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Larz

Tame my Lust for this Machine

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Hi all,

I'm lusting for a Tracer 900 GT. In much the same way I lust after young, exotic or athletic  women ( at my age, that gets expensive real quick :>).I almost bought an FZ a while back, but reports of unintended wheelies and a very twitchy throttle with sub par suspension put me off that idea. Got a Versys 300 non-abs instead- gotta hand it to Kawa for wringing so much out of so little. I've put 88k on a 2011 Harley Dyna in the last 8 years as my main ride. On its third build now and makes better than 100hp /100lbs at the rear wheel with zero rider aids. Its pure outlaw hooliganism, and I've toured most of the Western states on it ( damn uncomfortable after 200 or so miles and scary as shite in the rain.)

I think I can handle the GT,.I know it's gonna be faster than my Dyna, but has those rider aids as well ABS, which I've wanted on a bike for quite a while now. I have a real happy wrist, however, and tend to use all of what a machine will offer up. That said, I'm still here because I also know my limits and ride with the assumption that all cagers are trying to kill me, they just have to "make it look like an accident".

And I've always wanted a sport touring bike- a Connie, an FJR or an ST1300. But all of them a little heavy with a high center of gravity for a little guy- I'm 5'7 and 150. Sat on a Tracer and its feels like a slightly bigger versys 300- it feels damn good. But so does a woman half my age- and that never works out in the long run.

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Posted (edited)

Hey Larz,  I don't think you'll be disappointed immediately or in the long run.  The GT has almost everything you need for touring.  I only had to add a Givi topcase, a power outlet for my heated gear, and a power mount for my Garmin 665.  Everything else is already there.  In 2 months, Ivan will have an ECU flash to make the bikes power much smoother and not as jerky.  I'll definitely have my ECU flashed as soon as Ivan gets it all sorted out.  Nothing all that bad with the bikes jumpiness, but I have a friend who has an FZ900 with Ivan's flash.  It's so much smoother after Ivan turns off the fuel cut on deceleration and adjusts the ignition timing, etc.  Awesome bike and I also own and ride an FJR.  More details about Ivan's ECU flash here:

http://www.ivansperformanceproducts.com/fz09.htm

Like I said, in 2 months, Ivan will make this bike perfect. 

Edited by fjrpittsburgh
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You wouldn't like it.  I've got 900 miles on mine and it's awful.  I would be more concise but I can't think of anything to complain about except it's not candy apple red with yellow wheels.  The first thing that is awful is the stock seat, but I really can't complain about the Tracer's.  I just got home after a 3 1/2 hour ride and my backside is so happy not to be on an ST stocker.  My favorite seat on the ST was a Corbin solo (leather stretched over something really hard) but I'm happy with the Tracer seat.  The bags aren't huge, but I don't take all my worldly possessions with me on the road.  I bought a 39L topbox and it looks kind of dorkie, but I like it.  Oh I have a complaint....the gas gauge is weird, but I go by the trip thingie.  

I hope I helped you out, but my heart just wasn't into it.  I think the Tracer is my perfect bike.  I'm 72 and not old enough to ride a GoldWing yet.  Stop whining and go buy one.  You know you want it. 

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You will enjoy it. I’ve toured on multiple bikes, small to large, and the GT is one of the best. It has a power to weight edge on the big touring bikes and is much more agile on the tight twisty roads. It is good at eating miles on the interstate where cruise control is welcome. It has the superb triple engine that loves to be unleashed. I’m enjoying mine.

E3EABAB0-15D5-497A-9505-4DD68C7FD4D7.jpeg

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18 minutes ago, kingfisher said:

You will enjoy it. I’ve toured on multiple bikes, small to large, and the GT is one of the best. It has a power to weight edge on the big touring bikes and is much more agile on the tight twisty roads. It is good at eating miles on the interstate where cruise control is welcome. It has the superb triple engine that loves to be unleashed. I’m enjoying mine.

E3EABAB0-15D5-497A-9505-4DD68C7FD4D7.jpeg

What he said.

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15 hours ago, Coop said:

Stop whining and go buy one.  You know you want it. 

Haha!!  Get some, Coop!!  😂

Larz, it sounds like you have the riding experience.  Only my opinion, but if you're physically able to reach it and comfortable enough in the GT's saddle, everything else is CAKE. 

Send us a pic once you pull the trigger on a new one, eh?  

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2019 Yamaha Tracer 900 GT (Annabelle)
2013 Suzuki V-Strom DL650 (Juliette)
2013 Yamaha FJR 1300 (Rachel)
2008 Suzuki Bandit 1250S (Fiona)
2006 Honda VFR800 (Jenny)
2005 Suzuki V-Strom DL650 (Hannah)
2003 Honda Shadow Sabre VT1100 (Veronica)

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I traded a 900 lb cruiser/touring bike for my GT, good lord what a breath of fresh air! The Tracer is so light and nimble, and with a few mods fits my 6' tall, 64 yr old body just fine. The throttle is twitchy in A mode but very manageable in B, and with traction control full on I've never had an unintended wheelie. I swapped the stock pannier lids for used ones from an FJR and added a 50 litre trunk so lots of luggage space, Calsci windscreen, FJR foot pegs and I'm ready to tour anywhere.

