This and similar questions I got a lot throughout this trip on my bike. Often, when I went to see a mechanic they would laugh and some fellow bikers would tell me how unprepared they think I was for this trip.
At first I almost felt a little intimidated by the people on big 1200 cc BMW’s, offroad KTM’s and all those other bikes I saw on the road to a point when I even started asking my self WHY?
Therefor I decided to dedicate this post to my reasons for doing it on my cheap chinese bike. (Sold in Russia, imported to Kyrgyztsan, bought from an Austrian and driven over 10000 km to Europe)
First of all, which goes without saying, the money. Buying a Honda or any other popular brand was not an option as they are hard to find and super expensive in Kyrgyzstan. Obviously I could have booked a cheap flight home bought a good second hand bike for not too much money and done this trip the other way round. However, I wanted the challenge and buy it in Kyrgyzstan, which leads to my next reason.
It would have been easy with Austrian number plates and insurance. I wouldn’t have had to worry about border crossings and there is lots of information online as quite a lot of people drive their bikes from Europe to somewhere in Asia. I wanted to see how easy it is doing it the other way ’round. Even the process of buying and the paperwork was an adventure. The papers for the bike are not in my name and are all in russian which sometimes made me look a little suspicious to police. I got a power of attorney and with a little explanation it always turned out fine.
Of course I was hoping that the bike doesn’t break too much but also saw it as part of my adventure. As I said in previous posts I often had the best experiences when I had issues with the bike. Moreover, driving this bike was always something to talk about.
Lastly, I wanted to design this trip in a way that everyone who has a similar dream could do it. Driving a good expensive bike, people can say they don’t have the money to do it or aren’t yet on their unrestricted Motorbike licence or whatever excuse they might find. (I am not yet allowed to drive a 1000cc bike but believe me you really don’t need that) Even though the bike wasn’t that cheap for what it is I also saved a lot of money by only using my backpack instead of expensive side cases and spare parts were cheap too.
I was not very handy with motorcycle maintenance before but learned as I went and always found someone to help me. People are awesome!!
..Saving so much on safety gear as I did, however, isn’t a smart idea!! ( Nothing happened to me so far but it’s simply not worth the risk. There are a lot of mad drivers out there. Cheap chinese bike is fine, cheap chinese gear isn’t.)
It’s not a fast bike with not much power but I already drove over 9500 km on all kinds of roads (sometimes I wouldn’t even call them that) and all I can say, eventhough it sure is fun to be on a powerfull bike with all the little extra features, it doesn’t need much but determination to do a trip like this. I got my licence only one year ago and only had little experience from my time in Vietnam on a bike and just gathered experience as I went.
It wasn’t always easy and sometimes very frustrating but certainly a hundred percent worth it!
If you have a similar dream I hope this can maybe inspire you a little. It doens’t need much!
Go out there and hit road!