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post #21 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-08-2008, 08:42 AM
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Well, my spouse has three bikes of her own so I'm just sorta trying to keep up!

She actually went to the California Superbike School in Las Vegas last weekend and took a two day track course; now she wants to trade her '06 EX500 on a new ZX6.


Cheers,
Dave
Ok - Dave, you're really rubbing it in now. What a woman! How'd you rate to score like that?
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post #22 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-09-2008, 09:06 PM
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Come on man... You can't tease us with stories about your motorcycle driving girl without posting up pics!
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post #23 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-09-2008, 10:09 PM
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Come on man... You can't tease us with stories about your motorcycle driving girl without posting up pics!
Back in my old rx7 club, this was called the Man Law. So +1 to GregScuba.
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post #24 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 11:39 AM
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OK, OK

She still has the pics on her camera, so when she gets into the office this morning, I'll post a couple (if I can figure out how!).

Cheers,

Dave

2008 Versys, 2008 ZX6R, 2006 EX500, 2002 KLR650
2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
2004 CRF250X, 2002 CRF150
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post #25 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 02:38 PM
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Here goes;
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2008 Versys, 2008 ZX6R, 2006 EX500, 2002 KLR650
2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
2004 CRF250X, 2002 CRF150
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post #26 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 02:48 PM
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a couple more; I threw one in of my son on the MX track

Cheers,
Dave
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2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
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post #27 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 04:47 PM
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Nice lines! And yes, I'm talking about the motorcycle.
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post #28 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 05:27 PM
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Nice lines! And yes, I'm talking about the motorcycle.

Thanks

2008 Versys, 2008 ZX6R, 2006 EX500, 2002 KLR650
2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
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post #29 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-11-2008, 07:42 PM
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OK so I’ll enter the fray with my TCW. In 1932 on a 2 cylinder Douglas, Robert Fulton Jr rode around the world on what we would now consider bicycle tires. Ted Simon rode a 1973 Triumph Tiger around the world when there was no such thing as a “dual sport” bike. The point I’m trying to make is any bike can go “off road’ just some will do it better than others. It is more the will to go, than the limitations of the bike.
That said, the V will never be a true off road bike, but nor are others that are marketed as “adventure” bikes. The Buell Ulysses, the Triumph Scrambler and earlier Tigers, the Honda Varadaro, and to some extent the V-Strom for example are all limited in their abilities to go off road. It comes down to what you want in a bike.
I’ve owned a 1998 KLR and rode it from Montreal to Panama. Most of that was on paved roads, but there was a lot of back roads or beach roads, mountain paths and crude stretches of “short cuts”. The KLR was only limited by my choice of tires, which were not good in mud.
Since then I’ve come to realize what I need in a bike. Firstly I can only afford one; and most of my riding is on paved roads commuting and weekend rides with friends. However I still like to explore the dirt roads and hope to one day ride to Hudson’s Bay or the Trans Labrador Highway which I know the V can do easily with the right tires. As in all things in life, it is a compromise. If your not in a hurry, and not going where only a really “off road” bike can, the V with a good skid plate, the right tires, and a good sense of adventure should be able to get you there.

Moe
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post #30 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-12-2008, 10:25 AM
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OK so I’ll enter the fray with my TCW. In 1932 on a 2 cylinder Douglas, Robert Fulton Jr rode around the world on what we would now consider bicycle tires. Ted Simon rode a 1973 Triumph Tiger around the world when there was no such thing as a “dual sport” bike. The point I’m trying to make is any bike can go “off road’ just some will do it better than others. It is more the will to go, than the limitations of the bike.
That said, the V will never be a true off road bike, but nor are others that are marketed as “adventure” bikes. The Buell Ulysses, the Triumph Scrambler and earlier Tigers, the Honda Varadaro, and to some extent the V-Strom for example are all limited in their abilities to go off road. It comes down to what you want in a bike.
I’ve owned a 1998 KLR and rode it from Montreal to Panama. Most of that was on paved roads, but there was a lot of back roads or beach roads, mountain paths and crude stretches of “short cuts”. The KLR was only limited by my choice of tires, which were not good in mud.
Since then I’ve come to realize what I need in a bike. Firstly I can only afford one; and most of my riding is on paved roads commuting and weekend rides with friends. However I still like to explore the dirt roads and hope to one day ride to Hudson’s Bay or the Trans Labrador Highway which I know the V can do easily with the right tires. As in all things in life, it is a compromise. If your not in a hurry, and not going where only a really “off road” bike can, the V with a good skid plate, the right tires, and a good sense of adventure should be able to get you there.

