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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 Igor Djokovic, camping above San Juan river, Arizona USA

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


Photo by Igor Djokovic,
camping above San Juan river,
Arizona USA



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  #46  
Old 18 Dec 2017
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Nice to see a new publication with Simon Pavey's son at the helm!
I've seen the Husky 701 in person. Would have had a sit, but too tall.

With a 36" seat height, it's too tall for me. In my Enduro race days I could have handled it but now, if it were loaded up, might be a bit tough and embarrassing.

The 701 Husky engine got exact same upgrades as my 2017 690 Duke got back in 2016. HP and torque figures vary slightly from publication to publication, my '17 690 duke is listed at 73 HP/ 55 ft. lbs. So, pretty close all round between Husky 701 and KTM 690 Duke.

Basically, KTM did a whole new engine in '16 and that is what is in the Husky 701 with minor differences.
Biggest change is balancer shaft arrangement for smoother running. My Duke is certainly better than earlier versions or my old 2001 Duke ll, but it's clearly still a THUMPER!

It's got a ton of power for a single and on a twisty road can keep pace with just about any bike or rider ... even guys on 1290's. At some point ... it's all about the rider. A fast guy could really rip it up on my 690. Mine has a Nitron shock, still need to do Andreani fork kit ... forks not great in standard form.

The 690 Duke also comes with the fancy TFT dash that the Husky doesn't have. ... which in bright Sun sometimes does not read well. In low light, it's amazingly BRIGHT! (too bright?)

As the review in Brake mentioned, that Husky will not be great as a travel bike as delivered. They didn't go into details, but I could see making it RTW ready might get expensive.

3.4 gallon tank, not enough. I spent $150 for my IMS 5.2 gallon tank on my DR650. Range up to about 220 miles plus reserve. A minimum for a travel bike, IMHO.

Other issue is rear sub frame and luggage. I'm sure the bike is an absolute DELIGHT to ride and if it could be cost effective to trick it out for travel ... then I might be on board. But for me, I'm thinking lower, lighter and CHEAPER!

But for your use around England, seems like the perfect Hooligan weapon, making punters on sports bikes look foolish in the twisty bits ... just remember to watch your (VIBEY!) mirrors as they Whistle by you at 160 mph once back on the straight roads.

My Duke is a lot of fun, but I'm probably going to sell. Only had it two months! (yes, I am truly an idiot!)

I'm just not the young aggressive rider I once was. How I made it out of that period alive, is quite a miracle ... but a story for another day.

I just can't use what the 690 has anymore. I know it's there ...
no way can I get there most of the time.

I do love a lot of things about the bike: Handling is very good ... but forks need work. Stock seat is very good too ... OK for at least two hours before a break needed. (Corbin seat on my DR650 is good for 4 hours easily)

Fuel economy is remarkably good. Seat height is VERY low at just 32.5 inches. Perfect for me.

But not ideal for travel and not great fast highway cruising all day riding with a group of Hooligans on 1200cc bikes averaging 80 mph for a full tank worth of miles.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Mumbo68 View Post
Hey Molly..on my phone so sorry for any typos.
It wasn't me who posted the links to those kits, it was Tbr china I think over on another thread..I just "liked" his post...but yes ..exy..still if you want it and its gonna be a keeper.
The husky is not the same bike as the ktm 690 but similar..It's def not a world class enduro bike either..it'a dual sport..a modern one yes, with some quality kit and real off rd ability yes, looks trick yes but it's a dual sport it doesn't need a piston every six hrs. It comes with passenger footrests in the extras box included!The 17 model is a diff. story to the single balance shaft previous models too...its 74hp too and the ktm 690 is still 67hp like last yrs Husky..so probs not got the extra balance shaft either.??..and Klr's & Dr's are ok though they are, are not really what I'm interested in..I don't envisage any bike I purchase getting too "beat up" in a yr of use either if looked after...I don't intend taking it around an mx track!.....good review of the Husky here if you fancy a read of it , good online bike magazine too, you may or may not know about :

Seven things we learnt about the 2017 Husqvarna 701 Enduro | Brake Magazine



OK, back ON TOPIC and more about the CRF Rally! Enough of these BIG KTM's and Huskies!
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  #47  
Old 18 Dec 2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
Who would be stupid enough to take a bike whose service intervals are in hours

I think you're wrong here, quite a few people took so called race bike for
very long trips like you would regular travel bike succeeded with no problems.
If you're not racing service interval actually can be measured in miles or kilometers and it's not that bad because they changed oil every 2000 km
or 1200 miles so it's doable. You get instead very light bike to deal with on the road. I was afraid about this aspect as well until I own my ktm 500 exc which appeared to be very reliable and adventure capable machine.

BTW, crf250l doesn't look good at all, looks weird at most.
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  #48  
Old 18 Dec 2017
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You are correct about how reliable the KTM 500EXC appears to be. But it's still early days with only a couple guys taking the 500 on RTW type rides. I'm sure more will follow ... and good luck to them.

We all travel in different ways with different priorities.

But its true, traveling on a race bike will mean you can likely extend service intervals out quite a bit, as traveling is usually not hard on the machine. If the basic bike is reliable then could be done. So, instead of 500 mile interval could be pushed up to maybe 2000 miles? More?

But is this ideal?
Most raced based bikes are not well set up for carrying luggage. Some don't have large fuel tanks available, unless you spend A LOT on money. Many carry Rotopax or Bladders ... I'm not a fan of either of these methods.

Rear sub frames may not exist or quite weak. So not idea for panniers weighing 30 kg. or so. ... plus a top bag and other crap travelers tend to pack.

Some travelers like to camp (to save money I guess?) and LOVE to pack up their bikes like the Beverly Hillbillies. Race based bikes may not be ideal for the perennial over packers so common in our world.

