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Discussion Starter #1
Before I start, I want to say that I'm a current 2011 Wee owner and long time bike rider (mostly enduros and dirt bikes). My question is this: why are Adventure bikes so popular when they really don't ride as well as a street bike or a dirt bike? If you want a road/street bike..ride a street bike. If you want an off-road bike, buy a dirt bike. Right? Because you can't tell me that an Adventure bike will ride as well as the top road bike on the road or top dirt bike off-road. It's like when I bought my first boat it was a fish and ski model..because I liked to do both. But, I learned very quickly it really wasn't a good ski boat or a really good fishing boat. Same with SUVs. I've owned em all and I can tell you for a fact, they are really not that good for off-road (like a Jeep) and they're really not that good for all-road (like a sedan). So, why did I buy my Wee? I thought it could do both well and I was wrong. It's ok on the road for long trips..but the only way to get it really road acceptable is to farkle the hell out of it. Same with off-road, I took my Wee off-road and it doesn't come close to riding like my dirt bikes. It's just too big/bulky/heavy and has too much crap on it (lights/turn signals/cases/etc). Yes, I realize not everyone has money to buy a dedicated dirt bike and/or road bike and that an ADV is a compromise for both. But, are we kidding ourselves into believing our Wee does both equally as well? I don't, but I know a lot of Wee owners (who drink the koolaid) believe their bikes do EVERYTHING well. Since 95% of my riding is done on the highway, I think my next bike will be a touring or sport touring bike. Make sense? Or, is there really an ADV bike that does it all better than the rest? i.e. KTM, BMW, Ducati, etc.
 

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I agree that the V-Strom isn't a dirt bike, but for me, it is a great compromise. I needed something that I could ride for a couple hundered miles on the road without feeling like I took a beating, and also be able to ride the dirt roads with a little comfort. I've had cruisers that were more comfortable, but were a handfull on the loose dirt. And I've had dual sports that were great in the loose stuff, but after an hour on the street, I was ready to get off.

I've only had my Glee for about a month, but so far it does everything I've asked of it, and done it well.
 

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I came from a Kawasaki Voyager 1200. When it was time to get other I ended up on a V-Strom because I no longer wanted to be afraid of dirt roads. I can comfortably ride my DL all day, easily pack enough on it for a week away and not have to find another route when the pavement runs out. The voyager hated anything other than good pavement.

It's funny though that they sell the Strom as an Adventure bike yet put a side stand on it that can punch through pavement.

Honestly though check out Horizons Unlimited and you'll see that an adventure bike capable of taking you around the world seems to be anything under your butt.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I agree that the V-Strom isn't a dirt bike, but for me, it is a great compromise.
I just see a lot of You Tube videos on the net where guys are taking ADV bikes and jumping them off road and taking them down narrow trails that I'd normally only take my dirt bikes. And, you know these riders are professionals hired by the manufacturer's trying to sell the fact it can do EVERYTHING. Can you see taking your Wee off-road down a narrrow trail and hitting a tree and breaking a clutch lever or something that would render it unrideable? Or maybe you dump it during a stream crossing? What do you do then? When I rode dirt bikes and that happened, you just called it a day, walked the bike out of the woods, loaded the dirt bike back up on the trailer and headed home. When you got home, you fixed it and were ready to go the following weekend. I couldn't even see pushing a 500+ lb Wee out of the woods.
 

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I see what you're saying but for me it wasn't the "adventure" name that sold me on it, the seating position did. If I wanted a more upright seating position, like in the old days, this was about the only bike out there at the time. I couldn't stand the position on a sport bike and couldn't afford a wing. So, for me, it wasn't the so called dual purpose moniker...:beatnik:
 

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Compromise

Every sport has equipment to "do it all" and they all compromise performance to varying extents. Hybrid bicycles won't come near keeping up on the road and are very weak off road, to say the least. Skis probably achieve the "all mountain" goal pretty well. Cross training shoes for a dedicated runner - nope, but they'd be OK for as little as I'll ever run. The list is endless. These products only exist because there are people who want them enough to ignore the compromises.

