GL650 Silverwing | Page 2 | GTAMotorcycle.com

GL650 Silverwing

jeff96

Well-known member
Should I be concerned about burning oil? I see a lot of references to that in the KLR forum

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timtune

Well-known member
Not sure why there is so much fear of older bikes on this site. If not for my bad hip my wife and I would be going east this summer on a 1986 GL1200 without a single thought as to it's age.

Due to the hip I sold it. I then bought a GL650 because it was narrow enough to ride with the hip trouble and the Squeeze had enough room on the back. Unfortunately a short test ride proved (at least to me) that it didn't quite have the power I wanted in a two up ride. Had it been powerful enough we would have gone east on it without a second thought.

All that said I also own a KLR650 and of the 13 or 14 bikes I've had over the last four decades it's definately one of my favorites. Cheap to buy service and insure. Fun to ride from the twisty roads to the gravel roads and more. Goes just about anywhere. Has great range. For long days in the saddle the long travel suspension makes for a super comfy ride.
Sadly with the bad hip it's too tight for long two up rides. (mine doesn't burn oil)
 

jeff96

Well-known member
I just checked into insurance. Apparently I didn't realize how lucky I am to pay $265 a year on the CBR.
Paying over double isn't a deal breaker, but the bike I've got suddenly looks way more attractive

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timtune

Well-known member
I just checked into insurance. Apparently I didn't realize how lucky I am to pay $265 a year on the CBR.
Paying over double isn't a deal breaker, but the bike I've got suddenly looks way more attractive

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Have you shopped around? My KLR , 2008 Yaris and my sled (1980 Kawi Invader) are less than 1000$ combined per year.
(no fire theft collision...)
 

jeff96

Well-known member
I called Allstate. The rep was heading out for a meeting so we'll talk specifics later today, but during our conversation he said 564 for the gl650 sounded about right. He thought that with bundling with the rest of my stuff that he might be able to do better

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timtune

Well-known member
I called Allstate. The rep was heading out for a meeting so we'll talk specifics later today, but during our conversation he said 564 for the gl650 sounded about right. He thought that with bundling with the rest of my stuff that he might be able to do better

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I have found Allstate to be no bargain. Just like anything else you should get at least three quotes before you sign.
 

Morrissey

Well-known member
Unless you are able to 90-100% of the work yourself you can easily find a well maintained VStrom 650 in your price range that will be farkled well with locking luggage, plenty of wind protection etc and it will only be maybe 10 yrs old vs 35 yrs old. Also, with your height you will find the ergos on the VStrom much more comfortable. Plenty of 10yr old VStroms out there that have been babied by their owners. I would have no concerns with buying one and putting 100k on it. Another thing to consider is insurance. Some companies won't insure a bike that is over 20yrs old. It sounds stupid but it is true. My insurance company considers them to be "classics" and does not deal with "classic" vehicles.
 

happycrappy

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Another vote for the KLR. I'm on my second one; I've been off road with it, rode it to Nova Scotia, and there is no better bike for short city trips as well (rough pavement/potholes mean nothing anymore). Either generation can be had cheap, tires are 200 bucks for a pair and you'll easily get 12000 kms out of a set on the street. I pay 500 bucks a year for full coverage insurance, and get 60mpgs too. I'm also 6'4 270, no issues having room on it.

EDIT - regarding oil burning, the 08's and some 09's had an issue at high sustained RPMs and oil use. The 685 kit, or some other mods have been know to cure this. My 08 has been bumped to a 685, and now burns exactly 0 oil
 
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jeff96

Well-known member
So I left a message with a KLR owner and looked at the GL650. (Don't you just love guys who ask for advice and then don't follow it?) Anyways, the bike is in good condition for the age and the owner seems to be very conscientious about maintenance. It isn't being sold safetied, but I don't think it would need anything except for the inspection. We simply don't know if the motor has been out of it for the 'triple bypass'; the owner thinks it has been because of the general condition of the bike when he bought it. In any event, these are things I can do myself, and the cost of parts is minimal. Fork seals and tires are new. The rubber boots to connect the carburetors to the intakes will need to be replaced soon. I haven't put a deposit down, I have time to think this one over, but I really like the bike. I can also by 2.5 GL's for the price of one KLR
There's also a very keen internet forum for these bikes. One of the senior members lives in the same town as I.
 
