True Dualsports getting heavier and less powerful?

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by mikem9, Jan 22, 2013.

  1. JensEskildsen

    JensEskildsen Long timer

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    Yeah, its hard to get everything in one package. Everytime I bitch about my xt600 being heavy, undersuspended, underpowered ect, I allwas stop and rethink the whole thing.

    I wouldn't change any of that for the reliability. Currently its at 117.000km, and the engine has never been opened. So yeah, the bike could have had more power, but would that have left me stranded a couple thousand kilometers from home on a trip? The bike could be lighter, but would my frame have held op to my use and abuse?

    You just gotta buy the closest thing to what you want, and adapt the bike from there, and enjoy the versatility, if thats your game.
    #61
  2. Ken F

    Ken F Been here awhile

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    I think the maps have lost their way or just trying to make cheaper dual sports.
    I have an 09 crf250x.weighs in about 250lbs.the 230l is something like 295.some reason went back to steel frame.not sure a horn and signal lights add 45 lbs.
    I do wish manufacturer would realize we are not all 6ft10.or doing 30ft jumps.I guess the dual sport is lower.now adays 125 bikes are as tall as rest.
    BTW jet skis have used digital injected 2 strokes for few years but don't see them made anymore.
    Think I may look into a beta.they are trying to get into the us.market
    #62
  3. Grreatdog

    Grreatdog Long timer

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    You can't blame the tonnage increase on steel frames. Both of my orange bikes have those.
    #63
  4. Ken F

    Ken F Been here awhile

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    I'm not.I have KTM too.and gas gas.both light bikes I know they are 2 strokes and 4 strokes are always heavier. I did see spec.on KTM 500 at 250 lbs don't know if it had lights etc.
    #64
  5. Adv Grifter

    Adv Grifter on the road o'dreams

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    Even though the CRF250X and CRF230L are both Hondas ...they really have nothing in common. I did extensive mods on a friends 230 (off road version) and know the CRF250X pretty well too.
    The main thing to remember is the 250X is a full race bike from the git. Alu. frame, (F.I. on newer ones), top shelf suspension, best wheels.

    I've ridden a couple different X's ... love that bike. But both my buddies had repeated serious engine failures ... same with 450 version. Bad Ju Ju.
    Pretty common on early CRF250's, no? Everyone re-does valve gear.

    The 230's are made in Brazil. That should tell you something. No real high tech weight saving effort, very low budget components for the most part and a bike that is about half price of the CRF250X. But the 230 motor is a hammer .... much like the unstoppable XR's of yesteryear. :clap Not fancy or powerful ... just keeps running. The CRF250X is a delicate jewel in comparison.

    On my buddies 230 I rebuilt the forks adding Race Tech emulators. Huge difference. Sent the shock out for rebuild too ... awesome upgrade to previously un-ride able stock one. Re-jetted carb and did a few other mods for comfort/durability.

    That cheap little bastard is nearly as good on a knarly trail as my WR250F ... easier to ride (BECAUSE IT'S LOWER!) The WR responds best to aggressive riding, true to it's MotoX roots. But at a crawl its not perfect. The 230 is not half bad, slow, yes, but a perfect old guy bike for moderate dual sport use, reliable and not expensive and so easy to maintain.

    The CRF250X could be worth converting to dual sport if one could get the motor reliable. Rode in Baja with a guy on a CRF450X ... blew up in Bahia de Los Angeles. :cry On the bus ... 500 miles to the border.
    #65
  6. Duken4evr

    Duken4evr Been here awhile

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    Here is my list:

    The best hard core dirt oriented sold as fully street legal dual sport on earth is the Husaberg FE570. Very few know how truly cool these things are. They have amazing but usable power, and they have well made/durable powerplants with adequate (1.5 quarts single sump) oil capacity and good electrical (211 watts) output for a fan and accessories. A few fixable fuel pump niggles, but the hard metal spinny whirly parts are good durable stuff and the slant engine 'Bergs are very smooth runners with little vibration with a wide ratio XC-W trans that makes street cruising easy. The stock seats are good off road, but weapons of ass destruction on the street though.

