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Discussion Starter #1
Can someone help me identify the type/model of the fuel tank installed on this bike (see photo).
(I'm obviously new to the forum so it could possibly be one of the older member's bike.)
It does not look to me like it is one of the Clarke plastic tanks. longroad-1[1].jpg
I would appreciate if someone knows.
Thanks!
 

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Can someone help me identify the type/model of the fuel tank installed on this bike (see photo).
(I'm obviously new to the forum so it could possibly be one of the older member's bike.)
It does not look to me like it is one of the Clarke plastic tanks.
I would appreciate if someone knows.
Thanks!
Appears to be a metal tank from an XT350 or XT600...but am not positive.

jb
 

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Peruano's writeup:

http://tw200forum.com/forum/performance-customization/5933-synopsis-xt350-tank-install.html


A number of us have them. Also available from Clarke in a plastic, 4 gallon version. The O.E.M. steel XT350 tank is about 3.2 gallons. The XT600 tank while similar is a bit harder to mount and actually holds a bit less due to its faux air scoop arrangenent.

Your TW seat can be used with the XT tank swith a bit of tweeking. There are as many methods of dealing with the seat as there are XT350 tank owners. Do a search and you'll find one which suits you.

Here's mine, with a TW/XT seat slpice (main seat pan is TW, nose of an XT350 seat pan grafted on to match tank, then re-covered).

 

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Discussion Starter #4
You are right. I did some more research and it is the OEM XT350 just like on your bike. I really like the look and the fit with your mod seat as well.
I'm not into the look of the Clarke plastic version. Is there a place where to get an OEM steel XT350 tank?
The once i've seen on eBay are quite beat up and rusty (even with rust inside which scares me, - how do you even clean rust from inside a tank???? :(
Your seat looks sick!!! (could you maybe post a pic of the bottom of the seat? to see how the two different seats are put together?
Thanks a lot for your post.
 

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You are right. I did some more research and it is the OEM XT350 just like on your bike. I really like the look and the fit with your mod seat as well.
I'm not into the look of the Clarke plastic version. Is there a place where to get an OEM steel XT350 tank?
The once i've seen on eBay are quite beat up and rusty (even with rust inside which scares me, - how do you even clean rust from inside a tank???? :(
Your seat looks sick!!! (could you maybe post a pic of the bottom of the seat? to see how the two different seats are put together?
Thanks a lot for your post.
The only surefire way to find a metal OEM XT350 tank is to buy a Clarke XT350 tank. Once you have installed the Clarke tank, a nearly complete XT350 parts bike with a clean tank and an asking price of $100 will be posted to your local Craigslist within 1 week.

Pass this on to 10 friends or else you'll never get an XT tank for your TW EVER!

Seriously though, I looked for a couple of months for an OEM XT350 tank before giving up and getting a Clarke, and that's pretty much what happened to me.

Cosmetics aside, the plastic Clarke tank has a few things going for it. More fuel capacity, zero chance of rust, dent resistant.

I agree with you, the metal XT350 tanks are sharp, but depending on your luck and time frame you might find it worthwhile to keep the aftermarket tanks in mind.

Also keep in mind that the XT350 tank mod (with the accompanying mods to the seat and pan) is a pretty committed and involved customization. It's a 1 way street too. I love having that much fuel capacity, but honestly it's rare that I actually need it. I'm sure that Lizrdbrth's and others' bikes fit together a little neater than my hack job, but I might think a little harder about the TW-specific Clarke tank if I was doing it again.
 
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Don Benito, have you ever had opportunity to compare yours with the steel versions and if so in how many dimensions is it bulkier than the steel jobs? Is it notably wider in the rear?
 

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Don Benito, have you ever had opportunity to compare yours with the steel versions and if so in how many dimensions is it bulkier than the steel jobs? Is it notably wider in the rear?
I have never had the opportunity to do a side-by side comparison, but from the looks of the indentations in the Clarke tank the rear end must be pretty close to the stocker.





From the outside of that lower bottom rear corner bumpout (above the front edge of the side panel) to the outside of its' twin on the other side is about 10". From looking at pictures of stock XT350 tanks it seems that Clarke made most of the extra room by expanding the front and top of the tank.
 

