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ABee 06-06-2013 07:26 PM

100cc Hodaka Road Toad on the TAT
I have wanted to ride the Trans America Trail for some time now. In fact, I bought myself a retirement gift, a new KTM 530 EXC, to make the ride. However, my wife and I were on Interstate 84 near Pendleton, Oregon last summer on our way to Portland when we noticed truck after truck going down the road loaded with Hodakas. It was people going home after the Hodaka Days event. My wife then looked up the information about Hodaka Days on her I-Phone as we were driving. She found the article on Jack Broomall's trip from Pennsylvania to Athena on his Hodaka Wombat, which she read to me as we drove. I thought that it was pretty cool that this fellow had the courage to hit the road on a 34 year-old 125cc trailbike.
When I was in college in Arcata, California, I put myself through school working for a BMW dealership in Eureka, California called Pacific BMW. Another local dealer, Fred Villopoto,of Eureka Cycles (Ryan Villopoto's grandfather, no kidding), was looking to get out of the business and sell off his inventory. Fred sold Bultaco, CZ and Hodakas at the time. We ended up buying all of his Hodaka bikes and parts and established a relationship with the business that was liquidating Hodaka inventory nationally (Wheels of Time, I believe). Anyway, part of Fred's old Hodaka inventory included a 02 Model Road Toad which I ended up buying for my wife (Donna) to learn how to ride on. It was her very first bike, and we have carried it around all of these years. She used to compete in enduros on it, but became interested in vintage MX and so the Hodaka sat in the corner of the garage unused for decades (she has a Super Combat and some MX Yamahas that she uses in AHRMA events). For whatever reason, I ended up acquiring another identical 02 Road Toad along the way.
So, inspired by Jack's ride, I will leave the new KTM in the garage and head across the country on the 100cc Hodaka around the first of June, giving me a little over three weeks to make Hodaka Days. I am doing the ride solo, but will meet up with friends who will ride portions of the trail with me in places like Colorado. Donna will drive our motorhome and meet me at the end of each day's ride. The motorhome will serve as a support vehicle (sag wagon, if needed). I will bring the additional Road Toad on a trailer behind the motorhome to cannibalize any major components, if needed. I will also get the Super Combat going and throw it on the trailer so Donna and I can race the MX at Hodaka Days.
The bike itself, other than having the motor freshened, up, new tires and an MZB electronic ignition, will be stone stock. Since I will have a support vehicle, I will not need to carry a lot of gear, other that my GPS, maps, spot locator, plugs, tubes, CO2 cartridges, jets and basic tools.
Of course, I don’t know if the 35 year-old 100cc two stroke trail bike (or my body) will be able to make it the 4,000 plus miles in the time allotted, but I am going to find out how far I can get before I have to throw the Toad on the trailer. If I kill both of the Toads in the process, I will have at least had some fun doing it.

The support vehicle. Note vintage Holsclaw trailer. (Thanks Tom!)

Yukoner2 06-06-2013 07:54 PM

My 1st bike was an ACE 100, it got me started, next was an ACE 90, not as much fun, but still only 2 wheels.I hope you have a great trip, would love to see all the old Hodaka's some day, but will probably not happen for me, too far away. PS black letters are very hard to read.
Looking through some drawers here, I have about 6 pack of un-used original Hodaka matches, must be worth a fortune to some old smoker.

bk brkr baker 06-06-2013 07:56 PM

I hope you meet up with the guys from the west coast that are heading east on Trail 90 powered by China motors . It will be race time !

ABee 06-06-2013 08:29 PM

100cc Hodaka on the TAT, Day One

Leaving Jellico

We drove up to Jellico from our home on the morning of June 3. Storms had moved through the area the day before so I expected a good bit of mud to be lurking in the hills. The idea for the first day was to ride around 150 miles as a “shakedown” after the engine rebuild. I planned to take it easy and make any needed adjustments to the bike. In the spirit of keeping the bike as stock as possible, I retained the oil injection system, which is a bit of a risk since they have a reputation of being inconsistent. Even though the new oil injection lines had been bled and the oil tank had been flushed, I was running a 32 to 1 mix for the first tank of fuel as insurance. I could then measure the amount of oil pumped at the end of the day, compare it to the fuel consumed and then calculate the ratio.
The ride started around 1:30. Cool weather, some cloud cover. Just a few miles out of town, I began climbing into the hills on wide gravel roads. Not really much traffic on a Monday afternoon. The scenery was beautiful; there were many single lane wooden and concrete bridges over the numerous creeks. More often than not, there would be people fishing off the bridges or just enjoying the day.
People in the East Tennessee Mountains seem friendly. I received lots of waves and questions about the weird old bike whenever I would stop to take pictures or get gas.
Unfortunately (for me), about 75% (or better) of the first 150 miles of the TAT are now paved. I still enjoyed the ride, however. The natural beauty of the area is hard to beat.
My favorite parts of the ride were the scenery around the Obed River and the dirt trails in the Catoosa Wildlife Management Area.
I met my wife in the camper in the Rockwood area where we spent the night. 153 miles, 3.2 gallons of gas and 12 oz of injector oil.
Wooden Bridge near Winfield, TN
Obed River, near Wartburg, TN

Baby Mudhole, Catoosa Management Area
Toad's Eye View, Catoosa Management Area
Who will get to Oregon first?