    Best dirt capable dual sport that is truly road worthy is the KTM 690, with an honorable mention to the Husky TE 610/630. Love those previous gen Huskys. They are durable, they are cool and they are my personal idea of a "dual sport". Actually favor them over the undeniably cooler KTM 690 for their simplicity.

    Road worthy dual sport that is capable of a some dirt looks to be the new Husky Terra. These appeal rationally as they have the unbreakable BMW engine tweaked to make good power, look sharp and are excellent on the street and decent off road, but leave me a little cold emotionally. I want my dual sport nastier and dirtier, and some of the cost cutting moves suck the cool factor out of them. Rational thought should win out though, the new Husky is an excellent value and really would make a nice ADV bike that involves somewhat difficult off road terrain. The new Husky seems to be in the running when it comes to a real do it all pretty well dual sport.

    Although a vastly different experience, the WR250R is highway capable (learn to love the revs) and can be ridden pretty fast off road. Makes me wonder what the mythical and as yet unbuilt WR450R could do.

    Best dual sport that can cover all surfaces on earth and be fixed with a flat blade screwdriver and a rock in the outback of Panama award goes to the DR650. The big DR is my choice as a post nuclear zombie ride.

    What we want and what we need are two different things. A light and tall dirt bike bike is cool, but they suck on the road. It is just the nature of things. 15 miles of pavement on my plated 'Berg and I am ready to pull off. 15 miles of gnarly single track? Just getting warmed up. 15 miles of pavement on a DR650 is a piece of cake. Just shoot me after 15 miles of gnarly single track on a DR though :)
    #66
  7. Adv Grifter

    Adv Grifter on the road o'dreams

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    Well the DR is no single track attack dog, no question, but it's surprising where it can be ridden. The good news about the DR650 ... is it can RIDDEN ... (NOT trailered) to Panama ... and back.

    Love the Bergs. I was lucky enough to ride a demo for a couple weeks in the Mojave. Way better bike than I am rider. I had an '05 550E.
    I am hoping KTM/Berg will make an Adventure Dual Sport version of a Berg. They are exquisite motorcycles ... in fact, best bike I ever rode in the Desert. But ... if going to Panama ... I'll take my DR650.
    Post apocalypse single track? CRF230 (modified as above)
    [​IMG]
    #67
  8. montesa_vr

    montesa_vr Legend in his own mind

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    Sorry, but I totally reject the premise that dual sports are getting heavier and slower. OK, the current 650 class of Japanese dual sports are true porkers, but they are also quite a bit more powerful than their 500 and 600 cc predecessors. The 250 class really hasn't gained any weight in 40 years, and power is way up.

    Example: Honda's XL250 from 1976 weighed 323 pounds on Motorcyclist Magazine's scales. What advantage does it have over today's Honda 250?

    Example: A Yamaha WR250R is both lighter and faster than either of the XT500 Yamahas that I owned. Faster in the quarter mile, faster in top speed. Yeah, I know, no comparison at 3000 - 5000 rpm, but you can't say dual sports are getting slower.

    The lightest 250 4-stroke Japanese dual sport ever was Yamaha's XT250 from 1980 to 1983, which came in at 265. It was very light (partly because the 1.7 gallon tank reduced fuel weight). It was also air-cooled, 5-speed, kick start only, drum brakes, 6V lighting, 35mm fork tubes with 7.5 inches of travel, and even with it's "modern" counterbalancer Cycle said "longer than 30 minutes at freeway speed you'll find yourself buzzing when you stop."

