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Old 04-27-2011, 02:49 PM   #76
ThomasVolomitz
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The Suzuki incentives persuaded me to buy the new 2008 GSX650F. Never had a "sport bike" unless you consider a 1975 Z1-B a sport bike. The deal was really too good to pass up and I was able to trade a C50T that I bought to take to bike week in on it.

Just kinda commenting on the incentive program, you can get a great deal on a new bike that will last a long time.
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Old 04-27-2011, 03:03 PM   #77
bomose
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I've had two KLRs (00 & 05). No problems. No burning oil , broken subframe bolts, or over heating.My wife rides with me much of the time. We have done the WRT , Imogene Pass, Big Bend , and most of Utah. We could not do two up riding on the DR like that. Much of our riding is on pavement, also. That being said, the DR is better offroad because of the suspension and being lighter. The seat is not as good and for what I do I would have to have a bigger tank. I told a friend he should buy a DR for what he does. Off road he can not go anywhere I can't go. I now have an XR650R and I can go places he can't. Of course it's not a good road bike! All in all, for what I do mostly, the KLR would be my choice. I also have a KTM 950 Adv. Each bike is good in it's own way and I don't understand why some people have to downgrade other's bikes or get in a pissing match with another poster.
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Old 04-27-2011, 03:22 PM   #78
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This has turned out to be an extremely entertaining thread. Thank you to all who have contributed. Really.

I don't own either, but I've heard a lot of good things about both, and they both seem very popular. It is interesting to know that some people base their brand choice primarily on color though.
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Old 04-27-2011, 03:33 PM   #79
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Not one problem at 18,000 miles....might not out run a KTM, but at the end of the day it ends up were they are....well outside the mechanic shop!
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Old 04-27-2011, 03:40 PM   #80
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All in all, it comes down to the type of oil you use.

YESSS, another oil thread.
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Old 04-27-2011, 03:44 PM   #81
ThomasVolomitz
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If you don't use Suzuki 4 stroke oil, well then, I guess you just ain't livin'!
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Old 04-27-2011, 05:10 PM   #82
Mongle
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I have a 09 DR650 and my friend I ride with has a 08 KLR650. We did the TAT together. I think they are both good bikes; no mechanical issues out of either. I think my DR was a little better in the rough. His was better on the road. I think some of the luggage racks and hard bags they make for the KLR are better then what is offered for the DR. Neither of us would trade for the other...

The DR is a little more Jump friendly as well!
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Old 04-27-2011, 05:15 PM   #83
Mongle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rasthomas View Post
If you don't use Shell 4 stroke oil, well then, I guess you just ain't livin'!

Fixt

When did SUZUKI get an oil refinery?
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Old 04-27-2011, 05:54 PM   #84
Royal Tiger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bomose View Post
I've had two KLRs (00 & 05)Each bike is good in it's own way and I don't understand why some people have to downgrade other's bikes or get in a pissing match with another poster.
My thoughts exactly, but lookie here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adv Grifter View Post
I don't think they are really that much alike. Not only in technical terms, but in personality and riding character ... very different machines, IMHO. Ride both ... them comment.

Maybe you owned Suzuki's back in the 60 or 70's to have such an opinion? (the "bad old days"?) Suzuki have hit several home runs over the last 20 years ... very few misses in my experience:
GSXR's: Has any sport bike done more? Or received more accolades?
SV650: one of the best "do it all" fun bikes ever made, huge seller.
V-Stroms: 1st reliable and affordable adventure bikes. Many now with over 100K miles and counting. Legendary reliability.
DR650: Best true 650 class dual sport bike since 1996. (unheralded)
DR350: Awesome light weight dual sport. Unsurpassed until ...
DRZ400E and S: First modern, liquid cooled, lighter, sportier dual sport 400cc class bike. Game changer and still a super popular bike.

NOTE: Every single one of the above bikes has proven to be most reliable in class. Compared to any Euro bike, not even close reliability wise.

