Trailering Tie Down Points, 3rd Gen, 650 LT - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-29-2017, 09:04 PM Thread Starter
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Trailering Tie Down Points, 3rd Gen, 650 LT

I've never trailered a bike before but in a few months, I'm going to rent a MC trailer for a long distance, interstate haul (1450 mi one way). I need to know where the tie down points are for my 2016 650, especially the front.

In looking online at general tie-down instructions, it seems most people use the lower triple tree for the front and any number of points for the back. When I looked at the front of my 2016, it seemed like the fairing would get in the way of using the triple tree for the front tie-down.

If anyone has trailered their 3rd gen, I would appreciate any tips you could give (especially w/ pictures) on tie-down points.

2016 Versys 650 LT, Orange


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Last edited by Wolfcamp; 03-29-2017 at 09:06 PM.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-29-2017, 09:47 PM
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I use a soft loop looped around the lower triple on each side. Do be careful, though as there are brake lines and/or cables that would be really easy to wrap the loop around. Make sure that you go between the triple and the cable/hose. No interference with fairing, though if tie downs are in a far location you could have an issue. No way of knowing without trying it out or actually looking at the trailer.

Hauled my '15 to a rally in Fellsmere, FL last weekend and to beach camping that we are in the middle of now. Will be hauling it to Big Bend country then NC via AR and back to Fla next week.

Having a Roadtrek class B will spoil a person. Tent camping from a bike is getting to be too much like work. Then there is the 2500+ miles of flat land riding I won't have to do.

HTH.
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And most of Canada too, eh?
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-29-2017, 09:48 PM
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I am interested also...........I haven't hauled the Versys in my RV toy hauler yet but I will in June.
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-29-2017, 09:57 PM
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-30-2017, 06:46 AM
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Interesting this question comes up. I just loaded my 2015 650LT in my toyhauler yesterday for a roadtrip in Arkansas (riding some street and dirt this time together). I have soft straps on the handlebars connected to tie-downs and a front whee-chock. I found it challenging to secure with the wide tank plastics, as I didn't want to rub/strap anything. I used some towels for extra protection. I then secured the rear wheel with a strap to keep it from hoping around. I will let you know how it turned out next week.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-30-2017, 08:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by captpfd View Post
Interesting this question comes up. I just loaded my 2015 650LT in my toyhauler yesterday for a roadtrip in Arkansas (riding some street and dirt this time together). I have soft straps on the handlebars connected to tie-downs and a front whee-chock. I found it challenging to secure with the wide tank plastics, as I didn't want to rub/strap anything. I used some towels for extra protection. I then secured the rear wheel with a strap to keep it from hoping around. I will let you know how it turned out next week.
I've heard of handlebars collapsing from the stress of being used as a tie down. The triples are quite a bit more robust in dealing with the forces involved and they would seem to offer more clearance for the straps.

Yeah, if you want true ram air tuning, you better be willing to ram some air! (SiSF)

'15 KLE650LT
'99 Concours(with 234,xxx miles on it), sold
'98 KLR650


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And most of Canada too, eh?
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-30-2017, 08:24 AM
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I use a Canyon Dancer harness, I've trailered many bikes with it including the 650LT.

Welcome to Canyon Dancer, Inc. - Home of the original Bar-Harness.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-30-2017, 09:40 AM
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I agree with looping soft ties around the lower triple. That's how I've towed many bikes over the years, including full-faired sport bikes. I've been able to adjust the tie down points so as not to hit the fairings. Make sure you have good quality straps, not the cheap junk from Home Depot or Harbor Freight. I've used exclusively Ancra for over 20 years with no failures. I prefer the cam ones compared to ratchet. It's easy to get the ratchet ones too tight, plus I find them a pain to release compared to the cam style.

For the rear (always tie the rear, too!) I've used rear foot pegs, front foot pegs, part of the subframe, whatever works. If possible, pull these two straps forward also. If you can't due to the location of the tie down rings, just don't pull them too tight or you'll end up pulling the bike out of the wheel chock.

ALWAYS use a front wheel chock. Just jamming the front tire against a wall will work, but has as greater chance of failure as the wheel may turn and the bike can fall.

Canyon dancers work, too. I've never had one snap a handlebar, but I suppose it's possible if you really over tightened it. What they do, however, is sometimes mess up your grips.

