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Honda Phantom Wikipedia Article - Seeking Input From Thailand!


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#1 Kalyan

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Posted 2010-12-23 21:06:35

Hi

I've not been here for a while, some of you may know me as the Honda Phantom fanatic from Singapore down south :) Yes I like to buy old bikes and give them a new life!

Anyways I searched through wikipedia looking to read up on some newer Asian commuter bikes and some models were never documented. My beloved Honda Phantom's page had less than a hundred words! Blasphemy! So since it was Xmas eve I spent a day in the office revamping the wikipedia article writing using my Singaporean point of view, which you can see here

http://en.wikipedia....i/Honda_Phantom

Everything but the last, horridly outdated "maintenance tips" and the overview was rewritten, lots of things were added including my ownership review and DIY tuning project. I also solved some myths such as "frequent overhauls needed", "skid prone", "eats oil" etc with properly modern 21st Century solutions and some ride videos :)

I thought to leave the page open when it came to mentioning the Phantom's heritage and ownership/modifications/accessories in Thailand because I bet you over there have much more knowhow for the bike than we do over here :)

#2 aitch52

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Posted 2010-12-24 12:17:37

Good job Kalyan a very good update much appreciated.

Chris

#3 billd766

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Posted 2010-12-24 13:45:49

I have had mine about 18 months now and increased the mileage (odd term for KM)from 5,5xx when I bought it to about 29,1xx km now.

During that time I have had it regularly serviced at 4,000 and sometimes 2,000 km points,replaced the speedo cable at 8,400, new IRC tyres front and rear at 15,000, new battery at 16,200 (it was the original and nearly 5 years old, the chain and front and rear sprockets at 22,000, cam chain tensioner at 23,xxx, front and rear brake pads at 25,000 and bulbs as and when required.

It is not a rocket ship but it is comfortable enough for me my overall fuel consumption is 28.24 km/l over the year.

I like it because it it comfortable, reliable and cheap transport that gets me to where I want to be slower than big bikes, faster than little ones and in all weathers.

It starts first time every time and is not fussed overmuch about TLC though it needs it from time to time.

It can be serviced at the local Honda shop and there are a lot of those in Thailand and they don't have the parts today it will only take 2 or 3 days to get them.

Would I buy another?

Yes as it is practical and good value for money.

Edited by billd766, 2010-12-24 13:50:58.


#4 Kalyan

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Posted 2010-12-24 14:55:56

Thanks, glad you like the makeover :)

I will definitely be building the Thai ownership section of the article using your excellent feedback billd766 - in the meantime I also came across some very nice custom Phantom images from this Vietnamese bike forum here:

http://bikervietnam.com/bfrm/showthread.php?t=43663

As for the Phantom's performance I think if I remember right you guys actually take them all the way up to 130kph and that is quite impressive! I've never tried anything above 110 as I notice the revs soaring sky high as the poor little Honda mill pretends to be an RS125.

Coming back to custom Phantoms - the thread above has some very nice "total conversions" for the "Road King" look! Any idea where I can browse for pictures in the Thai part of cyberspace?

#5 billd766

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Posted 2010-12-24 15:32:25

Thanks, glad you like the makeover :)

I will definitely be building the Thai ownership section of the article using your excellent feedback billd766 - in the meantime I also came across some very nice custom Phantom images from this Vietnamese bike forum here:

http://bikervietnam.com/bfrm/showthread.php?t=43663

As for the Phantom's performance I think if I remember right you guys actually take them all the way up to 130kph and that is quite impressive! I've never tried anything above 110 as I notice the revs soaring sky high as the poor little Honda mill pretends to be an RS125.

Coming back to custom Phantoms - the thread above has some very nice "total conversions" for the "Road King" look! Any idea where I can browse for pictures in the Thai part of cyberspace?

Hi Kalyan
The most I have got my Phantom to is 106 kph GPS speed or about 119kph on the speedo.

Having said that I am 116kg and big built and if I was smaller and had a windscreen I may have made perhaps 115 kph.

