Suzuki GSX-R Motorcycle Forums Gixxer.com banner
1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
481 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

Anyone out there ride long distances?

This is going to be a fun ride for me, nothing more nothing less.

Talking to a friend who happens to ride a harleys, tells me they averaged 400-600 miles in a day of riding, when they are going to sturgis or other ******* parts of the country.

here some questions i need answered.

Where did you travel?
What time of Year?
What baggage did you use?
How many miles in a day?
And would you do it again, or Rent a touring bike?

thanks in advance.

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: God ]</p>
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
11,514 Posts
Vancouver to Foster City (just south of San Fran) on a 96 750 back in 97. Down in 2 days stayed for 3 days back in one day.

took the coast on the way down (Excellent!) took I5 back (Shitty!)

Longest time in saddle was 12 hours (ouch!)

do not overstuff a tankbag, it makes it very hard to hang off in the twisties.

Lane splitting was freaky, but sure beats sitting in the heat!

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: God ]</p>
 

·
Sexy Irish Man God
Joined
·
20,879 Posts
I've done a couple long trips now.
The advice I give you for the Gixxer would be.
1) Start working out a bit. Lots of push up's, sit up's, squats ect. You will thank yourself later. Your shoulders, back, wrists become very sore.
2)If you want to take your Gixxer I would not recommend going over 400 miles in a day unless you are in real real real real good shape. Take a rest every 100 miles or so. Rest at least 15-20 minutes. Lay down on the ground at all of them and stretch out. It helps more than you think.
3) I have some generic soft saddle bags I use. Back packs suck big time on a sportbike. Get either a large duffel that wil bungee to your passenger seat or some kind of saddle bag.
4) Take tools! Small socket set, allen's, tire repair kit, flashlight, first aid kit, cel phone ect. Something always happens wether it is very small or very big. Be prepared.
5) Rain suit in duffel bag. I also found wearing the leathers is much better on you than say a loose jacket and pants. The leathers do not beat you to death like the loose fitting clothes will at highway speeds.
5)Take lots of water too. You get real thirsty out there in the boonies.
6) Pay close attention to the gas milage you are getting and give yourself a good buffer zone. Nothing like running out of gas and when you get a ride to a gas station and return to where your bike was and it is mysteriously gone.
7) Have fun! Even with problems (to a point) road trips are fun as hell!

MHO at least

jontflesh

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: God ]</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,615 Posts
Last Year I bought my Honda CBR 600 in West Palm Beach, Fl. I took Greyhound down from Larenceville, Ga to West Palm. The owner of the dealership picked me up at the station. I stopped over in Daytona for about 30 minutes to listen to the ocean. Then I headed up to Jacksonville where I spent the night. Of course I parked the bike in the room
Then from Jacksonville it was a straight shot all the way home. It was a total of 625 miles!

I have recently sold the Honda and bought a y2k GSXR 750. I bought it in Goose Creek, Sc. Once again, took Greyhound and rode the bike back. That was 311 miles. I only stopped for gas on that trip.

My next trip is this weekend. Me and a buddy on his TLR1000 are headed to Myrtle Beach. That will be about 380 miles.

------------------
Y2k Gsxr 750 (Yellow - The fastest color allowed by intergalactic law!)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
357 Posts
Take jointflesh's advice. Being in shape, makes long distance travel on a sportbike much easier. Two weeks ago I rode my 2k 750 from Charleston,SC to Atlanta, GA. I stopped once for gas both going and coming. No problem! By the way I averaged 40 miles per gallon. Not bad considering the speeds I was going. Great Advice Jointflesh!

------------------
AKA BARRYZX9R
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Great advice flesh!! Your 600 must not ALWAYS be broken down, to give good advice like that...
I do not like tank bags, and just ordered a rocket locker to fit on where the passenger seat usually is:
http://www.rocketlocker.com

We'll see if it's what the doctor ordered...Do your long hard days at the beginning of the trip, and always leave some extra time in case if you find a cool area to check out, bad weather, or whatever...
A Corbin seat (I love it!!) or a Suzuki gel seat is a smart investment. My ass used to fall asleep after about 300 miles, now I can stretch it out way farther than that...
A 600 day is not bad, just don't try too many 600 mile days in a row...
I may be a sick bastard, but I really think the Gixxer is comfy...

Griff

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: God ]</p>
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
15,097 Posts
I don't know how you guys do it. After 50 miles I'm done. I'm young too and in rather great shape. I think my problem is that since I'm sooo short I have to sit up real close to the tank. That part of the seat as you guys well know isn't half as cushioned as the back of the seat. So basically my ass always hurts. Also my right wrist usually begins to get numb from holding the throttle open. Anyone have any suggestions?

