Shedding some weight on the beast - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-02-2019, 09:18 PM Thread Starter
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Shedding some weight on the beast

So I just got myself a vn2000 (previously was on a 1500) and love the ride but am having trouble with low speed maneuvering. Is it possible to make the bike lighter? What modifications have yall done to make handling the weight easier? Any tips on taming the beast is greatly appreciated. Thank you.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-03-2019, 07:38 AM
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There was a guy called Poncho Villa on here a few years ago who made it his mission to lighten the Beast. You could try to look up some of his old posts.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-03-2019, 12:01 PM
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Ponch took off lots of stuff he felt unnecessary, but I doubt it changed the overall weight and balance all that much.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 10:21 PM
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Wifey and I went on a diet and lost 124lbs between us...... "bike" is a lot lighter lol. Fuel tank and top-heavy motor make reducing the weight that affects handling difficult but I have thought about raking the front a bit so it doesn't steer so much like an old Honda 90 trike at slow speeds.... I have plans to put a Tiltster trike kit on my V2K due to some personal "landing gear" issues, maybe I will look at it then.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-10-2019, 04:28 PM
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If you don't have a crash bar put one on. Big heavy bike. Once moving handles great. Bad tendency of falling over when at rest. Bros Mean Streak fell over while on kickstand Sunday. Lot of damage.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 01:08 PM
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The bike already has a decently low center of gravity, beyond that, you can start removing stuff that sits up high and admittedly doesn't weigh very much but should make a minor difference. I have the LT so if inclined, I could pull the sissy bar and windshield but taking very much more off requires a lot of work for little reward. Running with less fuel in the tank would be the easiest and most significant thing to do differently but has an obvious drawback.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 10:17 PM
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Is pro'bly easier to just go on a diet...

Yeah... Right?

I know!!!

You can't take that much of the Beast's weight off, you might notice it a bit when maneuvering in your garage/driveway or in a parking lot, but once you are off and running the bike is quite nimble, can't feel all that weight.

Best advice I could think on giving on this issue is do not do those slow speed moves loaded up on luggage or with a passenger or at least not until you get a good feel for the bike and are really used to it. BALANCE is the key.

I usually don't let my wife on until I am pointed in the right direction and ready to go, after getting synced to the Bike's balance the most trouble is crawling speed with passenger on, other than that is not really hard to handle, maybe a bit of a workout but that keeps my arms from flapping too much.

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-16-2019, 04:24 PM
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My tips are not really about shedding weight, but about technique. You might already know these, but they are the absolute top two things that helps me when doing low-speed manouvers on the beast, especially when having a passenger:

1. Squeeze the tank with your thighs in corners, the harder the better. This connects your personal balance with the bike's balance, making it much easier to handle in slow (or fast), tight turns. If you are carrying a passenger, make sure he/she does the same thing with his/her knees around your waist or thighs. This way you, your bike and your passenger are all connected through your body's sense of balance. You may need to remind your passenger every now and then, I somtimes just tap my passengers' knee lightly when getting near a sharp turn, roundabout, parking lot or speed bump, they know what the signal means. This squeezing will also give you a big improvements when braking hard, pushing your momentum with the bike instead of just using your arms to prevent your body from travelling faster than your bike on top of it. It allows you to better focus on steering the bike if needed when doing emergency braking, and to prevent your passenger from slamming into your back.

2. Keep your head up. Look at where you want to go with your eyes on the same level as the horizon, not at the ground just in front of you. It's amazing how much better the balance gets when doing this and how much easier curve taking becomes, regardless of speed. The body does a fantastic job of balancing you with the bike (if you follow #1 above) when you just feel it and focus on where you want to go instead of looking at the closest few feet ahead. You can compare this with when you're bowling; if you just look at the ball and the first few feet of the lane, your odds of hitting a strike are significantly lower than if you look at the pins you want to hit. Sure, you still have to pay some attention to how you hold the ball and turn your wrist, but you don't need to keep your eyes on the ball to do that. You look at where you want it to go.

Other than that, don't pack too high, like using those sissy bar bags that not only acts like a sail picking up side winds easier, but offsets the balance as the whole things act as a giant lever. Keep your center of gravity as low as you can.

I hope anyone learns or gets a useful reminded from this.
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Last edited by FrankLumien; 06-17-2019 at 11:35 AM. Reason: Spelling, added bowling analogy
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