Team-BHP > Motorbikes


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 3rd June 2021, 16:49   #1
BHPian
 
tchsvy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 159
Thanked: 420 Times
Default My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R

How the thread should be?
Informative? Nah, I don’t even know the basics, aargee has covered everything about the baby Ceeber!

Entertaining? Woah, I don’t have a funny bone, I am boring guy!

Shall I start with explorative, like four wheelers move the body, two wheelers…. Cliché!

Okay, let’s start from the beginning, let me just tell you a story! yeah this sounds better!


I wasn’t exactly a motorhead from childhood, I never had a poster of a Sports bike or a Sportscar on my wall, my dreams were (are) basic, never dreamt big. I was happy with collecting pens, occasionally exchanging my old watch to a new one, and then if there is handheld device that I can afford, like Walkmans (I had a Panasoanic portable cassette player during my plus two days, notice the spelling, yeah it was Panasoanic indeed!), Gameboys (again chinese ones), I would just save for few months and then after like 3 or 4 months bug my parents to shell more money to get something, that’s about it.

So, when did I first encounter automobiles for the first time? It was the early nineties when my father was posted in a remote location, to reach to village we had to walk 3 KMs, that’s how remote the village was. There was a single Maruti 800 in the village that belonged to a rich family, for some weird reason that car was called as a ‘Frog car’ by the villagers, I don’t know why. Then there were few two wheelers mostly Bajaj Chetaks, and IIRC a couple of Hero Honda CD100, the general thinking was, if you had a Car, then you are rich, you have made it in life, Chetaks were for commuting and if you a motorcycle then you belong to the crème of the middle class. So, for a young tchsvy, the early impression was the bikes are premium thingies!

Then came 2000, just completed my plus two and one of my aunts was getting married, on the day of engagement my to-be-uncle arrived on a RX100, with all the bling in the world, from Hyderabad to my grandparents village covering 175 KMs, my father and other relatives were cracking jokes on the fuel economy of the RX100 and at the same time wondering how rich my uncle might be for owning such a vehicle, that talk along with the mighty RX attracted me to the world of two wheelers. It was just then I have also started to learn two wheelers, my dad used to have a Bajaj Chetak, but he would never let me ride it, so it was maternal uncle who was kind enough to give me his scooter sending down two of my cousins so that they can teach me, and I started with a wheelie, so you can say my interest in two wheelers sky rocketed on that day.

So, it was then that I decided that I need to buy a RX100 (which I did for a brief period in 2016), and my fascination with two wheelers started that day. Every single bike that was released after that caught my attention, Bajaj Caliber, Suzuki Fiero, Bajaj Wind, Hero Honda CBZ, Bajaj Pulsar, oh boy I wanted each and every one of them. Bajaj changed the ‘premium commuter motorcycle’ market big time with the launch of Pulsar, I dearly wanted one during my post-graduation days, but couldn’t afford.


HONDA UNICORN (2005-2013)


Name:  uni.png
Views: 3287
Size:  575.1 KB
(Unfortunately, I don't have any pics of my Uni, but (un)fortunately, the current owner doesn't believe in traffic rules, so this one pic that I have managed to get from the Hyderabad traffic police challan portal)

After completion of the post-graduation, I needed to have a two wheeler as every interview that I attended during that period, used to end with a question, ‘do you have a two wheeler?’ my answer would be negative and I will lose that opportunity.

But being a caring father that my dad is (the ‘Bommarillu father’ type as we call it in AP and Telangana), he never wanted me to ride a bike, interesting when you consider he owned six different two wheelers starting from Priya Scooters to Yezdi in his younger days. It took a lot effort from me and my mother to convince him, he finally agreed and withdrew 60K from his PF, that was a significant amount for him, may be equal to or even more than his two-month salary. So, as per the middle-class tradition, you start your bargain from the top-of-the-line motorcycle and your father will start from the basic motorcycle then you both will arrive at a mid-tier motorcycle, that’s how it goes on normally. I wanted a Yamaha Libero G5, why? My friend used to own a Libero, and I really liked how refined it was, that’s about it, but as per the procedure started my bargain with Honda Unicorn, my dad started with Hero Honda Passion, I tried to bring him to Libero, but he outright rejected it, saying he would never let me ride a Yamaha, why? RD350, RX100, Yamahas are fast and furious! I haven’t done my research at that point, so not a single clue about other bikes, decided to stick with Unicorn, dad was adamant that it has to be a Hero Honda, convinced him enough to take a look at Uni which he thankfully agreed to, both of us along with a bike mechanic my dad trusted, went to the District headquarters to book either Unicorn or the Passion.

