All about my favorite motorcycle - the Honda VFR 800
My love-affair with the VFR started in the 90's. I nearly pulled the trigger on a 1997 model brand-new. I even found this old posting from Usenet about how I made the very adult decision to pay off my Jeep Cherokee instead of getting more into debt. How very responsible of my 27 year-old self!
There it was, my chance at finally owning my dream bike. It's probably for the best. The most-revered VFR came out the next year, 1998, with the Gen5 that had gear-driven cams. Still today, a huge following of riders love the Gen5 VFR that was only sold from 1998 - 2001.
Twenty-two years later I finally did acquire a VFR. A 2006 VFR 800 6th generation (VTEC RC46) model in Sunbeam Pearl White. I must say, it is a beautiful color for the bike.
This particular example hasn't had the best life. I think the hardest parts to maintain on these bikes are the body panels. This bike had been laid down on both sides at some point in time and has the scars to prove it.
But a great thing about the Honda VFR is the engine. The V4 engine is just a wonderful power unit to ride and the VTEC is quite impressive when it opens up the second set of valves around 6600 RPM (there are different timings in the 2002 - 2005 6th generation model years, so starting with the 2006+ the VTEC RPM trigger is lower and less abrupt. People complained about the very sudden rush of power in the pre-2006 years).
This VFR puts a smile on my face every time I ride. Even when it's just s short ride across town. I can't wait to put some more miles on this coming summer. A great thing about motorcycles, especially when it is on a bike that has a large following, is the group of people you can join up with and ride. I've already met a group of riders in the area that are all interested and willing to help with repairs, go for rides or even hit up a track. Going on a track day would be amazing. I will need to acquire some additional gear before that happens.
The challenge with all hobbies is saving your money and not buying parts / upgrades all the time!
It really is funny how many "upgrades" seem completely, 100% necessary once you get a motorcycle, especially if you bought it used and "saved all that money!" I've already gone down the rabbit hole of:
- New heated grips (Oxford Premium Sport https://amzn.to/38czcoh)
- Cover for outdoor storage (Favoto 96" https://amzn.to/38czefT)
- Disc lock - not really an upgrade, but it keeps the motorcycle where I leave it (https://amzn.to/31ELQcX)
- RAM Mount for cell phone (https://amzn.to/2H61ftu)
- Cortech Super 2.0 18L tank bag - LOVE IT! (https://amzn.to/2vjJjc2)
- ROK Straps for holding things in place (18"-60" https://amzn.to/2Sbj8gF)
That's just a short list! What's on my todo list? Oh, maybe a new windscreen to make the wind just a little bit more bearable, maybe new body work that looks a bit nicer and isn't all scratched up, new chain, new sprockets, new Regulator/Rectifier, new battery and on and on and on and on and on...
Don't forget the apparel!
Yes, you need a nice helmet, boots, jackets (warm, cold, wet), gloves, riding pants, replacement shields for the helmet, communication system.
It can be a bit overwhelming at times, but the joy of the sport is high for me. I just have to remember to curb my enthusiasm and not just buy things to buy things. I'm pretty sure that a new windscreen would really help out with some of the noise, but I also know I need to put more miles on to really know what needs to change. I'm trying to be realistic here.
Anyway, I love my 14 year-old motorcycle. See you on the road some day, rubber side down!
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