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Discussion Starter #1
Who has ridden an adventure bike? Seems to be the current trend.

How are they for long distance travel?
Passenger comfort?
In city driving?

The only one I’ve seen with a shaft drive is Yamaha Super Ténéré 1200. Nice bike but they are sure expensive! Another nice one is the Suzuki V-Strom, but a chain drive.

I have no interest in off roading and they come with a lot of options that I would prefer if they were dealer installed so they could keep price lower?

Thoughts? Purely for conversation.
 

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As with any bike it just depends what you want to do on it. I have a TW200 (not really an adventure bike) which is fun off road or for putting around town but it is too slow for freeways or high speed riding. It can hit around 70 mph but it vibrates and is a little shaky. I like this bike as my hop the curb, spin on a dime, go through high waters (floods in Houston) or do anything on it. This bike is like an adult mini-bike with big fat tires and it is fun. My Spirit 1100 I have to be careful or it scrapes around the corners or I have bottomed it out over a speed bump when 2 up moving slowly. I have heard some of the big adventure bikes are really too heavy and takes away some of the off road fun. It just depends on what you get used to I guess.
 

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I have been on an adventure bike and don't like them. This a hard question because there are different bikes to choose from. If you aren't taking it off road, more for show, the only thing you need to know is these bikes have high seats, not good for short legs and most are heavy. I think the KTM 690 Enduro is the smallest one out there and it weighs in at 325 lbs. or around there.

For the highway the bigger BMW's and the African Twin will go fine at highway speeds. Pretty comfortable, lots of suspension and I like the flat seats. If you are use to a cruiser with a windshield this isn't going to be anything like that. Feet right under you, wind in the face and a higher center of gravity. Quicker to get around in city traffic than a cruiser.

Off road those big bikes are only good for dirt roads and not much else, just to heavy. You can't man handle the bike around in slippery stuff.

If I was heading across countries I would probably go for the KTM because it has the best mix of uses. At 690 CC's it will do well on the highway and it's light enough to do some off roading. I had a 250 enduro way back when and that was bad on the highway, white knuckle ride for sure. Worked well in urban areas and off road.

This is on You Tube, it's the star wars guy and his friend riding across Europe all the way to the US. Everything thing was great until they got off the European highways. The BMW's were a bad pick for what they are doing. This is a decent series to watch, not that long. If you want to see adventure bikes do their thing.
 

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@Mark-B needs to chime in.
I know several people that have done criss country and backwoods rides on various bikes and love them.

Why shy away from Chain? They are more maint but more options and reliable if you halfway take care of them. I probably wouldn't consider one that wasn't chain drive, not sure how shaft woukd be In mud. And yes, mud is part of it.
The triumph Tiger is a fine bike, the Vstrom is another that will do anything you want. With the computer adjustable ride controls and all they will do whatever you tell it to.
If my next one is not a GW it will be an adventure bike.

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Discussion Starter #5
I’m just patial to a shaft or belt. Really no interest or use for the abilities of an adventure bike but I do realize why they specifically would be chain driven. It’s just a personal preference that I brought up because of the trend toward adventure bikes and the lower selection of cruisers as a result. If no suitable cruiser available at the time I buy, it may have to be what I get. But I’m confident there will be a good used cruiser available when I’m ready.
 

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I’m just patial to a shaft or belt. Really no interest or use for the abilities of an adventure bike but I do realize why they specifically would be chain driven. It’s just a personal preference that I brought up because of the trend toward adventure bikes and the lower selection of cruisers as a result. If no suitable cruiser available at the time I buy, it may have to be what I get. But I’m confident there will be a good used cruiser available when I’m ready.
You should look into the sport tourer line then. Comfort, POWER and shaft drive. If you never plan to ride offroad, then the sport tourer world would be a good fit.
But probably there will be a cruiser or 2 to choose from.
Ever seen a belt snap because it wasn't warmed up yet and you got on the power too fast? Unfortunately I did, a buddy had to get towed home from The Tail of the dragon....shaft drive or chain may be a tad better....

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Off road = chain drive. No off road then you can use belt or shaft, I would go shaft.

Chain drive really isn't that much of a problem but it does take some time. To me the most annoying thing is the chain stretching out and you have to adjust it. If you don't the chain bounces around and can break teeth off the sprocket along with just a poor feeling under acceleration. Poor deceleration feel as well.

Comes down to this. If you are a newbie reading around this forum people will say chain drives are a lot of work. If you use your bike to go to work 5 days a weeks, I would say a shaft drive is for you. Other than that a chain drive really isn't much work. I spent years riding trial bikes, myself and buddies didn't spend much time on the chains. Hose them off, spray oil. They stretch, you move the back wheel back. Can't move it back any more, buy a new chain or take a link out. I know someone will call me on this but chains don't need much attention. They are very strong taking abuse well. Belt drives are the worse if you ask me. Smooth but the most prone to failure.
 

