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Discussion Starter #1
So, I am currently riding a 2011 Ninja 650r over here in Thailand.

Sadly, I have to return to the US about June next year. The good news? The US has 1000x the number of choices when it comes to bikes and cars.

I love my Ninja, but I'm not really a sport bike guy, I bought the Ninja because it was the best bang for the buck and I couldn't find a legal CB750 or similar.

But what I did realize is that I love long distance riding, planning on going from Chiang Mai to Singapore this December (2500km).

This is something I want to continue to do in the US, so I am looking at bikes to tour on and can handle a dirt road here or there.

The versys doesn't do it for me, and I don't like how I sit on them, as for the Vstorm, not many around here for me to check out. Though I hear we are getting the 2014 DL650, for $10,500 mind you.

My question is the DL1000 too much for someone who has only been riding proper motorcycles for a year? It's not like jumping up to a Kawi 636, but 30 more hp is nothing to scoff at.

I figured this bike would be great as a daily driver and do touring duty and let myself pic up a 70's triumph for a fun project.

So, good first bike for the US for a semi new rider? Or should I grab a 650 first. Been seeing alot of 2005-7 DL1000's for really decent prices.
 

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You should be fine, either model is tall, 1000 has a bit more weight and allot more power. The 650 is typically the best machine straight out of the box, the 1000 likes to be fined tuned in most cases but runs GREAT once dialed in. Personally I would go with a 650 were I you, it is plenty fast and powerful, much easier to handle exploring off the beaten path too. Ride a 1000 if you are able, you might just find you really like it.
 

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I started riding a Kawasaki Versys 650 because I was worried about starting out on a liter bike. Owned it one year and needed more. The versys felt like riding a 65 hp sewing machine. Got the DL1000 and no problem. Plenty of power but fairly linear once out of first gear. The two pipes sticking out the back looks and sound better too.....
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The ride height of the DL1000 is about ~34" isn't it? My Ninja is a tad over 31" and I can flat foot it, though pulling out backwards from parked can be a pain.
Either the 650 or the DL1000 have aftermarket options to lower them if I am not mistaken. Hopefully in the coming months I can rent a DL650 and try that out.

However, a used 2004-7 DL1000 for ~$5000 is looking nice, and even the new models the 1000 is not a large jump in price...
 

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The ride height of the DL1000 is about ~34" isn't it? My Ninja is a tad over 31" and I can flat foot it, though pulling out backwards from parked can be a pain.
Either the 650 or the DL1000 have aftermarket options to lower them if I am not mistaken. Hopefully in the coming months I can rent a DL650 and try that out.

However, a used 2004-7 DL1000 for ~$5000 is looking nice, and even the new models the 1000 is not a large jump in price...
Lowering ruins these bikes IMHO.
 

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I think its officially 33", but the stock suspension really settles under my weight. I under stand the DL650 seat is a bit lower to. I have no idea what my seat height is, haven't measured it yet. I just know I like it better than the stock one. The guy said it was a OEM gel version.

There are many DL1000s around $3 to $4,000, while I was shopping most were over 500 miles from me. Many were on the west coast. I found a 2006 DL1000 for $3700 with a few farkles like a power commander, exhaust, two seats, new tires, fresh brakes, recent chain and sprockets and OEM luggage. The only thing it really needs is fork seals. I went with it because it was an hour's drive away.

The asking prices have ranged from $3200 up to about $4500 well set up with lots of stuff on them. The one I have is not as tall as my modified DR650 with heavy springs. I easily flat foot mine with the OEM gell seat, but my inseam is 34".

My first road legal bike was a KTM 950A set up very tall, it was tall even for me. 37" seat height had me on my tip toes. Usually I only put my left foot down at stops anyway while keeping my right on the brake.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Lowering ruins these bikes IMHO.
Yeah, I was reading into it, and seeing that others say the balance is affected it the benfit is not worth the cost.

Sagebrush: It seems my first step would to be to try out a DL1000 with a 650 seat and then look from there. Don't know my inseam, but I wear 32x30 pants and I'm JUST 5'8". As for prices, those are nice, cheaper than what I am seeing in and around PA. But I am not looking too hard as it's pointless to find the perfect bike when I am currently on the opposite side of the world. For ~$3500-4500 I could swing both the V-Strom and a Cafe/bratstyle project. Thanks guys, I'll take the next few months to learn more about the bike so I know the ins and outs of what to look for when buying used.
 
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