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Old 05-20-2015, 10:07 AM   #1
Berg570FE OP
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I want to get my wife an Adventure bike . . . .

Hello all,

I would appreciate some input and/or help from you guys/gals. I am knowledgeable about bikes, and have been riding for 30 years, but am having a tough time deciding on an Adventure bike for my wife.

Lindsey is an intermediate ladies rider, 5'1", 130 lbs, athletic and strong. She currently rides a 2012 KTM 250 XCF-W that is highly modified for her (lowered, Rekluse, bars cut, ect) for single track mountain riding. She loves it.

I have a 2014 Husaberg 501 FE for single track, and a 990 KTM for Adventure rides.

I want to get her something that can favor the dirt (everything BUT single track), yet can comfortably rip down the freeway at 65 for, say, 25 miles if need be. I have to be able to lower it, and I mean slam it down.

Im not concerned about her picking it up, as I would always be there, or the other ladies in our group would help as they often do for each other now. Her friends have a 650 GS, KTM 500, and a KTM 690.

Id like to keep the whole thing under $10K. Including bags, guards, . . . .you get the idea.

So on my radar are the following, with my concerns for each: And I don't wish to offend anyone who owns said bikes.

KLR 650 - I had one. Power to weight ratio is not so good, and it just seems like a HUGE bike for a 650?
DRZ 400s - Enough power to handle the Hwy?
DR 650 - Im leaning toward this bike, though its one of the few bikes Ive never ridden. No Efi or even FCR carb . .
My Husaberg 501 - I am planning on a '16 anyway.Ive dual sported it all around Moab, and it does not like the hwy speds at all. Not comfy either.
KTM 690 - Cost, and the concern I cant lower it enough?
XR 650L - I don't have any single reason to not consider it?

Her 250 just isn't happy hitting the hwy (Moab). She was revving the piss out of it just doing 50, geared up even.

So, any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 05-20-2015, 10:51 AM   #2
operose
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My vote is DR or DRZ, both are good bikes that can be lowered and will handle the highway transitions no problem, but why aren't you letting HER decide?
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Old 05-20-2015, 11:07 AM   #3
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DR650, CRF250L, WR250R are what I'd recommend. I love my DRZ-SM for all around duty but above 65mph, even though I've geared it down to 15/38, it gets loud. Honestly most of the bikes you listed would work, but if she's that small I'd stay on the lighter-weight side of the spectrum so the KLR and KTM are out.

An incredible resource right up this alley is the Shortypants Thread here on ADV. Lots of women showing off their (often extremely) lowered dual sports which they seem perfectly able to still have a ton of fun with. Have your wife check that thread out and, if she wants, post some questions to the ladies there.
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Old 05-20-2015, 11:27 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GypsyWriter View Post
DR650, CRF250L, WR250R are what I'd recommend. I love my DRZ-SM for all around duty but above 65mph, even though I've geared it down to 15/38, it gets loud. Honestly most of the bikes you listed would work, but if she's that small I'd stay on the lighter-weight side of the spectrum so the KLR and KTM are out.

An incredible resource right up this alley is the Shortypants Thread here on ADV. Lots of women showing off their (often extremely) lowered dual sports which they seem perfectly able to still have a ton of fun with. Have your wife check that thread out and, if she wants, post some questions to the ladies there.
+2 on the shorty pants thread.

One note GypsyWriter... the KTM 690 is actually the same weight or lighter than all the bikes the OP posted, and is also lighter than the CRF250L and a bit heavier than the WR. I don't believe however, you could get it low enough.

My wife ended up with 3 bikes; we just found there was no way to do most everything with one bike.

KTM 200XC - Dirt, mostly ST and Quad track stuff
CRF250L - Dual sport. Riding dirt, needing to get from point A to point B and require a plated bike
BMW F650GS - Adventure riding. Pack up all the camping gear, long distance rides on dirt, gravel, and tarmac for a few weeks.

It's become a bit more costly that we originally anticipated as I am set up the similarily (also with a 990A), but pretty damn sweet.
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Old 05-20-2015, 11:38 AM   #5
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Hey Berg,

IMHO if I could have just one bike, it would be my 2010 690. It does everything I ask of it just fine. I also have a 2011 570 Berg and it rocks on the tight stuff and does ok on the freeway, and my 990 is great too, but the 690 does everything it does better except for one thing, the 990 goes down the road so smoothly, easy to do 700 miles a day on the slab.

You can lower the 690 with dog-bones and shortin up the forks if needed. I have the Rally Raid front tanks and 200 miles is no problem and for a 335lb. bike, it does really well, just don't put your foot down...

