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croustibat

From Montreal to California

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croustibat
Hey there !
 
I'm new here even though I came a few times to get some useful information ! I finally decided to register, and that is because I want to get your opinion on a big project of mine !
 
I live in Montreal and I bought a nice FZ07 2015 in march, I rode 4000 km up until now and I love the bike !
 
Now, what I would like to do is to survive winter to go from Montreal to California next summer during 2 ou 3 weeks.
I realize this is a big project and I need to prepare a lot for it, that's for sure and I will everything that is necessary to have a great trip.
 
What I am asking here is whether you think this big road-trip is doable on a FZ07, or not ?
 
I added a 27cm Ermax windshield to be more comfortable but that's all I modified on my bike.
 
From my 4000 km experience, I'm 99% sure that I will need to upgrade the seat because after an 1 and a half hour, it's starting to get uncomfortable.
 
Thank you for your inputs !
 
Cheers,
Croustibat
 
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fzonly1
Suspension....., I'm way to heavy for the stock set up... I have a full Matris set up heading my way in a few weeks to sort it out.. How are you feeling with the stock suspension? How much do you weigh?

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croustibat
To me, suspension is OK. But I don't really have a comparison in mind, it's my first bike, so it can probably be better ...
 
I am at 65 kg, so 143 lbs.

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zombiphone
I don't think suspension is really going to be a limiter for distance unless you're loading down the bike with a LOT of stuff. But welcome! I'm gearing up to do cross country on the FZ myself in a couple months (I'm in socal, shooting to go from socal to florida, then wherever else weather will permit in winter/early spring months). So far, the mods I'm looking at/already have for the trip include:
 
Panniers/top case for storage (I plan to camp most the trip, so storage is good to have. Not sure if that's your intention)
Wind screen
Handguards (for added wind protection)
GPS mount and accessory outlets
crash protection (Engine guards, frame/axle sliders- in case things go wrong far from home)
A new seat, brand TBD (Agreed on the hour and a half of comfort. Although I'm not feeling corbin's offering so far)
Maybe a small gas canister and a way to mount it
 
And then a slew of non-bike mod related stuff for my own comfort- mostly new gear related (You'll definitely want things like a hydration pack/well vented leathers/etc if you're going through the heat of summer). I don't see any reason this bike can't go the distance. The seating position is comfortable, the power is more than adequate, and yamahas are ultra reliable. I think the small gas tank is going to be the biggest limiter, but otherwise, it all depends on your own endurance. I know plenty of people who have gone from new york to socal on supersport bikes, so it's really just a matter of wanting it
 
I would recommend trying to find fun routes though. I did 400 boring straight miles last weekend on the FZ, and it's not the most enjoyable way to get from point A to B.
 

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croustibat
Hey Zombiphone, thanks a lot for all your input ! I'll definitely take a good look at everything you said there, there are a lot of good ideas !
 
I'll follow your trip if you write about it :)
 
Agreed for the fun routes, it's definitely not fun to go for 400 boring miles ...
And yeah, the small tank might be a problem, need to take into consideration when planning the trip.
 

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lonerider
Hi,
 
I'm living just north of Montreal and i went to the Canadian Rockies with my SV650S in 2003.  Is the FZ07 can make the trip Montreal-California? For sure. If you want to avoid long days of riding highways, you will definitely need more than 2 weeks.
 
About your concern about the FZ07's seat, you are the best person to judge the comfort or discomfort of this seat. But, don't underestimate the «butt acclimatization factor» on consecutives riding days. For me, the best way to do a lot of mileage is to stop often. A break at each 1,5 hour to 2 hour is the secret for me. 
 
Remember that a road trip of 4 days is similar to a several weeks of road trip. You'll need the same amount of gear. Travel light is the key. For my trip in the western part of Canada, i had a tankbag, soft saddlebag and a dry bag on top of the saddlebag. My camping gear (tent, mattress, sleeping bag and stove) was in the dry bag and in one of my saddlebag.
 
This summer, i did a little trip of a couple of days. I'm 165 lbs, suspension isn't an issue even with all my gear. A windshield is a must for a long trip, imo. But again, we all have our point of view.  Be sure that you have great gear like a jacket that is comfortable under a large range of weather. It's no time to bring 2 different jackets. When getting cold, wet or too hot, the trip will tiring you. Great gears make a lots of difference for a positive trip. Try to avoid the memorable trip that look like hell.   :(
 
Be sure that your bike AND yourself are in good shape.