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Mad Mike

Well-known member
So I left a message with a KLR owner and looked at the GL650. (Don't you just love guys who ask for advice and then don't follow it?) Anyways, the bike is in good condition for the age and the owner seems to be very conscientious about maintenance. It isn't being sold safetied, but I don't think it would need anything except for the inspection. We simply don't know if the motor has been out of it for the 'triple bypass'; the owner thinks it has been because of the general condition of the bike when he bought it. In any event, these are things I can do myself, and the cost of parts is minimal. Fork seals and tires are new. The rubber boots to connect the carburetors to the intakes will need to be replaced soon. I haven't put a deposit down, I have time to think this one over, but I really like the bike. I can also by 2.5 GL's for the price of one KLR
There's also a very keen internet forum for these bikes. One of the senior members lives in the same town as I.
Jeff, I love your enthusiasm but I'm not sure you appreciate the challenges of owning an antique bike. Imagine being between Ryoun Noranda and Chasibi and needing a stator (or any part) for a GL650 -- 5-15 days vs 1 day for a KLR 650. Also think about support -- a KLR can be fixed by a weedeater mechanic, not so much for a vintage v-twin Honda.

I always say keep the heritage bikes as your pets... not your daily or touring rides.
 

jeff96

Well-known member
I'm starting to come around to what you're saying. I was a little alarmed at the oil consumption thing with the KLR, but really; a KLR may or may not consume oil between changes. That's it's worst fault.

The GL will eventually throw a starter clutch, or a stator, or a cam chain.

I can carry extra oil.

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Mad Mike

Well-known member
I'm starting to come around to what you're saying. I was a little alarmed at the oil consumption thing with the KLR, but really; a KLR may or may not consume oil between changes. That's it's worst fault.

The GL will eventually throw a starter clutch, or a stator, or a cam chain.

I can carry extra oil.

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Jeff, you already did one epic ride -- that's more than 95% of the forum readers here. If you ride like that, look at a longer horizon - 3-5 years for your bike. An antique is nostalgic and sometimes cheap -- I get that. If you want to understand that in better detail, drop by my garage, I have a 60's Triumph, 70s Honda, 2x 80's Yamahas, 90's Enfield and my late model '12 FJR and '16 VStrom. They all are road ready, come by in the spring and see/feel/hear the difference between antiques and daily rides.
 

shanekingsley

Well-known member
Site Supporter
I vote KLR! Or V-Strom!
Buy the GL as a second bike - not a daily rider.
I had a KLR and would have kept it, if it wasn't so gutless on the highway riding 2up. It was a great bike and 500kms off a tank of gas is nice. Burned a bit oil, but only needed a top-up 1x between oil changes. Older KLR's should get the doohickey done.
Since I wasn't riding it much in the dirt, the V-Strom was also a better fit for my style of riding and I liked it better for everyday commuting and wind protection on long rides.
As with all bikes, there are great model specific forums for each one. Both are great bikes and no one will ever steal them because they are so ugly.
 

Mad Mike

Well-known member
I vote KLR! Or V-Strom!
Buy the GL as a second bike - not a daily rider.
I had a KLR and would have kept it, if it wasn't so gutless on the highway riding 2up. It was a great bike and 500kms off a tank of gas is nice. Burned a bit oil, but only needed a top-up 1x between oil changes. Older KLR's should get the doohickey done.
Since I wasn't riding it much in the dirt, the V-Strom was also a better fit for my style of riding and I liked it better for everyday commuting and wind protection on long rides.
As with all bikes, there are great model specific forums for each one. Both are great bikes and no one will ever steal them because they are so ugly.
We're in the same camp. Jeff is coming from a Honda 250 -- the KLR is a nice step up with dependability, tour-ability and economy. The GL650 is a basket of unknown and potentially disruptive issues. If Jeff can stretch to a VSTROM, I'd say do it - I love mine, it's my daily driver and unless I'm tooling with liter+ sport/STs bikes, it's my go to on the weekends.
 

Iceman

Well-known member
I'm waiting for a CX650E to fall into my lap one day...
I had one as my first bike back in '91... It may not be the greatest machine, but I had a lot of good times on it... 'Rode it to Ft. Lauderdale and all over SW Ont

Nostalgia I guess...
Pretty nice package here if you're serious.


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MacDoc

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