Riding again after 30 years - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-10-2019, 09:13 AM Thread Starter
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Riding again after 30 years

I recently purchased a 2008 versys 650 10k miles on it. In very good shape with a just a couple additions like saddle bags, a helmet box, engine guard, different windshield, etc. I was looking at klr’s but when I saw a post that asked about taking the kle off-road and Alaska Jeff posted back that its meant for street only and to never do it all the while posting picks of hims la driving backwoods of Alaska, I was sold. I like this bike a lot and it’s astounding the technological upgrades over the bike I had 30 years ago. One thing I noticed right off the bat was how much better the tires are as an example.

My plan has been to have a dual sport/adventure bike setup so that I can ride down baja and back and then all over Mexico, and possibly other parts of North and South America. I figur d that this bike is big enough o get the job done, but also small enough to get back into “riding” shape. This forum and all the people here are the source I’ll need to achieve those dreams. Ride on!
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-10-2019, 12:23 PM
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aboard!

REMEMBER - you CAN'T ride the Versys OFF road...!


















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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-10-2019, 12:24 PM
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Welcome From Canada

]https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forum...ber-intro.html please read, please do a second post in this thread you started( if you haven't done so). Thanks
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-10-2019, 08:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
aboard!

REMEMBER - you CAN'T ride the Versys OFF road...!

















Wait a minute, this must be fake news. Everyone knows you can't ride a Versys off road. Well, maybe you can but it's hard on the bike as witnessed by the third from last photo. The poor Versys was so exhausted it settled down to take a nap at the side of the road.

Arion

"Plan? Plan! There ain't no plan."
Pig Killer, Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome

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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-11-2019, 06:31 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the great pics fasteddie. Those are very encouraging, even the one where versys is “taking a nap”! I look forward to some similar adventures down the road.

I’m finding d termini get what upgrade to do first is the hardest part right now given how many things are out there. However, something has to be done about the seat situation. As some (many?) have expressed on the forum, the boys tend to not be happy with the stock setup. So, that’s where I’m headed first.

Tim

Baja or bust!:
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-11-2019, 09:03 AM
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Thanks for all the great pics fasteddie. Those are very encouraging, even the one where versys is “taking a nap”! I look forward to some similar adventures down the road.

I’m finding d termini get what upgrade to do first is the hardest part right now given how many things are out there. However, something has to be done about the seat situation. As some (many?) have expressed on the forum, the boys tend to not be happy with the stock setup. So, that’s where I’m headed first.

Tim
https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forum...tions-diy.html
https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forum...s-methods.html
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-11-2019, 06:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Srbobdog View Post
Thanks for all the great pics fasteddie. Those are very encouraging, even the one where versys is “taking a nap”! I look forward to some similar adventures down the road.
However, something has to be done about the seat situation. As some (many?) have expressed on the forum, the boys tend to not be happy with the stock setup....
Tim - RAISE THE FRONT OF THE SEAT! Requires a piece of scrap steel, two 6 x 45mm bolts, and 12 = 1/4" washers. [I have about 165 THOUSAND MILES on V650s w/ that mod!]





The front of mine are up around HALF an inch. BIG difference!


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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-11-2019, 07:05 PM
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Welcome.

The Versys 650 IS a street bike. But that doesn't mean you can't take it off road. There are better tools for that job though. KTM 790 Adventure maybe.

You can ride any bike off road if you are skilled enough, strong enough to pick it up, and crazy enough to ride it out of its normal environment.


Skip to 1:30 for the action


Unmodified sport bikes.

A little mini movie for your entertainment.


My Versys Travels:


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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-12-2019, 05:51 AM
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-12-2019, 12:44 PM
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Here's a "crotch-rocket" Honda I saw at Dawson City during D2D a few years ago in '16:





Ended up crossing into Alaska at the same time as the 'crotch-rocket' did, at Poker Creek, AK - W end of Top of the World Hwy.
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Last edited by fasteddiecopeman; 08-26-2019 at 04:44 PM.
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 07:42 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Eddie for the prescription for the seat “upgrade”. Plan on getting it done this week. Great pics btw

Baja or bust!:
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 07:44 PM Thread Starter
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Pretty cool videos Twowheel. Just shows you can do just about anything you put your mind to.

