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Which Bike? Comments and Questions on what is the best bike for YOU, for YOUR trip. Note that we believe that ANY bike will do, so please remember that it's all down to PERSONAL OPINION. Technical Questions for all brands go in their own forum.
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Old 2 May 2002
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Africa Twin-Dominator-Transalp

I'm planning to ride around in India/Nepal and Thailand this winter. Trying to find out whats the better choice. I,m rather tall, and weigh about 100kg, I,m traveling alone. Would like to hear others experience on what to choose, Africa Twin, Dominator or TransAlp.


[This message has been edited by Dizzie (edited 11 November 2002).]
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Old 3 May 2002
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I would go for the AT.. But I am pregedist owning one myself

I guess it depends a bit on your needs. Do you want to go heavy off-road, or stay on the (dirt)roads?

The transalp is a bit heavyer then the AT but has less power. So there I would go for the AT. The dommie I don't know much about.
For the AT make sure you get a RD07A, it's the best version. Check for fuel-pump trouble (early models) or wheel-bearings (later models). For the rest they are bomb-proof.


- www.maartensworld.tmfweb.nl -
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Old 3 May 2002
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Since your based in Norway, the best choice would be the TransAlp. AT is expensive, and Dommies also hold their price to good compared to TA. When you get stuck in indian trafic, watercooling is a nice thing.
There is a 89` XRV 650ccm for sale in Moss (50 000,-), low milage. That`s a nice bike...
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Old 4 May 2002
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Being from the states, I have only limited knowledge of each of these bikes. But there have been plenty of reports that each of these bikes is a great tourer - so perhaps the issue is to consider how much money you want to spend on the bike and how much money your carnet will cost?

Going to India, your carnet will cost you quite a bit. So the less your bike is worth, the less money you'll have to invest up front and the more time you'll get to spend on the road.

Wright Bagwell
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Old 10 Jun 2002
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The three bike are all good uns, and you wont go wrong with any of them. The Africa Twin is the heaviest, and therefore the least good off road (unless you are talented). And you dont need it power where you are going. Its large tank, metal bashplate and strong swingarm are absent from the transalp though. Of the half a dozen dominator riders I have met overlanding, all but one have wanted a Transalp for its comfort and speed. It's far better on the highway. But the dommie, IMHO, is not much better than the TA off-road. If you are serious about off-road you could consider a true off road bike: there are plenty of opportunities in India and SE Asia. In India you are rarely moving fast.

[This message has been edited by Simon Kennedy (edited 10 June 2002).]
Simon Kennedy
Around the world 2000-2004, on a 1993 Honda Transalp
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Old 13 Jun 2002
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I must be the one happy Dommie rider then aye Simon? I've met a couple of others more than happy with this choice - it's a great machine.

But the pertinent points for you obviously are your size, which rules the Dommie out really. It's built for more compact riders and would cramp your knees too much. Much overland riding is a long dull slug remember.

To my mind the weight issue is somewhat irrelavant also. A Dommie is 160kg dry & the A-F & T-A another 40kg plus on top of this. But once you load any bike down with another 50kg of luggage for life on the road they all become heavy & somewhat unweildy negating the fun factor to a degree. Take the boxes off though & I'd back the Dommie any day in the dirt. All three are really only glorified street bikes though.

So yeah I agree with Simon that one of the big twins is the way to go for a big fella like you.

Hillsy in Malaysia
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Old 15 Jun 2002
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I'd have to say just get out and give each of them a ride to see which suites you. Different people like different bikes and the only person who can really make a judgement on what you need/want is you. Whatever you choose (good or bad) you'll come to love it for its good points and the bad points you'll come to see as 'charictor'!

All that said, I had an AT an loved it. Never had a problem taking it off road and I'm no six footer. Crap seat though - get a better seat or a better ass if you go with this one.

Whatever you choose - enjoy.
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Old 15 Jun 2002
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I have a Transalp 650, done 55000km in less than one and a half year with it. Took it too Marocco for 8300km of fun, lots of off road. Seen the Alps and whole of France with it. Ride as an Express courier with it.

It pulled me through everything but.... if I could make the choice again I would go for the AT.
I have ridden short distances on the AT and it gives the extra power you might need or want from time to time. Also windprotection is lots better with a high screen and the bike actualy less heavy then the Transalp!!!
I weigh around 70 and it was limit sometimes (long oueds, sand,...). If conditions get hard I am afraid you might have a hard time. Also you will get banged around because of lack of windprotection. Especially when you are tall.
Other things: the airfilter is very hard to reach (you have to take the tank of) and after 8300km back and forward to Marocco I needed to replace it... It is a paper one and I couldn't find a suitable foam one to replace it.
Fuelfilter is also hard to reach, you also need to take the tank off.
Suspension is a bit too soft for long and hard aff road stuff. Although this also seems to be a problem on the AT.

Although I really love my ever trusty Transalp and I would like to take it around the world, I wouldn't recommend it for you. Go for the AT, they are better suited for a tall and bigger somebody in my eyes.
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Old 26 Sep 2002
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hi there
i curently have a TA-600 ride with it 45.000 with not a single problem but its heavy and not to powerfull(am 115 kg) and in case i would go so far a africa twin would be me choice since its built to be stronger and can be loaded more heavily than the TA
good luck and safe trip

john from athens greece
Yes i have a hairdresser ....his name is Helmet
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Old 26 Sep 2002
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Im about to take a dommie for a roundtrip Africa and im a 1.90m/85kg bloke! Its true, with my length i do not have any space for tankpanniers.. Mainly Ive chosen this bike for its relativly lower weight, reliable engine and positive feedbacks on the tripreports at www.adventure-motorcycling.com and sure its a financial thing as well.. Both front and rear shocks are upgraded so should go better offroad with panniers but still, its heavy... TA and AT must be worse in this area but general the comfort zone on these bikes are much better....
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