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Topic: Tour Prepping a SuperSport, Why don't we do this?  (Read 11058 times)

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smackdoogle
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« on: April 10, 2012, 06:28:59 AM »

So, I've been molding my body imprint on my couch for over a week now as I heal from my reconstructive surgery on my ankle. Not very mobile and all I can do is sit on the couch and hobble to the garage on crutches to look at my VF1000R. With two online college courses I still have a ton of free time so I've been reading tons of threads on here and other forums.

This topic has been brought up briefly in some way shape or form on here before but never really with much thought.  

I know,  for many of us,  the first thing we would like to do to our bikes when we buy them is the suspension.  Working the stock suspension on any bike can range from $500-$2000 depending on what your looking for it to do.

So why don't we just make it easier on ourselves? I've been searching craigslist, ebay, etc and 2004-2008 Yamaha R1's, Honda CBR1000RR's, ZX10R's and GSXR1000's can be found all day with less than 15000 miles in good shape for less than $7000. Usually in the $4500-$6500 price range with less than 10000 miles.

With these bikes you get fully adjustable suspension, gobs of power, nice instrumentation, tons of braking power, etc, etc. The only thing you don't get is comfort but......................Spiegler makes a very nice handlebar kit for all of those bikes sitting you up straight (as seen here http://www.spiegleru...on-kit-4394.htm)

The kits runs about $550. Combine that with a corbin/sargeant/whatever for your bum and you have a high performance sport tourer for the same price or less than a 6th gen VFR all farkled out, or a Sprint, or a Tiger 1050 or whatever. Legs still cramped? I'm sure someone makes peg lowerers or whatever for less than $100. Pretty sure Buell pegs would give you another 1". Anyway,

Am I missing something? I'm sure others have thought of this but why isn't it more popular?

What are your reasons for modding your bike or whatever when you could have gone the SS route?

I guess it's all subjective since we all have our own opinions but to me,  it just seems like I've been doing it backwards.  Finding a sport touring bike and dropping money for performance, suspension and comfort when I could have been buying a SS and dropping less money on just comfort.  
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« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2012, 07:40:19 AM »

I'm with you on modding a sport bike for all-day solo twisty strafing. But that doesn't work if you want factory hard luggage, two-up comfort, lots of alternator output to run farkles, no windblast on the super slab, etc. Different strokes and all that...
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« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2012, 07:49:08 AM »

I agree, for the most part.  Thumbsup

I bought a Hayabusa because it was lighter than almost all the dedicated ST bikes (although it’s still heavy by sportbike standards). It has fully adjustable suspension front and rear, strong brakes, and it’s roomier and more comfortable than the “RR” bikes. It has PLENTY of power/torque and it’s as reliable as a hammer. I bought mine with 23k on the clock, in excellent condition, for $4200; Hard to beat that combo. As a bonus, I can raise the bars and lower the pegs for more comfort for very little cost (I actually have a set of Buell pegs sitting in the garage).
The downside though is that I will never have the kind of wind protection afforded by a dedicated ST rig. I will never get the kind of seating position a ST bike has. I will never have roomy hard bags like a ST bike. Those are all compromises I decided I was OK with though for the sake of performance.

With a true “RR” bike you do have some other compromises to consider:
-Most lack low end torque. The liter bikes are certainly OK but they are still short compared to some of the big bore ST’s.
-because of the  soft low-end torque most are geared quite short. That means LOTS of revs out on the open road. A typical 600 will be running 6000rpm+ at interstate speeds. The engines take that kind of spinning just fine but the noise is kind of fatiguing on long trips (been there/ done that).
-The super light weight tends to make them get blown around a lot in cross winds or turbulence off of the back of trucks.
-The overall layout is very compact. 2-up in comfort isn’t going to happen and no matter what kind of risers ect you put on it will never be as roomy as a ST bike. It also means limited space for luggage, although you can pack a pretty good amount on one with some creativity, especially for one person
-The riding position is a bit extreme. You can only raise bars and lower pegs so much and even still you will be stuck with a “sporty” riding position.

