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Old 07-08-2013, 05:16 PM   #451
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Belle Isle from atop the Ren cen

This is from the top of the GM Rennaissance Center/Marriott.

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Old 07-08-2013, 05:19 PM   #452
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This is looking the other direction.You can see Cobo Hall, Joe Louis Arena, The Detroit Princess, and the Ambassador Bridge.
I wish it was a clear day instead of overcast.

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Old 07-08-2013, 06:37 PM   #453
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i just read this entire thread, i just wish i could see the pics too. (company blocks) i recently traded my Triumph Trophy on a well farkled KLR myself. been trying to do as much reading as i can to learn what i can about these bikes. the po put a lot of work into this bike, so i need to go through it kinda like you did just to find out what all has been done to it. i'm hoping he covered most of the weaknesses already. i know the doo has been done, suspension up grades, 685 kit and such, but i don'k know about the "big hole" inside the case, sub frame bolts or anything else. i know he spent tons of time and money on it. i will have more time to spend on it when i get home from work. offshore that is in a couple of days. i have lots to learn! thanks for making this thread Gas.
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:28 PM   #454
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Originally Posted by MIKEYLIKESIT View Post
i just read this entire thread, i just wish i could see the pics too. (company blocks) i recently traded my Triumph Trophy on a well farkled KLR myself. been trying to do as much reading as i can to learn what i can about these bikes. the po put a lot of work into this bike, so i need to go through it kinda like you did just to find out what all has been done to it. i'm hoping he covered most of the weaknesses already. i know the doo has been done, suspension up grades, 685 kit and such, but i don'k know about the "big hole" inside the case, sub frame bolts or anything else. i know he spent tons of time and money on it. i will have more time to spend on it when i get home from work. offshore that is in a couple of days. i have lots to learn! thanks for making this thread Gas.
Great !!! I am glad you are enjoying it.You really need to go over the thread again with access to the pictures when you can.I will do my best to keep it going.I have decided to just combine everything I do with the KLR into this thread instead of jumping around with ride reports in one area and tech in another.
So I hope nobody objects to just one ongoing thread for my life with the KLR.
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:33 PM   #455
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Is it really that easy to work on?? Everyone on here seems to be a tech/mechanic or 20+ yrs experience. They make it seem like working on the beast us like making a PB & J sandwich. I own a 04. Its only mt second bike and this is my 3rd year riding. Im comfortable adjusting my chain, cables, air pressure and other minimal stuff but any engine or carb work frightens me...
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This is an adventure, not a field trip!!
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Old 07-09-2013, 03:04 AM   #456
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Is it really that easy to work on?? Everyone on here seems to be a tech/mechanic or 20+ yrs experience. They make it seem like working on the beast us like making a PB & J sandwich. I own a 04. Its only mt second bike and this is my 3rd year riding. Im comfortable adjusting my chain, cables, air pressure and other minimal stuff but any engine or carb work frightens me...
The KLR is very easy to work on.Get a good service manual and just pay attention and take your time.
If you are not sure about something stop and find the answer before continuing.
Being orderly and methodical are a big help in not getting in trouble on a mechanical task.If you need to ,write things down, draw diagrams, and take pictures as you go until you get familiar with things.Before you know it, you will know your way around the bike.
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Old 07-09-2013, 04:21 AM   #457
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Originally Posted by GAS GUY View Post
Great !!! I am glad you are enjoying it.You really need to go over the thread again with access to the pictures when you can.I will do my best to keep it going.I have decided to just combine everything I do with the KLR into this thread instead of jumping around with ride reports in one area and tech in another.
So I hope nobody objects to just one ongoing thread for my life with the KLR.
type away my friend! i'm in for the long haul.
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Old 07-09-2013, 06:39 AM   #458
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Hi Gas Guy, I've read this whole thread and it is great, you seem to be really passionate about the KLR, but not biased towards it when people speak of other bikes, which is why I am wondering if you can help me? (sorry if this is hijacking thread but you seem to really know your shit and everyone else on the thread really seem to want to help people).
I'm 23 years old, and on 1st April 2015 my dream will finally come true and is my ride date for a 5 year solo RTW trip by motorcycle starting in Europe, down west coast of Africa, up east coast, Middle east, Asia, North America down to TAT, onwards to South America loop then back to finish in my homeland New Zealand.

BIKES - For the past 4 months I have read thousands of threads and forums, gone through every last bit of information I could find and in the end the two bikes that really stick out for me are the KLR650 and KTM990 Adventure.

