For those who love the sound of the roaring engines!!


Yeah this is burning HOT topic and how on earth I’ll not put forward my opinion on that.

from Royal Enfields to Jawas/Yezdi to RD 350 to … to Pulsar 220/ZMA (Karizma) and Comet.
We have made a constant progress.
Royal Enfield Motorcyles:


few year ago in India touring meant Royal Enfield. This machine was not a power house neither it could boast of bink of an eye 0-60. This bike was different it used to charm people with its lazy thump and ability to carry a house on it.
No wonder it was favored by Tourers.
But days passed by and this bike never bothered to evolve much besides a LB AVL Engine.
But it still sells because of the image it has and because of the loyalty associated with it.

As a kid I grew up reading the heroics of few biker who measured whole india on Two wheels and their rides “Royal Enfield Bullet”

Models currently available:
Bullet Standard 350
Bullet Electra 5s
Bullet Machismo 350
Bullet Machismo 500LB
Thunder Bird.

Somewhere down the line they launched a Bullet 535 Lightening.
But the glory of that machine some how faded before reaching the crowds.

Yamaha RD 350:


Yamaha did launch the legend in india.
Legend of RD350 refuses to die till today, where people keep looking for a junk RD and restore it.
RD350 is no longer a production model but in India you can find many people who keep RD as their prized possession.

Legendary Jawa and Yezdi:
You need to hear the Jawa and Yezdi fire to simply fall in love all over again.

Then came the Hooligans RX Series from Yamaha
Many of my generation people started there biking habits on these bikes.
These bike were fast and nimble. And these bikes made the young indian power hungry.
and Suzuki launched it competitors as Supra, Samurai, Shaolin & Showgun and Kawasaki along with Bajaj launched KB100,RTZ.
These were legendary 2 strokes that ruled the roads of India and still continue to give new 4 Stroke bike owners run for the money.

Amongst these 2 Stroker i felt Yamaha RXZ/RX 135 5 speed and Suzuki Shaolin were revolutionary.
Whenever we are overtaken by these beasts heart still manages to Skip a beat.

Bajaj and its scooters: Bajaj introduced scooters in India and they became pretty popular but bikes remained possesion of young hearts.

Some how Hero group along with there technical partners HONDA got it all right with its 4 stroke bikes(CD100,Splendor etc) which gave more kilometers per litres and was an instant hit.
Saving was always a top priority for an Average Indian and this was a boon to them.

Then came a Legend Hero Honda CBZ 4 Stroke 156cc beast that looked cool and was fast and nimble. But its sales where eaten away by Suzuki Fiero another Bike in the same segment providing better fuel Efficiency and looked better than other 100cc Machines.

Soon Bajaj came up with a 175 cc psuedo Cruiser in collaboration with Kawasaki in 2001 it was Kawasaki Bajaj Eliminator it was and awsome bike but pricing was against this machine and Milage a bit on the lower Side and Yamaha ate away its sales through its psuedo Cruiser Enticer.

When other players playing with 100 – 125cc segment.
having countless launches in that segment all focusing on Fuel Efficiency.
But LML launched 3 valve engines those where faster then other 100cc namely Adreno and Energy. i felt those looked pretty good but failed to make an impact as they never gave Fuel Efficiency as expected from 100cc motors.

Bajaj Launched a winner.
Bajaj Pulsar 180cc and Bajaj Pulsar 150cc. It went on to become one the best sellers.
This bike gave the power hungry indian youth something to cheer about.
This bike had good looks and good power.

Hero Honda was not far away it launched a 223 cc machine called Karizma.
We had similar looking bike called LML Adreno but this one was better looker with more cubic centimeters of displacement and more power.
Had disk brakes, Half faring, Alloy wheels and was a sporty tourer.
This bike got famous for its touring abilities.

Bajaj answered by Launching Pulsar with DTSi.
No it was no rocket science but Pulsar 180Dtsi was able to keep up with Karizma.

Gradually Pulsar went through loads of evolution a nd remained the king of 150cc Market when we had even honda entering the Market with its 150cc Unicorn.
TVS evolved the Suzuki Fiero to Fiero F2 and Fiero FX.
LML came up to graptor.
But Pulsar dominated why because Pulsar went through loads of evolution and was a Hooligan bike that Indian Youth wanted.

