75000 mile 3AJ
some advice needed please,
I have just seen an 'F' reg 3AJ with 75000miles for £750. it seems to have had an easy life considering this mileage.
It sounds ok (to my untrained ears) and rides quite well. I want the bike for commuting in london while i finish/start restoring my xt500 and also for a sahara trip at the end of the year.
I am wondering what the costs and availability of parts for a full rebuild are, and wether or not I should save up and buy a second hand KTM adventure for £3500. Any comments would be greatly appreciated
not sure about that mileage, seems a bit high perhaps. i saw 2 3AJ's recently with +- 20k on the clock for £1600 at bonanza bikes down in croydon. also, fc trott had a few a month or so ago.
no comment on the KTM.
Easy life or not, 75k on any engine is approaching major rebuild time.
I bought an '89 3AJ from FC Trott a couple of months ago. He had another 3AJ and a few earlier models which were imported from Italy. Mine was pristine at 20k miles - I've since had a good look over it and concluded the previous owner had really taken care of it. Unfortunately just a few weeks on UK roads has caused corrosion all over the place. I paid £1,500 for mine, which I thought was about right seeing it was in such good condition - came with givi screen, paolini (sp?) shock, progressive front and even original toolkit.
Very happy with the bike, the price and FC Trott. You could get a second-hand one cheaper from a private seller (if you can find one in the UK!), but it'll never be in such good condition.
get a lower mileage one. 75,000 is proof that they can do it, but not a sound basis for a saharan saga unless you're thinking of staying there. £750 is over the odds, too. £1500 for a lower mileage one and £2000 budget for setting it up right. eg replacing rear suspension ... make sure you use off-road parts rather than road-oriented spares (see chat about rear calipers and lazer exhausts) and take it to an MX track for a shake down to see where bits collide.
if you go KTM, you get better performance and handling, but complexity of liquid cooling. the later carb 2000 on is more reliable, but harder to work on. better than an easy piece of junk!
Be careful if you decide to buy a bike from Trott.
I paid him £1800 for a 'mint' condition 1988 Tenere last year.
I was told he had 'gone over the bike with a fine toothcomb' and that 'it would get through Africa with nothing but a major service'.
Well, 1 top-end rebuild later........
A small tip which I've learnt, when you are looking at buying a bike, take note of the small signs of lack of attention.
eg: dirty brake fluid, missing clips/nuts/bolts. Cracked rubber mountings/housings etc. Take off the LHS cover and look at the state of the wiring and the fuse.
If there are a lot of small faults, the previous owner hasn't been looking after the bike and chances are he was selling it off for a reason.
Thanks to everyone who responded!
I suppose i should stop trying to do biking on the cheap!
It's a hard decision for me to make, re: Tenere vs KTM. I grew up in spain and xt's were always the bikes to have, however the modern chassis and power of the KTM are very tempting. I also had a '96 Husaberg 400 until it got stolen recently which was a fantastic bike but the maintainance schedule measured in hours was a pain (oil change every 10 hrs, valves every 20!).
It seems it will be a while before i have the money for something worth having, so plenty more time to obsess about it.
again thanks for the replies
A 75K tenere would need approx 1500 pounds spent on the engine to get it to full overland spec and upto 1000 pounds for similar on chassis.
With your purchase price added you would still end up with a good value bike.
Dont dismiss it.
Remember -- old bikes = cheap carnets, insurance, border bribes........etc.
3250 is not expensive for a good overlander and the twin lamp tenere is one of the best.
the work needed on a 75k vs a 20k surely arent dissimilar. reading all the old threads it seems that any engine would need a full rebuild (the bulk of the cost being labour?).
Tending towards a KTM at the moment though.
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