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£4000 all rounder - commuting/touring/weekend blasts

Discussion in 'Biker's Cafe' started by TallPaul_S, Sep 2, 2015.

  1. spp

    Hitman

    Joined: Nov 15, 2006

    Posts: 549

    Location: North West

    I'm also looking at a daily commuter to keep the miles off the S1000RR. My budget is also around 4k. I was thinking of a VFR800. Used to have one a few years ago, and have fond memories. Very comfy, although was quite pricey on the services I seem to remember.

    Another bike you could consider is the suzuki GSF1250S? Comfy, good range, cheap.
     
  2. TallPaul_S

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 24, 2011

    Posts: 5,778

    Location: Kent

    Looks like only 2011 FZ1's have ABS, I'll dig further into them though.

    TBH - I don't have any confidence in the brakes now, apart from on warm tyres, in the 100% dry. I don't know if it's me or the bike but they it does seem to lock up very easily, and the brakes aren't even that powerful. When I test rode the MT-09 and tracer I nearly headbutted the screen the initial bite on those were that great!!

    If I was in a situation where I was doing more than 10-20mph, say 60/70mph, in the slight damp, and had to PROPERLY brake, like emergency braking situation, one of 2 things would happen. I'd either brake so lightly to not lock up that I'd have to swerve to avoid the obstacle, or I'd brake and lock up at 60mph. And I wouldn't be walking away from that with just a couple of marks on my gear and a few bits on the bike needing replacing. The thought of coming off and sliding down the road at 60mph, possible into incoming traffic, or being taken out by a following car... no thanks.

    Both times it's happen there's been no sensation of 'oh I'm sliding, time to release the front brake' it's more 'brake, brake some more, whack... Oh FFS I'd sliding down the road.'

    Insurance shouldn't be too bad, for a FZ1 it's under £500 fully comp. Pretty much anything is insurable after having my licence for a year, apart from proper sports bikes.

    Even a K1200S isn't too bad at £650 fully comp. If it was garaged (which I'll be looking at doing come winter) it would drop it another £150 to £500 fully comp.
     
  3. Daftbrown

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Oct 23, 2013

    Posts: 1,193

    Location: Surrey

    Good shout. Mine would fit the brief (Except for the ABS).

    I expect that OP is looking for something a tad more exciting though.

    ... And they're not ugly any more.
     
  4. wazza300

    Caporegime

    Joined: Jul 11, 2009

    Posts: 27,065

    Location: BenefitStreetBirmingham

    no there not ugly I agree,the newer versys are very stylish imo,and look very rugged and tough

    as for riding in the wet just allow plenty room/breathing space ect and you'll be fine

    the older zx6's and zx9's make good commuters aswell,big comfy seats but are probably all shagged out by now
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2015
  5. TripleT

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Oct 24, 2002

    Posts: 9,398

    Location: Manchester City Centre

    You're going to struggle with ABS really as its only become common on brand new machines in the past few years.

    You're going to exclude a hell of a lot of bikes with that requirement.

    I'd look at either your technique / gaps you leave or the bike mechanically first, 1000's of people ride bikes without abs. I had to anchor on this morning in fact in the wet.

    Failing that hornets had abs early on I think?

    http://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/advert/201508035736855

    Would be right not suggesting my own bike as I find it amazing, although you can afford the newer model. Plus this one has proper luggage and no need for silly backpacks ;-)

    http://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/advert/201508156080860
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2015
  6. TallPaul_S

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 24, 2011

    Posts: 5,778

    Location: Kent

    It's probably somewhat technique based, but I know for a fact I'm not 'grabbing' at the brakes with the initial application - it's the 2nd bit of braking when I'm squeezing them on more. Maybe because there's hardly any braking initially and the front wheel hasn't had a chance to load up. :confused:

    Just checked my brakes now, and the first inch and a half (measured on the lever end, normal length lever), from the normal resting position, there's no braking. I can hear the pads every so slightly touching the disc, that's it.

    The next 5-10mm (max, it's that small) is the difference between being able to move the bike with the brake applied, and not being able to move the bike by man power. Then the next 5-10mm is full braking.

    Essentially, the entire braking on my bike is about a thumbs width of lever movement, from the start of braking to being fully on, lever won't squeeze any harder full on. The lever doesn't go anywhere near bar.

    Normal?
     
  7. TripleT

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Oct 24, 2002

    Posts: 9,398

    Location: Manchester City Centre

    Get some adjustable levers, mine have 6 different positions. I bit of play at first is good to stop you grabbing a handful straight away. But yer mine has a fair bit of movement to squeeze. But every bike will be different I imagine.
     
  8. IC3

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Dec 3, 2011

    Posts: 9,229

    I'll do a video how much I can squeeze my front break lever, its ridiculous!

