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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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  #1  
Old 2 Sep 2011
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Transalp or Vstrom?

hello everybodi, just subscribed here
I am italian and live in Roma
I have this question keeping on my mind since few week
Since the day where my bike was stolen
It was a Honda Dominator
Great bike.
I made a few big trip with it
From Italy To turkey, then another trip to Armenia, and last trip to Iran
I had little problem with my bike but every time easily solved even in condition af difficult, just because that bike was easy to mantain!
Now i am to choose another one
And i am doubtfully between VStrom And Transalp(2002.2007 model)
I use the bike everyday in traffic of big town, for this they both similar i suppose
Often i do medium distance trip on the weekend, and for it probabily better Strom

My big doubt when thinking to big trip
Don't know when, may be in 2, or 3 year tiem i will want to ride to MOngolia
Now, there are point
The ability to face dirty road. I don't like to go to dirty road, but sometimes in big trip like this i MUST, no choice. And anyway i do that carefully and slow
LAst but not least. Reliability
I know TA much easier to fix in any circumstance and that would be a pro
I don't know much about Strom, for sure it is not so easy, but for what i read it look like a bike whi never break down!
To tell it all....i have a sensation that TA would be better for all, but in certain way Strom is more exciting to me and would like to have advice that i could do all with that....
anyway i must try to follow what is my need at time of choice!

So that is an overview of my doubt, i'd like to share with you suggestion, advice and whatever will be worthy to be considered!
Thanks a lot
Stefano
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  #2  
Old 2 Sep 2011
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superbike wanted

Hi Stefano,

Welcome first of all and always stay upright.

I would go for the Suzuki, got a much better range than the Honda.
Both bikes are very reliable, therefor you can't go wrong.Take them for a test ride and make up your mind.

Good luck.

Cheers

Rusty
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  #3  
Old 3 Sep 2011
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Sorry, but what models do you mean exactly?

The good old Tranny´s been around for ages, in 600, 650 carb´d, and now as a 700 EFI-version. There are a few other differences between those models, too.

And Suzuki DL came out in 2002 (as a 1000cc version), while the 650 was introduced for 2004. And then the 650 had a few technical changes for 2007.

(All bikes/versions mentioned above, though they may not all be equal in every way, have been used for long trips and even RTW-tours).
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  #4  
Old 3 Sep 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pecha72 View Post
Sorry, but what models do you mean exactly?

The good old Tranny´s been around for ages, in 600, 650 carb´d, and now as a 700 EFI-version. There are a few other differences between those models, too.

And Suzuki DL came out in 2002 (as a 1000cc version), while the 650 was introduced for 2004. And then the 650 had a few technical changes for 2007.

(All bikes/versions mentioned above, though they may not all be equal in every way, have been used for long trips and even RTW-tours).
ok..for ta i m looking for 650, something from 2004 to 2007
for the strom, actually i don't know the differences, but in the 2 hand market i am looking from 2005 and on models. don't know if one is bettere than other and why
i know that older model have carburator, and that for maintenance could be better?
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  #5  
Old 3 Sep 2011
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DL650/1000 has always had injection.

Transalp 600/650 had carbs, and the newest 700 version is injected.

DL650 has always had a bit more punch than the Transalp, even if compared to the 700. But the Honda is a great bike, too.

Unless you are very familiar on maintenance & working on carbs, I´d say then go for EFI, it works really well these days, and has clear advantages over carbs, too.
(...But whether it is carbs or EFI, wouldn´t be my decisive factor, as you can make equally big trips on both).
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  #6  
Old 3 Sep 2011
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ok i made confusion, itr was not injection-carburettor difference but the 1 ore 2 spark model, talking about strom.
The point is the answer to the classical question
would people go thru remote country with strom?
i know they woul do that with ta
Talking about fact, i am not skilled in doing maintennace, can do simple things, sometimes if with no other choiche try do do more but anyway no so skilled
So whern i talk about reliabity when travelling in remote country i ll always mean that i am supposed to find someone with skill to do those maintenance.
Again for what i know in remote country they may be able to do everything even without spare or special means when talking about pure mechanic
Don't know if they could do the same when it comes to electronic
On the other hand it is also true that bewer machine as strom is, may guarantee a long usage without any breakdown, or at least is what i am trying to understand and what i am expecting
Also one thing i consideder is how the bike would react to poor petrol you find in some remote country
Eventually i must consider that i will use he bike every fay of the year in normal condition, traffic city, short trip in weekend,..or even holiday but not always in diffcult country
a trip to a remote country would be once in 2,3 year i might say
so i also want to consider that these part for important that could be will not be the main of the whole question
i might say, i just need a little assurance that strom would let me try do do those trip if and when i will consider the whole question
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  #7  
Old 3 Sep 2011
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Well, the fuel injection is a bonus if you want hassle free riding. Especially in mountainous areas. With carbs, they will need to have jets changed at some stage, weras the FI looks after the mixture for you.

