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Discussion Starter #1
Hey All. Great Forum!
Been street bike less for almost 10 years. Had a CRF the last few years to ride trails with my kids but they are older now and not riding. I’ve had many bikes over the years starting with an old 250 triple at 16 and last street bike was a wing.

Looking to get back into it with a commuter that’s capable of the odd weekend tour and maybe a week a year solid on the bike vacation likely loaded down with camping gear. 99% of the time single rider as the wife has no interest and likely all pavement riding unless I found a group that dragged me kicking and screaming in the dirt. Regardless of what I by Luggage is a MUST and an important factor in my considerations. Fir instance the DL1000 SE stock bags seems way undersized.

I’m 50, 5’11 and fat (240ish) but still strong and loosing weight :). Looking at the above mentioned bikes based on upright ergonomics and some weather protection in a package I find appealing. Safety in wet/cold riding is also important to extend the short season up here in Canada so a little traction control and ABS are welcomed aids.

First off I haven’t narrowed down the search to either the 650 or 1000 flavors of either bike and the FJ in the middle at 850.

Given my circumstances what would you buy and why? (Yes I get I'm asking this on a V-Strom forum:)

I know you must get this over and over and I’m ferociously reading over older threads now so consider this an introduction and thanks for having me post!
 

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Given your riding history and that you want new I'd opt for FJ-09 in a heart beat. Even tho either Strom would be fine the FJ will give you a thrill and in my view is a bargain for what you get.



Yamaha FJ-09

and another review
https://rideapart.com/articles/incredibly-nimble-insanely-fun-yamaha-fj-09-review

The advantage with the Strom is the wide range of farkles and a reputation for durability ( my 2010 650 has 115,000 km on it with zilch problems ).
But I keep around the CBF1000 for the thrills I can't get from the Wee. I take either for distance but the Wee for multii-week rides as it has better luggage and much better fuel mileage.

The only question in mind for the FJ is long term durability as it's relatively new design and lots of electronics. I tend to used and simpler proven designs.
My kid loves his FZ8
 

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Both good bikes with the Versys being the sportier of the two. Back in '09 I went through the same debate with myself. I opted for the Strom for practical reasons, a large back seat/luggage rack for carrying gear, at the time a larger gas tank and centerstand capable, front and rear fenders that made an attempt to keep you dry, and roomier ergos. The Strom seemed like the better long distance bike at the time, it all depends on your priorities.

I always tell people to get a test ride. I can't tell you how many bikes I've ridden that on paper I was sure would be great, but ended up hating once on the road. The FJ09 being one, a fun bike but the buzzy vibration at 4k RPM was a deal breaker for me.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks guys!
Macdoc that was my feeling as well but I have to rethink that.

I just test “piloted” the FJ. Yea… Haven’t been on a street bike in years but did these things get a whole lot faster? Way more speed that I’d ever need or use. Fun but a tad scary if I’m being honest with myself! :)
So much top end speed! Very light handling but the throttle felt like a switch. Admittedly I’m way out of practice.
Ass was sore in 30 mins. Got off, got a coffee to calm down a bit. Nothing felt right but everything is new including all my gear.
Love the seating position in relation to the bars but the peg position feels a little cramped (high) and far back. Wind protection sucks but I guess they all will compared to my old wing.
I love the look of the bike but I think I’ll focus on the VStrom/Versys and see what I can ride next.

Can the 650’s do all I’m asking of them given my weight and interest in riding loaded to camp?
I read the 650 Strom will have traction control next year and since it’s the end of the riding season where I am I can wait. :)
 

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So I am 5'11" and running about 270 right now and the dl650 has plenty of power for me to do whatever I want. I have panniers and a top case, even when full for a trip the little 650 rips just fine. I did some test rides some time ago and tested most of what you are thinking of. I sat on the FJ but the cramped leg position was an immediate turn off. Based on the power of both 650's (versys and Vstrom) and the Vstrom 1K, I knew it was not necessary for me to test the versys 1K. Check out my test reviews, they run for a couple pages starting on page 6:

http://www.stromtrooper.com/v-curious/237810-considering-weestrom-6.html

Good luck!
 

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I'm 6'1", 240# (well was, on the way down now, saw 215# yesterday!) And ride a 2012 dl650a. Took a 2600 mile ride through Nevada last summer, heavily loaded. I never felt like I needed extra power, though I've always ridden smaller bikes (400s and 450s).

So there's a data point about whether the 650s can suffice.
 

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Can the 650’s do all I’m asking of them given my weight and interest in riding loaded to camp?
I read the 650 Strom will have traction control next year and since it’s the end of the riding season where I am I can wait
I call my Wee The Mule ....I'm always overladed travelling with the kid as his FZ only has a top case ...bit small for 3 weeks and all his diabetes supplies.

We've been to both coasts and the Mule just chugs along fine in in the Dakotas with insane traffic speeds



Seating is enjoyable, very upright, little or no buffeting with a Madstad bracket and incredible value - just curious why you want new tho.

Stripped down the Wee can canyon carve if you get the suspension sorted....it's great on the less than perfect Quebec roads - even The James Bay Road frost heaves it floats over and with K60s on its rock steady on gravel plus gets 400 + km per tank... the spare fuel in the photo above is for the kids FZ which is very lucky to get 200 km per tank....annoying when touring.
 

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I have owned the V-Strom and the FJ-09. I have ridden the Versys with cash in hand fully ready to buy it. That changed as soon as I rode it.

They are all very different bikes. If you plan to take cross country trips the choice narrows to the V-Strom quickly.

If you want a sport bike with a "slightly" more comfortable seating position, get the FJ-09.

Pass on the Versys. Just plain uncomfortable in a way that can not be fixed.
 

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I have owned the V-Strom and the FJ-09. I have ridden the Versys with cash in hand fully ready to buy it. That changed as soon as I rode it.

They are all very different bikes. If you plan to take cross country trips the choice narrows to the V-Strom quickly.

If you want a sport bike with a "slightly" more comfortable seating position, get the FJ-09.

Pass on the Versys. Just plain uncomfortable in a way that can not be fixed.


I had a '13 DL650 and I *loved* it. I would agree with everything said here about the 650. I agree with these comments about the Versys. I loved the engine but the ergos were awful - for me. I have not ridden the FJ. I moved up to a '14 Vstrom 1k. If the 650 is a perfect bike, the 1k is "perfecter" IMO. I am 5'8" and 220lbs and have the stock seat. It's very comfortable for 1 day or multi-day rides. This bike is really underrated and awesome. It can do *everything* well... even dirt. I've had mine for 22 months and have 67,000 miles on it - with NO problems (other than those caused by me!). Yes, that includes dirt too. I would say skip the 650 and go to the 1K Adventure.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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I have a Wee, a V2 and a FZ09 so similar to some of your choices.

There is no doubt the Yamaha is fun, heaps of grunt and weighs next to nothing but I don't see it as a long term bike, ride it, flog it and pass it on is the way I see that bike, my son had a small get off in the wet and the bike had to be trailered home, there is no metal in the bike whereas he could have picked up a Strom and ridden on.

I have a huge soft spot for the Wee and had many happy days loaded up with the bride and our gear, I was never disappointed by the thing but one day I need to do 900ks (560 miles) in the wet in half a day, I found I was spending a little to much time on the wrong side of the road during my stupid overtaking manoeuvres so the V2 was purchased.

I always called my Wee my honest bike and the V2 is called my lifetime bike, I could be happy enough to try and keep it for my lifetime ?

The FZ09 is the Scud, life threatening.

Ultimately the only way not to be disappointed is to make your own decision but if I could only have one bike, for the ridding I do it is the V2.
 

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hiya, vaper, welcome to the forum.

around here in the san diego area it's not easy to test-ride unless one of the manufacturers is hosting a demo day. ontario may be more forgiving.

anyhow, ride as many as you can. i guess that's obvious, huh? about the only feature of a bike i cannot handle are - no pun intended - clip-on handlebars. a face-in-the-tank ergonomic devastates my back, quickly and severely. no other factors in seating arrangements have bothered me, from cruisers with floorboards to a ninja 650 and now a 2015 650 wee. i'm, 68, 5'10", and 160ish, down from 191 last march.

i am appreciating the lighter weight of the sports bikes. i wouldn't mind another cruiser in the garage, but, yikes, i gotta admit that yanking a suzuki M50 or a yamaha v star 950 off its kickstand is a bit intimidating. in fact, i've been considering a honda CB500X or F.

well, enuff of that. just get out there and....ride! and good luck!

oh, yeah: report back regularly!
 

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honda CB500X
brilliant bike ...takes you back to what motorcycling used to be ...mind you a stripped down Strom is not far off.
 

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Hi Vaper,
I have looked at FJ-09 and (after sitting on it) I dismissed it because of the ergonomics, too cramped.
I dismissed the Versys 1000 because of heat issues. I had heat issues on a previous bike (ST1300) and sold it within 1 year of ownership. Excessive heat can really make a ride uncomfortable and no fun.

So, that narrowed it down to the V-Strom and I chose the 1000 over the 650. The 1000 is as nimble as the 650 but has better brakes, suspension, about 30 more HP and has Traction Control. The bike feels really stable on the highway and handles crosswinds on the interstates very well. I am 6'1" tall and weigh 270 lbs. The bike is not even breathing heavy in 5th gear @70mph (about 4K rpms) and still has PLENTY of power available and an additional gear.

