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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 18 Dec 2004
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Location: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
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Saudi Arabia to UK on a ZZR?

Hi everyone

new to this board, and new to touring...

My name is Haitham, im english but live and work in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia ...

I've been planning to go to UK next year, maybe late spring/early summer, and have'nt decided what bike to use yet - I dont want to travel with a bike im not familiar with, and I dont want a dedicated tourer (I had previously considered the Goldwing but its too cumbersome in town ...) ...

after asking about it seems the Kawasaki ZZR (1100?) is a suitable bike for touring, I could use it from now until then, and I dont need to sell it afterward....

Anyone here toured on a ZZR? any comments on it?
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Old 18 Dec 2004
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Location: Estonia
Posts: 772

any bike will do it if you have enthusiasm! Dedicated tourer? Hmm... If you want to see more landscape and non-public places - to see the real country not just the boring highways connecting them, then i'd go for some travelenduro bike to be independent on the conditions of the roads awayting you on your trip. From Yamaha XT660 all the way to BMW R1150GS all are excellent and reliable enduros there that can do tarmac on the same level as Kawasaki ZZR bike and also can do gravel- and offroad that Kawi bike would be considered as very uncomfortible and dangerous to ride...

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Old 18 Dec 2004
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Location: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
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well so far ive only toured twice - my first time was from Riyadh to Haql in the far northeast of saudi Arabia, actually you can see the lights of Egypt and Israel from there (about 2000km), and the second time was to Dubai and back ... both on a Goldwing ... but the bike wasn't mine and rode two-up taking turns in riding ... so im not too experienced in highway touring, let alone getting lost in backroads ... maybe next time!

its GREAT for distances, but like I said, i want something I can keep ... my previous bikes were: Suz GSX400F, Yam R1, Kaw ZX9R ... so i guess i like sport bikes ,,,, plus in Saudi Arabia BMW bikes are not available ... only H-D, Suzuki, Yamaha, and Honda. Kawasaki and its parts are available through importers from the UAE, so i think a BMW or a unpopular Yamaha would be difficult to maintain, I especially avoid this situation after my Suz GSX400F, i crashed id and couldnt get any parts for it, after 3 months I sold it as is in its damaged condition ...

plus here I can easily get a good clean ZZR1100, say a 2000 or 2001 model for about $3500 ...

what i needed to know is are there any issues with long-range touring on it? does it have any annoying niggles you dont read about in the spec sheet, of things city riders dont notice ... if you know what I mean ... what should I look out for when buying one - i.e. any ZZR-specific issues?

[This message has been edited by dragonninja (edited 18 December 2004).]
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Old 19 Dec 2004
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Location: Eureka, CA USA
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I just looked up the ZZR 1200 at an on line motorcycle mag I subscribe to. Here is the short story.

A couple years ago, this would have been the ultimate sport tourer. If laser-like straight-line speed and sleek styling are your game, you'd be hard pressed to find a better bike. In fact, for short-range commuting, day trips and general usage, the ZZR is a fantastic motorcycle. However, the Kawasaki's slightly buzzy engine, stiff suspension and sportbike riding position relegate it to a back-of-the-pack showing in today's world of nearly perfect Sport Touring motorcycles.

The things we said we liked MOST about the Kawasaki ZZR 1200 were:

Powerful Engine
Good Looks
Huge Saddlebags

The things we said we liked LEAST about the Kawasaki ZZR 1200 were:

Long haul comfort is compromised by harsh suspension, engine vibes and aggressive riding position
Saddlebags are a dealer installed "extra" and are no longer available color matched
Saddlebags are not common keyed with the rest of the bike, so you always have to carry two keys
Looks funky with saddlebags removed, because the clunky frames stay on the tailsection
Annoying engine vibes at cruising speed
Rear shock needs more rebound damping when ridden solo

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Old 19 Dec 2004
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Sicamous,Canada
Posts: 130
I have a friend who has traveled all over europe he sold a gold wing to buy the zzr loves the z
Your trip will be all tarmac so you don't need a gs or at. From the other posts get another shock (Olins?)and some soft luggage,I think oxford products in england do some great gear?

cheers nobby
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