Now it was 2005
and Kinetic Launched two mean machines in partnership with Hyosung.
Aquilla and Comet.
These machines were truly class apart from Indian bikes.
Kinetic Priced them very correctly and no TV commercials regarding this machine and they managed to sellout these machines.
People might have cribbed about low Fuel Efficiency and High pricing but secretly all wanted to own it.

2006 TVS came up with Apache another hooligan bike.

2007 Finally Bajaj launched the big brother of Pulsar 180 namely P220 and Pulsar 200.
and TVS Apache got upgraded to RTR 160.

Now point to be noted is nowadays bikes are becoming sporty and people are upgrading.
but still we are conservative.
Still 100cc machines and 125cc machines outnumber the sales of higher capacity bikes.

Bajaj trying to replace 100cc bike with its new 125cc XCD which promises to give similar fuel efficiency as 100cc bikes and power slightly less than 125cc bikes.

As per the trend people are upgrading to slightly bigger machine.
Lets see what we get.

Touring in india is no longer only Royal Enfield.
We have sporty Tourers and Psuedo Cruisers.

Indian Bike makers TVS and Bajaj have come a long way. In terms of quality with latest range of products.
Where as LML failed despite of having few good products.
We have come travelled quite some distance in terms of Bikism and we will travel futher.
Different people different needs and Indian Bikism is really different.
Economy bikes will sell.
Demand for power bikes is growing.
It wont be easy for any Bike Maker to study this Indian Market.
We have done our bit in trying to analyze this market.

Highways have improved and vision of youth is changing.
Now biking is becoming more popular among young executive.
Lets see where are we heading to.

Very recently Yamaha launched it flagship models R1 and MT01.
But at a price double than whats available at Rest of the World.
But finally they are here and they are here to stay.

Hopefully Indian Bike Market will soon be as good as International Bike Market.
Things are changing and we welcome the winds of changes.

One day we shall ride the machines we dream and drool about — amen.

 thanx to–www.theroadrollers.com


Engine is definitely the heart of the bike and needs proper care.
A wrong engine oil and stretching the engine oil too far can have an adverse effect on engine.
It will not only effect the engine life factor but also the performance factor including fuel efficiency.
So it become mandatory for us (bikers) to take proper care of the engine by feeding it with right engine oil and draining the engine oil in right period.
Pulsar 220 Technical Forum Community at Orkut having entries from Mr. Venkat and Mr.Sandeep K Ram
Bike Nomads

There are many more intricate things that comes while choosing the right one for your bike, those are gradations, mineral or synthetic, standards obtained etc.
While we say gradations the the brands that are available in the market are multigrade. How one can find out which grade is suitable for his bike? Simple.. the manufacturer provides this information in the bike manual. Now comes the debate of mineral or synthetic, its advisable that when the bike is in its ‘run in’ period one should stick to oil provided by the manufacturer in its service centers usually mineral or semi synthetic. Once that period is over synthetic is something which will show the bike its true might.

– Lets go deeper into the what Engine Oil really does

–>Purpose of the Engine Oil
Purpose: Reduce Friction

An engine oil’s job is primarily to stop all the metal surfaces in your engine from grinding together and tearing themselves apart from friction whilst transferring heat away from the combustion cycle. Engine oil must also be able to hold all the nasty by-products of combustion, such as silica (silicon oxide) and acids in suspension. It cleans the engine of these chemicals and build-ups, and keeps the moving parts coated in oil. Finally, engine oil minimizes the exposure to oxygen and thus oxidation at higher temperatures. It does all of these things under tremendous heat and pressure.

It Irons out the unevenness of two mating surfaces by creating a layer of separation between them.
The Grade of oil would determine the quantity of friction reduced & at what conditions.

The Engine oil needs of any typical engine is to reduce friction. How ever this need is challenged by a typical Four stroke Motorcycle.
Whilst the oil has to reduce friction at all moving parts, the same has to create Friction at the Clutch. This being the need, the oil plays a very very crucial role in redefining the performance.
The Quantum of Friction inhibitors & Modifiers play a very crucial role in a Typical Wet clutch 4Stroke Engine, which uses the same oil for both Engine As well as Clutch.

