Hello! And I already need help - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 01:10 AM Thread Starter
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Hello! And I already need help

Hello Team,

I am excited this thread exists, thanks in advance for all your help. I have a white 2013 Versys. I like it so far, but I've already spilled around a corner at an intersection...at 15 miles an hour! The rear dunlop slipped and the bike and I ended up on the pavement. A couple questions:

1) Any ideas on bending back a brake lever?
2) I have heard the stock dunlops are crappy--plasticy rubber with very little grip. Have you guys had better luck? If not, any tire recommendations?

Thanks!
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 01:47 AM Thread Starter
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also, i'm kind of at a loss as to why i slipped. I didn't feel I was being very aggressive and was told to trust the sides of my tires...though they did only have about 50 miles on them. Hhave any of you had similar experiences?
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 02:08 AM
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Not sure about the brake lever?

Slipped once on the stock tires. IMO they are not a very good tires and a saftey issue. Watch for cracks in the rubber!

Some of the fellow forum members get 8K out of them but most change sooner.

At 5,200 miles put MPR4's on!







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Last edited by MTS; 03-17-2014 at 05:11 AM.
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 02:41 AM
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Welcome.

I'm only a learner and I bought my Versys 2nd hand 4months ago as my 1st bike - I have already been spoilt with Perelli Angel ST's that the original owner put on... I'm really liking them so anything less will be a great let down. I have got the chicken strips down to about 1/2 in now without really trying.

Sorry for your spill. I hope you are OK.
With regards to why you lost control, I'll say it was dirt/sand or gravel on the road. Intersections are notorious of collecting little triangles of gravel. They are hard to see and **** tires will just skate over them like they are marbles.

You might be able to bend back the brake lever in a vice and a long pole stuck on the end. Be careful as the brake lever is desined to snap and not really bend. You might have to apply some propane/mapp gas torch heat to make it a bit easier.

Cheers
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 06:59 AM
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I rode 6200 miles on my OEM Dunlops. Never had an issue. I always am overly cautious with brand new tires, especially the first hundred or so miles until they get roughed up a bit.


There are too many unknown variables during the time of your spill that I cannot offer you a useful analysis. Have you taken the MSF class? I rode for over 20 years before I took the class with my wife. I must say I learned some things that have made me an even better rider now that I know a bit more about why motorcycles do what they do.


Glad your OK!

Last edited by Capn Kirk; 03-16-2014 at 11:02 AM.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 08:58 AM
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I don't recommend attempting to bend the brake lever back, as it's designed to break as Gigitt said. A rebend, even with heat, will weaken it considerably. Replacement levers aren't that expensive anyway. As for the tires, there are as many opinions as members of this forum. Consensus seems to be that the stocks are crap (though they wear great), and that almost any thing else is an improvement. Common replacements are PR3, BT023, ContiMotion, and Angel ST. I went with the Diablo Rosso II and have been pretty happy so far. Search tires and you'll end up with more info than you'll know what to do with.

Jon
'09 Versys in Blue

Last edited by 80-watt Hamster; 03-16-2014 at 09:00 AM.
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 09:30 AM
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 09:42 AM
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As some others have said I wouldn't recommend bending your lever back. When it comes to brakes don't cheap out. They are cheap enough to replace. As far as the tires I just got my 2013 white versys yesterday brand new leftover and already rode it around a bit. If the bike is brand new one thing to keep in mind is that they are coated in a oil to preserve them. It makes them very slick until they get worn in. This is true for any new tire. So I would suggest wearing them in slowly. Sorry to hear you went down but glad everything is OK.

- Ian Thomas
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 10:39 AM
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Get a new lever. Went with PR3's for my last 2 sets for the Versys now they have the PR4's. I just ordered a set of PR4-GT's for my FJR

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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 10:54 AM
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+1 I am very pleased with my set. Just make sure you take it easy the first couple hundred miles to get them properly scrubbed in.
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ghahl View Post
Hello Team,

I am excited this thread exists, thanks in advance for all your help. I have a white 2013 Versys. I like it so far, but I've already spilled around a corner at an intersection...at 15 miles an hour! The rear dunlop slipped and the bike and I ended up on the pavement. A couple questions:

1) Any ideas on bending back a brake lever?
2) I have heard the stock dunlops are crappy--plasticy rubber with very little grip. Have you guys had better luck? If not, any tire recommendations?

Thanks!
Remove your brake lever and heat it with a propane torch before bending back. Replacement levers are really cheap ($12) on ebay. Save some money and replace it with a generic brand lever rather than a Kawasaki brand lever.

Let your Dunlops wear down to the wear bars and replace them with a higher quality tire. They are not so bad you need to replace them before they wear out.

You can choose from 3 tire categories:
- adv tour tires (95% pavement / 5% dirt roads) - some minor loss of pavement grip over sport tour tires on pavement but better traction on dirt roads, excellent wet grip
- sport tour tires - best combination of pavement grip and tire life
- sport bike tires - uncompromised pavement grip, short life expectancy due to soft rubber compounds used

Dual compound tires, tires that use a harder rubber compound in the center and softer rubber on the edges will wear better, grip better and last longer.

