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Post  kevin10529 on Wed Feb 04 2009, 01:45

Hi names Kev, from Scotland and had a bike for about 9 months now.

Doing my DAS at the mo and hoping to get a "cat" as my 1st big bike. Curently have a DT125 2004 and its class, so am gonna stick to yamaha.

Been reading reviews and asking about on other sites about cats and got some good info but i think coming to a cat specific site will get me the best knowledge.

I would like some info on likely problems to look out for/the 2nd gear issues and other advice on buying, also if anyone was selling in the near future.

Hope this is not too much to ask being my 1st post and also dont get booted for never owning a YZF600 Very Happy
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Post  Schnorbitz on Wed Feb 04 2009, 03:23

Welcome, rest assured you won't get booted for not owning a 'cat. I can't give you any tech advice on the purchase as I am a mechanical numpty but I can tell you some things of use. 1 - the 'cat is a great bike to start on. I did it, as have many others here, it's comfortable, forgiving and has got plenty of grunt for everyone. 2 - this forum, and the peeps on it should you get on a ride, will help your riding and give you great advice.

Enjoy and good luck with your purchase!
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Post  ellie on Wed Feb 04 2009, 10:15

Hi,

I've recently passed my test and progressed from a Honda Varadero (125), to a Thundercat,they are a really good first bike, I have a 1998 one and its reliable and great to ride.
My mates with 1000cc still love having a go on my bike!! I bought it because it was cheap, and had really good right ups.
I've just put a beowulf exhaust on mine and it sounds great and have Dunplops,Renthal Chain and Sprocket.

The move from a 125 to a 600cc is awesome also!!

Have Fun!!!!! :yzf:
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Post  robertcains on Wed Feb 04 2009, 13:22

The biggy to keep an eye on is the 2nd gear issue, Simple test is to change it into 2nd gear whilst riding at low revs & wind the throttle back fairly hard, If it jumps out of gear simply walk away as its gonna cost you over a grand.

Nothing else that I can think of that springs to mind except all the usual stuff on any bike i.e Chain, Headstock bearings, swingarm bearings, accident damage etc etc.

Carbs always benefit from a balance each year too
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Post  0ldcat on Wed Feb 04 2009, 13:33

@kevin10529 wrote:Hi names Kev, from Scotland and had a bike for about 9 months now.

Doing my DAS at the mo and hoping to get a "cat" as my 1st big bike. Curently have a DT125 2004 and its class, so am gonna stick to yamaha.

Been reading reviews and asking about on other sites about cats and got some good info but i think coming to a cat specific site will get me the best knowledge.

I would like some info on likely problems to look out for/the 2nd gear issues and other advice on buying, also if anyone was selling in the near future.

Hope this is not too much to ask being my 1st post and also dont get booted for never owning a YZF600 Very Happy
Hello Kev,

Firstly,
Welcome to the :yzf: site. Of course you won't get booted for never owning a 'T/cat', not even if, in the end, you don't get one and opt for something else.

Secondly,
Welcome to the biking fraternity as you've not been about it for very long. Now it's in you're system, get used to a lifetime incurable (but rather nice) atease (as opposed to disease).
There's no tablets , no jabs, and no councelling ..........just your next fix ride out to look forward too.

Thirdly,
As for advice, well, if you're not technicly/mechanicly minded....when buying your first big bike I would advise a biking knowledgeable friend goes with you when making the deal, especially if it's to be a private purchase.
Do all the usual HPI & credit checks. Your biking savvie mate should point you in all the right directions on things to look at on the bike.
Check the bikes paperwork to THE bike ... ie frame/chassis & Engine Nos. all tally to the Docs. TAX, MOT the whole 9 yards.
Get him/her to do a test ride for you if you're not confident doing so yourself.
If you don't have access to someone in the know, then I would suggest that money spent on one of the major motoring organisations inspectors could prove invaluable, not cheap, but could save you thousands in preventing a nightmare purchace.

