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Old 07-01-2012, 07:54 PM   #976
WVhillbilly
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eastbloc View Post
It's also a good base for building a rig with another tug if you find that you want a reliable highway-capable ride.
I just want it to putt around on. Think it would be ok for that, as long as I have tools on board.
It seems that the issues with these rigs are known ones, they are expected to happen and the solution is out there and documented.
I'll never have time to take a cross continent trip, so I don't need to worry about that.

If I do have time, I'll take one of my other bikes.
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Old 07-01-2012, 07:57 PM   #977
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I dont disagree, actually. If I were a well prepared motorcycle adventurer, could weld and carried enough spare parts to fill the trunk, I might even prefer to take a Ural. But Im not; Im always going to take the new bike with the best chance of getting me there. But if its my butt in a sling, Im Pickin mother blue and white. I love my Ural. I like Ural. But if I'm going out of state, I'm riding my BMW. If I'm going to cross the continent in a hack, I'm having that Ural chair adapted to my GS with some new wheels and shocks and brakes, if for no other reason than to get there on time.

Also, never fall into the trap. Any manufacturer that has to say the machine they make now is so much better than the one they made 10 years ago is not a builder of a great, reliable machine. New Urals break too.

Now thats not anti-Ural. Id love to have a new one.... its just theres no chance I would spend $15,000 on a motorcycle that stil has some pretty serious bugs to get worked out to meet the standards of its bretheren from Japan German and the US. I could funkafy a sportster for that kind of dough.

I'm just sayin I wouldn't blame the bike. Ural does not lie to people about the resilience of their product.
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Old 07-01-2012, 08:01 PM   #978
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And to add, I have a whopping $3000 wrapped up in my 650
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Old 07-01-2012, 08:14 PM   #979
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When you're talking about your 650cc Ural, it's like pointing to an AMF-era Shovelhead for evidence that Harleys are still shit bikes. It's just not a fair comparison at all.

They are freaking ungodly expensive, though. That much is true
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Old 07-01-2012, 08:27 PM   #980
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I just can't see spending $15K on a new one.
If I had time to grab that one in Wisconsin for that price I would jump on it tho.

I don't care if I idle around at 45 mph, there are MILES of great roads where I live that are perfect for that.

I have an Acura and a Suzuki Samurai, the Samurai I so fun to drive but it's slow.

I'm ok with that, it saves me money on tickets because when I'm in the Acura I'm usually (way) over the speed limit.
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Old 07-01-2012, 08:42 PM   #981
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Originally Posted by eastbloc View Post
When you're talking about your 650cc Ural, it's like pointing to an AMF-era Shovelhead for evidence that Harleys are still shit bikes. It's just not a fair comparison at all.

They are freaking ungodly expensive, though. That much is true
So you see my point, My 3000 rig does what I need it to do. I think my friends with new Urals like them too. But to cross the Himalayas I'm taking heavy duty.
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Old 07-02-2012, 07:42 AM   #982
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So you see my point, My 3000 rig does what I need it to do. I think my friends with new Urals like them too. But to cross the Himalayas I'm taking heavy duty.
You mean a Dnepr flathead?!?!?!

Taken from the early 1980's article, The Motorbike Travels of Ann and Peter Parsons.
(The Parsons' complete African ride reports on a Ural 650 and a Dnepr 650 with with pics is here: http://gspell68.multiply.com/photos/...-Trips#photo=4 )

