XR650 'R' versus 'L'


104 replies to this topic
  • nanoonanook

Posted August 06, 2005 - 09:27 PM

#21

Lovin' the thread thanks everyone !

-- I can't ride the 'L' or the 'R' to school as it's a 400km (one way) commute ! ...... long story short, 2 day's a week, 9 hours a day for 11 months to get the masters degree, staying in a motel one (maybe 2) nights a week in Buffalo. --

What I want is a bike with enough nuts to be able to handle 200km road trips, gravel roads (not the nicely graded crap.... water runs, single lane, twisty, swamp on both sides, no winter maintaince roads) as well as double track, as much single track that I can find (not much around here.... mostly snowmobile trails). I'm guessing 60 trail, 40 dirt or county road.

Gotta be honest.... I'm really leaning towards the 'R' given the 'useful' comments posted.

Thanks again everyone..... a particular thanks for not mentioning the coffee chain that appears to be popping up everywhere !!!! :D

cheers,

AW

  • ghoti

Posted August 08, 2005 - 05:02 AM

#22

Yeah, but none of those fancy overhead cams or multi-valve heads either. Too questionable!
Make it just like a Harley..the pinnacle of reliability! :D



Yeah, my L's pushrods are very well concealed. I can't even see them from the outside :D RFVC means what :D

  • frankstr

Posted August 08, 2005 - 05:09 AM

#23

Your L has no pushrods, RFVC = radial four valve combustion i think... :D

  • captb

Posted August 08, 2005 - 07:31 AM

#24

Yeah, but none of those fancy overhead cams or multi-valve heads either. Too questionable!
Make it just like a Harley..the pinnacle of reliability! :D


The Hardley Abelson is just to learn on, the low power keeps you from getting in over your head and the 1940s state of the art technology is designed to be unreliable so you learn to make repairs on your own, and besides it gives you a reason to stop for a smoke. Their kinda like a big Briggs & Stratton mini bike with 500 lbs of chrome that cost alot. And there's nothing like trailering a HOG out on the open road. :D

  • XR650L_Dave

Posted August 08, 2005 - 08:27 AM

#25

The L is an awesome exploring bike, and its sure not a race bike, but its def.not a foo-foo bike only suitable for easy exploring!

But if fast is important too you, nothing brings that to a halt faster than a whole crapload of extra weight.

D

  • ghoti

Posted August 08, 2005 - 08:45 AM

#26

I was, dare I say it, leaning heavily towards the R as my dual sport. I bought a L mostly for the cost difference, somewhere around $2000.00 more for a new street legal R. But there were some other factors like if you do ride on the street with it and want to run into a store, or as in my case, leave it in the lot at work, it has an keyed ignition and fork lock. There is also a helmet/tail bag lock and buddy pegs. Not to mention the Honda top quality switch sets and instrument panel. I can't comment on the quality of the dual sport conversion kits. Don't let the R guys fool you Nanoonanook, The XR650R is way too heavy and too powerful for serious, technical singletrack, a smaller enduro is much faster with less rider effort. It rules the wide open spaces.

  • Jayzonk

Posted August 08, 2005 - 11:47 AM

#27

Hey Mork (Nanoo Nanoo), if you're master's material, you'll get an L. Read Ghoti's comments. Those are things that you won't be able to do with an R at all. Do the smart thing!
jason
(BA, MA, BSC, MBA, llb - no kiddin')

  • huntmaster

Posted August 08, 2005 - 03:14 PM

#28

The question however was comparing the R to the L. Not if a KDX200 is a better choice for a novice trail rider on single track...which it is. Still, the R will do the single track fine with a capable rider, and then rage in the open stuff. Neither of which applies to the L. But if you need street legality (out of the box) with some off-road capability then the L is the way to go.

It's all about chosing the right tool for the job vs your needs. I don't see see the issue here anyway and have repeated stated that these bikes don't compete with each other if you are at all clear on your requirements. :D

Here's a better answer, buy a CBR600RR and put knobbies on it. Same weight as the L with another 80 hp! Probably will be better in deep sand then the L too :D ... and you can smoke any R model that comes along!

Don't let the R guys fool you Nanoonanook, The XR650R is way too heavy and too powerful for serious, technical singletrack, a smaller enduro is much faster with less rider effort. It rules the wide open spaces.



  • theSWAN

Posted August 11, 2005 - 09:08 AM

#29

Dude, keep your life simple - get an L! Spend your time riding, not cabbaging up your bike. I'm a firm believer that the L will be a prize antique some day. Try to get your hands on one now!


what do you mean some day :D the L was a prize antique the day it was released

  • Pig_N_CR5hundy

Posted August 11, 2005 - 11:05 AM

#30

I was jumping the Grand Canyon, before you were a twinkle in your Daddy's eye...


on my L

I new the "L" technology was old, but not that old.......... :D

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  • khelton

Posted August 11, 2005 - 02:34 PM

#31

My L is a plonker, totally reliable, never lets me down, not even a blip all the way to Copper Canyon and back, can ride it all day too....My R is the most fun of any motorcycle I have ever owned....I can't ride for over an hour at a stretch w/o getting off but don't care..it is by far my favorite.

