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Discussion Starter #1
I'll admit I'm a little put off by the term "top heavy" particularly after reading posts about learning to ride a Strom after coming from another bike and dropping it 3-5 times in the process.
I'm slowly circling in on the purchase of a '05 wee. I currently ride a DRZ400s. I'm 6'3 and about 190 geared up. Should I be nervous about this top heavy business?
 

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V Stroms are not so much top heavy as simply tall. Compared to Cruisers and standard bikes, Adventure style bikes tend to have a taller seat height. I don't find them any more top heavy than many other bikes, especially the newer generation DL 650 and 1000 as they are much lighter. If you are prone to dropping bikes there is something in your riding style that you might want to look at. Something as simple as a better pair of boots with better tread for instance. No one can hold up a bike once it leans over a certain amount, learning to not allow it to lean off center is something I am mindful of.
 

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Not top heavy at all, but being taller and holding over 5 gallons of gas might make it feel that way to some. My previous 1000's felt sluggish in steering, but my 650 is not top heavy or sluggish at all, and my opinion is the same of the new 1000 as well.
 

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At 6'3" - you won't have an issue. It's not as top heavy as an ST1100..not as planted as my CBF1000. Any time you have a big tank and long suspension there is an element of top heavy for the height challenged rider like me.
You will appreciate the height tho.
It is certainly going to feel heavier than your 400.
 

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Coming from a v star 1100 I was concerned to say the least but I have yet to drop it on asphalt. I've become proficient at picking it up off road but that's because I lack the skills as of yet. That being said only a left turn signal had bitten the dust so far. Love this bike wish I had made the move sooner. I think you'll love it too.
 

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I moved to the DL from a BMW R1100RT.

The RT was some 150 lbs heavier, and seemed lower in terms of center of gravity. But I've also owned BMW K bikes, and a Suzuki DR650. All of those were taller than the DL650.

At any rate, I'm 5'6" with a 29" inseam and I don't have a problem with the DL. I do need to add that I purchased a low-seat, but other than that it was mostly a mental adjustment.

FWIW
 

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I don't believe my 650 is "Top Heavy" one bit. Just a tad tall, I mount/dismount like one would for a horse. 34" inseam.
You want real top heavy, stop by and take my ST1300 for two mile gravel ride before the pavement shows up and jump back on the DL which now feels like a Super 90. I had several machines that get the top heavy feel after filling up , the Strom is not one of those at all. Easy peasy to put on the C-stand too.
 

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I don't believe my 650 is "Top Heavy" one bit. Just a tad tall, I mount/dismount like one would for a horse. 34" inseam.
You want real top heavy, stop by and take my ST1300 for two mile gravel ride before the pavement shows up and jump back on the DL which now feels like a Super 90. I had several machines that get the top heavy feel after filling up , the Strom is not one of those at all. Easy peasy to put on the C-stand too.
Back in January of 2012 I rented an ST1300 in Los Angeles and rode about 1,200 miles in California and Arizona. My (then future) wife was on the back. Awesome bike.. great power, smooth, wheelies on demand, great for lane splitting on that super relaxing California 405. But no doubt you could feel that top-heavy weight on it. And yes my 2006 DL650 felt incredibly light when I got home!

..Tom
 

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My 2011 felt top heavy until I got the suspension dialed in. The bike was set on the softest settings from the dealer. I set both front and rear to mid range and tuned it to match my weight and with/ without luggage. I stiffen the rear one mark for a full set of luggage. If you lower the back with kouba links do slide the forks down an appropriate amount.
I've dropped my bike twice. First hitting an oil slick during a U turn. I was down so fast I didn't even have time to think "Oh, Sh__!" much less say it. The second drop was a side stand roll off and I was 15 feet away.
 

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I came back to ridng after a 25 year hiatus.... picked my vstrom brand new....
Felt right at home... Can't find this top heavy balloohey.. Heven't droped or being close to yet...(knock on wood)
At your height and weight i think you'll be riding it without any issues!
 

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I have called the bike top heavy, but it isn't something that I notice at speed. It is more when I am pushing it around the garage or occasionally when I come to an intersection and my foot slips that I feel like I might not hold it up. I have put about 4000 miles on it and at this point I compensate early and don't notice nearly as much as when I first got it.

I have had a couple of close calls in the garage, but so far I haven't dropped it.

It is a tall machine. I am 6 foot tall and it fits me well.

John
 

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I've had bigger bikes before, but got the 650 Strom after a few years on a GS500, and the Strom felt heavy and top-heavy after the GS, but I soon got used to it. Definitely have to be a bit more careful pushing it around in the garage though. I'm 6'1" and 84 kg. (That's 185cm and 185lb) :)
 

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Above stuff sums it up - tall/top heavy pushing it at around or low speed, but well carried and pleasant when moving.

I miss the Strom the least when pushing the SV around the shed...
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Great input! Thanks everyone!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Comes down to what you are experienced with. A heavier cruiser has lower CG, smaller bikes obviously lighter and lower.
Had about 9 yrs on a Kawasaki 1000 GTR (Concours), now that was top heavy especially with 28 litres in the tank plus camping gear. When that started to tip all you could do was step off. No way you could keep it up. The DL 650 feels like a lightweight to me.
I am 5' 7" on a good day and just under 80 kilos. 28" inseam. Tippy toes at stop bike upright. No problem just adjusting butt sideways a touch to flat foot one foot. Changed to calf length hiking boots with a thicker sole and chunky tread for traction, also have the lowered seat but left all other types of lowering alone.
It's really a question of long time experience on the bike. Rather than use upper body strength use your whole body to support the weight.
Obviously different going off road with very uneven ground.
I think pretty much any one doing off road will drop any bike probably quite a lot.
I have yet to drop this bike but am aware it will happen at some stage.
 

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I'm likely built very close to Shultz up there and have only lowered my seat.
I can sit with the balls of my feet planted.
I've had to lay mine down 4 times now. Note that was a deliberate laying the bike down , not a fall over go boom.
I've had many bikes and all of them I felt comfortable moving while at a stop. IOW something felt odd stopping you lean it over and take a peek at the front or rear... not on this bike. More than a few inches from vertical and gravity starts beckoning.
I've come to grips with teh bike and I quite like her - as mentioned she handles like a thoroughbred when moving.
Each and every time I had to lay her down it was a slope or low spot. At an off angle I simply don't have enough leg to get her back upright.
You're like a tripod and there's simply no leverage to get her back up since you're fully extended. It doesn't take too much of a slope either - I pulled into a burger joint one time and noticed the parking sloped gently down to the street. Didn't seem like much when I parked but I had a heckuva time getting her back up and balanced to back her out. In those moments you realize you have to be very careful with your angles so you don't go past your limits. All my other bikes I had much more flexibility in how far they could tip. At work I park in the lower deck and the road out is a pretty good slope. I wait if there's anyone at the top because if I get stuck on the hump at top I'm screwed.
Is it the bikes fault? No. More of a mismatch between rider and bike - but she rides so sweet I'm willing to live with it since the goal is to be moving.
 

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I also traded my DRZ400 in on a DL650. They are chalk and cheese. I ended up with it after riding dirt bikes and sport bikes for a few decades. I even had a DR650 a while back and there is also no comparison.
It's a tall road bike with longer travel suspension and an upright seating position that with the right tires can take on any dirt road and a few 4WD tracks as well - just don't take it into soft sand or deep mud. You will start riding much further from home and your dirt experience can be used to take it places that others might not attempt. Your mates with road bikes will hate you as you will be able to keep up with them on any sealed road and yet disappear into the distance at the road works while they flail about in the gravel.
 
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