However to me speed is not one of the things you buy a Phantom for as it at its best cruising around 90 to 95 all day apart from refuels and rider breaks.

I find that when I am flat out at 100 or so if I pull the clutch lever in the engine will gain a lot more revs so if you want to go a little faster perhaps replace the front sprocket from a 13 tooth to a 12 which may take the top speed up a little.

I have always thought that the gearbox had ratios too low as 5th and 6th are more of an overdrive and I usually go down to 4th to overtake safely.

#6 Kalyan

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Posted 2010-12-24 15:42:16

(It seems I can't edit my post!)

During that time I have had it regularly serviced at 4,000 and sometimes 2,000 km points,replaced the speedo cable at 8,400, new IRC tyres front and rear at 15,000, new battery at 16,200 (it was the original and nearly 5 years old, the chain and front and rear sprockets at 22,000, cam chain tensioner at 23,xxx, front and rear brake pads at 25,000 and bulbs as and when required.


May I clarify with you the procedures for your servicing - would it be oil changes or does it involve inspection of the internal workings, such as valve clearance checks, cam chain tensioner, etc?

Thanks!

---

Read your earlier post - will make some corrections to the wiki now :) I will also post the gear ratios on the wiki, from the Phantom manual.

I'm pretty sure we're using a 520 link chain so some theoretical gearing work could be done at www.gearingcommander.com :D

Edited by Kalyan, 2010-12-24 15:59:43.


#7 Kalyan

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Posted 2010-12-25 07:52:28

Merry Xmas to the Land of the Phantom :)

Today I will do a little writeup on the Phantom in Thailand (I will see if I can unearth more user reviews from this forum, in the older discussions)

I also sorted out some silly licensing issues with the staff of wikipedia so they'd stop deleting the diagrams, videos, etc I created :P

Speaking of videos I should do a compilation of chase footage showing the Phantom's handling during some backroad rides I did back in July. The thing is actually very maneuverable with a stiffened set of forks :)

Final info request -

Do y'all use synthetic oil?

Before I made the DIY performance improvements, mineral oil was more or less fine all the way. After the mods? Mineral can't take the stress. Lol! But, some older bikes that ran on mineral all the way can't accept synthetic as there seemed to be a lot of blow-by leading to oil consumption. Those that I personally tuned are usually rebuilt examples and I did the Mototune USA treatment (hard break in) before synthetic oil was used, and they were fine with fully synthetic - I like synthetic for quieter running and high temp stability.

#8 billd766

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Posted 2010-12-25 13:44:42

(It seems I can't edit my post!)

During that time I have had it regularly serviced at 4,000 and sometimes 2,000 km points,replaced the speedo cable at 8,400, new IRC tyres front and rear at 15,000, new battery at 16,200 (it was the original and nearly 5 years old, the chain and front and rear sprockets at 22,000, cam chain tensioner at 23,xxx, front and rear brake pads at 25,000 and bulbs as and when required.


May I clarify with you the procedures for your servicing - would it be oil changes or does it involve inspection of the internal workings, such as valve clearance checks, cam chain tensioner, etc?

Thanks!

---

Read your earlier post - will make some corrections to the wiki now :) I will also post the gear ratios on the wiki, from the Phantom manual.

I'm pretty sure we're using a 520 link chain so some theoretical gearing work could be done at www.gearingcommander.com :D

As far as I can remember the guys down at the Honda shop follow the service manual but if I take it in for a between service oil change that is mostly what they do.

I get the chain oiled every so often (usually when I remember) and that costs about $1 US and during the regular services every 4,000 km they will clean the plus, change the oil and air filter, check the valve clearances, adjust the chain tension but not the cam chain tensioner but they never give the bike a wash mores the pity.

Overall I get a good level of service from the guys and girls at the shop which is more than reasonable as only one person can speak some English there.

I have been trying for months now to get hold of the parts manual so that I can scan it onto my PC but they won't let it out and even Honda Thailand won't sell me a copy.

