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Thread Starter #1
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Hello People,

It's been over 13 years, since I've lived in India. I must say that it's great to be back. Although, I was just next door in Muscat, Oman I was quite disconnected from many things that I've treasured while I was in Chennai. This move has rekindled my spirits and the first step is of course to get to know people - especially of similar interests.

I left as an automotive person and ended up becoming a journalist - yea, go figure. However, some things you never forget; like the RD350. I had started out tuning at 16 by adding magnesium powder to fuel in my Bajaj Sunny and ended my Indian adventure after building a 42hp RD350 that ran the Magic Ton in fourth.

Since a person's life in this forum is measured in automotive terms, I shall simply share in chronological order the vehicles I've owned:
1993 Bajaj Sunny, 1986 Rajdoot Yamaha 350, 1996 Enfield Bullet Machismo, 1996 Suzuki Shogun, 1998 Suzuki GSX-F750, 2003 Hyundai Getz, 2004 Honda VTR1000SP2, 1993 Ford Explorer, 1995 Mercury Sable, 1998 Ford Explorer, 1989 Mercury Cougar, 2002 Ford Explorer, 2005 Kawasaki ZRX1200 ELR, 1998 Chevrolet Malibu, 2001 Ford Taurus, 2009 Ford Mustang, 2008 Honda CBR600RR, 2009 Harley Davidson XR1200, 2012 Toyota Camry and finally back in Chennai with a 1962 HM Ambassador. This probably gives a fellow "petrol head" what madness runs in my mind.

I have some knowledge that I've accumulated over the years, and I'd be pleased to share with anyone who asks. Do allow me the same.

Keep the faith,
Rathish.
 

350Z

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Since a person's life in this forum is measured in automotive terms, I shall simply share in chronological order the vehicles I've owned:
1993 Bajaj Sunny, 1986 Rajdoot Yamaha 350, 1996 Enfield Bullet Machismo, 1996 Suzuki Shogun, 1998 Suzuki GSX-F750, 2003 Hyundai Getz, 2004 Honda VTR1000SP2, 1993 Ford Explorer, 1995 Mercury Sable, 1998 Ford Explorer, 1989 Mercury Cougar, 2002 Ford Explorer, 2005 Kawasaki ZRX1200 ELR, 1998 Chevrolet Malibu, 2001 Ford Taurus, 2009 Ford Mustang, 2008 Honda CBR600RR, 2009 Harley Davidson XR1200, 2012 Toyota Camry and finally back in Chennai with a 1962 HM Ambassador. This probably gives a fellow "petrol head" what madness runs in my mind.

I have some knowledge that I've accumulated over the years, and I'd be pleased to share with anyone who asks. Do allow me the same.
Now that's a list of rides one would want to own. You're wholeheartedly welcome to this automotive haven, Rathish. I'm sure the community will benefit from your vast experience. Looking forward to your posts and have a pleasant stay on board. Please buzz the moderators anytime you need a hand around. :smile:

Drive Safe,
350Z
 
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Rathish@

Welcome to TAI family!.

It is a big list of vehicles you owned/ride. I guess half of them will be in abroad. I Couldnt resisit the urge to see the pictures of your rides and waiting to hear your experience on these machines.
 
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Welcome to TAI Rathish. Wish you have a pleasant stay here.
That's a good list of vehicles that you owned and would love to see the ownership review of each one (wondering how many days / weeks will it take to compile) How about the current ride (Amby) is it intact or any restoration planned? BTW, do you still hold the RD350?
 
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It's been over 13 years, since I've lived in India. I must say that it's great to be back. Although, I was just next door in Muscat, Oman I was quite disconnected from many things that I've treasured while I was in Chennai.
Hi Rathish,
Welcome to TAI.

Being at Muscat, you have the opportunity to explore different other vehicles. Any way explore in TAI.
 
