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Killa's biking history *Part 12*

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Won't Shut Up

Joined: 18 Oct 2004
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PostPosted: 10:17 - 21 May 2018    Post subject: Killa's biking history *Part 12* Reply with quote

From sixteen to thirty four, Iíve certainly taken a step back from riding in recent times and itís not completely out of choice.
I damaged my nerves/muscles in my forearms around three years ago, unfucking a fucked oil filter on my old 300 ZX, I still suffer from that even now.
My coccyx was obviously an issue with the narrow seat on the MZ and a previous wrist injury sometimes raises its head on longer journeys. I will still continue to ride though, gone are the days Iíd be out for hours at a time and the weather...well, what a shower of shite the UK can be. Rolling Eyes

With the MZ gone, my plan was clear. There was a bike still on the wish list, something rare, twin cylinder and now it seemed to be the most obvious choice given my history.
I started trawling eBay for the exact model and colour. I specifically wanted the red and black Yamaha TRX 850. Judging by the reviews it was strong, reliable (if maintained) with decent power but not so much that itíd rip your arms off like TLR or an R1. The low and reasonably wide seat was going to suit my needs and the looks had certainly grown on me over time.

The issue I found is that anything low mileage was out of budget, yet the very fact these bikes have some decent mileage on them, meant that the bike was good for it.
For just under two grand, something popped up, and she looked gorgeous. Made up in a one off white and red 50th anniversary colour scheme, it also had a complete suspension change (R6 front and rear) Yoshimura exhausts, braided lines etc etc. All with the original stuff to pop back on.

The seller was a pleasant enough chap in the end but I felt a little unnerved when I pulled up at a tower block of flats, the seller was there at a row of garages with a couple of big looking dudes and a young lad sat on a motocross bike. The kid road away on the scrambler and left me with the seller and one of the big lads. They were friends but as the story about the bike unfolded, he explained he lived not too far away and left the bike there for security. There was a camera he pointed out facing the garages, he felt it safer being here than at his house.

As genuine as it could have been I still didnít feel entirely comfortable with the situation. Either way, I needed to ride the damn thing. Upon start up, black smoke, I had checked the oil level and it was a little low, black as night to. First signs things arenít quite spot on, although she hadnít been run in some time. It was such a built up area I could only cruise around the estates. Even still, the bike, the engine, the gears, were a pleasant surprise. Oh and the noise. For me nothing comes close to the sound of the lazy Suzuki TL engine but the TRX certainly put a grin on my face. That being said the bike didnít idle properly, you had to feather it from crawling speed and keep the engine alive at a standstill. Apparently this was due to the change of exhaust can to the Yoshiís and an additional concern for me.

The looks alone nearly made me part with the cash that day, that custom paint job is still the best Iíve seen on the TRX to this day, I was weighing up the potential work/unknowns.
I think I made the right decision in the end and walked away, I just didnít feel 100% about the bike and I really needed to be.

The second bike to look at was only forty minutes away and seemed like a genuine listing. Medium to high miles (For me anyway), she was in the right factory colours and was all original, with the exception of the exhausts.
When I got to the location the couple were busy working on their huge renovation project. This bike was purchased from a chap who scared himself on it and passed it on to this guy. It seemed genuine enough but sadly the bike, cosmetically had seen better days. It was all there but there were obvious signs she had been stood for some time, outside with no cover.
Everything from forks, to the chain and the seats were all worn. Upon start up however I could tell this was running spot on, she had just had an MOT and service, so this was a good sign.
I stuck on my helmet and took her for a swift ride along the country lanes. As the lanes opened out and I started taking some corners, I couldnít help but notice how shite the handling was. Compared to the first TRX I tried out, this thing handled like a boat. I met a roundabout which was a good time to turn and head back and I literally had to chuck it in to get round. I thought about how much work was needed to get this bike right on the way back and sadly I had to walk away again.

Then, out of the blue a TRX appeared on eBay. It was the right price, not too far away and looked clean. It was actually mentioned here in an article on Bennets;

The guy was right, the modifications to this one in particular made the bike very enjoyable to right, almost perfect in fact. Fully adjustable levers, R6 forks, decent brakes with braided lines. I even liked the replacement for the original clocks.
As per usual the ride back was a nightmare. I actually left his place, which If I remember was just north of Brum again, it was really sunny and warm.
I think around the motorway section around Birmingham the heavens opened. I literally drove into a wall of rain. It was so hard, within a short space of time, I was wet enough to stop caring about the rain and just ploughed on. This time however, when I arrived home, the bike had run from start to finish faultlessly and the next morningís clean up of the bike proved she was a nice example all round.

The TRX is pretty perfect for me. The seat is low and doesnít give me any issues, the bars and position are just right. The replacement foot pegs can be a little extreme but overall Iím really happy with the bike. The torque and the box go together well, road riding is great, brakes are rarely used hard.
I removed the stickers that were on the bike, including the rim tape and Iíve been slowly adding personal touches to the bike as I go along. Thereís a tail tidy on the way over from Japan and Iím planning to make some more visual modifications when Iím a bit more flush.

I hope youíve enjoyed the journey so far, itís quite surreal reading back through and realising just how much happened. I actually quite the uneventful part of my biking history now, riding when I like and on the bike I think Iím most satisfied with. Iím sure Iíll be back at some point with more tales of bike ownership. Thanks for reading and happy riding all. Thumbs Up
Cleverly disguised as a responsible adult.
Bike:- Yamaha TRX850 | Killas Biking History | Killas Gaming History | Killas autmotive history
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Joined: 27 Jun 2008
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PostPosted: 15:47 - 21 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Really enjoyed these write ups Thumbs Up
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stevo as b4
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Joined: 17 Jul 2003
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PostPosted: 17:42 - 22 May 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another brilliant chapter mate!

I guess that the TRX is a bike that you would not instantly love the first time you ride one, especially if you hadn't had a few twins before? Also it's a bike that attracts modification and I guess really benefits from the right upgrade and modifications if done right.

But finding a rare bike that wasn't a big seller can be a tough one and in my experience they either elusive for ages or two or three bikes come up for sale at the same time.

I remember it all well when looking at KMX 200's, KR1S's and TZR 2ma's. Your bit about the first bike and being uncomfortable about either the seller, the bike or the area really took me back to when I went to look at an NS400R. I remember having some doubts about the bike, but more so thinking the seller won't be happy with what I could offer as my best price taking into account all the faults and issues. Of course in hindsight I'd have bought it at full list price and the RG500 I also went 80miles in the rain to view too. Doh!
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