2016 Vulcan Voyager 1700 Test Drive Thoughts - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-29-2017, 04:27 PM Thread Starter
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2016 Vulcan Voyager 1700 Test Drive Thoughts

I took a test drive yesterday afternoon. The wife and I took the afternoon off and took my current ride, 1500 Custom Classic FI, to the dealer. It was a beautiful day, sunny and 80 degrees and the 1-hour long ride down was great. I only have a small windshield on my current bike, and we get a lot of wind and noise. Nonetheless, it is a good bike and has served me well. I have a Mustang seat and backrest on it along with loader pipes, etc. You know you make it "yours" over the years.

Getting a test drive on the new bike was good. The windshield is way too high, but that an easy fix. It drove pretty well with loud gear shifts and not enough pipe noise. There was a whine from the bike, probably from the belt drive. It was not loud, and I am sure louder pipes will take care of this. Again, you get used to what you currently have. Here are some of my observations.

Handlebar Controls: They seemed intuitive and are shared from the 2000 Vulcan, so they were in a familiar spot. Of course, there are more of them for the cruise and radio controls.

Engine: While certainly powerful, I was expecting more. My 1500 seemed just as quick. With the added weight and running lean out of the factory, it retarded its performance. With tuning and mods, I am sure you will get more out of it. Now I understand those that state Ivan's ECU flash makes such a difference. It did backfire a good bit during deceleration. Especially when hot.

Heat: Pleasantly surprised of the overall heat it threw off. I was expecting more, so that was a big positive. However, I was not standing still too long during the ride. The temp gauge was 1-mark past the center line, and the fan did come on.

Passenger Confort: My wife loved her seat and positioning. Also, with a full fairing, there was a lot less wind and noise. We were able to communicate easily unlike when on my current bike. My wife has problems with her ears and is very sensitive to sound. So the lack of wind noise was an excellent sign. However, when installing a shorter windshield, I wonder how this may change.

My comfort was a bit different than my wife. As I stated, I have a Mustang seat which scooped out and lower than my stock seat my current bike. The seat sits me lower, and at the same time puts me back towards the rear of the bike. I have grown accustomed to the positioning and feel.

I am not happy with the stock seat on the Vulcan 1700. I can handle extra height, but the seat is not scooped out. It is hare to explain, but there is an angle transition from the pan of the seat to the top where your lower back is supported. This angle is approximately 45 degrees, so this transition goes much further towards the front of the bike where it meets the seat pan as compared to my current Mustang seat. The result is that I am pushed forward on the seat, and my tailbone rests on the transition. Bottom line, the new setup is not as comfortable as the bike I ride today.

I have to do some investigating on new seats and what they accomplish. Ideally, I would like to sit back a bit and if at all possible lower me down. Overall, I am impressed at its value at the same time; it can be so much better with some changes. That is the beauty of it; you get to customize as you see fit. Just have to make sure I can get the right seat and positioning.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 04-30-2017, 12:10 AM
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The seat for me was a little high, making my footing while stopped sketchy at times. I cut the foam down about an inch and slightly scooped it, then recovered. This made a nice improvement for me.
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-01-2017, 01:58 PM
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Soooooo did you pull the trigger?

It's not garage kept.....I actually ride it.

2012 Voyager ABS
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-02-2017, 07:14 AM Thread Starter
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Soooooo did you pull the trigger?
Have not pulled the trigger yet. Reviewing seating options and reading a lot about them. I talked to Mustang, Ultimate, and Mean City for modifications. Getting a better understanding of what I can make happen. Also, a used Harley came available in my area that I want to see with the wife. I hope to have all reviewed by the end of the week.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-02-2017, 09:59 PM
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I Love my Vaquero with a 2up corbin seat, it was pricey and stiff at first but now it feels like riding my lazyboy recliner!
No regrets!

