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Old 27th November 2013, 20:13   #31
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Originally Posted by Kaboooooom View Post
Thanks Bulk . Test rides begin mid December. I am going to post my findings then.
Hey no worries..happy to share my thoughts.
I would suggest though keep the TBTS tests early since we have the famous waiting period that needs to be considered.
The others are not so long a wait.
All the best. Some bikes are always for life so make the right decision..
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Old 28th November 2013, 13:05   #32
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

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Okay tell me this, not considering other things which bike can be ridden for longer duration among the Duke, Karizma, Apace, Thunderbird 500. Which bike will tire out the rider first to last (on the kind of terrains in the link in my previous post)?
I guess ultimately I am looking for the right balance between comfort and flickability.
Never ridden the Karizma. Don't fit on the Apache. Never ridden the Thunderbird 500. You seem to be veering towards comfort over performance (both from your short list of bikes as well as your concerns) so honestly I would suggest the Thunderbird 500 for you. The Karizma too if you are ok with slightly compromised performance on the highways before you reach the broken terrain. Depends on which of these 2 tug at your heartstrings more. The Karizma though would have the advantage of alloys and the option of tubeless tyres, which is always a plus when going to remote places with terrain that can cause a puncture. Its also lighter. The Impulse too would be great. Test ride it. If you are ok with its low-ish top end on the straights, its got great suspension and dynamics for the hills and broken patches.
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Old 28th November 2013, 15:51   #33
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

For Himalayas Strict NO for your Rx135

Its the place where Torque/CC matters.
So any bike with higher torque in lower RPM suites for Himalayas, so that you need a bike with more CC.


If TBTS 500 is not suiting you due to its heavy Weight, Consider CBR 250 from your list.
KTM might be having Full tank fuel verse total range limitation, But engine wise , still its good

Not considering Karizma since its in your NO list

But important is to learn basics about your bike so that you can do minor Fixes what ever Bike you are taking

My collegue had a trip with two TBTS 500 and they came across situations to do minor repairs/Air filter change their own

- Happy Biking

Thanks
Arun
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Old 28th November 2013, 16:42   #34
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

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Originally Posted by Kaboooooom View Post
Thanks Naveen. I did not consider the Impulse because its quite tall for me and doesnt all the powerful/raunchy as its advertised. It was my very first impulse (pun intended) but then I realized, thats not it.
How tall are you? Yeah gotta agree that it is not powerful at all. And the only way to get that is by plonking the zma engine. Perhaps you will take a relook

Quote:
Originally Posted by abhinav.s View Post
Good suggestion Naveen!! I had missed out the Impulse from the list. Good GC, dual purpose tyres, seating position suited to ride on bad/uneven roads.

What is the tank capacity by the way?

PS: Once you manage to swap the engine please keep us updated. And your ownership review is still pending of the impulse.
Tank capacity is 11 l. And am working on the engine swap - a mech friend is looking for the engine. Lets see how things pan out.

Hahaha, yes, the ownership review is still in the "Assembly line" and I've completed 3k on the bike now
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Old 28th November 2013, 16:49   #35
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

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Tank capacity is 11 l. And am working on the engine swap - a mech friend is looking for the engine. Lets see how things pan out.
Naveen sorry for asking a delicate question but is this going to be an engine swap of only the internals with the outside casing stock, or are you planning to get the bike's registration smart card amended with the new engine number of the donor engine?
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Old 28th November 2013, 16:55   #36
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

Hey Kaboom,

From your choices, I think TBTS 500 is a good option.

I have just test driven the TBTS 350 and 500 and both are solid bikes. RE has improved a lot on fit and finish. The new TBTS looks a different bike altogether with the bigger tank. The engine was very refined and responsive, braking seemed to be better than the old bikes.

Its a different story that I finalized Avenger due to Moolah and waiting time issues. (Happy with the purchase though- true VFM).

I was upgrading from Enticer and wanted a similar stance. If only Yamaha can launch a 200cc Enticer. You cant match its handling.

On second thoughts, why dont you try the newly launched Cafe Racer. Its the most modern RE in India.

Last edited by arsenal.arun : 28th November 2013 at 17:08.
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Old 28th November 2013, 16:56   #37
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

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Naveen sorry for asking a delicate question but is this going to be an engine swap of only the internals with the outside casing stock, or are you planning to get the bike's registration smart card amended with the new engine number of the donor engine?
Well honestly - I am not even sure if the RTO will be ready to amend the registration with a swapped engine number. Do they even allow that? Just cross fingers and ride :(
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Old 28th November 2013, 17:01   #38
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

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Well honestly - I am not even sure if the RTO will be ready to amend the registration with a swapped engine number. Do they even allow that? Just cross fingers and ride :(
Yeah there is a process for doing that for a new chassis as in after a major accident. Dont know about engine though.
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Old 28th November 2013, 17:04   #39
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

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Yeah there is a process for doing that for a new chassis as in after a major accident. Dont know about engine though.
Ok, will research that too. Would be great to have it completely road legal.

