View Full Version : Best commuting bike for 150mi round trip


FLRover
05-21-2013, 09:43 PM
We are moving in with our in laws in an attempt to save up for a house. With this move we will be closer to my wife's job but my commute will be 150mi a day.
I am thinking about going back to commuting on a bike like I did in South Florida. I am looking for advice for a very comfortable bike that gets good fuel economy I am thinking something metric and around 650cc as I had a 250cc before. Any suggestions?

Skin
05-21-2013, 09:45 PM
this wont answer your question but think twice about it. 150 miles a day 5 days a week on a bike is a great way to get splattered by an unaware driver. Cant think of one person I know who did the daily driver thing on a bike that didn't have a fairly serious incident at one time or another.

CNGsaves
05-21-2013, 10:30 PM
Your solution is NOT a motorcycle for 150 mi round-trip commute in Austin, TX - - - too dangerous and not the least cost method.

Solution is CNG - - - - Compressed Natural Gas !!

You need to be driving a Honda Civic GX (newer models called Civic Natural Gas).

Here are the 2 re-fueling sites in Austin, TX for CNG - - - see this website for more details:
http://www.cngprices.com/station_map.php

1) City of Austin, TX - solid waste (Trillium)
2400 Business Center Dr, Austin, TX 78744
Price is $2.09 / gge
800-920-1166

2) ABIA
3100 Spirit of Texas Drive, Austin, TX 78719
Price is $2.14 / gge

With mostly highway driving, you can get 40 mpg in the 1.6 ltr Honda Civic GX which works out to 5.3 cents per mile using the $2.09/gge cng.

With current high price of gasoline (ie $3.80/gal), you'd have to get moto getting 72 mpg to get same cost per mile as the Honda Civic GX.

The Civic GX has full compliment of features including power windows/locks, cruise control, auto CVT transmission, etc. Look for 2002 to 2007 model year vehicles for a pretty good bargain.

Here is one on AutoTrader.com - - - 2002 Honda Civic GX $7,999 w/ 59K mi
http://www.autotrader.com/cars-for-sale/vehicledetails.xhtml?endYear=2014&fuelCodes=ALT&zip=67212&keywordPhrases=natural+gas&listingType=used&listingTypes=used&sellerTypes=b&mmt=%5BHONDA%5BCIVIC%5B%5D%5D%5B%5D%5D&modelCode1=CIVIC&sortBy=derivedpriceASC&showcaseOwnerId=67947&makeCode1=HONDA&startYear=1981&searchRadius=0&listingId=338471654&listingIndex=2&Log=0

Here's one on Craigslist - - - 2002 Honda Civic GX $5,900 w/ 147K mi
http://inlandempire.en.craigslist.org/cto/3805471187.html

On occasion, there are some low mileage cng vehicles sold out of government fleets at:
http://autoauctions.gsa.gov/autoauctions/findavehicle.seam

Current prices of NEW Civic natural gas are at terrific prices with Honda incentives, and free fuel cards $2K and $3K (California for Clean Energy). Car prices range from $21K to $25K and you'll want to shop nationwide as extra inventory in one state may be best price.

ducksface
05-21-2013, 10:34 PM
Rainy season coming up.
Get a different job.
The one you have seems to have done little for you.

X1 Mike
05-21-2013, 10:35 PM
Don't listen to the no fun police. Sounds to me like you need a Suzuki Wee-Strom.

daveroy
05-21-2013, 10:41 PM
I won't echo the naysayers from the Saftey standpoint.. I don't drive in TX so can't speak to it. But you will not save money with a bike over a small economical car. If you won't a bike because you want a bike, then go ahead... If you want a bike to save money, your fooling yourself.

Roots
05-21-2013, 10:47 PM
I commuted just a bit more than that daily, on a motorcycle, for almost a year. It's doable... just be vigilant, get plenty of sleep, and ride defensively! There's a lot of potential bikes in the ball park you're looking at, any idea what you might be looking at spending? Just to narrow it down.

For what it's worth, just realize how much time you're going to be losing each day from commuting so much. It pretty much killed me being able to enjoy a road trip for a few years. Also realize, that at least once a week, traffic may cause the trip to take exceptionally longer. I reached the point where if traffic was to bad, I'd just pull off and have dinner/see a movie until it cleared up.

Zelatore
05-21-2013, 11:40 PM
I spent many years commuting on various bikes. Is it cheaper than running some ultra-econobox? Not really, when you add up the costs of good gear, shorter tire life, etc. But who the heck wants to spend time trapped in that sort of craptastic car anyway? A bike is immeasurably more enjoyable, even on poor weather days. You'll arrive at work feeling alive, instead of only half awake from a mind numbing drone in a cheapo tin can.

Plus, on the weekend you'll have a bike to ride for enjoyment instead of some POS you hate to drive.

It's hard to pick a single best bike. The wee-storm mentioned above is a good choice. It can knock on 50 mpg, has a nice upright seating position, is cheap to buy and run, is commonly available new and used, and has good aftermarket support. All in all, it's a modern example of the classic UJM.

You didn't mention what sort of roads you'll be running, but I'll assume it will be largely highway. Good wind protection will be helpfully here. I favor naked bikes myself, but long periods of interstate are not great, particularly if you're bucking a headwind that can turn your 80 mph cruise into 100+. Another thing I'd look into is a hard tail trunk. Yeah, they look pretty dorky on most bikes but for commuters they work really well. Less drag than saddlebags means better economy, and keeping the bike narrow helps with lane splitting (not sure if this is legal in TX yet, but weren't they working on it?...let's hope so!)

Some other stuff to consider might be the Gladius (a sportier version of the WeeStrom, and the successor to the much loved SV650) or one of the new Honda 500s if you are looking for something new. And although you found your old 250 a bit small, the new Kawi 300 is a major improvement that might be worth a look. You could also look at the EN-6 and the Ninja 650. I would probably steer clear of full sport bikes or cruisers and more toward the standards and adventure(ish) platforms, but that much is probably clear from the bikes I've mentioned already.

Glacial_Speed
05-21-2013, 11:50 PM
Did you have a ninja 250cc before? If yes then you might look into a kawasaki 500R aka ex-500. Maybe a 650 versys? Honda NC700 (supposedly insanely good mileage) perhaps? Go retro with a shaft drive yamaha Seca 650 from the 1980s? Honda PC 800? Kawi concours?

I don't think you'll save any money on a bike versus a commuter car, (but you will have more fun) . Even if the bike gets 55 mpg you'll still likely end up paying more because the tires wear out so much quicker (and the speeding tickets, maybe that's just me :lol: ). I remember a years ago seeing a post of a guy who got better mileage out of his diesel VW than his GSXR 750cc Suzuki. Then again, the mileage versus tires argument was valid at $2/gallon.....now that it's closer to $4 it might be different.

Hmm...do they make CNG bikes?:D

Skin does have a point, you do have to ride like everyone is out to kill you, every time.

150 miles a day? Damn that's like 37,000 miles a year.....and a whole bunch of wasted time running back and forth to work. You might want to look for another job.

X1 Mike
05-22-2013, 12:03 AM
Just remember no one on a bike is looking at a dude in a cng shitbox Honda wishing they could change places. Get on your bad motor scooter & ride. The suggestion of an old Seca 650 is really good as well.

theoldwizard1
05-22-2013, 12:06 AM
I commuted just a bit more than that daily, on a motorcycle, for almost a year. It's doable... just be vigilant, get plenty of sleep, and ride defensively!

ABSOLUTELY !

Drowsy driving causes many accidents. In a car, you might wake up when your tires hit the side of the road. On a bike, you might wind up busted up in the ditch.

As an alternative a couple days a week, sure. 5 days a week, could get brutal very quick.

Look for a less than 10 year old Honda Nighthawk 750. Lots around with low miles.

machine_punk
05-22-2013, 12:10 AM
I've been thinking about a more comfortable bike lateley (I must be getting old). I've sorta been looking at the BMW "clones..."the very upright stance bikes with long suspension travel, to replace my Ninja 600. All the Japanese manufacturers make a similar model.

I just added a commute as a changed jobs. Total of 50 miles round trip (most wouldn't call that a commute, but I lived 4 miles from my last job). It is a reverse-commute too (I'm heading in the opposite direction of all the traffic...it is always busier on the opposite side of the road).

My daily driver was a large, 15-passenger van, with a 5.8 liter engine. I think it got less than 10MPG. That wasn't going to work for the added mileage, so I got a small car for commuting. I got the Honda Fit, in it's basic configuration, with a manual transmission. You'd be surprised how little it costs right now (PM me for details). My reduction in fuel costs MORE than pays for the car. It is one of the cars the young guys like to get, because it is relatively inexpensive, but has a bit of sportiness to it. It is a lot of fun to drive, with the manual transmission.

If you are still set on a motorcycle, make sure you invest in comfortable safety gear. Make sure you choose a motorcycle with an upright seating posture with an easy reach to the handlebars (sport bikes and some cruisers have an awkward seating position...you'll hate that quickly on the long commute). Go to the dealer, put the bike you think you want up on the center stand, and sit on it for a full 15 minutes. If you aren't completely comfortable at the end of 15 minutes, try something else.

If you've never taken a MSF (Motorcycle Safety Foundation) rider course, I HIGHLY recommend it. I use the skills I learned there to stay safe EVERY time I ride. I've taken the basic course (their bike) and the advanced course (your own bike). Both of them are fantastic (and may lower your insurance rates).

Keep the shiny side up and the sticky side down...

Kev

ZRX61
05-22-2013, 12:45 AM
Just remember no one on a bike is looking at a dude in a cng shitbox Honda wishing they could change places.

:thumbup::lol_hitti

SV650 sounds about what ya looking for & 150 miles a day is nothing. I did about 2000 miles a week for 8 years when I was a courier.

ZRX61
05-22-2013, 12:46 AM
this wont answer your question but think twice about it. 150 miles a day 5 days a week on a bike is a great way to get splattered by an unaware driver. Cant think of one person I know who did the daily driver thing on a bike that didn't have a fairly serious incident at one time or another.

You live in Boston... a city with a high percentage of Irish....

The rest of us don't have to deal with them on the level you do....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HaxQv-ZvxZI

bdkw1
05-22-2013, 12:48 AM
KLR 650. Decent wind protection on the highway, nice upright seating position for good visibility in traffic. If it falls over, who cares, it's a KLR. Great gas mileage and they run forever with very little maintenance. Lots of aftermarket bags and goodies for them if your into that.

Delta74
05-22-2013, 12:52 AM
lots of choices out there, if your taller, look at the Kawasaki Versys 650 I bought a brand new 2012, for a screaming deal, its classed as a sport bike, has the power and speed to have lots of fun, but is tame and docile around town, and best of all, the extras for the bike will blow your mind, hell I got saddle bags for mine throw into the deal as part of the 2012 clearance, holds a 12 pack no problem, or change of clothes and crap for work if needed. anyway look around it was cheaper for me to buy last years new, then used.

Good luck.

Zelatore
05-22-2013, 01:00 AM
While plenty of guys have done amazing things on KLRs, I'm going to vote against it or any thumpers. For long haul highway miles, a big single just isn't very enjoyable.

I know not everybody feels this way, but I think more would agree with me than disagree.

