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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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  #46  
Old 14 Nov 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
My math says the XR is still 45 kgs. lighter than the GS. Handling the weight is simply a matter of going to heavier springs on the XR. Every bike's handling changes when weight is added. The XR will STILL be much superior off road. Its' 45 kgs. lighter! Did you forget that?
Changing springs is not so easy but when you do it is exactly were your great handling XR650 will become a dog.
The reason for the XR being so great at what it does is because the suspension is set up to deal with the weight of the bike and rider and nothing else. When you change the suspension to deal with more weight on the bike the handling go out the back door.
Adding the same weight on the XR will have a much bigger influence on its handling than a heavier bike like the BMW for instance. The XR is only a winning recipe if you stay over in hotels and carry the most basic items with you keeping the total weight to less than 15kg's
The BMW is also able to not just carry 45kg, but can carry almost it's own weight.
This mean that an average rider weighing 85kg can add a 100kg worth of fuel and luggage to his bike if needed.
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  #47  
Old 14 Nov 2008
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Modern chains are essentially maintenance free and a good one will last 20,000 miles, including off road use, more on a twin.
Patrick
80f temps here today![/QUOTE]

The Suzuki DR600 I owned was only fitted with the best O-ring chains I could buy and with no or little maintenance I would get about 5000 to 6000km. When I started to use expensive synthetic chain lube I could increase the mileage to 10 000km. This riding mostly on dirt.
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  #48  
Old 14 Nov 2008
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I can see that the weight of a shaft system is discussed again.

Do you want to know the exact weight? Check here: http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...20-post16.html


Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
Ghana can do this, or the one in Cuzco, or the one in Phenom phen. Chains & Sprockets are universally understood and available world wide.
Once again Mollydog, chains are not available world wide. They often have to be shipped and the weight is the same as a new shaft…

Last edited by AliBaba; 14 Nov 2008 at 09:18.
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  #49  
Old 14 Nov 2008
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That’s hard word for someone who have never seen or tested a HPN-frame. Do you mean that we should take it seriously?
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  #50  
Old 14 Nov 2008
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Interesting one this as someone who has owned and travelled using a ktm 950 (74000kms worth of travelling) and now ownes and uses R80gs part converted and ongoing project HPN.
Firstly for solo riding the idea of a very large powerful travel bike does not really make sense more so if a lot of off road stuff is to be done so if you only need something small fine. A lot of my travelling is done two up - so I can easily justify larger machine. Next It does not matter what you ride if your happy with it.
My experience with the KTM are very positive it was overall very reliable, superb at speed, excellent two up loaded up and capable on dirt but it was complicated and expensive to maintain. Service was overly complicated in comparison to other bikes,Basic parts are very difficult to get when outside of the EU. It went through three chains and sprockets in the time I had it (about the cost of one shaft drive replacement), The white power forks needed a rebuild after a failure at 15000 kms the rear shock was rebuilt twice with oil leak problems, The clutch was replaced twice and due replacement when it was sold - the clutch basket also needed replaced (the cost of the clutch basket and clutch parts was more than a complete replacement gearbox for the bmw.) Also the clutches do burn out and fail often under hard use - Very inconvienient when in the back of no where.
But I still rate it very high as a superb machine.
The R80gs (half faired) /HPN project has been kept at standard height as it suits it for what I want, it has a 1000cc conversion, large 43 ltr tank, HPN marzocchi forks inserts, Wilbers rear shock, upgraded electrics,Billet 6 pot front brake and HPN rear drum upgrade, I am waiting for a slot to get the frame rebuilt and strengthened. The total cost of this work and buying the bike is so far way below the cost of 990 ktm. The bmw is slower, but much more comfortable far easier to ride with lower power and better torque than the ktm, very good handling, more economic and better on fuel, very very simple to work on and so far now over 72000 kms very reliable. (I had to fix an oil loss problem now sorted and need to rebuild the cylinder heads - new valves and twin plug them -next week part of the ongoing work. Eventually a high torque cam,.altered gearbox ratios etc - Is all this needed for a travel bike - no but its also an ongoing project/hobby. It also makes a very nice overlander. And still cheaper so far than buying a new bike. Its also a lot more satisfying on a personal basis.
What do I prefer - for ease of the mechanics and unique custom build, comfort, better fuel and better overlander the HPN wins, If I wanted to have a mad day out and short overlanding trips or touring in western world the ktm takes the hat but both are superb in different ways and its really down to what floats yer boat.
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  #51  
Old 14 Nov 2008
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The terms travel or adventure bike both imply lots of road miles which is why, in my opinion, only twins with a capacity of 800cc plus are the most suitable bikes. Travelling or touring off road usually means unpaved roads rather than totally off piste rally raid type of riding. As ever, there has to be some compromise and as far as I can see there is nothing that will compete with an HPN airhead or KTM adv. for the combination of road and off road travel. Neither of these are going to compete with an Exc off road but neither is an XR or KLR and I know which I'd prefer for a 500km road trip.