Sorry for stealing the thread a bit guys!
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Old 28th November 2013, 19:03   #40
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

Well, I did go through the entire thread and can only guess your confusion.. ok adding one more variable so you get closer to getting totally leh'd even before you set course . But I think you will need to address this as well. Whichever ride you choose or even before that get more info on and if any tuning change required as you hit some serious altitude. it would be worth while to identify the ASS/garage you want to get it done or may be tools and knowledge incase you consider it doing yourself. rest have fun selecting the ride and keep posted.
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Old 28th November 2013, 20:39   #41
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

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Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
Yeah there is a process for doing that for a new chassis as in after a major accident. Dont know about engine though.
Quote:
Originally Posted by naveenroy View Post
Ok, will research that too. Would be great to have it completely road legal.
The engine number can be endorsed by RTO but again it is subject to inspection by the RTO Folks. The usual process of pencil etching will be carried out and yes you will have to account for the original engine as to what happened to it.

You can get them done easily obviously by applying grease.

One of my friend's car suffered from a sump damage and obviously a major seizure. Company folks advised replacing the entire unit and they had assured of getting the RTO Entries done. My friend sold the car instead.
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Old 29th November 2013, 10:10   #42
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

Authorized Service Centers of big dealers (Bajaj definitely) routinely do the chassis replacement route so there is obviously a well set channel in place. The engine though is a bit more rare obviously, cause then it brings into question cubic capacity as well vis a vis what is homologated (in this case).
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Old 29th November 2013, 10:26   #43
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

I have biked across Khardung La and Chang La in 2009. The nine of us had a combination of bikes, namely RE, Yamaha & Pulser. From my experience the ride is definitely better with a low revving bike. The RE's perform very well and were a pleasure to ride. There are many slow moving stretches at high altitudes where the high revving bikes struggle and the experience is painful

My suggestions are two fold. One is to stick to RE and the other is the hire the bike. The high altitude really take a toll on the engine and you may never enjoy riding your bike after this trip. If you still adamant of taking your own bike, then be reconciled that you may have to sell it after the trip.

Cheers

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Old 29th November 2013, 10:48   #44
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

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If you still adamant of taking your own bike, then be reconciled that you may have to sell it after the trip.
I must disagree. Took my bike (2007 TB) to Khardung in 2007 and since then she's taken me across Central India, to the North-East, to Kutch and on numerous other trips and still going strong. Know a lot of people who have used their own bikes for Ladakh and are still using them. If you take ride sensibly when riding in Ladakh and get it serviced well after you return, there's no reason why you need to worry about ruining your bike on just one ride.

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One is to stick to RE and the other is the hire the bike.
I guess there are some new premium rental outfits these days that do keep their bikes in good shape. But if you are thinking of hiring a bike from one of the numerous small outfits in Delhi or Leh, perhaps think again. Those bikes are really abused by their riders and the chances of one of those rental bikes breaking down is high. And in Ladakh, you really don't want a bike to break down. I remember our group helping a couple of Isralies who were on a broken down-Bullet. Looking at the condition of their rental bike I wondered why they even hired that particular bike in the first place, especially for that kind of journey!

Having said all that, coming to your original query about a good bike for those sort of journeys. I think the REs are really good for the job, especially for pillion comfort and luggage. But if I were doing Ladakh again, I'd prefer a lighter bike with better GC. Wait for the promised 'bigger-engined' Hero Impulse perhaps? Hero has the added advantage of having a presence all over the country. Have noticed this on all my rides, the chances of finding a Hero service center outside of the Metro-GQ-Tier 2 City-NH circuit are much higher than any other bike brand.

Last edited by am1m : 29th November 2013 at 10:54.
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Old 29th November 2013, 11:24   #45
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Default Re: A Premium Bike for the Himalayas

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Originally Posted by KPS View Post
I have biked across Khardung La and Chang La in 2009. The nine of us had a combination of bikes, namely RE, Yamaha & Pulser. From my experience the ride is definitely better with a low revving bike. The RE's perform very well and were a pleasure to ride. There are many slow moving stretches at high altitudes where the high revving bikes struggle and the experience is painful
That is a very good & important observation which should be helpful in selecting a bike for run in such terrains.

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Originally Posted by KPS View Post
The high altitude really take a toll on the engine and you may never enjoy riding your bike after this trip. If you still adamant of taking your own bike, then be reconciled that you may have to sell it after the trip.

Cheers

KPS
Any particular reasons for it? There are numerous reports on TBHP where people have not only gone to such places in bikes but also cars & SUVs; which inherently require much more air to keep them alive at such altitudes. I can understand that revving, starting, FE & overall performance while being at high altitudes will be reduced, but why would the engine suffer a permanent damage (as lubrication is not compromised)? I think all such symptoms will subside as soon as the vehicle is back to normal conditions; may be a proper service will suffice.
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