#9 floridaguy

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Posted 2010-12-25 17:05:11


(It seems I can't edit my post!)

During that time I have had it regularly serviced at 4,000 and sometimes 2,000 km points,replaced the speedo cable at 8,400, new IRC tyres front and rear at 15,000, new battery at 16,200 (it was the original and nearly 5 years old, the chain and front and rear sprockets at 22,000, cam chain tensioner at 23,xxx, front and rear brake pads at 25,000 and bulbs as and when required.


May I clarify with you the procedures for your servicing - would it be oil changes or does it involve inspection of the internal workings, such as valve clearance checks, cam chain tensioner, etc?

Thanks!

---

Read your earlier post - will make some corrections to the wiki now :) I will also post the gear ratios on the wiki, from the Phantom manual.

I'm pretty sure we're using a 520 link chain so some theoretical gearing work could be done at www.gearingcommander.com :D

As far as I can remember the guys down at the Honda shop follow the service manual but if I take it in for a between service oil change that is mostly what they do.

I get the chain oiled every so often (usually when I remember) and that costs about $1 US and during the regular services every 4,000 km they will clean the plus, change the oil and air filter, check the valve clearances, adjust the chain tension but not the cam chain tensioner but they never give the bike a wash mores the pity.

Overall I get a good level of service from the guys and girls at the shop which is more than reasonable as only one person can speak some English there.

I have been trying for months now to get hold of the parts manual so that I can scan it onto my PC but they won't let it out and even Honda Thailand won't sell me a copy.


I have an english version of the manual if you want it. just pm me

#10 Kalyan

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Posted 2010-12-25 18:29:59

As far as I can remember the guys down at the Honda shop follow the service manual but if I take it in for a between service oil change that is mostly what they do.

I get the chain oiled every so often (usually when I remember) and that costs about $1 US and during the regular services every 4,000 km they will clean the plus, change the oil and air filter, check the valve clearances, adjust the chain tension but not the cam chain tensioner but they never give the bike a wash mores the pity.

Overall I get a good level of service from the guys and girls at the shop which is more than reasonable as only one person can speak some English there.

I have been trying for months now to get hold of the parts manual so that I can scan it onto my PC but they won't let it out and even Honda Thailand won't sell me a copy.


Wish I had that kind of trustworthy "by the Service Manual" servicing there :)

The owners manual does document the first 12,000kms of maintenence procedures but with the shop manual perhaps it's time for me to end the myth of "cam chain tensioner always fail" that some love to post all over the internet a few months back.

If ever the live example of me drag racing other small bikes every day to and from work is not enough :D

#11 aitch52

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Posted 2010-12-26 13:20:18

Greetings to all,

Hi Kalyan I've had my Phantom from new, I bought it April 2007 so she's knocking 4 years old now. I like the bike very much as it is a relaxed ride and I've had very few dramas on the Thai roads (touch wood). I keep threatening to buy something bigger but why change when you are almost happy with the performance, reliability wise she is superb. One breakdown due to a short in the cheap and nasty spotlights which drained and killed the battery.

I changed the chain and sprockets and front and rear disc pads at 22000 Kms, if memory serves correct 14 front and 41 rear. I carry out the oiling of the chain at approximately 400 km intervals and oil changes, non synthetic at 2000 Kms. Changed the cam chain tensioner at 24,000 kms. She goes in for a service at approx 4000 Kms, I try and make sure the shop follows the recommended inspection regime. I did tap a few holes in the rear exhaust baffle. I was doing a 360km round trip commute every week, fuel consumption was between 26 to 31kms per litre. After a drop in performance and increase in fuel consumption I had the fuel system cleaned drained and inspected, lots of dirt in the carb. I am now getting 34 kms per litre for a mix of riding conditions.

At 25,000kms a loud squeak had developed from the front wheel so I changed the front and rear bearings also, the fronts were totally shot, the rears could have probably gone on for another 10,000 Klicks. About this time the rear brake started to play up, had it cleaned and bled but the master cylinder was totally shot, replaced that and back to normal again.

