Inquiring: Large Person, Mountain Pass and a DL650 - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 30 Old 04-22-2016, 07:04 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 11
Inquiring: Large Person, Mountain Pass and a DL650


As some of you may already know, I’m a potential rider who’s orienting himself around commuting to work, on very possibly a V-Strom 650. What better place to gather information from than the dedicated community here!

Perhaps a good starting point is the bike itself. I would like to know what you think about myself as seat meat on a DL650. I am 1.88 m (6.2 ft.) and weigh in at 110 Kg (240 lbs.). My commute includes a mountain pass named the ‘Malahat’ located on Vancouver Island in Canada. Its elevation is 352 m (1150 ft.) and that’s where my first question derives from.

Will a DL650 haul my sorry buttocks up and over the Malahat easily? With ‘easily’ I mainly want to make sure that the bike gets the job done without straining the engine, or any other components for that matter, too much. I’m looking to take care of the bike from a maintenance point of view, but under that same topic I’d consider not having to push the bike to its limits too often. That would be nice but unfortunately can’t tell from experience yet.

What says you?!
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post #2 of 30 Old 04-22-2016, 07:11 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: PA North Central
Posts: 201
I live at an elevation of 1800 and have no problems coming back up the threw the mountains ,i am 5' 10" 200 lbs and and always have at least 50 lbs of gear on the bike and sometimes the wife 160 lbs ,2011 wee .6 gear .

Common Sense Isn't

Wee = The Swiss Army Knife of Motorcycles ,not great at anything ,but good at all.

The second time its not a mistake its a choice.
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post #3 of 30 Old 04-22-2016, 07:41 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 11
Alright, that was easy haha. If you get that job done, I should certainly be fine with myself as the only person riding, plus some luggage.

Ok, knowing this now I'm sure following replies are going to be very similar.

Adding a question:
Will the DL650 be a comfortable motorcycle for my body type? I sometimes see individuals riding, thinking to myself, "Man, you look way too tall for that bike! Why did you not choose a larger bike!"

Any thoughts?
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post #4 of 30 Old 04-22-2016, 08:13 PM
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Location: Hazelton, BC
Posts: 169
I lived in Victoria in the mid eighties to early nineties and have driven the Malahat many a time. Might have to do some downshifting, but the elevation and steepness of grade should not provide much of an obstacle for the bike.

Second question, I am 4 inches shorter so can not speak to it personally, but an upright riding style would seem easier for someone taller to hold on a bike than more of a tucked-in one (like that of a more sportier variety) and there is lots of aftermarket support (e.g. peg and lever lowering relocation kits from AdventureTech) to change the ergonomics to suit you better.

12 DL 650
00 KLR 650C
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post #5 of 30 Old 04-22-2016, 08:34 PM
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Location: Houston Texas
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The DL 650 is a full size bike. Basically the same size as the 1000 V Strom. The first generation DL 650 had a low seat that was not good for taller, larger riders but you could interchange a 1000 seat which was taller or go aftermarket. Install a footpeg lowering kit and maybe bar risers and you will have a bike that fits a large person better than 99% of the bike out there!
I am about the same weight. With myself and my wife, with cruise set on 68-70 mph it pulls some rather steep hills in the Texas hill country in 6th gear without losing any speed at all.

'12 DL 650 '14 BMW R 1200 RT

WERKS modified clutch baskets for DL and SV 1000's.
The BEST in chudder control, noise control, and lasting durability! AVAILABLE HERE:

Have questions about the clutch in your DL or SV 1000? E-mail Terry [email protected]
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post #6 of 30 Old 04-22-2016, 08:47 PM
aka Rick in Alabama
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Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Lower US 48
Posts: 502
In terms of raw horsepower and size of the bike, no problem.

In 2010 I spent 3 weeks riding in the Rocky Mountains and crossed 13 passes at higher than 10,000 ft in elevation. The only problem I had with my DR650 (not a typo - I was on the big Suzuki thumper) was with it running rich due to being on a carbureted bike.

So I would say go for a later model DL that is fuel injected, that way the O2 sensors in the system deal with the oxygen supply in the atmosphere.

Current rides: 2001 GL1800, 2014 DL650 Adventure; Gone away: 5 BMW's, 4 Honda's, 2 Suzuki's
"The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -Marcus Aurelius
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post #7 of 30 Old 04-22-2016, 09:16 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: north east, Buffalo NY area
Posts: 2,496
All V-stroms are fuel injected, so no problem. Plus you ride basically at sea level. The DL650 is well documented here to be plenty capable of providing the transportation you need, pretty reliable at low cost.

You need to study what modifications are best to accommodate your size. In addition to the earlier suggestions, which are good ones, you may want to consider getting the rear shock reworked to get it sprung and dampend for your weight. Daugherty Motorsports - Motorcycle Suspension Performance and Modification is one choice. He is good and reasonable priced but it may take some time for the shock to come back, especially in the busy spring and summer season.
If you find the fork dive when breaking harder annoying consider drop in fork cartridges from Ricor (Intiminators). I have them and they were relatively easy to install and made a big difference. I kept the stock springs.

Good luck with your choice.
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post #8 of 30 Old 04-22-2016, 11:26 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Washington State
Posts: 1,802
I'm 6'-5", 230, and one of the reasons I got the bike is because it fits me so well. And I have ridden Malahat a couple of times. You will have no problem.


Ride every day, it's good for you.
07 650A | KLR250(x2) | KLR650 | DRZ400 | FJR
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post #9 of 30 Old 04-23-2016, 02:43 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 11
So from what I've gathered so far is that the bike probably won't be a problem.

Jurgenk: Why the move?!
Blaustrom: Thanks for the link. I'll keep it in mind when the dream has become more of a reality haha. Appreciated.

What speed do you find the sweet spot is on a (2012+) DL650? And in what rpm range would it be sitting at that point? (Just so I have a future reference point when you guys and gals talk speed vs. ratio).
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post #10 of 30 Old 04-23-2016, 03:37 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Ontario Canada/Cairns Aus
Posts: 4,316
I find the bike comfortable and quiet 90-100 kph and maximum fuel mileage. ( 50-65 mph )

70+ is fine and higher but fuel really starts to gurgle out and you need to think about an improved screen to reduce buffeting

60 mph is about 4k rpm and varies if the OD kicks in.

Ontario Canada rider staying in Cairns Australian Feb to May & Aug-Oct each year
Canada 2018 CB500x >2009 CBF1000 sold 10 Wee ABS sold09 Burgman Exec sold • 10 NT700v sold
Australia> 04 KLR65093 ST1100 sold
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