From the sport-tourer perspective the DL1000 handles better than the ST1300 and inspires more confidence. I have heard more than 1 reviewer just say things like "This bike is so easy and fun too ride". I would have too agree.

Good Review:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ww2qji84MtI
 

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Thanks guys!
Macdoc that was my feeling as well but I have to rethink that.

I just test “piloted” the FJ. Yea… Haven’t been on a street bike in years but did these things get a whole lot faster? Way more speed that I’d ever need or use. Fun but a tad scary if I’m being honest with myself! :)
So much top end speed! Very light handling but the throttle felt like a switch. Admittedly I’m way out of practice.
Ass was sore in 30 mins. Got off, got a coffee to calm down a bit. Nothing felt right but everything is new including all my gear.
Love the seating position in relation to the bars but the peg position feels a little cramped (high) and far back. Wind protection sucks but I guess they all will compared to my old wing.
I love the look of the bike but I think I’ll focus on the VStrom/Versys and see what I can ride next.

Can the 650’s do all I’m asking of them given my weight and interest in riding loaded to camp?
I read the 650 Strom will have traction control next year and since it’s the end of the riding season where I am I can wait. :)
A side effect of the v-Twin design is the useful torque. The roads here in Texas get plenty of oil and general detritus. When it rains the roads can get very slippery fast. I find I start out in 2nd gear and it moderates the slick roads just fine. That to say unless you *want* to pay a premium for a new bike with traction control you could likely get last years bike for a better discount. I got my 2015 basically with the luggage thrown in free and 0% financing.
The Glee is a fast little minx - but the acceleration slows somewhere around 90 mph. I notice when cruising at 70-75 a stiff gust will slow me and riding into a headwind you can feel the extra power needed. So it's not exactly overpowered. If you plan on schlepping up mountains with full gear at full speed you might want to look at the 1000.
 

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Go for the litre

I ride 2-up occasionally, and I am so glad I bought the 1000 and not the 650.

I have no problem keeping up with other bikes, and to me the Versys was too street and not enough "dirt".

Go for the 1000, you'll be glad if you ever end up on the highway, or go riding with friends.

My 2014 1000DL is my first "real" bike, so don't be scared of it. And I never bought the throttle tamer either (why tame a throttle?!)

Aloha.
 

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Ok. Where to start? I never test rode FJ. Just had a close look at it and set on it. To much plastic on it and to uncomfortable for my legs. (I'm 5'9 with 33 inseam). I started my V Strom story with Vee (had them twice). But after riding my friends Wee I've got my first Wee (2006). Then there was 4 of them (2008, 2009 2010 and 2011). Right now I'm on my second Wee2.(2013). So far it is the best for my needs. Test rode Vee2 and it was good, but I don't need that extra power. I also don't need extra cost of gas (premium) and extra cost of insurance premium. Not talking about perhaps 50% higher initial cost of purchase. I think you should wait till February and take a close look at 2017 Wee (3?). Perhaps ride it too. This is definitely my next bike in 2 years or so. That's after perhaps 2 another Wee2. I think the new one looks pretty cool. Specially the XT model. Have I mentioned plenty of accessories compering to Versys
 

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Can't go wrong with any of them, really, it's just a matter of comfort...and that's subjective.

If you're going to do any off-pavement, tho, the Wee has the strong edge.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thank you ALL for the replies! Each one adds a little insight. :)

Been away a bit but I did get to try a few bikes and I think I’m leaning toward a deal on a NOS 1000 Vstrom.
Drove a used 2103 650 Versys and it’s not a bad bike at all. Ugly duckling maybe but it drove well. No demo in town of the new style Versys and they won’t let me run the new ones.
Got 30 mins on a demo 2016 Vstrom 650X without luggage. Nice bike! Feels more stable than both the FJ and Versys I rode. Longer wheelbase maybe? Doesn’t dive into corners like the others and that works better for me :) Lots of torque and good seating position. Legs don’t feel cramped at all. Not a lot of power up top.
The demo DL1000 was sold so I no test there but it should be similar to the 650 with more grunt right?

So I have to decide if I wait for the 2017 650 or 2018 they say the new 1000 will come out at or go for a well discounted 2015/2016 unit.
One dealer is motivated to sell 5 new old stock 2015 1000’s with a 5-year factory warranty for less then 1K more then the 2016 650 and likely the same price as the 2017 650. With a price differential so small why not the 1000 right?
The other dealer in town has a 2016 1000 SE for 2K more than the 2015 but I’m not in love with the size of the stock bags and 2K (Canadian) would buy a dam nice set of after market bags.

Any downside to getting a new 2015 in almost 2017 other then resale? I’d be more concerned about things like rubber seals, gas tank rust etc. Would any of this or something else I’m not thinking of be any real worry?
Thank again for your patience with me! :)
 
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