I personally have ridden the strom through deserts and it is also a great commuting bike, and I have never changed the sprocket ratios either. If I was to mainly do road riding, then I would change the gearing to suit better economy.

After 2007 the Strom has four spark plugs, and of course the later versions have ABS braking, which is a bonus.

I may be a bit biased, but the strom is my choice

If you like, you can see where I hav taken my strom, check out my blog page

Cheers
TravellingStrom
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  #8  
Old 4 Sep 2011
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I have 2005 dl650 got it new and put on around 30,000 miles 48,300 or so kilometers on it. I have put new tires, oil, oil filter, brake pads, brake fluid spark plugs, and air filter in it and that is it. Tomorrow I go for another 5,000 mile + (8,000 k) trip, 2 weeks off is not normal for the USA (or me) so I do not know what to do. Bike will have 300lbs to 350 (136kg to 158kg) load on it same as it has on most of my trips.

Most of what I have done most is from home to work. It has been to Canada and Mexico. I have been to 11,000 or so feet (3,000 meters) to sea level. From snow to 120F (48c) I have had it up to 104mph (160kph)

It is a fine bike. It will serve you well.

If your Transalp brakes down unless you can fix it you will be still pushing it. The weestrom has FI after that the parts of the bike are close. Can you fix a carberator if not may want to go with FI.
What will brake on the bike?

the chain
the tires
filters
brakes
hoses and cables
anything plastic

All things you need to replace any way before you go on your big trip.

Join the collective resistance is futile.
Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
V-Strom Riders International Group
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  #9  
Old 4 Sep 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DLbiten View Post
I have 2005 dl650 got it new and put on around 30,000 miles 48,300 or so kilometers on it. I have put new tires, oil, oil filter, brake pads, brake fluid spark plugs, and air filter in it and that is it. Tomorrow I go for another 5,000 mile + (8,000 k) trip, 2 weeks off is not normal for the USA (or me) so I do not know what to do. Bike will have 300lbs to 350 (136kg to 158kg) load on it same as it has on most of my trips.

Most of what I have done most is from home to work. It has been to Canada and Mexico. I have been to 11,000 or so feet (3,000 meters) to sea level. From snow to 120F (48c) I have had it up to 104mph (160kph)

It is a fine bike. It will serve you well.

If your Transalp brakes down unless you can fix it you will be still pushing it. The weestrom has FI after that the parts of the bike are close. Can you fix a carberator if not may want to go with FI.
What will brake on the bike?

the chain
the tires
filters
brakes
hoses and cables
anything plastic

All things you need to replace any way before you go on your big trip.

Join the collective resistance is futile.
Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
V-Strom Riders International Group

yes i agree with the list of component you did, that was also my experience in my travels, chain, tires brakes..and spare things
Of course the focus wwe are doing on efi or carb it's just an example for everything that means differences in electronic or mechanich.
At least for me, it's not the carb the problema, but the general overview when thinking to a more electronic fitted bike or not.
I say you blog TRAVELSTROM
Nice trip, i can see it's very capable!