Ks-Rydr 06-07-2013 07:07 AM

How cool ABee, I bought a new "Road Toad" in June of 1976, and had a great time riding that bike. I even took it to Chadwick, Mo. and it did well there. That was back with the old single track trails and not the new wide 4-wheeler trails. It was a good bike and lot's of fun to ride. I think you'll enjoy the ride, 2 years ago some friends and I did part of the T.A.T., from Arkansas to Utah. I rode a '98 Suzuki DR350SE and had a blast. Would love to do it again.... I'll be following along to see how things go.

MUS 06-07-2013 07:21 AM

Unlike the guys on the Honda CT90's, are you going to keep up with a RR on this trip on ADV? Please no more Facebook! I had a Hodaka 125 I bought in Pennsylvania in 1976 and road trails all over PA for several years before I somehow broke the engine casing on something. I don't even think I had a skid plate on that bike, but it was sure fun to ride. Wish I still had it. If you do a RR, I am in. :clap

prsdrat 06-07-2013 07:56 AM

I fell in love the old Hodaka's back in the sixty's when they did a run
down Baja. I still remember the signs they posted, as seen in some
bike rag at the time, "Hodaka esta aqui!"

I'm in for the RR. Keep us posted. 06-07-2013 08:23 AM

Wow! Dude that is going to be an awesome accomplishment! The TAT is a fantastic ride! I read about Hodaka Days every year, and hope to take it in as part of a long ride some day.
Ride safe and best wishes!

socalhodaka 06-07-2013 08:26 AM

AB, I look forward to seeing you at Hodaka Days in a couple weeks.

Gunslinger1 06-07-2013 08:40 AM

:clap.........Looking forward to your Adventure.....

My cousin bought and rode a new Hodaka when I was a kid coming off a Trail 90 it was a BIG DEAL.........I remember the chrome tank and the smoke trail it left...:huh........Makes me smile today........I Loved It.

Bob 06-07-2013 01:56 PM

Cool old bikes.
Good luck

JackB1 06-07-2013 02:22 PM

Andy, All the best to you on your epic journey. One of my great hopes for my 2011 ride to Hodaka Days was that it would inspire others to attempt magnificent adventures on old bikes like your doing. Sorry I won't be at Hodaka Days to welcome you home but hopefully we'll meet at some point. I'll buy! ! Good luck buddy!
All the best,
Jack Broomall

huzar 06-07-2013 04:03 PM


This should be fun :clap

Ferguson Valley 06-07-2013 06:55 PM

Have a Great Ride. My wife and I both had Hodakas in the early 70s, lots of fun in the California desert. We'll be folowing your RR.

ABee 06-07-2013 07:27 PM

Day Two
Day Two
Jonathan's Barn
I was back on the trail around 8:30. I was treated to clear weather, temperatures in the mid-80s. The plan was to meet my wife for lunch in Sparta, about 80 miles into the ride. In this area of Tennessee you are riding across the Cumberland Plateau. Again, beautiful scenery, but with the exception of a few dirt roads here and there, this part of the TAT is all pavement. Without GPS, navigation would be a bit tricky at times in this area with all of the zigzagging on the back road lanes. The highlights of this segment of the ride for me were Rock Island State Park and meeting an interesting fellow named Jonathan on the trail outside of Sparta. Rock Island State Park, named for an island with the same name on the Caney Fork River, runs through Great Falls Gorge in White and Warren Counties. Great Falls Dam is located here, along with the old Great Falls Cotton Mill, which was in operation from 1892-1902. Going up a ”hollow” on the TAT outside of Sparta on one of the few dirt roads on the ride, I spied an interesting barn that someone had built using lumber from other old barns, including some that had the old “See Rock City, Outside of Chattanooga” advertisements painted on the side. This barn also had an intriguing plaque hanging in the front that said “Aunt Sally.” I had to stop and get a picture. While I was doing so, a fellow sporting a long graying beard came running down the hill, spied me and shouted “HELLO,” in a not-so-friendly tone. I explained that I thought the barn was cool and all I wanted was a photo. The fellow, who introduced himself as Jonathan, said he was a little on edge because some local kids had tried to burn the barn down recently. He said that he taught outdoor classes at a nearby college and used the barn as a retreat or getaway when the need arose. This explained the “Aunt Sally” tag from Tom Sawyer, where he rejects civilization at the end of the story. “Aunt Sally, she’s going to adopt me, civilize me, and I can’t stand it. I have been there before.” Jonathan said that he has had to fight the county to keep the road in front of his place unpaved and welcomes the TAT crowd through his corner of Tennessee. Cool.
222 miles to Bell Buckle, Tennessee. 4.7 gallons of gas and only 10 ounces of oil pushed through the injector pump. Yikes! Time to start mixing oil with the fuel again!
Jonathan in front of his Barn

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