Fourth,
You will hear horror stories about any make or model bike. On the cat for some reason it seems to be this 2nd gear problem.
Yes it exists, but in 8 years of being a member of and administering this site I have only had the occasion to know of two or three people who have ACTUALLY had it go completely, and perhaps twice that number experiance problems with it but soon enough for it not to become a serious issue ... ie repaired in time. (NB: There are 160+ members here now, we had 1300+ come and go on the MSN site, and about 50ish on the first ever cat site).
So you can see my point (I hope) and my scepticism with number ratios just not adding up to this "2nd gear" problem really being a significant problem at all.
There is always a clunk dropping it into first, and shifting between 1 and 2 isn't always the smoothest (both of mine were the same in this respect) so NOT nessacerily an indication of a second gear problem. Don't be put off by that.
More the bigger grumble with the Cat is the poor headlight (if you night ride a lot) and the rear suspension, both of which are or can be reasonably sorted.

In the cat you have an every day commute, a capable tourer, and a more than handy scratcher when needed. A well handled cat will out strip a pooly handled fireblade 24/7.
We did a trip to Germany a number of years back where we took in the Nurburgring. Those of us as "pressed" on a bit saw indicated 154 mph (so probably 139 - 140 real). Fast enough ? Shocked Laughing Wink
It has a plush seat, comfy seating/riding position that seems to suit the smaller and taller riders alike. It also has plenty of room for a pillion (to be comfy) and luggage for a two week European tour. I've done that twice so neither me nore my pillion are talking bovine pooh.

If you've managed to read this far, welcome again. Good luck with your DAS.

Lastly (and by no means least),
There are quite a few Clan Cats saltire on site who I'm sure would be willing to lend the benefits of their experiances your way.

All the best
Tel
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Post  ellie on Wed Feb 04 2009, 13:50

BTW-Theres a really good service (I think its the DLA???/) that you can text the reg to and it texts back its history, and its only about 3 quid.......
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Post  Rosco on Wed Feb 04 2009, 15:09

Hello Kev........ and welcome to the site.

Good luck with the DAS and any bike purchase.

@0ldcat wrote:A well handled cat will out strip a poorly handled fireblade 24/7.

DBD has a fireblade for sale if you are interested (in another thread).......and he handles it really well.

Seriously though.......I can't fault any of the information you've been given thus far.

If you can pass your test and get a CAT (other bikes are available) before April 18th then you'd be welcome to join us on Wee Mac (have a look under 'Something For The Weekend').

I'll be trying to do a test rideout of the Wee Mac route before April 18th (once the snow and ice eventually go away) and will be passing Dumfries. You'll be more than welcome to join in for some or all of that if you fancy.

Cheers
Rosco.
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Post  kwakkat on Wed Feb 04 2009, 19:55

hi & welcome to the :yzf: site . many of the things said are spot on . ive had 2 cats both of them i had no trouble with the 2nd gear
& if i remember right 1 cat owner as done well passed 100,000 miles on there,s the cat is a great 1st move up from a 125 learner bike very forgiving
if you make a mistake very stable . nice to ride easy on the bum lol
as tel said we travel to assen 2 up fully loads never missed a beat
& in fact i was looking very hard at a 07 import last year
headlight is not the best rear shock is a bit soft but that can be easy sorted.
i went from a fazer to a cat & loved every min .
i rode it so much so i had 2
red white & black are the best lol
pete
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Post  Ezzy's Mum! on Fri Feb 06 2009, 15:10

Hi kev,

welcome to the mad house. Touch wood -never had any probs yet with mine Smile

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Post  Yorkshire_Thundercat on Sat Feb 07 2009, 11:57

Morning Kev - Hope you're finding the site useful..........

Suzie - I thought you had the same problem as me? Keeping the bike vertical in Car Parks ponder
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Post  kevin10529 on Sat Feb 07 2009, 13:15

Thanks for all the info so far, top class. :D

Whats the thunderace like? To crazy for a first bike? All 1000cc 2crazy for 1st bike??

Sorry for not getting back sooner my laptop blew and i have to use my work pc.
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Post  Wild-Kat-Wolf on Sat Feb 07 2009, 18:14

Hello and Welcome great ..... well I've got both a 'Cat and an Ace, so I'm going to put my tuppence-worth in.

