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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all! Been touring on the Versys X for about a month now and have really been enjoying the open roads, but when i am in situations where i am doing some urban commuting, the throttle response has been kind of problematic. Basically, no matter how gradually i try to roll on the throttle, the bike's response is all or nothing. When slowing down and speeding up again, the bike goes from aggressive engine braking to 100% power with nothing in-between, so that I'm being jerked back and forth like it's Day 1 at the MSF course.

My first instinct is to blame the slipper clutch. While most normal motorcycles have a huge "sticking point" that allows for a clutch to engage with the transmission across a variety of positions, the X300 instead has an extremely small sticking point, which means your clutch has to be pulled in just right. Even so, i feel like when i get it right the engine is really jerky.

Regardless of the clutch, i feel like the engine could be a lot more forgiving than it is. On my last bike (wr250r) i could accelerate and decelerate in 2nd or 3rd gear very smoothly without even having to touch the clutch at all, though granted the wr250r is a dual sport thumper.

Anyway, i wanted to hear people's thoughts. Do i just need to get better at feathering the clutch or could i tinker with the free play or the idle screw to get the results that i need?
 

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Probably not your issue but I had some tickover issues when I first got mine, which turned out to be the position of the adjuster.

It's an odd device.on a short rubber extension on the l.h. side of the engine. Mine had become trapped in a slightly twisted position.

Sorry if my description is odd, it's easier to do than explain, anyways if you've not yet I suggest checking it as it's no cost.

I've switched to Brisk LGS plugs, on my last couple of bikes and they seem to smooth out the running to my mind. Again may be of no value, but next time you're changing plugs take a look.

Best of luck

Sent from my motorola one using Tapatalk
 

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These bikes have little low end torque so I am having a hard time understanding what you are experiencing.

At what RPMs is this occurring?
Are you just moving the throttle a little and all of a sudden you get a surge, or are you having to roll the throttle and then finally the bike surges?

I've only done a 30 minute ride on the Versys 300X, but I had to really roll on the throttle and let the revs climb to get anything out of it. Mmm.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
At what RPMs is this occurring?
Are you just moving the throttle a little and all of a sudden you get a surge, or are you having to roll the throttle and then finally the bike surges?
What the issue really is, is that the power comes on too fast and abruptly. So let's say that i'm slowing down and and using engine braking to decelerate, and i decide that i want to accelerate again. If i twist the throttle, nothing will happen for quite a long time, and then suddenly the power shoots in and i jerk forward. So i guess to answer your question, i feel like i am having to twist the throttle a fair amount before the power kicks in. The fact that i have to twist the throttle a lot in that situation doesnt bother me so much as the fact that the power comes on so suddenly. I think feathering the clutch allows for that power to come on more gradually, but as i mentioned, the slipper clutch leaves very little room for error.
 

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What the issue really is, is that the power comes on too fast and abruptly. So let's say that i'm slowing down and and using engine braking to decelerate, and i decide that i want to accelerate again. If i twist the throttle, nothing will happen for quite a long time, and then suddenly the power shoots in and i jerk forward. So i guess to answer your question, i feel like i am having to twist the throttle a fair amount before the power kicks in. The fact that i have to twist the throttle a lot in that situation doesnt bother me so much as the fact that the power comes on so suddenly. I think feathering the clutch allows for that power to come on more gradually, but as i mentioned, the slipper clutch leaves very little room for error.
What RPMs is this occurring at? If you are trying to accelerate at low RPMs on a bike that makes most of its power in the high RPMs then you have to wait for the RPMs to reach the powerband and because you gave it a lot of throttle it takes off (relative term) once it hits that power band. Try keeping your RPMs over 5000 and see if that makes a difference.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
What RPMs is this occurring at? If you are trying to accelerate at low RPMs on a bike that makes most of its power in the high RPMs then you have to wait for the RPMs to reach the powerband and because you gave it a lot of throttle it takes off (relative term) once it hits that power band. Try keeping your RPMs over 5000 and see if that makes a difference.
Honestly, i just feel like it should be smoother, even though the x300 engine is a super high rpm, low torque machine. Thanks for the response. Ultimately, the problem can be solved by having really good clutch control so that the power can be delivered gradually, or guess riding at super high RPMS at low speeds as i decelerate which does not particularly interest me.

But... i can't be the only one having this issue or who has noticed this, right?
 

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I had something similar with my 650 that turned out to be a vacuum leak. A small hose had a split in it from the factory, and it took me quite a while to find it. I thought the jerkiness was normal, because on the 650 some jerkiness is normal. There was a plasticy pipe, not a typical thick rubber hose, that ran to a sensor (atmospheric air pressure) which had a split that couldn't be seen without disassembly.

It sounds like your bike is not riding like others, so I think there is something to be adjusted or repaired on it. Poor fueling, poor air flow, or bad spark. If it is easy to replace the spark plug I would do that. Cheap enough, and plugs can have hidden damage. Make sure the intake is sealed properly with everything snugly connected. Trace all the vacuum lines and carefully inspect them. Check the air filter for obstruction. Run some fuel system cleaner through it. Check all the sensors you can find for secure mounting and good electrical connection (unplug and then re-plug them in if you can).
 