Here comes little drama at the Honda showroom, Unicorn was originally launched in 2004, and in 2005 Honda introduced a second generation Unicorn with sticker job and supposedly few changes to the engine as well. I wanted one in grey color, but the second gen Uni wasn’t available with the dealership in grey color, however a first gen Un in grey color was available, the SA asked us to book one in grey and he will get it in couple of weeks’ time. My father took the opportunity and told him that he wanted to buy a bike on that day itself and he will go to the Hero Honda showroom and get me a Passion. I, on the other hand, didn’t wanted to be seen on the Passion, it was quite common bike on the roads those days, I wanted to ride something that stood out from the crowd. I was adamant on getting the Uni, the manager, a blessed soul, offered a solution that he will change the body panels on the second gen black Uni to the first gen grey Uni that they had in the stock, that was best of both worlds for me as I hated the sticker job on the second gen Uni, I instantly agreed, but my father rejected the idea, he argued that the perfect marriage of body panels and soul (engine) carried out at factory shall not be disturbed, but I persisted and he finally gave up. And frankly speaking, he was right, the panel gaps were never consistent and there were few fitment issues that lasted forever.

So, I got my first bike a Honda Unicorn, first Uni in my hometown, one look at it and people used to say “Ghoda hai!” (Looks like a horse!) It was indeed a reliable steed, server me until 2013, when the odo read somewhere near 70K KMs. I also have to admit here, in the initial couple of years, every ride I did with the Uni would have ended in the Bad Drivers thread on this forum, I was young, with 13.5 horses between my legs, I did many of the things on a bike that shouldn’t be done in the first place, met with few accidents too, one, too serious that permanently damaged my knees, and to this day can’t walk for too long. Was going to Miryalaguda from Hyderabad with my young cousin riding pillion, the Addanki Highway from Narketpally to Addanki was under construction, every tree on the way had a board stating the speed limit as 20 KMPH, it was getting dark and with all the paddy fields on the way, there were too many bugs in the air causing a great disturbance, so what did I do? Wrung the throttle and rode at 80KMPH, result? A little slippery material on the road, and the bike lost traction, my cousin jumped off the bike, I was with the bike sliding for what seemed like an eternity, fortunately there was no traffic behind, otherwise it could have been a fatal accident, somehow avoided a culvert and found myself in a small ditch with dirt, blood all over my hands, knees and legs, riding gear you might be asking, I had a helmet and jeans jacket on, that’s about it. Due to his jump my cousin’s ankle twisted a little, which by god’s grace only required a pink bandage and had few small scratches here and there. First instinct was to check on him, relieved to know that he was fine then looked at myself, I had bruised knees, skinned outside of the right hand with no skin from elbow to wrist, both wrists bruised heavily. The knees were so severely bruised that it took me six months to wear a pant again, and it took me even more time to wear shoes, yes I attended an interview wearing flipflops! There were two more occasions when the bike slid on wet surfaces, resulting in few bruises. Apart from these, I had a whale of a time with the Uni, it served me well. Learnt all my lessons on the Uni, in some ways, it was one of the few companions during my tough times. Had many long rides on the Uni, but in 2013 decided to sell it off and buy another Honda with self-start, with heavy heart bid adieu to the Uni.


HONDA TRIGGER (2013-2016)


My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R-trigger.jpg
(Again, I don't have any pics of my trigger, this is lifted from the google search)


So got a new job in 2012, settled down a little bit, life felt stable after long periods of struggle from 2005 to 2012. Come 2013, I wanted to replace the ageing Uni, things on my mind, it has to be a Honda, but this time it has to be one with self-start, the kick start on the Uni was so hard, it left few marks on my leg, I wasn’t ready for that. Wanted to replace the Unicorn with Unicorn Dazzler, but Honda replaced the Dazzler with Trigger, and I was triggered to replace my Uni with the Trigger.

There wasn’t much drama with Trigger, neither buying it or owning it, it served me well, it was a little hungry bike compared to Uni, except that, it fulfilled my requirements, was one good bike to ride. The ownership experience from 201 to 2016 was fuss free.


SUZUKI ALL NEW ACCESS 125 (2016- )




Got married in 2014, my wife was finding it difficult to hop onto the Trigger, even the DMart/Spencers runs were not exactly fun on the Trigger. Meanwhile my father-in-law wanted to purchase a scooter, I casually suggested him a Vespa and he picked up a VXL150, the first time I rode it, I was impressed, it was not anything like the scooters that I rode before, engine felt peppy, suspension setup was really good, and the braking was next level compared to the Activas and Dios. I immediately wanted one until I heard the on-road price, it was 1.05 lakhs at that time. Later that year Aprilia started accepting bookings for the SR150 at mouthwatering price. By that time, I had just welcomed a kid into my life, my savings were nil, still somehow booked a SR on the Paytm website, thinking I can cancel the booking if needed. A month or two later, got a call from the showroom telling me that the test ride vehicles reached the showrooms and I can take a test ride, I went there with my wife, and found the seat can only accommodate me, a six footer and that the suspension was too race track oriented, too stiff for daily use. Immediately cancelled the booking, Paytm didn’t cancel it and they said they can’t return my booking amount, I had to go through pgportal to get my money back. A Suzuki showroom was very close to the Aprilia/Vespa showroom in Malakpet, so visited the showroom and took a test ride of the ‘All new Access 125’ with my wife riding pillion. It was the second-best experience I had on a scooter after the Vespa VXL150. So zeroed on Access.

