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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking forward to selling my 2012 Suzuki V-Stein 650 and getting an Africa Twin, which appears to be better in every way. I'm 47 and have been riding motorcycles off and on for 25+ years. My other bikes are a 2014 Honda NC700X, a 2006 Honda 919 and a 2005 Kawasaki Z750S, which I have the most experience on of all three. Enjoying reading all the interesting posts on this forum and learning more show this bike's abilities and limitations before I take the plunge. I am soon moving to Eugene, Oregon from Seattle, Washington.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
BTW, I have several years of mountain bike riding experience (long ago), but almost none with a motorcycls in the dirt. The Africa Twin seems to be a great compromise between a road bike and a dirt bike. I know it's heavy and doesn't have the best suspension, but it still gives you access to areas that would otherwise be unreachable and let's you hone your dirt bike skills a bit.
 

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Im a total novice when i comes to off road stuff but i have took my ATAS down a few rough tracks and trails,i enjoy it but it does take some wrestling around with it being a larger machine,it's definitley happier on the tarmac but it's always nice to know it can tackle slighty rougher stuff if you need to.




:smile2:
 

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The AT absolutely rips on the dirt once you get familiar with it and your confidence builds - especially when you junk the OEM tyres and get some decent 50-50's. I took me a while though. I had dirt bikes as a youngster - many years ago - but my subsequent experience was pretty much all sportbikes. So when first got the AT a couple of years ago I quickly realised that I'd overestimated my capabilities because hustling a bigger bike in the dirt is not the same as flicking a 250 or 450 around. It took me about a year to get where I needed to be. Now when the tarmac transitions to dirt, I pin it. It will easily do 100mph + on the dirt - allegedly. And that is bog standard without any suspension upgrades etc. You are going to love it!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The AT absolutely rips on the dirt once you get familiar with it and your confidence builds - especially when you junk the OEM tyres and get some decent 50-50's. I took me a while though. I had dirt bikes as a youngster - many years ago - but my subsequent experience was pretty much all sportbikes. So when first got the AT a couple of years ago I quickly realised that I'd overestimated my capabilities because hustling a bigger bike in the dirt is not the same as flicking a 250 or 450 around. It took me about a year to get where I needed to be. Now when the tarmac transitions to dirt, I pin it. It will easily do 100mph + on the dirt - allegedly. And that is bog standard without any suspension upgrades etc. You are going to love it!

Interesting progression of skills, Derek! Good tires for the job cannot be undervalued. Glad to hear that you have learned to be such a good off-road rider with such a big bike. Sounds like a lot of fun. Cheers!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Been deciding what I want to add to the bike when I make the purchase. This helps bide the time, right? Keeping the torch burning.

Thinking Mosko Moto luggage, Hepco Becker racks, a center stand (recommendations?), Outback Motortek crash bars and skid plate, Cogent Dynamics revalved/sprung forks and rear shock and some Baja Designs LED accessory lights (which ones?).

Any of you have experience with any of these products and like or dislike them?

Any other must-have that you recommend?

Probably going to wait until 2020 as I think Honda will have the fork anodizing and wheel corrosion problems sorted by then. Maybe cruise control will on the menu! I know, don't hold my breath.
 

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I just got a 2017 manual, love it so far. Have been riding street and trails for years and years, and cannot overstate the value of spending some time on a lighter bike in the dirt. Gives perspective and physics on sliding, feathering clutch/brake/shifts and all that happens very quickly when off-road. My last bikes for years have been big thumpers, KLR600/XR650, which are heavy but not near so much as the AT is. Ditto all sentiment on tires, they are key to control off the road (and on FWIW). I'm still trying to work the discipline to turn the traction controls OFF before hitting the dirt, that'll mess you up in a hurry when you forget!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I just got a 2017 manual, love it so far. Have been riding street and trails for years and years, and cannot overstate the value of spending some time on a lighter bike in the dirt. Gives perspective and physics on sliding, feathering clutch/brake/shifts and all that happens very quickly when off-road. My last bikes for years have been big thumpers, KLR600/XR650, which are heavy but not near so much as the AT is. Ditto all sentiment on tires, they are key to control off the road (and on FWIW). I'm still trying to work the discipline to turn the traction controls OFF before hitting the dirt, that'll mess you up in a hurry when you forget!
Howdy neighbor! Been living in Seattle for last 20 years. In process of uprooting now and moving to Eugene.

I have next to no offroading experience on a motorcycle. My best friend had a KLR. Was bummed when he sold it. Was a bute! Sliding and feathering easier or harder on AT?
 

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If your just starting out on the Dual sport world, Rawhyde is in the pacific northwest and offer a good opportunity to learn the difference between street and dirt. I have not gone to ride with Rawhyde yet but I did take the Jimmy Lewis riding class in Nevada and re-learned how to ride. It always seems like a big chunk of change to do these classes but they are worth it. I was in a class with a solo baja 1000 finisher and even he took skills away which helped to improve his riding. The other nice thing about these classes is you can justify the expense and the time away doing what you love to the spouse by stressing the fact that you will be learning how to be a better rider. Sometimes a little humility goes a long way with a spouse. lol
 
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