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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,
My wife just picked up an '04 620 dark for her first bike after the requisite "disposable" Ninja 250. I've taken it for a spin or two, and I gotta say, it's fun little bike.

Anyhow, I'm pretty impressed with it, and was also fortunate enough to be able to take a friend's 999S for a couple laps around sears point recently. All this adds up to my looking veeeery closely at the S4R as my next streetbike.

Does anyone here do any sport-touring on their S4R? How's soft luggage work out, if you use it? Whats the tank range like? I'm coming from an Aprilia Falco (a supremely underrated motorcycle), how would it compare? My bike is pretty tricked out at this point, and I honestly cant think of any "good" reasons to replace it....but that damned S4R in black has really caught my attention! Any info is greatly appreciated :)

-Ryan
 
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Discussion Starter #2
Let me start by saying I love my S4R.
My last bike was an Aprilia Futura. But I got ride many different Aprilia models. I work part time at a dealer. To be completely nuetral, I would stick with the Falco for sport touring. The dual exhaust on the one side of the bike make it difficult if not impossible to mount saddle bags. Which for touring would be a huge plus. This would not be a problem with your falco. If the Monster gets you going. Try finding a left over S4. I know our dealership has a few.
 
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Discussion Starter #3
I am also debating between S4 and S4R. I like the looks of the single-sided swingarm but I will do a lot of stop and go riding in the city. Do you find the S4R tough in that environment ?
 
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Discussion Starter #4
Not to me. But I came off a much bigger bike. I had an Aprilia Futura which is a few hundred pounds heavier. And before that I rode R1's(I had 2 in a row). Around town the bike feels small and comfy like a scooter on steriods. But when when you roll on the gas, you know its no scooter. Its very small and light feeling. A pleasure to ride around town. To me it would be the ultimate city ride. Quick launching monster fun. But still very good for the twisties. It just would not be my first choice for Sport Touring when bringing a lot of stuff along is the goal. A backpack, tankbag and tail bag is the limit. Unless you find some shield to protect the bags from the high pipes.
 

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A Futura "a few hundred pounds heavier" than an S4R?!!

C'mon Dennis, that's a serious exageration.

The S4R has gotta list at 430 or so and the Futura dry weight is listed under 500 lbs. Sure, with bags and fluids the difference is greater, but I'd guess right around 100, not much more.

The Futura is much higher and in general, less compact feeling, but you make it sound like a pig!

I don't have one, but I'm thinking about it. (daydreaming is more like it)
 
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Discussion Starter #6
I'ts possible I could be happy with just a tailpack & tankbag...obviously the tankbag would work fine, but that tail section looks a little small, how feasible is it to get a tailpack onto it? I was using the panniers mainly for the wife's stuff, but now that she has her own bike.... ;)

-Ryan (who appears to be slowly talking himself into buying an S4R)
 

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We're glad to help you talk yourself into it. You expect anything else from this list?

Do it. Do it. Do it.

We are enablers; co-dependents.
 
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Discussion Starter #8
My Bad, I did not remember the correct weight on the Futura. I thought it was just under 600lbs. The bike is so tall and feel so heavy compared to my Monster. Its nice once your moving. But sitting at a light, getting on it and throwing it around is a work out.
 
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Discussion Starter #9
I love my S4R. I plan on doing some touring with it. I've already test fit my tailpack and tankbag which is all I ever need for a week at a time. I am planning on getting the Evoluzione clutch slave to reduce the pull at the lever because it is a little tiresome around town, other than that it's been a great bike for me. Get one now! You have our permission. ;D
 
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Discussion Starter #10
Just picked up an S4R last wednesday.

First. The folks at Ducati Seattle rock. They did a great job getting everything ready and taken care of so I could just stop in, sign some stuff and pick up the new bike.

Initial reactions: After 2 years on an M900 Cromo, it's like riding a completely different bike. Its more agile, faster (obviously) and less problematic when cold.

