Why the F800GS?

Discussion in 'Parallel Universe' started by eal1284, Jan 31, 2010.

  1. Motoriley

    Motoriley Still riding like crap after all these years.

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    I stand corrected. Big bore and piston, airbox mods, re-jet, big gun exhaust, oversized valves in a reworked head a couple dozen or so Dyno runs to get the jetting spot on. What is that a lazy afternoon with wrenches and 25$....
    and then you have 45 horsepower!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Kind of like a stock F650 single.....except they make more torque...
    Standard mods like re-jetting,an exhaust and opening the airbox get you a little more torque and usually less HP on the top end. Been there.
    You want power in a single buy a 690.....which it looks like you did.



    #41
  2. LeChatNoir

    LeChatNoir artiste

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    so a DR650 is out of the question when shopping these?
    seriously- I am looking into these 3 and the DR with the massive tank and other bits seems to be one of the most versatile ADV tourers (the threads! those Aussie's and Kiwi's!)
    or is it like a CJ7 Jeep to the BMW's Land Rover Defender?:hide
    #42
  3. You said it couldn't be done, I didn't say it was a smart idea. I don't like KLR's and I don't like F800's... money is better spent on a 690. :evil

    If there is one thing I've learned about buying bikes, buy the one that is going to suit your needs for the least amount of money. It is going to break, most likely from something stupid (clutch levers, brake levers, ...), and it shouldn't cost an arm and a leg to fix it.


    DR650 is a descent bike... especially for the money... A local dealer had a brand new '09 listed for $4699... they may still have it... If you're looking for something on the cheap then DR is probably worth considering.

    At west fest a guy had one (don't remember his name) and he rolled 100K miles over on it up there... at least this is what he claimed..


    #43
  4. Motoriley

    Motoriley Still riding like crap after all these years.

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    I actually said it wasn't easy not that it couldn't be done. I have a 690 rented for week in Costa Rica later this month. We'll see if I'm down at the KTM dealer when I get back. :D

    #44
  5. Adv Grifter

    Adv Grifter on the road o'dreams

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    The KLR is no Hot Rod but is pretty reliable and has the RTW resume' to back that up. It's outdated, primitive and has a lot of crap parts and assemblies. But like the Indian Enfield, it takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin.

    How many 690 KTM's have done RTW? Hundreds of KLR's have, going back to the early 90's. I put 6000 miles on a KLR doing Baja and Mexico in late 90's. Dozens came before me, going far further and far longer.

    I would put the KLR up against any F650 BMW. Having read Ride Reports here and elsewhere since the 90's and actually ridden with the BMW F650's, I've seen many F650's with constant problems. Plus, they are 60 lbs. heavier than a KLR. No contest, the KLR is the better, more reliable bike for a RTW ride.

    Going to the 730 cc kit on the KLR (or whatever CC it is?) is pointless, IMHO. The KLR is a travel bike and best left stock. With proper mods it can work pretty well in this role. For a tangible illustration of the absurdity of modding the motor, read Sgt. Marty's long ride report traveling through S. America on a kitted KLR. He went through two or three rebuilds, something that would rarely happen on the stock bike.

    A KLR will never match the F800GS for speed, power or comfort. But the price of admission to KLR world is reasonable.

    So what is your ride? Where are you going? And for how long? For a week end warrior and Cafe Adventure bike the F8 is Awesome.
    For a bike I'd be living off of for 6 months or a year ... I'll take the KLR, DR650 or XR650L.

    I searched for a pic from a guy over on Thumper Talk who has stripped down his KLR completely, new WP forks, Ohlins shock, all new headlight nacelle, reconfigured rear sub frame, better wheels. Can't find the pics,
    sorry. So they can be made better. This guy was trying to make a woods bike. He managed to strip off about 40 lbs. off the bike. In this case, I'd agree that he should dump the KLR and just buy a KTM, WR450F or CRF450X.

    EDIT: Found the KLR mentioned above.
    Go to Sam's post #163 for pics.
    #45
  6. Adv Grifter

    Adv Grifter on the road o'dreams

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    The DR is the undiscovered Dual sport. It won't impress the "Ride To Breakfast" crowd down at Starbuck's, or shine at the BMW gathering, but for real hard riding, it's hard to beat it's utility.

    Nearly all the BMW and KTM owners (GS12's, 1150's, KTM 950's, 990's) in my riding group now have a DR650 as their 2nd or 3rd bike.

    I'm currently prepping one for S. America. I could have taken any bike, the DR is my choice. It's Royal Enfield simple and cheap, even tougher than the KLR and much better off road with full Japanese reliability. 37 mighty HP! 324 lbs. dry weight. :lol3
    #46
  7. This is like saying, how many KLR's have raced the Dakar? Whats the point?