Thread Starter #6
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Welcome to TAI Rathish. Wish you have a pleasant stay here.
That's a good list of vehicles that you owned and would love to see the ownership review of each one (wondering how many days / weeks will it take to compile) How about the current ride (Amby) is it intact or any restoration planned? BTW, do you still hold the RD350?
Thank you. It would take a while. However, I can write a few line for each car if you like.
It's in a decent shape, although I'm not a fan of the F305 Matador engine in it. So giving it sometime to decide if I should drop a 2.0 oil-burner or just swap and buy another petrol Amby.

I had four RDs at one time. Now I have none. :(


Hi Rathish,
Welcome to TAI.

Being at Muscat, you have the opportunity to explore different other vehicles. Any way explore in TAI.
I had that opportunity. Yes, let's hope I can in TAI.
 

vijay

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Welcome to The Automotive India and wish you a great stay here.
Pretty good experience to have driven those list of vehicles, do share which one you loved the most and some pictures when you can.
 
Thread Starter #8
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Hey Guys,
Here's my four-line summary on all the vehicles I've owned, and the last one I just picked up.

1993 Bajaj Sunny:
Bajaj's smartest creation. Kicked the nay-sayers of plastic on their jaws with durability and performance in a 50cc motor. Great handler but behaved like a kid.

1986 Rajdoot Yamaha 350:
Indeed the best bike there ever was until the KTM was launched. Handled well until 160kmph and its stiff chassis really held strong. Today, it's a point-and-shoot machine that’s been sexually abused.

1996 Enfield Bullet Machismo:
Hammered to the core, its brakes lasted 7,000kms and the clutch about 4,000kms. Could never be ridden hard w.r.t. the chassis. Braking into a corner flexed its forks like a woman wearing minis. The engine however just refused to die.

1996 Suzuki Shogun:
It could be tuned to far higher state like a college student than either the chassis or brakes allowed. The best-tuned production motor in its era – actually better than the RX100 even. Third to fourth gear was too large a gap for its powerband, which got worse with tuning.

1998 Suzuki GSX-F750:
Air-cooled motor that actually ran pretty cool even with fairings. Was extremely heavy like a pregnant cow though, and of course noisy. Exhaust sound was impressive, and brakes seemed lacking.

2003 Hyundai Getz:
Quite a powerful car given its monocoque and 1.3-litre motor. Handled well in high-speed corners, but was sprung a bit soft for a Korean. Top-speed was higher in fourth than fifth, due to the gearing.

2004 Honda VTR1000SP2:
Honda’s best engine ever inside this disguised WSB motorcycle or a CK model. With 500cc per cylinder it seemed like a miracle it ran at 12,000 revs. Was too good for a novice like me or any other.

1993 Ford Explorer:
Ford’s answer to the Cherokee. OHV motor was very torquey and pulled hard with six people. Great clearance and electronic 4WD. Ladder frame designed made it heavy however.

1995 Mercury Sable:
Surprisingly good handler although designed as a tourer. Didn’t need the poor brakes much, as it could get into a turn without too much dive. Reliable if you were faithful.

1998 Ford Explorer:
Similar to the 1993’s performance, but sprung too soft. Wallowed into corners like a boat. Always had this rear squatted stance even when empty. Most reliable of Ford’s cars, which is not saying much.

1989 Mercury Cougar:
This was a car that shouldn’t have been bought, because it shouldn’t have been built. Except its classic lines was attractive. Came with 5.0-litre V8, with an output of a diesel genie. It was always sailed in, never driven.

2002 Ford Explorer:
The next generation Explorer. Ford put all their money into handling with IRS and advanced suspension. Could be raced with Camaros. Powered increased by over 50hp, but could never induce wheel spin at the lights. Can’t off road either – like a sissy H2.

2005 Kawasaki ZRX1200 ELR:
The Eddie Lawson Replica was an handsome looking bloke who could easily get laid. The 1,200cc motor was a beast full of torque fed by quad-carbs. Great positive handling and superb brakes. Was a bit heavier that it could have been.

