Considering a second bike, now completely confused

Discussion in 'General Discussion / News / Information' started by bard, Sep 5, 2009.

  1. bard

    bard Ol'Timer

    Of several reasons I have been thinking about getting an additional bike. Since I live close to Bira and like track, my first thought was to get a trackbike. I was really keen on the Daytona, then Andrew pretty much ruined this by pointing out I never have time to be serious with racing and for other uses the bike would be a pain to ride. For what I do on the track the FZ6 is fine...

    Anyway I meet the guys at Triumph and brought my better half with me, I looked at the speed triple as Andrew figured out it was more for me, more cc and so on...

    I did not decide but let it sit in my mind, then Tony posted that he was looking for a dual tire for use on road and on lesser good roads as he wanted to explore Cambodia and Laos etc...

    Then it tickled my brain, when I do have time off I have a lot of it. I love to ride in new places discovering new stuff, I already done dirtroads with my FZ6 (not recommended) back home I rode in terrain with dirtbike and I loved it. Suddenly I thought I got it, an adventure tourbike as they seems to call it... Then it would not be a bike which is almost what I have and I can do something entirely different with it.

    Now question to you old timers on bikes who gone everywhere, is this a good idea? Is the road conditions bad enough in Cambodia and Laos to need a bike like that? I know places up North a bike like this would be ideal, but do you really need one over in Cambo and Laos? How much on dirtroads/offroad do you actually do with the bikes over there?

    If this makes sense to you guys that is what I will go for, hopefully the KLR 650 will be in a Thai version soon, or Yamaha will come with the XT 660 Z Tenere, as I find the Beemers to expensive, the new F650GS is (according to bike mags) not for offroad as it's front tire and ground clearance is not sufficient, so that leaves the F800GS for adventure riding and 770k is not what I feel for spending at this point... The cheaper beemers have less than 10 liter tank, range 150 - 200 km is not exactly for adventure riding... Can imagine on a dirtroad when fuel consumption is on high the range is real crap on them...
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  3. schackster

    schackster Ol'Timer

    Ive got some friends who have the new KLR650, great all round bike but boy oh boy, you need to be about 7' tall to touch the ground
  4. SilverhawkUSA

    SilverhawkUSA Ol'Timer

    These questions, or similar, seem to get posted often. In my opinion, it is an individuals decision and a person just has to decide what they want or are going to be happy with and commit to it.

    Riding Laos ( I am not that familiar with Cambodia) can be done on ANYTHING. There are posts here from people who in Laos ride everything from a Ducati to a KSR. I traveled Laos extensivly, both on and off road, on a TDM 850 because it was all I had at the time. River crossings, single tracks and everything between. I of course later bought a dirt bike. :D

    Laos can be ridden from one side to the other and never leave tarmac, if you so desire. Or, it can be done on mostly dirt, bulldust and mud. What do you choose to do? :wink:

    Decide what type of riding you REALLY ARE going to do, not just based on a current whim or idea, or what someone else may like . Then, choose accordingly and have fun. :D
  5. hs0zfe

    hs0zfe Ol'Timer

    Well, the Kawa 6Er-n (?) is a pretty good deal when you deduct the cost of a NEW Green Book on used import bikes. What, THB 62,000 to 70,000?

    On is a thread about knobby dual purpose tires for this bike.

    Green Book, 2 years warranty, a new bike with you choosing its colour and breaking the engine in: show me a better deal for a new big bike!

  6. bard

    bard Ol'Timer

    That guy is Tony who wanted knobbys for his ER6n

    OK why I came up with the "whim" is this;

    My better half want to ride with me sometimes, and also my daughter who refuses her mum to sit on the bike with me... Big catfight, anyway we decided to get an additional bike. Obviously I looked at the Kawa 650, BUT I own a FZ6 already which is pretty much the same kind of bike just more comfy and powerful. I do not want to buy something similar as that would give me nothing extra. Hence I was considering a literbike for a while. Now this is still a street bike and again it would not add up much more than power to my usage of a bike.

    Hence I was thinking about a trackbike, now as Andrew pointed out they are not comfy on tours, and my FZ6 is pretty cool as is on the track so again it would not ADD up more usage for me personally. The Kawa is a good deal in Thailand, but with a Yamaha FZ6 it does make no sense to buy one.

    The Adventure bike idea came from Tony's knobby post, I did dirtriding when I lived back home in Europe and I had a lot of fun doing so. Riding up a trail to see areas and so on. Hence the idea of adventure bike came up. When my wife goes with me I could ride that, on road trips I'll use my FZ6 but on more adventourus rides I could use the adventure bike.

    Since I already have a big bike which serves me well, I wanted to extend the usage when I buy an additional bike.

