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Old 27th August 2013, 23:02   #256
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

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Originally Posted by ku69rd View Post
Anurag,
From my experienced with the Bird, think she can effortlessly cruise at 100-110 Kays all day long. Believe its more got to do with Engine Revs. The right spot and you should be comfortable as well with no body fatigue.

But on the Leh- Ladakh circuits am sure doing 60s must be a good one
My friend (in the photographs above) keeps telling me exactly the same about the cruising speed. Somehow I feel as if the bike just starts rattling too much. Or it could be just the unit I own, REs do have character, right?

By the way, we were doing 100 on the last 50 kilometres to Leh.

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Originally Posted by ku69rd View Post
Take your time buddie am pretty much on with loads of time. But yes your feelers indeed give me a whole world of confidence.

Trivial things, did the bike suffer any breakdowns? Were you let low by any punctures, CDI going Kaput? Simple but annoying stuff like a cable bust or Kickstand Spring going its way? Also did you carry any spares? If yes what were they.

Shucks you need to pen a detailed one buddie
Thanks for the long line.
My bike had no mechanical issues, whatsoever. Must mention that on a long downward road of about 10 odd KM I used the rear break too much, absent mindedly or just being lazy, and the break overheated and stopped working. 15 minutes of break time had it back in action. I reverted to the proper habit of front plus engine breaking with rear breaks used only when really required and it never happenned again. No such problems on my friend's bike, who happens to be a much better rider than me.
My Friend's bike had a broken clutch cable somewhere on the way to Chushool. Luckily he was well prepared and had an extra cable. Must mention that the cable was already hard before we started on the journey and he had more or less expected it.
Second: His break pedal hit a protruding rock hard, in a river bed and refused to come back up. We had to attach a bungee cord from the leg guard to the pedal to hold it up in place.

Among the less important ones:
My side stand light on the cluster refused to go off and we found that the switch cable attached to the side stand had dislocated.
The steel clip that holds the short silencer cover in place (just as it straightens out after the turn from the engine side) also broke on his bike. We replaced that In Manali for Rs. 8.

Nothing else I can think of. No punctures during any journeys (More on that later).
One thing that is worh mentioning is that I was planning to change the rear tyre to a softer compound for better grip and cornering. I am glad that did not happen because, some of the roads had sharp and loose stones strewn all over. The MRF tyres handled them well. A softer tyre may have been ruptured, I feel.

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Originally Posted by Vihari View Post
No sir, you cannot say thanks like this. The perfect thanks to all those whom you intend to, is by way of giving us a 'Wonderful' Travelogue! The two important components of a Travelogue - Beautiful Photographs & Lucid writing - are available in abundance with you. So it is more the bad, if you do not put out a Travelogue.



..and your travelogue with the above details requested, will give US a chance to thank you!

- Sai
You are right! I owe it to the members on the forum, to write, and the judgement on it's quality is their's to make while the obligation to write is mine. Thanks for the appreciation and nudging me in the right direction .

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Originally Posted by azm@bpl View Post
And moreover a good travelogue inspires others like us to take the plunge. Deep inside everyone wishes to go an adventure like this but cannot pull up the courage to dive in. Travelogues like this are an encouragement for a novice like me
Correct! That is how I got inspired in the first place. Thanks for the perspective.
Regards.
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Old 28th August 2013, 14:59   #257
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

Anurag, welcome back and iam mighty glad to note that you have completed this dream bike run safely and back in town with loads of memories that you can cherish for rest of your life

Some of the pictures are breathtaking and you should not feed us teasers here but, dole out the whole thing which many of us adventure hungry folks will lap it up hungrily

I do know your just back from a long ride, how about a short ride this weekend if your up to it?

Let me know and look forward to a blow by blow detailed travelogue on the forum soon in future.

