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Old 11-09-2012, 09:40 PM   #886
NSFW
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Joined: Feb 2007
Location: Burbank CA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CCer View Post
I picked up a 650 Terra from Long Beach BMW/Husky on Tuesday evening (they had 4 at the time, no Stradas). It's got 400 miles on it now so thought I'd share a few thoughts and a ride report of sorts. This bike replaces a F800GS and my other bikes are a Harley R-G and Husaberg FE570S, just so you know what it's being compared to.

My immediate impressions when first riding the bike in the dark of Wednesday morning on the way to work:
  • Start it up - sounds like a thumper, remarkably similar to the WR250R with FMF slip-on I had a while back.
  • Suspension is really stiff, especially the rear, sure hope it softens up. Gotta check the pre-load when I get a chance.
  • The seat cants forward a little, not a good sign. I've got really bad memories of the stock 800 seat.
  • Like everyone said, it's smooth (for a thumper) and what vibration there is is the good kind.
  • Steering is quick, so the bike feels agile. It feels small too, much smaller than the 800, which adds to its agile nature.
  • Air temp gauge seems to read high.
  • There's the flat spot coming off idle, just as others have noted. Can't just load up the clutch while adding gas, gas has to come first, if only a little.

Traffic is heavy on the surface streets to work, but no lane-spitting or even filtering for me, gotta get the feel of the bike first. I hate the break-in period of any bike. I'm wondering how few break-in miles I can get away with.

I commute to work on the bike the rest of the week, take the long way home on Thursday, up to Lake Hughes and down Bouquet Canyon. The road up to Lake Hughes is not in great shape, pretty rough in places, but has several miles of fun twisties. The suspension is still stiff over the rough sections, but I think it's getting better. I'm a little tentative, still not really pushing hard, just letting the bike break in, but I'm beginning to smile. The bike will pull from 2000 rpm but it likes 3000 a lot better. Down Bouquet, a much better road also with lots of twists, the bike really handles well, and the smile gets bigger.

On Saturday I have to go to Ventura for a funeral. My wife has to pick up her sister, so she says 'why don't you take the bike'. I love that woman. The 126 is a nice 4-lane asphalt highway over to Ventura, posted 60 to 65. At 70 the bike is still smooth, but I'll be looking for a windscreen soon, probably not the little one Husqvarna has shown on their site, I need just a couple more inches to take some wind off the chest.

The seat is working out pretty well, not causing any issue, but I'll take a look at what Seat Concepts comes up with. Bundy, if you're listening, I think the seat can be a little taller though the swale to remove the forward cant. Maybe a little less crown side to side. Don't go crazy with the width, I still care what the lines of the bike look like. Thanks.

After the reception, down the 101 to Camarillo, off on Los Posas, then up Potero Rd to the BMW shop in Newbury Park. I go in to buy an oil filter for the bike, they verify it should be the same as the BMW 650. The 3 guys working in parts all go out to admire the bike, joined by a mechanic from the back. Much admiration for the bike of course, what else would they say?

I could have gotten the filter from the Husky dealer in Moorpark, Tri-County Motorsports, where I bought the Husaberg, but I was afraid Vince the salesman would see me and the new bike. I would have loved to have bought the 650 from him, but they had sold theirs and once I made up my mind on Sunday, there was no stopping me.

I manage to get the pre-load down to the softest setting without a spanner wench (from 2 bumps up) and the suspension is definitely softening up now, but the expansion joints on the freeway still cause a little hobby-horse action. The 800 with its added weight could deal with them better. I travel about 140 miles on Saturday with no ill effects at all. It's still early, but I think you can do regional-sized rides on this bike. I wouldn't want to go across the country on it, but it's certainly doable.

This morning I decide it's time the bike got dirty, so go up Bouquet planning to go into the Rowher Flat OHV area via the fire road off the south end of Bouquet. The gate is closed, so go on up to another entrance. Not the nice single-track with a few dozen water-bar/jumps that zig-zags up the mountain, and not the steep, gnarly, 2-track hill climb that goes up under the power lines, but the easy fire road a half mile further.

Turning off onto the road, the bike suddenly changes personality and gains weight, feeling a lot like the 800 and not at all like the 570. Last weekend I had come down this road on the 570 in the opposite direction with Tuff Enuff and my memory is of a somewhat-maintained, pleasant fire road. Now I'm having to stand up to absorb the ruts and undulations of the road, I have to watch my speed so I don't over-cook the corners, and don't feel all that much in control. In fairness no one would expect the 650 to come anywhere close to the 570, but the difference is stark, more than I thought it would be. I had had this small germ of a thought in my mind that maybe the 650 was all I needed and the 570 could be sold to get the bike count back to 2, but that ain't gonna happen.

