Marlin Firearms Forum banner
1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
12,138 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My son and I just drove the Jeep to California and back, about a 2,000 mile round trip. I had been planning to take my trusty little Suzuki 650 again, it's been excellent on the same trip several times now. At the last minute my oldest son was able to get some time off, and elected to join me.

I tried to get him to ride with me. He's never been on a multi-day bike tour, although he's done some 300 - 400 mile day rides with me from our home town.

He told me "Dad, my bike doesn't have wind protection, the seat is uncomfortable after about 150 miles, and I'd need to re-fuel every 130 miles or so." Hmmmm.


I've ridden his Yamaha FZ8 a few times. It's fun and fast and I think it looks great. But the young man has a point, it's really not a touring bike. Phooey. I'd take it on a tour though!

My Suzuki on the other hand has at least decent wind protection, a comfy seat & riding position, carries duffle bags easily, and has a 250+ mile range. He calls it an "old man's bike" ! Hah! :biggrin: May have a point actually...


So, I sadly abandoned my hopes for a spring motorcycle tour to California. We tossed a cooler and a couple of duffle bags into the Jeep instead, and had a great trip anyway, but it wasn't on the bikes.


Less than an hour from our driveway, it was 31 degrees going over the first mountain pass. Later that day the wind was howling. At another point hail was peppering the Jeep. My son looked at me and said "Dang, I'm glad we're not on bikes." Hmmmm... I may yet make a motorcycle tourer out of him, but apparently it's going to take some time.

Just a few random thoughts about our trip, and still wishing we'd been able to do it on the bikes!

Guy
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
497 Posts
I'll have to agree that a comfortable seat and wind protection are essentials for long distance touring. You can do without but I'm all ways in a better mood and can go longer if the tush is comphy and my arms aren't wore out. All my bikes have had at least a fly screen and two had full on fairings. I just fabbed up a cardboard fly screen for the DR 650 and does it ever make a difference. I'm no longer reluctant to jump on the interstate as its much more relaxing not having to hold myself up against the wind. I started with cardboard because even a half inch height change makes a difference in where the wind blast hits and the noise in the helmet. I started tall and gradually cut it down. I'm working on side wings for it to get the wind off my shoulders and arms. Eventually I'll cut one out of plastic and if I go the winged mode, make it up of fiberglass. The seat still needs a bit of work - I've got a sheepskin and I cut up an old life jacket to stuff underneath for more padding and height.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,561 Posts
A motorcycle with good wind protection and a smooth engine definitely makes long rides more enjoyable.

I've done long rides on my Hayabusa and DR650. It's a good bike but the DR650 engine isn't known for its smoothness. :biggrin:

A lot less fatigue riding the Hayabusa for sure. I recently installed a windscreen on my DR650 and it makes a noticeable difference. Can't do much to smooth out that thumper engine however. :vollkommenauf:



 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
12,138 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Slamfire, kind of opposite ends of the spectrum with those two Suzukis of yours! :biggrin: Cool.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,561 Posts
The Hayabusa is now in its 16th year of production - it's an amazing machine.

And the DR650 has been in production since 1990 - enough power for inter-state highways and excellent for forestry roads.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
497 Posts
Slamfire - if you haven't see it all ready check out drriders.com - everything about the DR. Plus one for Suzuki - I'm on my 5th one. Tried Honda once but it was not thought out well and tough to work on. I like Suzuki simplicity
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,791 Posts
I toured on a Honda 929RR for a couple years before a guy stopped me in a rest stop one time. He was on a BMW 1100S. I was in love and bought one 6 months later. Didnt even know BMW made bikes. Couple years later I bought a BMW 650Dakar. It is my touring bike of choice now and have over 50k on it. Its been to Inuvik, Alaska, Nova Scotia etc. Its just a joy to ride. Im now up in arms as I want a big touring rig. KTM 990, The new DL 1000, Triump 800, BMW 800 are all on the radar.
The thing about touring on the rocket type bikes is take lots of breaks. 130 miles is just right for me. Its time to get off and walk around a bit after being crunched up like that for 130 miles.