Listen to your inner voice, just buy one! 😈

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2019 Tracer GT,  Ontario, Canada

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Thanks for your responses guys, I appreciate it.

Coop, sounds like you find the GT to be a better ride than the ST?

I think I'm buying one this week or next, depending on how fast I can pull the cash together ( cash and carry only nowadays).  

How do you guys feel abut the brakes? Seems to be a few comments out there about them being weak....

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Weak brakes? No. My previous two bikes had integrated front and rear brakes so I'm relearning to use the rear pedal on the GT but they are more than adequate. 

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2019 Tracer GT,  Ontario, Canada

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I've had my 2015 FJ-09 for almost 4 years.  I've got 35K on the odo, and plan to tack on buttloads more.  

I absolutely love this bike!  

I'm 6'3", 195 lbs.  It fits me perfect.  It's a bit of a tall bike.  Be sure to sit on it, and test ride, if you can.  Keep in mind, the seat has both a low, and high, setting.

It has more than enough power for me.  Actually, probably more than I need, most of the time.  It is wickedly fun on the twisty backroads.  I often ride in standard mode, but when I get into the twisties, I flip it over to A mode.  Wooo hoooo.  A slight twitch of the throttle, and that bike is shooting out of the corners.  So fricken fun!  

I've done quite a bit of customization.  Renthal handlebars, re-programmed ECU, custom seat, new windscreen, and so forth.  I also rebuilt the front suspension, and installed a Penske rear shock.  The stock suspension is ok, but if you're going to really get crazy in the twisties, you're gonna want to upgrade the suspension.  

I often will do 500-mile days, easy.  This bike has never failed me.  It's reliability has been great.  As for the brakes, I've had no problem with them.  Some say that the brakes are too small, for a bike pushing 500 lbs.  Like I said, I've never had a problem, and I don't plan to upgrade the brakes.  They work just fine, for me.

I LOVE my Fudge 9!!!  Heh heh.  Cheers.

IMG_2381.jpg

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42 minutes ago, Larz said:

Thanks for your responses guys, I appreciate it.

Coop, sounds like you find the GT to be a better ride than the ST?..

It's  different.  The ST was smooth as glass and would go a long way between gas stops.  I really enjoyed it, but the Tracer is a different cat.  It's like going from a big car to a sports car.  It doesn't have the storage the ST has, but it has enough and the agility is off the charts.  After I put on heated grip and a McCruise the ST was a better bike.  Yamaha make all that work unnecessary by putting  them stock on the Tracer.  One thing the ST has over the  Tracer is the knowledge base available and all the small cottage industries building things for the ST, but that all takes time.   There was a lot of complaints about the ST, but I never experienced any of them and probably the Tracer will be the same.  You will like the Tracer.

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@Larz - Welcome to the forum, and good luck with your purchase decisions.   We obviously have a ‘pro-Tracer bias’ around here, but I think you’ll find the overall advice to be fair and accurate.   

That said, motorcycles are highly subjective and emotional devices... your personal needs & wants & perceptions are the ones that matter the most.   Personally, I absolutely love my 2015 FJ-09, and know the Tracer GT is even better still.  I lean much more to the sport end of the sport-touring spectrum, so I’ve invested in upgrades that suit my purpose:  High end suspension, big brakes, et cetera.   If that’s not your gig, then just enjoy it stock.  The only areas that seem to be broadly disliked are the stock windscreen and seat (although the GT is improved from the Gen 1 FJ).   

@Coop‘s assessment of the ST vs Tracer is spot on. I owned an ST1300 for awhile, and really tried to like it.  It was flawless at what it did, but was about as boring as a sport-touring motorcycle could be...  too smooth, too refined, too quiet.  It seemed like a Civic on two wheels.  I can only imagine the Honda engineers shaking their head in dismay... “What?  It’s too good of a motorcycle?  Crazy Americans!”   :) 

So, if the Tracer GT pulls at your heartstrings, just buy the damn thing.  It sounds like you’re already hooked, and I’m sure you won’t be disappointed. 

-Scott

 

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Posted (edited)

went ahead put a cash deposit down. Not really sure if it is actually a deal- 14,000 out the door- think they inflated the tax a bit. But the only one I could actually find on a showroom within 50 miles of me ( down in Arizona by Phoenix) and they didn't blink at a cash purchase. Went to another "bigger" box powersports store that showed a GT in inventory on their website- nope, nada, but had a Tracer 900 with a broken windshield pinch lever and disconnected wires dangling from the chassis ( I wouldn't buy a Taco from them- but did sit on a lot of their bikes- yep Africa Twin still too tall, FJR still too heavy,etc.) 

With my boots on my size 9 feet don't come close to passenger pegs and I can flat foot it if I'm up against the tank, and it still feels almost as light as my Versys ( test ride? surely you jest amigo).

I'm excited already :0

Edited by Larz
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