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Discussion Starter #1
I also posted this in the HUBB, but given the pedigree of bikes on this forum, I thought I'd put it here to and harvest from the collective wisdom. Overlanding by bike is my biggest passion after motorycling itself. Couple that with bodging and building bikes with varying degrees of success, I often think about the bikes I have had or like and consider them for that purpose...

So the Revere or NTV 600/650....

Not in it's standard trim, granted, but would this bike have potential?

Thing is, twins are more versatile than singles, the Honda lump is solid, (proven in the Transalp and Deauville series) and it is shaft drive: a nice option in the 650 class that is otherwise the reserve of the 1000+ cc engines.

Finally, it also a comfy, economic bike.

A slightly longer rear shock, a 19/21 inch front and slightly longer forks, panniers and a screen and off you go...

Thoughts?
 

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Bloody furriner
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First of all: Comfy bike, for people under 6'. Taller, then not so much.

My dad had one for a while, and we both found it a great little do-it-all, but too cramped for long rides. He's got a dullsville now, and my knees couldn't handle that kind of origami either. ;-)

Re: The longer rear shock, this isn't necessarily as easy as on a chain drive. There's U joints and stuff that can only take that much of an angle.

I know from the old airhead GSes that the u joints wear out a lot quicker if the angles aren't right. Hence people messing about with lengthening the older simpler monolever or retrofitting the tail end off a 1100 or 1150 bike at great expense...

And you'd have to raise it a lot if you intend to replace the front end with something taller, or you'll turn the bike into an american chopper. ;-)

You could have a look at whether the rear can take an 18" wheel, but that'll make it higher geared which is not something you'd like on a RTW bike.
 

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... A slightly longer rear shock, a 19/21 inch front and slightly longer forks, panniers and a screen and off you go...

Thoughts?
Good idea. Should be ideal for taking you over the Alps. You could even call it something like, oh, Trans Alp or something.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Good idea. Should be ideal for taking you over the Alps. You could even call it something like, oh, Trans Alp or something.

Such insolence!!!

Yes, but shaft drive!!!

Either that or chuck a NTV final drive into a TA. I won't tell you which I think would be more herculean a challenge...

Anyway, where's the bodging in buying an Alp?... far too capable off the shelf!
 

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Someone on this site (Raymo?) has got a very early shaft-drive Africa Twin. It's a lovely thing, but the shaft-drive didn't stay.

Honda rejected it for a reason: I'd suspect because as unlikely as it is to go wrong, the consequences of that happening in a remote part of the World are terminal. Chains are bodgeable and almost universally available.

Charley and Ewan are good poster-boys for shaft-drive RTW biking but they had back-up. Without it, I'd choose a chain even though I'd have very little doubt that a shaft-drive - particularly one as proven as the NTV's - would get me round the World and spit in my eye.
 

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Discussion Starter #6

Honda rejected it for a reason: I'd suspect because as unlikely as it is to go wrong, the consequences of that happening in a remote part of the World are terminal. Chains are bodgeable and almost universally available.

I disagree. I suspect cost, weight and power loss were more likely to be the culprits leading to Honda's decision.

Air-head BMs are still a RTW bike of choice and are good at those sorts of trips. Carrying a spare shaft is a bit heavy, but no more so than a spare chain.

A chains ability to be bodged is not so great either. A busted shaft is no worse than a chain wrapped around your front sprocket, picking bits of crack crank case from between it's teeth!!

On our BM 1150, shaft drive was not a necessity but it was peace of mind as far as routine adjustment was concerned.

I'm not planning to do anything to my TA, other than improve it with a few bits and bobs, but I like to imagine....
 

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i didnt see LWR/LWD as good ads for bmw, it was good for getting the roundel seen on mainstream tv but anyone knowing anything about bikes could see how they struggled.
they wouldve been much better off with smaller lighter bikes. they made the classic mistake of taking too much stuff, probably because it was thrown at them for free, and the bikes gave their fair share of trouble.

the shaft drive xrv750 was pre "AT" wasnt it? id agree with it being too complicated, heavy and expensive for honda to continue with it. those few still on the road are still going strong.
 

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Bloody furriner
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Air-head BMs are still a RTW bike of choice and are good at those sorts of trips. Carrying a spare shaft is a bit heavy, but no more so than a spare chain.
And the real smart cookies fit them with an upgraded shaft with replaceable U joints. Carrying a couple of those is easy.

(That said, the shaft on a paralever airhead isn't exactly maintenance free. They tend to break every 50-60k miles. Regular as clockwork.)
 
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