Baja or bust!:
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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 07:51 PM
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I started riding again about 4 years ago, after about 35 years of not riding. I've enjoyed the heck out of it! Welcome back!
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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 10:44 PM
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Off road Versys

Quote:
Originally Posted by Srbobdog View Post
My plan has been to have a dual sport/adventure bike setup so that I can ride down baja and back and then all over Mexico, and possibly other parts of North and South America. I figur d that this bike is big enough o get the job done, but also small enough to get back into “riding” shape. This forum and all the people here are the source I’ll need to achieve those dreams. Ride on!
I rode down to Baja for 3 weeks in June and did about 50 to 100 miles of off road (but most roads in town are dirt/sand too). The Versys did fine but I found that deep sand was the most difficult probably because at some point traction is lost with 50/50 tires which is about as much as you want for highway, rough roads and dirt roads. I had a Shinko 705 on the front and a MotoZ on the back. I would suggest a radiator guard, crash bars, skid plate too. I used mostly T-Rex and they worked fine. I have a Givi knock off for front crash bars but to really to protect front flashers (I broke one of my front flashers) something like the T-Rex might be better or reposition them so that they don't stick out quite so much. My son and I did well over 2,000 miles in Baja and the only problem I had was that by the time I got back to Phoenix my chain was shot. I put 14,000 miles on the factory chain.

The 650 has plenty of power but remember as far as suspension and weight goes, it's not a dirt bike. I would also use some bands to reinforce the side and top boxes, the roads are ROUGH. Have fun, watch out for topes, the bike will do it.
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-26-2019, 10:30 PM
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Fasteddie I've seen your seat fix several times and decided that I was tired of the down slope of the seat and did the fix. It feels comfortable sitting still so I'll take it out tomorrow morning for a nice long drive. Ya know, any excuse for a ride is good...…


Update: Took it for a 100 mile ride and that little fix worked great, much more comfortable.

Last edited by Ricki Ticki Tavi; 08-27-2019 at 11:12 AM. Reason: Update
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post #16 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-27-2019, 11:20 AM
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Ricki Ticki Tavi - when I joined this Forum back in mid-'08, probably the biggest question was HOW to fix the seat problem and what I suggest was something I got from the "early" V650 riders - a solution that WORKS. When I got my FIRST V650 in Sept '08, raising the front of the seat was my first mod, since done to my other TWO V650s in their first few days of being mine.

I have somewhere around 170,000 miles w/ that mod, and that includes a cross-Canada ride, as well as up to Alaska THREE times!

-

Ed
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post #17 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-27-2019, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
Ricki Ticki Tavi - when I joined this Forum back in mid-'08, probably the biggest question was HOW to fix the seat problem and what I suggest was something I got from the "early" V650 riders - a solution that WORKS. When I got my FIRST V650 in Sept '08, raising the front of the seat was my first mod, since done to my other TWO V650s in their first few days of being mine.

I have somewhere around 170,000 miles w/ that mod, and that includes a cross-Canada ride, as well as up to Alaska THREE times!

-
It works indeed! For many folks, not all, this is all the fix they need. I wonder how many people on this forum have replaced or modified their seats without trying this simple fix first!
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post #18 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-27-2019, 11:25 PM Thread Starter
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Did the fix yesterday and got a short 60 miles today. So far so good. Expect it will pay big dividends down the road, too. Thanks for passing along fasteddie.
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Baja or bust!:
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post #19 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-27-2019, 11:29 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricki Ticki Tavi View Post
I rode down to Baja for 3 weeks in June and did about 50 to 100 miles of off road (but most roads in town are dirt/sand too). The Versys did fine but I found that deep sand was the most difficult probably because at some point traction is lost with 50/50 tires which is about as much as you want for highway, rough roads and dirt roads. I had a Shinko 705 on the front and a MotoZ on the back. I would suggest a radiator guard, crash bars, skid plate too. I used mostly T-Rex and they worked fine. I have a Givi knock off for front crash bars but to really to protect front flashers (I broke one of my front flashers) something like the T-Rex might be better or reposition them so that they don't stick out quite so much. My son and I did well over 2,000 miles in Baja and the only problem I had was that by the time I got back to Phoenix my chain was shot. I put 14,000 miles on the factory chain.

The 650 has plenty of power but remember as far as suspension and weight goes, it's not a dirt bike. I would also use some bands to reinforce the side and top boxes, the roads are ROUGH. Have fun, watch out for topes, the bike will do it.
This such great information. Thanks Ricki. You and your son have done what I plan. Which MotoZ did you use?
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post #20 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-27-2019, 11:41 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by richardbruer View Post
I started riding again about 4 years ago, after about 35 years of not riding. I've enjoyed the heck out of it! Welcome back!

Pretty cool. I forgot how much I loved it and I’m so glad I still do. I think I enjoy it more now than then, even. Can’t wait to get new tires and try some dirt roads around here.

Baja or bust!:
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