Getting two-up tour ready - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
DL650A - 2017+ DL650A - 2017 (L7) and later

 
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post #1 of 6 Old 08-19-2019, 03:34 PM Thread Starter
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Getting two-up tour ready

My girlfriend likes to ride with me but only for an hour or so at a time, sometimes more if we take breaks. Recently I momentarily considered buying an old Goldwing and she was extremely interested the idea of riding comfortably for a much longer duration. That idea quickly passed as I realized I really wasn't ready to maintain such a vehicle. But I think the money could do well invested into the strom.

So how do I make this bike ready for extended two-up riding?

The bike is currently stock except for a small handlebar riser that isn't as much rise as I would like.
I'm trying to make a list to slowly check off between now and next spring.

Here's my current list:
Suspension front and rear - Cogent DDC? Unsure for rear.
New seat - but which one? Pillion comfort is a priority
Lower pegs for both
A top box with a backrest
Bar risers and/or new handlebars
Brake line extension, possibly replace all with stainless lines
Cruise control or throttle lock - I've got no clue about these at the moment

I'm sure missing something so please offer any suggestions. I love this bike enough that I've put off upgrading it because I've been too busy riding it everyday. It's time to make it even better.
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post #2 of 6 Old 08-19-2019, 03:55 PM
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I just finished over 4k km with pillion and bike was perfect, especially for my wife.

- IMO you don't need new seat, stock is excellent (almost 12 hours in saddle 2 times, no problems)
- suspension cranked all the way on new models '17+ of strom is both very good, no need for upgrade, at least for me and I am 240lb/ 6.1
- I have givi trekker 52l top box with backrest, very comfortable and spacey.
- no need for bar risers for me. (6.1)
- used throttle lock but didn't like it.
- get a wind deflector

Last edited by offnote; 08-19-2019 at 03:57 PM.
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post #3 of 6 Old 08-19-2019, 04:05 PM
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The #1 thing that makes riding long distances with a partner better is having an intercom between helmets. Being able to talk makes it a trip together, and less something you are doing and your partner is tagging along on. I have a set of Sena SMH-10s and they are really great, newer models are even better. When you aren't talking you can share music or listen to an audiobook or podcasts together, just like if you were on a road trip in a car.

Have you asked your partner what they think would help or what bothers them about riding long distances? Having them be involved will make a huge difference on how much they like riding with you. Shop online together, try seats together, discuss options together. It could make all the difference in the world.

2003 DL1000
Too much other broken stuff to list
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post #4 of 6 Old 08-19-2019, 04:08 PM
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I would hold off on changing pegs for the pillion until she rides for a while and figures out what's comfortable for her. She'll need a couple rides that last for a few hours, for her to really settle in and decide what's actually going to be a long-term discomfort, as opposed to just a temporary discomfort as she gets used to being a passenger. If she's a novice who hasn't been in the saddle for more than a short ride, being on a bike for a four or five hours is probably going to be uncomfortable at first, no matter what adjustments you make. My girlfriend can be on the bike all day, as long as there hasn't been a long time span between rides, but if she doesn't ride for a while, even a two hour ride can be uncomfortable.

There are a myriad of aftermarket seats to try; some will tell you that a Corbin is perfect, others will say Corbins are too hard and a Sargeant is the way to go. One seat that's pretty universally acclaimed is a Russell Day Long, but they're one of the more pricey options. My girlfriend was no fan of the OEM seat on my old 2012 DL650, but she's fine with the OEM seat on my Super Tenere. A seat that's comfortable for you both over a long day is probably the wisest investment you can make. I still use the OEM seat too, though I've put an Airhawk seat pad on mine. That's good for me for about eight or ten hours in the saddle, which is about as much as I want to ride in a day.

On my V-Strom, I had my OEM rear shock resprung with a heavier spring by Cogent Dynamics. It made for a better ride when I was riding two-up with a load of gear. On my S10 I had a stock rear shock rebuilt by Norwest Suspension with new valving and an 1100 lb spring. Both modifications made for a better ride as far as having a passenger and gear for two is concerned. I've never made any modifications to the front suspension on either bike.

A backrest is pretty important for a passenger. I have a small Pelican knockoff as a top case, and my passenger backrest is simply a $20.00 ATV seat pad from Walmart, folded in half with some egg crate foam stuffed inside. This pad is attached to the forward part of the topcase by a couple of quick release nylon straps. My girlfriend says it's very comfortable.

One thing I did was install a power outlet that was accessible to the rear passenger, so she can plug in her phone, or recharge her comm unit while we're riding. On my Super Tenere, it's a Motopower USB outlet that's attached to one of the passenger grab rails.

"No matter where you go, there you are."
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post #5 of 6 Old 08-19-2019, 04:14 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by offnote View Post
I just finished over 4k km with pillion and bike was perfect, especially for my wife.

- IMO you don't need new seat, stock is excellent (almost 12 hours in saddle 2 times, no problems)
- suspension cranked all the way on new models '17+ of strom is both very good, no need for upgrade, at least for me and I am 240lb/ 6.1
- I have givi trekker 52l top box with backrest, very comfortable and spacey.
- no need for bar risers for me. (6.1)
- used throttle lock but didn't like it.
- get a wind deflector
-The seat is more for the pillion, I mostly find it fine except on certain days. Maybe the top box is the ticket to give her some comfort to wiggle around a little.
-I can flatfoot the bike with the passenger, which would never happen solo, and I feel the rear end dip a lot on bumps and we're only 175/130 lbs.
-what do you mean by wind deflector? I do have a madstad windscreen. They recommended the small size for me (5'8") but it seems low so I might clip something to the top.
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post #6 of 6 Old 08-19-2019, 05:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RhythmJunkie View Post
-The seat is more for the pillion, I mostly find it fine except on certain days. Maybe the top box is the ticket to give her some comfort to wiggle around a little.
-I can flatfoot the bike with the passenger, which would never happen solo, and I feel the rear end dip a lot on bumps and we're only 175/130 lbs.
-what do you mean by wind deflector? I do have a madstad windscreen. They recommended the small size for me (5'8") but it seems low so I might clip something to the top.
Well, I did say seat is fine from pillion perspective because I rode on better ones already.
What year is you strom? as I said new v-strom are pretty stiff on suspension and I never bottomed up
even with full luggage on bumps and I'm heavy guy. If you have madstad you should be fine, I.m using stock screen
hence I needed deflector.
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