Did you own an XR650L?
Looks aside, the Honda is a pretty good bike and will run rings around your KLR in any off road situation. I owned a '93. At the time the XR650L won all the dual sport shoot outs, year after year. Lots of guys tried to make them into Baja racers and lots of guys found the limitations of the Honda ... including me. A good bike with limitations.
After only about 5000 miles and a year I sold mine off. It did OK in Baja but was lacking everyplace else.

The real problems with the XR-L did not center around looks ... but weak subframes, broken battery boxes and overheating motors. But the suspension was best of the bunch (this pre Husky and KTM).

With the right mods the KLR can be transformed. The new version the OP has is improved in a few good ways over the original. Decent brakes (original KLR brakes were just plain dangerous), bigger front forks, better damping, better cooling, better looking.

But it still needs a better seat, a doo hickey and sub frame bolts. Not a big deal. Oil burning to me is no big deal ... within reason. Kawi should have gone to F.I. in '08. They will have to do this soon anyway, should have done it then. Now, it will be more costly but they will have no choice. Hopefully when they do that they can do a good upgrade. Really, an all new motor is called for. A modern version of what they've got. Good economy, more power, lighter weight. $$$$
Find ONE time in my post knocking the DR. As for the vanilla comment, they are both similar bikes designed for the same market, but slightly different, so I feel the analogy fits. Bikes like the Husky & KTM would be more like chocolate or strawberry in that comparision. Still ice cream, but even more different.

I will grant you the SV. Awesome bike. The GSX-R? Good bike but hardly a segment leader. Well they are loved by squids. Unsurpassed quality? Are we skipping the 2005-2008 catastrophic frame failures that killed people? Maybe you are talking about their motorsport prowess. Problem is in WSBK, they have one Championship in the series. From 1988-2010 they won the 2005 manufactures title. What about MotoGP? Never in the 800 or 990 years. Last 500cc championship was 2000. Last 125 was in 1970. What about Masterbike, since that is actual production bikes? Nope, no winners.

Was 1993 the last time Honda updated the XR650L? I didn't own one, but I rode it. Not impressed, but that doesn't make it bad. Plus that list of failures you posted support it being better then the KLR?

Here's the bottom line. I did not mock your beloved Suzuki. Why I don't like them only matters to me. Your post is 99% opinion with not one fact backing up a single claim you made. Yet, somehow what your opinion is, is somehow more valuable then mine? My post was to point out they are both bikes built to a minimum standard and price point. They are direct competitors because of that. They are not cross shopped against a TE630 or RXV 5.5. Again goes back to that intial analogy, which I posted to make that point and stop the bickering prior to my post. If you like your bike, good for you. The KLR wasn't what I was looking for, but it happened. Sorry for whatever subliminal message you got out of that.
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Old 04-27-2011, 05:58 PM   #85
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Had the chance to take a fellow inmate's purple-framed DR650 while in New Mexico last summer. Never having ridden a dual sport, I was shocked at how fun it was (compared to my Bandit I had been riding for about 7000 miles for several weeks before).

I did struggle with the KLR/DR decision, but opted for the DR in the end. Didn't want to deal with the doohickey and oil burning. DR seemed to have such a loyal following here on ADV. Plus I've had great luck with Suzuki.

I've since traded my 99 for a nearly new 2002 (only 1200 miles). In the process of farkling for a trip to Nicaragua where it will be left for when I move there. Trust me, it will be RIGHT at home in that environment.

One request - could you kids stop arguing and name calling about this cooling issue? Thanks.

Be blessed.
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Old 04-27-2011, 07:30 PM   #86
ThomasVolomitz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mongle View Post
Fixt

When did SUZUKI get an oil refinery?
All I know is the bottle says Suzuki. I am a little brand conscious.
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Old 04-27-2011, 07:49 PM   #87
Dan Stark
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KLR to DR and Back

I'll give you my experience and will remain as objective as possible. My first bike back after a long time without one was an 08 KLR. In two years I put almost 18K miles on the bike and decided to try somethng else for a change. I sold the bike and about a month later found a DR650 that I wanted. I spent a good part of the winter trying to set it up similar to the KLR. I put an honest 2K miles on it if I recall, and just couldn't stop comparing it to the KLR. Now, I admit 2K miles isn't many and maybe I didn't give it a fair shake, but I just couldn't love it. Me and the bike didn't fit I don't think. I did enjoy dirt roads with it though, I think it slides better than the KLR, maybe. In the end, my old bike came up for sale and I have it back. I don't think 20 miles was put on it while the other guy owned it.

