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Old 12-06-2013, 08:53 AM   #31
itsatdm
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I agree with pick the bike and then ask the question about longevity. Drive trains, like your question about FI longevity differ among makers. Some are just better than others.

Doesn't make much sense to isolated 2 problems while the bike you pick is well known for another.

I will start, since you have referred to Triumph in both threads. Late model bikes have a good reputation for reliability. Twins are pretty simple compared to some potential choices. If that turns out to be the one, then how easy is it to work on? Even if you don't do it, it will impact service cost.
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:10 AM   #32
LPRoad OP
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Originally Posted by itsatdm View Post
Doesn't make much sense to isolated 2 problems while the bike you pick is well known for another.
Good point. I just didn't want to sound totally lame with a "please pick my bike for me" thread. (Although that seems to be kinda what I am asking)
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:23 AM   #33
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As the owner of a belt driven bike I recommend a chain. Install an oiler. Belts are such a crapshoot, you can take one 100k miles and another might break after 3k.
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:32 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by LittleRedToyota View Post
you really don't. try it sometime. when you get a new chain, don't do anything to it other than hosing it down with WD-40 after washing the bike. you'll be surprised by the results.

WD-40 seems to condition the o-rings just fine. or they don't need to be conditioned. in any case, they last a long time without lubing them.

if anything, lube just attracts dirt and turns into gritty paste...which will wear everything faster.
When I switched to a Scottoiler, my x-ring chain life doubled. That makes me think that lubricating a chain does increase the life of the chain...
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:45 AM   #35
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The new x ring chains might be expensive but worth it, never lube mine, even in mixed riding, 30-70 gravel-blacktop, they seem to last forever. I keep checking it for tightness, can't remember when I had to adjusted it last. Having said that, I don't have any experience with a belt or shaft. There is talk of BMW having issues with their shaft, but this being internet, things seem to balloon out a bit and some people tend to believe everything they read here.
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:47 AM   #36
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My criteria was shaft drive, mostly because I loved doing long distances and hated having to lube every 300 to 600 miles. The whole, push, lube, push, lube, and then after diligently cleaning and lubing the chain, wiping the excess off and the wax of the rims, I got tired of it, no to mention seeing the little rubber o-rings come loose, this didn't make me feel particularly trusting of chains.
The belts aren't offered on many other brands except HD, that I know of (I'm probably wrong,) and I wasn't interested in a cruiser anyways. So I ended up on the FJR, because it has a reputation for having an "OK" shaft drive with easy maintenance, perhaps not as good as BMWs but I can't afford BMWs. I know that I compromised and sacrificed a lot of power and efficiency for the shaft, however, the bike will still outperform my riding abilities, so who cares. I'm no GP racer and I'm in my forties, so officially in the category of "Old Fart!"
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Old 12-06-2013, 11:24 AM   #37
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I haven't read your other threads but I'll weigh in anyway. Since you are in Maine right now and moving to New Mexico, I think you should also look at the twins and triple out there that have a 21 inch front wheel. These willbe modern motorcycles with fuel injection. They'll weigh in the mid 400lb range, tour well, handle rougher terrain and be comfortable.

I've spend a lot of time riding out west. I keep a dual sport in Arizona and have another here in New England. In my experience, the dirt roads out west can deteriorate quickly due to weather and flash flood washouts. The soils out there range from bull dust and sand to clay. Some of the most beautiful ride destinations are a long ways from pavement. You want a bike most capable for getting to them.

To get the most benefit from your rides, I think you need a motorcycle that you can equip with the right tires for the job. The reason you want the 21 inch front hoop is because it rolls the rough stuff best. You are also going to want decent fuel range.

I rode a KTM 950 for 7 years and 60k miles. The newest version of that bike is the 990. I think you should add that and maybe a BMW 800GS and Triumph 800 to your list.

I also vote chain drives. The reason is that if you want to take a big trip you want to make sure your drive system will get you home. My big trips were typically about 7k miles long. That means I would begin the trip with a new chainset and an extra rear tire (strapped to the bike or drop shipped at a predetermined location). My 950 chainsets lasted about 15k miles. A new chain and sprockets cost about $325. My rear tires went about 4k. The 950 had about 220 miles fuel range. Out west that is barely enough.

I replaced the 950 with a KTM 690R. It is about 120lbs lighter making it easier to pick up by myself when solo. I like touring with the 950, though. I rode it all over the continent.

My 950 had carbs. My 690 and Yamaha have FI. I vote FI for a better running motor and advantages at higher elevations.
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Old 12-06-2013, 11:47 AM   #38
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Oh yeah, let us know what you went with bike wise and your impressions.
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Old 12-06-2013, 12:33 PM   #39
cliffy109
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I love that you have the R nine T on your list. That is about the coolest looking bike I've ever seen. It should handle VERY well and would be a blast to ride.