Again in my opinion, the HPN is the better choice of the two potential 'ultimates' but this is because I value simplicity, maintainabilty and the satisfaction of doing a trip on a bike you've built yourself over going to the shop and buying one
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  #52  
Old 15 Nov 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magnon View Post
The terms travel or adventure bike both imply lots of road miles which is why, in my opinion, only twins with a capacity of 800cc plus are the most suitable bikes. Travelling or touring off road usually means unpaved roads rather than totally off piste rally raid type of riding. As ever, there has to be some compromise and as far as I can see there is nothing that will compete with an HPN airhead or KTM adv. for the combination of road and off road travel. Neither of these are going to compete with an Exc off road but neither is an XR or KLR and I know which I'd prefer for a 500km road trip.

Again in my opinion, the HPN is the better choice of the two potential 'ultimates' but this is because I value simplicity, maintainabilty and the satisfaction of doing a trip on a bike you've built yourself over going to the shop and buying one
Well in my opinion a stock Africa Twin can compete in every condition with a HPN and be better. I had one, been twice in the Tunisian desert, did a lot of training off road, take 4 trips on road two up, then resel it in excelent condition. It never failed a bit, it was 8 years old when I bought it and it was cheap. My cousin have a GS100, stock. In my opinion it is not eaven possible to compare the two of them. The AT has better comfort on road, better handling offroad, better suspension (and on an AT is not good), better brakes, big tank, and it is very reabile with 12000Km interval for oil change, withought oil consumption. I was driving the GS100, found it bad. It is 40years old technology. The forks and brakes are a joke. It is a relict. It's an old BMW. That is it.

The ultimate twin tourer in MY opinion could be an Africa twin.

But as it was mentioned before, for an long off road adventure trip, I just cant see the point of tweaking an old heavy BMW, while there are a lot of KLR's, DR's and similar stuff, cheap and realible.

This is my opinion.

And another thing, my cousins GS100 is the most unreliable bike on earth. He changed heads, pistons, shaft drive, gear box, he is and addicted BMW. The bike left him numeruous times on the road on short sunday trips, but he is still throwing money in it.
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  #53  
Old 17 Nov 2008
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I am not discussing BMW bikes.
This thread is about HPN.

These are two very different things. When completed the cost of BMW parts is less than 10% of the total cost of new parts and less than 10% of the original parts are used without modifications with probably less than one third of the total parts being used from the original donor bike.

HPN does not handle like a BMW and does not feel in any way even similar.

To try and compare HPN and Honda is to compare Fiat and Ferrari.
One is mass produced in Japan, huh Italy, where as the other is hand built in small numbers to a very select clientele.
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  #54  
Old 17 Nov 2008
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Originally Posted by gsworkshop View Post
I am not discussing BMW bikes.
This thread is about HPN.

These are two very different things. When completed the cost of BMW parts is less than 10% of the total cost of new parts and less than 10% of the original parts are used without modifications with probably less than one third of the total parts being used from the original donor bike.