Like I said I had no savings left with me, and this is a pattern you are going to observe in my next purchase as well, I am impulsive, but do I regret? Well, mostly not! One of my friends who really liked my Trigger told me that he will buy my Trigger, what more, he himself offered to finance the remaining amount, which I can return whenever I can. Friends, I tell you are the real treasure! So, I got myself an All new Access 125.
First two bike purchases were necessities, this time it was more of a want than a need. The excuse I had at the time was, a scooter would be fuss free in Hyderabad traffic and that my wife would be far more comfortable on the scoot and the grocery/vegetable runs would be far more convenient.
The Access is serving me well. It has great balance and brakes for a scooter, initial pickup is good with reasonable top end, can cruise at 60 KMPH comfortably all day long. Pathetic A.S.S. is only sour grape in the ownership of the scoot.

The Jawa Conundrum(2019)



2016-18 was the most turbulent time in my life, I went through a lot professionally and personally, by God’s grace everything sorted out by the end of 2018, so once everything settled down, the bug to get back to ‘real biking’ started to bite, excuse given this time was that the scooter’s stiff suspension was giving my back a hard time. By this time my family had given up on me, and they decided I have already lost my mind and there was no point in raising concerns. By the beginning of 2019, I started to clear my debts, with absolutely no savings, I went on to book a Jawa 42, telling my family that by the time a bike is delivered to me, I will have enough savings to buy one.

So booked one in March and the long wait started, after the couple of years that were filled with stress and depression, my family was happy that I was excited about something. Now we started to wait for the day that I will be called to make the final payment. Meanwhile I started to do my own research on the 42, every source I can find on the internet, my excitement can be seen here on the Jawa thread, posting various news every now and then. I haven’t been active on the social media, but for the sake of Jawa 42, I started to browse them every day. Jawa’s official pages, fan pages, owners’ pages, some guy’s vlogs, you name it, I was follower of all these on the net. And that’s how exactly I lost my interest in Jawa.

I almost forgot to tell you, why I chose Jawa, like I said, my father used to own a Yezdi in his younger days, and there’s a certain charm to Jawas and Yezdis, so when CLPL announced their bike, I was very excited, they did a tremendous job on the design front, they are beautiful. Went on to test ride one and instantly fell in love with the 42, the same connection that I have felt when I test drove the Nissan Micra Active. One more test ride was enough for me to book it there and then.

Now coming back to the point, as I started to follow fans and owners’ pages on the social media, quite a few problems were listed there, it all started with rusting issues, CLPL responded with different bolts and some rust proof paint at the end of the exhausts. Seat is really short, if you are six feet like me, then there is little space for the pillion, you need to visit your friendly neighborhood upholster to get a new seat, not exactly a good thing. The lambda sensor was faulty on most of the Jawas that were delivered, company was providing a replacement, again good on CLPL’s part. The fuel gauge was faulty and moist was getting inside the meter console, no solution for this from CLPL, the final thing that bothered me was the reported low ground clearance when center stand is installed. Every bike has its own shortcomings, and even though CLPL was taking care of few issues, I need to visit their service center to sort them out, but all the three showrooms in Hyderabad are at least 25 KMs from my place, add to that, it’s impossible for me to get those many Casual Leaves just to get my bike sorted. Thought long and hard, I wanted to put stressful days behind me, but still the work was giving enough stress, didn’t want to add a miniscule level of it to my already loaded mind, with heavy heart I dropped the idea of purchasing the 42.


HONDA CBR250R (2019 - )



When I dropped the idea of buying the Jawa, my brain became a little sane and started to question the decision of pouring two lakh rupess into a bike and emptying my savings. The stupid heart was still set on a bike though, like I always do, bargained with my mind, and arrived at a decision that, buying a reasonably premium bike in the preowned market with a set budget of 1 lakh rupees would be best idea, I will be getting a new toy and will be having at least one lakh in savings account.

So, once this decision was taken, informed my family about it, and surprisingly they were disappointed that I wasn’t buying the Jawa, I drove my family mad with all my trivia about the 42 in the last 9 months or so.
My search for a preowned bike began on the OLX, visited the classifieds section on this forum every day, initially started with three bikes in mind CBR250R, FZ25 and Dominar, with CBR250R being the first choice, with that, started to refine my search.

CBR250R, manufactured after 2015, with less than 30k KMs on the odo, this was the search criteria. Most of the CBRs on these online platforms were beaten, with various levels of modifications carried out. Wanted a bone stock bike in good condition. Took my time, and found one in reasonably good condition with 27K Kms on the odo, the previous owner took good care of it, but the rear tyre needed to be replaced, we couldn’t agree on a final price though, I kept it my shortlist and continued my search. One fine Sunday, my brother-in-law who is into automobile sector and who’s judgment I trust, came to visit me, I suggested him we go bike hunting, he readily agreed and shortlisted two bikes to check out, the first bike we checked out had some 8K Kms on the odo, but the right side panels were broken at places and the bike pulled to right, it was apparent that the bike met with an accident but the owner insisted it was just fell down, engine was in pretty good condition though, we decided to pass it and went to the second bike on the list.

