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AAZCD (Forum Supporter)
AAZCD (Forum Supporter) Dork
11/14/21 9:17 p.m.

I recently finished a 10 day long stretch of going to work in the morning before sunrise and coming home in the evening after dark. It was a beautiful afternoon today and the autumn leaves haven't fallen from the trees yet. A great time for a ride on the back roads with the XT.

AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter)
AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
12/21/21 10:53 p.m.

I got an F.

I know I've rambled and changed my mind a few times about what I like and what I want. Pretty consistently I've concluded that I don't enjoy the KLR 650 and the R75/7. Both are bikes that I wanted for a long time. When I finally had them I realized that the image that I had of them was not the reality. Also, the KLR has not run well since I got it and I don't want to spend more time with it as a project.

A few days ago I saw this BMW F650GS on FB market and tried to ignore it. I really did hope that it would sell fast because I am in the middle of sorting junk and reducing my load of stuff. When it had been on the market three days, I was telling Mrs AAZCD about my frustration with the KLR and how I'm going to sell it as soon as I have time to list it and deal with typical 'buyers'. "...and After I sell it, I might look for something like this [BMW F650GS]."

She said, "That looks nice. Why don't you stop telling me about it and go message the seller? Buy it now." She is such a good enabler. The seller didn't message me back until the next day and during the wait, I was sure it was already sold. His reply was "Yes, it's available" along with his address and phone number. An hour later I was there, cash in hand. His wife is also an enabler. They had just bought a new RV and a red BMW F900XR to go with it.

I like it. The riding position is comfortable for me and the balance feels a lot better than the KLR. The tall windshield keeps the wind off without making the bike bulky. It handles well on the street and does fine on back roads and open ground. It's heavy for true off-road, but If I want to hop over rocks and climb trees, I have the XT225. Mid January, I'm planning to market the KLR and R75. This bike easily surpasses both for any riding that I would do with either.

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/21/21 11:04 p.m.

Nice choice. A buddy had the same bike and loved the E36 M3 out of it.

ddavidv
ddavidv UltimaDork
12/22/21 7:30 a.m.

Good choice. Indestructible engine. They are comfy to sit on too. I just couldn't get past the pulses of the single after moving to multi-cylinder bikes.

I liked my KLR while I had it but it was a bike full of compromises.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
12/29/21 10:21 p.m.

Everyone loves the KLR but the truth is they're heavy, under powered, don't brake well and just aren't particularly good performing bikes.

My first bike was an F650GS Dakar, so basically the same as what you just picked up.  Fun bike, gets crazy good gas mileage.  Still a bit underpowered, vibrations weren't bad but were the wrong frequency for me, my hands would start to fall asleep after riding for an hour.  Very uncomfortable.

 

AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter)
AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
12/30/21 9:37 a.m.

There are a lot of differences between the KLR and the F650GS, but to me the most significant is the center of gravity. The KLR is tall and has a big tank mounted up high. On the F650 the gas tank is below the seat and the rider sits a lot lower. I always felt unbalanced and awkward on the KLR. I do notice some significant vibration on the F650 at the lower rpm range, but so far it has not been a problem for me. I have yet to ride it for over 30 minutes at a time.

For power I am intentionally avoiding 'powerful' bikes. I know that on the street, they feel too good and I don't have the restraint. I was fortunate in my youth to get away with things and not face the consequences - and I loved it too much. A bike that can do 75 mph comfortably, but not take me to 130 mph with a quick twist of the throttle is what I need. Likewise with helicopters, I now fly one that often requires a little finsesse to mange take offs and landings rather than one I can blast between trees at 130 knots and throw into a 90 degree bank.

Just thinking about the joy of a powerful aircraft in terrain flight leads me back to my last year in the Army. Typically when Blackhawk pilots took infantry out for aircraft orientation and training flights we would try to give them a 'good ride'; some close formation flight, some on-the-trees NOE, and some high-to-low G manuevering. It was AWESOME to play with a multimillion dollar, high power machine. A friend of mine was out doing that, flying trail in a flight of three. Nobody knows exactly what happened, but near the end of the flight, the crew chief on chalk two noticed that three was not behind them anymore. The smoking hole in the ground found over an hour later, erased our hopes. One dazed survivor was consious, but had no memory of what had happened. A second survivor of the 13 on board was found in critical condition. 11 dead. Not to be trite, but that could have easily been me. Many times over many years. Even if we are as good as we think we are, when you are running on the edge it only takes one small thing to put you on the other side. I'd prefer to die a warrior's death, but I do not seek it.

Um... That's not where I had intended to go with this, but I'll leave it. I meant to say, "It's more fun to ride a slow bike fast....."

AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter)
AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
12/30/21 11:31 a.m.

Speaking of slow bike fast, I may need to pick up a mini bike. The "Lime 100" with North Texas Rallycross and Lonestar Gambler 500 looks like fun. I could give the bike to grandkids and borrow it for races.

ddavidv
ddavidv UltimaDork
12/30/21 12:13 p.m.

The KLR is a great machine...when purchased for sub-$2500. wink I don't regret owning it but I knew going in it did nothing particularly well. As I wasn't entirely sure I would enjoy the motorcycle thing it was a safe choice vs a BMW or other bike for at least twice the cost.  I put a LOT of miles on it while I had it.

While it is a fond memory today, I have no desire to go back. I've sat on a few since and am astounded that I could ride something so absurdly tall.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
12/30/21 6:44 p.m.

I had an FZ1 for a short amount of time.  When cruising at 85mph you could feel the bike egging you on, it really wanted to do triple digits all the time.  I'm happy on my thumpers but I still want some power.  My 690 "Adv" probably makes 80hp and it's the perfect amount.  It also has the tank under the seat but it came with a Safari tank too, which still puts the fuel pretty low on the bike.

AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter)
AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
12/30/21 6:54 p.m.

In reply to docwyte :

I love your 690.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
12/30/21 10:04 p.m.

In reply to AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter) :

It's really the perfect bike for me.  Total hooligan feel, good power and suspension, excellent range with the two tanks.  Perfect bike for me here in Colorado.

03Panther
03Panther UltraDork
1/7/22 11:55 p.m.

In reply to AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter) :

Glad ya left that. Never got to  control multi million machines, and never rode wicked fast stuff. But lots a time ridin' on the edge. 
Much older, and just slightly wiser, these days. 

03Panther
03Panther UltraDork
1/8/22 12:05 a.m.

In reply to ddavidv :

Unlike most of the folks I was around during my chopper days, I didn't grow up on dirt bikes. Never rode one, except a few times in friends yards, and that ain't really ridin' a dirt bike. 
the enduro bikes, even the "little" 250s, are all a bit tall for my style. I did own a $2500 BMW F650 for a bit. Granted, it did have pure street tires, but it was worse on dirt or fire roads than my ol' FXR shovel (despite being very lowered) was. And commuting  to work on it (what it supposedly excelled at) was so incredibly boring, it wasn't worth putting gear on to ride to work. 
Granted, my K75 is considered to be a boring bike; it's just so pleasant to ride. I guess! 

AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter)
AAZCD-Jon (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
3/23/22 12:29 a.m.

I had four of them out for rides over the weekend. The weather was great and I had some free time. They were all good except for the XT225. I let it sit outside all winter under a cover with gas in it. It ran okay with a lot of choke, but it's going to need a good carburetor cleaning. Stalling out in the middle of crossing a 2' deep section of river was not fun, but most of the ride was still good.

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