Start with a 310 after a long time not riding, or go back to the 650+ I left at?

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by kairo, May 15, 2018.

  1. kairo

    kairo Adventurer

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    Posted this in Thumpers and deleted. It probably better fits here.

    So, long story short-ish.

    I haven't been on a bike since about 2007-ish. Had a KLR and sold it, and spent a lot of time on an F650GS Dakar. Then I bought a bunch of different Jeeps and stuff. Garage is now cleared, and I'm on the hunt for 2 wheels.

    I like the idea of the little BMW 310GS. I won't really ride freeways unless its to get me down to the cutoff roads to Lake Tahoe. I'm not out a ton of money if I don't end up liking it, and I think it looks cool (that counts, right??).
    I'd ride the bike around the NV back roads, cruise around the BLM land, and throw a duffel bag and tent on the back and camp out in the desert. The 310 should be fine for all of that.

    Anyways. If I do end up liking the bike, I've got a feeling within a few months I'll want to jump to something in the 650-800cc range. Especially if I actually load it up to go camping and shit like I keep telling myself I will...

    I've never spent much time on a small CC bike, nor have I spent a lot of time on a large CC bike. Most of what I've ridden has been in the 650 - 800cc class. But again, it's been so long, I'm not really sure if I should pick up at the bottom, or start again where I was riding before.

    Any of you with a fair amount of experience on the low and mid range CC bikes that can help me with my noodling?

    It looks like on paper that the 310GS has about the same HP and TQ as my old '05 KLR. Prolly just have to rev the piss out of it a bit more.

    Thanks!
    #1
  2. curtis6870

    curtis6870 Long timer

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    Look at the Honda 500 twins....CB500x, etc.
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  3. kairo

    kairo Adventurer

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    Will do! Thanks.
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  4. Bucho

    Bucho DAMNrider

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    There are many different ways you could go.

    If you like the little 310GS an want it, then I say go for it. Motorcycles really aren't practical in many ways. They are a passion, something we WANT (or you can argue NEED).

    Personally, I like smaller bikes and I like thumpers. Just to throw out something else to think about, on paper at least Kawasaki's mini twin VersysX or whatever they are calling it looks nice.

    Or something like a DR650 can be picked up very cheap. This is a bit lighter than the KLR650 and/or BMW650.

    Goodluck w/ whatever you get. Welcome back to riding!
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  5. kairo

    kairo Adventurer

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    Excellent point on getting a "want" rather than a "need". I looked at the little Versys as well. Went and sat on one of them and the 310GS at the respective dealerships.

    I think what it came down to on those two bikes, is the bmw has ABS standard and tubeless tires. I kinda like the idea of plug, fill, and go if there's a leak. I've dealt with pulling tires off my KLR to patch or replace a tube, and it can be...a chore. Especially if you don't do it often enough to be good at it.
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  6. White mt guy

    White mt guy Long timer

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    At six grand the 310gs is a hell of a toy. If it were my decision I would get the BMW, enjoy a light bike while re-breaking myself in, pay it off asap and then jump up to something larger, keeping both. Just my two cents.
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  7. spin10k

    spin10k Long timer

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    I started a few years ago on a '14 Ninja 300, which I still have, along with an '01 Aprilia RST1000 which I got last year. The Aprilia is so much bigger, more powerful and heavier - it would have been a bad choice at the start.

    As a complete noob, the Ninja was a good start for me (even though it's really too small for me, physically) but in your case I really don't think you need to go back to square one.

    I'd say that for you a 650 is a good place to pick it up again.
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  8. C/1/509

    C/1/509 Why?

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    Pick whatever makes you happy. No need to start over.
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  9. Baconologist

    Baconologist Been here awhile

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    Whatever your most comfortable on
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  10. chasbmw

    chasbmw Long timer

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  11. SocalRob

    SocalRob Long timer

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    There are some variants of the MotoGuzzi V7iii that are great bikes. These are 750cc twins completely air cooled that only make 52hp but plenty of torque. Top speed on the freeway is well over 100mph, and can cruise 85 all day. There is a scrambler model that looks like fun.
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  12. Snowbird

    Snowbird Cereal Killer

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    If one bike fits your budget and storage space better than two AND if you think you'd get bored with the 300... then get the bigger bike whichever you choose. I'm shocked by how much I like my KLR, a bike I could never understand why it still existed after nearly 30 years of production. It's definitely my first choice for shorter rides on my area's rough roads, carries a passenger well and does well enough for me off-road or gravel road or fire trail. I'm more about enjoying the scenery than imagining myself riding the Dakar Rally.
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  13. Mande92

    Mande92 Adventurer

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    I got back to riding 2 years ago after 20 years off a bike. I started with an XT250 and changed to a VStrom 650 within a couple months. The 250 dual sport is obviously quite a different style bike and I kinda wish I could keep a second bike but the VStrom just fits my needs (wants?) better: two-up and long distance riding. I don't think you will have any trouble going straight to a 650 size bike.
    #13
  14. kairo

    kairo Adventurer

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    My dealer has a couple 2017 F700GS in stock. BMW is doing 0% financing and a couple grand off since they're leftovers. 798CC. How would that ride compared to the F650GS I've ridden before?

    Think it would get me in trouble as I get my sea legs back under me?
    #14
  15. 9Realms

    9Realms Drawn in by the complex plot

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    I would snag a little G 650 GS BMW. When compared to a KLR, you get fuel injection on the BMW, a 31 inch seat, 50 hp, a six speed trans, and 70 MPH to the gallon- and you are hauling less fuel by a couple gallons to go just as far or farther with less weight up so high. Just a thought O.P.

    I hear you on not wanting to mess with spokes and tubes anymore, but this one has cast wheels.

    A KLR is fine, but a rider is typically inclined to spend an equal amount of money on stuff to make it something it's not... I think one of these would be fine as-is.

    And your getting all that from a KAWI addict... :lol3

    http://www.motorcycle-usa.com/88533/buyers-guide-specs/2016-bmw-g-650-gs/

    BMW-G650GS-20161.jpg
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  16. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer

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    If you think you will end up wanting a bigger bike then get a bigger bike. A 650 is not that much bigger or heavier than that 310 GS. The 310 GS is within 10 pounds of my KLR if I only put 2.9 gallons of fuel in my tank.

    On the other hand, I plan on downsizing from my KLR to a smaller bike at some point. I just went on a three day trip with my camping gear on a bike with half the displacement of the 310GS so a 310 should be plenty big enough for almost anything. I've done 550 miles of interstate in a day on a 250 before. So a 310 will do it but you have to decide if you want the extra power a 650 or bigger offers.
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  17. Baconologist

    Baconologist Been here awhile

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    Thats all controled by you’re right wrist
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  18. Bucho

    Bucho DAMNrider

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    I would imagine it would be a heavier bike. Its a twin compared to your old 650 thumper.
    If you aren't doing more than dirt road exploring its probably fine. Will certainly be nicer on the open road.

    Depends on what you want.
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  19. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

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    My wife is interested in the 310GS. She currently rides a DR350 that she loves, but it lacks the top speed needed to travel freeways. She doesn't use freeways much, but without the ability to keep up with 80 mph traffic our riding areas are boxed in. The 310 has a top speed around 95 mph, so should be able to do 80 as long as needed.

    As far as I can tell, the only limitation of the 310 is carrying capacity. It probably wouldn't be good for 2-up travel with a bunch of gear. It might even struggle if it was loaded to the max with a solo rider. Pack reasonably light and ride solo, however, and it should be great.

    She sat on the 310 at our local dealer, but wasn't allowed to ride it because it was already sold (understandable). It turns out they are such a hot seller that every one they have received is sold before they get them! My wife is like me, and won't commit to buying a bike until she has ridden it.

    So if you buy that bike and want something bigger in a year or two, you will have no problem selling it. It will need to have 7500 miles on it to sell it to a California resident. We aren't very far away from you. :wink:

    P.S. Rally Raid has some farkles available for that bike:

    [​IMG]
    #19
  20. kairo

    kairo Adventurer

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    That Rally raid gear looks sweet, doesn't it? All for the low low price of almost half the cost of the bike lol!

    If I buy one and you guys ever make it over the hill, I'll let you and your wife take it for a spin if you'd like.

    Dealer got back to me on the F700. They want $13k for it still (all in, out the door). No thanks. I was hoping around $8-10k out the door.

    Looking like it'll be the 310 or a G650GS if I can find one within the next month or so.
    #20
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