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Hello! After 30 years of pretty serious bicycle riding, I just decided a couple of months ago i'm ready to ride a motorcycle. I geared up, took a basic rider course, put a few miles in on a friends little 250 Suzuki and after a month of intensive searching, found a beautiful, close to stock and super clean 1990 TransAlp XL600v (28k miles). Of course, the day after I bought her, it snowed and the temp dropped to 13 degrees F. Grrr.

These bikes are super rare here in the states, so I'll be lurking this forum from the other side of the world for clues, insight and tricks (wondering about that XR650 front end upgrade, already).

I'll be sure to (inadvertently) violate some rule of decorum, and ask questions with answers any experienced person would laugh at, so asking for some latitude for a few days :^). As compensation, I'm a professional photographer, so feel free to ask me any questions you might have about that... Now to try uploading a picture of the TA, that currently waits in my living room/studio for the weather to improve.

Thanks for all your contributions, past and future. And is that Xenon headlamp really $200?

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welcome along Tom you guys in USA only got the Transalp for 2 years but luckily the best model in my humble opinion I ride a 90 myself :D but you got the best paint job that moon stone is the bomb :cool: you very lucky to pick up such a well preserved low mileage example with some tasteful extras added . don't be shy to ask any questions you have plenty or reading in the Transalp forum to help you get to know your bike you should check out transalp.org too its a USA based forum and you have a Transalp rally every year over there hopefully not to far away from you also ADVrider.com has a huge thread on Transalps take a month straight to read it all :thumbright:
 

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Hi Tom and welcome.
What a fantastic looking Alp you have there, now, don't you be going and butchering it by bunging another front end on it - they ride and handle fine as they are and really nice standard ones are becoming increasingly hard to find.

Although it is a bit quiet here nowadays, it is quite relaxed so don't worry about asking questions.
Enjoy the bike and in the meantime, why not put your photographic skills to good use & post a few more pics up!

Phil

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hello and thanks for the welcome!

I'll have more pics as soon as I can get on the road and photograph my new TA somewhere besides my living room.

I'm looking forward to learning about this beautiful bike, and motorcycles in general. I'm a totally new rider and have been using these subfreezing days to study her mechanics and understand how everything works. First was the totally unresponsive throttle, that wouldn't spring back... that took about 15 minutes to fix, which I'm surprised at... I plan on getting the bike to a local mechanics to have it inspected and made solid. I can see where some rubber housings may need to be replaced, and I'd love to get a real skid plate that doesn't detract from the beautiful lines of the cowling and some more solid hand protectors.

I have friends a couple hundred miles away with decades of riding experience that have been very helpful so far, and I can't wait to visit them and tour the forest service roads of North Carolina here in the states.

Here's a photo of how she looked when I first saw her. The guy I bought her from only had her for about 10 months. I've asked him for contact info for the guy he bought her from, that rode her for 10 years, but it doesn't seem likely.

More later, and oh... skid plate? Which forum should I search to see what the options might be?

Tom

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Wow,

Welcome Tom, that is a really good looking bike and it already all the main extra's fitted for you, I have an old 89 and love it like the guys say don't mess about with it just look after her and that bike could serve you for many years, "A good find"


BIG D
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks, D.

Yeah my friend in Asheville keeps saying "just RTFT".

I think I'm obsessing because the weather has been so bad... like I found a vacuum tube that is worn as it enters the cylinder head, and I think the chain is too loose. I need to put the magnifying glass away and just do what he says...lol. When the weather lets up, I'll ride it to a shop in Decatur Ga that has a good reputation with vintage bikes. The sun is shining today, and it's almost 32 degrees! yay.

Tom
 

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More later, and oh... skid plate? Which forum should I search to see what the options might be?
Hello and welcome, Tom.

This forum would be a good start. There is a current thread about customised transalps, and I think I've seen a TA on there with an AT bashplate. The AT one is a three-piece pressed alloy job and takes quite a bashing; it's also rounded to fit the bike and looks better than the angular welded jobs (personal opinion, of course). It's mounted with rubber bushes and through-bolts on the AT; not sure how much modification you would need to fit to a TA. They do get quite pitted if used in the UK Winters, but they're pretty thick, so you can polish out minor surface damage. Probably have a better chance of sourcing one in Europe. Hate to think what postage would cost, but they do come apart (a dozen or so tiny nuts and bolts), so that might save a bit.

Best of luck with it, and leave that chain loose, like Andy said; over-tight chains bugger the output shaft, one of the few weaknesses in an otherwise thoroughly reliable bike.
 

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Welcome and great looking bike Tom. As Phil says leave it as standard as possible
 
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