Trading my KLR for a Burgman 400....another talk me out of it thread

Discussion in 'Battle Scooters' started by doogiepooch, Nov 5, 2012.

  1. hugemoth

    hugemoth Long timer

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    IMO the biggest advantage of a scooter over a motorcycle is weather protection. On many scoots you will stay pretty dry even in the rain as long as you can keep moving thanks to the leg shields that extend all the way down to become floorboards.

    The things I don't like about the new maxi scooters is the CVT, all the plastic, and the seating position. I prefer to be able to control the RPM at any given speed rather than be stuck at whatever the CVT rollers are set for. Paying hundreds of dollars to replace a piece of plastic that breaks when the scoot is knocked over is a no go for me. Until they make an all metal scooter with a manual transmission and upright seating position I'll stick with motorcycles.

    For many years I rode an old Vespa Rally 200 both as a commuter and long distance tourer. I've also done many long tours on a CX500 and a GL1000. Except for the limited power, the Vespa was my favorite.
    #81
  2. Starbuck21

    Starbuck21 Manly scooterist!

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    Understood, but most bikes now are buried in plastic as well. One slight get-off on my KLR caused over $200.00 damage all to plastic :evil.

    I think this is something that needs to be addressed on bikes and scooters as well. Either that or make the dam*n plastic cheap to replace!!!
    #82
  3. markcap

    markcap Been here awhile

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    I looked at the Burg 400 & 650. I felt the 400 did not offer enough storage for me, while the 650 seemed to have adequate cargo space without having to add side cases if such case exists. But I probably haul more due to my need to camp & cook at the campsite. But the B 650 just seems SO BIG!
    Sounds to me like you talked yourself into a Burg 400. Or maybe you should look at the Wee 650. That's what I have. Fantastic all around machine. Maybe little buzzy at extended high speed travel on super slab.

    BTW, Nelson Rigg soft cases with nerf bars work well on a KLR and are not tall & skinny. You can squeeze lots into one.
    #83
  4. cbolling

    cbolling Here...Hold my Beer.

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    Strange because the 400 actually had a little more storage space than the 650.:huh
    #84
  5. markcap

    markcap Been here awhile

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    Maybe I am mistaken? Looked bigger to me.
    #85
  6. tastroman

    tastroman Long timer

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    As far as storage goes vs the KLR, you can't ignore floorboard on a maxi scooter. If you pick a model with a flat floorboard you can haul all sorts of odd shaped items right at your feet. When I need to fill my 5 gallon gas can I just drop it on my floorboard and head to the gas station. Try hauling a full 5 gallon gas can on a KLR. Not saying it can't be done but it's not going to be as simple as dropping it at your feet.
    #86
  7. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    One big problem with the CVT as used on scooters is that it has nowhere near the gear range as a manual transmission. It is severely lacking on the low end. This becomes very obvious on my 125cc scooters. They run out of gear pretty quick trying to climb hills. The lowest ratio available on the CVT is nowhere near low enough for most hills. OTOH, my Genuine Stella with a manual transmission will literally crawl up a steep grade in first gear, barely moving but keeping the engine in the powerband. This prevents engine lugging, bogging, and eventual engine damage due to putting to much of a load on an engine in to high a gear. The big scooters have enough power that they can get away with a limited gear range. But a true automatic transmission, like in most cars, is the real answer. Either that or a CVT with dual range, like the old Honda trail bikes. Some way to get a much lower gear when you need one. I would prefer an actual automatic transmission with a torque converter.
    #87
  8. heirhead

    heirhead Been here awhile

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    Hello,

    Nope can't do it. That is, talk you out of it, wont even try.
    7 Yrs ago had foot operation so couldn't shift. Bought a 250 Elite so I could still ride. Would go up Ortega Hwy, twisties to Hells Kitchen eating establishment on my scoot in shorts, sandals, cast and crutches. Had 1150gs, Guzzi Bassa, r100gs P/D and Transalp sitting home taking a break. Saw a 650 Burgman in Salt Lake on Fleabay that a lot of plastic that was busted up. Drove and rented trailer to pick up and take home, lots of snow. Put 20,000 miles on that 03 and didn't touch it. A couple of years ago saw 03 650 for sale, bought it off Suzuki employee. Had 223 miles on it, now has 12,000 on it, not touched.Now this is not a dual sport but IS an adventure bike as it will go every where on asphalt as smooth and effort free as any bike out there. Took it out to Ocotillo Wells and went 10 miles down desert road!! If in pouring down rain 80 mph you will barely get wet from waist down. The manual paddle shifters let you put RPMs to work and help braking down hill. 45-50 mpg, super comfortable seat and ergos for me. Just put front and back tires on at 10,000 miles. Will race Harleys with gusto and smoke them in twisties with ease. Excellent brakes, 3 discs, and still have lots of wear left. Have large Givi on back but Chase Harper cl850 humongus throw over bags work perfect to haul as much as any KLR. I know as I have a dr650 with tank bag, Ortliebs or the cl850, Rotopax, Cvclerack with a 40' atv rack over that with giant North Face scuba bag. liked this one over Silverwing as like the shifters. I always have more than 1 bike, now I have 4 but this is a keeper. Not a sport bike rider but surprise lot of sportbike riders on all bikes in twisties as having rode Ortega for 45 yrs.
    If you are NOT going in dirt this scooter will do all that is asked and more, also very easy on any passenger, comfy with backrest, floorboards and SMOOOOOTH.
    I know, tell us what you really think.
    PS. I do like the looks of the Scarabeo. Good luck with your decision, LeBron made his, you can make yours.

