Thinking about a dual sport/adventure Motorcycle

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Ted, Jun 7, 2021.

  1. mondtster

    mondtster En-Route

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    I did a 30 second look but it appears that open source tuning and flashing software may be available for this engine/ECU. You might be able to set the mixture where it runs best and get the timing right. Maybe the second plug will help power and efficiency as well.

    I suspect swirl and the way the flame travels during combustion drove the need for a second plug, especially with lean mixtures.
     
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  2. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    Ooh... now that would be useful. What/where have you found open source tuning/flashing software? I'd be 100% interested in that...

    Yes, I'd agree that makes sense.
     
  3. mondtster

    mondtster En-Route

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    https://tuneecu.net/
    https://tunertools.com/products/euroflash-motorcycle-interface

    This looks like it might cover your application. I don’t know anything about it nor do I know exactly what you have so more homework would be necessary before jumping in with both feet. I’ve worked on plenty of Bosch and Marelli ECUs but don’t know what BMW is doing or using. The good news is that the bike is European, which generally translates into greater tuning interest and cheap/free tuning tools.
     
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  4. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    Thanks, that gives me some good places to get started looking through and see. It uses a Bosch Motronic of some sort. It would definitely be preferable to work with the existing ECU if I can do so easily/cheaply.
     
  5. mondtster

    mondtster En-Route

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    I was guessing it was a Bosch ECU of some sort. You might also peruse the nefarious motorsports web board; it is mainly focused on the ECUs found on Audis but there is a little bit of everything for Bosch stuff.
     
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  6. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I'll do some more digging. I'd say one project at a time, but of course that's not how I work. Not even close.
     
  7. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I got a bit of time last night to start playing around with swapping the new carbs on as well as installing the new rectifier on the Morini. After getting confirmation on how the rectifier, that was simple.

    I got one of the PHBH30s off and started swapping parts over to the PHBH28. Unfortunately, the atomizer isn't the same design between the two, although all the other parts do fit. This screwed things up a bit since my plan was to start off with just using all the jets/needles/etc. from the old carbs and throw them on the new carbs, with the expectation it'll run a bit richer and go from there.

    The end result was that I kept the idle and cold start jets from the old carb, as well as the needle. But then I put in the slide, atomizer, and main jet from the new one. My belief is that this will ultimately make the thing run too rich, and I'll have to tune it down from there. However because of the different atomizer design, that may not be the case. I'll just have to see. The Moto Guzzi V50 that these old carbs supposedly came off is rated for a similar horsepower to this (a bit less) so it may not be all that far off. I'm not all that optimistic, though. We'll see. I can always revert back if I decide that would do better.
     
  8. charheep

    charheep Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

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    Once you have it running, and running well, is it done? Or is there more planned?
     
  9. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    Good question. The only thing after it runs well I plan to do is get the rear brake working. Otherwise, just enjoy it.

    I’ve actually toyed with the idea of submitting it as a candidate to be on Jay Leno’s Garage (the YouTube channel). It’s a really odd and unique thing, but high he seems interested in.
     
  10. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    Yesterday I felt like putting the Morini back together, so I did. Got the second carb rebuilt, put the fuel tank on, and got it running. Somewhat to my surprise, the thing started right up and ran very well. Of course the carbs were completely out of sync so first I got them sync'd and got the idle adjusted. After that, I played with the throttle some to see what the running was like. Not surprisingly, they were way too rich. I had put in the needles from the 30mm carbs which were significantly richer than the needles the 28mm carbs had come with. So, I put the leaner needles back in, and that made a very significant improvement. The bike is still too rich and at high throttle it basically hits a brick wall due to overfueling. So, I need to get some smaller main jets as I expected, at least that's what I currently think. I need to ride the bike on the road some to see in higher gears if I'm thinking the same thing.

    I'd also increased the preload on the rear shock and that helps quite a bit. Really it needs a new/better rear shock I think, but increasing the preload makes it less bouncy and that's doing well enough for the time being.
     
