Where is Azoulay?..

Discussion in 'General Discussion / News / Information' started by gobs, Jan 23, 2009.

  1. Hi mon camarade Azoulay!

    Where are you for the moment? We don't hear of you...

    Are you still in your "Land Of Camembert": your lovely France, or have you already made a come back to LOS?

    Many BMW and Buell waiting for you here!


  2. Hi Friends, hi Gobs,

    ...and thanks to wonder about me, I should say I am quite busy at present, being working like hell "at the Grand Capital Mine" (a Golden Mine or a Charcoal Mine, I let you appreciate...) in the cold and wet European winter.

    In fact, we -our Family- have done the error to postpone our ritual X'mas holliday due to the event we saw begining last December and since, I miss this wonderfull break in LOS.

    For the time being, yes, I am in CamembertLand, falling in the morosity of World Recession. Work is harder and with not too much fun as everything declines.

    On top,when I see the €uro becoming weaker, the retirent age going forward and the lack of business in Old Europe, I think my dream are delayed for a while...

    Nevermind, our tickets have been rebook for Easter and will invade from the 9th to the 26 April, then we'll be back for summer from June and August.

    Downhere, I bought some spare parts for the bikes and I have the firm intention to buy a new bike in Thailand, for the time being I hesitae between a BMW 1200 GS and a Harley (I just acquired a wonderfull brand new BUELL Lightning, week ago, for some 9000 € -Sales oblige- anew Boy's toy for Paris -a "Keke" bike, but funny- when not with the scooter).

    I allways think that despites I don't have the "Harley profile", I could let such bike to my son when I will pass away... so a lot of hesitation on what to buy in LOS, I have the Off-Road bike with the Suzi 400DRZ, the roadster with the Ducati Monster, now I would need something to travel around, my heart would go to the GS, reason would go to the Harley.
    Suggestion are welcome.

    So here it is, when I go through posts on the forum, it keeps me dreaming about all of you who are spending a so wonderfull life under the sun...

    As David says Keep the Power On, allways !!! Have fun and hope to see you soon.
  3. Greetings to the Land of Electric Camembert!
    Suggestions are welcome? How about the F800GS, seems to me the perfect bike, stronger than the 650 single but not as porky as the big GS...
    I posted a couple of good links in the BMW section yesterday.
  4. Yep, not ridden one but have seen one and read loads - the F800GS certainly presses all my buttons. If I'd not spent my mum's inheritance on my Bonneville, I would consider selling it for the GS. Guess I'll have to continue bouncing around on twin shocks until I win the lottery ;-)


  5. Hi Friends,
    Hi Pikey and KZ,

    Thanks for your post, in fact the GS 800 is not so popular in France, sure it should be a good bike but KZ is right by his description of the 1200 GS, a bit porky, the style i like.

    In Camembertland, that's the must for dual purpose bike, of course some will also present the KTM but then too violent and maybe less reliable for everyday rides

    The Harley, on an other hand, is something you can transmit to your son as an unheritage when you pass away...

    Choice is really an headhacke.
  6. I know what you mean Azoulay...

    As the froggy I am, I know that in France a bike under, let's say, the 750/900 cc range, it's considered as a "moped"... 250 or 500 cc it is "shit"! Just good for the scared tiny "youngish" losers...
    Even if the french biker only has the money for a 600 cc, he is dreaming of a 1200 or 1500 or whatever more!
    So, are the french bikers so "brain and body powered"? No! Just a good communication work done by the big japanese Four: "I have one bigger than yours" if you know what I mean...

    But let's the things roll... The "size" doesn't make sense and happiness!

  7. The F800GS just came in last week here in Dubai. I was thinking about it, but the 80% markup here quickly blew that dream.

    Did manage to take it for a ride though on the pretense I might be interested in buying. Gotta say it's heavier than I thought it would be. The R1200GS is a pig of a bike, and the 650 is a little light. Figured the 800 would be the ultimate compromise. Really, it's prob the best bike for a full-on two year adventure RTW. But for any practical use, it's too much , for too much money. For me at least.