    Heirhead
    #88
  9. Qaz

    Qaz Been here awhile

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    Here is the deal, I have a 400 Burgman and love it. I grew up on dirt bikes, moved to the street during the 2-stroke era in the early 70's, and continued right through to a 1800 Wing. i have 4 bikes in the garage and the one that is ridden the most is the Burgman 400 Here is the straight poop; If you want to travel and have a bike that is easy to live with the rest of the time, go for a maxi scooter. Scooters are about compromise, they are not as comfortable as a touring bike, nor can you haul as much stuff, they don't handle as well as a sport bike and they don't dual sport like a KLR, but they do all these things better than any one other bike that I know of, meaning they tour well, can get down a winding road pretty damn fast, and if you get to a gravel road, it will keep going as long as the incline is not too steep. If you are over 5'6", you will have no trouble flat footing it. I rode all the maxi's and bought the 400 Burgman because performance wise it is not far off the 600's, but a nice step up from the Majesty. It has better wind protection than all but the 650 Burgman and is comfort able. It is a 2005 with 38,000 miles on it, I can ride 190 miles on a tank of gas before looking for a gas station. As far as using oil, don't fill it up to the top mark on the dip stick and run a good synthetic oil and I have had no problems. Maintanence- if you do everything on your KLR, you will have no problem doing the same withthe scooter. I get 15,000 miles on the rear tire and 20 something on the front. Valve adjustments are easy, just alot of body work to take off. After you do it once, the second time goes alot faster! CVT trannys are simple as dirt, but a head wind is their enemy (revs more than a transmission on a bike).
    If I was going to use mine more for trips I would change a few things: Taller shield, heavier weights in the variator and some form of cruise control. I hope this helps.
    #89
  10. go.duesouth

    go.duesouth Lord of the geeks

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    I'm 40, been riding since I was 12. Started on a YZ80 and have owned and ridden lots of different bikes. I fell in love with scooters after trying one a few years ago. Kept my WR450 for dirt adventures, scrubbed everything else and got a Kymco 300i. Thought I'd miss shifting, turns out I don't. My riding buddy, first laughed, then he cried when he realized I wasn't joking. Then we went on a thousand mile trip. Somewhere between me whooping his butt on corners, keeping up on straights, my stuff staying locked and dry, the heavy rain going mostly around, instead of on me, quiet engine, and getting 70mpg's, he finally got it. He's the only one who's ever said anything, and it wasn't disparaging, just shock. My only regret is, I didn't wait for the BMW C600. I still love riding motorcycles, but now I love scooters too. But then, there's not much on two wheels I don't like. If you have any reservations and are concerned about what people think, then run right down to the Harley dealer and buy your manhood and join the sea of other middle class noobs on bikes. Otherwise, buy what you like.
    #90
  11. ohgood

    ohgood Long timer

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    what's this "work on" thing you speak of ? I don't believe you own a klr at all.



    oh, or a scooter. neither requires this "work on" thing you've mentioned. :D
    #91
  12. Domromer

    Domromer Desert Rat

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    I do all my own maintenance. This is one my main considerations when looking at bikes. For example Silverwing 15miutes to change air filter and spark plugs. Vstrom two hours requires removing fuel tank, fairing and moving radiator. Klr 15 minutes to do the job.
    #92
  13. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    From my experience, scooter tend to require maintenance more often than motorcycles and getting to things are complicated due to all the plastic. However, this varies from scooter to scooter as well as motorcycle to motorcycle.

    Valve adjustments in particular can be very complicated on a scooter due to all the body work. Adjusting the valves on my KLR is easier than on my Sport City 250. This, despite the fact that the Sport City has Screw & Locknut adjusters and the KLR uses shims. Luckily, neither requires valve adjustments that often. On my Kymco on the other hand, Valve adjustments are very easy, but are required every 2500 miles. I have read that the valve adjustment on the Burgman 400 is very time consuming so you may want to look into that.
    #93
  14. ohgood

    ohgood Long timer

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    ya, I heard about some of that, body panel mess. yuck

    4 bolts and the entire rear of my cheap chinese scooter comes off, engine is -right-there-. the drz takes longer to change throttle cables than I think the entire scooters assembly time.
    #94
  15. Dr. Motardo

    Dr. Motardo Adventurer

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    Interesting thread. My everyday ride is a Vespa GTS 250 and I also have a Triumph Tiger 800. I've had 2 or 3 other scooters and a selection of Honda and Ducati motorcycles over the years and I can say with confidence that the Vespa is my all time favorite daily ride. With a Givi topbox I can fit a week's worth of groceries or use the bike for riding into downtown Denver and parking just about anywhere.

