am I crazy? - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2009, 07:51 PM Thread Starter
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am I crazy?

Just got a new Versys last week, so far so good. I've been riding a ex-500R, so its a big change position and feel wise, but I'm loving the power and control gained.

My inseam is just over 32", relatively short legs for my height at 6"3, but my initial feedback from the week is that I want the bike lowered. Am I nuts? Maybe this is just because I'm used to the 500, but even though I can rest both feet flat standing, it feels to high to get any control with a foot down - how do you shorter guys back up on an incline?

Only other complaint is since my upper body is so long, the handlebars seem to high, I'm getting cramped in there, hands come off feeling like I'm on the verge of loosing circulation - but not quite, might have to lower them as well saw a few good threads on those options in here.

So should I just give it some more time to get used to it? Ergos aside, bike is great, and I'm looking forward to this summer now.

Anyways, great to see such a strong community here, glad to be a part of it.

Last edited by big_pipes; 04-30-2009 at 07:53 PM.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2009, 08:13 PM
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Apparently, I'm built just like you. I'm about 6'-2", with a 33" inseam. I've got the extra-long apeman upper body and arms. I too thought my Versys needed lowering at first, but I got used to it. Most riders are content I think, if they can get just one foot down flat, but it sounds as if you and I can get both down pretty easily. I really think you'll get used to the bike's height, given a little time and some more riding experience.

I also get the somewhat numb hand thing. I wouldn't lower my bars if I could due to a bad back, but I do feel I'd like to stretch my arms out a little now and then. Since I bought my Corbin seat though, that feeling's gone away somewhat, as I can now slide my butt back on the roomier seat, thereby changing my relationship to the bars a little.

Anyhow, I don't have any solutions to your problems, I just felt like rambling

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2009, 08:14 PM
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If you are able to flat foot, I wouldn't recommend lowering. Lowering will affect the handling of a bike (unless you are able to lower the front and rear equal amounts which is usually difficult to do). Sounds like you just need a little more seat time on the Versys. Do you back into parking spaces? Look at the situation each time and decide which way to park. If you will have to back up going up hill then it's best to park the bike by backing in down the hill. If the situation is reversed and you can pull into the space and then back out downhill, do so.

A forum member makes a lowering kit if you feel you must:

Your handlebar reach might be cured by using Rox risers but you would position the bars as far forward as possible making sure to have clearance at full lock (don't think you would be able to move it much).

I don't know of a lowering kit unless maybe you got some flat handlebars. But again, you would probably have a clearance issue.

Good luck.

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2009, 09:13 PM
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I think you should lower it if that's what you're comfortable with. When I bought my KLR, I bought it from a guy who was 5' 7" (I'm 5' 11"). He had it lowered plus he had the scooped seat on it. I rode it that way for awhile, then put the factory seat back on. If I had of kept the bike, I would have taken the lowering link out as well. It allowed me to get used to the height of the bike over a period of time.

The point I'm trying to make is that you can lower your Versys to a height closer to what you're familiar with. You might want to keep it that way forever or you might want to return it to the original height somewhere down the road.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2009, 11:40 PM Thread Starter
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ha, nice to know I'm not the only ape-man around here.

I'll probably hold off lowering for now, but after I fix the buzzing, and the seat (great info here!), I'll look into options on the handlebars. Thanks for the replies.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2009, 11:55 PM
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Originally Posted by big_pipes View Post
My inseam is just over 32", relatively short legs for my height at 6"3, but my initial feedback from the week is that I want the bike lowered. Am I nuts?
Yes, without a doubt...

Any other questions?


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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-01-2009, 11:36 AM
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Give it some time; it's bound to feel weird at first coming off the EX500 but you need to RESIST the urge to change it until you've given it a chance. If you lower a V and put lower bars on it maybe you'd have been happier with a Ninja 650.


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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-01-2009, 11:54 AM
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We're all nuts, so welcome to the club. Ride for a month first. I lowered mine and the handling is not compromised at all and it is an easy fix. The links are manufactured by a member here named Speedy and his website is (great products). Finally, you can buy a used gel seat for $250 +/- that will drop the seat height by 3/4 inch.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-01-2009, 12:48 PM
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I think it all depends on whether or not you want to put $125.00 into an experiment to see if you like the bike better when it's lowered. I don't think inseam length has a lot do do with it. Tall guys ride cruisers and they can be 6" closer to the ground than a Versys. Last week I had to make a quick lane change to avoid a car and ended up stopped on a hump with two ruts on either side. At that moment in time I would have loved a lower Versys. It's all in what you're comfortable with.

I have a 33" inseam and wouldn't mind trying a lowered Versys. Speedy says it doesn't affect handling at all.
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