Cheers !!!
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Old 28th August 2013, 15:01   #258
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

Congrats Anurag! Nice to see the two Enfields in their element. I would be most satifsfied with a photo documentary. i.e. photos with a short commentary on each. I have alsways found that to be the easiest least painful of doing the customary/expected travlogue after the ride is done and real life catches up.
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Old 28th August 2013, 18:38   #259
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

Hello Anurag,

Thanks first off for this wonderful post and the minute details you shared with us

some questions which newbies like us need info on if you oblige

1.Did you have to carry and lube your chain regularly considering that leh and surrounding places can get dusty.
2.how was the rattle on the instrument cluster
3.how did the new projector Headlamp unit function, did you get a chance to compare it with another Bullet on the way
4.what the average FE for the trip
5.any trouble with muck /slush / water wading capabilities on the new bull.

sorry if these are too many I have some more too but will save that for later
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Old 29th August 2013, 10:39   #260
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

Quote:
Originally Posted by mobike008 View Post
...Some of the pictures are breathtaking and you should not feed us teasers here but, dole out the whole thing which many of us adventure hungry folks will lap it up hungrily

I do know your just back from a long ride, how about a short ride this weekend if your up to it?

Let me know and look forward to a blow by blow detailed travelogue on the forum soon in future.

Cheers !!!
Thanks Avi! Travelogue coming up soon.
I would love to go for a ride, just that the bike has not come back yet and it may be another week before it does. I was thinking of a night out on our bikes and camping somewhere (I guess I need time to get out of the Ladakh frame ).
I will get in touch with you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
Congrats Anurag! Nice to see the two Enfields in their element. I would be most satifsfied with a photo documentary. i.e. photos with a short commentary on each. I have alsways found that to be the easiest least painful of doing the customary/expected travlogue after the ride is done and real life catches up.

Thanks Doc. Your idea sounds cool! And you are correct, many pending chores, most of them tasteless...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimmy_u View Post
Hello Anurag,

Thanks first off for this wonderful post and the minute details you shared with us

some questions which newbies like us need info on if you oblige

1.Did you have to carry and lube your chain regularly considering that leh and surrounding places can get dusty.
2.how was the rattle on the instrument cluster
3.how did the new projector Headlamp unit function, did you get a chance to compare it with another Bullet on the way
4.what the average FE for the trip
5.any trouble with muck /slush / water wading capabilities on the new bull.

sorry if these are too many I have some more too but will save that for later
Answered one by one:

1. We did not carry it but did get our bikes washed and greased on arriving in Leh.
2. Even on the worst roads I failed to notice any exaggerated rattle. And I know what you mean. I get that sense while going over the multiple speed breaker strips.
3. We completely avoided night driving as a rule. But I do ride home from office sometimes after dark and the road has no street lights. I found the low beam very appropriate for sedate driving.
4. Both bikes averaged 30 kmpl
5. The muck at Rohtang which in places is a foot deep (It looks much more menacing than a foot deep), was well dispatched. We did hit rocks in the river beds, but the bike ploughed on and for both of us: we did not have to stop midway in a water crossing. Some crossings were upto 30-40 metres long. Please do keep in mind that it was August and not June-July (water flow and depth would be lower now).

Please do not apologise for your queries. It is a pleasure to be of any help.
Regards.
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Old 31st August 2013, 17:19   #261
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

Here are couple of pics of the bike from last week's solo ride...I did about 125 KM one way and I generally enjoyed the ride. Like many of you said it's pretty frustrating to maintain the 55-60 Km speed limit especially on a good road. I was also annoyed with the increased engine noise which the dealer claimed is normal. I need to get it checked in the next service that is due next week. I got a mileage of about 30 Kms average.


Quote:
Originally Posted by nemo View Post
Nearly 6 months after making the booking & 4.5 months after briefly considering a used TBTS 350, I got the delivery of my TBTS 500 last evening. It did not come easily and definitely not before some yelling and screaming at the dealer. Their entire allotment process is one black box with absolutely no transparency. Royal Enfield's customer service is plain pathetic and no match to their products.