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  11. FormerHangie

    FormerHangie En-Route

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    Good to hear that the carbs are working out, but I'm a little sad that a V50 had to die for this to happen, because that was the model of Moto Guzzi that I had.
     
  12. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I know, any parts that came off a parts bike mean a bike had to die. But, someone made the decision to sell them, and now this bike can live better. :)
     
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  13. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I’d ordered some new main jets for the Morini that would let me lean them out, as the mains were too rich. I put in 100 jets to replace the 110s, and rode it this evening when my daughter wanted to ride the dirt bike. It’s significantly better than it was. I’m going to ride it more, but I think that may be enough. Swapping main jets takes about 2 minutes, so I may try the next size down just to see what that does, but I want to ride it a bit more first.
     
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  14. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    A friend of mine sent me an MSD Sport Compact ignition box (which near is I can tell is an MSD 6A in a smaller package and set up for the lower ignition demand of a 4-cyl instead of a V8). He’d had it on a couple of his cars but wasn’t going to use it, and thought of the BMW when he fished it out of a box in his basement. It arrived yesterday, and so I installed it today.

    The benefit of the MSD box is that it will fire multiple sparks below a certain RPM and just a stronger spark above that. They don’t assume it being on a twin cylinder, so I’m not sure what that ends up being. But I put it on and it immediately seemed to start better and be more responsive and smoother. I’ll ride it around some, but the goal is to replace the single coil with two coils and get all 4 plugs working. And then at some point I’ll do the high compression pistons on it.

    I rode the Morini around more today. I’m pretty sure it still needs to be leaned out a couple more jet sizes.
     
  15. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I rode the BMW and the Morini some this week with their respective changes. I think that the Morini's main jets were still too rich, so I replaced the 100 jets with 95s. I'll see how those do.

    The BMW is hugely better. It runs much better at low RPM, it starts easier, it's more responsive everywhere. More power? Well probably not appreciably, but it just runs a lot better. So I got some coils coming for me to set it up to run on dual spark, both spark plugs firing. I could from there play with spark plug gap, but I'll wait on that. One thing at a time. The MSD box incidentally did pretty much exactly what I remembered it doing on my V12 Jag back 20 years ago, which makes sense. Both setups were pretty taxing on the ignition systems, and really needed to have better ignition. That's why BMW went with the twin spark setup in the first place on later R1150s (all variants), and they were copying a fix that the aftermarket had pioneered and found successful.

    After that will be high compression, but that will be some point in the future. I don't want to do other big projects on the bike during riding season, and especially while I'm trying to get the RX-7 and Cobra going in time to get some races/drives this season.
     
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  16. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    Yesterday was my friend's memorial service and the associated ride. He was part of the American Legion Riders, and so they did a memorial ride and final ride for his ashes. He liked the BMW and thought it was cool just the way it was, so that's what I brought. They were kind enough to let me join the ride, even though it's been a while since I've done any group rides and was riding a dirty BMW adventure bike. One thing I like in Kansas is that the motorcycle community is pretty inclusive, and I haven't seen many people thumb their noses up at others for bike types. I definitely was in the "Which of these is not like the others" category.

    [​IMG]

    It was really hot, but it was still a nice ride.
     
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  17. Brad Smith

    Brad Smith Pattern Altitude

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    Sorry to hear about the loss of your friend. My condolences.
    Our club is inclusive of all types of bikes, but in Oregon Harleys tend to outnumber everything else. We are an older generation of riders and a trike or two usually joins us as some are no longer able to ride on two wheels. Personally, I’ve owned all the Japanese brands and Harleys as I’m non-denominational when it comes to motorcycles. Never owned a BMW but seriously considered buy a “brick” back in the day. Ducatis have also caught my eye but that desmodromic valvetrain seems to be a PITA. Sorry for rambling!
     
  18. EvilEagle

    EvilEagle Cleared for Takeoff

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    I never understand the shade thrown at people just by looking at their bike. If the guy was standing next to it talking about all his off road adventures, I’d say fire away. (Although you still never really know).

