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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 James Duncan, Universe Camp, Uyuni Salt Flats

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


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  #16  
Old 29 Sep 2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Scott View Post
I rented one for a week in Morocco and must admit I was not impressed at all, primarily due to the vibration. There was nothing wrong with the low-miler other than possibly worn out MT21s or similar.
But you'll be running similar tyres. And they say it's less hardcore than the 690...
.
i use a 690 enduro, no vibrations from engine; Of course, when it reaches 100 kmh with cranked tires, the handlebar vibrates, but with any motorcycle more or less

husky 701 could be my next choice for desert riding
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  #17  
Old 29 Sep 2017
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Funny thing about Kawa and overlanding.
In Europe long unknown and unused; saw one in Syria once but never in the Sahara. Yamaha and Honda have long 'dominated' there, I presume helped by Dakar wins.
The KLX650 is of course the 'Tenere' of North America in terms of RTW reputation, but you get the feeling Kawa are sort of embarrassed/annoyed/indifferent to that. Suzuki the same with DRs.
Maybe ZXRs and GSXRs etc make them more money.

RTW 701s
Ride Must Go On – Globetrotting since 2014
The start of a 5 year adventure • MotoMorgana
Lately in Colombia and Cape Town

Being lent one again next week it seems; they've run out of XRs ;-(
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  #18  
Old 29 Sep 2017
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Views on the husqvarna 701?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Scott View Post

RTW 701s

Ride Must Go On – Globetrotting since 2014

The start of a 5 year adventure • MotoMorgana

Lately in Colombia and Cape Town

Being lent one again next week it seems; they've run out of XRs ;-(

Fab - fingers crossed its a 2017 one.

Hopefully its a good experience for you; assuming you report back (please) it'll definitely be an insightful one for me :-)


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  #19  
Old 29 Sep 2017
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Pretty sure it'll be the same old jackhammer, but will report back if it feels any different.
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  #20  
Old 29 Sep 2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Scott View Post
Funny thing about Kawa and overlanding.
In Europe long unknown and unused; saw one in Syria once but never in the Sahara. Yamaha and Honda have long 'dominated' there, I presume helped by Dakar wins.
Yes, no doubt!
But Honda and Yamaha haven't been dominate in Dakar in years ... not since Peterhansel's 9 wins on Yamaha going back 20 years or more. In last 10 years in S.America it's been a KTM show, but at least Yam and Honda are competing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Scott View Post
The KLX650 is of course the 'Tenere' of North America in terms of RTW reputation, but you get the feeling Kawa are sort of embarrassed/annoyed/indifferent to that. Suzuki the same with DRs.
Maybe ZXRs and GSXRs etc make them more money.
I think you mean KLR650, not KLX650. The KLX was only in production 2 years or so mid 1990's. True disaster for Kawi due to batch of bad engines. The KLR hasn't really changed much since 1985!!! ('84 KLR600, then KLR650, minor upgrade in 2008 ... that's IT! )

Kawi have awakened from 20 year slumber, now using KLR's RTW reputation to market it a bit ... A bit. The amazing thing is that the KLR still passes USA emissions testing ... as does the DR650 and Honda XR650L.
All super Dinosaurs with carbs!

Suzuki are no longer embarassed by their DR650! At a press intro I was told the DR is one of their top 10 best selling bikes! DR650 had a nice sales spike in 2007 up to about 2012. Leveled off now, very quiet with only Husky and KTM showing strong sales.
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  #21  
Old 16 Dec 2017
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Quite a few tasty H701 kits out from all over the globe to transform the H701 into a reliable long distance touring and rally bike as life is too short to own and ride boring bikes!!!

https://www.hardkits.com
https://kit701.com
http://www.aurora-rally.com
http://www.radegarage.com
http://omegafibre.net
https://www.nomad-adv.com
http://www.bikerswarehouse.co.za
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Somewhere down the road in China since '89 ~ along the route I've learned the hard way that pleasing everyone is impossible, but pissing everybody off is a piece of cake....TBR
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  #22  
Old 26 Dec 2017
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Xr650r

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Scott View Post

Looking for a bike for Algeria – a supported tour not a travel bike.
Try XR650R.
Light, powerfull, bulletproof and cheap in comparison to 701/690.
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  #23  
Old 26 Dec 2017
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XR650R hard to find in the UK or expensive.
They were never really a hit here (as travel bikes)
Got myself a nice XR4 for DZ.

On my tours the novelty of the 701 soon wore off over the cushier Tornados, but we don't ride hard.

