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Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone here gone from the 1500 FI to the 1700? Did you find the change worthwhile? Are the differences significant? Any downside? Would you do it again? Thanks.
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IntheWind
'06 1500 Classic
 

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I did. I had a 2002 1500 Nomad and moved up to a 2009 1700. In a week I will be celebrating two years with the bike.

I feel the 1700 is a lot different than the 1500. Obviously more power and bells and whistles, but it seem to fit me better. I am 5'11" and 190lbs. I did not have any problems with the 1500, but it was like the 1700 was custom fit for my size.

I am sure you have read all of the negative remarks, too hot, transmission too loud when shifting, belt whine noise, etc. I notice all of those and have done what I can to reduce it. After 15K miles, I don't notice them anymore. This is the 5th motorcycle I have owned. I would buy it again in a heartbeat.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I did. I had a 2002 1500 Nomad and moved up to a 2009 1700. In a week I will be celebrating two years with the bike.

I feel the 1700 is a lot different than the 1500. Obviously more power and bells and whistles, but it seem to fit me better. I am 5'11" and 190lbs. I did not have any problems with the 1500, but it was like the 1700 was custom fit for my size.

I am sure you have read all of the negative remarks, too hot, transmission too loud when shifting, belt whine noise, etc. I notice all of those and have done what I can to reduce it. After 15K miles, I don't notice them anymore. This is the 5th motorcycle I have owned. I would buy it again in a heartbeat.
Dvl, Thanks for your input.

Yep, read all the negatives. I think most of them have been addressed... The first year models also had some issues with the ECU, causing it to stall when decelerating, that was the one issue that kept me from trading two years ago (and the gas mileage). I then made a few changes to my 1500 (fuel processor, Baron's air kit) and it felt like a different bike.

I notice you added a fuel processor and air kit to your 1700: Did you find the stock set up lacking in power? I was hoping with the bigger engine I could avoid this expense again, not to mention that my gas mileage dropped a bit when I made these changes to my 1500. I assume it'll result in a drop in the 1700 mpg as well.

Thanks again, and thank you too for your service to our country.
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IntheWind
'06 1500 Classic
 

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I had an 02 Meanstreak till just a few months ago when I replaced it with a Vaquero. That was the first bike I had come across that made me want to get rid of the Meanstreak. From the looks to the accessories that come stock on the bike. As far as power goes stock is pretty much the same as a stock 1500 as it is very restricted by the exhaust and air cleaner. So getting slip ons or full system and a new air cleaner is a must in my opinion. As far as the ride it is fantastic very centered and easy to navigate low and high speeds. Love the bike and would do it again in a heart beat.

By the way I am 6'9" and 310 lbs so not a small fella....

Go for it you wont regret it!!
 

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I just did this 3 weeks ago, traded my 2005 1500Fi Classic for a new 2010 1700 Nomad.

Some things that have caught my attention so far:

  • Changing into and out of first gear the clunking sound is insanely loud. Pedestrians and other drivers turn heads, they can hear it a block away. I haven't tried synthetic oil yet.
  • Gear and belt noise are significant, sometimes barely audible but at many speeds louder than the engine and pipes. I haven't adjusted belt tension yet.
  • Power characteristics seem similar, allowing for the taller high gears. Gears 3 and 4 seems to have wider usable power bands but I generally stick to shifting at the same speeds as before. I can't really use Gear 6, anything under 70 MPH feels too low for it and I don't have those kinds of roads here.
  • Changing sparkplugs looks like a lot more work on the 1700, they aren't even visible. Not a big deal to me though.
  • The Nomad seat seems several inches forward of the Classic's. I sit more upright with knees bent more and actually next to the rear of the tank badges.
  • The wheelbase is the same, but I find the Nomad to be more agile at very low speeds, probably due to the riding position.
  • Gears 5 and 6 are tall. The 1700 chugs noticeably harder at 55MPH in gear 5 than the Classic.
  • A large windshield makes a big difference (in both good and bad ways.)
  • Locking the tree is much more convenient on the Nomad
  • Some engine stuff that was chromed metal on the Classic is chromed plastic on the Nomad.
  • There's a lot more chrome on top of the tank, with a lot more curves that reflect a lot of sunlight, especially with the windshield.
  • There are two oil drain plugs on the 1700.
  • The 1700 feels like it throws a lot more heat than the 1500, I never felt heat on my legs or seat on the 1500, but it's quite noticeable on the 1700. The radiator fan on the 1500 only ran when I came to a stop for more than 30 seconds or so, but the 1700 fan runs often while moving.
  • On my 1500 I got 46-48 MPG with conservative habits. For 4 tanks of gas and the same habits I'm getting 33 MPG on the 1700, which I'm very disappointed with. I had a trustworthy 220+ miles range on the Classic, and now I have only a 150 miles range.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
As far as power goes stock is pretty much the same as a stock 1500 as it is very restricted by the exhaust and air cleaner. So getting slip ons or full system and a new air cleaner is a must in my opinion.

