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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So took my wife out for the first on the FZ this weekend and she loved it.

She took the msf course with me and got her liscense but decided that riding on the street vs a parking lot was not for her.

Anyway she's a great passenger, even for my first time of riding with one, with the exception of the expected challenges that come with the extra weight we were in sync and our hand signals worked well (i have to get her an smh10r to sync with mine), we both had a blast.

For bike prep, the suspension needs an upgrade just with me on it so when she got on with me it was even worse (front end dives hard, back end jumps up and down) but it was controllable and I was riding very casually (would not push it hard). I think I'm just going to get the base penske shock through stoltec but unsure if that will be sufficient (i asked on his forum but didn't get a lot of responses - not sure if the double clicker is worth the extra cash).

Also getting a new seat through Niners buddy as my ass and hers were dead after an hour. I didn't have many complaints about the seat but having her on the back pushed me forward slightly and down putting more pressure on me and the passenger padding is terrible.

I also put about 3psi more than I usually do in the tires due to the added weight - is this stupid? Should I not change psi or should I have added more?

Does anyone else have any considerations for 2 up riding that I'm missing, any specific to the FZ?

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I took my wife out yesterday for an 80 mile ride; about half city, half inner city highway. I'm 6'2, 200 bare, and she's about 5'7, 120. I had to stop a few miles in and pretty much max preload and rebound at both ends. Dive was still there on the brakes or even engine breaking, but was manageable. The rear is what really suffered. It would bounce 3 or 4 times like an 80's Cadillac after a bump or dip in the road. The seat is bad, but we knew that from looking at it in the showroom. With a seat and suspension it will be much better. My wife is a great passenger, too. She's been riding on the back for about 8 years now. We don't have any communication devices, though- all non verbal. She's really good at paying attention and knowing what's going to happen.
 

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BTW, I found your thread talking about ordering the seat, but didn't find a picture. Any way you could post one? I'm looking into seats as we speak.
i will see what i can do . as i am mobile from surgery . bike is stuck in the basement still .
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
stock tire presh is hi in my opinion . dont go over that
Should have been more clear - i typically ride 33psi front 36psi rear - i upped these a few psi for the extra weight.
 

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I'm getting a V-strom 1000 used for two up and some distance riding. Great bikes, and there are deal galore since the new model is out. My buddy has one and he put 110,000 miles on his and it is still going strong. Great do it all bike.

To me, I got the FZ-09 for me and while I will take it on some road trips, I got it to be a hooligan bike. It's for that other side of me that my wife probably doesn't like.
 

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The total payload for this bike (if I remember correctly) is only 388 lbs. You can definitely add heavier springs and oil in the front. I'm using a ZX10 shock out back, but I wouldn't recommend it for two up use. It would be a royal bitch to change the preload as the weight change (one up to two up). I think you're running too much air as your baseline. I'm using 31f 33r. I would bump it up 2psi on both ends for passenger duty. A rear rack and box is an option to consider also; it gives the passenger something substantial to lean against. In the end, you may find that none of these thoughts work for you, and that you may want another bike to fill this role, a second bike of course!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
in a perfect world i'd have a second bike - my ideal plan would be fix the seat and suspension on this bike and tell the wife it's for her - then if it doesn't work - i pitch the 2nd bike idea for 2 up riding :)

she'll likely only come with me a handful of times a season and we'll likely do much shorter stints. I didnt buy this to be a 2 up machine but for occasional rides it would be nice to take her on it. Aside from the suspension and the seat we were actually pretty comfortable on it together.
 

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When I got the FZ, we always knew it will be for two-up. We checked out many bikes and this was the best compromise of price, performance and comfort.
I am 5'11.5" & she is 5'3" and together we are about 265 lbs.

Seat: We have travelled many miles and we know that seat is torture for her- so we got the Airhawk- it works great in the city. On the highway, it is even better as the roads are not filled with craters. Maybe will get a custom seat soon but the Airhawk is here to stay. I don't really mind the seat much.

Position- the upright position if obv more comfy than a supersport so we are fine there- no fatigue even after 2 hours of riding in low temps. She said the knees are fine so stayed off the footpeg extenders for her.

Tire pressure: I stay with the OEM recommendations (36-42) - so far haven't struggled for grip on the S20s. Works fine with pillion too.

Suspension: The shock is set to about 5- the hardest setting is too hard with her on. Hitting big holes does send her off the seat but then if you hit those holes in a car, the same thing is bound to happen. The front doesn't really dive- I guess you need a softer hand on the levers with a pillion.

Truth is, I have toured with her on a smaller bike for hours on end in India- one of the few first things that made me fall in love with her. She says she will be taking the class soon and be biking next to me on her own bike. Right now, we just started cycling together! Baby steps...
 

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You didn't give us your total combined weight, but if you get close to the max recommended for the bike or tire, your pressures should be closer to the max as well. I would certainly not recommend pushing any limits for two up riding and would stay in the 36-42 psi range for the rear. One thing to consider as well is that the bike will probably wheelie easier with two people on it. Also, since there is no back rest for the passenger, they could fall off more easily, so any hard acceleration should be avoided. I two up ride a lot with my wife on a GL-1800, but we're probably a little heavier than you and your wife, and I wouldn't ever consider it on the 09! :)

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I'm 6`0 and she's about 5`3 but unlike motorock our combined weight is around 330lbs (she's only 115lb with gear and i'm probably overstating - don't tell her :) ).

I need to adjust the stock suspension now and make it stiffer - i should have done this before but didnt have a lot of time. The front end fork dive started first with the difference in weight - you are right croomrider - i adjusted by hitting the back brake first then front slowly. Got used to that after a few practice runs. We started out in a parking lot just to get used to everything and i'm glad we did - once we got on the road we were good to go.
 

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The double clicker is not an emulsion type shock. From what I gathered this would make a difference at high speeds. Biggest benefit of the double clicker is separate compression and rebound plus remote adjustability. You can upgrade the penske shock to double or triple later. Just a matter if mo $. The passengers seat padding is almost non existent!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Got them . A big difference . We just sat on the bike cant ride yet
I can sense the misery in all your posts haha

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So I ride 2 up sometimes, my wife and I together are closer to 400 than not. Maybe a little more in gear, I have the Zx10 shock and new springs up front (.90kg/mm) and 10wt oil. I have the Stoltec flash, and I have it set pretty stiff for me and I don't add preload with her on. I also have the PR4's at about 35psi since they heat up well at that level. Tire pressure is almost if not as important as suspension. Seat concepts seat, their foam is great.

With my wife on, it is comfortable for her and of course slower to stop and a lot smoother over bumps. Still corners great, accelerates fast, and she is comfortable. The only issue for her is the uncomfortable position of the passenger pegs, way too high. I have taken corners pretty spiritedly, the only issue is preventing wheelies...it's not hard,just something to keep in mind. The ZX10 shock is a little bit taller so I think it handles more sag better.

Having said that a sport touring bike is immeasurably better than the FZ09, but it is a bit better than my FZ6R is, and a hell of a lot better than stock was. The basic Penske would be more than adequate foe you, and if you want to save money get a ZX10 and have somebody like race tech increase the spring resistance for you and rework the innards. Definitely look at the options Stoltec has for the front forks, they are affordable and good value. Race tech can also do those for you, there are few companies with as good of a reputation as race tech.
 
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