70s enduros.. <3
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  1. #1
    Senior Member jontow's Avatar
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    My wife's birthday is in a few days, and she's shown some interest in [re]learning to ride, but wanted a bike of her own, last time on a bike for her was when she was a young teenager on a trail 90. TWs are relatively few and far between here, and they almost never come up for a low price, so we didn't have much hope of going that route at this time. She also hates the 90s color schemes Can't blame her -- my 97 is about as muted as the inexpensive 90s models get, and its still pretty in your face with the colors on the tank/seat. I've been watching a few semi-local craigslists for a while, and caught an ad for a *pair* of 70s Kawasaki 2 strokes, and having wanted one for quite a while, I knew it had to happen.



    Yesterday, we decided to cut out of work early and left to have an adventure. 90 miles each way in my ratty old chevy truck, we averaged ~17mpg (pretty decent for a whipped 350 v8 in bad need of a tune up), blew a brake line (front, between the T and the proportioning valve, killing *all* front braking) at the very far end of the journey, and the upper radiator hose started leaking from rubbing on the alternator bracketry! Needless to say, this is pretty much how all of my adventures go, and its certainly not my first rodeo. When the brakes blew, I downshifted and swung a quick right turn on a side street, having broken down about 2miles from the guy's house, and 1500ft from an advance auto parts store. Well, it turned out the guy was an old car nut, and it was also not *his* first rodeo: he gave me access to his garage+tools, and gave me a ride to the parts store to buy a short section of brake line; I replaced it in his driveway and commenced to oogle the bikes Needless to say, they're at my house, now, keeping the TW company in the shed.









    The yellow one belongs to my happy wife, who spent an hour or so in the dark last night relearning the art of the clutch, and learning the art of the kickstarter



    Yellow: 1975 KE125 (hers)

    Brown: 1974 KE175/F7 (his)



    She went to bed with quite a smile, and a bit of a bruise/scratch on her leg where the kickstarter bit her, but all in all: great adventure, and hope to have some good times on these smokey old enduros.



    The yellow one needs fork seals, new tires/tubes, and the turn signal flasher doesn't work, although all the bulbs do. Otherwise, just basic transmission fluid change, fork flush, etc.

    The brown one doesn't start without starting fluid yet, and the gas smells a bit varnished, but we did get it running before I loaded it up; it needs all of the same basic maintenance as the yellow one, plus has a few gaskets that need replacing. Otherwise, both are in good cosmetic shape and are "low miles" (2000-3000 on each), and run great.
    --

    1997 TW, well loved, a bit modified.

  2. #2
    Senior Member joeband's Avatar
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    you're going to have a great time with those, they are a pair of great barn finds. congrats!
    1994 TW226- 6spd. 10w-40 synthetic, XTHidden Content , XT225 stainless header, +2" Joemama swingarm, lizrd cooler, +20% fork springs, +25% rear spring, 2001 speedo w/ trip odo, pro taper atv bars, bark busters, shinko 241 front tire, front fender w/ mr bracket bracket, Hidden Content , o-ring chain, ricochet skid plate, Hidden Content , XT225 rear brake cam lever, folding-tip shifter, cycle rack, kolpin 1.5 aux tank & 1450 pelican case. Hidden Content or Hidden Content

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  3. #3
    Senior Member mrbracket's Avatar
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    Those are really clean! Nice find!! Have fun!



    You've got a friend in the Bracket Business! Hidden Content

    Get your TW200 Parts at ProCycle! Hidden Content

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  5. #4
    Senior Member Xracer's Avatar
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    Lot's of fun getting old stuff running again. Great Find!!

  6. #5
    Moderator vuldub's Avatar
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    Nice!! Love it.
    Regards...Wes
    In the Stable: 73 Honda CT90,81 Honda CT110,81 Honda CT70,04 Yamaha TW200,07 Kawasaki Vulcan 1500

  7. #6
    Senior Member silverhead's Avatar
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    Those kaws are cool. What I like about the old enduros is the super wide handlebars. I have two Suzuki TS250 bikes at the moment. A '73 and a '74. I just like two stroke stuff. Two stroke stuff you can ride on the street legally is even better!



    Also, I find them to be easier to keep running right than the old 4 stroke stuff I've had. Simplicity!
    1993 TW200

  8. #7
    Senior Member Xracer's Avatar
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    Anyone know where I can get a TS-400 Suzuki or DT-400 Yamaha? Seems the big bore 2smokes are hard to find.

  9. #8
    Senior Member silverhead's Avatar
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    There's a 200 dollar Suzuki TS400 on my local craigslist, but I'm in Iowa, so I'm sure it's not worth your while. They're out there.. I think people just have them stuffed in garages because they don't think they're worth much.



    Mine both run reliably and get about 75mpg. People underestimate old stuff.
    1993 TW200

  10. #9
    Senior Member jontow's Avatar
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    Well, the wife's bike (KE125) is legal and inspectable now.. only thing wrong was the turn signals: flasher relay was shorted shut so they just stayed on instead of blinking. Turns out its really hard to find a 6V flasher relay in this town; NAPA ended up having a taller heavy duty 6V one with 3 pins instead of two; taping off the third pin it works fine and seems to fit!



    The K7 (175) only needed the horn fixed, which turned out to be a wire unplugged. The K7 still is very finicky about starting; it'll fire on the first kick but if you don't keep it running, it seems you're done for a few hours. I've had good luck, I got it to start on the first kick two days in a row. I suspect its leaking air, apparently the 175 is renowned for that. Lots of bits and bobs to buy for it to get it in good shape, there have been a few hackish fixes (front brake light switch, rear taillight lens, duct tape over the carb adjustment hole instead of the appropriate seal, which looks hard to source).



    Here's a bit of background: I'd been looking for a KE100 for my wife, since its a nice small/cheap bike and they can be had in modern form, 70s up until 2001 or something ridiculous. However, I couldn't find any close enough for a reasonable price, and then these popped up She's had a blast putting around the yard and woods on hers, and I've done the same, the times I could get it to start, at least. Hers fires up first kick every time, and is in notably better shape all around.



    HOWEVER: you folks will love this one. After riding hers around for most of our lunch break today, I convinced her to take the TW for a spin in the yard, and now she's hooked on my bike. I think it'll be easier for her to learn to ride in the dirt on the TW though, its a lot more stable with its chubby tires. Probably gonna have to go and buy her a TW now, too!



    There are far worse things in life than an empty wallet and a happy wife
    --

    1997 TW, well loved, a bit modified.

  11. #10
    Senior Member operose's Avatar
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    Take her on a ride over to my place and run some of the trails, I saw you said last night she did 7 miles in the yard... that's too many miles for your little yard man



    The DRZ fully loaded with bags and gear made it up to the tops of the ridges no prob, those little billy goats should go damn near anywhere. If she's not comfortable with some of it there are always the semi-groomed trails on the back side of the field. Let me know though so the wife can be informed, wouldn't want the dogs set out on ya
    ITCB

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