As for the SV650, it's a can't-miss option in many ways. Excellent all around bike that can cover everybody from beginners to track rats. Good examples can be had for $2K. But....the S has pretty aggressive ergos, and the naked needs a windshield for highway commuting. They are also getting a few years on them now if that matters to you. Still, I wouldn't (and haven't) hesitate to recomend them to friends and family. Heck, I even bought one for my brother a few years ago. I think the twin with a good pipe might even sound better than my Triumph triple. (naaa...couldn't be)

ZRX61
05-22-2013, 01:22 AM
Friends SV has over 200K miles on it, engine has never been apart & it's seen more than a few thrashings at track days

Zelatore
05-22-2013, 01:28 AM
I think my brother currently has about 50K on his and it's still going strong. No track days, but lots of mountain thrashing combined with commuter duty.

CNGsaves
05-22-2013, 02:15 AM
Just remember no one on a bike is looking at a dude in a cng shitbox Honda wishing they could change places. Get on your bad motor scooter & ride. The suggestion of an old Seca 650 is really good as well.

Kind of forgot that important human function of READING . . . :lol:

OP is married . . . says "We" are moving . . . ie "wife and I" . . . . maybe Brit is having trouble with the English written word?? :lol_hitti

Gotta warn OP to not follow above poster advice of Texting, Drinking, and Driving . . . it WILL be hazardous to your health! :lol_hitti

OP likely wanting economy . . AND . . . safety in getting finances in order if having to move in with in-laws. Wish you the "patience of Jobe" to handle that situation while commuting 3 hrs a day.

With hot TX summers, the cng Honda Civic GX would be comfortable low cost solution. However, the OP could try low cost motorcycle and see how it goes while he checks out cng. Such a long commute would push me towards an older road bike like Honda Aspencade or Kawasaki Voyager. These would be comfortable, get great mileage and several on CL for $3K or less. Bike like that would hold it's relative value if OP had to abandon motorcycle idea and switch to car.

Good luck but go touring bike and 1,000 cc minimum if that's what you try.

A_Pmech
05-22-2013, 02:37 AM
I suggest an SV650 naked (I might be biased) or a Honda 599 / 919 (might be biased here too). Both make excellent commuter bikes with the proper saddlebags for people in the 5'3" range. If taller than 5'7" consider an adventure bike as they offer a less-cramped seating position.

Enjoy your work mandated riding time! Don't forget to check out every possible way to and from work, even if it adds hours to the trip. ;)

Zelatore
05-22-2013, 03:47 AM
Kind of forgot that important human function of READING . . . :lol:

OP is married . . . says "We" are moving . . . ie "wife and I" . . . . maybe Brit is having trouble with the English written word?? :lol_hitti

Gotta warn OP to not follow above poster advice of Texting, Drinking, and Driving . . . it WILL be hazardous to your health! :lol_hitti

OP likely wanting economy . . AND . . . safety in getting finances in order if having to move in with in-laws. Wish you the "patience of Jobe" to handle that situation while commuting 3 hrs a day.

With hot TX summers, the cng Honda Civic GX would be comfortable low cost solution. However, the OP could try low cost motorcycle and see how it goes while he checks out cng. Such a long commute would push me towards an older road bike like Honda Aspencade or Kawasaki Voyager. These would be comfortable, get great mileage and several on CL for $3K or less. Bike like that would hold it's relative value if OP had to abandon motorcycle idea and switch to car.

Good luck but go touring bike and 1,000 cc minimum if that's what you try.

I'll skip the part about texting, drinking, and driving...

As for CNG...we all know your position on it, but the fact remains that although economical it's wildly inconvenient. As you pointed out, there are all of TWO stations he can buy fuel at. And what if he wants to go to another town? Better start googling to make sure there's a CNG station at the other end of your trip or take a normal car. If you happen to commute along a route that has a station then maybe it works, but for average use it's a 2nd car at best.

Now to the part about the OP and his wife - what's the relevance? Are we to assume women hate motorcycles? That wives won't let their husbands ride? Hmmm...I guess something must be wrong with mine, as she's perfectly fine with me riding. Encourages it even. Same goes for my brother's wife. And several friends' wives. And my mother for that matter, who's toured most of the lower 48 along with my dad - both on their own bikes.

And 1000+cc's simply is not a requirement for commuting. That sounds like the sort of talk I hear from people who either don't have much/any experience with bikes or who ride cruisers exclusively. Big motors are great, but the OP is looking for more economical, so the mid-size bikes such as stuff in the 650 range offer a good trade off of enough power to smoke anything on 4 wheels he's likely to encounter and yet pull down 50 mpg on the commute. Telling a guy he needs a heavy-weight touring rig just for a 150 mile ride is like saying you have to buy a Caddy if you're going to drive the interstates. It might be a little more comfy, but it's overkill.

CNGsaves
05-22-2013, 04:43 AM
I'll skip the part about texting, drinking, and driving...

As for CNG...we all know your position on it, but the fact remains that although economical it's wildly inconvenient. As you pointed out, there are all of TWO stations he can buy fuel at. And what if he wants to go to another town? Better start googling to make sure there's a CNG station at the other end of your trip or take a normal car. If you happen to commute along a route that has a station then maybe it works, but for average use it's a 2nd car at best.

Now to the part about the OP and his wife - what's the relevance? Are we to assume women hate motorcycles? That wives won't let their husbands ride? Hmmm...I guess something must be wrong with mine, as she's perfectly fine with me riding. Encourages it even. Same goes for my brother's wife. And several friends' wives. And my mother for that matter, who's toured most of the lower 48 along with my dad - both on their own bikes.

And 1000+cc's simply is not a requirement for commuting. That sounds like the sort of talk I hear from people who either don't have much/any experience with bikes or who ride cruisers exclusively. Big motors are great, but the OP is looking for more economical, so the mid-size bikes such as stuff in the 650 range offer a good trade off of enough power to smoke anything on 4 wheels he's likely to encounter and yet pull down 50 mpg on the commute. Telling a guy he needs a heavy-weight touring rig just for a 150 mile ride is like saying you have to buy a Caddy if you're going to drive the interstates. It might be a little more comfy, but it's overkill.

Funny how we haven't heard from OP that he's already thinking my idea of 5 cents per mile while driving Civic GX back and forth to Austin, TX is such a bad idea?? :dunno: Strange how some feel so threatened with "new" solution. I provided address of CNG pumps so OP can check that out for himself. OP doesn't need your narrow-minded "IT CAN'T BE DONE" attitude to direct what he does or doesn't do. I'm certain he'll figure out best route to drive back and forth to work, without your California opinion.

OP has mind of his own and can make own decision . . . I'm just giving him another option that might be helpful for both he and his wife dealing with 3 hrs of drive time back and forth to Austin, TX. Civic GX is proven tens of thousands of times every day in CA, UT, OK, NY, etc. as the perfect commuter vehicle to put on LOT of miles, and still do it affordably. If OP/wife live out in sticks, having an affordable vehicle to "drive into town" with the wife on weekends might be a good thing for them. Wife's 2nd car could be used for other purposes.

With 150 mile commute, OP likely be refueling daily anyhow (car or bike) so CNG Civic GX is about same range as bike. Spend $1K more for an addtl cng tank in Civic GX trunk, and the car would jump up in range to 400 to 450 miles, thus extending fillups to every other day.

My idea of affordable touring 1,000 cc bike is based on my riding experience with Honda 650 Nighthawk that just is plain uncomfortable for such a long commute . . . around town is fine, but 3 hrs a day will just pound the OP to pieces with expansion gaps on freeway driving. A loaded Aspencade for $2,700 to $3K is just an idea that OP can check out. Sounds like OP may not have ever owned a larger bike. Also, heavy 35K annual miles on just oil-cooled 650cc engine will kill those bikes quick. Aspencade would last him years, even with those heavy miles, due to being water cooled.

Let's let OP make decision based on how it will work for him & the wife.

adam728
05-22-2013, 06:02 AM
My idea of affordable touring 1,000 cc bike is based on my riding experience with Honda 650 Nighthawk that just is plain uncomfortable for such a long commute . . .

Your experience on a bike that's at least 28 years old (they stopped the Nighthawk 650 in 1985) is basis for what should be chosen from today's crop of motorcycles? :headscrat
Should we use 1980's CNG car's as a basis for which one he should drive today?

And I disagree about the Nighthawk, had a 1983 650SC for about 4 years. Went on many 100+ mile rides, and even did 1K in a weekend. Needed a windsheild, but otherwise was a pretty comfortable cruiser. Bikes like the modern Vstrom 650 can click off many miles even more comfortably. No need for big displacement in my opinion.

cide1
05-22-2013, 06:27 AM
I think a bigger bike with a few more features would make the ride more enjoyable. I really like the Yamaha FJR1300. The cruise, electronic windshield, and heated grips will be nice on daily long rides, the bigger gas tank will help how often you have to refuel. The long maintenance windows will help reduce downtime.

My 81 xj550, very similar to the seca mentioned earlier, got about 130 miles per tank and needs oil every 2000 miles.

Roots
05-22-2013, 06:31 AM
My idea of affordable touring 1,000 cc bike is based on my riding experience with Honda 650 Nighthawk that just is plain uncomfortable for such a long commute . . . around town is fine, but 3 hrs a day will just pound the OP to pieces with expansion gaps on freeway driving. A loaded Aspencade for $2,700 to $3K is just an idea that OP can check out. Sounds like OP may not have ever owned a larger bike. Also, heavy 35K annual miles on just oil-cooled 650cc engine will kill those bikes quick.

There's a lot of bikes less than or around 650cc, which are quite comfortable. A lot of those bikes can handle that mileage as well, SV's in particular are practicly bullet proof.

milesvdustin
05-22-2013, 07:29 AM
I commute 60 miles round trip each day to work on my motorcycle. It's a Harley, gets 40mpg. Way better than 13mpg in my jeep! I have saved a lot of money already by riding the bike.

SHOCheapRacing
05-22-2013, 07:50 AM
Glad to hear the SV650 recommendations. I picked one up at the end of last summer. My 2006 is an SV650s. I added an old man kit to bring the bar ends up and closer to me for more comfortable riding. Fun bike and a different kind of riding over my old Sportster. If you look at them make sure you are happy with the S riding position over the regular SV650.

snorky18
05-22-2013, 07:56 AM
I commuted 160 miles / day for about six weeks, sometimes by car, sometimes by bike (Ninja 250). The bike days could be sort of fun, if I didn't mind feeling beat up for the rest of the evening when I got home. For the job, being allowed to park under my building downtown rather than a half mile away was a nice privilege. I already had the bike. It never paid for itself, but for the <1 mile commute to college and being able to park next to the door for every building was a big time saver.

I love motorcycles and I love saving money. But I had a spreadsheet at one time that tracked insurances, fuel, maintenance, TIRES, oil changes, etc, for all my vehicles and I can tell you that you will not save money riding a bike over a cheap used civic unless you ride a 250 AND do 100% of your own maintenance - and then it's really close. If you want some fun factor and that drives you to a bike fine, but if you think you'll save a lot of money you are wrong. And all this before you take into account the increased liklihood of death or serious physical injury from an accident. I've never laid down in over 10 yrs of riding, but the possibility of it, and the desire to be around to raise my kid prompted me to give up most motorcycle riding for now. YMMV.

But if you're still listening to me ramble at this point, and still planning on motorcycle commuting, I'd check out fuelly.com for actual mpgs obtained by various motorcycles. That Honda NC700 mentioned above is pretty impressive.
http://www.fuelly.com/motorcycle/honda/nc700x

I really like the SV650s, but for 150+ miles a day every day I would want more wind protection and better fuel economy. And MPG isn't all that great since it has the aerodynamic properties of a parachute. :D

gsport
05-22-2013, 09:27 AM
i doubt that with the cost of the bike and insurance it's not going to save you any money in the long run

X1 Mike
05-22-2013, 09:39 AM
Gotta warn OP to not follow above poster advice of Texting, Drinking, and Driving . . . it WILL be hazardous to your health! :lol_hitti


Has your complete obsession with CNG obliterated your sense of irony and sarcasm? Obviously they are both dangerous; my quote is more an indictment on the murderous idiots that insist on texting while they drive which I consider far more dangerous than a few beers. The real question I have is, are you in the industry with a vested interest? I see no other reason for the constant preaching.