I also have a Renazco high seat on mine, but in stock form it is a pretty low standing bike. It would be my choise for anyone looking for what you described.

Take care Brother, Eric.

BTW, come on out to Phoenix and she can take it for a spin and we can rock those Bergs!!
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Old 05-20-2015, 03:36 PM   #6
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Thanks guys, I really do appreciate it.

The link to the ladies short legged thread was indeed helpful as well.

Here is a picture of her on her KTM several weeks ago.



I think I may look into the DR 650, perhaps modify it a bit.

I will get her whatever bike she wants, but, she isn't sure what bike will best fit her "adventure riding" needs . She will try to test ride a DR 650 if she can find one.
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Old 05-20-2015, 03:39 PM   #7
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Big-E

We will be in Arizona this November. My wife will be doing her horse competition, but we are bringing the bikes as well.
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Old 05-20-2015, 03:46 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by operose View Post
My vote is DR or DRZ, both are good bikes that can be lowered and will handle the highway transitions no problem, but why aren't you letting HER decide?
+1 for DRZ

Amazing bike...
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Old 05-20-2015, 03:50 PM   #9
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I would think the DR would be the choice. It's got good power, is stupid simple, and a great after market.

Can the DRZ be lowered very much?

The XRL is to tall and even with a lowering link is pretty high.
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Old 05-20-2015, 08:57 PM   #10
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stock DRZ's not that great on the hiway because of the gearing... but there are a couple companies that make a lower 1st gear. then you install a bigger countershaft sprocket and maybe a smaller rear cog & get decent hiway speeds. kinda lot of work but it's on my list. just a thought
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Old 05-21-2015, 04:06 AM   #11
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My friend is 5'2", and I have an XR650L with a lowering link. He has no chance of even test riding it. When one foot is on the ground his other foot is about at footpeg height.

He recently got a DRZ and lowered it. A DR650 would be similar height.

I wonder how happy she'd be following a 990 adventure on a thumper though? I've recently been eyeballing the Honda CB500X with the Rally-Reid adventure package. It looks like a fun small bore adventure bike. You;d be close to 10 grand by the time you're done I think if you went for the full package.







http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1012021
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Old 05-21-2015, 06:16 AM   #12
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At 130 pounds, is there a reason she needs anything bigger than a 250? XT 250 or WRR? Even with an athletic build, I would imagine she would have a hard time moving a bike around that is nearly TRIPLE her body weight. If you weigh 200 pounds, go find a 600 pound bike and see what it is like. Try picking that bike up after you drop it. I would think a 280 pound 250 might be tough to handle.

Edit: I would be looking at a WR250X, put some knobbies on the SM wheels, lower the suspension a bit.

Another test you could do is find some weights and strap 125 pounds to the XCW that you have and see how she likes that.
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Old 05-21-2015, 07:21 AM   #13
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Other thoughts...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Berg570FE View Post
Hello all,

Lindsey is an intermediate ladies rider, 5'1", 130 lbs, athletic and strong. She currently rides a 2012 KTM 250 XCF-W that is highly modified for her (lowered, Rekluse, bars cut, ect) for single track mountain riding. She loves it.

If you can swing it, maybe keep the 250 XCF-W for the shorter more technical dirt rides, and perhaps try something like the CB500X with a stock 31.9" seat height or a used BMW G650GS with the Wunderlich Ergo Low seat for those longer rides. My buddies wife kept her KLX250S and added the BMW 650 for the same reasons and it worked out well. Try it for a few years and sell what you don't use, etc.

Article: 10 best motorcycles for women -
http://www.visordown.com/features/10.../22057-10.html

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Old 05-21-2015, 07:50 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by decooney View Post
If you can swing it, maybe keep the 250 XCF-W for the shorter more technical dirt rides, and perhaps try something like the CB500X with a stock 31.9" seat height or a used BMW G650GS with the Wunderlich Ergo Low seat for those longer rides. My buddies wife kept her KLX250S and added the BMW 650 for the same reasons and it worked out well. Try it for a few years and sell what you don't use, etc.

Article: 10 best motorcycles for women -
http://www.visordown.com/features/10.../22057-10.html

I second this... here is my wife on the F650GS.

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Old 05-21-2015, 04:11 PM   #15
trailer Rails
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I second this... here is my wife on the F650GS.
You are saying a 440 pound (wet weight) bike plus racks/bags/gear (490# loaded) is ok for a 5'1"/130# woman? I would like to see how that works on a rutted dirt road. Scratch that, I don't.
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