The world according to a woman... on a Z750S

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The world according to a woman... on a Z750S

#1 Unread post by sunshine229 » Sun Aug 05, 2007 10:04 pm

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My name is Andrea and I live in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. I am married to TotalMotorcycle Mike and I (of course) got into riding thanks to him. :wink:

If you asked me 10 years ago if I would ever step foot on a bike I would have looked at you like you were crazy. When I was a kid I went on the back of my uncle's bike for a ride around the block and I was soooooooo freaked out I decided I would "never do that again". Here I am now, have been riding for 4 1/2 years and I am so glad I tried it!

Mike dragged me (nearly kicking and screaming) to the Calgary Motorcycle Show in January of 2003 and it turned out that I was very interested in looking at bikes. We spent the first few hours looking at all the new models (with Mike telling me about each one individually...LOL) and then spent a few hours talking to the different riding schools in town. At the end of our 8 hour day, I had signed up with Too Cool Motorcycle School and Mike was dragging me out of the show (nearly kicking and screaming again...LOL). He had had enough. I hadn't.

In February we bought me a bike in preparation for me getting my license. It was a 1981 Honda CB400T. She only had 24,000 km's on it and looked pretty good for her age. But the best part was that the price was right - I didn't want to spend very much money in case I hated riding altogether. So we bought the bike and Mike brought her home for me.

Next would come the MSF course, which was in March 2003. Boy was it cold when I took the course!!! I signed up for the evening course so that I could take 4 whole days to get used to riding before having to take the test on the 5th day. I figured this was better than trying to conquer riding in a short weekend. First day I was on a Marauder 250 (new), followed by an Exciter 185 (old), and then a Honda Rebel 250 (new). The first 3 days were all focused on techniques and I found it really hard to get the courage up to do any of them well. I guess you could call me a chicken, but I found that every night I would do something that would freak me out so badly that I would actually stop the bike and cry. (I am such a girl.) But on the 4th night it was time for the road ride and I felt like I was really ready to take it on. The instructors gracefully let me take out my "dream bike" (at the time) - the Ninja ZZR 250. They said I was finally ready for it and I felt that I was too. So I rode that thing like I had been riding for my entire life and I loved every minute of it! After that, I knew I could pass my test with flying colours and I knew I would have a long, happy life of riding.

After keeping my good ol' Honda for 3 riding seasons I decided I would look for something new to sweep me off my feet. The year is now 2007 and I am on the hunt....
Last edited by sunshine229 on Sun Aug 12, 2007 10:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#2 Unread post by sunshine229 » Mon Aug 06, 2007 12:47 pm

Date: February, 2007

Saw the 2006 Kawasaki Z750S on the showroom floor at a local dealership. Tried to talk my hubby into buying it for himself (since he was the one in the market for a new bike). I just loved the look and feel of this bike and all I knew is that I wanted it in our garage!

Date: May, 2007

Took a pre-owned Monster 620 for a test ride. Didn't like the riding position - I was too cramped up to enjoy it.

So I went on the Kawasaki demo days and test rode both the Z750 and the Ninja 650R. Absolutely fell in love with the Z750S. Gave it a 10/10 (while the Ninja got a 7). Wanted to buy it right then and there...

I felt that the Z750S was so fun for me. After my four years of riding experience, I felt that this would be a good bike to move up to because it will take me a long time to grow out of it. I tried the Ninja 650R because I figured it would be a more sensible bike...and it was. It seemed so much tamer and easier to ride, but that wasn't quite what I was looking for. I think the Ninja would make a great first bike or second bike for someone who has a year or two of experience. But since I have more than four years of riding behind me, I wanted something a little more naughty... :naughty:

Date: Summer, 2007

Tried to find a used bike to try to save some money. Wasn't home very much so didn't put too much effort into it. We went on a bike trip with another couple in the end of July and decided then that I wanted a new bike for sure. (It was hard to keep up...LOL!) *Almost* bought a used 2005 FZ6 but when I went on the test ride I heard a funny engine noise so I changed my mind at the last minute. Unfortunately, I had already put insurance on the bike and had brought the cash to buy it but no decision is a final decision until the money has changed hands, right?

