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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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  #31  
Old 13 Nov 2008
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Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
Many others are simply buying old Jap singles for a few pounds and going RTW. Patrick
I think I would much rather travel on a train or in a car or even by foot hiking if the only reason for my trip was to get to some foreign country.

The pleasure of riding a bike that is intended to deal with tough road conditions is immense and choosing a route you would normally not go down because you are not sure if you or your transport will make it through and then discovering the most incredible places still kept hidden from the harsh influence of tourism.

I guess there are two types of bike travelers, - the 1st group like the idea of going to rough places but will end up following the known routes and going to all the popular places frequented by tourists and other travelers.
The second group is much smaller and they are mostly made up of guys that want to go discover something new, they want to go down a path not because they know of the incredible places they will find on the other side but because they just don't know what they are going to find. These are the guys that want to escape from civilization and just disappear into the blackness of the uncivilised part of this planet still covering the biggest portion of its landmass. They don't care how tough it is going to be and they sometimes are not even concerned if they will make it through as long as they are busy doing it.
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  #32  
Old 13 Nov 2008
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The ultimate off road tourer !!!

I was comparing to the video , the Bemmer didn't have any luggage either, now as per my experience I prefer to be stuck in mudd in Laos Cambodia or in deep sand in Sahara with a soft luggage equipped XR650R than on the BMW, I think the HPN looks great but I have not tried them I have own many bikes and travel on many continents and lighter is better off road , now on HWY that is different but the HPN is not fitted for thateither . I think what made the reputation of BMW was more by the commitement to travel ( by the owners) versus it's use on some terrain or even reliablibilty. I found myself always pretty much wishing for lighter bike off road and to respond to the comment about speed I think that the HPN will be faster on good terrain ( maybe ) but go to see the Baja 1000 or some other type of rally, or do some ride on single track in Colorado and they are pretty much nowhere to be found.

Just what I think , nothing presonnal??
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  #33  
Old 13 Nov 2008
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Originally Posted by gsworkshop View Post
<SNIP>
The second group is much smaller and they are mostly made up of guys that want to go discover something new, they want to go down a path not because they know of the incredible places they will find on the other side but because they just don't know what they are going to find. These are the guys that want to escape from civilization and just disappear into the blackness of the uncivilised part of this planet still covering the biggest portion of its landmass. They don't care how tough it is going to be and they sometimes are not even concerned if they will make it through as long as they are busy doing it.
I like that...but the point of the journey is as unique to the individual as the individual is unique to others. So travel wherever or however...but f-ing travel...exploring is a good thing.
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  #34  
Old 13 Nov 2008
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Originally Posted by HendiKaf View Post
I was comparing to the video , the Bemmer didn't have any luggage either, now as per my experience I prefer to be stuck in mudd in Laos Cambodia or in deep sand in Sahara with a soft luggage equipped XR650R than on the BMW, I think the HPN looks great but I have not tried them I have own many bikes and travel on many continents and lighter is better off road , now on HWY that is different but the HPN is not fitted for thateither . I think what made the reputation of BMW was more by the commitement to travel ( by the owners) versus it's use on some terrain or even reliablibilty. I found myself always pretty much wishing for lighter bike off road and to respond to the comment about speed I think that the HPN will be faster on good terrain ( maybe ) but go to see the Baja 1000 or some other type of rally, or do some ride on single track in Colorado and they are pretty much nowhere to be found.

Just what I think , nothing presonnal??
The point about weight is valid, at least when you are stuck in mud, as long as you can keep moving I find it okay.
This is maybe one of the most important differences between a standard GS and a HPN, with the HPN you generally use on gear higher when it gets rough. The key is to keep moving.


I live 3300 km from Africa (my favorite destination) so from time to time I cover a lot of highway-kms. Normally I drive 250 km (150km/h) before I take a short brake and I fill petrol every 500km. It’s not exactly fun but I can easily cover the 3300km in three days (even in bad weather). Yes you can find faster bikes for the highway but IMHO the limiting factors are the tires. I run T63/MT21.
With a standard R80GS I did 200 km (125 km/h) and filled petrol each 400 kms so it’s not that much different. This is not the reason (for me) to do a conversion.
A trip like this is often around 12kkm and not much maintenance is required, I only top up the oil, clean the airfilter and tighten a few bolts.

Sadly there are no rallies around here for twins. A few years ago it looked like there would be a “king-Enduro”-class but now it’s all gone.
It’s not even possible to start in the Dakar Rally with a large twin anymore. I think that’s a shame…
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  #35  
Old 13 Nov 2008
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With the XR650 I was not referring to the means of carrying the luggage but rather the ability. The bike is a beast when you ride it on your own with nothing on but once loaded the suspension clearly does not handle the extra weight but most importantly the bikes handling especially of road is destroyed. Being a heavier bike the BMW's can handle the extra weight of luggage very comfortably and although the handling is also badly influenced by the extra weight of luggage it is not nearly as obvious when riding a smaller single.

