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post #1 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 09:45 AM Thread Starter
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Hovering in the valley of decision

Howdy fellas,

So the bike search is happening again. This time considering the Versys 650.

Currently have a 2015 KTM 1190 Adventure. Prior to this I had: FZ09, Ninja 1000, Concours 14, FZ1, etc...

So you may be thinking "Why would this guy consider going from all those "hot rods" to a mild mannered Clark Kent kind of bike?"

I am asking myself the same question.

Part of it is old age. I'm 64 and my old back just cannot tolerate the rough ride of sport bikes so that is how I ended up with the ktm which by the way is an outstanding motorcycle. Torque out the wazoo and the WP suspension is second to none.

What has me worried on the ktm is the cost of parts and repair. I am retired and short on cash. So when the extended warranty expires is a couple of years and something major should brake I would have a very expensive boat anchor sitting in my garage.

So enter the Versys 650. Much cheaper than the ktm to purchase and parts are about 1/3 the price of the Austrian super bike. Plus I really don't need to be going north of 130 mph which is pretty easy to do on the 1190.

Am I making sense? Anyone here been in the same boat?
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post #2 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 10:23 AM
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I never went the sportbike route and have ridden small and large displacement cruisers along with a Yamaha Venture prior to acquiring my used 2011 650 Versys.

I was very pleased with the acquisition cost and cost of accessories for the Versys.

My primary reason for buying a used 650 Versys after riding a 1200R Sportster was driven by cost so I understand your logic (I am 63 and semi retired)

You have a few choices in the 650 class so my suggestion would be to test ride a few samples.

Good luck and I hope to see you on the forum in the future.

“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!” Hunter S. Thompson
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post #3 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 12:15 PM
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post #4 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by hawkerjet View Post
Howdy fellas,

So the bike search is happening again. This time considering the Versys 650.

Currently have a 2015 KTM 1190 Adventure. Prior to this I had: FZ09, Ninja 1000, Concours 14, FZ1, etc...

So you may be thinking "Why would this guy consider going from all those "hot rods" to a mild mannered Clark Kent kind of bike?"

I am asking myself the same question.

Part of it is old age. I'm 64 and my old back just cannot tolerate the rough ride of sport bikes so that is how I ended up with the ktm which by the way is an outstanding motorcycle. Torque out the wazoo and the WP suspension is second to none.

What has me worried on the ktm is the cost of parts and repair. I am retired and short on cash. So when the extended warranty expires is a couple of years and something major should brake I would have a very expensive boat anchor sitting in my garage.

So enter the Versys 650. Much cheaper than the ktm to purchase and parts are about 1/3 the price of the Austrian super bike. Plus I really don't need to be going north of 130 mph which is pretty easy to do on the 1190.

Am I making sense? Anyone here been in the same boat?
Welcome. Recognize you from other forums. The Versys 650 is a nice bike. It will wheelie and hit 90 easily when passing a logging truck on a back road. It was probably the most fun street bike I owned because it feels like riding a comfortable supermoto. Of course I had the 2nd gen. Not sure if they tamed the 3rd gen some to meet more of the sport touring group it looks to be designed for.

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post #5 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 12:47 PM
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Ahhhh, the old age syndrome (I'm 66).......I reached it last year when I dropped my 1500 Vulcan Classic and couldn't pick it up.........no one around to help...........I had been thinking about a smaller bike for some time and this incident was the deciding factor to my purchasing a 15' Versys 650 LT. It is a nice "sporty" sort of bike that still allows some touring (I just returned from a 3600 mile 15 day trip). I think you would like one. JMO
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post #6 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 01:27 PM Thread Starter
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Ahhhh, the old age syndrome (I'm 66).......I reached it last year when I dropped my 1500 Vulcan Classic and couldn't pick it up.........no one around to help...........I had been thinking about a smaller bike for some time and this incident was the deciding factor to my purchasing a 15' Versys 650 LT. It is a nice "sporty" sort of bike that still allows some touring (I just returned from a 3600 mile 15 day trip). I think you would like one. JMO
I am most likely to do the same and grab a clean low mileage 15 or 16 LT model.

