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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 22 Jun 2006
alan hopkins's Avatar
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V strom ?

Spent ages trying to decide which bike but never considered the smaller v-strom.
Has anyone done any off road/ distance on one I guess they are reliable as but easy to get on with or fragile.
Plenty of performance for one up for touring but I will spend most time on it in uk so need a domestic bike ability too. How does weight compare to the GS Dakar/Africa twin/transalp/etc...
Seems the ideal bike (no such thing but preety damn close)
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Old 25 Jun 2006
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Thumbs up Nice Ride

The Wee-Strom is getting a good name for itself, and in many ways, can be a better bike than it's big brother. The lower weight and price make a significant difference to many people, and press reviews have been very favourable. It's less of an all-road bike than the likes of the TransAlp and F650GS I think, but they are not really off-roaders either. If real off-road is what you want, then one of the XT Yamaha range, or KLX Kawasaki, or DR Suzuki etc. is a better choice. I have owned a TransAlp, and currently have an '94 F650 Funduro and a 2001 F650GS, but the 650 V Strom would be at the top of my short list to test ride for my next bike.
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Old 27 Jun 2006
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I owned an 05 DL650 for about a year, originally bought it as a possible replacement for my 98 F650, and put about 10000km on it. On the road it's much better than the BM, more power, smoother, handles a little better so would definately suit your UK use. On rough gravel roads/off road the BM handles it a lot better but that can probably be fixed by playing with the suspension. I'm a shortarse and the DL always felt bigger and heavier than the BM. I'm heading off to SE Asia and maybe further for an extended tour in a couple of weeks and have sold the DL and am taking the F650. My reasoning - feels a lot less delicate for when I drop it, carbs so can fix them anywhere, I've had the BM since 98 and know it backwards so can do any maintenance to it. I've ridden later model F650's and can't see a reason to upgrade, waiting to check out the F800GS when it comes out. Saying all that, I wouldn't hesitate to buy another DL650 in the future if most of my riding was on bitumen with the occasional dirt road. Take them for a ride then decide
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Old 27 Jun 2006
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I have a 1000. It is new so I only have about 500 miles on it, but I did take it down a gravel road. It is very easy to ride and handels better than you think it would on a dirt road. The stock tirs are not what you would call stellar on gravel road, but going straight I was clipping along about 50 mph. and felt comfortable. BTW I am Far from an expert rider,. I say lower end of intermetiate on riding skills. The big complaint I have heard with them is that hte windshiled does not provide good wind protection and some of the earlier models were jetted lean and had a stumble about 3500 rpm. Overall I am very happy with mine. Very comfortable to ride , handels well and good all around bike.
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Old 9 Jul 2006
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I have an 04 650 now with 56,000 miles. It has been to Mexico 3 times including Baja. Seen lots of dirt and the ONLY thing this bike lacks is ground clearance.
I have the SW Motech centerstand and skidplate and I have scraped and bottomed out so many times because of the low clearance. It takes it OK but it's just a matter of time before I really mess something up.

I bought this bike as an experiment, coming off of a BMW 1100GS, I wanted something cheap, cheap to buy and cheap to keep. The wee strom has not let me down. In 45,000 miles it has never needed the valves adjusted, always in spec (I'm done checking), the plugs last 30,000 miles and I do oil changes every 5 or 6 thousand miles.
I'm going to ride this thing into the ground as part of the experiment.
Most likely it will take a couple more years at the rate it seems to be holding up.
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