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Which Bike? Comments and Questions on what is the best bike for YOU, for YOUR trip. Note that we believe that ANY bike will do, so please remember that it's all down to PERSONAL OPINION. Technical Questions for all brands go in their own forum.
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  #1  
Old 2 Sep 2002
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Setting off on a high milage bike - bad idea?

Hi.

I currently own a Honda XRV750 Africa twin that has done 46,000 miles. The bike has been ridden hard - lots of offroad and fast on road stuff. The bike has been well maintained with very regular oil and filter changes and valve clearance carried out at the specified intervals and although it users a tiny little bit of oil occasional, the bike runs perfectly.

My question to the board then is would I be foolish setting off on a UK to OZ trip on a bike that has such high mileage? What, if anything is likely to cause problems and what preventative measures can I take, short of a full engine rebuild, to minimise any potential problems once on the road. I have already decided that cam chains and clutch are a must but anything else? Would I be better off simply replacing the engine with a low mileage example (£1000 in the UK)

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


Alf.
UK
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  #2  
Old 2 Sep 2002
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Hi Alf
My Dommie had done 37K miles before I set off to India in May. I left the UK with new tyres, DID chain/spr, discs/pads, wheel bearings and generally full serviced. I got to Bangkok and changed the clutch as I didn't bother before I left. I also got a new set of tyres too. I am now in Penang and still going ok with 48K miles on the clock. My Dommie is 1992.
I guess you know your bike so you would have a feel about how much oil it uses etc. I just changed my oil/filter every 2000 miles for good measure.
Hope this gives a bit of info.
Cheers
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  #3  
Old 3 Sep 2002
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hi
my bm has done 130,000 I have thought nothing of takeing it across the europe I have had the bike{r100gspd)for 7 years and know it top to bottom If you have done the maintanance yourself your know the bike so would you want to change it but if you get a garage to do it maybe not
cheers chris
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  #4  
Old 3 Sep 2002
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Only in the UK is 47,000 considered "high mileage." For some reason - probably related to the sports bike guys trading their rarely ridden hyper-bikes in every year for a new one - dealers have decided that 5000 miles a year is max. Anything over that is unsellable.

An Africa Twin at 47,000 that is well-looked after should only need the routine maintenace for the mileage - see your dealer, he should know EXACTLY what should be done.

Chains and clutch are probably good ideas. See the AT list for more info. (on the links page)

Have a compression test done, perhaps pull the heads and have a look if compression isn't perfect. A rebuild should be less than a £1000 and then you KNOW it's perfect. BUT I doubt it's needed.

A big advantage of a bike with that mileage is that the stupid flaws have probably surfaced, so it is only routine maintenance from here on. (plus any rider induced glitches... )

I wouldn't change the engine myself, you know how yours has been used, and the "new" one could have been thoroughly thrashed for all you know. btdt...

Go for it.

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  #5  
Old 9 Sep 2002
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My africa twin had 49000 miles on it when I went to Morrocco last April. It now has 63000 miles on the clock. It has never seen the inside of a dealer workshop since I bought it new in April 2000. The only problem I've had so far was a failed fuel pump at 42k. This was replaced under warranty (see Honda section of this site). I've heard that the same engine used in Honda's Revere/NVT600 etc can go twice around the clock if looked after. My Camchains are still quiet and the bike uses very little oil.
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  #6  
Old 9 Sep 2002
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I totaly agree with Grant. I wouldn't worry about +40k miles on the bike. As Grant says that is only considered high mileage over here 'cos of the weekend only riders who only ride if rain isn't forecast for the next 4 weeks, polish it until there is nothing left of it or crash after 2 miles down the road because they only ride it twice a year.

Go with the suggestions Grant makes and don't worry about it. My AT was still going strong at 60k and still would be now if some kid hadn't knicked it and trashed it. The only other thing I would check out is the rear shock. There is generally no need to change it as the original is good quality and upto the job but if it has had alot of off-road miles with luggage they do go soft.

Happy travels

Chris
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  #7  
Old 13 Sep 2002
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There may be other reasons why a high mileage bike can worry the British. Our roads are (still!) old horse tracks covered in ( hopeless quality ) tarmac. Very twisty, blind bends etc, which, together with the total overpopulation of cars on the roads, means that British riders tend to be very hard on the rolling stock. ( They are forever stopping and starting ). Americans and Canadians can ride hours without changing gear - pure joy for your bike, pure utopia for British bikers!
The engine should be fine, but I'd check all wheel/headset bearings, suspension, fork springs and seals, clutch plates. Our climate eats electrics, too. Clean all connector boxes. Boring, dirty work, but not expensive. Should pay you back in safe, reliable trip. Hope so!
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  #8  
Old 14 Sep 2002
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Quote:
Originally posted by Alfie:
Hi.

I currently own a Honda XRV750 Africa twin that has done 46,000 miles. The bike has been ridden hard - lots of offroad and fast on road stuff. The bike has been well maintained with very regular oil and filter changes and valve clearance carried out at the specified intervals and although it users a tiny little bit of oil occasional, the bike runs perfectly.

My question to the board then is would I be foolish setting off on a UK to OZ trip on a bike that has such high mileage?
No way! Get Going!

Alf.
UK
Alf your bike will be fine. Change fluids before you go and fit new chain/sprockets. A bigger fuel filter might be a good idea too. Enjoy your trip!

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  #9  
Old 15 Aug 2003
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Honda V-Twins are incredibly reliable. I have three:
1985 XLV750R (75,000 km); 1987 Transalp (49,000 km); 1992 Africa Twin 750 (RD04) 60,000 km. I don't consider any of these bikes to be 'high-milers', but note Persig's comments on a Harley V-Twin at 58,000 km (p. 273... ZATAOMCM).

We ride 30,000 km per year, in some pretty rough country, heavily loaded. Serviced properly, many of our club's bikes do 200,000 km, before they need major work. None of my three Hondas has required any major mechanical work..... but........

1.) I'd agree that rear shocks can be problematic;
2.) AT fuel pumps are sus. I fitted a vac fuel pump
to the AT, prior to crossing Australia, then riding north to Broome....

I'm biased... 21 of my 23 bikes have been Hondas. I've never yet been stuck out in the desert (for long) and I've crossed the Nullarbor East - West and North-South and back.

Must admit I'm drooling att the prospect of a KTM950.... but that's probably a good Lotto win away.....

Paul,
Margaret River,
WA


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