Review after recent trip... - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 12:26 AM Thread Starter
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Review after recent trip...

Over Memorial Day weekend I took a 1150 mile trip that, for the most part, let me use most things I've purchased for or for use with, my Versys.
I'm no writer but here is my review of most of it.

Rider - Me, Chris. Iíve been riding about 6 years and the Versys is my third bike. Like most who are in love, there are many times I think the V will be my last but obviously it won't. I do hope I have for a long time though. My first bike was a '81 Kawasaki 440 LTD and second was '95 Triumph Thunderbird. I've had the opportunity to ride a harley, a Honda CB600 and a Honda Shadow. So, I am by no means Mr. Experience, but at least I've ridden a couple different bikes. I am pretty cautious in riding style though do like to get on it. I'm still learning, but then again, arenít we all.
I'm 6'5 and weigh about 215.

Windscreen - MRA Vario Touring Windscreen - I bought this a month or two ago used from one of the members on this forum for $75. I think the screen looks really cool and it did a pretty good job on this trip. It kept the wind off my chest but did put quite a bit of turbulence on my helmet. It seemed if I adjusted it to the lower position the buffeting was less but if I have to have it on the lowest position to be most effective I might as well just use the stock one. I did go into a full tuck for a while one the interstate and it did give me a great pocket of air to rest in but I can't ride like that for long. Perhaps for someone shorter then me it would be really good. I am not ready to get rid of it because it may be a nice blend of looks and function that is not easily replaceable.

Tank Bag - Dowco Rally Pack - Because of the plastic covering the sides of the tank on the V this tank bag is not a perfect fit, but I made it work just fine and had no fear that it would come off in the wind. It has a map window, which I used and liked, and enough space to be hold a bit of stuff and not get in the way.

Seat - Modified stock. - I hate the seat. It's better now that I modified it using the standard foam additions and raising of the front attachment point as described on the forum. Better, but still crap. Some like it, I do not.

Speedy's Flat foot. - A must have. If you are reading this review trying to figure out if you need to buy one of these, my suggestion is to just do it. It is the single best thing you can buy for the V. If you don't own one, you must buy one.

Tires - Pirelli Scorpion Sync. - These tires are sweet. They look great and for an average rider like myself will handle anything I can throw at them. For $350 or so, they'd better. Worth that kind of cash for me? Not sure. They will wear out after about 5000 miles based of indicated wear thus far. I don't regret the purchase but don't think I will buy a second set.

Luggage - OEM Top box - Worked well, I'm sure a larger case would be nice but I don't think they look as good and I personally don't need that space. Now, if my wife were to come along I'm sure a larger case would be needed but for me, combined with my soft saddlebags it was sufficient. I think it is overpriced but I didn't pay retail so it was a good choice. I used it to hold, my ball cap, swimming towel, jug of whiskey, microfiber towels, extra gloves and as some point a back of ice, and other groceries for one nightís meal. There is better for cheaper out there...

Cortech Sport Bags - For my 4 day trip I did not even have to expand them. They held: Jeans, 3 pair of socks and underwear, long sleeve T, toiletries, 3 shirts, a sweatshirt, flip-flops, running shoes, swimming trunks, a hatchet, K-bar knife, and cell and charger, to whiskey glasses, 5 plastic grocery bags, 2 large garbage bags and at some point, groceries for one nightís meal. Two thumbs up on the bags. Cost effective (I think about $120 or so) and hold a decent amount of crap.They come with rain covers which I had on for 350 miles of interstate riding and one side ripped due to wind. I am not impressed with the covers.

- Canoeing style Dry Bag - used this to hold sleeping bag. I was worried about rain but didnít encounter any rain when it was strapped to the bike but imagine it would have worked well. I donít think I would not use it while carrying a sleeping bag on the bike.

Helmet - Scorpion EXO 1000 Ė The helmet has a pump up system that snugs the helmet down to your face. When I first got the helmet I didnít really use the pump system but on this trip I did. I really like that feature now. Snugs things down nicely seems to quite things down a bit. I used ear plugs on the interstate bud didnít on the back roads. With all the air vents open this helmet is not a quite as I would have hoped but I do really like the helmet. I love the flip down sun visor as I wear glasses. I wish the tint was darker though. I assume there a darker visor for sale but I canít say I have looked for one. On my trip I had one spot on my forehead that the helmet seemed to tight on, but by the end of the trip it felt fine. I have always worn a large in any helmet and I do in the Scorpion also. It fits tight at first but loosened up after a bit. Overall a great helmet and I am glad I own it. It was a replacement to a Zamp modular helmet that I still have but donít think I will wear any more. Nice as the modularís are, I think I am done with them.