At the top of the ridge I get to see where I've come from, Bouquet reservoir down below,



and where I'll be heading,



Like always happens, after a while in the dirt you start going faster on whatever bike you're on, so by the time I get down to Texas Canyon and point the bike toward staging area 1, the bike has lost some weight and the pace is faster. It really is handling it all pretty good. It never blews thru the suspension travel like the 800 liked to do, and tracks nice and straight thru some minor whoops. Still, I'm only going at a moderate pace and working fairly hard to make it happen, The 570 can do its magic-carpet-ride thing through this section at a much faster pace.

I startle some pre-adolesants coming the opposite way, swerve right and sweep by them, an adult rider on an adult bike, spraying some dirt their way as the bike accelerates away.

The Rowher main entrance had a few inches of small rock spread on it a couple of months ago. On the way out the 650 manages to get into a thick layer of loose rock built up on the outside of a turn. The 570 goes thru this stuff with no drama, but the 650 immediately starts to plow right and left, another reminder of the bike's weight.

Coming out onto Sierra Highway, the bike returns to it former small, agile self. This is it's element. Not that it can't do dirt, but it has the limits you would expect given the weight and suspension.

Other thoughts:
The kick stand is a safety hazard - it is not engineered correctly. When you put it down it will stay down about 2 out of 3 times. The third time it springs back up. You cannot just put in down and lean the bike over, you must make sure it stays down. I learned this early on and only just caught the bike before it took a nap.

I really like this bike. It's not too big, not too small, ... I don't think I've bonded this well with one since the 76 XT500.

Well, if you've read this far and don't own one you're obviously obsessed with getting information about the bike. Just be done with it and go buy one.

Dale
excellent write up

perfect replacement for my 640e but nothing soon yet.

congrats dale. hope to see you soon.
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Old 11-09-2012, 11:07 PM   #887
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mxbundy View Post
YOU are missing the point on this bike, it is a Euro KLR650/ DR650 plain and simple, nothing more, nothing less.
This bike is MORE THAN CAPABLE for the type of rider that would be interested in a bike like this.
The problem is, NOT ENOUGH riders wanted or needed the performance of the TE630, or they would still be making them.
I sold very little seats for the 630 until they fire saled them. People just were not buying them.
A 12 inch travel bike is overkill for ADV riding, when you load a bike down with camping gear and such, the speed over ground drops off considerably negating the advantages of long travel. For fire roading and such a shorter travel bike is much easier to ride, for the same reasons that flat trackers still use 4 inch travel frames on there bikes.
The whole point is to stop and smell the roses, enjoy the sights, etc.
If you want to haul ass, get a te511 or KTM530 or something like that.

Bundy
You Know they still sell the 630 in Europe, they just didn't import it to the US after 2011.
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Old 11-09-2012, 11:14 PM   #888
rancher1
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Originally Posted by larryboy View Post
No, you're missing the point...they rebadged a BMW that they couldn't sell even during the boom years. It's a BMW and that offends those that love Husqvarna.

The 630 was neutered and over priced when BMW took over, it was the bike that got heavy and had short suspenders...do your homework.

My speed over ground would drop off with a 10 inch travel bike, my speed over ground with a fully loaded bike stayed fast with a 12 inch travel bike.

I would return to a KLR before I bought this BMW, it just doesn't make any sense to take on BMW problems like canbus, fuel injection and fuel pumps when a bike like the KLR exists.
You know the husky doesn't have canbus, right ?
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Old 11-10-2012, 02:01 AM   #889
Cruz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rancher1 View Post
You know the husky doesn't have canbus, right ?
I think he has made up his mind completely, wouldn't matter if it was any good or not. He is obviously after a high speed enduro machine so would never be looking at this style of bike anyway.
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Old 11-10-2012, 03:28 AM   #890
rancher1
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Originally Posted by LukasM View Post
I think you are still missing something here..... Are you aware that the 5 speed of the Terra has a wider total gear spread than the 6 speed of your 530?!

In other words if you gear both down to have the same first gear ratio, that you will be turning less RPMs once you hit the highway in 5th gear on the Terra than in 6th gear on your 530 (around 2.8%)?

