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  #1  
Old 22 Jul 2005
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Buy Honda xr650r or xr650l

Me and a 2 other friends are busy planning a trip down africa.We decided on using the honda xr650.I would like to know the mane differences between the xr650l and xr650r.
I am also looking for the best place in the uk to buy these bikes.Looking for secondhand bikes and are willing to pay up to £1800 pounds and then kit them out.Would appreciate any info.
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  #2  
Old 22 Jul 2005
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You won't get an XR650R for anywhere near £1,800.

The R & L are very different bikes

R: Aluminium frame, watercooled engine, more of a competition bike although people have travelled on them. Not sure about servicing?

L: Steel tube frame, basically an XR600 fitted with the air cooled & e-start NX650 Dominator engine. Valve adjustment is via screw & locknut adjusters and generally easy to service.

I believe that very few parts, OEM or aftermarket, are interchangeable between the two models?
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  #3  
Old 23 Jul 2005
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both are awesomely reliable, easy enough to service and can be made to handle very well fully laden, off road. neither is great on the road for hundreds of miles a day cos the seats are enduro-style.
having done 20-30,000km on each, its down to how much power you need. in a very real sense, if you think you need the power of the R, get the L cos the R will get you into trouble.
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  #4  
Old 25 Jul 2005
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Thanks for all the information so far.Can any one help me with a a place on the internet or on some phone numbers who I can contact to buy the bikes.
Would appreciate any further tips and info for this trip.Where the best place is to look for equipment and what modifications to do on the bike.
Thanks
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  #5  
Old 25 Jul 2005
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There's always at least one 650R in MCN every week and several of each every month in TBM.
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  #6  
Old 25 Jul 2005
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If you want to meet up in London one weekday evening (I go away at weekends), I can tell you what I did to my bikes and where I went. tanks, parts, servicing, routes ...

the relevance will clearly depend on where you want to go, how you want to ride and what you plan to carry.
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Old 25 Jul 2005
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The XR650R is a full on off-road racer. You don't need all those high power revs. It is not designed for the road at all.

The 650L is a better bet. Have a look in the link
http://www.pm-04.com/index1.htmlThe XR650L

for how to set up an XR650L if money is not problem. Although I hope you have better luck than this guy did.

Have you thought about something smaller? Read through the postings on the Which Bike part of this site's bulletin board here:

http://tinyurl.com/bochs

I like many others who have gone long distance, believe that smaller is better. Especially for africa. In your position I would be looking at something in the 250 to 400cc range. A smaller bike would suit your budget too.

I am not sure it is clear what the abbreviations above mean. MCN means Motor Cycle News. It is a newspaper format biker weekly that you can pick up in most newsagents. TBM is Trail Bike Monthly, which comes in magazine format. You'll need to go to a bigger newsagent for that.

Can I raise another suggestion: buy a bike that has already travelled.

They are cheap. They have all the useful (expensive) kit already fitted. Overlanders are honest about the bike's faults. Biker travellers will not rip you off. You know that the bike has been mechanically well looked after - overlanders depend on their machines. Don't be too put off by high miles and scruffy looks - whatever you buy is going to look scruffy by the time you get back from africa.

There are bikes for sale on this site often. There is, for example, a guy who is practically giving away a Honda Transalp at present:

http://tinyurl.com/cujdz

Why not put up a posting explaining what you want and see what comes back?

Good luck.

Simon
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  #8  
Old 25 Jul 2005
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Thanks for the invite rick but during the week I work near cambridge and only come into London over weekends depending on the weather.Would leave another message as soon as I am back in London during the week.
Cheers
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  #9  
Old 6 Aug 2005
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To Rich

I am one of the guys thats going with Mj, I posted you an email on a bike I am currently looking at. (to your hotmail as on overland solutions site)

Please respond as I would like to meet up with you

Cheers

Geo



[This message has been edited by gwc (edited 18 August 2005).]
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  #10  
Old 16 Aug 2005
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http://www.pm-04.com/tech1.html

Sorry, pics are broken for the time being.
Hope this helps.
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  #11  
Old 17 Aug 2005
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Hi,

There is an XR650L on e-bay as we speak with about 6k on.

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  #12  
Old 17 Aug 2005
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Hi,

Spotted another 650L at Carlton Motors in Whitby (01947 603 234). It's a 94 model American import with 9k on the clock at £1875 with a warranty.

I know it's a distance from you but if you went for it, its a good ride home to spot any faults.

If your looking specifically for L's and can't afford a new import, check Autotrader, MCN and E Bay websites daily.

You just missed a good looking X-LMF on E Bay.

Cheers,


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  #13  
Old 13 Oct 2005
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Hi all.
Just whant to update my post.
Bought my honda xr650l a few weeks ago for 1350 with 20 000 ml on the clock,mot till next year september.She off 93 model and runs good.Have all ready fitted hand guards,inline fuel filter and a wind screen.Thanks for all your suggestions and help so far.
Happy riding in cold weather!
ps.Ricklees if your reading this please e-mail me.I am coming back to london till end of year and would like to meet up if you dont mind.

[This message has been edited by mjp.xrl (edited 13 October 2005).]
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  #14  
Old 21 Oct 2005
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hi mate
seeing you decided on the xr650L you might want to know what i found out about the engine on my alaska to argentina trip. i was on a dommie but it is essentially the same engine. if you look at the honda tech section of HUBB where this is posted and go to page 2 there is a posting entitled "prepare your dommie better than i did". with a little bit of work you could avoid the potential problems i encountered with this engine. hope you have an excellent trip
oz
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  #15  
Old 25 Oct 2005
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Me and a friend are planning a 25k round trip of South America. Were using Xr650R's.

Its true the seats are awful but were getting them repacked and altered so should be fine, also we went for the more powerful R as were going to gear the bikes down for the road and the enter torque will pull much better with higher gearing, especially with luggage. The power wont get us into trouble. The alloy frame is much stronger too (although harder to repair) and water cooling is always a better option in Hot climates. The L uses the old dominator engine.Although basic and reliable, it has its own faults which can be found on this forum.

Also, the R has a kick start unlike the L's Electric. Id rather have the piece of mind to always be able to start the bike and not worry about battery condition. Clearing a flooded engine with an electric start will kill you battery in minutes...
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