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Author Topic: Question from a beginner  (Read 2661 times)

Blackcat360

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Question from a beginner
« on: November 19, 2012, 10:22:26 PM »
Hello, I am a new rider that has just taken a MSF course.

I am looking at getting my first bike and have been flip flopping between a TU250x,GS500 and a Royal Enfield 500cc (leaning towards the look of the military model). My goal is a good standard bike that I can keep for a long time. I am also going after a used bike and my question is when comparing and making a final decision should I save more money and try to get a newer used EFI or go ahead and get a 2000+year model with a Carb? I have sat on a Royal Enfield and really liked the seating position along with the look. I also like having a kick-start as well.

So any recommendations? Looking for a fun bike to commute sometimes on interstate and around time. As well as joy ride as a hobby.

LarsBloodbeard

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2012, 10:37:04 PM »
The EFI models have more readily available parts in the US.  I think they're probably more reliable too.  They're better suited for the freeway than the older bikes.

The carbureted models are easier to work on, and there's a plethora of parts to be had from CMW, ebay, Hitchcock's, etc. for cheap.  And you could probably find a derelict parts bike for cheap too, if that's a prospect that attracts you, since many parts are interchangeable across a great number of year models.

Short answer: EFI = no fuss, Iron Barrel = cheap/easy to work on.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2012, 10:39:20 PM by LarsBloodbeard »

Arizoni

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2012, 10:38:19 PM »
I'm a bit prejudiced because I own a UCE but I think paying a few dollars more for one of these will be well worth it to you.

The UCE's have a lot of improvements in their engine that makes them more reliable and less fuss.
All of them except for some of the 2010 models have a kick starter.

The only weakness I'm aware of is the drive chain and some areas of the electrical harness that needs some additional protection from sharp metal edges.
The rest of the bike seems to be pretty "Bullet proof".  (little joke there...Royal Enfield Bullet).

The only condition I avoid is riding on the Interstate highways where the speed limit is at 85 mph.  As the bike tops out at about 80 and everyone in a car is driving at 90 mph, that's not a good place for them.

Highways with posted limits of 65 mph are great fun.
Jim
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Blackcat360

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #3 on: November 20, 2012, 02:03:03 AM »
Thanks guys. I will defiantly start looking more into the new models. Unless of course see a really good deal on a newer iron barrel. Now they joy of shopping for a used bike! On the plus side I reckon am hunting in the best season since its cold out maybe more people be inclined to offer a good deal. ;D

GSS

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #4 on: November 20, 2012, 02:07:47 AM »
I have a TU250 and a RE C5.  The TU is a highly refined "mini Enfield" that will give you the same top speed as a RE C5 military for 4K vs 7K for the Bullet. However the TU will never attract crowds and you will want to upgrade within 6 months. I bought the TU as a starter bike for the wife and am holding on to it for the kids to reach riding age. Meanwhile it will be a fun little cafe project. Do yourself a huge favor and get the RE....any 2009 or newer with the UCE engine will be great! They are very reliable despite minor quirks.
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LarsBloodbeard

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #5 on: November 20, 2012, 02:13:18 AM »
I just saw one of those TU250's not an hour ago.  There was a 5' tall 90 pound woman riding it.  That's a great little city bike for shorter, lighter people.

GSS

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2012, 02:22:12 AM »
Exactly! It is perfect if you are below 5' 8". I was definitely scrunched when I put about about 150 miles on it for the initial break in. Great handling bike though.
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GlennF

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2012, 05:15:13 AM »
The UCE bikes are reliable at highway/freeway speeds over longer distances.

The iron barrels, not so much.

dginfw

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #8 on: November 21, 2012, 05:00:20 AM »
For what its worth, I got the UCE over an older Enfield because the older bikes with carbs need a few mods just to get them to the performance of a newer bike, and the older bikes have notoriously crucial break-in periods. If you don't know how well the bike was broken in, you could be taking a bigger risk...       just my .02
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jonico61

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #9 on: November 21, 2012, 02:45:19 PM »
I definitely agree, get a newer UCE EFI. If you were totally into the tinkering and mechanics aspects you probably wouldn't have asked here. If you do feel like doing minor tinkering you certainly can on the new ones, but your riding doesn't depend on it like it does for the older ones. Let us know what you get in the end!
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Ducati Scotty

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #10 on: November 21, 2012, 03:03:04 PM »
If you were totally into the tinkering and mechanics aspects you probably wouldn't have asked here.

I like that point of view: if you have to ask you don't really have to ask. :)

eda1bulletc5

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #11 on: November 21, 2012, 05:11:39 PM »
The newer EFI models gives less headache than the iron barrel but has the same appeal. If you do decide to do small tinkering work on the EFI it is not too hard to do either. I don't consider myself a mechanic per say, but the ease of access of certain aspects of the bike and the helpful folks here in the forum gives me more confidence to do so.
Within the EFI type, you will have to decide which model by doing test rides; of course individual liking to a model as well. I liked the more classic looks of the C5...given an option now I would have gone with C5 military or wait for the cafe racer, thats just me!
RE EFIs are nice bikes, you will not be disappointed...Oh of course, be prepared for all the curious on lookers and questions especially "what year is it?" "Did you restore it? "
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barenekd

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #12 on: November 21, 2012, 05:18:04 PM »
I'm not sure why Lars says the iron barrels are easier to work on. They are essentially the same bike until you get into the bottom end of the engine. The electronics, I supposed could be considered harder to work on, or more possibly harder to troubleshoot.
On the other hand you shouldn't have to do anything to them anyway. No valves to adjust, no carbs to rejet, No points or timing to adjust, much more reliable electronics, the only thing you really have to do is change the oil.
The UCE is really the only way to go if you're not a mechanic.
And I've seen some super deals out there on 2012s.
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Ducati Scotty

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #13 on: November 21, 2012, 06:16:57 PM »
I'd say that's the difference, the electronics.  The older bikes are no more complicated than a lawn mower.  It's easy to learn and understand that technology and there are plenty of people to ask when things don't work.  EFI is still black magic to many otherwise very capable hobby mechanics.

Scott

LarsBloodbeard

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Re: Question from a beginner
« Reply #14 on: November 21, 2012, 06:23:54 PM »
I'm not sure why Lars says the iron barrels are easier to work on. They are essentially the same bike until you get into the bottom end of the engine. The electronics, I supposed could be considered harder to work on, or more possibly harder to troubleshoot.

I think you just made my point for me.

Hmm, I'm assuming you mean they are the same, conceptually.  Very few of the parts are interchangeable.

I'm considering all things, when I say that.  No pressurized fuel system.  The carb can be completely disassembled and adjusted with nothing more than a screwdriver.  I'm also considering the tolerances of the engines.  And I could be wrong on this, but it was my understanding that the older bikes are a bit more forgiving, tolerance-wise.  The rings can be compressed with your fingers and shoved into the barrel, whereas the EFI has one of those odd springy rings, which might be simple enough, but I think requires a compressor at least.  And the bike is a bit simpler (less to diagnose).  No kickstand kill switch, no O2 sensor, etc.

I did say the EFI is more reliable, so you probably won't HAVE to do much work to it anyway.
« Last Edit: November 21, 2012, 06:37:36 PM by LarsBloodbeard »