Moe
That's a good post. You hit the nail on the head; just like I said earlier, it depends what you mean by "off road". The Versys obviously CAN go "off road" to some degree. It may not be good at it, and it may be far from the ideal off road mount, but it CAN be done as long as the going doesn't get too rough. For anyone that disagrees with that and insists that a Versys can go ANYWHERE, I have a loop behind my house that I'll be please to take you on. Bring your bike. Heck I'll even supply the tires.

I understand that not everyone wants or can afford a bunch of different bikes and if your idea of versatility is to put some "dual sportish" tires on your V and take the odd dirt road then more power to you.

Cheers,
Dave

2008 Versys, 2008 ZX6R, 2006 EX500, 2002 KLR650
2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
2004 CRF250X, 2002 CRF150
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post #31 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-12-2008, 01:51 PM
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Good topic. I bought my Versys with the expectation to ride it 30% on dirt/gravel roads. After four months and 600 miles on dirt, I am satified. I go 30-40 mph on decent roads and 20-30 mph on rougher stuff and have ridden throughout the CO mountains. I avoid rocky trails, gravel on a slope and single tracks, but other than that I've ridden lots of dirt on stock tires and have had no trouble.
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post #32 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-20-2008, 07:02 PM
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Someone needs to invent super fast quick change wheels, so you could run street tyres on one set and then switch over for the weekend blast through the hills on knobblies.

The key limitation to any vehicle, two wheels or more, is tyres, your contact patch with the surface you're traversing. Almost everything else is personal taste. I used to get laughed at a lot when I rode an old 70's road bike around the tracks my mates were buzzing around on hard core off-roaders. I'd stuck as set of crusty old knobbly tyres on it with bugger all left across the middle of the tyre, (from too much tarmac) but plenty on the shoulders where you want it for some sideways action in the dirt. I wasn't as swift, nor agile but I was going everywhere they were.

As moflow points out... theres a thin line between limitations of the bike and limitations of the rider.
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post #33 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-21-2008, 12:09 PM
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Someone needs to invent super fast quick change wheels, so you could run street tyres on one set and then switch over for the weekend blast through the hills on knobblies.

The key limitation to any vehicle, two wheels or more, is tyres, your contact patch with the surface you're traversing. Almost everything else is personal taste. I used to get laughed at a lot when I rode an old 70's road bike around the tracks my mates were buzzing around on hard core off-roaders. I'd stuck as set of crusty old knobbly tyres on it with bugger all left across the middle of the tyre, (from too much tarmac) but plenty on the shoulders where you want it for some sideways action in the dirt. I wasn't as swift, nor agile but I was going everywhere they were.

As moflow points out... theres a thin line between limitations of the bike and limitations of the rider.
I'm sorry, but that's just wrong; tires aren't the ONLY thing that make a decent dirtbike. It sounds to me like some of you haven't ever been on a true harescramble/cross country race course because there is NO WAY you'd ever make it back to the pit. I've been racing for many years and I can tell you that even Ty Davis isn't going to make it around one of our courses on a Versys (with or without knobbies).

As I've said (several times now, in fact) whether a Versys is capable off road depends greatly on your definition of both "capable" and "off road", but regardless, make no mistake: there are a great many places in this world that no Versys is ever going to go.

