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Truffle shuffle king
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Discussion Starter #1
Ok so I know the Xl1000 Varadero isn't the best bike for offroad (green laning and some trails)
Would be interested in hearing what you would change to make the Dero the best you can for an offroad.
I saw a Varadero in Stafford where they have grafted an Africa Twin front end but I don't want to go this far. (seen this bike on this forum too)

So for starters the Tourance tyres would have to go. - Fit Continental TCK 80 I presume?

So what's next?
 

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I've done a bit of dirt tracks with the mighty Varadero, very big, very heavy, but take it easy and don't expect too much from it and it'll be fine.
TKC's might keep the front wheel in line instead of washing out in corners, the rear might get a bit more grip as it does tend to snake about under power, but I still wouldn't show it too much soft ground or it'll sit down!
Best advice I can give is momentum is your friend!
 

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SHW'MAE BUTT
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Hi you could try lifting the suspension at the rear and extending the front forks like the AT. Will AT wheels fit to to a VARA? Dont know the durability of case wheels. Some chaps have grafted an AT belly pan on to the Vara to add protection. What about some after market exhausts and you will gain some performance and loose weight.
 

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Truffle shuffle king
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Discussion Starter #4
Ok good so far. I know the front wheel isn't big enough for offroad work.

The front forks are a weak spot would it be feasible to change the springs and oil to make it dive less?

I have an Ohlin shock at the back end already so this should help.

Crashbars would be good - Givi perhaps...
 

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Truffle shuffle king
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Discussion Starter #5
I've done a bit of dirt tracks with the mighty Varadero, very big, very heavy, but take it easy and don't expect too much from it and it'll be fine.
TKC's might keep the front wheel in line instead of washing out in corners, the rear might get a bit more grip as it does tend to snake about under power, but I still wouldn't show it too much soft ground or it'll sit down!
Best advice I can give is momentum is your friend!
HIya AfricaJim
Agree with the momentum - stop and you are dead.... and probably underneath the weight


Does your exhaust save much weight?
 

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Weight loss from exhausts probably make up for the weight of the luggage racks and crashbars! LOL! Givi bars seem substantial, def worth while. Rear luggage racks protect the rear plastics.
Depends what you have in mind for offroad, I'd have thought more travel, or dive is actually what you want? Mine works fine suspensionwise, even the linked ABS didn't give me too much problems.
This is not a motocross bike, it won't corner or jump like a MX, but it will cover rough terrain at an alarming pace and the stock suspension works just fine for me. Sit forward for cornering, weight to front wheel and stand for straight and rough bits weight on back wheel. Linked brakes are not for wild MX style riding, rear pedal will throw too much weight on the front wheel, possible washout, so use gears to trail the rear.
It's no trial bike either, note the lack of Gas Gas stickers? :confused: Don't try to rock crawl with it, it WILL fall over! And yes, you're right, it'll be on top of you! Sensible speed is the answer, horses for courses, it's an adventure bike for touring on tar and occasional dirt track not muddy ground.
Let us know how you get on and what terrian you cover mate. :thumbup:
 

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Truffle shuffle king
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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks AfticaJim
great advice. especially as you have obviously tried it.

My offroad skills are far less than the bikes as standard so no mx for me.
I have a drz 400 which should do everything I want. it was the bike I was advised would be great for green laning an off road stuff. Problem I have is that it is toooooo light for my 17 stone frame and as the one I bought has no indicators and mirrors and I need to ride 20 miles at least to find offroad I tend to leave it covered up and go out on the dero.
Thought process then made me think so what do I need to change on my fave ride to get both needs!!!

I have just mulled it over..... With the help of some ice cold blonde beer I might add..... What I really need to change on my dero so it is still a comfy mile eater and a pretty good offroad is NOTHING. Doh no I havebeen thinking the wrong way... I am describing an Africa twin!

So keep the dero..... Anyone want a 05 suzuki drz so I can fund my next bike?
 

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One thing I'd mention, Robster had TCK's on his Vara when we did the Stella Alpina a couple of yrs ago, offroad gave reasonable grip, although I covered the same ground with a pair of Anakees, but on the tar we came over the Col D'Iseran and the Col De Monte cenise from France into Italy and peg scraping in the hairpins was the order of the day! Damn that bike handled well for what I considered to be knobblies on it!
The DRZ's a fine machine, great fun offoad and a lot easier to pick up than a Varadero! But it's not an adventure bike and wouldn't fit my purpose of a bike for all uses. Agree the @T is a perfect bike for everything, pity they don't make them any more!
(Know about the 17 stone bit as well, I need to stop eating pies!)
 

