Author Topic: Brent J  (Read 1760 times)

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Offline brent j

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Brent J
« on: July 28, 2007, 10:28:27 PM »
At around 11 years old I discovered motor bikes. I didn't have one and had never ridden one but that didn't come in to it. I lived and breathed motor bikes. All my pocket money went on the latest editions of "Popular Cycling" and "Dirt Bike" magazines, much to my parent's consternation. Even my pushbike had MX handlebars and low gearing.
My first motorcycle was a SUZUKI TS90MX. This was a miniature version of a TM 400, over powered and evil handling. The MX90 was a Japanese home market model but somehow 6 of them arrived in NZ in about 1974. Basically they were a TS100, sleeved down to 90cc and hotted up to the max. All road gear was removed and they had a paint scheme like a 73 TM. Unfortunately making them look like a moto-crosser didn't make them work like one. Over time I fitted a TS125 front end (21" wheel) and after reading all the magazines I laid the shocks down.
Then came a TM 125 and what a revelation. Smooth power, good handling and suspension that worked. What I remember most about this bike is how little trouble I had with it. Over time it was played with as well (bit of a pattern developing here). Some on road equipment then a TS185 motor. This produced one of the best fast trail bikes ever. Soon after came the laid down shocks, lengthened forks and a snail pipe.
I had a bit of a break from bikes for about 12 years while I played with four-wheel drives. I still rode when I could but didn't own one.
The next bike was a TL250 Honda. One of the best play-bikes ever built. I got hold of an XL350 motor so built a 350 motor with the TL head, cam and transmission. The only limit to what that thing would climb was how big your balls were! It was amazing, the amount of power and how smooth and tractable it was. At least it was until some bastard stole it. Then followed a Honda TL125. This thing had been striped and fitted with a POWROLL 150 kit. The owner couldn't put it back together so sold it cheap. This is probably the second best fun-bike ever, the power making the TL350 more interesting.
When I came to Australia in '88 I was given a Husky MX bike in exchange for some work on a drag car. Thinking back it was a 360 Mikkola replica, purple tank and the “Mikkola replica” sticker still on the airbox. It was complete and ran well. I ended up selling it to a wrecker for $100 due to getting divorced and having nowhere to put it.
Then came a TY250 built from parts found at the wreckers. I kept this thing for about 10 years and in its final guise had the frame back bone, swingarm and monoshock from a Yamaha 125 of some description with the TY250 engine cradle and downtubes. Disc brakes front and rear and reshaped TY tank and bodywork.
That was traded to the wreckers for the parts I wanted for my next project, an XT500 YAMAHA. This had been a continuous project for the last five or six years and I don’t think it will ever be finished especially considering I now have enough parts to build a few more and still have spares.
Doing an apprenticeship as a fitter & turner in NZ in the 70’s has been a blessing. This was a country with strict import restrictions and you soon learnt to make every thing you needed because you certainly couldn’t buy it!. I haven’t had that many bikes over the years but the ones I have had have all been modified to within an inch of their lives.

I was never much of a racer, I had a go at trials for a few years but generally it was trail riding with my mates.
In 88 I came to Oz and went to Darwin for a few months, 19 years later I’m still here and although there’s no VMX up here I love the lifestyle. In the last six years I have started to race MX. I have been south for two meetings and will do so again, hopefully at least once a year. I race “C” grade up here against the moderns and have more fun than when I did race in the past. The only pressure I feel now is to have fun and that’s easy.
I still remember walking into the newsagent in 98 and seeing this glossy green magazine called VMX. I couldn’t believe what I had found. My hands were shaking as I picked it up. That seed rekindled a new interest in the bikes I remembered. Next came learning to use a computer and the internet. What a revelation that’s been. I found Graeme’s “petshop” site then the Yahoo group which developed into OZVMX after Ray Ryan’s sad departing. This website is my VMX connection.
The older I get, the faster I was

Offline shoom

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Re: Brent J
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2019, 08:21:11 PM »
Just wondering here if there are any options for oversize valves for the XL350s out there?

I cant find a think about them .. can you adapt them from another model?

Many Thanks, Tom S.