I’ve used Tutoro chain oilers for a number of years now. The great thing about them is the simplicity. They have no requirement for 12v power or vacuum from the inlet manifold like many other oilers do, they just use the natural up and down motion of the bike to control the oil flow.
The Tutoro oilers come with most of the fittings that you’d normally require however, none of them really worked on the Tenere 700 and it was soon obvious that I was going to have to make a mounting bracket for it.
Heading off to the workshop with nothing but a rough idea of what I needed, I grabbed some sheet metal and started making the mounting bracket. I used a piece of 4mm sheet metal as I wanted it to be a really solid mount so that it could handle the rigours of trail riding.
The best place to mount the oil reservoir was on the rear of the Outback Motortek pannier rack. At the point where the rear support crossbar is bolted to the left side tube there are two convenient long bolts that lend themselves perfectly to being used to mount the bracket. Spacing is tight but, with a little tinkering it fits perfectly. I had to make a couple of plastic spacers to get the position of the reservoir correct such that the flow adjuster knob didn’t stick out to far to ensure clearance when the pannier is fitted. I made the spacers from a piece of plastic rod I had on the shelf in the workshop, cut to size and then drilled the centres out so that the bolts could slide through them.
Once the final shape was reached, I cleaned the bracket up and gave it a quick spray with some black plasticoat paint to protect it from rust and then hung it on the washing line in the sun to dry.
Whilst the bracket was drying I started running the oil feed hose around the frame. I’d already worked out the route and decided that the Acerbis chain guide provided the perfect mount point for the oil delivery nozzle.
Running the oil delivery tube around the frame and swing arm was an easy task using a mix of cable ties and heavy duty stick on clips. I’ve fitted the tube on my other bikes using the same technique and have never had any issues even when riding off-road.
Having the Acerbis chain guide fitted was a real bonus as it provides the perfect secure route right up to the rear sprocket. Needing just two small cable ties the tube was fed through the upper part of the chain guide and then down by the side of the sprocket. This not only provides a secure fixing but, also protects the feed nozzle from flying debris.
Once the tube was in place and the new bracket was dry I got it all mounted and bled the oil through the tube to the delivery nozzle.
The Tutoro supplied brackets usually mount to just a single point on the reservoir but, since there are two mount holes on the base of the unit I decided to use both to get a much more solid fixing. Knowing what the trails are going to be like in Mongolia and Siberia I wanted to ensure the fixing was as solid as possible.
With another fun little project complete I’ll be moving onto the next one very soon.
I purchased the Kawasaki Versys 1000 GT new in June 2016 from Orwell Motorcycles in Ipswich who are my local Kawasaki dealer. It’s a great bike and I really love riding it but, it’s time to sell it and try something new!
I had the MRA tall screen, Oxford Heated grips and the SW Motech GPS/Phone mount plate fitted by the dealer at purchase time. These simple additions really improve the comfort with the screen throwing the wind up way over my head leaving me in a calm, buffet free bubble and the heated grips keeping my hands warm during those colder months we get here in the U.K.
Please note, the Garmin Zumo GPS mount is NOT included in the sale and will be removed prior to sale as I’ll be keeping the GPS unit for my next bike.
The bike has done 11300 miles from new and has been serviced by Orwell Motorcycles with all stamps in the book and on the service key that is included in the sale. The bike is sold with all original paperwork and keys.
The bike comes complete with all the GT extras namely, matching top box and side panniers, spot lamps, gear indicator, 12v socket and fairing protection bobbins on each side as shown in the photos.
The bike has the Kawasaki KTRC traction control and ABS system with the ability to select power and traction control levels on the fly.
Included in the sale is the Tutoro automatic chain oiler and Optimate Battery charger both of which were fitted by me from new. With the Tutoro oiler fitted I’ve only had to adjust the chain twice over the 11300 miles, it really does make a difference.
New Continental Road Attack 3 tyres were fitted by Orwell Motorcycles just a few hundred miles ago.
There are two tiny marks on the green section of the left hand pannier where I dropped it whilst removing it from the bike, other than this there are no marks on the bike at all.
I’m a mature rider of 40 years and have fettled the bike much more than I have ridden it! Having multiple bikes none of them have high mileage but all of them are serviced by the main dealer even if they haven’t reached the necessary mileage.
