First 2-up ride - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-04-2010, 09:05 PM Thread Starter
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First 2-up ride

I have about 1700 lifetime miles, all but my MSF course being on my 2008 V. I finally broke down today and got my girlfriend a helmet and we tooled around the neighborhood. I didn' tweak the rear suspension (thoughts on that welcome).

I can't say it seems like it would be comfortable for a ride of any length. I certainly felt the weight transfer of my rider through my arms/grips. Thankfully the bike has the torque to handle the extra load at low speeds. The most precarious maneuver was the stop sign, steep uphill, facing a right turn. I needed the right foot up to manage the brake against rolling back, but really felt like i needed that foot down to help initiate a bit of lean with the extra weight of the rider. I ended up just burning a bit more clutch than normal, revving a bit higher until we were firmly held against the steep slope, then getting the foot down to initiate the low speed, off camber turn.

I believe there will be a HD touring bike in the portfolio before too long. But at least the cherry is popped.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-04-2010, 09:27 PM
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I feel your pain. Not long ago I asked the forum for advice on riding with my girlfriend on the back. I have a lot more lifetime miles, but prior to buying the Versys, it had been years ago and it was with a Goldwing. The rare times I rode with a girl on the back then (girls weren't much into guys in their 20's riding Goldwings) it was very smooth. Touring bikes are just made for that stuff.

It definitely changes things, especially if your girlfriend herself hasn't ridden much in the past. I'm still struggling with that, trying to get her to understand the body mechanics of riding, leaning, etc. More than once (I'm not exaggerating) in a curve I've felt the bike wobble, only to find out that she felt that halfway into the curve was a good time for her to adjust her underwear. We still bang helmets, but less so now.

I'm sure others will agree that sticking to the straightaways is good until you (and she) feel more comfortable with her on the back. I don't have much of a choice here, as every road is twisty. The nice thing about it, though, is when you do go ride by yourself, you feel so fast and maneuverable without that extra weight.

Tim
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-04-2010, 09:36 PM
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I have about 1700 lifetime miles, ... I finally broke down today and got my girlfriend a helmet and we tooled around the neighborhood...

The most precarious maneuver was the stop sign, steep uphill, facing a right turn. ... really felt like i needed that foot down to help initiate a bit of lean with the extra weight of the rider. I ended up just burning a bit more clutch than normal, ...
Nice to see that you waited to get plenty of experience and mastered the machine before you decided to put your girlfriend at risk...
.

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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-04-2010, 09:49 PM
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get way more experience before thinking a HD wieghing hundereds of more pounds that does'nt do turns well and shakes like a blender would be a better two up bike! my wife and daughter love riding on the v. the wife just does'nt like getting on and off-bad knee.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-04-2010, 09:55 PM
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If you are two up riding would be important to adjust suspension to allow for extra weight, there are plenty of suspension gurus here so hopfully they will chime in with correct advice, Att 'Gustavo'. With two up the pillion needs to practice being one with you or you have to compensate by leaning more if they lean wrong way. Work out some pre arranged signals, my wife smacks me in the ribs if going to fast (not a recomended signal as it hurts) just glad she does not go on back to much.
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-05-2010, 09:34 PM
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Nice to see that you waited to get plenty of experience and mastered the machine before you decided to put your girlfriend at risk...
.
Give the guy a break. He said he's just "tooling around the neighborhood". He's clearly new enough to riding and if he weren't open to constructive advice (instead of "rolling the eyes" criticism), he wouldn't be posting.

Tim
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-05-2010, 11:50 PM
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Hey Belowreserve, it all sounds good to me, though why did you not use the front brake while stopped at the incline? If you would have done that, you could have used both feet on the ground also. Maybe I read your post wrong?

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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-19-2010, 03:53 PM
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Yeah... Seems like on the Versys, I'll have to go solo or at least forego these tempting long hauls 2-up. Damn.

Ah, well, one can dream, right?

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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-19-2010, 05:58 PM
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My first 2 up ride on the V was a little scary but it gets better fast as you and your passenger learn to move together. My wife and I did a 150+ mile ride a month or so ago. At least 50 miles of that was on gravel and we had a great time. The only issues I have is the extra weight when we come to an off camber stop.

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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-19-2010, 06:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Belowreserve View Post
I have about 1700 lifetime miles, all but my MSF course being on my 2008 V. I finally broke down today and got my girlfriend a helmet and we tooled around the neighborhood. I didn' tweak the rear suspension (thoughts on that welcome).

I can't say it seems like it would be comfortable for a ride of any length. I certainly felt the weight transfer of my rider through my arms/grips. Thankfully the bike has the torque to handle the extra load at low speeds. The most precarious maneuver was the stop sign, steep uphill, facing a right turn. I needed the right foot up to manage the brake against rolling back, but really felt like i needed that foot down to help initiate a bit of lean with the extra weight of the rider. I ended up just burning a bit more clutch than normal, revving a bit higher until we were firmly held against the steep slope, then getting the foot down to initiate the low speed, off camber turn.

