The DR650 Highway Touring Thread

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

  1. ShadyRascal

    ShadyRascal Master of None

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    the Root, Western Montana
    I've done a little bit of longer distance riding on my DR. Dirt tires. It does of course give you vibration at highway speed; that's a big piston slapping up and down there. On the highway I can pull in the clutch and the vibes disappear to the point that I don't know if smooth tires would even make a difference. :dunno In any case, it's not particularly bad.

    Out on the long slab at 75 it's very tolerable, for what it is.

    On dirt roads and paths, it's very much in it's element.

    On a twisty paved mountain road, you feel like nothing can beat you.
    #41
  2. Jelly

    Jelly Super Dork

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2007
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    210
    Location:
    Detroit, MI
    Thanks everyone for your input. I have not ridden one of these, but it sure seems to be a neat little bike! I spend much more time on back roads these days, rather than the super slab. The last few years I have found some really cool places, traveling to the same destinations that I have been going to for many years. I'm amazed how many things I have unknowingly ridden past a bazillion times because I needed to get there “quicker” to save half an hour. Michigan has a ton of “Seasonal Roads” that I would love to spend a Sunday checking out and then blast home at 65 mph for a few hours so my boss can make his Benz payment Monday.:D
    #42
  3. Midpack

    Midpack Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    Las Cruces, NM
    Getting on my DR reminds me of my 79 Bonneville's riding position, agility, and performance with better suspension and off road ability. With a Sargent seat, JustForBikes screen, and IMS tank a 350 mile day from southern New Mexico to Toas area forest roads is a cinch. 75 mph cruising with stock gearing not a problem. 15 minute change over to 14T counter sprocket if needed for off road climbing. I'm 5'9", 165lbs, 32" inseam/sleeve length, the bike just fits. I use soft luggage with side and tail racks which work well. I'm doing a week or so in Colorado July and will be taking it rather than my street bike, you can't off road a ST2 Ducati. I've lowered the suspension to see if it makes any difference and since I don't do much single track it seems OK. I added a center stand for convenience.

    Attached Files:

    #43
  4. planemanx15

    planemanx15 Long timer

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    Just bought a trail tech vapor for a little bit of added luxury on the dr. Will report back when its all set up and ready to go!
    #44
  5. mike1952

    mike1952 Long timer

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    north of ann arbor michigan
    My wife and I stopped at that same spot on our honeymoom 31 years ago.
    #45
  6. Adv Grifter

    Adv Grifter on the road o'dreams

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Passing ADV Stalkers in California
    Vapors
    I had thoughts of going with the Vapor but after using bicycle computers since the early 1990's, I eventually came to the conclusion .... I really didn't need all the extra information these devices provide ... I also had a bike computer stolen off the dash in Mexico.

    I did find it useful having multiple trip meters and speed averages when laying out a ride route or back tracking. The Bicycle computers never had temp sensors or tachs, like the Vapor, but had most all the other features as the Vapor. I used the Sigma ones, about $30. Now, I just don't pay attention to much of it and last time the Sigma died, I just left it off. Never missed it. Still have the Super Magnet in my Rotor. :D

    If I went with a Vapor now it would be to replace the stock speedo, headlight, and front sub frame ... it's all pretty heavy. So if you really want to put your bike on a diet ... that is one approach. At this point I've lost interest in that. But to each his own. Less weight means easier to ride in technical off road and less hammering to the bike itself. All good.

    Some notes on over loading your DR650.
    If all you ever ride is highway or smooth dirt roads like in Canada and Alaska then this is not such a concern. Load it up, no worries. But if you get out on rougher two track or serious wash board or whooped out tracks ... as found in California, Baja, and the Desert Southwest .... then an overloaded bike can have issues over time.

    Running hard cases and steel mounting racks can be of particular concern. Running huge tool tubes adds a LOT of weight which could stress the sub frame or luggage rack. If you're only doing a few thousand miles ... probably won't be an issue. But over time and big miles doing rough riding .... everything will most likely crack or break.

    So take a lesson from Jammin' Jay and others doing the RTW rides ... they have all had these issues. Traveling light is really hard to do ... especially if you camp and cook on the road. No real easy solution.

