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Old 01-27-2009, 09:16 AM   #16
dolomiti OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedMenace
The KZ will make more power for the weight. At the prices you are talking about these bikes are disposable-cheaper to get another POS and hook it up than to fix.

Spend less money on paint and more on the bike. Forget the 30+ year old bikes. Get the newest insurance write off you can. Strip the plastic and rattle can the the remains flat black. Reapply as needed.
I may have given the wrong impression about what I am shooting for. I want a nice set-up, but don't want to spend mega-bucks on a hot cb750 if I am just going to break it down, rebuild the engine, powder-coat the frame black, and paint the tank, etc sand, put on some knobbies, change to a dual-sport handlebars, etc. I would rather spend $500 on a bike that is sorta running than $2000 on one that is running but will need me to go through and redo everything anyway. The reason I am doing it this way is:

1. I don't want to spend $13,000 for a Ural Gear-Up
2. I want a bike that will go faster than 55 mph
3. I want a bike with relative reliability (but with a classic look). I know they are getting better but I owned a UAZ-Patrol, and have no desire to do that again.
4. I want to do most of the work myself

I am not looking to put together a rat. I want a capable platform (even if it is sinking some money into a bike that is worth less than what I have spent. I want to be able to go to Terre Del Fuego or Prudhoe Bay, not just the grocery store.
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Old 01-27-2009, 09:34 AM   #17
Threewheelbonnie
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I came a similar route:

1999 Ural 650; great when it went, didn't go often enough. 50 mph cruise on under 35 hp.

1995 BMW R1100R with Charnwood chair; Great until it hit 9 years old, then the electrics were a PITA and it rotted faster than an Yamaha XT down pipe in a salt factory. Would pass anything except a petrol station or a speed camera on 80 hp.

I settled on the Bonneville as the compromise of slightly less power in a newer and simpler package. Don't know enough about Suzuki's to get into detail, but I think you are on the right line.

Andy
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Old 01-27-2009, 09:47 AM   #18
RedMenace
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dolomiti
I may have given the wrong impression about what I am shooting for. I want a nice set-up, but don't want to spend mega-bucks on a hot cb750 if I am just going to break it down, rebuild the engine, powder-coat the frame black, and paint the tank, etc sand, put on some knobbies, change to a dual-sport handlebars, etc. I would rather spend $500 on a bike that is sorta running than $2000 on one that is running but will need me to go through and redo everything anyway. The reason I am doing it this way is:

1. I don't want to spend $13,000 for a Ural Gear-Up
2. I want a bike that will go faster than 55 mph
3. I want a bike with relative reliability (but with a classic look). I know they are getting better but I owned a UAZ-Patrol, and have no desire to do that again.
4. I want to do most of the work myself

I am not looking to put together a rat. I want a capable platform (even if it is sinking some money into a bike that is worth less than what I have spent. I want to be able to go to Terre Del Fuego or Prudhoe Bay, not just the grocery store.
You probably cant do that with a 30 yo $500 Japanese bike. It will end up costing as much as a newer bike by the time you make it "as new" and it will still be a 30yo bike with old tech and poor hp to weight ratio or hopped up for good hp, reduced reliability. A 30 yo bike broke down in bumfuck will not be any easier to repair and abandoning it will be the most practical course.

I love old bikes, but being easier to work on doesn't make up for poor performance, constant maintenance requirements and scarce parts. Further, the Japanese multis you are looking at aren't all that easy to service. You can make a fine budget rig with one, and you can polish it up for the Vintage shows, but it isn't the best choice for far flung adventures in remote locales.


If you are serious about an adventure hack, spend more money on a newer bike. Get something less than 10 yo that had a long model run. You will find parts easier to get and the bike will be more reliable. You can do this for well under the cost of a new Ural and have much more bike for the money spent, but a $600 hack + a $500 bike = a money pit or a rat, not a reliable Pan American adventure tourer, IMHO
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Old 01-27-2009, 09:54 AM   #19
dolomiti OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedMenace
You probably cant do that with a 30 yo $500 Japanese bike. It will end up costing as much as a newer bike by the time you make it "as new" and it will still be a 30yo bike with old tech and poor hp to weight ratio or hopped up for good hp, reduced reliability. A 30 yo bike broke down in bumfuck will not be any easier to repair and abandoning it will be the most practical course.

I love old bikes, but being easier to work on doesn't make up for poor performance, constant maintenance requirements and scarce parts. Further, the Japanese multis you are looking at aren't all that easy to service. You can make a fine budget rig with one, and you can polish it up for the Vintage shows, but it isn't the best choice for far flung adventures in remote locales.


If you are serious about an adventure hack, spend more money on a newer bike. Get something less than 10 yo that had a long model run. You will find parts easier to get and the bike will be more reliable. You can do this for well under the cost of a new Ural and have much more bike for the money spent, but a $600 hack + a $500 bike = a money pit or a rat, not a reliable Pan American adventure tourer, IMHO
Thanks for the straight-forward advice. Maybe I should go back to my original plan of a KLR650. They can be had for relatively cheap, and after I paint the plastics, will look pretty cool too.
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Old 01-27-2009, 10:12 AM   #20
MooseKiller
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Since you already have the hack, why not consider a late model BMW 1100 GS, or and early model 1150? They have the benefits RedMenace mentioned, and are (relatively) reasonably priced these days... Poke around long enough and you will find a good deal. Just a thought...

Good luck with your project regardless of the route you choose! Post pix when you start working on it!
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Old 01-27-2009, 10:32 AM   #21
RedMenace
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dolomiti
Thanks for the straight-forward advice. Maybe I should go back to my original plan of a KLR650. They can be had for relatively cheap, and after I paint the plastics, will look pretty cool too.

