Review of Schuberth SRC for the C3

Having owned a black C3 helmet for almost 2 years, I recently bought a new Schuberth C3 helmet in Fluo Yellow for my daily commute.  I was offered a good deal on buying the helmet with the Schuberth SRC system that I couldn’t refuse.  I would like to point out to Schuberth, that paying the full RRP, of £280, for this system is way too expensive, and will deter a lot of people making this purchase.  Knock a £100 off the asking price and I am sure most C3 owners would save their pennies and buy one of these.  I would even go as far to say, that some people might actually go out and buy the C3 helmet just to have the easy integration of wireless communication, bluetooth and radio.

I absolutely love the way the SRC system integrates into the helmet.  Yes, it adds a bit of weight, but it is barely noticeable, and the convenience far out ways the minimal weight increase.  The only real issue I have had with the installation is that the flip lid requires a bit more effort to close than it does without the SRC system installed.  Maybe this will get easier with use.

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Although I have not been able to test the rider communication, I have been able to test the bluetooth integration with my mobile phone and TomTom GPS unit, as well as the radio.

I have to say, the radio reception has been really poor.  I live in Berkshire and ride to London most days.  Outside of London I have hardly been able to receive a signal of any quality.  The radio constantly crackles and the signal fades in and out – so much so, that I have elected to void the warranty and take the system apart to see if there was anything I could do to improve the reception myself (video after the break).  I have soldered a wire onto the thick metal strip that runs around the back of the helmet and will let you know how I get on.  I would be interested to know if I had a faulty unit or whether or the SRC systems are this bad.

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Triumph Thunderbird 1700cc (limited edition factory fitted big bore kit)

The nail in the coffin for my old Thunderbird 1600 was when Triumph announced they were doing a limited run of factory fitted big bore kits and two new colour schemes.  This was back in November last year when it was still hard to get any details about cost or whether the two new colour schemes would be included with the big bore kit or an optional extra.  I sold the old bike there and then, after only 531 miles, and used the money as a deposit on the yet to be launched 1700.

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Four months later, in late March, I picked up my Thunderbird from Bulldog Triumph, in Twyford.  The time had finally arrived to find out whether that extra 100cc would make its presence known.  I had already told the shop that if I wasn’t happy with this one, I would be back for a Rocket III Roadster.

After nearly 1200 miles and six weeks of use, I have to say, the big bore kit makes a huge difference.

With the 1600, you feel compelled to change up through the gears quickly and at relatively low revs, whilst the 1700 is quite happy to linger in gears and feels content to use the full range of the available revs.

[image title=”Thunderbird Performance Curve” size=”medium” id=”330″ align=”left” linkto=”full” ]

The graph to the left shows the difference in power delivery.  The 1600 reaches peak torque around 2700 rpm and then slowly drops off whilst the 1700 reaches peak torque a little later – at around 3000 rpm – dips a little and then hangs on to the power until around 3500 rpm.  Whilst this shows the 1700 has more power, I think the following describes how and why the 1700 feels more comfortable to linger in gears.  The 1700 exceeds the 1600’s peak torque sooner, at around 2400 rpm, and continues to exceed the 1600’s peak torque until around 4000 rpm.

For me, Triumph are onto a winner with the 1700 and my local dealer will be sorry to hear that I won’t be getting a Rocket III Roadster any time soon.  The 1700 is for keeps!

My new (and old) Thunderbird 1600

Well, my new Triumph Thunderbird 1600 arrived last August and I have already sold it after only 531 miles.  Don’t get me wrong, I loved the bike, but first impressions left me under whelmed.  I was expecting more torque than was readily available on tap and I was never impressed with the initial colours available.  It’s not all bad – well, apart from the after market handlebars playing havoc with my wrists – the riding position is great, it’s a lot more fun accelerating off the lights and over taking than using the Triumph America.  Although cornering is smooth, the footpegs scrape the ground a lot sooner than on the America, but for such a big bike with such wide tyres, cornering was effortless.  Compare cornering on the Rocket III Tourer which has a smaller 180/70 rear wheel and you’ll see what I mean.

The only reason I sold the bike is because Triumph are releasing a special edition of the Thunderbird with a factory fitted big bore kit taking it up to 1700cc.  They are also releasing two new colours; Phantom Red Haze and Phantom Blue Haze.  I have already put my name down for one of the limited SE’s in Phantom Red, so watch this spac

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Trident Exhausts for 1993 Triumph Tiger

I am currently doing 900 miles a week on my Tiger so I decided to treat it to some new exhausts as the old ones have been full of holes since I bought the bike over a year ago.  Triumph wanted around £300 per exhaust which are made of plain old steel with just a dash of stainless steel at the end and another extra stainless plate for a heat shield.  Looking around, I was able to find Trident Exhausts offered a selection of exhausts for the Tiger and I decided on the carbon and stainless steel option.  Peter Corlett was very helpful on the phone and the exhausts were around £80.00 cheaper than the Triumph offering with a lot more going for them.

The exhausts took a little over a week from order, to be custom made, and to eventually arrive at the door.

I was a little disappointed with some aspects of the exhausts; One of the baffles was dented to the one side, the pipework were of different lengths and – this is a little picky as I am happy with the finish – but the stainless pipework does not look as polished as the website pictures:

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Thunderbird 1600 – First Impressions

My local dealer, Bulldog Triumph, recently took delivery of their demo Thunderbird 1600 and I had the opportunity to take it out for a spin and compare it against my faithful America.

With the America and the Thunderbird side by side, the big 1600cc looks quite small in comparison.  This is not just an illusion;  The seat height of the Thunderbird is around an inch lower, whilst the height and length of the Thunderbird are reduced by 2 inches and 3 inches, respectively.  Even the larger, 22 litre, fuel tank looks smaller than the 19.2 litre tank on the America.

After a short test ride I was impressed with the handling.  Even though the Thunderbird boasts a large 200/70 rear tyre, the bike leaned into the corners with ease.  The front brakes were sharp and responsive and  the forks didn’t dive when braking (like they do with the stock springs on the America).  Gear changes were smooth – something unique to a Triumph.  The engine seems happiest at low RPMs with peak torque arriving around 3,000 rpm.  For anyone expecting a lot of excitement when opening the throttle, I would steer them towards the Rocket III.  This bike is quite sluggish given the huge 1600cc capacity.

The big dissappointment for me was the sound from the stock exhausts and I eagerly awaited the dealer putting on the Triumph after market pipes.

With the after market exhausts the Thunderbird is more expressive but with more of a rasp than the bark of the America.  This is a real shame.  I want bark, and if Triumph want to win any Harley owners over, they will need to provide it.  I have been informed that the rasp could be due to the catalytic convertor as a similar problem was found with the Rocket III’s.

Schuberth C3 Review, Reviewed

Well, after two months of living with my perceived faults of the C3 I finally managed to get to Jack Lilley and speak to them about the C3 helmet I purchased from them.  Initially, the first person I spoke to was going to replace the visor/helmet, but a colleague of his, who has been on a number of helmet manufacturer courses knew exactly what the fault was.  The pins that hold the pinlock visor in place have a flat side acting like a cam.  By rotating the pins,the cam action causes the inner visor to fit flush with the main screen.  Unlike Shoei, there doesn’t appear to be a tool to adjust this without removing the visor.

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Well, I am extremely happy and I can give the C3 a glowing 10/10 for comfort, quietness and functionality.  It is early days, but I have not had the visor mist up once since having had the visor adjusted.

Schubert C2 & C3 Review

Please see this updated post regarding this entry

It’s been a few months since I decided to buy a full face helmet for the Winter and I wanted to provide my feedback for anyone else considering a Schubert.

I originally purchased a Schubert C2.  I kept this for two weeks before handing it back.  Although Schubert claim the visor is coated with an anti fog solution, this appears not to work.  With the visor down, it gradually mists up and you are forced to open up and let the air in.  With the visor partially open, the visor rattles against the bottom edge of the lid.  Not only is this a distraction, it also started to mark the lid after only a couple of journeys.  Needless to say, I couldn’t live with this helmet and returned it under warranty.

I  exchanged the helmet and some cash for the Schubert C3 which has received many great reviews.

Well, initial impressions were great.  The new pin lock system really worked, the visor fixings were a cinch to use, the centered release for the flip face was easier to use than the side mounted one on the C2, and even the sun visor had been improved.

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