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Old Today, 12:41 PM   #1
88Toyota OP
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Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Sandy, Oregon
Oddometer: 63
One more Versys Adventure

A little background for those that are in the same dilemma that I was. After months of looking for the perfect 'all road touring' motorcycle for my needs, I came up with no good options from the factories. I put nearly 50k miles on my KLR, and it was a great bike, and did everything I ever asked it to do including some nasty single track. But after 50k (still on the stock piston and no oil burning), it was time for a change. I commute every day, year round, so I wanted something that is comfortable on the road, and be fun with some spirited riding, handle rain/snow in the winter, and be fun in the gravel/dirt roads. I have a KTM 300 for OHV parks, but there are some very degraded roads in the area, so it needs to be good on very rough roads or fairly easy quad trails. I do like to do camping, so it needs to handle a bit of a load and ride easy down the freeway to get to the good stuff. I rode the BMW F800GS and Tiger 800XC. Both were very nice, but just a little bland to me and felt too big for what I wanted (Im 62 and ride a Valkyrie on nice days, so big bikes arent bad, just not what I want in the dirt). I grew up riding dirt bikes, so a little engine feedback is nice. The Tiger was just too smooth for me. The BMW was a bit better, but still just kinda bland. I didnt ride the WR250R, but that was high on my list, and would like to have one, but its just a little too dirt bike for what I wanted this time around). I ruled out KTM based on high cost of ownership and questionable reliability. I don't need a race bike, so I don't want the race bike maintenance. I'm sure the KTM guys don't like to hear that, but from what I have read, I'm not comfortable going that route for a street bike (my KTM 300 is a great bike, but it too has some design flaws and high part costs). I had read about so many of the sweet builds that JDRocks and others had done, all with their own needs/requirements, so I took one for a test ride. The Versys, while not as fun as the Ninja from what I have read, was a very fun bike to ride. Some good pull. Little bit of engine feedback to let you know you still have a petrol burning contraption between your legs, and the suspension/brakes were WORLDS ahead of the KLR. I know the KLR can be fitted with better suspension, engine work, seat, etc., but I wanted something different (variety is the spice of life right?). The Versys is also 1/3 or so the cost of the other two. So I looked around for a few weeks and picked up a 2013 with 1500 miles on it.

I had read many reviews and report about these bikes and it seemed like reports were split 50/50 on the dirt worthy capability. Some say it can be great, others say it is a street only bike. So the day after I bought it, it was time to see if it could do dirt duty:

This thread will hopefully document my very slow build progress on this bike. Many if not all of my changes are based on something that someone else did, so I'm not claiming original design on anything here, just how I am bringing the different things together to make my ideal bike, and hopefully inspire someone else down the road.

My current list of planned mods are:
Shinko 705's 130 front and 150 rear - on order
Front fender lift for new front tire
Dual stainless front brake hoses for lifted fender
SW Motech Crash bars
Skid plate/gravel guard
Radiator protection
Rear shock protection
Lever protection
Handle bar risers - on order
ProTaper SE ATV High bars
Taller seat (its a little tight and slopes forward)
Lower Pegs
Lighter/better clearance muffler - in process
Evap delete - DONE
Possibly complete exhaust system change. I have an idea to run the pipe more like an F800GS to get better ground clearance. If someone has seen or done this, Id like to hear about it. I have seen the picture of the green/yellow dirt Versys, and it looks like he tucked it up nicely, but from the picture, I can't quite tell where he ran it, and if/where he put the H-pipe or ran the muffler. I have some ideas, but if someone already worked it out, I'd like to see it.
Possibly 2015 Ninja oil pan with side drain for ground clearance

I am thinking this should get me real close to where I want to be. I really like the look of the DR forks/R1 shock and wire wheels, but those will be some of the last things I do at this point.
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Old Today, 02:31 PM   #2
88Toyota OP
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Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Sandy, Oregon
Oddometer: 63
Evap removal and T-mod - DONE

So the first thing I did was remove the evap canister and associated hoses. The system is intended to remove vapors from the tank and burn them (or something along those lines) instead of release them to the atmosphere. I would not have removed the system, however there is a risk of having the system flood (if the fuel tank is over filled or if the bike falls over), and result in a possible no start situation. This could probably be dealt with on the road if it happened, but I made the decision to remove the system before it became a problem (for better or worse, this is also why I remove kick stand sensors and sometimes clutch sensors, I know it can be dangerous, that's a risk I take, but I have had them fail, and if they fail at the wrong time, it could be much more dangerous in my opinion. I had a finicky clutch switch and one day killed the engine pulling away from a light and instead of being able to just pull the lever in and hit the starter, I had to shift back to neutral and let the clutch out for it to start, this could have resulted in me being rear-ended if the car behind me didn't stop).

So removing the system is much easier than it first appears. I pulled off the seat, side plastics, and the evap cover. Pull the bolts out of the bracket, and remove all the hoses attached to it. There are 4 hoses that go to the bike, and one hose that just connects one side of the canister to a valve or something. One hose goes to the air box, another goes to the throttle body, the third and fourth go to the tank under the plastic on the left side.

The tank has a blue dot next to one of the hoses. This hose needs to vent to the ground. This is the main tank vent and if plugged will cause vacuum lock in the tank which will make it hard to open the gas cap and could stave the engine. The other is a return hose from the canister and can be capped off.

Next is I removed the tank and air box. The tank has two electrical connections, fuel connection, and the water drain from around the fill cap. Easy enough to remove and not much fuel leaks out. I just used a rag to absorb what little did drip out.

The air box can be removed without taking it apart, just pull the four screws in the small cover and pull that part with the hose out (its easier to leave the hose that goes from the contraption at the front of the air box to the valve cover attached at the valve cover and pull the contraption off from that hose). Next you will find four screws inside that cover opening. Pull the screws and pull the air box out.

Now you can remove the band clamps and pull the air box adapter off the throttle bodies where you will find a hose that use to connect to the evap canister. Pull this off and plug it.

The final hose connects to one of the throttle bodies. You can take one of the hoses that you have removed and connect it to the other throttle body instead of capping it (there is a cap on the other port that you pull off). This will result in both throttle bodies being connected to the vacuum sensor (vacuum hose connected to the left throttle body that goes up toward the front left fairing where the sensor is), and should provide in a bit smoother running engine at low speed. I didn't ride the bike much before I did this, but it did seem to help a bit.

That should be it. Put it all back together knowing that you don't have to worry about the potential for this system failing and causing you trouble down the road, and as a side benefit, you have a nice little spot for a tool pack
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Old Today, 04:50 PM   #3
Gravel Runner
Joined: Jul 2007
Oddometer: 4,591
Originally Posted by 88Toyota View Post

The air box can be removed without taking it apart...
yes, you can, but i'd split it every single time since you need to visually inspect and clean every part of the airbox interior both in front of and behind the filter, given the access and opportunity. inspecting just the filter doesn't tell the whole story upstream of the throttle bodies, and is especially true if the bike is used in dusty conditions.
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