    These bikes are great road warriors! Why hate on people that don’t use it for your preferred use? Is a 20k mile multi-country road trip an adventure? I’d argue that it is!

    I am by no means an off-road pro! I’m a complete novice but I like riding on and off road on my GSA. I have a similar wind blocker on top of my windscreen. If you actually do long days in the saddle at speed, you will appreciate it. The cover on the lights isn’t for wind, it’s for rocks. Catching a rock on the headlight lens or on the oil cooler (right below the light) is a very expensive and potentially stranding event.

    Trade-ins are especially weird. You never know if they fixed it up to trade it in or just rode it to the dealer as-is.

    Anyway, back to the rebuilds!
     
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  19. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    Well with only 4K miles on an 11 year old bike, you know he couldn’t have gone too far with it. :)

    I get your point, and I think it was a great find for whoever bought it. But it wasn’t for me.
     
  20. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I’m similar. We’ve owned bikes from every Japanese brand, Harleys, Triumphs, and I’ve got more on the bucket list (including Ducatis). I think they all have merit.

    And one day, it’ll probably move to trikes.
     
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  21. SoonerAviator

    SoonerAviator Final Approach

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    As Ted mentioned, the fact that it had all of the accessories but only had 4K miles in over a decade is what led me to my comment. I mean, to each their own with regard to bikes and what they want to strap on them. Plenty of Jeep Wranglers with 35" wheels and jacks/Jerry cans strapped to them that never get off of the pavement.
     
  22. cowman

    cowman En-Route

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    This thread is relevant to my new interests. I'm going to be taking a safety course and getting my M endorsement in a month. Coincidentally looking at dual sports as a first bike... I live on a gravel road and there are a lot of those all around me to go exploring on. Also want to be able to take road trips/run errands that don't require the cargo space of a car, etc. So I need something that can handle the gravel but be fine on a 55mph highway that everyone drives 65 on... or a 70mph interstate.

    I have a feeling I'm ending up with a KLR-650, I was also interested in a CB500x but no dealers near me seem to have them. I was interested a KTM 390 adventure but there are no nearby dealers and none of the distant dealers seem to have them either. I sat on a KLR, it's not bad. A tad bigger/heavier/taller than I like but the balls of my feet touch and I'm told it can adjust down so maybe if I'm in boots with an adjustment that will get my heels down. I guess my fear right now is, not having experience, I'll have trouble keeping all that bike upright. Also just generally that I'll get out on the highway and find it uncomfortable for any distance. Maybe I'll have a better concept of it in my head after doing the safety course.
     
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  23. TCABM

    TCABM En-Route

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    The KLR is not a bad choice and there’s lowering links for it if you want. It doesn’t do anything very well, but then again it also does pretty everything you could want it to do save be a trials or motocross bike.

    There’s also huge KLR aftermarket, but there’s only so much windscreen can do without an actual fairing. Seats can be customized fairly easily though.
     
  24. cowman

    cowman En-Route

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    Yeah that's what I've been hearing. Also I have 2 Kawasaki dealers within 45min. I guess not ever having ridden anything else I won't have anything better to be comparing it to. I've also heard good things about the Suzuki V-Strom 650 but those are a little more than I want to spend unless I go used. Kind of leaning towards new just because I want this to be something I can get on and enjoy then put away without constantly having to fix stuff. The other big question is how big of a deal is ABS- most of the base KLRs I see for sale are the non-abs variety. If this was a car I'd say I don't care, I know how to modulate a brake pedal but....
     
  25. TCABM

    TCABM En-Route

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    The V-strom and the KLR are both good, reliable choices with very little maintenance or repair problems.