Dave

2008 Versys, 2008 ZX6R, 2006 EX500, 2002 KLR650
2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
2004 CRF250X, 2002 CRF150
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post #34 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-21-2008, 01:08 PM
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We ride in very loose sand, lumpy as buggery, no huge hills, no real rocks to speak of but plenty of trees and stuff to run into/over, then often out onto the local limestone marble gravel on hard packed unsealed road. It's not the most challenging terrain I grant you but it still hangs up quite a few guys on pretty good bikes and yet I make it through on a pile of junk. We have Enduro races and other pro events on the same land though I've not competed myself, ( I simply have no inclination to, nor do I get a buzz from competition with anyone but myself). My rat bike isn't a Versys by any means and I guess by saying so I'm diverting from the original topic about it being the bike in question.

If we bust a bikes purpose down to the core level, it's about transport. It's about carrying your arse from one place to another with the most safety and efficiency. If a bike gets you from A to B without removing skin and within a reasonable time frame, I'd say its 'capable', regardless of the terrain crossed.

My pile-of-crud gets places it was never designed to go just by adding some crusty offroad tyres and riding it with some knowledge. It just didn't work in the sand, or on the loose crud on the road with the original skinny pavement tyres, all it did was spin on the spot in sand and do its best to dump my ass on the gravel. Adding those knobblies transformed the bike. It's the same story with cars. Ask any racer about whats the first thing to change when you go from street to track and you'll find 99 times out of 100 its wheels and tyres.

In short, add knobblies to a Versys and I think you'll find it goes all sorts of places you couldn't go before you made the change. By the looks of it, your substantial stable would give you ample opportunity to test this. Jam some road tyres on one of your dirt bikes and see how quickly you come off...

There's a reason why we have drag slicks, why we have water dispersion grooves and gator skin knobbles.

Oh and to rub a little salt into the wound, my Uncles very well maintained and kept Honda XR500S (late 80's, last of the drum brakers), is an unforgiving twitchy pain in the ass in the same terrain. I'm happier on my pile-o-poop, forgoing the power for some more controlability. His Honda has dumped me many more times than the junkpile, mostly because I don't modulate the grunt well enough. I'd be willing to bet that you would much prefer the Honda to the POS and you'd probably get around the track far faster than I ever could... and viola.. we come to my last point, personal style and preference.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

As a sidenote : Experience is a double edged sword my friend. It gives you many advantages but it also dulls your ability and capacity to accept different ways of doing things. Hard won modes of operation, hard won skills are precious, no doubt about it but you always need to leave room for the possibility that you can do something another way.
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post #35 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-21-2008, 03:13 PM
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We probably agree on as much stuff as not, but to be clear on what I was trying to say;

- Yes, tires make a HUGE difference. I've ridden my KLR with Pirelli scorpions as well as a new set of DOT knobbies and the bike was far more capable off road than with the Pirellis. Still wasn't a real dirt bike, but much better than before. At the same time, the extra 100 lbs, spindly forks, cheapo suspension, etc. all mean it has no chance keeping up to my CRF. At some point in time, I have to concede that "capable" to me has a minimum speed! OTOH, there are some obstacles encountered off road that require a certain minimum of speed and momentum to make it through.

- Again, there is off road and then there is off road. I've been on trails that I had to lift my bike over a dozen logs too big to jump over. I've had to ford creeks up to my seat and I've been on hills that it took a 220 lb 50hp bike to get to the top of. On THESE kinds of trails, a Versys would still be out there somewhere like those cars you see off the sides of logging roads with bullet holes and the paint burned off!

- My point in belabouring all this is simply to prevent some poor newbie sap from reading this forum and buying a Versys "'cause the guys on the web said it made a good off-road bike". It isn't a good offroad bike and can't really be made into one either. What it CAN do is go on dirt roads and such provided you have the right tires.

