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Old 03-14-2015, 04:34 PM   #1
shoeb OP
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Is there any point in owning a serious adventure-touring bike in the UK?

Probably been asked a thousand times but I'm new to the forum (and forums in general). It seems to me that if you live in the UK, you are realistically several thousand miles from anywhere where a road bike wouldn't be a better touring tool than a big trailie on a long motorcycle journey. You'd have to ride all the way through Europe, with its silky roads and ample petrol stations, before you reached a sizeable chunk of planet Earth rugged and undeveloped enough to warrant such a machine. Call me, well, unadventurous, but I'd bet very few UK riders take their machines outside of Europe at any time in their lives, and even if they did, it would probably constitute about 0.1% of their riding life. Why not buy a bike more devoted to road riding that will have the edge for the other 99.9% of the time?
Add to this the fact that so many companies throughout the world offer motorcycle holiday rental and I find it hard to see why I'd ever keep one in my Yorkshire garage. Doesn't it make more sense, if I feel the ride-some-gnarly-shit urge coming on, to just fly out to my chosen place of travel, rent a badass trailie, enduro, or whatever, hand it back covered in mud and fly back home, rather than burn at least a week or two piling through Europe (each way) to get there?
I'm not trying to offend anyone who owns an adventure bike, quite the opposite. See, I like the idea of them, and indeed I could see myself astride one in some far flung desert and I fancy I'd suit the image. But given my above perplexions, I just can't seem to justify getting one over something more work-a-day, say a VFR? Help me figure out what the rage is all about by posting me your reasons for getting one (or avoiding one, if you do prefer touring on a road-biased bike).
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Old 03-14-2015, 04:51 PM   #2
whisperquiet
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It appears that you have Starbucks in the UK. http://www.starbucks.co.uk
So, yes you can use your serious-touring adventure bike to ride to Starbucks, park your bike, and impress all the patrons at Starbucks.
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Old 03-14-2015, 06:22 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whisperquiet View Post
It appears that you have Starbucks in the UK. http://www.starbucks.co.uk
So, yes you can use your serious-touring adventure bike to ride to Starbucks (standing up), park your bike, and impress all the patrons at Starbucks.
Great post
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Old 03-14-2015, 06:35 PM   #4
Slaghammer
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Common misconception is that all Adventure style bikes are bought to go off road to some extent or to at least look the part.

What a lot of people don't seem to understand is that a lot of us buy them with absolutely no intention of going off road. We buy them because their large, roomy for two, comfortable, handle well and can carry a lot of stuff. Very easy to customize to our exact touring or whatever needs.

What is it that makes it look like a serious off road bike ? Is it the low front fender, the tall touring windshield, the cruise control, the oversize hard saddlebags or was it the ME880s ??

Some set theirs up differently and go amazing places off road. Some of us consider them a perfect platform for serious pavement only use.

Buy what works for you but lose the attitude that people that own this style bike are posers. In my years, I've done a lot of dirt and a lot of pavement. I don't need to try to impress anyone or pretend. I imagine it's the same with most Adventure style bike owners.
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Slaghammer screwed with this post 03-14-2015 at 07:35 PM
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Old 03-14-2015, 06:37 PM   #5
mattoid1
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Rent a serious-touring adventure bike to ride to Starbucks. Wining!
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Old 03-14-2015, 10:15 PM   #6
Jimmy the Heater
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Paragraphs would help to form a concise question (just a suggestion)

I have never ridden in Europe, however I find it hard to believe that every single pavement covered street is in perfect condition. Potholes, speedbumps, cracked pavement are all much less of an issue on a big trailie than any street bike.

Also a big trailie has a perfectly upright riding position that many riders prefer. This riding position is very rare to find in a 100% street bike. Even the very popular naked bikes have a slightly leaned forward riding position and often a much less comfortable saddle.

All that combined is a very good reason to get a trailie. Even if you have no intention of going off road.
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Old 03-14-2015, 10:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whisperquiet View Post
It appears that you have Starbucks in the UK. http://www.starbucks.co.uk
So, yes you can use your serious-touring adventure bike to ride to Starbucks, park your bike, and impress all the patrons at Starbucks.
Lol!



My answer would be: if you have to ask that question, then in your case, chanses are - no.

