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Old 09-08-2010, 02:19 PM   #46
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Location: Arizona, Prescott more less.
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Originally Posted by AntonLargiader
He was pretty accurate on the G/S.
One out of three is not bad, I figure my '92 GS is around 500lbs (full tank).
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Old 09-08-2010, 02:24 PM   #47
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Location: Merritt Island, FL
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FWIW in the airhead GS vs thumper debate....

My 99 Funduro has been a perfect all around bike. I've added a few functional farkles and keep a spare set of wheels so I can throw on Tourances ro TKCs depending on where a trip may take me. Comfortable on highway, dirt and gravel, and "manageable" on sugar sand. Weight is something like 425lbs without gear loaded for camping or traveling. It is top heavy, but predictable.

My R80 ST(nothing more or less than a street version of the G/S with 1" less suspension at each end) has been getting more and more use that the F 650 would normally handle. Because:

They both put out 50 HP with similarly useful torque curves. The suspension travel is almost identical at both ends. Both have upswept single left side exhaust. Both have similar braking ability. Both can carry what I normally pack for a long or short trip that may include camping and or cooking. Both are reasonably reliable, although I have managed to break both this season and only have the R80 back up running so far. The R80 is somewhat smoother.

The biggest differences to me so far are the differences in weight distribution vertically and the fact that I haven't had the chance to run any kind of D/S tires on the R80 yet. I'm so used to how to control the top heavy F 650 in the loose dirt, that I haven't gotten the feel for the R80 with its lower C of G because of the tire differences. With equal tires and practice it will be an interesting comparison. The R80 does not get blown around by wind gusts like the 650 which has more topside structure along with higher C of G.

Both are very comfy on long road trips even though the ergos are somewhat different.

So its hard to say which will be better in the long term. BUT, in terms of comparisons for thumpers to G/S or GS airheads, don't overlook the Classic Funduro, or its GS/Dakar successors up through the early and mid 2000s(I've ridden with several of that type on short and long rides.)
Mark J
Merritt Island, FL

When a person asks you for advice, they don't want advice. They want corroboration.
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Old 09-08-2010, 02:31 PM   #48
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Thanks for the comparison, I have wanted to test ride a 650 Dakar and another DR650 with a decent seat.
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Old 09-08-2010, 02:31 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by AntonLargiader
Some Googling gives me:
KLR: 337 dry for the old one, 430 curb weight for the new one
DR: 360~385 dry for the old one, 324 dry for some newer ones, back up to 390 today.

I've heard that published dry weights are typically on the low side. Nothing beats simply weighing one.
No way a stock DR weighs more than a stock KLR. If I remember rightly, the KLR weighs just shy of 400lb dry, 360 is probably about right for a DR.

Having owned a DR650 and an r100gs, and having a KLR living in the garage for a couple years (the wifes) -

I'd say the airhead was good for +10 mph on the road and -10 mph off the road. So long as you don't want to go more than 65mph all day long, it's pretty tough to beat a DR650 as a do it all bike. The airhead will beat you up a lot less at higher speed, but the DR is a much better bike off the road. IMO.

Oh - and the KLR - a good bike. Boring as hell though. Both the DR and the airhead were much more fun for me.
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Old 09-08-2010, 04:25 PM   #50
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My B44 VS is 276 lb dry, 300lbs wet, and if you have ever handled or ridden a 300 lb bike it feels 100lbs lighter than most thumpers you can buy today.

Claimed dry weight is just a nonsense , these days the claim is around 40 /50 kg less than the on road figure so it must exclude tools, tires, battery, as well a every fluid, coolant brake etc.

When it ran my 2000 F650 GS did everything I want from a bike, just a pity it was a horrible piece of shit.

If I could find a good old Funduro I would buy it , but they are starting to fetch G/S and GS prices over here.
Adelaide Hills, Australia. 93 R100 GS, 77 R75/7 ,70 BSA B44VS, , 86 R80 G/S PD, 95 BMW Funduro F650 ST
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Old 09-08-2010, 05:56 PM   #51
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I have had airheads since the mid 70s and use thumpers for dual sport riding. The way I look at it the thumper will do any highway you put it on, though not a comfortable as other bikes. The airhead however won't do the harder off road the thumper will. So to me, this makes the thumper more versatile. I do a lot of solo back country riding and when I start down a slippery road or trail, I want every advantage I can have to get back out of there.

I have a 07 (old body style) KLR with 28000 trouble free miles. The pre 08 bikes are 25-30 or pounds lighter and weigh close to 400 real world pounds, depending on variables. Obviously if my 7Gal. tank is full and I'm loaded for a trip, it"s more.
I also have a 50 state street legal TE610 and TE 450 Husqvarna. These bikes are much lighter at around 310 and 260 respectively and actually handle like a dirt bike and are well suited for serious dual sport.

This is a very good thread and I think it will have a long life. One thing I was going to suggest is to post the same question over on the thumpers forum for a different perspective. I'm sure there are many people over there that have or have had a GS and other bikes, including BMW thumpers.

So much riding-so little time
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Old 09-08-2010, 09:50 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by Lornce
A KLR weighs 330lbs.

A BMW R80G/S weighs about 450lbs.

There's 120lbs between them, people.

DR650's weigh even less at about 280lbs.

fwiw: The GSPD has been down all season with another failed driveshaft.
The KLR and the DR have been shouldering the riding chores until I can
stomach buying a replacement piece.

So, who's got the crow?

This is interesting for a number of reasons, not the least of which is you can't believe everything you read.

I had read that KLR's wieighed approx 330lbs and had simply guessed the DR was 30-50lbs lighter than the KLR after riding them both.

In fact, about the only thing I was right about was the different weight distribution between the two.

KLR's easier to loft the front and feels less front end vulnerable in the soft stuff than the DR. The scale bears that out as the KLR carries 55 fewer pounds on it's front end than it does it's rear. While the DR carries 30lbs more on it's front end compared to it's rear. That's significant and might explain why I feel more comfortable on the KLR off-road.

Anyhow, I wasn't even close on the real world weights of these two bikes...

The KLR, equipped with a pair of Happy Trails pannier racks, a 1400 Pelican box and about a 1/3 tank of fuel weighs 230lbs under it's rear wheel and 175lbs under it's front for a total of 405lbs.

The DR with a pair of Dirt Bagz racks and bags, a GSX-R 750 muffler (approx 1/2 the weight of stock muffler) and an IMS plastic fuel tank (which I ass-u-me weighs less than the stock steel tank Anyone know?) and a half tank of fuel weighs 175lbs under it's rear wheel and 205lbs under it's front for a total of 380lbs.

I'm guessing my GSPD weighs 500lbs with a half tank, but does anybody have a scale to verify that?

Very surprised the KLR weighs as much as it does, because it's so capable off-road. You can't go real fast in the rough stuff, but it'll crawl up, over and through just about anything. Certainly more capable than the GSPD at getting to tough places.

Who'da thunk?

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Old 09-08-2010, 10:28 PM   #53
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Thanks for doing that Lornce, interesting numbers!

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Old 09-08-2010, 11:33 PM   #54
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Not much to add that hasn't been said before - it really comes down to being honest about what type of riding you plan to do on a particular bike.

Pardon the overly simplistic, male oriented analogy, but I don't believe that there is a perfect motorbike, sailboat, or girlfriend. Certain desirable traits are mutually exclusive of, or are simply just not found with other desirable traits.

I have the small luxery of owning several bikes for several types of riding. I am not a speed deamon, but I love mountain and coastal twisties. I also love getting out into the bush on super technical, drop your bike till you can't pick it up, 2nd gear oh-my-I-cant-beleive-my-bike-carried-me-through-that single track.

This multi bike for multi style approach is great until you begin to travel far from home, when you have to pick only one bike to take you down all the roads that bekon.

My first try at a trip bike has been an R100GS. It has taken me to C. America and back with good days and breakdown days. I have taken it on woodsy singletrack and had fun, but it is heavy to pick up and it really doesn't have enough clearance. I've put in a low 1st gear and it actually does okay in the tight stuff and climbs loose hills surprisingly well! Then bck on the road it carries 2 people and gear in hard luggage comfortably at +80mph highway speeds with extra power to pass. I even think it is kinda classy looking and it starts conversations daily. Its fun and simple to work on.

BUT - I am not sure that it is the best all around travel bike out there. While travelling in Mx I rode a fellow travellers KTM SE950 and I think it deserves a thought (SORRY - I KNOW THE OP ASKED ABOUT THUMPERS, BUT WE ARE TALKING ABOUT FINDING THE MITHICAL PERFECT BIKE). It is admittadly more expensive (but perhaps not really when you add EVERYTHING up you need to do to set up an airhead for long distance foreign travel). It has very nice modern suspension, which to me is VERY attractive. I have an Ohlins shock and I could do some work to the forks, but the R100GS suspension can't compare with a properly tuned KTN WP set up. The SE has two cylinders, its carburated (simple), has little body work to damage.... I don't have one (WOULD LOVE TO HAVE AN EXTENDED TEST RIDE), but just saying perhaps there may be some other bikes to consider when we dream of a do it all machine.