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Since I'm the owner of the tank in the picture, I'll chime in a bit.
1. Don Benito with all due respects, the conversion is not irreversible or even difficult. I'd replace the sawed off stub at the rear of the tank with a longer bolt and slap on the tank.
Secondly since I only added flex to my seat and didn't hybridize it like Lizard, it would reinstall immediately and probably take a bit of time to snug up like originally.
2. My original tank was an OEM metal xt350 tank and the one I'm riding now is perfect condition on (its my second because the first was an ugly duckling - it served me well, had some rust that never gave me problems with a fuel filter, had some dents which I covered with gripper pads, and has been passed on to others in the TW world with the hope that it will resurrect itself).
3. My present tank came to me for $50 after I contacted a guy selling an XT350 with a plastic tank on CL. I inquired about whether he had the original tank and he replied affirmatively. When I inquired about its condition, I nearly jumped through the phone to get it.
The XT350 guys and gals have had plastic tanks available for many more year than us, and there must be many stocker tanks sitting in garages. Advertising on CL, AdventureRider, or other forums would probably yield usable tanks.
Are they easy to find? No, but they exist. Range before hitting reserve is about 180 miles and reserve must be big as its installed on mine.
Not related to anything, but I recently discovered that I was presented with a Daisy BB gun during the two year period in a 100 yr history of manufacture that the stock and forepiece were made from plastic, 1950-52. I still have that gun and resent it having plastic components. I don't want no frigging plastic tank!

Tom

Here is a side by side comparison of the stock tw tank and the xt 350 tank.



And another view.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
ATTACH=CONFIG]500[/ATTACH]Thank you all for the discouraging posts lol.
I guess I can get the same Clarke look by moding a milk container and saving some big $$$ :)
Jokes aside, is there a way to clean rust from inside the tank??? Did anyone attempted to do this???
I'd like to hear your thoughts.

On another note, DonBenito - I'm also looking to get the rear rack. Noticing on yours you have the cycleracks one.
Any advice on the rack?
I've looked at the TCI ones as well as the original one sold by Yamaha online. None states the max load weight.

Yamaha online: $113.49 (Would work with the SHAD hard case)
aba-2jy51-00-00.jpg

Cycleracks.com $199 Not sure how this rack looks like (not mounted), on the bike pictured it is hard to tell how it is mounted to the frame (the connection points) - which is kind of nice and sleek though.
However, cycleracks does not offer optional/additional side rack to attach to this like the TCI ones do. So even though I like this one I would have to still figure out how to add the side racks and which ones would work with the cyclerack. :confused:
TW200%20Bike[1].jpg

The TCI products offer the most variety from simple one around $120 to $350 with the side racks which gets a bit pricey $$$$ :eek:
Any thoughts on these???
TCI Borrego Rack.png
TCI Borrego Rack $120

TCI 1 Sequoia Rack.png
TCI 1 Sequoia Rack $270

TCI Denali Rack.png
TCI Denali Rack $270

TCI Outback Rack $350
https://tciproductsusa.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=144_167_173&products_id=734

TCI products site:
https://tciproductsusa.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=144_167_173&sort=20a&page=1

Any advice on the racks? (pros-cons)
Thanks.
 

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Tinman Tim (on this site) sells a set of side racks for the cyclerack. The cyclerack is unbelievably bomber and @199 it is a great value in my mind.
 

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There are a zillion ways to restore a tank, from acids to tumbling to electrolytic rust removal. If you're not into tackling it yourself check with your local radiator shop. They'll sometimes take a crack at it as long as you relieve them of responsibility for your paint job.

Everthang affects some other thang, and I would submit that the size of your tank impacts your rack decision. If you intend to use the bike regularly for camping or for longer trips IMO gas belongs between your knees, not taking up cargo space. Bigger is better.

Plastic is mobetter in a lot of ways, one of which is weight. A 4 gallon Clarke weighs less than half as much as a steel 3 gallon XT350 tank (it also weighs less than the 1.8 gallon stocker), but EITHER weighs less than a comparable amount of extra fuel once adequately secured on a rack or stored in Rotopax type containers with all their associated bracketry. No law says that you have to keep them topped off when you're just goofing off locally.

http://tw200forum.com/forum/technical-help/173-tw200-component-weights.html



The sky's the limit when it comes to racks, from homebrewed to bargain basement to high-dollar. Most of the more useful types constitute at least a fair investment so you'll really want to do your homework taking into account your planned use for the bike before jumping in. Check the stickies for the rack discussion.

I can vouch for the fact that TCI's stuff is first rate, but costs accordingly and no one else has bothered to produce a complete dedicated conventional pannier system forthe TW at any price. I have the Outback system on my KLR and by way of disclaimer the wife's bike was used to prototype many of their TW accessories, but I had ample opportunity to see the quality and care employed in their manufacturing process. IMO their skid plate is the best available for a TW. Again, it's priced accordingly.

With so little horsepower wind drag is a huge factor in road trips both from the standpoint of performance and fuel mileage. In my experience panniers are good for as much as a 20 mpg/mph hit at highway speeds. Try to keep your gear behind you and out of the wind whenever possible and reserve the panniers as an add-on used only when the gear requirements for the trip justify their use.