    Maybe some day. Just not today.
  8. So what's the froggy insider opinion on Voxan bikes? I've never seen one and don't know anybody who owns one, never read a test in a magazine.
  9. Hi KZ,

    Do you read French, dear friend? If no, I guess you can't read anything about Voxan's bike! :mrgreen: I'm joking here...
    I guess french magazines are (nearly) the only ones that comment Voxan's actuality... Maybe every 2 month you can find tests, specs, comparos or whatever about these french bikes for (only?) french riders (a very few ones!).
    In my soooooo long rider life, maybe I "met" two ones... maybe...
    So in foreign countries, I don't even hope to meet one! :cry:

    Seriously, go here: http://www.voxan.com/voxan/actualites.asp or here: http://www.voxan.org/ if you read French...

    French frame, french engine (yes, sir!) and french design (remh!), they are expensive and very particular on the market. Just some happy fews buy and ride these bikes, and realy love them. They seem to perform and to be on top of quality (no, I never rode one...), and make you "apart" of the huge mass production. But at what cost and what about the network of dealers and the avalibility of the spare parts?
    Unless some update, Voxan uses the same engine base for all its models (5 or 6 different ones) and nearly the same frame. Just adapts wheels, shocks, cosmetics and the lot to get the "Voxan line".
    They can't compete the japanese production, not even the italian one... But as France had a long motorcycle story until the 60s (time of the complete fall down) as a "big" manufacturer, many investors and governements tried and try to put back France on the move to a new shining era... There were many attempts through different brands since the 70s but they always failed to find a market and to survive.
    One of this attempt was to "insert" a Citroen 1200cc engine car (very popular in France in this time) in a "big frame and body" to get a sport-tourer... weighing more than 250 kg :roll:

    IMHO, Voxan's bikes are good bikes with bright technology and top quality building, but what a hard job to compete the great brands!

    I don't know the Azoulay's thoughts about Voxan... Maybe another sound of bell?..
    Oh, I'm just thinking: please camarade Azoulay, why do you choose a Buell and not a Voxan while you live and ride in Paris?

  10. Hi Friends, True Riders,

    Just this small "mise au point":

    *For l' Ami Gobs and related to my appeal for big bikes:

    Many thanks for your comments on French appeal for the -big- size of bikes but here I would like to point out that this is really not applicable to me as since 40 (fourthy) years I am driving bikes of a respectable size, didn't i participate to the Coupe Motul Kawasaki in the seventies 3 years along with a 3 cylinders, 2 strokes 500 cc Kawa, didn't I partcipate to the Le Touquet enduro with a 360 yamaha DT, didn't I particpate to other enduros with a 400 KTM...??? yes, I did it, but since and in between I had several crashes which forced me to rapatriate on more "confortable" vehicles.

    On other "in between legs" considerations, I will let it free to your imagination but I think I have at least some explanations why women love me (prétentieux !).....

    I would add also that now, flirting with 100 Kg/200lbs I need some bigger cubes than in the past, for instance I was a bit disappointed by the lack of power from the Suzuki 400, not enough for me...

    Thus, at present, finishing my professional carieer and being a bit more "easy" with money, I try realise my dreams of big bikes by acquiring several big bikes (the HD Fat Boy and the Buell I have in France -even if I am driving a scooter during work week time, more easy in Paris-, the Ducati Monster S2R 1000 2006 I imported into Thailand, the Suzuki DRZ400).

    However, in LOS, I could comment that for me, in Thailand:

    -the Ducati, and specially mine, which is fully fitted with the latest ECUs, Termignoni pipes, all the accessories I could dream and also specially rightly tuned by myself, gives me a lot of pleasure according to the power and and speed but I think it's NOT a bike for Thailand where speed is not the most important. On top the riding position is a bit unconfortable for me and force me to bow provoking back aches after 3 hours....Oh, I forgot I am 56 now, shit !!!!!!!!!!!!!

    -the Suzuki is nice for LOS but as already said a bit underpowered with absolutely no confort as the saddle should be some 1, 1 and a half cm thick, again just imagine few hundred kilometers of Thai roads...

    That's the reason why since few years I am dreaming about a BMW GS, I first thought to aquire a second hand 1150 GS but those who sold it, were a bit too greedy at asking overvalue for what is, at present, an obsolete bike which has been overpassed by thge 1200 Gs, lighter and more powerfull, more easy to drive...
    On an otherhand, I would say that this appeal of big bikes would much fit to our German neighbours than to the Frenchies but that my own opinion; I would say German are better at big mechanic.