  • HawkGT

Posted August 12, 2005 - 12:51 PM

#32

How does the R compare to an L for freeway riding? Is the L significantly more comfortable, the same, or is the R better?

  • hill5150

Posted August 12, 2005 - 04:08 PM

#33

You'll get there faster on the "R" that's for damn Su"R"e............. :D

  • nanoonanook

Posted August 13, 2005 - 02:24 AM

#34

Whew....take a day off and look at all of the conversation I've missed!! This is going to take some more reflection on what my needs/wants really are. Good thing I've got loads of time to think about it!

A

  • Jayzonk

Posted August 13, 2005 - 05:38 AM

#35

As far as driving either one on the highway, the knobs on the R make it somewhat more buzzy.
Nanook, here's a quick summary of some considerations that have come up:
:D Cost - the conversion can cost you up to $2000 - you need the Baja Designs kit, and two new tires for the R; rewind the stator motor as well
:D RFVC - excellent design with good reliability. The R doesn't have this design. The L still does. Doesn't seem to be a big reliability factor at this point though. (okay, so no favouritism one way or the other here).
:D Headlight - the L has a bigger headlight for highway visibility. Surface area is twice as large as the R's.
:eek: Passenger pegs
:eek: Helmet lock for stopping in the city
:eek: Steering column lock
:D Key ignition
:D Tool bag - you get a toolkit behind your seat on the L; not on the R. Comes complete with a basic repair kit, and room for your manual, plus your wallet, plus your insurance/ownership, plus room for a sandwich!

I'm planning on trying to do some of my own maintenance on my L - not for cost savings, but for the enjoyment of learning about motorcycle mechanics. I'm not sure if the L is more amenable to this than the R or not. It may not make much of a difference. Maybe someone can comment on that.

  • huntmaster

Posted August 13, 2005 - 12:56 PM

#36

It comes down to whether you need to ride on the street or not.
If you do, the choice is obvious....get a proper street bike :D
Otherwise get the R and hold on!

Whew....take a day off and look at all of the conversation I've missed!! This is going to take some more reflection on what my needs/wants really are. Good thing I've got loads of time to think about it!



  • oldturtle

Posted August 13, 2005 - 01:28 PM

#37

here's a quick summary of some considerations that have come up:

:D Cost- The slight extra cost of 650R is the most bang for buck you can spend on engine and suspension performance. No amount of money spent on 650L could ever match performance of R.
:D RFVC- This obsolete head design was required in order to prevent overheating between valves on air cooled motors. With liquid cooling the 650R has more efficient and more reliable parallel valve arrangement.
:D Headlight- Stock 650L headlight is very heavy and only adds to front end heavy feel of L when pushed in any type rough terrain. Weak output not adequate for any serious night offroading.
:eek: Passenger pegs- More unnessesary weight that does nothing for performance. In rare situations where needed aftermarket pegs are lighter.
:eek: Helmet lock- Not needed. Just padlock helmet D-rings to front disc.
:eek: Steering Column Lock- Not needed. Padlock on front disc works just as well.
:D Key Ignition- Not needed. Use padlock.
:D Tool Bag- The 650L small and very weak rear fender tool bag is absolute joke. This never worked and never will. Best method ever devised for loosing all your tools and your wallet.

  • captb

Posted August 13, 2005 - 02:17 PM

#38

I have made 4 XRs street legal in Florida and Arizona I don't need no stinking kits.
Side marker socket and bulb added in existing T/lamp $6
Miniture air horn and 2 plastic ties mounted to front fork behind h/lamp $7
Used motorcycle brake lamp switch and a couple pieces of wire under $10
Trailtech computer multifuntion speedo, time distance etc. ebay about $79
C/D Case mounted to rear fender for tools wallet paperwork $8 to $15
Minature Switch radio shack hidden for engine cut off $3
Disc Lock $19
I just used the knobbies it came with.

  • Jayzonk

Posted August 13, 2005 - 08:28 PM

#39

Dudes, if you're really after that much performance, why are you riding an XR at all??

  • huntmaster

Posted August 14, 2005 - 07:07 AM

#40

This divergence of opinion here clearly shows that people are looking for different things when considering the "R" or the "L". I am still baffled as to how there can be such debate about two quite different designs that really don't compete with each other. If you are unclear on a choice here, you are really unclear on your riding requirements too! This debate is comparable to arguing about which is better...a Gold Wing or a CBR1000RR! The only thing they have in common is that they are both lighter then a 650L (and better in deep sand!) :D

Cost- The slight extra cost of 650R is the most bang for buck you can spend on engine and suspension performance. No amount of money spent on 650L could ever match performance of R..







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