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Honestly, i just feel like it should be smoother, even though the x300 engine is a super high rpm, low torque machine. Thanks for the response. Ultimately, the problem can be solved by having really good clutch control so that the power can be delivered gradually, or guess riding at super high RPMS at low speeds as i decelerate which does not particularly interest me.

But... i can't be the only one having this issue or who has noticed this, right?
Do you not know what RPMs this is occurring at? You avoided providing that information every time I asked. Knowing the behavior of your bike is critical to understanding how to be smooth with it.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Do you not know what RPMs this is occurring at? You avoided providing that information every time I asked. Knowing the behavior of your bike is critical to understanding how to be smooth with it.
Oh shoot, sorry! totally slipped my mind. When stopped, the bike begins to move forward at 1500rpm. It does ride fine that way. But when decelerating and then accelerating again, id say theres a big power glut going between 3000 and 4000 rpm when the bike begins to jerk forward again.
 

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I don't know what the logic is on the X. Make sure that you don't have your hand on the throttle when you turn the key to the run position. The Throttle Position Sensor may be reading an incorrect zero (idle) position. Just a thought.
 

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Oh shoot, sorry! totally slipped my mind. When stopped, the bike begins to move forward at 1500rpm. It does ride fine that way. But when decelerating and then accelerating again, id say theres a big power glut going between 3000 and 4000 rpm when the bike begins to jerk forward again.
Between 3000 and 4000 rpms the bike is only making from about 7 hp to about 10 hp.
Between 4000 and 5000 rpms the bike is making from about 10 hp to 15 hp.

Unless you are in 1st or 2nd gear I can't imagine ever running this bike below 4000 rpms and probably more like never running it below 5000 rpms in 5th or 6th. When considering that the power is max at about 11,000 RPMs running above 4000 sounds reasonable.

Does the bike exhibit this behavior in every gear? I'm thinking that if you are trying to cruise in higher gears at 3000 rpms you are probably bogging the engine.
 

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These bikes have little low end torque so I am having a hard time understanding what you are experiencing.

At what RPMs is this occurring?
Are you just moving the throttle a little and all of a sudden you get a surge, or are you having to roll the throttle and then finally the bike surges?

I've only done a 30 minute ride on the Versys 300X, but I had to really roll on the throttle and let the revs climb to get anything out of it. Mmm.
There is torque available but there is not much below 5000 rpm. From 5 it is quite linear until 10,000
So it is a question of being in the right gear to keep the engine above 4000. At really slow/walking speed there is some chain snatch but one gets that with most bikes.

Just keep the revs above 4 to 5000 and it should ride OK.
 

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This is a well-discussed issue with the Versys 650. Didn't know it was a problem with the 300 too. First try adjusting the throttle cable. This helped noticeably on my 2019 Versys 650, though the throttle response it's still far from smooth in low gears, particularly 2nd when throttling into turns at intersections. The choppy throttle is my only significant gripe about the bike. (It's annoying that Kawasaki hasn't fixed it given that the 650 is now at generation 3.)

For the 650 I understand it has to do with the way Kawasaki programmed the ECU to manage the fuel injection, probably for cleaner emissions. The solution I see posted most in forums and on the FB Versys 650 group is to buy and install either a "Power Commander" or "Booster Plug" module. These are competing brands of similar devices that are connected to the ECU and intercept and modify its signal. Both get good reviews though as with many things like this, people tend to like the one they chose. They're sold for many makes and models of bikes, including the Versys X300 and 650. You can buy and install yourself (check YouTube for how to videos). Many dealers also sell and install them. Be aware that installing one may (will probably) void your warranty, so if your bike is new you might want to wait a year or two. I'm personally still on the fence. Good luck.

 

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On decelaration, the ECU likely cuts off all fuel - to lower emissions and save gas. Add the fact that neither the x nor the v like doing any work below 4K rpm and you have a snatchy throttle response. Methinks.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I want to thank everyone for their replies. I actually am convinced that the problem is in fact with the fuel injection mapping. The solution is simple... In stop and go traffic i just kind of avoid being in 3rd gear, which I think is precisely where the mapping is worst. Luckily you can drive really slow in 4th gear. It's a bit of a quirk to be sure, but easy to work around.
 

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I think you need to adjust the way you using gears. Sounds like you are at the top end of gearing.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Just want to clarify, I think the mapping on the 3rd gear is what makes it janky. When I ride around town, Ive just found it easier to use 1st, 2nd, and 4th, 5th.and 6th gears. I just kind of skip 3rd gear and it makes for a smoother experience. 3rd gear kind of sucks on this bike to be honest.
 

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Are we sure this bikes ECU is that slick? I know my 2-stroke Honsa has 3D mapping, whatever that, is but I'm still not convinced it looks at gear slection. Just rpm, airflow and throttle position.

Edit: Hmmm? I'm sure they don't put a gear selection switch in the gearbox just so we can have a pretty number on the dash!
 
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