HPN does not handle like a BMW and does not feel in any way even similar.

To try and compare HPN and Honda is to compare Fiat and Ferrari.
One is mass produced in Japan, huh Italy, where as the other is hand built in small numbers to a very select clientele.
In other words the HPN is over engineered and over priced? 5 standard BMW's and a support truck, dumping each one as it broke would do a pretty much any trip. Sorry to be a Troll, but this thread is heading for one acceptable answer to the people who like HPN and can't see how anyone else wouldn't validate their choice.

Sorry, I just don't agree. You don't need an 800cc twin, just travel slower. You don't need WP shocks or a laser cut bash plate or a 70 litre tank, just plan your ride to match what you have. HPN may work for you and your style of riding, but I'll take an Enfield or XT600 or C90 or Ural as my ultimate thank you very much as these simply match how I ride.

Why not the HPN? I'd be scared of someone pinching it and simply don't see the need for the whole it'll cruise 90 and still do mud routine. Also, have you tried it in snow? A Ural will beat it hands down.

I'll never buy a Ferrari either BTW. Unreliable, can't do speed bumps and no where to put your shopping.

The HPN is a nice bike I'm sure, but the ultimate? I think that's down to each riders choice and will always be so.

Andy
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  #55  
Old 17 Nov 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Threewheelbonnie View Post
Sorry to be a Troll, but this thread is heading for one acceptable answer to the people who like HPN and can't see how anyone else wouldn't validate their choice.
I don’t know about you but I don’t need anyone to validate my choices.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Threewheelbonnie View Post
You don't need WP shocks or a laser cut bash plate or a 70 litre tank, just plan your ride to match what you have.
My bike has none of the items you listed, is it not a real HPN then

I would not say the question is what you need, it’s more what you like.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Threewheelbonnie View Post
Also, have you tried it in snow? A Ural will beat it hands down.
Yes I have tried it in snow, I have also tried Ural in snow:


But it was maybe one of these you were thinking about?


I find the Ural pretty interesting (I took part in building the one in the upper picture). Personally I would find it interesting to do a longish trip on one.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Threewheelbonnie View Post
The HPN is a nice bike I'm sure, but the ultimate? I think that's down to each riders choice and will always be so.
It’s hard to say what’s ultimate, how is the ultimate girlfriend?
People have different preferences; preferences also seem to change over time. I have built a bike which is ultimate for me, and I rebuild it when my preferences change.
It would have been boring if everyone had used the same bike.
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  #56  
Old 17 Nov 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gsworkshop View Post
I am not discussing BMW bikes.
This thread is about HPN.

These are two very different things. When completed the cost of BMW parts is less than 10% of the total cost of new parts and less than 10% of the original parts are used without modifications with probably less than one third of the total parts being used from the original donor bike.

HPN does not handle like a BMW and does not feel in any way even similar.

To try and compare HPN and Honda is to compare Fiat and Ferrari.
One is mass produced in Japan, huh Italy, where as the other is hand built in small numbers to a very select clientele.
Italy is full of hand made exotic motorcycles with hitech hand made parts, but they are just being perfectly clean and driven from one caffe to another. They are not beeing seen on the road with lagguage. So, a ferrari is shurely no good to go on a long off road trip. When you came to the desert, you see local peple and turistic guides driving primary mass produced Toyotas and Mitsubishi off road vehicles.

But we can discuss the Fiat and Ferrari thing further. IN terms of suspension, the HPN is shurely ahead of the Honda, but only when it comes to performance, not when it comes to reliability. A stabdard damper rod fork is better when it comes to realibility than the modern cartridge fork. I'm talking with my experience. I have a motorcycle with WP suspension. And when you come to cartridge forks is it well known that Kayaba or Showa are better than any WP. SO, in suspension terms you don't have a Ferrari, eaven if we are talking purely performance.
When we came to the machine, I don't know how can you compare that secondworld war machine eaven if it is tweeked to a ferrari? The Honda AT V machine is for these days totaly outdated, but in comparison to the BMW HPN is hitech. And once the machine is tweaked, goodbye reliability.

