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Discussion Starter #1
I finally have the OK from the Boss to exchange my 1982 Yamaha Maxim 750 for something I don't have to hang antique plates on. I've grown up on this bike. It was my pop's and I rode many miles on the pillion. A few years ago, after years of prodding, I was gifted the bike. Sadly it was neglected and had been idle for too many years. I got it back to a road worthy condition, but it truly needs more care and money than I care or desire to put into it. Time to modernize.

I'm looking mostly for a commuter. My commute is short and I can get there mostly on residential streets. Frankly a little scooter would be sufficient, but I want to maintain my man card and youthfulness for as long as I can.

My intention is to utilize a bike for year round commuting. As mentioned the distance is not far and I can ride the Yammy without any problems down to temps just below freezing. Much farther and I get uncomfortable.

My initial interest was with the Kawasaki Versys. Then I found the Versys 300, and thought that might be perfect. Maybe a little small, but very practical for my intentions. I went to a Kawi dealer and liked the fit and finish of the 300. I went to another dealer to sit on a 650. Beside the Kawi sat the V-Strom. My eye kept drifting away from the Kawi.

I had the option to view and sit on 3 different Wees a 2016 and two 2017 versions. Right off the bat I liked the look of the '17s better, but the price reduction of the '16 had me on that one first. I'm use to having knees bent and flat foot on the Yammy. These bigger adventure bikes require me to keep my legs straight to flat foot the bike. Reminds me of the old days when I had to stretch to reach the ground on my Yammy dirt bike.

As I started learning more about the '17 V-Strom, I liked the new features. ABS and traction control sound very foreign on a motorcycle to me. However the features and the feel of the bike in the showroom has sold me on the V-Strom over the Verys. At least on the larger bike. The smaller Versys is still a contender. I have to schedule a test ride for both, but I am heavily leaning to the V-Strom at this point.

So that is a long introduction and if you actually read it all I thank you for the time you took. I also apologize for wasting your time with my drivel.
 

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Fynlcut (is that a Pink Floyd album?)

Anyway, Before I bought the 650 Strom, I test rode several bikes. You can find results of those rides here:
Considering a weestrom

The first test (dl650) is on page 6 with, page 9 has the versys 650 test and there are a few in between. It may be helpful, it may not, but another perspective to think about. I test rode an nc700x on page 7, if I was buying a cycle for commuting only, it would be in my garage.

Also, the Honda cb500 series of bikes are top notch and if you are considering a 300, you need to think about the cb500x. I did not get to ride one but my buddy picked one up and absolutely loves it.

Good luck!!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Mr Vavoom,
Aye the Honda. I do like both the 500 and 700 offerings. Unfortunately my wife's brother passed away while riding a Red Honda.
Honda and any other red bikes are automatically vetoed by the Boss.

This is partially why I am limiting myself to the smaller bikes and/or bikes with additional safety features like ABS and traction control. So she can worry less, and I can ride more.
Just like a car ABS and traction control, I believe these features are driver assistance features, not replacements for driver competencies. They may help in limited situations, but the Boss has stated these features would be good for me to have. Along with protective gear and as many lights horns sirens and other visibility devices I can stand to apply to the bike.

I do appreciate the reports of your test rides. The more first hand "Everyday Joe" reports I can read, the better I can evaluate the bikes while testing them for the short periods I expect to get.
 

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Please, I prefer something less formal than Mr Vavoom. ;)

I see you skipped my question though, is your screen name Final Cut or did I read something different into it?

Honda stuff is understood some battles are not worth fighting. I too agree that ABS, TC and the such can be helpful.
 

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I owned a Midnight Maxim 750 many years ago and actually rode it from the Atlantic to the Pacific and back in 1988. After several bikes since I have had a 2007 V-Strom 650 for the last 5yrs. I considered the Versys also. Your desire to ride year round caught my attention.....The Wee is going to offer much better wind protection than the Versys. Secondly and this is toward your desire for safety and visibilty, I think the larger overall size of the V-Strom compared to the Versys makes it stand out more and therefore possibly safer. And don't forget the absolute HUGE aftermarket for all sorts of accessories for the V-Strom. Don't get me wrong, I LIKE the Versys a lot. Its a very comfortable sporty type bike. The V-Strom to me is just a better overall bike for all conditions riding. I wish you the best on your decision.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Senior Vinny,
Yes it is true. Fynlcut is a play on the album title The Final Cut. Probably, like, from the best band ever man.

Izrock,
Thanks for the input. As a Maxim rider you know how much fun that bike can be. Would love to find a brand new one, lol.
I thought the Wee had a fairing that at least looked more operational. I'll also pass on the bigger is easier to see benefit to the wife. She might like that idea.
 