Anyway, the bike, as everyone now knows is such a treat and pleasure to ride. I only got a chance to ride about 10 KMs yesterday and the brief ride in a heavy bangalore traffic was not at all bad. I'll post a brief ownership report after I mange to ride a bit.
Attached Thumbnails
I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership-1150277_10151855694182082_1029291343_n.jpg  

I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership-1239899_10151855694337082_1486780075_n.jpg  

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Old 16th September 2013, 13:34   #262
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

Finally, got my Bird

It was a classic RE experience, let me explain:
I got a call in the last week of Aug saying that my bike is here and I will get it as soon as I make the payment. I immediately went to the showroom, paid the monies and submitted the required documents. I was told the registration will take 5 days but I can collect the bike as soon as the cheque is credited. Extremely excited, I went in to collect the bike after 2 days.

On the appointed day I called twice and confirmed that the bike will be ready by 4 pm. I reached the showroom at 5 pm and I was asked to take a seat. Waiting. The bike is in the service station (which is 500 metres away from the showroom), on its way. Waiting. Still on its way.Still waiting. The service station has run out of fuel. Waiting. Finally at 7.30 pm, someone rode in with the bike (2 kms on the odo, I made sure to check it).

I had the detailed PDI checklist with me (courtesy helpful T-BHP members ). Most of it checked out OK. I said I have some queries - how do I open the tool kit compartment, how do I change the rear tire, etc. The guy was a little surprised. Showed me how to reach the tool kit (I thought it was quite a task, by the way!), couldn't explain the rear tire bit. I asked about running-in. Again he couldn't help. Asked me to come again tomorrow as someone else might be able to explain. Before I left he asked me if he could keep a copy of the PDI checklist for his reference!

Just as I was about to leave with the bike, the guy in charge tells me that I can take the bike home but can't ride it as it has a temporary number plate. Well, why didn't you tell me earlier? No answer. Fair enough, when do I get the registration? Oh, the documents are still with the dealer, not yet sent to the RTO. Although disappointed, I just smiled to myself, steeled my resolve and said welcome to the RE family.

And here's the brighter side, all the guys at the showroom (from the watchman to the sales guys) were extremely polite and helpful. Eventually, got the registration completed after a week. It was a trying experience to have my TB350 sitting at home, all ready to be ridden but unable to take it out. But the wait is finally over!

Last edited by bblost : 16th September 2013 at 13:57.
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Old 17th September 2013, 09:09   #263
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

Congratulations Anurag on the fantastic bike and the out of this world Leh trip that you did on it. You will cherish the memory for the rest of your life.

Keep updating...
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Old 25th September 2013, 16:25   #264
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

Have not been able to enjoy my TB350 because it has been raining a lot in Mumbai for the past few days. Have done just a little under 100 kms over 4-5 trips. It's been fairly smooth so far: gear shifts are fairly smooth (a little difficult to get to Neutral from gear 1, cant be easily done from gear 2), comfortable ride quality and stance. Have kept to under 55 kmph and well under 3000 rpm for most the time.

However, there is a slight niggle which is bothering me. When I start the bike it has soft, lazy thump sound to it. But after my last ride (~20 kms, 30 mins) I could hear a slight clattering sound. It seemed to be coming from the engine. This sound wasn't there when I started the trip. Not sure if I am hearing things or being over cautious.

Any views on what this could be and what I can do to set it right?
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Old 25th September 2013, 17:05   #265
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

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Originally Posted by charade View Post
Have not been able to enjoy my TB350 because it has been raining a lot in Mumbai for the past few days. Have done just a little under 100 kms over 4-5 trips. It's been fairly smooth so far: gear shifts are fairly smooth (a little difficult to get to Neutral from gear 1, cant be easily done from gear 2), comfortable ride quality and stance. Have kept to under 55 kmph and well under 3000 rpm for most the time.

However, there is a slight niggle which is bothering me. When I start the bike it has soft, lazy thump sound to it. But after my last ride (~20 kms, 30 mins) I could hear a slight clattering sound. It seemed to be coming from the engine. This sound wasn't there when I started the trip. Not sure if I am hearing things or being over cautious.

