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Old 06-05-2012, 08:05 AM   #31
Let's Ride
Joined: Aug 2004
Location: Marietta, GA
Oddometer: 903
Originally Posted by rotten View Post
Lets throw some gas in the fire...

Low weight, good power, steel frame, air cooled, easy to work on, no dohicky, hell... why not. Honestly I'd settle for a KTM super enduro to me possible the best adventure bike made as soon as I can afford one .
+1 I wish they sold parts. This would be a fun project bike, but I'm not willing to pay the price for someone else to assemble it.

I also like the 950SE -- wish they still sold it in the US. Maybe they'll put a 21" front on the SMT.
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Old 06-05-2012, 08:05 AM   #32
Boon Booni
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Location: Richmond, Va
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Originally Posted by vicster View Post

PS How do you sand a shim thicker? :-)
If your valve clearances are opening up, you've got more problems than a valve adjust will take care of.
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Old 06-05-2012, 09:15 AM   #33
Brunow - 007
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Any old FN motorcycle! (check out this web-site!)
Working on the D14/4 Bsa Daily Driver .
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Old 06-05-2012, 09:23 AM   #34
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Location: New Mexico
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Sent from my C771 using Tapatalk 2
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Old 06-05-2012, 09:28 AM   #35
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Joined: Feb 2008
Location: Southern Oregon
Oddometer: 635
Originally Posted by Ham View Post
Now the first to step up will be the bean counters and they will say this is impossible to do without a whopping price. I don't believe it for one minute.
Doesn't matter what you believe, it's still true.

My idea is something like the VT 500 Ascot engine. I would like 7 speeds with a true granny gear and a true highway gear made for mileage without bogging down.
Good news, I don't know anything about the VT500, but most modern motors have enough power spread than true granny and true highway can be accomplished with 6 speeds. Hell, a KTM 450 has three granny gears and 6th is still reasonable for the highway.

Its got to be bone simple.
Bad news:
fuel down low combined with fuel up high
Probably means a fuel pump. Not so simple.

and a simple drive chain
What is simpler than a chain?
Shaft drive? At least two gears, probably four gears and two u-joints.
Belt drive? You're going to put a battle-proof skid plate and a belt on the same motorcycle...

You can claim that you want "bone simple" for reliability, ease of working or just nostalgia, but the real reason anybody buys a bone simple bike is because it's cheaper.
One fuel tank is cheaper than two, zero fuel pumps are cheaper than one, 5 speeds are cheaper than 7, and good enough suspension is cheaper than the best. Steel is cheaper than aluminum, except in Japan, but they're both cheaper than titanium everywhere.

If a motorcycle is half KLR (simple) and half KTM (good), nobody wants to pay KTM prices for it, and manufactures don't want to sell it for KLR prices, so it doesn't get made.

...Give me... Give me... Give me...
There's your real problem.

Snide comments not welcome
That doesn't apply after page one right?
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Old 06-05-2012, 09:29 AM   #36
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Joined: Jan 2005
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Oddometer: 192
well, you're right; it has been talked about before. Among the many guys who have built their own was an inmate (Wes Weber or his brother?) who built his own based if irc, on a dr 650. It was yellow-very yellow. Good enough to be featured in Cycle Guide magazine several years ago.
Maybe somebody with better search skills can bring up the original thread, or maybe one of the Webers can chime in, but I don't recall seeing any posts from them in a while.
But somebody else already said it- what ever is perfect for me, may not be perfect for you. Or said another way- there is no perfect machine, so modify ourselves to suit the situation.
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Old 06-05-2012, 12:07 PM   #37
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Joined: Jun 2011
Location: Barcelona
Oddometer: 1,520
I have a DRZ400 E and a Super Tènèrè 1200 and if I would go to a really adventure trip I will go with the DRZ: simple, no electronics, unstoppable in sand, mud…
Usually I use it for enduro rides but also in trail trips or Morocco with a bigger tank, more comfortable seat, a rack, led lights and the development of the S mode (more speed).

Enduro version

Adventure version

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Old 06-05-2012, 01:22 PM   #38
Ham OP
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Location: Montana
Oddometer: 370
I didn't mean "I believe" like "I feel". I have some experience into what things cost. What I see in this world is if there is a will there is a way, but you have to start with a clean sheet of paper. Simple yes, but not simpleton. LEDs gave us a great leg up on the electrical end of things.