    There are not that many 690's out there. Given there are only a hand full of these bikes and given there are hundreds of thousands if not millions of KLR's, the number of opportunities for a KLR to go on a RTW trip are more.

    I would take my 690 on a RTW trip...

    There have been plenty of 640's that have done RTW trips and there are only a hand full (literally) of these.

    If you're getting at reliability, not sure I would go there... LC4 is extremely reliable even at break neck RPM's.


    #47
  8. capt_enduro

    capt_enduro tool whore

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    Hey OP (eal1284), you still out there?

    What do you think about all this feedback?

    All of us F8GS cool-aid drinkers say go for it.

    The KTM guys have a nice bike. Might be better suited if you're more than 80/20 on / off road and want to ride single track (completely agree).

    Then there's the DR650. A rock solid alternative. (My riding buddy has one - about as solid as you can get. Only downside is the 2x4 rock hard seat. Not a RTW bike, unless you want to do it one hour at a time.) My #1 pick if someone said "you only have $6K to spend and can have only one bike."


    :D
    #48
  9. Irish Xplor

    Irish Xplor Irish Xplor'r

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    I really can not speak about the KLR, but I upgraded from BMW's F650 GS Dakar to the 800 GS and I'm very glad I did. I could have owned my 650 Dakar forever and still have been happy. My 650 Dakar (I'm sure KLR too) could really do almost anything I asked it to do as long as it was nothing extreme. 1. off road - just fine for a large bike, as long as it was nothing to technical or tight single track, highway riding - just fine but you felt buzziness in the bars once over 75 mph and you could not see out of the mirrors past 65. Twisty's - handles nice, fun and light - just not sport bike nice. Two-up - ok, but not the most comfortable for very long. Luggage - carries enough to handle any solo trip. For the weekend warrior - really a great bike.

    However, my 800GS does everything my 650 did - just a whole lot better...off road, touring, twistys, two-up, adventure rides, luggage, etc. Plus, I have to be honest, I like how it looks when riding with the "ride to breakfast" crowd. Now is it really worth 3 times the price of a KLR? Only you can answer that. Mine is a toy - I don't use if for commuting, nor is it my main mode of transportation. I use it for enjoyment only and somehow I have justified my 800 GS is worth every penny.
    #49
  10. Law Dawg (ret)

    Law Dawg (ret) Been here awhile

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    I have the F800GS and a DR650. The GS is almost set up the way I want and the DR is next. I've got a feeling that the DR will end up being my rough stuff tourer and the GS will be for distance that involves mostly paveement.

    Love the GS (tickles the hooligan in me), love the DR (tickles the dirt loving little boy in me)...no clue about the KLR.
    #50
  11. B-B

    B-B out of my lane

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    Interesting mentioning the DR650; I was considering a more dirt-oriented bike like that at one point. What say you all about the XR650, how does the Honda stack up against the Suzuki and Kawasaki?
    #51
  12. Adv Grifter

    Adv Grifter on the road o'dreams

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    Fair point. 690 is too new. Hope it works out going RTW.


    And most of that handful have had major mechanicals along the way. Break-Neck RPM's indeed! Mostly Euro riders have done the long rides on KTM's, and most are very good mechanics but still end up with problems at some point. Definite pattern to it. Go back and look at the history. It ain't pretty for the 640.

    I'm sure the 690 will do better. To do a long haul ride you just need to figure where to hang luggage and how to carry enough fuel.
    #52
  13. Adv Grifter

    Adv Grifter on the road o'dreams

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    No serious DR riders use the stock seat. C O R B I N. Allows for big mileage days, back to back. No, it's no F800GS but it's much better than you would think for long days. Actually, it's the perfect RTW bike if you plan to seek out "off the beaten path" destinations.

    But so is the F800GS if you set it up nicely. The fact is, most RTW riding is pavement. You could take a big Harley. But it's that 10% of mud, sand and rocks that messes you up! :lol3 That is where the DR does pretty good.
    #53
  14. capt_enduro

    capt_enduro tool whore

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    Hey thanks - I didn't know Corbin made a DR seat - I'll let my buddy know. That's his only complaint, otherwise I'd bet he'd say it's perfect. I've ridden it from time to time. Damn fine bike.


    :D
    #54
  15. Law Dawg (ret)

    Law Dawg (ret) Been here awhile

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    Could be wrong but XR650= kick start and that just would not make my Titanium knee very happy. Most accounts call the XR a better dirt machine though. The DR650 will take me to places I simply don't want to motorcycle on...prefer a horse for those.
    #55