The Cyclerack has pretty much been the standard for most of the TW crowd. I believe Cycleracks now offers a pannier attachment for their racks and several members have devised their own versions of it. Hard to beat for capacity and general rough useage and with the pannier attachment should work well for the odd long voyage though your panniers will be further out in the breeze than with the TCI system.

Here's a pic of myself displaying the absolute WORST way to load a TW (or any bike) for long distance. Panniers, whether soft or hard are absolutely horrid from an aero standpoint. It may be the most practical and common way to deal with space management but they're hell on performance and to be avoided whenever possible. I carried all the gear, tools, clothing and camping gear for two for two weeks. I don't think mpg ever quite got down into the 40's, but I struggled to hold a 50 mpg average (yet another point in favor of beeg tanx. Fuel mileage is totally unpredictable depending on conditions. Relatively light headwinds can knock you down from 80mpg to 60mpg in a heartbeat, even without a load). She carried only her sleeping bag and incidentals BEHIND her and could run off and leave me as if I was standing still. We're pretty conscientious about our gear but the nature of the trip (rain, snow, camping, cooking, bulkier clothing such as insulated riding pants, etc.) demanded carrying nearly all of it. That said all of our crap weighed only 30-40 pounds so it ain't the weight, it's an aero thing. The pannier racks are HT add-ons in this case. Solid and secure, but overly wide, as are most:

 

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Discussion Starter #14
Yeah, your bike sure looks like a Sherpa :) Nice pic.
I agree on the big tank. I'm seriously scouting the steel xt350 though (will never get over the plastic; it's a personal thing ;)
Luckily my own body weight is only 160lbs, so that leaves me extra for luggage :)
Fishing and camping is my thing btw (besides sailing lake Ontario).
Any sailors in this forum?
 

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homemade pannier brackets

Tom,
what rear/side racks support your bags?

It takes a strong rack to hold a big load. The seat was designed to hold a big load (pax for example) so I use the yolk of the saddlebags to support the weight of the bags (at rear of seat), and a simple homemade tubular steel frame on each side to hold the bags away from chain, wheel, muffler etc. The pax peg brackets were used at the bottom front and the most rear extending point on the "real" frame (not the frame extension) was used for the rearward brace. Be aware the pax pegs are not symmetrical so the frame that you will build won't be either. Not rocket science, but things that work, work. Tom
 

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It's taken me a long time to get over my resistence to plastic, as well.

My bike is now prepared for Armageddon in terms of equipment, but at what has become considerable weight penalty. The next iteration will see it similarly equipped but considerably lightened. If I had it to do over again one of the things I'd have done differently is to go with the poly tank from the git. I got the steel tank essentially for free, but given the cost of steel XT tanks of late...

I particularly like Tom's solution to the pannier problem. It could easily be removed when not needed but serves to triangulate the sub-subframe at a lower weight penalty and slimmer profile than most of the commercial offerings.

K.I.S.S.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks for the detail pic. I've decided to go with the cyclerack and get it modified by adding the pannier side bars to it. Luckily my cousin owns a steel shop so it should not be a problem (for him I :) I'd like to keep it simple, sleek and minimal with concern to total weight yet sturdy enough. They would be permanently fixed (not removable) so the whole rack will essentially be one piece. Match the paint of the bike frame and problem solved... (then start mass production :rolleyes:
 

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For the sake of completeness, lets state that there are several Clarke options for those who are willing to go "plastic". The TW200 is the smallest capacity of the three obvious ones, and the mods for installing the XT225 and XT350 plastic Clarke tanks are well outlined here on the TW200 forum. Most of the perceived problems for installing an XT500 tank are capable of being overcome as well so, one should look for appearance, capacity, price, and availability when making this oh so wonderful mod to your bike if you are going to go far into the wilds (away from service stations). Just saying. Tom
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Ok, I got the a used steel XT350 tank on eBay yesterday (let's hope it's not a pc of junk when it arrives, it was not cheap!!! :mad:
Now let's get to the seat...
I'm scouting some XT350 seats.
Lizrd, a question for u since u successfully moded yours.
Now, would it be possible to install the XT350 (with some mods to it) w/o the need of splicing it and cutting the tw one?
Since I don't have the XT seat yet it is hard to imagine what the differences are. If it is jut a wider seat, maybe I would not mind. but again, I'm shooting out of my leg here.
I would appreciate if you could elaborate on the seat process, or post a link if it's already on forum. :confused:
Thanks!!!
 

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You'll probably find once you get the seat that the shape of the 350 pan doesn't lend itself to adaptation to the TW. Nearly everything about the profile on its underside is all wrong and that a splice, while a lot of work is probably best.

It has been several years and I didn't take pics of my seat splice as I was doing it, but just by coincidence I'm planning to take both our seats to be re-upholstered sometime over the weekend and I'll strip the foam back from the splice and get pics of the details.

