Longer trip - my best farkles
I recently did an 800 mile, 2.5 day, ride south of St Louis full of twists & turns and want to share with you what I found to be the best additions to my bike for that kind of trip.
350 miles of that was the highway slab getting there and back, but the other 450 was two days on the fun back roads around there. My longest day was 400 miles.
Here's my list of what made this a fun ride & not one that I was hurting to get off the bike, and what they cost me. Kinda of long, but I thought it might help some of you out that are wondering what's worth spending $ on to ride longer distances.
Comfort gear: These all were great.
-Seat beads $15 (BEST BUY EVER! l bought these for my Wing & when I couldn't get a new seat fast enough for the Versys I just happened to try them & they work GREAT for getting rid of the butt burn, just don't wait too long to put them on.)
-Grip puppies $15 (don't use too much soap when putting these on!)
-Vista cruise control $37 (ok for temporarily stretching the hand but doesn't hold same speed for long)
-Plus I adjusted the rear suspension down a notch from OEM setting.
Travel gear: these all worked great. My only caution is on the tankbag - it's magnetic so keep it very clean underneath & don't pull on the magnets or you'll get some small scratches. If you'll do alot of long distance rides I'd consider spending the extra $ for the GIVI hardbags.
-Nelson Riggs SPRT50 Saddlebags w/ raincovers $100
-Nelson Riggs tankbag w/ clear mappocket CL1020 $50
-Cortech sport tailbag w/ raincovers $110
I also have the Kawasaki tailbag & love it too ($85 on ebay).
Other helpful farkles: I was glad for these too!
- Motowerk Mirror Extenders $34 (be sure to use plenty of lock tite at the mirror base when putting these on)
- GIVI D405ST windshield $?
- Helmet Guardian to lock up helmets $55
- SWMotech Crash bars $210 ... no I didn't crash, but I did use these to rest my legs on several times. Wish there was a better foldup peg option for them, I don't have it.
- Both clear & tinted helmet shields with shield cleaner to clean off all the bugs :-)
- Frogtoggs raingear and boot raincovers. $80 Not a farkle, but it helps keep the clouds away.
- I did buy a RAM mount $40 afterwards so that I can try using a GPS next time.
- And don't forget the earplugs or IPOD, the kickstand plate, and the tire guage too!
Need to add:
More Visibility - Twice I had a semi and car pull into my lane. I never have this problem on my big well-lit Wing, but be ready for people to look right through you on this smaller bike. I think driving lights on front, a hyper lite on back, and a Hi-viz jacket/helmet would help. Not sure what I'm going to do, I'm alittle conscious about how it all looks too.
Indiscrete hwy pegs to rest my legs out on.
I loved this ride on the Versys. The Versys did well at 75 mph on the interstate, was fun to cruise the scenic spots, and a thrill to ride through the technical twisties (it did great!). The bike does bounce around alittle in the curves, but hardly ever slipped out on me. When I had the extra weight of the full saddlebags on day 2 I felt alittle better planted to the ground with the rear tire. My knees, thighs, butt & back did pay some price for that many miles, but when I kept the beads on the seat it helped out tremendously and I will definately do it again. Now for the 1500 mile 5 day trips I'll still take the Wing but it was great to find out that for so little money I could make the Versys a fun tourer too!