    The posts over show me I can ride without an adventure bike in Laos, and I can also use an adventure bike. This is what I am after, is there use for it. Obviously if there is a lot of places where these bikes are a godsent for access, it make sense. If there is tarmac everywhere it does not make any sense. As for me I would use it to access more areas and places where my streetbike is a pain to ride. (trail/dirtroads) There are a few mountain villages up North in Thailand I have gone where my bike was very unsuitable on the dusty dirtroads going in steep ups and downs, yes I did it but I would prefer to not do it again on that bike.

    Hence my query for advice, if there is tarmac almost to everywhere in Laos and Cambodia as in Thailand it make no sense, however if there is a lot of places where dirtroads and trails are the only access it really does make sense to me.
  7. gobs

    gobs Ol'Timer

    Hi Bard!

    What a dilemna, isn't it?..
    First of all, as said SilverHawk, everyone has to make his own choice or find his own answer. What is good for one is not automatically good for the others, even if it seems so...

    Though I never went racing on a track (I'm incapable of this! :oops: ) and never did long distances in such short time (see before!), as you do and enjoy, I had the same dilemna months ago... Enjoying riding with my FZ6F here and there around CNX on tarmac, I felt a bit frustrated not to be able to take the dirt roads/tracks that can lead to some village or some pleasant place...
    But no matter to leave my FZ6F, with whom I'm in love too!.. Too superb design (through my own eyes) and great bike on tarmac (through my humble capacities)...

    So the choice of a second bike, more "soft" off-road related: the BMW F650GS single cylinder (year 2007). Before I turned around several dual-purpose bikes (Africa Twin, Transalp...) and at the end, that's to say right now riding it, I feel this bike just fit my needs and joys...
    I DON'T SAY it is the best one! I just say it is perfect FOR ME...

    Maybe for you it would be a bit "diesel tractor"... I guess :roll:

    Now, Bard, imagine you actually have not any bike, but you actually want 2 bikes... What should be your choice?
    Maybe a special one for the track, your great own "solitary" pleasure, and a second dual-purpose one for your pleasure too to go everywhere you can think of with a pillion and in good condition of comfort, reliability, power and so on...
    I don't want to play the :twisted: , but imagine you sell your FZ6F, put the money on table and add the money you are guessing for this actual second bike you are thinkink about, what in this supposed time should be your choice with the amount you get?..

    I don't want to be a heart-breaker (about your FZ6!), but it may happen erasing the plan, we can draw a better one... Or at least, get new points of view...


    Understand me well, Bard: I don't want to add to your confusion, just another "comment"...

  8. bard

    bard Ol'Timer

    Hi Gobs,

    That is an interesting angle and the answer would probably be the F800GS or 1200GS for me if I sold the FZ6 and put all the money into one bike.

    However there is no way I can sell her, I love her to much. Nimble fast, can play on racetrack, long distance tours on the roads etc. It's just to good bike to get rid off. If I get in Valentino mode she is on, if I just coast a road and enjoy the view she is on, great range tank and awesome in the twisties... No way I could sell that bike, to nice bike.

    A second bike would allow my keen wife to go with me sometimes, and ride herself (my FZ6). A thumper would allow me to access the places I look at, but don't go for the moment. I don't care that much of top speed on a second bike need to be a 650 or so tho for comfortable power. KLR 650, XT 660 Tenere, Transalp or F650GS would be fine, 250's are nice but I have to travel a bit to get to these roads so 650's are more relaxed to cruise over distance with luggage than hammering a 250. If I want to go fast on the road I have my FZ6, she is more than fast enough for me.

    Although it is an interesting point of view, the F800GS would probably fit fine for anything I do except track, but trackbike is cheap as you don't have plate not greenbook requirements on them.
  9. hs0zfe

    hs0zfe Ol'Timer

    Hi Bard,

    what's your budget? You got a lovely Fazer, my face is bright green with envy.

    For shorter trips, a 250 cc single might work well. but then you are spoilt for power...

    KTMs are too expensive as well? These hard enduros might beat even liter bikes on winding roads. At least I was overtaken a few times.

    For Cambodia, forget top speed.

    My solution: buy 2 more bikes...

  10. feejer

    feejer Ol'Timer


    From what you describe as your wants and your preference for the FZ6 on the road, the "Wee-Strom" or DL650 would probably fit the bill perfectly. I've had my eye on an '09 ABS down at the dealership to stable next to my FJR, but now will wait for the 2010 to arrive in a month or so. Perhaps a better deal to be had?

    The V-Twin motor is fantastic and pretty much the same (other than cam profile) as what is in the SV650 street bike, very torquey and smooth. Much smoother than the other single cylinder KLR's, Tenere, or F650GS etc. If no V-Strom available, then the Transalp is about as reliable machine as exists today.

