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Old 06-18-2009, 04:54 PM   #1
Bob Tosi OP
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Converting a Honda V65 Sabre for dual sport

Does anyone know if this has ever been done? and where? Maybe this is just a dumb idea
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Old 06-18-2009, 05:36 PM   #2
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Anything is possible if you throw enough cash at it, but why bother.. sell it and get one that's already a D-S bike if you really want one.
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Old 06-18-2009, 09:33 PM   #3
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dumb idea.
that's a cruiser correct?
the body position, fork rake, ground clearance & suspension travel are not optimal for dirt even if you put knobs on it. if you want to do dirt then sell & buy other.
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Old 06-19-2009, 06:34 PM   #4
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No this is not a cruiser but one of the old school super bike styles. It came after the CB900 F and CB1100 F. Before the rush on Hurricanes and Ninja's. I dont own it but can get one for dirt cheap. I am not cash rich but looking for way to get back on the road after a long lay off. Dont want to race or be a canyon carver anymore but ride and go off road. I am trying to look at all my options and get an affordable bike that will work. This one up for cheap. So I was just asking the "What if question". I've seen alot of crazy dual sport conversions here so was just wondering.
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Old 06-19-2009, 06:37 PM   #5
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a little info on the Sabre:


http://www.cyclechaos.com/wiki/Honda_VF1100S
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Old 06-19-2009, 06:44 PM   #6
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Thumbs down

Man that bike is a monster. Just getting on the gas to get out of trouble will get you into even more trouble. Thats the kind of Duelie that Bat Man would ride. Down size to a V45.
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Old 06-19-2009, 07:54 PM   #7
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interesting idea. i owned 2 v-65 sabres in the late 80's & early 90's. put a lot of troublefree miles on them-- mostly in week-long trips covering a lot of ground. they made great sportourers (both had corbin seats, one had a full fairing & hard bags, the other was unfaired with hard bags). they were a hoot on roads like the blue ridge , but a handful on really tight roads like the dragon. i actually rode one of them from cade's cove to the dragon via parson's branch rd. & on santeellah creek rd, which are somewhat challenging dirt roads through the mountains, with no problems.

they have great powerbands, easy to use & control. the suspension isn't bad (probably as good as my v strom) i say go for it!!
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Old 06-19-2009, 08:57 PM   #8
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the one I found is only $1700 with 38,000 miles. Could be an interesting project to fool around with as long as I didnt ask to much off road capability of it.
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Old 06-20-2009, 06:13 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Tosi
the one I found is only $1700 with 38,000 miles. Could be an interesting project to fool around with as long as I didnt ask to much off road capability of it.
Most of the bikes that are intended for dual sporting dont do that well off raod either. Put some dual sport tires on it and thrash it!!!!! In the good ol days there were no street bikes or dirt bikes just bikes and from some of those old videos I have seen it was the rider that made the trips capable not the bike.

By the way my first experience with a BIG bike offroad was a CB450 that a friends father had donated to the farm. No knobbies dry rotted tires and a very bad suspension oh the fun we had. There was an old photo floating around that has my friend getting that CB about 6 feet off the ground.
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Old 06-20-2009, 10:45 AM   #10
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I seem to reccall seeing some pictures of a couple of guys down in Baja a couple years ago on Sabres that had been converted, but they were the smaller 750 Sabres. I thought they were kind of cool. Then again they might have been something entirely different. Making this a completely useless post.
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Old 06-20-2009, 11:17 AM   #11
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You would want to put a manual fan switch on it for slow going. My dad had the Magna variant and it would get extremely hot in slow traffic for more than 5 minutes at a time. The stock fan temp switch is set way too high.

He took that down some dirt roads with me and my KLX250 when I was just starting out. He said that the hardpacked dirt and gravel was ok but the sand was really sketchy.
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Old 06-20-2009, 11:21 AM   #12
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imho its not possible to make it a true dual sport (far too heavy and wide). You could make it more adv/dirt road capable (in the spirit of a GS, Tiger, and that sort of thing).

The simple steel frame which IIRC even wraps under the motor and the smooth, slow reving, controlable motor should make it quite a good all around tourer I would think. I would focus on improving the suspension and increasing ride height as well as adding some sort of bashplate to protect the engine and any releated tender bits. That said, there's no reason you can't ride one on some pretty beat up dirt roads in stock form either. Do take care to keep it cool and keep the cams alive (they had issues with lack of oliling and premature wear on those motors).
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Old 06-20-2009, 11:48 AM   #13
Bob Tosi OP
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"Do take care to keep it cool and keep the cams alive (they had issues with lack of oliling and premature wear on those motors)."

I have heard about this problem before but never experienced it. Do you know what the specific issues were? It seem if you kept the oil clean and at the proper level and kept it cool and had the valves adjusted regularly on schedule that should take care of any problems.

These are all great ideas. Now I just need to decide to spend the money on a true dual sport or go the cheap and experimental route.
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When you're lost in the wild and scared as a child. And death looks you bang in the eye, and your sore as a boil, its according to Hoyle to cock your revolver... and die. But the code of a man says "fight all you can" and self-dissolution is barred. In hunger and woe, its easy to blow... Its the hell-served-for-breakfast thats hard........Robert Service
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Old 06-20-2009, 12:15 PM   #14
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I like your spirit but for less than twice what you are paying for the Sabre I have seen vstroms for. Just a thought. I sold my mint KLR650 for 1700.
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Old 08-30-2014, 03:13 PM   #15
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I'm doing it

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