    *Related to VOXAN:

    So now my comments on the Voxan would be a Genius Do-It-Yourself piece of work but it's a bike I don't know, I could remember that it could be built on a Citroen based engine by some formal Citroen engineers but I am not sure, frankly speaking I do not like the look and I won't be courageous enough to trust this French exception...French could be excellent for wines, foods and other French Way of Life specificities but I won't trust for bikes, sorry Mate.

    *Related to why a BMW 1200GS compared to othere even a 800GS:

    Since few years I am dreaming about a BMW GS, I first thought to aquire a second hand 1150 GS but those who sold it, were a bit too greedy at asking overvalue for what is, at present, an obsolete bike which has been overpassed by thge 1200 Gs, lighter and more powerfull, more easy to drive...

    However as life shorten day by day, I wonder if by choosing a BMW GS I would make the right choice to bequeath such bike to my son and if a Harley (then a second one for LOS) won't be better. Harleys seems not to date after years...

    Apart from those who are young and slim, I would like to collect some opinions from friends riding roads and tracks in Thailand. For instance, I would like to be able to ride from BKK to Lao our Cambodia, easily with confort but not necessary allways on asphalt.

    I knwon that BMW make some good other GS such as the 600 and the 800 GS but for me "THE BMW" must be a flat twin engine, such as the Boxer one. If I would go for something "punchy" I would go to a KTM but nowaday these bikes are not for me anymore " a too violent kick in the ass" for my age.

    I'ld like to go for a reliable, confortable and lasting bike to cruise in Thailand.

    Since few days, and only due to curiosity, I discover the existing the Post dedicated to BMW, well done mates, I will read it with aciduity...
  11. Hi Azoulay,
    As a recent (22nd Nov) purchaser of a new R1200GS from BKK BMW in Bangkok, and having ridden an FJR1300A for the last 11 months I thought I would throw in a couple of comments, on these bikes in Thai conditions.
    Incidentally I have 7800km on the BMW and 18,000km on the FJR, so both have been well tested.

    I have decided to keep both bikes, as I live in Issarn with mainly flat country and fairly straight roads, the FJR is a very fast, comfortable, bike with excellent weather protection, on major routes it is my vehicle of choice. It is heavy to handle in parking lots or garages and awkward to get out of tight spots, but the weight is not noticeable when moving at any speed. I am also likely to use the FJR if I am expecting rain.
    As I love to explore the further afield less well known roads, and also to ride the bendy hilly northern mountain roads, the BMW is my bike of choice for this. It is also the one I take for any local journeys of less than 25km and the only one I take into Khon Kaen town for shopping etc. It can be described as porky, but the weight is very well balanced and maybe because of the wide high bars, it is very easy to handle in tight spots, very tight turning circle and easy to put on the centre stand and handle in the garage.
    As my wife is not comfortable on the back of my TTR250, and I need to use a motorcycle to take her into town, I am using the BMW and find its very easy to handle in local traffic, consequently I am going to let the 250 go and will use the BMW daily, and the FJR for most of my longer flatter trips.
    i find the BMW is most comfortable at speeds at or under 140kph, I probably normally travel on it at 130ish. The FJR however is still comfortable at up to 200kph and there are many quieter dual carriageways and other good visibility roads, where I can use the greater speed for some of the time. I am neither a maniac or a speed freak but being able to turn the wick up at the appropriate time considerable cuts the longer journey times when I am trying to get somewhere, rather than touring and viewing the countryside.

    I have to do a 90 day report in Khorat tmro (380km trip) I will use the FJR, I am with the local Thai riders on a Tamboon type ride on Sunday, slowish speeds, mainly cruisers and maybe a bit of unsurfaced road, will use the BMW
    Aware I have been long winded but thought it may help some of your deliberations on which bike is good for what in Thailand.
  12. Hi Friends, Hi JohnGooding,

    Thanks for this very interesting report, having a look at your profile I could imagine that we are roughly in the same age range thus with some common view on confort.

    It secures me when you comment the confort of the BMW

    Would you have some comment on your BMW dealer in Bangkok, it's interesting to know about it even if the choice is restricted...

