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Old 03-04-2013, 04:18 PM   #16
biodieselandon
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Honestly I would still go for the 800 still. You get more power and torque, better looks (in my opinion), more offroad-ability, more aftermarket support, more flexibility, and so on.

Also keep in mind the new WC 1200GS is lower in price than the previous oil cooled model. If I was looking for a more road going bike, that is the route I would take. However, I think the 800 is the best bang for the buck.
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Old 03-05-2013, 08:20 AM   #17
brakedw
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Laugh f7000gs

For me the F700GS is the right balance of size, cost and performance, I will say that i have spent money farkling ( is that a word?) crash bars, hard cases, skid plate, 12v socket and P3 lights by Skene, its got ABS and heated grips( a must).
I think I'm done for now (except maybe GPS, driving lights, Fuzebloc, centerstand, top luggage rack..... NOOOO I must STOP!
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Old 03-05-2013, 08:24 AM   #18
73datsun OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brakedw View Post
For me the F700GS is the right balance of size, cost and performance, I will say that i have spent money farkling ( is that a word?) crash bars, hard cases, skid plate, 12v socket and P3 lights by Skene, its got ABS and heated grips( a must).
I think I'm done for now (except maybe GPS, driving lights, Fuzebloc, centerstand, top luggage rack..... NOOOO I must STOP!

Do you have a build thread?

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Old 03-05-2013, 02:09 PM   #19
duffs
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Hmmm looks like the responses are a pretty even balance among your three choices...

I have an 800, I'm 5'9 all torso, short legs and with a pillion I can get my toes on the ground. Alone, it's one foot. However, after a year and nearly 6,500 miles of largely inner city London riding (a LOT of stopping and going) I don't even think about it anymore, once I stop I'm on autopilot.

That said, during my last service I was given a nice fully specced 700 for the day which I thoroughly enjoyed. Weight/luggage rating is virtually the same as on the 800. Power/torque is the same up to ~5,000rpm. I did a little review on this loaned 700 if you're interested.

You said you felt most comfortable on the 700 so you may have answered your own question!

Edit (completely off topic): I remember Minneapolis... 1996 it was... to date, among my favourite US cities—trees everywhere and genuinely warm, friendly people.
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Old 03-05-2013, 02:12 PM   #20
vtbob
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BIkes are very much and individual choice. buy the one that makes you smile the most!!

Having said that I chose the f650gs 3 years ago over the F800gs, the R1200gs and multistrada.

why because it fit me. The F800 was too tall, the R1200 was too tall and too heavy. the multistrada was neat but while very powerful seemed a road bike dressed up...and seem a bit fragile

I'm very please with my decision. I ride back roads and dirt roads, often very remote dirt roads. the F650/F700 has more that enough ground clearance/suspension travel for this type of riding.

I've hit some pretty nasty pot holes and rocks and my wheels are fine ...I think the fear of cast wheels are over stated but wire wheels are tougher (heavier, flex more so handling in the twisties is not as crisp, etc etcor
It will cruse all day at 85...so 110 on occasion....basically have no problem keeping up or leading my friend on a R1200GSA to alaska last summer. got a LOT better gas milage!! fwiw

the bigest weakness in my opinion is the rear suspension. I'm 210 an when my bags a filled I have another 100lbs or so.
the stock spring is soft so with a load I too oftened bottomed the rear in agressive twisting riding and hitting a hole.
I upgraded to a Wilber's and the problem is fixed and the damping is MUCH better than stock.

Ride them all. Have fun
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Old 03-05-2013, 02:40 PM   #21
GH41
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The cast wheel problems are exaggerated. Most of the damaged ones are the result of lower tire pressure and big rocks. Same as spoke wheel damage. For the OP's use the F700 rims will be fine. The power difference between a 700 and 800 is not worth talking about if you arn't racing. I went through the same thing last year and bought the F650GS. I could afford any of the three but my goal was realistic and I am comfortable in my own skin. Bigger and badder isn't always better but you couldn't have made me believe that 40+ years ago when I started riding! GH
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Old 03-05-2013, 02:53 PM   #22
CheckerdD
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I own both an F 800 GS and a 1200 GS. I think the 800 is the better all round bike. If you rarely go off pavement, the 1200 is a better road bike, but it's a heavy SOB off pavement. To me all the 700 is is a cheaper version of the 800. And again the stuff they have cut out is related to riding off pavement. Dave
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Old 03-05-2013, 03:47 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duffs View Post
Hmmm looks like the responses are a pretty even balance among your three choices...

I have an 800, I'm 5'9 all torso, short legs and with a pillion I can get my toes on the ground. Alone, it's one foot. However, after a year and nearly 6,500 miles of largely inner city London riding (a LOT of stopping and going) I don't even think about it anymore, once I stop I'm on autopilot.

That said, during my last service I was given a nice fully specced 700 for the day which I thoroughly enjoyed. Weight/luggage rating is virtually the same as on the 800. Power/torque is the same up to ~5,000rpm. I did a little review on this loaned 700 if you're interested.

You said you felt most comfortable on the 700 so you may have answered your own question!