I have tried to think of every factor, the KLR650 seems to be one of the most agreeable go anywhere Jack of all trades bike for the lowest price, easily maintained, cheaper parts, and a pack mule. The KTM990 seems to be a beast of a bike designed for adventure through and through however comes with a bigger price tag and weight. (but no offense it looks way cooler). I have been going round in circles and want to hear yours (and anyone elses who bothers to read this) opinion on which bike to pick

As I said I'm going RTW for 5 years and therefore am likely to come across every type of terrain possible, it is suggested a light bike for this will be the best option and I agree but a part of me is saying the bike is going to be heavy anyway, as realistically there is a lot of stuff I'll have to take for a long haul trip. I am 6'1 and weigh 220lbs as it is (though hopefully will shed an easy 20-30lbs when I leave and stop going to the gym).

I know the KLR needs a substantial amount of upgrades to prep it for such a task and the weight it has to bare, would it be worth just going for something already capable of this?

MONEY
This is a major issue for people, expenses, and can be the one and only factor that determines the bike at the end. My life is entirely dedicated to this adventure right now, money is not really an issue for me as I have a great job and no expenses at all. I have approx $20-25k AUD to spend on a new bike, and farkling etc to get it into a state for a RTW trip of this extent (don't worry about "save your money for the trip" it is not really an issue right now), however in saying that I don't want to have to be spending thousands on fixing the KTM while on the road

EXPERIENCE
I will not lie, I am a novice rider - however I am doing my research now and taking the necessary courses and steps to prepare myself for such a trip, I live in Australia for now (well.. at sea ) but will be trying to go on a couple of Round Australia trips in the next 2 years so will have a bit more experience in long haul. I want to ride as safely as possible and am really careful when it comes to speed, I really don't want my ride to turn into my coffin on such a trip and reading the ADVrider memorial makes it sink in pretty hard. I figure a lot of experience I need to gain can be done in the 2 years leading up to it but mainly in the first 6 months to 1 year full time riding hours and hours every single day

FINAL
after 4 months research all I have settled on is the Carribou pannier system 1550's incl top box. All the rest is still in the air and I'm hoping you have a final say in what you believe will be best for taking RTW. Is the KTM's weight and replacement parts that much of a negative? I just want good information and hope nobody takes the time to lecture me and call me stupid for taking such a risk on a trip like this, I have two parents that do this on a daily basis (though I think they're starting to support the idea as they've given up trying to stop me)

By the way unfortunately I can't see any of your pictures, but can't wait to try again when I get back on land and see what it looks like!

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Old 07-09-2013, 07:44 AM   #459
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wanted View Post
Hi Gas Guy, I've read this whole thread and it is great, you seem to be really passionate about the KLR, but not biased towards it when people speak of other bikes, which is why I am wondering if you can help me? (sorry if this is hijacking thread but you seem to really know your shit and everyone else on the thread really seem to want to help people).
I'm 23 years old, and on 1st April 2015 my dream will finally come true and is my ride date for a 5 year solo RTW trip by motorcycle starting in Europe, down west coast of Africa, up east coast, Middle east, Asia, North America down to TAT, onwards to South America loop then back to finish in my homeland New Zealand.

BIKES - For the past 4 months I have read thousands of threads and forums, gone through every last bit of information I could find and in the end the two bikes that really stick out for me are the KLR650 and KTM990 Adventure.

I have tried to think of every factor, the KLR650 seems to be one of the most agreeable go anywhere Jack of all trades bike for the lowest price, easily maintained, cheaper parts, and a pack mule. The KTM990 seems to be a beast of a bike designed for adventure through and through however comes with a bigger price tag and weight. (but no offense it looks way cooler). I have been going round in circles and want to hear yours (and anyone elses who bothers to read this) opinion on which bike to pick

As I said I'm going RTW for 5 years and therefore am likely to come across every type of terrain possible, it is suggested a light bike for this will be the best option and I agree but a part of me is saying the bike is going to be heavy anyway, as realistically there is a lot of stuff I'll have to take for a long haul trip. I am 6'1 and weigh 220lbs as it is (though hopefully will shed an easy 20-30lbs when I leave and stop going to the gym).

I know the KLR needs a substantial amount of upgrades to prep it for such a task and the weight it has to bare, would it be worth just going for something already capable of this?

