Jean's New Bike: Fun, Functional, and Fully Decked Out!

In last month's posting, I told you about Jean Hanson's new cherry red F650 twin. The bike is a beaut and Jean is having a great time on it, already logging some serious road miles on trips hither and yon. (Yon is a great destination...we need to plan a club ride there.)

Today, let's dig a bit deeper into the new F650 with some information from Jean about her riding background AND the new stuff she has already found to add to her bike.

It has become a great source of humor amongst the area BMW loyal that no bike truly reaches its full potential unless $$$$ worth of aftermarket goodies are hung from it. Some of us are a little more guilty of this than others, but those club presidents shall remain nameless. Now back to Jean's story...

I took the MSF course in October of 2007. I started out on a Suzuki Boulevard 650 S-40, but found the bike set up and size was too much for me at the time, so I traded it for the Kawasaki Ninja 250. I loved the size and set up and was able to get some good miles on this beginner bike. I truly loved the little Ninja, but felt it was time to graduate to something I could take a few distance trips with. My choice for the BMW 650 was because of the rider sitting position, foot peg position and straight up sitting style. I also liked that I could get a low version with low seat because I am vertically challenged. The on board computer offered a gear indicator and for a newbie that is a good bit of information to have for sure!

(Now the story shifts to Dave Hanson, the 'goodies guru':)
All good bikes need a lot of good accessories our additions on this bike has really made it perfect.

First of all if BMW did not offer this bike in lowered suspension and low seat, it would not have been an option for us to look at. The low suspension and low seat is listed in the spec sheet as 30.1”. Jean needs at least 29” or lower to be somewhat comfortable handling the bike. I researched and found an alternate rear tire in size 150/60/17 (stock is 140/80/17) which would lower the rear another 7/8”. I also lowered the front by raising the forks 22mm in the triple trees (also about 7/8”).

I broke in the bike in 2 days going to Arkansas both days (Jan 21-22 09) Thursday and Friday. 175 miles the first day and 320 miles the second day. I tried to hold no steady rpm, and did not exceed 4k rpm the first day then 5k the second day. No full throttle runs, but some brisk ¾ throttles up the gears. I noticed the motor really starts to want to go over 4k rpm.

The first add on was the SW-Motech crash bars for pretection, next the Calsci windscreen for better wind protection. I also purchased the Tourtech handguards after seeing a picture of them on advrider forum.

I researched the many farkles that are out there for this bike before settling on the few items we deemed necessary. I use these two sites for most of my information: and

The stock windscreen is useless for wind protection. I researched the many windshields available and went with the CalSci medium (lowest model) and found it to be much better but still slightly turbulent for me. I am 5’11” and 32” inseam, Jean is 5’2” and 27.5” inseam, it works good for her. The picture below is of the CalSci screen.

I send Mark Madstad the stock windscreen and he has developed a solution; the prototype will be tested on the bike. It has adjustable up and down plus angle forward and back. A link to his website:

Jean made her ride Saturday 1/23/09. We went about 225 miles, Arkansas and back. Her arms were sore from stretching to reach the handlebars. So the next farkle was the ROX barbacks. They are CNC machined out of aluminum and very nice. The ROX raised the bars 1-1/4” and moved them 1-3/4” back. It's a pretty tight fit with the front brake line, be sure and check lock to lock for clearance if you go with this mod.

I added the Fenda Extenda to the front fender to provide some protection to the exposed radiator. We both liked the BMW vario cases and the Jesse Safari 8” cases (most narrow by the way at 34”), but decided on the Caribou cases even though they are 38” wide.

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