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Old 06-19-2015, 05:50 PM   #1
DeputyDogg OP
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Project adventure in progress

Hello inmates, I'm not quite a "true" adventure rider yet but it should be happening soon, I hope. I started out in the dirt as a kid and always wanted the awesome dirt bikes of my time, 90's, but rode bikes like a 67 Greeves 2 stroke and Triumph 500cc T100's. As I got older I bought a yz450f and had a blast but could not ride on the street. I have since gotten rid of that and dabbled in the sport bike world with a 07 Triumph Daytona 675 bought new and had a blast riding it, but I was missing something and got bored and sold it. I'm currently riding a 82 cb450sc that I got on the cheap and mainly use for commuting 40 miles every day to work. It started when I went to the BMW dealer to get parts for a vintage project I'm working on and then I saw it! The void that's been missing from my life. 2014 G650GS with spoke wheels and a great deal to boot. Is this the right bike for me? They just opened a OHV park near me and this seems like the perfect bike for commuting to work and having fun on the weekends. Thoughts?
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Old 06-20-2015, 06:15 AM   #2
Kawidad
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They are great bikes, just don't try too much single track on it. They are really heavy for dirt use. Otherwise, they are fine motorcycles.
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Old 06-20-2015, 09:22 AM   #3
stevo7706
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You'll probably wish you didn't sell the YZ450F after riding the GS650 at the OHV park. The Beemer will fill the void on the road, but will leave a crater deep and wide in the dirt.
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Old 06-20-2015, 11:29 AM   #4
Motomochila
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Naw....big bikes on the trail are soooo much fun.

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Old 06-20-2015, 01:59 PM   #5
DeputyDogg OP
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Yeah, I don't plan on getting too crazy in the dirt but want to have fun when I am. I know the YZ would have been great but I want something that will do double duty so I don't have to get 2 bikes. Aren't most of the adventure bikes a little on the heavy side anyways? Are there other options I should look at? I like the setup and look of the new KLR's, but the lower HP worries me.
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Old 06-21-2015, 07:14 AM   #6
Kawidad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeputyDogg View Post
Yeah, I don't plan on getting too crazy in the dirt but want to have fun when I am. I know the YZ would have been great but I want something that will do double duty so I don't have to get 2 bikes. Aren't most of the adventure bikes a little on the heavy side anyways? Are there other options I should look at? I like the setup and look of the new KLR's, but the lower HP worries me.
KLRs are a good choice for adventure traveling, however, there's tons of hate on this forum about them. Some love too, you just have to take it all with salt.

If your looking around in this genre of bike, then take a look at the Suzuki DR650SE. These are really good compromise motorcycles. Lighter than either the KLR or the beemer, but still a tank. Tons of aftermarket support and information about making them better for whatever mission you choose.

If going almost all street, the beemer is a good choice. The KLR is another good choice, much lower tech, but also a much lower buy-in cost. However, the best of the bunch and the closest to a true dual sport is the DR650.
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Old 06-21-2015, 08:54 AM   #7
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I do plan on having it mainly for commuting but want it to handle decent off-road. I know I won't find the perfect bike but I'm just indecisive. I like the BMW the most, but think it would not be as enjoyable off-road. I'm warming up to the idea of having the KLR since it has a massive tank for long distances and seems like it can handle off-road situations better and it's less expensive. I haven't made my mind up yet but I know I don't want a mostly off-road bike. Looks like I'll be visiting both dealers again and see if I can test drive both. The BMW dealer offered to let me ride the demo when I'm ready. I didn't ask the Kawi dealer though.
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Old 06-21-2015, 09:15 AM   #8
Kawidad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeputyDogg View Post
I do plan on having it mainly for commuting but want it to handle decent off-road. I know I won't find the perfect bike but I'm just indecisive. I like the BMW the most, but think it would not be as enjoyable off-road. I'm warming up to the idea of having the KLR since it has a massive tank for long distances and seems like it can handle off-road situations better and it's less expensive. I haven't made my mind up yet but I know I don't want a mostly off-road bike. Looks like I'll be visiting both dealers again and see if I can test drive both. The BMW dealer offered to let me ride the demo when I'm ready. I didn't ask the Kawi dealer though.
Well, honestly if you're looking for decent off road capabilities, then neither the beemer or the KLR are a very good option. They are considered almost exclusively street bikes. Light fire roads are okay, but anything more than that I'd look elsewhere.

I used to own a Gen 1 (first generation) KLR and have ridden the G650 (the old single cylinder and not be confused with BMW's asinine current model designations). Although, I never rode the beemer in the dirt, just on the street.