Comfortable supermoto description sounds like lots of fun and I really don't need 150 horsepower to have fun. Arm stretching is fun but at a high cost. You can burn off the rear skin on the 1190 in under 1000 miles. At $200 a tire that can be painful on the wallet.

3600 miles in 15 days is a pretty good poke. How did your butt hold up? Are you running the stock seat?
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post #7 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 02:13 PM Thread Starter
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Curious is there is much difference in vibration between the newer 650's with the rubber front engine mounts vs the older bikes without the rubber front mounts?
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post #8 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 03:51 PM
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2009 Blue Versys.
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post #9 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 04:09 PM
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Coming from the KTM and the FZ-09, I would be looking at the Versys 1000...I doubt very much you will be happy with the power of the 650....
I sold my FZ shortly after getting my V1K ...I saw no reason to keep them both,...the big V is just as much fun as the FZ but rides so much better and I can carry stuff.... .. ....and good to see you over here...

2016 green V1K
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post #10 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-12-2017, 07:41 PM
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I am most likely to do the same and grab a clean low mileage 15 or 16 LT model.

Comfortable supermoto description sounds like lots of fun and I really don't need 150 horsepower to have fun. Arm stretching is fun but at a high cost. You can burn off the rear skin on the 1190 in under 1000 miles. At $200 a tire that can be painful on the wallet.

3600 miles in 15 days is a pretty good poke. How did your butt hold up? Are you running the stock seat?
I have a stock seat that I modified..............shaved the riders foam almost down to the pan and then inserted a 3/4" gel pad. Used 1 1/2" of high density carpet pad to build up the nose and then covered it all with a 1/2" low density foam to hide my work. I also have an Air Hawk pad and a sheepskin pad..........the seat is better without either of them. I also did the seat nose mount lift mod. I did one day of 462 miles on that trip and the butt was a bit sore but not bad.
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post #11 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-13-2017, 03:07 PM
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...3600 miles in 15 days is a pretty good poke. How did your butt hold up? Are you running the stock seat?
I just finished 8,668 miles (13,950 kms) in 25 days. STOCK seat, front raised 9/16".

MY butt is FINE...!

aboard!

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post #12 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-13-2017, 11:08 PM
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curious is there is much difference in vibration between the newer 650's with the rubber front engine mounts vs the older bikes without the rubber front mounts?
yes

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post #13 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-14-2017, 12:40 AM
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post #14 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-14-2017, 02:16 PM
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Curious is there is much difference in vibration between the newer 650's with the rubber front engine mounts vs the older bikes without the rubber front mounts?
I have a Gen 1 in AZ as well as a Gen 3 in BC. I really don't notice much of a difference in vibes between them, altho' there MUST be....

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post #15 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-14-2017, 04:53 PM
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Howdy fellas,

So the bike search is happening again. This time considering the Versys 650.

Currently have a 2015 KTM 1190 Adventure. Prior to this I had: FZ09, Ninja 1000, Concours 14, FZ1, etc...

So you may be thinking "Why would this guy consider going from all those "hot rods" to a mild mannered Clark Kent kind of bike?"

I am asking myself the same question.

Part of it is old age. I'm 64 and my old back just cannot tolerate the rough ride of sport bikes so that is how I ended up with the ktm which by the way is an outstanding motorcycle. Torque out the wazoo and the WP suspension is second to none.

What has me worried on the ktm is the cost of parts and repair. I am retired and short on cash. So when the extended warranty expires is a couple of years and something major should brake I would have a very expensive boat anchor sitting in my garage.

So enter the Versys 650. Much cheaper than the ktm to purchase and parts are about 1/3 the price of the Austrian super bike. Plus I really don't need to be going north of 130 mph which is pretty easy to do on the 1190.