As far as the suggestions of an SV I think those are good to but comfort factor and lines of sight are better on the Wee-Strom and they share the same motor.

skyking
05-22-2013, 09:44 AM
I think a bigger bike with a few more features would make the ride more enjoyable. I really like the Yamaha FJR1300. The cruise, electronic windshield, and heated grips will be nice on daily long rides, the bigger gas tank will help how often you have to refuel. The long maintenance windows will help reduce downtime.

My 81 xj550, very similar to the seca mentioned earlier, got about 130 miles per tank and needs oil every 2000 miles.

I ride a FJR 1300 . I would not consider riding any motorcycle for the amount of time you are . I love my bike but it is very dangerous and it is not air conditioned.The preppies in hill country will run over you. Good luck.

805gregg
05-22-2013, 10:03 AM
Commute to work on Monday morning and commute home on Friday afternoon, find cheap lodging near or at your work

Lkdelta
05-22-2013, 10:10 AM
ABSOLUTELY !

Look for a less than 10 year old Honda Nighthawk 750.
Lots around with low miles.

I had to get rid of my nighthawk because parts are getting expensive
I just got the Kawasaki Vulcan custom. It likes the highway runs,
cruising along at 75+ are where it seems to like to run,
while getting 53 MPG

Make sure the pipes are fairly low noise, other wise it echoes in your helmet the whole way
Ive had both kinds of pipes, the quieter ones are better
With loud pipes, The cars do whatever they can to keep you behind them

FLRover
05-22-2013, 10:14 AM
Wow thanks for the response.

Ok I am not in Austin anymore we are back in Pensacola, FL and I commute to Mobile, AL where my job is. As far as getting a new job at the moment my earnings justify the driving. The drive is all interstate and takes about 1hr 15mins, its a very easy drive and dosnt take much out of me. I have driven it before and did just fine.

For the CNG stuff. No, that's all I have to say.

I have an Escape and Mini I will be driving to supliment my ridding. I enjoy ridding and with counting my bike as a toy and not as just a commuting vehicle I do come out way ahead with cost. The difference in 45mpg vs 25mpg over the course of 150mi a day adds up. I had a KLR650 before and I'm leaning that way again given the low cost to own. I had a VStar 250 which also was a great bike and had plenty of power even with the na-sayers telling me I had to have 1600cc to go on the interstate.....

I am looking for some bikes similiar to the KLR650 as far as ridding position and relibility. I love KLR's but its a pretty utilitarian bike. I'm going metric since the BMW's are out of reach price wise

Lkdelta
05-22-2013, 10:41 AM
i doubt that with the cost of the bike and insurance it's not going to save you any money in the long run

$20 a week/$80 a month for gas for the bike or $50 a week/$200 a month for gas for the truck.
I'm saving while driving the bike....
and I get to enjoy the commute :thumbup:

wornoutoldman
05-22-2013, 10:49 AM
My vote is for finding a nice clean 70~80s era 2-stroke. Yamaha RZ350 or Kawasaki H1 come to mind. Now that's some fun commuting!

Zelatore
05-22-2013, 11:01 AM
A couple of thoughts:

If you rode the Vstar 250 and thought it had adaquate power, you'd be in love with the new Kawi 300 motor. It's a major step up and will still be very cheap to own and operate. It also has strong resale as these little bikes are very popular with entry-level riders. I've known a couple of guys who bought and rode the 250 version and sold them on a year later for what they paid. (the last guy was actually in your part of Florida)

The KLR really doesn't have many true rivals. It's a very basic stone-axe sort of bike that can plod around town, down a fire road, even does OK in the dirt, and yet can cruise on the freeway and with a few bolt ons you can head for Panama or circle the globe. And it's very cheap and dependable. But it's sheer versatility and low cost also mean it's not particularly good at any one of those things.

The closest competitor for the KLR I can think of off the top of my head is the new Husky 650 Terra/strada siblings. Of course it will cost more (what won't?) and it's fairly new so it's relatively unproven, but it should be a step up from the Kaw in almost every category.

You mentioned the BMWs - I'm guessing you're talking about the 650 singles. Having lived with the KLR, you may not mind a thumper but I don't care for them on the freeway. I've done freeway miles on the BMW and while it can maintain 80, it feels like it's working awfully hard to do it. Throw in a hill and a good headwind and .... well, let's say that was the only time a Harley passed me on a bike. I've never really understood this bike as it seems the KLR will do anything the BMW will at half the price.

If you like the basic ergos of the KLR but want to keep the price down I'd be looking at the Japanese mid-range 'adventure' bikes. The aren't really comfortable off-road, they're more like street bikes in drag, but that fancy dress means more comfort and utility. In a lot of ways, this class of bikes is the new UJM. As an added bonus, these bikes actually look OK wearing hard bags and a trunk. Always a plus for a utilitarian bike.

I'd start with the WeeStrom. Well-proven engine in the 'strom, SV, and Gladius platforms, comfortable, and lots of aftermarket support. Also quite inexpensive on the used market since there are so many of them.

Kawi's Versys is their entry into this segment. Not near the market penetration or popularity/support of the 'stom, but it looks to be a solid player.

Honda's new NX700 might also fit in this segment, but it's a little odd. I really have no experience with this bike so can't comment much about it.

If you want to really have some fun and step up about 3 classes in engine performance, I'd say look at the Triumphs, particularly the 800 Tigers. Triumph makes some of the best motorcycle engines on the road today in the 800 and 1050 triples, but you're getting away even further away from that basic commuter bike here.

There are lots of other platforms to pick from, but again I'm basing this mostly on your like of the KLR. If you get the chance, ride a 'strom sometime - I think it will be an eye-opener after your last two bikes.

X1 Mike
05-22-2013, 11:05 AM
I'll skip the part about texting, drinking, and driving...

Are you another one that has no sense of irony and sarcasm? Obviously they are both dangerous; my quote is more an indictment on the murderous idiots that insist on texting while they drive which I consider far more dangerous than a few beers.

When I ride down the road and see someone texting I get their attention, point two fingers to my eyes and then towards the road ahead.

justanengineer
05-22-2013, 11:07 AM
I might get flamed a bit for this, but Id be considering the smaller dual sports. Even a 250 has a bit of pep and the fuel economy is good also due to the lack of weight alone. Personally, at 6'4 I also think the taller suspension is more comfy and also more forgiving in those "oh crap I cant avoid the giant pothole/dead animal/other crap" moments.

CNGsaves
05-22-2013, 11:07 AM
Wow thanks for the response.

Ok I am not in Austin anymore we are back in Pensacola, FL and I commute to Mobile, AL where my job is. As far as getting a new job at the moment my earnings justify the driving. The drive is all interstate and takes about 1hr 15mins, its a very easy drive and dosnt take much out of me. I have driven it before and did just fine.

For the CNG stuff. No, that's all I have to say.

I have an Escape and Mini I will be driving to supliment my ridding. I enjoy ridding and with counting my bike as a toy and not as just a commuting vehicle I do come out way ahead with cost. The difference in 45mpg vs 25mpg over the course of 150mi a day adds up. I had a KLR650 before and I'm leaning that way again given the low cost to own. I had a VStar 250 which also was a great bike and had plenty of power even with the na-sayers telling me I had to have 1600cc to go on the interstate.....

I am looking for some bikes similiar to the KLR650 as far as ridding position and relibility. I love KLR's but its a pretty utilitarian bike. I'm going metric since the BMW's are out of reach price wise

Well looks like faulty info in your profile led to quite a boondoggle !!:bounce:

Lots of details you apparently left out on purpose?? :dunno:

As for CNG, now the compelling story for Civic GX (natural gas) looks even better as Pensacola, FL has $2.05/gge CNG at:
. . . City of Pensacola, 6722 Pine Forest Rd, Pensacola, FL 32526
Highway driving likely get you 40 mpg which works out to 5.2 CENTS a mile.

Good luck if you plan on driving KLR650 for 3 hrs a day. Wind, rain and driving stance will make that a very tiring drive to Mobile, AL. ;)

Your "old town" of Austin, TX has $3200 used KLR650 for you:
http://austin.craigslist.org/mcy/3819481774.html

A_Pmech
05-22-2013, 11:10 AM
My vote is for finding a nice clean 70~80s era 2-stroke. Yamaha RZ350 or Kawasaki H1 come to mind. Now that's some fun commuting!


RAWR!!

But probably not for the daily commute... :)

As far as 150 miles on a bike "beating him up", that's what I do on the way to breakfast before the real ride. It's easy as pie and refreshing, not a form of torture.

If 150 miles is tiring then you need to ride more and build up those motorcycle muscles. Also, buy or modify a bike so it fits properly!

All of my bikes are and have been nakeds. I HATE windshields.

sk farmer
05-22-2013, 11:19 AM
i don't care one way or another but i don't get this "cng" is the answer to everything. the guy clearly said he wants advice on a bike and a "metric" one to be more specific. i don't get people recommending something the op clearly does not want. now if there was a cng bike out there i could see that but i don't know of one commercially available. there may be but i am sure we would hear about it if it was.

again, i have nothing against cng. i am sure it is a fine alternative but the shameless promotion of it at every opportunity is a little over the top and probably detracts from an otherwise good message.

ducksface
05-22-2013, 11:25 AM
?
No job justifies living with parents to supplement savings.
If the occasional fuel savings of three gallons (25vs50 mpg) is going to 'save your financial plan' you need a mew planner.
You're not thinking clearly emough while at a desk, let alone on a bike, to figure things out.

Your max savings, without regard to insurance and repair is very slight.

Do the math. Three gallons a day x 20 days...$80 per month maximum minus tires and insurance...really?

Say it out loud:
I'm trying to justify a toy.

X1 Mike
05-22-2013, 11:25 AM
i don't care one way or another but i don't get this "cng" is the answer to everything. the guy clearly said he wants advice on a bike and a "metric" one to be more specific. i don't get people recommending something the op clearly does not want. now if there was a cng bike out there i could see that but i don't know of one commercially available. there may be but i am sure we would hear about it if it was.

again, i have nothing against cng. i am sure it is a fine alternative but the shameless promotion of it at every opportunity is a little over the top and probably detracts from an otherwise good message.



CNG :deadhorse It's like the boy who cried wolf, it may be the greatest thing since sliced bread but to me he sounds like Charlie Browns teacher.

ducksface
05-22-2013, 11:42 AM
I gave you 5mpg to be fair.
Do the math.
Of course no helmet or gear costs ever....

Kevin54
05-22-2013, 11:57 AM
Commute to work on Monday morning and commute home on Friday afternoon, find cheap lodging near or at your work

^^^^^This right here. At 150 miles a day, come Friday, you're ass is going to be dead tired riding a scoot. Not only counting going to work while it's nice, then getting off when it's pissing and pouring. I'd rent a sleeping room somewhere close, and talk with the wife either by laptop or phone. Just don't chat on your Smartphone while on the shitter :lol_hitti

justanengineer
05-22-2013, 12:07 PM
?
Do the math. Three gallons a day x 20 days...$80 per month maximum minus tires and insurance...really?

