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About 54321

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    trail riding, street riding...travel.

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  1. Interesting! tell me more! What mods have to be done to make it fit? Choke? Throttle cables? Any info appreciated! Patrick
  2. Thanks guys, I read back on the first thread here and found some detail on setting float height. I've used the tube method on my DR650, worked well. This CRF has some damaged parts so ordering up some new stuff, hoping for the best. The used carbs on Ebay are pretty bad ... corrosion, rust. Anyone have a nice used Carb they want to sell? or know where to get one? I will keep an eye on Ebay ... hope to find a better one. I saw that I can buy ALL the OEM HONDA internal parts for $233. May go that route. Will update on progress in next week or so. Thanks everyone! Patrick
  3. Thanks TT, that is what I figured. But the kits make it easy ... now I have to track down every single bit I need off the Fiche. PITA. I wonder if Honda OEM dealers offer a rebuild kit for this Carb? I've not seen one, did I miss it? Anyone know how to set float height correctly? I can wing it but a tutorial would help. TIA, Patrick
  4. About four years ago I restored my buddies CRF. Did Race tech on forks (did it myself) sent the shock out to that guy in San Jose. Re-jetted and pipe. Fantastic result. But my buddy is cruel to bikes and so is his spoiled 30 year old kid and clueless friend who "borrow" the bike, abuse it then put it away wet and broken and never say a word. Long story short, they abused the bike, then have let sit out that last 1.5 years, near the beach. First look: Throttle stuck! Turns out slide was rusted stuck barrel ... carb full of corrosion, looked like Hell. I thought I could pick up a nice used Carb cheap ... but hardly any out there, all over $100. OK guys, which rebuild kit is the best? I've stupidly used ALL BALLS kits (bearings, seals, jets) in the past ... never again. it's very poor Chinese stuff. I know most of these kits come from China ... do you guy recommend one that might actually FIT that 230 Keihin Carb? Looks like I need a float bowl valve ... and need to know proper way to set float height on this carb. I've gone through the carb, cleaned it up with a soak in Simple Green and clean up with Carb cleaner. Blasted out with air. Float valve is leaking, I think I tweaked the "tang" when getting the pin out. (dumb). I've love to just toss the whole carb away ... if I could find a decent one to put in. Meantime I'd like to try a Carb kit and replace what I can. Anything that is a common failure on these? I imagine letting them sit does the MOST damage. When the bike was running ... was perfect. Any help, links or recommendations greatly appreciated. TIA!! Patrick
  5. IMO, the DRZ is the wrong choice ... Why? You are BOTH big guys. The DRZ400 is a little skinny dirt bike. The seat will cripple you ... especially you Dad! Trust me, owned one and currently am Bike sitting my buddies DRZ400SM. Torture rack and I'm only 5'7", 180 lbs. Get the DR650 and be happy. It's the easiest and safest for a beginner rider. Very mellow ... yet capable enough to do it all. Also, I dare you to try to pack up a DRZ for camping or whatever. Terrible! The DR650 has HUGE after market support with racks, bags, ... everything to make it a good dual sport bike. It's also simpler and cheaper to maintain than the DRZ, less complex, easier Carb. The DR DOES need some mods to bring it up to it's full potential ... it will need a better seat too. But it can be easily made super comfortable ...even for large humans! But upgrades can come later, like in a year or so once you've ridden and got comfortable. Go ride them both and decide. Also, you may find more used DR650's around for sale, cheaper than DRZ, not sure about that, but good ones come up, some even have lots of good aftermarket stuff already on them. DR650 is a perfect beginners bike ... and quite versaltile as well.