Am I making sense? Anyone here been in the same boat?
aaaand here we go:

age: well, I remember Kennedy's assassination pretty well. I watched the moon landings as a teenager, and only the lack of the Right Stuff* kept me from trying to become an aeronaut.

$$$income$$$: I hate taxes. I hate 401K tax rates. I hate taxes. (do you sense a theme here?)

mo'sickles: I have a ZX14R and other assorted artillery (none pertinent except the ZX. And the soon-to-be-mentioned 650LT.) When we quit fooling with the ZX we were getting dyno-measured 207 crank horse, 187 hp at the rear wheel. More than my wife's Subaru, and most modern cars.
Gen Mar risers kept the grips up to where I could hang on for dear life (literally - I consider Percy to be an ICBM with turn signals - ain't scared of him, but I am VERY, VERY respectful.)

Fast forward to last year: I live in the wilds of North Idaho where the 2 lane roads prevalent here are

^^trees+wildlife^^__2 lane road__^^trees+wildlife^^.

Why in the world do I need something that turns 0-60 in under 2.5 seconds? Why would I pilot said land missile down a 2 lane road rife with moose, deer, wolf (so I'm told), coyotes, skunks, porcupines, etc etc?

I almost hit a deer a few years ago, and that was enough.

Enter Black Pearl (BP), a '16 650LT.

I looked at the 1000LT Versys and realized I had that same bike already in Percy (named 'cos he's a 2008 which is "Persimmon Red + Flame Black" - hence 'Percy'.)

BP will run 80mph all day long (yeah, you gotta play a tune or two on the gearbox to get there), but BP'll do it. Handling is close to Percy-esque, i.e. BP handles better than my age-slowed, active-imagination-regarding-accidents fueled skills. Insurance is a HELL of a lot less. MPG is 40-ish. I throw crap in the panniers and hit the road. No place on Percy for that currently, and I refuse to fit an ICBM with saddle bags. It's like spray painting the Mona Lisa with hunter fluorescent orange 'to make her look better'. ugh.

The seating position is very good for me (I'm 6'0" started with a 33" inseam (well, hell 30" now) inseam) and I'm content. I did put a Givi 4114 windshield on to let the plastic take the bug hits instead of me.

Like any well-researched and unhastily chosen relationship there's give and take and arguments, but in the end things are like a Glen Campbell song - It just works somehow. Oh yeah, there's a little cancer problem that gives me a year or so left on the meter. So wife's complaints notwithstanding, I'm trying to check off the bucket list items while I can, and that means time in the saddle in lieu of a Scotland trip that's prolly not gonna happen now, given my sudden (and forced) retirement.

So there ya go. More than you ever wanted to know about some other old coot, right?

msg me for specifics on other farkles if you want more info.

bp

*blinder'n a bat.
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post #16 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-14-2017, 11:16 PM Thread Starter
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Update:

Thanks guys for the input and welcome.

I rode a pristine 2013 with 3k miles on it. Yes I was a bit underwhelmed with the power as I suspected I would be coming off the 1190. But it was very comfortable and nimble. I did notice a fair amount of vibration in the bars in the 5000 to 5500 rpm range. The asking price was 5k.

Yesterday I rode a somewhat beat up 2015. The owner had dropped it a couple of times. The first thing I noticed was the front end was tweaked. The bars were twisted about 10 degrees starboard when going strait. Anyway I gave it about a 20 minute shake down. The new fairing and wind shield provided a bit better wind protection than the 2013 model. Also there was a noticeable reduction in vibration compared to the 2013. Pretty smooth in the bars but a little buzz in the foot pegs. For sure an improvement.

So the beat goes on in the valley of decision.
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post #17 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-15-2017, 01:07 AM
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another senior guy moving downscale. 66, with well over 50 years riding, dozens of bikes, etc. I didn't bother with even looking at the Vs1000 because I just got rid of 2 bikes that were liter plus. if I wanted a liter bike I would have kept one of my BMWs. love those bikes (had 4) but the Vs 650 is lighter & more nimble. it doesn't have the liter bike hit for power but it does everything I want for a mostly pavement bike. fast enough on any highway, even loaded down. thats proven.

