The DR650 Highway Touring Thread

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by planemanx15, Mar 25, 2011.

  1. planemanx15

    planemanx15 Long timer

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    There is a ton of info on this site (and others) about the great Suzuki DR650 and its dual sport abilities. But what about those that do mostly highway touring?

    What features and comforts did you guys and gals add to your beast to make it a better highway cruiser?

    For me, I haven't added much yet, but got an IMS tank for better range, had the seat customized to be much more comfortable (its a dished seat look), and plan on getting a bigger windshield, since the slipstreamer tombstone shield isn't good by any means. I also want to raise and change the bars, as well as lower the pegs. I would also like the dash area cleaned up a bit too, not a fan of the wires and lines going every-which way.

    I really like the DR650 a lot, but would like it to be more tame on-road.

    What about you?

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    #1
  2. bluebye

    bluebye Skin it back

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    #2
  3. ADV8

    ADV8 Taumarunui..Darwin..

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  4. planemanx15

    planemanx15 Long timer

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    i like that setup, how hard is it to move the key over? you dont have the ability to lock the steering now right?
    #4
  5. planemanx15

    planemanx15 Long timer

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    :eek1 Windshield doesn't hit the helmet?
    #5
  6. Arc 21

    Arc 21 Been here awhile

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    Choice of tires and gearing makes all the difference in the world when it comes to which end of the spectrum these bikes function at.

    I day dream about having two, one built as a super moto and my current one that leans more heavily twoards 80% dirt riding.
    #6
  7. Northyork

    Northyork Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Canada
    Safari Tank
    Corbin Seat
    Heated Grips
    Extended Mirrors
    Suzuki rear rack
    SW-Motech luggage racks
    Pelican IM2600 storm cases
    USB and Cigarrete lighter outlet ports
    RAM mount for GPS
    Tool Tube + tools
    Spare back and front tubes
    Lower foot pegs
    Upgrade Suspension (front and back)
    16T front sprocket
    Windshield
    Maier Hand Guards
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    #7
  8. jessepitt

    jessepitt Ride More

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    Great idea for a thread! I can't wait to see what every one has done to make their bikes ADV-touring ready. This will be a great resource!:clap
    #8
  9. Foot dragger

    Foot dragger singletracker

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    Ive put a set of street wheels on my DR,19" ft,wider 17" rear,IMS tank.Corbin seat that broke in at about 15000 miles and now works great,lowered ft pegs,raised pro taper bars, It is smooth enough I have done 600 mile days no problem. I put a used Cee-Bailey windscreen on a spare headlight shroud and for me it works fine. I can change it over to a dirt dual purpose in about 45 minutes flat.
    #9
  10. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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  11. planemanx15

    planemanx15 Long timer

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    I like those Safari tanks, shouldda looked around more before I bought the IMS!

    edf: Those trax panniers are really nice as well, do they preform as well as they look?

    NorthYork: I like that dash set up, but why the two speedos? If you want to remove the windshield is it an easy task?
    #11
  12. appalachian

    appalachian Ride fat boy ride

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    NORTHYORK...what does the 12volt supply get its power from, wher in the electrical system does it connect ??

    Been curious about how to put one on my bike later on.
    #12
  13. bluebye

    bluebye Skin it back

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    Not much, if it does it's just above the visor. It's all a compromse, these dual sport thingy's .
    #13
  14. Northyork

    Northyork Been here awhile

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    Trailtech Vapor/Vector/Striker are much more than just a speedometer. Check this link for a TrailTech computer comparison http://www.trailtech.net/computer_comparison.html
    Removing the windshield is a minute job. It is held in place by two plastic bolts/nuts

    #14
  15. Northyork

    Northyork Been here awhile

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    I have ran two wires from the battery to the 12v outlet. The wire connecting to the + is fused. I did not want it to be switched, this way I can use it to connect the battery trickle charger.

    Battery+>>>Fuse>>>12v outlet
    Battery->>>>>>>>>>12v Outlet



    #15
  16. planemanx15

    planemanx15 Long timer

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    Going to lower my dr650 tomorrow the factory way... think it will affect the highway ride?
    #16
  17. soboy

    soboy Long timer

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    Short answer: the only thing a stock DR650 needs to be a good street bike is a better seat.

