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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.
Photo by Ellen Delis, Lagunas Ojos del Campo, Antofalla, Catamarca

I haven't been everywhere...
but it's on my list!


Photo by Ellen Delis,
Lagunas Ojos del Campo,
Antofalla, Catamarca



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  #1  
Old 12 Jul 2005
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2000 Varadero 1000 any good?

Hi all, I need some help about a 2000 Varadero 1000. I am in the eary stages of planning an overland trip (europe, asia, indo, oz). I will be travelling with my wife, both on one bike. I have been told that the Varadero would be a good choice and have found a 2000 Varadero with low mileage and in good condition. It rides well and I thought this would be the bike for us, but after doing a bit more research through forums etc. the Varadero doesn't seem to be getting a very good response. Csn anybody give me any advice. Is a 2000 model too old? Why is it not getting a good feedback? Has anybody got anything good to say.
Any help would be good.
Thanks
Dan.
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  #2  
Old 12 Jul 2005
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I have an 03 Varadero - the first fuel injected model. The previous models all have carburettors. Nothing wrong with that, exept the carburetted versions are prone to excessive fuel consumption. In high speed on motorways or when pushing the bike, do not be surprised to see the bike slurp 10 litres pr 100 kms.
The 'dero is quite heavy, but IMHO a great bike for long distance travelling as long as you stay to roads (make no mistake: The 'dero is a road bike only, even if its appearance may try to tell you something else). The earlier model's suspension were criticised for being too soft (a set of Ohlins will sort that out). There is some breakable plastic, and due to the radiator's positioning you might damage it in the event of a fall-over. This is avoidable to a large extent by mounting crashbars. Some dislike the coupled brake system (squeezing either the front brake lever or the foot brake will engage both front and rear brakes). I don't mind. But this feature is probably the one thing that makes me stick to roads and hesitate to venture into the gravel with my bike.
The Varadero's main advantage is exactly for two-up long distance travelling. Your pillion passenger will thank you a thousand times for choosing a 'dero. Both the rider and the passenger will have plenty of comfortable space. And it is a Honda - reliable and plenty of workshops around.

I would not hesitate a microsecond to take the Varadero on the journey that you are about to embark upon. Fit it with some crashbars, perhaps a taller windscreen (the original one tend to make some turbulence in speeds above 100-120 km/h), maybe a new set of dampers (although the original ones makes the bike a rather plushy ride...), and off you go! Keep the speed reasonable, and you'll get plenty of mileage from the 25 l fuel tank.

Have a great trip!

Rx
Hans
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  #3  
Old 12 Jul 2005
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Thanks Indu, you've been a great help. I think I'll go for the Dero and keep in mind the extras you have suggested before our big trip. Thanks again
Dan.
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  #4  
Old 12 Jul 2005
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They dont have the adventurer image but those I know with them, love them. Reliable, comfortable and able to cope with dirt roads at realistic speeds. To big for the tight stuff but you will be two up anyway.
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  #5  
Old 12 Jul 2005
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No problem Dan. Welcome to the comfy world of The Deroristas. If you want a longer test ride before your great journey, you might want to join fellow deroristas at the Varadero International Meeting #8 to be held in Sicily in June next year. If you have more questions or just want to make contact with other Varadero riders, try www.varaderoforum.com and/or www.varadero-international.com.

Rx
Hans
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  #6  
Old 13 Jul 2005
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Thanks for your help Simmo, good to hear some positive feed back. I hear there not very popular at all in Oz?
Hans, that's exactly what where looking for. We will be looking at doing a Euro trip then and I've always wanted to go to Sicily.
Thanks again.
Dan.
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  #7  
Old 13 Jul 2005
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We are, literally, just about to set up from the UK to Oz.

we considered the Varadero and certainly Honda were keen to give a pretty good deal. In the end we opted for a KTM 950 Adventure mainly because of weight. The Varadero is a heavy bike before considering kit for a year or so and riding two up etc. The KTM is, and felt much, lighter. That said the varadero is more comfortable and your pillion will certainly be more comfortable.

As has been said the early Varaderos had a reputation for guzzling fuel but I think the later ones are better, this may correspond from when the bike went form 5 to 6 gears but I'm not sure.

I would ride a few bikes, try the KTM, beamers etc and make the choice you want. I don't doubt at all that the Varadero could do the trip!

Have fun!!!!
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Old 13 Jul 2005
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I think the lower fuel consumption on the '03 and onward models is due to them being fuel injected and having a 6th gear.
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  #9  
Old 13 Jul 2005
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Thanks Twit,
What route are you taking? Are you staying in Oz afterwards?
Good travels.
Dan.
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  #10  
Old 14 Jul 2005
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No Dan they aren't very popular down here. Most people ride spotrs bikes, crusiers or proper trail bikes. But if you are heading into dirt for an extended time put some knobbies on it and it will be a differrent bike, they dont last though. My wife would have killed for a dero seat, suspension and some honda reliability when she was with me. Make sure you can do tyre repairs yourself, breaking the bead on a tubless rim is hell. G clamps can be very helpful.
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  #11  
Old 14 Jul 2005
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Thanks Simmo,
All noted.
Have you done many trips?
What bike do you ride?

