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Old 23rd May 2012, 10:18   #961
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My wait is about to be over too- I should be getting my black C3 by the end of next month.

The guys at RE were kind enough to loan me a Classic 500 for the last weekend. That was the same bike which I had test ridden two years ago and also my first ever ride on a geared mottorcycle.

She was in a terrible shape as she had participated in a Great Ride event the week before. There were numerous scratches, dents, one pilot light wasn't working, the taillight was dead and so was the speedometer. The gears weren't really smooth and I encountered plenty of false neutrals. Still, she could deliver the goods when the hammer was dropped.

Amazing performance from a bike in such a poor conditon! I think that the C5 is one of the fastest rides in India today- only the CBR250R, Duke 200, Ninja 250 may outgun the C5 (and all of them are pretty rare here)

More than the speed, it's the torque- it just comes at you in an unrelenting wave. It's addictive and habit forming. I got sore wrists and elbows due to being constantly thrown back in the seat by the torque. So did my brother, who is considerably lighter than I am.

This was a first generation C5 and I think that may explain why the power delivery was quite jerky at times. It was as if the engine was missing a beat at times and that there was a hole in the throttle response like a badly tuned carburetted engine. Also, the bike was pulling to the left side at high speeds along with a sharp spike in the vibe levels. These issues have been sorted out in the new Classics, right?

The rear brakes were strictly average for a bike of this size- disks at the rear would have been more appropriate. The front disks were powerful, but they have too much bite. One gets used to them pretty fast however.

Strangely, I found the much criticized spring loaded seat quite comfortable. But that could be because my rides weren't too long or maybe because I'm a pretty big guy.

Ladt
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Old 23rd May 2012, 10:58   #962
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Last but not the least the sales Rep had told me that the fuel economy for the c5 was 25 kmpl. I am not too sure about that. Unfortunately I had no means of measuring that either as the speedometer and odometer was dead. Do the new C5 s give better mileage?

The C5 is a brutal machine that is full of fun. It appeals to me but I doubt whether I would be responsible with that much power at my fingertips, especially on a motorcycle. Power corrupts, as the adage goes. The lower fuel efficiency is also a turnoff. 35 kmpl I could have lived with, but 25 kmpl? That's close to what my City gives (22 kmpl on highways). No way- my wallet would be busted in weeks if I were to start using the C5 for my office commute.
Another major turnoff had been the laundry list of problems the 500 has as mentioned in Randhawa's thread. The c3 seems much more reliable in that aspect.

I hope that I won't miss the C5 too much when I ride the C3. Only one way to find out- time to get a C3 for another weekend! If the C3 isn't too much of a.compromise, I'll go ahead with it.
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Old 23rd May 2012, 14:25   #963
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Default Re: RE Classic 350 - Initial ownership

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Originally Posted by evilmessiah View Post
Last but not the least the sales Rep had told me that the fuel economy for the c5 was 25 kmpl. I am not too sure about that. Unfortunately I had no means of measuring that either as the speedometer and odometer was dead. Do the new C5 s give better mileage?

I hope that I won't miss the C5 too much when I ride the C3. Only one way to find out- time to get a C3 for another weekend! If the C3 isn't too much of a.compromise, I'll go ahead with it.
I used to get a mileage of 27-28kmpl with City (Mumbai). Used to be first out of every signal. So Someone who drives more sedately might get better mileage but do not expect more than 30-31. Highways you do get 35kmpl. Tankful to tankful method.
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Old 26th May 2012, 13:39   #964
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Default Re: RE Classic 350 - Initial ownership

