Hello from Salt Lake City, Utah, USA - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-10-2008, 05:49 AM Thread Starter
Jen
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Hello from Salt Lake City, Utah, USA

I'm Jen. I bought my Versys on April 21, 2008 and love it. I've been lurking on here for a couple months, but didn't get too involved then because I was super busy with work and was trying to get the bike set up for a 1000 mile 3 day trip at the end of May.

I have just over 3000 miles on the bike so far. I commute on it some (70 miles RT, not including going to lunch and errands after work) and also "sport tour".

For the Memorial Day weekend, I went down to Southern Utah with 14 friends. The trip report, with photos integrated, will be up soon on http://www.canyonchasers.net/ - most of the "in depth" text is mine. The photos are already up in the gallery. There are probably better pics of my V, but here's one showing the hand guards.

I zipped up to Bear Lake, ID to camp with some other friends this past weekend. And in 1.5 weeks, I'll be heading to Yellowstone Park for a 4 day trip with 7 friends. I've never been to Yellowstone, so I'm super excited!

I got my motorcycle license in 1998, after 22 years of lusting to ride. My previous (and first) bike is a 1985 RZ350 - which is for sale, if any of you are 2smoke freaks. I also commuted on that and did day rides, but never any overnights.

I've also spent a little time on the track with the Versys. I did a Sport Touring Advanced Rider Training the weekend after I bought the bike - it's how I broke in the motor. And last week I spent a 2.5 hour block on the track as part of the Racing 2 Save Lives charity event. Fun stuff! So fun, in fact, that I'm going to look for a track bike (probably an SV).

I've made the following modifications to the Versys so far
  • Kawi / Givi PLX side cases
  • Kawi "low" gel seat
  • Acerbis supermoto hand guards* with the swivel joint mounting kit. We had to make a custom bracket extension to accommodate the weird placement of the master cylinder. But I really wanted hand guards that were "structural", not just for wind protection.
  • Heated grips*
  • Distribution block / relay* - so my accessories turn off when I turn off the bike
  • 12V accessory outlet (cigarette lighter style outlet)*
  • Power cord for heated vest*
  • I flipped the stock windscreen upside down and it still sucked, so for now it is off the bike. I have the slightly larger Kawi windscreen, but haven't been able to get it to mount correctly to be able to test it out.
  • I just ordered Conti Road Attack tires today. Woo hoo!
  • I'll be getting my suspension set up by Corporate Suspension within the next week.

* My friend Mike installed the electrical bits for me and made the custom bracket for my hand guards. Any questions about installation would have to be forwarded to him. :-)

Mods I still want to do - in no particular order
  • GPS
  • Radar detector
  • Tank scuff protector thingie
  • Steel braided brake lines
  • Engine crash guards: https://www.twistedthrottle.com/trad...view/3855/652/
  • Sliders - engine and swingarm. I know there are already bolt holes to add "spools" on the swingarm, but I'm not sure what I should be looking for in choosing "spools".
  • Windscreen that doesn't direct the wind at the base of my head, making me look like a bobble head doll! I think I might go for the CalSci one.
  • Fender eliminator. I know, I know, removing the fender will get me dirtier. Whatever. I hate the Versys fender and want it cleaned up. So far, I think I like the R&G one. Or I could just go with an undertray and get rid of the goofy blinkers completely.
  • Different tank bag. I'm using a friend's Icon. It's good, but kinda big for the bike. I think I want to get the PacSafe.
  • I want to get a soft sided tail bag to use on longer trips. A few of my friends have the Ventura system and I *really* like it. But I also like the idea of the PacSafe tail bag locking to the bike...
  • Not specific to the bike, but I want to find a good in-helmet headset. I'm so tired of dealing with earphones under my helmet to listen to the iPod. They never stay in place correctly, etc etc etc.

Items I'm not sure about
Well that's me! I look forward to getting to know y'all, and I hope more people in the SLC area buy Versyses soon so our bikes can have play dates!

If you have any suggestions for any of the mods I haven't done yet, please let me know!

Jen

p.s. I work at Miller Motorsports Park, so if you ever come out, ask for me to say hello!
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-10-2008, 06:01 AM
 
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WOW, great intro! Sounds like you are really enjoying the V !
.
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-11-2008, 10:03 AM
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Congrats and welcome!

For me, I'd skip the water temp guage, I think they are distracting. I'd love a gear position indicator and I think all bikes should have them. I'm not too sure about the other stuff, but if you like the farkles, farkle away!

Don
"ride more, worry less"
2005 Suzuki GSXR1000 (slightly bent) - Track
2000 Honda VFR800 - Street
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-11-2008, 02:46 PM
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Wow

Welcome and farkle away. sounds like got everything I want to do already done, cool! Post pics of Yellowstone if you can.


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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-11-2008, 04:30 PM
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Way to make an entrance!!