I got the Ace about a year after getting the 'Cat. Tbh - the Ace sharp of it's mark, and whilst not as razor sharp as say a Fireblade, R1 or GSXR 1000, it's no slow coach. Really it's all about what you do with your right wrist... if you tend to be a bit heavy handed, then I'd suggest aiming for a 600 first... then thinking about moving up.

I, as I'm sure plenty folk on here will tell you, am not the fastest rider (yeah okay you can all laugh but I know what speed I'm comfortable riding at...I always get there in the end :sleep: ) and I noticed a big difference from Cat to Ace - on occasions nearly sliding off the back as it shot off when I twisted the throttle for say an overtaking manoeuvre.

The other difference is that the Ace is heavier to move about (parking etc - depends if you're a 2 stone weakling.... I'm not 🐷 ) and only has 5 gears (which means less gear changes - handy if you're lazy like me). I like them both... but tbh I'm glad I had the Cat for some time first before getting the Ace as well.

I'm sure others will have other opinions but that's my take on it... good luck with the search for something - like Rosco says, if you have something in time, maybe you could join in with Wee Mac :whoop:

Fi girlpower
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Post  Yorkshire_Thundercat on Sat Feb 07 2009, 18:52

I agree with Fi great (and wouldn't recommend a 1000 for a 1st BIG bike) - work your way up!!

...also think insurance :down:

I've paid £75 today for my thundercat TPFT, which was based upon 4 years NCD and thats enough to pay til I can get protected comprehensive cover on something bigger?

I paid nearly as much (£55) for full RAC cover to include my European trip later this year ......
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Post  ellie on Sat Feb 07 2009, 18:57

£130 a year TPFT and I've got no no-claims and only passed last year, but I am old.......!!!!!
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Post  weasley on Sat Feb 07 2009, 20:18

I have had my Cat for 6 years and it has been Swiss-watch reliable and has kept up with plenty of ride-outs and even shown a clean pair of paws to a few bikes on the track. Now I'm no riding god, far from it, but the Cat is plenty enough for me and I love that it is something of a sleeper, in that given a fistfull at low revs it'll see most newer 600s off (the torque and mid-range from the engine is something of a trump card, even if the overall power and rev range are not as high as some). It is also comfortable and practical, lugging plenty of pillions and luggage about with no complaints. The fairing keeps the wind and rain mostly at bay too.

There are a few issues, but what bike doesn't have any? The 2nd gear thing is the biggie, but mine is so far free of that particular problem and has, in fact, had absolutely NOTHING go wrong with it, and I mean NOTHING. Well, the battery went flat once but that was down to a loose battery terminal - I tightened it and bought an Optimate and the problem went away. Oh, and the speedo cable once undid itself letting the inner drive wire fall out but after a few quid at a local dealer I had it fitted in minutes. Hardly what you'd call a lemon!

The main thing about them now is that they are getting on a bit. When I bought mine (a 1997 import) they were still selling them new. They haven't done that for a while now so even the newest ones are starting to age, so finding a peach is getting more and more of a gamble. I was lucky and got a minter for a bargain (in fact I could have sold it 2 years later for what I bought it for) but they are out there to be found. Take a look at mine and it's easy to forget it's 12 years old.

And as mentioned above, running costs are very manageable. Fuel economy is awesome (I easily get 180 miles out of a tank, even on a ride-out where speeds are... ahem.... "progressive" officer), it doesn't use oil, it doesn't break down, it costs me £80 TPFT to insure..... what's not to like?!
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Post  0ldcat on Sat Feb 07 2009, 20:26

@weasley wrote:..... what's not to like?!
Go ON ........... get the cat ........... trust me ....... you'll not regret it great
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Post  kevin10529 on Tue Feb 10 2009, 20:48

Think my mind is made up, a Cat it is. My "training school" is booking my test on the 20th of feb so hopefully i should pass sometime after that. If anyone is looking to sell or know someone who is send me a messege, pm me or email - kevinj1984@hotmail.co.uk. Oh and i will swap my DT125 2004, 3900 miles on her .... :deal: ?????

Thanks for the response this site has been very helpfull and friendly.

regards Kev.
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Post  Ezzy's Mum! on Wed Feb 11 2009, 10:57

@Yorkshire_Thundercat wrote:Morning Kev - Hope you're finding the site useful..........