Hayden.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,561 Posts
Those touring BMW's are about the most comfy machines. A K1200RS I test rode once would be perfect for traversing the continent. :top:
 
  • Like
Reactions: M700

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
15,449 Posts
I toured on a Honda 929RR for a couple years before a guy stopped me in a rest stop one time. He was on a BMW 1100S. I was in love and bought one 6 months later. Didnt even know BMW made bikes. Couple years later I bought a BMW 650Dakar. It is my touring bike of choice now and have over 50k on it. Its been to Inuvik, Alaska, Nova Scotia etc. Its just a joy to ride. Im now up in arms as I want a big touring rig. KTM 990, The new DL 1000, Triump 800, BMW 800 are all on the radar.
The thing about touring on the rocket type bikes is take lots of breaks. 130 miles is just right for me. Its time to get off and walk around a bit after being crunched up like that for 130 miles.

Hayden.
age also makes those 130 mile breaks needed

I used to think nothing of covering 600 miles in a day
 
  • Like
Reactions: M700

·
Registered
Joined
·
124 Posts
I have ridden many many miles on BMW, Harley, and Indian. Then I lost my mind and traded a realy nice 1983 r100rt for a used Ural Patrol. It's like a BMW from the 1950's! I still have my two Indian Scouts and my old Harley panhead. I have rode the Ural about 5000 miles since I got it mid summer-mostly on gravel and dirt. I'm pleased with the old girl for a run around vehicle but find it to slow for touring. Myold 48 pan is the ticket for touring comfort-ride 600 milesand still feel riding some more!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
I downsized the bike this year. I had owned 3 straight BMW's...the last being a K1200 LT and they are hard not to like. Heated grips, heated seats, electrically adjustable windshield, real cruise control and 100 horsepower. Fun and comfortable bikes. I got tired of the 850 lbs though. Decided to go with the Suzuki DL-650....the Wee Strom. I have to say that I have been very pleased with the switch. The longest ride I've taken on it has been about 375 miles on two lane roads to Birmingham, AL for the Barber Vintage Festival. Can't say that my butt felt much different at the end of the day:)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
12,138 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I do admit to cracking up a bit, laughing (usually silently) at motorcyclists who get all puffy proud about doing 400 - 500+ mile highway days... :biggrin:

Try 100 on a bicycle in a day... Then you're demonstrating some real toughness. Or 50 miles on a mountain bike, on dirt... Suddenly those miles on a motorcycle don't seem so tough.

I enjoy the heck out of my long motorcycle rides, but even when it's very hot, or very cold, they're not really "tough" they're mostly fun, big time fun! The long bicycle rides? They're also fun, but dang... That takes a lot of physical and mental toughness!

58 year old me taking a silly break at a little country bar on a ride earlier this year:


Chilly ride last winter:


But, back to bikes with motors - Love 'em!

Regards, Guy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,898 Posts
Years ago, I rode to fall river lake from wichita ks, on a Ducati 250 mk3, single cylinder with more of a race than road suspension. I made it, and so did the ducati, but that was the only time. only 65 miles on kansas roads is more like a thousand.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,898 Posts
M700, I have helped with a few bike rides around here, the longest so far is the ms150, one hundred ffty miles out and one hundred fifty back the next day. I am usually in my pickup, hauling tired broken down or just exhausted riders and their bikes, as well a stocking the rest stops. our ham radio clubs provide radio comuications for the rides for safety, and three biike shops rovide roadside assistance for breakdowns. I get tired just following those guys.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
12,138 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks for supporting the cyclists!

I'm good for 100 or a little more, on relatively gentle terrain with modest hills. Throw in some big hills or a lot of heat and I run out of go quicker for sure.

Guy
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top