I commute with my bike, 50 miles a day. I take as many dirt roads as possible and try to do a dirt road trip on the weekends. I might do 5% two track or single track exploring with it. It's important to acknowledge how you will use the bike.

I'm very pleased with the 08. You could argue it has alot to do with the time spent on it as to why I prefer it. My only advice is to be really honest with youself about what kind of riding you will do and chose your bike accordingly. I'd love to have a KTM 530 or a FE570, but for what I do, it's not the bike for me. Maybe a second bike someday, but I not my primary ride.

FWIW.
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Old 04-27-2011, 08:47 PM   #88
Flys Lo
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I bought 2 Klr's (08 & 09)

I had no experience with dual sports, so had no huge idea what I was looking for. I priced out buying bikes that were a couple of years old, lightly used and ticked as many items from my desired farkle list as possible.

For me, and I hate to be boring here, it came down to economics.
I had no brand or model aversion when looking - I wanted a single cylinder that was as simple as possible, light and also comfortable for a long day in the saddle. Both are intended for a 20k+mile ride through South America.
I looked at all the big 4 Japanese brands. KTM's, BMW's, Huskies and Husaberg's of the single cylinder variety remained items of bone aching desirability (particularly a berg FE570), but outside of both my purchase and no doubt repair budget.

Since there aren't many 07+ Yami XT's in the states , the short list was the XRL, KLR and DR. KLR's appeared to be the most plentiful, cheapest and (typically) highly farkled bikes available (SoCal area). I was sold. Twice.

Am I convinced I bought the best outright bike?
Not necessarily. I like the KLR (a lot) but I think the DR would fit my criteria a little better, but would ultimately take more dollars to get it there. Both bikes have their downsides - although I found it easier/cheaper to rectify the KLR ones in the aftermarket, yes I am disappointed I have a radiator that weighs me down and can get a stone thrown through it (I ain't buying into the water cooled is better for engine reliability malarky... it is better if you have wide temperature variations or if you are controlling spark on highly strung engines, but mostly it is better for... emissions), but on the plus side 3rd gear is less likely to grenade on me going across the altiplano.


YMMV
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Old 04-27-2011, 08:55 PM   #89
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Not sure I want to join in on this fun, but here it is anyway.....

I have owned two KLR's (89 and 98). Loved them both, probably spent more on accesories than the bikes themselves. The 98 fit me perfectly as a "do it all Ok" bike. I decided I wanted something better for the on road portions of my time riding. I got a DL650. I really enjoy the 'strom. I still rode the KLR quite a bit, and more off road. The more off road (actually un improved, minimum maintence, forest road -type non paved roads) the more I realized I wanted a lighter bike. I ended up with a DRZ400. I really like having the better suspension and all. I sold my KLR. Couldn't really justify having three bikes, and the KLR was the odd one out.

Now, after all of that, if I had to only have one bike, the DR650 would be it. Better off road than a KLR, better on road than a DRZ.

Luckily I have two bikes, and really like the abiltiy to pair the bike to the ride.

I really don't care how it's cooled, fed, or oiled. They're all proven designs, with occasional shortcomings. Fortunately, we have ADV, TT, ect to get near instant info with any issues.

Now, where is that 450cc injected bike w/ 6 sp gearbox, holds 7 gallons, comfy seat, has race suspension and weighs 250 lbs......

See it's all a compromise. It is for me anyway.

Ryan
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Old 04-27-2011, 09:06 PM   #90
ThomasVolomitz
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Yes , many compromises. It's all in taste and preference. I had a really nice wee strom but only put 1500 miles on it before selling. It seemed too heavy for anything but pavement. I am getting old. The DR 650 does it all for me but the new KLRs look awesome. Love to have one.
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