Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > Technical, Bike forums > Honda Tech

Honda Tech Honda Tech Forum - For Questions specific and of interest to Honda riders only. Questions comparing which bike is best etc go in the "Which Bike" forum.
Contact Overland Solutions for all your custom modifications and setup for overland travel.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 7 Oct 2008
*Touring Ted*'s Avatar
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Wirral, England.
Posts: 4,467
Would you buy an XR400 for an all round bike ??

Im currently bikeless after getting bored with my TDM850 and selling it...

Im skint so the next bike needs to be my only bike for everything..

Thats a daily 40 mile commute involving city and motorways, some UK trips and hopefully some transcontinental riding..

I also want to do some trail riding and green laning..

Maybe even throw it on a plane back to the Americas.. who knows !

Now, I need a do everything bike. My XT600 was too lardy for anything offroad and other trail bikes are too off road orientated...

I've considered other bikes but im on a £1500-£2000 budget at the moment.
__________________
www.TouringTed.com
1994 XR650L
2001 NX650 Dominator.

BMW Dealer Technician
Welder/Fabricator

Ushuaia - Colombia 2007/8
UK- South Africa 2010/11
India 2012
Yukon 2012
S.E Asia 2014
U.K - Magadan 2015
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 7 Oct 2008
Contributing Vendor
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Tallinn, Estonia
Posts: 973
The +s:
Light, nimble and easy on petrol. Will cruise at 60 mph on motorway.

The -s:
Seat is bloody torture (although fitting a sheepkin did make a huge difference: its no armchair, but a lot better!). Its a kickart so not lecky, and no ignition switch: always loc it up. prohibitive oil change schedule. At 40 miles a day, you'll need an oil and filter change every couple of months, if not more...

I've got one, but now that I live here, in such a small city, a push-bike is easy going and so my annual mileage has plummeted about 20k to as little as 4-5K!!

Those are the considerations I'd have: see what you think, but perhaps there are more road friendly 400s out there.... DRz?
__________________
Adventure: it's an experience, not a style!
(so ride what you like, but ride it somewhere new!)
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 7 Oct 2008
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Somewhere west of Laramie...
Posts: 479
I'd tend to agree with Warthog - as an everyday bike the DRZ400 would be hard to beat.

It's still only 5 speed, but geared for more comfortable motorway speeds. Has electric start which is huge bonus. Pretty damn reliable too, although slightly more complicated than the XR of course (let's face it, you can't get much simpler!). Oil changes are less frequent too. Consumable parts easy enough to come by too.

The XR would have the edge off-road, but only in extreme conditions (it is noticably lighter than a DRZ, and yet the XR is still considered heavy compared to the current crop of off-road bikes). For your typical RTW type riding, the Dr Zee would be a great travel buddy. Subframe is also pretty substantial (on the S models), so modest luggage shouldn't be a problem either.

Hell, I never thought I'd recommend a Suzuki over my XR400...

You ought to be able to find a decent enough DRZ for your budget, but be aware that they are very nickable, so do check the VIN etc before you buy...

xxx
__________________
JennyDakar.com
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 17 Nov 2008
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Cardiff
Posts: 73
I think XR is better than DRZ for the following reasons
Its not hard to kick
Its not as lardy
Maintenance is simpler
I use mine for the very reasons you want one. I commute on it and take it out on the beautiful Welsh countryside and it does both perfectly.
Maybe change the front sprocket to 16t for better road manners and still gives more than enough for slipppery pulling off road, i.e will cruise at 65/70 mph
The seat is pretty much the same as DRZ in comfort stakes and there are plenty of options
Sheep skin. Airhawk.
Corbin do a wider seat but I rekon its expensive
Take seat to have a custom job and will be as good as corbin
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 19 Nov 2008
BCK_973's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Buenos Aires,City of good sex,mate and asado!
Posts: 545
Wowww Ted surprise surprise

That would be a nice challenge for you.....after a lot of bike changes and swaps lately.
I would love to CU on a RTW XR 400!
Remember Honda is still a Honda(no ofences for other good bikes)
What ever your choice is i hope you keep it more then a full year,hahahaha
__________________
http://vientoderipio.blogspot.com/
America is a nice continent,not a country.All people who lives in this continent are americans.Discover it in peace!
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 19 Nov 2008
klaus's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Toon City, Ehime-ken, Japan
Posts: 258
All-round-bike

Looking at your budget and what the bike will be used for, how about an old(er) Honda TransAlp!?!?!

Very reliable, good gas-milage, easy to maintain and good for just (almost) everything!

I have owned one for the past 2 (+) years, went touring to Hokkaido last year during summer vacation (3.500 kilometers) and it never let me down.

Previous bikes included a Kawasaki ZZR and a Kawasaki KLE - I have to say that the TA is the bike I DO like!
__________________
Klaus D. Orth
A German in Japan
1992 Honda TA
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 20 Nov 2008
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Up in the hills of Norfolk
Posts: 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
.........I agree with the Transalp suggestion. With a 40 mile a day commute you need a twin mate. You'll clap out a single in a year.........
I think you may find that people with bikes like say an F650GS may disagree with that bit.

I'd have thought the TDM would have been ideal Ted, so what was wrong it ?
*edit* sorry, just reread your post - you also want to do some trail riding and green laning..
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 22 Nov 2008
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Cardiff
Posts: 73
Cant see why a single would be clapped out in a year?? As long as its maintained correctly with reg oil change its a capable engine in the XR4 and will last for many a year, not as smooth as a twin for sure but just as capable albeit slower.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 22 Nov 2008
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Essex UK
Posts: 152
Why not a 650??

Quote:
Originally Posted by tedmagnum View Post
Im currently bikeless after getting bored with my TDM850 and selling it...