    Long answer: I bought my DR to replace a vintage Yamaha DT250 as my dual sport bike. On the ride home from the dealer, I was so impressed with the DR's street performance that I ordered a Corbin for it. Once the seat arrived, I took the tailbag off my WeeStrom, put it on the DR, and took off for a Blue Ridge Parkway tour. It handled that ride so well that I sold my Wee when I got back. Now my DR is both my dual sport bike and my street bike of preference. I have also added heated grips which let me ride the bike in the winter comfortably. I've also made a number of modifications for off-road performance, but none of these are needed to make the DR a good street bike.

    I don't like windshields so that is not an issue. I find the OEM Trailwings to be an excellent 50/50 tire, I can go asphalt dancing all day in the twisties, and still ride all the dirt I want (just no mud). The Wee had a better engine but nothing else about the Wee was as good for me as the DR. I have really enjoyed this bike and it is as close to a do-it-all motorcycle as I have ever owned in my 38 years of riding.
    #17
  18. ram1000

    ram1000 Long timer

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    no.
    #18
  19. ADV8

    ADV8 Taumarunui..Darwin..

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    Yes the steering lock is now removed as it would not work with the RMZ 450 triple clamps and be more accessible.

    http://s30.photobucket.com/albums/c345/manurewa/07RMZ450Fork/#!cpZZ1QQtppZZ20

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    I have found the DR650 to be a very capable tourer,dirt or tar.
    The SM wheels and 320 mm front rotor make a noticeable improvement.
    A simple wheel change back to dirt specs.
    #19
  20. Adv Grifter

    Adv Grifter on the road o'dreams

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    PLUS ONE :clap:clap

    Having come off a Vstrom I'd have to agree. I also agree with your view of the DR650 and what it does well and what it needs ... and doesn't need ... to be a good road tourer.

    Sure, you can spend a fortune on farkles; fancy dash mods, suspension, over-bore kits, but as mentioned above, the DR really only needs a decent seat. I have a Corbin.

    I put an Ohlins shock on my bike but for road work the stock suspension is totally fine unless you weigh in over 225 lbs. or so. Even then, it's mainly springs that are needed. If you get into very sporty riding then more is needed, but for touring, its really OK.

    Figuring out luggage is your choice. Hard or Soft. Both work well on the DR. Try that with any KTM, Husky. Not great.

    Since I DO ride off road with my DR ... I have it set up with that in mind. I have two sets of wheels. But I've done many long road rides for up to a month or six weeks that were 85% on paved roads. I did lots of these when my DR was basically stock, save the seat.

    I am not a fan of taller gearing on the DR. The stock gearing is plenty tall IMHO and it's quite smooth even at 80 mph indicated. If you cruise faster than that you'll be burning through tires, chains and sprockets very quickly.
    But if the 16T front sprocket fits and lasts well ... then why not? You can always down shift to 4th if it gets "luggy".

    IMO, the DR is pretty nice and smooth at high speeds. Very low vibes with my heavy Corbin seat (absorbs vibes!), Pro Taper Alu bars with risers, and those wonderful rubber mounted pegs that very few other single dual sports have.

    I'm also not a windshield fan but I totally get why our Canadian brothers go that way. I would to if I rode a lot in freezing temps. But in hot weather a shield just makes things worse. On a long ride a shield can mean less fatigue, but if it's noisy, then you'll be worse off. No shield means CLEAN, QUIET air flow.

    The DR650 is one of the most economical, low maintenance bikes out there ... and certainly TOP DOG for a single in terms of a road tourer. It's also a HOOT in the twisties and sucks up broken up pavement like its not there. The KLR can be made good, but needs a lot more to match the reliability, simplicity and smoothness of the DR. The BMW 650's are nice ... but are 60 lbs. heavier and double the price ... plus have a litany of problems.

    There is a reason the big DR650 thread has over 6 million posts. :D

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    The guy on the K1300S was stunned that all three DR650's left him behind on the slippery wet roads going over this Sierra Pass. I did miss his heated seat and better heated grips however. His bike costs about $20,000.
    Most of us payed under $5000 for our DR's. :deal
    #20