    Don’t hold out for ABS; 99% of riders don’t have the ability to take advantage of the technology. Biggest difference is a car has one pedal, one system. Bike has two pedals, two systems. It’s entirely possible to stop a bike using the front brakes only almost all the time. From a simple perspective, most skids are rear-wheel skids, not much dangerous happens as the rear brakes only supply 30% or so of total stopping power. The fronts are much more difficult to lock up unless it’s freshly wet pavement that still has oil on it. Outside that brief timeframe, not much more dangerous than dry pavement, given serviceable tires.

    The Wee Strom will handle better on the road and the KLR better on the gravel. They both have great aftermarket support.

    Unless I was dead set on going single track, technical off-road, I’d do the VStrom XT as it’s a much more versatile tool. But it is more of a swiss army knife than a leatherman.
     
  26. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    Jaime, if you get a bike with ABS, make sure you can turn it off or that it has an "off road" mode. When off road locking up the rear tire is what you want for panic stop braking (you want to practice this of course) because it creates an "anchor" type effect. We practiced this at the BMW class and it was an impressive distance. Also, not all ABS systems are created equal, and the most recent ones are really good. Older ones... less so, and where that cutoff is depends on manufacturer. Just something to consider.

    The KLR 650 isn't a bad price. It's popular for a reason. I don't like sitting on it personally. If this is your first bike and your riding experience (on or off road) is minimal, something in that 600cc or less range (a KLR is still fine at 650) will do fine.

    One friend of mine bought a KLR, rode it a bit, sold it after less than a year for a BMW. The big single cylinder thumper and buzzing/vibration is something that comes with any big thumping single. Normally I'd advise against buying new, especially for a first bike, but the way things are right now there may just not be much value in used depending on prices and availability.
     
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  27. TCABM

    TCABM En-Route

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    This *2. Thanks for going down that path as well. I don’t consider lack of ABS to be a show stopper, but ABS that can’t be turned off is in that category, even if it’s a street only bike. There’s just so many good reasons to be able to lock the rear wheel up in certain conditions that I feel ABS is more of a hindrance than a help.
     
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  28. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    Newer motorcycles now mandate ABS and you can't turn it off on the front. Really I can't think of any good reasons to lock up the front wheel intentionally, so I can accept this. Turning off rear ABS as I understand it is limited to bikes designed to go off-road. It may not be in place currently, but that's the direction it's going.

    The old R1150GS had factory ABS. It was an early system. It was bad, and was known to cause a lot of crashes when it acted in a poor manner. By comparison on any of the new BMWs or my wife's new Triumph, it's so good that you can't even tell it's doing anything on the front, and on the rear you feel it a little but it's non-intrusive. At the BMW course they tell you for panic stops to pull the front brake hard enough that you think you'll break the lever. You never feel it working, but it is. That's the system you want, otherwise, I don't want it.

    Also, important to know how it can be turned on/off. The #1 complaint of the Triumph that is very common, but Triumph is doing nothing about apparently, is that you can only turn off-road mode on or off from a dead stop. This isn't practical for how you normally ride. All other modes can be swapped on the fly. No idea why they did it this way, but they did. BMWs don't have this issue. Not sure about other brands.
     
  29. TCABM

    TCABM En-Route

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    Is that a NHTSA requirement or the IIHS & NTSB poking and prodding industry or just a carry over from EU mandate? Either way, ABS on dirt does not pass the cost/benefit analysis in my book. While I can’t fathom a reason to lock the front, it almost always occurs in a panic braking situation and I’m not sure how much ABS can contribute to a reduction in injury/death for most of those cases.

    Concur. My ‘14 Multistrada is quite refined with preset and programmable independent ABS settings as well as turn the entire system off.

    The Duc will change between preset modes on the roll, but the throttle has to be closed to do so. Having done it in changing conditions, there’s so much distraction using the left thumb to work the menu while watching the menu that it’s almost unsafe unless you’ve got a nice, open straight. To turn the whole system off or reprogram the presets (4 modes; sport, touring, enduro, rain) requires being at a dead stop and in neutral with no brake activation. Those modes affect ECU mapping, e-suspension, traction control, and ABS.
     
