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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 7/25/2005 10:43:16 AM EDT

OK, so Jap bikes suck. My last motorcycle was a Ducati Monster, and I've had a couple of old Triumphs. Right now, I'm "between motorcycles" as they say, but find myself yearning once again for the freedom of the open road. More to the point, I find myself yearning for the freedom of the open trail. Now, at 40, I'm certainly no Jeremy McGrath, nor do I intend to be. I'd just like something that I can chase the cows with every now and again. I have no interest in a Harley, since my hair isn't falling out and my penis still functions properly. Sportbikes arent built for the 6'-5", 230-lb frame of Dorkus Maximus like me, either. Sure, I'd love to have a P-D GS, but who wouldn't?

That brings me to the KLR. At $5K brand new, I think I'd be getting a lot of bike for the money. Some will say "too much" bike for the money, since the thing is pretty heavy. Correction ... real heavy. However, there are some fixes around. Plastic "mil-spec" fuel tank helps a lot, as does a substantial fork brace. I don't plan on riding such a machine in the Iron Butt or anything, but wouldn't mind using it for a little 2-lane getaway when I can.

Green is back for 2006, but it's the bright lime green, not the cool dark green from several years ago. Eh, what do I care? A couple of cans of Krylon, and it can be any color I want, right?

So, does the ARFCOM sphere of influence have any experience with this living museum of 1980's motorcycle technology?

Thumpers are teh r0xx0r!
Link Posted: 7/25/2005 11:20:05 AM EDT
IIRC nationwide got rid of his KLR recently and you might want to IM him to get his opinion.

If you aren't a fan of crotch rockets and not a fan of big honking cruisers, that kind of "dual-sport" bike might actually be your cup of tea.
Link Posted: 7/25/2005 11:27:18 AM EDT

Originally Posted By deej86:
IIRC nationwide got rid of his KLR recently and you might want to IM him to get his opinion.

If you aren't a fan of crotch rockets and not a fan of big honking cruisers, that kind of "dual-sport" bike might actually be your cup of tea.

Thanks for the tip! I'll follow up with nationwide.
Link Posted: 7/25/2005 12:28:28 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/25/2005 12:29:56 PM EDT by PVFD304]
At 6' 4" and 250lbs, I have been looking at the V-Strom and the Yamaha FZ6.

Between my size and a bad back I need a more upright riding position. I never got into the whole cruiser scene either.

Glad to see another "big man" on a bike.

Link Posted: 7/25/2005 1:21:59 PM EDT
Okay, for your size, you don't need to worry about touching the ground flat-footed or anything so that's good.

Personally, I'd get the KLR650 only if I wanted something to take on long road trips. That's where the huge gas tank and mini fairing make it the winner.

But for something more dirt-oriented, I'd go with the Honda XR650L. A little more modern suspension and frame than the KLR, and it definitely feels more nimble in the dirt. Things I'd add would be more aggressive tires (yet still DOT-legal) and a bigger tank because stock, it goes on reserve in about 70 miles. I think its brakes are superior to the KLR's as well.

But if you wanted something in between the XR-L's dirt-worthiness and the KLR's long-distance street orientation, then I'd suggest Suzuki's DR650. To me, it feels a little more comfortable on the street than the Honda, but it also is better in the dirt than the Kawasaki. Again, I'd opt for a larger aftermarket gas tank and better tires, unless you think you'll spend 90 percent of your time on pavement.

You might find used KTM 620s or 640s. Those are definitely more dirt-oriented and feel a tad rough on long road rides. They don't have quite the finished feel of the Japanese machines, though the newer KTMs come very close. Of course, if you're talking big twins, the 950 Adventure is awesome and clearly superior to the pre-2005 BMW GSs in the dirt. I've put a quite a few miles on the 950s with stock tires and found them to be pretty darn good in the dirt. Little jumps, no problem. Only thing is the high asking price currently.

For something completely different, of course, there are the ATKs and CCMs with their pretty bullet-proof Rotax motors. It's just that finding a good dealer close by for parts and service might be a long shot. Good luck and good riding.
Link Posted: 7/25/2005 2:24:19 PM EDT

Originally Posted By kato4moto:
A lot of insightful comments!

Thanks a lot. The Honda appears to come at about a $1000 premium ot the Kaw or Suzuki. I might stop in and look at both the KLR and DR at a local shop.

I knew a guy who had a Duke for a while. Being a SuperMotard-style bike, it was VERY heavily biased toward street riding, which doesn't upset me at all. In fact, the place I bought my Monster from is a KTM dealer, too. Hmm ...

Thanks again, kato4moto. You gave me a lot to ponder!
Link Posted: 8/2/2005 8:30:40 PM EDT
sadly it's been archived, started off about the Marine's modified KLR650 but had some decent discussion and links for civilian KLRs too
Link Posted: 8/2/2005 9:02:14 PM EDT
Thanks, sharky30!
Link Posted: 8/3/2005 5:48:42 AM EDT
Link Posted: 9/6/2005 9:07:25 AM EDT
Link Posted: 9/6/2005 1:38:30 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/6/2005 1:39:05 PM EDT by jstang]
Get it!!! I just picked up my second KLR an 05. Before it I had A ZG1000/Concours. I hear the DR is better in dirt, however the motor is a plated cylinder, not the cast iron bore of the Kaw. There is a whole aftermarket of parts availible to tailor the bike just to you. Check out the forums www.klr650.net

I use my for commuting and the bigger tank is a big plus. The GS beamer while nice doesn't justify its price tag. I'm also 40 6' in the 200+ range.

also look at
Link Posted: 9/18/2005 8:58:35 AM EDT
Well/ What did you finally get/
I got the 06 KLR650 about 3 weeks ago and it's been great.
Went on a road trip here last weel and vactually 75.3 miles per gallon.
Link Posted: 9/29/2005 2:08:01 PM EDT
The Suzuki looks cool, I have a partialness to the color yellow!
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