MONEY
This is a major issue for people, expenses, and can be the one and only factor that determines the bike at the end. My life is entirely dedicated to this adventure right now, money is not really an issue for me as I have a great job and no expenses at all. I have approx $20-25k AUD to spend on a new bike, and farkling etc to get it into a state for a RTW trip of this extent (don't worry about "save your money for the trip" it is not really an issue right now), however in saying that I don't want to have to be spending thousands on fixing the KTM while on the road

EXPERIENCE
I will not lie, I am a novice rider - however I am doing my research now and taking the necessary courses and steps to prepare myself for such a trip, I live in Australia for now (well.. at sea ) but will be trying to go on a couple of Round Australia trips in the next 2 years so will have a bit more experience in long haul. I want to ride as safely as possible and am really careful when it comes to speed, I really don't want my ride to turn into my coffin on such a trip and reading the ADVrider memorial makes it sink in pretty hard. I figure a lot of experience I need to gain can be done in the 2 years leading up to it but mainly in the first 6 months to 1 year full time riding hours and hours every single day

FINAL
after 4 months research all I have settled on is the Carribou pannier system 1550's incl top box. All the rest is still in the air and I'm hoping you have a final say in what you believe will be best for taking RTW. Is the KTM's weight and replacement parts that much of a negative? I just want good information and hope nobody takes the time to lecture me and call me stupid for taking such a risk on a trip like this, I have two parents that do this on a daily basis (though I think they're starting to support the idea as they've given up trying to stop me)

By the way unfortunately I can't see any of your pictures, but can't wait to try again when I get back on land and see what it looks like!

If money is not an issue,it really depends on which bike appeals to you the most and the one you want to ride.
I will be honest and say if money was no issue for me I would only ride European bikes,as there is no comparison to the thrill in the ride,lightness,power and fuel economy with BMW.
But that being said,I have a house, wife,2 kids and 3 dogs to support along with myself on a 40 hour a week blue collar paycheck which is getting harder every year in these new times we are in.So I do what I have to do and make the most of it.
The KTM is not much heavier than the KLR and with the huge power and great suspension probably feels lighter in use.
The KLR is a great bike but I think it needs alot of little massaging before you leave and its up to you if you want to do that.

So,if I was leaving for around the world I would be taking My well sorted and highly modified KLR.

But,if I was you I would probably be ordering up a BMW 1200 GS or that new 800 GS Adventure or the KTM 990 Adventure.

And guess what,if it broke down I would be enjoying and exploring whatever cool exotic area I was in and mingling with the locals until parts arrived or the bike was fixed locally.It is all part of the Adventure.It all just comes down to money.
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Old 07-09-2013, 07:46 AM   #460
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Do you believe a KTM 990 is pretty well ready to go from stock? aside from luggage systems?
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Old 07-09-2013, 09:06 AM   #461
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Do you believe a KTM 990 is pretty well ready to go from stock? aside from luggage systems?
I have not looked too deep into them,but I think for the most part they are.You need to do some research in the Orange Crush section of ADVRIDER and you will get all the info you need.
Start a thread over there telling of your plans and asking the collective what they feel you need to do to prep the bike and any little issues that may pop up.
They are very passionate about their KTMs over there.

I owned a 2009 KTM 450 XCW and it was an amazing machine.

Just remember these bikes have a aggressive nature about them as they are engineered to race.

The KLR has a more relaxed nature about it that wants to just thump along and explore.
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Old 07-09-2013, 10:05 AM   #462
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Originally Posted by Wanted View Post
I have tried to think of every factor, the KLR650 seems to be one of the most agreeable go anywhere Jack of all trades bike for the lowest price, easily maintained, cheaper parts, and a pack mule. The KTM990 seems to be a beast of a bike designed for adventure through and through however comes with a bigger price tag and weight. (but no offense it looks way cooler). I have been going round in circles and want to hear yours (and anyone elses who bothers to read this) opinion on which bike to pick
Since your budget is good I'd not worry too much about "which bike" at this point. Get out and ride a few bikes, learn your craft. The KLR certainly has potential ... and as you read more you'll discover hundreds have done RTW type rides on the KLR. Is it right for you? It could well be! Check out this excellent Ride Report starring a KLR:
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=526389


Igor's KLR early in his ride, in Baja.

It sounds to me like you've done some homework and may be starting to grasp what 5 years on the road will mean. But you won't really "get it' until you get on the road and begin living off the bike, day after day.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wanted View Post
EXPERIENCE
I will not lie, I am a novice rider - however I am doing my research now and taking the necessary courses and steps to prepare myself for such a trip, I live in Australia for now (well.. at sea ) but will be trying to go on a couple of Round Australia trips in the next 2 years so will have a bit more experience in long haul. I want to ride as safely as possible and am really careful when it comes to speed, I really don't want my ride to turn into my coffin on such a trip and reading the ADVrider memorial makes it sink in pretty hard. I figure a lot of experience I need to gain can be done in the 2 years leading up to it but mainly in the first 6 months to 1 year full time riding hours and hours every single day
I'd get onto Horizon's Unlimited HUBB and read some of the threads on the Which Bike forum. Pay attention to Colebatch and read his threads here on ADV Rider. (Sibirsky Extreme ride and others) Good insight there about which bikes really end up being good on the long haul.
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/which-bike/

Since you have 2 years to prep and learn to ride, you've time to focus on what will work for you. Unless your flow of money in unlimited and unending ... then I'd be very careful about what you spend and realize your big expenses will come when on the road. 5 years is a very very long time on the road. I did 7 years ... but that was broken up with breaks back home and visiting other continents. It's very tough.
How many languages do you speak?