Say it out loud:
I'm trying to justify a toy.

Not going to argue with the last part, we all do that occasionally, but where are you buying gas from? 3 gallons saved per day x $4/gal = $12 per day saved x 20 work days/month = $240/month x 12 months = $2880/year. Thats ~5% of the price of the house I bought last year just from riding. If the OP can ride something 70 mpg+, he could pretty easily get a nice down payment depending upon the area he buys in. Granted, maintenance and gear isnt cheap at times, but depending on the bike the first can be and the second may already be owned/paid for.

On1Wheel
05-22-2013, 12:24 PM
BMW F650GS.

Used ones can be found around here for under $5k with a few (quite a few, but they run forever) miles on them and they get 65+ mpg all the time. They're hands-down the best MPG conventional motorcycle and the heated grips that most of them already have on them will help if you plan to do this year round. My 2¢.

antinym
05-22-2013, 12:34 PM
My advice, get a nice big comfy custom seat.
The BMWs are nice, it's a true boxer so they're internally balanced.
Smooth is something you may come to appreciate.

ZRX61
05-22-2013, 12:36 PM
I commute 60 miles round trip each day to work on my motorcycle. It's a Harley, gets 40mpg. Way better than 13mpg in my jeep! I have saved a lot of money already by riding the bike.

40mpg? I didn't realize Harleys got such bad gas mileage. My Kaw is putting 142hp to the ground & gets an easy 45mpg commuting. From the state of tune I would have thought HD's got better than 55mpg, maybe even 60mpg. Is it a weight issue?

X1 Mike
05-22-2013, 12:40 PM
The BMWs are nice, it's a true boxer

Not the 650 I believe the engine on that bike is a Rotax.

SpiderGearsMan
05-22-2013, 12:42 PM
I commuted that far every day
when I started screwing cars up , I had to quit

On1Wheel
05-22-2013, 12:57 PM
I commuted ~100 miles round trip for over a year into DFW on my 636 Ninja and loved it when the weather wasn't too harsh. I wouldn't ride if it was raining in the morning or if it was below 40, otherwise I took the bike every day. I had protected HOV lanes (big jersey barriers on both sides) for almost half the trip so it wasn't as dangerous as most people think. If it's all slab be sure whatever you get is comfortable, unlike a sportbike!

bobadame
05-22-2013, 01:16 PM
Geo metro. It's like a large scooter with a really good windshield and a radio. You'll be spending about 3 hours a day commuting. The wind and vibration does bad things to the body over the years. Save your motorcycle time for rides that you actually want to do.

Roots
05-22-2013, 01:29 PM
I might get flamed a bit for this, but Id be considering the smaller dual sports. Even a 250 has a bit of pep and the fuel economy is good also due to to.

I'm a huge fan of many small bikes, I think they're more fun than a liter sport bike for the streets. I'm even ecstatic about the KTM 390 coming out next year. That being said, I wouldn't want one for long distance commuting on a highway. I personally don't find them too well suited for that.

CNGsaves
05-22-2013, 01:32 PM
It's like the boy who cried wolf, it (cng) may be the greatest thing since sliced bread but to me he sounds like Charlie Browns teacher.

With Brit's like above, it's crystal clear WHY the United States of America defeated the tyranny of "King's Rule" and became independent country . . . with independent thinkers. Brit is spewing crap that he knows nothing about. :willy_nil :willy_nil

Why is X1 Mike so scared of cost saving suggesting of OP driving for 5 cents a mile for 150 mile daily commute?? He a bigshot at BP and wants world to continue blind consumption of petrol/diesel?? Embarrassed that Italy is beating the pants off Brittain in the area of CNG?? Doesn't like paying $8/gal in Brittain and assumes there aren't better ways of commuting??

OP original post played out he had financial hardship, living with in-laws to save money, and commuting 150 mile round trip . . . AND. . . even considering driving that distance with little 250 cc motorcycle?? My suggestion to consider a CNG car would just make his life much easier and speed up his savings for own house versus living with in-laws.

Here's the easy math - - with 35K miles annually:
Civic GX (natural gas) at 40 mpg/gge at $2.05/gge is 5.2 cents a mile
Ford Escape at 30 mpg at $3.80/gal is 12.7 cents a mile
Motorcycle at 50 mpg at $3.80/gal is 7.6 cents a mile

Savings with Civic GX over Escape is $2,625 a year.
Savings with Civic GX over motocycle is $840 a year
Huge benefit of cng also is stable price that won't go up in near future.

Thus OP can decide what suits his need best . . . motocycle or car.

Jeff95TA
05-22-2013, 01:54 PM
The national average for a 2008 Civic GX with 60,000 miles is $15,000, which would be 5.7 years to recoup the difference (compared to using the Escape). Plus additional insurance.

sk farmer
05-22-2013, 01:55 PM
THE QUESTION

We are moving in with our in laws in an attempt to save up for a house. With this move we will be closer to my wife's job but my commute will be 150mi a day.
I am thinking about going back to commuting on a bike like I did in South Florida. I am looking for advice for a very comfortable bike that gets good fuel economy I am thinking something metric and around 650cc as I had a 250cc before. Any suggestions?

YOUR ANSWER

Your solution is NOT a motorcycle for 150 mi round-trip commute in Austin, TX - - - too dangerous and not the least cost method.

Solution is CNG - - - - Compressed Natural Gas !!

You need to be driving a Honda Civic GX (newer models called Civic Natural Gas).

Here are the 2 re-fueling sites in Austin, TX for CNG - - - see this website for more details:
http://www.cngprices.com/station_map.php

1) City of Austin, TX - solid waste (Trillium)
2400 Business Center Dr, Austin, TX 78744
Price is $2.09 / gge
800-920-1166

2) ABIA
3100 Spirit of Texas Drive, Austin, TX 78719
Price is $2.14 / gge

With mostly highway driving, you can get 40 mpg in the 1.6 ltr Honda Civic GX which works out to 5.3 cents per mile using the $2.09/gge cng.

With current high price of gasoline (ie $3.80/gal), you'd have to get moto getting 72 mpg to get same cost per mile as the Honda Civic GX.

The Civic GX has full compliment of features including power windows/locks, cruise control, auto CVT transmission, etc. Look for 2002 to 2007 model year vehicles for a pretty good bargain.

Here is one on AutoTrader.com - - - 2002 Honda Civic GX $7,999 w/ 59K mi
http://www.autotrader.com/cars-for-sale/vehicledetails.xhtml?endYear=2014&fuelCodes=ALT&zip=67212&keywordPhrases=natural+gas&listingType=used&listingTypes=used&sellerTypes=b&mmt=%5BHONDA%5BCIVIC%5B%5D%5D%5B%5D%5D&modelCode1=CIVIC&sortBy=derivedpriceASC&showcaseOwnerId=67947&makeCode1=HONDA&startYear=1981&searchRadius=0&listingId=338471654&listingIndex=2&Log=0

Here's one on Craigslist - - - 2002 Honda Civic GX $5,900 w/ 147K mi
http://inlandempire.en.craigslist.org/cto/3805471187.html

On occasion, there are some low mileage cng vehicles sold out of government fleets at:
http://autoauctions.gsa.gov/autoauctions/findavehicle.seam

Current prices of NEW Civic natural gas are at terrific prices with Honda incentives, and free fuel cards $2K and $3K (California for Clean Energy). Car prices range from $21K to $25K and you'll want to shop nationwide as extra inventory in one state may be best price.

once again, i have nothing against cng. i am all for alternative energy sources.

but, you insist on telling him he is wrong and it is not what he wants even though he is pretty clear in what he wants, not a car. a common theme in your cng responses to tell people they really don't want what they want because cng is the answer to all things. pitch your product when it fits but quit using everyone else's thread to pitch your facts figures and statistics.

i am in need of a new atv for checking fields, a lawnmower for the grass and a high horsepower ag tractor. i suppose you will tell me i don't want or need those either and should get a cng car or truck to perform them.

my apology to the op for this thread going off track.

X1 Mike
05-22-2013, 01:58 PM
With Brit's like above, it's crystal clear WHY the United States of America defeated the tyranny of "King's Rule" and became independent country . . . with independent thinkers. Brit is spewing crap that he knows nothing about. :willy_nil :willy_nil

Why is X1 Mike so scared of cost saving suggesting of OP driving for 5 cents a mile for 150 mile daily commute?? He a bigshot at BP and wants world to continue blind consumption of petrol/diesel?? Embarrassed that Italy is beating the pants off Brittain in the area of CNG?? Doesn't like paying $8/gal in Brittain and assumes there aren't better ways of commuting??


Not sure what you are talking about a Brit, but in regards to me the point I'm making is you never shut up about it. My best guess is you make your living off that industry and have a vested interest.

Here is a typical thread: What lube is best for an Harbor Frieght ratchet?

CNG: Not sure but you can get to HF at $.000006 a mile if you use CNG in your car. You will only have to go 17 miles out of your way to find a station.


CNG may be a great alternative but the fact you never shut up about it makes me tune you out.

CNGsaves
05-22-2013, 01:59 PM
. . . . Hmm...do they make CNG bikes?:D

Skin does have a point, you do have to ride like everyone is out to kill you, every time.

150 miles a day? Damn that's like 37,000 miles a year.....and a whole bunch of wasted time running back and forth to work.

Actually there are handful of cng motorcycles (see below) . . . however, not real practical for 150 mile daily commute that OP says he'll be making.

I'd sure hate to see OP pursue heavy commuting with underpowered motorcycle, or without proper fairing so heavy wind drag on rider . . . . all of which might take fun out of motorcycling.

In GJ fashion . . There's a proper tool for the job. Good luck deciding!! ;)

Shadowdog500
05-22-2013, 02:13 PM
Gold wing?!?!

I wouldn't do a daily commute like that on a bike, but if you want to my recommendation is for a Gold wing. At least you will be fresh after your 3 to 4 hour daily commute.

Chris

bull_duck
05-22-2013, 02:19 PM
Get a new job. With the decisions your existing job imposes on you, it is not a keeper. Get a job closer to where you will be residing. Ideally, walk to work - will keep you in shape.

VWPORSCHEGT3
05-22-2013, 02:27 PM
find a Nice used 883CC Sportster, 2004 or newer (rubber isolated engine) one of the most comfortable bikes stock.. if the seat irks you, find one that fits your butt. Foreword controls and nice soundtrack to listen to and you'll be happy , trust me. I do my daily 80mile commute on a 600cc sportbike.... by the time I'm home im buzzy....

Roots
05-22-2013, 02:27 PM
Get a new job. With the decisions your existing job imposes on you, it is not a keeper. Get a job closer to where you will be residing. Ideally, walk to work - will keep you in shape.

That's a luxury, few people with professional careers have.

Aberdale
05-22-2013, 02:40 PM
I've had experience on quite a few motorcycles, and currently have nine of them in the garage. Everything from Harleys, BMWs, Hondas, and Yamahas.

Since you said you were commuting mostly on the freeway from Pensacola to Mobile, I would suggest something with a longer wheelbase for comfort, and a little heavier to compensate for the wind effect from semis. A fairing would be nice, and some storage space would be good for a jacket or rain suit.

You were leaning towards a bike in the 500-650cc class, but didn't say why. I am assuming it's because your experience has been on a 250 cc bike, and you want something bigger, but don't have the confidence for something in the 1000cc or larger class. Or perhaps you are assuming a bigger bike will get poorer fuel economy.