    The 2-stroke Japanese dual sports weren't as light as people remember. In 1976 the Suzuki TS250 weighed 288 lbs, the Yamaha DT250C, 288 lbs, the Honda MT250K2, 284 lbs, the Kawasaki 250 F11A, 282 lbs. They weren't powerful either -- the fastest, the Yamaha, struggled to a top speed of 73 mph. The Kawasaki and Honda couldn't even hit 70. So it's not like we've passed the golden age of dual sports.

    Yes, some of the weight from today's bikes is EPA related, and that's why you should stop blaming the Japanese for not competing with KTM and Gas Gas. The EPA has different rules for manufacturers selling less than 3,000 units in the US, regardless of global sales and endless variations in the form of hardship provisions, in which a manufacturer can gain a three-year exemption from current rules by demonstrating they have done the best they can and that compliance would affect the company's solvency. http://www.aimag.com/epa/Nov04-pt2.htm

    The fact of the matter is today's dual sports are faster, smoother, longer travel, more sophisticated and more convenient than ever, while weighing about the same as they have for 40 years. So stop your bellyaching.
    #68
  9. Grreatdog

    Grreatdog Long timer

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    Do you really believe KTM sells less than 3000 bikes per year in the USA? Maybe GasGas, but KTM sells four or five times that in a bad year. Their sales figures range from 12,000 to over 20,000 motorcycles per year here.

    They just have a different mindset about how to build motorcycles. Can you imagine any product liability lawyers from a Japanese company giving the OK to a motto that says "Ready to Race" for everything they roll out the door?

    Just count the number of warning stickers pasted to a Japanese dual sport plus the number in the pamphlet that passes for an owners manual to see that corporate philosophy in action. Then compare that to how many are stuck to a KTM or in the owners briefcase.

    The Japanese seem to want zero product liability from either warranty, emissions or accidents. KTM figures the owner is going to strip half he DOT/EPA crap off the bike, ride it like they stole it and then fix whatever they break be it body or bike.
    #69
  10. CJBDRdude

    CJBDRdude Dirtyrider

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    The ONLY thing the DR650 has going for it is reliabilty! it WILL last forever and endure with lack of maintenance. I bought one new in 2000 and after 12 years and 13k miles sold if for a same year KTM LC4 640. I had a few repeated electrical issues, but overall it was a dependable bike..I just realized after getting the big KTM how much I didn't like the lower/outdated Suzuki. I ride serious dual sport and the DR650 was a handful for serious offroad! I personally view the DR650 more like a lighter/high fender/single cylinder version of my V Strom. So some of us old(er) guys don't always want the old style/lower d/s bikes of the past! BTW BERG! yup BEST one in its class!
    #70
  11. CJBDRdude

    CJBDRdude Dirtyrider

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    LOL! True Montesa_vr!!! I'm 56 and what keeps me riding fast and a lot is the 'new iron'. I love my garage full of old OSSAs & Suzuki PEs, but I'll ride one for an afternoon and thats enough 'old bike' ride for awhile for me! I wish..I wish there was a european bike...that had over 10 inches of suspension...I wish there were reliable two strokes and 4 strokes with electric start... I wish they made them fairly unbreakable... I wish... HELL I own them now!! I'm loving the future(its here,.its all good..bottom line..theres lots of great stuff for us to choose from nowadays..lets ride!!)
    #71
  12. acesandeights

    acesandeights Asperger

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    The only thing going for it is reliability? Seems it also has a huge aftermarket following, relatively inexpensive to change the suspension (which is very rider dependent, and I'd need to do on any bike I purchased). To compare it to a VStrom seems way off base to me. Seems much closer to say an XR650 than a VStrom. I don't own a VStrom, you do, but after having sat on a VStrom they don't feel anything similar and it's hard to imagine they ride anything alike offroad.
    #72
  13. CJBDRdude

