This is my first post here after weeks of lurking.
So I bought my 919 about four months ago, and finally took her on a long ride this weekend (8 hours from points A to B on Friday and again on Saturday). About an hour and a half into the ride on both days, I started getting some considerable shoulder pain.
I'm 6'4", and I'm guessing that the pain is a result of the bike's riding position and me being taller than the average rider (for whom the bike was designed). Are there any other tall riders out there who have experienced this? What comfort-options do I have if I intend on keeping the bike?
Check twistedthrottle.com, they have bar risers that could help.
Otherwise you can look into handle bar swaps. Most people on here have put lower bars on theirs, but I am sure there are some options that would give you a more upright stance, Renthal makes some I think
I actually think it is the upright stance that is causing the pain. Sort of hard to explain, but its something like I have to force my shoulders back to not feel like I'm falling backwards off the bike.
If that is the case I would definitely recommend some lower bars like Renthal Ultra Lows, Suburban Machinery, or Coerce Hyperbars Low. I am the same height as you, I can't say I've ever experienced shoulder pain like you describe, but lower bars do make my back feel better and are more comfortable on the highway because you are leaned perfectly into the wind.
could also be not so much taller as you are wider then they are designed for.. I had some pain on longer rides that would move from palm to wrist to elbow to shoulder the longer I was on.. and was pretty mild at the palm and wrist.. and got worse the further up it traveled.. figured out it was my hands and arms being at odd angles for me.. went with cheap dirtbike bars and a set of risers from twisted throttle and would up with wider and less sweep (less of angling back) bars and a bit lower the stock as well.. would like a bit higher for really long rides but the lower is great for Sunday moring back road straffing with the sport bikes..
What those guys said. I will add that riding a bike 8 hours is a chore. You have had the bike for 4 months. Sometimes it takes a little time for a person to get used to using different muscles, and being in the position that riding puts you into. I've had good results by stretching a lot.
I have the same problem with most sit up bikes -- the wind pressure tries to blow you off the back, so you end up doing prolonged chin ups to compensate, which is very tiring. Also, if the stock bars are swept too far back, flexing your wrists to compensate for a wrong angle will not necessarily be a problem for the first couple hours, but really tells after a day in the saddle. Try these tests:
1 -- Sit on the bike in your normal position, preferably while riding. Leaving your thumbs around the grips, straighten your fingers and move your wrists to as relaxed a position as possible. The grips should describe a line just behind your knuckles.
2 -- When riding your normal touring speed, lean forward slowly to balance wind pressure, then move your left hand forward to keep a comfortable bend in the elbow -- this is where the bars should be, probably lower than stock.
The whole point is to balance wind pressure and forward lean so there is minimal weight on your arms, which is why most versions of naked bikes sold in Europe have lower and flatter bars than those sold in the U.S.
Or , you could mount a windshield for touring, but given your height, it would have to be pretty tall.
Good luck with fitting your bike to you -- it is absolutely worth the effort!
If it has already been done, it is safe to assume it is possible to do it.
On the other hand, if it has not been done never assume it is impossible to do it.
------- Rob --------