    While I love the Vespa, I have not been able to find a real maxi scooter that I prefer over a motorcycle. The T-Max comes close as do the Piaggio and Aprilia 500's, but I'm not sure the latter 2 are really maxis. I'm hoping the new BMW's do the the trick but right now I'm still very happy with the Triumph.

    I think most of the positives and negatives have been covered already. The only thing I'd emphasize again is that the standard scooter riding posture isn't always comfortable for long stints in the saddle. You need to make sure you're actually comfy on whatever scoot you decide on. It helps if there's room on the floorboards to move your feet fore and aft. It also helps to take a long test ride. Good luck!
    #95
  16. Daboo

    Daboo Adventurer

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    I'll pass on some quick thoughts...

    Yes, you can ride at interstate speeds for hours on end. I completed a SS1000 last June on mine and felt it was extremely comfortable. Much like a barcalounger. :) While I've put 70,000 miles on a Burgman 400 in the past few years commuting north and south on I-5 in Seattle, I also take it for day long trips in the state. Those are 300-400 mile days. It does camping well, because you have 62 liters of storage space under the seat...and then you can load up a top box and the pillion.

    If you're interested in cruising at "high" interstate speeds...like 15-20+ mph over the speed limit, you probably should look elsewhere. It'll do it, but you'd be better off with an ST1300...till you lose your license. ;)

    The oil burning you've heard about is primarily with the 2006 and earlier model 400. Some did it, others didn't. But at sustained high speeds, they would suck oil back up through the air cleaner and burn a lot. The engine (as well as the rest of the bike) was totally redesigned for 2007, so that problem is pretty much been eliminated.

    My "drop" from a bike to a scooter had about 20 year in between, so I can't really speak to that. But like everyone else, I like to look at bikes and think of what would it be like. I haven't found any bike better yet. Each bike will do something perhaps better, but the total package is a compromise with what I already have.

    • Fun factor. The 400 is simply a delight to toss into a curve. Even freeway onramps are a blast. Find a curvy road and while a sport bike will pass you, you'll have a ton of fun in those turns and do pretty well keeping up. Most cruisers will be left way behind.
    • Storage. The 400 has more than any other maxi-scooter in the world, and it is all usable. Use the bike on your daily commute and on the way home, stop at Costco. You...and anyone else around...will be surprised at what you can take home.
    • Power. It won't snap your neck with the acceleration, but you'll surprise yourself when you see just how fast you're going. That's both because of how fast it'll get to speeds to earn you a "performance award" and how deceptively well it handles at high speeds. The first time I got an experience like that was when I was trying to catch a group I'd been riding with. As I was closing in on them, I looked down and saw I was at 96 mph and still accelerating. I had no idea. It felt like 60 or 70.
    • Economy. The 400 drinks gas like a 250cc scooter. I don't know how they do it, but this bike gets mid-60s in the summer with low 70's on trips.
    • Maintenance. It's simple and easy on the pocketbook. The expensive items like the CVT belt last about 50% longer than the maintenance interval suggests. Valve adjustment is about double. Tires cost about $60 each and last about 15K. That's cheap for a motorcycle.
    • That fairing...is nice. You won't appreciate it nearly as much in the summer (with the exception of the bugs it stops), but in the winter it keeps a lot of the cold and wet from hitting you. And the floorboard keeps the feet dry and gives you different seating positions.
    • Riding position. I lean forward in a "sport touring" position and find my back doesn't hurt like some people's backs do. Plus, it distributes the weight more evenly, which helps a lot in handling. That sport-touring position is also one that is restful for long rides. I was coming home with a group of riders after going up to Artist Point at Mt. Baker. We had a Ducati rider join us several times on the way back. The reason he kept joining us was that he'd pass us ...and then have to stop a half hour later. The weight on his wrists was too painful for anything longer.
    Unless you need ABS, I'd look seriously at used 400s. From 2007 and on, they are pretty much the same. ABS came in 2011. I don't think you'll find any difference at all between a 2011 and 2012 except a few thousand in depreciation. Many people buy them on a whim and never ride them past the break in mileage. So you could find yourself a good deal. BTW, try using a search engine called SearchTempest. It does a search of Craigslist ads for a range of miles around and puts the results on one page. It's how I found my current Burgman.

    Chris
    #96
  17. emmettken

    emmettken Long timer

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    @ Daboo, well said.
    #97
  18. Canuman

    Canuman Crusty & Unobliging

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    That's some excellent evidence. If you need to ride mixed roads, keep the KLR. If your riding is mostly on pavement, the Burg will treat you well. We all need to adapt the ride to the road. In this case, the Burg may be a good match.

    I never felt like a sissy on a scooter. I still have great admiration for the SYM HD200. If I rode that machine correctly, I could leave most of the pack in the dust. It had 175 cc's. It returned 72 mpg. If a scooter is something you're comfortable with, be comfortable on a scooter. They are outstanding machines.
    #98
  19. vortexau

    vortexau Outside the Pod-bay

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    #99
  20. gec343

    gec343 Been here awhile

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    I agree. If and when that Integra comes to the U.S., I'll be standing in line for one.:norton