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Change of heart (dr650)

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A couple of months ago, I was torn between a dr650 or a street bike (sv650) to go along with my dr350. I got the sv thinking it would be great for errands/commuting/touring. After riding it for a couple of months, I realized that I can do all these things on a dr650!--why didn't you people stop me? J/K- I really don't fit in with the street bike guys. I don't get much kick out of running the same section of road over and over?? &%$#@! is that about? Tried it and I'm ready to move on-good news is I bought used so I won't take much of a hit (if any) when I sell it. I'm looking to pick up a '96-'97 or '00 and up dr650. I hate being limited to street only and while a few mods (seat and tank) are needed for touring, they are cheap and easy. I'm aware of the base gasket issue on the pre '03? bikes and of course the starter problem on the '98-'99. Is there anything I'm overlooking here?

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I feel pretty much as you do,not really fitting in with the street crowd and found the "runs" that are made kind of boring.

Recently though I've been looking for a cruser to add to the garage but not to replace the DR. I'm just looking for something to replace my pick-up on nice days and for long road trips that the 650 is less suited for.Even though its a road bike its got 2 wheels and is still better than riding in a box!

I love that DR but 150 miles in the saddle will put a hurting on me,even with the gel seat.The tire whine on the pavement is getting old too (I won't take the knobs off though they work great offroad). THe DR is not what I'd consider a touring bike and I can't get my wife to make any extended rides with me(2hrs or more). I really can't blame her. That accounts for the itch for a cruiser,with a fat touring saddle.

Well I made my rounds to all the dealers and so as not to be a hipacrite myself I checked out the harley dealership,though I havn't been a fan of the Harley crowd with the thinking that if it ain't a Harley...,and the buttholes that never rode a bike before buying a Harley and are now instant bikers.These are the same people that are to good to talk to or give a wave to a rider on any other bike much less a dirtbike, we've all seen them. :cry:

With that said I test rode a softtail deluxe and ended up very impressed. :cry:

(I think I upset the dealer when I told him that the handlebar placement and overall balance felt like my dirtbike. Hey I thought that was a good thing. :cry:)

That might be my next bike! Go figure?

I am definitely not getting rid of the DR though and have plans to rework the suspension this winter.

Hey,my wife even wants me to keep it!!! Says she couldn't see me without a dirt bike,its what I've been riding for 30 years. :lol:

Mike. :cry:

PS- If I get the Harley when I ride it I'll only wave at the dirt bikes! :cry:

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I really like that look, just wondering what you pick up over the Dr as a start point. It sure is a head turner!! SGT MIKE; I am also looking to add a Jap Cruser to the stable, my father forced me to ride his and i have to say i kinda liked it even thought the pegs are in the wrong place. :cry:

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that modified SV is huge! probably pretty fast on the trails! .......an HD? why would you overpay for something that's slow and requires excessive maintenance???? and yes most of them are posers......sad sad

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The sv motor is one of the best ever made. It would be unbelievable in a dirtbike frame--very quick. About the dr, have any of you used one for adventure riding?

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that modified SV is huge! probably pretty fast on the trails! .......an HD? why would you overpay for something that's slow and requires excessive maintenance???? and yes most of them are posers......sad sad

Yeh, I know its way too much and thats bothering me,but have you ever ridden one? That thing felt like an all American hot rod!It was comfortable,looked right,felt right,sounded great and had something that the jap bikes didn't. That I can't discibe,you have to see for yourself.I know the Jap cruisers are solid and dependable but they still some how miss the mark. Its hard to explain. I rode the VTX,goldwing(not for me),and royal star.THe Harley was the only one to put a grin on my face.It ain't that slow with the 88 cube motor either as cruisers go.(remember its a cruiser not a crotch rocket :cry:)One of the biggest reasons for my choice to get a cruiser and which cruiser is that my wife and I have plans to take trips together.

I have also noticed when I think about it that the jap cruisers that my friends have,have had their problems too. Heck my DR leaked oil from beneath the cam chain tensioner at only 6,000 miles :cry:.

Oh yeh the foot peg and rear brake placement does seem strange,like stepping on a cars brake.

Mike.

PS-remember,I'm still going to keep and ride my DR!!!

PSS-on the note that my wife and I are planning to take trips together I know someone will say that with the HD I'd better plan on taking frequent rest stops. No big deal,my wife can't travel anywhere without 50 bathroom breaks anyway :cry:.

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I have a newer FXD, which I like alot. It provides a more upright riding position and is Harley's least expensive big bike. I have it opened up in the breathing and drinking departments, and it runs fine. No rocket, but it still pulls well at reasonable speeds. I just sold a bunch of bikes, but kept the Harley. Have you looked at Guzzi's at all. They run well, handle well, accommodate 2-up riding, and don't sound like a Jap cruiser. Used prices on Guzzi's are very attractive..I do like Harley's the best in the cruiser market. Been that way for 40 years.

