Let's talk Thumpers

Discussion in 'New Zealand' started by Phreaky Phil, Sep 27, 2019.

  1. Phreaky Phil

    Phreaky Phil Long timer

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    While most of the adventure world seems focused on big twin cylinder adventure bikes, for Solo riding with offroad tracks on the menu, a thumper still seems the best option. So what's available ? Price ?
    And pros and cons.
    I'll start the ball rolling.
    DRZ 400
    DR 650
    WRR 250
    KTM 690
    HUSKY 701
    XT660R
    XTZ660
    SWM's
    HONDA CRF450L
    HONDA CRF250L
    HONDA CFF250 Rally
    #1
  2. bigkuri

    bigkuri Long timer Supporter

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    Buy them before ABS hits!
    Too right though, I love thumpers.
    #2
  3. Oscar

    Oscar Master of the Universe! Supporter

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    I love my XT500.
    #3
  4. Phreaky Phil

    Phreaky Phil Long timer

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    As only a mother could ! :D
    A great bike in their day. Saw one on the TAT. The guy had ridden it through a lot of countries. Said he liked it because it had the simplest wiring system there is. No battery required.
    #4
  5. Phreaky Phil

    Phreaky Phil Long timer

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    So the mighty DRZ400. Cheap as. Been around 2 decades. No real Archilles heel that I know of. Gearing is a bit of a PIA. 5th to low.
    What mileage do they do before needing a rebuild. ?
    Suzuki even give you a big tank at the moment !
    #5
  6. Oscar

    Oscar Master of the Universe! Supporter

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    I loved my DRZ. Gear it up slightly and take it anywhere.
    Sold it, bought it back five years later....
    #6
  7. wairau

    wairau get in behind!

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    depends what you’re after i guess. if i were to thumper again i’d do what @nzrian does and put a number plate on another enduro.
    #7
  8. Phreaky Phil

    Phreaky Phil Long timer

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    Agree with you there, the lighter enduro bikes sure are nice when the going gets tougher. Maybe not so nice on the road and shorter service intervals ?
    #8
  9. Night Falcon

    Night Falcon Broke Engine Supporter

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    Cool thread. My 530 was great but cost a bomb to set up for adv riding. It's only annoyance was it's twitchy front end. Enduro's have quite a tight rake so the front end moves about a bit on gravel. Wade had a dampener on his which fixed it but they aint cheap!
    Personally you can't go past a well set up 690 I recon (although I might be biest) There are a few low K 2015-18 ones on TM going for a song.
    #9
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  10. nzrian

    nzrian renegade master Supporter

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    Loving my 500, it is very new to me though.
    Coming from a DR650 that I have put 60,000 km on.

    IMG_20190924_180118.jpg

    But at night falcon says, they ain't cheap to set-up, totally worth it to me though.
    #10
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  11. EVLED

    EVLED Bike riding nutter!

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    Loving my little WR!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #11
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  12. innathyzit

    innathyzit AKA Woodman

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    Enjoying my SWM. Lovely engine, 6 gears very relaxed on road no need to rev the crap out of it, quite light 145kgs_ish. Still e few rs650s in dealers in NZ. Granted mine has been pretty modded but not totally necessary.
    20190901_150731.jpg
    #12
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  13. Phreaky Phil

    Phreaky Phil Long timer

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    The little Yammies are very capable. Really frugal on gas and apart from Rosies reluctant starting on hers, seem pretty reliable. Just a shame they aren't a 350.
    image.jpg
    Couldn't resist this pic. Truth was it was caused by a mechanic. Didn't put the tube for the fuel pic up into the clips
    So it wouldn't pic up fuel. We didn't find this out till later tho.
    #13
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  14. Phreaky Phil

    Phreaky Phil Long timer

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    What mods have you done ? How's the reliability and how many km you done ? I remember MXNut saying how good the gear spread was. Husky was a Husky tho, not a SWM. His had a gearbox issue near new but I don't think it's common issue.
    #14
  15. Phreaky Phil

    Phreaky Phil Long timer

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    Looks lean and mean eh. Quite a contrast to the portly DR. ! Be interesting to hear your comparisons with it and the DR.
    #15
  16. nzrian

    nzrian renegade master Supporter

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    Impressions so far, the 500 is better in every way except comfort.

    The 650 is obviously better on the road, but not by much.

    Gravel is a treat on the 500, sits on 140 km/hr nicely if required and lots of fun on sweeping corners, drifting the back wheel in a powerslide.

    I am just getting used to the traction control, which seems to make powerslides pretty predictable.

    I have a few more mods to do on the 500 yet, I need a screen for the road sections, an IMS tank has been ordered, and I need to hook up the heated grips.

    I am glad I made the move to a lighter dual sport/ adv bike, it's a lot of fun.
    #16
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  17. innathyzit

    innathyzit AKA Woodman

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    Mods include subframe brace, seat concepts seat. Safari 25l tank, single pipe with arrow race map bashplate, rear rack, te 250 forks. Much more travel and puts the geometry where Husqvarna intended.Not all necessary, but all worth it, especially the forks. Reliability been good, in fact quite robust. The engine failed in Australia but that was due to a bad modification by me. Replaced by SWM.16000kms so far.
    #17
  18. Phreaky Phil

    Phreaky Phil Long timer

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    The old DR650 first came out in 1996 so the manufacturing dies must be getting a bit sloppy by now. They have always been a cheap adventure bike to buy with almost unlimited amount of mods you can do to them with bits from Procycle and others. Apart from the random 3rd gear blowups which tend to destroy the engine the are as reliable as as stone, engine wise.
    I've owned 2 and done a few km on them and have had problems cracking the frame around the swingarm pivot area, but also had a pillion a lot as well so a lot more stress than most.
    image.jpg
    #18
  19. oldbeer

    oldbeer Grandadventurer

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    If this is a whats my next bike thread in disguise then you probably wont consider these but your misses at least two obvious thumpers
    Drz250...i notice blue and red made it to the list but not yellow:)
    RE Himalayan. Later versions have been decently road tested and seemed to do pretty well. Not a light bike though.

    As someone else said it depends where your riding is biased. I'm always on roads so my little drz250 will take me anywhere i have the balls to go plus carries full camping kit.
    #19
  20. Phreaky Phil

    Phreaky Phil Long timer

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    Not sure if its a "whats my next bike thread " but I still have a hankering for more offroad type tracks and trails. LIfe has taken its toll on my back and even my smaller Beemer is 180 kg without fuel. I can just pic it up by myself but the back doesnt like it.
    My list was only a preliminary one. I had only posted the more common choices. The little DRZ250 is a reliable little bike but must struggle a little on the highway. The 250s (with the exception of the WRR seem a bit happier at 90KMH rather than 100. Thats based on me following them. Even the WRR has to be wound up for passing manoeuvres. Having said that, if you travelling around the open road speed limit it will do it all day long. Then in the rough its in its element.
    The Himalayan isnt on my radar. To agricultural and hasnt got the Japanese of euro reliability
    #20