Honda XRV 750 to travel arround
Hi, I'm wondering to travel from Barcelona to sydney and reading arround i found good things about Honda Africa Twin.
Is a good motorbike to travel? i want go down to Africa and then move to pakistan and cross India.
Wich are the components that i have to install on it? of course the aluminium cases, but i what else to use phone, GPS, additional gas tank... please ?c?
Thanks very much!!
Good choice of bike:thumbup1:
The engine is bullet proof, however the standard seat is designed for enduro riding so it's hideously uncomfortable for long journeys, this can be resolved with any of the aftermarket options such at toutatech, CM seats, Airhawk or even addind a sheepskin cover. Originally I went for a sheepskin cover and added a little padding underneath and this was OK until it rained and I got a soggy bum.
Also, check out the rims as these can crack, however the alloy is pretty thick so cracks appear worse than they are. A shiny new rim will cost around £120 from Colin Evans near Wrexham, however, not all AT's suffer from this.
Metal panniers are always better than plastic however plastic one are much cheaper.
A Scotoiler will save your chains and sprockets, a touring screen will prevent you from buffetting but makes the bike a little unsteady at very high speeds
Watch out for the drive sprocket, do not fit aftermarket ones as they are not up to the job, if they come loose they will strip the teeth off the spline and can cost over £1k to replace if done by Honda.
Any of the models are fine, I have an RD07 which has never missed a beat after 30k miles.
When I was picking a bike I thought long and hard about what to go for. The BMW is great for long distance but very expensive, the KTM is great for off road and a hooligan machine but still pretty pricey, Tigers aren't always easy to get bits for overseas and which will upset you the most when you fall off it a £10k BMW or a £3k Twin?
Oops almost forgot, I bought a mobile phone holder that clamps onto the bars, I use this for my smart phone with sat nav and mp3 player. I have an intercom located under the seat with a lead from my phone to it running under the tank. I also have wired in a cigarette charger near to the headstock so I can charge the phone while riding.
I have the standard tank which I get about 200-250 miles from it which is perfect as I need a break at about this point.
If you have crash bars you can get spot lights fitted onto them like the BM, or alternatively get some super bright bulbs.
you can check my website Far Away From Flakkee.
Has info on the bike, and what we have modified on them, in English.
We love 'em, and they are still going strong! (Mirjam's AT has 136.000 km's on! Still a perfect bike, very low oil usage and started easier than mine this morning at 4867 meters altitude in the snow)
Go for the 1993-1995/1996 RD07, best model.
Second choice: 1996-2000 RD07A. (almost just as good, but with some minor changes)
Avoid the older ones. (RD03 and RD04) ('improved transalp ')
Don't be fooled by 2003 models, Honda stopped building them in 2000 ;-).
the axle from the gearbox is the only really nasty problem as far as I know. For the rest, it is just fuelpumps, rectifiers, fuelpumps and maybe some switches. Don't forget the fuelpump!
If you have any specific questions: feel free to email me!
Just worked 3 days on an AT in Ecuador, met a guy who had just bought it, didn't know anything about it but wants to leave within one month on a long trip! ;-)
I have a RD04 80.000 kms fantastic, rode 8000 kms to Jordan without problems, left it a year in Cyprus recharged the battery, rode it no problems.. would ride it around the world tomorrow...
Fantastic bike ...
1) I got one last new piece of production Africa Twin and it got stolen 2 months before our big trip. It was parked beside a Hayabusa.
2) Got another 9 years old AT for the trip. Mileage? unknown but i know the front disc is worn out.
3) 2nd month of our trip, charging system broke down. battery dead. we are in Pakistan mountain.
4) Burning of engine oil. not much, just 100ml per 100km.
5) Engine fully broke down on our 18th month of travel. Easy to rectify this issue because no repair is needed. Friends found another used engine and we just swap. no repair.
6) Back home with the 2nd engine, it is still burning engine oil. 100ml per 100km. It does not travel more than 110km/hr.
7) will i invest my $ in a good AT? YES!!!!!!
8) just my luck from the beginning when the best AT got stolen and got me a bad machine for the trip.
Fabulous bikes.. I've owned three. I'll probably get another at some point too.
Engine is bullet proof IF YOU LOOK AFTER IT.. Many don't. It's forgiving but it still needs love. 70-80,000 miles and you really should be rebuilding the top end if you want it to last.
Biggest problem is that good ones are very thin on the ground and the ones with relatively low mileage go for SILLY money.
They are good, but no way worth 3-4K, which is what they can fetch. Crazy for a 10-20 year old bike. You could buy an almost new Tenere for that etc.
They have their failings too. Suspension is basic and too small for the size of the bike. Brakes are pretty poor too for the size as well. Fuel pump needs swapping and the seat is a bit of a pain too. Choke plungers can stick open too although I've never had that problem.
They are BIG bikes so unless you're a skilled rider or a big strong chap, then going off road becomes an issue. You should really consider that. That's always stopped me taking mine on 3rd world trips.. Light bikes are ALWAYS better for a million reasons.
