So the bike search is happening again. This time considering the Versys 650.
Currently have a 2015 KTM 1190 Adventure. Prior to this I had: FZ09, Ninja 1000, Concours 14, FZ1, etc...
So you may be thinking "Why would this guy consider going from all those "hot rods" to a mild mannered Clark Kent kind of bike?"
I am asking myself the same question.
Part of it is old age. I'm 64 and my old back just cannot tolerate the rough ride of sport bikes so that is how I ended up with the ktm which by the way is an outstanding motorcycle. Torque out the wazoo and the WP suspension is second to none.
What has me worried on the ktm is the cost of parts and repair. I am retired and short on cash. So when the extended warranty expires is a couple of years and something major should brake I would have a very expensive boat anchor sitting in my garage.
So enter the Versys 650. Much cheaper than the ktm to purchase and parts are about 1/3 the price of the Austrian super bike. Plus I really don't need to be going north of 130 mph which is pretty easy to do on the 1190.
Am I making sense? Anyone here been in the same boat?
aaaand here we go:
well, I remember Kennedy's assassination pretty well. I watched the moon landings as a teenager, and only the lack of the Right Stuff* kept me from trying to become an aeronaut.
I hate taxes. I hate 401K tax rates. I hate taxes. (do you sense a theme here?)
I have a ZX14R and other assorted artillery (none pertinent except the ZX. And the soon-to-be-mentioned 650LT.) When we quit fooling with the ZX we were getting dyno-measured 207 crank horse, 187 hp at the rear wheel. More than my wife's Subaru, and most modern cars.
Gen Mar risers kept the grips up to where I could hang on for dear life (literally - I consider Percy to be an ICBM with turn signals - ain't scared of him, but I am VERY, VERY respectful.)
Fast forward to last year: I live in the wilds of North Idaho where the 2 lane roads prevalent here are
^^trees+wildlife^^__2 lane road__
Why in the world do I need something that turns 0-60 in under 2.5 seconds? Why would I pilot said land missile down a 2 lane road rife with moose, deer, wolf (so I'm told), coyotes, skunks, porcupines, etc etc?
I almost hit a deer a few years ago, and that was enough.
Enter Black Pearl (BP), a '16 650LT.
I looked at the 1000LT Versys and realized I had that same bike already in Percy (named 'cos he's a 2008 which is "Persimmon Red + Flame Black" - hence 'Percy'.)
BP will run 80mph all day long (yeah, you gotta play a tune or two on the gearbox to get there), but BP'll do it. Handling is close to Percy-esque, i.e. BP handles better than my age-slowed, active-imagination-regarding-accidents fueled skills. Insurance is a HELL of a lot less. MPG is 40-ish. I throw crap in the panniers and hit the road. No place on Percy for that currently, and I refuse to fit an ICBM with saddle bags. It's like spray painting the Mona Lisa with hunter fluorescent orange 'to make her look better'. ugh.
The seating position is very good for me (I'm 6'0" started with a 33" inseam (well, hell 30" now) inseam) and I'm content. I did put a Givi 4114 windshield on to let the plastic take the bug hits instead of me.
Like any well-researched and unhastily chosen relationship there's give and take and arguments, but in the end things are like a Glen Campbell song - It just works somehow. Oh yeah, there's a little cancer problem that gives me a year or so left on the meter. So wife's complaints notwithstanding, I'm trying to check off the bucket list items while I can, and that means time in the saddle in lieu of a Scotland trip that's prolly not gonna happen now, given my sudden (and forced) retirement.
So there ya go. More than you ever wanted to know about some other old coot, right?
msg me for specifics on other farkles if you want more info.
*blinder'n a bat.