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Northern Asia Topics specific to Russia, Central Asia (also known as "the 'stans"), Mongolia, Japan and Korea
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  #1  
Old 2 Jul 2004
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buying a CJ in Ulan Bataar

Hi Scott,
How easy/difficult is it to buy motorcycle in Mongolia and register it there etc etc? I am fed up hearing how difficult it is in China, so I am thinking to start my journey in Mongolia and buy the bike there, spend a couple of weeks to fettle it up and then head off. What is the availability like of bikes? Can I get one ordered from China and sent to Mongolia?

best rgds

john
HK, Asia's WC (World City)
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  #2  
Old 6 Jul 2004
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John: It's easy to buy a bike here in Ulaanbaatar, and registering it should not be too bad either. The problem is the selection. There are no new bike dealers, so you're stuck with whatever used bikes have come over in containers from Japan. They are a real mixed bag; a lot of sport bikes, a few full-dress tourers like Gold Wings, and a few small dirt bikes and enduros. Big adventure bikes are rare.

You could buy a bike and ship it to UB. If you do it by surface shipment it is not very expensive, though you need to have more time. Shipping by air is also possible. Air China, Korean Air and Mongolian Airlines (MIAT) all fly cargo into Ulaanbaatar. If you're coming from Hong Kong you might check with the HK Air China cargo office for a quote.

Finally, have you heard there is an official BMW motorcycle dealer in Beijing now? They told me they can rent bikes to foreigners and that they can handle all the paperwork. Perhaps they can do that for new bikes as well.

Hope this helps.

-Scott
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  #3  
Old 6 Jul 2004
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G'Day,
to my knowledge, the BMW bike dealer in Beijing cannot rent motorcycles, they trying to but as always in China: Red Tape! they have heavy difficulties getting registration / license / insurance for rental bikes and looks like there is still a long way to go until this issue is sorted. furthermore, Shg/BJ authorities does not issue temporary motorcycle license to individuals.
even you were able to rent a bike in Beijing, there is still the grey area about travelling to or through other Mainland China provinces, they implemented a "interprovince travel ban for motorcycles" three years ago. you can get away with it being a foreigner but they could give you hassles and confisctate the bike. ain't life in China great?!

doubt very much that you can enter China easily with an Mongolian plate (registration).

honest, if your talking about a CJ= Chang-Jiang 750cc sidecar, personally would not do a long haul trip on a CJ sidecar, you will not enjoy it. you need some repair knowlegde about the old CJ beast and furthermore they are unconfortable, slow,heavy and too many breakdowns, trust me - driving CJ's since 1989 in China....

best regards,
Butch
www.butchshanghai.com



[This message has been edited by butchman (edited 06 July 2004).]
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Somewhere down the road in China…. life is one lap with no restarts and the finish line is unknown ~ keep going!!! TBR-China
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  #4  
Old 6 Jul 2004
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Butch: Thanks for the update on the BJ dealer. Guess I'll hold off on bringing my helmet the next time I visit.

John: I didn't catch that you are looking for a Chang Jiang. There aren't any of them in Mongolia. Mongolians don't like Chinese things. Instead we have the Russian Ural sidecar rigs, which are quite similar. See www.ural.com for details on Urals.

I agree with Butch on not driving one of these things long distance. I lived in China for 5 years and had a Chang Jiang. It was fun for short trips (under 200 km) in the countryside, but it broke down frequently and was uncomfortable. The Urals aren't any better. Unless you travel with a Ural mechanic, as some tour groups do, you'll end up stranded in the Steppe somewhere.

-Scott
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  #5  
Old 6 Jul 2004
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OK, thanks Scott, Butch.
I'm interested that it's easy enough to import bikes into Mongolia. I'll get something else for the trip instead of a CJ although I'm a bit heavy and wanted something strong enough to handle my weight.

best rgds

john

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