    I think that this BMW 1200 GS is a perfect choice for Thailand according to what you wrote, frankly today and specially in Thailand even with a confortable bike (or my Ducati) i don't feel safe at riding over 150/160 Km/h. I don't need it as I generally ride small distances such as Bangkok to Cha Am, Bangkok to Kao Yai, Bangkok to Rayong, if I would have to do bangkok to Chiang mai I think I would take two days enjoying this wonderfull country and driving safely...

    Thanks again for your advises and comments, do not hesitate if you would have additional brillant ideas.

    Should I understand that you would say that that the BMW coude be driven as "a bicycle" by the ease it could be handle ?

    Could you comment as well how comes the bike out of the shop, I mean with which equipements as I don't know what BMW Thailand does propose normally there for such model 1200 GS // 1200 GS Adventure ???
  13. Hi camarade, hi mates,

    No personnal offence from my part in my point of view about big bikes in France... I didn't attempt to hurt someone. My remark pointed the lack of success of the BMW F 800 GS there...
    It's just my own opinion about the behavior of so many guys there. Just have a look in many french bike forums where many so called "big bikers" bash the "underweighted" bikes and their owners...

    No matter, Azoulay, I too I'm 56 y.o. (well, 57 in 6 months :shock: )! Through the years I rode all sorts of classic bikes (I love the years 60s and 70s and so never own a brand new bike until these days) including 50 cc as well as 1300 cc from Europe, Japan or USA. But, as you say, in any case I wouldn't depreciate any bike because of their "light displacement". The pleasure of owning and riding a bike is related to the owner/rider's happy feeling and the part of his "heart" he plugs in...
    So no matter the size of the bike... the most important (IMHO) is the size of the owner's heart!

    Here in LOS I own a Honda XR 250 and a Yamaha FZ6F (so, "only" 600cc), and I'm very happy with them. They just fit my heart!
    Before the purchase of the brand new Yammy, I was interested in purchasing some biggest one, but on this thread and others, many guys with more experience than myself in riding in Thailand, suggested a "lower" range bike, better suited for the "environement" here (city, roads, traffic)... I thank them a lot for this, and now I've got the same opinion, through their comments and my own recent experience...
    There in France I own a lovely "Béhème": a nice classic 1974 BMW R 90/6. It was my current bike back home before settling in LOS near 4 years ago, and I can't decide yet to sell it... One thousand thanks to Jicé, a true friend there who cares it as his own.
    I think the 90/6 should be perfect for my uses here in LOS, but I worry too much about the hassles and uncertainities about import and rego... So I went for the Yammy.
    As you say, Azoulay, too much big money for a "good recent" Bimmy here (purchase, maintenance, spare parts), and further the new models don't appeal me. But they are great bikes, in particular IMHO the F 800 GS (?750000 Bahts brand new!) for both on-road and off-road...

    Well about german guys, yes they love big displacement bikes, but I never met one german rider bashing the "lower displacement" bikes... I think they are too much "well mechanic minded" for this.

    Wow, what a long speach! Sorry guys... :oops:

    Amitiés Azoulay,
    and cheers to all,
  14. Hi Friends, Hi Gobs,

    No problem at all for me I did not felt as attacked... I love big bikes and yes, I rode all kinds of bikes, you are right,from the 50 cc up to the Harleys.

    Ooh I forgot to tell you that I brand with me in my suitcases, some 5 years ago, a Honda Monkey that I recopndition as brand new, mint conditions.

    Now my preference would go to the Big Bikes you could drive like a bicyle on Thai roads the 1200 GS seems to be one, but so many Bikers are commenting positively the new 800 GS that I feel oblige to organise at least a drive test. I will contact my friends at BMW Motorrad Etoile Avenue de La Grande armée in Paris and organise it...

    What about my body weight to carry ?

    If you are around Bangkok or Cha Am mid April, let us meet.

  15. Hi Azoulay,
    I will answer a couple of your questions about dealer BKK etc, but will move it to the BMW thread, as I think fits better there. Will do that tonight after come back from todays trip. I already added a few comments there about the different models available. Cheers, John
  16. Hi John,

    Thanks for your answer, you are right it will fit better in the BMW post.

    Have a nice day.

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