I met some Belgian desert pros (690, DR650, 701) doing long, hard days and the guy with the 701 said he really rates his over former DR and X-Ch following an inexpensive fork upgrade (prog' springs; thinner oil, lower-friction seals). Plus a €150 seat and a small screen.
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  #24  
Old 26 Dec 2017
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Scott View Post
XR650R hard to find in the UK or expensive.
They were never really a hit here (as travel bikes)
Got myself a nice XR4 for DZ.

On my tours the novelty of the 701 soon wore off over the cushier Tornados, but we don't ride hard.

I met some Belgian desert pros (690, DR650, 701) doing long, hard days and the guy with the 701 said he really rates his over former DR and X-Ch following an inexpensive fork upgrade (prog' springs; thinner oil, lower-friction seals). Plus a €150 seat and a small screen.
There are road legal (Kitted) XR650R's for sale around here everyday. They go from about $2500 up to about $4500 depending on condition and mods done.

Most guys here using it as dual sport bike with emphasis on Desert work. Tight trails not great on XR650R. It's very tall, bit top heavy. But robust and stable at 70mph powering through rocks. Remember, Honda's XR650R won many many Baja 1000 races for YEARS ... then Honda went to the CRF450 class bikes ... XR650R was put out to pasture.

A great bike overall for dirt riding but takes quite a bit to set it up for travel with luggage and stuff. Only ever seen ONE set up for travel.

XR400R?
Assume you mean the old Honda XR400R? Great bike, wish it had "the button", but if you get your kick starting technique down it's OK, reliable, plenty of power with gearing that allows reasonable highway speeds.

BTW, the XR400R is still, TODAY, one of the favorites of the Baja tour companies for their client bikes. Below pic shows mix of bikes but a LOT of XR400's in there along with a few CRF250's.



Surprised you rate the Tornado over the 701 Husky. For novice riders I get it, but for more experienced guys (like the "pros" you met) in tough conditions, riding at speed, I'm thinking I'd prefer the 701.

I'm sure it needs set up for rider weight/ability but the potential is clearly there to be exploited ... where as the Tornado, as good as it is overall, is limited if the pace picks up and terrain worsens.

As a travel bike for long road sections I would still choose a DR650 over a Husky 701. More comfort, better reliability, very low maintenance vs. Husky.

The DR is rarely set up correctly but if it IS set up right, it's quite surprising how good it can be off road, even loaded up for travel. Bang for Buck is, IMO,
pretty much off the scale.
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  #25  
Old 27 Dec 2017
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Views on the husqvarna 701?

Currently in RSA revisiting this thread. Decision time (keep or sell) on my XT660z having finished my short trip here (for now).

I took a one day, one to one training day on the XT660z before setting off. It transformed my experience of riding it (fixing a few minor things in my technique gave me so much more confidence on it) . As a result I am leaning towards keeping it, doing another trip or two here and then shipping it to the US to do the TAT in a couple of years.

When back in the UK i will try and test ride the 701 while the XT is fresh in my head just to test that decision.

Decidedly off topic but a few clips of some cracking riding in RSA here if of interest. http://youtu.be/JqWxZeLh3Fw



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  #26  
Old 2 Feb 2018
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If you are still fence sitting may i suggest

Husqvarna 701 Super Moto and Enduro! | Adventure Rider

for feedback on specifics on the 701.

I've been riding my 701 for a couple years and for my style of riding, 50/50, i love it.

It handles hours of slab without problems and keeps up to my 450 offroad with equal ease.

As any bike it required ergo modifications, im 6'2", and travel mods such as pannier racks etc are all easily available.

The power to weight ratio is excellent as is the fuel economy.
And, you can easily pick it up yourself when the inevitable get off occurs

IMO this is a true dual purpose bike.

Good luck
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  #27  
Old 2 Feb 2018
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I hope you don't expect us to read all 900 pages of that ADV Thread! :smarts:

Maybe you could give us a short review of your own ... perhaps a couple paragraphs of specifics?

I'm guessing you have the "Enduro" version as you mention it's the perfect Dual Sport bike.

Couple questions:
What is current MSRP? Full OUT THE DOOR cost (on the road).

Have you ridden a 2016 or 2017 KTM Duke 690? I recently bought a near new
'17 Duke for a song. It's pretty smooth at highway speed (65 to 75 mph).
Nicer than earlier Dukes, IMO but no Triumph 1050 (glass smooth triple)

Wonder how if the Husky motor is the same as the new generation 690 used in my KTM Duke 690?

KTM claim the Duke makes like 72 HP. (I feel a real dyno run would indicate true HP of about 62 at best. Plenty for me.

