Noob(to the Versys)/ So you think you want a European Bike? - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-01-2017, 09:18 AM Thread Starter
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Noob(to the Versys)/ So you think you want a European Bike?

Hello, My name is Alex and I am a bikeaholic, its been one day since my last ride, I'm starting to have sweaty palms, slight twitching in my left eye, dry mouth and a strange tingle in my nether regions.

I have been riding for about 30 years the past 12-13 have been adventure type riding owned a couple KLR, a wee-strom, my last bike was a Aprilia Caponord(that's a whole nother story).

After much hassle with the Italian bike I decided to go back to the Japanese bikes for the turn key and ride factor. I was going to get another wee-strom but someone mentioned the versys and I just kept coming back to it, guess I'm a sucker for ugly bikes?

Found a '11 with 3400 miles not too faraway $3000 bone stock unmolested, I prefer to be the molester. Absolutely immaculate condition.

Time to farkle it up
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-01-2017, 09:43 AM
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Great Story Teller/ Welcome from Canada

to the forum, I am getting my popcorn ready. We are heading into fall here, no cabin fever yet but a good story is good anytime.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-01-2017, 11:04 AM
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2009 Blue Versys.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-01-2017, 12:51 PM Thread Starter
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So you think you want a European Bike?

Just take the following survey,

Do you mind not being able to ride for weeks on end?

Do you have the one click buy button turned on for your Amazon Prime account?

Do you have the number of the local Euro bike shop a favorite on your iPhone, and is it above your wives?

Does the UPS guy just drop things at your house when he see's the return address is from ____powersports, even if its not for you?

Do you mind carrying a laptop and diagnostic cable on trips to the store for the beer you can no longer afford to drink?

Can your favorite beer go from a lovely Brown Ale that drinks like a meal to PBR's?

Does it have large enough panniers to cram spare ignition coils and the laptop, spanners, etc needed to go on a 4 day weekend camping trip with your mates?

Now I'm not saying they're all like that, but the one I tried sure was. "The little girl with the curl
when she was good she was oh so good, but when she was bad she was oh so bad!"

My Caponord was an 03 purchased last spring with 44k miles, in about 2 seasons of riding I managed to log 6k miles, my average is more like 10k per year. If I figured the cost per mile with all the parts I'd likely hang myself with one of the $80 magnacore wires!
It was an absolutely beautiful bike to look at and ride when it was running right. I could have seen myself keeping it for ever, if I had the money and space to have a Versys and the Capo it would have been an ideal pairing.
Alas I don't, so down the road the Capo went, I do miss it even as a I type this a tear comes to my eye.

See'ya
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-01-2017, 02:47 PM
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aboard! ...ANYWAY...!

(I started on Triumphs 'back-in-the-day', so I had to get used to: Lucas - PRINCE of DARKNESS electrics; doing maintenance in a '2 to 3' ratio - 2 hours tightening stuff to ride 3 miles!...; and buying shares in BP to TRY to stay 'ahead' of the drip-rate, etc, etc, ETC!)
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-01-2017, 09:09 PM
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aboard! ...ANYWAY...!

(I started on Triumphs 'back-in-the-day', so I had to get used to: Lucas - PRINCE of DARKNESS electrics; doing maintenance in a '2 to 3' ratio - 2 hours tightening stuff to ride 3 miles!...; and buying shares in BP to TRY to stay 'ahead' of the drip-rate, etc, etc, ETC!)
I've heard the Lucas horror stories from my dad, he never had a bike, but had an old series Land Rover 88 that had a Lucas electrical system, by the time he sold that Land Rover had had probably re-wired about half of it.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-02-2017, 11:45 AM
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I've heard the Lucas horror stories from my dad, he never had a bike, but had an old series Land Rover 88 that had a Lucas electrical system, by the time he sold that Land Rover had had probably re-wired about half of it.
I read that Jaguar is the company that 'turned' Lucas Electrics around. Jaguar would receive a large % of Lucas parts that would NOT work, so told them that they had to get their reliability to 100% (in a very short time) or they would NEVER work w/ Jaguar again.

Seems to have worked.

BOTH my '62 Triumphs experienced their alternators failing. On the Bonneville it happened on a road-trip near the Grand Coulee Dam in WA, breaking thru my primary-chain case at the same time.

LUCKILY I was able to get the hole welded near there, and was able to ride CLOSE to home on the magneto (NO lights...), which then burned my exhaust valves by retarding the spark... - dying about 180 miles from home.

What a COLOSSAL P.O.S.!!!

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Last edited by fasteddiecopeman; 10-02-2017 at 11:51 AM.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-02-2017, 12:08 PM
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Welcome. Looks just like my 2011 when I picked it up in May 2011. I added almost $4000 in mods to it to make it a capable two lane touring machine.

I currently have a Moto Guzzi, and sold my Triumph Trophy SE last September. No complaints.

Now, if your Versys should get a rock through the radiator you may be waiting months for a new on to arrive. The Japanese are not to good about stocking many 'non wear' parts on the shelves.

My Versys Travels:


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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-03-2017, 09:07 AM
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Welcome aboard from Moosehead Lake, Maine. Wait a minute! New Hampshire has a seacoast?!

Ah yes, memories of European bikes. Back in the day, I lived with (or tried to at least) a '75 Norton Commando Interstate 850 and then an '81 Moto Guzzi V50 III. When they ran both were almost sublime. But then being in a sublime state doesn't occur very often in the best of circumstances. Maybe that's the allure?

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-03-2017, 12:47 PM
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...Now, if your Versys should get a rock through the radiator you may be waiting months for a new on to arrive. The Japanese are not to good about stocking many 'non wear' parts on the shelves.
Got a leak in the rad of my '09, took it off and over to a rad-shop where it was welded (fixed!) for about $65CDN.

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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-03-2017, 08:07 PM
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Welcome. Looks just like my 2011 when I picked it up in May 2011. I added almost $4000 in mods to it to make it a capable two lane touring machine.

I currently have a Moto Guzzi, and sold my Triumph Trophy SE last September. No complaints.

Now, if your Versys should get a rock through the radiator you may be waiting months for a new on to arrive. The Japanese are not to good about stocking many 'non wear' parts on the shelves.
I've noticed that, my local Kawi shop is basically a "all parts are special order" parts dept. Thankfully it only took a few days to get a clutch cable and footpeg. Though the first footpeg they sent was for the wrong side (wrong part in the bag, the bag had the part number for a right side footpeg, but there was a left side footpeg in the bag).
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-03-2017, 11:44 PM
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-06-2017, 05:36 PM
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welcome i have the same bike but i have done all the farkles i wanted to mine. Maybe?
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-06-2017, 08:09 PM
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Welcome and although I am new to the Versys myself I like it a lot so far. I can see a few options to customize it a bit but in reality I would prefer attend to make it more comfortable and easier to ride...
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