Service details are:
22/06/16 1st service, 721 miles
10/07/17 2nd service, 4181 miles
01/09/18 3rd service, 7248 miles
19/12/19 4th service, 10593 miles
All done by Orwell Motorcycles, registered Kawasaki dealer, where bike was purchased from. In terms of what has been done at each service:
New spark plugs at 7248 miles
Oil and filter change at each service
Brake fluid change at 7248
New tyres fitted few hundred miles ago.
Price £6499.00 OVNO
Payment of cleared funds only via bank transfer before collection please.
First to view will buy.
No Test Rides.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact me direct on 0752 6116110 or via email
For Sale: 2019 Honda CRF250 Rally with many extras.
Purchased new in Jan 2019 for my adventure to Mongolia and back however, due to the pandemic this trip is now cancelled for the forseeable future and so I have decided to sell the bike and will purchase another new bike once travel to Central Asia is possible again
The bike has been well maintained and serviced by the local Honda dealer and had oil and filter changes done by me in between regular services.
The bike has been kitted out for the ride to Mongolia and has had the following extras fitted:
Gecko heavy duty clutch £35 Tutoro auto chain oiler £100 DID 520 VX3 chain £55 JTSprockets £25 Tusk Pannier Rack £292 Oxford heated grips £100 Renthal bars £35 Bar risers £25 Hagon rear shock £300 HyperPro front suspension £120 Continental TKC80 tyres £174 GP-Kompozit Crashbars and skid plate £135 Zeta XC handguards £52 Sidestand foot £5 Rotopax style 5L fuel can £22 Optimate battery charger £56
The sale also includes the following Parts: £165 4 x Oil filters + Gaskets Front/rear brake pad sets 1 x air filter Front & Rear wheel bearing sets Head bearing set 2 sparks plugs Front sprocket Inner tubes
Total cost of extras £1696
Original OEM IRC tyres free!
The bike has now done 5369 miles mainly on road with the bike having been taken on Peddars Way in Norfolk and a week riding soft trails in the Pyrenees. I’m a mature experienced off-road rider and so the bike hasn’t been abused.
The bike has just had an oil and filter change and the next official service isn’t for another 6000 miles.
The bike is in excellent running order but does have a little wear to one of the transfers on the left side where my boot has rubbed, see photos.
The Tusk rack that is fitted to the bike was imported from the USA and fitted by me in my extensive workshop.
Viewing highly recommended as first to see will buy.
Payment of cleared funds only via bank transfer before collection. No test rides.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact me direct on 0752 6116110 (08:30 – 22:00hrs) or at email@example.com
On an almost daily basis I get asked questions about the setup of my Honda CRF250 Rally that I’ve kitted out ready for my trip to Mongolia and what gear am I taking with me. Since I’m often asked the same question over and over I thought I’d put the definitive set of answers here in a blog post so that I can just refer everyone to the same place, so here goes!
Q: Have you made any modifications to the engine or exhaust to get more power? Are you using an EJK ECU? Have you fitted an FMF exhaust?
Simple answer is No.
I’ve not made any changes whatsoever to the engine, ECU, exhaust or any other component connected to the engine. I’ve deliberately kept the engine completely original so that I have maximum reliability.
When I purchased the bike I knew it only had 24HP and I am happy with that. If I’d wanted more power then I would had bought a bigger bike.
Q: What tank bag are you using?
I have fitted a Givi 6 Litre GRT706 tank bag that fits nicely on the tank and doesn’t get in the way when I’m riding in either the seated or standing positions. The tank bag is mainly for carrying my Canon 1300D DSLR camera and a map that’s visible in the clear plastic water proof top pocket.
Q: What USB device is that you have and where can I get one?
The dual USB and 12v socket with integrated voltmeter I picked up from Ebay. All the information of how to wire it into the AUX 12v feed already on the bike is in this post on the blog. For completeness I’ve also included the details of where you can get the 12v connector really cheaply.
Yes! I was fortunate enough to negotiate a free pair of Oxford Heated Grips when I purchased the bike from my local Honda dealership. They really do get hot and are great in the winter months. All the information on how to fit and wire them to the CRF250 Rally can be found in this blog post.
Q: How will you keep your chain lubricated during the trip?
Q: What crash bars are they you have fitted? What skid plate do you use?