Clutch is a Friction generator. Power transmission is by way of friction from Engine to Gear box. The material used is an abrasive & thus a wear agent when it enters unwanted areas. Keeping this Agent at bay is an important aspect.

Slippage is the main reason at clutch for wear of its material. Avoiding slippage become very very inevitable. Oils play a Very Crucial role in the entire Gambit.

A typical 4Stroke M/c Oil has to reduce friction at all areas where it flows & at clutch has to support Friction. This is achieved through the Friction Inhibitors & modifiers used in the oil.
Most M/c Oils are now Semi-Synthetic based & exhibit this property very very well. Since the Friction material gets mixed up in oil, it tends to loose out on its Lubricating property. This exactly when the oil change is necessitated.

All Most all oils meet the SAE as well as JASO (Japanese Automotive Standards Organization) application standards. Therefore all oils are now level, none greater than the other.

However There are Two crucial factors which make longterm difference One internal & the other External

1. The Detergent effect for cleansing the oil passages
2. External branding, Market acceptability & availability

As long as you’re using the Right Grade & the Right Application used at the right Interval, You’d no problems irrespective of the brand.

–> Multigrade Oils
With the engine Temperatures varying under different conditions, the Need for the right type of oils began to increase.

This was the mother for the invention of Multigrade oils.

A typical Multigrade oil has a specification of lets say 15W50
15W Indicates the oil viscosity when the oil is cold i.e. viscosity of the oil is 15 at 0 degree Celsius.
50 Indicates its temp when the oil is hot & this would be the max viscosity the oil would display i.e the Viscosity of the oil is 50 at 100 degree Celsius.

So an oil with grade 15W50 is better than 20W50 as oil flows better within the engine under cold condition thus protecting the engine at cold starts.
There is no doubt that Synthetics are much better….

15W is a much better oil than 20W when the season around you is very very cold. It circulates better in cold & prevents engine damage, which would peak in cold.

There is nothing called the Best brand, all of them are similar.. except for the two factors which I’d pointed out earlier.

Synthetics last Twice the distance as the Semi Synthetics, but cost any where between 3~5 times of the later.

So apply either your Heart of your mind… & then choose.

–> Car Engine oils in Bikes
A lot of people have used engine oils meant for cars in their bikes and claim that there is absolutely nothing wrong in doing so since they cannot find any damage .
The damage is certainly not perceptible to you , but such engine oils undoubtedly damage the internals .
Most car oils are rated as API SF, SG, SL and the latest being SM (not yet avail in India)
These ratings are given once in three years and each new rating is an improvement over the previous one . The ratings are in the same order as the English alphabets . The newer is better . so SM is better than SL and SL is better than SG etc.
Car engine oils have friction modifiers in them . Motorbike engine oils – specifically four stroke engines with a wet clutch multiplate setup do not require oils with friction modifiers . Modifiers can increase or decrease the friction , but most of the modifiers used are to reduce friction.
So these Car Engine Oil though may not harm the cylinder and piston but they will definately hamper the clutch plates.

–>Mineral oils are based on oil that comes from dear old Mother Earth which has been refined. Synthetic oils are entirely concocted by chemists wearing white lab coats in oil company laboratories. For more info, see the section on synthetics further down the page. The only other type is semi-synthetic, sometimes called premium, which is a blend of the two. It is safe to mix the different types, but it’s wiser to switch completely to a new type rather than mixing.


–>Despite their name, most synthetic derived motor oils are actually derived from mineral oils. they are mostly Polyalphaolifins and these come from the purest part of the mineral oil refraction process, the gas. PAO oils will mix with normal mineral oils which means average Joe can add synthetic to his mineral, or mineral to his synthetic without his bike’s engine seizing up. The most stable bases are polyol-ester. Here ‘stable’ means ‘less likely to react adversely with other compounds.’ Synthetic oil bases tend not to contain reactive carbon atoms for this reason. Reactive carbon has a tendency to combine with oxygen creating an acid. As you can imagine, in an oil, this would be A Bad Thing. So think of synthetic oils as custom-built oils. They’re designed to do the job efficiently but without any of the excess baggage that can accompany mineral based oils.