You say "of course aluminium cases".. DON'T !! This bike is heavy enough. Don't turn it into a tank. You will curse it if you ever drop it (and on that trip YOU WILL).
Additional gas tank isn't required. You should easily get 200-250 miles out of the tank if you don't ride like a demon.
Have fun :thumbup1:
Theres a gentleman from Yorkshire, hes been using an AT for his trip.
Update on Ian Coates - Riding Around the World
I faced similar decision in 2009 when planning my Lisbon-Guinea Bissau trip. I bought a 97 RD07A model with 25'000km on the clocks and couldn't be happier :thumbup1:
Very rugged and reliable
Still lots of accessories and knowledge available
Versatile, so that on the same trip you can ride off-road and then take the motorway when in a hurry
Holds its value (this is a pro when you own one :) )
It's tall and heavy (I'm 60kg, 1,85m tall). Riding off-road and in the sand requires some judgement
The engine is not as fast as the new crop on the market but that was not high on my specification list
The aforementioned rectifier (I've changed once) and fuel pump (still pumping after 40'000km but I have a spare Facet). Some people complain of wheel bearing failures, I changed mine before the big trip and have a set of spares.
Reports of my trips
Morocco - piste Merzouga Mahmid and back - Africa Twin point of view
Panoramio - Photos by LMCabrita > MS6 - Merzouga Mahmid
Panoramio - Photos by LMCabrita > MS6 - Mahmid Merzouga
Have a look at XRV.ork.uk, really helpful and knowledgeable members
I'd like to jump in here for some advice....
I have a 92 Rd04 and have torn it down for some serious restoration / maitenance.
The down pipes are still together but are a bit manky.. Does anybody know where I can get new pipes??
I have sent the frame out to have it grit blasted and powdercoated.
The bike has sat for a Loooong time (about 10 years now) but the cylinder was sprayed and preserved and kept away from a moist environment. I have not broken into the engine yet and it only has 32,00 miles on the clock.
The exterior has paint flaking in places and lots of chain lube on the back and bottom. The intake runners and valve stems look new and after removing the valve covers, my overall impression is that the engine is in good shape.
I am looking around for a bore scope to look inside the jugs before I go yanking them off just o find that was a waste of time.
I will probablu do a leakdown test and check the valve seating by praying some brake cleaner in in top of the valves.
Now I keep reading about the output shaft bearing failing.
I have the engine out... The parts are right in front of me... Dare I replace this bearing with such low mileage? Or leave well enough alone.
Carbs were clean as a whistle inside but dirty on the outside. They have been cleaned and reassembled and bagged. Starter is coming off today just to check brushes.. I am also replacing Oh rings and seals whenever I can. Front end has new progressive springs, seals etc and oil. Rims have been powdercoated and respoked courtesy of Central wheel Components in England. I can't say enough about the outstanding over the top service and quality.. New bearings and cush drive in wheels.
All hardware is cleaned and double cad plated. (Go ahead, try to rust).
Attention to detail everywhere.
Is there anything I am missing?
I don't want to dive into the motor if I don't have to but my background is that of a machinist and I am not the least bit afraid to tackle the job. it's the $ that are going into the bike that concern me. far more than it is worth on a saleble market.
Thanks in advance for your opinions and ideas thought or just support.
I welcome everyone's thoughts.
Retirement is great when you can afford it...
I am just buying an AT for a long journey and wonder what the weak points are if it is year 92, which is what I am finding the most... I just found an ugly one but the engine seems and sounds perfect with 80000 kms and that is what I was focusing in, thinking that all other parts of the bike would be replaceble if needed.
Should I wait for a newer model?
Just got a phone call that the Africa Twin 92 is mine already (exchanged it for a motocross KTM) so please, do not advise me to look for a newer unit.:scooter:
Our bikes (AT's) are at 1 liter/2500km's now and if we start another big trip (which gets more realistic by the day...) I'll do two engine rebuilds.
The engines are bullet proof, indeed, IF YOU LOOK AFTER THEM.
I know hundreds of AT's because I've sold parts for their famous fuel pump, and I know only one on which the engine failed.
It started to use oil, and they didn't top it up in Africa. ANY engine will fail without oil in it.
My problem with 100ml/100km (so 1 liter / 1000km) would be the oil logistics. Where to get all your Jaso-MA oil if you want to cross africa or russia? You'll need to carry 15 liters!
I know plenty of AT's with a lot of km's on (till 300.000km) and they use up to 1 liter every 500 kms and run just fine. Just a lot of work topping them up every time you fill em up with fuel :-S.
Hey Often if an AT that is "burning Oil" it is not that the engine is warn but the oil rings can from a glaze and let oil past.. I had about 1/2500 lt/k loss (no blue smoke) This i could not take (read anal-retentive) stripped the engine the pistons were still showing honing marks!!! bier(oh this is at 150000K). changed the rings and presto ... no burning. :D I change my oil at 3-5000k and have not lost a drop since the new rings... :thumbup1:
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