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Gordon Gray, GrandPaul, KevRasen, PINEMONKEY
Total Likes: 20
Original Post (Thread Starter)
#696730 05/29/2017 12:05 AM
by Lannis
Lannis
As Fay and I are riding through our mountains here, or through a State Forest, I see little "Forest Roads" and "Fire Roads" going off into the greenery. When I look at a map, these roads often go many many miles through the woods and mountains, no signs of civilization around anywhere. I'm being heavily tempted.

My riding for the last 40 years has been geared around:

1) Highway roadburners
2) Two-up touring bikes
3) Old Brit bikes for riding to rallies.

I have not even though about a trail bike since I sold my 1973 Yamaha CT3 175 cc back in 1976, which was a very nice bike for the road and for the woods.

I have friends who have gotten back into off-road riding over the last few years, guys who used to ride with me on 175 to 360cc bikes with a MAX of 30 horsepower; very few people had anything as big as a 400. Almost without exception, my get-back-into-trail-riding friends buy a 450cc to 690cc bike with 60 water-cooled horsepower, and suspension as tall as a tree, and forget how fast that outfit will get them going, and they high side or endo and finish with the bike hammering them into the fire-road like a tent peg. And they are limping around grimacing every time they laugh or cough or sneeze, and using an elbow crutch until the cast comes off.

I know that many people these days use bikes like my Guzzi Stelvio or the big BMW GS bikes for off-roading. That's the LAST thing I would ever use that bike for - what possible use could I have for 590 pounds and 100 horsepower on an Appalachian fire-road or creek bed?

As I think about what bike might be good for, say, a 100 mile ride to a trailhead, a day of riding the woods, and 100 miles home on the old blue highways (55 - 60 MPH), I think how cool an MZ ISDT replica (not a genuine replica, but a replica replica, if I can say it that way) would be for that. Then I think of my old CT3 or a DT250 Yamaha, and then I think of a trail-optimized 441 Victor Enduro. For the way I'll ride, the 1973 suspension travel will be fine - I don't care to ride on stilts and try to sit on a 2" wide seat.

Something that weighs 300 pounds or so, or less, and has at least 20 - 30 horsepower and can travel on the road at 55 - 60 with pretty aggressive tires (not full knobbies). Old and cool would be good, although I bought a 1986 TT225 Yamaha once that my boys learned riding on which was pretty good ....

So that's me thinking about it. Any ideas that occur to anyone, I'd like to hear your thoughts ....

Lannis
Liked Replies
by Lannis
Lannis
Originally Posted by Lannis
Originally Posted by D.Bachtel
Something like this could take you a ways....

[Linked Image]


238lbs. and 38 hp should be able to haul you around, maybe even street legal with minimal effort.
450cc of low compression and heavy flywheel. Geared down to 90 mph top speed.


Don in Nipomo


Been a good lot of information and ideas provided to date ... thanks all and don't hesitate if another good idea or bike shows up.

So far, I like the one above ...

and this one ...

[Linked Image from photos.smugmug.com]

or a modified 441 Victor of some flavor .... I can't see me getting my hands on a Bultaco, those are pretty rare.

Could be that I'll save my pension pennies, take the truck, and carry a roll to York this coming winter and see how much people like the bikes they have there .... !

Lannis

It's just hard for me to believe that it's been almost 5 years since I considered this and said "I think I'll do it."

Five years. A goodly percentage of the remaining years I have on earth. They just FLY by.

So I'm just going to do it this year. Taking the truck and some folding money to York and see what's there, if anything strikes my fancy. The desire to trail-ride, and do it on a light bike, but maybe with the trail-head 80 miles from home so I have to ride there, has NOT gotten fainter, it's gotten stronger, so it's just time.

Something between "practical" and "no one else has one of these", subject to being reliable enough not to quit 30 miles back in the forest, and that you can still get parts for, one way or another. I've decided against using a trailed-up Firebird; it's going to be heavier than I want at 400 pounds or so - I'm shooting for 300. Can't be an original MZ ISDT ... I haven't got that kind of money. It can be a dual-sport like a DT250 Yammie with turn signals, or it could be a barely-legal Penton enduro with lights and a road title.