Im skint so the next bike needs to be my only bike for everything..

Thats a daily 40 mile commute involving city and motorways, some UK trips and hopefully some transcontinental riding..

I also want to do some trail riding and green laning..

Maybe even throw it on a plane back to the Americas.. who knows !

Now, I need a do everything bike. My XT600 was too lardy for anything offroad and other trail bikes are too off road orientated...

I've considered other bikes but im on a £1500-£2000 budget at the moment.
On your budget you could get a good XR650. I can agree that a vstrom would be a better road bike, but if your gonna go off road theres no contest, and nowt to worry about if it gets dropped. Worth a thought??
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 23 Nov 2008
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Cardiff
Posts: 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
OK OK, you guys Win! So the XR400 will be just a dandy commuter and will go 100,000 miles without a care ... after all .... it's a Honda, Right?
And it'll be nice and smooth at 80 mph on the motorway too

Last time I was in the UK speeds on the motorways were FAST!! Me and my
'99 Tiger just about got sucked up and we were going 80 mph, but that was not fast enough! 90 mph is more the right pace to stay out of the way! This of course with only medium traffic.

Ted's proposed 12,000 mile a year commute may not "clap out" the XR400 but I guarantee this will induce some wear.

If one were to stay off the motorways then the XR400 would be OK, but I don't think anyone is gonna do that when they are late for work.

The XR400R Honda is great ..... I owned a '97 (street legal with a Baja kit) I found it was fine at 55 mph to 65 mph cruising. Beyond that it would be spinning pretty good. But that was ten years ago so memories do fade.
I do remember it pinging a bit on Mexican gas however ....

My next bike after the XR400 was a Suzuki DRZ400E (2001). Better in every way as my dirt bike, especially in the tough, slow, steep, knarly stuff we have here in California's Sierra and Desert's. Once I rode my XR400 back to back with a well set up DRZ, well that was it for me.
Where do I sign?

The S model does not have the "punch" the E model has as it lacks the Pumper FCR carb of the E, but as a street legal 400 the S model is reliable and pretty capable for light duty trail riding and commuting and general riding.

And since the S was designed as a street bike from the off, from the factory, it will be better all round than the XR400, which was initially made a dirt only bike. For certain markets it was adapted to be EU legal and Aussie legal. In the USA it never was, off road only.

With the DRZ-S, it really depends on the rider. A good rider can get a lot out of it. I would find it difficult, but I'm old, out of shape and not aggressive anymore. (former AMA Dist. 36 "B" enduro rider)

But given the use described by Ted, I'd still go with the Wee Strom. Put a bash plate on, TKC 80 Conti's, bark busters and go riding ..... or touring,
or commuting or two up ..... or a trip to Europe or the Americas or whatever.

Can any 400 even come close? Having "been there, done that" I'd say no.
Really , if I read back to the OP he asked if it would be ok to commute and his XT was a bit lardy and he want a greenlane tool which in UK tends to be green not American wide open stuff. Wee stroms are not really in question although very boring Im sure do things you want it to.
And Uk , for me have never been eaten at 80, most times these days your out the way at these speeds and less.
And where did he say he want a 100k mileage???
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 23 Nov 2008
POB/London's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: London / IOW
Posts: 508
How about an older Dommie?
Seems to fit the bill pretty well:

+
Lots around, and pretty cheap
Cush drive
Fairing
Less vibey than XR
Very good economy
Reliable (like a 2-wheeled hilux)
Pretty good off-road

-
Tall-ish
Kinda heavy next to an XR
Terrible lights
Short-lived transmission when thrashed
90mph max
easy to nick
More vibey than a twin
Need to watch oil consumption
Lots of old knackers out there
__________________
=-=-= ON THE EDGE! =-=-=
My XR650L Pan-Med Expedition Site!

Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
XT600/660 or XR400? butchdiamond Which Bike? 4 27 Apr 2008 23:06
XR400 Parts davidlomax Honda Tech 10 12 Nov 2004 21:54
Round and round the world - starting sicamore Southern Asia 0 22 May 2003 13:14
Round and round the world - starting sicamore Travellers Seeking Travellers 0 22 May 2003 13:02
round world trip by bike start u.k. - tried routes samon Route Planning 1 16 Jul 2000 19:04

 
 
 

NEW! HU 2015 Motorcycle Adventure Travel Calendar is now available! Get your copy now for some terrific travel inspiration!

HUGE, 11.5 x 16.5 inches, beautifully printed in Germany on top quality stock! Photos are the winning images from over 600 entries in the 9th Annual HU Photo Contest!

Horizons Unlimited 2015 Motorcycle Adventure Travel Calendar.

"The calendar is magnificent!"

"I just wanted to say how much I'm loving the new, larger calendar!"

We share the profit with the winning photographers. YOU could be in the HU Calendar too - enter here!


HU DVD Autumn Special!

Take 40% off Road Heroes Part 1 until October 31 only!

Road Heroes features tales of adventure, joy and sheer terror by veteran travellers Peter and Kay Forwood (193 countries two-up on a Harley); Dr. Greg Frazier (5 times RTW); Tiffany Coates (RTW solo female); and Rene Cormier (University of Gravel Roads).

The first in an exciting new series, Road Heroes features tales of adventure, joy and sheer terror by veteran travellers."Inspiring and hilarious!"

"I loved watching this DVD!"

"Lots of amazing stories and even more amazing photographs, it's great fun and very inspirational."

"Wonderful entertainment!"

Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to use Coupon Code 'HEROES' on your order when you checkout.


Renedian Adventures


Renedian Adventures

What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders

contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!


What turns you on to motorcycle travel?


Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!


New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.


Books & DVDs

amazon

All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.


Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!




All times are GMT +1. The time now is 23:42.