Like I said, the budget set aside for the bike was 1 lakh, and the two bikes that we checked out were listed at 1.05-1.15 region, we were ready to spend 80-85K on them, but the third bike was listed at 1.6 lakhs, way over our budget even with hard bargain it will definitely be more than the set budget. Now, we got impulsive, sat down in the car, started the engine, and my brother-in-law for some reason was pumped up and he went on to say “we will check the next bike out, we will offer him 1.3 lakhs and get the bike, are you on this?” I just nodded my head and said yes! And that’s exactly how it happened but not without some confusion and hilarity.
We went there and checked the bike out, the bike has run just 5500 KMs and was in pristine condition, apart from a minor scratch on the heat shield of the exhaust, there wasn’t a single scratch on the bike. We really liked the bike and the whole conversation went on like this:

My BIL to me: “Bike’s really good, we shall start the bargain from 1.1, I know he won’t accept it, but we have to play it cool and eventually land him at 1.3, what do you say?”
Me: “Yes, sounds like a plan!”
My BIL to the previous owner: “Bro 1.3 is what we offer, hard cash, now, transfer of ownership within a week”
I was like, “what, we were to play it cool no bro?”


The previous owner started the downhill from 1.5 and eventually agreed to let it go at 1.3, now comes the hilarious part.


Now that, we needed to pay him 1.3 lakhs, my brother-in-law was supposed to pay the amount which I will return in couple of days, but he forgot his debit card in his car, now the account number of the previous owner was added to my brother-in-law’s account but due to some limitations, we were able to transfer 40 thousand only, then we started to play the Google Pay, PhonePe and JoBhiPe game on our mobiles. Kudos to the previous owner, who patiently waited for all the money to be transferred to his account which took more than one hour, but eventually we completed the transaction and left from there with a wide and stupid grin on our faces.


These motorcycles I tell you, make you do all the stupid things in the world, for them and with them.


Now wait a second, I didn’t even do a proper requirements study prior to the purchase. So, does it make any sense to buy a CBR250R for city commutes through thick Hyderabad traffic, where I hardly get to engage the third gear, let alone 5th and 6th? Hell, no sir! The Jawa with decent low-end grunt, or the Classic 350 with the famous locomotive pull, or the FZ25 with good bottom end torque makes more sense than the baby ceeber. But I just wanted a CBR, I told myself, if it gets too cumbersome to ride the CBR then I have the Access as a backup. Add to that, at that time I was 35 years old, and any bike with fairing was not supposed by driven by a 35 year old. In fact, when I first took it for a wash, I heard the owner of the wash shop say to other gentleman, “they race on these on necklace road, they all do”, so, that’s how the bike is still perceived by the aam junta.


So, put more than half of my savings into a bike that doesn’t even make any sense, so was it worth it?


As far as the bike was concerned, I was at home with it, got hang of the riding position and the ergonomics. But it took me nearly 10 days to understand the gearing. I am an early shifter, but with the baby ceeber you need to hold on to the gears for little longer compared to the commuter bikes. As far as gripping the tank with knees, fortunately when I had the Unicorn, during one of the numerous repair works to the Uni, I happened to visit the Secunderabad ASC of Honda, and they had an informative chart in the lounge with good riding practices, one of them was gripping the tank with the knees and staying with the bike in the event of mishaps. This was exactly what saved me during my slide on the Unicorn, I am so sure because, one of my cousins who met with a small accident where someone abruptly entered his lane and he braked hard to avoid a collision, his bike’s tyres lost traction and he started to fall, he tried to put his hand and leg on the ground, which resulted in multiple fractures in his hand and leg, for which he had to undergo few surgeries.


In the city, I have already mentioned, it doesn’t make any sense, but boy take it out of the city boundaries and it puts a wide grin on your face. Take it to the open roads, and let me tell you this, the bike deserves every single rupee spent on it. By the way I have named it ‘Hisan’, horse in Arabic, my steed.



Got it serviced at the nearest ASC, which proved to be a wrong decision. Couple of BHPians suggested me to get it serviced at either Secunderabad or Erragadda, but chose the Moosarambagh ASC and those guys kept the bike with them for two days, and the only thing they did in those two days was removing the front sprocket cover which they forgot fix back while returning the bike, realized this after couple of days, reached the ASC in anger and they blamed me for taking the bike back just after two days! They offered to service the bike then and there, hindsight I should have said no, but agreed and handed over the bike to them. Overall, not happy with the service quality and needed to visit the ASC one more time to adjust few things.


Since then, till date I have covered 9000 KMs on the bike, did few semi-long trips to various places surrounding Hyderabad, and its has been a pleasure riding it. When you think about it, the baby ceeber is all you need in our Indian conditions, its reliable, offers decent comfort levels, can tour all day long, can do decent speeds, and return 30 KMPL all the time, so what more do you need! But then again, this is a dangerous motorcycle to upgrade to from a commuter class, not because its too fast or cant be managed by a noob rider, but because it introduces us to proper bikes and lets us experience what a good bike can do, there starts the rabbit hole, you want this quality in more quantity, that’s where I am right now, I ‘want’ something more, do I ‘need’ anything more, hell no, but I want. Let’s hope that I will eventually climb up the ladder and land something unthinkable, here’s to hope!

