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I just got back from Alaska last Thursday. Rode my 2017 Africa Twin DCT on the 8,955 mile trek. If you want to read about the trip here's a link to my blog http://www.budslatestadventure.com

I wanted to start this thread to report my findings and options about the the AT, not the trip. Started the trip with 2,587 miles on the bike. So, here goes.

First and foremost, the AT is a solid well belt Dual Sport motorcycle. It is not a long distance touring motorcycle. There are things that can be addressed to make it more comfortable, but my bike is just like it came off the dealer's showroom (except for windshield, heated grips, and foot pegs).

When I bought the bike I put the Honda side boxes on - I wish now that I would have spent my money for metal top-loading boxes. The OEM boxes look nice, but are not practical for travel. They are also mounted so high you can't strap stuff to the tops and still get into them (the key in the top, and has to stay there is a pain). Loading the bike with camping gear and travel essentials was like a jigsaw puzzle. Sure I could have changed these items, but choose not to spend a ton more money for another set of boxes, wider softer seat, etc. but use that money for travel expenses.

Other than not being very comfortable, the AT engine and transmission performed perfectly. Got and average 42 MPG for the entire trip. It runs as well on 82 octane as it does on 91. And performs just as well in 45 degrees (F) and rain as 104 and baking sun. The AT has an abundance of power even when loaded for a 4 week trip. A quick twist of the grip and the DCT will down shift to 4th and accelerate from 60 to 90+ in just a few seconds (maybe 3-5, I was too busy looking where I needed to be to watch the clock).

The factory rear tire was ready for replacement at 5,500 mile, and I was in Grande Prairie, British Columbia. I knew from reading other threads on this forum that the original tire did last very many miles, and I would have to get one while on the road. Got a very aggressive Mitas E-09 Dakar installed for only $340 (Canadian). I didn't want such an aggressive tire, but when you are 3,000 miles from home you take what is available.

Many of the days we road in the rain and on gravel surfaces, and not necessarily smooth surfaces. At 6,100 miles the left front fork seal developed a leak. Not bad, and I guess the Honda engineers attached the brake calipers so the leak would not get on the brakes. Two days later, the right fork seal joined the leaking game. I found a Fork Mate tool at a powersports dealer in Kamloops, BC and that evening performed surgery on the forks in the hotel parking lot. Dried them up and they made it home. After cleaning 4 weeks worth of dirt and grim from the bike, I serviced the forks and all is good, again.

Hope others find this informative, not a bashing. The AT is a good bike. It suits me better as a weekend rough-county get-away bike than a cross-country, multi-timezone, load it up adventure bike.

Later, Bud...
 

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Thanks for the info. Eventually, I'd like to do a trip to Alaska and back as well. What in particular did you not find comfortable? The seat? Buffeting? Skinny tires?
 

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I do find the stock seat terrible for any distance and the discomfort worsens by the day on multi-day, multi-week trips.

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I do find the stock seat terrible for any distance and the discomfort worsens by the day on multi-day, multi-week trips.

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I bought the sargent seat ,very expensive but if I bail on the ATAS It should fetch a fair price second hand, this is an improvement over the original seat but probably only going to increase riding for another hour tops,It feels ok on the higher seat setting as slightly thinner seat but a tad wider,Im going to do a bigger trip this month accross the uk and like I said earlier I will bail on the bike if It becomes too painful, hope you find a sallution..
 

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The seat was the most uncomfortable part of the ride. That can be fixed. Michael brought up Buffeting. I missed that as one of my concerns, but yes, cross-winds and gust (15+ MPH) push me around not so much the bike. It's like the winds come around the front of the bike. I can lay on the tank and things get more stable, but my 70 year old body doesn't like that riding position for more than about 5 minutes at a time. Also, keep in mind that this is a 500# bike and it is going to get pushed around by strong winds.

I don't plan to spend any money to try to resolve these issues, I have two KLRs that are more comfortable and much less expensive to maintain. Might trade the AT or just sell it outright.

Later, Bud...
 

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The seat was the most uncomfortable part of the ride. That can be fixed. Michael brought up Buffeting. I missed that as one of my concerns, but yes, cross-winds and gust (15+ MPH) push me around not so much the bike. It's like the winds come around the front of the bike. I can lay on the tank and things get more stable, but my 70 year old body doesn't like that riding position for more than about 5 minutes at a time. Also, keep in mind that this is a 500# bike and it is going to get pushed around by strong winds.