Suzie - I thought you had the same problem as me? Keeping the bike vertical in Car Parks ponder

Now look you - don't you go telling everyone (well, the few that haven't witnessed it/picked the bike up - i have a rather nice pic of Greencat righting it up on my photobucket page shit happens )!! I've not done since Lincoln BIG 2007 when i apparently got a cheer in the police control room as i did it under a cctv camera and everyone said that HAS to be suzie!

BTW - touch wood so far never had the 2nd gear problem and i have to say i find the CLUNK into first gear very reassuring Wink

Can't quite remember what my insurance is - i'm sure it's just under £200 fully comp, that also covers me for pillion and riding other bikes too and helmet/leather cover passed my test early 2007 but i'm young at heart too Laughing
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Post  Guest on Wed Feb 11 2009, 16:16

Hi, I got my cat after having a CG125 and it wasa a great move. Had the bike nearly 5 years now got it a 17,000 miles now got 37,000 on it. Realiability has been great. Chain went at 29,000 but as far as I know it was the original, Starter motor went in January but to one off ebay for £20. I am considering changing my bike although I'm a fair way from scotland. The only thing wrong on mine is the Compression adjusters on the front have and the rebound adjustment on the rear have seized so check these as replaceing the suspension is expensive. But the 'Cat's still a bloody good buy great
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Post  kevin10529 on Wed May 06 2009, 00:47

Got 1!!!!!! 96'Thundercat navy and silver 21000 miles scot oiler original tool kit and disk lock in prefect nik. Guy never used it and kept it in his shed most of the time. No rust or damage just a bit jittery at low speed but i think its just the carb needs balanced. Any tips on how to do this will be welcome.

Its got a remus viper system and can on it, anyone know if this is good/bad and will it increase performance much.

On another note why the hell would you want a bigger bike than a 600c, Fook me they are fast.

I miss my DT125 for town riding to be honest. Cats a bit of a lump at slow speed but a blast everywhere else.

So very very glad i got 1.
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Post  0ldcat on Wed May 06 2009, 01:04

Book it in for a dyno run and a good service. They'll balance yer carbs and probably recommend K&N filter kit + other gooddies.

Dyno run will also tell if yer end can has made a difference to power output, 96 bhp is a standard 'Cat', so anything higher than that is a bonus.
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Post  robertcains on Wed May 06 2009, 06:26

Balancing the carbs will make a world of difference to the bike, Make sure that you first clean the air filter etc etc otherwise you can get a 'false' reading.
You will need to remove the fuel tank & set up a remote temporary tank & also a set of guages to read the vacuum, Its a fairly simple job once set up, I reccomend you get a haynes manual to guide you through the process.
A set of guages will set you back over £50 so it may be cheaper to let someone do it for you.
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Post  Dirt Bike Dave on Wed May 06 2009, 12:06

Nice one Kev....great choice of bike......hope to see you on one of the rideouts.. Big Mac maybe?? Coming along to one of these rides will do wonders for your confidence and riding ability.
Once i get the Duc i'll probably head out your way for a blast if you fancy hooking up..
I made a carb balancing tool which i gave to Rosco once i sold my cat...If you need a hand balancing the carbs i'm happy to give you a hand.

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In a previous existance i may have known the Bouncer.

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Post  SteveCat on Wed May 06 2009, 12:31

@kevin10529 wrote:Got 1!!!!!! 96'Thundercat navy and silver

Congrats, know you're gonna be happy.medal-2
@kevin10529 wrote:
On another note why the hell would you want a bigger bike than a 600c, Fook me they are fast.
Feel the same. thundercat's have been known to annoy/impress many a larger bore machine owner.

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Post  kevin10529 on Wed May 06 2009, 12:46

The Big Mac?? I would love to come on a rideout but i think i would just slow everyone down at the moment. Need to learn a bit more me thinks.

That coast road by Troon, Ayr then on to down Castle Douglas and then Dumfries looks like it would be class. Let me know if you are thinking about it and i might meet you for a jaunt.

Thanks for the offer to help me out with the carb issues. I'll check what my garage is charging and if they take the piss i will take you up on the offer.

Thanks again Kev.
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