When we came to chasis, it may be reinforced, that is ok, but wou will never get the geometry and riding possition of a KTM out of the BMW. Try to drive off road a 950ADV or 640ADV and you will see what I am talking about.

I was very happy with the AT performance on road and off road, considering the price and how outdated the model is. But I sell it and bought an eaven cheaper and lighter singel, which have better offroad performance and it is good enought to drive 120Km/h on road, which is for my driving condition fast enough.

And if we talk about tweaked motorcycles, just google a littel and see the tweaked Africa Twins and then compare to the HPN.


At the end, I have nothing against the HPN, I woul like to see you and the bike, I would like to drive it to see the diference against the GS100, and so on. It is yust not right to rate it as an ultimate off road tourer.
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  #57  
Old 17 Nov 2008
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Originally Posted by mladen View Post
A stabdard damper rod fork is better when it comes to realibility than the modern cartridge fork. I'm talking with my experience. I have a motorcycle with WP suspension. And when you come to cartridge forks is it well known that Kayaba or Showa are better than any WP. SO, in suspension terms you don't have a Ferrari, eaven if we are talking purely performance.
With HPN you choose the fork you like, if you prefer Showa you fit Showa. It’s all up to you, and that’s the main reason to build a bike. You build what you like. If you would like a damper rod fork then you install it.

Why do you mean a damper rod fork is more reliable then a cartridge fork? Just curios..
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  #58  
Old 17 Nov 2008
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Originally Posted by AliBaba View Post
Why do you mean a damper rod fork is more reliable then a cartridge fork? Just curios..
One think is that damper rod forks are more simple, have less mooving parts and is easy to work on them. I service them by myself. The cartridge forks on my KTM are to complicate for me and I need special tools to thear them apart.

Another think is that from all my damper rod forks I had, none had a failure, specialy on the AT they were abused and bottomed out numeruous times.
On the other way on my light KTM cartridge forks did 60hours and then oil leak and servicing.

But there is no comparision in performance, cartridge forks are way better. So, for a sunday hard enduro ride, I defenitely choose my hi-tech KTM, which need a lot of my servicing attetion to be in shape, for a longer offroad trip, then I would choose my bigger jap bike, much more reliable, much less fun off road.
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  #59  
Old 17 Nov 2008
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I can’t see problem with moving parts in the fork.
I have only worked with Marchocci cartridges and they are easier to work on then the rod-type. (Same fork different internals).

I should have serviced my WP4860 but I haven’t done it yet. If I understand the manual correct you don’t need any special tools for servicing the fork. (Disassemble, clean, change bearings, dustcover, seals, new oil++). The fork has been used for 30kkm.
If you want to remove the axle-clamp you might need a special tool but I can’t see why it’s necessary to remove it. There is also a special tool to insert the new seal but you don’t need it.

WP has had it problems with seals (esp late 1990) and there are multiple reasons for that, as far as I know it has nothing to do with the use of cartridges.
There are a few simple tricks to make the seal last longer (and to improve the suspension).
Generally seals on an USD-fork has a harder life then ordinary forks so I was a bit afraid to install an USD-fork, so far it hasn’t been any problems.
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  #60  
Old 18 Nov 2008
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Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
Can they put a Honda engine in one?
The engine from CX500 might "fit", but who wants to downgrade?

I can see you still have some problems to differ between HPN, BMW and gossip Mollydog.
It looks like you get “better” response on Advrider so why don’t keep it there? The thread about the G450X was typical.. The guys on Thumpertalk didn’t care much about your writing, maybe a better nick will help, using only numbers are a bit boring.

I’m not sure if it’s fascinating or scary that someone uses time to write BS about bikes he hasn’t seen (or tested) on at least three different forums.
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