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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 24 May 2014
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XT 660Z Tenere or G650GS Sertao

After my last thread where people have advised me nt to use my CRF250X I am now looking for another bike to do my trip on next year.
I have looked about on the net and used forums like this. I have narrowed my choice down to either :-

XT660Z Tenere
or
G650GS Sertao

Any thoughts please in aiding me choose
Thanks
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  #2  
Old 24 May 2014
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I had a 2008 tenere for a about a year or so,unfortunately I needed some penny's for another van at the time so had to sell it but I liked it a lot,had no issues with and didnt realy lose any money on it.
Not a bad bike on the motorway for something that has some off road capabilities,a little tall when stationary but then I'm only 5.6 ish..
Had a good tank range,standard chain wasn't fantastic but I would have another one..
I did have test ride on a BMW f 650 in 2011,went quite well for a single,but did feel a bit like it was going to fall to bits..I can't comment any more than that as. Only done about 20 miles or so on it..
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  #3  
Old 24 May 2014
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The last year I went from Spain to Tashanta on my Tenere, and no problems at all. Anyway…

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  #4  
Old 25 May 2014
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I own a Tenere 660 -11 model. These days I am upgrading it for a long overland trip. And it certainly needs a lot of upgrades for such a trip (seat, better windscreen, sprockets and chains, engine performance, suspensions, headlights, cush rubber drive - just to mention a few and the usual ones. But hopefulle the Tenere is a good base for a travel bike and the 23 liter original gastank gives a range of 5-600 km in relatively good conditions. Its still very heavy and the engine isnt much to boast about.

Then Sertao I dont know a lot about....
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Old 25 May 2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snakeboy View Post
I own a Tenere 660 -11 model. These days I am upgrading it for a long overland trip. And it certainly needs a lot of upgrades for such a trip (seat, better windscreen, sprockets and chains, engine performance, suspensions, headlights, cush rubber drive - just to mention a few and the usual ones. But hopefulle the Tenere is a good base for a travel bike and the 23 liter original gastank gives a range of 5-600 km in relatively good conditions. Its still very heavy and the engine isnt much to boast about.

Then Sertao I dont know a lot about....
Ok Thx
I was looking at getting one to do UK to Mongolia and back...and/or Southeast Asia So are you saying the stock bike is no good due to all the work you are doing to it??
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Old 25 May 2014
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A stock bike is a stock bike. Most bikes will need a certain degree of upgrading - at least to function near optimally, especially before doing a long overland trip. Some bikes will need more upgrades and some will need less.

The Tenere needs quite a lot of upgrading in my opinion, but some might disagree about that. The Sertao might needs less.
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Old 26 May 2014
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Here is a magazine that have tested and compared both the Tenere and the Sertao...

http://transmoto.com.au/bikes-bmw-65...ha-660-tenere/
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Old 26 May 2014
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Since you can't get the Suzuki DR650 in the UK ... perhaps consider either the Yamaha XT660R (not the Tenere') or the air cooled XT600E. The 660R is 165 kgs. dry, (363 lbs.) the XT600E: 156 kgs. dry (343 lbs.).

The XT660 Tenere' is 183 kgs. dry. (402 lbs.) Once all are fueled up and measured for true Wet Weights ... all are heavy ... but the 660 Tenere' bumps up over the 200 kgs. mark. Not ideal for a travel bike intending off road use. Sure, it can (and has) been done. But is it fun or easy?

Both the other Yamaha's are substantially lighter weight than the Tenere'. I'm sure there are still plenty of XT600E's around since they were discontinued in around 2004?

The XT660R is simply a pared down version of the Tenere'. Lighter, simpler and the price is quite good too for used ones. (cheap)

Of course ALL would need plenty of up grades & substantial modifications ... as would nearly any bike you buy ... Unless you buy a freshly re-done travelers bike that is already set up to go. Something like one of Ted's bikes ... all the thinking and good modifications have already been done.

If you ever choose to buy here in the USA then you've got more options.
The Suzuki DR650 is just 324 lbs. (Dry) about 367 lbs. (Wet) Many for sale with lots of extras already done ... and cheap as chips compared to UK pricing. Also, the versatile and inexpensive (and hugely popular) KLR650 is also an option you don't have in the UK. All good bikes.

If you want to continue with BMW ... then, IMHO, the real choice is to take a virginal X Challenge and do as many of the Colebatch modifications you can afford or have time for. Once fettled, it will become a throughly competent RTW weapon. But think THOUSANDS of pounds rather than Hundreds to make an X Challenge right.
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Old 28 May 2014
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I was in the same dilemma, XT660Z or F650GS Dakar.......??
.

.

.
And i buy a XT600E!
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Old 29 May 2014
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Take your pick, I think they would both do the job in standard form and you could spend a lot on both to get them to what you exactly want.

The Tenere has a better fuel capacity from standard and although heavier the frame on that thing is never going to break!! Some say it's under powered, but I never had any trouble two up round Spain last year.

