Good next bike after my klr650

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by Hawk900dc, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. Hawk900dc

    Hawk900dc Dual Sport Intitiate

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2013
    Oddometer:
    33
    Riding my klr650 all over creation and loving it. I do however, want a bike that's more highway touring oriented but no boats. Leaning toward maybe a midsize adventure bike or a cruiser what's everyone else have next to thier klr's?
    #1
  2. Kommando

    Kommando Long timer

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2006
    Oddometer:
    9,650
    Location:
    By the Great Lakes
    I'd look for a used Tiger 800XC or F800GS at a good price.

    I'd even be tempted to put offroad suspension on a used street twin (Ninja 650, DL650, SV650, Versys 650, etc), then fit up a front 21" wheel/knob and a long-wearing DS tire out back.
    #2
  3. Beezer

    Beezer Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2004
    Oddometer:
    6,856
    Location:
    Anchorage, formerly Spenard (hub of the universe)
    how much dirt do you expect to do on the new bike and are you keeping the klr?

    add the vstrom to the list above
    #3
  4. Rogue_Ryder

    Rogue_Ryder

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2005
    Oddometer:
    7,898
    Location:
    Pinewood Springs, Colorado
    I've never owned a KLR650, but my evolution from the XR650L was:

    XR650L>BMW K100LT>Vmax>>Vstrom>R1150R>R1200GS but I also owned DRZ400Ss and other dirt bikes in parallel to these.

    A Strom 650 or 1000 is a perfect bike to add to your stable. The newest strom with ABS and adjustable windscreen is probably hard to beat. My DL1000 buffeted like crazy and the suspension was shot at 20K mi, but otherwise it was a great bike and for the money probably the best.
    #4
  5. Hawk900dc

    Hawk900dc Dual Sport Intitiate

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2013
    Oddometer:
    33
    Quite the collection, you like the storm 650 most?
    #5
  6. Canuman

    Canuman Crusty & Unobliging

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2008
    Oddometer:
    4,689
    Location:
    The Palace of the People, VT
    +1 on the Wee. It's a very nice bike to ride, which eats up both gravel and moderate off-road while being a pleasure on pavement. It has a great transmission, and will get 50 mpg on regular. It's simple and cheap to keep. It's the perfect companion to a KLR.
    #6
  7. Hawk900dc

    Hawk900dc Dual Sport Intitiate

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2013
    Oddometer:
    33
    Wow, didn't expect this many vstrom 650 recognitions. I figured it might be to close to a small-mid weight bike like my klr.
    #7
  8. Canuman

    Canuman Crusty & Unobliging

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2008
    Oddometer:
    4,689
    Location:
    The Palace of the People, VT
    The two are very different, although my KLR is Gen 1, and I have no experience of the second generation KLR. I've had quite a few road bikes, and I can say that the Wee is one of the sweetest cornering of the lot. It really makes you feel like a pro in the twisties. It's not a bad bike two-up with a smaller passenger. My son and I did quite a few miles on the Wee.

    It's very pleasant on reasonably groomed gravel, and properly armored, would be a perfect bike for something like a Trans-Lab or a Trans Alaska. The Wee really needs a good skid plate, as the water pump and oil filter hang out front in the view of God and everyone. Where it begins to fail is exactly where the KLR begins to pick up -- in slow speed crawling where the KLR's torque comes into play. I know guys that take Wees into impossibly bad conditions, but for my nickel, they're a bit too heavy and under-suspended for that.

    It's a great bike on the road (really!) and a very good performer on moderate off-road. It has way more upper end snot than the KLR could ever dream of. It actually makes pavement pleasurable, and I don't much care for pavement anymore.

    #8
  9. Aprilia

    Aprilia Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,109
    Location:
    Flagstaff, AZ
    Next to my KLR? I have two other KLR's, an SXV550, triumph 675, triumph 800XC, Road King, Aero and CB750.

    If you are keeping the KLR then go with something completely different.
    #9
  10. tkent02

    tkent02 Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,323
    Location:
    Littleton, CO
    Anything.
    #10
  11. RandoCommando

    RandoCommando Wannabe

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,679
    Location:
    Philthadelphia, Pennsylvania
    I have a 2013 F800GS next to my 1999 KLR.
    But you're going to spend a lot on the F800 and parts/service are expensive.
    Not to mention you have to find BMW dealers hear ya.
    The VEE would probably be your best bet.
    #11
  12. jch44

    jch44 John from Texas

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2011
    Oddometer:
    16
    Location:
    Texas Hill Country
    I will chime in on the V-Strom; I have both a KLR and the 650 Strom, like them both a lot. Agree with other posts regarding the crossover point - anything more challenging than a loose gravel road, I would much rather be on the KLR. I also know folks who have taken their Strom where I would hesitate to ride a KLR, but to each his own. If I have more than 100 miles of pavement to cover I will arrive much fresher on the Strom. As others have said, it is an amazingly good street bike.
    #12
  13. steveWFL

    steveWFL Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,391
    Location:
    Tampa