Engine Guard Ė SW-Motech - didnít have to use them. They look good and I even rested my legs on the for a bit. I hope to never actually need them.

Gloves Ė Icon 29ers - I really like these gloves. Theyíve got air damns that allow air into your fingers which keep your hands pretty dry. They are my favorite of all my gloves.

Jacket- Olympia Airglide 2 Ė I really like this jacket. I wore it and a moisture wicking running shirt on some 90 degree very humid days and I was cool as soon as the bike started moving. I donít have large shoulders so I find the jacket could fit a bit tighter but for a guy a bit broader in the shoulders, it would be an awesome jacket. The liner was not needed on this trip but I have used it on many occasions and love it. I wear a t-shirt, sweater, jacket and liner on 25 degree days and I am fine. Good jacket I just wish it fit me better without the liner.
Pants- Olympia Airglide 2 - I love these pants. They fit like a glove. I like wearing them with just underwear in the summer when itís really hot. The included armor is satisfactory but I may look for something better. They look good and fit well.

Boots- Icon Super Duty 2 - These are pretty nice. They come over the ankle, broke in quickly and I can wear them all day. There is a snap/buckle that keeps your laces down and helps to snug them up. I like this but at first it was really quite hard to operate. Itís worn in well now and works really slick. They let good amounts of air flow through them and thus are not waterproof. I didnít test that, but itís obvious. They may be a bit on the heavy side but all I have to do is keep my feet on the pegs and I donít notice it. Thatís where my feet should be anyways!

Mirror extenders - Speedyís Ė Wow, thereís a whole world behind me that I can now see. I was starting to thing my shoulders were chasing me everywhere I went before I got these. Must have.

Mirrors- Z1000 Mirrors - They are nice mirrors but I still have lots of vibration issues that make things not clear over 40mph or so. I donít think it has anything to do with the mirrors and more just being a buzzy bike.

Rim Tape- Some Italian stuff I bought at the local stealership. I think the tape made me ride faster and definitely look cooler then I would have without them. If you are feeling slow, buy rim tape, I think I gained 10 horses just by adding it.

Hopefully this long but lame review can help someone. If you have any questions feel free to ask.

By the way, I had asked a question last week about lubing the chain with wd40 while on the trip. I brought some but didn't use it. I just lubed the hell out of the chain before I left and then again when I got home.
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Last edited by Mawson; 06-06-2010 at 12:33 AM.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 01:32 AM
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good review.i am glad you spent some money for aftermarket parts that proved to be good buys in the trip.the red tape on the rims is for sure italian though did you make any notes about mileage?
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 03:42 AM Thread Starter
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I did make mileage notes. I will post greater details soon but as an average I got 50mpg which is awesome and at the same time really surprised me.....
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 07:40 AM
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The review is very much appreciated. Thanks for taking the time!

Why is Speedy's flat-foot such a must have? Because you were parking it on dirt?
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 08:25 AM
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what is the back case and rack ?
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 08:37 AM
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Nice review Chris! 1150 miles! Wow!



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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 08:42 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by objectuser View Post
The review is very much appreciated. Thanks for taking the time!

Why is Speedy's flat-foot such a must have? Because you were parking it on dirt?
Its a must have because aside from parking you bike in your kids sandbox, there is really no place you have to worry about your bike sinking and tipping with the flatfoot. Its the cheapest insurance you will buy.
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 08:46 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by shahrukh View Post
what is the back case and rack ?
OEM from Kawasaki.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 09:46 AM
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Nicely written and informative review. Thanks for taking the time.

Mark Jags
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 10:04 AM
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Have you ridden in the rain with the Airglide jacket ?
I know they are waterproof but I was wondering if they would keep you dry if you had to ride all day in the rain ?
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 10:04 AM
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Now how about telling us where you went, what you saw, and some pics too.
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 10:38 AM
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Very nice review!
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-07-2010, 09:17 AM
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Thanks for sharing your ride and some images of your trip will be good.

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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-15-2010, 04:36 AM
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Mawson,

I'm just getting started outfitting my new Tour master Venture Airersys, and I am also looking at the cortech sport saddlebags. One question about them is whether you need to have any kind of a rack in place to support them, or are they made to use without a rack?

Does anyone have an opinion about this?

Thanks.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-15-2010, 06:19 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpeterson1954 View Post
Mawson,

I'm just getting started outfitting my new Tour master Venture Airersys, and I am also looking at the cortech sport saddlebags. One question about them is whether you need to have any kind of a rack in place to support them, or are they made to use without a rack?

Does anyone have an opinion about this?

Thanks.
I do not use any rack nor do I think they are intended to need one. There was no issues with them sagging anywhere near the wheels. They are great bags and I recommend them as a cost effective luggage option.
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