Need a dual sport bike - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 12:16 AM Thread Starter
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Need a dual sport bike

Need an on road off road bike, and on a reasonable budget. (Sorry KTM, you're out.) What do you guys ride/suggest?


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post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 02:00 AM Thread Starter
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I'm leaning towards a Yamaha XT250


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post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 07:38 AM
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The DRZ400 or DR650 are great dual sport bikes. True competence off road and a little more power to make the time on pavement not completely miserable.

Mike
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post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 08:15 AM
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The guys over at HFL seem to have taken a shine to the Yamaha WR250R.

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post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 08:21 AM
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I traded my XT250 to get my Versys. I didn't get to use it off road as much as I wanted too so I went for a better road bike. I liked the bike but it had a few things about it I just couldn't live with anymore. First the stock knobbies are crap. I changed them to Avon Distanzias. They worked out very nicely when on the road but a little shaky off road. Also on the road at +65mph it is not the most stable bike in the world. It's very light ~250lbs. so the wind has it's way with you on open roads. The bike is kind of small though. I always sat with my butt close to the back end of the seat. (I'm 5'-10") On the good side. It was very dependable, 0-60 was quick enough for commuting, averaged 65mpg, it's weight made it easy to handle a super slow speeds when off road, the seat height is a little low but that makes it easy to handle at stop lights. Great bike but it has it's limitations. If I could do it again I would have went for a DR650 or something with a little more than 17hp.
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post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 09:17 AM
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if you are looking for a 250, pick up a used klx250s, 07 or newer. Most reviews has it beating all the budget 250s, ie xt250, xt225, honda 250, dr200. the only one it isnt better than is the yamaha wr250 but that is over 1000 dollar premium. I have found used ones for around 3000 for the 09s and newer and 2500 for the 07s.
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post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 09:43 AM
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DRZ400 or the earlier air cooled 350(?)

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post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 11:52 AM
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LIGHT weight is your friend off-road!

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post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-22-2011, 12:41 AM Thread Starter
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I like the WR250 Yamaha, but it's expensive. Hopefully there are used ones laying around this spring. Another big concern is limited fuel range. The carb bikes are easy to add a fuel cell to, but the fuel injected ones usually require drilling of the tank, which I don't like the sound of.


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post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-22-2011, 06:21 AM
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Wr 250 the road version is guttless and quiet tall, DR650 is smaller but heavy, DRZ 400 is between the 2, if your after cheap and the offroad is not mainly single track and your not lightweight the DR 650 is a good choice. cheap, enough power for off and onroad, lots of spare parts around and the motor last over 50,000kms, if you want lightweight DS there is none all the bikes on the market are 120kgs plus wet, other bikes but older without E start is the xr range.

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post #11 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-22-2011, 07:07 AM
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Here's what you do.... Buy a YZ426F, bolt some road bike bits to it, get it inspected.... go have a helluva time on or off road

I'd get something bigger than a 250 personally... maybe an xr 650 or a bigger yam.... the KLR 250 i rode is a hog and bland in terms of fun (that's probably an understatement). Mind you i'd just gotten off my YZF MX bike lol

500 or a 650 would be my ideal dual sport.
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post #12 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-22-2011, 09:36 AM
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The klx250s is carbed, and there are bigger tank options out there. I usually filled up around 120 miles, averaged around 75mpgs. The thing i liked best about the klx was the fully adjustable suspension, i could make it a pretty good off road bike and really tighten everything up for good road manners. Did about 90 mph, on the speedo. 18 hp at the wheel. the drz400 would also be a great choice if you get 05 (somewhere around then) and newer, has better suspension than previous years. However, the drz will cost you as much as the wr250.

too bad you didnt want a dualie a few years ago, saw a brand new 09 klx250s for sale at my local dealer for 3900 otd.
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post #13 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-22-2011, 09:37 AM
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It really depends on what you consider off road. I have had a couple DRZs, a TTR225, a KLR, and a XR600. Out of all of them the DRZ was the best for riding like a dirtbike and short commutes. The TTR was a dog, the KLR was a pig, and the XR was just a beast but too tall and heavy.

My next dual sport will either be a Husky or KTM. I think the dual sport market is definitely one where you get what you pay for. If you just want something to putt around on and hit some trails then the DRZ is a very dependable ride just not very exciting.

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post #14 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-22-2011, 02:41 PM
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I would probably choose a DRZ400. It is off-road worthy enough and light enough to toss it around, yet it will hold up for the hour or so I need to ride on-road to get there.
It all depends on which way your bias swings: Very single track off-roady, or capable of playing but quite comfortable for commuting on the slab...

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(snip) If you just want something to putt around on and hit some trails then the DRZ is a very dependable ride just not very exciting.
Heheh, that depends on the level of experience, I think.
I'm sure it is sedate in experienced hands, but I would have a hoot learning how to hang the tail out consistently on gravel paths and starting to sharpen my skills on single track.
Don't know Moto's skill, but for a newbie like me a DRZ would be quite exciting enough.
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post #15 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-22-2011, 04:25 PM
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Originally Posted by eparker202 View Post
The klx250s is carbed, and there are bigger tank options out there. I usually filled up around 120 miles, averaged around 75mpgs. The thing i liked best about the klx was the fully adjustable suspension, i could make it a pretty good off road bike and really tighten everything up for good road manners. Did about 90 mph, on the speedo. 18 hp at the wheel. the drz400 would also be a great choice if you get 05 (somewhere around then) and newer, has better suspension than previous years. However, the drz will cost you as much as the wr250.

too bad you didnt want a dualie a few years ago, saw a brand new 09 klx250s for sale at my local dealer for 3900 otd.
I would +1 this but remember the big Q. What are you going to use this bike for the most? Some are air cooled and that is not so cool!!!





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post #16 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-22-2011, 06:02 PM
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I bought a 2002 KLR250. It's a nice, light bike for the single track. I'm the last one to the trailhead, but even the KLR650 guys tell me the 250 is the better bike for DS. Smaller is better.

I like the WR250 also, for the fuel injection. But, as has been noted already, it's kind of pricey.

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post #17 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-22-2011, 06:59 PM
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I've owned the DRZ400S and now have a KLR650

The DRZ was a true dirt bike that is street legal. Plenty of power to muscle up powerline trails, great on the twisties. Like all dirt bikes it has an uncomfortable seat and speeds over 55 require a tight fitting jacket to keep from being a sail.

The KLR can go most anywhere, is comfortable, but requires a lot of muscle when off road.
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post #18 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-22-2011, 08:42 PM
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I took the DRZ400 up to canada by way of dirt trails from NM. and it worked great all around "a side from a little fuel mixture problem at high altutudes" it took a lot for the versys to get me off the DRZ400.
cheers
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post #19 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-23-2011, 06:07 PM
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I went through this drill a few years back and the 09 klx 250s was my choice. I think it was $4,500 out the door and for the money you cannot beat it.
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post #20 of 29 (permalink) Old 09-23-2011, 09:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlj View Post
I went through this drill a few years back and the 09 klx 250s was my choice. I think it was $4,500 out the door and for the money you cannot beat it.
Do you still have the KLX250? If you don't mind, what is your height and weight? How did it ride on the street? Were you able to keep up with traffic? Any other comments you wish to provide would be appreciated.
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