I don't plan to spend any money to try to resolve these issues, I have two KLRs that are more comfortable and much less expensive to maintain. Might trade the AT or just sell it outright.

Later, Bud...
I still havn't ruled out the gs although I did test ride one and found it a bit sterile ,if thats the correct word and when I got back on the ATAS the gs didnt feel worth the extra money, I probably needed to be on it for longer to be fair...I wear a shuberth M1 so havn't really suffered from any Buffeting so to speak,I also havnt blanked of my fork tunnel so cant say what the difference would be although we have had some very hot days in the uk and the breeze coming up through the tunnel has been quite nice..
 

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I've put a couple long days on the bike and haven't been any more uncomfortable than other bikes I've ridden. I know that everyone's different though. I have an Airhawk seat pad and a Madstad windshield. They keep me plugging along just fine. I WAS pretty uncomfortable when the bike was still stock.
 

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Last summer. I rode from home, Fort St John,BC, to Tuktayuktuk which included about 2500km off road. Fork seals were leaking badly when I got back to inuvik. Had the seals replaced in Whitehorse. Rode home from Whitehorse. Cleaned the bike. Then left to ride across Canada and back home. Cleaned the bike. Then left for Vegas. I have just under 80,000km on my bike now. I really have no problems with the AT. Stock seat, no problem, I stand on the pegs every chance I get. I’m never uncomfortable. I did change the windscreen to a Mra Vario and with a tank bag I have zero buffeting and I wear a Shoei hornet helmet with the peak. Heavy crosswinds do throw the bike around, but I don’t fight it which seems to help. Maybe other ADV bikes aren’t affected by wind, I have no idea. For me it’s a great long distance touring bike. Completely rocks off road as well. Now I just need to unseize these compression adjuster screws.🤔
 

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My AT is a 2016 manual, awesome machine, I’m currently at 56,000 miles on this bike with stock seat, stock wind screen & have factory Honda side bags that I have used on numerous long distance adventure rides , with no complaints 💯💯👍
 

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Greetings all! I just picked up in Aix en Provencce, a 2017 Africa Twin DCT, with 7500kms, to replace my failed 01 BMW F650GS; I also ride a 2013 Moto Guzzi Stelvio NTX (USA) which I absolutely love (except that I’m getting a bit old to lift it when I fall on dirt roads… 60’s wear and tear ;-)

FIRST IMPRESSIONS: I rode 350kms with a passenger over the weekend of which about 30kms on dirt trails with rocky limestone gullies, and 200kms on very narrow winding roads of Provence.
1) DCT works well overall, but NO WAY in the D position, during which it up-shifts at ridiculously low rpms (1500) where the bike has VERY LITTLE LOW END TORQUE. I found myself using S2 on winding roads and in the city.
2) the bike handles remarkably well with the ¾ worn Dunlop tires on it (original?), but I did find the FRONT FORK A BIT WOBBLY in certain low speed high angle turnss (haripins, rotaries) or when braking in a turn
3) I bought the last available pair of new Honda SIDE CASES from the dealer, and wished I’d read your comment earlier on this forum – might have looked at non-Honda had I realized how WIDE these are… oh well)
4) in steep slippery/rocky/gravelly trails I have found the DCT MAJORLY INCONVENIENT as I am not (yet?) able to keep a minimal amount of traction on the rear wheel to start if I fall or am stuck part-way up the slope; I understand the Traction Control is supposed to solve that but I have yet to master it. Keeping a foot on the rear brake and gradually substituting the clutch while slowly accelerating seems very challenging with DCT
5) I also do not like the seat....my butt gets sore after 100kms! I have friends who have a marine upholstery shop here and who have offered to customize the seat. Any suggestions would be useful (exterior material, leather? Interior memory foam? Wider? Narrower??). Note that it is a problem I have had with ALL my adventure bikes, so maybe it's malformation of the two bones I sit on, or extra whimpiness...
6) your recommendations for tires (85% on road in ALL weather, including snow) would equally be appreciated.

I’m planning to ride to Italy, Switzerland, Germany, maybe Slovenia in the next few weeks so I’ll add impressions.

Your feedback most welcome – preferably by email or personal message as I am a klutz with forums and the internet in general.

Safe and wonderful rides to all!
Nicolai
 
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