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Old 08-28-2013, 02:18 PM   #31
DPelletier
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OK, so we can take the listed bikes and put them into three distinct catagories;

1) The WRR, KLX and CRF are all lightweight, modern(ish) dual sports and while they can't be compared directly to a plated racebike like a KTM EXC, they would all work well offroad. The WRR is a better bike than the other two and (surprise!) costs quite a bit more too.

2) The DR650 and XR650L are both reliable, functional, air cooled dual sports which will do better on the highway and worse offroad than the bikes in the 1st group. DR is probably a better choice IMO, but you aren't going to keep up to any of the 250's offroad (all other things being equal, of course)

3) The DRZ is smack-dab in the middle of the two other groups of bikes; more torque than the little bikes, better suspension and lighter weight than the 650's .


Like all things dual sport, there isn't a right or wrong answer, but based on what you've said, I'd probably get a WRR or the DRZ for you and a CRL or KXF for your kid.

2 cents,
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Old 08-28-2013, 02:31 PM   #32
kenny61
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You're not going to get one do it all bike. I run a xrl650 for the dual sport runs and a 200 exc for enduros/ harescrambles. Sure you can run a bigger 4stroke ktm as a dual sport but the maint intervals are shorter then the true dual sport and you will also find you dont want to burn up your knobbies that you are doing any real trails with on the street. sure you can also get by with a wr250 but again you are not going to want to do a few hundred miles of slab at 75mph on it and you will find the stock suspension is marginal for racing plus broken blinkers and general trashing of plastics that us C riders allways have to deal with.

Keep in mind you dont need a new bike to race. A 10 year old exc is not going to limit a c riders abilty and can be had for around $1500~
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Old 08-28-2013, 04:57 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Off the grid View Post
I'd rather spend 1k more up front and get a KTM that needs the exact same maintenance as a Japanese bike but is 100x the bike, much lighter, more power on demand, 100x the suspension, etc etc.

Again, don't take my word for it. You ride the NorthEast. What do you see people riding? Because every ride I went on when I lived in the Northeast was 50-70% KTM.....for a reason.
The only guys in the Northeast that I know that own KTMs are hardcore RACERS.

I've owned an LC4, an RFS 525; 2 DRZ400Ss, an XR650L, KX250 and RM250.

I disagree that a KTM is 100x the bike of the Japanese bikes. In fact my 2006 RM250 is every bit as good as a KTM and maybe even has BETTER suspension (Showa vs linkageless WP) definitely a way better dirt bike than my 525 MXC ever was. The LC4 was a big heavy pig that vibrated so bad it was literally painful to ride on the street.

An RFS 400/450/525 is a better performing bike in the woods than a DRZ400S for sure. But the DRZ is a Dualsport that needs a couple little fixes and uncorking to make it a bombproof bike. The RFS needs a little more TLC and is still a race bike first (albeit one that makes a good Dual Sport); personally I'd rather have an RFS than a DRZ but I don't mind the extra maintenance. I'm not sure if it's even possible to find a plated one in the North East.

When it comes to tight woods riding, I want to be on the smallest lightest bike that's practical. If I were back living in the Northeast it'd be one of the 250s for me from the OP's list.
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Old 08-28-2013, 05:46 PM   #34
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Wr all the way baby,I picked my X up with 2,000 miles on it looking spanky brand new for $3,900






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Old 08-28-2013, 08:15 PM   #35
Off the grid
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dukeryder View Post
The only guys in the Northeast that I know that own KTMs are hardcore RACERS.

I've owned an LC4, an RFS 525; 2 DRZ400Ss, an XR650L, KX250 and RM250.

I disagree that a KTM is 100x the bike of the Japanese bikes. In fact my 2006 RM250 is every bit as good as a KTM and maybe even has BETTER suspension (Showa vs linkageless WP) definitely a way better dirt bike than my 525 MXC ever was. The LC4 was a big heavy pig that vibrated so bad it was literally painful to ride on the street.

An RFS 400/450/525 is a better performing bike in the woods than a DRZ400S for sure. But the DRZ is a Dualsport that needs a couple little fixes and uncorking to make it a bombproof bike. The RFS needs a little more TLC and is still a race bike first (albeit one that makes a good Dual Sport); personally I'd rather have an RFS than a DRZ but I don't mind the extra maintenance. I'm not sure if it's even possible to find a plated one in the North East.

When it comes to tight woods riding, I want to be on the smallest lightest bike that's practical. If I were back living in the Northeast it'd be one of the 250s for me from the OP's list.
We'll have to agree to disagree on basically everything you said.

Which is OK, we all don't have to agree!

Except the LC4 vibes, no experience with that bike.
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Old 08-29-2013, 10:25 AM   #36
DPelletier
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It isn't really KTM vs. Japanese except for the fact that KTM makes a plated race bike and the Japanese don't.

I raced a KTM 300XCW up until recently and it remains my top choice as an offroad mount. If you said "pick a bike to do this gnarly trail with", the KTM 300 would be my go-to bike. If you said it had to be street legal, I'd choose a 450 or 500EXC hands down...

BUT, there is a downside to all that offroad capability;

- increased maintenance
- decreased longevity
- limited carrying capacity
- limited range
- too light and twitchy for long distance highway travel.
- no wind protection

As I've said many times before; the reason that there is NO PERFECT DUAL SPORT is that all dual sports are an exercise in compromise and that exercise needs to be done on an individual basis based on the usage, wants, skills and budget of the rider in question;

For one guy, the perfect bike is a 1200GS, for another it's a 990 adventure, for the next guy its a DR650 and for someone else its a 500EXC....

The real answer is: IT DEPENDS.

2 cents,
Dave
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Old 08-29-2013, 10:34 AM   #37
Rob.G
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Probably the closest to a do it all bike will be the DRZ400 or DR650. And that's IF you don't plan on doing anything super-nasty.

I started out with the DR650. Great all-around bike. Then I went to Death Valley, and as a Dirt Noob, I learned very quickly how it was just too big and heavy for me to deal with (being 5'8, 29" inseam and 175 lbs). So I got a KLX250S and learned how to ride it. That's the bike I use for anything technical now.

Then I did some more mixed asphalt/dirt trips on the DR650. Still a great bike, but I wanted more comfort on the pavement, so I picked up a used 2012 V-Strom DL650 at great price (that's another story). It's fantastic on pavement and is much better on dirt than you would think. It's not quite up to the DR650 but it'll do damn near everything it'll do, but with more limited ground clearance.

Now I have three dual sports. And the DR650 is the middle and is almost pointless. ALMOST. This weekend I'm going to ride some of the Oregon Backcountry Discovery Route. I could do it on the V-Strom. But since I already know ahead of time it's gonna be mostly dirt, it will be more fun on the DR650. The KLX would work well too but there will be too much pavement, and it doesn't carry a load of camping gear nearly as well.

Rob
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