Personally, I find the Glee fine for my road riding and very sure-footed on unpaved roads. I have no interest in single track. It's real strength seems to be its combination of versatility, agility, performance, reliability, and value.
 

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Can you see taking your Wee off-road down a narrrow trail...
you can stop right there...no, I can't see me taking it on a "trail". I have a dirt bike for that. And, even if it can be taken on the trails, I wouldn't enjoy it, not after riding a bike that was made for the task. But it is nice to know that if I get into a position that I have to take a trail, the bike will do it.
 

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upright seating and don't tell those dudes I passed on the bad pavement of tortilla flats that my bikes no good in the street. they'll be embarrassed.
 

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There is a road :)

ok more than one, actually a lot of roads.
there is a kind of road at here in quebec, but also everywhere else.
busted up secondary roads patched up pavement, potholes, not too many houses, all bumpy and cracked, that goes through farmland, along rivers, over mountains, narrow roads, like "larry's river road" "taramacouta" the road to honeydew in Ca. and other roads similar, and some hard pack gravel roads that wind through the countryside, like riviere rouge etc. I am pretty sure you have them wherever you are. the adventure bike is great for these roads. same for exp tires, distanzias etc.

they are doable on a sport touring, but painful, scrape the bottom of a cruiser, , a dirtbike is overkill really this is where the adventure bike excels. .

just my .02
 

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I bought my new 2006 DL650 not becasue it was an offroad bike or because it was a great sport bike or tourer but because it was a general purpose bike that tended to do most things I would do with it reasonably well. It wouldn't limit me to one particular style of riding. That bike is pretty much retired with almost 126,000 miles on it and is replaced by a new 2012 DL650 which now has about 43,000 miles on it.

Both bikes have been/are used as my daily commuter. They have taken me on many long trips (just got back from a 2700 mile road down to North Carolina on Sunday.) Been a blast on the twisties and I never had to apologize for my bike's handling when I rode with sport bike riders. Never caused me concern when riidng on unpaved roads (which is generally part of my daily commute.) Were great when having a rider on the back. And both have been incredibly reliable.

While having the Stroms I did a number of rides on other bikes. Most recently I spent a week on a Honda ST1300 riding in California and Arizona with my (now) wife on the back. Great bike.. fast as hell, very good handling, etc but again I couldn't wait to get back to my Strom. Not too long ago I did 1,200 miles on a new 2010 Gold Wing 1800 in the Canadian Rockies. Amazing bike tht I am sure can't be beat for touring type riding and it performed way better than it had a right to do; but when I got home I was glad to hop back on my Strom. I think that I am just not into bikes that are more narrowly focused that the Stroms are and don't feel I need a bike to define me. I just want to ride a lot and the Strom is a great everyday bike for that.

I am not into offroad (although in years past I did take both my Norton 750 Commando and Suzuki GS850G on Fire Roads (and the occasional dirt path) but here is a link to a thread on ADVriders where people have posted pictures of the Stroms offorad. Most aren't really offroad but some are pretty crazy:

Lets see your Vstrom OFFROAD! - ADVrider

..Tom
 

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Everyone seems to have a slightly different option of what 'adventure' means. To some it simply means motorcycle camping.

For me, I think of my GStrom as I would a Jeep. I can ride it just about anywhere I want. I can't go as fast down a trail as a dirt bike, but like Jeep I can still go down that trail ( within reason due to the limited ground clearance ).

For me, right now the limiting factor is the suspension. The one rocky forest service road I've taken the GStrom on beat the crap out of me due to the overly harsh front forks. I'm working on that. As soon as I finish reading Amazon.com: racetech suspension bible I'm going to tear into the front suspension to make it work better for me. I already know that I am going with an Elka shock for the rear, but I have not decided what I am going to do with the front yet.

Anyway, for me, adventure means exploring. Where I live gravel and forest service roads will take you along some of the most scenic areas. The GStrom works well for me for this kind of riding. If I decide I want to motorcycle camp, this bike has plenty of storage options to make that happen.
 