    Best of luck with whatever you decide. :D ... 66386.html

    "At a first glance, it is nothing wrong even with comparing the Suzuki V-Strom 650 with the Yamaha FZ6 as the bikes share a lot one with the other. For starters, V-Strom’s bodywork is pretty sleek considering the category in which you find it and those cast aluminum three-spoke wheels tend to position it more on the streets rather than off them, but that’s until the 165mm of ground clearance intervene. Also, the seat is low enough even for average-sized female riders (820mm) and the handlebars are at quick reach, allowing an upright riding position. This is where the 50mm manually height-adjustable windscreen makes an entry and gives a clue on the bike’s cruiser-like riding conditions. But the rest of the front end has nothing to do with a cruiser as the dominating headlights are integrated into a narrow fairing, giving that nice sporty look that tends us to position it right next to the FZ6."
  11. bard

    bard Ol'Timer

    Thanks for the link the Wee-Strom would be an ideal bike for more adventourous biking, any idea if the main Suzuki dealer will start selling them in Thailand or only "other" importers will get hold of them?

    My budget would be in the 500k range, hence the Tenere would be the pain threashold for me I can imagine. The new Beemer looks very tempting but with the extras you'd like we're talking into 700k range and that is to much for me.

    I am going gradually, if the adventure takes hold of me I would probably add up later on with a 250 or something for that. But one step at the time feels better.

    I given up hope on Honda "coming soon" has been there all year, and the dodgy dealers are the only place to get them. I bought the FZ6 from Yamaha and yes it's expensive buying from them but warranty, service and help has been accordingly. Certainly a twin would way better than a single, so hopefully the Wee will be available from Suzuki soon, if not it sounds like Yamaha will take in Tenere, although slower and less powerful it would probably be plenty for the slower speed I'd do in Cambo, Trails and Laos I can imagine. Should Honda ever come up with a model range and the Transalp and the price would be in the correct range I would not hesitate to get one.

    And it's correct I am spoilt on power, now I want to get to the other places, but I would hate wrenching a 250 on the road to get there. Cruising in highway speed on the road in comfort with some to spare is very nice.
  12. feejer

    feejer Ol'Timer

    I would think that a nice used wee could be had somewhere if a guy imported one in the past. Try baht&sold and the like.
  13. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    For me a 2nd bike would be a 400 DR or XR. Take your pick. You've got a bike that does the road, plus some light & easy dirt at a pinch. So why waste money on a bigger dual purpose bike that still is a hand full /no good for the rough dirt trails, which is what you're missing out on?
    Just aim for a dirt 400 plus.
    The 250 will bore on you on the asphalt getting to the dirt, but with a 400 you can keep a nice comfy speed.
  14. johngooding

    johngooding Ol'Timer

  15. bard

    bard Ol'Timer

    Dave, thanks a lot for that advice I really value your input and it does make perfect sense. You're right, and I aim for this now... Awesome finally cleared up a messy mind.

    John, thanks for that link i PM'ed siinthai already, looks like a winner, I can even have fun and use it for motard...

    Hope it's not sold and I get it, great value for the bike with green book.

    Cheers guys for the great advices, it really helped make up my mind and if I get the XR saved me serious dosh buying something much of the same...
  16. daewoo

    daewoo Ol'Timer

    Hi guys...

    I don't know where the talk of an EFI KLR650 is coming from...

    I ride a KLR here... and while there is always talk on the KLR forums about EFI, what they should do, whether they should add it to the current motor or use the Versys or Ninja motors, there is nothing to indicate that Kawasaki are even considering it, let alone doing any development...

    Just saying that if it was me, I wouldn't let the prospect of an EFI KLR affect my decision making now, as it is probably at least few years off becoming a reality... and if it does happen, it would most likely be a completely different (and unknown) bike...

  17. bard

    bard Ol'Timer

    Cheers guys I followed Dave's advice and bought a 400 already, can't wait to blow some dirt with it :D
  18. gobs

    gobs Ol'Timer

    Congrats Bard!

    Good choice if you want "to blow some dirt with it"...


    Some pics of the new baby?

  19. siinthai

    siinthai Ol'Timer

  20. bard

    bard Ol'Timer

    Thanks Siinthai for posting a very nice trip report with my new bike :D

    The red XR440 is the one I bought from Siinthai.

    Cheers Bard
  21. gobs

    gobs Ol'Timer

    Hi Guys!

    I guessed it was this XR... :p
    But, hey, don't want to get in trouble with anyone!

    Nice bike for nice rides... lucky Bard!

    "Happy buyer and happy seller make together the world brighter"

    Han Kin Song, 1367-1434


  22. bard

    bard Ol'Timer

    Thanks Gobs, can't wait to do some exploration with the bike, lots of nice trails around where I live and I've seen no posts about them, so hey maybe it will be bards trails on GT-R :D

    Won't be home for a long period until November but from then on I will ride a lot, and use this bike for a good deal of it. Cambodia, Trails in Rayong, Chantaburi, Trat, Laos maybe manage to do some up North with the guys up there as well. Speed is not the thing it will be seeing new stuff, and take pictures, document and just enjoy the trips.

    When home I will toss on the motard wheels and have fun on Bira with it.

    Happy is the word :D
  23. gobs

    gobs Ol'Timer

    "have fun on Bira with it"

    No surprise here!


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