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Adv tourer for 156cm duck?

Discussion in 'Adventure/Enduro' started by Gronked, Apr 6, 2009.

  1. My flat mate has decided that, one day, she wants to get a bike... of course we have been watching the Long Way series again and so she also wants an adventure tourer. So basically mostly road, some dirt, no serious offroading.

    Trouble is she's 156cm with short legs. While we are aren't looking for the adv tourer to learn on, but she just wants to know if/that there is a bike out there that would suit her. Oh and like me she has zero offroading experience beyond some mtn biking... but an offroad riding course would more than likely be on the cards in the future.

    Thanks in advance :)
  2. BMW F650GS (the twin cylinder version) with the optional low seat and the optional low suspension will almost certainly be rideable by her.

    Warning... by the time you add a few small options you won't get any change out of about $17000, maybe $18000.
  3. Yep what he said ^^

    My girlfriend (Jadey on here) is about the same height, bought herself a new BMW F650GS (Twin 800cc) and hasn't had seat or suspension lowered but manages to ride it fine :grin: She can't flat foot it so getting the seat lowered is definitely an option although the lowered seat doesn't feel as comfortable as it ends up more squared on the sides...

    Then there's the option to lower the suspension, but if you do that you'll lose your centre stand which will come in extremely handy if you want to do some adventure touring for maintenance and repairs.

    So there is options for her :cool:
  4. you can get lowering links for basically all bikes. you can sculpt any foam based seat as well as cutting back the rubber seat mounts underneath.

    I'd find a bike you like and are reasonably happy with, then investigate your lowering options specific to that bike. Searching a web forum dedicated to that model will turn up hundreds of people who have done the exact mods your after.

    Ebay is an obvious source for lowering links (often called dog bones), but you need to make sure you get appropriately rated ones because adventure riding obviously creates greater stresses than road riding does, so the new links need to be nice and strong.

    edit - if, as you suggest, your riding will be vast majority road with a little bit of dirt tracks etc, then seriously consider a Suzuki Vstrom. You can get a brand new 650 for under 10,000 which leaves you with a hell of a lot of money to kit it out, before you've even spent close to what a BMW will cost.
  5. Thanks for the advice people. Actually the v-strom 650 is the bike I have my heart set on for my full licence upgrade. There was a huge thread on another site just for v-stroms, it was full of pretty impressive pics of people taking them offroad, and that was basically what convinced me (was originally looking at a Versys).

    That TW200, funky lookin little thing... is it a kid's bike?? :)
  6. Its also a big case of the amount of height you can stand, a few short guys i ride with. One being around your freinds height wish short legs rides a 650R and manages to boot it over and climb on with no problems, he has no trouble at lights, traffic ect but he has to hold the seat under his knee. There are some bikes that will end up being too low by the time you lower them and fit a bash plate, so thats also something to consider.

    I noticed 650GS's are verry low already so with a low seat it would probably be low enough. Same as the Vstrom and Transalp.
    Her's a pic from another forum, theres no way in hell she'd flat foot but seems happy with it and KTM's arnt really lowerable accept for the seat.
  7. As has been said, most bikes can be lowered but the suitability for your flatmate will not just depend on height but the seat width as well as that impacts the stretch to the ground.

    Whilst some of the bikes mentioned specifically would be good, of course the dollars that are available will be an important part so I would suggest looking around heavily first off to see what bikes look 'appealing' and then finding out which can be lowered easily as opposed to which are difficult.

    As for the Weestrom (DL650) I have owned one and they are great bikes, but very top heavy (by comparison) as they carry their weight much higher than many other machines. This means that for a shorter person they could well be difficult to control in tight stuff but more concerningly in the Illawarra is the ability to be ably to hold the bike upright when stopped at traffic lights during some of the local wind gusts we get throughout the year. That aspect will need to be borne in mind.

    Now, I would suggest that you look at the DR650 (sold the Wee and got one) as it is light when compared to the Wee, learner legal if that matters, cheap in all areas to buy, run and maintain and above all else can be easily lowered around 50 or so millimetres as mine was (got mine second hand).

    Again I would suggest visiting the local dealers and playing dumb, sit on the bikes and check the reach to the floor etc. Remember that roads will be cambered and not smooth like a floor so if you just touch the floor, the bike may well be to tall. Ask about lowering etc and any other questions or requirements you may have or may be of interest.

    Once that is done then look around, ride where possible and have fun when you buy