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Discussion Starter #1
I am new to this forum.I am currently in the market for a replacement for my Triumph 1200 Explorer which was originally purchased as a two up tourer and was an excellent one at that. However the years have caught up with me and I now struggle with its weight two up.

The 2017/8 DL1000 is very high on the list of possible replacements as is its little brother the DL650. My question, how good are these bikes as two up long distance tourers. My main concern is pillion comfort for my Wife who has back issues from time to time.
 

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This was one of the main reasons why I bought DL1000 although many will confirm that 650 will do just fine. Last summer I went on two long distance trips with my better half, averaging 600-700 km per day. The bike was fully loaded (side cases, top box and tank bag) and performed flawlessly. I have a stock seat and the only thing I added was a Shad top case backrest (huge improvement for a passenger). My wife was perfectly comfortable, didn't complain at all and trust me she can be quite picky. :laugh2: I don't want to sound too subjective but the extra power of 1000 and a slightly better suspension comes very handy on these two up trips.
 

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We haven't done a true long distance trip (e.g. cross-country) but my gf claims that she's very comfortable on the back of my 2012 DL650. (She fell asleep back there once so apparently. :-D) I have the Canyon Dual Sport Saddle Corbin Seat & a Bestem T-Box with a back rest. Last summer, we rode from San Diego up to San Luis Obispo (just over 300mi) and then up & down the central coast for a couple of days. Around 850mi for the extended weekend. The bike handled fine once I adjusted to having a passenger.
 

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My girlfriend and I did quite a bit of long distance two-up touring on my 2012 DL650. She told me she was pretty comfortable on the stock seat, and had lots of room to move around. She's pretty slender, but when we had a Harley Road King, she was actually more cramped and there was a lot less space between us. The hardest thing about that bike for her (and she has the same problem as she does on my Super Tenere) is getting on and off the bike because it sits so high. She always waits until I get on the bike, they she does a Rockettes style high kick to get her leg over the pillion part of the saddle. She then slides onto her seat. I've given up trying to teach her to stand on the footpegs to get on, or at least get on first on the lower front part of the seat and slide back.

Her one complaint was when we were on the interstate and getting knocked around by the dirty air coming off all the trucks, she felt decidedly unsecure back there. I never felt that, probably because I had the bars in my hand and had a sense of control, but for some reason she would get unnerved back there. She says she doesn't get that same feeling on the S10, and that it feels more "planted" to her.

I felt that the 650 was a little underpowered on the interstate when both of us were on it with a full load of gear. That was one of the main reasons we moved on to the 1200 CC Super Tenere. Other guys never had that complaint, so it's definitely a subjective opinion. Other than that, the 650 was a great touring platform.
 

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My experience:

I have a ‘16 650. My wife has been comfortable riding pillion ever since I put on a Kappa top case. I didn’t need to add a pad. She always wears a jacket and leans directly onto the plastic.

I didn’t like the stock seat for 2up riding. The passenger would slide forward into me when braking. Seat Concepts solved that problem.

The 650 is adequate but the 1000 might be a better choice. The 650 will cruise all day at freeway speeds. However, passing on a grade or riding into strong headwinds requires working it pretty hard. It can handle being pushed but fuel economy suffers greatly.

If you’re the type to cruise along with the flow of traffic, the 650 is fine.
 

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The hardest thing about that bike for her (and she has the same problem as she does on my Super Tenere) is getting on and off the bike because it sits so high.
Same problem here, but once she is on the bike she is comfy. We rode from Salt Lake City area to Baja, Mexico last year and (other than getting on and off) she was a happy rider.
 

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I'm surprised she's so comfortable on that pillion seat. Maybe it's because she's so light, and gravity isn't her mortal enemy like it is mine. I've offered more than once to at least get her an Airhawk, and she says no, she doesn't need one. She's a damn fine passenger.

But the whole gymnastics routine about getting on and off is going to get pretty old in a few more years. Neither one of us are in the Springtime of our Youth, and I can see the ADV style bike, no matter how much I love them, becoming too much for her. And that'll be a real dilemma for me, because I don't want to go back to a cruiser, and I have no idea what could take the Yamaha's place and still be as practical and enjoyable.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Many thanks for the responses so far. As yet we have only tried the bikes in a static situation and my Wife favours the seating position on the larger bike even though on the models tried there seems to be little or no difference in the size of the seats. We will shortly get to ride the DL1000 two up for a couple of hours but we are struggling to find a demo 650.
 

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My bride and I toured on a 650 Wee for years, she never complained once no matter how long we spent on the road and the 650 did everything my V2 does it just takes a little longer to do it.

When we swapped up to the V2 the first thing we had to do was get a custom seat built, within 2 hour we were both in pain with the original 2014 seat.

I love my V2 but I would not be upset if I was forced to go back to the wee, it was a fun bike to punt around.

You need to get on a stationary 650 & 1000 and lean them over till they get heavy and see which works best for you.
 