Chances are that if you spilled at 15mph in a corner it was not the tires but because you had your hand or foot on the brake or were accelerating too hard coming out of a corner, or perhaps hit a patch of oil or anti freeze on the road, some gravel, or some frost or ice. Remember never brake past the point of turn in, in a corner, never downshift in a corner - do it before, and be very gentle with throttle transitions in a corner. Suggest reading Twist of the Wrist 2 or Proficient Motorcycling. My point is that even the least grippy knobby tires used on pavement will not cause you to go down in a 15mph turn.

Last edited by twowheels; 03-16-2014 at 11:46 AM.
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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 11:54 AM
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There is nothing wrong with the stock tyres, however having said that the Michelin PR2's I replaced them with are a lot better. Better feel and they are lasting a lot longer than the OEM Dunlops. Sorry you came off but at 15 MPH it has little to do with the tyres as twowheels said.
How bad is the brake lever bent? Can you post a photo of it?
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 12:48 PM
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Glad you're ok! I rode the stock Dunlops for some time without any kind of real drama; but having moved on to Michelin PR2's in hindsight I would have swapped them out the day I bought the bike. I think most any of the commonly recommended tires here is a pretty nice improvement over the Dunlops. Personally, I'll likely stick to my Michelins.


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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 02:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ghahl View Post
...1) Any ideas on bending back a brake lever?
2) I have heard the stock dunlops are crappy--plasticy rubber with very little grip. Have you guys had better luck? If not, any tire recommendations?

Thanks!
I'm assuming you're referring to the rear brake lever? If so - heat to dark red, re-bend.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghahl View Post
...though they did only have about 50 miles on them. Have any of you had similar experiences?
From now on allow yourself at least 100 miles before getting aggressive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 80-watt Hamster View Post
I don't recommend attempting to bend the brake lever back, as it's designed to break as Gigitt said. A rebend, even with heat, will weaken it considerably. Replacement levers aren't that expensive anyway....
GOOD advice IF you bent your FRONT brake lever....

Ed
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 08:56 PM
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Boned! Get that thing fixed, looking good and back on the road. Not many white ones out there - gotta represent! Was on mine today, would be ticked if I dinged it but at least you're OK. Not going to change my OEMs till they wear down. Had a similar situation but since it's a pretty light bike I was able to save it by getting my foot down (leg hurt for weeks). After that, I always look at the road when entering a hard curve. Gravel and grease a big time hazard and won't move out of the way for you. I know it sucks, make this an opportunity to throw on a few farkles.
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post #16 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-17-2014, 02:41 AM
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I had a spill last October that had my rear brake pedal wrapped around the footpeg, removed it and with a vice and a lot of patiants I got it back to straight, have put a lot of miles on since with no issues, if I happen onto a spare one I will get it but until then I waste O time thinking about it and enjoy the ride, if you were talking about the front brake lever I would replace it because they are as these guys say very brittle.

Last edited by chwhnd; 03-17-2014 at 02:46 AM.
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post #17 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-17-2014, 08:14 AM
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As others have stated, your spill might have been caused by the tread release compound on new tires.
When I mount new tires I go to an empty parking lot and do figure 8's in increasingly tighter angles until I get to the edge of the tires. Then I know I won't be surprised by a slip on the road. Only takes 10-15 minutes and is a good control exercise for slow speed riding.
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post #18 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-17-2014, 12:42 PM
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as others have stated, your spill might have been caused by the tread release compound on new tires.
When i mount new tires i go to an empty parking lot and do figure 8's in increasingly tighter angles until i get to the edge of the tires. Then i know i won't be surprised by a slip on the road. Only takes 10-15 minutes and is a good control exercise for slow speed riding.

+1

lop
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post #19 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-20-2014, 07:00 PM
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This post is super helpful, I checked out the Michelin website, and when you click "GRIP" as feature, the PR4's become greyed out and only the PR3's become an option.
I used their tire selector feature located here:
http://motorcycle.michelinman.com/ti...93,27697,27702

Do you think that Michelin is the best tire for the Versys 650 to replace the OEM? Someone local to me is selling the Pirelli Diablo brand new set for $279 (CDN)
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post #20 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-20-2014, 07:32 PM
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This post is super helpful, I checked out the Michelin website, and when you click "GRIP" as feature, the PR4's become greyed out and only the PR3's become an option.
I used their tire selector feature located here:
http://motorcycle.michelinman.com/ti...93,27697,27702

Do you think that Michelin is the best tire for the Versys 650 to replace the OEM? Someone local to me is selling the Pirelli Diablo brand new set for $279 (CDN)
Almost anything is better than the OEM

But you probably spill for another reason (oil patch, sand ...)

The "new" tire are very much better than the old oem, but it's at higher speed that they will shine the most, at low speed, it's not that big of a deal

My 2 cents

Glad you were not hurt, neither to much of the bike

LOP
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