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Senior Vinny,
Yes it is true. Fynlcut is a play on the album title The Final Cut. Probably, like, from the best band ever man.
Pink Floyd is my favorite, probably why I caught it right off the bat.
 

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I always considered myself an "old school" type of bike rider and for a long time poo-pooed any and all rider aides. More for the reason of extra complexity and fear of the trouble/cost to fix them. Then I got a bike with ABS, traction control and selective engine mapping.

I doubt I will ever buy a bike for touring or daily riding again that does not have ABS. If it has a large motor, it will also have traction control.

I can live without the selective engine mapping and cruise control.....but if available, yep, toss that on too.
 

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I really like my V-Strom, but...have you looked at the Yamaha FZ-07 and FZ-09? Worth a look. The FZ-07 has an ABS option--ought'a be standard. Get ABS.
 

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I'm a relative newbie when it comes to bikes. I've ridden 20,000 in 10 years, and mostly on the same bike, a 2007 Suzuki Vstrom DL650 ABS. Some of those miles were on dirt roads and trails, but most of those miles were on the road, as a commuter. The DL650 is not great at a lot of things, (which I think it more than makes up for in the "is good at" or "can do competently" categories) but one thing it is GREAT! at is as a commuter. The gearing seems to lend itself to it. I ride mostly between 1st and 3rd, 4500-6500rpm is the sweet spot. It's very comfortable but also sporty enough to have a little fun with.
-mm
 

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Fynlcut, I also agree that ABS and traction control are good things. Keep in mind however that your level of rider competence/training should be your first line of defense. If you have not done so, MSF and advanced MSF classes are a good start along with a host of other rider skill sharpening classes nationwide. The bottom line is a 50cc scooter can get you just as dead as a 1500cc cruiser if the rider fails to perceive the threat and act accordingly.

Aye, this sounds kinda harsh....I really do not mean it that way at all..............
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Opportunities make it harder....

Not harsh at all -- Reality!

I'm not new to motorcycles. My first experiences driving a motorcycle goes back to when I was 5 years old. Too small to reach the pegs and foot levers, I sat cross legged on the gas tank. Cut-off jean shorts, no shirt, no shoes, and no helmet in sight. (don't recall if Dad even owned a helmet, or a shirt for that matter...). Heck back then some cars still didn't even come with seat belts.

I have taken the basic course a couple times after lapse in riding for a few years. Still, I have quite a few miles under me. Never needed ABS or TC. Hope to never need them going forward. Just think they are an evolution in safety such as wearing pants, shirts, and helmets.

Along those lines I just come across a '12 Vee Adventure with less than 4k miles, in pristine condition. Current asking price is $5500. Bigger than I have been considering. Older than I have been considering. Obviously missing those new safety features, but the price makes me think about it.....

Starting a new round of information gathering on the '12 model.....
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Oh boy!

I did it now.
2017 V-Strom 650XT
In Champion Yellow
Dealership took delivery yesterday at noon.
I sat on it about 3pm
Put down a deposit about 3:30.
(also picked up a multitude of new riding gear)
I'm itching to go pick it up, but have this pesky work thing to attend to. Might be a few days before I can get in and finish the deal. :furious:
 

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FynlCut,

Congrats! You will be enjoying yourself very soon. ;)
 

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I did it now.
2017 V-Strom 650XT
In Champion Yellow
Dealership took delivery yesterday at noon.
I sat on it about 3pm
Put down a deposit about 3:30.
(also picked up a multitude of new riding gear)
I'm itching to go pick it up, but have this pesky work thing to attend to. Might be a few days before I can get in and finish the deal. :furious:
EXCELLENT....pics we need pictures. Nice choice sir!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I have jumped from the V Curious, to the New Member Introduction :grin2:
I have a couple pictures from the ride home last Sat HERE
 

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Fynlcut,
The best thing to do is take all the bikes that you are considering out for a test ride.

You can sit on a thousand bikes that "feel" right, but until you actually ride them, you won't know how they "really" feel.

When I got my 07 650 V-Strom, my husband bought a 650 Versys. I took his bike for a ride and hated it, back then the wheels were both 17" where the V-Strom has 17"/19".

The Versys was a little too sporty and Hubby actually changed to a 2010 650 Strom.

He now has a 2014 V-Strom 1000 that he's very happy with.


All the best for what ever bike you choose.

Sharon


P.S.

OOPs, I see you went with the new Strom, we haven't got it here in Oz yet, but thats what I'm looking at when I upgrade :)
 

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I love it when someone loves a bike enough to make a clear decision there and then on the spot.

To me that means you got it right, enjoy it.
 
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