Help my buddy choose a bike

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by Ryan Carman, Jul 26, 2013.

  1. Ryan Carman

    Ryan Carman Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    94
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canuckiastan
    Options are:

    KTM 990 adventure 2011 6000 Kms $12995 +13% tax

    Triumph tiger 800XC 2013 0kms 12699 +13% tax freight pdi etc

    Ducati multistrada S 2010 24000kms asking 16000 +13% tax but they're willing to negotiate a fair bit it would seem

    He has a Ducati 996 sps that he's going to trade against if it doesn't sell privately, the dealer that has the ktm has offered the best money so that is a factor

    He wants to be able to travel, and do some offroad

    Thoughts?

    Full disclosure: I ride a klr because I'm cheap, let us know what you ride :D
    #1
  2. Ryan Carman

    Ryan Carman Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    94
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canuckiastan
    Btw I wasn't sure where to put this so, if it needs to be moved, that's cool
    #2
  3. concours

    concours WFO for 41 years

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,454
    Location:
    Kensington, NH USA
    Does your buddy have 30 years experience? Or 30 miles? Abilities? It matters...
    #3
  4. Ryan Carman

    Ryan Carman Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    94
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canuckiastan
    He's experienced, he's been daily driving the 125hp 160mph 996sps for two seasons now, and the a 748 for a couple seasons before that

    Spent a few weeks on a multistrada in Italy

    So he can handle the any of these bikes in question
    #4
  5. slartidbartfast

    slartidbartfast Love those blue pipes

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2003
    Oddometer:
    5,061
    Location:
    Southern Louisiana or Southern England or ...
    The evidence would seem to imply he's a Ducati afficionado, so the Multistrada is an obvious choice. Somehow, however, I imagine he wouldn't be asking if he were entirely happy maintaining that brand allegiance.

    They are all good bikes. Personally, I'd lean toward the Ducati for myself (because I want one) or the Triumph for someone else (because I think it is the most sensible compromise of performance, reliability, cost, etc.)

    My suggestion is that you flip a coin... Heads - you recommend the KTM, tails - the Triumph. If your buddy hesitates for even a split second, indicating he disagrees with your suggestion then just tell him "F**k it! Get the Ducati. You know it's what you want."

    You could always mess with him by insisting he should get a BMW :wink:
    #5
  6. Maggot12

    Maggot12 U'mmmm yeaah!!

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2010
    Oddometer:
    6,740
    Location:
    Barrie Ont
    Yamaha S10
    #6
  7. Ryan Carman

    Ryan Carman Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    94
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canuckiastan
    I'm pretty sure he's leaning towards the ktm, financially it's the best deal, the dealer that has it sells both Ducati and ktm, so he'll get better value from the sps

    I'm a little partial to the tiger, but I think that may be partly because I really like the styling and ergonomics, (save for the bars being too low, however a set of rox risers fixes that on the cheap.

    And unfortunately for BMW I'm of the opinion that the f800gsa has no soul, it's a fantastic machine on paper and I'm sure the build quality is fantastic. As are its capabilities. But it doesn't do a THING for me, and my buddy agrees.
    #7
  8. Ryan Carman

    Ryan Carman Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    94
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canuckiastan
    Not an option, the list above are actual bikes sitting in showrooms.
    #8
  9. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    19,747
    Location:
    OR
    I would go with the Triumph. The KTM has better suspension and the Ducati has some nice features but you just can't beat a Tiger 800XC. The Triple in that bike is intoxicating. :D
    #9
  10. sieg

    sieg Wearing out tires......2 at a time, day after day.

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,016
    Location:
    Southern Illinois USA
    I'm surprised it took till #6 post and 12 hrs for someone to recommend the bike they want and not one that the OP's buddy wants.

    Now let's see how long till someone recommends a KLR.:rofl
    #10
  11. Jays-f800gs

    Jays-f800gs Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2012
    Oddometer:
    309
    Location:
    Spokane, WA
    Have you ridden one? More offroad, ktm, f800gs, triumph, ducati, more road then reverse the order. My .02
    #11
  12. slartidbartfast

    slartidbartfast Love those blue pipes

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2003
    Oddometer:
    5,061
    Location:
    Southern Louisiana or Southern England or ...
    You can always be sure that when someone states they want suggestions for a low, light bike under $2000, several people will recommend a brand new GS ADV or something with 48" seat height, etc. ...and you're right, there's often at least one recommendation each for a KLR, FJR and (bizarrely) 1200 Sportster as well. That's ADVRider!
    #12
  13. Ryan Carman

    Ryan Carman Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    94
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canuckiastan
    Yeah I have, and, so has he.
    #13
  14. Ryan Carman

    Ryan Carman Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    94
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canuckiastan
    People are generally idiots.
    #14
  15. Thanantos

    Thanantos Ride hard.