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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-11-2008, 06:23 PM
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Hi Jen, My wife got her versys last saturday. We're looking for a seat to lower the height but too many complaints about a gel seat. How do you like yours?
Safe Ride(s)

Last edited by Andreas; 09-28-2008 at 09:15 AM. Reason: removed wife's information.
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-13-2008, 03:24 AM Thread Starter
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Someone was asking about the gel seat in a thread on the versys.co.uk site: http://www.versys.co.uk/index.php?op...5&topic=3397.0

I posted the following in that thread a few days ago:

I too have the "low" gel seat. I bought it within about 2 weeks of getting the bike (which I purchased 21 April 2008) because I wanted to have my feet more planted on the ground. I'm a 5'7" female - important because in general, women have longer legs and shorter torsos and men are the other way around. My legs are about as long as a typical guy who is 6' tall. I always thought I had a 32" inseam, but I just measured and got 33". Is it possible to measure your own inseam? Anyway, I could flat foot the bike, but I had to "reach" for it.

I was very annoyed that the "low" gel seat does not feel lower *or* narrower (supposedly 2 inches lower and an inch narrower). Maybe it doesn't feel narrower because I'm female and have a narrower "stance" (crotch area)? I don't know, but I really don't feel like I can reach the ground any better with the gel seat than with the stock seat.

After doing a few 2 hour rides on consecutive days with each seat, however, I couldn't deny that the gel seat was more comfortable. The stock seat made my butt hurt after about 1/2 hour. The gel seat, on the other hand, has been fine for the last 2 months. It was even fine on a couple of 350 mile days down to Southern Utah at the end of May. It does seem that my knees have a slight bit more bend in them with the gel seat (and therefore my legs require a bit more stretching on long rides), but that may just be my imagination.

As annoyed as I was at having paid $400 to not be any closer to the ground, I haven't been able to get rid of the seat because it really is more comfy (for my bony butt).

Jen
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-13-2008, 03:28 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jude View Post
Oh - if you see a red model in the SLC area and the woman has a white Jacket, that's Jude.
Safe Ride(s)
Cool!!!! Congrats! And come to bike night! I won't be there this coming week (I'll be taking a class at Rockreation - yeah!), but I should be there the following week with tales of Yellowstone. And don't be intimidated - "bike night" is just 10 or 15 of us getting together for dinner and talking about motorcycles. :-) There's usually someone who's recently been on a trip, bought a bike, or is shopping for a bike, and that gives us plenty to yammer about.

Congrats again! I'll look forward to seeing you guys around town!

Jen
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-13-2008, 03:37 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by hacktracker View Post
Congrats and welcome!

For me, I'd skip the water temp guage, I think they are distracting. I'd love a gear position indicator and I think all bikes should have them. I'm not too sure about the other stuff, but if you like the farkles, farkle away!
Thanks for the input. My Ducati friends are ALWAYS talking about what temperature their bike is running and I feel all inadequate that I don't have a temp guage.

Do you guys feel that the Versys runs pretty hot? It seems like a cooling fan kicks in quite often. (I don't even know if there IS a cooling fan, but it sure as heck sounds like it.) And a LOT of heat comes off the engine and onto my legs, especially my right leg.

I'm supposed to "hug the tank" with my knees in corners, but sometimes I can't because the bike is too hot to rest my leg against it. And that's with my riding pants (overpants). Anyone else having that issue?

Jen

p.s. our PR guy came from VIR and he disagrees with your assessment of VIR > MMP. Come on out and we'll give you a tour. I *do* agree with you, though, that VIR is much prettier (green) than MMP. I was out there in October and it was gorgeous! I LOVE the east coast for that. I've lived in both New York and Georgia and miss the greenery.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-13-2008, 05:54 AM
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Hey Jen, thanks for the invite. I'll tell my wife about it. Hope she's up for it sooner or later. Safe Travels !!!! Andreas

Last edited by Andreas; 09-28-2008 at 09:14 AM.
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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-15-2008, 10:05 PM
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Hey Jen that was a great intro and the pictures of the ride was impressive. The snow was great and as a former Nighthawk owner I'm always happy to see others riding one.

I was the one that posted the message about the gel seat. I bought one a while back and while it doesn't get both feet firmly planted I did notice a difference especially with my wife on the back. The cost was definitely steep but of the 9 bikes I've owned, this the only one I've really felt a need to go with a different seat. Is there a particular reason you didn't choose the Givi windscreen?

Charlie
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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-16-2008, 01:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jen View Post
p.s. our PR guy came from VIR and he disagrees with your assessment of VIR > MMP. Come on out and we'll give you a tour. I *do* agree with you, though, that VIR is much prettier (green) than MMP. I was out there in October and it was gorgeous! I LOVE the east coast for that. I've lived in both New York and Georgia and miss the greenery.
Well, I must confess, I have never been to MMP. So take my opinion for what it's worth. I will be out next year for World Superbikes. I'd love to take you up on the tour offer.

Cheers!

Don
"ride more, worry less"
2005 Suzuki GSXR1000 (slightly bent) - Track
2000 Honda VFR800 - Street
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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-16-2008, 02:15 PM
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It does seem that my knees have a slight bit more bend in them with the gel seat (and therefore my legs require a bit more stretching on long rides), but that may just be my imagination.
Jen
100% True. The pegs stay in the same place, so if the seat is lower, the angle of your knee becomes more acute.