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I am new to this forum.I am currently in the market for a replacement for my Triumph 1200 Explorer which was originally purchased as a two up tourer and was an excellent one at that. However the years have caught up with me and I now struggle with its weight two up.

The 2017/8 DL1000 is very high on the list of possible replacements as is its little brother the DL650. My question, how good are these bikes as two up long distance tourers. My main concern is pillion comfort for my Wife who has back issues from time to time.
Hi Grif,

I would immediately rule out the 650 for 2up touring over long distance. I've owned 3 of them they are fantastic bikes, but they are not all that enjoyable for 2up riding. Will they do it? yes they will but not at the comfort or fun that you are used too with the 1200!

The 1000 is OK 2up, i've owned 2 of them. They get the job done in relative comfort. My wife and I did a long trip last year and we enjoyed every minute of it. However I very much knew she was back there and it does effect the performance of the bike.

For what you describe I'd say a Honda ST1300 would be damn near perfect. Yes they are heavy but the weight is carried very low, as is the pillion. I really regret selling mine, I had it setup amazing. Russel day long seat, heated grips, really nice top case, etc It's a way better bike for 2up riding then the Vstrom 1000. I couldn't even tell my wife was on the bike because it's so low! For 2up riding it felt way lighter then the Vstrom 1000 with its tall seat height... now I want another ST1300 BUT I just cant justify it for the 1-2 trips we take a year :) So the Strom isn't going anywhere haha.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The decision has been made after a two up try out with the Wife today on the DL1000. It was totally down to Her and if it didn't get her seal of approval then it wasn't going to happen. She liked the lower seat position in comparison to the Triumph. This gave Her greater protection from Wind blast at speed on motorways and the like. She liked the fact that the footrest is much lower than the T and therefore easier to mount. Lastly She liked the fact that there was less space between us and that also afforded Her more protection from cold air and weather. Her cons were a little more vibration but not enough to be an issue. Another was that the seat might not be as comfortable as the T item.

I liked the nimble handling, strong bottom end and midrange usable power, good top and 5th gear passing ability, reasonably good suspension. I was aware of some high frequency buzz at some higher speeds in top gear cruising. Enough to be noticeable but not enough to be a nuisance. There was a Touratech bodywork crashbar on board and I could certainly feel that vibing and wonder if it was partly the culprit as crashbars can sometimes be.

Anyway the deal is almost done. The bike is a new late 2016 model with the silver rear subframe that has a number of accessories added such as crashbars, spotlamps, heated grips, panniers and centrestand.
 

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My 650 is great long distance and my wife is very comfortable back wise - I moved the top box back and then added a nice soft back rest.. trouble is the Sargent seat I have feels a bit hard after a while! I find myself looking for a better seat- the stock one is worse!..The Wee will go all day - no issues even 2 up..
I do have Hyper pro suspension so that helps. I would think the 1000 is even better.
Cheers
Dave
 

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Hi Grif,

I would immediately rule out the 650 for 2up touring over long distance. I've owned 3 of them they are fantastic bikes, but they are not all that enjoyable for 2up riding. Will they do it? yes they will but not at the comfort or fun that you are used too with the 1200!

The 1000 is OK 2up, i've owned 2 of them. They get the job done in relative comfort. My wife and I did a long trip last year and we enjoyed every minute of it. However I very much knew she was back there and it does effect the performance of the bike.

For what you describe I'd say a Honda ST1300 would be damn near perfect. Yes they are heavy but the weight is carried very low, as is the pillion. I really regret selling mine, I had it setup amazing. Russel day long seat, heated grips, really nice top case, etc It's a way better bike for 2up riding then the Vstrom 1000. I couldn't even tell my wife was on the bike because it's so low! For 2up riding it felt way lighter then the Vstrom 1000 with its tall seat height... now I want another ST1300 BUT I just cant justify it for the 1-2 trips we take a year :) So the Strom isn't going anywhere haha.
Strange- I had a ST1300 and I found it YES comfy on the backside due to the Russell Day long but found it HOT as heck on my nuts and it was ungainly especially at slow speeds. Also didnt feel that it really had the Power I felt it should have (probably due to gearing).. I find the Wee is physically the same length but drastically lighter and also find the get up and go to be (to me feeling ) better than the 1300.. I would not trade my Wee.. I feel its perfected
Cheers
Dave
 

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Strange- I had a ST1300 and I found it YES comfy on the backside due to the Russell Day long but found it HOT as heck on my nuts and it was ungainly especially at slow speeds. Also didnt feel that it really had the Power I felt it should have (probably due to gearing).. I find the Wee is physically the same length but drastically lighter and also find the get up and go to be (to me feeling ) better than the 1300.. I would not trade my Wee.. I feel its perfected
Cheers
Dave
I think you had something wrong with your ST1300 lol... The ST1300 is over a second faster int he 1/4 mile and I'd bet if you did it 2up it would be 2-3 seconds faster. For 2up touring the ST1300 is far superior IMO, I can't think of a single area where the Wee would be better 2up except for maybe fuel mileage.
 
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