Need help for long term winter bike

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flw
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Need help for long term winter bike

#1 Unread post by flw » Thu Sep 13, 2012 2:09 am

I'm looking to get a bike to ride during the winter in Northern Il. Yes it snows, we have ice, pot holes, sand/salt and tar snakes. I don't plan on riding when there is a fair amount of ice.

The aspects of the bike I'm looking for is in keeping with the KISS principle.

-Single cylinder four cycle

-Single carb

-Electric start

-A kick for when battery goes

-Drum brakes on front and back but not a deal breaker. Part of keeping it simple.

-Must have option to buy some support for add on side bags or bag that attaches to luggage rack for storage. Storage is a must have item.

Knob tires (aggressive or mild for screw head that stick out).

The bike needs to be a common one so parts are available for it online or junk yards.

I don't want the bike to be over 15 years old.

So looking at all the above needs, what street legal bikes have the above items or I can buy the items for the bike. i.e. knobby tires can be bought for that model bike?

Any help or guidance you can help out with would be appreciated. Dan

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Re: Need help for log term winter bike

#2 Unread post by Wrider » Thu Sep 13, 2012 2:46 am

I can't think of anything street legal that has had a kick start in the last 15 years or so. I know you can add a kick start to a KLR650. Very popular, dead reliable, single carb, plenty of aftermarket available, tons of dualsport tires for them. It doesn't go with your requirement for drum brakes, but IMO disc brakes are easier to work on and maintain than drums.

Might also want to look at a Suzuki DR650. Just as powerful/reliable. Not as big of an aftermarket but still plenty of one.

Normally I'd suggest a KTM 620/625/520/525, but they're a bit more intensive to maintain because of multiple oils. They are definitely beasts, so they tend to be more difficult to maintain.
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Re: Need help for log term winter bike

#3 Unread post by sapaul » Thu Sep 13, 2012 3:04 am

Tend to agree with the KLR, especially the carb model. Easy to work with and should handle the snow and ice with tack tyres without too much fuss.

The other option I would recommend is a Ural, you can fix them with bubble gum and string. Go for the sidecar unit and you can stay stock standard on tyres and everything else.
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Re: Need help for log term winter bike

#4 Unread post by Wrider » Thu Sep 13, 2012 4:00 am

Forgot about the Ural, but also a very good option for what you're looking for.

SAPaul, do they have an FI model down in SA? Here in the US (and I think CA as well) they're only carbed.
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Re: Need help for log term winter bike

#5 Unread post by MmeMagpie » Fri Sep 14, 2012 11:00 am

I have no idea what it was, but my dad kept a dirt bike with a kick starter as his only reliable transportation for winters in Anchorage, AK from '79 to '81. As you are suggesting, he did put screws in the knobby tires for traction on ice and snow. He had to replace them fairly frequently, but it worked.
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Re: Need help for log term winter bike

#6 Unread post by dr_bar » Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:27 pm

I would go for the Ural with two wheel drive if it was for snow and ice. Regretably, our resident expert chose to vacate the site... :o(
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