Hi everyone, I have clocked 6700 kms in my Standard UCE and is currently in the process of stretching my top speed up little by little. Last day I rolled the throttle to touch 80 kph for 1/2 a minute and rolled back to 50kph and a minute later had to stop at a signal (This was the second time I am touching 80 kph- I mostly ride in city traffic at speeds 50-60kph and rarely get the chance to go WOT) and during the deceleration to a stop, I felt the engine juddering a bit / somewhat more shaky. Is it due to the heat build up due to touching up a never attempted rpm and coasting to a stop before the engine returned to normal temp? After riding some more the shake was gone. Any idea what it could be ?
Another thing is that the steering of the bike feels notchy in the middle of the arc when moved side to side with the bike is in the center stand and the front wheel is raised off the ground. There is also a low pitched squeal coming out of the front left forks when bounced. Should it be left alone or attended promptly ? Advice please..
Regards Adrian

Last edited by adrian : 26th May 2012 at 13:43. Reason: typo
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Old 4th June 2012, 12:45   #965
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Default Re: RE Classic 350 - Initial ownership

Finally, the guys at RE Cochin were kind enough to lend me a C3 for the weekend.
Now this C3 was in a much better shape than the C5 I had got a couple of weeks back.
Here goes my initial observations-

1) I had felt that the C3 was much smoother than the C5. Acceleration and deceleration was much more linear. Maybe the C5 was rougher because it was from the very first batch of 500-s which were still rough around the edges? The showroom folks might not have updated the ECU to the latest firmware either.

2) Maybe the brakes were setup different, but the brakes on the C3 performed much better and had less bite (the front brakes) than the C5's.

3) I felt that the C3 was capable of delivering a decent shove. Not close to the rabid performance of the C5, but more mature and linear without any nasty surprises. I found it somewhat inadequate in the highway. Overtaking requires planning and I had to shift gears much more than the 500 whose engine didn't care what gear it was and was eager to rocket away at a twist of the throttle.

4) Sublime ride quality. Potholes and craters are dismissed off with a mild 'thud'. I don't think other bikes even warrant a comparison.

5) I rode pillion on the C3 on Saturday night with my friend piloting it. He had been much more liberal with the throttle than I was and the top speed he could achieve on the empty highway was slightly in excess of 100 kmph. I had felt that the engine sounds the most relaxed at 60-80 kmph. Again, the ride quality was brilliant- even while riding pillion. Absolutely stable and planted even at top speed. However, I hated the pillion seat- it's like sitting on a loaf of bread which would be uncomfortable and precarious. I hope that I never have to ride pillion on a Classic again solely due to the poor pillion seat.

5) However, all this ended in a somewhat sad note. My friend was trying to start the C3 yesterday evening. He was using the electric start and would keep the button pressed down for quite some time for it to start instead of cranking it for a second or two, waiting for some more time if the engine doesn't come to life and then trying again like I do.
As I was saying, the dude had been keeping the button pressed down and cranking the engine when suddenly a loud pop came from near the carburetor (Please correct me if I'm wrong). I saw something getting dislodged but I didn't give it much thought. The bike refused to start despite using the kick lever or the electric start. I didn't check it out much further as I had a lot of stuff on my plate at that time.

This morning, I had to return the bike and it wasn't starting still. I checked out the carb and found that it had been dislodged! The carb sits between two pipes and one end had popped free when my friend had been starting the bike. I grabbed a screwdriver loosened up the front pipe, slipped the carb back in and tightened the ring around the pipe again and secured the fit with the pipe leading to the backside too.

The bike started with a single kick of the lever after that. The vibes were a bit more than usual when it started but it smoothed out after a minute or two of idling. The ride was uneventful after that and I returned the bike to the showroom.

Pardon my ignorance- I'm not too knowledgeable about bikes in general. I'm wondering whether I'm talking about the carb or the fuel pump. I'm uploading a picture of a 350 T-Bird engine and I've circled in red the part about which I had been referring to as the carburetor. Is it really the carb or the fuel pump?

That doubt aside, I'm also wondering why it had happened in the first place. I do agree that the way my friend had started the bike wasn't how I would do it, but is it wrong to crank the electric start continuously?