1998 Chevrolet Malibu:
Better overall handling than even the Taurus. Was a 2.4-litre that cheated you of fuel. Absolutely unreliable, and a pain to diagnose. It should’ve caught cancer and died.

2001 Ford Taurus:
This one thinks it’s a rear-wheel-drive. Always went over steering into corners. Fast but couldn’t stop. Wallows with new drivers and was affectionately called the Blue Whale.

2009 Ford Mustang:
The S197 was a muscleman with bad attitude. A little mod got it excited to spit out more HP. Could not dance, yet figure skated on tarmac. Brakes faded in five or six 200kmph to 140kmph drops. It can grow up to be a race car someday.

2008 Honda CBR600RR:
Was loud like a schoolboy on THC, screaming all the time at 11,000rpm. Any lower it lost motivation to spin its crank. And at 3,000rpm couldn’t make up its mind whether to coast or power. Nuisance seems like a good name.

2009 Harley Davidson XR1200:
Most faithful of machines not unlike a bullet. An average looking damsel who never complained and could just get you really excited. A tease who also sounded great. Legs made in heaven, and brakes to light the tyre.

2009 Nissan Xterra:
Best all around SUV ever built. Would like to have its own walk of fame made of selfies – and quite honestly should be given one. Mad power, mad off roader, and slightly cuckoo in a good way.

2012 Toyota Camry:
Very stoic member of the Toyota club. Turns away from a Yaris and ignores the Avalon. Minds its business perfectly, be it corners, acceleration braking or just chilling. Not one peep of a complaint even if abused.

1962 HM Ambassador:
This was a mistake. It was a Frankenstein with parts from vans, trucks and small animals. Could not be driven over 80kmph, with driveline and rest of the body in different timezones. It’s the walking dead of cars, and an undertaker thankfully just bought it.

1996 HM Ambassador:
To replace the vacant spot of nostalgia, this was an extremely lucky find. Came with verified 32,000kms and with factory paint. Nothing in the car was changed except the horn. Now in the shop with a makeover for the next catwalk.


Thanks all,
Cheers,
Rado.
 
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Your collections are Superb Mr. Rado; Also please post the list of vehicles you had.
One of the BHPians mentioned that you had constructed a millyard rd 700 from two RD350 engines; Is it true? please share your experience.

Thankyou,
Anand
 
Thread Starter #10
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Hey Anand,
Thank you for your comment.

Yes, indeed I had built the RD700 motor. It was my college project. Although it was finished, I ran out of funds (salary was pocket money you see) before I could go the whole way to get it running leave alone run it.

It was the best experience of my life building this from two motors, there was a bunch of calculations and measurements that my college brain could process.

All but the project report has been disposed off sadly.

Cheers,
Rado.
 
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Hey Anand,
Thank you for your comment.

Yes, indeed I had built the RD700 motor. It was my college project. Although it was finished, I ran out of funds (salary was pocket money you see) before I could go the whole way to get it running leave alone run it.

It was the best experience of my life building this from two motors, there was a bunch of calculations and measurements that my college brain could process.

All but the project report has been disposed off sadly.

Cheers,
Rado.
Sorry to reply very late, because I'd been in Coimbatore GD Naidu Automobile course at that time, and laptops and mobile phones are restricted there; the main purpose of joining there was to learn to construct a millyard, but been taught nothing such.

can you post any photo of that RD700 engine?
I think that would be India's first ever millyard.

I'm about to construct a Shogun 220 with two crank cases.
Is there any way to register that modification under the "alteration rule" in the RTO and make it street legal, because my friend told me that I need to send the vehicle to ARAI, Pune, for test.

What Chassis would be better to handle a 220 cc twin 50 bhp; also I need suggestion on castor angle, wheelbase, dynamics, mass centralisation, etc.
 
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