Lots of good advice already in this thread, and I've absorbed all of it. Thanks!!

Lannis
3 members like this
by Lannis
Lannis
Originally Posted by PINEMONKEY
Lannis, I feel like what you need is a HERCULES 175GS 7A... and I happen to know an idiot that has a fine example with a clean title.

It looks a lot like this one... but uglier.

[img]https://bringatrailer.com/wp-conten...s_175_GS_For_Sale_Right_resize.jpg?w=620[/img]

"Uglier" is a very subjective concept and can mean vastly different things to different people .... however, there's something in your body language and intonation here which makes me suspect that yer 'avin' me on, and that plastics tubs would be involved in viewing this bike .... !!

Lannis
1 member likes this
by PINEMONKEY
PINEMONKEY
Originally Posted by Lannis
Originally Posted by PINEMONKEY
Lannis, I feel like what you need is a HERCULES 175GS 7A... and I happen to know an idiot that has a fine example with a clean title.

It looks a lot like this one... but uglier.

[img]https://bringatrailer.com/wp-conten...s_175_GS_For_Sale_Right_resize.jpg?w=620[/img]

"Uglier" is a very subjective concept and can mean vastly different things to different people .... however, there's something in your body language and intonation here which makes me suspect that yer 'avin' me on, and that plastics tubs would be involved in viewing this bike .... !!

Lannis

Oh, no, I am rather serious (as serious as I get, anyway).... especially about the "idiot" part, as the bike is mine. I've been in a herd-thinning mood and this particular bovine needs a new home. It's a nifty machine. An odd Austrian bird that is not so odd you cannot find parts for it. It is complete-ish, running, riding... not a collection of parts in refrigerator trays and plastic buckets.
Attached Images
1 member likes this
by Pete Suchawreck
Pete Suchawreck
For a great woods bike I'm a big fan of Husqvarnas. The late 70's early 80's 250WR is a rugged simple dirt bike that works great in the woods. Parts are more available now than when new. Once you get past 84 they are watercooled. An early 80's Can Am Qualifier is another simple rugged bike. Or you could go modern... '83 Husky 250WR, 2008 Husky 250WR
Attached Images
1 member likes this
by Lannis
Lannis
Originally Posted by rick e.
Had a Hodaka when I was a teen. I loved the 'ring-a-ding-ding-ding-ding' sound. (My next bike was a Triumph...still have it.)

Years later, I think 2 strokes make the most obnoxious sound on the planet and you could not give me a 2-stroke bike....

Perhaps its just me.

Probably not just you. If 20 years of listening to kids of all ages revving up their 2-strokes at Ohio Valley and VMD, riding up and down up and down up and down, just working the throttle from idle to pinned as fast as their wrist will move, even on the flat at a constant speed, just to make noise, has not put me off wanting another two-stroke, then nothing will ...

Lannis
1 member likes this
by Rich B
Rich B
Lannis, for what you want to do, IMO, you would be better off looking newer. There are some decent 250's that have been built recently that have good suspension/brakes, can do some distance, and are not terrible on height.

IMO, if you want vintage, then it is hard to beat the Honda XL250/350 bikes. Parts are not terrible to find, they can do the 80 miles on the road.

Doing 80 miles on a vintage "enduro", especially a 2 stroke, is gonna be less then fun.
1 member likes this
by Lannis
Lannis
After looking at hundreds of trail bikes at York, I know what I'm going to get now.

Gotta get hooked up with the right guys, but soon I'll be reliving my youth on the trails, rose colored glasses and all.

A venue like York is perfect for seeing every kind of bike in every condition, from rusty wreck to gleaming show bikes.

Thanks for everyone's help, I'll send a photo when this four year process is over!

