Re-living our youth?
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  1. #1
    Senior Member ChipBeck's Avatar
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    Mar 2011
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    Gentlemen,



    Last month, after a desert ride in the mountains north of Scottsdale on my CRF250X water cooled dirt bike I started thinking back to when I started off-road riding at age 13 back in 1969 on a Honda Trail 70. I've owned over 20 different dirt bikes since then. Huskys, Penton, DKW, Hodaka, Suzuki, and then back to Hondas. XR250, XR600, XR400, and now the CRF250X. Light, fast, and very capable BUT.....the first time my 15 year old son crashed his he wiped out BOTH radiators. Even doing the work myself it cost $1200 to fix everything! And they need to be going FAST or they seem tall and awkward. My bikes have gotten much faster and a lot more expensive but I had more fun back when I was riding that Trail 70 than I've had on anything since. It was licensed and when I came to a public road I could ride down it without fear of getting pulled over for riding an unlicensed dirt only motorcycle. It had a rack on the back and I could take food, water, and gear with me when I went out.



    I wondered if anything like that existed today that would haul a 200 lb guy up any hill or over any terrain, was street legal, accommodate a rack behind the seat, and use an old style air cooled motor. It would probably be too much to ask to have fat tires like that Trail 70 as well. When I came across a TW200 I thought, "THAT'S IT!!" That's the bike I had in mind and I bought the first new one I found. After the first weekend I confirmed that it will go anywhere the CRF will go, at a bit more leisurely pace. Best of all, I didn't trailer it out to the mountains, I rode it there. I'll be modifying the seat and I've already ordered the rack. I love this little bike.



    So here's my questions. How many of you have owned a Trail 70, Mini Trail, or Trail 90 when you were a kid? Did your memories of that bike influence your choice of the TW200? I feel like a kid again when I ride my TW.



    Chip
    The road to hell on earth is paved with the good intentions of liberals.

  2. #2
    Junior Member coopdway's Avatar
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    Jul 2010
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chip Beck View Post
    Gentlemen,



    Last month, after a desert ride in the mountains north of Scottsdale on my CRF250X water cooled dirt bike I started thinking back to when I started off-road riding at age 13 back in 1969 on a Honda Trail 70. I've owned over 20 different dirt bikes since then. Huskys, Penton, DKW, Hodaka, Suzuki, and then back to Hondas. XR250, XR600, XR400, and now the CRF250X. Light, fast, and very capable BUT.....the first time my 15 year old son crashed his he wiped out BOTH radiators. Even doing the work myself it cost $1200 to fix everything! And they need to be going FAST or they seem tall and awkward. My bikes have gotten much faster and a lot more expensive but I had more fun back when I was riding that Trail 70 than I've had on anything since. It was licensed and when I came to a public road I could ride down it without fear of getting pulled over for riding an unlicensed dirt only motorcycle. It had a rack on the back and I could take food, water, and gear with me when I went out.



    I wondered if anything like that existed today that would haul a 200 lb guy up any hill or over any terrain, was street legal, accommodate a rack behind the seat, and use an old style air cooled motor. It would probably be too much to ask to have fat tires like that Trail 70 as well. When I came across a TW200 I thought, "THAT'S IT!!" That's the bike I had in mind and I bought the first new one I found. After the first weekend I confirmed that it will go anywhere the CRF will go, at a bit more leisurely pace. Best of all, I didn't trailer it out to the mountains, I rode it there. I'll be modifying the seat and I've already ordered the rack. I love this little bike.



    So here's my questions. How many of you have owned a Trail 70, Mini Trail, or Trail 90 when you were a kid? Did your memories of that bike influence your choice of the TW200? I feel like a kid again when I ride my TW.



    Chip


    We started on a '64 Honda 55cc Trail bike, though that one is long gone, I've got 2 3/4 of them in the garage right now. These are the only bikes in the garage that are smaller than my TW200, yet I spend about half of my riding miles on the 200. Like you and many of the rest of us, bigger isn't better these days, for all sorts of reasons.
    '62 Honda C105

  3. #3
    Junior Member farmbo's Avatar
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    South Dakota
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    I think most of us spend thousands of dollars on motorcycles just trying to get that same feeling we did the first time we rode a trail 70. I still have mine amd use it once in awhile. My oldest daughter will be old enough to ride it this summer.

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  5. #4
    Senior Member shocker's Avatar
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    I started on a Tecemsuh 2.5 horsepower, no suspension, friction rear brake only, mini bike. If you were lucky enough to have a mini 50 or trail 70 me and my friends thought your family was rich as we all had briggs powered Rupps, Clinton powered cheetahs, or some form of lawn mower engined mini bike and could not afford the Hondas. We still rode the hell out of them. I remember going to the local Honda dealer and seeing the trail 70 new on the showroom floor for $399.00. My good friends Dad had a Honda CL 90 around 1967 that we loved to get rides on.