Enough with the talk, now few pics!

My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R-img_20200301_134757.jpg
Near Amrabad tiger reserve

My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R-img_20200301_134812.jpg

My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R-img_20200301_135817.jpg
Near Munnanoor

My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R-img_20200301_142445.jpg
Dindi Project

My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R-img_20200301_142719.jpg

My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R-img_20200614_161920.jpg
Looks gorgeous even without any colours!

My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R-img_20200823_143451.jpg

My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R-img_20200823_152225_1.jpg
En route Ananthagiri hills

My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R-img_20201025_131300.jpg
Vizag Colony

Last edited by tchsvy : 8th June 2021 at 14:44.
tchsvy is offline   (14) Thanks
Old 4th June 2021, 16:54   #2
BHPian
 
tchsvy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 159
Thanked: 420 Times
Default re: My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R

What about the bike then?



This thread is more about my story than the bike, and the following threads have beautifully covered every aspect of the baby ceeber, if you need any information about the bike, there is plethora of it on these.

https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/motor...questions.html (Honda CBR 250R : Answers to some commonly asked questions)

https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/motor...000-km-up.html (Pre-worshipped 2013 Honda CBR 250R ABS. EDIT : 1 year & 10,000 km up!)

https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/motor...nt-2020-a.html (Honda CBR250R Review : Still relevant in 2020!)

https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/motor...-cbr-250r.html (My 2018 Honda CBR 250R)

Still, few relevant bits from my experience with the bike so far:


Pros:
+ Excellent build quality, no squeks, no uneven panel gaps
+ Made for munching miles
+ Planted and spot on ergonomics and suspension setup for both highway rides and city commutes
+ Reliable, fuss free ownership, fill it, shut it, forget it!
+ Pillion seat, unlike many other bikes, is comfortable for long rides
+ Aged pretty well for a decade old design
+ Decent FE figures, especially on the highway (~35 KMPL)
+ Windshield is actually useful; I have never felt a need to change to something like Double bubble
+ Minimum heat felt on the highway
+ Great bike to start with, if you want to upgrade to middle class and liter class bikes in the future

Cons:
- Spare parts availability is a big concern
- ASC experience is not good, and it’s only going to get worse
- Tyres, ContiGo, doesn’t inspire confidence, especially in rainy season and when going from a dry tarmac to a wet surface, it gets scary there
- Doesn’t inspire confidence to carry speed into corners, I know its not an R15 or an RC390 to cut through corners but it should not be as bad as it is
- Turning radius in city can be a bit of problem (nit picking)
- Brakes could be better (on standard version)
- Age old instrument cluster, things like gear position indicator are sorely missed
- Design, again, even though it has aged well, but Honda has failed to give it a proper make over in 8 years of its running, only sticker jobs were carried out
- Some might say it lacks character! No thrill, no drama, just a plain mile muncher, or even call it a glorified commuter, if you can!
- After market accessories are limited, especially now that it has been discontinued, the vendors have moved on to R15s, RR310s, RC390s and alike

Engine:
The baby ceeber comes with a gem of an engine, I am not the right person to talk about the bore x stroke or the compression ratios, from my (layman) perspective it is linear in acceleration, climbs to speeds pretty quickly and can stay above 100 KMPH all day long without breaking any sweat. I have previously owned two Honda bikes and the engines on those bikes were pretty smooth, the baby ceeber is on those levels when it comes to engine smoothness. Vibrations are kept at minimum with a buzz felt at the tank at 4000 RPM. The gearing needs getting used to if you are coming from a commuter bike with good low end, like any Honda it loves to revv and changes characteristics once past 5500 RPM, until that it’s just any other bike, once past that mark, it’s a different beast all together, those who have ridden bikes with more BHP and NMs might be laughing at me for calling the baby ceeber a ‘beast’, now keep it in mind that I am talking from a beginner perspective. Best part of the engine is how stress free it feels to ride it, I have done few speeds above the speed limit and which cannot be mentioned here, but if I had done one more KMPH, I would have been able to say ‘I Love You’ to the bike, but alas! At even at those speeds, it did not feel like I am stressing the engine, I am not advocating doing unreasonable speeds in our conditions, but the thing is it is effortless that you do not realize what speeds you are doing unless you take a look at the speedo.



I always wanted to take the best care of the engine so fed her with good quality fuel, most preferred fuel is the XtraPremium fuel at the Prisons department owned petrol bunks in the city, experimented once with Shell fuel, but the results were not good, so went back to the XP fuel, and last time around I have fed her with XP99, so far so good. As far engine oil is concerned, after bringing the bike home, I have changed the engine oil thrice, first two times it was the Honda Throttle engine oil, for the third service I have chosen Motul 7100 Synthetic 10w40 engine oil, and I have observed two things, first the engine has become smoother, and second the bike holds on to the higher gears a little better, resulting in less gear shifts.