Good handling bike (but can't match my Ducati Hyperstrada), fair brakes, very fun to ride. Can't match my DR650 or Ducati for long distance. Thoughts?

How does the Husky 701 compare to KTM 690 off road in more technical C and B Enduro trails?

How about reliability? Surely in 900 pages someone has put more than 3000 miles on one? Thoughts of long term reliability? IE: would your ride one to S. America or cross Mongolia?

How much fuel does it hold in stock form? Aftermarket tanks? How much?

Cost of maintenance? Can you do ALL regular maintenance yourself or do you
need a dealer? Hard or easy?

Has anyone done any significant cross continent traveling on the 701?

Thanks, love to hear your thoughts and opinions.
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  #28  
Old 5 Feb 2018
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Cool

Mollydog, unsure if I can do your interest level into the 701, or your time investment in your post, justice and answer all your questions but I can share the following:

I show 12,000 km on the clock and issues so far are an intermittent horn which was replaced under warranty.

For MSRP I recommend contacting your local dealer. I live in Canada and these bikes can be difficult to find, likely less so in the US I understand.

IMO vibrations are relative to the rider and I find them non-existant on my 701, but then I have ridden mainly dirt on dirt bikes - to me the 701 is carpet smooth.

Yes, I do my own maintenance. 10,000km oil change intervals.

Would I ride it rtw - yes.
Are parts as plentiful as the DR's etc - highly unlikely.
Would that stop me - no...in fact that is why I purchased the bike.

Check out Tom and Caroline as they ride their 701's rtw for a list of improvements and challenges encountered:

About us • MotoMorgana

Or Check out Dave's RR taking his 701 from Tucson to AK for breakfast.

Riding to Alaska for breakfast on a dirt bike | Page 4 | Adventure Rider

But what it really comes down to, for my riding style and interests, is the smile this bike puts on my face every time I ride it or even 'think' about riding it.

And as Mr. Chris Scott points out in the AMH: '...don't forget the value of a machine that, even after weeks on the road, still gives you a thrill to look at as you crawl out of your tent each morning.'

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  #29  
Old 6 Feb 2018
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Hi Riel,
Which model year is your 701 ? I'm guessing it's a 15/16 ?
Thanks.
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  #30  
Old 7 Feb 2018
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Riel View Post
For MSRP I recommend contacting your local dealer. I live in Canada and these bikes can be difficult to find, likely less so in the US I understand.
I only asked what you paid in Canadian dollars ... not MSRP. I can figure conversion from CA dollars to US. Here we have lots add on fees and tax ... so price goes WAY up above MSRP. maybe same in Canada?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Riel View Post
IMO vibrations are relative to the rider and I find them non-existant on my 701, but then I have ridden mainly dirt on dirt bikes - to me the 701 is carpet smooth.
Good to hear. Yes, most bikes are pretty smooth riding dirt. So you never rode your Husky cross country on highway for long day rides? Maybe test that out before going RTW on it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Riel View Post
Yes, I do my own maintenance. 10,000km oil change intervals.
Wow! 10K km between oil changes is great! Is that what Husky/KTM recommend in the factory service book?

I don't even go that far on my 10 year old Suzuki DR650! I usually try to change at around 4K miles or so (6K km). So far, made it to 62,000 miles with NO engine work. Just lucky I guess?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Riel View Post
Would I ride it rtw - yes.
Are parts as plentiful as the DR's etc - highly unlikely.
Would that stop me - no...in fact that is why I purchased the bike.
I'm sure you'll do just fine. Even with the DR you have to order parts from abroad. Most Suzuki dealer outside USA/Canada would not stock Suzuki DR parts. So same as Husky ... order and wait a month.

Question is ... which engine will break first?

Great travel stories! Thanks for the links!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Riel View Post
But what it really comes down to, for my riding style and interests, is the smile this bike puts on my face every time I ride it or even 'think' about riding it.

And as Mr. Chris Scott points out in the AMH: '...don't forget the value of a machine that, even after weeks on the road, still gives you a thrill to look at as you crawl out of your tent each morning.'

Spot on! But I'd rather actually RIDE than simply "think" about riding

... and I don't see the bike when I'm riding it. The main thing is that it starts up and keeps going ... everyday ... for 10 years ... without even ONE repair.

I raced AMA Enduro, dist. 36, B rider, for eight years. So I know how to go fast in the dirt and I know what a fast dirt bike is.

For travel (for me) I'd don't need the fastest or best handling ... or even the best looking bike for long distance travel.

Most times I'm on highways anyway, so a "True Dual Sport" is of paramount importance. Being able to ride 10 hours a day, day after day at 75 MPH is a good test of the engine.

All the best!
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