If buying in the EU I'd give a serious look at the new CCM Adventure bike.
Pretty cool bike, made in the UK specifically for Adventure travel. Uses the 450cc BMW single and top quality components.
It's expensive and unproven but shows tremendous potential.
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...ure-bike-69964



I don't think the KLR is for sale anywhere in the EU now ... so you would need to buy one in Oz or USA.

Also consider the new-ish Husqvarna Terra. A great little bike by all accounts with potential as a travel bike.


Don't forget the Yamaha 660 Tenere. Reliable and tough (but heavy) and for sale in Australia.


Another very popular bike in Oz is the Suzuki DR650. The DR is my bike and I'm a big fan. Hang around here or the DR650 forums in Oz and read up on the fabulous DR650.

Ready for Mexico

Unless you are a Pro mechanic I would avoid the big KTM 990. You just don't need a 100 HP bike on a RTW ride. Your studies over Horizons may confirm this ... listen to the many experienced RTW guys over there. KTM's are not the most reliable bikes on the planet and dealers and service is scarce.

Small, light, simple, easy to service and inexpensive is the way to go.

To start, I'd get out there and start doing test rides on various bikes. Once you pick one, then do your Round OZ rides. This will help to make you RTW ready in terms of riding skills and survival on the road. Once you're out there a while and have a chance to sample several bikes ... your views on what is best may shift.

Many Australians and Kiwi's start their trips in the USA because used bikes here are quite inexpensive compared to OZ or EU. About half the price in general for bikes like the KLR, DR650.

Going RTW a major expense can be shipping your bike from continent to continent. Air or Sea, both pricey and a major hassle. Many sell off their bike and buy another once on new continent.

In Asia I rented bikes. In the EU, I bought a bike and stored it there. Shipping bike is becoming less and less popular among travelers. It takes a huge chunk out of your budget. Something to ponder.

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Old 07-09-2013, 10:36 AM   #463
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I think i read somewhere about a couple of guys that rode DR 350's RTW.
If it were me, i would pick the easiest bike to work on that had some kind of support everywhere you went. in two years you learn to tear apart the bike and put it back together. you never know when you have to make repairs out in the middle of nowhere with nothing more than duct tape and bubble gum! i guess if you planned around going to big towns in your travels then it might not be such a big deal. i never plan to RTW anyway, so i wish you the best of luck!
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Old 07-09-2013, 11:28 AM   #464
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I'd get onto Horizon's Unlimited HUBB and read some of the threads on the Which Bike forum. Pay attention to Colebatch and read his threads here on ADV Rider. (Sibirsky Extreme ride and others) Good insight there about which bikes really end up being good on the long haul.


You will find that COLEBATCH rides lightweight and high powered Euro bikes.
I also noticed from other threads that he is eyeballing the CCM adventure bike.

But Colebatch rides extreme offroad and most RTW riders dont.So ask yourself what kind of riding you are realisticly going to do,especially if you are a new rider and riding alone.
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Old 07-09-2013, 11:45 AM   #465
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Originally Posted by GAS GUY View Post
You will find that COLEBATCH rides lightweight and high powered Euro bikes.
I also noticed from other threads that he is eyeballing the CCM adventure bike.

But Colebatch rides extreme offroad and most RTW riders dont.So ask yourself what kind of riding you are realisticly going to do,especially if you are a new rider and riding alone.
This is true ... Walter does truly hairball rides. But you can learn SO MUCH from Walter on everything related to motorcycle travel in general. His work habits, maintenance and choices set examples for us all. He is a bit Euro-centric but really knows his stuff regards ANY bike.

I do believe a very well set up KLR ... with a good rider on board ... could, in fact, do a Mongolia/Siberia ride. The world is becoming a smaller place, more and more of the nightmare Mud tracks out there are paved or are being paved as we speak.

The KLR is GREAT VALUE and once you learn its ways and set it up ... it is, IMO, a 100% valid choice. But everyone is different ... and this Kiwi Noob will need to get out and ride to determine Which BIKE works best for him on his travels.
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