Any views on what this could be and what I can do to set it right?
Hi Charade,

congrats on the Bull and welcome to the family.
which dealer did you get the bull from ?

To comment on your observations.
1.neutral will be a mystery
2.gear shift sometimes may be hard to stiff but will smoothen post 1st service
3.check the handle if it is stiff, i had to get to correctly set from the service center
4.take the bull to the service center asap in case of any unnatural sound

you can read my experiences in my ownership thread.
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Old 25th September 2013, 23:28   #266
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimmy_u View Post

Hi Charade,

congrats on the Bull and welcome to the family.
which dealer did you get the bull from
you can read my experiences in my ownership thread.
Thanks Jimmy_u. Might take it to the service station if the sound recurs.

Got the bull from Voyage Motors, Kandivali in Mumbai.

Cheers,
Charade
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Old 26th September 2013, 03:06   #267
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

Congratulations on your new RE.

As Jimmy_u says, shifting and everything else will work better as your new motorcycle breaks in.

With only 100 km on the bike, things are learning to live and work together smoothly. This process won't really be fully finished until you have over 1500 km on the motorcycle.

Often, the clutch cable will stretch a little when it is new and this can aggravate finding neutral. You can do a quick check to see if this has happened by lightly moving the clutch lever on the left handlebar until it starts to show resistance to further movement.
The gap between the lever and the stationary housing should be 2 to 3mm (.08-.12 inches). If the gap is greater than this you can adjust it easily.

To adjust the clutch cable, notice at the lower end, two nuts where the cable attaches to the left side cover. These straddle a solid lug on the cover.
Loosen the nut that is closest to the lever and rubber boot at least two full turns.
Turn the forward nut clockwise (forward looking aft) about 1/2 turn and check the gap at the clutch lever. It should be smaller.
You can increase or decrease the gap at the grip by tightening or loosening the forward nut so do this until the free movement is between 2-3mm.

When this free movement gap is correct, tighten the rear nut and recheck the gap at the clutch lever.

A slight clattering sound is to be expected. The piston, rocker arms, cam followers and dozens of other parts are beginning to wear into one another. As they do the clearances will increase and small whirring, clicking and tapping sounds will be noticed.

These sounds become more noticeable when the engine oil becomes fully heated after a long ride.
This is more obvious on a air cooled engine like the Royal Enfield has than it is with the water cooled machines.
The water cooled bikes also make these same noises but the cooling jacket and water that's in them serve to dampen out many of these sounds making the watercooled bikes sound quieter.

If it makes you feel better and it isn't inconvenient for you, take your motorcycle to the service center. I suspect they will adjust your clutch cable and tell you the sounds are normal.
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Old 27th September 2013, 11:35   #268
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Thanks for the inputs ArizonaJim. Will check this out over the weekend and revert.

After what you have said I think it's quite likely that the extra clatter is due to various parts of the engine running in.
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Old 2nd October 2013, 21:40   #269
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i am awaiting the delivery of my TBTS500.
though the bike seems to be a perfect budget cruiser the only thing which RE took too further in order to keep the cost under check are the tyres. i mean they are too 'skinny' to match the character of the bike.

i was wondering whether i can change the profile of both the front and the rear tyres without negatively impacting the handling and ride quality of the bike.

what i have in mind is 120/80 18 for the front and 140/70 18 for the rear.

please let me know if i can go ahead with these fitments or not?
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Old 3rd October 2013, 14:21   #270
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Default Re: I Live again: Thunderbird 500 Ownership

ArizonaJim, you were right - its the breaking in and things are learning to live together smoothly. Have covered about 250 kms and the bike rides noticeably smoother.

Few other things that I am loving about the bike:
1. The headlamps - just amazing! Superb visibility, beats a few small cars too I'd say
2. Comfortable riding position, although would have liked the handle bars to be higher. May be I'll try out a different set sometime in the future. Wonder how apehanger handlebars will look. Any suggestions?
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