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Discussion Starter #1
" In 1987 first made the TW a Japanese named Shinji Kazama guy rode the bike the NORTH POLE!?!"

In the 1980's I was the School Inspector for arctic schools. One of the schools I had responsibility for was Qamartalik School in Resolute Bay Nunavut - check that out at Resolute Bay, Nunavut, Canada on https://maps.google.com/.

Shinji staged his polar trip out of Resolute Bay and I had the very interesting pleasure of meeting him and noting the changes they made to his TW.

Shinji_Kazama-north-pole.gif

The most challenging modification related to keeping heat in the engine at the temperatures he was riding in. To achieve this his mechanics sawed off all the fining on the engine!

The expedition actually chartered an aircraft to fly from Resolute Bay to Ward Hunt Island and launched their expedition from there.

There is a bit of an overview of the trip at Shinji Kazama - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 

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That subject got hit pretty hard here a few weeks ago. I looked into it considerably because I had always heard it was a TW. I became convinced as people argued it was a TY with some TW fittings. Largely by examining pictures of the frame.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Shinji owned the largest Yamaha motorcycle dealership in Tokyo. They flew the bike back and forth until they had it right. The oversized front wheel makes me think it is a TY -
Somehow I missed that thread sorry.
 

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Nothing to be sorry about. I love the story. And I am not convinced totally as of yet what it was. Shinji among other things is not much of a publicity seeker, and information on both his North Pole and South Pole bikes is very scarce. I think it would be great if somehow we could make a complete ID on what exactly that bike consisted of.
 

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The "TY" I believe was a two stroke . I believe "his" bike, just had the TY front end.
Not sure. But I blew up the only pictures I could find, and compared the TW and TY frame, and it looked like a TY frame to me. Plus I'm not sure he didn't use a two stroke.
 

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Yea , I'm not arguing or being pig-headed , it just seems strange that "they" could get the model wrong on such an event and all of the coverge it had back then and some now ?.
 

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I always appreciate reading anything related to Shinji.

Happy Trails
 

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Yea , I'm not arguing or being pig-headed , it just seems strange that "they" could get the model wrong on such an event and all of the coverge it had back then and some now ?
I'm not arguing either, I would really love to know what actually made up that bike. Thing is I could never find the "they" I have never seen anything by Shinji himself or Yamaha that said it was a TW. More I looked at what I could find the more convince I was that somebody saw a picture, jumped to the conclusion that it was a TW from the rear tire and that just kept getting propagated.

If anyone has something where Shinji himself says it was a TW, or something official from Yamaha, that would clear it up in a heartbeat. Short of that, all I can go off is what it looks like when I blow the pictures up and then compare to a TY and TW frame. Like I said, I started out skeptical since I had always believed it was a TW.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I got all the gear, so heck...sure I'll go.
Sorry to tell you this lads - the polar ice pack is changing substantially. And with that change it has become increasingly difficult to get to the pole on the surface. The first big problem is a shear zone anywhere from 50-100 miles north of Ward Hunt Island. That is an area where land fast ice grinds against floating polar ice and creates ridges up to 30 feet high. Then there is the problem of the big lead. It can be anywhere from 1/2 to five miles wide. It is quite unpredictable. Provision has to be made for a boat - usually an inflatable to float the gear across. After these two issues - there is some 350+ miles of sharp ridges again up to 30 feet high. Pick axes are a must to open a path to get through wether you are on skiis, a snowmobile or as motorcycle. Once you get to the geographic north pole a new problem arrives. There is nothing there. So today you look at your gps and it tells you that you are there. Quite a psychological downer. Then getting back. The polar ice is constantly moving through something called the Arctic Gyre. It moves so quickly that sometimes adventurers awaking in the morning see all their previous days progress erased. To come home most folks arrange for a charter airplane for pick up. It has been a long time since any adventurer made the two way trip.
The surface trip has become quite difficult with some adventurers saying it is today totally unsafe.
 

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Not only is it a TY frame, but it's also a TY fork, front wheel, It's a TY motor, and if you look close. enough you can make out the TY mid muffler on the TY exhaust. That French Museum picture even says it's a TY250, but on this I think they are wrong, wrong because it's actually a TY350.

When you think about it, it all makes perfect sense in a Japanese sort of way. You have this guy who's the biggest dealer in Tokyo, he has shiny new first year TW's and the new TY made it's debut right around the same time frame. They were probably sitting around with the Yamaha brass trying to figure out a way to promote these quirky new play bikes. What better way than to take one to the north pole? The thing is, after thinking it through, they probably got to thinking that little 200 stroker might be hard starting in the frigid conditions. Then they looked across the the showroom floor and saw the shiny TY and said to themselves, that thing is made to go over anything. It will start right up in the cold, only drawback is it has no damn seat, and that skinny rear tire will never do...Hey, grab that fuel tank and that seat off the T'Dub, I've got an idea and a blowtorch, and that's a dangerous combo.

PS: this is just my alternate theory, my thoughts from 4 years ago are probably more accurate (Canadian model TY250), but the fact remains, we'll never know and he ain't tellin :cool:
 

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I started to get the impression it was just like that. Really not that hard to understand even in our context. Guy swaps an XT350 tank for the volume. It's in good shape, he doesn't care what it says...ends up in a museum with a sign that says XT350:D
 
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