There is no scientific data to support the idea that mixing mineral and synthetic oils will damage your engine. When switching from a mineral oil to a synthetic, or vice versa, you will potentially leave a small amount of residual oil in the engine. That’s perfectly ok because synthetic oil and mineral-based motor oil are, for the most part, compatible with each other. (The exception is pure synthetics. As Polyglycols don’t mix with normal mineral oils.)
There is also no problem with switching back and forth between synthetic and mineral based oils. In fact, people who are “in the know” and who operate engines in areas where temperature fluctuations can be especially extreme, switch from mineral oil to synthetic oil for the colder months. They then switch back to mineral oil during the warmer months.

This write up has been compiled by reading various webpages.

article courtesy—www.theroadrollers.com


‘Fools learn through experience, the wise learn through inference!’

We are ready to be called fools, for the sake of helping you making the correct choice in buying your first bike.

We start off with 6 simple steps to complete the entire decision making process. Succeeding it is a brief outline of the bikes available in India and their categorisation, which will help you to understand what the Indian bike market has to offer. But, no sooner you have been to the first shop, you will come back with a host of other questions, mainly arising because of the jargons the salesmen would use. To answer those questions there is the FAQ section at the end. So here we go…….

SIX STEPS for all you wanna be bikers:-

2.Plan your budget
3.Search for availability
4.Study the shortlisted
6. Finalize

The first step is to set the priorities right. To do this, ask yourself why are you buying a motorbike? Do you need it for travelling 30 kms a day to you office? Or will you be travelling every weekend hundreds of kilometres to the Dam or Beach nearby? Or you need to buy it because all the good girls are going for the hunks with bikes? The answers to the above will help you plan your budget! Once you have decided the purpose of the bike, you would have a fair idea about your budgetary requirements. In case you need bank loans, most sellers these days have bank agents on the shop itself, who would advise you on the loan schemes. It’s always a good idea to window shop at several places to get a fair idea about the best deal.

The third step is searching for the available models. A visit to the showroom is essential in this step and it should not be done on the phone. The salesmen often advise the customers to wait for an upcoming model or variant. And it’s not a bad idea to have your hands on a bike that is uncommon on the streets. So please listen to them and remember to collect all the handouts and brochures they give you.

Study the bikes using the publicity material you have collected, browse the net for user reviews and then zero in, but not more than 2 models should be on your wishlist. Go to the showroom ask for a test ride. The feel of the ride is the most important factor that should help you finalize on your selection.

Broad outline of Bikes in India. (Availability as on 25.01.2007)

In India the bikes are broadly grouped into five categories:-

1.     Standard

a.      Bajaj : Platina,

b.      Hero Honda : CD Dawn, CD Deluxe, Splendor+, Splendor NXG, Passion plus, Super Splendor

c.      TVS : Star

d.      Kinetic : Stryker

e.      Yamaha : Alba, G5, Crux

f.      Global Automobiles : Rock 100

2.     Executive

a.      Bajaj : XCD 125, Discover

b.      Hero Honda : Glamour, Glamour PGM FI, Achiever

c.      Honda : Shine

d.      TVS : Flame

e.      Yamaha: Gladiator

f.      Suzuki : Heat, Zeus

g.      Global Automobiles : Xpression, Xpression plus

3.     Premium

a.      Bajaj : Bajaj Pulsar DTS-i

b.      Hero Honda : CBZ Xtreme, Hunk,

c.      Honda : Unicorn

d.      TVS : Apache RTR 160

4.     Cruiser

a.      Royal Enfield : 350, Electra, Machismo, Electra 5S, Thunderbird

b.      Bajaj : Avenger, Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi,

c.      Hero Honda: Karizma

d.      Kinetic : Aquila, Comet

5.     Superbikes :

a.      Yamaha : R1, MT01


How Much CC should I go for?
The cubic capacity of your bike is directly related to the Fuel Efficiency you desire. The higher the cubic capacity, the higher is your engines capacity to push you to higher speed but also it decreases the fuel efficiency. Regular commuters who are keen on buying fuel efficient bikes should choose bikes in the Standard or Executive Segment.

