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Old 04-22-2008, 04:58 PM   #1
Mikef5000 OP
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Location: Columbus, OH
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What about the cute little KE100

What's the word on this thing??? Reliable? It's said to do 55 mph stock, how about after changing the gearing? Could I make it cruise at 55-60 comfortably?

I know it's not great for off roading... but for inter-city commuting, with the rare occasion to get on a trail, it seems like it would work nicely.

100cc 2-stroke! 11 horsepower 186 lbs.

I found a 2000 with 600 miles on it for $800.

I think it's cool as heck!

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Old 04-22-2008, 05:46 PM   #2
scorch
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikef5000
What's the word on this thing??? Reliable? It's said to do 55 mph stock, how about after changing the gearing? Could I make it cruise at 55-60 comfortably?

I know it's not great for off roading... but for inter-city commuting, with the rare occasion to get on a trail, it seems like it would work nicely.

100cc 2-stroke! 11 horsepower 186 lbs.

I found a 2000 with 600 miles on it for $800.

I think it's cool as heck!

That was my first bike, i had a 1999.

I put 6500 miles in about 2 months and it was as reliable as anything. It was pretty fast for a little bike got about 100mpg and got me around without any problems. Kick starting it easy.
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Old 04-22-2008, 07:01 PM   #3
Oni
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I had one of those as my first bike! It was named G5 back then...but still looks basically the same. Not many rotary valve bikes still around. I remember we trimmed it a little for more performance. Rode the crap out of that thing. Broke the footpegs off and had them welded back on.
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Old 04-22-2008, 07:23 PM   #4
WR_guy
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Location: 96' Dr650 - 200 wr400f street legal -- Hot xr50
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The same bike since 1971...will go about 50mph with a full size person on board...more gearing won't help as it is limited by power not gearing.
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Old 04-22-2008, 07:34 PM   #5
SIKLR250
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I took my MSF class on one of those and had a great time. I was just (no kidding) trolling the local craig's lists for one. I've always had a thing for two strokes (since my Puch moped days).
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Old 04-22-2008, 07:47 PM   #6
Twotrak
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Location: SW Ohio
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It's a great bike.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikef5000
What's the word on this thing??? Reliable? It's said to do 55 mph stock, how about after changing the gearing? Could I make it cruise at 55-60 comfortably?

I know it's not great for off roading... but for inter-city commuting, with the rare occasion to get on a trail, it seems like it would work nicely.

100cc 2-stroke! 11 horsepower 186 lbs.

I found a 2000 with 600 miles on it for $800.

I think it's cool as heck!

My brother had one in the 70's. Last winter I bought a 2001 with 300 miles on it. I mainly bought it so my family could use it as a starter bike. But it's a blast! Carefull on the road though. I've had mine up to 55 but it won't comfortably cruise there. I weigh 200 pounds and in a stiff headwind I could only cruise about 40. I haven't honestly tried it on the trails yet but I think it may do OK. I think these things are one of the best buys out there. Besides - you get a classic, a piece of history. One of the last of the street legal two strokes.
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Old 04-22-2008, 08:23 PM   #7
montesa_vr
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I think if you lie down flat on your stomach with your feet straight out behind you and tuck you head down against the speedo you might be able to get it to 60. Might take about two miles to reach top speed.

There's something really fun about riding one of these little things in the dirt. Light, low, and not much power -- you feel invincible. You can push the envelope and not get hurt.
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Old 04-23-2008, 12:11 AM   #8
fixer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikef5000
I found a 2000 with 600 miles on it for $800.

if it's complete, in good condition, and they have the title... that's a GREAT price!

but it's a little bike, fine for cruising around, but trying to "cruise" at 55 will be pushing it.
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Old 04-23-2008, 12:22 AM   #9
elgreen
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Location: Northern California
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Terrible bike. The suspension bottoms out on the smallest jump. Forks made of finest noodles. Top speed of 50, as everybody else said. Has less power than your average riding lawnmower. Have to slip the clutch like crazy to do anything with the little beasty. The stock tires it came with wore like iron, and had about as much traction both onroad and offroad.

Also pretty much indestructible. No valves to adjust. No reed valve to wear out -- just a disk on the end of the crankcase. No timing chain to jump cam timing. No radiator to change out fluid in. There's pretty much no "there" there -- the thing is simple as dirt. Just keep feeding oil and gas to the thing and clean the air filter and change the crankcase oil from time to time and it'll pretty much run forever with no real maintenance. It's so small and light that if it falls on you, it doesn't hurt, and if it falls over the other way, it's too short and light to build up enough velocity to break anything. In other words, it's a terrible bike that is a surprisingly fun beater bike to thrash around in the dirt despite the fact that on paper it is an absolutely terrible bike in all conceivable ways.

The biggest killer of KE100's is the oil injection pooping out. If there's no oil coming out of the end of your exhaust, the oil injection isn't working (the oil injection is, let us say, enthusiastic). On a vintage KE100 it's probably a better idea to let the oil injection tank run dry and rely on premix, that's one less thing to break on a vintage bike.
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Old 04-23-2008, 03:06 PM   #10
BikerDave
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I had a Ke100 for a while...I think it was a '76 model. Other than paint there isn't much difference between years. Cool little bike but you're gonna be winding it up to cruise at 55mph! I have a '77 KE125 in my collection now and even that one is best at 50mph and under. Big plus is that gas lasts FOREVER in them!!!!!
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Old 04-23-2008, 06:51 PM   #11
hppyfngy
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Location: Where the Skyline meets the BRP
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I've been eyeing one of these on CL near me for a couple of weeks. '01 for $900.

I want it as a beater to teach some kids on, (maybe the wife too... )


Seems like a perfect bike for my 14 year old nephew to learn on...
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Old 02-19-2009, 07:00 PM   #12
gswanna
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i had 1 of them 1981 ke-100 it was blue -it was 4 stroke though and it sucked too heavy -no power couldn't get up hill unless in first gear,, the brakes ,suspension were terrible --but of course i was trying to ride it like a motorcross bike -----------------------on-road around town it would probably be a cool little ride --
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Old 02-19-2009, 07:28 PM   #13
Wreckster
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Joined: Aug 2005
Location: Stone Ridge, NY
Oddometer: 377
Stepfather has one of those I toy around on from time to time. Was originally for my mother and sister to learn on. My mother somehow managed to do a two-wheel power slide, Endo, and pull the front wheel up all just before running into a car and bruising her knee really bad.

Myself, I can pull the front wheel up on demand, with complete confidence. Take it through the woods with the same confidence and spin the back end around through the tightest of turns.

Fast bike? heck no, but a good fun bike to toy with, very easy to teach on.
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Old 02-19-2009, 09:37 PM   #14
YamaGeek
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Probably the last production street/trail two stroke tiddler. Great bikes, this bike, the old rotary Suzuki's and 100cc Yamahas rotary valve engines all have the same type of powerband. It's rather broad and not too pipey, for a small two stroke bike. My Suzuki TS 100 was probably the same power wise.

Also has drum brakes and twin old skool shocks in the rear, so it's not going to be a lot of fun in really rough conditions going fast.

100 cc's, either two or four stroke, are not going to like being pushed over 50 mph for long time periods, but great flickable back roads cruisers at 40 to 45 mph non-the-less.
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Old 01-07-2011, 12:27 AM   #15
dirtydeeds
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Bump.

These days we have a CBR 125 which could be a great beginner bike too. What do you think?
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