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Kawasaki Concours ZG1000


cali_beemer

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cali_beemer

I am starting to look back into budget bike shopping....I am acustomed to the nicer BMW's but that aint gonna happen on $3000...but I still want the all around capability. I will be using the bike to commute to work everyday, day rides in the mountains, weekend camping trips and an occasional trip. Fuel economy is important since it will be used as a commuter. I have a short list that includes the VFR 800, ST1100, Vstrom 650/1000...but the connie is looking better and better. However I know very little about it other than its ugly with samsonite looking luggage. I rode a neighbors years ago and seemed okay but a bit buzzy. I have heard that the motors can be dialed in to be smoother. Otherwise they seem like they are bulletproof, large tank capacity, comfortable and under 3k dollars all day long. Anyone able to tell me what years are better if any, any isses to look for? any updates made throughout the years....etc...it has seemed to be basically the same bike every year.

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Mister Tee

You might check out the Concours board (http://www.zggtr.org) for some input on the C10. I ride a C14, but I wouldn't consider a C10 myself. It's dated, and it hasn't been produced since 07 (I think that's the last year, the C14 came out in 08). I hear they are fairly bulletproof. The only major issue I'm aware of is the engines have been known to hydrolock by fuel leaking through the carbs while sitting.

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Can't beat the value of the Old Skool Concours.

 

It has luggage, 2 trip meters, metal gas tank (use any kind of tank bag you want), comfortable seat, no heat issues on your ankles, good weather protection, excellent lights (visibility)...

 

Got mine with 16K miles for $4k

 

Doesn't do anything GREAT, but when you add everything it can do - its one of the best values out there :thumbsup:

 

Took me a little time to learn to ride it (need to lean into turns ).

 

MGP isn't great 38ish.

 

On paper its a win-win.

 

 

 

 

Probably like most 4cyl bikes - it doesn't have a soul. I like it when I ride it, but it doesn't call to me to ride.

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Shiny Side Up

I like the older Connies - especially the Pearl Tan colored 2005.

I also like the 1400's (my neighbor has one - it's a rocket)

All are a bit top heavy - Connie's a big gal and when she wants to lay down, there's no stopping her!

I like the ST1100s and 1300s

 

Hope this helps!! (NOT)

(If I could afford it - they'd all be in my garage!

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cali_beemer
I ride a C14, but I wouldn't consider a C10 myself. It's dated, and it hasn't been produced since 07

 

While thats a great philosophy and I would love a ZG1400, but you may have missed the part about my $3000 budget...There are alot of bikes I would prefer, but there is that darn pesky thing called money that seems to put limits on whats obtainable. The C10 is defiantely a dated design but thats also what allows so much bike to be bought for so little and adds to the attraction.

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Have you found any? What yr? How many miles?

 

Mine is a 2004, Black - the best and worst color!

 

 

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If the engine in the Connie is the same as the one in KZ1000P, the engine is bulletproof. You can't hurt it.

If you want a cheap commuter, find a KZ1000P.

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Mister Tee
If the engine in the Connie is the same as the one in KZ1000P, the engine is bulletproof. You can't hurt it.

If you want a cheap commuter, find a KZ1000P.

 

No, the KZ1000P has an air cooled engine. The C10 engine is liquid cooled.

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Matts_12GS
I ride a C14, but I wouldn't consider a C10 myself. It's dated, and it hasn't been produced since 07

 

While thats a great philosophy and I would love a ZG1400, but you may have missed the part about my $3000 budget...There are alot of bikes I would prefer, but there is that darn pesky thing called money that seems to put limits on whats obtainable. The C10 is defiantely a dated design but thats also what allows so much bike to be bought for so little and adds to the attraction.

 

My brother had one for several years and swore it was the best thing since sliced bread.

 

I looked at them years back, but the dealer I was talking to pulled me aside and told me I would be bored on it in no time. Have you considered looking for an older R1100RT? They can be found in that dollar range if you look carefully, most will be farkled to some degree and you are familiar with the platform.

 

I have recently seen some decent models in the 3-5K range...

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I ride a C14, but I wouldn't consider a C10 myself. It's dated, and it hasn't been produced since 07

 

While thats a great philosophy and I would love a ZG1400, but you may have missed the part about my $3000 budget...There are alot of bikes I would prefer, but there is that darn pesky thing called money that seems to put limits on whats obtainable. The C10 is defiantely a dated design but thats also what allows so much bike to be bought for so little and adds to the attraction.

 

My brother had one for several years and swore it was the best thing since sliced bread.

 

I looked at them years back, but the dealer I was talking to pulled me aside and told me I would be bored on it in no time. Have you considered looking for an older R1100RT? They can be found in that dollar range if you look carefully, most will be farkled to some degree and you are familiar with the platform.