What should be the ideal Fuel Efficiency?
Best Fuel Efficiency is delivered by a bike at RPM of 4500 for most bikes available with minimum number of Gear shifts. So keep your bike within those limits and enjoy more kilometres per litre.

What is Cruising Speeds?
Ideally speaking the best Cruising speeds for any bike is at an RPM 500 less than the RPM that produces Peak power as this RPM will let u easily overtake others on Torque and the engine is slightly more relaxed and number of gear shifts required is less too. So on highways this RPM gives the prefect blend between fun, Fuel Efficiency and speeds.

What about Serviceability and Service Duration
Winner among serviceability is by Royal Enfield Bullets, there is a saying ‘an Enfield never betrays its rider’
But in terms of service duration it as bad as it gets as you will need to speed more time with your Mechanic.
So choose a bike that’s easy to service and doesn’t need servicing frequently. All major dealers in India have a very good service centre network but the quality is questionable in some centres. It is advisable to do your own homework on the nearby service centres before deciding on one.

Should I buy a Commuter or a Sporty Bike?
Now people say commuter riding position is more comfortable than sporty riding position. Yes in the city they are comfortable as they are somewhere between cruiser and sporty bikes but for long rides they are not. Primarily because the riding position is slightly awkward and weight rests more on your back and may cause terrible back ache but in Sporty riding position with rear set foot pegs the weight rests on your Shin the strongest bone of the body and thus saves your back from taking a beating.
So we recommend people taking bike mainly for city purpose to go for commuter riding position but someone taking bike to highways frequently must take a bike with rear set foot pegs.

Some more seriously technical stuff…….

What is more important TORQUE or BHP?
People usually tend to overlook torque figures and buy a bike with higher BHP and later they find out that Torque is what drives the bike.

Torque generally defines the pulling capacity of the bike you might be having a bike that produces more BHP but you can still get torqued by a machine that produced slightly lower BHP and produces more Torque.

Why the more powerful bike in terms of BHP gets torqued? The bike with greater Torque will have greater pulling power and it may be slow to start with but after some the peak torque will be achieved and the bike will just keep going forward on Torque and chances are high that it will overtake other on Torque.
— have faced conditions where you need to down shift a gear to overtake someone.
Why that happens — simply bike has to make more torque to take u forward.

Our Take – Torque will enable u clear the traffic ahead of u just by flick of throttle with out changing gear. We don’t mind losing a couple of BHP to get a better torque Curve.

Which is better Cruiser or a Sporty Bike?
This is a popular misconception that cruisers are more comfortable than the Sporty bikes on a long ride.
Yes Cruisers do have a better torque curve than Sporty bikes and helps them operate with fewer gear shift.
But feel like god yeah on good roads they make cruising feel like good but on bad roads they are more pain due to low seating height and longer wheelbase combined with that low height makes it hell to handle the bike over broken patches of road.
Whereas Sporty bike are comfortable on good roads as well as bad roads and manoeuvring them is easier.
So if you are die hard fan of Cruiser then you can opt for it. But if you are choosing it simply because you heard they are comfortable for cruising, think again.

What should I go for Long Stroke or Short Stroke?
If your looking for bike for cruising take long stroke engine as they tend to produce better torque curves where as if u are city rider and like to get the best out of engines over a short range then take a short stroke engine as they develop BHP rapidly and gives u quick 0-60.
Fun starts in Long Strokes after 60 but in Short Stoke engines fun starts from 0 but Dies out as soon as it produces the peak power in a particular gear.

Our Recommendations:

Cruising – Hero Honda Karizma, Bajaj Pulsar 220
City Riding – Pulsar 200/180 TVS Apache RTR 160

for Fuel Economy conscious people:
Cruising – Hero Honda CBZ Xtreme, Hero Honda Hunk
City – Unicorn, Discover 135

For Cruiser Fanatics
Avenger200,Royal Enfield Bullet Machismo 500, Royal Enfield ThunderBird.

