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Thread: Trucks

  1. #1
    Less is more.
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    Trucks

    I really love my G650GS, and it's paid for. I could go into debt to get something else, but my day to day riding is in the city. I've got the russell on it, and givi bags, other little tweaks. Most of the time, when the sun is shining, I don't feel like I need anything else.

    Buuuutt.... On the interstate, when the speed limit pushes or exceeds 70, I can just sort of tool along at 65. Sure I can go 80, but with the gearing I have on the bike (and maybe this is something I should change) it is pretty comfortable at 65. Of course this means that most traffic, including huge semi's are roaring past me in the left lanes.

    Those trucks kick up an awful lot of wind. I've done trips to Ohio and to Georgia (from Philly) so it's obviously doable. It feels a little insane though. The bike is so small that you get that "oh **** I'm going to die!" feeling. What I want to know is this, to a certain extent, all bikes? I mean it is a motorcycle after all, you are not going to get completely out of the wind..

    Some part of me thinks that a bike with 150 extra pounds and twice as much horsepower would be way more comfortable... On the other hand, I love what I have. Do other people go through this calculus as well? Riding in the city versus comfort on the highway, and the economics of bigger bikes?

    It's not very Zen to want new kit every 15,000 miles, and i am trying to resist some vicious cycle where I try to feed a techno-lust with new hardware, only to be ultimately dissatisfied and have to shell out again.

    OK discuss!

  2. #2
    Benchwrenching PGlaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by samuelh View Post
    I really love my G650GS, and it's paid for. I could go into debt to get something else, but my day to day riding is in the city. I've got the russell on it, and givi bags, other little tweaks. Most of the time, when the sun is shining, I don't feel like I need anything else.

    Buuuutt.... On the interstate, when the speed limit pushes or exceeds 70, I can just sort of tool along at 65. Sure I can go 80, but with the gearing I have on the bike (and maybe this is something I should change) it is pretty comfortable at 65. Of course this means that most traffic, including huge semi's are roaring past me in the left lanes.

    Those trucks kick up an awful lot of wind. I've done trips to Ohio and to Georgia (from Philly) so it's obviously doable. It feels a little insane though. The bike is so small that you get that "oh **** I'm going to die!" feeling. What I want to know is this, to a certain extent, all bikes? I mean it is a motorcycle after all, you are not going to get completely out of the wind..

    Some part of me thinks that a bike with 150 extra pounds and twice as much horsepower would be way more comfortable... On the other hand, I love what I have. Do other people go through this calculus as well? Riding in the city versus comfort on the highway, and the economics of bigger bikes?

    It's not very Zen to want new kit every 15,000 miles, and i am trying to resist some vicious cycle where I try to feed a techno-lust with new hardware, only to be ultimately dissatisfied and have to shell out again.

    OK discuss!
    I have an F650 Dakar. Older but substantially the same as your G650. I have the stock sprockets - stock gearing. It has big Pelican Case side bags and a Pelican Case top box. I live in Texas. West Texas. Two-lane speed limits are 70 or 75. Interstate speed limits are 70 or 80.

    It is totally happy at the speed limit on any of these roads. I don't know how you have yours geared, or why, but I would suggest the simple expedient of going back to stock gearing and seeing how you then like the bike.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://www.bigbend.net/users/glaves

  3. #3
    From MARS
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    I'm with Paul.

    Cruising at 80mph on my F650GS was very comfortable. It did have an aftermarket windscreen, but other than that, it was stock. The bike really smoothed out at 5200-5400rpm's and had no problem holding that all day.

    Tom

  4. #4
    Geeser
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    Quote Originally Posted by from mars View Post
    i'm with paul.

    Cruising at 80mph on my f650gs was very comfortable. It did have an aftermarket windscreen, but other than that, it was stock. The bike really smoothed out at 5200-5400rpm's and had no problem holding that all day.

    Tom
    +1
    Marty
    K1600GTL
    F700GS
    IBA #42016

  5. #5
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    I started on a g650gs. Around town it was a blast but to go to the cottage 2 hours away I felt that I was going to get run over or blown off the road like an old leaf. I switched to a RT, now around town, when it is hot, I want a R12R or the g650gs, but the rest of the time the RT rocks.

  6. #6
    Rally Rat nytrashman's Avatar
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    on my F650GS i went up one tooth on the CS sprocket to a 17 tooth and down two teeth on the rear sprocket to a 45 tooth. this combo allows me to cruise on the interstate at 80 + very comfortably. the bike is very smooth with this gearing and using a wunderlich touring screen with a laminar lip the wind blast/noise is not a factor anymore. although these little 650's aren't really meant as a long distance high speed interstate cruiser when set up properly they will take you anyware. i remember a time when a 650 was considered a big bike, but now it seems most people think of them as something to get started on.

