bonding with Kermi - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-16-2013, 02:01 PM Thread Starter
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bonding with Kermi

I don't name all of my motorcycles. of the three keepers I had before the versys, only one had a name. if you ever saw my Transalp, youíd understand why it was known as Ragamuffin. the other two bikes were often referred to as Big Red and Lil Red, but thatís only because they were both red and very different in size. as well, calling them by model names could be tedious, at times. but those arenít really names.

I may have been delirious when I first named the versys. I had done 1052 miles of i-40 and was knee deep into a second day of the same when it occurred to me that the bike was coated with a metal-flaked version of the Muppet paint scheme. Iím blaming delirium; too much time spent with myself inside my ill-fitting helmet. but I keep on calling it Kermi.

Iím moving from Memphis to Reno next month and I needed to find a place to live. I decided to ride out on the bike to meet my real estate agent in Carson City and I didnít have a lot of time to get there, so I pounded out 2100 miles in two days. during those two days, I learned that a 22-mile commute is not long enough to determine that a new helmet is a good fit; hotspot front and center. interesting, since my previous 4-mile commute was long enough to determine that my previous new helmet was a poor fit. even better, if it rains hard enough, the vents leak and the visor gets really blurry if itís rainy and cold. bummer. it seems Iím going back to Arai for a while.

I also learned that i may have to concede defeat and do something about that saddle. those other three bikes all had Corbin saddles, no reason to think the versys could go without. not sure a Corbin would have prevent my flaming buns after two days on the interstate. but my cheap fix of beaded and sheepskin seat covers is annoying and only partially effective.

finally, 6000 rpm was a happy place to cruise. given the typical speedo error on motos, I figured that was good for about 75mph. imagine my surprise when I figured out that, with my stock sprockets, this calculates to 80mph! oops! GPS, can you confirm? i think with my well-worn rear tire, that calculation is a little high. fortunately, on most states covered, patrols was scarce. most of the troopers i saw were in AZ and i supposed i wasn't juicy enough to target.

well anyway, I have the license plate bracket, but i am not an Iron Butt devotee. i prefer twisties. I needed some quality time with the versys, as this has been in short supply since I bought the bike. Iíve used it on a couple of get-there trips to Atlanta an New Orleans, but only once was I able to get it into some mountain twisties and not only was I still on stock tires, but it rained heavily that day. to this point, I knew versys only as an effective commuter and I while I liked the bike, there was no love. so, once business was adjourned, I was eager to find some curvy roads where i could really get to know the machine... after 3.5 years of ownership. pathetic.

I headed towards to coast and sought out some curvy roads along the way to Redwoods National Park. there was some sketchy pavement, but plenty of good stuff where I could appreciate the neutral handling of this machine. there was some awkwardness getting the feel for the handling with a full load behind me, as well as figuring how how much I could trust the nearly flat-spotted Contis. I had a good time chasing a guy on a well-ridden cruiser thing and really came to appreciate Californias frequent placement of passing lanes. once at the park, I had occasion to sample the gravel road handling of the machine, and it performed as expected. on the return route, I took a different road which was one of the longest stretches of good riding I have ever seen; it would be epic with consistently good pavement. the versys proved a bit recalcitrant at the beginning of this stretch, reluctant to turn and requiring extra effort to hold a line. when i stopped for gas, I noticed the rear tire was low, which, when corrected, cured the handling. it was a sweet as pie afterwards. funny, my inner voice told me to check the pressure when I broke camp. my next thought was: these tires have always been good when Iíve checked the last two years, now theyíre gonna leak? yes, now. stupid, stupid, stupid.

anyway, throughout that ride, and yesterdays ride to Lake Tahoe, I kept smiling at Kermi. it may take a few more mountain passes, a new helmet and a new tire, but I think there may be some magic happening with the Kerm. we shall see.

In a world full of people, only some want to ride. Isn't that crazy?
Seal/CRAZY/misquoted


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Last edited by kevrider; 05-16-2013 at 02:08 PM.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-16-2013, 02:30 PM
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You have the license plate bracket but aren't a devotee?

HA!

If you have the license plate bracket... you ARE a devotee.

Good read.. glad you found your mojo with the green frog.


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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-16-2013, 02:50 PM
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Nice write up! Have yet to name any if my motorized bikes yet =\

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-16-2013, 03:26 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Zatx View Post
You have the license plate bracket but aren't a devotee?

HA!

If you have the license plate bracket... you ARE a devotee.
touche! let me explain... i think a devotee would have done whatever necessary to get recognized for 1000+ miles for two days in a row. i think there's an award for such a ride. tha bracket was earned over 10 years ago when i thought 1000 in 1 would be fun. i was wrong!

it was cool to do it (once) and i rock that bracket because it was a tough day. but it was not fun. much respect for those who enjoy such riding, especially those who do it on inappropriate machinery, but it ain't my cuppa.
this time it was done was purely out of necessity and i intend to never do it again.


you're wrong for that, Zatx!

In a world full of people, only some want to ride. Isn't that crazy?
Seal/CRAZY/misquoted


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Last edited by kevrider; 05-16-2013 at 03:30 PM.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-16-2013, 08:58 PM
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Pics or it didn't happen

It seems like so much great riding in the sierra, north coast and trinity alps. Will you do more riding in California before heading home?
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-16-2013, 10:27 PM Thread Starter
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not this trip, leaving tomorrow. i'll be back in a couple of weeks and will have a couple of weeks to kill before the job starts. hoping to squeeze one in during that time.

pics, i know the rules. i have a few to share... gotta get home to unload the SDcard....

In a world full of people, only some want to ride. Isn't that crazy?
Seal/CRAZY/misquoted


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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-18-2013, 06:06 PM Thread Starter
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just a few pix... launch point


that's a lot of tree


socked in here, but it was a nice view


CA36 is nice one



In a world full of people, only some want to ride. Isn't that crazy?
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 05-20-2013, 11:38 PM
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Sooooooo.... What's quicker? The V or the Sub wagon?

Looks like a blast btw! Nice stuff out that way!


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