The world needs some gravel bikes

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by DesertPilot, Aug 16, 2018.

  1. DesertPilot

    DesertPilot Been here awhile

    Joined:
    May 18, 2014
    Oddometer:
    628
    Location:
    Mountain View, CA
    I did a short 200-mile loop around the Santa Cruz mountains Saturday to check the bike out, and that rear license plate holder did a great job of keeping mud off my back. But that's about the only place it protected. This bike has a front fender extender and a rear hugger in it's future :D

    Except from some issues with the suspension, which is of the 'metti fuori i denti dai denti' (shake the fillings out of your teeth) variety, it handles tight corners on less-than-perfect surfaces much better than the Tiger. Definately the bike for gravel... once I get that suspension sorted out.

    IMG_0859.x5r60.JPG
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  2. Scoozi

    Scoozi Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2016
    Oddometer:
    966
    Location:
    London
    DSCN0663.JPG

    This is my Kawasaki W650 with some minor mods, tires are Duro HF308. It does alright on the smooth stuff and struggles when it gets rough or muddy.
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  3. LeMaitre

    LeMaitre Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2016
    Oddometer:
    374
    Location:
    NE Minnesota
    Did a couple hours out on gravel today.

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    Stopped at the helipad at the Pigeon River

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    Bridge over the Swamp River

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    No maintenance section of Tom Lake Rd

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    Not going to tackle this without someone with me.

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    Time to back track.

    -Mark
  4. Doug Just Doug

    Doug Just Doug Silly Party Candidate Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,193
    Location:
    Newark, Dela-where?
    I don't hesitate to run some gravel/hard dirt on my Versys. I do shy away from pea-sized or deep gravel tho since I run street-only tires. I just take it very easy, particularly since the oil filter is exposed, and the 3rd-generation Versys has expensive fairing pieces.

    [​IMG]
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  5. Pago Cruiser

    Pago Cruiser Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Oddometer:
    371
    To the OP, congrats on the Duc!

    Keeping this thread moving in the same direction, surprised someone has not brought up the KLRSys build.
    KLR chassis reliability, Versys 650 engine, Jap electrics, and you can provide whatever gearing you would like for the particular occasion.

    Early model conversion:
    upload_2019-9-19_9-55-30.png

    Later model:
    upload_2019-9-19_9-56-19.png

    Change to some USD forks with better brakes if you want for less then $500, maybe change to a rear cush drive.
    A Cogent Dynamics rear shock would also be a sweet upgrade.
    Maybe add some frame reinforcements at a couple critical areas - nothing too complicated.
    Heck, parts are cheap enough you could have a pavement and gravel and enduro set of wheels/tires/gears.
    I'd buy one. Seriously. IMO, this bike is just about perfect.
    If I did not have to work so dam many hours, I would build one.
    I still might, if I can ever retire...
    Linky here:
    https://advrider.com/f/threads/klrsys-build.797568/
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  6. Cappy63

    Cappy63 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2015
    Oddometer:
    14
    Location:
    Queanbeyan NSW
    WP_20160221_13_13_50_Pro.jpg WP_20160221_13_13_50_Pro.jpg WP_20180405_12_44_17_Pro.jpg KTM 950SM goes alright, would be great if I could affordably change to 19/17 wire wheels.
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  7. 9Realms

    9Realms Drawn in by the complex plot

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2010
    Oddometer:
    5,880
    Location:
    Central Mn
    Thought I would chime in with another gravel munching "V" after Doug-Just-Doug :-).

    versys_vs.jpg
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