I use a great integrated skid plate and crashbar combo from Inpreda/GPKompozit. The bike has been dropped a few times on the trails now and it’s protected everything really well. The bash plate has also taken a few hits and has done a great job at protecting the engine sump.
I’ve fitted a Tusk pannier frame to the bike, it’s really solid and can handle the weight I’m going to put on it. All the details on fitting it correctly and the adjustments I had to make are detailed in my blog post here.
Q: What size Rotopax fuel canisters are you using?
Due to the cost I decided not to use Rotopax fuel canisters however, I do need to be able to carry extra fuel with me to make it between fuel stops on the trip and so after much research I went with some ChinoPax fuel canisters that I found sensibly priced on Ebay. They are really well put together and are very strong. They’re made from a very thick plastic that isn’t brittle and so they can take a fair amount of bashing. Noraly of Itchyboots fame uses the same cans and has dropped her bike on them many times without incident. I got 3 x 5L canisters with fittings for less than the cost of 1 x 1 Gallon Rotopax can. Since the two front canisters will only be used on certain parts of the trip when fuel is difficult to get I didn’t see the point in spending a fortune on Rotopax cans when they would be empty most of the time.
I’ll also being using petrol to cook with and so the rear 5L tank will always have fuel in it so that I can cook at the end of each day. Full info on fitting etc is on the blog right here.
Q: Are you using hard or soft panniers?
I’m using soft panniers from Givi as I didn’t want the extra weight and bulk of the hard panniers. I looked at a lot of soft pannier options including the very cheap Lomo throw over bags but, eventually I settled on the Givi GRT709 Canyon 35L lockable soft panniers.
I really like the Givi soft panniers, they’re well put together, have a separate waterproof inner bag and have a separate water proof bottle carrier on the rear facing side of each pannier making it easy to gain access to drinks without having to open the main bag.
Q: What GPS are you going to be using on your trip?
I’ll be using two effectively, one on my iPhone in the Ultimate Addons waterproof case mounted above the instrument cluster and a Garmin inReach Explorer+ with SOS capability. I also have a Garmin Zumo 350LM that I may take as backup but it’s worth noting that Garmin do not supply maps for Central Asia for the Zumo GPS units and you have to create your own using OpenStreet Maps.
Q: What side stand foot is that in your photos?
It’s another Chinese made item from Ebay I’m afraid. When it arrived it didn’t actually fit so I had to re-engineer it but, it fits perfectly now.
Q: Have you changed the suspension and if so what have you done?
Yes I have changed the suspension as the OEM suspension isn’t really fit for the kind of punishment I’m going to be giving it on the trip. There are quite a few options available suspension wise for the CRF250 series of bikes these days but I opted for the HyperPro uprated progressive spring for the front forks and a completely new custom built Hagon shock for the rear.
The difference these two changes have made is stunning! The bike now handles so much better and to date I’ve not managed to bottom out the front or rear suspension even hammering along the trails.
There are a number of articles on the blog with regard to suspension. Links to all the articles are detailed below:
Most suspension questions should be answered between those 3 articles.
Q: Does the Hagon shock reduce static sag? If so, what is the seat height?
Yes, the Hagon shock with the spring that I have along with the Hyperpro fork spring reduces static sag considerably. With the bike off the side stand and standing free without load the seat height is increased to 93cm (930mm).
Q: What tyres are you using on your trip?
I’ll be setting off on a pair of Continental TKC80s. These are great 50/50 tyres for road and off-road use. I am aware that people with high power bikes complain that they wear quickly on the tarmac but, on my little 24HP CRF250 this isn’t going to be an issue. Whether I’ll be able to get another pair of TKC80s as I travel I don’t know, so it may be a case of just buying whatever is available when they wear out. I imagine I am going to need 3 or 4 pairs of tyres over the duration of the trip so we’ll see what I end up using as time goes on.
Q: What hand guards are you using? Are they any good?
I’ve fitted a pair of Zeta XC hand guards to the bike. I like them because the plastic hand guard can be unscrewed and replaced if it gets broken and the aluminium mount bar provides great protection for the brake and clutch levers in the event of a drop.
Are they any good? Well they saved my hands a few times now from bushes and branches and the levers didn’t get broken in the falls I’ve had off-road so, I guess that must mean they are good.