To summarise, a simple bike, easily serviced here in Thailand, prior to the Phantom I owned a Kawasaki Boss 175 for 4 years, there is very little to choose between the bikes, performance is very similar, Boss a little more comfortable. I changed the footpegs for plates and that gives me room to alter riding position and stretch my legs.


Billd is a mate and we have had a very similar servicing routine, would write some more but I'm going for a ride

Happy trails Chris H.

Edited by aitch52, 2010-12-26 13:25:40.


#12 jombom

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Posted 2010-12-26 14:45:35

(It seems I can't edit my post!)

During that time I have had it regularly serviced at 4,000 and sometimes 2,000 km points,replaced the speedo cable at 8,400, new IRC tyres front and rear at 15,000, new battery at 16,200 (it was the original and nearly 5 years old, the chain and front and rear sprockets at 22,000, cam chain tensioner at 23,xxx, front and rear brake pads at 25,000 and bulbs as and when required.


May I clarify with you the procedures for your servicing - would it be oil changes or does it involve inspection of the internal workings, such as valve clearance checks, cam chain tensioner, etc?

Thanks!

---

Read your earlier post - will make some corrections to the wiki now :) I will also post the gear ratios on the wiki, from the Phantom manual.

I'm pretty sure we're using a 520 link chain so some theoretical gearing work could be done at www.gearingcommander.com :D


Hi Kalyan,
Many thanks for your excellent efforts.
Please consider the following suggestions;
1) The insert about bike inspection loses clarity when expanded, and is rather difficult to read. Would it be possible to save or download a clearer print??
2) Thus far, I have failed to find a wiring circuit schematic. One would be useful.
3) Your personal view of licensing regs in Singapore, may indeed be correct, but I am not sure that Wikipedia is a suitable platform for this viewpoint.
4) Tire pressures are mentioned as being quite important, but the correct values are not mentioned (Sorry, if they are, but I cannot see them)
5) In the maintenance tips section 5000km is given as the service interval, whereas, most posters mention 4000km as per my Honda Owners guide.

Recently, a number of fellow owners have mentioned to me that they are using pure 40 Grade oil, and skipping the 10 part of 10W40. This makes sense to me, and I will probably do this on my next oil change.
My fuel consumption is 32 Km/l using Gasahol 91 on mixed local driving, and rarely get a prolonged run in gear 5 or 6. When purchasing this bike, it was a pleasant surprise to find, it is actually much more fuel efficient than the small automatics.

Once again, thank for your most useful post.

#13 Kalyan

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Posted 2010-12-26 14:45:50

Alright, thanks for the great rider's review. I'll think carefully how I'd like to lay out the maintenence recommendations bit. For the local context I'll do up a "mythbusters" type fact vs myth debate thingie and support it with the regular servicing intervals you've provided.

Thanks again!

#14 billd766

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Posted 2010-12-26 15:42:04


(It seems I can't edit my post!)

During that time I have had it regularly serviced at 4,000 and sometimes 2,000 km points,replaced the speedo cable at 8,400, new IRC tyres front and rear at 15,000, new battery at 16,200 (it was the original and nearly 5 years old, the chain and front and rear sprockets at 22,000, cam chain tensioner at 23,xxx, front and rear brake pads at 25,000 and bulbs as and when required.


May I clarify with you the procedures for your servicing - would it be oil changes or does it involve inspection of the internal workings, such as valve clearance checks, cam chain tensioner, etc?

Thanks!

---

Read your earlier post - will make some corrections to the wiki now :) I will also post the gear ratios on the wiki, from the Phantom manual.