The Riding Experience:

I was riding a scooter before getting the Hisan home, from relaxed posture to a little lean forward position, it was not tough actually and thanks to the threads mentioned above, I was ready with all the necessary information as to how not to keep the arm straight and bend it a little to avoid wrist pain, etc. I was at home with the bike from the first kilometer.

The baby ceeber is really an all rounder and can be rode in all conditions, that being said, its more of a tourer than a city commuter. The suspension setup is perfectly tuned for the Indian conditions and potholes, speedbrakers are not an issue, corner cravers may find the setup to be on the softer side, but helps a lot on the bad roads that we encounter on daily basis. Turning radius is on the higher side and the torque curve is also linear, bottom end is not explosive, other than these there is nothing much to complain about with city rides. Take it to an open highway and that's where it shines, it's planted, stable, fuss free and doesn't heat up that much to cause inconvenience, two grouses are, it's not exactly a corner craver and doesn't inspire enough confidence to carry speed into corners and as I had to pick up a non ABS version, the brakes are not exactly great, I have heard and read that the BS4 is lot better compared to earlier versions, I can only imagine how bad the brakes were on the earlier gen bikes. I have tried DOT 4 brake fluid, and the feedback seems to be better, whether its placebo or real, I can't tell.

Comfort:
I have brought the bike home on 10.11.2019, the odo read 5500 at the time and now it reads 143XX and I have enjoyed every KM of those 88XX KMs. I am 5’11”, almost 6’ guy and the seating triangle is perfect for me, the forward lean is not as prominent as on something like the R15 V3 or the RC390, at the same time its not exactly a commuter friendly upright triangle as well, its somewhere middle of these two, and its perfect for every occasion, not too committed for a city ride and not too upright to cause wind blasts to the chest on the highways.
The seat is also made for long rides, firm and doesn’t bottom out, the contours are also perfect for my height and the seat height is also perfect for me. I have added fego air cushion for long rides and initially I felt the difference, but now, I am not too sure whether its helpful or not. Pillion seat is comfortable for long rides, I have had a pillion riding with me on a 200 KM nonstop ride and the pillion had no complaints whatsoever.

Feature list:
Its pretty bear bones when it comes to features, with the BS IV upgrade Honda has added LED headlamp and that’s the only novelty, the instrument cluster is basic and displays speed, RPM, fuel level, temperature, time, Odo, single trip meter and misses out on gear position indicator, second trip meter etc. I have got my self a non-ABS model, hence the brake calipers are Bybre, the tail lamp, indicators are still old school halogen bulbs.


Ownership, maintenance, costs, etc:
The one aspect I absolutely hate about the ownership is the availability of spare parts, or there lack of. I encountered this early in my ownership, the previous owner removed the rear view mirrors and didn't provide them to me, I had to search the whole Hyderabad to get them, then when they were available at one of their ASCs, the bolts to fit them were not available! I had to get them from outside. Then just before the lock down last year, I had a fall from the bike and the rear brake pedal got bent, needed to replace it, but due to the lock down couldn't do so, after lifting off the lock down, I had to wait 6 months to get it replaced, numerous trips to various ASC were not fruitful, but a mail to the Honda customer care thankfully moved things forward, and the same ASC which previously stated that the part was not available called me the next day, and I got it replaced. This is what aargee has always been telling us the CBR owners, to send a mail to the Customer Care to get the spare parts, but I believe every ASC that deals with the CBR should stock at least regular consumables and parts which are easily broken or needs frequent replacements.

Oh, and the fall! I was coming back from office one day, and was just overtaking a slow moving Maruti Omni, it was a relic to be honest, and the wipers were not working, so the gentleman driving the Omni took a bottle full of water and hand sprayed it on his windshield, but only 25% of the water landed on the windshield while the other 75% was thrown on to me! I wasn't sure what just happened and by this time I was little ahead of the van, I turned my head around took the right hand off the handlebar and gestured him what the hell he was doing, after may be a couple of second turned my attention back to the road to find the lady in front of me frantically braking hard as a black Scorpio was overtaking her from her left, I had split seconds to brake hard to avoid hitting her and my hand went from gesturing 'what the hell' to 'hell I need to brake' real fast and grabbed handfull of the lever, resulting in front wheel locking up and had a fall at slow speeds, had few bruises on my leg, but that was it thankfully. As for the bike, the rear brake pedal was bent, the fork seals went kaput.

Apart from this one incident, the ownership has been great. As far as financials are concerned I have two tables to show here:

Name:  CBRService.PNG
Views: 2545
Size:  32.9 KB

Name:  CBRFE.PNG
Views: 2533
Size:  37.1 KB

As far as service is concerned, I am just about OK with the experience, but it could be far better, but the guy who used to work on my bike at the ASC has left and started his own garage, not sure whether to trust him there or go to other ASC for the next service. I have been hearing good things about Secunderabad ASC will try to check them out next time. The fuel efficiency is on par with other CBR 250Rs I believe, around 35 on the highway and 30 in the dense Hyderabad traffic, I will take that.