  7. #7
    just hangin' out 2bikemike's Avatar
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    I think you guys have over looked the OP's question. I understand him to say that his bike is light weight and being pushed around by the wind blast of big trucks. Apparently he's not comfortable riding 80 mph to stay away from said big trucks. As far as a heavier bike goes, there would be more stability, but you're still going to get moved around by the wind blast. I ride an '04 1150 RT and am totally comfy riding at 80 mph. I just have to be on the look out for Smokie.
    keep it light enough to travel.....
    '04 R1150RT
    '81 Honda CB650 Custom

  8. #8
    Amma Holly's Avatar
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    Use the whole lane

    You can shift to the right side of the lane when being passed by trucks going in either direction. Do a shoulder check first, of course. I've put about 100,000 miles riding 250s across the continent (yes even through Kansas) and haven't been blown off the road yet.
    Volunteer for the 2014 Rally in St. Paul. rallyvolunteer@bmwmoa.org

  9. #9
    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
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    Trucker here:)

    Yep, I've been driving the biggest rigs for near 40 years now, go home jump on one of my Beemers. We ARE indeed giant wind deflectors out there on the slab and seasoned bikers are sure aware of the dangers around our big rigs at freeway speeds. It can be a pucker thing indeed for any biker, especially in cross winds coming around a big rig. Know your ability well in these cross winds especially, when passing a rig, because you can have the poo scared out of ya I'm certain. I have 3+million rig miles and near a million bike miles and respect all the above to this day. The Western/Midwestern regions of the USA are real wind challenge on many days for the most experienced, advanced riders. I try my best to respect my fellow bikers when they come near my rig out on the highways, as I know the feel ever too well. Stay clear of these giant 80000 gross lbs rigs if you can, let 'em pass you quickly if needed, or you pass them the same way, never shadowing one of these for long. A fully loaded rig is 100+ TIMES heavier than you and the bike you're on and the wind will not effect us badly until it gets really blowing too hard for any bikers to be out there. Be safe, Randy

  10. #10
    2-up and havin' fun sugarhillctd's Avatar
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    Our daughter had the same problem.

    Her first bike was a 2007 Kawasaki 250R- the little Ninja. Great for learning how to ride. But large passing vehicles or very windy days would push her around quite a bit.

    Swapped the 250 for another Kawasaki (her pick), a 2002 ZX6R 600cc. Noticeably heavier.

    Problem SOLVED. She is very happy.
    John & Cathy
    '92 K100RS (gone- '04 R1100S Boxer Cup)
    '12 Suzuki DRZ400
    ("kid's" bikes) '02 Kaw ZX6R- Jen's '07 Duc 800ss- Johnnie's

  11. #11
    Back in the Saddle mcmxcivrs's Avatar
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    I really liked my 03 F650GS except for what you describe. I didn't mind the power for cruising on the highway, it was quite happy and capable of doing 120 Km/h and sipping fuel doing it. The big issue was when I was stuck behind a line of two or three vehicles or worse, big trucks with limited passing opportunities. Trying to get around quickly was not likely, so often I ended up just hanging in the line hoping they would pull off (they never do).

    Best option is to learn to accept the bikes limitations while enjoying its strengths. If you can find an option to having to be out on the interstate, perhaps a dirty little backroad, where the bike will be in its element.
    Ed Miller, Calgary, AB
    2008 K1200GT, 2009 F800GS
    I can't wait to retire and have a fixed income. The one I have now is always broke.

  12. #12
    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
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    Truckers;

    They come in a wide variety of folks, just like all other drivers come. Some are good reasonable drivers and others are jerks of the first degree. Riding a bike around big rigs can become frustrating and indeed tiring. The best advice is probably find an alternate and take a break, let'em go. Many too are bikers, just like us. Randy

  13. #13
    robert.bantly
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    Wind, etc.

    I have a 1200GSA and with bags and screen, in spite of it's weight it catches wind and truck blast worse than any other mc I have owned. Look at the sail area + rider + high CG to see why! I am OK with the trade, though and just kind of got accustomed to an angled world on windy days. I suspect an RT or K would do better due to smoothness of fairing. My old ZX-11 was certainly less bothered by wind, but couldn't carry the kitchen sink...

    I dodge interstates as much as possible, they just aren't fun, nothing to see, are full of hurrying, or sleepy, or road hypnotized people and wannabee NASCAR drivers, as well as truck blast. Besides, GS's LOVE secondary roads!

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