The GS was ready to come off the lift so we went for a shake down ride! An Airhead friend near Vinland, KS spent minutes planning our impromptu ride. The weather was glorious (60 degrees in January - this kind of weather confuses me when it comes to global warming...) and the roads were dry! I met him at his place and we took the back roads to The Blind Tiger in Topeka. Beers on their deck was a great January treat! We stayed too long and it got a little chilly after the sun set. I suppose I could have tried out the heated grips but my hands stayed warm behind the GS hand guards.
The GS ran well and is very stable. I've replaced a lot of broken parts since trading for it so I was a little worried that my euphoria during the test ride hid big problems. Fortunately there's nothing fundamentally wrong with the bike! It tracks straight and true, goes and stops well, and handles very predictably. It's a heavier bike that Otus and the traffic circles made that obvious, but it never surprised me. At 70 mph it revs at 4,000 rpm in 5th gear - almost identical to Otus - so it feels very familiar and comfortable. The riding position is what I was hoping for - my feet beneath me and my back straight. While it is a bit more work to ride this big bike, I am very pleased with the GS!
Spotwalla Route Map
Now that the shake down ride is in the books I'll be doing a bit more maintenance-related jobs - fluids, filters, and lots of grease - so I'll be ready to go anywhere on this big machine!