Need a bike to go further

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by WHYNOWTHEN, Oct 27, 2012.

  1. WHYNOWTHEN

    WHYNOWTHEN where are the pedals?

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    612
    Location:
    closer to Baja
    Oh internet sages, I need some advice from people with diverse motorcycle experience.

    I currently own, and love, a 990 Adventure which I occasionally ride off the beaten path. During a recent trip to Baja, I was once again reminded how far away a gas station can be from a 990. Just a little over 75 miles. I started thinking about changing to a bike that allows me to get more lost without loading up on gas like a super-tanker.

    What kind of MPG are you guys getting on all your fancy/not-so-fancy bikes?
    I need something that can sometimes carry a passenger, do 80ish on the freeway, make it through long sand washes and up sections of lumpy singletrack, be capable of carrying a weeks worth of camping gear, have a range of about 300 miles, and make me smile too.

    I appreciate your recommendations.
    #1
  2. OrangeYZ

    OrangeYZ Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    646
    Location:
    Southern Oregon
    A bike that can do all that stuff at once? Well, that will be neat.

    My vote is to load your 950 up with gas like a super tanker, and have fun.

    My fancy bike is a 450EXC. Not going to work with the passenger, but it can do 80 on the freeway, and lumpy single track though picking one set of tires to do both is not easy.
    Have done 270 miles on a 6.6 gallons tank, and had enough left over to do 300. Not sure if it would do 300 miles of lumpy single track, and I know I wouldn't want to do the first 100 miles with all 6.6 gallons hanging out there on top.
    I camped for a week and a half with it, but that was with no camping food or cooking gear.

    Smiles: Yes!

    I also have a KLR650. It will work with a passenger and camping gear, but not really both.
    80 on the freeway? KPH yes, MPH not really. Lumpy single-track and smiles, yes, but also not at the same time!
    #2
  3. WHYNOWTHEN

    WHYNOWTHEN where are the pedals?

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    612
    Location:
    closer to Baja
    Thanks Orange.
    Funny that a 450 EXC is first suggestion. I have a nice dirty one parked next to the 990. It only has 3 gallon tank. Hmmmm. :ricky:ricky
    #3
  4. Kommando

    Kommando Long timer

    Joined:
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    It depends on your size. 2 large people aren't going to fit comfortably on anything less spacious than a KLR. If you're our size (5'8"/200lb/30"inseam and 5'4"/petite/30"inseam), you could potentially do it on a DR650SE.

    Add an Acerbis 5.3 or an IMS 4.9 tank, expand it a little to 6gal, add some performance mods to engine and suspension, and throw some sand-capable tires on it. Figure on roughly 50MPG if you get the jetting right, so you'd want about 6gal of capacity to hit your target of a 300-mile range. A Safari 7.9 will get you about 100 miles further and only weigh about 12lb more, unless you expand it to get even further. Fill the tank only part way when extra fuel isn't needed. You could also carry collapsible fuel bladders to dump in ASAP, when you need extra range.

    The DR is about as simple as you can get without being an air-cooled dirtbike. The air/oil-cooling works great, as does the gear-driven counter-balancer, the valves can easily be adjusted while on the road without needing to source shims, the MCCT works fine once you replace the stock gasket with RTV, and the bike also has a sturdy subframe for luggage. Do the common fixes and make the popular performance upgrades and it's a reliable do-it-all bike with good parts support. It's even easy enough to push-start by yourself on wet pavement that I've done it, and the oil-cooler can be bypassed if you damage something. It's design lends itself well to field-fixes in BFE.
    #4
  5. Navin

    Navin Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2009
    Oddometer:
    8,476
    I'm not a BMW fan but my Husky dealer just got a new 650 Husky. It looks like a better KLR. Possibly the best street thumper going too. Seat room will easily carry 2 comfortably. They are telling the dealers a 5g tank is for sure to follow. At $6999 I can't see a reason to even consider a new KLR, not that I'm even considering either but i did own a KLR and a 610TE.

    Go sit on one. It isn't a race ready KTM-anything but as a street bike that has dirty looks it should beat up anything else, especially at the price.
    #5
  6. WHYNOWTHEN

    WHYNOWTHEN where are the pedals?

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    612
    Location:
    closer to Baja
    Lets make this a little simpler.

    What mpg do you get on your bike? And what kind of bike is it?
    #6
  7. Dino3310

    Dino3310 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    674
    Location:
    waikato gravel and sand
    transalp or weestrom would work but your losing a few ponies
    #7
  8. plugeye

    plugeye mc caregiver

    Joined:
    May 11, 2007
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    4,016
    Location:
    Garland, Texas
    dr350sex, stock.
    65-70mpg
    commuting, average speed 50
    #8
  9. McB

    McB Joe 40 ouncer

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2005
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    Location:
    North Slope of the Flint Hills
    '07 KLR, stock. low 50s with a 200# rider and no gear, around town and legal highway speeds. As low as 40 with camping gear, a bit of wind, and 80mph on the highway.
    #9