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In order of priority, I'd suggest:
  • engine bars;
  • TKC tyres or similar;
  • spring-loaded brake and gear levers;
  • [EDIT] handlebar guards (e.g. BarkBusters); [/EDIT]
  • engine bash plate;
  • weight loss - not sure what you can reasonably loose though;
  • then the more difficult stuff like larger diameter spoked wheels, lowering first and second gear (?)
Just as important will be personal fitness, skill and practice!
 

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Ok,actually I'm in no position to advice...because I only owned the Varadero for 7months only...

But i did gave it a shot offroading it unintentionally....I was out to snap some photos of birds,nature and maybe well..the bike itself...


and somehow,I ended up riding in singletrack,soft sands,etc just because i saw someone was doing some trails on an XR200R.SO pardon for the no safety attitude riding with open face helmet,bermudas,no gloves,and nike sneakers.(never attempt on such).and also pardon me on the shaky video as i was using my Sony H-50 and tied up the strap shorter and hang in on my neck...:hitler:

YouTube - Varadero offroad

So,from 1st hand experienced it myself,I could probably just give a little shoutout on what I do and what I would do to beefen up the Vara for a better offroading than what i currently have done.

What's currently on my setup...
1.Rear tyre I was using Shinko Trailwing.The front one was done and I'm not aware of it during the trail.I m using Pirelli Scorpion.
2.Aftermarket endcans.(it saves a hell loads of weight,and more torque on the lows.
3.Handguards with metal insert
4.Crashbars from Givi.

What I would do next.
1.Suspension.yes..both front and rear.it needs to be replace.NOW!
2.front tyre.maybe another Shinko?becoz the rear Shinko does great IMO.
3.Probably I won't do another session of dirt with the Vara...when i can do it nicely on my XRR...lol..


:toothy4:
 

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You, Sir, are totally mad... well done! :thumbright:

And yes, I should have included handlebar guards in my list.
 

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Truffle shuffle king
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Discussion Starter #12
Wild video - Pleased to see you caught him and passed him - big grin I am sure.

Well done that man - did you also have flip flops on? - would think that is a weight saving item
 

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Truffle shuffle king
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Discussion Starter #13
In order of priority, I'd suggest:
  • engine bars;
  • TKC tyres or similar;
  • spring-loaded brake and gear levers;
  • [EDIT] handlebar guards (e.g. BarkBusters); [/EDIT]
  • engine bash plate;
  • weight loss - not sure what you can reasonably loose though;
  • then the more difficult stuff like larger diameter spoked wheels, lowering first and second gear (?)
Just as important will be personal fitness, skill and practice!
Ok So
Engine Bars - Tick
TKC tyres - get em on birthday list
Spring loaded brake and gear levers - mmm not seen these
Handlebar guards - have oem which are no good in a fall - get em
Engine bash plate - have oem - which is no good
WEIGHT LOSS - hey you cheeky ..... Oh I see not me... although it would help (you see I was born 6ft and 16 stone and have only grown 4 inch and one stone hehehhe)
Larger Dia Spoked Wheels - mmm that sounds like the VaraTwin I have seen on the site
Lowering First and Second gear - needs new chain and sprocket - presume that would help if I altered the number of teeth.

Have Ohlin suspension on rear already - not been on a none Ohlin Vara so not sure how different - however it seems the way to go.

Personal Fitness - now theres a whole new can of worms.
I was thinking of doing something like this guy
YouTube - Push-up-deros!.AVI :rolleyes:
 

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Ha ha! Amazing video, thanks for sharing (waiting for barrage of "shouldn't be on a bike without protection")! LOL!
I ride around in the summer here with shorts and trainers and occasionally get ribbed for lack of protection but believe that's my decision. I think you were doing well on the Vara in those conditions, looked like a hoot to me! Wish I could have been there on mine, I'd have traded in the flip flops for trainers though, my feet get sunburnt easily!
An XR is a luxury for some, if you can only afford one bike and it has to do everything, and having a 2nd bike, more dedicated is out of reach then you have to make the best of what you have. Also the XR isn't the all round bike the Vara or the @T is.
A few extras to improve your Vara offroad? Why the hell not? As most of my riding is on the tar I'll keep mine standard, a great bike in my opinion.
 
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