downsizing my KLR too I think... I got a second set of wheels for the Versys (ninja wheels are cheap & fit) and the V makes a good gravel road runner. now I don't need the KLR for gravel roads and it is a bit big for the rougher stuff... so I think it goes. I plan to get a KLX250 and put on the 350 jug. I thought about getting another DRZ but that narrow 5 speed tranny makes that the lesser choice

anyway... don't be afraid to make the leap

if I'm answering your question I assume the basic points have been addressed, such as: did you do a compression test? is it still on fire?
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post #18 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-15-2017, 08:10 AM
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another senior guy moving downscale. 66, with well over 50 years riding, dozens of bikes, etc. I didn't bother with even looking at the Vs1000 because I just got rid of 2 bikes that were liter plus. if I wanted a liter bike I would have kept one of my BMWs. love those bikes (had 4) but the Vs 650 is lighter & more nimble. it doesn't have the liter bike hit for power but it does everything I want for a mostly pavement bike. fast enough on any highway, even loaded down. thats proven.

downsizing my KLR too I think... I got a second set of wheels for the Versys (ninja wheels are cheap & fit) and the V makes a good gravel road runner. now I don't need the KLR for gravel roads and it is a bit big for the rougher stuff... so I think it goes. I plan to get a KLX250 and put on the 350 jug. I thought about getting another DRZ but that narrow 5 speed tranny makes that the lesser choice

anyway... don't be afraid to make the leap
I'm turning the big 70 in a couple of months and picked up a 2016 650LT last year and love it. It's the first sub liter bike I've had since two stroke college days. I find it's perfect for my needs, agile, a nice midrange hit when needed, sporty, and a capable and fairly comfortable bike on longer trips.

Like Beezerboy, I have a KLX250S as my go anywhere dirt bike and am contemplating the 350 conversion as I would like to be able to snatch the front wheel up easier going over obstacles. The KLX250s is a very capable little bike, and am disappointed that Kawasaki discontinued it. I was hoping for a fuel injected model.
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post #19 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-15-2017, 08:22 AM
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Curious is there is much difference in vibration between the newer 650's with the rubber front engine mounts vs the older bikes without the rubber front mounts?
Seemed to be to me, but that was before I went through my 2009. EZ bike to ride. This and the BMW F700GS are the easiest so far that I've put any time on. Plenty of power, pretty light. I've been sufficiently spoiled that I wonder whether a Versys 300 or a BMW 310 would do fine for my future Illinois home!

Versys seems pretty tire tolerant, decent everything, nothing exceptional. Not happy with current and stock windscreen, still working on that. Likely put spoilers on the fairing to kill some of the flow along the fairing and tank into my knees.

Dr. Toaster: Guzzi 1400 California, VStrom 1000
Mrs. Toaster: 2009 Versys 650
Located 50 miles W of Deals Gap aka Dragon
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post #20 of 44 (permalink) Old 08-15-2017, 08:30 AM
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Howdy fellas,

So the bike search is happening again. This time considering the Versys 650.

Currently have a 2015 KTM 1190 Adventure. Prior to this I had: FZ09, Ninja 1000, Concours 14, FZ1, etc...

So you may be thinking "Why would this guy consider going from all those "hot rods" to a mild mannered Clark Kent kind of bike?"

I am asking myself the same question.

Part of it is old age. I'm 64 and my old back just cannot tolerate the rough ride of sport bikes so that is how I ended up with the ktm which by the way is an outstanding motorcycle. Torque out the wazoo and the WP suspension is second to none.

What has me worried on the ktm is the cost of parts and repair. I am retired and short on cash. So when the extended warranty expires is a couple of years and something major should brake I would have a very expensive boat anchor sitting in my garage.

So enter the Versys 650. Much cheaper than the ktm to purchase and parts are about 1/3 the price of the Austrian super bike. Plus I really don't need to be going north of 130 mph which is pretty easy to do on the 1190.

Am I making sense? Anyone here been in the same boat?
You too !! Thinking my FZ will be replaced by a 650LT but still considering. I'll be keeping my H-D FLHT but want a 2nd bike (lighter/nimbler) that will travel cross country comfortably (solo rider). New 650 LT's can be had OTD in my area for mid/upper $7k's. At the expense of being boo'd/hissed, I really would like to ride the new 2017 Wee Strom but their are none locally to see. Crosshair keeps me looking at 1000 LTs, and their is a local used 2016 with 1k mikes going for around $8k. Hurrying up to wait
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