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Need advice for a trail bike!

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Looking to get a bike for riding the forest roads in Florida and the NC mountains, Baja and Copper canyon. I've done the Continental Divide ride on a DL1000 and loved it, also recently the Trans Labrador hiway in the rain on a DL.

I'm a big guy at 250lbs and 6'2" and want something that will haul me around OK.

I'm currently thinking along the lines of an xr650L, DR650, DRZ400, KTM 525. I'll consider anything but I want something that will be dependable and be able to get parts in out of the way places like central America.

Thanks,

Ken

www.kenackerson.com

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by saying the word "dependable" you narrowed your chioces to a xr or drz. if you are going to be doing alot of miles, and possibly some highway go do the xr650. if not get a drz400, great bike and never ever with let you down, and with the rite setup and an ok rider it will hang with a good placed trail group with no problems.

(edit just saw "big guy" bit....get an xr650)

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How about the DR650? It's $1000 cheaper to start with. How about after market parts.

Ken

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Your chosen riding areas are really not 525 KTM's forte, you would need something like the 640 or 950 Adventure. The central America excursion will require too much extraneous weight to be carried, and it will tax all of the mentioned bikes to the point of failure. Parts availability will be about nil for any bike, so you will need to carry spare parts.

I suggest checking out "Trail Rider" magazine from about a year ago for their 3 part series on riding Baja from CA to about Belize. Yeah, things like broken sub frames from carrying extra weight can interrupt your fun.

As for local fire roads and tight mountain trail rides, the 525 EXC KTM can't be beat by any of your other choices, that's what it does best. It, however, will need regular (15 hour) maintenance. If you aren't willing or able to do this, the XR's and DR's will give you a bit more leeway, but at the cost of more pork and less performance.

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