Q: Where do you get your stuff from?
A multitude of places! Ebay, Amazon, local motorcycle dealerships, overseas … there are many. I’ve put together a list of suppliers on my suppliers page.
Q: Are you going to change the chain and sprockets?
Yes, I’ve got rid of the cheap and nasty OEM chain and sprockets and replaced them with a DID 520VX3 chain and JTS sprockets. I’ve kept the sprocket sizes standard, 14/40.
Q: Have you changed the handle bars and/or fitted bar risers?
Yes, both! On my first venture off-road with the CRF250 Rally it was immediately clear to me that I needed to raise the handle bars up a bit as I was having to lean over too much to reach them when standing.
I decided to change the bars for a better quality item as the OEM handles bars flex very easily and I could see them getting bent out of shape very quickly.
This is a good question! I’ve spent ages trying on different skid lids trying to find one that really fits me well and that isn’t too heavy or noisy in the wind. Time and time again I kept coming back to the Nolan N702X. I have a Nolan helmet for road riding and really like it and this 702X really works for me. It’s great in that it’s convertible so I can remove the peak if I want, remove the chin bar and make it an open face helmet and wear it with the visor or goggles. It just ticks all the boxes. The other great thing is that my Sena headset will also fit. Money now spent, I’m really pleased with my decision.
Q: Are you wearing KLIM motorcycle clothing for the trip?
Simple answer is No. KLIM maybe nice clothing but it should be. At almost £2000 for a pair of trousers and a jacket they ought to be gold plated too! I’ve been using RST motorcycle clothing for some time and really like it but, it’s a bit hot in the summer months. After looking around and trying many different outfits on I opted for the Rev’It OffTrack jacket and Sand3 trousers. The reason I got the different trousers is that no one in Europe had the Offtrack trousers in stock and there wasn’t going to be another manufacture run until mid 2020. On the plus side, the Sand3 trousers are made of a slightly heavier material which should wear better especially when kneeling fixing punctures or repairing the bike. Both the trousers and jacket can zip together and have the complete 3 layer system meaning that in the really hot areas like the Gobi Desert I can remove the inner water proof layer and the warm quilted layer leaving me with just the thin outer shell with the back, elbow and shoulder protection.
Q: What tools are you taking with you?
I’ve based my tool pack on the tools I’ve needed to do the jobs on the bike during the preparation stage. I’m sure there are tools in the pack that others wouldn’t take and tools that others take that I’m not. It’s a personal thing and also takes into account my attitude towards risk which may be different to everyone else.
The above image shows all the tools that I’ve included in the pack so lets go through what we have here.
Spanners: 19/12/10/8mm. Tyre Levers: 3 x including a Motion Pro tyre lever/ring spanner combo for the rear axle. Allen Keys: 6mm Long and short, 5mm long and short, 4mm & 3mm Long. Electrical Screwdrivers: Large, medium and small flat head and large and medium cross head. Sockets: 17/14/13/12/10, 10mm Sparc plug socket, 17/14mm Hex for front axle, Bahco 1/4in socket set and 3 x socket to ring spanner converters so that I don’t need to take a socket wrench with me. Electrical: Multimeter, cable/zip ties, insulation tape and a length of electrical cable. Miscellaneous: Valve removal tool, pliers with wire cutter edge, stanley knife, Hagon rear shock C spanner, Tutoro priming magnet, plastic fuse puller and tyre pressure gauge.
I also have an electric 12v tyre pump and head torch that are not shown in the picture.
I also recommend you take a look at Matt Boyle’s video about his tool kit that he takes on his CRF250 Rally adventures.
Q: What spare parts are you taking with you?
I’m taking the following spares with me:
Complete clutch plate set and clutch housing gasket. Front and rear brake pads. 5 x oil filters and gaskets. 1 x air filter Front and rear wheel bearing kits Head stock bearing kit 2 x spark plugs Spare bulbs and fuses Puncture repair kit Spare inner tubes Front and rear sprockets
Well I think that just about covers all the questions I get asked regularly online. If I have any more I’ll add them to this page.
Since I’ve had a Tutoro chain oiler on my Kawasaki Versys 1000 from new and it’s been faultless for the last 12000 miles I decided to fit another one to my adventure bike for the trip.
