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Thread: Advice for a newbie.

  1. #1
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    Comment Advice for a newbie.

    Hi All.

    Recently joined the forum and require some advice.

    I am looking at buying a motorcycle, however choosing what would fit my needs is a different story.

    The run down:

    I am moving to Maun, Botswana pretty soon and I am looking for something that I can use there as a daily commuter (so needs to be Road Legal) and also go on some adventure outrides with a few mates up there (They have GS 650 and Yamaha YZF250's). I am by no means looking for something like a Scrambler, I want something that is reasonably comfortable.

    Main concern is reliability as well as ease of servicing, as I will need to service the machine myself.

    Also would like something a bit bigger than a 250, as I am a pretty tall guy.


    So far what I have looked at is the following:

    Yamaha XT660R (Seems to be top contender right now, as it fits the bill and can do on and off road well, apparently.)

    F650GS (Parts availability and cost of maintaining is high?)

    CRF250L (Bulletproof, but a little on the small side and uncomfortable on longer rides.)

    KLR650 (I have no experience with these machines, but they seem to be a good option?)



    Any feedback and advice will be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks.

    GCS

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerhardsteenkamp View Post
    Hi All.

    Recently joined the forum and require some advice.

    I am looking at buying a motorcycle, however choosing what would fit my needs is a different story.

    The run down:

    I am moving to Maun, Botswana pretty soon and I am looking for something that I can use there as a daily commuter (so needs to be Road Legal) and also go on some adventure outrides with a few mates up there (They have GS 650 and Yamaha YZF250's). I am by no means looking for something like a Scrambler, I want something that is reasonably comfortable.

    Main concern is reliability as well as ease of servicing, as I will need to service the machine myself.

    Also would like something a bit bigger than a 250, as I am a pretty tall guy.


    So far what I have looked at is the following:

    Yamaha XT660R (Seems to be top contender right now, as it fits the bill and can do on and off road well, apparently.)

    F650GS (Parts availability and cost of maintaining is high?)

    CRF250L (Bulletproof, but a little on the small side and uncomfortable on longer rides.)

    KLR650 (I have no experience with these machines, but they seem to be a good option?)



    Any feedback and advice will be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks.

    GCS
    My suggestion would be KLR650. I owned one, they go almost everywhere, easy to maintain, relatively comfortable ride. I did a trip from East London to Vereeniging some years ago and have been to Transkei with KLR multiple times
    Alround, best bike for all purposes


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    Have fun! Ride safely

  3. #3
    Nuon Fangirl

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    Yamaha XT660R: Tall bike, but I would be very surprised if this bikes disappoints any new owner. Well worth a second look.

    F650GS: Are you referring to the F650GS (single), later became the G650GS or the later F650GS (twin)? Either would be a nice bike to own and ride. Not as expensive to maintain as many suggest. All three models well worth a 2nd look, but if you did mean the single I would suggest the F650GS Dakar, or the G650GS Sertao. The Dakar and Sertao are a tad more off-road orientated.

    KLR650: I don't know them well, but they do have a reputation for being bullet proof. They are usually loved or hated.

    In the end, your budget and since you will be in Botswana parts availability will be pushing your choice.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by AMZ View Post
    Yamaha XT660R: Tall bike, but I would be very surprised if this bikes disappoints any new owner. Well worth a second look.

    F650GS: Are you referring to the F650GS (single), later became the G650GS or the later F650GS (twin)? Either would be a nice bike to own and ride. Not as expensive to maintain as many suggest. All three models well worth a 2nd look, but if you did mean the single I would suggest the F650GS Dakar, or the G650GS Sertao. The Dakar and Sertao are a tad more off-road orientated.

    KLR650: I don't know them well, but they do have a reputation for being bullet proof. They are usually loved or hated.

    In the end, your budget and since you will be in Botswana parts availability will be pushing your choice.
    AMZ,

    I was indeed refering to the single F650GS. I am looking at the F650 GS Dakar as well. The parts thing isn't too difficult, as we have guys that come to Joburg and back to Bots fairly regularly and parts can always be brought up with them when they do come up.

    One thing about the F650GS that is making me nervous is the ease of servicing. I am pretty handy with a spanner and a pair of pliers, but I would prefer something as simple and as "mechanical" as possible, just to not have to struggle to maintain the bike if something does go sour. From what I can tell online the GS isn't difficult to maintain, but the KLR and XT (front runners at the moment) are a little simpler to maintain, more like a "Dirt Bike" than a sophisticated piece of German engineering.

    I am going to go look at 2x KLR's today, can't find a XT660 that stays on the market for more than 2/3 weeks and they don't seem to come around often.

    Regards.

    GCS

  5. #5
    Nuon Fangirl

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    Quote Originally Posted by gerhardsteenkamp View Post
    AMZ,

    I was indeed refering to the single F650GS. I am looking at the F650 GS Dakar as well. The parts thing isn't too difficult, as we have guys that come to Joburg and back to Bots fairly regularly and parts can always be brought up with them when they do come up.

    One thing about the F650GS that is making me nervous is the ease of servicing. I am pretty handy with a spanner and a pair of pliers, but I would prefer something as simple and as "mechanical" as possible, just to not have to struggle to maintain the bike if something does go sour. From what I can tell online the GS isn't difficult to maintain, but the KLR and XT (front runners at the moment) are a little simpler to maintain, more like a "Dirt Bike" than a sophisticated piece of German engineering.

    I am going to go look at 2x KLR's today, can't find a XT660 that stays on the market for more than 2/3 weeks and they don't seem to come around often.

    Regards.

    GCS
    I can't really comment on how complicated, or simple these bikes are to service and maintain at home. As I see it, they must all be very similar as they are all single cylinder engines with the BMW and Yamie fuel injected. All three run electronic ECU's, etc. The F650GS (singles) were not particularly electronic either, but still, the Yamie is probably the better choice anyway. The BMW and KLR are both nice bikes, rock solid, bullet proof and every other good thing you can say, but both may well be a tad boring compared to the 660R.


    IMPORTANT NOTE: Please read the last sentence and destroy the message immediately before any BMW or KLR fans see it!!!!!

  6. #6
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    Saw the post "AMZ"
    - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
    IMPORTANT NOTE: Please read the last sentence and destroy the message immediately before any BMW or KLR fans see it!!!!!
    - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
    Although I owned and rode a KLR, I agree with the boring statement, the 660R is a stronger contender and does warrant more respect!

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  7. #7
    Davey Jones Marsupial
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    One I don't see on your list is the Suzuki DR650, bullet proof motor and easy to maintain

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    But if you do nothing, there will be no result.
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