RickE.
2015 Vaquero 1700
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-03-2017, 06:41 AM
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2016 Voyager

I purchased a 2016 Voyager in March. I added the Mustang seat w/driver backrest. I had this same style seat on my 1600 Nomad for several years. The stock Voyager seat is not too bad for a stock seat, but the Mustang seat is worth the money for me. I did have an issue with fit, install of the new Mustang seat. Ended up returning to Mustang for seat pan issues. Mustang resolved the problem......customer service was very good. I completed the first service on the Voyager and found and fixed a couple of dash rattles. The drive belt noise was noticeable to me. I checked and the alignment marks were off from the factory. Made the adjustment and seems to be better now. This is my first belt driven bike and I have no idea what may sound "normal". Prior to the last 1600 Nomad, I rode eight different GoldWings for 35 years. Overall, I like this Voyager for my riding style now being 64 years old. It rides good, sounds good and gets 42 / 43 mpg on 89 octane. My wife likes it too especially since there is hardly any passenger "buffeting" at speed. As for the "other" brand, do some research on cam chain adjuster failure and rusting issues. No bike is perfect, but we buy what we want and can afford. I think the Voyager is a good value in today's market. Regardless of what you buy.....enjoy the ride and ride safe!
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-03-2017, 06:59 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by 08Nomad View Post
I purchased a 2016 Voyager in March. I added the Mustang seat w/driver backrest. I had this same style seat on my 1600 Nomad for several years. The stock Voyager seat is not too bad for a stock seat, but the Mustang seat is worth the money for me. I did have an issue with fit, install of the new Mustang seat. Ended up returning to Mustang for seat pan issues. Mustang resolved the problem......customer service was very good. I completed the first service on the Voyager and found and fixed a couple of dash rattles. The drive belt noise was noticeable to me. I checked and the alignment marks were off from the factory. Made the adjustment and seems to be better now. This is my first belt driven bike and I have no idea what may sound "normal". Prior to the last 1600 Nomad, I rode eight different GoldWings for 35 years. Overall, I like this Voyager for my riding style now being 64 years old. It rides good, sounds good and gets 42 / 43 mpg on 89 octane. My wife likes it too especially since there is hardly any passenger "buffeting" at speed. As for the "other" brand, do some research on cam chain adjuster failure and rusting issues. No bike is perfect, but we buy what we want and can afford. I think the Voyager is a good value in today's market. Regardless of what you buy.....enjoy the ride and ride safe!
Thanks for your insight, very helpful. I have a few questions regarding your Mustang seat. Did you find it to sit deeper in a pocket and move you further back? The stock seat seems to push me more forward than I would like. How about the overall height. Did that change? Finally, how does your wife like it when riding two up? I have read that it has a tendency to pitch the passenger forward and thus having to move back and adjust their positioning.

I have a Mustang seat on my current Vulcan, a 2000 1500 Custom Classic and love it.
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-03-2017, 12:34 PM
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I have a Corbin Young Guns seat for my Vaquero - very comfortable, and it puts you down and back a bit. Unfortunately, I'm too short, so I gotta put pullbacks on the handlebars to get rid of some upper back pain from stretching too far.

Other than that, the gear/belt whine you hear could be an over-tightened belt. My mechanic looked at my belt during the 600 mile service, and was appalled as to how tight it was from the dealer. He loosened it, and it made it a *ton* quieter. Now I hear exhaust and engine noises more than belt and gears.

-John

2016 Vaquero (mostly stock)
2005 VN800B Bobber (Blue Collar Bobbers kits)
1979 KZ650SR
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-03-2017, 01:11 PM
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On my Voyager, the Mustang seat w/ DR puts you back a bit, but up a hair also. Risers are on my list to do, but not a hot priority until I get a few long trips scheduled here for later in year

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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 05-03-2017, 07:07 PM
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LaskoFan....The Mustang seat did sit me back into more of a pocket. As for the height, it seems slightly lower to me. I rode a few hundred miles on the stock seat. I felt somewhat "cramped" on the stock seat. This feeling disappeared with the Mustang seat. Very similar to the Mustang w/driver backrest on my 1600 Nomad. As for the passenger issue with "pitching forward", that is nonexistent with the Mustang......VERIFIED this with my wife! LOL Another thing. The ABS brakes take a little bit to get used to. This is my first bike to have ABS and the first few times braking I noticed something different. Hard for me to explain, but no worry. I really like the braking system after putting some miles on and this thing will STOP quickly if needed. Go ahead and get that Voyager. I think you might just like it!
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