Jan 31, 2006

Two-stroke mania returns

Yesterday, a friend/colleague told me about a Yamaha RX135 5-speed, 2001 model, mint condition, for sale around Rs 14,000. Jesus, an old two-stroke, piddly 135cc and all, is still so attractive! I called a mechanic friend to ask if he knew of any old two-strokes that were up for sale. He said, a bike like that should only set me back about Rs 8-10,000. And he'd see what he could dig up.

Not having much money in the wallet - home loans, creditors and all - I decided to do a mental motorcycle, er... mentally for the time being and see what developed.

If I could get a well-kept RX100 or TVS Suzuki Shogun for about Rs 8K, and spend another Rs 12K-odd, I'd get a smashingly fast, pocket rocket, no?

It would go something like this. I bring the bike to the mechanic (grease under the finger nails isn't me. I'd rather be on it, than under it). He takes the block-piston off, and spends a couple of days porting and polishing the head to improve gas flow. This is assuming that the 8000-buck RX has a essentially okay engine to start with, of course.

Meantime, I call K&N up and arrange for a performance filter to be shipped, find a larger venturi carburettor for the RX, buy a bunch of upsize jets and finally, one call to either Kaulson Racing Products in Delhi or Proton in Chennai for an expansion chamber. Failing that, a more expensive alternative would be to call Vivek at TecTrac Racing for one of his own race-tested expansion chambers. Woo hoo!

With the engine ready, it would take us a couple of days to set up the new exhaust, intake, jetting and all. Aim would be a bike that may not like traffic (say 30-50 kph), but is hard to keep on the ground past 70-80 kph. I think a realistic top speed would be in the region of 120 kph, although more is always welcome.

If my calculations are right, this all should take about Rs 7000 bucks. Correct me if I am wrong.

Then, you sort a set of tyres. If I have the dosh, I could splurge on a Rs 4500 set of super-sticky Pirellis (officially available in India). Or stick with a more rational Rs 2000 set of MRF Nylogrip Zappers. And basically add a shiny, new thousand buck paintjob and you're sorted. And super-quick as well.

But there is more (there's always more, isn't it?). I also thought about putting in Bajaj Discover 17-inch alloy wheels with a front disc (essential for a bike that fast, no?), uprated coils, motocross-style quick throttle (bigger cam at the handlebar grip)....

With my head swimming with the visions of premix-contrailed, gratuitous speed, I hurried over to the computer to draw up a list of names, addresses and numbers of all of the people I referred to above. Time to send some juicy, persuasive emails, I say.

Then the wife walked into the room. She saw my look of furious concentration and twinkling anticipation. In that instant, she knew what sort of thing I was cooking up and reminded me, 'You told me me have no money right now...'