Date: Monday, July 30th, 2007

Went to a dealership to test ride the 2007 FZ6. Didn't totally love it. Found that that throttle was quite sensitive and it was too easy to go fast on it. That's just not quite my style of riding. It was also VERY hot at the engine - so much so that I would spread my knees from the tank to get a break from the heat (and my test ride was only 20 minutes!).

Date: Thursday, August 2nd, 2007

Went to a dealership to test ride the 2007 Versys. Didn't totally love it. Just as I thought, the bike was not quite my style - too upright and not a fun enough engine (see notes above about the 650R). Immediately went back the dealership where the Z750S is and, with the help of the salesman, decided that it was the bike I need to buy. I was looking at buying either the Z750S or the Ninja 650R, and the salesman said to me: "If you buy the Ninja, will you say you wished you bought the Z?" Hmmmmmmm....he had a point. So I went home to sleep on it one more night.

Date: Friday, August 3rd, 2007

9 am - phoned the insurance company to check on the cost of insurance for the Z750S.
10:30 am - phoned the dealership and placed the order!
10:33 am - could hardly contain my excitement so I ran up and down the hallways at work doing "happy dances"!
4 pm - showed up at the dealership to pick up the bike!!!
6:15 pm - left the parking lot on the first ride for this bike, which so sweetly said 0 km's on the odometer.
:jump:

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Last edited by sunshine229 on Sun Aug 12, 2007 10:35 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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#3 Unread post by Bost » Mon Aug 06, 2007 1:13 pm

Pics!!!!! And congrats on the bike!!

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#4 Unread post by scan » Mon Aug 06, 2007 1:28 pm

Nice bike. Is it very similar to the larger z1000? I have not seen the z750 yet in-person, but I have been looking at the z1000 at the dealer.
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#5 Unread post by sunshine229 » Mon Aug 06, 2007 7:15 pm

scan wrote:Nice bike. Is it very similar to the larger z1000? I have not seen the z750 yet in-person, but I have been looking at the z1000 at the dealer.
Hi Scan,

Yes it is very similar to the Z1000, but there are some differences. The 750 comes in both an S version and a non-S version. The non-S is more like the Z1000. My S version has a one-piece seat and a half-fairing, which was more appealing to me than the non-S or the Z1000. The physical size of the bikes is almost identical. I went with the 750 because it has more than enough power for me, it had the half-fairing, and it was cheaper.

Andrea :)
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The WORST 50 km's I've ever ridden...

#6 Unread post by sunshine229 » Mon Aug 06, 2007 7:27 pm

Date: Friday, August 3rd, 2007

After leaving the dealership parking lot, I found myself a quaint inner-city neighbourhood with stop signs between each block and no traffic. I was going to break in the bike using the "Monotune" method, which is where you push your engine really hard to seal the rings. Of course you can't take the bike over it's break-in RPM limit so I was taking off from stop signs, shifting quickly into second, and then given'r until 4,000 RPM, followed by hard engine braking to bring me to the next stop sign.

This method of breaking in an engine is not very much fun but apparently it works to increase the life of your engine thanks to sealing the rings properly. Check out this website:
http://www.mototuneusa.com/break_in_secrets.htm

So anyways, when I headed home I landed at 45 km's. I was aiming for 50 km's so that I could do the first oil change. But 45 was close enough for me! I couldn't take that crappy riding any longer! I hope to never have to do that again......until I buy another new bike one day..... :wink:
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#7 Unread post by sunshine229 » Mon Aug 06, 2007 7:36 pm

Date: Saturday, August 4th, 2007

After curing an annoying morning headache, I took the Z for a quick spin around the 'hood. When I got back home I had 51 km's on it and it was ready for it's first oil change. I know you are all thinking I'm crazy, but seriously, it's a good idea to get that sludge out since it is holding all kinds of junk from the new engine in it.