Lannis
1 member likes this
by Lannis
Lannis
There's a new, 0 miles 76 Hercules 125 in the show for $14,000 (!), there's a 350 Bultaco Alpina for $2000 calling to me, a couple of 175 CT3 Yamahas, a little 250 Triumph..... The indecision, it burns....
1 member likes this
by Lannis
Lannis
Originally Posted by Gordon Gray
"I want one that needs NO WORK to start riding ...."

Good luck with that my friend.

So why not tell us the brand that hasn't panned out? Just curious.

Gordon

I'm sure it's possible to buy a ready to ride bike.... I've bought and sold many bikes of just that description over the years. I saw a bunch of them at York but they just were outside my wish criteria, which is a bit wider now.

Someone out there has got one that they're ready to let go. I might still be able to get our local BSA Singles expert to put me together a nice ISDT styled Moto Giro ready B25!
1 member likes this
by Kent Shaun
Kent Shaun
Lannis lad, only ONE bike comes to my mind, and I think it's truly PERFICK for your requirements, you'll be riding on the T.A.T enjoying life and even paying a visit to the Horizons Unlimited ADV show in Virginia on it IF you got one..... shocked


Royal Enfield Himalayan.... thumbsup

Cheap as chips, light as you like, and I've ridden one so you'll fit on it too..... grin
1 member likes this
by Geoff
Geoff
Originally Posted by Gordon Gray
IME.......the main Giro ride was one of the eligible Honda twins.....with several to chose from. You can tell that the fellow who started and made up the rules for the GIRO USA.....was a Honda fan.....hence the 305cc max displacement.

Lannis, I wanted to do a Giro for a long time. Ended up doing 4 before I finally gave them up. I 'think" you'd enjoy doing one.....but not sure it's be something you'd do a lot of. I just never seemed to fit in with that group. Might have been a different experience if I had some folks from this site along. That only happened at one Giro......but Ed broke down before lunch and I didn't get to see him again until after the evening dinner.

I do understand that "to a minimum". My little trip into the XS650 world caused my BSA's a lot of grief.......I miss them but I'm glad they are gone.

Gordon

Now I feel left out smile.

I still don't fit in but bring my wife or a daughter along to keep me company. The cliques I think are broken down to the hard core USCRA guys and guys who come as a group. My Allstate never really attracted much attention or acted as an ice breaker, but the Greeves seems to have done pretty well in breaking the ice.

The Honda's are plentiful. There are a couple of B25's from Virginia that have been there for awhile that I inevitably end up around and annoying at some point. I acquired a 67 Starfire that I am slowly trying to bring back to life so I can bring 2 bikes in the same class in the event of a mechanical failure or another crash.

A 250 Allstate (Puch) is a good choice as well and seem to be sort of cheap and available.

Just my 2 cents as I would like to be a part of a team / group someday.


Geoff
1 member likes this
by Lannis
Lannis
Originally Posted by Gordon Gray
Geoff, I "think" you were at the first Giro I did....in Asheville, NC. But I didn't realize you were a board member. I DO remember your Puch drawing a lot of attention. Then we just couldn't put it together after that. An all day ride in the chase truck (my fault) pretty much did it in for me. Trying to solve a problem on the side of the road....by yourself.....with the chase truck sitting there waiting. (people you absolutely don't know) First time I fixed it and carried on. Second time I just gave up and got in the truck for the sake of all of us. It was mind numbing. BUT my experience was better than that poor Honda rider who broke down. Decided to catch a ride with a local deputy back to the motel and get his truck to retrieve his bike. When he returned........the bike had been stolen. But honestly......his experience wasn't that much worst than mine. laugh

Gordon

Sorry for the thread steal Lannis....... smile but since you ain't tellin......

Getting a bike that could be a local trail rider and also be a Moto Giro bike was just sort of a notion of mine. They sound like they could be sociable events if you "know someone". And I don't know many anyones in that line. So maybe I'll just get a good functional trail bike and save the Giro specification for another bike ....

