Originally Posted by Chadx
So it is the various Kawasaki Versys/Ninja 650 builds to which you refer? I've followed several of those with interest. I like to tinker, but haven't been willing to bite off that much of a project.
Yeah building is not easy or cheap as I have found out. I had never built a bike before and learned a lot of hard lessons about weight, tools and abilities. My first bike I was going to convert was a Ninja 650 but turned out the bike I bought was stolen so that put a damper on my plans, hence the FZ1 build.
I built another which I am finishing up right now.
Lukas started me thinking about the 650 engine again in the Inmate Build thread. It really does seem to hit every point we would want. yes, it might be a little wide but the weight is good.
Keeping the weight down is a tough chore, believe me, I tried every avenue I could think of on the CBR build. Aluminum subframe which doubles as a fuel tank, YZ450 seat, no fairing, no cush drive. I think 350 is achievable but you'd need to really keep an eye on things. I have zero provisions for a passenger on either of my bikes
I think if anyone could do it it would be KTM, but going to be tough to convince them to build.
I talked at length with the president of Husqvarna on the phone a week ago and asked him this exact question.
"any chance you guys would throw top flight components at a lightweight ADV tourer? There's lots of guys wanting one"
He basically said that's why they came out with the 650 Terra, but agreed it was not going to be the bike I was asking for. He compared bikes to Jeeps, there's the Rubicon and the Grand Cherokee. The 650 is a Jeep Liberty and it's also too heavy, not enough suspension.