First timer advice

Thread: First timer advice

  1. {{909}}'s Avatar

    {{909}} said:

    Default First timer advice

    Never thought I'd post here but here goes...

    I'm looking to buy a 48, 100 or 125 scooter / maybe motorcycle to ride here in China. Problem is, I know absolutely nothing about motorcycles or any motor vehicle for that matter having never passed my driving test.

    So, here's the situation: In China you can legally ride any battery vehicle on the roads with no licence, tax or insurance, which is all well for going to work and back. This legal status is pretty much accepted to stretch to 48cc bikes too and anyone you ask will tell you this, however a google tells me that's not the case but It seems the police don't even know this, nor do they seem to have the ability to tell the difference between a 48 or 125cc bike. Out on my bycycle last week I counted 40 scooters on the road, only 3 of them had a licence plate.

    With the possibility of getting mobile and having much more range to explore here, I am chomping at the bit to get a motor scooter and get out into the hills, battery bikes only stretch to about 30km at best, so I need to go gas if I wanna get into any real adventures.

    But, after a trip to the shops, it became painfully obvious its almost impossible to find a reliable Chinese brand here (Chinese made 48/100cc bikes come in at 400-500 quid), with so many copy cat brands with the usual intentionally mis-spelt big brand clones every where you look. To be honest some are obvious, HDNDA for example and endless Yamaha JOG clones with JOC etc on them, or bikes with legit looking badges which are just stickers on close inspection.
    There are some legit brands here (Dayang, Jin..something etc), but with negligible price difference to the obviously ropey bikes, there's no price induced reassurance.

    If i speak to any Chinese person they use the typical Chinese mindset of 'everyone else is riding those bikes, they must be ok', but speak to a foreigner and they say 'buy a Japanese bike', which I would but at a 300 to 400% price hike, it puts it out of my wallet for a good while.

    The biggest issue that I've heard with Chinese bikes is that the brakes aren't great, and/or soon deteriorate and according to one person, are sometimes un-repairable.

    When going to the bike markets the sellers are more than happy to let me take any bike for a spin, which I did a couple of times last month but with my zero knowledge, I have no idea what I should be looking for in a bike, or which part of the tyres to kick to pretend I do.

    So, is there anything I can look out for if I go back and take them up on the offer of a test drive?
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
     
  2. cyprus's Avatar

    cyprus said:

    Default Re: First timer advice

    I wouldn't overthink it too much. If you fall off a copy bike or an original it's still going to fucking hurt. Just get one that's rust free, starts first time, has a decent ride (suspension) and stops.
     
  3. tiggerbiker's Avatar

    tiggerbiker said:

    Default Re: First timer advice

    we sell kymco, TGB, sym. they are not too bad for cheap scooters - fairly reliable as long as they are serviced regularly and parts are readily available
     
  4. {{909}}'s Avatar

    {{909}} said:

    Default Re: First timer advice

    I've seen Kymco here, not sure about the others but its a start. Thanks TB!
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
     
  5. cyprus's Avatar

    cyprus said:

    Default Re: First timer advice

    Kymco are a very good brand. If I was to buy a scooter which I may do at some point, it would most probably be one.

    They seem to strike the right balance between style, affordability and quality.
     
  6. {{909}}'s Avatar

    {{909}} said:

    Default Re: First timer advice

    Quote Originally Posted by tiggerbiker View Post
    we sell kymco, TGB, sym. they are not too bad for cheap scooters - fairly reliable as long as they are serviced regularly and parts are readily available

    would you recommend buying a bike online? The variety and price is so much better (at least to my untrained eye) and I can get a branded Honda or Yamaha for shade more than the kooky brands in the local shops.

    There are garages everywhere here so getting it serviced shouldn't be an issue, although generally when you buy local they will go the extra mile to keep you happy after your purchase.

    Looking at some Honda and Yamaha bikes too

    Another question....

    It seems the more expensive models use disc brakes, with some bikes having a mixture of disc at the front and drum on the back wheel (only going by google translate here), should I go for disc brakes on both wheels if possible?
    Last edited by {{909}}; 30th June 2016 at 02:42 AM.
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
     
  7. tiggerbiker's Avatar

    tiggerbiker said:

    Default Re: First timer advice

    Quote Originally Posted by {{909}} View Post
    would you recommend buying a bike online? The variety and price is so much better (at least to my untrained eye) and I can get a branded Honda or Yamaha for shade more than the kooky brands in the local shops.

