Sport Tourers; Where Art Thou?

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by Rider, Jun 29, 2012.

  1. sleazy rider

    sleazy rider Squidly Adventurer

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    Two almost totally different types of bikes, teach.

    Sport-tourers are basically a sportbike style with hard or soft bags set up for longer distance touring and still able to romp the twisty paved bits. See FJR, ST1300, Concours, BMW RT, Ninja 1000, etc.

    Adventure bikes are the bigger dirt road and two track capable bikes like the Tenere, 1200GS, KLR, XR650 among others with luggage capability. Lots of ground clearance, highway capable tires, upright seating and the ability to eat miles.

    Some of us blur the lines to ride dirt roads and two track with sport-tourers and some adventure bikes do cross country real well.
    #61
  2. Contevita

    Contevita Cigar Adventurer

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    Don't let us stop you, Teach. Get to riding that 250 Rebel long distance because you're a rebel and a teacher. As for me, I did some light touring on my Blackbird today in the damned MS heat, at least the humidity was down.

    On my way home at a gas station on Hwy 59 (hint, we need more pics of the stort-tour bikes out there):
    [​IMG]
    #62
  3. Skowinski

    Skowinski Eukaryote

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    Here's my old man's sport touring machine.

    [​IMG]
    #63
  4. 625SXC

    625SXC Been here awhile

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    [​IMG]
    #64
  5. noshoes

    noshoes soñando con México

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    [​IMG]

    Found this on CL in Fairbanks this spring. Great bike for riding around Alaska.
    #65
  6. Cakeeater

    Cakeeater Been here awhile

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    My brother has an st1300. He loves it. He rides all over. While he likes it, that bike has never spoken to me because:
    A: it's hot as hell on the legs at speed on hot days
    b: it's pretty top heavy for any dirt-riding, with street tires....and it's tall in the saddle, which makes waddling around gravel campgrounds tough.
    c: It only shines when you're pushing 90 mph or beyond. And then it's a game of watching for the po-po.
    d: there's not THAT much space in it, compared to a full-boat touring bike. So when it comes to carrying camping gear, some food, etc, a big-assed touring bike does much better.
    e: there's a limited number of ladies who like to ride on the back. Yeah, some women like it, I get it....but from my limited polling most passengers would rather be on a true touring bike...not a sport-touring.
    f: I find it boring.
    g: tire wear is an issue in these here united states where we often ride 4000 miles on a trip.
    h: the riding position just isn't as good for loonnnng days in teh sadle lfor many riders.

    Thus....they are rare on the roads. And why the local Honda dealer has a several year old st1300, new, sitting on the sales floor. I'm not tempted to buy one.

    Cakeeater.
    #66
  7. Grainbelt

    Grainbelt marginal adventurer Super Moderator

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    I took back to back demo rides on a Ninja 650R and Concours 14 last weekend. The 14 was geared so tall I could have done the whole ride in two gears. Heavy. Hot. Not really engaging to ride - point and shoot. The 650R was a ton of fun. Can really get into the power, it is light and engaging without being frantic.

    I'll keep riding middleweights for the giggle factor.
    #67
  8. sleazy rider

    sleazy rider Squidly Adventurer

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    Three weeks ago on the Needles Hwy with my old man ST. :lol3

    [​IMG]

    I leave for Cape Breton in a short two weeks. Gawd, I love retirement.
    #68
  9. rider33

    rider33 Long timer

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    2011 Iron Butt Ralley Finishers:

    http://www.ironbuttrally.com/IBR/2011/15.pdf

    notice a pattern there? Remember, about 6% of the market. The truth is, Sport Touring bikes are significant overkill for most applications. If, on the other hand, you really are going to be doing some serious long distance travel and do not want your cappuccino-maker hard wired to the dash, they can be a rather handy alternative. YMMV.
    #69
  10. Grainbelt

    Grainbelt marginal adventurer Super Moderator

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    They are effective for multi-day road races, provided you don't crash in the process? :dunno
    #70
  11. Garp

    Garp Long timer

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    Most dog races are won by Greyhounds, but not many people have greyhounds as pets. What's your point?