I'm pretty sure we're using a 520 link chain so some theoretical gearing work could be done at www.gearingcommander.com :D


Hi Kalyan,
Many thanks for your excellent efforts.
Please consider the following suggestions;
1) The insert about bike inspection loses clarity when expanded, and is rather difficult to read. Would it be possible to save or download a clearer print??
2) Thus far, I have failed to find a wiring circuit schematic. One would be useful.
3) Your personal view of licensing regs in Singapore, may indeed be correct, but I am not sure that Wikipedia is a suitable platform for this viewpoint.
4) Tire pressures are mentioned as being quite important, but the correct values are not mentioned (Sorry, if they are, but I cannot see them)
5) In the maintenance tips section 5000km is given as the service interval, whereas, most posters mention 4000km as per my Honda Owners guide.

Recently, a number of fellow owners have mentioned to me that they are using pure 40 Grade oil, and skipping the 10 part of 10W40. This makes sense to me, and I will probably do this on my next oil change.
My fuel consumption is 32 Km/l using Gasahol 91 on mixed local driving, and rarely get a prolonged run in gear 5 or 6. When purchasing this bike, it was a pleasant surprise to find, it is actually much more fuel efficient than the small automatics.

Once again, thank for your most useful post.

Tyre pressures

Driver only
Front 200 (2.00, 29)
Rear 200 (2.00, 29)
Driver and one passenger
Front
200 (2.00,29)
Cold tyre
Pressures
kPa
(kgf/cm2,
psi)
Rear
200 (2.00,29)

#15 Kalyan

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Posted 2010-12-26 16:04:40

Recently, a number of fellow owners have mentioned to me that they are using pure 40 Grade oil, and skipping the 10 part of 10W40. This makes sense to me, and I will probably do this on my next oil change.
My fuel consumption is 32 Km/l using Gasahol 91 on mixed local driving, and rarely get a prolonged run in gear 5 or 6. When purchasing this bike, it was a pleasant surprise to find, it is actually much more fuel efficient than the small automatics.


Thanks for your feedback. I'll attend to your points when able :)

On 40 grade oil - please note that 10W40 is a detergent oil which helps to break down sludge and other deposits in the engine whereas straight 40 grade doesn't have detergents. It might be a big difference for long term engine health.

Tyre pressures - indeed I missed that out, will add to the specs and clean it up a little (got to learn table formatting, etc).

Does anyone find the 200/200 a bit soft though? Sure is a comfortable ride but the big rear tyre feels like a pillow under hard high speed cornering (then again it isn't a sports bike!)

Edited by Kalyan, 2010-12-26 16:06:16.


#16 jubby

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Posted 2010-12-26 16:41:21

I would definately check up on this 40 oil your talking about. Usually the number before the W indicates the low temperature viscosity and the lower the number the better the Oil generally. Remember wear and tear takes place at startup when the Oil is cold, or under extreme temperatures.

These engines are designed to run on good old 4T. and with regular Oil changes is probably the best thing.

Its certainly not a high performance engine designed to run on a pure synthetic Oil.

#17 aitch52

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Posted 2010-12-26 16:42:17

Hello all

I use Honda 4T 10W40 oil in mine. Tyre Pressures I go for the recommended 29PSI - 2 bar, checked cold. The handling with these pressures seems fine to me.

Happy Trails

#18 Kalyan

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Posted 2010-12-26 21:12:43

Some nice oil facts here:

http://www.nordicgroup.us/oil.htm

Written by an oil engineer.

Here's the full Motor Oil Bible (big!)

#19 jombom

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Posted 2010-12-28 23:53:25

Recently, a number of fellow owners have mentioned to me that they are using pure 40 Grade oil, and skipping the 10 part of 10W40. This makes sense to me, and I will probably do this on my next oil change.
My fuel consumption is 32 Km/l using Gasahol 91 on mixed local driving, and rarely get a prolonged run in gear 5 or 6. When purchasing this bike, it was a pleasant surprise to find, it is actually much more fuel efficient than the small automatics.


Thanks for your feedback. I'll attend to your points when able :)

On 40 grade oil - please note that 10W40 is a detergent oil which helps to break down sludge and other deposits in the engine whereas straight 40 grade doesn't have detergents. It might be a big difference for long term engine health.