All that being said, it can be done and if those compromises  don’t bother you they can make a pretty decent medium range tourer for a good price.
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« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2012, 07:51:59 AM »

Yeah I think there are more potential gotchas modding an R1 than sporting up an FZ1. Not insignificant in the discussion is the light weight, twist-n-flex tail/subframes on most rr/SS bikes. They can hold a 98lb pillion just fine but slap on a real-sized pillion and the game changes. Add real luggage to the mix and it gets messy. Add in tiny pillion seats, tightly tucked knees for both rider and passenger, "perchy" seating for the pillion.... It's just not the right tool forthr job. If you solo tour out of a tank bag and you don't mind the ergos then yeah...

I've done what you're discussing a number of times on a couple different SS bikes and the results are always the same; crappy handling due to extra weight and wind resistance not designed in and complete lack of comfort for the pillion.
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« Reply #4 on: April 10, 2012, 07:54:57 AM »

The main problem for me has always been lack of hard luggage options. It's pretty much the only reason I bought a Kawasaki ZZR600, I read a thread about some guy who modded a Kawi ZR7 kit to the ZZR. Same thing with the VFR, it's kinda sporty but has nicely integrated OEM saddlebags. Although SW Motech's system looks like a pretty good option for a lot of different bikes. Not fully integrated hard bags, but better mounting than traditional soft luggage.
http://www.twistedthrottle.com/article/articleview/420/1/18/


This is probably the perfect super sport tourer, from an old thread in the Kawi forum:
http://www.sport-touring.net/forums/index.php/topic,48971.0.html


Okay, here's a pic of the ZX with the Helibars, Corbin and Vortex rear-sets.  It's hard to tell how much room to get with the higher handlebars and lower footpegs because I don't have a comparison picture... but the handle bars are 2" higher and the footpegs about 1" lower.






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« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2012, 08:05:40 AM »

Interesting question with an obvious answer....this Sport-Touring.Net where most ride big fat touring bikes which the Mfg has marketed as a "sport tourer" so the purchaser can comfortably reinforce the illusion that there is something "sporty" about a big fat touring bike.

(It should be noted that nowhere in this post did I mention the FJR) Bigsmile
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« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2012, 08:20:04 AM »

I bought a 636 to do this, then sold it when I realized I would eventually lose my license if I kept it.  Razz
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« Reply #7 on: April 10, 2012, 08:30:24 AM »


Interesting question with an obvious answer....this Sport-Touring.Net where most ride big fat touring bikes which the Mfg has marketed as a "sport tourer" so the purchaser can comfortably reinforce the illusion that there is something "sporty" about a big fat touring bike.

(It should be noted that nowhere in this post did I mention the FJR) Bigsmile


yes you did.
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« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2012, 08:36:42 AM »

Thanks for the input!!!  

I ride by myself 99% of the time so 2-up riding isn't an issue or a concern.  I have soft saddle bags that I don't think I could fit 100lbs of weight in them if I filled them with cement.  Besides,  how much underwear do you have to pack for a weekend?  

Yes,  there are compromises with a SS.  No,  it'll never be FJR comfy but I'm looking for VFR comfy.  I'm looking for light weight, good power and easy riding for 500 mile days.  The LSL/spiegler superbike bar kit looks like it really helps the ergos a lot.  

All I'm saying is that the cost to performance to comfort ration seems as though you'd get more bang for your buck with a SS outfitted correctly.

Ultimately,  yes the compromises are on both sides and it's up to the rider (money spender) what is worth more and what isn't
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« Reply #9 on: April 10, 2012, 08:54:51 AM »

Meh, ride whatever you want.  In 99% of the cases the bike is much more capable than the rider.  I've yet to be left behind on my pig on the streets (slab or mountain road) when riding alone.  

The ability to comfortably carry a passenger and enough gear in hard luggage for a weekend or a week is just the cherry on top.  The purpose built "sport-touring" machines are exceptional at being the swiss army knives of motorcycles.  The same could be said for the big adventure tourers.  The real compromise is the RR bikes.
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« Reply #10 on: April 10, 2012, 09:59:38 AM »




yes you did.