    My solution is to do day loops. Get to a "hub" or "base camp" point. Leave your heavy gear there and do a "day loop" out into the rougher, more interesting terrain carrying only whats needed. Some locations are well suited for this: Like parts of the Mojave, Baja, Moab and even Copper Canyon. I'm sure there are many more.
    #46
  7. planemanx15

    planemanx15 Long timer

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    With a pair of ear plugs, windshield and helmet wind jammer, the dr is a quiet animal on the highway haha
    #47
  8. planemanx15

    planemanx15 Long timer

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    bump..

    I bought a DL1000 8 weeks ago and have been riding that almost all the time, and I think I came to a conclusion..

    The DR is the bike for me.

    I'm not tall (5'8") not heavy, and not that strong. It takes a lot to keep the big DL upright at a stand still, and frankly, I think it might be over powered for me. I love it on the highway, and my girlfriend loves getting on it, but its just too much for me.

    I will probably sell the DL and use some of the funds to make the DR a beast. Change out the Carb, a real deal windshield, and get a real seat. I spoke to Sargent about getting a a DL style seat for the DR, and they can do it, but didn't sound too comfortable with it.

    As for the Girlfriend, She basically said she was happy on the DR, spoiled by the DL (her only gripe about the DL was the seat was too big, and she could move around a lot), and with a new seat, *should* be okay on the DR.
    #48
  9. FatChance

    FatChance Road Captain

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Durango, Colorado, USA
    I have switched to IRC GP1 tires, otherwise my DR is as you see with IMS tank, Corbin saddle, Spitfire windscreen, GPS/MP3, 14-15-16/48 gearing, ProTaper SE handlebar, Pelican 1520 panniers, Dynajet, Powerlet 12v outlet, a front fender brace, Eibach springs, etc, etc. There is a blurry area between this and my 1150GS when choosing what to ride on multiday rides throughout the southwest. Shorter the DR wins, longer the GS wins. Can't go wrong...

    [​IMG]
    #49
  10. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    for luggage i've recently bolted a pelican 1520 to my ebay bbq rack (lining up the existing 4 rack top bolts plus drilling for 1 more rear one). the whole setup is very solid. i mounted it back from the from the front edge of the bbq rack about 1" so a passenger can have more room and so i can use my other piece of luggage: giant loop coyote bag http://www.giantloopmoto.com/products/coyote-saddlebag

    the coyote bag has a lower strap/hook system for use on top of a fender but also has those 2 center straps that go all the way around. if you have a rear rack or loop points you can just use those to hold the bag in place plus it also straps to the passenger foot peg mounts.

    so the 2 center loops go through that gap between the front edge of the bbq rack and the pelican, strapped on the rack and held hard in place. it sits on the rear of the seat and once the 2 foot peg straps are cinched, it's rock solid on the bike yet nice and light feeling.

    i was thinking about hard side bags but recently i've seen a dump in the dirt by someone else who whacked the living crap outta of his leg when the bike came down and his side box pinned him. after seeing that i decided GL is the only way for me when riding off road. unlike wolfman soft system, the GL is very narrow in width and nothing is left on the bike when i'm done with it. for day riding the pelican is all the storage is could ever need.

    if i need additional carrying capacity (beyond the GL & the rear pelican) i can strap another dry bag on top of the flat pelican and yet another on top of the GL. i use, i use rox straps and strap a dry bag to the top of the pelican and place on of the bunjie nets on top of the GL so i can quickly stash something.

    since the bbq rack is wider than the pelican mounted on top (i'd say 3" or so) i still get the crash protection from it being the widest rear point plus it offers me a nice hand hold when moving around the bike.

    if i was going to do it over, it might use caribou's quick plate mount for pelicans (mounted to the bbq rack) so i could remove the top box and have a flat surface left for other uses. http://cariboucases.com/store/?name=Catalog&mode=i&item=000325 i'm happy to leave the pelican up there permanently however as it only weighs a few lbs empty if i want to ride light. i don't notice it standing up or even leaning back off my butt.

    here's my bike in current form

    all said and done my dr goes down the hiway very nicely and yet climb loaded of rugged colorado passes too (been over mosquito & engineer loaded on tour!). not many bikes can do all that.

    Attached Files:

    #50
  11. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    dale,
    your wife broke her ankle or leg when she dumped her hardbag-equipped dr on her leg right?


