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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.
Photo by Josephine Flohr, Elephant at Camp, Namibia

I haven't been everywhere...
but it's on my list!


Photo by Josephine Flohr,
Elephant at Camp, Namibia



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  #1  
Old 13 Oct 2004
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1971 Honda 175

My husband and I have a 1971 Honda 175 and a 1971 Honda 250 with less than 1,500 miles on each and they are in great shape. My husband and I want to go traveling across North America on them for about a year. My dad thinks the bikes wont be able to handle it. We can not afford to buy a new/used bike. I would like to know your opinion. Will they make it?
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Old 13 Oct 2004
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Depends on how they've been maintained & stored?

If it were me, I'd give both bikes a thorough going over:

Clean out the fuel tank, fuel tap & carb
New cables & plugs
New oils
New chain & sprockets
New tyres - original tyres still on the bikes? Probably perished by now?
Full service
Take spare cables, levers & bulbs.
Overhaul the brakes

Your bikes are old, parts may be hard to locate at short notice. Buy them & take them with you or leave them with a friend to post on should you need them.

Replace tyres, chains, sprockets & brake parts - if they're still available for your bikes, they should be cheap. False economy not to replace perished tyres even if they still have plenty of tread left.

Before leaving on your trip, load the bikes up & go for ride, see how they cope with the luggage, weight, hills etc.

Neither bike is particularly powerful & will suffer from the addition of luggage i.e. not enough power for the weight. It can be done but choose & pack your luggage carefully.

Have you considered selling both bikes & buying one slightly newer & larger capacity bike for the trip?

Good luck
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Old 14 Oct 2004
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Absolutely they can make it! Parts for early 70's Hondas can be hard to find but motorcycle junk yards should have lots of them, and they will be very cheap.Travel as light as possible, and stay on the back roads and you guys will have a great trip.
Don't be paralyzed by doubt: if your trip "only" lasts three months before one of the bikes gets beyond help do you think you will consider the ride a failure? Who cares! Just have fun.
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Old 14 Oct 2004
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If they have less than 1500 miles on the clock they will not need all those parts. A routine service beforehand and during the trip is obviously sensible but they are virtually brand new and will easily make the trip. Barring accident damage, you should have no problems with breakdowns.
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Old 14 Oct 2004
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PS but Steve is right - news tyres will be necessary.
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Old 15 Oct 2004
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If you have specific questions about your bikes feel free to email me.I have manuals and first hand experience with these bikes. My question is why? I took a interesting trip this summer on a 300$ 650 honda that cost me a new chain and tires. I just bought a 650 suzuki 4cyl shaft drive for 300$ and plan on riding it a bunch. A larger newer bike can make the journey a lot less stressfull. But the main thing is to take the trip. Stop in if you come thru Montana.
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Old 15 Oct 2004
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Quote:
Originally posted by NHamilton:
If they have less than 1500 miles on the clock they will not need all those parts. A routine service beforehand and during the trip is obviously sensible but they are virtually brand new and will easily make the trip. Barring accident damage, you should have no problems with breakdowns.
Personally I'd think about about replacing the chain - why jeopardise the trip, the bike or even their lives for a length of cheap chain?

Not sure if these bikes have oil filters, I know my late 70's XL500 only had a wire mesh strainer? Clean it out, who knows what gunge has accumulated over time?

As Nate said, do the trip & keep clear of major highways. Even if you only travel for a few months, you're bound to have a great time.

[This message has been edited by Steve Pickford (edited 15 October 2004).]

[This message has been edited by Steve Pickford (edited 15 October 2004).]
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