I need a “Touring” bike.

Posted: November 7, 2013 in Uncategorized

This is one of the biggest misconceptions in the 2 wheeled world.

To travel you need a motorhome on 2 wheels… No… no you dont.

“Back in the day” people toured on whatever bike they had.

You had a Honda 360? Well, you strapped your gear on and hit the road.

Now… well, you need at LEAST a sport tourer, but a REAL touring bike is the choice if you plan on humming down the super slab all day.

I call Bull Shit on this.

You know what 2 of my most memorable and enjoyable trips were on?

A 750 ’89 Katana with an 1100 motor swap and a 91 ZX11.

At the time they were considered sport bikes, not hard edge sport bikes… but still sport bikes.

The ZX11 was the fastest bike sold at the time.
I happen to have the ’93 version of it sitting right outside at this very moment.

You know what else?
I would have no trouble strapping on a couple of soft bags, a tank bag and a roll bag on the back seat and heading out for parts unknown.

No, for 2 person touring it is not comfy like a Hondabago.
However, I see most of those with a single rider on them.

Now, if you MUST have your cruise control, CB, stereo, cup holder, 3 places to put your feet, and dont want to be bothered by the wing you are cutting thru… then by ALL means take off with your Honda.
I would suggest an Accord.

Because, to ME, this is not motorcycling.

You ride a bike to be a part of your environment… not to be insulated from it.

Before the Japanese 4 cylinders hit the states, you would cross country tour on a 650cc 2 cyl Triumph or BSA, they were Big Bikes with 45 or so horsepower.

Then the CB750 landed… and it didnt shake like the twins, yes it buzzed, and IT was the new cross country mount.

A few years later you could buy a Suzuki GS1100, it was a backroad scratcher, a drag racer, a touring machine.

Personally, I think motorcycles are too specialized now.
You have sport bikes, town bikes, sport touring bikes, touring bikes… and every now and then… someone releases a do anything “Standard” or Naked bike.

And… since the population is now used to the specialized bikes, these do anything bikes dont sell.

And we, the motorcycle lovers, are diminished by this.

The ZRX1200R, KTM 990SM-T… these are amazing bikes that can fill many roles and take up spots in the garage that would otherwise be filled by different specialized bikes.

People need to step back and evaluate their purchases.

Lets take the 990SMT as an example.
It can follow on the heels of a sportbike on public roads, and actually show many of them the way.
You can commute on it to work and back… to the store to pick up supper.
Toss some clothes in the bags and head out for the weekend.

A true multi purpose do it all bike.

Riders need to buy more of these… so we get more options in this category.




  1. HVS says:

    I love bikes. Want one myself. Just don’t like my sad friends who lost friends on bikes. ONE is too many. But it’s a bigger number than that. And being the most careful human being in the world won’t help you when it’s some texting teen behind the wheel of their dad’s car.

    But we all gotta enjoy life. So do what makes you and the missus happy. And enjoy.

    Yeah, my post is a bit of a downer. So sue me.

  2. Evil One says:

    The way I see it…
    I have lost a lot more friends in car wrecks or from illness.
    We could drop dead of an aneurysm while walking to the john.
    I take the precautions that I can in life, but I refuse to wrap myself in bubble wrap and avoid “danger”.
    Dude, you willingly go into New Haven…


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