 

I have recently seen some decent models in the 3-5K range...

Good point, if I was selling my '98 RT-P I would ask $2500 or so.

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cali_beemer

 

I looked at them years back, but the dealer I was talking to pulled me aside and told me I would be bored on it in no time. Have you considered looking for an older R1100RT? They can be found in that dollar range if you look carefully, most will be farkled to some degree and you are familiar with the platform.

 

I have considered one but I get very hesitant on the previous law enforcement bikes and really high mileage. The attraction is that I love the RT and I am already familiar with working on them and i still have my clymer manual for it. Hoewever parts for it are very expensive snd one major issue and the bike may be down for a while.... the connie can be had for alot less, seems bulletproof from what I have seen snd gets similar fuel economy...

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cali_beemer
Have you found any? What yr? How many miles?

 

Mine is a 2004, Black - the best and worst color!

 

 

not yet bullman, I sold the GT after the divorce to buy a house and I am am hoping to be signing papers tomorrow. Once I get the keys this week I will be in buying mode....I am also trying to figure out model years on the connie and if there are any better than others. So far it seems like its really the exact same bike so I may be able to save some money by buying a 99 or so instead of a 04....My goal is to stay under 3k and that seems doable for a connie. Ideally I will be using the bike to commute to work, take day rides, weekend and week long camp trips / touring.....my do it all bike..until i can afford a second bike.

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not yet bullman, I sold the GT after the divorce to buy a house and I am am hoping to be signing papers tomorrow. ....I will be using the bike to commute to work, take day rides, weekend and week long camp trips / touring.....my do it all bike..until i can afford a second bike.

 

If there was "like" button on BMWST, that post right there would get a click from me!

 

--

Mikko

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I really haven't done a lot of research on the differences between the 25 yr production.

 

My understanding is that they did minimal improvements thru the liftime.

 

My suggestion is to the Newest, Less Mileage that you can afford.

 

The dealer had 3 connies at the time. The other 2 were left out in the sun (used more) than mine, so the tupperware had some fading.

 

Get the best bike you find. Remember, you are the only one you have to impress = the hell with the rest of us :)

 

 

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I can understand your budget. Have you considered a K75S. You should find one around for 2500 bucks if you have patience. For ideas check this advrider thread

 

ADV rider Special Ks

 

I know you were looking at the C10 as was I when I returned to riding. I am just encouraging a few options so you buy what you most want after knowing you looked around and have a bike you feel good about having.

 

Make your choice and enjoy.

NCS

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I had a '98 Connie that I loved to death, but I got seduced by the sportbike bug and traded it in. The concours is a pretty dependable bike, with only a couple of known weaknesses - the spindly front forks which in stock trim were notorious for dive and bottoming out. I had a panic stop in the rain on a bridge not long after I'd bought mine and it was one of the most frightening things I'd experienced up to that point in my riding career. I felt the forks hit bottom and the front wheel started to chatter, and it took every ounce of willpower I had to ease off the front brake and look for a gap between the car in front of me and the pedestrian lane on the bridge. Fortunately, traffic started to move and I gained a little breathing space, and rode away unscathed (although with brown trousers). The other problem was the very bottom of the fuel tank would collect moisture, as it wasn't really accessible by the petcock even on reserve. Some bikes would develop pin-hole leaks at the back of the tank, so if you look at a used bike look for bubbling paint on the tank under the seat.

 

Otherwise it had screw and lock nut adjusted valves and a motor that could be revved past the red line, and was a great (but heavy) commuter. Oh, and there were a bunch of fiddly fasteners for the fairing, but any old-time beemer owner should be able to deal with that. If you can find a good one for a good price, get it.

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I can understand your budget. Have you considered a K75S. You should find one around for 2500 bucks if you have patience. For ideas check this advrider thread

 

ADV rider Special Ks

 

I know you were looking at the C10 as was I when I returned to riding. I am just encouraging a few options so you buy what you most want after knowing you looked around and have a bike you feel good about having.

 

Make your choice and enjoy.

NCS

 

I got a chance to ride a friend's K75 a few months ago. I don't know if it's just maybe because the bike was ill maintained, but it was the most horrid handling, awkward feeling bike I've ever ridden.

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CoarsegoldKid

I had a 1990 Connie before buying my current BMW. It was bulletproof. Dated yes compared to late model bikes. However if you get it cheap enough add a new set of tires and worked on suspension and bushings it should be a winner. You know all the stuff you must do to any bike to make it yours.

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I had a 2000 Connie for about a year. I have a weird thing about a bike having some type of character. I also have a Duc and an RZ350 if that gives you any measure of my weirdness.

 

I found the ZG to have absolutely no soul at all. It was an appliance. Got rid of it and bought a 94 CBR900RR.

 

But to get back to your quandry, I bought this last week for $3000. 94 R1100RS, 50K miles, all service 100% up to date including new tires, Ohlins front and back, Piaa's, turn signal minder set-up. Almost forgot to mention the nice Corbin seat with fancy flip up back for the pillion (my daughter loves that!)

 

 

They are out there if you look. There was also a guy in St. Louis that had the same bike with 47K miles for the same price.

 

rs1.jpg

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I had a red '03 and loved it. I rode on two Three Flags runs on it completely stock. A better saddle would have been nice but the bike is bullet proof.

 

If you're taller than 5'10, I might suggest an older R1100 RT or something like that. The Connie is confining.

 

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My last bike was a '99 C-10 Concours -- had it for 3 years/40K miles... it was my commuter 8 months out of the year. I was in a similar situation as you when I bought it: I was looking for an R1100RT, but was not finding anything acceptable in my price range.

I bought it, rode it, and enjoyed it... but always kept my eye open for that smoking deal to come along on a Beemer.

 

Here's the skinny: it was made from '86 - '06. There were very little changes over the run, (upgrade to twin-piston calipers, beefier forks, wider wheels) but the final changes were made to the '97 model year... so there's essentially no difference between a '97 and an '06. As far as maintenance is concerned, it will be much less expensive to own than a Beemer.

You really should check out the two forums -- which are extremely active and have a fanatical following:

 

http://www.zggtr.org (the independent forum run by a Concours owner, sort if like this forum)

 

http://forum.cog-online.org/ (the official forum of the Concours Owners' Group, sort of like BMWMOA site)

 

The driveline (engine, transmission, final drive) are absolutely bulletproof. No bearing or spline wear to be concerned about when purchasing. I would not hesitate to buy a Connie with 150K miles if it had been well cared for. As someone else had mentioned, hydrolock is a concern. It requires a double failure... but it can happen... and likely will happen at some point if preventive measures are not taken. If the vacuum petcock fails AND one or more of the carb float valves fails, then fuel can fill a cylinder and bend a connecting rod at start-up. This potential problem can be overcome by installing overflow tubes in the float bowls -- a feature that used to be present in all carbs, but has been eliminated to satisfy environmental concerns of leaking fuel. (Silly... but that's another conversation altogether.)

 

The engine is buzzy, but powerful -- a Connie will smoke an RT off the line. I never found a comfort zone with the ergos. I could certainly ride it all day, but it was not as comfortable as the RT.

 

I loved my Connie, and I'm glad I had it... but it was a compromise for me, and ultimately I sold it to buy my Beemer.

 

My advice to you would be to buy it, ride it, enjoy it. Then when your financial situation changes, and the right Beemer deal comes along, revisit the decision. You never know, you may find the Kaw is the right bike for you. My guess, however, is you'll probably be back on a BMW in the long run. But in the mean time, you'll have clocked tens of thousands of inexpensive, low-trouble miles on a bike that met your needs for that point in your life.

 

Best of luck!

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I owned an ST1100 for 3 years, best $3000 ST bike out there by a mile.

 

+1... if you can find one.

 

I've never owned an ST1100, but it was one of the bikes I was considering when I bought my C-10. The problem I encountered around here was that people were asking as much for the Hondas as the BMWs.

 

If I had the choice of an ST1100 and a C-10 Connie for the same money, I would definitely take the Honda.

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You cannot go wrong with the ST1100... I would pick it over the Kawasaki every day. :thumbsup:

 

+1.

The ST is really a fantastic bike. Just had one for 7 years before it just got totaled, and I was really happy with it. Doesn't have the soul of a Beemer, but it's definitely more affordable. It's not a light bike - about a hundred pounds heavier than an RT but quite a bit less top-heavy than the Connie.

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cali_beemer

Well I ended up with a 2007 Yamaha FJR1300...very well farkled. It needs some love and is on my lift right now. I ended up going outside my budget but I did get what I think was an amazing deal on it, just requires alot of elbow grease to get into shape.

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Sounds good. It could be worthy of a poll of how many motorcycle buys are under or on or o er budget. Mine was similar with starting at 3500 and move to 6000 and the cost 6500

You do know this is worthless with before during after and then so my ride pictures!

NCS

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Sounds good. It could be worthy of a poll of how many motorcycle buys are under or on or o er budget. Mine was similar with starting at 3500 and move to 6000 and the cost 6500

You do know this is worthless with before during after and then so my ride pictures!

NCS

 

 

This is kinda like "I wear a 36, but a 38 feels so good I usually buy a 40."

 

-----

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