Motorcycles BEFORE the trip


Once we have decided on a motorcycle, we usually ride it for a long time.

Occasionally, second or even third bikes are added, but these serve different purposes: Swift road tours and muddy off-road tracks are simply not to be mastered with a single bike.

Wolfgangs Bikes

  • BMW 1150 GS
  • KTM 690 Enduro R
  • Suzuki GSX R 1000
  • KTM 990 SMT
  • Beta 400 RR

The BMW 1150 GS was Wolfgang’s first motorcycle and he drove it for 7 years. It was upgraded with Touratech crash bar, Wunderlich seat, Touratech fog lights, BMW trunks and tank bag, MRA windshield and as a navigation system the Garmin zumo 660 with lockable Touratech mount. With it he even rode the LGKS, which was not yet straightened and simplified in 2010. But in between he cursed quite a bit about the motorcycle weight.

The KTM 690 Enduro R came into the fleet in 2011 when we were planning our Icelandic vacation. We both wanted to ride light enduros. We had equipped the KTMs in advance with additional tanks of the “KTM-950 Super Enduro”, off the ring road gas stations were rare and our route plans required stages of 400 km without gas station. For this motorcycle Wolfgang reached deep into the equipment box of the motorcycle suppliers:

  • Touratech Zega-Pro cases with the corresponding inside pockets
  • Touratech side stand support widening for better stability, especially in sand
  • Folding mirror
  • Aluminium bash-plate
  • Daytona heating grips
  • Conversion to the lamp mask on the KTM 690 Enduro
  • Wind shield of the KTM 690 SMC
  • Adapted seat of the 990 Superduro (shortened because of the tank)
  • Touratech washable air filter
  • KTM Powerparts silencer
  • KTM rear bag carrier
  • lower and wider rally footrests
  • stronger fork springs from WP

Besides road tours and enduro adventures, Wolfgang’s life also included a race track phase. For this the 1000cc Gixxer was the bike of choice. Pure adrenalin – and you learned what made a good cornering line different from the ideal line! But after a few crashes in the rain, this phase was soon over again.

After 7 years it was time for a change – the KTM 990 SMT replaced the 1150 GS. This powerhouse is simply fun on the country road – and has a great sound. Since vacations are currently taking place with the small KTM, the additional equipment here is manageable: Acrapovic rear muffler and a padded seat.

But for the difficult terrain and for training, the KTM 690 was already too big and heavy, so something lighter had to be done here: the Beta 400 RR is just right for this! Not much has been changed in that respect.

Danielas Bikes

  • Honda CBF 600
  • Honda CBF 1000
  • Suzuki DR 650
  • KTM 690 Enduro
  • BMW F800 GS
  • Beta Alp 200

Daniela’s first motorcycle was the Honda CBF 600 – her driving school motorcycle. Already after 5 months she was alone in Tuscany for 10 days – the travel virus could not be denied anymore. For this purpose, a manageable amount of equipment was added to the bike: only a top case and a tank bag.

Pretty fast 600 ccm were not enough – it should be more, but none of the tested bikes were as good as the CBF, so the next bike was a Honda CBF 1000 – in beautiful dark red – even the cover of the clutch housing and the cases. This machine already had grip heating – that’s addictive, all machines had that afterwards, if not standard, then retrofitted. Apart from the Garmin zumo 660, a MRA touring disc and Puig crash pads, there were not many other accessories available for this machine.

The one with the accessories only started when the trips became longer. The Suzuki DR 650, with which we were travelling in Liguria, already got a lot more equipment: a big moto-detail rear bag, Touratech Zega cases including the matching luggage carriers, a big MRA windshield, a Trailtech vapor speedo. Unfortunately, the big used Acerbis tank I bought was leaking, so I took it off again.

The trip to Iceland with almost new KTM 690 Enduro required the maximum amount of conversion so far. However, most of the work was commissioned from the company KTM Römer: the tank conversion and lowering. All in all I have changed the following:

  • Touratech Zega cases with the corresponding inside pockets
  • Touratech side stand support widening for better stability, especially in sand
  • Folding mirror
  • Aluminium bash-plate
  • Daytona heating handles
  • Adapted seat of the 990 Superduro (shortened because of the tank)
  • Touratech washable air filter
  • KTM rear bag incl. carrier
  • lower and wider rally footrests
  • stronger fork springs from WP

The many enduro rides made Daniela realize at some point that the almost 260 kg of CBF is too much – something lighter had to be found. The BMW F800 GS in kalamata-oliv was the ideal entry into the world of BMWs. The following equipment was available:

  • Lowering of BMW by new Wilbers chassis (60 mm)
  • BMW Vario-Case
  • Touratech tank bag Pure
  • Touratech seat (low)
  • Touratech side stand support widening for better stability, especially in sand
  • Folding mirror
  • Touratech tool box for BMW bash-plate
  • Scottoiler

The Beta Alp 200 is the most fun for the terrain. A good 100 kg and low like a bicycle.  The pillion grips (replaced by harnesses), pillion footrests, helmet lock were removed. The lamp mask was replaced by a smaller one (instructions here: https://www.betabikes.de/index.php/betabikes-de-projekte/alp-200-tt?start=1). The front fender was set a bit higher, after I had already crashed due to a mud-blocked front wheel. Since the machine is only used off-road, any travel equipment is superfluous.

So far our previous motorcycles. With which bike we will go on world tour is still open. Just as many equipment details.

But it applies in any case:

 

But the best bikes are still the ones that are the most fun – regardless of size and horsepower.

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