Quote:
19,000KM (11,400 miles) on a Dnepr MT-12
AUSTRALIA – SINGAPORE – MALAYSIA – THAILAND – INDIA – NEPAL – INDIA
When we were planning our next trip we had to decide again what vehicle we should use. We knew that conditions in Australia and South-East Asia were very harsh. When NevAl Motorcycles started importing the Dnepr MT-12, we knew it provided the answer to our problem. It had the flexibility of being an on road bike plus the two-wheel drive that would make it unstoppable in the rough. These features plus the attributes of all the previous Soviet bikes made us decide to purchase the MT-12.
We shipped it from London to Sydney right after we bought it and our trip began on a virtually new bike with the engine not run in properly. Of course, it was a bit risky also because a large part of our route crossed unpopulated areas. However, there were no unpleasant surprises except some problems with overheating, but it was also 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) in Central Australia and I was using the wrong oil which I realized later. Besides, the petrol in Australia was of a too high grade for the Dnepr, so when I realized that I had to add kerosene to it, the problem was solved.
Our route through New South Wales, Victoria, and South Australia was quite straightforward, but when we headed north, the conditions worsened. We encountered large amounts of “bull dust” which had the fineness of flour. The air filter would have to be cleaned out about every hour.
The day we left the town of Oodnadatta the clouds opened up with heavy rain. The condition of the road steadily worsened as the day progressed. By the evening the road was almost completely flooded. If it had not been for the two-wheel drive, I doubt we would have made it. When we reached the South Australian/North Territory border, we had to camp for five days to wait for the roads to dry out.
From there we drove through Curtain Springs to Ayers Rock and then to Alice Springs…(text runs off the page)…North-West with temperatures in the 40 degree Celsius range. We encountered heavy soft sand from the West Territory/West Australia border to Hall’s Creek. From that point, it was more dirt and corrugations for over 1,500 km (900 miles) to Perth, the capital of West Australia. This was the end of our Australian travels.
Incidentally, during these travels we met a man in an unpopulated part of Central Australia crossing the country on a Dnepr MT-9 with a dog in the sidecar. He bought the bike from an Englishman who had already used it for quite a while. He told me he had no problems with the bike. He’d been travelling for three or four months and seemed to be quite happy with it.
We shipped our bike from Perth to Singapore and travelled in Malaysia and Singapore for some time. Then we came to Madras by sea and travelled all over India and visited Nepal.
The big problem in India was the great amount of people, animals, carts, trucks, and scooters that clogged the highways and towns. It called for constant care and attention and damn good brakes which luckily the Dnepr provided.
Constant stopping and starting, braking and crawling through the endless traffic jams never seemed to affect the Dnepr. The engine remained cool and in control through the worst than Indian traffic could offer.
From New Delhi we headed north into the foothills of the Himalayas in Ultar Pradesh. We visited various hill stations always climbing high into the mountains. Then we headed south and east along the southern border of Nepal. We drove north to Pokhara on an extremely twisting and difficult road. From… (text runs off the page).
Then we spent two months on the roads of “The Top of the World,” sometimes going 120 km (72 miles) straight up non-stop which is very hard on any vehicle, let alone an air-cooled motorcycle.
We concluded our two continent trip in Calcutta and shipped our Dnepr MT-12, still in perfect condition, back to London.
PRAISE FOR THE DNEPR
Mechanically, the Dnepr MT-12 is fantastic just as the two previous models, perhaps even better. No problems with the wheels. The frame is extremely good. I was quite happy with the whole construction. It did much better than you would think considering how much weight I had. We overloaded all the time but we needed it. And it’s still as good as new. Only a few scratches from Indian drivers. But that’s all cosmetic.
The original Russian tires lasted quite well – about 10,000km (6,000 miles). Then I replaced them with American tires, but they lasted less than 5,000 km (3000 miles). I’m going to fit Russian tires as soon as I get them.
The Dnepr everywhere attracted attention. Sometimes I could hardly get the machine through a thick crowd of people pushing and gathering around the bike. Local specialists talking to me in many places were impressed by the two-wheel drive and by all three wheels being interchangeable. And I like this idea – you won’t find this on any other motorcycle with a sidecar. And everybody like the idea of a big sidecar and that it was all steel.
These are all practical ideas and good reasons why I decided to pick the Russian bike for the heavy conditions. It’s very practical. You normally want to make things as simple as possible, but they usually offer you something too complicated. That’s what I tell people asking me why I bought this bike and not a more fashionable, modern machine. I tell them that the bikes they mean might be impressive in England and France but it doesn’t help you if you get broken down in the middle of Africa or the Himalayas. You need something that is simple enough and you are confident you can fix with a minimum of problems. Everybody you see touring on motorcycles are not on complicated machines, they are on very simple things. Simple, practical, reliable. Just like the Dnepr. And it’s quite obvious that for the travelers and people living in places remote from good roads and service stations, the Dnepr is the best choice.
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Old 07-02-2012, 11:01 AM   #983
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Exactly! ;-). There is a local entrepeneur here in town selling cobbled together ones... And I have doubts it would make it across town.