I got a little fancy with mine in that there's a "wedge" of softer foam at the rear so that the seat flattens out a bit as I slide rearward. Effectively there's no belly or forward pitch to the seat anymore as there was with the stocker and it's easily 20 times more comfortable. (I'm not bragging. It ain't that hard to make a TW seat more comfotable. All you gotta do is take it off, throw it away and ride the frame rails with a towel under yer butt. lol. )

From memory this is how I went about it. You'll want to measure 16 times and cut once, so do put a lot of eyeballing and self-doubt into the process and it will pay large dividends later. Good 350 seat pans aren't exactly a dime by the dozen so it's worth taking your time when hacking one up.

First, install your tank COMPLETELY and permanently before you start work on the seat. Some of our tank installs have had minor differences in tank setback due to frame differences, and tank setback establishes where you'll overlay the XT parts onto your TW pan. Yamaha wasn't very exacting when installing our steering stops so most frames vary greatly in that they steer further to the left than the right before hitting the stops, or vice-versa. . Make sure you have plenty of clearance (at least 1/4") between the tank and the triples in BOTH directions before establishing the final hole spacing in your rear mount. You'll want to keep the tank as far forward as possible but with just enough clearance to the triples. Slam the bars HARD against both stops and make sure there's no chance of contact in a getoff

Once the permanent tank location has been established, mount your tank in its permanent home then begin whittling away at your TW seat pan cutting the nose back until it just clears the tank and lays flat without any bending, with the front hold down toungue inserted into its proper location. just as it did when stock.. Do NOT cut out the front mounting "toungue" area or the tounge itself as it is the key to successfully meshing the two.

Then cut your XT350 seat off about 4-6" back from its "tounge" and rearward of where it begins to bend upward on the tank. Lay it over the TW pan and carefully begin to meld the two by cutting each a little bit at a time looking for points of interference. You will want to eliminate the tongue area from the XT350 seat completely but do it gradually so that you maintain the integrity of both.

If you have the foam from the XT350 seat it makes an excellent guide for acheiving the "under foam" shape of the pan, and having your tank in its final resting place allows you to fine tune the angle of your spliced nose to match the rear profile of the tank perfectly. I held the nose of my seat back about an inch from the rear of the tank because I swap between 3 possible tanks and wanted a bit of wiggle room, but you can set your tank clearance to any distance that trips yer trigger aesthetically.

Once the cuts are done and everything matches the rear profile of the tank, clamp the XT nose into its final position over the TW pan as tightly as possible, recheck the fit, then drill a couple of well-spaced rivet holes on either side completely through both. I used epoxy beteen the two to eliminate any flexing but I'm not sure it was neccessary. Back up your pop rivets with aluminum washers on the underside and don't overcompress them. If they don't "pop" once they're sufficiently tight just cut the excess from the rivet pin and call it good. The join needs to be as rigid as possible or the pan will flex and make recovering a nightmare.

If you've done everything right you can even recycle the XT350 foam. It will fit over the nose shape perfectly and for the most part the underside of the foam will conform to the TW pan. There will be a couple of inches of foam hanging off the end of the TW part of the pan which will have to be cut off to match.

The end result will be thicker, denser and more level than the TW seat in all the right places right out of the box. Y(A)MV, but it matches mine perfectly. "Iron Butt" perfectly. All by itself it relegates the stock pitch and foam to medievel torture device status, which it deserves.

The new shape doesn't lend itself to the "stretch and staple" method of upholstering, but it can be done with a ton of hand strength and superhuman patience.. You'll probably want a stitched seat cover with gore points sewn in for best appearance.

A couple of pics will make my instructions appear to be so much unneccesary gibberish. It isn't as hard as it sounds, but it is definitely very time consuming, and probably why most folks just roll with the "bendy seat" method in which the stock seat is simply forced into place against the curvature of the rear of the XT tank. That method works fine (albeit a bit inelegant) for a steel tank, but it will carve a rut into the back of a plastic tank in short order. Others relieve the tension on the seat by making pie cuts in the pan webbing, some use a heatgun, or both then un-staple and restretch the cover, etc.

Ronnydog simply cut the nose on his TW pan back to the point of no tank contact, reshaped things a bit more pleasingly then covered it back up. It looks fine, but don't tell him I said so.

I really like mine because the forward "flare" in the XT section makes standing on the pegs a breeze. In addition to the steel XT tank I also have a WAY big Acerbis 5 gallon tank which has the same rear profile, the stocker still fits, it just looks funny, and my planned Clarke 4 gallon should match up with the seat, as well. In my case the splice was well worth it.

I'll try to get you some pics over the W/E.
 
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