Personally, were I in your shoes, I'd be looking at a basic 1200GS. It is a really good street bike that can handle dirt roads if you want to. Don't think of it as an enduro or dirt bike. It isn't. It is monstrously fun in the twisties, very capable on interstates, nimble enough in town and still capable of a bit of off-roading when you need it. That sounds about perfect for NM.

Still not as cool as the R nine T though.
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Old 12-06-2013, 12:53 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by max384 View Post
When I switched to a Scottoiler, my x-ring chain life doubled. That makes me think that lubricating a chain does increase the life of the chain...
and my chains started lasting significantly longer when i stopped lubing them. but i ride a lot of muddy trails. maybe it works differently depending on what type of riding you are doing.

i read about people getting 25k miles out of chains on street bikes. i freely admit that i do not get 25k miles out of chains. i just know they last a lot longer than they used to since i stopped lubing them.
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Old 12-06-2013, 01:11 PM   #41
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I would ride the bikes yourself. You may find you do not like one over the other for various reasons, and one of the reasons may or may not be the type of drive. I prefer a chain driven bike myself. I have ridden several different shaft and belted bikes. My least favorite type is the shaft due to the (not sure if this is the correct term) "shaft torque" where you can feel the power in the shaft drive which to me feels strange. Some people I know actually like that, but to me it feels off-balance. But I don't know if I wold rule something out due to the type of drive without knowing what it feels like "to you" first hand.
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Old 12-06-2013, 01:27 PM   #42
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After crossing the USA (1974)on a chain drive Honda I swore I would never put up with that nonsense again. Every hundred miles I checked the chain, lubed it and adjusted if needed. 32 times Vermont to Arizona.

This is a variation on chain drive I am surprised was a dead end. http://www.flickr.com/photos/2982116...n/photostream/ No adjustment, new oil once a year. This chain and sprocket lasted 70,000 miles. Monoshock.
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Old 12-06-2013, 01:32 PM   #43
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I am not a fan of shafts on a motorcycle... Certainly not an Adventure motorcycle. I have seen grenaded shafts on Goldwings, FJR's, VMax's, Concours', BMW's... Granted it does not happen often but when it does fail you may as well light the bike on fire and call it in stolen. (Something I would never do and I am not actually suggesting it)

Shafts are Power Robbing and very expensive to repair or replace.

Belts are the smoothest and most efficient transfer of power and can easily last over 100,000 miles needing adjustments about every time a tire needs replaced... Belts do not get along well with gravel.

CHAINS ARE THE SHIT!!! A modern O-ring or X-ring chain needs little to no maintenance and if one should break you can generally repair it on the side of the road in about 10 minutes.

I once rode home over 30 miles with a 530 link stuffed in a 525 chain (see pic) Just stuffed in there with no backing plate or clip to hold it on.


Replacements are generally just over $100. Hands down the best for most motorcycle applications.

I currently own all three... Chain, shaft, belt... They all have their place. IMO Chain is preferred.

I have found and plan on buying ONE more shaft drive bike... It would be a better bike with a chain but they don't come that way.
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Old 12-06-2013, 02:12 PM   #44
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Yes, an enclosed chain running in oil is great. Several makes of scooters used that system. Better yet is the original Vespa gear drive system. Just running a chain in a metal or plastic enclosure to keep the road grit and water out like the Cub type bikes works well, and it was used for a time on a few large bikes. Wish I had it on my chain drive bikes.

I wonder if shaft drive really robs power? My old Honda CX500s seemed to be just as fast as the chain drive 500s of the day. Never noticed any jacking on my CX500s or GL1000 either but did on my old BMW.





Quote:
Originally Posted by scootrboi View Post
After crossing the USA (1974)on a chain drive Honda I swore I would never put up with that nonsense again. Every hundred miles I checked the chain, lubed it and adjusted if needed. 32 times Vermont to Arizona.

This is a variation on chain drive I am surprised was a dead end. http://www.flickr.com/photos/2982116...n/photostream/ No adjustment, new oil once a year. This chain and sprocket lasted 70,000 miles. Monoshock.
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Old 12-06-2013, 02:56 PM   #45
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I wonder if shaft drive really robs power? My old Honda CX500s seemed to be just as fast as the chain drive 500s of the day. Never noticed any jacking on my CX500s or GL1000 either but did on my old BMW.
Yes it robs a little more than the other two, and it weighs a tad more too.

Neither one was noticeable when I was doing 100mph wheelies on my GS though.

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