I love my Versys and it's a great bike.....but it's not a dual sport much less a dirt bike. If a guy wants to spend a fair bit of time off pavement, there are much better choices out there.

None of this is meant as any sort of personal derision and, in fact, I admire your spirit for getting out there and riding regardless of your chosen steed. I don't know where you're from, but if you find your way to the southern interior of British Columbia, you have a standing invite for a trail ride. I'll have something you could ride.

Cheers,
Dave

2008 Versys, 2008 ZX6R, 2006 EX500, 2002 KLR650
2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
2004 CRF250X, 2002 CRF150
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post #36 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-21-2008, 04:51 PM
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Do most people take dual sport to mean, "it goes on the street, and can race around dirt track with the leaders, be carried over dozens of logs, and fly 50ft in the air"?
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post #37 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-21-2008, 06:10 PM
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Do most people take dual sport to mean, "it goes on the street, and can race around dirt track with the leaders, be carried over dozens of logs, and fly 50ft in the air"?

Nope, but a Versys still isn't a dual sport in ANY real sense of the word. Do you KNOW what a dual sport is? Do you REALLY think the Versys can compete with the KLR, DRZ, XRL, or KTM 690?

My track analogy was in response to those who opined that the Versys could go ANYWHERE with the right set of tires. Clearly this is not the case.

If you think a Versys is a real dual sport, you haven't been on a real dual sport ride........and it would appear that most posters would agree with me and so does Kawasaki by the sounds of it.

If you think your Versys is a dual sport, who am I to call you crazy? Have fun.

Cheers,
Dave

2008 Versys, 2008 ZX6R, 2006 EX500, 2002 KLR650
2010 KTM 300XCW, 2007 KTM 200XC, 2006 KTM 200 XC,
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post #38 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-22-2008, 10:57 PM
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Cool

Just got home from a 218 mile jaunt today on my "V", and it included the Apache Trail from the Roosevelt Dam to Apache Junction, so that was about 22 miles of dirt on the OEM tires (only 1100 miles on her...). I've ridden the Trail MANY times on my KLR (with K270s), and I wasn't much slower today on the "V", tho' I WAS slower! Even rode up the side "trail" to Beavis Trailhead.
Comments: when I hit the wash board, even 'on the pegs' it was rougher, and while I enjoyed sliding the rear on some turns, occasionally the front tire slid a bit which wasn't QUITE as much fun...! I was as high as 75 mph on one stretch.
Several days ago I was looking for a short-cut into Florence so I tried a dirt road that turned into a farm road then circled a large field. Dirt was no problem until I hit several patches of that "flour sand/dirt", maybe 3 to 6" deep. Got thru OK standing on the pegs, but it really grabbed the front end and tried to 'throw me'!
All-in-all, I'd RATHER be on the KLR on dirt , but I WON'T turn back from a good dirt road when on the Versys .
There - that's MY .02$

Cheers,
Ed
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post #39 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-22-2008, 11:47 PM
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First time on the boards. A blue 09 showed up today @ David Brown's Sport Center. My green one supposed to be couple weeks behind it. Sold my 08 KLR this week, swappin for the Versys. Guess Kawasaki did good by naming it Versys, (VERsatile SYStem).
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post #40 of 355 (permalink) Old 11-23-2008, 07:10 AM
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Kawasaki was in 2008 anyway, selling it as an adventure bike and had it listed in both the sport and DUAL SPORT sections of the website,so being it was marketed that way,I would assume many people think its ready as is for off road work.I do believe that with better tires it would be OK on a gravel road or a smoother dirt road,but its no klr.Everyone jumping on the no it isn't bandwagon had better notify Kawasaki ,as they (the company ) sold it that way. I remember having this conversation o another website with a fellow who showed me this on Kawas webpage,I do Notice that the 2009 Versys is not listed in the dual sport section,guess they figured it out

AMA EAA STN

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