    #51
  12. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    my next mod 2 hiway comfort mods are:

    -lower foot pegs http://www.procycle.us/bikepages/dr650.html#controls

    -madstad windshield for road touring days. i can keep my existing small screen on and can easily unbolt the robobracket (with screen coming with it) when need be for dirt day riding or say when i've arrived at camp from a long hiway ride and want to unload and go rode a local dirt ride . i would then be left with only the unobtrusive (turbocity) racks on the bike. madstad system is the only one that has full adjustment angles available to fine tune for height or air flow differences. since it stands off the front of the oem light shield, it also has air coming up the backside providing essential naca duct/laminar air flow to reduce buffeting. this is why those other cheaper bolt on screens produce so much buffeting. the don't have a naca duct. http://www.madstad.com/s.nl/it.A/id.553/.f
    #52
  13. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    i am real happy with my dr but am thinking about adding a versys as a big bike for multi-state monster tours and ADVing it...sort of a super tenere-lite.

    Attached Files:

    #53
  14. ThomasVolomitz

    ThomasVolomitz New Old Stock

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    NE Ohio
    Wow, in that form is does look like a Tenere, with those tires and all. Check this Tenere Rally Bike.

    [​IMG]
    #54
  15. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    21" front wheel on the S10.
    i'd bet those are ohlins forks
    #55
  16. NordieBoy

    NordieBoy Armature speller

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    At least Ohlins stickers...
    #56
  17. Kommando

    Kommando Long timer

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    Nov 28, 2006
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    Location:
    In the sand
    My DR has been a hoot. The previous owner set it up pretty nicely yet simply, and I even had him take a few things off (Corbin, topbox, etc.) to sell to somebody else. I'm ok on the stock seat for a while, and I'm used to not having even a shroud or flyscreen.

    It currently has the following mods that make touring no problemo:

    - Nice squishy grips.
    - IMS tank that fits 5+gal.
    - Aux. driving lights.
    - Choice of tubular steel Suzuki tailrack or PWD aluminum plate tailrack with Givi hardware.
    - Givi E45 topbox.
    - 3" aluminum extension plate to move Givi E45 back for passenger space.
    - Stock CV carb with Procycle jetting kit, cut airbox, Uni filter, and FMF Q2 exhaust. It pulls the stock gears like a freight train. 5th is now useable from 45MPH indicated.
    - Sideracks of unknown mfr. to keep soft panniers away from exhaust/tire/chain.
    - Mild TW22 tires.
    - ATV Logic tank panniers and tankbag.
    - Dowco Fastrax soft panniers.
    - Springs for a 200lb rider and 10wt. oil in both ends.
    - EnduroStar trailstand for service/repairs.
    - Battery Tender lead that doubles as a 12V accessory plug.

    I may add the following touring-improvement mods though:

    - Safari 8gal tank with Raptor petcocks.
    - Quieter never-repack exhaust...GSX-R1000 muffler.
    - 1-2" Lowered rider pegs, 2-4-6" lowered passenger pegs, and some touring pegs.
    - Aftermarket seat like Renazco or Procycle.
    - Inline fuel filters and stainless reusable oil filter.
    - Lockable ToolTube.
    - FAR KTM tall folding mirrors or some convex bar-end mirrors.
    - Tusk handguards w/LED signals in the shields.
    - 15&16/45 520 sprockets.
    - Vapor.
    - GPS mount.
    - Amber foglights.
    - Polisport YZ front fender.
    #57
  18. FatChance

    FatChance Road Captain

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    Bill - Yeah, she broke her left ankle in some deep sand in Moab about 3 years ago, but it wasn't the hard bag that did it. As she lost control and was going down (about 15mph?), she put out her left leg to kick the bike back up and rolled her ankle then the bike fell on her. Actually, the Pelicans held the bike up off her leg while sliding on the ground, possibly preventing a worse injury. In the picture you can see how it holds the bike up off the ground. As it was, in this case, the Pelicans were neutral at worst, or positive at best in this incident. I'm still not convinced that hard bags are inherently better or worse off-road since they can both cause and prevent injuries.

    [​IMG]
    #58
  19. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    thanks for the details dale.
    i guess it all come down to how you fall like you said.

    if you fall with your feet on the pegs, hard bags can keep up the bike and protect you....if you fall when try to make a foot dab move or something like that and your leg is whipped back then yeah the bag can land on your leg.

    soft vrs hard is a never answered debate...kinda like which oil to use.
    i proposed a new concept of both on post 12
    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=729632

    do you have any clue where your wife's bike is now?
    i know disco bought it, but then latter he changed over to a wr250r.
    #59
  20. FatChance

    FatChance Road Captain

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    I was wondering about that the other day. I have no idea and haven't contacted him to follow up on it.
    #60