Second post: Off-pavement capability - Kawasaki Versys Forum
Member Introductions Just joined? Tell us about yourself and your ride.

 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-09-2012, 03:12 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Smile Second post: Off-pavement capability

Part of the reason I went with the Versys when I bought a new bike three months ago is the alleged capability of riding the bike off-pavement (not off-road), say on a reasonably graded dirt road, as several reviews I read affirmed. However, the header on this Forum states that the Versys is not really capable of off-pavement riding.
Which is true?
If you have experience (positive or negative) with off-pavement riding, could you say a few words about it?
Thanks!
Vaidaman is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-09-2012, 03:33 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Posts: 687
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
I just got back from a trip across Labrador, almost 1000 kms of gravel. The bike handled it with equal aplomb to my brother's V-strom. Obviously not as well as a dirt bike would have, but then the other 5k kms were all on pavement. I have absolutely no qualms about taking the Versys on dirt or gravel roads, but everyone's comfort level is different.
Mt. Versuvius is offline  
post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-09-2012, 03:40 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Thanks, Mt Versuvius! Glad to hear your news.
Did you use tires different from the stock ones?
I have no intention of doing 500 miles of gravel (wow!), but the occasional few to a campsite would be nice.
Sounds like an awesome trip!
Vaidaman is offline  
 
post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-09-2012, 03:49 PM
Member
 
kenr74's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: The wet part of Oregon
Posts: 774
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
I ride gravel all the time. Get some decent tires and raise the front fender and off you go. You won't be ripping it up like a dirtbike but it will handle gravel and dirt fine.

The hardest part for me is remembering that it weighs twice as much as my dirtbike.
kenr74 is offline  
post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-09-2012, 04:07 PM
Member
 
twowheels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Ottawa, ON
Posts: 3,343
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Garage
I currently have Scorpion Sync Trail tires which are 95% on road/5% off road tires. What they offer is a significant improvement in traction on dirt or gravel without significantly compromising the on pavement performance as more aggressive dual sport tires do. Think these suit the personality of the bike well. They are compatible in on pavement grip to a typical sport tour tire and off pavement grip is 5X better.

IMO on road and off road performance is a trade off and the Versys is better on road than off road. You can improve the off road ride by reducing preload and rebound damping which will soften the ride and make it better on the bumps but also make the bike wallow a bit and just feel less stable at speed on the the pavement.

I find the bars a bit low to stand on the pegs but handle bar risers may help with this.

Another suggestion for dirt and gravel is SW-Motech engine bars. Dropping the bike on dirt and gravel is par for the course. This will pay for themselves many times over with prevented damage. I would recommend hand guards with a back bone that attaches to both sides of the grip for the same reason.

Last edited by twowheels; 09-09-2012 at 04:11 PM.
twowheels is offline  
post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-09-2012, 04:48 PM
Member
 
Versystole's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Aspen, CO
Posts: 330
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
I ride gravel all the time. Take your time, upgrade to a tire like the "trail" or "distanzia", and don't expect the bike to handle like a true dual-sport, and you'll be fine.
Versystole is offline  
post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-09-2012, 06:43 PM
Member
 
asdf38's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
Posts: 92
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Yeah it doesn't have much to do with the bike, I rode to the arctic ocean which is 500 miles of dirt one way and I was being followed by 2 Harley's one with a trailer. I like the versys I would hope on with no thought and ride it for a 1000 miles in 24 hours. So learn the feeling and response and never look back.


Sent from my iPhone using MO Free

08 Versys 32+k and counting


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
asdf38 is offline  
post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-09-2012, 08:00 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Posts: 687
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vaidaman View Post
Thanks, Mt Versuvius! Glad to hear your news.
Did you use tires different from the stock ones?
I have no intention of doing 500 miles of gravel (wow!), but the occasional few to a campsite would be nice.
Sounds like an awesome trip!
I used an MT60 front and scorpion trail rear (both Pirellis). The MT60 is a supermoto tire and sticks like glue on pavement and very good on dirt. Loose gravel was an adventure, but I knew I was making a compromise. I love that tire.
Mt. Versuvius is offline  
post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-09-2012, 08:25 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Thanks folks for the great feedback!
I've seen the Motech crash bars recommended here so many times that I will definitely get them (or the equivalent). And it sounds like the Scorpion Trail tires will be another option to look at.
Ouch on the video! Another one bites the dust (literally).
Vaidaman is offline  
post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-10-2012, 03:23 PM
Super Moderator
 
fasteddiecopeman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Kelowna, BC - summer; Florence, AZ - winter
Posts: 17,380
Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mt. Versuvius View Post
I just got back from a trip across Labrador, almost 1000 kms of gravel. The bike handled it with equal aplomb to my brother's V-strom. Obviously not as well as a dirt bike would have, but then the other 5k kms were all on pavement. I have absolutely no qualms about taking the Versys on dirt or gravel roads, but everyone's comfort level is different.
I've probably ridden AT LEAST 2,000 MILES on dirt, gravel and mud on my TWO Vs on street-type tires, tho' the AZ one now wears Metzler Tourance rubber, and there's another set on 'stand-by' for the BC one's next tire change.

I'm also waiting on an S-W Motech engine guard ('skid-plate') already ordered for the BC one, and will get a set for the AZ one later.

Ed
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


'08 V AZ, '15 V650LT BC
Ride to D2D 2013, June '13

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2015, June '15

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Ride to D2D 2016, June '16

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
fasteddiecopeman is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Closed Thread

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Kawasaki Versys Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome