Author Topic: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT  (Read 18492 times)

Offline martin_14

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #30 on: August 13, 2013, 01:06:43 am »
eng943, that's a well documented post, thanks.

I have to disagree on the handling part, which I found particularly noticeable while on a trip with a friend with his K16 and me on the Kawa, and we were swapping back and forth. Every time I got back on the C14 I felt like I was driving such a nimble, light bike, and the K16 felt like a whale. But as you well put it: each person appreciates different traits on a bike. One thing that puzzles me is how easy it is to take a hairpin on the BMW and how scary it can get on the Kawasaki. But that's about it. Everywhere else I take the Kawasaki without thinking, unless it's a two up trip, then the misses is happier on in the BMW.

Another thing that usually goes unnoticed until someone points it out at you is the throttle lag, that half a second that the BMW takes to respond to throttle inputs due to one-butterfly design and such a long intake. The I6 lack of vibes is neat, but the I4 from the C14 is amazingly smooth. So, to summarize: those 2 factors, together with the paralever, make for a very detached feeling which I don't care for, like driving a 7-series. Some actually like that very feeling; I (as you remarked) prefer conventional forks.
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Offline eng943

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #31 on: August 13, 2013, 04:07:54 am »
eng943, that's a well documented post, thanks.

I have to disagree on the handling part, which I found particularly noticeable while on a trip with a friend with his K16 and me on the Kawa, and we were swapping back and forth. Every time I got back on the C14 I felt like I was driving such a nimble, light bike, and the K16 felt like a whale. But as you well put it: each person appreciates different traits on a bike. One thing that puzzles me is how easy it is to take a hairpin on the BMW and how scary it can get on the Kawasaki. But that's about it. Everywhere else I take the Kawasaki without thinking, unless it's a two up trip, then the misses is happier on in the BMW.

Another thing that usually goes unnoticed until someone points it out at you is the throttle lag, that half a second that the BMW takes to respond to throttle inputs due to one-butterfly design and such a long intake. The I6 lack of vibes is neat, but the I4 from the C14 is amazingly smooth. So, to summarize: those 2 factors, together with the paralever, make for a very detached feeling which I don't care for, like driving a 7-series. Some actually like that very feeling; I (as you remarked) prefer conventional forks.

Cheers Martin! You're right about the the slight throttle lag. I felt that even in dynamic mode on my pre-order K16. My '13 seems to be mostly cured of that, though I still am no fan of throttle by wire, be it a car, or motorcycle.

The shorter wheelbase and reduced weight, although not dramatic, really did make the C14 feel more nimble at lower speeds in particular. Having relocated back to the midwest, where the roads are bad, the longer wheelbase and ESA set to soft really help my operated/fused lower back cope with bumps better. This is one of the main reasons I went back to a BMW, no pun intended.

Anyway, the C14 is really a great bike, and if Kawasaki ever took a leap and added cruise and ESA I might be back. Honda is well past due to update their ST, and have a gem of an engine in the VFR.         
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Offline shreveportSS

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #32 on: August 13, 2013, 09:38:09 pm »
I think he was speaking to the overall capabilities of the bike, not specifically handling and acceleration. To a vast segment of the sport-touring market, while those attibutes are generally desired, they are not the be all end all of deciding which ST bike is the right choice.

Now, having owned both my exprience is has been that as delivered, the K16 handles better than a C14 or FJR. It steers much lighter than the C14, exhibits no funky brake dive or squirrly linked brake behavior. However, when I added PR3's and went to a 190/55 in the rear, my C14 handled just as well I thought, minus the lamented linked brakes and associated brake dive. Upgrading the Z8's on the K16 might advance the handling capability as it did on my C14. Both offer handling capabilities far beyond the scope of an average rider, let's be honest.

To me, the measure of a sport touring bike goes beyond how fast or how well it may handle. Admittedly, even handling is subjective, as some prefer different handling traits. I can tell you going from duolever to conventional forks and back a few times always gets noticed, and takes me quite some time to adjust. Some guys like conventional forks only, personally, I have come to really dislike them for sport touring. It gets very annoying having my passenger slide into me every time I brake on the C14.

