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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have been riding motorcycles since I was about 10 years old. Honda XR, Yamaha YZ, Suzuki RM, and now I have a TW200. The only problem is... I wasn't really taught how to take care of my motorcycle, including simple maintenance. I have what I hope is a slightly better knowledge of motorcycles than the average person, but it is still very basic.

I'm hoping y'all can direct me to some helpful links, videos, etc to get my bike going, with the warmer weather just about here. There's a Yamaha shop right up the road. But. I don't want it to sit in there forever while I'm itching to going riding, and I very much want to learn how to do this stuff on my own.

Side note: First forum I've ever been a part of. So. Pardon my poor etiquette?
 

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Welcome to the forum!! :D

You will find that this forum is full of helpful nice people who will guide you step by step with just about any problem you might have with your bike.

How about telling us what year it is, it's present condition, mileage, any known problems, stuff like that...
 

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I think the two most important things are to:

A.) Give yourself enough time for a given project AND be patient.

B.) Have the correct tools to do the job - even if it takes buying that one tool that you'll only use for one thing.

I have progressed through the years, primarily teaching myself with only the help of hayes, chilton and other various manuals from the web. The folks here are great - as is Youtube now-a-days. I would start with the oil change and chain maintenance, this will give you confidence to move to other "more advanced" processes, such as valve adjustments, clutch changes, and sprocket changes too.

TW is very low maintenance and when it is required, it's very basic and easy. It sure beats trying to work on a modern sport bike. Geez, I had a horrible time the first time I changed my spark plugs on my R6 - when I had that.
 

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Welcome to the forum! +1 for everything Little Tommy & everyone else said.

The maintenance things to think of & be aware of in no particular order:
Tire condition & tire pressure. Oil level, & how to change your oil & know the correct oil filter, as there has been major issues with the WRONG oil filter ending up in the correct OEM box right off the shelf, DESTROYING engines! :( Chain adjustment & lubricating the chain. Check & clean the air filter. Check all the lights. Check the battery water level, & seriously consider replacing that lead acid battery with a lithium battery if the budget allows, way lesss trouble to deal with! & depending on the amount of miles on the bike, a valve adjustment.

Many of these things are things you can do no problem. A couple are a little tricky, & you may want to leave those to the shop, or see if there is a TW member in your area who knows how.

Always feel free to ask questions here, you will not be criticized, you will find that this is indeed a friendly & helpful forum.

Poke around & read a bunch in the thread you posted in: Technical Help

TONS of useful info! :cool: m.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
@Tommy: It's a 2006. Bought it in September of 2012. One previous owner. I'd mark it as "decent/good" condition. A little rust on the handlebars, but ran smoothly until late last Fall. Has 5,140 miles as of now.
@Purple: Thank you for the link to the PDFs of the manuals. I saved a couple to my computer and will read through them as I am able.
@Adam: I'm definitely committed as far as time and willingness to purchase tools and supplies. Riding has always been something I've loved, but it's time to figure all of this mechanical sh*t out, too!
@Madness: I have all of that on the list to figure out now, thanks. The battery (lead acid) is new as of Spring '15, and is working great.

Potential issues:

Was running smoothly until last Fall. I believe it started as a gasket leak (again, very basic knowledge, but I just kind of have a feeling). Which I believe lead to the slight knocking/clicking noise.

Went to start the bike today, for the first time since Spring. I should have done an oil change first, I'm sure, but I jumped the gun... Which I'm guessing has caused me more problems.
Started right up, no problem. Let it run for a couple of moments and turned the choke off. Was running smoothly. Turned the throttle a tad and it began to putter. Died after a couple of quick short throttle turns. Old gas? Something with the throttle cable? Started it back up and ran inside for a bit to let it burn some gas off. Guessing that was a hell of a bad idea, as when I returned... There was what smelled like oil leaking a bit from the gas cap. Immediately shut it down and removed the key, which was very warm to the touch. Bike is overheating? So something with the oil; coolant?

Sure do feel lost, and seem like an idiot, huh?
 

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Welcome aboard, Amanduh!
One thing though...you strike me much more as an Amanda than an AmanDUH!
Often times community colleges offer courses on motorcycle maintenance, entry level and up.
You might consider that...I've had a couple that were great. And you have the perfect bike to learn on.
You might also find a boyfriend with lotsa tools.
Then tell him to go wash the dishes...
 

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I have a 2006 as well. I had my base gasket changed twice already and it has begun leaking again about 6k miles ago. Is the leak coming from the base of the cylinder?

A leak here wouldn't have an effect on performance or running, just smelly and an inconvenience.

I would drain out old gas, buy some Sea Foam (add just a little bit to fresh fuel - read directions). Get your valves checked. It's very likely that if they haven't been adjusted yet, they do need it. This will cause more than normal ticking.

There's no coolant in these things, so you're likely smelling the hot, leaking oil from your engine - no big deal.

Great questions - let us know what you find.
 

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Adams right - no need to panic or to beat yourself up - follow the advice in his post and it'll be fine ........
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Doing this from my phone now. Gonna cut it out until I get home. Thanks, everyone, for your help thus far. Going to change the oil Thursday afternoon, for starters. K&N part KN-143 is the filter I'm looking at. SAE 10W-30 oil, yeah?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Alright, got it. Now. Here's where I get specific. I want to know WHY this oil. How does it work differently? Etc. Give me all the knowledge!
 

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Oil on the cases.....might be a base gasket or just a bit of weeping from the cases....I have to wipe mine once in a while. Oil coming out of the gas tank? That is VERY weird! The only thing I can think of is that somebody thought it was a two stroke and mixed oil with the gas. :eek: First thing to do is remove the tank, remove the petcock, flush the tank thoroughly (put a quart of fresh gas in, put the cap back on, put your finger over the petcock hole and shake like hell up, down, and sideways for a minute. Drain, inspect the petcock filters with a bright light, blow them out with compressed air and re-assemble. ( You might be surprised at all the crap that was in the tank!) Drain the carb bowl by the little screw facing you, and put fresh gas in. Look at the carb parts to figure out the drain screw: http://tw200forum.com/forum/technical-write-ups/881-tk-carb-photos-parts-identification.html
Once you get it all back together add a double dose of Seafoam and see what happens.

Although you may be able to back that screw out with the included screw driver if it is still there, one of the first TW specific tool you should buy is a set of three JIS drivers. The screws on the TW are NOT Phillips head, and VERY easy to bugger up if you use same.

To remove tank: remove seat, remove bolt at back of tank, turn gas OFF!, pull rubber gas hose off carb, and work the back of the tank up and then rearward with a little side to side motion. Be careful until you get the petcock off, as it is easy to bump and break off. It has a gasket and careful pulling and gentle working side to side should release it without damage.

One of the worst things you can do to a carburated engine these days is put Ethanol gas in it and let it sit for a year.....guaranteed to cause all sorts of problems! Actually, the problems start after just three months.:mad:
 

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Wait until you fix the oil leak before going to synthetic. It may cause it to leak more until you fix it. Otherwise, that is great oil.
 

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... I want to know WHY this oil....
It is simple, really. Full synthetic oil is slipperier than Dino oil, and it as a result it makes the gearbox and clutch work smoother on these bikes, which have the clutch and gearbox all in one case with the engine.. It also lasts longer, so that 2,000 mile oil changes are routine.
I get my Mobil 1 Racing 4T at Wally World. Castrol makes a similar product. (This is SURE to start a new oil argument, the latest in about 40 going back 10 years....:p)

Your bike is well broken in, so you can switch to full synthetic any time.
 
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