Several bikes come to mind. The V-Strom, mentioned earlier, is a good choice. The BMW F650 is also a good choice. I don't know how tall you are, but both of these bikes have tall seats, and may not fit you if you are vertically challenged.

A personal favorite for me as a commuter/tourer is the older BMW K-bikes. They are fuel injected and water cooled and are pretty much bullet proof. I still have a 1990 BMW K100RS that I bought new. Other than oil changes, it has been trouble free in the 60,000 miles I have ridden it. My wife rides a
k75. The K75 is a 750cc 3 cylinder that actually runs smoother than the 4 cylinder K100. The K series was available naked, an RS version with a sport fairing and removable saddle bags, or an RT version with a full fairing and windshield, and removable bags.

Both of these K bikes have averaged around 50 mpg. Many have been known to go 300,000 miles before an overhaul. Just keep the driveshaft and clutch splines lubed.

'dale

5lima30
05-22-2013, 06:06 PM
KLR 650. Decent wind protection on the highway, nice upright seating position for good visibility in traffic. If it falls over, who cares, it's a KLR. Great gas mileage and they run forever with very little maintenance. Lots of aftermarket bags and goodies for them if your into that.

+1 as long as your inseam is long enough!

ZRX61
05-22-2013, 06:22 PM
I'd sure hate to see OP pursue heavy commuting with underpowered motorcycle, or without proper fairing so heavy wind drag on rider . . . . all of which might take fun out of motorcycling.


I'm not familiar with this "lack of proper fairing takes the fun out of motorcycling" theory.. but then again, I've only been riding unfaired* bikes for 37 years & a hair over 1.5M miles.... :headscrat


* I did have a company 1981 CB750F2B with a screen at one time. I smashed the damn thing with a hammer 3 times & each time the boss replaced it even after I insisted I didn't want it or need it.
Then one day I was about 200 miles from home, stopped for gas/coffee... tore the entire screen complete with mounts etc off the bike & jammed it in a trashcan that was next to the bemused looking CX500 rider I'd just borrowed a couple of wrenches from & rode off.
Next day the boss says "I'm not replacing it again, this is just too expensive to replace every week"
YES!!!!! Thank you!! :thumbup::thumbup::thumbup::thumbup::thumbup:

(The '84 GPz11 doesn't count & I only had the '87 GPz1000RX for a few weeks)

FLRover
05-22-2013, 07:23 PM
Ok something that needs to be cleared up. We are not moving in with our in-laws due to a financial hardship at all. We would just rather put the $1,000 a month we currently spend in rent and put it into savings plus all ofmy wifes income (my income is more than enough to live on with the $1000 for rent removed) so in a year or year and half we can pay cash for a small project home. This is the only reason we are doing this not because we are in a financial hardship.

I am planning on checking out the V-storm as I've been reading a lot about the bike on line. Also am checking into the BMW K bikes as I've seen a couple cream puffs in my price range, but the added cost of maintanence scares me. So I'm down to a few bikes here and will deff be a used bike and with lower miles off craigslist.

I don't get why cng is still being talked about. I'm not buying some shitty Honda econobox for $15,000 when a $3,000 motorcycle does the same economy without searching all over for fuel and delivering a much more enjoyible driving expirence. And as far as rain and heat goes all I have to say is don't be a pussy. Also seriously a city filling station, I'm sure I can buy cng there at 8pm or on a weekend........

A747
05-22-2013, 09:24 PM
I use to have a 100 mile round trip commute. The deciding factor in riding my bike to work, was saving commute time. An hour by bike vs. an hour and 20 min by car, decision made. Also it helps to be allowed to split lanes here in California.

My commute bike was the VFR800, very comforable and getting around 45 mpg.

JT

Mandres
05-22-2013, 09:56 PM
No way in hell I would do an hour+ commute by bike in the gulf coast region. It's going to be ridiculously hot this summer. You'll roll into work every day sweaty, tired and dehydrated. It'll be straight up miserable by July.

Sureshot
05-22-2013, 10:39 PM
I find it humorous that people think an hour and fifteen is a tiring ride. They must be the owners of the 3k mile bikes that are ten years old.

I ride an 1800cc and love it but those 650's would be great for what you want. I know a few people that split the week by staying Tuesday and Thursday nights away from home.

Kind of off topic but with the low mortgage rates and the possible stress of the living arrangement I would be looking real hard at a mortgage.

A_Pmech
05-22-2013, 10:45 PM
I find it humorous that people think an hour and fifteen is a tiring ride. They must be the owners of the 3k mile bikes that are ten years old.

That's the only thing I can figure too... :dunno:

An hour and a half ride in the morning and evening is downright relaxing to me. In some ways I wish I still had a commute just so I could ride it and take a different way to work and back every day.

Mandres
05-23-2013, 12:01 AM
But we're talking about 90 degree temps and 95% humidity here. In the rest of the country riding season is just about to start. 'Round here it's coming to a close heh. I leave my Triumph parked most of the summer except for the occasional evening cruise and it's still pretty damn miserable in leather.

CNGsaves
05-23-2013, 01:02 AM
But we're talking about 90 degree temps and 95% humidity here. In the rest of the country riding season is just about to start. 'Round here it's coming to a close heh. I leave my Triumph parked most of the summer except for the occasional evening cruise and it's still pretty damn miserable in leather.

Reality will be a grim teacher, if in fact OP really commutes more than a few times a month on 250cc to 650 cc motorcycle between Pensacola, FL and Mobile, AL.

Hurricane season is coming up too, so we'll see if that little bike can withstand heavy winds and rain.

Good luck to OP and post up pics once you decide on a bike for 35K annual miles worth of commuting.

bdkw1
05-23-2013, 01:27 AM
An hour and a half ride in the morning and evening is downright relaxing to me.

I need My morning ride to wake up. Lane splitting at speed is better than coffee........

bull_duck
05-23-2013, 02:49 AM
I

...

Kind of off topic but with the low mortgage rates and the possible stress of the living arrangement I would be looking real hard at a mortgage.

+1. good time to buy. in many markets, especially Austin, housing prices will increase by as much as you can save - net zero.

Skyline
05-23-2013, 03:57 AM
Two things no one has yet suggested:

---Trade the Mini in on a diesel Golf or Jetta. These are nice fun cars to drive and will get you over 40mpg when the weather is too hot/wet/cold for the bike. These drive like real cars; nicer than the Mini. You may consider yourself tough enough to commute on a bike in the rain, but it is certainly no fun, and not particularly safe.

--- For the bike, why not a used BMW R75 or larger R series? I do like the idea of the K series bikes as well, but the R series bikes are perhaps the best for the distances you want to put on. There is a reason these R series bikes are pretty much the standard for long distance cruisers. And when you talk about nearly 40k miles/year, the comfort and reliability will really pay off.

milesvdustin
05-23-2013, 04:21 AM
The heat and humidity is a non issue with the right riding gear. A nice mesh jacket pays for itself the first time you have a hot weather ride.

bull_duck
05-23-2013, 05:08 AM
+1. good time to buy. in many markets, especially Austin, housing prices will increase by as much as you can save - net zero.

evidence at
http://finance.fortune.cnn.com/2013/05/17/housing-bubble

I disagree with Fortune Mags wording of "fair value", "over valued", "true value," and "bubble."

Also see Zillow / PulseNomics survey of expert market analysts' expectations at https://pulsenomics.com/Q2_2013_HPE_Survey.php

Now is not the time IMO to save and be out of the market. Now is the time to do some price shopping and possibly purchase the fixer upper. Emphasis on price, market, location, cost of fix up.

Aaron10647
05-23-2013, 06:46 AM
If I was commuting that distance, I would narrow my choices to a larger faring bike. I ride with commuting the ultimate goal is adaptability to your environment. Is it colder/warmer than you thought , you WILL ride in the rain more than you plan to. Do you pack a lunch?, go to the gym? bring your latest ratchet to the office to show off (this is GJ afterall), need to pick up something on the way home?

Personally for me, anything without hard waterproof bags would be a non starter for daily commuting. Yes you can live without but eventually I would find myself taking my vehicle every time i had to stop by walmart or whatever the distraction is that day. It lets you pack extra gear for the weather and you dont have to fit everything for work in your pockets and you get the extra protection from the wind/rain with a faring. Fuel mileage between bikes won't really change much (not talking comparing a Duc 1198 to a shadow 250) so my pick would be a BMW touring bike, Goldwing, Harley FLH, or dual sport adventure bike of the month.

jabin
05-23-2013, 07:23 AM
Is working from "home" an option for a couple of days a week?

Have you thought about CNG? :D

CNGsaves
05-23-2013, 07:23 AM
If I was commuting that distance, I would narrow my choices to a larger faring bike. I ride with commuting the ultimate goal is adaptability to your environment. Is it colder/warmer than you thought , you WILL ride in the rain more than you plan to. Do you pack a lunch?, go to the gym? bring your latest ratchet to the office to show off (this is GJ afterall), need to pick up something on the way home?

Personally for me, anything without hard waterproof bags would be a non starter for daily commuting. Yes you can live without but eventually I would find myself taking my vehicle every time i had to stop by walmart or whatever the distraction is that day. It lets you pack extra gear for the weather and you dont have to fit everything for work in your pockets and you get the extra protection from the wind/rain with a faring. Fuel mileage between bikes won't really change much (not talking comparing a Duc 1198 to a shadow 250) so my pick would be a BMW touring bike, Goldwing, Harley FLH, or dual sport adventure bike of the month.

--- For the bike, why not a used BMW R75 or larger R series? I do like the idea of the K series bikes as well, but the R series bikes are perhaps the best for the distances you want to put on. There is a reason these R series bikes are pretty much the standard for long distance cruisers. And when you talk about nearly 40k miles/year, the comfort and reliability will really pay off.

Great advice above . . . . however, sounds like OP is thinking that 35K annual commuting miles would be possible with at VStar 250 or KLR650 as shown below. Those knobby tires on KLR650 going to be helpful on highway? Others are recommending that the fairing or windshield should be knocked off whatever he drives as well. :headscrat

OP will need to provide feedback on how this really turns out.
Pics of bike and how many miles driven.

X1 Mike
05-23-2013, 07:51 AM
But we're talking about 90 degree temps and 95% humidity here. In the rest of the country riding season is just about to start. 'Round here it's coming to a close heh. I leave my Triumph parked most of the summer except for the occasional evening cruise and it's still pretty damn miserable in leather.


I know, it sucks when you get to work and your vagina is all sweaty. :D

hh76
05-23-2013, 07:53 AM
KLR 650. Decent wind protection on the highway, nice upright seating position for good visibility in traffic. If it falls over, who cares, it's a KLR. Great gas mileage and they run forever with very little maintenance. Lots of aftermarket bags and goodies for them if your into that.

My vote too. Can be had for very little, and surprisingly nice ride on the freeway.

While plenty of guys have done amazing things on KLRs, I'm going to vote against it or any thumpers. For long haul highway miles, a big single just isn't very enjoyable.

I know not everybody feels this way, but I think more would agree with me than disagree.


I do disagree. I thought the same thing, but when a deal showed up on CL, I bought one anyway (I'm kind of cheap). It is actually pretty nice on the freeway. The engine is surprisingly smooth at speed, and the ride position fits me well. I know it's no Goldwing, but compared to my Triumph Bonneville (Hinckley), it's way better for long trips.


