from place to place of where we would choose next to travel, the country certainly has plenty of choice with ample destinations for the likes of most.
What do we expect from these Cambodia motorcycle journeys that we and others participate, we know the roads are a little dangerous, with not many other road users abiding by the traffic laws or giving any thought for other road users including yourselves, so good to be aware of this and mostly in the cities. Out on the open roads be weary of large trucks and fast drivers. There are roads full of potholes to contend with too, many roads are of bad repair, but then again it depends on your planed journey, being that it could involve long dirt roads, not good in rainy season, or in dry hot season with the amount of dust clouds constantly in the air around you. Why do we do it? We all have our reasons. I for one, like my own freedom and travel independence, the sights along the way and of course the people we meet on the travels.
There are plenty of routes and destinations in the country to suit most eager traveller, some will certainly be an adventure for many.
My first bike in Cambodia was a Honda 250cc water-cooled off-roader I bought from a guy in Phnom Penh for $500, I rode it up to Koh Kong and broke the rear shock over the hills.
I also had a mini Scoopy 50cc, believe it or not, two of us travelled from Koh Kong to Kampong Cham and back, all so traveling along the banks of the Mekong with the road washed away, that moto was so comfy.
I had also had a Delirium I travelled from Battambang to Preah Vihear and Strung Trang half of the journey on dirt.
The journeys will hopefully carry on from before, but this time we have a new addition to take us there.
The motorcycle is an original Japanese 1982 Honda CB400SS. Being a import into the country, the way to tell it’s an original model, apart from the frame and engine numbers is that the Japanese bike came only with kick start, this too is not that good in the type of climate we now reside in, but never the less with a little tweaking I have managed to get the single cylinder to fire on one to three good kicks, beats the hot ten when I first bought the bike from a dealer in Phnom Penh. I had actually viewed one more on my last ride up to Koh Kong, but the price was too high on that model for my pocket. Apparently (I don’t know how true) but there are only six of these in the country.
I have done a little work on the bike in preparation hoping it will be a reliable tourer, one thing I did notice how hot it was running, that turned out to be the engine oil, or rather the lack of it, being possibly, it takes just over 2lts to fill, so can be seen as a little pricy.
Here are the specs of the original bike –
Engine: Air cooled, four stroke, single cylinder, 85 x 70 OHC, 4 valves
Bore and Stroke: 85 x 70 mm
Compression ratio: 8.8:1
Max Power: 29hp 21.2 KW @ 7000 rpm
Max Torque: 31 Nm @ 5500 rpm
Transmission: 5 speed
Final drive: Chain CHASSIS
Front Brake: Single disc
Rear Brake: Drum
Seat Height: 790 mm (31 inches)
Dry weight: 139 kg (306 lb)
Fuel capacity: 11 Litres (2.9 Gal)
I seems now to run well (hopefully) I have looked her over, and made a few alterations to my liking and also some of the little needs of tidying up and refitting of parts, nothing major because overall it is a very tidy bike.
I must say it was one of the models I was looking for amongst some of the others, but I would stress if you yourselves were to look, please find out as much information that is possible, for example I was to look at a few Yamaha’s but I found if there was any problem with registration it could not now be done due to them having a lack of, or not the required amount of engine numbers needed for the paperwork.
Let’s face it to, its not that easy to keep up with what maybe one day but change with no notice tomorrow.
Just refitting the end can has I wanted to reposition also I could fit a baffle midway in the exhaust pipe if needed, only a little bit of cutting of a stainless link pipe, with it being a slip-on and then make new brackets. The baffle I made from some old tube and a fire-resistant bandage.
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