Tyre pressures - indeed I missed that out, will add to the specs and clean it up a little (got to learn table formatting, etc).

Does anyone find the 200/200 a bit soft though? Sure is a comfortable ride but the big rear tyre feels like a pillow under hard high speed cornering (then again it isn't a sports bike!)


Thank you again.
Yes, I have considered the ''cold'' aspect, and feel Thailand does not merit the 10 component. As the engine feels quite ''hot'', on balance the 40 component makes more sense to me, hence the idea of maximising it. Perhaps posters with long life on their machines might comment. One guy told me, he has over 100,000 kms on his Phantom, and uses straight 40.

#20 Kalyan

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Posted 2010-12-29 09:26:04

Thank you again.
Yes, I have considered the ''cold'' aspect, and feel Thailand does not merit the 10 component. As the engine feels quite ''hot'', on balance the 40 component makes more sense to me, hence the idea of maximising it. Perhaps posters with long life on their machines might comment. One guy told me, he has over 100,000 kms on his Phantom, and uses straight 40.


Straight 40 - ask the gentleman when he changes the engine oil - does the oil come out clear or "dirty".

If the oil comes out clear it means he's using a non detergent oil and any sludge, deposits, etc will be building up on the engine parts themselves, instead of being dissolved and and flushed out like your normal murky W oil. The W guarantees you're getting a modern spec detergent oil. By modern, well, that could be a 90s formulation for all we care (some Motul oils that work great on the Phantoms are on API SF, SG, etc which come from the 90s) but it does work to keep the engine clean.

I'm not doubting the engine's ability to run forever with the sludge buildup; Honda small cc engines can literally, run on grease for years on end. Of course, they sound like farm tractors :D

The other fun fact I'll write about is the use of turbodiesel oil that I've read about approximately half a year ago. Turbodiesel oil are formulated to be extremely high temperature resistant and contain a lot of additives that might be favourable for an older bike engine, phosphorous etc.

Edited by Kalyan, 2010-12-29 09:26:43.


#21 billd766

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Posted 2010-12-29 14:11:44

Strangely enough for some reason the first start in the morning I always have to pull the choke out.

By the time I have gone 50 metres down the drive, onto the road and into 2nd gear it is fine.

The last couple of nights I have had to pull the choke out to start as well.

Yesterday and today it was 15C at 6 am.

#22 Kalyan

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Posted 2010-12-29 16:19:09

Hi,

After some research at some big, serious motorcycle websites such as www.msgroup.org, Honda dealers' standard procedure for cold engines is to start them and warm them up with full choke / zero throttle. The duration of choking (lol!) of course depends if its cold or warm weather.

I'm a bit lazy with mine and just turn the huge idling knob about half a turn for "starting enrichment".

#23 billd766

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Posted 2010-12-30 15:29:37

Hi,

After some research at some big, serious motorcycle websites such as www.msgroup.org, Honda dealers' standard procedure for cold engines is to start them and warm them up with full choke / zero throttle. The duration of choking (lol!) of course depends if its cold or warm weather.

I'm a bit lazy with mine and just turn the huge idling knob about half a turn for "starting enrichment".

I am lazier than you and pull the choke out, start it up with no throttle and when it is running just drive off.

The choke has usually gone back by 100 or so metres but the motor just keeps on running.

Lovely bike but about 30% underpowered and 25% under geared.

#24 jombom

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Posted 2010-12-30 15:42:42

Never have to use the choke, which is probably good, cos I don't know where it is.

#25 billd766

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Posted 2010-12-30 15:52:41

Never have to use the choke, which is probably good, cos I don't know where it is.

On the left side at the back of the tank under the fuel on/off cock.

I go down 6km to the village in the mornings at about 6.30 to see my son off to school and its a bit nippy at that time. 16C this morning and 15 yesterday.

A nice refreshing ride but definitely not recommended in shorts, thin shirt and flip flops.





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