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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 20 Nov 2012
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Ultralight 'adv' bikes

from 57kg / 600km

Just the job for hardcore Siberia or Darien, I reckon.

FX Bikes Mountain Moto World’s Lightest Motorcycles 125lb 125cc 125mpg

Ch
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Last edited by Chris Scott; 23 Nov 2012 at 10:36. Reason: added photo
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  #2  
Old 20 Nov 2012
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Haha. I was toying a while back with the idea of sticking a Cub pattern engine into a custom chassis with proper off-road bike levels of travel and ground clearance as a minimalist overland bike. Looks like someone did more than just toy with it
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Old 20 Nov 2012
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Trials?

Looking at the pictures, I am reminded of specialist trials bikes, but with a higher seat.

Sherco, sherpa et al, come to mind but they carry nothing but a rider and a few spares/tools.
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Old 22 Nov 2012
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It reminds me a lot of the, sadly never made, Derbi DH 2.0, although the Derbi is even more bicycle-like and at 88lbs for a 100cc even lighter.



I notice on the FX website it says:

If you have serious expedition experience (not necessarily on motorcycles) and you have some adventure ideas for an FX Expedition, you can apply for factory sponsorship.

Is anyone tempted? Sadly I can't say I've got serious experience otherwise I'd apply. Chris do you fancy pairing up on some sort of Apprentice style expedition? It might have legs.

One thing you'd have to do is pack very light, and it strikes me that motorcycling with all it's bulky clobber makes that difficult. These two seem more of the credit card and toothbrush style of touring.

Perhaps it's worthwhile flinging the Sachs Maddass into the mix? Not quite as rugged looking, but still not a scooter for those who just can't bring themselves to buy a C90.



I reckon there's a lot to be said for a super-light, small travel bike especially of you're thinking of shipping it rather than riding all the way there. The Derbi in particular could probably be stripped down and packed into a mountain bike flight case and taken on a plane as excess baggage.
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Old 22 Nov 2012
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This one weighs in at 85kg and there are luggage racks available as options. They all need bigger fuel capacity though.

Last edited by Chris Scott; 22 Nov 2012 at 16:55. Reason: CS made picture bigger
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Old 22 Nov 2012
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Some people can manage with less than others.
This is a mate in Morocco earlier this year, including tent and s-bag.


(He sent me the fxb link)

Realistically I think durability is an important factor on the long road and putting a motor in what looks like a chunky downhill MTB frame may not be compatible with someone of my weight + gear. All the chassis bearings and other running gear would get hard pressed, IMO.

Better suited, like I suggested, for specific hardcore 'stunts' where being able to pick up your moto (or float it on a packraft) is useful.

I did like the look of the Honda Zoomer (below) when it came out - though MadAss looks much better. Only a moped of course and 87 kg, but that seat frame could easily be raised to make room for more stuff - same on the Sachs. And in the merely lightweight category there is the Ryoku (concept only) + ag bikes, postie bikes and C90 step thrus.

I'd take that factory sponsorship offer with a pinch of salt. All they are going to do is give you a bike and expect the earth.

What is that Magnon?

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Last edited by Chris Scott; 22 Nov 2012 at 18:27.
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Old 22 Nov 2012
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This is the website, it's designed as a sort of two wheeled utility quad - if that makes any sense.

I think durability is esential and saving a few kilos on the bike when rider and luggage could weigh 130kg is not particularly important although makes picking it up easier!
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Old 22 Nov 2012
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85kg might seem light compared to some of the other bikes on the market these days but that's only because everything seems to have gained weight as the decades have passed. A lot of the Japanese stuff from years ago would have been around that weight. Someone gave me this 70's 125 Suzuki back in the summer and it's 86kg without anything in the way of cutting edge design.