    I should change the pads, but's its going to rain tomorrow... :( Sucks not having a garage
     
  9. TallPaul_S

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 24, 2011

    Posts: 5,778

    Location: Kent

    The lever is adjustable already, that's doesn't change the the amount of travel before the brakes actually bite. The brakes are the same as on a CBR600F and SP2, 4 pot nissin calipers.
     
  10. wazza300

    Caporegime

    Joined: Jul 11, 2009

    Posts: 27,065

    Location: BenefitStreetBirmingham

    Seems about right the bite point/lever movement,maybe your just squeezing them too hard? And allow yourself more braking distance

    My lever has alot of travel but I'm used to it like that
     
  11. DanF

    Mobster

    Joined: Feb 16, 2004

    Posts: 3,737

    Location: London

    You could check the pads currently fitted, organic pads can be much more progressive than sintered types usually fitted to bikes. Oh what's your bike and what tyres are you running?
     
  12. nyarlathotep

    Associate

    Joined: Feb 12, 2006

    Posts: 51

    I run two bikes, both BMWs: R1200ST (2005, with ABS) and K1200S (2006, with ABS and Electronic Suspension Control). Really I don't need two, but considering they both appear similar, I love both for different reasons!

    The K1200S has a truly awesome amount of power. More than you'll ever need. But it also has sensible things like heated grips, factory luggage and a comfy riding position for rider and pillion.

    The R1200ST seems a bit of an odd-ball choice (they never sold too well, largely because of questionable looks head-on and a high price when new) but has some advantages over the K1200S. It is lighter, has adjustable bars and seat, larger factory luggage and it runs far cooler. Servicing is also easier/cheaper.

    Of your initial suggestions, I ran a 2008 VFR vtec for 5 1/2 years. It was a good bike but both of the BMWs, despite being older, are better built and feel more special. Vtec is unnecessary, servicing is expensive, Honda build quality isn't as wonderful as they might have you think.
    The F800ST is a nice bike but feels cheap compared to the bigger BMWs. For the money, you may as well buy a Versys 650 (which you'll find is quite a bit nicer to ride than the ER6F, despite their seeming similarities).

    NC700x and Sprint ST I haven't ridden, but would suggest that the NC is very much the "sensible" option. In other words, you'll probably get bored.

    Also, the suggestion of a Yamaha FJR1300 is a good one.
     
  13. TallPaul_S

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 24, 2011

    Posts: 5,778

    Location: Kent

    I don't think they're sintered pads, they would be pretty loud I think?

    It's a 2001 Honda CB400 superfour vtec. Has the same 4 pot nissin calipers as many other 600 and 1000cc hondas, and tyres are pirelli angel GT's, which are great in the wet (I don't give them a second though when it's chucking it down, they are awesome).
     
  14. Kreeeee

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Jul 13, 2004

    Posts: 42,097

    Location: /* */

    It'll be crap for commuting.

    Superb choice :)
     
  15. MatteH Oxford

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Jul 26, 2010

    Posts: 1,641

    Location: Wiltshire

    I'm fairly sure ABS was available on every fz1 model as an option from the new model '06 onwards? Someone has one on a forum I visit and I'm sure that's a 57 plate "s", rare but out there iirc.
     
  16. TallPaul_S

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 24, 2011

    Posts: 5,778

    Location: Kent

    Z1000Sx is out of budget I'm afraid.

    I keep coming back to the K1200S, they're a hell of a lot of bike for the money.

    This one K1200S | Autotrader is miles away but is the sort of bike you can get. ABS, heated grips, ESA.

    [​IMG]

    200 miles to a tank, 50mpg, 165bhp. Safe, practical, (super!)fast. And not bad looking either!
     
  17. Kreeeee

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Jul 13, 2004

    Posts: 42,097

    Location: /* */

    I'm surprised they're in budget, they're expensive here!

    They're darn good bikes :)
     
  18. TallPaul_S

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 24, 2011

    Posts: 5,778

    Location: Kent

    Yes, you are correct. MCN isn't. :D

    Here's a 2007 model with ABS, not many have it but some do, thanks

    http://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/advert/201508196176838?search-target=usedbikes&make=yamaha&model=fz1&radius=1500&page=4&postcode=me160bg&sort=default&logcode=p
     
  19. Tefal

    Capo Crimine

    Joined: Jun 30, 2007

    Posts: 66,538

    Location: Wales


    Your brakes sound quite dodgy what's the pad and disk thickness when was the fluid last replaced are all the pistons working and not sticking?
     
  20. Tefal

    Capo Crimine

    Joined: Jun 30, 2007

    Posts: 66,538

    Location: Wales

    Just remember though they're HEAVY. Like most in their class, if your having issues were your locking and dropping a presumably quite light small bike how are you gonna handle something weighing near quaternary of a ton and with much more inertia, and brakes in a different league in terms of power