Edit (completely off topic): I remember Minneapolis... 1996 it was... to date, among my favourite US cities—trees everywhere and genuinely warm, friendly people.
The great news, I read your ride report when you first posted it. Was super helpful. The 700 with ESA seems like a pretty damn good buy.

Minneapolis is a fantastic city. I moved her eight years ago for my first job in advertising. I've had options to move to NYC, San Fran and LA. But I just can't leave Minneapolis. When I do it will be for London, Shanghai, or Rio for a few years abroad. But then back to Minneapolis.
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Old 03-05-2013, 03:52 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vtbob View Post
the bigest weakness in my opinion is the rear suspension. I'm 210 an when my bags a filled I have another 100lbs or so.
the stock spring is soft so with a load I too oftened bottomed the rear in agressive twisting riding and hitting a hole.
I upgraded to a Wilber's and the problem is fixed and the damping is MUCH better than stock.
Valid concern. Given that I'm still new to these newer bikes (first bike was a 73 CB450, subsequent bike was a Ninja 650R), if I opt for a 700, and get the ESA, will it be compatible with upgraded rear suspension, or do I then lose that "cool" feature.


Quote:
Originally Posted by GH41 View Post
The cast wheel problems are exaggerated. Most of the damaged ones are the result of lower tire pressure and big rocks. Same as spoke wheel damage. For the OP's use the F700 rims will be fine. The power difference between a 700 and 800 is not worth talking about if you arn't racing. I went through the same thing last year and bought the F650GS. I could afford any of the three but my goal was realistic and I am comfortable in my own skin. Bigger and badder isn't always better but you couldn't have made me believe that 40+ years ago when I started riding! GH
But let's be real, the 650/700 looks a lot meaner with spokes.



Good to know that I should just be careful with air pressure. And not be a screw off.
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Old 03-05-2013, 04:01 PM   #25
epicxcrider
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If you swap out the shock you lose ESA functionality. Swap out the spring alone and it will probably be fine.
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Old 03-05-2013, 04:04 PM   #26
GH41
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It does look mean with spokes but my yellow and black one looks taller!!!

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Old 03-05-2013, 05:25 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 73datsun View Post
The great news, I read your ride report when you first posted it. Was super helpful. The 700 with ESA seems like a pretty damn good buy.

Minneapolis is a fantastic city. I moved her eight years ago for my first job in advertising. I've had options to move to NYC, San Fran and LA. But I just can't leave Minneapolis. When I do it will be for London, Shanghai, or Rio for a few years abroad. But then back to Minneapolis.
Nice one, I used to do advertising design and moved to London a decade ago to progress - ended up working in the health sector designing for a hospital (and community outreach) - a very anomalous job in the NHS but I enjoy it more than the cut throat world of advertising - as for Minneapolis, I think it's underrated - a bit of a secret in the travel world, where most people (in the UK anyway) seem to only have NYC, SF, LA and Miami on their radars... If you do get to London I can definitely give you the flying tour, it's a city best explored by motorbike (and not on one of those skanky open top double deckers)!

Let us know when you've made your choice of bike - looking forward to the pics!
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Old 03-05-2013, 05:28 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GH41 View Post
It does look mean with spokes but my yellow and black one looks taller!!!

That is without question the best colour scheme for the F650, much more flattering for the shape of the fairings and the wheels look good in anthracite.
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Old 03-05-2013, 06:04 PM   #29
73datsun OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duffs View Post
If you do get to London I can definitely give you the flying tour, it's a city best explored by motorbike (and not on one of those skanky open top double deckers)!
You realize, I'll totally take you up on that.

I did four months in London while I was in college. Lived three blocks from Paddington Station. Took a long weekend every other to travel around; Barcelona, Brugge/Brussels, Cork, Paris, a week in the Greek Isles, etc

It's really what gave me the travel bug, subsequently I've tried to do two international trips a year. Last year was Turkey (wife's 30th bday gift), 36hrs in Brazil for the F1 Grand Prix, and Christmas in Mexico (but that doesn't really count).

Now I'm way off topic.

Again, thanks for all the help, guys.
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:00 PM   #30
Hamish71
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Go and do an "off road rider training" course. Bikes which look huge and unwieldy all of a sudden become nimble with a few skills and two days to practice.

For what its worth, the 1200 is actually easier to pick up than an 800....those bloody cylinder heads help with leverage.

When I first got an 800, it felt massive. After 2 days of training, some practice, and a few rides you will find yourself standing on the pegs chucking that thing around like a 450.

Im your height, your weight, and stand on my tip toes on a comfort seat on an 800......when I am at the lights. When I pull up on un even ground, I need to think about feeet placement. Very, very rarely it catches me out, and I need to shift my weight a little and put one leg down. At all other times, its the 800 over the 700 every days of the week.

Last 5 day off road trip I did, the 1200s stayed with me every step of the way, unless it was very rocky, or very technical. ......heaps of torque which helps all the time...and on road....I mean seriously whats better than a 1200 on the road?

If you ride a lot.....and you get the 700....bet you in 5 yrs you are trading it up!
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