Got down on the ground and unscrewed the oil plug and watched all the dirty oil come spewing out. Next task - get that darned filter off the bike! Tried using our plastic filter wrench and ended up busting it...the filter was on sooooooo tight!! So off to the store to get a metal one. One problem - the dealership did not have the perfect size for me so we had to go with a slightly bigger one and hope that it worked.

Using the new metal filter wrench, a cloth and a whole lotta force the darn thing finally came free. Wow, that filter weighed AT LEAST 3 times heavier than the brand new one in the box. (And yes, Bruce, I know it's because there was OIL in it, but there was also lots of metal junk too!) Makes you wonder why anyone would wait longer than 50 km's to do their first oil change...

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After finishing up the job and cooking dinner Mike & I headed to High_Side's house to show off the new beauty. Funny thing is that as I was doing the oil change he called our house and left a message saying that he saw the matte blue Z750S's at the dealership and that they are a really good price and I should go buy one. Little did he know that I already had one in my garage...

Pulled up to their house and honked like mad and then gave the engine a quick rev as he was coming out the door. You shoulda seen the smile on his face when he saw me! (That's what good friends are for, eh?)
Last edited by sunshine229 on Sun Aug 12, 2007 10:27 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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#8 Unread post by sunshine229 » Mon Aug 06, 2007 7:43 pm

Sunday, August 5th, 2007

Mike & I decided to go for an afternoon ride out to the mountains. Problem is that as we approached the west edge of the city we saw the black clouds growing. So we turned around and went for an in-city ride so that we could get home quickly should it start pouring. (Note to self - start bringing rain gear wherever you go so that even if it rains it's no big deal...)

We stopped at Canadian Tire to see about getting some kind of polish for my matte paint job. The sweet young kid that I had asked to help us showed us that Mother's Back-to-Black works on flat paints and not just black. Hmmmmmm.... Interesting. I wonder how that would make the paint look?

When we get home I bite the bullet and decide to try it out. What turned out was actually a great surprise - the paint is still flat but there is a slight sparkly-shine to it! I would describe the paint as looking satin. But now the colour looks so much deeper and has a lot more sparkle. Best part is, now I feel like my paint is at least somewhat protected. I'll keep y'all posted on how the paint holds up as time goes on.
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The first highway ride!

#9 Unread post by sunshine229 » Mon Aug 06, 2007 7:58 pm

Date: Monday, August 6th, 2007

I keep thinking to myself, "How on earth am I going to get those first 800 km's on when I can't go over 4,000 RPM?" Keep in mind, 4,000 RPM equates to about 90 km's/hr. That's not quite fast enough for typical Albertan highway driving. Here the speed limit is usually 100 or 110 but you know what that means...everyone wants to do 130.

So we have to plan our route carefully. We find some secondary highways and side streets to get us out to Bragg Creek so we can be out in the mountains. All the way to Bragg Creek I am continuing with the "Monotune" method - I slow right down but stay in a high gear, then give'r full throttle until she reaches 4,000 RPM then completely drop off the throttle for full engine breaking. Then I do it again, and again, and again...then there's a car that comes up behind me (bugger) so we pull off to let him pass, then I'm at it again. (Repeat four times...LOL)

Once out in Bragg Creek we sit and wait for High_Side to join us for a visit and a ride. Too bad, he can't stay for a ride but it was still a nice visit!

Then it's back to Mike & me for a trip down Route 66...ahhhh...Route 66. I still practice the "Monotune" thing where possible but all the while enjoying the beautiful mountain air and scenery. And what's that up ahead? Is that a herd of cows on the highway? Too cute!