I haven't towed the Versys yet, but that's what I'd do. If you're going to tow often, the very best system is the PitBull trailer restraint system. They do make a pin for the Versys' solid axle; a cup that has to be installed. I use this system to tow my GSXR to the track. It was developed after I was towing, but I got one a few years ago. No tie downs needed, it just attaches to the rear axle. Rock solid. It's pricey, but worth it if you'll tow often.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-30-2017, 12:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by captpfd View Post
Interesting this question comes up. I just loaded my 2015 650LT in my toyhauler yesterday for a roadtrip in Arkansas (riding some street and dirt this time together). I have soft straps on the handlebars connected to tie-downs and a front whee-chock. I found it challenging to secure with the wide tank plastics, as I didn't want to rub/strap anything. I used some towels for extra protection. I then secured the rear wheel with a strap to keep it from hoping around. I will let you know how it turned out next week.

I have bent/rolled handle bars so that's out. I used the lower point on the crash bar of a Vulcan 1500 and that was too low (bike slanted far enough to hit the wall). I have an over center front wheel chock and was wondering if I tied it down on the back with the tension pulling forward if that would be enough to hold it (a strap on each side). I can always make some soft loops (1/2" rope) to put around the lower triple tree and the fork tube.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 11:31 AM
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One other tidbit....if you are towing in an open trailer and it rains, check the tie downs, as they tend to stretch a bit when wet, therefore loosening up.
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 01:52 PM Thread Starter
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What is the specific tie-down point for the rear when hauling a 3rd gen Versys?

2016 Versys 650 LT, Orange


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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 01:54 PM
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Bull Line / 6000 LB rating

If you know of any underground trenching contractors working in the area, this is used to pull telephone and underground communication cable into duct banks and also used as a fish for long 1 mile runs .WP60 3000' | Dura-Line

What I do is have roughly 24 inch lengths for the front tripple and have 1 loop at one end using a bowline knot. The line goes around the triple and through the loop, choking around the upper triple, the remaining line goes into the ratchet tie down . I have 6 more short double loops, pass through the tie down on the trailer and through the loop, then double back over the other end and slip the ratchet tie down hook through, start on the kick stand side first and snug up. The reason for use bull rope even through the trailer anchor points is I have seen a bike bounce when the trailer hit a pot hole, came unhooked**crash. Eddie uses shock cords around the tie downs and has posted pictures of his trailer, Towing my Versys

Not the best picture of my 07, using the bull rope and ratchet tie down, normally when trailering the lower hook is held using the double loop as mentioned earlier. I used tow on the triple, one each above the main footpeg chocked on the main frame, two more on the rear trellis pulling down and forward to the wheel chock.I do have pictures , just can't find them.
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 04:16 PM
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+1 for using the lower triple tree over the handlebars. I picked my 2016 up from the dealer with a trailer, and used soft 'figure-8' straps on the lower triple so that the ratchet strap would clear the fairings. Easy to stay clear of electric and brake lines for me. On the rear I also use figure-8 straps, and put them on the passenger footpeg supports, making sure the tow straps are pulling the bike somewhat forward into the wheel chock. I will also leave the kickstand down, some minor added insurance for straps letting go on one side.

I have only towed the Versys 100 miles, but have tugged a heavier BMW for thousands of miles without issue. Checking straps after rain is a great habit they can stretch a lot!
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 09:08 PM Thread Starter
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soft 'figure-8' straps
I'm unfamiliar with these. I tried googling for them but had no luck. Could you post a link to a site (such as Amazon) showing them?

2016 Versys 650 LT, Orange


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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 10:17 PM
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I'm unfamiliar with these. I tried googling for them but had no luck. Could you post a link to a site (such as Amazon) showing them?
https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_n...ncra+soft+ties

The black Ancra ones. They come in 12" or 18"
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post #16 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 05:42 AM Thread Starter
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https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_n...ncra+soft+ties

The black Ancra ones. They come in 12" or 18"

Thanks. Which did you use on your Versys, 12 or 18 inch?

2016 Versys 650 LT, Orange


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post #17 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 05:48 AM Thread Starter
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I've decided to rent a trailer for a couple of days, well before my trip, so that I can get the method down pat. Don't want my first attempt at trailering to be on a 3000 mile round trip.

Thanks to all for answering my newbie questions on this. I may have some more when I actually attempt this.

2016 Versys 650 LT, Orange


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