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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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AMERICA’S PREMIER MANUFACTURER OF MOTORCYCLE SUSPENSION

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  #1  
Old 15 May 2007
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TTR600 or XR650L

So, I'm down to these two now, quite a few 2000-2004 TTR600's about (not interested in the TT600RE), only XR650L's I can find in the UK are early 90's (93-94)... I pretty much want them to cover a few bases, but nothing extreme...

Apart from general commuting about, weekends away with the lady on the back (she's about 46 kilos) travelling light and then I'd also like to kit up and do a 2 week trip, say in Morocco or some place similar, so, no round the world trips at the moment, but you get the general idea...

Any advice much appreciated, going mad, thanks!

J

Last edited by Jayse; 15 May 2007 at 15:41. Reason: Dyslexia - the usual!
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  #2  
Old 15 May 2007
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No one else has replyed so...
I was deliberating over TTR/TTRE/XRL myself. I eventualy decided to go for the RE over the R. Mainly because of the magic button. Now however having owned the bike for a while I would have gone for the R because of the better suspenstion, and it is a hassle getting hold of a decent sent of R suspenstion for my RE. You have already said you are not intersted in the RE but I throught I would say it is pretty straight forward to fit R suspenstion on to the RE and you then have in my opion a better bike then the TTR or XRL.
As for the XRL then, I must first say I have never rode one. But I have asked many questions about them when it was one my final choices of bikes. The main reasons which put me off the XRL was getting parts in the UK, also getting hold of aftermarket extras, tank, racks, bash plates are really easy for the TTR not quite so much for the Honda.

From what you are describing what you want to do with the bike I would personly find a good condition XR650L...there were a couple new on autotrader-bikes 6months ago or so.
Other than that both bikes have good suspension, both aircooled, both have a good reputation. However only one has a magic button! which if I was using it as a coumuter and trips around europe with the other half on the back then I think it would be enough to perswade me.

Hopes this helps
George
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  #3  
Old 16 May 2007
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Hello, choosing a bike is a crazy thing, work is sufferring, it needs to end soon!

I've been offerred an TTR600 which I'm very keen on.

The only XR650L versions I have seen have been the very early models which are in standard form, and some quite high mileage (and unconfirmed) I think spares aren't too bad, basically Dommie engines and plastics aren't too difficult to come by and I've seen a few places on the net that do bits and bobs for the L... The electric start is a factor, but for some reason I'm not too bothered, I quite like the old-school approach, we'll see how my tune changes after 10 minutes stuck in the sand in 40 degree heat! Wonder if there's a electric start conversion, for the XR's they are major expensive!

The RE, it's a lot to do with the suspension for me, but I reckon if you have the means and the patience to change it all over then it's the ideal way to go...

Anyway, looks like a TTR600 in my future, hopefully it will be a pleasant partnership!!

J
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  #4  
Old 16 May 2007
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OK enjoy your TTR! Im sure you have read about the 5th gear problem which all the XT/TT's suffer from, just don't lug it about at low rev's and make sure the engine is really spining before you move up from 4th.
When you go don't foget to send us some pics of your trip.
Happy travels George
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  #5  
Old 16 May 2007
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Thanks George, thanks for your help. I didn't know the 5th gear problem was for the TTR too, but suppose they are pretty much the same engine... off to exercise my right leg in preparation!

The TTR is a shot in the dark for me really, typical me, do some 'research' about some bikes and then get one I know nothing about, but on paper it seems like a good un, and is pretty much ready to go...

J
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  #6  
Old 2 Sep 2007
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ttr600 experience?

Hi Jayze,

I wonder if your descision was the right one ;-)
i bought a ttr600 '03 and preparing it for a trip in central america.

...stil not sure kickstart only is the right choice.

cheers,
Sander
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  #7  
Old 2 Sep 2007
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Wink More to be read

Sander,
If you put tt600r (or ttr600) into the HUBB search facility you will find other threads on the relative merits of the bike + a few comments about starting by kickstarter!

Welcome BTW
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  #8  
Old 2 Sep 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sanderd View Post
Hi Jayze,

I wonder if your descision was the right one ;-)
i bought a ttr600 '03 and preparing it for a trip in central america.

...stil not sure kickstart only is the right choice.

cheers,
Sander
Hello there, so far it's been pretty awesome. Once you're comfortable with the kick starter, it's two kicks to get going in the morning and then one kick for the rest of the day, I’ve got it so I can kick without the side-stand down and with a passenger on-board.