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croustibat
Thanks lonerider for your tips !
 
I have an A* Perforated leather jacket and I'm really happy with it.
 
I think I will take 3 weeks of vacation for this trip, meaning I can take my time !

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croustibat
Hello !
 
As I said earlier, I think I will take 3 weeks to follow this itinerary (which is just a first draft) :
 
Google Maps
 
First, do you have any great spots I should go see on this itinerary ?
 
I was thinking of leaving Montreal mid may or at the end of may, do you think it's a good time to leave and to travel through the US at this period ? My thinking was to avoid huge temperatures down south and vacations.
 
Also, do you think 3 weeks is enough ?
 
I bought a tank bag (Nelson-Rigg CL-2020), leather boots (Alpinestars Gran Torino Gore-Tex), an air cushion (AirHawk 2 Cruiser) for the seat during Black Friday.
I'm pretty sure I'll buy some Kriega saddle bags, they seem great.
I will start thinking about the crash protections (any particular ideas ?) and the outlet for the phone/GPS (is there an easy solution for this ?).
 
Thanks !
 
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pineappleunderthesea
Not sure if you'll be going through a lot of toll highways, but you might want to look into EZ-Pass or whatever system they use in certain parts of the country so that you don't have to wait at tolls. But this means finding a way to mount the transponder, since you don't want to be holding it in your hands while trying to brake or clutch.
 
The I-95 corridor can suck in terms of traffic, as a FYI. The I-78 might be more scenic, you could hook up to the 81 and go South from there (unless of course you want to visit Philly!)

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so1102
Good rain gear, especially if you are going to be travelling in May-June. Can be some nasty stormy weather here in the states during that time. And when you get to AZ, it will be over 100F, so take that into consideration as well.

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sorkyah
all of the south and midwest will be humid(>75%) and hot(85+°F) during the day, and with the exception of arizona, new mexico, and parts of oklahoma. 40-50 at night
Storms are weird, especially here in AZ.... dont get caught in a monsoon/microburst
and whatever you do.... stay away from lorries in PA, TN, and NM
they seem to be the worst for watching their surroundings

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croustibat
Ok, thanks everyone for your input :)

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Beemer
The question was is the the big road trip doable on an FZ-07 and I believe it is. Depending on your age or how tough your butt is. The question only you can answer is how well your butt can handle the stock seat on a long trip. Without getting carried away I will only suggest after taking into consideration the seat is good for you for an hour and a half and the tank is good for over two hours of riding and most people like to stop and stretch after a couple hours in the saddle or less, you might be OK with the seat and tank the way they are and stop every hour and a half to stretch and get gas. It might not be totally ideal stopping that often but it definitely is doable without spending money on a seat redo or worrying about the tank.
 
Bags of course to carry things. A suspension upgrade may be in order depending on your weight and how much you're loading the bike. If you're going to be stopping at a gas station every hour and a half or so there is always food and drink there so you shouldn't have to pack any survival stuff. As far as the bike itself goes I can't think of anything else it 'has' to have or should have for a trip. The big question, do you think you're tough enough for a long road trip on a bike? I used to be able to say yes but I'm not so sure anymore. I may need a three wheeler with a back rest and drink holder, ha!
 

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mjh937
I would think about staying further north. Black Hills, Mt. Rushmore, Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, through Utah and Vegas. Your route from New Orleans to El Paso will be mind numbingly boring. The weather might be more of a hazard further north in May though. Perhaps others can comment on that.

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croustibat
Thanks Beemer for your input ! You're right, I didn't really consider that tank capacity would "force" me to stop more often than I thought.
I also bought an air cushion (AirHawk2 Cruiser) to avoid a painless butt.
 
About the suspension, I don't think I will load the bike that much and I weight 150 lbs approximately.
 
Also, thank you mjh for your recomendation on the trip itself. I will take a look to what you suggested. But the Google Maps itinerary I linked in a previous message is just a very brief and default one. I don't plan on riding the highway at all times, I want to see nice scenes !

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