But they are cool too and mayhaps in a third world country, i may prefer a cruder set up... Oh, decisions decisions....
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Old 07-02-2012, 02:02 PM   #984
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Exactly! ;-). There is a local entrepeneur here in town selling cobbled together ones... And I have doubts it would make it across town...
Oh yeah! I didn't notice you are at Yuri ground zero.
Yep. I've seen some real shady stuff of his on eBay that I wouldn't drive any farther than I could push back. However, he does have some good stuff, it's just that he wants new Ural prices for it.

Old, well sorted (or well supported) Ural and Dnepr rigs are hard to beat for shear pleasure in their elements on old back roads and dirt roads. There's probably no better way to enjoy a slow day of motorcycling with a scardy-cat that would otherwise never sling a leg over a pillion seat. If you can keep their speed under 50MPH, I think Soviet bikes would probably last forever. However, like Mr. Cob here said, "It's more fun to ride a slow bike fast than to ride a fast bike slow."
He's right, riding my old junk at 100KPH is probably more heartpounding than riding Hyabusa at 100MPH.
It feels a little bit like this...
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Old 07-04-2012, 02:33 PM   #985
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Old 07-04-2012, 05:31 PM   #986
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Found this link on IMZ's homepage to a New York Times article.
Interesting because it talks about production numbers, quantity sold in Russia, target market, etc...
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/29/wo...pagewanted=all
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Old 07-04-2012, 06:07 PM   #987
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Not a Ural owner, almost bought one once though...My question to you and maybe it's been covered somewhere in the 50 plus pages of bitching and defending...why would do a trip like that on a Ural? If it's for the adventure and spirit of adventure riding, the Ural fits that bill perfectly since it ads challenges of it's own to any long trip...

If I was planning to go around the world, I would plan on breakdowns...which means I would be wanting a good support network or a very basic bike that I could make 95% of the repairs myself...The other thing is I would buy a bike, ride the snot out of it as part of my preparing to go...then either rebuild it so it's fresh or buy a new one...again so it's fresh...either way, I would know what to expect on how the bike would perform...know what possible issues I would need to be watching for...

At the point which I stopped going through all the posts on this on this thread, I would have dumped the Ural, picked up something more mainstream and enjoyed the rest of my trip...chalk it up to poor preperation on my part for choosing a bike not up for a ride like that...
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Old 07-04-2012, 06:32 PM   #988
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I love the NYT article, it brings up so many emotions.

I'm not an old motorcyclist. I'm 31. I've wanted a Ural since I saw my first one in 1999. I just couldn't afford one until now.

I've always hated riding two up, and made sure all my motorcycles had solo seats. "No, I won't give you ride!"

However, when wifey mentioned a Ural, I was all over it. Easy maintenance, and sidecar made sense for the nephew and niece....and the dog. Plus, I haul enough gear to work on a daily basis that panniers just wouldn't cut it. GASP! Buying a Ural actually made some sense for us.
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Old 07-04-2012, 09:17 PM   #989
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If I was planning to go around the world, I would plan on breakdowns...which means I would be wanting a good support network or a very basic bike that I could make 95% of the repairs myself...
I think the Ural would fit that bill on both counts. Almost any part for any motorcycle is just a phone call or an internet click away. I think the wait times on a needed part are probably going to be about the same for a Ural or a BMW if you are in Outer Mongolia. I know that (former) Soviet bikes may seem like a niche market from a US standpoint, but ten years ago, chances were probably better for you to source a part locally for a Ural/Dnepr while abroad than you might think. Combined, there's probably somewhere on the order of 3 million of them scattered across Eurasia. At one point, the Ural plant churned out about as many bikes in a week as it currently does in three years!!!
There's no reason to assume you can't make a world trip on a Ural if you have the time. Heck, some guys have even done it on Danish made 1930's Nimbus motorcycles (good luck on finding parts for that)! However, if you have deadlines on somewhere you have to be, well, the Ural may not be the best choice even though other folks have made some monster trips on them, hassle free.
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Old 07-04-2012, 10:27 PM   #990
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There's no reason to assume you can't make a world trip on a Ural if you have the time.
05.25 Irbit.
At the hotel we met this Ural from Germany, on his way for a RTW:

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