So far I’ve been using it as an all rounder in London and further a-field and just did 4 days in the south of France with it. Did a bit of gentle off-roading and one small spat of less-gentle 2-up with my girlfriend (she's only small though, 47kg). For the main riding I used Metalmule panniers with stuff for the both of us for the 4 days and it went really well, no complaints. I use a sheep skin type thing that comes from underneath a horse saddle for a bit of extra comfort on the seat which after an hour can become a bit hard, and this works fine. I’d recommend it as a great all-rounder, suspension is excellent, can't say I miss the electric starter. Motorways are a chore though, so avoid if possible, but that's not what you buy one of these for...

Last edited by Jayse; 2 Sep 2007 at 23:21. Reason: Typos!
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  #9  
Old 3 Sep 2007
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Nice summary Jayse; I have never managed to bump start one however. I read somewhere that it takes about 30 mph in 3rd gear to do that!
Everytime I have tried, it just came to a halt with the back wheel locked up.


Maybe that is what Sander has in mind - just one option on the starting front?
However, I agree that once the kickstart is set up correctly and the bike is in good serviced condition (spark plug gap etc etc) then it will start OK on the kicker.
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  #10  
Old 10 Sep 2007
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I've never tried to bump start mine, but as you say, a high gear and a hill is probably the way to go for that...
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  #11  
Old 23 Sep 2007
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Hi all,
thanks for your answers and comments. i tried my ttr off-road a few weeks back. the bike is very fun and easy to ride. and, by now, kickstarting begins to feel normal. although it kicked back when i wasn't paying attention, and had wrong boots. Auch!! ankle injury...

had one starting problem: swiched off choke before engine was hot: engine died when i pushed the choke button x2..

...jumpstarted it with two guys pushing, me on the bike...worked in 3th gear

but i made up my mind: i ordered big tank, pannier/luggage set spare parts and lots of stuff on Startseite they are TTR and XT specialists.
(developt a jetting kit for better starting)

Currently busy preparing and planning my trip.

I start in mexico around december/januari, take a month to learn spanish and go south from there. Can't wait!!

cheers,
Sander
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  #12  
Old 23 Sep 2007
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Hi Sander,
Good to hear that you are getting on well with the TTR: at a recent round of the UK Motocross championships a mechanic kicked off a crosser while not wearing boots -- it kicked back and his leg was ripped open so badly on the edge of the kickstart that he was hospitalised.

I've developed the habit of kicking with the ball of my foot, near the toes, rather than the instep; as a technique it is powerful enough to start the bike and when (not if) the bike kicks my ankle just flexes and "folds out of the way". It works OK for me!!

I have basically found the bike to be OK in starting when stone cold or fully warmed up but, as you say, they can be a bit fiddly while warming up - once started, I always stay near to the throttle/choke while the engine is warming through.

Anyway, best wishes for your trip!
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  #13  
Old 17 Oct 2007
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Hi Walkabout,

Just read your post. (have to look for email notification...)
I will try your technique.

tnx.
Sander
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  #14  
Old 18 Oct 2007
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Your welcome.

I should have added that I rarely, if ever, kick over while seated on the bike - what I said in my last post was referring to standing next to the bike, starting from cold or whatever the circumstance. It has always been easier for me with one foot firmly on the ground rather than with the bike tottering on the point of balance - I am short in the inside leg measurement and that seat is high!! To get the toes on the kicker, I stand a bit further toward the back of the bike than is usual, but, as I said, it works for me.

BTW, you don't get any notification of a posting as far as I know - please let me know if you know of some way of getting one.
However, you will get a message by email to let you know of a private message that is sent to you.

Cheers,
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  #15  
Old 19 Oct 2007
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Hi W.
i changed the email notification from instant to daily, seems to work... i got a notification of your last reply

standing next to the bike to start it looks like an an interesting way of starting it. will try...

next weekend i try to put my Startseite pannier rack on the ttr. big tank, solid handguards, center stand are fitted got some issues with rear suspension link bearings though, ordered new ones...

Althoug i still have my thoughts on the kickstart only, i really love the concept and configuration of the bike. It's so basic and straight forward, anyone can service it. Too bad yamaha saved on the suspention on the RE models...

i'll keep you posted on my trip preparations progress..

anyone knows a good adress for Spanish courses in Mexico or Guatamala??


cheers,
Sander
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