The trouble with starting with something light though is that luggage that would be unnoticed on a 1200GS has this thing on its knees. I'm planning on using it for the Elephant rally at the end of Jan so the toothbrush and credit card approach isn't going to be possible (unless the card is to pay for an ambulance when hypothermia sets in) so it's going to have to survive being loaded up. I'm not sure I'd want to do much offroading on it but it's survived 35yrs of commuting and it's still going so the Japanese must have got something right in the design.
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Old 22 Nov 2012
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I am trying to quote Chris and get the picture of that funny little thing with balloon tyres and twin headlights but it doesn't come up, the reason being I saw a photo somewhere, I think it was Jungle Junction of a Japanese man naturally, who was riding something like that the length of Africa.
Last night I bought a Honda XR125 on Ebay, the later one with the CG 125 engine and 115 kg, firstly to commute on but with the thoughts of going somewhere on it next summer, not quite in the league of these interesting looking bikes, I particularly like the Derbi DH2.0, but it might take me further than my R80GS for the same money.
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Old 23 Nov 2012
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Range looks good. Might need to double it in some places but it is a start.


19" front. A 21" would be more universal (adds weight?). What is on the rear?
Luggage capability is lacking.

Yes well .. they have an email link for suggestions... I think people will be pulling in all directions, the widest being from

US - for 'world tours' - range say 1200 km, luggage for 10 days food + camping + water.

Minimalsits - One over night, say 300 km range. Bicycle style, maybe even with only a back pack? Base camp with 4WD.
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Old 23 Nov 2012
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It's gotta be ONLY for serving the barest of minimalist

The fork hasn't been in production for some time. And Marzocchi sold/transferred the bulk of it's mountain bike fork production to Taiwan years ago. By then the reputation for quality and performance was poor and it's not rebounded. In the late 90's a 'Zoke was the fork of choice for a mountain bike.

That alone would seriously compromise durability. Even if the fork had been designed for a 125-pound bicycle meant to go the distance, not a 40-pound one that made 40 second runs.

Then again . . . KLR suspension and braking components are pretty dismal in comparison.

The engine . . . 12 BHP ? Maybe. Possibly fun to sling into a corner but it's not gonna jet out of anything. Long distance ? Not on a road with any traffic averaging 80+kph.

Luggage capacity - 12 BHP ! ? !

Perhaps there's a very good set of reasons the Derbi wasn't built.
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Old 23 Nov 2012
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The engine . . . 12 BHP...
Just about all the developed world is running on <12hp motos - and we've all seen the pictures from Asia of how they load them.
A 12hp moto will keep up with 80kph traffic, but I admit it won't have much in reserve. If it forces you onto the quieter backroads then so much the better.
And the CG 125 motor and its variants has got to be one of the best and most cloned 125s around.
Even then, such a lightweight bike (not ul fxb etc) would better suit a lighter rider.

As some of the best MTBs are still made in Taiwan...

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Old 23 Nov 2012
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Indeed those little bikes are almost ONLY overloaded . . . but they ride them because they must, not because they're fun.

Didn't poke at Taiwanese manufacturing. Marzocchi's forks had collapsed in quality while they were still made in Italy. Presumably the Taiwanese bought the "brand" and hoped to improve quality. The MTB world is still waiting on that . . .
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Originally Posted by Chris Scott View Post
Just about all the developed world is running on <12hp motos - and we've all seen the pictures from Asia of how they load them.
A 12hp moto will keep up with 80kph traffic, but I admit it won't have much in reserve. If it forces you onto the quieter backroads then so much the better.
And the CG 125 motor and its variants has got to be one of the best and most cloned 125s around.
Even then, such a lightweight bike (not ul fxb etc) would better suit a lighter rider.
Just one example of what a Cambodian can do with a Honda CG125, I saw one with a similar trailer carrying 30 odd 4 metre lengths of 50x50 steel square tubing which I estimate weighed about 2 tons in total, with nothing but the drum brake! I am confident that the CG engined XR 125 I have just bought will be up for a trip somewhere, I only weigh 10 stone.

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Old 24 Nov 2012
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Originally Posted by Genghis9021 View Post
The engine . . . 12 BHP ? Maybe. Possibly fun to sling into a corner but it's not gonna jet out of anything. Long distance ? Not on a road with any traffic averaging 80+kph.

Luggage capacity - 12 BHP ! ? !

Perhaps there's a very good set of reasons the Derbi wasn't built.
You say all of that, but cyclists tour the world happily at considerably slower speeds loaded down with all their kit and one human power. 12bhp is a positive luxury you just have to get out of the must get everywhere fast mindset.:
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