For Hardcore Fuel Efficiency conscious:
Bajaj XCD, HeroHonda Glamour PGMfi, Honda Shine, TVS Flame




Be ALERT with your life.
“Everywhere I go I find a poet has been there before me. “Sigmund Freud







Yes I am not doing this for the first time, nor I will be the last one. But touring on my bike gives the word ‘tour’ a new meaning. Touring on a bike is not easy, but again nothing in life has been. At least you enjoy every bit of this pain. It is an adventure of a whole new dimension. You torture test your bike, your stamina, your communication skills, and in case of a crash your recovery skills. Talking about crash let’s talk about the most dreaded word ‘ACCIDENT’. The most vital part of any tour is avoiding accidents, specially in Indian road conditions. ( Unruly Traffic, potholed roads etc.)

Let me start by saying there is only a 1% chance of getting hit if you ride sensibly. 77% of the time you can see it coming.

When riding a motorcycle, the rider must be aware of his surroundings. Car drivers and the like can not see us because they are not trained to see us. Think back to when you were small, when you went out to cross the street, no one ever told you to look for motorcycles. Maybe cars and trucks but not bikes. People who ride bicycles suffer the small problems we do for the same reasons. Sit back and think for a moment what car drivers are doing while they drive. They are doing as little as possible to drive. They are tuning the radio, putting in or taking out CD’s, they are talking on the phone. They are trying to do everything in their power not to drive the car while driving the car. It boils down to guessing what the other vehicle is going to do next. If you think they may do it, chances are they will do it.

Here is an Acronym–“ALERT” that would help make you safe.

A – Anticipate – prepare yourself both mentally and physically. Check the bike. Review your route plan. Once in motion keep looking around
L – Lead with your eyes. Keep your eyes 12 to 15 seconds ahead of bike. Scan with your eyes. Identify potential hazards. Figure out solutions. Look where you want the bike to go not on the hazard.
E – Expect the Worst. Maintain your space cushion
Check mirrors every 5 to 10 seconds. You are invisible and don’t forget it
R – Read the Road. Keep an eye on road conditions. Intersections are your enemy – watch for right-turners. Distracted drivers are dangerous. Check and Check again.
T – Take Control. Let everyone know your plans. Communicate with the cars. Keep up with traffic. Make them see you. Ride in their faces. Maintain good lane position.

On the highway you should scan at least 12 to 15 seconds down the road and have an idea what is going on. Always keep at least your parking lights on even during day, headlights are recommended, it would not drain your battery, as it runs directly from the alternator. You need to know what is going on within 4 seconds of you and be prepared to act if necessary. In the city the distance is about 4 seconds and the immediate danger area is within 2 seconds.

During riding on the highway during day, use the horn liberally. However never overuse it. To much noise will irritate the driver in front of you. Be patient. Give the truck driver in front of you some time to give you pass don,t just zoom past him from left.

Buses, they are the king of the road, and demand respect. Give them there due. There is no point in wrestling with them for space, betting your life.
Ride at a constant speed that does not tire you fast, an average of 80 kph on the highways is quite fast and comfortable. Though this will change depending on the road conditions. Read the road condition ahead, you don’t want to plough into some pothole/oil spill (Plenty of them on our highways) ahead.

Learn the proper (Indian) road etiquette’s. In night just use the dippers, no need to use horn. Proper turn signal is must.

On Indian Highways the right turn signal is used for many purposes, To convey that you are turning right, to convey to the rear vehicle that it is safe to overtake you, also to convey an approaching vehicle that you can not move more to your left, and to pass the approaching vehicle has to to this left, some times it is even used as a you first, at narrow bottlenecks. All these options for the same indication seems confusing at first, but believe me , with a little bit of patience and practice it becomes second nature. Come on, it’s just a guessing game.

Left turn indicator, this is very simple than the right one, it just has two functions, one to indicate that you will turn left, two, to convey that you are overtaking, (sometimes on seeing an approaching vehicle the right Turn Indicator is used.)

Never ever hope that the tail lamp, or the brake lamp of the vehicle in front of you are working, and adjust to this fact.

So Guys always stay on ALERT and tour safe.

 -sumit kalindi(TheRoadrollers-Motorcycle Adventure Tourers,Kolkata)



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