My worry would be if you get yourself into a location where you can't find top quality synthetic oil, as required for many high end race bikes like the KTM 500.

And in addition, the rider will need the skills and tools to do the maintenance on the road. The KTM is easy ... a good thing.

But some bikes are more complex to do self service ... and they are not even race based machines. (BMW GS's, Ducati Multistrada, KTM 1290) Most require dealership computers to plug in for diagnostics.

I like the looks of both the CRF250L and Rally. Weird? Not at all. It's just not that different from dual sport bikes 30 years ago. so, both good and bad.
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  #49  
Old 18 Dec 2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
:3.4 gallon tank, not enough. I spent $150 for my IMS 5.2 gallon tank on my DR650. Range up to about 220 miles plus reserve. A minimum for a travel bike, IMHO.
That's not quite what your opinion was earlier when I suggested the CRF250 "rally" could've used a bigger tank Mollydog...it was more like :
"Big tank? why? The ****ing thing gets over 70 miles per gallon ... who needs a big tank?"
Hey ho...only joking ....yeah I know, I don't think it matters anymore though....do you ?
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  #50  
Old 18 Dec 2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mumbo68 View Post
That's not quite what your opinion was earlier when I suggested the CRF250 "rally" could've used a bigger tank Mollydog...it was more like :
"Big tank? why? The ****ing thing gets over 70 miles per gallon ... who needs a big tank?"
Hey ho...only joking ....yeah I know, I don't think it matters anymore though....do you ?
Good point ... but the reason I made that comment was because the CRF gets about 70 MPG ... whereas, my 10 year old, 60K mile DR650 gets only about 45 MPG on average. Worse if plugging through deep sand.
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  #51  
Old 18 Dec 2017
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Originally Posted by tremens View Post
I think you're wrong here, quite a few people took so called race bike for
very long trips like you would regular travel bike succeeded with no problems.
If you're not racing service interval actually can be measured in miles or kilometers and it's not that bad because they changed oil every 2000 km
or 1200 miles so it's doable. You get instead very light bike to deal with on the road. I was afraid about this aspect as well until I own my ktm 500 exc which appeared to be very reliable and adventure capable machine.

BTW, crf250l doesn't look good at all, looks weird at most.
Yes your absolutely correct, you, me, anybody can do just about any journey they want to with any bike. They manage to get comp. bikes to the end of the Dakar with less time for maintenance than on a road & trail trip. It's a case of where there's a will there's a way. True too you don't have to be stupid to do it either, crazy maybe, like crazy in love with "that" bike ! Or just crazy with a passion to do it. Yes it's true too that if your not racing stuff can be pushed out a lot on the mileage....This guy is one who is proving it :The Rolling Hobo (respect) But it does depend what you want from it, and all that work can detract from trip unless you want it that "hardcore". I'm a great believer in horses for courses and if your not racing you don't really need a race bike for most trips, although if you just want it that's fine. I used to race (road) 250's TZ's & RS's...loads of work!..Loved it at the time...Now ? I can't be arsed with all that when I'm on holiday, right now I'm struggling with the thought off going back to a chain drive instead of a shaft and all that adjusting etc.
Everybody is on a different journey or wanting to be and we're all at different points in our lives and our journeys, we're all different heights, abilities, age's and we all have our own idea of the perfect bike..and even that will change for each of us unless we keep doing the same old thing. I used to think my R1 was perfect for me I put so much thought, reading up and test rides into which bike would be the best for me before I bought that bike, and it was awesome at the time but now I've got a BMW. It's been almost perfect for what I've used it for too but now I'm looking at Husqvarna's because I'm thinking of changing what I do and where I do it..again. Some choose their "ride" because it's a gimmick, unusual etc. and it will sell books or whatever, I'm not really a fan of that but I can't say I blame them, there are so many at it nowadays. Generally though my thoughts are ride what you like, doesn't matter to me but don't presume I'm on the wrong bike because it doesn't fit your criteria... So if you fancy all those oil changes when you could be having a round the campfire feel free..I won't be jealous..I will when you hit that fire road and get to "let it loose" though
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  #52  
Old 18 Dec 2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
Good point ... but the reason I made that comment was because the CRF gets about 70 MPG ... whereas, my 10 year old, 60K mile DR650 gets only about 45 MPG on average. Worse if plugging through deep sand.
Yeah but the CRF's only got 2.2 gallons so even at 70 mpg ..150/160 miles (worse if plugging through deep sand) falls well short of the 220 miles minimum IYHO
C'mon..just give me this one
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  #53  
Old 18 Dec 2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post

As the review in Brake mentioned, that Husky will not be great as a travel bike as delivered. They didn't go into details, but I could see making it RTW ready might get expensive.
No they said this :

"7. The potential is there to be an incredible world travel bike.
In it’s stock form it’s less than perfect for hitting the road. The wind protection is minimal, the seat can be found wanting and the 14 litre tank is, well, only 14 litres. It’s not intended to be a travel bike. It’s a dual sport but there is the foundation for something incredible.

When most super keen adventure travellers list what their ideal bike would have the only things missing from the 701 are luggage space, protection and fuel range. While they may not be incredibly easy to solve, it has been done. With a little modification and some creativity the 701 Enduro has the potential to be truly outstanding."

Potential to be an incredible world travel bike !!

Foundation for something incredible !!

Potential to be truly outstanding !!.....mmmh..sounds good
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  #54  
Old 18 Dec 2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollydog View Post
My worry would be if you get yourself into a location where you can't find top quality synthetic oil, as required for many high end race bikes like the KTM 500.
full synthetic is nit required, I use same oil as for my xt660z tenere, motul semi synthetic. Regarding luggage and frame, motonomad guys used fully loaded caoyote giant loop bag with no problem
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