  6. I ruled out KTM's for different reasons ... based on previous experience and things I've already mentioned in this thread. I'm no longer a racer but did race AMA Enduro (B rider) for 8 years on 2 strokes, retiring in mid 90's. Now I travel on bikes (retired) Almost no one here on TT travels, mostly dirt bike guys lots younger than me that are into Pick up Trucks and guns. I've owned several XR Hondas, starting mid 80's: XR600, XL600, XR400, XR650L ... and my favorite ... XR250R. I really had high hopes when I bought a brand new '93 XR650L. But it just didn't work out for me. At the time, the "new" XR650L was all the rage ... made the cover of all the magazines, guys even tried (and failed) to race Baja. Back then I went on an annual trip down into Baja, usually only as far as Mulege' and back but several times all the way to La Paz. NO TRUCKS, no back up, just us. Lots of guys bought XR650L's ... and many had problems. Mostly heat related from pumping though deep sand and running them at top speed on highway (about 95 mph). Did I mention the group I rode with are maniacs? Also, lots of bent rear sub frames (carrying almost nothing on the back) and a few torn off battery boxes, bent wheels, failed stators and more. I ran my bike low on oil one trip, had to rebuild the top end. Never could get the handling right for our Nor Cal single track. The XR-L was OK if you were cautious. Push it hard and it could BITE. I sold it off. As I got more into doing long, extended trips for months rather than weeks ... I had to rule out the Big Honda for ALL the reasons that found it wanting in Baja. Many have over come It's shortcomings and made them into good Long Range ADV Dual sport bikes. But I moved on. It was a shame that Yamaha discontinued importing the XT600 in '95 ... another good dual sport that makes a very good travel bike once set up. So all that brings me to my Suzuki DR650. It's no featherweight ... and if I were doing more off road in my travels, I'd have a 250 Super Sherpa, WR250R or CRF250L instead. But over the years I realize I end up on far more paved roads than dirt or trails. For this use the DR650 is hard to beat. Cruise at 75 mph all day, day after day. Great fun in the twisties, or doing nasty Desert tracks, rocks and deep sand without too much drama. All this with a 65 lb. load on board and range of 235 miles. I've ADV Toured on BMW GS's, Vstroms and KTM's ... All too big, too heavy and too expensive when they hit the ground .... just TOO STUPID! So the DR650 is my Old Guy compromise bike. I've owned most of the rest (KLR, DRZ400, XR-L, KTM, BMW, Yamaha) So far the DR650 is the one for me. It's not a tall bike which is good for me at 5'6". Tough and reliable. If I get back into real dirt riding I'll buy another KTM 250 EX or SX Two Stroke.
  7. Nice response Mike! Jeez, if we were over on ADV Rider ... they'd call in the Lynch Mob and Tar and Feather you! I've ridden a very well set up XR650R (ages ago now) with full Precision Concepts and more. It was good but did not ride it long enough to really do an accurate comparison as you've done. I do remember the Honda are very stable, tracked well, rocks did not knock it off line and was easy in desert sand. Rode the XR-R here: Friend Matt's bike in Black Rock Desert rode along this trial on that bike. ... good, but BIG and heavy and TALL for me!
  8. That's in interesting comment Mike! Never heard anyone bring up the chassis ... and the affect it might have on handling. Thanks for that insight. On my two brief rides on the 690 (only one off road) I was not all that impressed with the "feel" of the bike. But so little time, could not diagnose anything. so are you saying the stiffness means it's not nimble? Doesn't hold a line? Doesn't slide predictably ... or a combo of all that? I never found my former XR650L a good handler either ... and fell off it many times ... sometimes for no good reason. Front end usually washed out on high speed fire road. Lets hear your comments/insights!
  9. 54321