  30. cowman

    cowman En-Route

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    The main thing holding me back on the KLR is fear that I'll decide I hate it on the road after a while. Also if I want something like a CB500X it looks like I'm spending around $5k for something 8-10 years old or around the same as a new KLR for less old used bike. That and the 390 adventure both look slightly better tuned towards what I want but price and availability are a thing too. IDK if there's a better time of year when more bikes are available that I should wait for.

    From what I understand the KLR's ABS can't be turned off, although I think I ran across mention of it being easy to change that. It kinda looked like a nice safety feature but meh. I'm also resisting the temptation to just show up at the dealer with a checkbook and bringing one home so I can run around the farm and teach myself to ride before taking the safety course :D
     
  31. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I'm not sure what the background is surrounding ABS requirements, or if it's that manufacturers are simply carrying over what they're already doing in the EU. Honestly, I don't pay a huge amount of attention to the latest trends and the model year changes.

    In an off-road panic stop situation, though, I can really see the value of forward ABS. You have less traction anyway, so therefore more likely to lock up the front wheel. The benefit will be more for a less experienced rider than more experienced. For me, it's not a deal breaker one way or the other, but if I had unlimited funds with which to buy myself a motorcycle, I would probably end up with a new one and I'd take those features. But I also don't consider myself nearly as good with a motorcycle as I am with a car/truck/bus (I'll leave plane out since I'm so out of currency).

    I don't know much about the Multistradas (other than I really want to ride one, but also expect it might be very expensive if I did), but that does sound more complicated than the BMWs or the Triumph to change modes. Then again, the BMWs and Triumph that I've ridden are also newer, and so it may be one of those refinement things they've improved.
     
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  32. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I think deciding you don't like the KLR on the road is a very real possibility. Back at a previous job a coworker had an older KLR 650. He would ride it to work, and when he was in the mood he liked it. But it was a vibrating thing.

    What you don't know yet at this point is how exactly you're going to ride, like how much of it is on your property, on roads, on trails, things like that, and that will dictate where you go.

    I will put in a plug for the BMW G310GS. New they're around $5k. Just fine on road or off road (although I would recommend the one tooth smaller front sprocket). It is a single and you get the associated buzzing, but it's definitely more refined, nicer to ride, and also a lower center of gravity than a KLR 650.

    Nothing wrong with that idea. Just remember - whatever you get, you're going to drop it. And if it's a dirt bike and you don't drop it, then I will point and laugh at you for not riding it properly. ;)
     
  33. Shepherd

    Shepherd Final Approach

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    I love my Suzuki VS1000.
     
  34. Morgan3820

    Morgan3820 En-Route

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    I purchased my v strom 650 new 18 months ago and really like it. Might be my last motorcycle.
     
  35. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I keep on looking at motorcycle specs, reviews, and other things I probably shouldn't be bothering with. While I do like the fleet I have, my brain is always wanting to learn more.

    The Ducati Multistradas have attracted me as owning a Ducati has always been a bucket list motorcycle item for me. However the early Multistradas generally were designed as "Yeah you could maybe possibly take this off road but probably not". The current Multistrada V4 has a lot more off-road capability built-into it. Then there's the new Desert X, which looks like it's supposed to be a more purpose-built off-road bike. What I don't like about the V4 is that it's, well, a V4 (as opposed to Ducati's historic V-twin or L-twin as they call it) and what I don't like about the Desert X is it's the smaller V-twin (950cc I think), and I like big engines.

    The Multistrada 1200 Enduro looks like it could be more of a sweet spot for what I'd want. It was built in a time when the Multistrada was still very much of an on-road bike, and the Enduro seemed more poised to compete with the R1200GSA at the time. Larger tank, some factory guards, looked the part of a proper adventure bike and actually has some good off-road and good features.

    It looks like checks a lot of boxes, not as a today bike to actively seek out but as something to maybe casually watch for a good deal on.

