800GS vs KLR

Discussion in 'Parallel Universe' started by motoman250f, Dec 2, 2008.

  1. itsatdm

    itsatdm Long timer

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    Initially I found it difficult to bond with my 800gs. I admit I was anti BMW before, for they seem to design complex answers to simple questions. If it wasn't for the Rotax motor and the abililty to order a base bike to minimalize potential issues I may have passed.
    At first it was just the suspension I was upset about, but the more I work on it, the more I see a certain method to their madness.
    For instance why torx screws? yes they are metric, but try to buy them in any small town. Why so many different sizes?. Ever take the plastic off. basically sheet metal screws that thread into cheap metal clips. I presently have one stuck on the top panel that is stuck and just spins. Wait until you take the rear shock off and then tell me what tool you use to get access to bottom shock mount.
    How about maintenance schedules, apparently the computor will tell you, but any other way is going to require you to search
    The whole bike seems to be designed to keep you coming back to BMW for parts and service. They will gladly sell you a $300 tool kit, and even if you do some of your own service you need to return to reset the computor and be downloaded to the mothership.
    I love the design, the frame and the motor, but other than that, I do not think it is light years ahead of any Japanese bike.
  2. amk

    amk Been here awhile

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    Unfortunately, this is a common tendency. Bikes are getting more complicated and less "user or home mechanic friendly". There is no modern Jap bike around, KLR is a dinosaur, which is much easier to work on. Modern "green" regulations, I guess, are mainly responsible.
  3. Desert Dave

    Desert Dave Enjoying the moment

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    +1 for the KLR :lol3

    Seriously, I agree with you on modern bikes vs the shadetree mechanic, and much of that is a result of higher technology for certain. BUT the more I dig into the BMW shop manual it seems that BMW went out of their way to keep you dependent on the dealer than many other current offerings.
  4. EvilClown

    EvilClown Standing by to standby for a possible disregard Super Moderator

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    :nod

    It's the wave of the future. Gets you into the 'boutique' while you're waiting. Everyone is following HD on this one. From a business standpoint, why wouldn't you? It's not about bikes anymore - it's about marketing.:deal
  5. OtterChaos

    OtterChaos Guzzi Sud!

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    The problem for me is that there isn't a BMW dealer anywhere close to me (San Luis Obisp, CA) so those trips to the boutique would get mighty tiresome. I'm thinking of getting a F800GS someday but the need to drive long distances to get the computer reset would be a big negative on the list of pro's and con's.
  6. The Griz

    The Griz Long timer Supporter

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    On both my 07 and 08 KLR's I regularly got 230 miles out of a tank, max. And that was stock. After a UNI filter, re-jetting the carb, and Two Brothers M-7 exhaust it cut it by 10-15 miles per tank on my 08. And yeah, you could put WP or Cogent Dynamics or Ohlins shocks on any bike and it would make it ride top notch. Those kinds of shocks would make ANY bike better. But in my opinion, my stock 800GS rides light years better than my stock KLR's ever did. On and off road.

    P.S. I'm serious, all the stock fasteners on my KLR's are like butter. I stripped and twisted off so many nuts and bolts just trying to torque them to service manual specs. So far I've done a lot of wrenching on my F800GS, and have yet to strip or break anything yet.
  7. The Griz

    The Griz Long timer Supporter

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    First off, there are egotistical asses that ride all types of bikes: Harley's, Ducati's, etc. etc. You're making a lot of unfounded, generalized assumptions. The fact that someone is egotistical has nothing to do with the bike they ride. In other words, it's the person, not the bike. Also, you're stating your opinion as fact. These things make you the egotistical one.

    Secondly, I look around and observe that most of the GS's I see make their way on AND off road just as much as KLR's, DR650's, V-Stroms, etc. What I've observed in my neck of the woods is a 50/50 balance. And my experience with my F800GS has been superior to my KLR's in virtually all aspects. That is my opinion, and my experience. We all have a right to our own opinions, It's when we push them on others that things get out of hand.
  8. johngil

    johngil Reseda, CA

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    I don't envy you guys that don't have a good dealer close buy.
    I bought my 800 partially because the dealer is about 3 miles from my house. They have been in business over 50 years and are very down to earth and reasonable. I couldn't say that for the KTM dealers semi-near me.
    I do the work I can do, which is pretty much oil and tires. I don't have a problem taking the bike in on a Saturday every 6000 miles and having coffee and bullshitting for a couple of hours while they do what they do.
  9. EvilClown

    EvilClown Standing by to standby for a possible disregard Super Moderator

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    That can be a problem - with any brand. Close support isn't a bad thing. Once on the road all bets are off, though.

    Regarding the mileage - the 300 miles to the tank (m/t) isn't likely at any high speed. Commuting at 75mph certainly won't get it.:lol3 But 230-250 m/t hammering on the bike isn't bad either.

    The 800GS spec not that all specs are to be believed was at ~56mph (if my math was right). Griz, (or anyone else) how far are you getting on a (stock) tank with the 800?

    Based on bxr140's reply it sounds like the mileage might be better with the 800GS (given the FI that's not a shocker) but the range is still greater with the KLR. Curious what other people are experiencing.
  10. Desert Dave

    Desert Dave Enjoying the moment

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    I guess my point was that (In my opinion) BOTH of these bikes require the same upgrades to get it where I feel it works right for what I'm doing. Both bikes in stock form bottom the rear suspension on all but the easiest of landings, an both have front ends that seem like the dampning is way off for sharp edged rocks/step ups so they both effectively limited me to the same riding in stock form in the dirt. I call that a tie in my book. And no, I didn't buy either to achieve "big air" :lol3 but I feel a bike like this needs to be able to hit small waterbreaks at speed an catch a little air with a smooth landing, or ride washboard an ruts at speed without feeling like a strut is on the front end, an these upgrades are what is required. Of course the beefier forks on the GS ARE a better starting point.