I got rid of the KLR not because it was bad, but just because it was too big and heavy for what I was doing. I tried doing tons of modifications help it's dirt worthiness, but the one modification I could not do was shave weight. The current KLR's are even heavier than the Gen1 bikes. The beemer is even heavier still and honestly even less dirt capable.

I liked them both for what they are, which I would consider single cylinder adventure touring bikes. Dirt bikes, no.

Like I said previously I would suggest you look into the DR650SE. They are kind of a blank canvas of a motorcycle. Pretty vanilla out of the box, but with very little additional money, they can be made into something more interesting.
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Old 06-21-2015, 12:49 PM   #9
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Any of the 650 class bikes are going to be a big fat pig in the dirt. A 400 class bike is much better for off road. But then much worse for long hauls on the road. Get a DRZ400 or such bike for mostly off road, a KLR650 or such for mostly road and some dirt/gravel road type stuff.

Or spend the big $ on a KTM if you really want the best of both worlds

A 650 class bike in an off road park will be about like taking a 2 wheel drive pickup up a jeep trail. They are quite heavy and when you get into true single track they are not a good choice.

Maybe a street plated WR450F would be a good bike for you!
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Old 06-21-2015, 02:28 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by sparkingdogg View Post

Or spend the big $ on a KTM if you really want the best of both worlds

Which model is this ?
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Old 06-21-2015, 02:48 PM   #11
MeinMotorrad
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KTM 690 Enduro is the best all rounder I could find. It's no trials bike though, it's better at less technical, faster stuff. You can do your commute with ease. 500 + miles a day on slab is not a problem with a seat upgrade.

If CCM sold their 450GP in the USA then that would be your best bet (it's lighter), but they don't, so 690 IMHO.
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Old 06-22-2015, 05:31 AM   #12
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Buy used

Whatever model you ultimately decide to get, I recommend that you buy a used bike in that model, if that is an option for you. Don't buy a new bike, find a used one. That way if in 6 months or so you decide the bike isn't meeting your needs you will have the option of selling it for about what you paid for it (assuming proper care and maintenance).

The G650GS you are lusting over may seem to be the best option today. What if 6 months or a year down the road you decide you really need something more dirt worthy? Or lighter? Or faster? Or...any other differences? Would you like to have the option of selling the bike without taking a significant financial loss in order to get another bike that may be a better choice for you and how you ride?
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Old 06-22-2015, 12:55 PM   #13
DeputyDogg OP
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Originally Posted by Trail Boss View Post
Whatever model you ultimately decide to get, I recommend that you buy a used bike in that model, if that is an option for you. Don't buy a new bike, find a used one. That way if in 6 months or so you decide the bike isn't meeting your needs you will have the option of selling it for about what you paid for it (assuming proper care and maintenance).

The G650GS you are lusting over may seem to be the best option today. What if 6 months or a year down the road you decide you really need something more dirt worthy? Or lighter? Or faster? Or...any other differences? Would you like to have the option of selling the bike without taking a significant financial loss in order to get another bike that may be a better choice for you and how you ride?
The BMW dealer does have a used 2013 model in yellow that has hard cases, rear rack and has 3k miles. They're asking 6500 for it. Is that too high?
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Old 06-22-2015, 02:11 PM   #14
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Don't overlook the (albeit harder to find) Husky TR650 Terra. Couple of good threads here in thumpers.

Husky TE610 or 630...lighter still than DR with FI and much more off road worthy and will do commuting just fine. Good bit more power and higher spec suspension. Depending on your size, maybe a WR250R? Competent little dual sport, but still not a "dirt bike". There is a nice thread (WR250R Mega thread, I think it is called) on here. It would make a great commuter that can handle the Interstate, although I'd personally stick to back roads.

Me? I own a 2002 KLR650. 48,000 trouble free miles and counting. Canada, AK, and all over the US. Loaded down with gear. I commute AND have done the A & B trails @ Durham Town OHV in Georgia. B trails were narrower with a few inclines/hills to climb, so I slowed down a bit, but still had a blast. I prefer long distance ADV type rides, but also love to play in the dirt some. But a "dirt bike"? Nope. Tank is an apt description.

I cannot speak to the DR's ability off road (but it is shorter and lighter than the KLR, especially the newer KLRs), so it is going to be better/easier to ride off road, given two riders of equal skill.) I can speak to the comparatively cramped cockpit vs. the KLR, which is the main reason I don't own one...and I am not a particularly tall person. 5'10"/155lbs. KLR has WAY more room to move around on the seat during long days in the saddle.

Whatever you buy, ride the poop out of it and have fun...and what others might say about your choice be damned
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Old 06-22-2015, 02:34 PM   #15
Roland44
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Originally Posted by Motomochila View Post
Naw....big bikes on the trail are soooo much fun.
hehe yeah, looks that way
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