    The ORIGINAL adventure bike

    Actually Europe was there too, Husky, Maico, Montesa, Ossa, Bultaco all had dual sport versions ... all two strokes, street legal. I bought a brand new Bultaco Matador in 1967 : 250cc two stroke, street legal. Great little bike. I ended up converting it to a flat track racer, then sold it and bought a Pursang. Raced at Ascot Park ... once! All the big four did small cc dual sports starting in the late 60's, thoughout the 70's. I later bought a Honda CL175 and took it on a Surf trip into Baja. Then rode all around Baja, doing day trips. This in about 1967 or 68, IIRC. I think Yamaha made the best early dual sports ... two strokes. DT series were great, solid bikes. Honda sold millions of those 350's but never, ever heard anyone call one a "Dual Sport" bike.
  10. So True, fitness is everything for racers, and a GOOD THING for everyone! During my AMA Enduro days I mountain biked for fitness and raced Motocross as cross training. Man, what a difference biking made! Scott Summers was a God! Amazing what pure talent can do! NO ONE in that era could ride a four stroke as well. Watching him ride technical sections I always was reminded: Smooth is Fast! But no matter how fit you are ... it won't help a heavy pig of a bike with crap suspension handle better. YOU WILL CRASH trying to go too fast on such a bike. But since we're talking about Dual Sport bikes, not race bikes or racing, I think if your fitness is not at 100%, does not mean you can't ride at all. But WE ALL should try to stay in better shape. (easier said than done!) It's safer and better for ya! But if traveling solo like I've done in Mexico and Cent. Am. the last 20 years, then being fit (IMO) is a must. I hate getting old as I'm so weak now. But I can still lift my loaded DR650 up and ride for 12 hours straight! How many dirt bike guys can do that?
  11. Hard to argue with that statement! The DRZ is a great one, and as you say, great bang for the buck. Everyone has different priorities. Do consider that the bikes you list are decades apart and can't be fairly compared to your KTM or a DRZ either. The KLR650 was first introduced in "around" 1984 as a 600cc, then upgraded to 650 a year or two later. Since then, just the one up date in '08. The KLX has been out of production for 20 years. Shame Kawi never followed up on the KLX ... coulda' been a major contender. The DRZ400 came along in '99 hasn't changed since, the S model a couple years later. Great dual sport, tough, reliable and affordable. Most all my friends who've owned 520/525/530 KTM's have had MAJOR issues within a year or two of use. Great bikes, fast, great handlers, but maintenance instensive: Ready To Race is no joke. If you've got the time and money, a great way to go if you only ever ride close to home or carry your bike around in a pick up. So when you think KTM, also think $40,000 pick up truck!
  12. Damn! Beautiful bike Mike! Nice work! Possible Employment Opportunity: I've love to see someone do speciality work like you've done, but focus on ADV "round the world" travel bikes. The XR-L is a great candidate ... and with proper mods and upgrades it could be world class. Those who have packed up the XR-L and done big miles, crossed borders know it's faults and it's positives as well. IMO, it's got potential. The XR650R is another bike that could be kitted up to be a traveler's off road dual sport weapon. Most guys here take dirt bikes and make them barely street legal but never ride more than 50 miles from home. Others or go Super Moto like you did, but if they get serious, buy a race bike. (read: KTM, Husky, or Husaberg) But NO ONE I know of is doing serious ADV bike builds commercially. I think there is a small niche market for such a service. KTM's would be suitable too ... but the owner would have to be a master mechanic and speak German and carry a trailer full of spares to go round the world on any KTM single. Great bikes ... for a while. In England, a few small companies have cropped up building ADV Travel bikes ... fully kitted bikes with all the right stuff. Mostly old XT Yamaha's. Strong, light, travel ready. Not sure if there is profit potential here for someone but may be worth a close look for you fabricators/engineers out there! Getting out in it in Africa.
  13. You may be giving your fellow Americans too much credit regards there grasp of moto history or it's importance. Fact is, most don't care. It's all about flavor of the month and "What have you won lately?" We are no longer a reading culture (TV 24/7) ... so many young guys under 30 don't know Jack about Honda, XR's or where they came from and what they did during their long run. (starting in the 70's with XL's) And as I said, many don't care. How many ever even heard of Scott Summers? How many can name the years and number of Baja 1000 wins by Honda? No one cares. The Japanese figured this out too ... that's why they've moved on ... and now make bikes/parts in China, Vietnam, Thailand, Brazil and the Phillipines ... as do most all the big four these days. Sort of a Wal-Mart-iza-tion of big four products ... thanks to our indifference and their greed you now get a lesser product made down to a price. The other thing many don't know (or don't want to remember) is what JUNK KTM made for so many years. (from late 70's to mid 90's) Was mostly their 4 strokes that had problems. It's taken KTM YEARS to catch up. But have to say, through clever spot marketing, they've done really well. They also finally learned basic stuff the Japanese had figured out in the 1960's ... like electrical systems and metalurgy. The Japanese excel at both. But KTM are close now ... but I still prefer Suzuki .. who's parts are now made (some) in the Phillipines.
  14. That's great news! If you need help with mods on your "new to you" DR's, come over to the DR Riders forum, WAY better than this spammed out Thumper talk and almost NO ONE here has a clue about the DR650. The DR Riders forum is ALL DR650 ALL THE TIME. Good resource for everything DR's. (PLUS ONE on taking them home to S.A. ... man, would I love to ride Africa!) http://drriders.com/ Cheers, Patrick
  15. 54321

    DRZ400SM Clutch replacement

    Thanks for all the comments guys! Ohgood, You've got it! Bike belongs to friends "wild" daughter. I'm sure once it started slipping ... she liked it and just kept revving the crap out of it. The Black pressure plate and spring shrinkage prove this to me. (HOT) I am WELL AWARE of syn vs. non syn oils, friction modifiers and all that, Moto specific oil and all. I did NOT service this bike ... it's not mine. As stated, we now theorize that someone added oil (and overfilled it as well) with regular "energy saver" Syn Car oil. Not good. Put this stuff in your wet clutch bike and you will be sorry! Oils like Mobil One Synthetic "High Mileage" or "extended use" are fine in wet clutches. (250,000 miles in my bikes) But energy saver with friction modifiers ... a NO GO. (literally) Anyway, all rebuilt now and clutch is working PERFECTLY. Smooth engagement, easy shifting, NO slippage! YEA! The Girl's Dad found out what she did ...we're hoping it won't happen again! KIDS!