I believe there will be a HD touring bike in the portfolio before too long. But at least the cherry is popped.
Well, I have to tell you....give it time. Kudos for just "tooling around" before you jaunt out on the highway. I've got over 100K in lifetime mileage and there isn't a single time that going from one rider to two that there isn't a period of "adjustment" both in psyche and suspension set-up. I feel the V is a GREAT bike for 2-up riding if it's properly set up. First, you have to make sure it's set-up comfortable for YOU. Seat, pegs, bar adjustments, mirrors, 'shield, etc. Once that's done, concentrate on seat time. The more miles you build up the more comfortable you'll feel with a passenger. Practice in a parking lot, going slow with {and without} her on the back. Get used to "body english" and how it works for you...and....against you. As far as the suspension, give the rear pre-load adjuster a notch or two closer to the highest setting. I've found out that {with 2} the stiffer settings help the front end from feeling too light and nervous. CAREFUL WITH THE THROTTLE in first gear with a passenger, the front end can get very light even when you don't want it too!!{anything over 4500rpm} ... Hope this helps....
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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-19-2010, 08:12 PM
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Great screen name and avatar, BR! Best two up riding machine-Honda Goldwing. My choice if my wife would ride, Kawasaki Concours.

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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 12:14 AM
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Originally Posted by bill_milstead View Post
Hey Belowreserve, it all sounds good to me, though why did you not use the front brake while stopped at the incline? If you would have done that, you could have used both feet on the ground also. Maybe I read your post wrong?
i think you read it right, Bill.

BR, it takes one finger on the brake lever to hold the bike in place. you can operate the throttle, while holding the brake with your index and keep two feet on the ground. alternately, index the throttle and hold the brake with the rest. practice. solo.

agree with Hardware... you might want to get (a lot) more saddle time before doing much 2up riding... if you consider yourself a newb, anyway.

In a world full of people, only some want to ride. Isn't that crazy?
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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 04:30 AM
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I pretty much ONLY ride 2 up , and have been doing so for at least the last 4 years, mostly on a 125 but now for the last 8 months on the V.

It probably helps that the missus is so used to being on the back of a bike that I donīt even know that she is there most of the time. The only time I do notice is if I brake hard and she butts me in the head

I hardly notice a difference between one and two up, apart from the slight lack of power since I am still on a restricted bike, but apart from that you shouldnīt notice it to the extent you are talking about.The bike can easily handle 2 people, you probably just need to keep practising thatīs all.

Good luck!
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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 05:56 AM
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Well, I have to tell you....give it time. Kudos for just "tooling around" before you jaunt out on the highway. I've got over 100K in lifetime mileage and there isn't a single time that going from one rider to two that there isn't a period of "adjustment" both in psyche and suspension set-up. I feel the V is a GREAT bike for 2-up riding if it's properly set up. First, you have to make sure it's set-up comfortable for YOU. Seat, pegs, bar adjustments, mirrors, 'shield, etc. Once that's done, concentrate on seat time. The more miles you build up the more comfortable you'll feel with a passenger. Practice in a parking lot, going slow with {and without} her on the back. Get used to "body english" and how it works for you...and....against you. As far as the suspension, give the rear pre-load adjuster a notch or two closer to the highest setting. I've found out that {with 2} the stiffer settings help the front end from feeling too light and nervous. CAREFUL WITH THE THROTTLE in first gear with a passenger, the front end can get very light even when you don't want it too!!{anything over 4500rpm} ... Hope this helps....
Great tips, BTW.


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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 07:23 AM
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I have taken a friend for a number of all day rides and redline is right about that period of adjustment everytime out (maybe not for spainy, since he is usually 2-up). The main thing to remember is that everything will take longer and require more concentration with a passenger. Personally I ride a lot slower with a passenger so steep leans aren't an issue. As long as your passenger follows your body movements (shouldn't be too much) you should be fine. Give yourself a lot more room to stop and maneuver.

Steve

I bought a motorcycle because my wife said that I couldn't! Now I have two and she still says I can't have another one!
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Sounds like a challenge to me!

Now I have four!
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post #16 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 08:13 AM
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I have taken a friend for a number of all day rides and redline is right about that period of adjustment everytime out (maybe not for spainy, since he is usually 2-up). The main thing to remember is that everything will take longer and require more concentration with a passenger. Personally I ride a lot slower with a passenger so steep leans aren't an issue. As long as your passenger follows your body movements (shouldn't be too much) you should be fine. Give yourself a lot more room to stop and maneuver.
As a man who has never rode on a Versys before, I'd like to ask:

Exactly HOW fast can a Versys go with a passanger on a ride? Can it go at least 130 km/h on a highway, if traffic allows it?

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post #17 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 08:26 AM
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Easily! You could do that all day with no problem.

Steve

I bought a motorcycle because my wife said that I couldn't! Now I have two and she still says I can't have another one!
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Sounds like a challenge to me!

Now I have four!
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post #18 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 08:46 AM
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Easily! You could do that all day with no problem.
Phew... A load of my mind.

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post #19 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 09:39 AM
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I've set a 60kg weight limit for passengers on the Versys.
I don't like it at all and seldom do it.
It changes the bike too much for me. I'm sure I would adapt and learn with practice but don't see the point. If a girl wants to ride with me she should get a motorcycle.

I also had moments when passenger (girl) thinks it's a good idea to correct her attire while lane-spliting at 20km/h or tries to 'counter steer' in opposite direction mid-corrner. My heart sank each time. To much responsibility taking someone with no moto-gear and experience on board.


Cheers.
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post #20 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 10:10 AM
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I won't take anyone without proper gear. It is enough responsibility just having them back there. So far I haven't had any of those problems. I am 240lbs and she is probably 120. Also loaded top and side cases.

Steve

I bought a motorcycle because my wife said that I couldn't! Now I have two and she still says I can't have another one!
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Sounds like a challenge to me!

Now I have four!
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