I don't know what to make of this event. On one hand, I'm relieved that I was able to fix the issue. On the other hand, I'm a bit flabbergasted by this incident. I haven't seen such a thing happening on any other bikes.

I hope that the BHPians can make out what had happened from my ramblings and enlighten me about it. These Enfields sure are polarizing- I had hated it when it didn't start and was considering cancelling the booking and getting myself a CBR instead. But when I was able to fix the problem and get it started, I started to love it once again. Odd.Name:  royaenfiledtwinsparkright.jpg
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Old 4th June 2012, 13:41   #966
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Default Re: RE Classic 350 - Initial ownership

I'm facing problem with ES on my Electra which is 2008 model. 6 out of 10 times it won't start with ES, it seems (i think) like the battery is not able to take the load, and I donít use ES during mornings, and mostly prefer kick start. Any thoughts what could be the problem.

PS: Recently I got the battery replaced (Exide 12EB14L) as the old was weak, and ES was not working at all. Additional info, the amp meter normally stays just towards +ve while driving, I suppose thatís the ideal.
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Old 4th June 2012, 14:01   #967
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Default Re: RE Classic 350 - Initial ownership

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I'm facing problem with ES on my Electra which is 2008 model. 6 out of 10 times it won't start with ES, it seems (i think) like the battery is not able to take the load, and I donít use ES during mornings, and mostly prefer kick start. Any thoughts what could be the problem.

PS: Recently I got the battery replaced (Exide 12EB14L) as the old was weak, and ES was not working at all. Additional info, the amp meter normally stays just towards +ve while driving, I suppose thatís the ideal.
You have the old design sprag. Get it replaced at the ASC asap. New sprag is sourced from another vendor and is of very good quality.
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Old 4th June 2012, 16:13   #968
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Default Re: RE Classic 350 - Initial ownership

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You have the old design sprag. Get it replaced at the ASC asap. New sprag is sourced from another vendor and is of very good quality.
Thanks buddy. BTW, pardon my ignorance, whats this "sprag" ?

EDIT : Ok, did some google, trying to understand what does that mean

Last edited by Milestone : 4th June 2012 at 16:18.
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Old 4th June 2012, 20:37   #969
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Default Re: RE Classic 350 - Initial ownership

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Finally, the guys at RE Cochin were kind enough to lend me a C3 for the weekend.


This morning, I had to return the bike and it wasn't starting still. I checked out the carb and found that it had been dislodged! The carb sits between two pipes and one end had popped free when my friend had been starting the bike. I grabbed a screwdriver loosened up the front pipe, slipped the carb back in and tightened the ring around the pipe again and secured the fit with the pipe leading to the backside too.



I don't know what to make of this event. On one hand, I'm relieved that I was able to fix the issue. On the other hand, I'm a bit flabbergasted by this incident. I haven't seen such a thing happening on any other bikes.

I hope that the BHPians can make out what had happened from my ramblings and enlighten me about it. These Enfields sure are polarizing- I had hated it when it didn't start and was considering cancelling the booking and getting myself a CBR instead. But when I was able to fix the problem and get it started, I started to love it once again. Odd.Attachment 936294
Hi what you had experienced is "spitting through" the intake, the indication of a lean condition.(The test ride machine might have been jetted lean and when combined with the cold morning condition and cranking without the choke on might have actuated it) After the connection from the air filter was knocked off by the explosion, the matter worsened as the engine began to take more air through the exposed carburetor intake. More air and less fuel prevented the engine from starting.
Regards Adrian
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Old 5th June 2012, 04:44   #970
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Default Re: RE Classic 350 - Initial ownership

evilmessiah

Yes, the part you circled in your photo is the carburetor.
See? You are wiser than you thought you were.

Actually, the models that have a carburetor do not have a fuel pump. They rely on gravity to move the fuel from the fuel tank to the carburetors float bowl.