    CJBDRdude Dirtyrider

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    My point is they are a good general purpose bike and yes inexpensive. But in my opinion they're not in the same league as KTM, Husky, GasGas, BMW or even a Honda XR650 all of which are more offroad oriented than the DR.
    I still have my V Strom and had the DR650 for twelve years which allows me to my opinion. The DR is closer to what the Strom is.. more of a general purpose adventure bike. The Strom was much better on the pavement and thats also where the DR is happiest. Why have two bikes for the same purpose? BTW, I had the DR set up for offroad> suspension, seat, bars, tires, pipe, Clarke tank..etc. Its fun, cheap but NO WAY a real offroad bike. If you want that in a Suzuki the best they have to offer is the DRZ400.
    #73
  14. NesquikNinja

    NesquikNinja Been here awhile

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    Heavier and less powerful?

    Nope. You're all getting weaker and fatter.
    #74
  15. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    I own a Strom and a DR and you're right, they're nothing alike.
    #75
  16. acesandeights

    acesandeights Asperger

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    Yep, you've got more years experience with the bike, more miles with the bike, and a VStrom to compare. My experience is very different than yours. I agree they are not in the same league as a KTM, Husky, GasGas or BMW. I would consider them in the same league as an XR650 though, and more of a "true dualsport" than most KTM, Husky, GasGas or BMW, which is the title of the thread.
    #76
  17. CJBDRdude

    CJBDRdude Dirtyrider

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    You're missing my point. I didn't refer to the DR and V Strom being the same kind of bike. My reference was they both do well in pretty much the same area of riding> Pavement. The DR650 is a fantastic pavement bike and so is the Strom! The DR no matter what you do to it(In my opinion) will never be a decent offroad motorcycle. I learned that after 12 years of tinkering and tweaking trying to make the DR into an offroad bike.
    #77
  18. CJBDRdude

    CJBDRdude Dirtyrider

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    I disgree with your Honda comment. The XR650 is MUCH more dirt worthy than the DR650 will ever be! I'm not much of a Honda fan, but if I was to buy a Jap Dual Sport in the 650 size again.. it would definitely be the Honda.

    In my opinion, Suzuki should take the much loved (but really outdated) DR650 and make it more like the heavy Kawasaki KLR 650 which also has its 'cult' following. You know, bigger gas tank, lower to the ground, heavier than an ox - more pavement oriented still. I have buddies that own KLRs and weren't happy when Kawi went 'more street' with their latest DUAL SPORT design. I also find the guys that ride the KLRs/DRs(for the most part) don't ride offroad as much or as aggressively as the crowd riding KTMs, Husky, GasGas and Honda XR650s! As a TRUE dual sport the perfect bike should do both equally. True??? There is NO perfect 50/50 bike. So the way I view it - The KLR/DR crowd prefers mostly pavement/dirt road stuff and the KTM, Husky, Honda XR crowd prefers the mostly true offroad stuff!
    #78
  19. acesandeights

    acesandeights Asperger

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    I put almost 5k miles on my DR the first year I owned it, about 1500 of that offroad. After 5000 miles I made dirt specific modifications and my experience is that the DR650 and the XR650L are slightly different shades of the same bike (same size engine, same size forks, both 5-speed trans, within 20 lbs of each other which may be even closer considering wet weights). Or, maybe you were talking about the older XR650R (non-street legal)? Are you sure your DR650 isn't a DL650?
    #79
  20. OrangeYZ

    OrangeYZ Been here awhile

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    Oh Hells no! One overweight non-suspended pig cult on this board is enough! And Suzuki makes the DL650 which stomps the ass off the KLR on road, and the DR650 which beats the KLR off road, even if it doesn't stomp its ass off.


    Dangerous to say that sort of thing around these parts. These are studly adventurers here who will not hesitate to ride their KLRs faster than walking speed on the gnarliest of flat gravel roads!:pot

    IMO, the one true 50/50 dual sport bike is the DR650, as long as you realize that 50/50 is not 100/100, or even 80/70. It is halfway good at both. The XRL is more of a 60/30 off/on, the KLR is a 10/45.
    #80