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favorite dual-sport motorcycle

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by snowdriver, Dec 12, 2009.

  1. snowdriver

    snowdriver sandy,oregon Member

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    i am looking to get another dual-sport,i had a yamaha xt-350 years ago that i should have never sold,nice bike,but back then i had to be the fastest machine around,and sold it and built up a fire breathing kx-500,well a little older now,and now just want something to go exploring on,have been looking at the klr 650,seems to be a very versatile machine,but i want to know what you guys have found that works well for you
     
  2. johnboy

    johnboy Hillsboro Member

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    Owned a 650 Yamaha single for a few years. Great until you want to go on smaller trails off the fire roads...too heavy. And to load alone..too heavy. I now own tw200 and it is slow on the roads 55 max, but have street sprockets and can trailer/load myself,and ride to work (non freeway)I have 6500 trouble free miles..love it......
     
  3. n47587

    n47587 creswell Member

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    I had a 2007 KLR 650 for a spell and loved it. unfrotunatly I was forced too sell her recently due to financial concerns. Have ridden many dual sports and like the klr the best. They are tall, but I have long legs so it fit well. A bit heavy for harder trail or sand dune romping, but excellent for back raods touring. If you get a pre 2008 model, ask if its had the du-hickey replaced. that was a weak point in those machines. See klr.com for more info on that.
     
  4. d1esel

    d1esel Ridgefield WA. Member

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    Take a look at KTM. The newer EXC line comes street legal I went from a KX 500 to EXC450 and I love my KTM. Keep in mind they are off road race bikes that are legal to ride on the street.
     
  5. kenr74

    kenr74 Oregon Active Member

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    I have had a bunch of dual sports and ridden a bunch more so here is my OPINION of what I have been on within the last few months.

    DRZ400-Good do everything bike, best for beginner-intermediate riders. Kind of boring in stock form but very reliable. More street that dirt oriented in the SM format but just the opposite in the S format. I have the SM now with a extra set of dirt tires. Had the S with an extra set of SM tires. Hard to pick a favorite between the two. Low maintenance.

    KLR650- Blah............more street than dirt worthy but still a cable logging road cruiser. My least favorite of the ones I have been on. Big, heavy, slow. Has a big following though is very capable for all but the most extreme offroading with the right rider.. Also low maintenance.

    Husky TE450 and 510-Hang on. Tons of power. Hits like a MX bike but comes with a plate. Very dirtworthy but not so much on the street. Kind of twitchy but if you ride alot you get used to it. Probably my favorite bike for the riding I do. Maintenance like a MX bike.


    KTM 450EXC-Similar to the Husky. Dirt bike with a plate. Not a long distance bike although it will last with proper maintenance.

    If I was looking for a mostly offroad long distance bike it would be the DRZ. For short distance to weekend trips I would go with the TE or EXC.
     
  6. SonicBlue03

    SonicBlue03 Snohomish Well-Known Member

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    How big are you, and just how far on your exploring do you want to go?

    An older KTM 660 will go anywhere - and I mean ANYWHERE -you want to go. I ride a 990 Adventure which will also do the same, but it's not an ideal bike for those super narrow trails or areas where you think you might be picking it up a lot.
     
  7. Wallygator

    Wallygator Albany, OR Active Member

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    I would either go with the KTM 450's or the DRZ line. Like another poster said, if it is short range get the exc's if longer go with the drz's
     
  8. snowdriver

    snowdriver sandy,oregon Member

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    the dr-z was one i was looking at very closely too,and to tell you the truth it was what i was looking to get before stumbling acrosss the klr,i think my bigger is better mentality got to me again,the ktm i never even looked at,another consideration,i will check it out
     
  9. SonicBlue03

    SonicBlue03 Snohomish Well-Known Member

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    DRZ is a good bike too, not taking away from it at all. My brother currently lives in AZ and just sold his - he used it to commute to work across the desert. Thing was rock solid in the sand and almost never saw pavement. He's been riding about 25 years and it was one of his favorite bikes (he's 5'10" and about 160lbs)
     
  10. snowdriver

    snowdriver sandy,oregon Member

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    i am 6 foot even and 205lbs.,i think the dr-z would move me along fine,and dont plan on any big jumping so i would think the stock suspension would be fine too
     
  11. kenr74

    kenr74 Oregon Active Member

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    That back end is pretty soft stock but for under $100 you can put a new spring on and it is much better. I'm about 180lbs and went with a stiffer spring mostly because I beat the crap out of the bike in the whoops and jumping. For easy trail riding or street riding it comes pretty nice in stock form.
     
  12. SonicBlue03

    SonicBlue03 Snohomish Well-Known Member

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    Ok, that helps - you're my size then. Don't know about your inseam, but I had a much harder time w/ the KTM 660 than I did my 990. Oddly enough, my990 is closer to the ground so easier for me to handle it.
     
  13. Sun195

    Sun195 Pugetropolis, WA Well-Known Member

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    Any thoughts on the smaller 200-ish-CC dual sport bikes like CRF or KLR or Sherpa? Good for...what?
     
  14. Gunner3456

    Gunner3456 Salem Well-Known Member

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    Everything except freeway travel. Good choice. Remember, you may need to lift this thing over a few logs... :)

    I wish I still had a Honda CL125 scrambler I once had. It would do 55 mph all day, but was high enough and light enough to go anywhere. It looked something like this:


    1974-Honda-XL125-artic-p1.jpg
     
  15. cyclesarge

    cyclesarge Eugene OR, DUH! We're ALL in the NORTHWEST Well-Known Member

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    I realistic assessment of how you will use it will go a long way towards a decision here. If you are going to ride it on the road just enough to get to the nearest dirt riding spot the KTM's and Huskys are probably the hot ticket, if you are going to ride to the coast one weekend and the the mountains the next the KLR, and BMWs are probably gonna work better for you. If you are going to tour Africa the KTM 990 is gonna be your best choice. Notice I didn't say "plan to ride". I think people buying based on how they "plan to ride" results in disappointment when how they "actually" ride is different.
     
  16. Gunner3456

    Gunner3456 Salem Well-Known Member

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    Actually, every guy NEEDS two bikes. A lightweight dual sport for getting to and riding off road, and a HARLEY! :thumbup:

    Well, you NEED more than one handgun, don't you? :laugh:
     
  17. kenr74

    kenr74 Oregon Active Member

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    4 is better.:D A light weight single track cruiser, a short range dual sport, a long range dual sport, and some form of pavement pounder.

    I have two and am always finding myself when one of the ones I don't have would be perfect.
     
  18. billc

    billc Albany Member

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    For logging/two-track roads, nothing beats a 2005 or newer Ural Gear-up! 2-wheel drive, reverse, and a sidecar to haul all of your crap!!