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,704
    Location:
    Michigan
    He wants to "ride some offroad."

    What does this mean? Is he riding two up down some 2 mile long graded, gravel road to get to some place that his travels might take him or is he wanting to really learn how to ride off road in all types of conditions?

    Has he ever ridden off road? If so how much and how much of what he's done matches up well with how much he plans to do in the future on this new bike?

    Does he/you realize if he's going to learn to ride "off road" he's going to fall and scratch the shit out of an investment that costs more than 13 grand in the process of learning this new skill? If you ain't crashin' you aint learnin' on dirt.

    I'm not trying to be a jerk but there are a lot more questions to be answered here before deciding on a bike.

    If he really wants to "ride some offroad" and his only experience is with a couple of sport bikes then grabbing a giant "Adventure Touring" bike and heading for the trail is a monumentally bad idea. Street experience doesn't mean shit "off road".

    If his only experience is with a couple street bikes then he should grab a smaller, cheaper bike that he can resell quickly and learn the basics of off road riding on that, but it's up to him (and apparently you.)
    #15
  16. Wdwrkr

    Wdwrkr Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    Oddometer:
    2,154
    Location:
    Lost at sea
    The KTM is the best off road, but no joy on long road trips.. It has plenty of power, and handles great, but being set up to be more off road capable then most it lacks comfort. It's wind protection

    The MS is the opposite end of the spectrum. Fantastic street bike, faster then many sport bikes, handles like a dream, but all that power comes at a price off road. Can it do it sure, but there is a reason you don't see many on the trail, or for that matter with dual sport tires. More of a sport tourer then adventure bike IMHO

    I'd go with the triumph. Of the three it's perfect mix. Capable on or off, fairly comfortable.. Very good all around bike.

    I ride a GSA which I love, so I have no horse in this race, but I have friends with each of the bikes you've listed. I've traveled and swapped bikes with each.. To be honest all three of them say mines the best bike. Your friend can't make a mistake, they are all good bikes, but since the big pig isn't in the running I'd go triumph
    #16
  17. scottrnelson

    scottrnelson Team Orange

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,523
    Location:
    Folsom, CA
    If he'll be doing mostly paved roads and a few easy dirt roads, then I would pick the Ducati Multistrada 1200. I probably would have gotten one of those instead of my KTM if it didn't cost nearly twice as much at the time.

    However, I've recently put some Heidenau K60's on the KTM and intend to search for more dirt now that I have proper dirt tires on it, which just wouldn't work with the Ducati.

    With more street oriented tires, like Continental Trail Attacks, the KTM is just fine for 500 mile days and everything from tight, twisty roads to freeways.

    If I had the Ducati I would feel that I needed to clean it all the time. I'm not sure if I've ever actually washed the KTM in three years of ownership. And I don't care if it gets scratched either.

    The Ducati engine both feels and sounds better to me than the KTM engine.
    #17
  18. Ryan Carman

    Ryan Carman Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    94
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canuckiastan

    Well, I appeciate your position/advice, and yeah there will be some two up down 2 miles of gravel,

    But there will be double track, fire road, power line riding as well.

    I learned to ride off road on a klr, which is the same weight as the ktm, only half as powerful ;-) it wasn't so bad.

    Problem with starting on something like a klx250 is that it doesn't do highway all that well and he needs something that will do the highway, and some two up.
    #18
  19. Ryan Carman

    Ryan Carman Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    94
    Location:
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canuckiastan
    That sounds reasonable...

    I was wondering how long this would take to become a tire debate :lol3
    #19
  20. scottrnelson

    scottrnelson Team Orange

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,523
    Location:
    Folsom, CA
    The only reason why I mentioned tires is because it has transformed the KTM into a better dirt machine. The wider 17 inch front wheel puts some limitations on the Ducati for what you can do in the dirt compared to the narrower 21" KTM front wheel.

    Everything else should be points to consider, since I have the KTM, but spent many years as a Ducati guy.

    Most people already know what they want anyway, and are just looking for something to help them justify buying that one.
    #20