2011 Versys vs Trail - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-29-2011, 11:16 AM Thread Starter
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2011 Versys vs Trail

I wanted to get out there and see what how the versys would handle on some nearby trails. This trail had everything from hills, baby head (large rocks), slick mud and dirt, silt, hills, wash outs, and rail road ties. The versys handled all of it with a good sense of moderation.

This is with the stock dunlops, the front about 2 turns in and the rear in the 3rd notch from softed setting.

Here is the video watch it in 720 HD:
http://youtu.be/7XRsTRsTBbo?hd=1

1997 KLR 650
2011 Halle-friggin-leuya Versys
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Last edited by BAMF; 05-29-2011 at 12:13 PM.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-29-2011, 05:36 PM
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Avon Distanzias

I put distanzias on mine and went anywhere.

If you're not living life on the edge, you are taking up to much room.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-29-2011, 06:41 PM
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Try removing all suspension preload and damping to soften it up a bit. Add back some preload if you are bottoming out.
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-29-2011, 06:52 PM Thread Starter
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My opinion is that the bike will do a lot. It is not a dirtbike and you cannot expect it to be, but with a mature sense of what is doable and what is stupid...you can do most things that you will come across. What I wanted to do was use it for some trails and fire roads occasionally. This bike will do fine with those things, as you can see in my video.
I am going to invest in some protection so the big rocks don't impact the engine or exhaust. Also dual sport tires are gonna be om the short list...I think they will help the most.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-29-2011, 07:41 PM
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I guess part of the problem is that you normally want to air down the tires for traction, but then you risk damaging the rim. I will ride gravel roads but I still am not comfortable riding them at the speeds I can ride the KLR. I've seen Harleys handle some pretty knarley stuff in all those old movies from the '60s.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-29-2011, 08:00 PM Thread Starter
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yup, this trip was with stock dunlops with stock pressure, so any more aggressive tire and/or lower pressure would have netted more stabilty and capability.

I mainly wanted to see what it would do with all the odds against it and have THAT to work from.

1997 KLR 650
2011 Halle-friggin-leuya Versys
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2011, 09:49 PM
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great video the V can do a lot more than people think in the dirt even with the OEM tires. I was at an ADV rally and there were KTM950s, VStroms, KLRs and I kept right with them on the ATV trails. They were all surprised how well the bike did in the mud and rocks. I wouldn't take in on a boulder trail but rocks and gravel it does do well just have to know how to muscle the bike around and stand on the pegs

2012 Super Tenere On order
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2011 Versys Sold
2006 DL1000 Sold
2006 XR650L Sold
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2011, 10:08 PM Thread Starter
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sup martin, check out our ride in late june...we are going up to bear creek mountain

should be in group rides

1997 KLR 650
2011 Halle-friggin-leuya Versys
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 08:29 AM
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I just did a Dual Sport Weekend with my gf on her Versys and it handle great. Especially considering she beat the **** out of it! Here's a short list of the things we did to it in order to make it better in the dirt:

SW Motech Crash bars
SW Motech Skid Plate
Dirtbike handle bars
Rear panniers (good for traveling and rear crash protection)
bark busters (a MUST have)
MT60 front tire
Mich Anakee 2 rear tire

If I remember when I get home, I'll toss up a pic. It handled great, even in sand. The deep sand was a little tough, but normal stuff was good. The one thing I didn't love about it is that the exhaust is so low for water crossings.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 11:47 AM
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Ha, the cameras are fun aren't they?

The term 'trail' is rather loosely applied to these off pavement treks. For the most part perfectly smooth and firm. The versys will do anything a car would drive on without much issue. We soon learn that the suspension becomes the limiting factor when the going gets rough.

I just want to caution any lurkers that the Versys is a streetbike that will go off pavement anywhere you would drive your car. Anything that would require a 4-wheel drive to navigate is going to pose a real challenge if not be impossible for the Versys. The things that are limiting are it's weight, it's front tire diameter and width (it plows in soft soft), suspension designed for on-road, and it's lack of ground clearance and vulnerability of low hanging components.

Worse, the likelyhood of dumping it over is VERY high and the broken fairings can be fairly expensive to replace, not to mention bent bars, sub frame, dented exhaust, and potential for cracked case covers.

Carry on. Forewarned is fore-armed.

Chris Brown
In SoCal
2009 V - custom black-on-black - SOLD
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 11:58 AM Thread Starter
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thanks CJ... i would say that the versys can certainly handle a little more than what the standard car could traverse. Especially with decent rubber.

but overall, very much agreed...this bike is designed for roads, whether they be concrete, asphalt, potholed, bumpy, dirt, small gravel, cobblestone or whatever else you would drive on. It is not a dirtbike.