Good luck if you plan on driving KLR650 for 3 hrs a day. Wind, rain and driving stance will make that a very tiring drive to Mobile, AL. ;)

Your "old town" of Austin, TX has $3200 used KLR650 for you:
http://austin.craigslist.org/mcy/3819481774.html

You could probably even find one for less than 3200, if you don't mind a slightly older bike.

arrowhead
05-23-2013, 07:57 AM
I'm a fairly new rider so I can't bring much to the table, but I do have V-Strom 650. I've put about 2,500 miles on it since I got it in September '12. I originally bought it for fun, but have actually been using it to commute as I've been kind of busy so no time for "fun" rides so otherwise I wouldn't get to ride it.

There are pro's and cons to a smaller bike like a 650. I do get 50+ MPG regualrly, but it's more susceptable to crosswinds than maybe a lower heavier cruiser type bike. I installed a fork brace which made it handle completely different and much more stable. It's a really durable bike though and seems to have fewer problems than it's 1000 big brother. Good luck, a 150 mile commute is a long ride no matter what you choose.

FLRover
05-23-2013, 07:59 AM
Ok CNG guy the VStar 250 isn't in this consideration and shocking I know but you can put road tires on a KLR650. Please go elsewhere to post your spam and stop trolling in my thread.

FLRover
05-23-2013, 08:14 AM
As far as weather related concerns go I will probably not be driving to work in a hurricane reguardless of the vehicle. Not sure how that is suppose to be a factor? Rain in the afternoons is usually done by the time I get off work anyway. Heat is solved with a good quality mesh jacket/pants and a high quality helment, leather isn't my thing. If its a shitty day I'm just going to drive my car period.

As far as trading for a diesel VW that is in consideration for the future (1yr out). First my wife gets a new Escape to replace the current one and the Mini will probably be sold off and I will use proceeds from that to buy a diesel VW.

After work today I am going to ride by the big metric dealer and look at many of the bikes mentioned here including a couple of the larger bikes. I want wind protection so the bike will of course not be naked. It is a toy but its also a commuting vehicle so I have to keep it practical. I enjoy 2 wheel commuting as I already do it everyday on a 1980 Bajaj 2-stroke scooter.

sk farmer
05-23-2013, 08:19 AM
Ok CNG guy the VStar 250 isn't in this consideration and shocking I know but you can put road tires on a KLR650. Please go elsewhere to post your spam and stop trolling in my thread.
:thumbup:

hh76
05-23-2013, 08:25 AM
As far as weather related concerns go I will probably not be driving to work in a hurricane reguardless of the vehicle. Not sure how that is suppose to be a factor? Rain in the afternoons is usually done by the time I get off work anyway. Heat is solved with a good quality mesh jacket/pants and a high quality helment, leather isn't my thing. If its a shitty day I'm just going to drive my car period.

As far as trading for a diesel VW that is in consideration for the future (1yr out). First my wife gets a new Escape to replace the current one and the Mini will probably be sold off and I will use proceeds from that to buy a diesel VW.

After work today I am going to ride by the big metric dealer and look at many of the bikes mentioned here including a couple of the larger bikes. I want wind protection so the bike will of course not be naked. It is a toy but its also a commuting vehicle so I have to keep it practical. I enjoy 2 wheel commuting as I already do it everyday on a 1980 Bajaj 2-stroke scooter.

Be sure you stay disciplined about only taking the car on shitty days. I had a tendancy to make up an excuse to take the car when I was tired or it was cold.

bobadame
05-23-2013, 08:44 AM
Ok then, how about a used Honda ST1100? mine gets about 50 mpg. It's fast, rock steady and comfortable. They are available used for reasonable money and they last for ever. Mine has over 119,000 miles on the clock.

Aaron10647
05-23-2013, 09:52 AM
As far as weather related concerns go I will probably not be driving to work in a hurricane reguardless of the vehicle. Not sure how that is suppose to be a factor? Rain in the afternoons is usually done by the time I get off work anyway. Heat is solved with a good quality mesh jacket/pants and a high quality helment, leather isn't my thing. If its a shitty day I'm just going to drive my car period.


I don't live where you do so i can't relate to weather that consistent but just this weekend I participated in a poker run where they were not planning rain until the night. Guess what, it rained. Luckly i keep gear in my bags and the ones who said i drove an old man bike (HD Street Glide) quickly were envious that i was dry and they were soaked. Commuting inherently puts you in situations you couldn't plan for when you first wake up and decide what to drive.

Sounds like you really want a toy to make your commute a little more fun cause you likely wont save any money. The KLR was a great recommendation but buy what you really have your heart set on. Unless you drive it A LOT, its very difficult to actually save money with an additional vehicle/bike when you really factor in all the costs.

Ride safe and let us know what you end up with!

FLRover
05-23-2013, 10:00 AM
I don't live where you do so i can't relate to weather that consistent but just this weekend I participated in a poker run where they were not planning rain until the night. Guess what, it rained. Luckly i keep gear in my bags and the ones who said i drove an old man bike (HD Street Glide) quickly were envious that i was dry and they were soaked. Commuting inherently puts you in situations you couldn't plan for when you first wake up and decide what to drive.

Sounds like you really want a toy to make your commute a little more fun cause you likely wont save any money. The KLR was a great recommendation but buy what you really have your heart set on. Unless you drive it A LOT, its very difficult to actually save money with an additional vehicle/bike when you really factor in all the costs.

Ride safe and let us know what you end up with!

If I didn't have a tight budget I would be all over a Street Glide or Switchback

X1 Mike
05-23-2013, 10:40 AM
Ok then, how about a used Honda ST1100? mine gets about 50 mpg. It's fast, rock steady and comfortable. They are available used for reasonable money and they last for ever. Mine has over 119,000 miles on the clock.


The This is a good choice if he is willing to go larger but it has one glaring flaw. It is a cult bike and guys that own them love them some for a bike that sold like crap oridinally it is tough to get one at a decent price. The KLR650 is overpriced for the same reason, The bike I suggested the Wee Strom was fairly unloved and can be had for cheap and can do those kind of miles with no issue and can even go off road lightly.

adam728
05-23-2013, 10:47 AM
I can understand all the arguments againt a bike being a money saver. It is VERY hard to justify it that way once you figure in all the costs. The bike, maintanance, registration, insurance, helmet and gear (if you dont already have it) etc. Guy I work with rides an 80 mpg klx250 in place of his 15 mpg truck when possible (winter isnt safely possible). By his calculation he needed 24000 miles to pay for thr bike and ins/reg, not counting maintanace and tires.

I looked into this a few years ago, was doing 135 mile round trip from a family members place to work and back while house hunting. I REALLY wanted a bike, but doing the math I coukd not justify even a 1k bike. And that was while doing that drive in a 15 mpg 3/4 ton, plus 270 miles on the weekend to stay with the wife/kid.

bull_duck
05-23-2013, 11:32 AM
....its very difficult to actually save money with an additional vehicle/bike when you really factor in all the costs.
Ride safe and let us know what you end up with!

+1

A few years after the '74 OilEmbargo, I bought a used 1970 Cadillac 2-door slab side, hardtop. Bad gas mileage. Not "green". But, because of the gas price spike, I only paid $500. Drove it for years, then gave it away. Only cost to me was the gas.

Look at the total cost and opportunity cost of money and time.

Major Ramifications
05-23-2013, 11:34 AM
Be a real man...get a Schwinn!:D

Lkdelta
05-23-2013, 07:11 PM
I still see alot of ...."can't save money with a bike", so...
not counting buying the vehicles....

Insurance, bike is $100 yr, truck is 50/month... $600 yr
bike registration is $15yr

To go 9000 miles.... however long that takes

Bike(52 mpg)
173 gallons of gas x $4= .... $692.40.
tires $120 rear, $90 front.. ..$210
3 oil change..........................$84..........$986. 40

truck..(17mpg)
529 gallons of gas.......$3.75...$1985
3 oil changes..........................$60.............. ....$2045

and I do about 12,000 miles

150 miles a day only takes 60 days to get 9000 miles

And now that I own 1, the Kawasaki vulcan custom is awesome on the highway.
It has no problem keeping up with traffic flow, whatever that may be.
And There has been days with traffic flow 80+

Zelatore
05-23-2013, 07:36 PM
Are you another one that has no sense of irony and sarcasm?

No, I did get it. I was skipping Mr. All CNG, All the Time's comments about it as they just seemed foolish.

Roots
05-23-2013, 07:43 PM
While one might struggle to justify purchasing a motorcycle solely for money savings, unless you're foregoing a car. Most people with motorcycles are motorcyclists, they're likely to have one anyways. Hence most of those costs are already factored into their lives.

Bulldog13
05-23-2013, 07:49 PM
FJR1300... Kawi Concours 1400...I commute with my Electraglide but I think a Sportourer would be more comfortable.

Zelatore
05-23-2013, 08:02 PM
RE: the suggestion of the ST1100.

How about it's less-loved ugly sister, the PC800?

I give you: The CACK!!!

http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=265019&highlight=cack

Warning: This is just one of many threads on the adventures of cack on ADVrider.com You could burn weeks reading about all things cack. This one thread runs over 20 pages, and it's just the start.

Cack is legend.




*I understand Cack is currently for sale for $1, but only if you promise to ride it to Japan and right up to the gates of the Honda factory where you complain about the fork seals. It only makes sense if you read the threads.

CorvZ961
05-23-2013, 09:44 PM
i put 30k miles on a '06 Yamaha FZ6, if I were to get another bike I would probably get an FZ1. I never experienced any kind of rider fatigue on long stretches. I rode that bike everywhere, went from here is Ga. to Amarillo TX. with no issue's what so ever with the bike or being uncomfortable, did stop in little rock over night, but that had more to do with getting drowsy than anything. I good friend of mine just replaced his '91 kawasaki concours with a new ST1300. that concours had 120k miles on it, that would also be a contender in your search.

HAY YOU
05-23-2013, 10:03 PM
Putting a bike on a cross country trip is a lot different than riding it every day of every week of every month etc. Buy yourself a little car & when you man up & move out of your mother-in-laws house one of these days you can buy a bike for relaxation, you’ll be single by that time. Really… how can a card carrying man do his wife justice with his in-laws in the next room?

JMartel
05-23-2013, 10:21 PM
If you do get a bike to commute on, I would highly suggest A) keeping a full change of clothes at work, b) getting hard saddlebags or a tailbox, and c) keeping rain gear on the bike at all times.

Personally, I wouldn't want to buy a single cylinder motorcycle for this. 4cyl would be far smoother.

Lou E
05-23-2013, 10:37 PM
I have a seventy mile daily commute, round trip, and although I wish I could ride my bike to work everyday it's just not a realistic solution. Because of that, and the fact that my Silverado would cost $20 a day on gas, I bought a 2002 VW Golf TDI. I average 600 miles per 12gallon tankful, and that's doing 80mph. I managed 664 miles on a tank a few weeks ago, shooting for 700 now, but its tough keeping it under 70...

It also works as a pickup truck if you fold the rear seats, it can easily handle 500lbs of shingles! lol I'm convinced this is the best commuter car ever made, possibly even all around car. I'm at about 160k now but I've seen plenty of people with 300k on the clock and still going strong.

My supervisor has a 2004, basically the same thing, that has a veggie kit on it so his 90-100 mile commute costs him next to nothing!

Toolgarage
05-23-2013, 10:58 PM
I've been thinking about a more comfortable bike lateley (I must be getting old). I've sorta been looking at the BMW "clones..."the very upright stance bikes with long suspension travel, to replace my Ninja 600. All the Japanese manufacturers make a similar model.

I just added a commute as a changed jobs. Total of 50 miles round trip (most wouldn't call that a commute, but I lived 4 miles from my last job). It is a reverse-commute too (I'm heading in the opposite direction of all the traffic...it is always busier on the opposite side of the road).