Btw: Welcome to the board SHOEB!
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Old 03-14-2015, 11:30 PM   #8
Rogue_Ryder
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To me the best part of the ADV bikes are the friendly ergos for taller riders like myself. And the long travel suspension is nice for rough roads (paved or dirt). BUT I've never ridden a big ADV anywhere that I wouldn't also ride an ST1100 (Pan European), you just gotta go a tad bit slower on the street bike.

For me if it's really rough I want to be on a Thumper, the multi-cylindered bikes are just too damn heavy for me off-road.
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Old 03-15-2015, 04:19 AM   #9
shoeb OP
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[QUOTE=Jimmy the Heater;26360918]

I have never ridden in Europe, however I find it hard to believe that every single pavement covered street is in perfect condition. Potholes, speedbumps, cracked pavement are all much less of an issue on a big trailie than any street bike.

Also a big trailie has a perfectly upright riding position that many riders prefer. This riding position is very rare to find in a 100% street bike. Even the very popular naked bikes have a slightly leaned forward riding position and often a much less comfortable saddle.


OK, this is a decent point; British roads are, at least in towns, a bit naff. However, I've ridden a few streetbikes and I wouldn't say it's such an issue that I need long-travel suspension to cope with it. Streetbikes don't need racetrack grade tarmac to give a nice ride (though I wouldn't want a full-on sportsbike in Sheffield. Yikes).

A few people have commented on the ergos, fair play. They do look comfy and well equipped. On the other hand, so do touring bikes like (as mentioned) the Pan, or the R1200RT, and perhaps these are better bikes to compare with trailies than my VFR suggestion. Has anyone ridden both types that could say if the ergos are similar or not?

Also, cheers for the comments!
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Old 03-15-2015, 04:30 AM   #10
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Not having ridden Europe I think the comments are not completely out of whack. I ride all kinds of machinery and have each them for different purposes. Overindulged? You bet but my bikes are purchased used and cheap.
The GSA is certainly too much bike for popping around town but if that is all I owned that is what it would do.It eats miles, is relatively powerful and carries a boatload of gear over dirt roads if need be.

I will keep it for now.
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Old 03-15-2015, 06:52 AM   #11
Buzz Watkins
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Of course. Anything over 450lbs touted as a good offroad bike is false advertising anyway.

Any place with bumpy roads is plenty of reason to get an ADV bike.
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Old 03-15-2015, 07:09 AM   #12
rider33
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[QUOTE=shoeb;26361544]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimmy the Heater View Post

....
Also a big trailie has a perfectly upright riding position that many riders prefer. This riding position is very rare to find in a 100% street bike. Even the very popular naked bikes have a slightly leaned forward riding position and often a much less comfortable saddle.

This. There are some who buy them as fashion acessories and some who actually take them off road in meaningful ways but most I believe are bought for the comfortable upright ergo's, particularly for the taller rider. If you think about it, this really started with the GS which at the time was a varient on the big BMW road bikes. Most of the road bikes have gotten more compact and tucked in. Big dual-sports still are bolt upright with plenty of leg room and acres of space to lash on whatever.
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Old 03-15-2015, 07:43 AM   #13
Paulvt1
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I made the leap from conventional sports tourers to uber trailie type machines a few years back. Love the visibility and comfort of the class, and if you long for performance, the KTM 1290, Multistrada and the soon to be released BMW S1000XR will fit the bill.
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Old 03-15-2015, 07:54 AM   #14
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I was in a BMW dealer getting some new gloves (best gear dept of all the bike shops around here), there was a GS rider in for something and we had the usual conversation. He was strictly highway and the prospect of the obscure dirt/gravel/logging roads I take my Bandit down horrified him. But he was perfectly comfy on his adv bike, the performance, ride etc- I don't see any problem.

IIRC theres a motorcycle vlogger in the UK w/ a GSXR who finds all sorts of oddball trails- I remember one episode where he was slogging down a soaked and muddy farm road - just gross mud everywhere. Funny I imagine his bike would be easier to pick up out of the mud than some of the fancy adv ones.
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Old 03-15-2015, 09:10 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Slaghammer View Post
... I don't need to try to impress anyone or pretend.....
See, right there is a difference-- many of the folks who post poser comments have a compelling need to show how hard core they are by belittling others.

One really great thing with adventure bikes is that they work great on the backroads that seem to be the most fun because many of those roads are tight, twisty, cratered, poorly maintained, etc.; and in the vicinity of many nice dirt roads as well.

It's that aspect, rather than doing serious dirt, that got me into adventure bikes in the mid-90's; with a Moto-Morini Camel
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