I think the C14 and FJR represent the ST purists in a sense. They most certainly are the best value around with minimal gadjets and conveniences, leaving it to owners to farkle accordingly. Less emphasis on wind protection, more sporting rider ergonomics, etc.

On the other hand Triumph and BMW try to let you have your cake and eat it too. They provide machines that provide better weather protection, comfort/conveniences/refinement, better two up platforms, and give it to you with a very sporting balance of performance and more refinement, and arguably do so beyond the FJR and C14.

I can tell you this much. As good as the C14 engine is, if Kawi plopped in a butter smooth torque monster I6, that would really be something. Nothing beats an engine that is naturally banced, and the more holes the better! 

There is no wrong choice, but it is almost impossible to argue that the Trophy and K16 in particular are at the head of the class in terms of their broader capability.

Just curious, Did you spend much time setting up your C14 suspension or tinker with it? It took me awhile to get mine set up for optimal handling but I can corner better on my Connie than I can on my Ninja 1000 as the N1k's suspension was not manufactured with a 245lbs rider in mind. (Olins in it's future?) By setting mine up correctly, i don't have any noticeable brake dive. Just have to worry about flying over the handlebars.
 I have ridden a new Trophy and  K1600GT  and for me, the C14 was definitely the better canyon carver, but, It's no cushy ride when set up this way when the road gets rough. That to me is where the Trophy and K16 show the superior suspension's ability to perform well while giving that cushy ride.
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Offline eng943

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #33 on: August 14, 2013, 12:18:24 pm »
Just curious, Did you spend much time setting up your C14 suspension or tinker with it? It took me awhile to get mine set up for optimal handling but I can corner better on my Connie than I can on my Ninja 1000 as the N1k's suspension was not manufactured with a 245lbs rider in mind. (Olins in it's future?) By setting mine up correctly, i don't have any noticeable brake dive. Just have to worry about flying over the handlebars.
 I have ridden a new Trophy and  K1600GT  and for me, the C14 was definitely the better canyon carver, but, It's no cushy ride when set up this way when the road gets rough. That to me is where the Trophy and K16 show the superior suspension's ability to perform well while giving that cushy ride.

No, I really did not tinker much with the suspension on the C14, and when I lived in SoCal, it was less of an issue really, since most of the roads were really good.

Now in the midwest, where I crank out more slab, and the roads are really complete junk, the suspension on the C14 became more of a focal point. It's nice to be able to hit a button and get what you want, and it's an option I would love to see more bikes in this segment have along with cruise.
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Offline VirginiaJim

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #34 on: August 15, 2013, 12:25:44 pm »
The BMW is the benchmark?  :o :rotflmao:

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Offline VirginiaJim

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #35 on: August 15, 2013, 12:35:48 pm »
eng943, that's a well documented post, thanks.

I have to disagree on the handling part, which I found particularly noticeable while on a trip with a friend with his K16 and me on the Kawa, and we were swapping back and forth. Every time I got back on the C14 I felt like I was driving such a nimble, light bike, and the K16 felt like a whale. But as you well put it: each person appreciates different traits on a bike. One thing that puzzles me is how easy it is to take a hairpin on the BMW and how scary it can get on the Kawasaki. But that's about it. Everywhere else I take the Kawasaki without thinking, unless it's a two up trip, then the misses is happier on in the BMW.

Another thing that usually goes unnoticed until someone points it out at you is the throttle lag, that half a second that the BMW takes to respond to throttle inputs due to one-butterfly design and such a long intake. The I6 lack of vibes is neat, but the I4 from the C14 is amazingly smooth. So, to summarize: those 2 factors, together with the paralever, make for a very detached feeling which I don't care for, like driving a 7-series. Some actually like that very feeling; I (as you remarked) prefer conventional forks.

