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Thread: New Owner from NY

  1. #1
    Junior Member jimdubs's Avatar
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    New Owner from NY

    Hello everyone! I've been lurking/reading for a while now but I guess I should introduce myself. I bought a TW on a whim (I tend to be impulsive) one day after riding my buddy's for a short time. We went riding together, he brought his TW that he had recently bought. I had always seen the bike as a toy, or gimmick, and laughed when he pulled up with it and I saw how silly and tiny it was! I had brought my XT350, so part way though the ride we traded for a little while. The TW was slow with no suspension travel, BUT was low and had that magic start button. Perfect for the slow, rutted, rocky rides I generally do!

    Despite watching my friend struggle through anything remotely similar to mud (GOD this bike sucks in mud!!!), I loved it and decided to keep my eye out for one at a good price. The next day one popped up on craigslist, not too far away and priced right. I picked up a 2004 with 300 miles on it, owned by an older women, then her even older brother.

    The bike was pretty clean, minus some garage chips and marks. The biggest problem was that the old guy liked to tinker. He removed every Yamaha name and warning sticker with a shovel based on the gouges in the plastic, he even spray painted over the Yamaha name on the seat! He added a headlight switch (because he claimed it was too much drain while starting) and some exterior frankenstein bolts for jumping the battery (because it was always dead). I promptly bought a new battery (shorai) and got rid of his modifications. I also cleaned out the carb since it wouldn't idle reliably, and reset the ungodly high idle speed that I think the old guy cranked up because it wouldn't idle.

    The one modification I left, that I soon regretted, was the -2 front +2 rear sprockets and new chain. The regret came not from the lowered top end speed, but when the $20 chain he bought online left me stranded 4 miles back in the woods. I pushed the bike up and down hills for about a mile while my brother went ahead to see what we had in the truck. After a mile with sweat burning my eyes, heels blistered and thousands of little gnats swarming my face I decided I would wait for him and was prepared to leave the fat little pig bike behind a tree.

    He came back with no tools or chain. The only other bike we brought had a different link size, so all he brought was a rope. We tied the TW to the back of his 1977 DT250 and he pulled me three miles back to the car. It was awful, by far the worst experience I've ever had riding. Afterwords I put the original front sprocket back on and the OEM chain the PO had given me, which was the same length as the Made In China one he put on.

    This bike has taught me to look over any used bike more carefully to see what the PO has screwed with, and done wrong.

    That being said, I love this stupid, slow, silly bike. I laugh hysterically as I encourage it up to speed, or up an incline on the road. It is the worst bike I've ever owned in some ways, but the one I've enjoyed the most (so far!). Best wishes all, ride safe and I hope to learn and perhaps help others here in the future

    Jim
    Last edited by jimdubs; 12-01-2019 at 12:30 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member TW-Brian's Avatar
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    Great introduction, Jim, and welcome to the forum!

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Purple's Avatar
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    The carefull aged owner huh - it's rarely that simple

    Welcome to the cruise ....
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  5. #4
    Senior Member Scooterbrained's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forum!
    littletommy likes this.
    '16 Yamaha TW200 '08 Kawasaki Vulcan Nomad '07 Kawasaki KLX250 '93 BMW R100GS Bumblebee (Mothballed)
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  6. #5
    Senior Member Smitty Blackstone's Avatar
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    Nice post. Welcome.
    You mention NY in the title of your post, but you do not mention where in NY.

  7. #6
    Senior Member Badgerflorida's Avatar
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    Those deep woods lessons are the best and worst ways to learn. Welcome to the forum! Nice introduction!
    01 SOLD
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  8. #7
    Senior Member GaryL's Avatar
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    Nice intro Jim. This is proof positive that a very in depth inspection is in order once you get the new bike home and in your own garage. I bought one that I thought had a good chain but was a riveted solid chain with no master link. When doing my deep inspection at home I found the chain was not riveted but the master link was on the chain but facing backwards with the clip on the inside and the clip was missing. That could have been a disaster out in the deep woods. I think you will find the original sprockets, 14/50 are fine for most dual sport riding but if the trails is where you spend most of your time a bigger rear sprocket will serve you well. I hate the original roller cheap chain and always immediately swap it for a good quality DID O or X ringed one.
    Where in NY are you?

    GaryL in NY
    Smitty Blackstone likes this.
    Be Decisive! Right or Wrong just make a decision. ​ The road of life is paved with flat squirrels that couldn't make a decision.

    Since light travels faster than sound, some people appear bright until you hear them speak.
    If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong.

    1987 Yamaha BW350 Big Wheel
    2017 Snowdog Track sled tow motor for ice fishing
    Kubota BX2370 Subcompact tractor with snow blower
    Wilderness System Ride 115 fishing Kayaks

  9. #8
    Junior Member jimdubs's Avatar
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    Thanks for the welcome all. I'm in the Buffalo area unfortunately. That means most good riding is a couple hours away in any direction.
    Smitty Blackstone and GaryL like this.

  10. #9
    Senior Member GaryL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimdubs View Post
    Thanks for the welcome all. I'm in the Buffalo area unfortunately. That means most good riding is a couple hours away in any direction.
    Go Bills! Wife grew up in Albion and I worked there until I made promotion to Sgt. and ended up at Groveland C. F..

    GaryL
    Be Decisive! Right or Wrong just make a decision. ​ The road of life is paved with flat squirrels that couldn't make a decision.

    Since light travels faster than sound, some people appear bright until you hear them speak.
    If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong.

    1987 Yamaha BW350 Big Wheel
    2017 Snowdog Track sled tow motor for ice fishing
    Kubota BX2370 Subcompact tractor with snow blower
    Wilderness System Ride 115 fishing Kayaks

  11. #10
    Senior Member stagewex's Avatar
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    "It is the worst bike I've ever owned in some ways, but the one I've enjoyed the most"

    One of the best descriptions I've ever read here, HaHa.

    Welcome to you from downstate. Ya still have gnat's up there in this freezing weather?
    2008 Vespa 150"S" (Elec & Kick Start)
    2007 Ural Patrol (2WD, Elec & Kick Start)
    2006 Yamaha TW200 (Elec & Kick Start)
    1995 BMW K75 (Elec Start)
    1991 Honda XR250L (Kick Start Only)
    1986 Yamaha BW200ES (Elec & Kick Start)
    1969 BMW r60/2, US Model (Kick Start Only)

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