KLR is comparable to a Ural in performance. I have great fun with mine. But they won't do the speeds you want and aren't the best quality the Japanese have to offer.

Keep looking. There are lots of bikes out there with the hp you want at good prices. An old Bandit is a great sidecar tug. The Seca looks good too. Not a lot of ground clearance , but good capable bikes that last forever and can be found cheap.

Aaron(crash a ron) made a very cool rig out of a wrecked Calvacade. Insurance wrecks can be a great source for a newer bike, done cheap. You can use some the money you save to replace a damaged front end with leading links. You can leave the broken plastic off. It doesn't need to be a rat- think street fighter, be creative.

The spine frame bikes are more difficult to mount sidecars to, but make a great rig once you figure out the subframe. My old carb Tiger was the most fun of any of the rigs I have had, tho it was a pain to work on and the subframe was tricky. It would go 80mph all day long fully loaded and was good in the dirt, too I put that together for around $8000 if I remember rightly.

The newer BMWs can be expensive to mount to, but will haul your sidecar at freeway speeds. The airheads are usually easier and less expensive but still need a good subframe and will work hard above 65mph.

A used V Strom might be a good choice.
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Old 01-27-2009, 11:38 AM   #22
dbarale
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedMenace
Keep looking. There are lots of bikes out there with the hp you want at good prices. An old Bandit is a great sidecar tug.
I was just looking at my old Bandit and wondering just that...
Is the chain drive an issue or an advantage as it allows easy re-gearing?
How do you handle the lack of 17" dual sport tires? Early 18" GSXR front and 600 Bandit rear wheels?

... Sorry for the hijack.
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Old 01-27-2009, 11:46 AM   #23
RedMenace
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbarale
I was just looking at my old Bandit and wondering just that...
Is the chain drive an issue or an advantage as it allows easy re-gearing?
How do you handle the lack of 17" dual sport tires? Early 18" GSXR front and 600 Bandit rear wheels?

... Sorry for the hijack.

I think chain drive is an advantage for sidecars

I use a Cheng Shen trials pattern up front and a Kenda K270 on the rear, with good results
I had to raise the front fender to make the tire fit





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RedMenace screwed with this post 01-27-2009 at 12:06 PM
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Old 01-27-2009, 12:38 PM   #24
dbarale
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I now remember seeing a picture of these two rigs in a crowded garage somewhere else, Maximum Suzuki maybe?
I cannot tell if these are B6's or B12's, what size rear are you running?
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:00 PM   #25
claude
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The Bandit is a great choice for a tug. However, someone mentioned an XS1100. We have had two rigs powered by these and they are a good choice also.
P.S. I think the sidecar pictured earlier is a Dnepr and not a Ural.
Looks like it had been modified a little too.
Our old XS1100 rig:
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:01 PM   #26
RedMenace
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbarale
I now remember seeing a picture of these two rigs in a crowded garage somewhere else, Maximum Suzuki maybe?
I cannot tell if these are B6's or B12's, what size rear are you running?
B6

I think it is a 510x17 might be the next size down
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:35 PM   #27
dolomiti OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedMenace
KLR is comparable to a Ural in performance.
So you mean highway speed or reliability? At 43HP is beats the 40HP put out by the Ural, but am unsure if that means much. My F650GS had 50HP and it seemed like it had plenty of power to pull.

I never thought of the KLR650 as unreliable, but I guess as far as DS, the African Twin and Transalp may be more reliable bikes than the KLR?

Now with my Dnepr side-car, am I going to have trouble getting it on the frame of a KLR650? It seems like there is a lot of plastic to get in the way.
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:53 PM   #28
RedMenace
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dolomiti
So you mean highway speed or reliability? At 43HP is beats the 40HP put out by the Ural, but am unsure if that means much. My F650GS had 50HP and it seemed like it had plenty of power to pull.

I never thought of the KLR650 as unreliable, but I guess as far as DS, the African Twin and Transalp may be more reliable bikes than the KLR?

Now with my Dnepr side-car, am I going to have trouble getting it on the frame of a KLR650? It seems like there is a lot of plastic to get in the way.
I mean performance. Reliability seems to be better, provided you do the doohickey. It doesn't like speeds much above 60mph but will do so, just like a Ural. One advantage is it is easy to regear the KLR to match what you want to do with it. My KLR Sputnik seems to do highway speeds much easier than the barn door motox sidecars I have on the others. The 685 big bore KLR is happier pulling the hacks than the stock engine.

You mentioned in one of your posts wanting a rig that will do 70 or 80 mph. Niether the Ural nor the KLR will do that. You might be able to wring those speeds out of one in some circumstances, but it aint right and the machine will let you know it.
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:56 PM   #29
RedMenace
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dolomiti
Now with my Dnepr side-car, am I going to have trouble getting it on the frame of a KLR650? It seems like there is a lot of plastic to get in the way.
You will need a subframe. The top front mount is tricky. Dauntless Motors has the best solution for mounts and is worth the money, but it is not cheap.

On my home built subframe I put the top front mount low, about the bottom of the front fender. I've posted some stuff here and at klrworld.com if you want to see how I did it.
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Old 01-27-2009, 02:14 PM   #30
SilkMoneyLove
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too late now..

...you bought the sidecar, but look for a HD with a sidecar and see what is out there. I have seen sportsters with sidecars and think that is a neat set up. Reliable and torque enough to go down the road. Also, parts and dealers are everywhere.

Classic look, V-Twin torque and inexpensive.
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