    I've been riding the Morini most of the time when my kids have wanted to ride in the evenings, both getting more comfortable with the more aggressive way that it wants to be ridden, and working on expanding some of my comfort with it. My slow speed balance continues to improve in the direction of being slower. On the BMW, I'd replaced the final drive in part to lower the speed at first gear in idle without slipping the clutch, and that was a comfortable speed. Now I'm back to slipping the clutch to go even slower. The Morini I've been practicing some general more advanced off-road and tricks/practice items that help with general capability with the bike. Things like riding it off the center stand, intentionally kicking the rear tire out a bit with power, and intentionally getting the front wheel off the ground (I won't call them wheelies, definitely not high enough for that). I still need to finish up the bracket and install of parts for it to have a rear brake. I'm happy enough with the carb tuning that I'm not likely to mess with it much.

    The Morini is a bike that likes to be ridden fast and aggressively. It's fun, probably really not the ideal bike for how I ride, but I do enjoy it quite a lot. I still need to find a rear shock for it.

    The BMW I still have the high compression pistons to put in and the new coils for making a dual spark setup. Those will happen but are lower on the priority list. They might be a winter project, certainly a "When the kids are back in school" type project.
     
  36. TCABM

    TCABM En-Route

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    That’s the only Duc that excites me in the current lineup.

    Ducs tend to depreciate real quick so it’s not unheard of to find a real good deal on a 2 year old.
     
  37. Bill

    Bill Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    The Multi 1200 was great the first five years, but after that it started having problems. Like leaving me stranded 300mi from home problems.

    Nope!
     
  38. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I've noticed that depreciation. It seems like mid teens is where I can buy a 1200 Enduro fairly easily.

    I do like the Desert X on paper, and I think they'll sell a good number. Really, though, it reminds me of the Morini more than the BMW (looking at my lineup). Maybe on paper it's closer to the BMW, but it strikes me as more of the soul of the Morini. 21/18 wheels, etc. If I got a new Ducati, I'd be looking at the V4. Might try to do a test ride just for fun.
     
  39. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I get that. Really, I just want to have a Ducati to check it off the bucket list at some point more than anything. The BMWs are, undoubtedly, better machines in essentially every way.
     
  40. Ted

    Ted The pilot formerly known as Twin Engine Ted

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    I ended up not riding as much as I'd hoped over the summer, but I still did a good bit. Most of my riding was in the evenings when it cooled off a bit (it was a typical hot Kansas summer), following the kids around on their dirt bike. We've gotten good use out of that thing so far. I split my time between the Morini, BMW, and Triumph, getting the Triumph past its 600 mile first oil change and now past its 1000 mile "full break in" meaning the engine can finally go up to its redline.

    Mostly, I've focused on the BMW for my riding. I do like riding the Triumph, but mostly take it if I'm going on a longer highway ride because of its cruise control and being slightly quieter when droning down the highway. The BMW I really have set up better for under 65 with the gearing and the lack of front windshield (I can put it on in 2 minutes, but I leave it off mostly). It'll do highway speeds just fine, but it does get a bit buzzy with the shorter final drive I put in. Riding back and forth to the office on the dirt/gravel roads, the BMW is a real joy and works great. The MSD box really helps it run and behave well at lower RPM. I'll still do the high compression pistons and get both spark plugs firing, but I suspect the former will do more than the latter. Of course the latter is easier, so I'll probably get that going first. Both still probably over the winter.

    The BMW GS trophy event is going on in Albania. I'm starting to think about trying out next year for the US team. The event is every other year with tryouts in the off years, so tryouts for the participants this year happened in October of last year. You have to bring your own bike to try out on, and so of course I'd be showing up with the old panzer. Somehow, though, this doesn't seem like a bad pick. I'll have to think about it some more as it gets closer. As I keep on riding the BMW I continue to get more comfortable with it, especially on loose surfaces, making it do what I want it to, and most of all at low speed maneuvering. Personally I still don't consider myself beyond a novice off road rider, but several friends who know better think I'd have a shot. So, I'll consider it some more and in the mean time, keep on riding.