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Looking for a dual sport bike. 70% highway, 30% forest service roads. I ride trails quite a bit also and have a bike for that so it's not my intention to ride technical trails with this bike. But I want a decent suspension for when the road turns into a jeep road. Some have recommended the Suzuki DR650. Others the Honda 650L or KTM 640. Should also be able to ride 200 miles of highway without feeling like I've been on my dirt bike.

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Originally posted by UsedToBe:

Should also be able to ride 200 miles of highway without feeling like I've been on my dirt bike.

IMO - The DRZ-S is not for you. Any of the bikes you mentioned would be better for the long haul - or maybe even the KLR650.

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I'm in a similar situation. I'm taking a hard look at the KTM 640 LC4.

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If long tours are your thing...I would think twice about the 400s...I love mine.. But anything over an hour on the road, and you know all about it. I'm actually kind of ticked..I have a camp about two hours from my house...I end up trailering the bike to the camp and enjoying the riding from there.

I have done a few long road trips with the drz...and they do end working out OK. The bike has plenty of road power...But the wind and vibration beats you up pretty bad.

If I were in your position (having a spare off road and extra money), I would go for one of the larger displacement bikes for the road.

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Its not so much that the 400S is bad on road, i find it fun on road and with a spare set of motard rims and tires it would be a scream.

I dont find the vibration to bad compared to other duallies i have ridden and i have unbolted the bar weights and foot rest rubbers.

The seat is uncomfortable for longer trips but a gel seat might cure that.

The bike is light for a duallie so crosswinds are a nuissance but no worse than on any other high bike and when the trail turns to those jeep tracks i would rather have the lighter bike.

I treat mine more like an enduro off road and i cannot imagine doing that with any other duallies out there so far, i have the 01 and the 02 is improved even better.

If you were carrying a passenger for long distance on road that would be the one area where a bigger duallie such as the 650L or DR650 would score better, i take my kids on behind for runs off road and its good for that.

Den

01 400S

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I owned a KLR650 2 years ago. I'd definitely look at the KLR650. It sounds ideal for your purposes. I lowered the suspension, which made the bike alot more stable on the highway and in turns. The bike is top heavy and benefits from this modification, and will get it about 2" lower. The stock tires would be fine also.

It has a large tank and a very useable rear rack. It has a small fairing that deflects bugs and wind. Best of all its liquid cooled and a rider can drive for 12 hours straight without worry of overheating. This is not necessarily true of the XR650L. The Suzuki only has an oil cooler radiator.

The bike has not changed much over the years and has lots of parts available.

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The only place where I would like to have a bigger (or road) bike is for highway use. Otherwise, the DRZ400S is great for me. That's why I have installed saddlebags, koubalinks, and a gel seat. My wife has a Marauder (no fairing or windshield) and I must say that I can REALLY feel the wind at highway speeds. I now feel more comfortable on mine than on hers, wherever I go. I got used to it.

No one mentionned the BMW650GS, I tried it and it is great, as long as you don't hit the "real" trails. If money is a concern, don't bother looking at them, unless a used one is available. I (really) wanted one for a while until I realized I probably couldn't pick it up if I fell!!!

Johnnydrz

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I would prefer to use something more road orientated than the DRZ(which I own S model) for the type of road use you would be doing,

It's not that it's all that bad on the road(again could be adjusted to suit) just not as good as say the DR650(which I owned for 2years) and done alot of road miles on(18,000 miles worth),

I have not tried the KLR650,BMW F650 but I would put money on them being better on the road than the DR650 going on there fairing's and such,

Back to the DRZ400S, It's a great dual sport bike and is fun on the road, I reckon it handles better than the DR650 and put's out it's power in a more exciting way and I would not go back to a DR650, but I dont travel long distance's if I did I would probarly get something else,

My reason's are, seat like a plank of wood, engine seem's to prefer being blasted up and down the gear's as opposed to sitting at a set speed, gave the wife a lift to the garage once never again,

Hope this helps

Sunny

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Originally posted by crbid:

I owned a KLR650 2 years ago. I'd definitely look at the KLR650. It sounds ideal for your purposes. I lowered the suspension, which made the bike alot more stable on the highway and in turns. The bike is top heavy and benefits from this modification, and will get it about 2" lower. The stock tires would be fine also.

It has a large tank and a very useable rear rack. It has a small fairing that deflects bugs and wind. Best of all its liquid cooled and a rider can drive for 12 hours straight without worry of overheating. This is not necessarily true of the XR650L. The Suzuki only has an oil cooler radiator.

The bike has not changed much over the years and has lots of parts available.

crbid, how was the KLR650 in the woods? Was it a reasonable fire road mount?

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Hi,

go to that link, http://motorcycle.com/mo/mccompare/opendp.html

they did a big bore shootout between the 650L, the dr650 and the klx650r. I owned two 650L anD one klx650. I can tell you that the 650L will give out less confort onroad but a lot more fun in the trail as the test confirm. The 650L is more trail oriented than the dr650 and is bullet proof in any condition as all the xr of this generation.

The ktm is more expensive since it is a newer technologie and a probably as good as a dr650 onroad and as good as a 650L offroad.

I don't consider the klr as an offroad bike but rather a "poor road" bike with a large handlebar and high travel suspension. The dr650 is an offroad bike adapted for highway use (softer spring and seat lower, suspension less adjustable than the dr650) and the 650L is an offroad bike made legal with the minimum equipment and the technologie of the 1990.

Robin

the klr is a pig offroad compared to a 650l or dr650.

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KTM LC-4. LOOKS LIKE A BITCHIN' DUAL SPORT MOUNT. BEST LOOKING DIRT BIKE I'VE SEEN. WELL, BESIDES MY DRZ...

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DR-ZEZ.

This bike was designed for the purpose UsedToBe is stating. I've owned a KLR650 '89. Fireroad or "Jeep road" is all that the KLR is really good for in offroading. I have taken the KLR650 on some trails, and nothing fell off, but you are very aware of the size and weight of the ride.

The bike does fine on dirt roads, fireroads, jeep tracks, ATV tracks etc. . Single track no way.

The best way to describe this bike is, "its a road bike you don't mind riding on a dirt road".

I'd be scared to nick or scratch my BMW if I owned one of those, and I have looked at them. They remind me of the city only driver, that brags he has an SUV, but would never dream about taking it on a dirt road.

I've never driven a DR650, but if I were looking for a bike like UsedToBe, I'd look at the Kaw and Suzuki. They both have great price points.

Having worked for Honda, I'd concur that the XR650L is more dirt oriented than the KLR or DR.

The way I see it in this size category:

XR650 dirt 70%.

DR650 50%/50%

KLR650 road 70%.

KTM ?? (no experience) lots of $.

[ November 28, 2001: Message edited by: crbid ]

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