    The fact that sport touring motorcycles win events that require extremely long distances at relatively high speed isn't really surprising, it's what they were designed for. Maybe your point was that very few people ride like that, so very few people buy sport-tourers?
    #71
  12. Little Bike

    Little Bike Air/Clutz Sue

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    Thats Miz Teach to you two!:rofl

    Not to hijack the thread for a moment, but in regards to riding in the heat I'm taking off Monday to ride through the Mojave Desert to get to southern Utah - yuck, get up at 3 am, ride til the sun comes up, hide in a motel, repeat. :huh My family thinks I'm nuts, they don't get it......whatever......:loll

    Anyhoo, I was checking out KLR650s on Craig's list - I think that's my machine to park with the Rebel - when we get our furlough days back:cry
    #72
  13. antwon412

    antwon412 Been here awhile

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    I just picked one up. Was also looking at a ninja 1000 but realized it was just overkill. Bigger then I wanted as well. The 650 is perfect o me. Just waiting on Givi to release brackets to run v35's.
    #73
  14. sleazy rider

    sleazy rider Squidly Adventurer

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    :thumb: You got it, Miz! KLRs can be lowered if you're uncomfortable with the seat height. Once you get familiar with it, it can be restored and ridden appropriately.
    #74
  15. Cakeeater

    Cakeeater Been here awhile

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    Bingo!! We have a winner!

    The most popular dog in the US is a labrador retreiver. They're big, sturdy, kinda slow at running (fast swimmers tho!!) and are amazingly easy going and mellow...after they're two years old. They are NOT sport-tourers.

    When I ride my brother's ST, it seems a waste to run it below speeds that put me in peril of losing my license, and it's just not much fun to ride it at mostly legal speeds. Seems to me most ST bikes are a bridge too far...too big, too heavy, too hot to be sporty...top small, too cramped and too nervous to be long-distance two-up tourers. The F-111 of motorcycles.

    Cakeeater
    #75
  16. Chisenhallw

    Chisenhallw Avowed Pussbag

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    I've narrowed it down to 'earth'. Or 'Baltimore'.
    Well, then.....um....don't buy one.
    #76
  17. Ever Onward

    Ever Onward Older,Wiser, Smarter

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    I agree with Cakeeater. Most of whats considered the sport tour bike selection is a bit overkill. If they made a more middleweight version that would suit alot of us better.......wait......they did, and it didnt sell well enough in the USA. :wink:



    [​IMG]





    Not to big

    Not to heavy

    No heat thrown off at the rider, with excellent aerodynamics

    Not to cramped or nervous

    55 MPG

    Kinda the Acura mid size luxury model of the Honda line. Midway between a ST1100 and a Goldwing in the way it rides.

    Think of it as a easy going more touring oriented , lighter and smaller alternative to a ST . Also zero maintenance except oil changes.
    #77
  18. discochris

    discochris Long timer

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    And the snotty tone here is because?
    #78
  19. rider33

    rider33 Long timer

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    You might want to check out DR650's as well. While similar in intent, the DR's are not quite as tall.. I've put thousands of miles on both on and off road and would say there capabilities are well matched. If the KLR felt tall, the DR might feel just right.

    Back on topic: sport tourers are designed for going long distances, quickly, and in comfort while maintaining more of a grin-factor in the twisty bits than a full-up touring rig. If none of that appeals/applies to you, by all means shop the other 94% of the market. You don't win a ralley on speed tho, in fact excessive speed can hurt you. Ralley's are about long distance endurance which is why sport touring bikes are significantly over-represented in the results. You can (and I have) take a 250 on a thousand mile journey but it's at the upper edge of its design envelope. A sport touring bike, on the other hand, is just getting started right about then.
    #79
  20. Onyx B.

    Onyx B. Pacific Coaster-east

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    +1

    [​IMG]
    #80