I think that the throttle lag is endemic of anything accelerated by wire.  The computer is calling the shots, not the rider.  I quick twist doesn't necessarily translate to the same thing at the TB butterfly.  On Motorhead Garage they had a device that removed that lag (now this was for a truck, I think) and could change it for road or track or some other condition.  I don't see why that couldn't be done somehow for these fly by wire bikes.
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Offline Rhino

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #36 on: August 15, 2013, 12:52:55 pm »
eng943, that's a well documented post, thanks.

I have to disagree on the handling part, which I found particularly noticeable while on a trip with a friend with his K16 and me on the Kawa, and we were swapping back and forth. Every time I got back on the C14 I felt like I was driving such a nimble, light bike, and the K16 felt like a whale. But as you well put it: each person appreciates different traits on a bike. One thing that puzzles me is how easy it is to take a hairpin on the BMW and how scary it can get on the Kawasaki. But that's about it. Everywhere else I take the Kawasaki without thinking, unless it's a two up trip, then the misses is happier on in the BMW.

Another thing that usually goes unnoticed until someone points it out at you is the throttle lag, that half a second that the BMW takes to respond to throttle inputs due to one-butterfly design and such a long intake. The I6 lack of vibes is neat, but the I4 from the C14 is amazingly smooth. So, to summarize: those 2 factors, together with the paralever, make for a very detached feeling which I don't care for, like driving a 7-series. Some actually like that very feeling; I (as you remarked) prefer conventional forks.

I thought it was just me and my lack of skill. I don't like hairpins on the C14.

Offline gPink

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #37 on: August 15, 2013, 01:38:15 pm »
I think that the throttle lag is endemic of anything accelerated by wire.  The computer is calling the shots, not the rider.  I quick twist doesn't necessarily translate to the same thing at the TB butterfly.  On Motorhead Garage they had a device that removed that lag (now this was for a truck, I think) and could change it for road or track or some other condition.  I don't see why that couldn't be done somehow for these fly by wire bikes.
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Offline VirginiaJim

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #38 on: August 15, 2013, 02:15:04 pm »
We're not throttle by wire.  Whole different can of worms with those bikes.
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Offline jayke

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #39 on: August 15, 2013, 02:25:02 pm »
I'm now riding a '13 FJR with throttle by wire. 

It has two modes:

Sport which has instant response, I don't notice any lag.

Touring- which has simular throttle response to my stock '08 C14

I don't think you can just blame throttle by wire buy it's self for the lag. I'd say it's in the software.

The BMW K bikes with a single throttle body might be the exception though.

Offline VirginiaJim

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #40 on: August 15, 2013, 02:43:50 pm »
As I said, the computer controls it, albeit by software.  Software runs in the computer.  At least the FJR has some user override, which makes a lot of sense on a bike rather than having to buy some aftermarket device or reflash.
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Offline gPink

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #41 on: August 15, 2013, 03:02:11 pm »
computer controls the flys
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Offline VirginiaJim

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #42 on: August 15, 2013, 03:31:37 pm »
Last time I looked, there were two cables going to the throttle bodies.  I think that they control something down there, don't they?  We're not a throttle by wire bike.  We're a throttle by cable bike.  It ain't the same as a throttle by wire.  :doublepuke:
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Offline gPink

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #43 on: August 15, 2013, 04:06:32 pm »
Last time I looked, there were two cables going to the throttle bodies.  I think that they control something down there, don't they?  We're not a throttle by wire bike. We're a throttle by cable bike.  It ain't the same as a throttle by wire.  :doublepuke:
agreed
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Offline shreveportSS

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Re: Cycle World - FJR vs. Trophy vs K1600GT
« Reply #44 on: August 15, 2013, 05:18:01 pm »
I thought it was just me and my lack of skill. I don't like hairpins on the C14.
I find the BMW with it's longer wheelbase can be turned through a hairpin where the Connie need to be lain over and counter steered through it with a little throttle roll on like a sport bike.
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