Really? I'm surprised. That's a real bummer. :(

Thanks for the info.
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IntheWind
'06 1500 Classic
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I just did this 3 weeks ago, traded my 2005 1500Fi Classic for a new 2010 1700 Nomad.

Some things that have caught my attention so far:

  • Changing into and out of first gear the clunking sound is insanely loud. Pedestrians and other drivers turn heads, they can hear it a block away. I haven't tried synthetic oil yet.
  • Gear and belt noise are significant, sometimes barely audible but at many speeds louder than the engine and pipes. I haven't adjusted belt tension yet.
  • Power characteristics seem similar, allowing for the taller high gears. Gears 3 and 4 seems to have wider usable power bands but I generally stick to shifting at the same speeds as before. I can't really use Gear 6, anything under 70 MPH feels too low for it and I don't have those kinds of roads here.
  • Changing sparkplugs looks like a lot more work on the 1700, they aren't even visible. Not a big deal to me though.
  • The Nomad seat seems several inches forward of the Classic's. I sit more upright with knees bent more and actually next to the rear of the tank badges.
  • The wheelbase is the same, but I find the Nomad to be more agile at very low speeds, probably due to the riding position.
  • Gears 5 and 6 are tall. The 1700 chugs noticeably harder at 55MPH in gear 5 than the Classic.
  • A large windshield makes a big difference (in both good and bad ways.)
  • Locking the tree is much more convenient on the Nomad
  • Some engine stuff that was chromed metal on the Classic is chromed plastic on the Nomad.
  • There's a lot more chrome on top of the tank, with a lot more curves that reflect a lot of sunlight, especially with the windshield.
  • There are two oil drain plugs on the 1700.
  • The 1700 feels like it throws a lot more heat than the 1500, I never felt heat on my legs or seat on the 1500, but it's quite noticeable on the 1700. The radiator fan on the 1500 only ran when I came to a stop for more than 30 seconds or so, but the 1700 fan runs often while moving.
  • On my 1500 I got 46-48 MPG with conservative habits. For 4 tanks of gas and the same habits I'm getting 33 MPG on the 1700, which I'm very disappointed with. I had a trustworthy 220+ miles range on the Classic, and now I have only a 150 miles range.
Mauibay,
Thanks. Very helpful!

My 1500 consistently gets 43-45 mpg, and that's with an aftermarket air kit and fuel processor. I'd be willing to drop a few miles per gallon but not 10. That can't be right, although I have read where others are getting in the low 30s... That would really upset me.
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IntheWind
'06 1500 Classic
 

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My 1500 consistently gets 43-45 mpg, and that's with an aftermarket air kit and fuel processor. I'd be willing to drop a few miles per gallon but not 10. That can't be right, although I have read where others are getting in the low 30s... That would really upset me.
I've seen similar comments and was hoping to get at least low 40's per gallon. I checked for any recalls on my VIN on the Kawasaki website but there aren't any. I've read that replacing the ECU has fixed some issues and increased mileage for several people, but it's not clear to me if that only applies to the 2009 models. I've got 6 years warranty on this bike and don't plan to add any aftermarket changes that interfere with that, so I'd love to find a simple way to fix the MPG, it seems way too low to me.

