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Old 08-30-2009, 02:33 PM   #1
cantrell OP
F650GS (twin)
 
Joined: Aug 2006
Location: Northern Virginia
Oddometer: 136
F650GS as a street bike

I just sold my DL650 (a questionable move) and I'm looking for a replacement. I want something slightly bigger with ABS and a comfortable riding position which has led me to the F650GS (twin).

My question is how good of a street bike it is. I like to picture myself taking it off road, but the reality is that I probably never will (I never did with my Wee). I initially considered the F800ST, but I found it a little cramped for me since I'm tall with long legs, and the F650GS next to it felt perfect.

Is it a good street bike that can be used, with some modifications, for light touring? Or should I keep looking?

Thanks,
Christian
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Old 08-30-2009, 02:36 PM   #2
BMWHillbilly
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Perfect street bike IMO. I plan on traveling alot on mine and so far ( ~ 5000 miles) it is VERY comfy for touring. I added ROX risers, F800GS stock windshield with TT spoiler, engine guards with hiway pegs. I'm all go!
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Old 08-31-2009, 10:05 AM   #3
JRWooden
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I have one and think it is fine - F800GS is a bit taller, so depending on your height you might finde that a better seating position, but not unless you are at least 6' or better I would say...

Both are more or less "upright" and I'd say good for touring with the exception of the stock seat ... but I won't rehash that here

F658GS is geared a bit taller so that is better for road use IMHO, but if you got the F800GS a simple front sprocket swap would give you similar results.
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Old 08-31-2009, 10:18 AM   #4
huckleberry
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I personally have yet to ride a better all around bike!! it has flaws,suspension is cheep,many small parts are cheep but the core of the bike is wonderful!!!!I happly ride mine anywhere and would not be afraid to ride it anywhere!
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Old 08-31-2009, 04:01 PM   #5
Bigem
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Christian, have a look at the F800R. Its actually listed as cheaper than the F650GS and might tick all the boxes for you. It also looks absolutely horn in any color!!
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Old 09-01-2009, 08:46 AM   #6
blackie
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I have one, you wont find a more fun street bike to play with. As a plus, if you come across a dirt road, just ride on through while your buddies turn around. Just change the seat The F800R doesn't look like its coming to NA anytime soon.
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Old 09-01-2009, 07:17 PM   #7
Terrytori
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cantrell
Is it a good street bike that can be used, with some modifications, for light touring? Or should I keep looking?

Thanks,
Christian
Contrary to what the brochures will tell you, it is largely a street bike.
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Old 09-02-2009, 08:35 PM   #8
v8toilet
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I always felt the old F650 single was the ideal commuter with its low seat height and standard upright design. I can't imagine the more powerful twin version would disappoint in this regard.
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Old 09-02-2009, 11:25 PM   #9
DiabloBlanco
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Yup, sounds like the perfect bike for what you want. It can handle off road, but when off road I do sometimes wish I had the 800, but it is definitely a GREAT street bike and WILL handle off road, just not as well as the 800 (but I am admittedly limited by my abilities)
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Old 09-03-2009, 08:34 PM   #10
SloSolo2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWHillbilly
Perfect street bike IMO. I plan on traveling alot on mine and so far ( ~ 5000 miles) it is VERY comfy for touring. I added ROX risers, F800GS stock windshield with TT spoiler, engine guards with hiway pegs. I'm all go!
How about 2 up? I want the next bike to be more street oriented and capable for two to the beach or mountains both about 200 miles.

Jamie
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Old 09-04-2009, 07:18 PM   #11
raider
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I'm thinking of a similar move, although keeping my Wee and adding a second.

I don't know if it's available in your market, but if you're thinking F650, you should also think CBF1000:


In Oz, the CB is slightly cheaper than a non-ABS 650, and all CBs on the Oz market have the linked ABS brakes (whereas BMW insist upon calling ABS "optional" on the 650, despite the fact that if I ordered a non-ABS bike, the dealer would literally have to remove the ABS from a manufactured bike at their own expense...).
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Old 09-04-2009, 07:46 PM   #12
BMWHillbilly
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SloSolo2
How about 2 up? I want the next bike to be more street oriented and capable for two to the beach or mountains both about 200 miles.

Jamie
I dont know about 2-up since I dont ride 2-up on this bike. I have read some posts on some that do and seems to work out fine for them.
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Old 09-05-2009, 02:32 PM   #13
distributist
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SloSolo2
How about 2 up? I want the next bike to be more street oriented and capable for two to the beach or mountains both about 200 miles.

Jamie
My wife and I have done 400-500 km trips two-up on the 650, no problems (with two stuffed Caribous cases and a backpack). Been on the highways at almost 150km, no problems with having enough power to pass or anything. It's certainly all that we need (combined weight: 340 lbs + luggage).

Hugh
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Old 09-05-2009, 03:18 PM   #14
Poustman
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Street Smarts

I like this thread, because it invites me to consider the F650GS differently than I have so far. I've taken for granted that the bike is an excellent street bike and have tended to seek confirmation of its trail capabilities.

Some official ad copy
states "Take the F650GS on long or short rides, solo or two-up and even on mild trails." (I note that the top link's copy recommends "
adventurous wild terrain
"!) I've read a few reviews which suggest that off-road is dicey indeed with this bike, in spite of the 'Unstoppable' ad campaign. I have also read reviews (and writeups that I'm not sure how to categorize) which insist that this bike can do just about anything dual-sporty. I've never yet heard any hint of hesitation about its asphalt abilities. (This perspective seems to be confirmed by the previous posters here.)

My impression is that more folks consider the bike capable of vigorous fieldwork than feel it is not up to the task. This suggests to me that the rider more than the machine is the measure of what terrain an F650GS can tackle-- and that it will do very well indeed well on paved roads for anyone.

For what it is worth, I personally put this bike high on my wish list.
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Old 10-04-2009, 02:46 PM   #15
zzmelayu
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650GS twin is capable of offroad



I won't reiterate how capable the 650 is on tar. It is really a sweet bike. Offroad, the 650 is extremely capable too. Unless you ride extreme hardcore stuff, the 650 can keep up with big brother 800GS and 1200GS on most offroad terrain. I just finished 1600km of dirt roads, gravel, sand, mountain passes, salt plains in 5 days. The only limitation was my ability to ride and keep up. You see I am a noob and my nerves get the better of me beyond 120kmph on unknown dirt road. Went from ZERO to 1600 km offroad experience in 5 days. Even after a few spills, the 650 kept on going as if nothing happened.

The 19" alloy wheel is a worry but unless you ride it hardcore it should not be a problem to 95% of the riders out there.

PM me if you want more info on my setup
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