Tour of Southeast Michigan
This is a discussion on Tour of Southeast Michigan within the XSR900 Ride Report forums, part of the Yamaha XSR900 Cafe Racer Forum category; When I bought my bike back in February I couldn't ride it home because of the weather, so during the month and a half waiting ...
Post By 2nerkid
Tour of Southeast Michigan
When I bought my bike back in February I couldn't ride it home because of the weather, so during the month and a half waiting to pick it up I started devising the Ultimate Break-In Ride. I live in Metro Detroit where the roads are a boring grid of pothole-ridden streets, but if you know where to look you can find a few gems and so I went about piecing together all the best ones.
After months of planning on Google Maps followed by testing pieces by trail and error, I finally completed the compilation and was just waiting on a good weekend to do the whole thing. A week in advance, May 20th was forecasted to be sunny in the mid 70°s with a 5% chance of rain, so I got the word out amongst my friends and coworkers.
Fast forward a week and in typical Michigan fashion, the day was looking more like a dreary low 60°s high with 35% chance of rain in the afternoon. "Screw it, I've been waiting too long. I'm gonna do it anyway."
You can read my full ride report here: (Ride Recap 2017-05-20: Tour of Southeast Michigan | Ford Motorcycle Club) but the XSR-specific highlights are as follows:
- Before the ride, I had softened the rear preload and front rebound a click or two each. I weigh 160 lbs fully geared and, as mentioned above, most Michigan roads are quite awful so the suspension adjustment was very well received. It was perfect for the Tour, approaching the perfect balance between being hard enough to slay corners and soft enough to breeze through bumps. It's still a slight bit stiff but I expect it to get softer as I get more miles in.
- I mentioned earlier that it was supposed to be a Break-In ride, but by the time May 20th rolled around I'd already racked up 1800 miles. Well and broken in with plenty of seat time!
- Despite that, I was still more used to my FZ6 which I've had for two years. On paper it weighs about the same, but in hand they feel worlds apart. The XSR's handling by comparison is sublime - it's so flickable it's nearly telepathic!
- I'm also used to the FZ6's currently-7,000-mile-old sport touring tires - the XS's Bridgestones are so sticky by contrast that I feel confident at any lean angle, at virtually any speed.
- TOOORRRRQQQUUUEEEEEEE. The roads I ran were all non-highway, mostly between 40-55 mph speed limit... let's just say I had some fun, you know how it goes... but no matter which gear I was in I could always find enough power. 6th gear pull from 40? No problem, just twist and go. I love this bike for that!
- Of all the bikes in my stable the XS probably has the hardest seat, but I still didn't have any complaints during either half of the combined 12-hour ride. Contrast that with my bobber-riding buddy who had to take a fifteen minute break every hour! And my seat will get even softer with time.
- Ugly they may be but I'm gonna miss the stock mirrors once I get rid of them. Leading a ride means I'm constantly checking on my pack, which is as easy as taking a millisecond-long glance down using only my eyes. I ordered some bar-ends recently and have been trying to train myself to look in that area and it involves turning my whole head a smidge, something I guess I'll have to accept in the name of better aesthetics.
Anyway, thanks for reading this far! For any Michiganders who've stuck it out this long, here's what you've been waiting for - the route map: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1YM...OI&usp=sharing
Nice write up. Glad you enjoy the bike and the ride.
About the mirrors, if it's just the looks bothering you that's interesting. I simply can't see in mine (almost all elbows) but I'm a bit bigger at 6' and 245ish. I'm trying to figure out the best set up for mirrors myself. I like the bar end look but not completely sure what route I'm going yet. Good luck and keep enjoying!
Ehh, the right mirror gets pretty buzzy above 75 mph or under hard acceleration at any speed, but I don't mind because the left is always crystal clear. That's the only non-aesthetic complaint I have with these mirrors.
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