My choice was the Tenere but I'm biased as I have an '83 600 Tenere as well (and a BMW 1200gs) and I like all three.

Watch this space if you want to know how it does the trip. We leave tomorrow from Paris to Magadan (although only two up as far as Moscow)

Chris.
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  #11  
Old 29 May 2014
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Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
If you want to continue with BMW ... then, IMHO, the real choice is to take a virginal X Challenge and do as many of the Colebatch modifications you can afford or have time for. Once fettled, it will become a throughly competent RTW weapon. But think THOUSANDS of pounds rather than Hundreds to make an X Challenge right.
Sure, to fix it up like Colebatch's will take thousands of pounds, but his is fitted out to a T. I've actually put quite a lot into my XC as well, but most of it not strictly necessary. I'd say put on a bigger tank, a luggage rack, and a bash plate and you'll have something that will take you far.

Of course once you start talking about a new fairing, new forks, etc. it starts getting expensive fast.
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Old 29 May 2014
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Originally Posted by Chrispy View Post
Take your pick, I think they would both do the job in standard form and you could spend a lot on both to get them to what you exactly want.

The Tenere has a better fuel capacity from standard and although heavier the frame on that thing is never going to break!! Some say it's under powered, but I never had any trouble two up round Spain last year.

My choice was the Tenere but I'm biased as I have an '83 600 Tenere as well (and a BMW 1200gs) and I like all three.

Watch this space if you want to know how it does the trip. We leave tomorrow from Paris to Magadan (although only two up as far as Moscow)

Chris.
I will keep checking in, good luck, cant wait till its my turn next year, although not going as far as Magadan

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Old 29 May 2014
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Originally Posted by motoreiter View Post
Sure, to fix it up like Colebatch's will take thousands of pounds, but his is fitted out to a T. I've actually put quite a lot into my XC as well, but most of it not strictly necessary. I'd say put on a bigger tank, a luggage rack, and a bash plate and you'll have something that will take you far.

Of course once you start talking about a new fairing, new forks, etc. it starts getting expensive fast.

True, Walter's bikes are at the high end. But one basic change that seems essential is the Air Bladder shock. I've ridden two X Chal's, not impressed with the feel of that stock bladder thingy (harsh). I hear they all eventually LEAK. Most owners change it out ... no? So, right there you're right up to £500 to £800 to convert to standard shock.

Seems the bike would benefit from some sort of custom (or strengthened) sub frame? Perhaps Fabrication required there? Not sure on this, never seen the bike striped down except in pics. Does it need sub frame work or can it handle loaded panniers and top bag in stock form?

I think the standard WP forks, once re-sprung/re-valved would probably be OK ... not as good as the top of the range WP's Walter has ... but adequate? What do you have on your bike?

In my testing, I thought the forks were soft (good at slow speeds on rough terrain) but worked well over all. High speed on road, not so good. Just needed some firming up, better rebound damping.

And you're correct ...custom Dakar style fairing/dash/cockpit are mostly glitz, IMHO. Adds weight, expense and if you ever crash and your body goes THROUGH the Alu struts and shield ... you are dead. It's happened a few times to Dakar racers. If you're not racing, you just don't need all that Dakar stuff on the Dash, IMO.

But I'm old school Enduro racer ... I never liked a shield when riding off road.
Can't see properly. It's a real shame BMW no longer seem to be pursuing more off road biased enduro bikes. I was so hopeful when the X series came out ... but in a couple years ... gone! I blame Herr Kunnheim (former CEO) and hopefully they will turn it around and get back in the Off road enduro segment. So much potential there.
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Old 4 Jun 2014
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Just to speek for the XChallenge, i got one wich was completely rigged up with the big tank and rallye-fairing from Touratech, excel-rims an Scheffelmeier bashplate. Though no more needs for rebuild or upgrade.
After a couple of offroad-trainings i am very glad that i got this bike! It handles great and is very capable offroad!
At least 6500€, and ready to go

I won`t change the air-damping-system, because it feels good with the right pressure and is working offroad very smooth. At last i got a cheap spare part

In germany now there were a couple of xchallanges for sold, some complete rebuild for long range riding.
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Old 4 Jun 2014
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Originally Posted by DrWolle View Post
Just to speek for the XChallenge, i got one wich was completely rigged up with the big tank and rallye-fairing from Touratech, excel-rims an Scheffelmeier bashplate. Though no more needs for rebuild or upgrade.
After a couple of offroad-trainings i am very glad that i got this bike! It handles great and is very capable offroad!
At least 6500€, and ready to go

I won`t change the air-damping-system, because it feels good with the right pressure and is working offroad very smooth. At last i got a cheap spare part

In germany now there were a couple of xchallanges for sold, some complete rebuild for long range riding.
Thanks for the info, is there a link for the X for sale in Germany
thx
Caps
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