Likes and dislikes:
If I have to pick five things that I love about the bike, they would be i. Engine, ii. Ride quality, iii. Looks, I think it has aged well, iv. Ergonomics and v. Overall build quality. My five dislikes would be i. Spare part availability, ii. Turning radius, iii. Brakes on the non-ABS version, iv Tyres, and v. age old instrument cluster.


Modifications:
I had to replace the front right side indicator, but as usual it was not in stock with the ASC, so decided to experiment with the flush mount indicators and got one from the Bandidos Pitstop, apart from that the bike is bone stock and I have not carried out any other modifications, I have got Fego Float air cusion for the long rides, other than this I haven't added any accessories to the bike.

As far as riding gear is concerned, the lid is Studds Shifter helmet, actually wanted a SMK Twister, but the Thunder and Twister were made by the same company, Studds, with a thought to upgrade in the near future I chose the Thunder, as I needed to replace my old helmet. Got myself Rynox Air GT3 jacket and Royal Enfield Cordura Jeans in black shade, got Royal Enfield gloves for city rides and Big Bang Biker semi gauntlet gloves for the long rides, I need riding boots to complete my gear and would be procuring them soon, and replacing the lid is also on the cards and this time will be looking for an Axor or an MT helmet.

Name:  ezgif10ba14cea0c92.gif
Views: 2499
Size:  5.73 MB

I have mentioned in my previous post that, my shortlist had three bikes and CBR was my first choice, honestly speaking, I always had my heart set on CBR from its launch in India. Back in 2010/11, the baby ceeber was something that had the big bike road presence and was something that can be termed as achievable dream for a guy hailing from middle class family, so more than anything else, I was super happy to lay my hands on the bike that I have wanted for so long and used to admire as a young bloke. Was it the right time, was it the right decision, I am not sure, but I was and I am happy that I have brought it home, and at the end of the day, it's what all matters!

So, this is about all I could share with you now, this thread may not be up to the high standards set by other BHPians, but this is my first thread, hopefully I will be able to document my next (big) purchases (financial blunders, in my friends and family terms) in those lines. Thanks for your time!

Last edited by tchsvy : 8th June 2021 at 15:07.
tchsvy is offline   (13) Thanks
Old 9th June 2021, 07:26   #3
GTO
Team-BHP Support
 
GTO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Bombay
Posts: 61,207
Thanked: 205,250 Times
Default Re: My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R

Thread moved from the Assembly Line to the Motorcycle section. Thanks for sharing!

Will go to our homepage today
GTO is offline   (2) Thanks
Old 9th June 2021, 14:06   #4
BHPian
 
ManasN95's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2020
Location: Thane
Posts: 102
Thanked: 131 Times
Default Re: My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R

Hello, I loved every bit of your experience, and it was a very well-written review.

Congratulations!

Do try the Shell Advanced Ultra for your next engine oil change, some say it's a match made in heaven - the CBR & the Shell.

I could relate with everything you mentioned, except the brakes, which are amazing in the ABS version. Do look up for threads on some pointers for improving the braking abilities, like steel braided lines, DOT 4/5.1, and better tires.

For your spare part issue, please check Ruby Sales Corporation on Instagram, they are located in Pune, and have 99% of the spares in stock, or can be made available ASAP. They ship all over India.

Much excited to hear more updates from you. The front LEDs look dashing!
ManasN95 is offline   (3) Thanks
Old 9th June 2021, 15:47   #5
BHPian
 
s_pphilip's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Anjuna, Goa
Posts: 361
Thanked: 491 Times
Default Re: My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R

Congratulations tech savvy, this bike is like extended family and will be a wonderful catalyst to create beautiful memories, the baby center is a "does not go wrong anywhere" bike. Faster folks may get bored but it's got enough to keep the regular guys happy and engaged.
We've a Java and Repsol edition CBR 250 at home and the Ceeber can be both spirited or relaxed depending on your mood, not all can cover that range.
My friend who had a CBR 250 for a couple years earlier went back it picking one again cos he missed the fun it brings to the table without the added anxiety of others.
A comfortable mile muncher it is and you'll have nice stories to share, wishing you miles of riding joy.
s_pphilip is offline   (3) Thanks
Old 9th June 2021, 18:44   #6
BHPian
 
Xaos636's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Down South
Posts: 271
Thanked: 1,408 Times
Default Re: My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R

Congrats and well written. One of the few bikes which can do it all on our roads. Pillion- check, long trips- Check, city commutes without leg burns- check, fun- enough to put a smile on your face!