Which means that a light 441 or 250 single would do. Or back to a 175 Yamaha. Or (and this is the one I'm trying to get but it ain't easy) a Penton 175 Jackpiner, which was the dream enduro bike back in the day. I'm talking to a lady from California who has a real nice looking one that she bought for her late husband in 2004, and it's been sitting in the dining room on display since. She says it ran when she bought it but hasn't run in 15 years, and I'm wondering whether there's anything (I don't know what kind of crank seals it has, it's got the KTM engine) it would need besides the normal recommissioning cleanup of fuel system, etc, and it needs the lighting kit.....

By the way, there's no such thing as "stealing a thread" in my book. I don't get a deed and title to a thread that I create, it's a free for all .... clap

Lannis
1 member likes this
by raf940
raf940
had a red 1973 Rickman 125 ISDT with zundapp radial head engine and lights and rode it on street to work wish i had it back they are nice ring a ding ding dings
1 member likes this
by Geoff
Geoff
Originally Posted by Gordon Gray
Geoff, I "think" you were at the first Giro I did....in Asheville, NC. But I didn't realize you were a board member. I DO remember your Puch drawing a lot of attention. Then we just couldn't put it together after that. An all day ride in the chase truck (my fault) pretty much did it in for me. Trying to solve a problem on the side of the road....by yourself.....with the chase truck sitting there waiting. (people you absolutely don't know) First time I fixed it and carried on. Second time I just gave up and got in the truck for the sake of all of us. It was mind numbing. BUT my experience was better than that poor Honda rider who broke down. Decided to catch a ride with a local deputy back to the motel and get his truck to retrieve his bike. When he returned........the bike had been stolen. But honestly......his experience wasn't that much worst than mine. laugh

Gordon

Sorry for the thread steal Lannis....... smile but since you ain't tellin......

That would make sense then. I ended up losing my clutch then got a flat tire that first day in Asheville before lunch and ended up fixing everything in the parking lot at the hotel for Sunday. I would have missed the next couple that you went to after frying the front piston right before tthe next one - then a plethora of teething problems for the Greeves. By the time I was back, you were hung up your spurs.

Lannis, I have never met you in person but have been reading your posts for over 15 years. The Giro is a good time - competitive enough to make it interesting but not really enough to be crazy (although there are a few who are). I am addicted to it and would plan one if I lived somewhere that had the geography you need to have a good event. Get a Greeves, it would be nice to have another around on the board, and its weird enough to hang out with your Morgan.
1 member likes this
by Lannis
Lannis
I had a 1966 CB160 to ride while I was finishing building a Harley back in 1976.

It wasn't bad on the highways, but you did have to hold your speed through the turns and not get caught bogging down on a steep hill or you'd finish going up in first gear on the shoulder.

My CT3 175 had noticably more power and it was harder to get in trouble.

A 250 would certainly be better though.

Lannis
1 member likes this
by Lannis
Lannis
It's interesting (especially if you're impatient) how seldom the "Good Deals" actually show up. I've got in my head probably 10 or 15 REALLY good deals that I've passed up, or just missed getting on the you-snooze-you-lose principal ... But then realize that's over a 3 or 5 year period of time, which means that these deals only show up months apart.

At any given instant, a deep dive into the ads and craigslists and B-A-T and eBay and the club "for sale" ads doesn't turn up anything. But then one DOES show up, and whoever can get there "the fustest with the mostest" gets the brass ring. But it doesn't happen often ....

Lannis
1 member likes this
by Lannis
Lannis
Originally Posted by rocketscientist
Lannis. here's your bike. PM if interested. 72, but should be fine. 125cc. needs carb sorted. MIke

Come to think of it, mr. rocketscientist, every time I see one of your posts, or see you at VMD, you seem to have a mysterious pipeline to all sorts of fascinating little bikes, like this Benelli above, although they would have to stretch a point to let me into a Giro with that.

Nothing lurking in your back shop, is there ... ?

Lannis
1 member likes this
by koncretekid
koncretekid
[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

Well, here's a motor that might qualify, freshly rebuilt. But then...................

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

The frame may need a little work.

Tom
1 member likes this
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