My daily driver was a large, 15-passenger van, with a 5.8 liter engine. I think it got less than 10MPG. That wasn't going to work for the added mileage, so I got a small car for commuting. I got the Honda Fit, in it's basic configuration, with a manual transmission. You'd be surprised how little it costs right now (PM me for details). My reduction in fuel costs MORE than pays for the car. It is one of the cars the young guys like to get, because it is relatively inexpensive, but has a bit of sportiness to it. It is a lot of fun to drive, with the manual transmission.

If you are still set on a motorcycle, make sure you invest in comfortable safety gear. Make sure you choose a motorcycle with an upright seating posture with an easy reach to the handlebars (sport bikes and some cruisers have an awkward seating position...you'll hate that quickly on the long commute). Go to the dealer, put the bike you think you want up on the center stand, and sit on it for a full 15 minutes. If you aren't completely comfortable at the end of 15 minutes, try something else.

If you've never taken a MSF (Motorcycle Safety Foundation) rider course, I HIGHLY recommend it. I use the skills I learned there to stay safe EVERY time I ride. I've taken the basic course (their bike) and the advanced course (your own bike). Both of them are fantastic (and may lower your insurance rates).

Keep the shiny side up and the sticky side down...

Kev

you must be going towards the north bay instead of upper valley, if i stand correct you must be talking of A.C.

bobadame
05-24-2013, 08:46 AM
The This is a good choice if he is willing to go larger but it has one glaring flaw. It is a cult bike and guys that own them love them some for a bike that sold like crap oridinally it is tough to get one at a decent price. The KLR650 is overpriced for the same reason, The bike I suggested the Wee Strom was fairly unloved and can be had for cheap and can do those kind of miles with no issue and can even go off road lightly.

I gave $800 for mine. Really.

joebiodiesel
05-24-2013, 08:51 AM
Buy whatever gets your hear pumping. There is NOTHING that compares to piloting a vehicle you love. It turns a commute into a ride.

Joe

tez929rr
05-25-2013, 03:39 PM
I can understand all the arguments againt a bike being a money saver. It is VERY hard to justify it that way once you figure in all the costs. The bike, maintanance, registration, insurance, helmet and gear (if you dont already have it) etc. Guy I work with rides an 80 mpg klx250 in place of his 15 mpg truck when possible (winter isnt safely possible). By his calculation he needed 24000 miles to pay for thr bike and ins/reg, not counting maintanace and tires.

I looked into this a few years ago, was doing 135 mile round trip from a family members place to work and back while house hunting. I REALLY wanted a bike, but doing the math I coukd not justify even a 1k bike. And that was while doing that drive in a 15 mpg 3/4 ton, plus 270 miles on the weekend to stay with the wife/kid.

Every time I figured it out the cost of tires blew up the bike savings. I think that the F650 was a good suggestion; those new Honda twins would also be good. I have told several people that one of those 650 scooters would make a more economical commuter than a bike. When gas prices got to $4 a couple of years ago all kinds of guys at work were trying to justify a bike purchase as saving money, but only one guy tried it and I am pretty sure that shelling out 15K for a Gold Wing did not save him any money in the end.

If you change your own tires and buy something with a less sporty compound the OP could probably make it work. But commuting on a bike is a pretty serious commitment.

Mandres
05-25-2013, 05:43 PM
I know, it sucks when you get to work and your vagina is all sweaty. :D

Hehe, touché :beer: I nearly sweat through my dress shirts just from the walk into the building though. If I had to ride to my job I wouldn't have my job for long ...

bull_duck
05-25-2013, 06:15 PM
If I didn't have a tight budget I would be all over a Street Glide or Switchback


Look for a Road Glide. Best long distance Harley.

I have my FLTR for long rides. My FXSTD for short including 6 miles each way to my office - when I went into the office.

Delta74
05-25-2013, 11:58 PM
I am going to say it again, Kawasaki Versys, its a KLR with tweaked suspension for street, the engine is tweaked for street use ( not mixed road ) and comes with OMG street tires, a lot of the KLR stuff will fit, and there are tons and tons of add ons for the KLE-650 Versys , plus they can usually be picked up for a song.

as for comfort, well I know one is in this years iron butt Rally, and I have personal done a butt burner run on mine, that's 1,000 miles in under 24 hours.

so again I would look at a KLE-650 Versys love mine, wish I bought it a few years ago.

now Off topic OP can stop reading here.

CNG you sound butt hurt in your replies when he said NO to CNG use, I am tired of your constant ANSWER CNG .... ya know what, I would not drive a CNG car or truck, if you paid for it 100% and all costs, and hope you will deliver fuel to me all over the country side. hey nothing wrong with having pride in your job, or a passion about something ( I mean don't we all love our garages?? ) but you sound like a paid advertiser and lobbiest for CNG and I dread seeing your name in ANY post, cause its always the same cut and paste drivel from you. its just not practical when there is ONE station in town that sells it, and is only open Monday-Friday, 9-4:30 and closes for an hour at lunch. and no other stations within 400 miles.

big surprise, our Gas company uses them, and its there pump, they let the common folks use it as a token gesture but that's it around here. its like E-85 its just not available any where near by, no demand, so no stations, cause there is no stations, there is zero demand

FLRover
05-26-2013, 09:07 AM
Checked out a used Honda KT1100. I really liked it but the only one around used is at a dealer (eat your ass up with fees) and has 34k on the clock. Otherwise a nice bike.

Road Glide or any other big Harley I would love but the cheapest ones are still out of budget and often are pretty rough shape. Metric bikes have them beat when it comes to cheap.

KLE650 is on my look at list now. I will check it out for sure.

Susuki S40 I looked at I like and they can be had for a song used. Any expirence?

Suzuki Vee-Storm I can not find a single used one. Are these rare?

shoturtle
05-26-2013, 09:14 AM
A friend of my does a 202 mile round trip on a bike in the spring summer and fall in the North East. He does it on a BMW, the heavier bike is nicer on long rides. For the range you are riding I think a 650cc is a little to small. Look at some of the touring bikes with at least a 1/2 fairing. That will keep you from getting beat up by the wind.

I commute on a 650 and a 1000cc, but my commute is much shorter, on 20 miles each way.

X1 Mike
05-26-2013, 09:42 AM
I am going to say it again, Kawasaki Versys, its a KLR with tweaked suspension for street, the engine is tweaked for street use ( not mixed road ) and comes with OMG street tires, a lot of the KLR stuff will fit, and there are tons and tons of add ons for the KLE-650 Versys , plus they can usually be picked up for a song.

Not even close, The Versus isn't even close to the KLR except in displacement. What exactly do you consider tweaking the engine, adding another cylinder? The KLR is a single while the Versus is a twin.


Wrong information is worse than no information. :thumbup:


How are these even close?

http://www.klr650.net/2008_kawasaki_klr650_review/g1.jpg

http://cdn2.bikesevolution.com/photos/3a/6f/2007-kawasaki-kle-650-versys-enduro-specifications_a1cf8.jpg

adam728
05-26-2013, 10:11 AM
Not even close, The Versus isn't even close to the KLR except in displacement. What exactly do you consider tweaking the engine, adding another cylinder? The KLR is a single while the Versus is a twin.


Wrong information is worse than no information. :thumbup:


How are these even close?

http://www.klr650.net/2008_kawasaki_klr650_review/g1.jpg

http://cdn2.bikesevolution.com/photos/3a/6f/2007-kawasaki-kle-650-versys-enduro-specifications_a1cf8.jpg


Same tail light bulbs maybe?

I was wondering the same when I read his post. You know a corvette zr1 is just a chevy cruze with tweaked suspension, tweaked engine, etc.....

X1 Mike
05-26-2013, 11:19 AM
My best advice when using a bike for that long of a commute is to get the cruise control option......


Take one of your chicks hair scrunchies and keep it between the throttle grip and the throttle housing. When you get to a speed you like pull that scrunchie down so it snugs up, it will hold your speed but you can still shut the throttle if you need. :thumbup:

FLRover
05-26-2013, 10:25 PM
Rode a Suzuki TU250 and fell in love with the little thumper. I said I wanted something bigger but it cruised nice at 65mph. Only concern is the wear on that small of an engine doing 150mi a day. I do cruise on the slower side though, rare I run 70mph and I do religious 2,000mi oil/filter changes. Bike does get double the mpg of a KLR650 which I love also.

So my short list is:
TU250
KLR650
Vee-Strom (hard time finding one)


In theroy if I rode a KLR650 for 38,000mi vs driving our Escape even with the higher tire wear I'm $2100 a year a head on cost.

CNGsaves
05-27-2013, 04:58 AM
I am going to say it again, Kawasaki Versys, its a KLR with tweaked suspension for street, the engine is tweaked for street use ( not mixed road ) and comes with OMG street tires, a lot of the KLR stuff will fit, and there are tons and tons of add ons for the KLE-650 Versys , plus they can usually be picked up for a song.

as for comfort, well I know one is in this years iron butt Rally, and I have personal done a butt burner run on mine, that's 1,000 miles in under 24 hours.

so again I would look at a KLE-650 Versys love mine, wish I bought it a few years ago.

now Off topic OP can stop reading here.

CNG you sound butt hurt in your replies when he said NO to CNG use, I am tired of your constant ANSWER CNG .... ya know what, I would not drive a CNG car or truck, if you paid for it 100% and all costs, and hope you will deliver fuel to me all over the country side. hey nothing wrong with having pride in your job, or a passion about something ( I mean don't we all love our garages?? ) but you sound like a paid advertiser and lobbiest for CNG and I dread seeing your name in ANY post, cause its always the same cut and paste drivel from you. its just not practical when there is ONE station in town that sells it, and is only open Monday-Friday, 9-4:30 and closes for an hour at lunch. and no other stations within 400 miles.

big surprise, our Gas company uses them, and its there (their) pump, they let the common folks use it as a token gesture but that's it around here. its like E-85 its just not available any where near by, no demand, so no stations, cause there is no stations, there is zero demand

Well there you go . . . Canada drivel about something you know NOTHING about . . . AND . . crazy as a hoot to boot!!! You don't even know HOW cng works . . . natural gas pipelines all across country deliver the NG, and the compressor does it's job of compressing the NG . . . thus CNG (compressed natural gas). How about take 20 seconds and follow the link to info on public cng pump in Pensacola, FL that I provided - - - - station is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and takes multiple credit cards!! See snapshot info below from the cngprices.com website. Price is $2.05/gge for public cng in Pensacola, FL.

I was simply offering the lowest cost commuting possible for the OP as he DOES have a public cng pump in his area with low cost fuel. It's that simple. Get yourself a $2 solar calculator and run the numbers. In earlier post, I calculated the cost per mile at 5.2 cents to be driving the Honda Civic GX . . . WHERE the OP actually lives after he fessed up that his profile was not true about being in Austin, TX, but rather he's in Pensacola, FL.

Just a suggestion, so OP can check it out or not . . . no skin off my back. Motorcycle or low-cost car for OP to commute, it's his choice.

Funny every crazy out there can attack idea of cng, but why not attack idea of driving a VW TDI on diesel . . . fuel that is $4/gal and likely to continue to rise, year after year!! BigOil is never going to let diesel price drop so you'd be stuck with ever increasing fuel costs. CNG fuel cost from a city owned public pump like in Pensacola, FL is likely to stay low cost for years into the future.

We'll see if OP really in fact commutes 35K miles a year he claims. Job may not work out . . . AND . . . . living with In-Laws surely will NOT be good for quality of life or marriage. Hey, reality will be his teacher.