Don
"ride more, worry less"
2005 Suzuki GSXR1000 (slightly bent) - Track
2000 Honda VFR800 - Street
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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-16-2008, 02:21 PM
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Do you guys feel that the Versys runs pretty hot? It seems like a cooling fan kicks in quite often.

Jen
I'm trying to get my post count up here, LOL.

It does come on frequently. Someone posted the fan comes on at 196 degrees F. My Gixxer 1000, the fan does not come on until 217 degrees F. So, yes it comes on more often, but keeps the engine cooler.

Don
"ride more, worry less"
2005 Suzuki GSXR1000 (slightly bent) - Track
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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-17-2008, 10:06 AM Thread Starter
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Hey Jen that was a great intro and the pictures of the ride was impressive. The snow was great and as a former Nighthawk owner I'm always happy to see others riding one.
Charlie
Thanks! We sure had fun. We're talking about doing the route again over Labor Day and maybe we won't have to deal with the snow. :-)

RE the Nighthawk... my step-dad had one when I was around 12 or 13 and I liked riding on the back. It's not what got me interested in motorcycles, but I liked it enough that that's what I wanted as a first bike. Things didn't work out that way, but I still have a soft spot for those bikes.

I will open myself up to ridicule by confessing that it was the TV show CHiPs that got me interested in motorcycles at age 6. By age 7, I had "motorcycle-style" boots and olive drab green pants that I tucked into the boots. Yes, I was a nerd at a young age. :-D

Heading out on Yellowstone trip tomorrow. Yay!

Quote:
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Is there a particular reason you didn't choose the Givi windscreen?

Charlie
Only because I haven't heard enough comments that it RULZ! From what I've read, it seems like it's "better" but not great. I don't have the money to take that chance (given how much I've already spent! I'm poor now!).

Jen
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post #16 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-17-2008, 10:08 AM Thread Starter
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I'm trying to get my post count up here, LOL.

It does come on frequently. Someone posted the fan comes on at 196 degrees F. My Gixxer 1000, the fan does not come on until 217 degrees F. So, yes it comes on more often, but keeps the engine cooler.
OK, thanks! I was afraid I was killing the poor thing.
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post #17 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-17-2008, 10:16 AM Thread Starter
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Well, I must confess, I have never been to MMP. So take my opinion for what it's worth. I will be out next year for World Superbikes. I'd love to take you up on the tour offer.

Cheers!
Sure, just email me through the website a month or so before the event. We'll have an easier time showing you around if you're there before the event officially starts. Once it's in full swing, I won't be able to pull our PR guy away from his office, and I'll have a hard time breaking away for long periods, but we'll see what we can do.

Also, we encourage car and motorcycle clubs to come out as a group - park together, buy tickets in blocks to get the group discount, etc. Our website is still lacking quite a bit of info (I'm responsible for it now and am slowly bringing it up to speed)... Once I get some "club" info up, I'll post about it in a more general thread on here.

Until then, keep the shiny side up! :-)

Jen
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post #18 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-17-2008, 10:19 AM Thread Starter
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Sure, just email me through the website a month or so before the event. We'll have an easier time showing you around if you're there before the event officially starts. Once it's in full swing, I won't be able to pull our PR guy away from his office, and I'll have a hard time breaking away for long periods, but we'll see what we can do.

Also, we encourage car and motorcycle clubs to come out as a group - park together, buy tickets in blocks to get the group discount, etc. Our website is still lacking quite a bit of info (I'm responsible for it now and am slowly bringing it up to speed)... Once I get some "club" info up, I'll post about it in a more general thread on here.

Until then, keep the shiny side up! :-)

Jen
Or.... your avatar pic looks like a race pic.... you could come out for a Masters of the Mountain race and experience the track first-hand!

Here's a list of the racing series we run: http://www.millermotorsportspark.com/track_series.php

I used to run motorcycle racing, but the Utah Sportbike Association runs the road racing series for us now: http://www.utahsba.com/racing/

Jen
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post #19 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-17-2008, 04:23 PM
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Or.... your avatar pic looks like a race pic.... you could come out for a Masters of the Mountain race and experience the track first-hand!

Here's a list of the racing series we run: http://www.millermotorsportspark.com/track_series.php

I used to run motorcycle racing, but the Utah Sportbike Association runs the road racing series for us now: http://www.utahsba.com/racing/

Jen
Sorry, but there is no chance I'm trailering my trackbike out to SLC at $4 gal.

Perhaps I can take a rental-car on the track like I did on the Nurburgring in Germany?

Don
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2005 Suzuki GSXR1000 (slightly bent) - Track
2000 Honda VFR800 - Street
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post #20 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-17-2008, 11:50 PM
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I will open myself up to ridicule by confessing that it was the TV show CHiPs that got me interested in motorcycles at age 6. By age 7, I had "motorcycle-style" boots and olive drab green pants that I tucked into the boots. Yes, I was a nerd at a young age. :-D
Jen
It was Street Hawk that did it for me...



Ah, fond memories of 1985...
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