A newbie in BKK

Discussion in 'New Users' started by Tom64, Feb 27, 2015.

  1. Tom64

    Tom64 Member

    Hi everybody,

    I am new to this forum even if I have been reading it for a couple of months! This is a fantastic source of information and I am looking forward to ask you all sort of stupid questions (normal ... I am newbie!), and maybe to answers some of your questions if I can! I am 27 years old French guy working in Bangkok and I would like to start a project of building my own motorbike, but I will need your help as I don't know much about mechanics!

    I am looking forward to discuss this with you,


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  3. Pheesama

    Pheesama Member

    Dear Thomas,
    I am also new here and living in BKK.
    I have been biking for decades and never have built my own machine. Although I have owned many bikes I never have built/assembling one on my own. So I think what you are going to do is very cool.

    I have started building wrack of XJ650 special. The more I inspect the more mistakes I have found from previous repairs/montage. I can assure you that it is not very encouraging. On other hand it is nice hobby and a welcome contrast to my bicycles assembling.

    In meanwhile I have got myself a PCX150 for cruising in Bangkok and a z235 for short trips. I must say PCX150 is a nice urban ride with huge "trunk" under seat. It is very practical for shopping.

    Wish you will have pleasant time with building/assembling your machine.

    If you need any info or assistance on building your bike, please contact....
  4. Tom64

    Tom64 Member

    Hey Pheesama!

    Thank you for your answer! I am in fact stuck on neutral regarding my project as I don't know where to find a wreck! I found a place but they only have bikes without green books... so that could be dangerous. Do you have any address for that?
    I am quite busy at work this days but it could be great to meet for a beer in Bangkok someday if you want!
  5. Pheesama

    Pheesama Member

    Hi! Thomas,

    no "green book" is taboo! Let use registration book instead of green book, please!

    And building a motorcycle from wracks is also taboo if engine and frame are no possession registration book.

    Otherwise, you can run application for registration of your self built bike if it has vouchers for frame, engine, etc.
    It is also very difficult cooperating with Thai authorities, i.e. you must get approval from an engineer who is willing to inspect and approve that your bike is adequately built according to rule and regulation, dictated by ministry of traffic and transport. And there are more to come i.e. inspection at Thai Industrial Standard Institute (TISI) etc.

    .....I really hate taking away wind from your sail.....
  6. Tom64

    Tom64 Member

    Ahahah you just blow up the ship! But that's ok I prefer to be informed before jumping into a project.

    I will keep'an eye out but I think things are way to difficult in Thailand. I will probably wait for my next destination to do this.

    Thanks again


  7. jimboy

    jimboy Ol'Timer

    Hi Thomas,

    Welcome to the forum!

    Don't be discouraged by the rules and regulations in Thailand. There are a lot of advantages to building a bike here. Tools are inexpensive. It's warm year-round (have you ever tried rebuilding something in a shed over winter in Europe?!) Specialized labor can be had in Bangkok at an affordable price. Machining and welding is readily available.

    You said you want to build your own motorcycle but how far do you want to go with your construction? Do you really want to weld your own frame out of Reynolds 531? Sand-cast your own engine block? Create your own wiring loom? They are all pretty neat projects and not beyond the limits of an amateur bike builder. At the same time they are not beginner's projects.

    As a first step, can I suggest you find an old bike with a green book to re-build? This has many advantages. You'll learn masses about the bike you are re-building which can be applied to other bikes. And you'll gather the tools and information and find out where to get what you need. And at the end of the day you'll have a bike you can ride.

    There are lots of used bikes on websites like http://www.mocyc.com/. I bought one myself and built it up. It was very satisfying.

    Good luck!
  8. Tom64

    Tom64 Member

    Hello Jimboy,

    Thank you for your answer, it is quite motivating! As you said I think that welding my own frame and sand casting the engine would be to much for my first project and I would like to start with rebuilding a bike from a wreck. As you mentioned I am looking for a wreck but didn't find the right place yet. I've been looking on the website you gave me but didn't find old bikes. Do you have any other tips for me? Ideally I would like to work on an old Honda CB.

    Thanks for your help,


  9. jimboy

    jimboy Ol'Timer

    Frankly, pretty much any bike you buy in Thailand that's more than five years old could do with a strip-down and re-build. A lack of regular maintenance and the humid climate breaks down bearings, seals, and wiring much quicker than in Europe.

    The GT-Rider forum "Motorcycle Buy and Sell" is worth keeping an eye on. Lots of different bikes come up. The motorcycles section of Craigslist.co.th and, as mentioned before, Mocyc.com are worth watching. There's a Chiang Mai based Thai website for motorcycles, too, which I can't remember. Can someone else chip in with the name?

    This "1999 Kawasaki KRR 150 Like New (Reduced) - ฿31000 (Bangrak)" looks like huge fun for the money. It says "Completely rebuilt from the ground up," which is a good starting point. A two-stroke bike like this will give you plenty of opportunities to learn about maintenance :lolno: (try checking the exhaust valve and the brake caliper pistons, and all the electrics, for starters). And, it runs which is always good for morale.

    BTW, the Honda CB's are great bikes but quite fashionable at the moment. Here's a cosmetically sound Honda CB400 off Mocyc.com. It's 95,000 baht but it doesn't have a Green Book (which is vital these days). Bear in mind that the emphasis on used bikes in Thailand is for them to be cosmetically beautiful rather than mechanically sound. "Mechanically sound" is viewed as "nice to have" rather than essential... :wtf:
  10. Tom64

    Tom64 Member

    Thank you for your great answer Jimboy! I think I have the tools now to find what i am looking for! I just need to keep my eyes open and look for the right one! I'll try to gather the right budget for it first ^^

    Thanks again,
  11. mikerust

    mikerust Ol'Timer


    Pick something that is/was made in Thailand . That way you can buy parts from a dealer. Much easier than importing everything. I know of a guy who is doing what you want to do using a Honda CBR150 as the donor bike. He is adding upside down forks, rebuilding the engine etc.

    Maybe not your thing but old Vespas are everywhere here. parts are easy, lots of painting and respray guys etc. OK not modern 4 strokes but you will still learn new things and get some satisfaction.

    There also should be quite a few older CBR250's around and Ninja 250's. It might even be possible to change a FI CBR250 to 300 using 300 parts. But i am shooting from the hip as I haven't researched the engine specs. Modern bikes use fuel injection and whilst this is great it makes DIY stuff a little more challenging if you are upgrading the motor away from, say, Honda's original specs. Not impossible but not as easy as simply changing a piece of brass with a hole in the middle.

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