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Old 25 Jan 2007
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A 1983 TT600 for a trans Africa Trip?

I want to travel from Egypt to South Africa by bike, I have low cash resources, and have come across a 1983 TT600 with the motor overhauled about 5000km ago (Price ZAR14,000/1000 pounds). Can I load it with about 30 - 40 kgs of equipment, is this bike as strong as the XT? Can I build racks onto the rear, and what is the best solution for a larger fuel capacity (11 litres standard)? Will it do the job, or am I barking up the wrong tree?

Your input would be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 25 Jan 2007
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Try this site for inspiration and info. Looks like an early tenere tank might be able to fit

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Old 28 Jan 2007
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Thanks. I didn't realise the bikes had such an illustrious history. I thought it was only the Teneres. Anyway, bought the bike, and my trip is set in motion. Regards.
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Old 11 Jul 2008
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Exclamation Any news?

Luke - still going or back yet? I'm going in 2011 with '84 Tenere - currently rebuilding it....

Albert Smit
Bredasdorp, South Africa.
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Old 11 Jul 2008
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This may be a bit late, but here are my experiences with that model in comparison with the XT travelling ZA NA BO Moz were.

The rear shock did not take kindly to the added weight and I would recommend a beefier spring. My shock disintegrated within 2000 km and I was left to see saw on the spring alone. Eventually the rear wheel went out of round too.

The gearing was all wrong for typical cruising. I put a 15 tooth in front and a 42 at the rear....but....The rear sprocket / hub doesn't have the dampers as found on the XT and I had a chain snap on me causing major damage to the crank housing.

The tolerance level of the piston / sleeve is much higher and I seized the motor a number of times. Eventually I just replaced the sleeve and piston with the cast iron affair from a XT600 and no more issues.

The 6V lighting issue is such a PIA, if you get caught in the dark and carry on riding you gonna kill yourself.

The bike can do the trip without doubt, but it would not be fair to compare it to a XT for this, the TT although superficially very similar, was modified more for competition. The higher tolerance spec and softer suspension make this a weaker choice. On the 6V issue alone, I would seriously recommend that you reconcider your options.


BTW, if your bike has Cookies stamped on the back it was mine. Bought it from a Freestate farmer who thought it was his gf. Avoid like the plague.......it must have been made on a Friday.

Last edited by bruken; 11 Jul 2008 at 11:32.
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