Driving those distances with motorcycle will quickly either prove that OP bought the right tool for the job, or 3 hrs a day of miserable pain.

Good luck as always to OP . . . but think for yourself and let GJ know whether motorcycle or car chosen for those 35K annual miles that OP says he's commuting. Provide an update of your cost per mile.

Sureshot
05-27-2013, 05:57 AM
Well there you go . . . Canada drivel about something you know NOTHING about . . . AND . . crazy as a hoot to boot!!! You don't even know HOW cng works . . . natural gas pipelines all across country deliver the NG, and the compressor does it's job of compressing the NG . . . thus CNG (compressed natural gas). How about take 20 seconds and follow the link to info on public cng pump in Pensacola, FL that I provided - - - - station is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and takes multiple credit cards!! See snapshot info below from the cngprices.com website. Price is $2.05/gge for public cng in Pensacola, FL.

I was simply offering the lowest cost commuting possible for the OP as he DOES have a public cng pump in his area with low cost fuel. It's that simple. Get yourself a $2 solar calculator and run the numbers. In earlier post, I calculated the cost per mile at 5.2 cents to be driving the Honda Civic GX . . . WHERE the OP actually lives after he fessed up that his profile was not true about being in Austin, TX, but rather he's in Pensacola, FL.

Just a suggestion, so OP can check it out or not . . . no skin off my back. Motorcycle or low-cost car for OP to commute, it's his choice.

Funny every crazy out there can attack idea of cng, but why not attack idea of driving a VW TDI on diesel . . . fuel that is $4/gal and likely to continue to rise, year after year!! BigOil is never going to let diesel price drop so you'd be stuck with ever increasing fuel costs. CNG fuel cost from a city owned public pump like in Pensacola, FL is likely to stay low cost for years into the future.

We'll see if OP really in fact commutes 35K miles a year he claims. Job may not work out . . . AND . . . . living with In-Laws surely will NOT be good for quality of life or marriage. Hey, reality will be his teacher.

Driving those distances with motorcycle will quickly either prove that OP bought the right tool for the job, or 3 hrs a day of miserable pain.

Good luck as always to OP . . . but think for yourself and let GJ know whether motorcycle or car chosen for those 35K annual miles that OP says he's commuting. Provide an update of your cost per mile.

Not sure why you feel the need to insult Canadians in general for one person's attitude and opinion??

I happen to think it is the future but people will need time as does the infrastructure.

Playwme
05-27-2013, 07:08 AM
He insulted the Brits as well didn't he?

Good laugh though. Buy a $15k car to save money. At least he's passionate.

To the OP, V-Strom I reckon is a good choice. What about Honda VFR's? Good reliable bikes that are sporty enough for you to hit the corners and have a bit of fun but comfortable enough to take 3 hrs in the saddle and eat up hwy miles with ease.

CNGsaves
05-27-2013, 07:26 AM
He insulted the Brits as well didn't he?

Good laugh though. Buy a $15k car to save money. At least he's passionate.

To the OP, V-Strom I reckon is a good choice. What about Honda VFR's? Good reliable bikes that are sporty enough for you to hit the corners and have a bit of fun but comfortable enough to take 3 hrs in the saddle and eat up hwy miles with ease.

Guess you have trouble READING . . . . found the OP some cng cars in $5K to $8K range with ongoing fuel costs of 5.2 cents a mile. Also found OP couple motorcycles in $3K range. Once again I'll repeat for ummpteeenth time, that cng is just suggestion for OP, just like all the various motorcycle ideas are just suggestions. OP can do whatever he wants.

Sureshot . . . no dig on Canadians in general . . . just Delta74 who IS Canadian and choosing to dog cng for no reason, and without knowledge of how cng works, and Delta74 also chose to spread false information that OP could not get cng fuel 24/7 which he easily can do in Pensacola, FL.

As for Brits, wasn't insulting in general . . .. just X1 Mike who has chosen to dog cng every chance he can, again without any knowledge.

Good luck to OP with tough 150 mile daily commute.

FLRover
05-27-2013, 08:13 AM
How is this guy not banned yet? All he does is troll, insults people and spams everyone's threads.

Woohoo moderators?

LB-1911
05-27-2013, 08:30 AM
:dunno: Guess he didn't get the memo...

Please go elsewhere to post your spam and stop trolling in my thread.

adam728
05-27-2013, 08:40 AM
I'm not sure having just one station available in a metro area of 1/2 million people qualifies as "easily available". How do you know that station isnt 25 minutes out of his way? What about in a year when they buy a home and are closer to his work, where there are no stations? WHAT ABOUT THE FACT THAT HE SAID MULTIPLE TIMES HE IS ABSOLUTELY NOT INTERESTED IN GOING THE CNG ROUTE? Yet you continue.......


There, now you can bash Americans too

FLRover
05-27-2013, 09:08 AM
I'm not sure having just one station available in a metro area of 1/2 million people qualifies as "easily available". How do you know that station isnt 25 minutes out of his way? What about in a year when they buy a home and are closer to his work, where there are no stations? WHAT ABOUT THE FACT THAT HE SAID MULTIPLE TIMES HE IS ABSOLUTELY NOT INTERESTED IN GOING THE CNG ROUTE? Yet you continue.......


There, now you can bash Americans too

It is I live on Garcon Point on the Blackwater side. Its 30min out of my way in one of the areas worst neighborhoods. The jailhouse is right up the street to give you an idea.

He instead attacks me personally, accuses me of lying about where I live even though I've posted what dealers I've worked for, insults our living arrangment that allows us to buy a home CASH even though he isn't aware the home we are moving into is a duplex and we have the other unit, attacks any person that questions CNG and attacks my desire for a commuter bike by trying to justify a $15,000 car and insulting my area of the country trying to make it sound as though it only rains and is 120' all year around.

FLRover
05-27-2013, 09:22 AM
He insulted the Brits as well didn't he?

Good laugh though. Buy a $15k car to save money. At least he's passionate.

To the OP, V-Strom I reckon is a good choice. What about Honda VFR's? Good reliable bikes that are sporty enough for you to hit the corners and have a bit of fun but comfortable enough to take 3 hrs in the saddle and eat up hwy miles with ease.

Is the VFR up right or hunched over like a Sport bike?

A_Pmech
05-27-2013, 10:18 AM
Is the VFR up right or hunched over like a Sport bike?

About like an SV-650S. You'll be about 1/3rd - 1/2 way to the tank on the stock clipons depending on arm length. There are several companies who make bar risers to bring them up 4-5 inches.

X1 Mike
05-27-2013, 10:38 AM
As for Brits, wasn't insulting in general . . .. just X1 Mike who has chosen to dog cng every chance he can, again without any knowledge.


Not exactly sure what level of cluelessness made you deduce that I was a Brit. I'm a 5th generation American who has never been across the Atlantic. ?????????????????

As far as me dogging CNG, I have never done that. I have dogged you. The first post I read I was slightly interested and actually looked into it, but like I posted before you are like the boy that cried wolf. The answer to everything isn't CNG. If you are paid by the CNG industry you are their worst spokesman because you make me want to know less about it.

I would gladly pay $0.50 a gallon more than I do now to not hear about CNG anymore. :stfu: :thefinger

JMartel
05-27-2013, 01:18 PM
Guess you have trouble READING . . . . found the OP some cng cars in $5K to $8K range with ongoing fuel costs of 5.2 cents a mile. Also found OP couple motorcycles in $3K range. Once again I'll repeat for ummpteeenth time, that cng is just suggestion for OP, just like all the various motorcycle ideas are just suggestions. OP can do whatever he wants.

Sureshot . . . no dig on Canadians in general . . . just Delta74 who IS Canadian and choosing to dog cng for no reason, and without knowledge of how cng works, and Delta74 also chose to spread false information that OP could not get cng fuel 24/7 which he easily can do in Pensacola, FL.

As for Brits, wasn't insulting in general . . .. just X1 Mike who has chosen to dog cng every chance he can, again without any knowledge.

Good luck to OP with tough 150 mile daily commute.

Shut up about CNG. The OP clearly isn't interested so why do you keep trying to force it?

tez929rr
05-27-2013, 02:29 PM
Is the VFR up right or hunched over like a Sport bike?

Very comfy. They also have a V-8'ish growl when you roll on.

FLRover
06-16-2013, 10:45 AM
Update:

Thought about this thread after CNGSaves cheap shot in the BMW thread.


Currently commuting in the Mini. Doing about 800miles a week and its ticking like a Timex. Haven't bought a bike yet. My cost in the Mini are dirt cheap since I'm splitting cost with another guy, running me about $13 a day in cost. Since the Mini has been working out great and is safer, I think I'm going to just get me a cruiser for fun on weekends and not commuting.

shovel
06-16-2013, 10:57 AM
Wow thanks for the response.

Ok I am not in Austin anymore we are back in Pensacola, FL and I commute to Mobile, AL where my job is. As far as getting a new job at the moment my earnings justify the driving. The drive is all interstate and takes about 1hr 15mins, its a very easy drive and dosnt take much out of me. I have driven it before and did just fine.

For the CNG stuff. No, that's all I have to say.

I have an Escape and Mini I will be driving to supliment my ridding. I enjoy ridding and with counting my bike as a toy and not as just a commuting vehicle I do come out way ahead with cost. The difference in 45mpg vs 25mpg over the course of 150mi a day adds up. I had a KLR650 before and I'm leaning that way again given the low cost to own. I had a VStar 250 which also was a great bike and had plenty of power even with the na-sayers telling me I had to have 1600cc to go on the interstate.....

I am looking for some bikes similiar to the KLR650 as far as ridding position and relibility. I love KLR's but its a pretty utilitarian bike. I'm going metric since the BMW's are out of reach price wise

Ok, that is better. Although I'm not much on riding the interstate system, the road from Pensacola to Mobile is not bad. The thought of riding a scooter into Austin everyday would not work. Too many unaware, Prius-driving assholes to do it safely. Since you are looking at Interstate riding, I'd go by the more-is-better rule... Get the biggest ride you are comfortable with. You still get 40+ mpg and have to do a days work when you get there. Good luck with your choice and keep us posted.

CNGsaves
06-16-2013, 11:18 AM
Update:

Thought about this thread after CNGSaves cheap shot in the BMW thread.


Currently commuting in the Mini. Doing about 800miles a week and its ticking like a Timex. Haven't bought a bike yet. My cost in the Mini are dirt cheap since I'm splitting cost with another guy, running me about $13 a day in cost. Since the Mini has been working out great and is safer I think I'm going to just get me a cruiser for fun on weekends and not commuting.

Funny how REALITY sets in that low cost car might be best solution for a long commute !!! :lol: :lol: Funny how I just happen to remember that was what I recommended.

Why not stick with Original FLRover Plan to ride a small 250cc to 650cc motorcycle "naked" like you were planning?? Thought you didn't need a windshield, or fairing, etc. - - - just an enduro motorcycle to Go Mudding during lunch hour while in Mobile, AL ??

Might be better next time to not sling those arrows so quick, UNTIL you've got some real experience (Reality) to back it up. BMW guys don't like getting dogged in the other Bull thread as well.

What's really IRONIC is that you are Commuting 150 miles daily IN A BMW (after you abandoned your own motorcycle plan), at the same time you're dogging all BMW's as being crap in the other thread by Bull . . . .:dunno: :spit:

Now that's messed up Reality right there. :lol_hitti:

FLRover
06-16-2013, 11:30 AM
Still trying huh? You are one pathetic person champ.