    There are garages everywhere here so getting it serviced shouldn't be an issue, although generally when you buy local they will go the extra mile to keep you happy after your purchase.

    Looking at some Honda and Yamaha bikes too

    Another question....

    It seems the more expensive models use disc brakes, with some bikes having a mixture of disc at the front and drum on the back wheel (only going by google translate here), should I go for disc brakes on both wheels if possible?
    i would always buy from dealer in person rather than online - ask about warranties, some are parts only and some are parts & labour, some 1 year some 2 year.

    on small bikes it really doesnt matter if they are drum front & rear TBH. many larger cruisers still have drum rear brakes.
    drum brakes are less efficient but the front brake does 70% of the work anyway so if it has a drum brake on the rear it doesnt really matter
     
  8. {{909}}'s Avatar

    {{909}} said:

    Default Re: First timer advice

    Quote Originally Posted by tiggerbiker View Post
    i would always buy from dealer in person rather than online - ask about warranties, some are parts only and some are parts & labour, some 1 year some 2 year.

    on small bikes it really doesnt matter if they are drum front & rear TBH. many larger cruisers still have drum rear brakes.
    drum brakes are less efficient but the front brake does 70% of the work anyway so if it has a drum brake on the rear it doesnt really matter

    good to know about the brakes.

    I hear you on he 'buy local' thing, but I am so so tempted by the online stores as they offer so much more. I'm not sure how it would work in the UK, but the shops here usually do the repairs themselves (as far as i can tell) which probably means untrained monkeys with less knowledge than me (pretty much the case with my bicycle here), but there's a garage that specializes in repairs of classic bikes more local to me than the shops, so I feel slightly confident I could buy online and take it there for service if needs be.
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
     
  9. {{909}}'s Avatar

    {{909}} said:

    Default Re: First timer advice

    A dealer localish has said he can get a few honda bikes for me, the main ones I like (and can afford) are the Vespa style 50cc bikes

    theres a Honda Giorno (also labeled a DIO 24)

    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    and another which I think is also going as a 'Crea' with the suffix DIO 54, although I cant find any reviews of it.



    The Giorno is 400quid, the Crea is 600quid and from what I can see, specs wise they look identical.

    Anyone got an idea what I should look for in the differences? The Giorno has a lot of plastic parts from the review, so I would guess maybe the more expensive models have more metal.

    Although the seller has said he'll offer some aftersales, it wont be as solid as a real dealer (of which there arent any here)
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
     
  10. {{909}}'s Avatar

    {{909}} said:

    Default Re: First timer advice

    semi answered my own Q, the Giorno is s/h
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
     
  11. mattress's Avatar

    mattress said:

    Default Re: First timer advice



    I'd rather walk than go by motorbike/scooter.
     
  12. mattress's Avatar

    mattress said:

    Default Re: First timer advice



    Fuck that!
     
  13. {{909}}'s Avatar

    {{909}} said:

    Default Re: First timer advice

    I cycle already, so I am more than aware of the road conditions! The danger is everywhere in China, you cant cross the road without some dick going the wrong direction on a scooter while looking at the phone and wearing headphones almost colliding with you.
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
     
  14. {{909}}'s Avatar

    {{909}} said:

    Default Re: First timer advice

    As a gentleman, I feel it necessary to update my thread with the outcome.

    I ended up getting a s/h bike from taobao, the chinese ebay of sorts. A Yamaha Future / ZhongYu ZY125
    It came from a dealer, so I guess more of a reconditioned model then genunine s/h and some parts are new, presumably the engine since the seller told me to keep it to 30kmph for the first 200km etc.

    First day out on it, back wheel tube blew but due to the 30kmph guide I was sticking to I didn't lose control of it. Dragged it to a garage and got it sorted (cost 18quid), got the dealer to pay that although he was adamant I'd been ripped off as his special brand of exploding tyres only cost a fiver...

    Day 2, i ran out of gas through my own stupidity, so another session of dragging it to the petrol station, got half way home and it packed up again. So, dragged it back to the garage again and I was told the tubes were dry so the fuel I added wasnt making any difference. They fixed that and also went to work on the starter as it was super flakey (unknown to me at the time) and 90 minutes later and a new sparkplug, the bike runs like a charm. This cost me a whole 2 quid 50.



    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]