The fuel injected models require much higher pressures than gravity can provide so they use a fuel pump to supply the fuel injector. The fuel pump is inside the fuel tank on these fuel injected models and can be seen by looking under the left rear of the tank.

No, it is not a good idea to continue to crank the motorcycle with the electric starter motor.
The starter motor uses a tremendous amount of electrical power and will rapidly overheat if it continues to run for more than a few seconds.
Continuous running will also quickly deplete the battery's power making the next electric start more problematic unless the ride will be for over 15 minutes. (Recharging the battery takes time).

As was mentioned, backfiring thru the carburetor can occur if the air/fuel mixture is not correct.
Things that can contribute to making the air/fuel ratio incorrect are many but low fuel levels in the tank, partially plugged fuel filters, partially plugged air filters, or something as simple as holding the throttle open while trying to start the engine can do it.
(Many motorcycles start easily with the throttle left in the idle position but if the throttle is opened while cranking the slow engine speed will not suck enough fuel into the airstream.)

Last edited by ArizonaJim : 5th June 2012 at 04:45.
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Old 5th June 2012, 10:15   #971
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adrian

Hi what you had experienced is "spitting through" the intake, the indication of a lean condition.(The test ride machine might have been jetted lean and when combined with the cold morning condition and cranking without the choke on might have actuated it) After the connection from the air filter was knocked off by the explosion, the matter worsened as the engine began to take more air through the exposed carburetor intake. More air and less fuel prevented the engine from starting.
Regards Adrian
Thanks Adrian! It had been really cold when my friend had tried starting the bike. That coupled with his continuous cranking must have triggered the splitting through. Does this happen only to RE bikes or is it a general phenomenon?
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Old 5th June 2012, 10:47   #972
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArizonaJim
evilmessiah

Yes, the part you circled in your photo is the carburetor.
See? You are wiser than you thought you were.

Actually, the models that have a carburetor do not have a fuel pump. They rely on gravity to move the fuel from the fuel tank to the carburetors float bowl.

The fuel injected models require much higher pressures than gravity can provide so they use a fuel pump to supply the fuel injector. The fuel pump is inside the fuel tank on these fuel injected models and can be seen by looking under the left rear of the tank.

No, it is not a good idea to continue to crank the motorcycle with the electric starter motor.
The starter motor uses a tremendous amount of electrical power and will rapidly overheat if it continues to run for more than a few seconds.
Continuous running will also quickly deplete the battery's power making the next electric start more problematic unless the ride will be for over 15 minutes. (Recharging the battery takes time).

As was mentioned, backfiring thru the carburetor can occur if the air/fuel mixture is not correct.
Things that can contribute to making the air/fuel ratio incorrect are many but low fuel levels in the tank, partially plugged fuel filters, partially plugged air filters, or something as simple as holding the throttle open while trying to start the engine can do it.
(Many motorcycles start easily with the throttle left in the idle position but if the throttle is opened while cranking the slow engine speed will not suck enough fuel into the airstream.)
Thank you Jim! I didn't know that the carbed bikes did not have a fuel pump - I'm ignorant about them in general as most of my automotive experience is with cars.
My friend used to start the bike by cranking it continuously. I had felt that he was doing it wrong but I did not correct him.
What was more amusing was the number of opinions people staying at that place passed around without knowing anything about UCE engines.
One guy was searching for the decompression lever
Another one who claimed he was in the bike business said that the UCE models with the gears and brakes on the 'wrong' side aren't really Bullets and hence didn't have much demand. Due to that RE is planning to make future models with the gear lever on the RHS and brakes on the left. I didn't waste my time correcting him.

Yes, the fuel was a bit low at that time. But, I had refilled it again after the engine had failed to start. What is the minimum amount of fuel that should be there in the tank? Fuel injected bikes do require a certain amount to be present at all times but I didn't think it applied to carburetted bikes.