I'm comparing apples to apples when it comes to my driving habits, and I've been careful to stick to my conservative style during the break-in period. I'm still hoping mileage improves eventually somehow, but don't see why that should happen on it''s own so I'm keeping my eyes open for tips on the forum.
 

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As far as power goes stock is pretty much the same as a stock 1500 as it is very restricted by the exhaust and air cleaner. So getting slip ons or full system and a new air cleaner is a must in my opinion.

Really? I'm surprised. That's a real bummer. :(

Thanks for the info.

Well after thinking about that a little more it does have a little more grunt then the 1500 but it is restricted like the 1500 is. There is a slight difference between the two but you also have to remember the Vaquero weighs a few hundred lbs more then the Meanstreak.
 

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You guys realize that the epa estimate for the bike is 36 mpg. I get 33mpg on average. If I baby the bike the best I have seen on the trip computer is 38 mpg. I have 1800 miles so far. I'm just going to ride the way I like and not worry about mpg anymore. I went green when I bought my scoot everything else I own gets 15-18 mpg.... :)
 

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I keep thinking of a Voyager some day. But all the reports I have read have got me scared. My 1500 classic has been a very good bike. Bought my bike in nov. 05 and have put 40,000 miles on with very little trouble. Plus it seems to fit my longer legs better.
 

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I think more things are blown out of proportion than anything else. You only hear about the few complaints over and over and over again. Plus you only hear it from a few compared to the thousands sold.
 

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Has anyone here gone from the 1500 FI to the 1700? Did you find the change worthwhile? Are the differences significant? Any downside? Would you do it again? Thanks.
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IntheWind
'06 1500 Classic
I went from an 05 classic to the VV. Overall I feel the quality was better in the 1500 I miss the shaft drive, and checking the oil in the 1700 is a process, and there were more tires available and they lasted longer on the 1500. All that being said the VV is a good bike too, I'm personally don't feel the upgrade was worth the price.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I went from an 05 classic to the VV. Overall I feel the quality was better in the 1500 I miss the shaft drive, and checking the oil in the 1700 is a process, and there were more tires available and they lasted longer on the 1500. All that being said the VV is a good bike too, I'm personally don't feel the upgrade was worth the price.
The only time I think about trading is when I'm not riding (when I'm sitting in front of my computer at 1:00 in the morning). Once I'm back on the bike, I find myself thinking "I love this bike, why would I part with it?" And that's after 52,000 miles.

I like shaft drive too, but I haven't owned anything to compared it with... I'm sure a year from now and 10,000 more miles on my 1500 I'll still be thinking about trading.
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IntheWind
'06 1500 Classic
 

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Has anyone here gone from the 1500 FI to the 1700? Did you find the change worthwhile? Are the differences significant? Any downside? Would you do it again? Thanks.
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IntheWind
'06 1500 Classic
Think about the V2K. It gets at least as good mileage as the 1700, if not better. And the power difference is, well, it's just great - and that is in stock form. So, you add a few pounds, don't we all, anyway? I average 40 mpg in mixed driving and my worst mileage is about 37/38 mpg around town. On the highway I get 42/45, depending on too many variables too list. If you're gonna ride a big bike, get a Big Bike.

...just my two cents.
 

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i've always said, give me a vn2000 with all the features of the nomad, good seat, digital display showing miles remaining, gear position, mph. add some of the best hard bags, engine bars front and back, add a well spaced 6-speed trans, and that wonderful electronic cruise control, and I'd buy it in a heartbeat.

come on Kawasaki, update the v2k with a 2012/2013 VN2100 HwyKing
 

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i've always said, give me a vn2000 with all the features of the nomad, good seat, digital display showing miles remaining, gear position, mph. add some of the best hard bags, engine bars front and back, add a well spaced 6-speed trans, and that wonderful electronic cruise control, and I'd buy it in a heartbeat.

come on Kawasaki, update the v2k with a 2012/2013 VN2100 HwyKing
There is a bike very similar to what you describe here, minus the 6 speed tranny, but plus ABS and a third cylinder: Rocket 3 Touring. That, and the Cross Country, will be serious contenders if I ever need to replace my sweet V2K.
 
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