------------------
Fighting for Peace is like Screwing for Virginity...
2001 Blue & White Gixxer 750
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Carnage,
I think you are right on the money...I have short legs and a extremely long torso, and even the new Gixxer's fit me great...
For the seat, go to a local custom seat maker or tell Corbin or Sargent what you need to solve the problem. Both Corbin and Sargent are glad to make a seat to your spec's, Corbin in their custom pan, Sargent in the one you supply.
As for your throttle hand, I would advise loosening your grip slightly, rotating your hand slightly to find a better fit, and a "throttlelocker"...I wish I had a link, it a $10 piece of plastic that lets you hold the throttle down with your palm. Aerostich and Whitehorse Press sell, as well as Competition Accessories I believe...

Griff

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: God ]</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
948 Posts
I'll have lots more details at the end of next month, but basically Mr. Flesh has it nailed...

June 8, I'm leave for 6000 miles/3 weeks, most of the upper northwest. I'm taking my VFR, not the GSXR but the principle is the same:

1) Take frequent breaks. Do some light pushups (even from your knees) at the breaks. Don't try to max out, just MOVE through range of motion! Swing from trees, lie down, throw some rocks/sticks, deep knee bends, etc.
2) HYDRATE like mad. You burn through SO MUCH water in a day on a bike, especially if it's hot/dry out. I'm taking a camelback.
3) Throttle lock is da bomb - so you can shake that right hand out now and then without doing the cross-over deathride trick
Stretch your wrists, the standard "carpal tunnel prevention" drill from any workplace ergonomics brochure. Shake blood into your hands frequently.
4) CORBIN SEATS RULE. They keep your 'nads outta the tank much better than stock... but firm foam. You need to be used to that (just takes some hours in the saddle BEFORE you leave for the long trip...)
5) Heli-bars are damned nice too. Don't know if they make'em (yet?) for the GSX-R. The VFR feels like a friggin Barcalounger now with the Heli's and Corbin. Still gets jiggy in the twisties OK though.

I'm planning no more than 350 miles on any given day, in my nominal schedule. I've done 500 plus in a day on my VFR, kinda long but doable. Would be pretty ruff on the Gixxer. Plus I have a lot of things I want to stop to see!!!

I'm taking Wolfman Luggage, tankbag, tailbag, and saddlebags. Built a set of rigid racks to mount the saddlebags to - keeps them off the body work and the high-right pipe. Product tested to 130 mph

I've had good luck with my Wolfman stuff on shorter trips. This will be the longest by far... Camping about half the time, with a hotel break every day or two to repack, clean up, dry out, etc.

I've done overnighters and day trips a bunch in the past but this will be first time stringing together multiple overnighters. And even before I go, I can tell you with certainty, hell yes I'd do it again


------------------
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
948 Posts
the other nice thing about the o-ring solution is you can swap it from bike to bike!!!

the throttlemeister was purchased in a mid-winter fit of "more $$ than sense"


waitaminnit... what am I apologizing for - it's not even made out of titanium or carbon lol

------------------
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17,099 Posts
i used to have a vista cruise throttle lock on my old gixxers - it worked well but it took a bit of hacking to get it to fit right...


------------------
 

·
Sexy Irish Man God
Joined
·
20,879 Posts
<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Gixxer Griff:
Great advice flesh!! Your 600 must not ALWAYS be broken down, to give good advice like that...

<hr></blockquote>

LOL I broke down on my big trip! 1st of the cam chain tensioner saga began in San Francisco. Had a gas leak on the recalled fuel pump gasket and walked out 6 days later with no fuel leak and firm instructions to get my bike back to Denver in a Trailor! I had to ride back down to LA at under 7k rpms to get her back to the trailor in one piece! That was so nerve racking riding back down, I made my friends take the 5 though with me lol.

This thread is excellent. soon to move to the FAQ
jontflesh

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: God ]</p>
 

·
Sexy Irish Man God
Joined
·
20,879 Posts
Oh yeah Moose,
HWY 101 is an amazing piece of road on a Gixxer! Try and leave on a weekday if possile, we hit minimal traffic after about Santa Barbara. Big Sur is beatiful too. Oh man I need to do that trip again but actually end up in Vancouver like we were supposed to!

Have a good time for sure man!


jontflesh

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: God ]</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
Probably being the quintessential long distance rider on this board, let me answer your questions and make some comments:

Q. Where did you travel? A. You name it: Denver, St. Louis, Chicago, Minneapolis, Vancouver, Seattle, San Diego, etc. (only the last 3 cities on my current bike).