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« Reply #11 on: April 10, 2012, 10:10:00 AM »

Heli-bars, lower pegs, soft bags, and I even have a hard trunk if I care to use it. I did modify the suspension as it's a bit too soft for a larger rider but that's me.



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« Reply #12 on: April 10, 2012, 11:21:47 AM »

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Not the best pic. Comfort mods are Cyclecat adj. clip ons (up and back an inch or so), vortex adj. rearsets (down 3/4" or so), suzuki gel seat and puig double bubble windscreen.
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« Reply #13 on: April 10, 2012, 11:37:59 AM »

My biggest issue with SuperSports and touring is that unless you are hauling ass they kill you ergo wise. Is just not something I would ever want to do. I rode the GSXR1000 to work a few times (120 miles rt) and that was far enough for me. Why anyone would want to sit on that thing all day is beyond me.  Nuts Shrug
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« Reply #14 on: April 10, 2012, 12:20:24 PM »


Thanks for the input!!!  

I ride by myself 99% of the time so 2-up riding isn't an issue or a concern.  I have soft saddle bags that I don't think I could fit 100lbs of weight in them if I filled them with cement.  Besides,  how much underwear do you have to pack for a weekend?  

Yes,  there are compromises with a SS.  No,  it'll never be FJR comfy but I'm looking for VFR comfy.  I'm looking for light weight, good power and easy riding for 500 mile days.  The LSL/spiegler superbike bar kit looks like it really helps the ergos a lot.  

All I'm saying is that the cost to performance to comfort ration seems as though you'd get more bang for your buck with a SS outfitted correctly.

Ultimately,  yes the compromises are on both sides and it's up to the rider (money spender) what is worth more and what isn't


For what you described (riding solo, packing light, 500mi days max) a modded RR will work pretty well. As a bonus, you're not lugging around 200lbs of excess bike during all the times when your not on a trip. I don't see any reason why a GSXR/CBR/ZX/whatever couldn't be made just as comfy as a VFR with a set of risers and some different pegs/rearsets.
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« Reply #15 on: April 10, 2012, 12:27:35 PM »


My biggest issue with SuperSports and touring is that unless you are hauling ass they kill you ergo wise. Is just not something I would ever want to do. I rode the GSXR1000 to work a few times (120 miles rt) and that was far enough for me. Why anyone would want to sit on that thing all day is beyond me.  Nuts Shrug


I rode 1500mi in 3 days on a Buell Firebolt (which has similar ergos to your average Japanese SS) with nothing more than a set of the Lightning pegs (1" drop vs. std Firebolt pegs). I actually found it to be quite comfortable with one exception, that plank they call a seat!  Crazy MAN that thing was killing me after the 1st 1000mi!
My brother rode his R1 from Indiana to Cali, up to Washinton state and back home a few years back.
"comfortable" ergos are such a subjective thing.
I really prefer a forward lean with my feet under me so long as my knees aren't crunched up too much. Most modern SS's I find to be pretty comfy, especially the GSXR's with the pegs in their lowest position.
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« Reply #16 on: April 10, 2012, 12:43:48 PM »

One other consideration is insurance. In many cases a SS is outrageously expensive compared to an ST. Some ST's like the Sprint are considered touring bikes by the ins. companies so are priced like a standard. ($300 yr for full coverage vs. a GSXR 1000, more like $1,000+)
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« Reply #17 on: April 10, 2012, 02:24:33 PM »




(It should be noted that nowhere in this post did I mention the FJR) Bigsmile



You may not mention the FJR but I'm sure it was in your thoughts.
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« Reply #18 on: April 10, 2012, 02:35:44 PM »


One other consideration is insurance.


Agreed.  Why do I need a 180+hp bike for sport touring?  And why would I want the extra worry of having a highly desirable sportbike stolen while I'm traveling somewhere?
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« Reply #19 on: April 10, 2012, 02:38:19 PM »

 You can tour on anything if you want to bad enough.
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