By the way today i saw Kawasaky Versys, that was beetwen my choice at the beginning. I left it cause it seemed not so all ound oriented, and now i saw it for the first time i confirm this impression
Though it's a nice bike, i like it
Any advice about it?
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  #10  
Old 5 Sep 2011
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Not familiar with that Honda model but I have a v strom...great bike, you won't go wrong with it.
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  #11  
Old 5 Sep 2011
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Hi
Strom is nice,reliable bike.It can do almost everything you want as long as you stick to "normal" roads .When you say Mongolia I would say (old) TA/AT.Can you imagine loaded Strom in mud of Mongolia?And then don't forget about tires.On roads of heaven choice of tires is often more important then choice of bike.
I can imagine someone on TA/AT with MT21/E09/..in the middle of Mongolia or Stans but not on Strom.
OK you can put knobby tires on Strom,but what about spokes,suspension travel ..?
Have a great time
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  #12  
Old 5 Sep 2011
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I have no personal experience with either of these highly reputable models but, for what it's worth, I've just spent some time in France (including Corsica, a very popular destination for bikes) where Transalps appeared to outnumber Vstroms by a wide margin. So, if you believe that the marketplace has something useful to say this might tell you something. Of course, it might have to do with the fact that the Transalp was in that market before the Suzuki's arrived.
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  #13  
Old 5 Sep 2011
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Although biking for barnardo's guys (Biking for Barnardo's - Our Bikes) did rtw on Vstroms including Mongolia and Chita-Vladivostok part of Siberia (where people usually hop on the train) on street tires, I wouldn't set on those roads on a strom unless you're masochistic. Have you looked at the these threads:

http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...r-2-year-58792
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...strom-gt-58693

markharf summed it up for me: "I've got a KLR and a DL 650. The KLR has 95,000 miles on five continents; the DL has 9,000 miles on one continent (North America, in fact, and all of them fairly close to home)."

I ended up selling my vstrom to get a simplier, lighter, 21inch front thumper for a planned 2 year trip to South America.

Also, when people talk about FI, nobody mentions the fuel pump + bad gas combination. I had fuel pumps go bad (no on the strom though) due to water in the gas. I don't know how easy it is to order a fuel pump in the remote areas.
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  #14  
Old 5 Sep 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by normw View Post
I've just spent some time in France (including Corsica, a very popular destination for bikes) where Transalps appeared to outnumber Vstroms by a wide margin. So, if you believe that the marketplace has something useful to say this might tell you something. Of course, it might have to do with the fact that the Transalp was in that market before the Suzuki's arrived.
Transalp (600) came out in 1987, V-Strom in 2002 (1000) and 2004 (650). The Tranny was among best-selling bikes in several European countries for many years, at a time, when V-Stroms didn´t exist. No wonder you still see many of them around.

To be honest, I don´t see how the Transalp, in the end, is really any more of an off-road bike, than a V-Strom is. Yep, the older models had a 21 inch front, but that´s about it, and both these machines weigh roughly the same. A good rider can get just about equally far with them on bad terrain... and a bad one won´t get anywhere, cos they´re almost 100 kilos too heavy, and their weight distribution isnt that great either!!

I´ve actually owned 5 (yes, five!) XRV750 AfricaTwins in the past, and there´s a bike, that just might be a tiny bit more offroad-worthy than a DL650. Even though it´s very heavy too. XL600/650 always was like its street-oriented little sister (and the newest XL700 has even dumped that 21 inch front for a 19´´).

Where the DL650 beats the Transalp in my book (...and now compared to the current 700 EFI version, which has improved from both 600 and 650 versions): about 10 hp more power, lower consumption & bigger tank (=better range), better headlights, better wind protection (well, for me anyway, and got sort of similar report from the missus at the back), a bit more space for two, better rideability 2-up fully-loaded (some may find it strange, but the DL650 actually beats both XL700 and the AfricaTwin on this – have a look at these bikes frame design, and you may get a clue, why that is!), and better handling on tarmac (though the XL700 gets pretty close). And I also consider tubeless tyres a plus on a long tour (all Transalp versions use tube type rims).

Both bikes have proven to be as bulletproof as they get, so that one´s a draw.

Now don´t get me wrong, I like the Transalp, too, and it´s a very capable bike for long tours. And differences aren´t huge, so in the end you´ll need to go test ride them both, and see which one feels better for YOU.
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  #15  
Old 5 Sep 2011
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You takes your choice

Stefan, I have an 05 650 Transalp which is perfect for me. It is heavy and it is not the off road bike that the advertising blurb makes it out to be but I can live with it for the travel I want to do and have done. My mate has an 04 650 Vstrom. His bike is faster and has a much better fuel consumption than mine. We recntly came back from the Hubb in Cheddar. On the way I filled up twice, he didnt. I also put more fuel in than he did on the way back. He was able to accelerate faster than me when overtaking was required.

I suspect that my bike would be better off road than his but he is a better rider than I am and would probably be able to take his Vstrom into places I could not take the Transalp. If you are staying on tarmac for most of the time, my advice would be to get the Vstrom. If you are going to do 30% off road and 70% tarmac get the Transalp.

Hope this helps.
GM
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