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Wow, Lottsa 'discourse' on the Harley issue, isn't there?

Well, I've only owned Jap bikes, and only MX'ers, until NOW, with my DR-650, but have rode a BUNCH of bikes over the years. From Honda Hawks, Kawy Ninja's, to ONE Harley Sporster.....and except for the DUAL purpose in my DR, the Harley would have won HANDS down, and this was almost 20 years ago, before the 'new and improved' motor. I rode my Best Friends 'Drag Pipe' equiped Harley for three or four blocks (With my MOTO-4 helmet by the way), through a very nice 'quite' Italian town...and the LOOKS!!!!!!! It was also the smoothest ride I've ever had!! At the time, I swore I'd never own a street bike that wasn't a H/D....but alas, that was 20 years, two wives, and a 'mid life crisis' ago. Thus the reason for my license plate......"RDNKHD"

Red Neck Harley Davidson!!!!!!

NEXT time, though, Harley it is!!!!

Tom

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I've got ZERO interest in harleys. We're talking about the DR650 as an adventure bike.

Point taken,this is a forum for DRs. My reason for bringing it up is that if you already own a DR and intend to keep it but want to set another DR up for mainly street,long trips or commuting you'd be better off getting a strictly road bike or a bigger adventure bike. I've done long trips on my DR and wouldn't try to make someone believe that its a comfortable ride. Its a bit light for the highway and takes a little more effort than a real road bike to hold your lane in traffic and you will get blown around. The seat is still a dirt saddle and will wear on you after a couple of hours (and I've got the gel seat). The DR is a great bike but it is disigned for a purpose and has limitations. Long road trips are better suited to KLR's and better yet BMW's. A long trip in the dirt is where a DRZ or DR650 will shine.

I know there are plenty of BMW people that believe that thier big heavy GS's are great in the dirt and all of us DR folk's can only shake our heads at that thought.

Thats kind of what I mean when the DR650 is looked at as a bike to take an extended road trip on. You can do it but it would be alot easier and more comfortable on something else.

I just think of it as using the right tool for the job.

Not out to bust anyones bubble,just don't want to see someone get disappointed. :cry:

Mike.

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One thing I forgot to mention, which might be relevant, is my age. At 26 years old, I think I can make the DR work in situations where some of the "old-ER" guys don't want to (long rides). I've seen plenty of 2500+ mile ride reports so I know guys are doing it on the DR650.

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Age does play a big factor in MAKING a long bike trip work or not, but most important is physical conditioning. I have heard guys 10 years older than me (I'm 38) complain about rides, riding fast/hard for extended periods of time, and they say "Wait till you're my age". Then I reply to them, "Well why was that guy 10 years older than you kicking all our asses?"

It's about being in shape and your frame of mind. The bike plays about 10%, maybe more if you are a suckier rider. :cry:

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Age does play a big factor in MAKING a long bike trip work or not, but most important is physical conditioning. I have heard guys 10 years older than me (I'm 38) complain about rides, riding fast/hard for extended periods of time, and they say "Wait till you're my age". Then I reply to them, "Well why was that guy 10 years older than you kicking all our asses?"

It's about being in shape and your frame of mind. The bike plays about 10%, maybe more if you are a suckier rider. :cry:

I might be that guy 10 years older :cry:(still do 100+ mile enduros thru the trees at 50-60+)

But seriously,there are more comfortable bikes for the long haul,but if feeling sore after a long ride makes you feel like you've accomplished something,knock yourself out! :cry:

Mike.

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The only other option for me is the big KLR. I know it's great on the road but it's just too damn tall (I'm 5'7"). I know I could lower it but as boingy as it is, I'm not sure that's a good idea. I think with the corbin seat, the DR will do fine.

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I believe you can get a Kouba link for the KLR that will lower it in the rear,as for the front just slide the forks up through the clamps. This would I believe solve the height issue. My main concern would be its weight mostly being top heavy and its suspension stinks as compared to the DR (I think thumper racing can fix that though). It does have the most comfortable seat of all the dual sports and a big tank for adventure type range.

Not an easy choice for sure.

When I go out of state I trailer the 650. Then put on a couple of hundred miles off road when I get there.

The seat don't hurt when you spend half of time on the pegs.I can also ride a little harder knowing that if I break something I have a way of getting it home. :cry:

Mike.

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I've decided on the DR. Hopefully, it will never see a trailer--if I'm gonna trailer a bike, it'll be the dr350. I've found one (650) with lots of goodies and low miles. I'm just waiting to hear back so I can lock it in.

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