Author Topic: Someone dropped my Connie, lost 1200€, but gained confidence in difficult situat  (Read 985 times)

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Offline penguin86

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Well, this story is a bit different...
the first time my Connie went down, I simply wasn't there. The bike had few days of life and I was moving from Pisa to a small city near Florence. At that time I was ultra concerned for the new bike. I was afraid to scrape it, to touch something or to drop it... The new flat didn't have a box, so I accepted to leave it in the street (with a biiiiiig chain and an huge lock) for a few days. Well, the third day my parents went to see the new bike and...

I risked an heart attack.
The mirror was completely broken, the headlight was broken (glass and reflector) the supports for the front fairing were broken and I couldn't afford the reparation. But I had to leave for an important winter motorcycle meeting in the northern Italy (you know, the one where you sleep in a tent in the snow roasting big pieces of meat and drinking beer together...), so I bought the spares in Germany and started disassembling the bike and soldering the ABS fairings. Here you can see an uncommon naked bike XD

During the reparation, few days before leaving, the disaster: we discovered the horizontal frame that supports mirrors and instruments was bent and cracked. I couldn't order another in Germany because it wouldn't arrive on time and the Connie is a very rare bike in Italy, so Kawasaki dealers didn't have the spare. I had no chance: we built a tie rod to apply traction to the cracked component, slightly modified the fairing and reassembled (with a lot of difficulties due to the new geometry of the component) the bike.
We mounted some crash cages and I was ready to leave!
Well, the right mirror was pointing a little inner, but the bike was great. With the scares on the fairing and the cages, I didn't fear anything. I also rode it in the snow, with the snow chains! There was a lot of people with BMW GS, dirt bikes and other offroad-able bikes, and I was there with an unstoppable 320kg monster.

Obviously, in such situations, is very likely to make a lot of friends! We were all riding and dropping the bikes and riding again like mad dogs in the snow! And a lot of chatting about snow chains and tyres and iced roads...

It was a great experience! I'm not sure I would ride in the snow if the bike was perfect. So, in some ways, the person that dropped my new bike, made me live this experience thoroughly.

(well, I hate him anyway   ::) )


PS: guys I'm sorry for my bad english, I realize I'm really bad at writing in your language :)

Offline mattchewn

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Penguin,


THATS FREAKING AWESOME!!!!!!!!   KUDOS TO YOU SIR!!!!

Matt
« Last Edit: February 09, 2017, 11:11:49 pm by mattchewn »
2015 C14  Poison Ivy. I feel the itch!
2014 KTM 690 Enduro R  Wheelie sweet!!

Online WANDRNG

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Very cool. Thank you for sharing.

And sorry someone crunched your bike.

Life is too short to live the same day twice.
2015 Concours 14 -- 2007 Kawasaki KLR650 -- 2003 Honda Magna 750 -- 2 V65 Magnas
Wandering Back Roads: RRs -- Wandering the Northwest -- Heading East Out West

Offline Zenfab

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Daniele benvenuti al forum ! Fabio di Montreal
 Qui scoprirai il megliore forum di concours

« Last Edit: February 09, 2017, 10:00:50 pm by Zenfab »
2003 concours
2003 fxdwg
2001 zx12r

Offline Ranger Jim

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WOW!  :-\  Just WOW! :-\ :-\ :-\
JIM CULP
OtP Jr. Slave Laborer (Safety)

No one is a TOTAL failure; they can always be used as a bad example.

Offline DC Concours

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Don't you have insurance coverage on you shiny new bike?

Offline Diz

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Thank you, thank you for sharing As Matt said:

Penguin,


THATS FREAKING AWESOME!!!!!!!!   KUDOS TO YOU SIR!!!!

Matt

Offline Bud

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Freaking amazing.   :beerchug:  I bet it's exciting going from snow covered to dry pavement! :-\ :-\

Offline mattchewn

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Now,
I consider myself at least a little crazy. No freaking way near riding a 700lb bike in the snow crazy though!
Giant Brass Ones I tell ya! Watch the paint on the tank eh?
Matt
2015 C14  Poison Ivy. I feel the itch!
2014 KTM 690 Enduro R  Wheelie sweet!!

Offline penguin86

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Thanks for the warm welcome guys :) I didn't expect so much answers!  :beerchug:
Well, guys, I tought it would be extra difficult to ride such a bike on the snow. But, before the GTR1400 I had an Honda Transalp 650 (480lb) and, despite not having ridden it in similar conditions, i gained a feeling the Connie is better handled in such situations. The weight is a problem, but the center of gravity is lower, and this makes the bike more stable. I'm not sure how much of this feeling is due the fact I have a better "grip" with my foot to the terrain (due to the lower saddle)... Another observation is: the more weight, the more grip with the chains (they should be able to crack the ice or compressed snow, and the GTR1400 weights 1,5x the Transalp).
BTW, I noted down some observations, in case someone is curious...
  • Almost all bikers were using a single chain in the rear wheel. This solves the problem of traction, but the increase in traction causes a decrease in front tyre grip (the only one you can use to keep up your bike). I mean that a bike without chains at all behaves better and has fewer possibilities to be dropped than one with only the back chain.
  • I was using home built chains in the front wheel. You can see it in the last photo. They are 10 flat chains pieces closed by a flat-head screw with a butterfly bolt. There is no longitudinal chain, and I was experiencing horyzontal swerves due to the part of tyre uncovered by chain. The rear didn't have this problem: I was using a chain like this: Unfortunately, the same chain couldn't be mounted on the front due to the little clearance between the tyre and the fender.
  • The chains needs to "adjust" themselves during the ride. When I took them down I noticed they were loose. I need to find some way of closing it with an elastic material.
  • The GTR1400 has a very soft and manageable 4 cyl engine, versus the more rude 2 cyl engine of the mayority of bikes (at least, here in europe...): this is a great plus on low traction surfaces. BTW, the first gear is too long to move slowly in the worst conditions. The first gear was shortened a bit on recent Concours, so I think they should behave better, although I'm not sure how the traction control will behave with the chains...
So, in the end... I don't think out Connie is worst than other bikes in such situations. It is just different. I mean, it's a matter of knowing our bike and predict its behaviours...

Offline mattchewn

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Keep trying',
You haven't convinced me to try to ride a C14 in the snow yet!   ;)

Matt
2015 C14  Poison Ivy. I feel the itch!
2014 KTM 690 Enduro R  Wheelie sweet!!

Offline Diz

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Keep trying',
You haven't convinced me to try to ride a C14 in the snow yet!   ;)

Matt

Maybe if you had a set up like these Frenchman..................

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OX_weIUwd_o

Offline mattchewn

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Yeah MAYBE,



UH, NOT!

Matt

I would happily flog the Porsche though! :)
2015 C14  Poison Ivy. I feel the itch!
2014 KTM 690 Enduro R  Wheelie sweet!!

Offline daigs

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Great story!  Opens up an opportunity for Steve to do a "snow flash". 

Offline Bob_C_CT

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Unbelievable, I've ridden dirt bikes in snow but the weren't any where near new either. They make this machine that's called a snowmobile for riding in the snow at speed. You have some guts to even try that, the chains have to be terrible when you hit some uncovered road areas. Kudos to you.
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