    As for MPG I'm running the exact same bags (Motosport panniers) which put a dent in the mileage on the highway, on the GS 3-5 mpg, more on the KLR (which also had a 685 kit, filter pipe etc). KLR averaged 40 mpg and the GS is getting about 45 for me. So on the GS I realisticly like to fuel up around 160 miles. Riding at a spirited pace :evil the gs has gone as low as 41 mpg. I definately have to keep an eye on the GSs range more than the KLR. On the KLR I just filled up a little over every 200 miles without thinking about it, unless I was really somewhere remote, while the GS has me doing math in my head more often. I don't trust the fuel gauge on the GS (or any bike for that matter) but I have found the GSs OBC to be really accurate for MPG figures, so if I push the limit I can quickly calculate what my range will really be for that tank depending on how I was riding.
  11. WoodWorks

    WoodWorks House Ape

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    Well, last Saturday, when I ran out of gas with the OBC telling me I had 22 miles left, and one bar showing on the gas gauge, :huh I had ridden 211 miles. But I've gone 216 before and still had a few thimblefuls sloshing around in there.

    David
  12. bullfrog

    bullfrog Dismember

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    :clap

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    :super
  13. The Griz

    The Griz Long timer Supporter

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    I had gotten 220-230 miles out of a 6 gallon tank on my KLR's.

    I get 220-230 miles out of a 4.2 gallon tank on my F800GS.

    The F800GS is more fuel efficient due to the fuel injection system. It's also German engineering though. They didn't sacrifice power for fuel economy. 85hp out of a 798cc engine while making 4.2 gallons last 220-230 miles. Well done BMW Motorrad!!

    The KLR650 throws only 38-40hp from a smaller (651cc) engine while making 6 gallons of fuel only last 220-230 miles.
  14. itsatdm

    itsatdm Long timer

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    I am happy with the fuel mileage on my 800. The bike seems to get 56 mpg no matter what I do. Thats real mileage, gas in the tank vs mileage. No wait the speedometer is optimistic.......never mind :rofl
  15. The Griz

    The Griz Long timer Supporter

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    As a previous owner of both 07 and 08 heavily farkled KLR650's, I'd have to disagree a bit. By the time you put all the farkle money into an 08 KLR (that OTD is around $6000), you'd might as well buy an F800GS. After, the 705 kit, Stage II kit, rear shock, front suspension, better bars, doohickey, better seat, front and rear sprocket changes, etc etc, you're going to be sitting around $8-10K to get it on par with an F800GS. And on top of it, you're still never going to get BMW build quality and warranty (3 yr/ 36,000mi) from a Kawasaki. Also, I learned something the hard way: You're not going to get any money out of your farkles. When I traded my farkled 08 KLR on my F800GS, I lost out on a ton of money. This is because dealers do not give you money for your after-market add-ons and accessories. The dealer is only going to give you stock price no matter what. This is due to the fact that how you farkled it is for you and you alone. There are only a few people that will like the bike the way you do. The dealer would prefer to have the bike in stock order, so more people will be interested in it, and it has a better chance of selling. So, investment-wise, you're better off keeping your bike as stock as possible. That way you won't lose out on any dough.
  16. LDHunter

    LDHunter Long timer

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    Or be like me and wait until some farkle happy guy get's done gussying up his KLR or whatever his latest fancy is and get's tired of it and then buy it and you have a farkled up bike for almost the same price as a stock bike. :deal

    Works for me but don't tell anyone or all those farkle happy guys will quit spending a small fortune on their bikes and selling them to sneaky guys like me... :D

    Some like to farkle 'em... Some like to ride 'em... I'm of the latter persuasion... :D

    $bob$
  17. Altaboy

    Altaboy Adventurer

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    Last summer I rode my 05 KLR from Edmonton Alberta to Inuvik and then took a short jaunt into Alaska. The KLR did a fine job but I didn't waste any time ordering a F800 GS once I got home. This summer I will be riding the BMW to Dead horse. When I get back I 'll let you guys know whether or not the BMW is worth twice the price.
  18. ScottDill

    ScottDill TANSTAAFL Supporter

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    Or keep the OEM parts and sell the farkles separately....much better option.
  19. The Griz

    The Griz Long timer Supporter

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    Yeah, if anyone will buy used, bike-specific, worn out parts. Haven't had much luck doing that in my neck of the woods.
  20. wheatwhacker

    wheatwhacker It's raining here

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    This is a never ending argument.
    Firstly, compare the KLR with the 650GS. Better comparison.

    Here's my story.
    I paid $5200 OTD for a brand new KLR in 2005. I have easily spent $3K on it between suspension, seat, bars, etc, etc. I have put 17K on it and must sat I enjoyed riding it except for the freeway.
    I bought a KTM950 in 06 for $13.5 OTD with all the farkles I needed on the bike. I put 28K on the bike and it did everything I asked of it without spending another penny on it save for the $45 fuel pump
    The KLR today is worth $3k max, the KTM maybe $7 so they have depreciated the same amount over the years but to be fair the KTM was way more fun to ride long distance.
    I personally like the BMW. They came out with a great machine but given the choice, I would go the KTM route again. The price is the same and the KTM is a sturdier bike on and off road.
    On the KLR side. If you can afford the twin, go for it, if not, the KLR is a great bike as well. The end cost of both 10 years down the road will not be much different. new KLR now I guess is 6K, plus 2 for farkles. In 10 years you get 3 back, loss 5K, or 500/yr.
    KTM/BMW now 14K. 10 years, 5K, loss 9k or $900/yr. If you like motorcycling, is $400/yr going to make a difference to your lifestyle?