My brother has a DR and I've ridden it about 300 miles in city and twisties, but no dirt or singletrack. It is fun in the city and on the twisties (almost felt like supermoto after the GS), but not a real champ on the freeway. I enjoyed it and have worked on it and it was fairly simple. Not sure I would take it round the world but think it is fun bike for shorter trips. Would really need to take it through its paces off road before having a full picture.

Hope this adds to the discussion... J
R100GS for going far, FZ1 for going fast, TE250 for getting dirty, and DR650 for when one of the others needs work
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Old 09-09-2010, 12:34 AM   #55
KilLeR Kawasaki
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There is only 15-20 lbs difference between the KLR generations. That is fact.

Source: Motorcycle Consumer News
2008 Kawasaki KLR650
2001 Honda XR400R
2007 Suzuki Bandit 1250
Colorado Dual Sport Riders
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Old 09-09-2010, 06:21 AM   #56
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Originally Posted by KilLeR Kawasaki
There is only 15-20 lbs difference between the KLR generations. That is fact.

Source: Motorcycle Consumer News

I have found bikes usually gain weight when they go on the scale. Here is a curb weight from for a 2010:

Overall length 90.4 in.
Overall width 37.8 in.
Overall height 53.1 in.
Ground clearance 8.3 in.
Seat height 35.0 in.
Curb weight 432 lbs.

Seems to be the same as what you came up with , so it must be close. The thing about the post 08 bikes is the additional weight is up high. With all the new plastic, I'd hate to lay one over. $$$$$

So much riding-so little time

Xcuvator screwed with this post 09-09-2010 at 06:29 AM
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Old 09-09-2010, 06:53 AM   #57
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There is no comparison

Well they both have two wheels and an engine.

A modern dual sport is light years ahead of a GS in terms of off road ability
(A KLR is not a modern thumper)

And really Japanese bikes only have this idea of being like a bic lighter
And BMW's as being the zippo.
What it really is, is that BMW owners are far more willing to sink a lot more time and money into the their bikes that Japanese bike owners are.

Many airhead riders think nothing of $600 tranny rebuilds, and $500 shaft drives and $400 charging systems.

Having smoked, having carried a lighter with me
In the end the zippo is cool for what it is, But I still want a Bic
I need it for when the zippo is waiting for parts,

And If I was to set off on an around the world ride.
I'd take my XR650L in a heartbeat.
On vacation for a spell
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Old 09-09-2010, 09:14 AM   #58
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I think that that is generally true. Despite the fact that I am "one of those" BMW riders that sinks enough money into his airhead to pay for three Japanese dual-sports, I agree that a major difference is simply the willingness to restore/repair/etc. etc. There is, at first, a build quality to BMW that is better than some parts of the Japanese bikes, but much of that is easily replaced with higher quality components (switchgear, levers, etc.) anyway if desired.

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Old 09-09-2010, 10:33 AM   #59
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Originally Posted by squish

And If I was to set off on an around the world ride.
I'd take my XR650L in a heartbeat.

I got to ride one on a dual sport ride the other day, WOW i like it.

Actually i worked on it for a guy and after i finished i only rode it around the yard to make sure it was correct, two weeks later he called and ask if i wanted to go for a dual sport ride, i said yes, he is new to the area and wanted me to lead, so i thought hehe i will put his ass thru the grinder.

I took the DR650 and he was on his XR650L, he did say he was a former moto cross racer, well we rode about 1 hour of pavement to get to the first trail, no problem for the XR, got to the first trail, its a pretty rough trail too, on a scale of 1-10 its a 7, lots of rocks the size of your head or bigger, no problem for the XR.
We get on a gravel road and i let him lead and OH S%^T its all i could do to keep him in sight.

I ask to ride his bike and he said sure, man it was nice, better suspension and handled like a dream, has great ground clearance and was no taller than my DR, we get to the next trail and same thing it was all i could do to keep him in sight, next trail i lead the way that way i could set the pace, much slower i might add.
Coming home we had 2 hours of asphalt and he lead, damn he ran 80 according to my speedo, surprised we did not get ticketed.
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Old 09-09-2010, 03:33 PM   #60
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I like my airheads and I'm stubborn about it. I'll use mine to do everything, so as long as I don't try anything else, in my case ignorance is bliss.
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