Which bike to get for my RTW trip ??????

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by MarkoB94, May 10, 2019.

  1. MarkoB94

    MarkoB94 Adventurer

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    Hello,

    I’m planning a RTW trip within the next 12-18 months. I am stuck between a few bikes for this adventure. If anyone has any knowledge or experience in the following bikes I would love to hear what you have to say so I can make my decision!

    Riding will be on and offroad!

    The following bikes are ones that are for sale right now in my local market and will pick one up within the next 2 weeks:

    1) 2016 Honda Africa Twin - Manual ( I’ve watched William Gleoge who toured and seemed to hold up well)

    2) 2015 KTM 690 Enduro with modifications such as larger tank etc (concerned about the reliability and availability of parts along the way, but hey prove me wrong lol)

    3) 2018 Kawasaki KLR650. 31 years of production. Any concerns?

    Personally leaning towards the KLR just because it’s a few grand cheaper than the other bikes and is basically ready to go.

    The range of bikes is a bit wonky but it’s what appealed to me and what is in my budget.

    Any input would greatly help me!

    Thanks!
    #1
  2. fastdadio

    fastdadio Still gettin faster

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    Get the KLR. It's the bike ridden round the world the most, by those in the know. Where are you meeting us for bacon sammiches? All noobs have to make the local FnF's a bacon sammich. :deal
    #2
  3. MarkoB94

    MarkoB94 Adventurer

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    Haha thanks for the reply ! So you think loaded up and with my weight of 250 lbs it will hold up ?
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  4. Pinky

    Pinky Been here awhile

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    Really depends on what your riding style is going to be. If you plan on using paved roads to cover a lot of distance, break off onto easy dirt roads every now and then, then I would say the Africa Twin. Iff you more enjoy going remote into the mountainous regions where it can get more off-road and don't plan on covering your big distances by taking highways or paved roads, then for sure the 690. Almost all of the reliability concerns can be taken care of before you leave because they are well known and easily fixed if you put some money into the prep. Same goes for the Africa twin too though. Gonna require a lot of money to get either bike ready to do that trip.

    Get the KLR if you don't have a lot of money to throw at the bike and getting ready. It will do a good job of getting you around the globe but its not gonna be near as fun as the other two, and not even close to as enjoyable as the 690.

    My personal choice is the 690 because its fun to drive and way lighter than the other two. If you haven't done a lot of traveling like this before, don't underestimate the impact on weight. Be as light as possible. Hence the 690. YMMV
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  5. MarkoB94

    MarkoB94 Adventurer

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    Thanks for the input! In terms of the riding I’ll be doing for the first part it’s going to be 70/30. I’m going to try getting off the main roads as much as possible.

    My friend has the 690 supermoto and loves it. I was personally worried about the maintenance and parts on the road. More so the parts if things go sideways.

    Definitely something to consider with it being the lightest bike of the three.

    Thanks again!
    #5
  6. Pinky

    Pinky Been here awhile

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    There are lots of people that have taken and are currently taking 690s RTW. Threads documenting every precautionary fix and parts are easy to find beforehand. Then you just carry the spares that you should have with you and go. I think your trip will be way more enjoyable on a 690.
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  7. andrewgore

    andrewgore Gôremā

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    None of the above.

    Honda 250 Rally. :deal
    #7
  8. mylsmkj

    mylsmkj Long timer

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    It truly depends on where you’re going. There’s lots of high speed roads in Western Europe and the US that you can avoid. Many south and Central American countries are far easier on a smaller bike unless you stay on main highways. I’ve ridden in Africa too but only enduro in South Africa so I don’t have a lot of input on that continent. If you’re after what I consider adventure you’d be held back by a 500# beast. But those 500# beasts are nice on asphalt and gravel roads. You have to decide what you want to do.
    #8
  9. wizz

    wizz Up a creek......

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    350 exc with 20L tank, like a boss. Forget all the rest.
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  10. Plebeian

    Plebeian Scruffy-Looking Nerf Herder Supporter

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    Results are in, claim yer bets...
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  11. mode12

    mode12 frageelay Supporter

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    Yes.

    IMG_1137.jpg
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  12. MacNoob

    MacNoob piney fresh

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    Suzuki DR650.

    The best bike for a trip though is usually the one you already own.
    #12
  13. Fishenough

    Fishenough Team Lurker

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    Adventure does happen on a RTW trip, it's the single item on my bucket list when I retire.

    What I have learned from riding in Mexico and SE Asia for decades is(4 bikes bought new in SE Asia where I put over 50,000 miles, or more, on each, and had several others over the years living there):

    1. High-value bikes attract much more attention in many countries. The new Vulcan 900 I bought for my Ex was a basic bike in North America but in Thailand, locals thought I was rich foreigner riding it, ladies asked me out when I rode that instead of a 250 SM. Bikes and gear can disappear and insurance claims are most challenging in such countries. I have been away from a bike for less than 10 mins in both Thailand and Laos to come back and find out that my Arai helmet was gone again. Again no insurance. I can afford the KTM myself but would be that much more upset when I woke up to find it gone. I so like my KLR but if it disappeared I would only feel the loss of the memories I had on it and not the monetary value in the slightest. Police certainly except more $$$ out of the visiting foreigner riding a fully frackled GSA for example.

    2. Performance. Oh so fun but Increased Risk. Too much randomness on the roads in less developed countries, commonly a motorcycle culture that does not except high-performance bikes. During my last 2 years in Thailand, letting my son finished school, I managed 2 insurance offices. The cases I learned about, you would not want a serious injury in the middle of Laos for example - and I've toured there with my son as pillion for weeks at a time. My first bike purchased in Thailand was a VFR800, after many enjoyable months sold it; local traffic does not except a bike with high performance. That sport bike traveling at 180 km/h looks the similar to a modern small displacement scooter, oh so common on the roads, coming directly at you. Sometimes felt every time I took that bike over 160 something happened in my path that made me question ridding at speed on Thai roads. I've ridden a GS1200 in the Delhi district of India.... and only felt safe riding it at the pace of the 90 cc Honda Cub.
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  14. sprouty115

    sprouty115 Long timer Supporter

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  15. thetubespoke

    thetubespoke Been here awhile

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    KLR-650 might not be bad but have you considered a DRZ-400S? You can get a nice rally frame mounted screen on it, though requires a huge tank to mount up against.
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  16. canoeguy

    canoeguy Long timer

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    What screen is this you speak of?
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  17. thetubespoke

    thetubespoke Been here awhile

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  18. The_Precious_Juice

    The_Precious_Juice The Virginian

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    Good to read the AT and the KLR is on the same list of three bikes.

    I recommend the AT DCT out of the three.

    Reason: Could be the most reliable, and less rider fatigue.
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  19. Bitingdog

    Bitingdog That's not my dog

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    Here's what you need: 20190511_002645.jpg
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  20. Vertical C

    Vertical C Long timer

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    Versys 300 good enough for highways in the West. Moe likely to get parts in the rest of world.
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