As to holding the throttle open, I face that issue with my brother's Honda Aviator scooter. It doesn't start at the first crank and at times one needs to give it some throttle. Also, the engine dies sometimes in traffic while riding at low speeds. Maybe the throttle positioning is wrong? Or could it be due to the Carb running lean?
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Old 5th June 2012, 12:07   #973
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Default Re: RE Classic 350 - Initial ownership

Guru's

I need a help. I bought a new Thunderbird 350 in April 2012. I have followed all the recommendations of "running in" the bird. I had no issues what so ever with the bird till it went to first service. After around 900kms on the odo, I took the bird for a 350kms ride spanning over 10 hours with over 5-6 regular halts. Never drove the bird beyond 70kmph and rpm beyond 3000. While nearing the destination on the last stop, I noticed massive oil leak on the fins with oil all over the engine block.

Limped back to the base with oil topped up. Managed to get 15W40 and not 15W50. Showed it to the service center. Drained the oil and filled 15W50. Service Manager said that he will take care of the same during second service. Since then haven't taken the bird out for a long ride. A small ones on an occasional weekend. However in last 700-800 odd kms, I haven't seen as massive oil leak that I first noticed on the long drive. Oil level in the window also seems to be OK. But there is mild oil leak for sure. Its from the center of the cylinder head. Fins on the above are clean, only the bottom half is completely smeared with oil. I am attaching the pic for everyone's benefit. Now, I am have done 1940 kms on the odo and will give bike for second servicing in this week. I want to know what needs to be instructed to the service center or what need to be done. Need to educate myself before going to service center. Appreciating the help in advance....

take care and ride safely
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Old 5th June 2012, 13:10   #974
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rkavthekar
Guru's

I need a help. I bought a new Thunderbird 350 in April 2012. I have followed all the recommendations of "running in" the bird. I had no issues what so ever with the bird till it went to first service. After around 900kms on the odo, I took the bird for a 350kms ride spanning over 10 hours with over 5-6 regular halts. Never drove the bird beyond 70kmph and rpm beyond 3000. While nearing the destination on the last stop, I noticed massive oil leak on the fins with oil all over the engine block.

Limped back to the base with oil topped up. Managed to get 15W40 and not 15W50. Showed it to the service center. Drained the oil and filled 15W50. Service Manager said that he will take care of the same during second service. Since then haven't taken the bird out for a long ride. A small ones on an occasional weekend. However in last 700-800 odd kms, I haven't seen as massive oil leak that I first noticed on the long drive. Oil level in the window also seems to be OK. But there is mild oil leak for sure. Its from the center of the cylinder head. Fins on the above are clean, only the bottom half is completely smeared with oil. I am attaching the pic for everyone's benefit. Now, I am have done 1940 kms on the odo and will give bike for second servicing in this week. I want to know what needs to be instructed to the service center or what need to be done. Need to educate myself before going to service center. Appreciating the help in advance....

take care and ride safely
Fuel tank needs to be removed to undo the rocker covers. Then tighten up the head bolts, if problem persists then they will have to replace the head gasket.
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Old 5th June 2012, 13:34   #975
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Default Re: RE Classic 350 - Initial ownership

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Thanks Adrian! It had been really cold when my friend had tried starting the bike. That coupled with his continuous cranking must have triggered the splitting through. Does this happen only to RE bikes or is it a general phenomenon?
Hi, all bikes with a carburetor shows this phenomenon when jetted lean or when reaches a temporary lean situation (clogged tank cap vent). As for the influence of climate, density of air plays a major role. Some of them are :

1. Cold mornings : Air density high : Bike runs lean
2. Dry afternoons : Climate is hot : Air density low : Bike runs rich
3. Rainy season : More water molecules and less air molecules (humidity) : Air density low : Bike runs rich
4. High altitude : Low air density : Bike runs rich
So that means on a cold winter morning the bike will run lean and on a cold rainy day the bike will run rich.
Regards Adrian
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