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Before buying my V-strom, i had (and still have) a 2000 CBR600, which is perfect for twisties and weekend fun, but try to ride that (with michelin pilot power tires) on a bit of rain badly paved (not even unpaved roads) and you're almost gonna shit ur pants.
Buying my V-strom i didnt really have in mind the "adventure" or "off-road" abilities. I just wanted something that i cam ride it like a car -kind of- where i can use for my commute to work all summer and being able to ride it when its rainy as well as not being scared when i have to go through gravel or unpaved roads while sitting more comfortably than a CBR.
Its not a do-it-all bike but it well do fairly good both on streets as well as when u have to go off paved road to gravel or sand (havent done any real off road or trail riding)

P.s. i dont like the stock bridgestone trail wing (or whateber they're called) stock tires on the Wee, they do pretty good off road on gravel and such, but 99% of my riding is street and highway in and around city and these seem to wear out fairly fast on the road. I have almost 9,000 km (5,500 miles) on my rear tire and its getting low and probably will need to be changed within 2,000-3,000 km
 

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I'm with ENESS

I went from a gixer to the Vee because of the little road conditions and the lack of LEO's on small roads. I might be wrong but I am probably faster in the real world with the VEE because it isn't so disturbed by bad pavement. Also direct experience that young tough sportbikers are beat up by Berkshire roads and have had it in a 1/2 hour.

Also I don't turn around when the road turns to dirt or dual track, yes she has taken an expensive nap once and a while (no armor)
 

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I prefer to think that the VStrom is the perfect 'do-it-all' bike. That is what I bought it for and that is how I am using it.
 

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It's the same reason Jeeps are so popular. Most Jeeps never go off road.

I switched from a SV650S to a DL650 simply for the difference in seating position. I wanted an upright bike but one that still retained some sport and wasn't a full cruiser. I'll probably never take the V-Strom off road, but just like my Jeep, I know I can if I want to......or need to during the zombie apocalypse.
 

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Mullerrj,

What you describe is pretty accurate, but if you simply forget about its supposed categories and how it may be marketed/hyped by the crowd, it's still a great bike, whatever it is. It certainly does have limitations all around as an all around bike, but once a person defines for themself what those are, its capabilities are still pretty good. But I agree with you; it's really a street bike for the most part as delivered from Suzuki.
 

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1. A Strom really isn't that different from an old airhead BMW. Upright seating, decent ground clearance, good suspension and you can hang tons of luggage on it.

2. I was a Scout. It's that "Be Prepared" thing. On my Strom or my GS I'm never too concerned about road constuction, dirt road detours or like a few days ago, a deep and fast moving water crossing a block from my house due to heavy rain.
 

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It's the same reason Jeeps are so popular. Most Jeeps never go off road.
You can count me out of this one. My Jeep has been thrashed at every off road park near me , My Vstrom has been in a couple hairy situations off road as well.:biggrinjester::hurray:

My conclusion , the Vstrom is a perfect "all road" bike , weather perfectly paved or a pot hole infested dirt path , you don't Have to stop.
 

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1. A Strom really isn't that different from an old airhead BMW. Upright seating, decent ground clearance, good suspension and you can hang tons of luggage on it.

2. I was a Scout. It's that "Be Prepared" thing. On my Strom or my GS I'm never too concerned about road constuction, dirt road detours or like a few days ago, a deep and fast moving water crossing a block from my house due to heavy rain.
Good point. Any road on the map is fair game, whether unpaved, gravel, or torn up for construction. No need to give it any more thought than "is this a public road?"

We sometimes ride with a friend with a Road King. When in Iowa this summer we had to detour about 10 miles south just to find an East-West road that wasn't crushed limestone, which he says is just too unstable for him.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Good posts guys..thanks for the feedback. I think the reason why the VStrom is such a good overall bike (for me) is because it allows us to customize/farkelize it better than most bikes to fit our needs. If we ride more road, we farkle it for the road. If we ride more off-roard, we do the same. If we do both, we compromise. It just cracks me up when I see the manufacture trying to show that our bikes can hang with the best of the track bikes and dirt bikes...when we all know it can't. I wish they would just show what it is: an all-around great bike to ride.
 
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