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I have a Honda Africa Twin DCT.....love it! I went for it as I wanted to sit up higher up and wanted to be able to go off road if I so chose to. Lot of guys go long distances on them..throw on some luggage ur good to go....Many chg the seat to make it more comfortable.
I dont foresee me ever going back to a cruiser. The 1 bike I wished I looked at more was the Honda VFR 1200X. Same seating style, but a bit more power and shaft drive so a bit less maintenance..but chain care is pretty easy. Depending on where u live, there are some excellent deals to be had on the Africa Twin....brand new and used.....
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Near my place there is a leftover 2017 AT for $12000. I don’t have $12000 but compared to a 2020 that’s a pretty good deal.
 

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The empty space next to my Shadow in the garage has been reserved for an older 750 Africa Twin, probably 96+. Honestly with where I live in WA it would be a huge bonus for recreation to have something I could take up old logging trails, I’m minutes away from outdoor bliss in multiple directions.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
That sounds like a blast. I’m surrounded by pavement and concrete. Shift work and a very short riding season really limit how many km I’ll put on in a year. My biggest thing is a reliable bike that will be comfortable for long distance on highway. I’d love to take my wife on a B.C. trip and I’m sure an AT could do it.
Like I said before though, I wouldn’t make much use of the off road capability but the comfort of the long travel may be worth getting it.
I’m coming around to the idea of a chain drive.
Rumor of a AT850 for 2021
 

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I had a Triumph Tiger 955i, excellent handling, wheely power, wind protection and luggage. Fragile motor, at 27kmi, it was letting all the oil go out the tail pipe. I've ridden the new BMW 1200gs, they felt huge, I never liked the cylinders sticking out in front of my feat, and the power seemed middling, not exceptional. But all this what I like vs. what you like seems like asking another person what pants would fit you. As far as chain drive goes, there are some comforting qualities to it: Regular maintenance (which is no big deal) means the operator regularly has a good look around the bike, an opportunity to see problems, and fresh chain/sprockets vs. fresh shaft is a huge difference. Comparing my '99 Aero 1100 to an Africa Twin, the Aero I must ride and maneuver in a manner that preserves it's body work, and the limited turning radius and the way it carries it's weight emphasizes this. If I had a AT, someday I hope, it would suit my desire to ride a bike in a less precious manner. I'd suggest seek a test ride on the AT and as many bikes as you can. I found the Kawasaki Versys 1000 flavorless, numb and made for short people, so as nice as it looks on paper, it's not my cup of tea.
 

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Love my Africa twin, but they dont seem to hold their value..which is fine for me as I have no plans to sell/trade it in. I have seen some excellent buys on them here in the USA, around $7500 usd for a 2017 DCT ($10500 cdn). Chain drive maintenance is pretty easy....plenty of videos on it
 

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I have a Versys 1000LT that I like. It is chain drive. The newer o-ring type chains are less maintenance than the old chains. (Think my BSA wanted me to pull the chain every 500 miles or so and soak it in a pan of melted grease...) The 1000 is a bit much for off road. I have had it on gravel and dirt roads and it does OK, it's definitely better than the Shadows. Also way faster than I need or expected. Should have looked at a 650 Versys before pulling the trigger.,,,
 

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I friggin love ADV bikes. I still haven't found the exact bike for me, but there are so many out there ... and it's so much fun to keep trying them out ... I'm sure I'll find one sooner or later. The KTM's are ridiculously powerful and fun to ride, but a bit too tall for me. The Triumphs are well rounded and can be modified to meet your needs and desires but I'm not sure about it's long term durability and dependability. I have quite a few miles on both.
The BMW GS bikes have my attention right now. Looking forward to meeting some of the various models up close and personal once this whole C-bug monster is gone.
 

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You should check our the Royal Enfield Himalaya , slow, stodgy but tuff as nails and I like the way it handles on and off road. Not the best road bike but if you're getting from one trail to the next no worries.
 

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I converted my Kawasaki 400 dirt bike to street legal. Perfect for commuting and going down the rod to get to my trails. Don't think I want to go too far on it though. What makes it a great dirt bike is what keeps it from being a great road bike. That's just the nature of things.
 

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I'm a ole' Thumper fan when it comes this AVB's. Rode a XL250 Honda for 8yrs. both dirt and street sporting a 15:1 PTWR. I was only one of my dirt companions that rode a 300 lb. 4 stroke when most were a 270lb.-ish or less "ring a dingy". 5-6 hrs. hill climbing/off roading/cross country ride was quite "invigorating" when I was in my 20's/30's. I guess I'm saying back in the day they were called dual sport and the weight/power was more suitable to actual off road situations. This motor was the 1st. 4 valve head on a modern MC thus 20 hp./20 ft.lb. torque was very capable to get one in trouble off road. This bike wouldn't quit while hill climbing. Like a horse it would throw you off, period.

On road it can do 55 mph. all day even two up though a little light on the front while doing so but 15,000 mi. later life changes, regrettably I said goodbye. Basically IMO a true "Dual Purpose". Anything bigger going off road, you better eat your Wheaties if spend any extended time off road.
 

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