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Fairings vs no fairings

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' started by Fleema, Jan 27, 2009.

  1. I'm about to buy my first (LAM) road bike after a few years of trail bike riding. Preference is Honda VTR250. In addition to commuting, I'm intending to do a few long-day/overnight tours. In the interest of comfort and fatigue, should I be looking at something with fairings, e.g. Kawasaki ZZR250? :?

  2. Only if you want something with fairings.
    A VTR with a screen would be just as good.
  3. long day/overnight tours mean highway speeds, and anything in the 250 class is not going to uber comfortable at those speeds for extended times. Frankly.

    ZZR would be a better option than the VTR, maybe. You gain fairings but lose top end speed (Drag), style points, and usually they are older bikes.

    If it's a lam bike and your focus is on long distance stuff, why not look at an older model of the "larger" bikes, that are lams approved. Cruiser style?
  4. vtr250 fully loaded up (fully with camping gear) tours great......rosie has done a few tours with us, on her vtr250 without a screen and hussles the vtr along very nicely......go naked if you man enough, if not buy a faired, but you have been warned :)
  5. Fairing multiply greatly the repair costs if you happen to fall off.....
  6. Yep, if you drop the naked you won't do near as much damage.

    Drop a bike with fairings you could smash the front fairing, windscreen and more.
  7. And these aren';t cheap...

    Not to mention bike is written off generally far more easily with fairings... Fairings are expensive, sometimes not worth the bother if it has exhaust damage etc as well.
  8. Actually a fairing reduces drag and increases top end speed, not the other way round. :)

    Garry from Oz.
  9. Fairings are for shirt lifters anyway. Get the VTR, and if you put a screen on it I'll be sure to keep a spare kickinnanutz for ya.
  10. True, but not by as much as might be thought, particularly at 250 speeds.

    20 years ago, Performance Bikes did some aerodynamics tests on, ISTR, an early CBR 600. Stock, it managed 145 mph. All fairings off, it topped out at 138.

    That's a lot of very expensive tupperware to cart around for a fairly academic (unless you're a nutter) increase in top end and the fairly limited improvement in rider comfort provided by sportbike fairings of the era.

    Edit: My unreliable memory may be playing me false here. The speeds I mention might apply to a stock FZ750 (faired) and a stock FZX750 (unfaired mini VMax) which had basically the same engine, which was another comparison I made at about the same time.
  11. which was my point patb, at the power of a 250 i'd regard greater surface area of the fairing as a liability over a slight streamlined effect.
  12. At highway speeds, the fairing will "cut the air" better and you (the rider) will generally get less buffeting on a bike with fairings than one without.

    Added bonus, its easier to wash & keep a fairing clean than an exposed motor.

    Disadvantage, like they say above, the repair cost from a small drop will be more.

    Personally, I think any bike without a fairing looks a bit like a tractor!
  13. :-O
    have you seen the streetfightered 1098S that sits up at the Maiala cafe
    that certainly doesn't look like a tractor :p I think it looks better than the nromal 1098 hehehe
  14. The VTR is perfect for long-day/overnight tours. I went on the 4 musketeers ride with my VTR and I couldn't be happier with it.
  15. I say go the VTR with a small givi screen or something similar.

    Best of both worlds. Around town you dump the screen and enjoy the air (or in hot weather like this, really enjoy the ventilation...) and out on the highway, fit it again for an easier ride.

    I've found with the SV that with a small fairing she'll go much better at higher speeds, and there's less fatigue after some time in the saddle....

    Not sure it effects the maximum speed, but she certainly feels more planted with the screen in excess of 120.... (tested on non public roads, of course)
  16. I cannot comment on a faired bike, as I've yet to own one. I use my naked hornet as a daily commuter and occassional joyride. It has a small screen & have had no problem handling the elements. I do, however, get some helmet buffeting at speeds over 120k. Otherwise it's all good!
  17. Thanks for all the great feedback floks
  18. Touring is fine on a naked bike.
    My first bike was a Suzuki Bandit and i had no issues touring on it.
    Don't let fairing / no fairing issue sway your decision - if you like the VTR, go for it.
  19. Anyone ever dropped a naked bike and got a quote to fix up their scratched up engine ?? I don't think it cheap.
  20. Au contraire. Compared to a fairing half, an alternator cover or clutch cover is pocket money. Plus the fact that many faired bikes wouldn't protect the engine anyway, leaving them both to fix.

    Example, my own BMW R1100RT. Rocker cover $120. Fairing, enough to write off the bike.

    For those really worried, a set of oggies can prevent engine damage from most light drops. Good luck finding anything that'll save a fairing to the same extent.