Think out of the box on how you can instead of sitting back lobbing 3 pointers hitting 1 out of 10...thats about your average right?:)
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Old 06-05-2012, 06:24 PM   #39
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Joined: Oct 2009
Location: Somehwere in the Utah Valley
Oddometer: 307
Define your adventure. Some of the "features" of an adventure bike desired by some folks have too high of cost (in the sense of trade-offs) for others. Fer instance: If I don't plan on adventuring in the Third World, the additional weight of a steel frame just so the one-eyed blacksmith in Bumphuxipawny can hammer weld it back together doesn't really make sense, does it? Ditto with fuel pumps, fuel injection, etc.

That said, based on my sense of adventure:
  1. Twin cylinder - 400-500 cc, tuned for torque. A twin for smoothness.
  2. 6 speed tranny with granny and overdrive. Torque tuned engine gives wider powerband. Think tractor, not race car.
  3. Titanium frame and other bits where possible. Keep the weight down.
  4. 6" or so of suspension, adjustable. I'm not racing motocross or doing stadium supercross.
  5. 200+ mile range.
  6. Robust electrical system with a "power distribution" center already installed for hooking in farkles.
  7. LED lighting for everything except maybe headlight.
  8. Adjustable seat, with cheap OEM seatpans so customized seats are relatively inexpensive. I don't expect the bike manufacturer to be able to build a seat that is comfortable for everybody, but I do think they should be able to make it easy for us to do so ourselves.
  9. Designed for ease of routine maintenance. Minimize the variety of fasteners.
  10. "Dirt bike" plastics. Cheaper and tougher than streetbike plastics. But not as shiny.
  11. Long maintenance intervals. I'd rather have a 3k-5k oil change interval than save 6lbs of weight by using only a single quart of oil!
  12. Two frame sizes. Small and Large. They've been building different frame sizes in bicycles for a century, it ain't that hard!
  13. Manually adjustable windshield. Adjustability is important, don't need it to be 'lectric though.
  14. Integrated pannier attachment points. Sell the mounting bits to aftermarket bag makers.
  15. ABS, easy to turn off.
  16. Either dirt cheap junk suspension in a very common form factor (so you have lots of choices for upgrades) or decent rebuildable suspension.
  17. Stout bash plate, protected radiator.
  18. Fuel injected. Runs on regular.
  19. Fuel filter and pump NOT IN THE TANK, i.e. easy to replace, uses commonly available replacement bits. Same with the oil filter. Commonly available size.
What I have no use for/interest in:
  1. Factory GPS.
  2. Electronically adjustable suspension. Not mature enough a technology to make it cost effective.
  3. Shaft drive. Weight penalty isn't worth it for this application.
  4. Two-up touring capability.
This is a solo long distance adventure bike suitable for everything from interstates to single track. It is NOT a race bike. Ya mosey down the single track. It's okay to put a foot down. Its okay to watch Ricky RoadRacer and Wally WoodsRacer disappear around the next corner. You'll be two states over tomorrow when Ricky is still getting the kinks out of his back, and Wally is deciding whether or not he's going to unload his bike from the truck.
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Old 06-05-2012, 07:14 PM   #40
No False Enthusiasm
a quiet adventurer
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Joined: Nov 2009
Location: Small Town, Texas
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Nevada, except for the second cylinder, you've accurately described my mythical WR450R...

But since this is in "Beasts", I'd be happy to have the bike you describe.

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Old 06-06-2012, 04:51 PM   #41
Ham OP
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Joined: Aug 2004
Location: Montana
Oddometer: 370
Fabulous nailed it. Now that I have the list I might get interested in making one myself.

Too bad Honda can't read these days.
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Old 06-06-2012, 05:16 PM   #42
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Joined: Jul 2008
Location: So. Oregon
Oddometer: 4,095
Perfect: 650cc air cooled, single-cylinder...maybe oil cooled/cooler. Hmm. I don't think they make it.
Amazballs Indi-music at
I may not be Rainman, but I'm not stupid eighter. Like Bartek on a taco.

I'll die with this hammer in my hand.
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Old 06-06-2012, 05:19 PM   #43
Ham OP
Gnarly Adventurer
Joined: Aug 2004
Location: Montana
Oddometer: 370
the DR is a nice bike. But as is...far from what we are talking here.
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Old 06-06-2012, 06:49 PM   #44
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Joined: Jul 2008
Location: So. Oregon
Oddometer: 4,095
I know, I was just kidding
Amazballs Indi-music at
I may not be Rainman, but I'm not stupid eighter. Like Bartek on a taco.

I'll die with this hammer in my hand.
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Old 06-07-2012, 07:01 AM   #45
Beastly Adventurer
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Joined: Feb 2004
Location: Tricities Washington
Oddometer: 1,837
For me the perfect adventure bike would be black! Other than that I'm satisfied with what they offer now.
A good adventure bike will get you to where you wish you had a good dirt bike! (and back)
:2014 XC800 :2012 WR450
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