  6. #5
    Member truepath's Avatar
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    Feb 2011
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    I started with an old scooter frame, added wheels and tires from the Montgomery Wards catalog and a Briggs and Stratton engine from an old reel type lawnmower and drove it around gravel roads the summer I was 12. It was about as good as it gets. Later moved up to a Honda Passport 70cc and could not believe the power.

  7. #6
    Banned qwerty's Avatar
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    I drug a worn-out mini-bike off a trash pile when I was 9 years old. It was a good one, though, with sprung forks, the 3hp engine mounted to the front of the swingarm, and 4.00x10 tires. I spent the winter rebuilding from the ground up, using books from the library as guidance. Come spring, some rich kid got hit by a car and I bought the wreck--for the 5hp B&S and torque convertor. I rode that mini for 5 years, until moving to Tennessee, where a 14-year old could get a restricted motorcycle license. I sold the mini and bought a street legal SL100 with the CL100S restricted carb slide, for street use, then came across a really good deal on a CT70H for muddin'. Within 3 months the SL had a 125 engine bored and stroked to 172cc, magnesium head and cylinder, cam, CB450 carb, Bassani pipe, and a 6-speed transmission. I got stopped for 98mph (downhill with a tailwind) in a 35 zone, but the LEO just gave me a stern talking to in exchange for labor rebuilding his SL125. When my kids were little we did a lot of RVing, starting out with a Z50 and a CT70H for camp bikes, eventually ending up with 3 CT70s and a CT70H as they grew. I'd love to have another CT70H for tooling around town.




  8. #7
    Senior Member Jay64's Avatar
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    Jul 2010
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    Richland, Oragun
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    When I reached my twelfth birthday, I was allowed to ride the Motor Cayuse which was a robust scooter made by a local farm implement manufacturer. Powered by a 5hp B&S, its output went from the centrifugal clutch through a two-speed transmission and on to an ATV-like rear tire. Suspension was nil and the top speed was 30mph. Much like our TW, it would climb enough grade to cause you to worry about tipping over backwards. Behind the seat was a deep tray which could carry tools and/or a lunch, pop, fishing tackle and some worms. A piece of pipe mounted along the side of the tray could hold the handle of a shovel or a fishing pole. Although it couldn't take me to places that my horse could, it got there faster and was almost as much fun to ride.
    The greatest trick that Jay64 ever pulled was convincing the world he did exist.

  9. #8
    Senior Member ChipBeck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by poolsgold View Post
    I started on a Tecemsuh 2.5 horsepower, no suspension, friction rear brake only, mini bike. If you were lucky enough to have a mini 50 or trail 70 me and my friends thought your family was rich.....


    That's exactly the way it was for me. I started on a 3HP Briggs & Stratten, no suspension mini-bike. It cost me $150 brand new. I made money to buy it by working at a car dealership on weekends. A Honda Mini Trail was $299 and the Trail 70 was $399. I also thought that any kid who had one was obscenely rich! But after buying that mini-bike I started saving for the Trail 70 which I bought 2 years later. The rocky trails here in AZ pounded my hands painfully on that ridged minibike so I rode it mainly on neighborhood streets. The plush suspension on the Trail 70 allowed me to go way off road for the first time so I consider it my first REAL dirt bike. Two years after the Trail 70 I had saved enough to buy a Honda SL-100 dual sport motorcycle.



    Chip
    The road to hell on earth is paved with the good intentions of liberals.

  10. #9
    Senior Member darnold87's Avatar
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    Jul 2010
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    Salem, OR
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    Your guys' stories are awesome. The majority of kids these days don't get valuable experiences like this, but rather spend all their time with tv, computers, game systems, etc, etc .

    I'm 31 yrs old and grew up on 3 acres. My parents got me a '85 Honda atc70 3wheeler at 5yrs old. After a hospital trip and many stiches in my face, they got me a '86 Yamaha YFM80 4wheeler at 6yrs old. They kept me on 4 tires until my teens when I got an old '73 Honda SL175 to start learning to ride motorcycles, on and off road. Once I had that desire I got a Suzuki DRZ400. And last year I bought my old '89 T-dub, and I haven't looked back. These bikes really do take you back and are just a blast to cruise around on...
    ~Davey

    '89 TW200

    '94 Suzuki Sidekick

  11. #10
    Senior Member 805gregg's Avatar
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    Oct 2010
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    572
    I also started on a Honda trail 55 in about 1964, moved up to a real bike Triumph Cub 200 cc.

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