Q. What time of Year? A. Depends on the destination, but usually between April and October.

Q. What baggage did you use? A. A small tank bag and a tail pack.

Q. How many miles in a day? A. As little as 115 or as many as 600; I find around 400 to 450 in a day is comfortable for me. 10 years ago I did do Seattle to San Francisco in 1 day (807 miles over 14 hours), but that's a bit much; the longest, back in the 1980s, was Denver to Los Angeles in 17 hours, but I don't recommend it!

Q. And would you do it again, or rent a touring bike? A. Absolutely, and have done it again many times; rent a bike no -- quite happy to travel on my sportbike.

My comments:

If you are not accustomed to long distance travel, take short trips, gradually working your way up. Start out with a 100-mile day, then a 200-mile day, and so on. Little things that don't bother you on short rides will appear on longer ones, so it's better to know beforehand if you helmet isn't comfortable after a few hours, or your footpegs buzz too much (thick socks help reduce that), or handgrips need replacement with more comfortable ones, etc. And of course the subject of ear plugs comes up again -- do use them, not only for saving your hearing, but not having that constant wind noise in your helmet makes a remarkable difference.

I ride all year, but WHERE I can go depends on the time of year. If it's snow season, I cannot even ride more than 40 minutes east of here because of the snow/ice on Snoqualmie Pass, but on the other hand I can go to Vancouver or Portland and the worst I'll encounter usually will be cold and/or rain. Personally, I try to travel long distances when it's not too hot. Maybe I'm weird, but perfect riding weather for me is overcast and 55 F. I have ridden in Central California in near 100 F. heat, and it's miserable. So I avoid going there during heat waves (as they're having now); however, you CAN travel in that kind of weather -- travel at night. This time of year it's not uncommon for me to sleep all afternoon/evening in Portland, then leave at 10:00 p.m. and arrive in Sacramento, 595 miles later, at 8:00 a.m., before the heat starts (and traveling lonely I-5 in the wee hours on a clear, warm night with a full moon is terrific).

As far as packing, I didn't buy luggage to accommodate my stuff, but rather said, OK, this is how much room I have in a tank bag and tail pack, and I'll pack no more than can fit in those. What I did years ago was to make a list of what I wanted to take along. Each trip I made note of what I used and, more importantly, did NOT use on the trip, or could have easily done without -- or wished I HAD brought along.

It didn't take long before I figured out what I needed and didn't need. In fact, I've got packing down to an art, and for a typical day trip, or even overnight or longer trip I use my expandable 10-liter tank bag -- and in it is quite a bit of stuff, including wrenches for chain adjustments, SLR camera, cellular telephone, shorts and T-shirt, radio, etc.

Everywhere you can save cubic inches makes a difference, and not having to SCHLEP all that unneeded shit along will make your trip much more enjoyable. By using a pair of Nike running shorts or spandex and a T-shirt (uh, when NOT riding, thank you) rather than denim shorts, you save space because typical cotton/polyester/nylon shorts pack very small. And if they have an inner liner, you won't even have to pack a pair of underwear or a jock strap to go under them, which also takes up several cubic inches of room in a tank bag. For photography buffs like me, 1 camera with a medium range zoom lens will take care of 99% of your photography, rather than carrying along several lenses (and heck, for amateurs, those little point-and-shoot cameras do a decent job and cost $30 -- and don't take up much more room than a pack of smokes). Use travel size everything -- toothpaste, shampoo, etc. Even the most insignificant things make a difference: If you use a wristwatch, get one with an alarm -- you won't have to carry a separate alarm clock (some cell phones, if you carry one, by the way, have clocks/alarms built in).

Wear your leathers. You'll need to take less clothing -- you just wipe them clean with a damp rag at the end of the ride (rather than get street-type clothes dirty). As far as underwear, shirts, socks, etc., take 1 pair of each -- the ones you wear on your ride. Wash them at the end of the day and hang them to dry overnight (I usually stay with friends that have washers/dryers of their own, so that takes care of that problem).

For those of you with bikes that have some underseat storage, even better -- little items that aren't fragile can go there. Order from your dealer an extra clutch and throttle pull cable, and carry them along. I've never had to use mine, fortunately, but if you ever need them, and assuming it's not over a 3-day weekend and any dealer you can find is closed, you can easily replace them and not have your trip seriously inconvenienced because it will always happen -- the part number YOUR bike uses is the one that's out of stock.

Mainly, ask yourself what you REALLY need to take with you. Laptop computer? Please! Use friends' computers where you stay or pay $2 at an internet café to check your Email. Hair dryer? Again, please! Keep your hair really short or allow time to air dry it. You're going to have "helmet hair" anyway, so get over it. Leave the cassette tapes and CDs for when you're home -- grandpa and gradma have room for that shit on their Gold Wing -- we don't.