That said, it is a hell of a lot of fun taking the versys off the pavement and onto a dirt road or path and having some modest fun, then going right back to the pavement and blasting down a highway with all the other pavement pounders. Its versatile!

1997 KLR 650
2011 Halle-friggin-leuya Versys
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 12:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dejavu View Post
I just did a Dual Sport Weekend with my gf on her Versys and it handle great. Especially considering she beat the **** out of it!
Did my post get edited, by a mod, for a swear word? Are you kidding me?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CJBROWN View Post
I just want to caution any lurkers that the Versys is a streetbike that will go off pavement anywhere you would drive your car. Anything that would require a 4-wheel drive to navigate is going to pose a real challenge if not be impossible for the Versys. The things that are limiting are it's weight, it's front tire diameter and width (it plows in soft soft), suspension designed for on-road, and it's lack of ground clearance and vulnerability of low hanging components.

Worse, the likelyhood of dumping it over is VERY high and the broken fairings can be fairly expensive to replace, not to mention bent bars, sub frame, dented exhaust, and potential for cracked case covers.
I agree that it's pretty heavy if you drop it (I had to pick her bike up every time) but my ktm950 is 100 lbs heavier. And easier to Crash than a dirtbike.

It does scratch easier. She crashed doing 35-40mph in the sand and it scratched the plastics up a little.

But I'm not sure I can agree on the limitations. it can go many places that a car can't. Is it dominantly street oriented, sure, but the limitations are in the hand of the rider.
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 12:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dejavu View Post
Did my post get edited, by a mod, for a swear word? Are you kidding me?
I think it is an autocorrection filter on the forum. Don't feel bad, nothing personal I am sure. You just can't say **** I guess.

I think the Versys suspension is harsh off road, especially as I have it set up fully for on road. But it is not bad enough to keep me off of those roads! If I need to, I will just slow down a bit.
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 12:59 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Pretbek View Post
I think it is an autocorrection filter on the forum. Don't feel bad, nothing personal I am sure. You just can't say **** I guess.

I think the Versys suspension is harsh off road, especially as I have it set up fully for on road. But it is not bad enough to keep me off of those roads! If I need to, I will just slow down a bit.
agreed, a knowledge of when to slow down is something that is invalueable.

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2011 Halle-friggin-leuya Versys
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 01:22 PM
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Using the 1-10 scale. What would you ride your Versys on?

Rating: 2
Dirt road. Dry, or less than 3" water crossing depth. Some ruts. Slight grades, up to 10 degrees. 2WD under most conditions. Rain or snow may make 4WD necessary. Usually one and a half to two vehicles wide.

OR
Rating: 3
Dirt road. Rutted, washes, or gulches. Water crossings up to 6" depth. Passable mud. Grades up to 10 degrees. Small rocks or holes. 4WD recommended but 2WD possible under good conditions and with adequate ground clearance and skill. No width problems for any normal vehicle. Vehicle passing spots frequently available if less than two vehicles wide.

OR
Rating: 4
Rutted and/or rocky road. No shelves but rocks to 9". Water crossings usually less than hub deep. Passable mud. Grades moderate, up to 15 degrees. Side hill moderate up to 15 degrees. 4WD under most conditions. No width problems, vehicle passing spots frequently available if less than two vehicles wide.

.
http://www.kawasakiversys.com/forums...ad.php?t=14732

Dropped my KLR many times, always going slow though. Don't wanna drop the Versys

"Respect the Ride if you don't you Won't"
"A man's got to know his limitations"

Last edited by cmoreride; 05-31-2011 at 01:31 PM.
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post #16 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 01:44 PM
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I think it is an autocorrection filter on the forum. Don't feel bad, nothing personal I am sure. You just can't say **** I guess.
Nothing like an auto filter suppressing our freedom of speech...
Thanks for letting me know, Pretbek.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pretbek View Post
I think the Versys suspension is harsh off road, especially as I have it set up fully for on road. But it is not bad enough to keep me off of those roads! If I need to, I will just slow down a bit.
Agreed, it doesn't have off road suspension, but I'm not sure you need it for most stuff. As CJ said, it wasn't initially designed as a full dual sport.
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post #17 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 03:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dejavu View Post
Agreed, it doesn't have off road suspension, but I'm not sure you need it for most stuff. As CJ said, it wasn't initially designed as a full dual sport.
Yeah, it really is an upright sportbike.
I enjoy taking it on graded non-tarmac roads because of its upright seating and wide handlebars, but it surely isn't a dual sport.
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