Its a no nonsense motorcycle and I had the luck to own the Combined ABS version for a few years where as for the BSIV one, they had removed the combined ABS, still the new one had spectacular braking and I think that's the only one you will be missing on it. And yes, try out the Shell oil next time

Wishing you happy miles on her!
Xaos636 is online now   (2) Thanks
Old 9th June 2021, 23:56   #7
BHPian
 
s_pphilip's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Anjuna, Goa
Posts: 361
Thanked: 491 Times
Default Re: My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R

Like everyone said, Shell advance ultra it is, match in heaven, tried in 2 different Ceebers and turns the engine into a softer purr, CBR250 isn't as soft sounding as Unicorn but you can sense it. Have even tried the Rimula hack used as flush.

On Team BHP, there's plenty of value added suggestions and hacks that the esteemed contributors, eg treasure trove Aargee, Sheel, Naveen, Neil, Ashwin, Prasanna etc, have suggested or FNG's can help with, like you can use the filter from Yamaha FZ, or Pulsar 220s rear brake pads for ABS version, though I feel the OG pads have better bite, or similar side indicators from one of the other Honda's.

Also try Michelins when it works out, complements CBR's. With 10ml more in the front shocks.
Batteries need to be in good condition always, I had the ABS light coming up and random swings from RPM needle and it turned fine when I changed the battery after some back and forth. Rest, the bike can go on without skipping a beat, gentle riding offers good fuel economy too. Only pain point is low end, double up.

The ignition set is pricey though. With my bike lying idle for the greater part of the recent 2 years, I'm starting to worry about it.

Maybe we can catch up when you ride to Goa once all this settles.

Last edited by s_pphilip : 10th June 2021 at 00:18.
s_pphilip is offline   (2) Thanks
Old 10th June 2021, 11:09   #8
BHPian
 
tchsvy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 159
Thanked: 420 Times
Default Re: My Motorcycle Journey | From a Unicorn to a Honda CBR 250R

Quote:
Originally Posted by ManasN95 View Post
Hello, I loved every bit of your experience, and it was a very well-written review.

Congratulations!
Thank you for your kind words.
Quote:
Do try the Shell Advanced Ultra for your next engine oil change, some say it's a match made in heaven - the CBR & the Shell.

For your spare part issue, please check Ruby Sales Corporation on Instagram, they are located in Pune, and have 99% of the spares in stock, or can be made available ASAP. They ship all over India.
I have considered Shell Advanced Ultra, thought long and hard before deciding on Motul 7100, will definitely give the Shell a try.

Quote:
Originally Posted by s_pphilip View Post
Congratulations tech savvy, this bike is like extended family and will be a wonderful catalyst to create beautiful memories, the baby center is a "does not go wrong anywhere" bike. Faster folks may get bored but it's got enough to keep the regular guys happy and engaged.
Thank you, and yes it sure is a 'go anywhere, do anything' sort of a bike, loving every bit of the ownership!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xaos636 View Post
Congrats and well written. One of the few bikes which can do it all on our roads. Pillion- check, long trips- Check, city commutes without leg burns- check, fun- enough to put a smile on your face!

Wishing you happy miles on her!
Thank you, whenever I take her to the open roads, I grin like a kid, it surely is not all about speed though!

Quote:
Originally Posted by s_pphilip View Post
Like everyone said, Shell advance ultra it is, match in heaven,
Now that I am hearing all this praise from all of you, I will be going with the Shell next time, for sure.

Quote:
On Team BHP, there's plenty of value added suggestions and hacks that the esteemed contributors, eg treasure trove Aargee, Sheel, Naveen, Neil, Ashwin, Prasanna etc, have suggested or FNG's can help with, like you can use the filter from Yamaha FZ, or Pulsar 220s rear brake pads for ABS version, though I feel the OG pads have better bite, or similar side indicators from one of the other Honda's.

Also try Michelins when it works out, complements CBR's. With 10ml more in the front shocks.
Batteries need to be in good condition always, I had the ABS light coming up and random swings from RPM needle and it turned fine when I changed the battery after some back and forth. Rest, the bike can go on without skipping a beat, gentle riding offers good fuel economy too. Only pain point is low end, double up.

The ignition set is pricey though. With my bike lying idle for the greater part of the recent 2 years, I'm starting to worry about it.
Oh boy, the TBHP university! I have learned a lot from this platform and many threads here have been eye openers, I owe a lot to this community and quite literally everything that I know about the baby ceeber has been learnt from this very platform.

I had few mods in my mind when I got the bike, changing the brake fluid to DOT 4 and brake liners to P220F steel braided ones was the top priority, changed the fluid to DOT 4 but didn't change the brake liners, I don't have enough confidence in the ASC guys. As far as oil filters is concerned I am OK with the stock fileter. For Indicators, I have asked the mechanic at the ASC to replace them with anything that fits and told them if they can fit an LED unit from Hornet 2.0 that would be far better, but they said nothing fits the baby ceeber, so got myself the bandidos flush mount indicators, they look neat though and are squid proof too!

Quote:
Maybe we can catch up when you ride to Goa once all this settles.
Its been almost six months since I have gone on a long ride and I am itching to take the Hisan on one. Goa is definitely on my list, if work permits, may be during the dussera vacation I would love to be there.
tchsvy is offline   (1) Thanks
Reply

Most Viewed
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks