TM talk time!!!

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3/18/2021 4:32 PM

Alright boys and girls, IT'S TM TALK TIME!!!

I've been looking at those bike for a couple years now and I'm now looking deeper at getting one, but I want to hear you all on those bike. I know many people swear by them and other not so much, and that's exactly what i want to hear.

Tell me your experience with the brand, the bike, aftersale, service, tips & trick, secret, ... Positive and negative, but please be truthful!

Some questions/fear I have:

-Are they really prone to electric problems? What to be careful about?

-Are parts THAT expensive? I know that there is moreand more aftermarket part for those bike, so that's good! one thing to consider is I'm in Canada...

-Anyone custom ordered one? Is it hard? Is their a huge delivery delay?

-I know that some parts are crossover to other brand, like KTM front brake parts, KX rear brake parts, but are there any more?

-Community around the brand seems tight, I follow some group on Facebook, any other place to look out?

As for me, my plan and why I'm looking at TM:

I'm looking for a TM MX 300 fi 4t latest gen

ticks all the boxes I like

-Basically a 250 with more power
-Great suspension (that rear shock tho!)
-Superb handling
-Great brakes
-Hydro clutch
-Aftermarket pipe
-Trick factor
-Component/hardware quality
-Probably one of the best looking bike out there
-Easy access airbox
-E-start AND kickstart
-Twin pipe really doesn't bother me, I like it better than having a huuuuge bazooka that sticks out like a sore thumb

Their is maybe two things that are bothering me so far:

1: thing that is bothering me a little is the 6 speed gearbox, seems excessive for MX?

2: Their is rumors of an aesthetic makeover for next year model, but so hard to get info out of them. I'm in need of a new bike now, but i don't want to spend that much money to have the "outdated" plastic 6 months later. Since it's supposed to be only esthetic, could they use the same mounting points? (like KTM did with their last makeover)

Thanks for your time and, PLEASE, feel free to post photos of yours!!

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3/18/2021 4:45 PM

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This was my first motorcycle at Age 11. 1975 TM75. That was in 1976. Lol, I is old.

These new TMs look great, lots more competitive then my old TM.
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3/18/2021 5:10 PM

As far as customer service and attention goes, you will never beat Ralph Schmidt (TM Importer in California)--I've called him with questions on an old TM125 I have, and he's always helpful, gets detailed about what parts I need and where to find them, and is just overall one great human being.

As for the bikes--works of art. Fast motors, great suspension (Ohlins on mine) and tons of fun. Are they pricey? I don't think so, for what you're getting. Parts prices seem to be right in line with anything else I have.

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3/18/2021 7:24 PM

If you custom order it I’m pretty sure you can get it with a 5 speed, I’ve put 65 hours of racing and practice on my 19 Tm 300mx 2 stroke and haven’t had an issue of any kind. Just tore it down for a top end.

New top end with gaskets was 265 - a bit higher than other brands but not earth shattering.

It is a little annoying not being able to hop on Rocky Mountain and order any little item I need but it also hasn’t needed anything.

I ordered a tm specific bolt kit, and air filters other than that anything I’ve needed isn’t specific to tms like tires, grips, levers etc.


The bike itself is awesome too. Extremely comfortable on it in all conditions.

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3/18/2021 9:18 PM

I had an 06 125 and it was a great bike. I know guys who have had them for years and they’re practically indestructible. I’m getting a 144 this spring. My buddy is a dealer and getting parts is a piece of cake. As far as aftermarket goodies, the TM has top notch parts from the factory. I wouldn’t buy one if I planned to do much to it. Therein lies much of the value - if you get a cheaper bike and add on an exhaust you’re probably at the price of a TM.

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Current rides: 2021 TM 144, 2017 KTM 350SXF

3/18/2021 10:10 PM
Edited Date/Time: 3/18/2021 10:12 PM

llaliberte22 wrote: Alright boys and girls, IT'S TM TALK TIME!!!

I've been looking at those bike for a couple years now and I'm now looking ...more

No issues with electrical, other than a bad CDI on my 2002 400F, which TM replaced under warranty/goodwill.

Most parts are fairly priced, with some exceptions.

I’ve custom ordered 2, a 2014 144MX and a 2020 300MX. It was easy and didn’t add any extra time, as the distributor was in the process of ordering a batch of bikes anyways.

Plastics, sprockets, chain guide, spokes, clutch parts, engine parts, radiators, air filters, shock parts, battery, etc are TM specific. Levers, pads, fork parts, oil filters aren’t. Getting parts has always been a breeze.

Basically the only online owners groups I’m aware of are on Facebook and Thumpertalk.

I wouldn’t worry about the 6spd, gear spacing on my 2017 was great, you’ll just never use 6th on a MX track. It could be a 3spd with 2-3-4 but those extra gears just make the bike more versatile.

Biggest drawback to that 300F you’re talking about is the resale. I had 7 hours on mine and it was very hard to sell. Ended up getting less than half the price of new, I should have just kept it. Every 4stroke TM that I’ve owned have been that way, the 2strokes are much better.

I’ve had a 2002 400F, 2011 450FiMX, 2013 250MX, 2014 144MX, 2014 250MX, 2017 300FiMX and 2020 300MX. They were all great bikes with the exception of the quirky 2002, and the 2013 was a used roaches basket case that I got duped on. I only sold my 300F because I thought I was done with riding after a pretty serious life changing injury. It was an awesome bike.

Only other complaints with that 300F was it had too much engine braking for my taste, and that engine is a screamer, I loved it, but I needed ear plugs as that front intake was insanely loud under WOT and high RPM.

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3/18/2021 10:31 PM
Edited Date/Time: 3/19/2021 12:41 AM

So first off I have to say that my son rides for TM in the Endurocross series. So we’re not an average customer, however we spend a lot of time with TM and really see how things work. Ralf at TM USA runs a first class operation. I’ve been very impressed seeing how he runs things. Plus he’s a rider, racer and good guy.

We’ve had a few 300 two strokes, a 144 and just recently got a new 21 300cc four stroke as he’ll be racing one this year.

First off since you asked we did have an electrical issue on one of his 300’s that affected the power vale operation. Unfortunately it was his 2020 race bike that happened at the National Endurocross events last year. We ended up having to swap out the wiring harness. This happened on one of several TM’s he’s had, so it’s not what I’d call an “Issue”

Build quality on these bikes is 2nd to none when you go over the bike. The hardware used is also first rate. All the bikes have held up extremely well. Better than other bikes he has ridden in the past.

I’ve spent some time on the 300 4t myself and I’m really impressed with it! It is a really great handing bike. Power is like you would expect, a powerful, torquey 250. It also revs extremely high. I’m not a big revver, but according to my son who has ridden all the modern 250 4t’s it revs further than them!

His 4t has the Ohlins rear shock which he really likes. Of course everyone knows how well the KYB forks work. I’m not sure why the 6-speed would be of bother? Even if you never use it, it won’t do any harm.

As for other options. He likes the Nissan front brake master cylinder with the Brembo caliper. It makes for strong, solid stopping power. Suspension is ordered for your weight and can also get the gearing you want. Plus a fan, vented or not air box lid etc. I’m not sure what the lead time on ordering is.

I’ve also heard that 22 gets new plastic. Haven’t heard if it will be able to swap to other bikes.

In case you haven’t seen it many accessories can be found here.

https://usa.cross-shop.com/


What the inside of a 300 2t looks like. This was after about 40 hours.

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3/19/2021 1:14 AM

My experience with used, older TM Bikes:

I bought a 1999 TM80 for my niece a couple of years ago.
Despite the bike already been 15 years old at that time- it was easy to get any spare part for it, also the bike was equipped with parts like a massive front brake rotor, hydraulic clutch, an engine which had great power, billet triple clamps, marzocchi forks, black wheels, HGS Exhaust, alloy tank...
When i got the bike i had to replace the left hand side crank seal and the hydraulic clutch master cylinder seal kit.
I remember a friend had a ktm85 at the time- that bike always had problems with not properly working brakes (very chep ones- not brembos), a seizing piston... so he asked if he could use the TM for a sigle moto...
He was impressed after winning his race on a 15years old 80cc bike!
I would say the built quality is something u wont find on any other bike- after 15years of use most bikes are clapped out- not so this TM!

I also took an early 2004 TM400EN 4stroke in part exchange ... it had so many hours on the engine and was low on compression- when i got it it would barely start so after a while i sold it on- but again- the chassis didnt show the usual signs of age like many other bikes of that era.

As me beeing a yamaha guy- i can only recommend these bikes- i dont think they will disappoint you!

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3/19/2021 4:25 AM

ccullins wrote:

So first off I have to say that my son rides for TM in the Endurocross series. So we’re not an average customer, however we ...more

That’s a very cool quality finish on the cases compared to any other brand.

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3/19/2021 8:24 AM

ccullins wrote:

So first off I have to say that my son rides for TM in the Endurocross series. So we’re not an average customer, however we ...more

CPR wrote:

That’s a very cool quality finish on the cases compared to any other brand.

Right??? Are those billet?

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Braaapin' aint easy.

3/19/2021 4:53 PM

First off, thanks everyone who took some time to answer!

nytsmaC, great point on the resale value, plus here in Canada (QC), not many people know about TM, they are pretty freaking rare and market is pretty small for MX all together. They tend to stay on the market for quite some time. Definitely something to think about. I do plan on keeping my next bike for at least 3-4 years.

Ralf at TM USA seem to be a really good and helpful guy, he is active on one of the Facebook page I follow. Importer in Canada also seem to be a good person and the rep in my region too.

ccullins, I've actually read a couple people talk about having to swap a new wiring harness, that's why I directed the question to that. Those guy thought that the weak point was at the connection, could that be a possibility? Would it be a good idea to put some electrical grease to help protect from the elements?

As for my concern with the 6 speed gearbox, it's just that I know I'll never use the 6th gear, probably not even the 5th. I only ride on tracks and tracks around here are tight, on small terrain and often jumpy. nothing like big US facilities. We don't have those huge tracks you guys have. Our largest track is probably Deschambault for the one who follow the Canadian MX championship and it's really not that "large". It add moving part in the engine, add weight. It's totally not a deal breaker, I mean, it add versatility like said higher.

Those bike sure do look good inside and out. Build quality and attention to detail is something else just looking at those photos. They are far away in front, the frame itself also look really well made.

What are your's options on the 4 stroke airbox and gas tank?

How are the little things like chain adjuster, brake pedal, radiator, pegs, ...? (Although, I like Raptor peg and that would probably be the first mod..!)

Removing 3 bolts from the rear sprocket is pretty common do you guys do it on the race bike too? (ccullins)

Thanks!

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3/19/2021 7:36 PM
Edited Date/Time: 3/19/2021 7:37 PM

llaliberte22 wrote:

First off, thanks everyone who took some time to answer!

nytsmaC, great point on the resale value, plus here in Canada (QC), ...more

Yep, Raptor pegs for nice on there👍
Stock pegs aren’t bad, but they are very average for a bike that’s built the way it is. They machine everything else like hubs, brake pedal, rear sprocket.

We don’t remove bolts from the rear sprocket, but when we change it out we don’t put them all back in. Nice thing with the TM rear wheel is you can use a socket and extension through the rear wheel, so rear sprocket changes are very easy.

The top mounted air filter is nice. It’s very easy to change and stays cleaner than an under seat filter.
I thought the side mounted gas gap would be funky to fill, but it’s easier than a traditional tank. Plus it’s clear so you can see the level.

I don’t think it was connections on ours. Not really sure. Good thing was the bike never stopped running, it just ran bad because the power valve wasn’t opening properly.

I’m sure if you order one you could get a 5 speed. Heck the 6 speed may just be an option that TM USA just always orders their bikes with. I’m don’t know about that.

I’d like to throw up some pics of the 4t for you, but haven’t taken any of it yet. So here’s one of his race 2t race bikes.
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3/19/2021 9:03 PM

llaliberte22 wrote:

First off, thanks everyone who took some time to answer!

nytsmaC, great point on the resale value, plus here in Canada (QC), ...more

Dan is a great guy, I’ve developed a really good relationship with him over the years. You’ll be in good hands. He doesn’t ride much so won’t have the knowledge that Ralf has in the US, but he’s always been as helpful as possible to the best of his abilities.

If you’re definitely going to keep the bike for 3-4 years, don’t worry about the resale. It’s never deterred me, it’s just something to be prepared for when the time comes.

Those Raptor pegs are nice, I had a set. They are only 40 grams lighter than the stock pegs though. The stock pegs are nothing flashy but they are a nice lightweight design, so unless you really want the extra large platform or bling it’s a lot of money for just something different.

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3/21/2021 11:29 PM

So I bought one of cullins old practice bikes and my buddy Dave runs the factory endurocross team and I have been exposed to these bikes for quite a while before buying one. I have only heard of two bikes having any sort of electrical
Issue. I think some of that comes down to the fact they’re being used in extreme enduro! Heck they drag them through anything you can possibly imagine.
Pouring over the details the last few days I’ve been poking around and just checking stuff cause Ty being pro or any pro for that matter can tax parts. I haven’t found anything yet lol... I cannot say that about other used bikes in the past. One thing I’m learning is Italians are very practical compared to the Japanese bikes. Example of this is the rear brake pedal bolt is a countersunk bolt that goes through the frame and has a nylock on the back side. The bearings are in the frame and are large roller bearings. Honda’s bearings are in the pedal and that pedal and bolt are like 260$ the TM is a standard m10 Allen I think or a m12 you could find anywhere.. and make work. Another thing I noticed, the chain adjusters and the axle blocks are all billet Cnc nothing out of the norm but nicer than the big 5. The axles are cadmium plated and reduced diameter in the center unlike some Japanese bikes. I’m not sure if that’s for flex or what but it’s interesting. The head stays are cnc and not some pressed plate.. all the bolts are cadmium plated. The silencer bolts go through the subframe and have a nylock nut on the backside which is nice.
Coming off a 18 yz450f this thing is very light feeling and fun, and having ridden 12 or so newer bikes because I couldn’t decide I feel the Tm does fill the whole package. They handle great, they’re stable. The suspension is workable. The motors are great, very rideable but still fast. Transmissions on the 4 I’ve ridden none which were 4 strokes have been great. They all have a very refined feeling compared to anything else.. it’s hard to compare it to be honest. Plus they look like nothing else on the track. Photo

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3/22/2021 6:00 AM

I bought my -18 TM 300 in Feb -19 and have put 150 hours on it now. I love the bike, handles way better than any bike I've ever thrown my leg over. It's something about how balanced it is where my old bikes would punish me this bike straightens up and keeps going.
Mechanically they remind me more of a highly improved Japanese bike than a KTM.
One example being the linkage. I have, during these 150 hours, taken the linkage apart 3-4 times (last time being 15 hours ago) expecting it to be dried out and rusty but no, it's always full of grease and not a speck of dirt.
I'm on my 4th piston, still on the A size and measured 180 psi compression after my last top end job.
I have nothing but praise for these bikes and I'm starting to wonder when it's going to start feeling worn because at 150 hours it still has that new feeling and I have no reason to start looking for a new bike. Whenever that happens though, It will be another TM 300.
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3/22/2021 9:09 AM

Doesn't surprise me they seems more like a Japanese bike, because over the years they've always looked like a copy of various Japanese bike parts. I've long thought the idea behind the company was, "what if you could take the best parts from the Japanese bikes and put them together...".

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3/22/2021 11:41 AM

byke wrote:

Doesn't surprise me they seems more like a Japanese bike, because over the years they've always looked like a copy of various ...more

I feel like that might be what they did and put their own spin on it. One thing I don’t understand is when the magazines say they feel weird or different. I didn’t think that at all. Maybe I’m weird.

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3/22/2021 12:04 PM

byke wrote:

Doesn't surprise me they seems more like a Japanese bike, because over the years they've always looked like a copy of various ...more

sreidmx wrote:

I feel like that might be what they did and put their own spin on it. One thing I don’t understand is when the magazines say ...more

Advertising dollars. They have to bash the small brands or pay the piper.

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3/22/2021 6:11 PM

Man, I didn't need much more convincing to pull the trigger, but I guess I have no choice now...

They do seems to pick the best parts/characteristics of every brand to make a total package deal. Every is made to higher standard, much more machined parts on those bike than any other.

I'm a big Honda fan, but I really think I'm going to be disappointed with the new 250. The TM is the perfect match to replace it I think.

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3/23/2021 4:37 AM

My brother sells TM as well as Kaw and Polaris. He rides a 300 4 stroke and his grandson rides a 250 4 stroke. Both have been rock solid and they do very well on them.
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3/23/2021 5:01 AM

My only gripe about them is the same gripe I have with a Honda. They are very rigid/stiff. Its probably not a terrible thing but it takes getting used to if you aren't used to the stiff frame.

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Shout out to: Fly Racing, X Brand Goggles, Kenda Tire, Nuetech Nitromousse, ProTune Suspension, Motool, Sunstar Sprockets, and Rehmerts Kawasaki KTM

Instagram: WoodsRacer126

3/28/2021 7:38 AM

llaliberte22 wrote: Alright boys and girls, IT'S TM TALK TIME!!!

I've been looking at those bike for a couple years now and I'm now looking ...more

Save yourself time and money and just go with one of the others. Bikes are nice. Parts are very hard to get - waited approximately 5 weeks for a common kill switch from Italy. Ralf is a great person but until there is a bigger presence in the US I wouldn’t do it unless you just want the bling factor.

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3/28/2021 9:51 AM

cheers_22 wrote:

Save yourself time and money and just go with one of the others. Bikes are nice. Parts are very hard to get - waited ...more

5 weeks for a kill switch...Was expecting to read something major and that i couldn't pick up from any parts supplier.

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3/28/2021 8:04 PM
Edited Date/Time: 3/28/2021 10:14 PM

1983YZ125 wrote:

5 weeks for a kill switch...Was expecting to read something major and that i couldn't pick up from any parts supplier.

Kind of what I was thinking, you could use the kill switch from an XR200, why rush order an OEM one from Italy? I’ve ever only needed one part special ordered from Italy with urgency and it was here in less than a week, as it wasn’t something I could go without until the next regular stock order came in.

They do a good job of stocking important parts. An OEM kill switch doesn’t really seem like it would be one, in my opinion, but I’m surprised they didn’t have one on hand anyways for guys who are fussy about keeping everything OEM..

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3/28/2021 9:06 PM

I've wanted a TM since the early 90s. A guy in Oklahoma City bought three different models one year. He was thinking of becoming a dealer. He'd take them out and do demo rides. I think it was the 300 that really impressed me.

I never understood that weird sprocket, That's a lot of bolts.

I think depending on where you live this might be a bike that once you buy it, you might be stuck with it. I have an 09 Husaberg FE570, and it's almost worthless as far as resale value goes it seems.

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3/28/2021 10:18 PM
Edited Date/Time: 3/28/2021 10:19 PM

BigBoreFan58 wrote:

I've wanted a TM since the early 90s. A guy in Oklahoma City bought three different models one year. He was thinking of ...more

The 9 sprockets is actually for the bolt pattern, so you are able to get a socket and extension onto the nut through the rotor side on every bolt, and allows for a lighter hub design. A lot of guys just remove every third bolt and run with six with no issues.

I’m surprised your FE570 isn’t a hot commodity, they go for pretty good money up here, especially if plate able . Probably the snowbike crowd who seeks them out more than anything.

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3/29/2021 8:06 AM

BigBoreFan58 wrote:

I've wanted a TM since the early 90s. A guy in Oklahoma City bought three different models one year. He was thinking of ...more

Re-sale doesn’t seem to be a problem at all. All our used bikes get sold right away.

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3/29/2021 8:45 AM
Edited Date/Time: 3/29/2021 12:48 PM

Owning a TM always seemed to me like joining a cult.
Once you have one, you lose all common sense and end up telling everyone they're the best bikes in the world. Which they really aren't.
They don't do anything to make your day easier. They're all on the heavy side, they're stiff as f**k, they don't turn sharp, their suspension isn't very well balanced and needs work. Their engines are somewhat brutal, yet not nearly as powerful as what you've heard, especially the 4 strokes. Their clutch pull is hard. And as far as design goes, they look like they've been put together from a bunch of 10 years old leftover parts from different brands.
At least they don't turn into a pile of rusty junk in six months like they used to do in the old days.
In all honesty, their strongest asset, if that's what you're into, is what's written all over them: they're exotic and unusual. That's about it.

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3/29/2021 9:36 AM

Falcon wrote:

Right??? Are those billet?

The cases are cast and then finish milled on a CNC mill.

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3/30/2021 5:15 PM

My friend took his 21 300 out today for its first ride. Swapped for a bit and he rode my 21 TX300.
Fun bike, much more rigid than my Husky. It worked great, very different feel. Photo

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