The bike in the pictures was not fitted with the large tank and pannier racks because I wanted it to have a clean look and retro styling. Currently I do only weekend trips with soft luggage but with the first big trip I will fit the large tank and pannier frames, no modification needed for this.
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The ultimate off road tourer !!!-hpn-501_studio-012658final_1_5_1.jpg  


Last edited by gsworkshop; 27 Nov 2008 at 10:02.
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  #36  
Old 13 Nov 2008
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Two-up touring (incl tent, sleepingbags, pots and pans):


Last edited by AliBaba; 13 Nov 2008 at 15:37.
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  #37  
Old 13 Nov 2008
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Thanks Ali, I don't know why it is so difficult for other riders to see how versatile these bikes is. All I need is to order the tank, fairing and luggage frames, have it painted and spend one hour on the bike and it will look almost exactly the same.

I love the Rally sport swing-arm. I have send HPN a R80GS frame and are still contemplating if I should have them fit the 1150GS Swing-arm and keep the same ride height as the original GS fitted with the damping inserts into the Marzocchi forks, or to have the frame made into the Rally Sport version.
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  #38  
Old 13 Nov 2008
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For those that think HPN is expensive look at this offering from the somewhere out of the USA from a group of guys with absolutely no real experience in bike building except the two bikes they have built being shown in the website.

Untitled Document

I do not want to discredit their efforts though, these bikes really look like they can be very good for the task at hand. I just don't think they are better than HPN and the price is outrageous.
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  #39  
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The ultimate off road tourer !!!

Now that is not fair ALIBABA, I am organising myself for a RTW 2 up and still look for which bike to take and you post this kind of pictures? not fair at all for someone looking for a 2 up high clearance basic engine with little electronic and enough power bike .
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  #40  
Old 13 Nov 2008
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Originally Posted by gsworkshop View Post
I love the Rally sport swing-arm. I have send HPN a R80GS frame and are still contemplating if I should have them fit the 1150GS Swing-arm and keep the same ride height as the original GS fitted with the damping inserts into the Marzocchi forks, or to have the frame made into the Rally Sport version.
I use the inserts on a standard Kalahari with an Øhlins shock. (imported from ZA via Moz and Netherlands). It’s a great upgrade!
The inserts and an 1150 swingarm will work better much better then this setup, esp combined with a strengthened frame. Rideheight will be more or less the same.

The Rally sport swingarm is expensive but it is a work of art. Combined with a good fork it’s a pleasure to ride.
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  #41  
Old 13 Nov 2008
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Originally Posted by HendiKaf View Post
Now that is not fair ALIBABA, I am organising myself for a RTW 2 up and still look for which bike to take and you post this kind of pictures? not fair at all for someone looking for a 2 up high clearance basic engine with little electronic and enough power bike .
There is one at mobile.de - mobile.de right now. Nice expensive engine (80hp) but not sure if it’s the right engine for RTW.
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  #42  
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I'm a great fan of the BMW airhead G/S, GS and the HPN models and improvements - I wouldn't consider anything else for a long off road trip. I also agree that the right bike is not too expensive compared to the only alternative (in the same capacity range) which is the KTM adv.. Yes there are larger fuel tanks available for the HP2 but there would still be a lot of other preparation/expense including a complete new rear subframe and seat if you were travelling two up.

But I take the original post in the way I think it was intended and we are talking about the 'ultimate' off road tourer here, there is simply no comparison with KLRs and XRs. Having the ultimate bike for your adventure is not everyone's goal - there's a lot on here and elsewhere about minimilist touring and for some people the aim of their trip is to get a less than worthy bike to unbelievable places or travel with a small fuel capacity and see what adventures result - brings back memories of the missing fuel stations in Namibia.

This site is an incredible resource for anyone planning a long trip on a bike but I also think you can have too much information and too many choices and variables. At the end of the day you have to decide whether it's about the trip or the bike, make your own choices and get on with it.
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  #43  
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This site is an incredible resource for anyone planning a long trip on a bike but I also think you can have too much information and too many choices and variables.
Peoples opinions might differ but as I see it you should collect all the information and knowledge you can get and use it to make the right (for you) decisions. If you manage this and at the same time are impulsive and able to dream you will have a long and happy life.
This goes for choosing the right bike, partner and most other things in life.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Magnon View Post
At the end of the day you have to decide whether it's about the trip or the bike, make your own choices and get on with it.
I can’t see any reason why I can’t have a great trip on great bike, it works for me.
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  #44  
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I can’t see any reason why I can’t have a great trip on great bike, it works for me.
No reason at all, but you can also have a great trip on a rubbish bike!
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  #45  
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No reason at all, but you can also have a great trip on a rubbish bike!
Yes absolute! In my student days I had an old cheap Kawa Z500 and it was crap but it was used for a lot of great trips. Loads of fun!
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