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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 10 Jun 2010
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africa west coast northbound

so the f650 twin isn't gonna make it.

i think the KLR650 or DRZ400 is the cheaper of the 4 i'm reading about, and the KTM640 is the hardest to work on and most exp, but most powerful and lightest:


pros / cons?

DR650 is crashworthy i believe (important for me....)

need something light, basic for me to work on, enough power to carry my 40kg of gear plus 70kg flesh, and fuel either in tank or my 12L bladder for 500km range.

what do you think?

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Old 10 Jun 2010
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No brainer

  1. DR650, +strength, easy to work on, reliable/- basic, vibey, slow top end, cheap.
  2. KLR650, +as above/ - Liquid cooling= more stuff to fail, harder to get parts not within the states.
  3. DRZ, +Light, economical/ - lack of power
  4. KTM, +looks cool as F**K/ -reliability problems.
If it were my choice it's a no brainer as the Jap bikes win hands down. Plus I've been there LOL!!

'Security is a product of one's own imagination, it does not exist in nature as a rule, life is either a daring adventure or nothing.'
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Old 11 Jun 2010
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Hello Dajg,

How is that pronounced?

I would concur with Geoffshings list. Although smaller is better IMHO. I would be on an XT250 or somesuch. No need for a big bike. Small cheap bikes are undrerrated. And they can carry you and 100 lbs of junk no prob. As I'm sure you know if you've seen the folks riding them around Africa.

John Downs
Panama and back on a 250 Super Sherpa Minimalist Adventure - ADVrider
South America and back on a 250 Super Sherpa Minimalist Adventure http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=831076
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Old 18 Jun 2010
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Xf 650

Hi John

Dont forget the Suzuki XF 650, They are cheap, reliable, big fuel tank, good on the backside. I rode mine up the east side of africa and finished in Jan. it is a 97 model and now has 71000 ks. only problem was the rear shock, that is a little weak. fixed it on the side of the road with a new seal head and auto trans oil. used TKC 80,s with the 19 inch front wheel it was ok.

Cheers Miles
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Old 1 Jul 2010
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Note on the KLRs. Don't take a pre-08 KLR unless its subframe has been upgraded, and its infamous "doohickey" replaced. The weak stock subframe on the pre-08 has stranded many an overlander after catastrophic failure. Hence the availability of several aftermarket kits to address the problem.

As for 08 and later KLRs, eh. Heavier, more expensive plastic, less off-road suitable than its predecessors. I've ridden extensively on a pre-08 KLR and a DR 650 and the DR wins hands down. I like the DRZ 400 too and though I've never toured on one, I definitely would.
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