If the engine really is that smooth and with 26% more displacement has the torque to pull wider gears, I don't think that's a point you should be complaining about if you think your 530 is perfect...
This is absolutely correct, The 650 can have a lower 1st gear and still turn less rpms at the same highway speed. Do you mean you want the 650 to have a NARROWER gear box like your 530 ?
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Old 11-10-2012, 07:02 AM   #891
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NSFW View Post
excellent write up

perfect replacement for my 640e but nothing soon yet.

congrats dale. hope to see you soon.
Hey Joel! Been keeping an eye out for a ride with you and the others. Maybe sometime soon...
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Old 11-10-2012, 10:52 AM   #892
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Going to test ride a new 650 vstrom today. I am weighing it against the Strada. both are similar in purpose and features and the prices are only 300 apart. I need all road ability and I like to cover some distance per day. The weight is very different but I think my skills are up enough to do nearly the same rough riding on both and enjoy it. Improved version of solid commodity or first sample of lighter weight machine? Riding partners are leaning toward tiger 800 and the like.
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Old 11-10-2012, 03:59 PM   #893
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Talked to Husky distributor today, the Terra is outstripping their ability to keep up with the demand.
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Old 11-10-2012, 04:23 PM   #894
blaine.hale
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Quote:
Originally Posted by George 99 View Post
What are the odds there's a CRF 450 R under one of these covers?
What does a honda dirtbike have anything to do with this thread?
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Old 11-10-2012, 05:15 PM   #895
MichaelInVenice
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After a quick test ride and some soul-searching, put down a deposit on a Strada today. The dealer had one, but arrived with some damage and they're waiting for the part. I'll either get that one, or the next one that comes in. Decided that for my purposes, which is probably 80% pavement and 20% off-pavement (note, I did not say "hard trails, most likely fire-road type stuff), this would be a more optimal bike than the Terra. Had previously been considering a V-Strom 650 and may yet regret not getting one, but my "buy for reality, not for the reality you hope may exist" favored this bike.

Hopefully will only be a week or two. They had one more Terra in stock, in addition to their demo bike.
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Old 11-10-2012, 05:39 PM   #896
catneck
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Stopped by Bill's in Salem to check out the Strada and Terra. No luck, none in stock. Great store though. Nice to see a real shop full of motorcycles that have actually been ridden.
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Old 11-10-2012, 05:54 PM   #897
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Originally Posted by catneck View Post
Stopped by Bill's in Salem to check out the Strada and Terra. No luck, none in stock. Great store though.
What time? I dropped my Strada off at about 11, it would have been among the service bikes. Loving the bike, but somethings not right with the fueling below about 4k. Stumbles, stalls, etc. Hopefully they will get it sorted out. There demo Terra was out at China Hat, it should be back Monday or so.
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Old 11-10-2012, 10:40 PM   #898
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Bought the Vstrom today! I really just need a bike that can do all road types and this thing felt a lot better than the 05 I owned years ago. I am a better rider now so that helps out as well. The motor on the 2012 Vstrom and Husky are really different and I just like the overall feel of the Suzuki much more. I was all smiles when the Terra left me with more of a positive but puzzled feeling thinking I was back on my DR but it was remarkably smooth for once. I know the numbers on these machines but the feel is really just not what I would have guessed. And that V twin really is something sweet. Now to wire up a switch for ABS shutoff.

Good luck to all of the you and if you are cross shopping the Strom and Strada, do test rides before you pick a winner. I think the Terra is a fantastic machine and a true DR650ish evolution but the Strada is limited just enough be the wheel package that it stacks up less favorably against others in the middle adventure class.

Greg
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Old 11-10-2012, 10:42 PM   #899
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Originally Posted by krussell View Post
What time? I dropped my Strada off at about 11, it would have been among the service bikes. Loving the bike, but somethings not right with the fueling below about 4k. Stumbles, stalls, etc. Hopefully they will get it sorted out. There demo Terra was out at China Hat, it should be back Monday or so.
It was 9:30, Lon was talking about your issue, seems they are trying real hard to get it figured out without full support from the manufacturer.
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Old 11-11-2012, 05:49 AM   #900
MotoChris521
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Originally Posted by George 99 View Post
What are the odds there's a CRF 450 R under one of these covers?
Looks like a bunch of cruisers . No high fenders there.

Honda already released their 2013 dual sport flagship , the all new XR650L-
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