One of my Buddies was pissed that I traded the Cromo, because, as he said, "it's a collectors bike!". Once he saw the S4R (the blue one with the racing stripe) he started singing a different song.
 
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Discussion Starter #11
I have no problems touring on the S4R, but I pack real light. My leathers on and a change of underwear or 2 and I am good to go. Oh and a camera or 2. But I would hate to go away for more then a night or 2 on it.
 

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Not to rain on anyone's toruing parade, but I have an S4, and while I LOVE it because of its flickability and responsiveness (my alltime favorite bike to-date, and I've owned over 30 others), I think it might make a less than great tourer because it is VERY much affected by sidewinds, and that fairing is laughable protection at 70mph going into a headwind.

I'm just trying to be realistic here . . .

Jim G
 

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Jim,

As I said above, I'm daydreaming of a Futura, precisely because the Monster isn't a very good long-haul machine.

If someone really wants a sport tourer, they should probably look elsewhere. But if 99% of the time you're staying within 200 mi of home and want to take one 5-eay trip a year, maybe you can talk yourself into it.
 
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Discussion Starter #14
Jim,

As I said above, I'm daydreaming of a Futura, precisely because the Monster isn't a very good long-haul machine.

If someone really wants a sport tourer, they should probably look elsewhere. But if 99% of the time you're staying within 200 mi of home and want to take one 5-eay trip a year, maybe you can talk yourself into it.
'

I will say one thing for the Futura. For its size, it did good things. I was able to get knee on that thing even with the hard bags on. And it throttle wheelied fantastic in 1st and with some work in 2nd.
But when you rode 2 people ground clearance was Harley like. I found myself dragging too easily with a passanger. The centerstand touched down way too easy. And when making a right turn, the stand would hit and come up and tap the bottom of your left foot with teh pad you used to put it on the stand. It freaked me out the first few times. Again I am also found it to be a heavy bike when stopped. Getting it off the side stand and throwing a leg over. I guess my legs are too short. Its a tall bike to me at 5'11". I was not able to sit flat footed on the bike. That combine with its heavy feel was not enjoyable. I found the bike as exciting as a Ford Taurus. Sure it drives well. And comfy. But it just was not exciting.
 

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Hmm. Interesting Dennis.

Regarding the handling w/pillion, did you crank up the preload when you took a passenger? I've only ridden one solo, but one feature I thought was good for ST use is the remote hydraulic preload adjust. Very easy to reach (even while riding), very easy to use. What I don't know is how much range there is to that adjustment and if it will really account for a 130 lb passenger.
 
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Discussion Starter #16
Jim,

As I said above, I'm daydreaming of a Futura, precisely because the Monster isn't a very good long-haul machine.

If someone really wants a sport tourer, they should probably look elsewhere. But if 99% of the time you're staying within 200 mi of home and want to take one 5-eay trip a year, maybe you can talk yourself into it.
what about 5 two day trips a year? :)

BTW, what kind of miles are you all getting until reserve?

thanks for the info!

-Ryan
 

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I've 'sport-toured' a bit on my S4, did one 450 mile day and numerous 250 mile days, both 'sport-touring' and slabbing plus canyon riding. Stock seat and fairing, with tall CycleCat bars.

I've seen a buck thirty on the speedo with saddlebags, a tailbag, tankbag and me on board. That was a bit windy, but I'm perfectly happy cruising at 85. My bike seems to handle crosswinds just fine, but my previous streetbikes were early 80's vintage, so my reference frame may be a bit skewed.

It sport-tours just fine IMHO, and I definitely don't miss the extra 50 lbs. that the ST4 packs along. The extra 1.5 gallons of fuel capacity of the ST4 would be most welcome, however.... :-/ Of course, with the ST4 you can have a reasonably comfortable passenger, but that's not an issue for me right now.

I usually get 120-130 miles before the light comes on, and have stretched to 150 before refueling.
 

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There is no reserve unfortunately. :-/
 
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