Dan.
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  #12  
Old 18 Jul 2005
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Hi Dan,

Now days I spend my time riding around Victoria's NE, when its not coverred with snow. Good forestry tracks, silly hill climbs.....I still havent done billy goats bluff as a riding companion crashed Ralphino's XT that weekend, breaking 4 ribs, rupturing sleen, puncturing lung and breaking his wrist, all at 10 kph! and to those who have read the and bikes thread... he was totally sober and did it all by himself.

The Varadero would be fine for all of this except the big hill climbs where gravity seems to defeat weight pretty soundly. See XT above. Send me your postal address and I will send you a magazine with someone jumping their knobbie shod Varadero over a drainage hump on one of these roads, didn't get as much air as the 950 KTM though.

I have an old R80G/S, i do NOT recomend it, especially two up. It is really a vintage bike now, although I concede a certain fondness for its shape.

In 2003-4 I did a trip across russia and the stans. You can follow the transformation from Uberbike to Schwinehundt de alec here.

http://users.netlink.com.au/~asimpson

Other wise I have rented or borrowed bikes overseas. A long time ago I spent 12 months riding around Aust on an XS1100.

I was thinking of a new big trailie myself but have decided to keep abusing the G/S as I now know how to fix it! and the thought of drowning a expensive bike or dropping it off a hill is too horrible for a tightass like myself. I also like to have something to complain about because life is pretty good otherwise. One day I hope to set it on fire in front of a group of BMW officionadoes.

If you were to take a GS, Ralphino and I would laugh at you when it broke down and make rude and derogatory remarks about it when you eventually made it to Australia.

You will have problems getting rubber for the dero i expect along your route. But judicious use of the air compressor and slow speeds should see you through. Those tubeless tyres are a bugger to change.

Are you going to try for an Iranian visa? or go through Stans and China $$$$$ to Pakistan?

Oh and I thoroughly recomend what you are going to do regardless what bike you choose.

alec

PS the G/S is now 21 years old......am I too harsh?

[This message has been edited by simmo (edited 18 July 2005).]
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  #13  
Old 19 Jul 2005
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Hey Simmo,
I just had a look at your site, very interesting and helpful. It will come in very useful in the following months.

What happened to your mate at 10kms? Did he fall off a cliff?

With our trip I think we'll be heading through Western Europe to Turkey. From Turkey, through Iran and Pakistan to India. Ship to Thailand, do Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, back to Thailand down to Malaysia. Ship to Indo, do as much as we can there. Ship to Darwin then travel home to Sydney.

We thought about doing the Stans, but it seems that the visa situation for the Stans is much more difficult and $$$. Would love to do China but again we're hereing to many different stories about visa's, bike access,etc. I think the route we've choosen is the most straight forward and I keep getting very good reports about Iran and Pakistan so don't really want to miss them anyway.

At the moment we're not sure when we can take off looking at all the hidden extras - carnet, visa's etc. Also we will be staying in Oz when we finish so have to work out what it will cost us to import and how this actually works with a carnet if the bike isn't returning to the UK.???

Thanks again Simmo most appreciated.

P.S. I bought a Triumph Tiger 900. During all the Varadero research the Triumph kept popping up. After riding them both I chose the tiger. Better fuel consumption,and the layout seems to give the bike much better protection. And a good deal.

Cheers Dan.

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  #14  
Old 19 Jul 2005
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Dan

Tigers pillion acommodation looks pretty comfy. learn how to adjust the valves, shim under bucket I believe, you will need to take some of diferrent sizes to do it on the road. You can re-use them and they dont take much space.

You wont get into Vietnam on a bike more than 250cc. I have met travellers who have overlanded across Burma/Myanma in the last year. They applied when they got to India and managed to get permits about two months later with persistent nagging.

I think the duty for a permanent import to Oz is the GST= 10% of the value. Then you have to get an engineering certificate to register the bike. So long as the bike is sold in Aust then its pretty easy, if a painful lesson in OZ beauracracy...its those special australian conditions..(sic) so the tiger should be ok.

You can get a one way carnet, see the Hubb blog by Rich and Lisa Parkinson, they went one way to NZ.

cheers

alec

My mate forgot that the front brake is still the most effective, even when riding down a very steep dirt track slowly.
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  #15  
Old 19 Jul 2005
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Dan

That is almost the exact route we are taking, though we will probably ship from Nepal or Bangladesh to Thailand rather than ship from India as India is meant to be a horror to ship out of. The last two tiems I have been to India the bureaucracy of the place has driven me bananas!!!

We leav in two weeks and will be on the road 12-18 months or so...
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