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TOPIC: Why did you buy a KLR?

Why did you buy a KLR? 3 years 9 months ago #102756

  • SafferCA
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It's perhaps not long and involved and I imagine similar to other stories but here goes ....

I studied Investment Management through Vrystaat and have always been aware of the depreciation of things and how the opportunity cost of money impacts on your retirement nest egg. Like others, I took big hits in my youth buying cars I couldn't afford, bikes that I never really used and boats that rotted in storage.

When I came to Canada I hated the place. My wife surprise bought me a Yamaha 1700 Road Star (I'd owned the 1300 Royal Star in SA) thinking it would cheer me up, at a time when money was thin. It didn't. I had to get my license all over again. Insurance was high and I could only ride for 5 months of the year. Besides, I hated cruisers. So I spent the next 5 years buying accessories for the thing, replacing batteries every year and never riding it. Last year I sold it, at a loss again, after putting on less than 3000km. I was now officially done with motorcycles.

In the meantime I had taken up skiing in the winter and my summer activity was practical handgun shooting. The shooting, however, did not involve my wife and included a lot of travel. After the world championships in 2014 I decided to give up shooting, but that left me with nothing to do in the summer.

Finally, this year I decided that I needed to find something to do, plus with global warming my skiing seasons are becoming shorter.

I didn't miss traditional motorcyling at all. But I did have a desire to travel more and I completely agree that motorcycle travel does connect you to your surroundings in a unique way. This naturally lead to combining the two. Fortuitously, a friend of mine was on a 3 month tour of Europe and this helped me make up my mind.

I first asked my wife if she'd like to be a part of it but only if she rode her own bike, and we went all in from the beginning. Not bit by bit, because then it never happens. She agreed. I then started to look at bikes.

I first looked at the Honda NCX750, but the dealer sucked. I then looked at the Suzuki V-Strom 650. Nice bike. But I was worried that it wasn't really dirt oriented and that I'd be reluctant to damage the bike given that it looks so good. This brought me to the KLR.

Initially I thought I was settling but the more I researched the topic the more I realised that simple is best. We have two identical bikes which makes repairs, services and tools a simple process. The online support and aftermarket accessories for the KLR is huge. As with any other sport the ability to accomplish something is rarely the tool but the user, so I figured the KLR would be just as competent in the right hands. The rest can delude themselves and pay for that experience. To top it all I could buy brand new 2015 models for a 25% discount.

The rest is history. We have done over 5000km each in two months andI haven't regretted my decision. I still don't like traditional motorcycling, scraping footpegs and riding in traffic. I love getting away from the hustle and bustle and onto the dirt. I love the travel.

Would I upgrade? I don't know. It's easy to fall into the trap that a better tool makes you a better workman. Sometimes that's true but not if the price differential is exponentially higher than your gain. I'm invested in the KLR and I actually find the bike very acceptable for everything I use it for. I am no longer a pocket-rocket guy and cruisers are just plain boring. My only regret is that I didn't get into adventure riding sooner.
Last Edit: 3 years 9 months ago by SafferCA.
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Why did you buy a KLR? 3 years 9 months ago #102826

  • Tengai
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Well, as my form name suggest, I had a Kawasaki Tengai a long time ago. I enjoyed it and as everyone confirms, it is willing and can do a bit of everything. After having a Suzuki DR800BIG and lastly the 1150 gs, which is a very nice bike and an icon of note, I started to find that the weight is playing more of a role recently i.e. putting the bike in the garage, riding thick sand and getting rain in the Tankwa Karoo. Did not enjoy the mud! :S
So the decision was to go lighter and NOT to do 2000k + trips anymore. Looking around and looking at prices of bikes I found myself going back to my beginning days and bought the KLR. It handled the long road from JHB to CT without a beat change and knowing about oil usage and so on, I felt confident on the bike. It used only 250ml oil in 1960ks. :) Very happy with my purchase.
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Why did you buy a KLR? 3 years 9 months ago #102851

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Current Bikes: Yamaha XT 1200Z; Honda XR 650; Kawasaki KLR 650 A x 2; Kawasaki KLX 300R; Yamaha WR 250F
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Why did you buy a KLR? 3 years 8 months ago #104034

  • cobusv
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I love the fact that the KLR just has that "doesn't die" attitude when looking at it and when riding it getting that same impression. The bike is solid, uncomplicated and easy to ride.

probably will never get rid of mine, just love it too much!
2014 Orange KLR 650, F1X Freeflow
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Why did you buy a KLR? 3 years 8 months ago #104424

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Why did you buy a KLR? 3 years 8 months ago #104491

  • martinr
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When I had my Suzuki gsr600, I came across a guy with a red fugly on Ontdekkers (where Barret, Voortrekker and Ontdekkers join), and the awesome thump from his pipe made me crave a KLR.
He really imprinted on me.
I patiently waited to trade for the KLR, and soon afterwards bought the F1X for my baby.....what a beautiful noise, comin' on from the streets....like a Neil Diamond hit.

I always loved thumpers, that sweet sweet THUMP! I grew up with the likes of the xt 550, xr 500, sp 370....a very special place in my heart.

My blood, and heart is green, lime green! :kiss:
2013 Green KLR, F1X pipe, DMD washable air filter, motard front fender
2000 Honda VTR Fire Storm
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Why did you buy a KLR? 3 years 4 months ago #108791

  • Piet
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This morning I just realised once again how much I love this bike:
  • I filled up 26.5 litres of fuel after traveling 525 km at about 20 km/l
  • She starts on the first swing with no choke every morning, regardless of low temperature
  • She is almost 80 000 km old and uses no more than 100 ml of oil per 1000 km
  • She lane-splits controllably and effortlessly between the traffic
  • I can ride her at 2000 rpm and she is happy
  • I can ride her at 6000 rpm and she is happy
  • She loves uneven surfaces
  • She needs the bare minimum attention ito servicing
  • She is such a gem at highway speeds with the tall screen

What a bike girl! B) :woohoo:
Last Edit: 3 years 4 months ago by Piet.
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Why did you buy a KLR? 3 years 4 months ago #108794

  • Kaptein Rooibaard
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Piet wrote:
This morning I just realised once again how much I love this bike:
  • I filled up 26.5 litres of fuel after traveling 525 km at about 20 km/l
  • She starts on the first swing with no choke every morning, regardless of low temperature
  • She is almost 80 000 km old and uses no more than 100 ml of oil per 1000 km
  • She lane-splits controllably and effortlessly between the traffic
  • I can ride her at 2000 rpm and she is happy
  • I can ride her at 6000 rpm and she is happy
  • She loves uneven surfaces
  • She needs the bare minimum attention ito servicing
  • She is such a gem at highway speeds with the tall screen

What a bike! B) :woohoo:

Almost sounds like you two should get a room... :silly: :woohoo: :whistle: :laugh: :laugh:
This is my KLR. There are many like it, but this one is mine.
(Formerly know as ChickenHawk... )
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Why did you buy a KLR? 3 years 4 months ago #108799

  • Psycho Porra
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Piet en sy fiets :evil: :laugh:
"The Brave do not Live Forever, but the Cautious do not Live at all"
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Why did you buy a KLR? 3 years 4 months ago #108815

  • martinr
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I agree Piet, she is not superbike fast, but she can ride ANYWHERE.
by the way, vra Cabous, ek Foetter superbikes op, op ontdekkers, so tussen 4 en 6 pm :silly: :silly: :silly: :silly:
2013 Green KLR, F1X pipe, DMD washable air filter, motard front fender
2000 Honda VTR Fire Storm
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