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Then it's time to head back to Calgary. Once back in the city I find myself grumbling at all the traffic. We make our last turn into our 'hood and then up into our garage where the bike will rest for the night. Too bad I have to work tomorrow... :evil:

Guess I'd better go make myself a margarita!
Last edited by sunshine229 on Sun Aug 12, 2007 10:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#10 Unread post by High_Side » Mon Aug 06, 2007 9:40 pm

sunshine229 wrote: Wow, that filter weighed AT LEAST 3 times heavier than the brand new one in the box.
Psssst. It was full of oil :P Just kidding Sunshade :wink:
sunshine229 wrote: After finishing up the job and cooking dinner Mike & I headed to High_Side's house to show off the new beauty. Funny thing is that as I was doing the oil change he called our house and left a message saying
that he saw the matte blue Z750S's at the dealership and that they are a really good price and I should go buy one. Little did he know that I already had one in my garage....

Pulled up to their house and honked like mad and then gave the engine a quick rev as he was coming out the door. You shoulda seen the smile on his face when he saw me! (That's what good friends are for, eh?)
The surprise was worth all of the aversion and b.s. that you guys fed me over that 24 hour period. And to think I was still out there working to find you that perfect bike...... :thumbsup:
sunshine229 wrote:Guess I'd better go make High_Side a margarita!
I couldn't agree more. What a great friend!

Here's a picture of the old girl last week somewhere in B.C. (and a Honda CB400)...
Image

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#11 Unread post by KarateChick » Tue Aug 07, 2007 12:04 am

Andrea! Great to see you again and on a new ride - congrats!! Hmmm, TWO blue bikes in the family now hey? :mrgreen:
Ya right, :wink: there are only 2 kinds of bikes: It's a Ninja... look that one's a Harley... oh there's a Ninja... Harley...Ninja...

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#12 Unread post by sunshine229 » Sun Aug 12, 2007 10:16 pm

KarateChick wrote:Andrea! Great to see you again and on a new ride - congrats!! Hmmm, TWO blue bikes in the family now hey? :mrgreen:
Hey KC! I love my new ride - it is so great to have. Yep, now 2 brand new blue bikes in the family...just gotta work on that Harley if we want to keep up with you... ;)
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#13 Unread post by totalmotorcycle » Mon Aug 13, 2007 1:38 pm

Great photos! :D

So, how is that brake-in period going? I know you just passed your 800km first stage...so what's it like to go to 6,000 rpm now? More power/torque? Does it want to keep going to red line? :D

Mike
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#14 Unread post by sv-wolf » Mon Aug 13, 2007 6:38 pm

Hi Andrea

Love that bike. I was just ogling one down at my local dealers last weekend - matte blue, just like yours - and thinking what a great looking piece of kit it was.

I didn't always feel that way. At first I thought it was an ugly sonofa... but quickly came round. When I'm rich enough to own a stable...

Enjoying the blog, too. Nice to get to know you a little after all this time. I hope you keep posting.

Cheers

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#15 Unread post by sunshine229 » Mon Aug 13, 2007 8:56 pm

totalmotorcycle wrote:Great photos! :D

So, how is that brake-in period going? I know you just passed your 800km first stage...so what's it like to go to 6,000 rpm now? More power/torque? Does it want to keep going to red line? :D

Mike
You totally beat me to it........ I was just about to post an update on the break-in period. Woohoo! Now I can go highway speeds!!!
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#16 Unread post by sunshine229 » Mon Aug 13, 2007 8:59 pm

sv-wolf wrote:Hi Andrea

Love that bike. I was just ogling one down at my local dealers last weekend - matte blue, just like yours - and thinking what a great looking piece of kit it was.

I didn't always feel that way. At first I thought it was an ugly sonofa... but quickly came round. When I'm rich enough to own a stable...

Enjoying the blog, too. Nice to get to know you a little after all this time. I hope you keep posting.

Cheers

Richard
Hi Richard,

Thanks for the sweet note! Yes we have "known" each other for a long time but since I don't post all that often I am kind of a hidden member. I like the blog idea too so that I can try to put myself out there a little more.