Having a Tusk pannier frame and rack on the CRF250 Rally is actually a bonus as it creates the perfect mounting point for the oil reservoir which would be difficult to mount on a stock machine.
The oil reservoir comes with a selection of mounting brackets that probably work on most bikes however, for this installation I had to modify one of the supplied mount to make it work. The oiler comes with a neat little 90 degree bend mount that I had to straighten in order for it to work with the Tusk frame.
As you can see in the photo above, there is a very short straight mount between the bottom of the reservoir and the back of the Tusk cross bar. I straightened it out with a hammer on an anvil gently so as to not crack and break it on the bend. This seemed to work well and has mounted perfectly.
Since I’m going to be riding a lot of washboard trails I also put a cable tie through the spare mount hole in the bottom of the reservoir and around the frame so if the mount bracket does break I won’t lose it.
Tutoro also very kindly sent me the metal protection cover for the glass reservoir so that it doesn’t get broken by flying stones when riding off-road.
The oiler kit comes with a long length of clear plastic tubing for the oil delivery. This is really easy to route on the CRF250 Rally as there are plenty of places to tie it to. Leaving the bottom of the reservoir it runs neatly behind the Givi GRT709 pannier mount and then along the metal tubing that makes up the Tusk frame.
From the Tusk frame the tube runs down the subframe tube and then along the side of the swinging arm towards the chain stone guard under the rear of the swinging arm.
The CRF250 Rally has a neat little plastic stone guard as standard. To mount the oil delivery nozzle directly over the chain just before it arrives at the rear sprocket it was necessary to drill two little holes in the top of the plastic guard and pass a cable tie through to form a loop. I then passed the delivery nozzle and tube through this loop and tightened the cable tie as show above. This provides the perfect mounting place for the oil delivery nozzle ensuring the chain is lubricated centrally.
The photo above shows the top of the chain guard and the cut off cable tie that holds the oil delivery nozzle in place.
This works a treat and allows plenty of clearance for the chain to pass without contact.
The oil delivery nozzle sits perfectly between the stone guard and the rear sprocket with plenty of clearance for all components in the drive chain.
The Tutoro oiler relies solely on gravity to deliver the oil to the chain and thus it’s important not to have any up hill runs in the delivery tube. Once everything is secured in place it’s just a matter of filling the reservoir and opening the flow control valve to maximum whilst putting the master valve opener magnet on top of the reservoir.
This then allows the oil to run freely down the delivery tube to the nozzle. Since it’s still winter here the oil is rather thick and so this process took about 15mins. If you’re installing this in the summer you’ll find that the oil runs through much quicker.
Once the oil arrives at the nozzle it’s just a case of adjusting the valve to restrict the oil flow such that there is just a drop every 30secs or so. Once this is done remove the magnet and the installation is complete.
These oilers really are very simple to install and work extremely well.
Remember that in the summer months you will need to close the flow valve slightly as the oil will flow easier due to temperature and then in winter open it up again. I have found on my Kawasaki that there is normally a 1 to 1.5 turn difference on the valve between winter and summer.
I’ve decided to fit an automatic chain oiler on the Honda CRF250 Rally so that I don’t have to constantly worry about the chain being lubed. I’ve had one on my Kawasaki Versys 1000 from new and I have to admit it has been brilliant. The chain on the Versys 1000 has only had to be adjusted twice in over 11000 miles and this is largely due to the fact that it is always well lubricated.
Following my quest to buy British I’ve purchased the same Tutoro automatic chain oiler for the CRF that I have on the Versys. The great thing about the Tutoro oiler is that it doesn’t need to be hooked up to the vacuum side of the injector and neither does it need a power feed. This makes it very simple to maintain and also reduces the risk of problems with the engine should something like the vacuum pipe split and allow extra air into the injector mix.
The Tutoro oiler switches on and off the feed of the oil simply by using the motion of the motorcycle moving. As the bike moves along a road of trail the movement up and down as it hits bumps etc cause the valve inside the oil chamber to open and allow a predetermined amount of oil to flow. This simple mechanical process needs no adjustment and is perfectly reliable. The flow rate of the oil onto the chain can be adjusted by simply opening or closing the little vale on the oil chamber.
Once I’ve got it fitted to the bike I’ll add some more photos to this article.