commuting tips / tricks - Kawasaki Versys Forum
Versys-X 300 General Discussion Please post any 2017+ Kawasaki Versys-X 300 related topics that DO NOT fit into any of the other topics here.

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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-27-2019, 08:51 PM Thread Starter
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commuting tips / tricks

Okay, so I'm VERY new to motorcycling. Only 250 km on the odometer of this 2018 Versys-X, which is my first bike.

Because I am cheap, I repurposed a pelican case I had (for transporting quadcopter drones) into a top case. See pic.

My question is... what do people do / how do they shuffle their gear around when commuting.

For example, I need to wear business casual (including sort-of dress shoes) for work. I also have a messenger bag / brief case. But when riding, I wear: helmet, jacket, overpants, riding boots, and gloves.

I'm thinking that I can put the messenger bag and my dress shoes in the trunk, and drive to work. In the parking lot, take off all gear except the jacket. The overpants, boots, and gloves can go in the trunk. There's no way the helmet would fit in there. Would you carry the helmet into your workplace, or somehow chain it to the bike?

Sorry if these seem like dumb questions. Like I said - NOOB.

Thanks for your consideration.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-27-2019, 09:11 PM
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I commute daily. I bought a 650LT specifically because of the panniers. You can get some soft pannier bags. It's amazing how much you can pack in them if you pack right. One pannier bag I keep my rain gear, extra gloves, and jacket liner. When I get to work, I put my helmet in the other pannier and put my overpants. jacket, and gloves in the top box. I have more than enough room, but my top box is also a 47 liter Givi. I have an extra pair of dress shoes I keep at work so I don't have to take them every day. And if there is a place to put your helmet at work, you can do that. I put mine on my desk when it's really hot outside so I'm not putting on a hot helmet when I leave work.

I don't care what you ride, just ride.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-28-2019, 12:15 AM
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James is right...sounds like you need more luggage. I also commute Mon - Fri.
I'm lucky as I can park in secured underground space plus there are change facilities with showers & lockers in office bldg. And I can leave helmet and boots there. But it helps to have locking side cases and a decent topbox. I improvised by adding a good size plastic toolbox to my carrier plate. Having extra shoes/belts/ties at work helps.
If I didn't have the facilities that I have, I would take everything to the office and change using the washroom there. The extra work in suiting up and suiting down is the extra cost/effort when commuting by motorcycle - unlike a car where you can drive anywhere wearing your PJs and slippers. Here's my bike set-up:
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-28-2019, 08:57 AM
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I'm fortunate where I can wear casual to work. My helmet goes in the topbox and lunchbag comes out, when at work. When I did need to change (usually in colder weather), I just changed in the office bathroom.

Wherever you go, there you are
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-28-2019, 06:55 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the tips. I am a contractor who works at multiple facilities and there is no on-site storage space of note, and no way to cache clothing in advance.

I'll do the "parking lot shuffle" for now and see how that goes. Not sure I want to invest in additional side panniers at this point. Worst case scenario, if I need more storage, I can just use a conventional backpack with the straps loosened a bit so that most of the weight is on the passenger seat.

It'll come down to trial and error (and my budget) for the next while...

Thanks again!
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-28-2019, 07:47 PM
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Another option is to buy a fairly long cable lock. Leave your jacket, pants, and helmet on the seat and just run a cable through a sleeve, pant leg, and helmet then through part of the bike.

I don't care what you ride, just ride.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-28-2019, 09:23 PM
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https://www.bikesrepublic.com/wp-con...c-72ppi_24.jpg

A set up like this can help you solve your problem.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-29-2019, 09:01 AM
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I'm a long-time year-round moto-commuter. I'm fortunate to have a private office, which makes things much easier for changing and storage, but if there's a will, there's a way. A good place to start is ridetowork.org. Aerostich also has some great commuter tips scattered around its site.

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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-29-2019, 10:15 AM
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I do have the full set of luggage on my V650, so I put all my gear in there. Sometimes I will bring my helmet in and lock it to a rack in the locker room. My only concern about the helmet out on the bike is it heating up and the materials degrading. I can smell chemicals just a little bit when I put on the helmet when it is hot. I am considering getting some kind of cover to shade the luggage so the helmet doesn't heat up in the summer months.

Many commuters just hang their helmet on the bike somewhere. On a mirror (seems to be a cultural thing with the naked bikes), on a side hook, or just on the seat. This is a very low crime area apparently, since I rarely see anybody bother to lock their helmet, but I would never leave an expensive helmet unsecured.

I have used a lock through the sleeve and pant leg when moto touring. The luggage is full of camping equipment, so when I go for a hike I leave my gear locked to the bike.

When I had an office job I did carry my helmet in if there was a chance of rain. That bike had no luggage, so either the helmet was hung on a hook on the bike or stowed under my desk.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-29-2019, 02:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fly-Sig View Post
...Many commuters just hang their helmet on the bike somewhere. On a mirror (seems to be a cultural thing with the naked bikes), on a side hook, or just on the seat. This is a very low crime area apparently, since I rarely see anybody bother to lock their helmet, but I would never leave an expensive helmet unsecured....
I use a cable "ski-lock" that I wrap around the chin-bar and the passenger grab-rail on the bike.

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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-29-2019, 03:03 PM
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I do what you are proposing - I wear overpants and boots and change into my work shoes in the garage at my office, and keep the pants and boots in the rear case (Givi Outback Dolomiti 46L). My backpack fits in there while I'm riding, too. I also have side cases (Givi V35), so I can keep a lot of stuff, like gym gear, and extra clothes. That's nice because I split my time between my place and my gf's apartment, so my bike is as much a home base as anything else.

The extra storage also serves my touring adventures very well.






I also have a cable lock wrapped around my crash bars to lock my jacket in a pinch. And I just installed new these Mirrorloks, which are kind of nifty since they serve as mirror extenders as well as locks for cable-locking helmets, jackets, etc:

https://motomanufacturing.com/mirrorlok/
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Last edited by leftbrain99; 07-29-2019 at 03:09 PM.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-29-2019, 05:09 PM
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Picture mister rogers neighborhood.

Sometimes i identify as a motorcycle guy we will call "rider rob".

Sometimes I am like Mr. Rogers himself and keep shoes and a change of clothes at the office.

I walk in with all my gear and change in my office.

Sometimes it is just change the shoes and put a logo jacket over my T-shirt.

Sometimes it is fresh shirt, pants, and shoes.

Depends on my agenda for the day.

I no longer ride to work so I drive in shorts and sandals and do the same thing.

My Versys Travels:


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