I've always loved the look of the Z750S. I am surprised you have made a 180 with regards to the looks. Most of the time if I don't like the looks of a bike it doesn't grow on me and when I love one I don't stop loving it. Anyways, I do love the matte blue colour but I am finding it easy to scratch with my knees when riding so I have ordered a tank bra to help with that.

Andrea :)
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#17 Unread post by sunshine229 » Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:04 pm

Date: Friday, August 10th, 2007

This was the day of the bittersweet last ride of the ol' Honda. Oh it hurts to get rid of her. She was really sooooooooo good to me. But although I am somewhat emotional about our departure, I have Mike whispering in the background: "You chose her fate. You're the one who bought a new bike." Hmmmmm... Is he too much of a realist? Well, anyways, he was right. Out with the old, in with the new!

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Thankfully she has ended up with a really nice young couple who will care for her just like I did. The bike is a 25th birthday present for it's new owner and he is just tickled to have it in his garage now. I wish him the best of luck with the MSF course and his new bike!
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#18 Unread post by High_Side » Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:15 pm

The end of an era:
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#19 Unread post by sunshine229 » Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:18 pm

Date: Saturday, August 11th, 2007

Riding under 90 km/hr is REALLY painful! My goal for the day: Get the bike as close to 800 km's as possible so that I can FINALLY ride it over 4,000 RPM!

Trip of choice: Out to the badlands at Drumheller. We start out at 11 in the morning on an absolutely beautiful late-summer day and head east towards the land of the dinosaurs. We take mostly secondary highways to avoid all the traffic and to go our own speed. We stop upon occasion to take a few pictures and for short rests. The best picture location: we stopped by a pump jack for a quick shot of TMW Mike's V-Strom!

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When we are pulling into the Drumheller area we decide to head down the road to a town called Wayne. It's claim to fame: 11 bridges. Yep, you have to cross 11 bridges to get to the tiny little town of Wayne. And once you get to the end of the 11 bridges you catch yourself thinking, "What did we come here for?" Okay, now I really have to pee and there isn't a bathroom in sight so we turn back towards the highway to find a loo. Wait a second...is that a campground up ahead? Is that an outhouse I see? Silly me, I am actually excited about finding an outhouse! LOL :laughing: I swear, the darn vibrations on a motorcycle make me have to go every 1/2 hour (or at least as often as possible...).

So now we head into Drumheller and make a quick stop at McD's for a snack. Bit of a mistake - there's crazy kids EVERYWHERE in there and to top it all off it is the smallest McD's I've ever seen. It was illegal how many kids per square inch were in that place! I could've went insane. But really I was more disgusted at the cleanliness of the restaurant and I actually couldn't help but smile at how cute all those kids really were...

From there we take a secondary highway off to Timbuktu (or whatever the names of those tiny towns were called). We stop at an amazing view point to see the spectacular scenery of the badlands and - look out below - there's a pile of washers and dryers at the bottom of the cliff. Seems it's more than just a lookout point for the locals.

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The trip back to Calgary was tiresome. My butt was hurting and the stupid pavement was so bumpy I was about to jump off my bike and throw a temper tantrum! Every time I hit a bump the bike would literally spank me in my sore spots and I just wanted to get home.

Moments from the city limits we see a biker pulled off the road so we stop to help him out. Seems he needs some electrical tape. No surprise, Mike has some with him so we help him out and he's good to go. That's a great way to end a day of riding!

Only problem...still only have 700 km's on the bike... Looks like I've got another ride yet to hit the 800 I need to!

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Last edited by sunshine229 on Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:52 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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#20 Unread post by RideYourRide » Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:47 pm

If you go back and reread the Mototune break in procedure you'll see that you do it with disregard for the manufacturer's easy break in rpm limits, which by definition are useless crap (unless you subscribe to the easy break in theory, which you obviously don't). Following the RPM limits AND using the Mototune method is completely redundant, conflicting, and pointless. You would have been better off to warm it up, pull out of the dealership, and shift it into second and hold it on the stops from 2 grand to 10.

Unlucky no one could clear up that confusion for you before you spent all that time puttering around under 4k rpm.
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