    "no boats" and "Cruiser" can't reside on the same axis statement :lol3
    #13
  14. Argus16

    Argus16 ThReAd KiLleR

    Joined:
    May 8, 2006
    Oddometer:
    843
    Location:
    Vancouver Island
    Upgrade your KLR: 685 /705 kit, rejet, airbox/exhaust, 16 tooth counter-sprocket, new suspension, taller windshield and a Corbin/Sargent seat. And decent luggage too. Relight to LED and add some powerlets. Add some 80/20 tires.

    You won't be disappointed
    #14
  15. Mosseltje

    Mosseltje Alive

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2008
    Oddometer:
    268
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    After I trashed my KLR I bought a Super Enduro.

    I never regretted the upgrade. :lol3
    #15
  16. Hawk900dc

    Hawk900dc Dual Sport Intitiate

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2013
    Oddometer:
    33
    No cruiser mentions? I do like the vstrom and I came close to buying one instead of my klr very close in fact. A little afraid if I get another adventure style like the vstrom then ill never want to ride the klr anymore
    #16
  17. CA Stu

    CA Stu Thanks Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2004
    Oddometer:
    51,111
    Location:
    Riverside, CA
    I found the 950 Adventure to be an awesome street bike, super comfy and a lot of power. I owned it for a year and put about 7000 miles on it, 99.9% street, and I loved it.
    I found it was too heavy for me off road, and it wasn't really the best pure street bike...

    For a comfy highway tourer, I scored a Tiger 1050. Upright seating position, plenty of torque, stops and goes very well, high and low speed handling is very good to excellent, and I get over 200 miles out of a tank at highway speeds.
    Not a boat at all, and very easy to ride.
    You can find them (lightly) used for KLR money these days, too...

    Edit: I rented a Wee for a 500 mile weekend (away from home), I found it a good bike but not great. Seemed a bit small and appliance-like.
    #17
  18. Beezer

    Beezer Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2004
    Oddometer:
    6,856
    Location:
    Anchorage, formerly Spenard (hub of the universe)
    unless I missed it... I'm still not sure if you are keeping the klr & adding a road bike (which is what I think you mean). if that's the case, then when I said Vstrom I meant the 1000. with a power commander :evil. the 650 is good, but it just didn't have the jump I like.... a solid performer, but yea, an appliance... (good one).... it did not excite. it's the next step up from the klr if you want a more road worthy bike.

    the Tiger is a good bike..... that's what I was looking for when I got a smoking deal on a BMW 1150 GS. the GS is a mile eater & works fantastic on gravel roads, but it is not a dual sport like some would have you believe. getting back on my klr after riding the GS is like getting on a bicycle. the tiger is not the dirt bike type either... it's similar to the GS function wise but more figity on the dirt (might have been the tires)
    #18
  19. Canuman

    Canuman Crusty & Unobliging

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2008
    Oddometer:
    4,689
    Location:
    The Palace of the People, VT
    This really depends on your style of riding. If you stick to decent gravel roads on the KLR, you may well never look at it again after sampling the Wee. If your riding takes you into the rougher stuff that's far from home, you'll still use the KLR. It's a lot more competent in the rough stuff than many give it credit for, and can still make respectable miles on the slab. A cruiser is a one-trick pony. You're pretty much relegated to slab or very good gravel, unless you're particularly insane. Riding a feet-forward stance on the rough stuff is a very bruising experience.

    #19
  20. btao

    btao RIP Lilolita

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2013
    Oddometer:
    1,026
    Location:
    Hidden amongst the celebrities of CT
    My vote is for the Tiger 800 XC. Stock with the street scorpion trail tires, and it would eat up the corners and rip up the streets with that awesome growl when unleashed. Then, you take your choice of tires for the terrain, slap em on, and you can go wherever you want. It's a lot to muscle off road, but an experienced rider can make any experience fun. Lots of ground clearance, lots of power, good ergos, excellent seat.... I'm glad I switched. I would get a smaller dirt bike to compliment so I can do more trails with bicycle handling. If you don't plan to really DS it, then get the roadie with some semi-knobs and stick to the dirt roads.
    #20