Normally the only thing that requires me to take a tail pack is a really long trip (Washington to California, for example), since I bring along a (small) can of chain lube and have to carry walking boots. Even here, I've learned to save room. Because my most frequent destinations are Vancouver and Portland, I just keep a pair of inexpensive walking boots at my friends' places, as well as my relatives' place in Sacramento (for those California trips), as I don't need them en route, so no need to strap anything to the rear seat -- meaning I have to carry it around when not on the bike.

Utilize the U.S. mail too. If you buy things along the way or no longer need stuff, don't drag it along with you. A few years ago I had a business seminar to attend in Portland, before continuing on my vacation to California. After the seminar was over, I went to a local post office (most major cities have 24/7 branches near airports), bought a box, and sent my dress clothes and shoes back home. Why drag them along for the next 2,500 miles when I don't need them?

These same rules apply to travel by bus, car or airplane, by the way -- travel with as little as possible. I flew to New York last year, carrying ONLY a 16-inch wheeled airline bag. Fits under the seat. No check in. No lost luggage. No hassles. I've seen people that cannot travel with less than 3 big suitcases, to whom I say STAY HOME (and believe me, you don't want them as passengers on your bike or even to go riding with them). Once on a flight to California my larger tank bag served as an excellent under-the-seat travel bag.

If your traveling when it's warm and sunny, use sunblock or protective lotion on your face -- a lot more sun comes through that helmet shield than you think. And use lip balm -- the lips will dry out as well.

Hope this all helps!

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: God ]</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
69 Posts
This is a question directed towards Tony the mileage man. Firstly I'd like to say holy shit. 100+ thousand miles?! I want to know what sort of maintainance habits you have to keep the bike running at such high kilometers. Do you baby the engine i.e. keep it below 6k rpm on the highway all the time? Touring is becoming my favourite thing to do, and your knowledge would be most useful in my future hobby.

thanx!

------------------
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,910 Posts
Went (round trip) from Kansas City to Daytona on a '96 GSXR1100 back in '97........I'll never do it again (does this tell you something?), it was a good experience. 1300 miles each way in March......temp was 38-42 and raining most of the way to mid AL, then it heated up to around 80-90 for the rest of the trip into Daytona.

The good news is you will be stopping for gas quite a bit (so you can rest your legs).

------------------
My Busa for Sale
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
948 Posts
A little different spin on the question... how about when you throw camping into the mix?

I'm headed out for a long haul. Tony, it sounds like you rack up some sick mileage, but mostly point A to point B with clear destinations (usually friends) at the end.
595 miles from 10 pm to 8 am on a regular basis? Yer a monster


I've got three weeks on the road planned. It's been pretty daunting planning for this but it's looking pretty possible right now...

Planning to camp one or two nights in a row, then do a hotel or friends/family for a night, etc. Many stops at places I'll want to get off and walk around at (parks, monuments, etc). I'm using saddlebags, a tailbag, and a tankbag. The sleeping pad, the sleeping bag, and the tent (small, hi-quality sierra design) go across the seat, and on top of the saddlebags respectively. I did a pretty complete trial pack last night and everything (so far) goes on without putting anything into the tankbag yet besides cell phone and the map I'm using for that leg of the trip.
I've got chain lube, tools for pretty minimal adjust/repair work, tire goo and instaflate for one flat, honda spray cleaner (small can for helmet/visor/bodywork whatever). Cook kit and stove, which may still get cut even though they are really small and pretty light (alpine gear from my climbing days). I can camp cold for a night or two at a time - I'm never gonna be far from food
Camera. lightweight first aid.
bike shorts for under the leather and when out of the leather. Jeans (1 pair), socks (1 extra), underwear (1 extra), tshirt (1 extra). Towel (medium). Raingear for the packs and for me (I'm going Colorado, South Dakota, Montana to Seattle, around Olympic Peninsula, down 101 through Oregon to the redwoods, then back up thru Idaho/Oregon, Wyoming, back to CO)
The stuff I'm starting to get worried about is what am I forgetting? I already picked up the spare throttle cable (hyd. clutch on the VFR) from Tony's post... what else would you add to the list if you knew it was going to be a medium length day trip, day after day for over 20 days? What spares are reasonable to expect to a) carry and 2) actually be able to replace on the roadside?

------------------
 

·
Sexy Irish Man God
Joined
·
20,879 Posts
Cabin that is a long trip for sure. The only thing I see missing is water and that is probably a no brainer

A quart of oil might not be a bad thing either if you have room. Just in case you are real low out in the boonies. Lots of matches (water proof) are always a good idea too.

Good luck man!
This thread is going in the FAQ

jontflesh

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: God ]</p>
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top