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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'd like to start off with introducing myself, and a little behind the thought process behind building the 919 in this direction.

My name is Justin, I'm a father of 3 and an avid outdoorsman with a penchant for going on road trips. I picked up my 2005 Honda 919 earlier in the year, and found it to be quite good at many things while not truly outstanding at any one thing. A perfect blank canvas, with comfortable ergos and the legendary Honda reliability.

Starting with general maintenance, I went ahead and replaced: the tires, chain/sprockets, wheel bearings, fluids/filters, spark plugs, and gave it a good once over to establish a maintenance baseline. For performance, I cut the header and installed a R6 Y pipe and added a PCV to balance out the fueling.

From there, I rode it several thousand miles (commuting, weekend riding, camping trips, etc) to get a feel for the platform.
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On my last camping trip, I rode around Lake Michigan in it's entirety along with ferrying over to Drummond Island. It was on Drummond that I realized the 919 makes for a decent ADV type bike, if ridden within it's limits. From there, my build took on this direction.

While off-roading on some mild Jeep Trails on Drummond, I made some mental notes on what I felt were the most pressing issues that needed attention. Lack of ground clearance, traction, and under engine protection were the three things I knew I could rectify without compromising too much on road handling.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Ground clearance.

As the 919 is a sport oriented motorcycle, ground clearance is quite a bit less than I'd ideally want when traversing rutted Trails.

Taking a page from Ken's trans alp build, I spaced the front fork cartridges up 35mm and relocated the rear shock's upper mount bolt on the frame. I gained roughly 30mm of height in the front and 24mm in the rear, which also helped to stabilize the steering a bit more.
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2. Traction.

The Michelin Pilot Road 2s were great on the tarmac, but lacked sufficient 'bite' in looser conditions to allow me to rode comfortably at any reasonable pace. After doing thorough research, I ended up choosing a set of Avon Trailriders to replace the Michelins with. So far traction on the pavement is every bit the equal to the Michelins, while off road traction has improved to the point that I can ride on gravel roads without clenching too much.
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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
3. Protection.

We all start out with the best intentions of staying shiny side up, but as we all know things can take a turn for the worse in a hurry. To that effect, I decided to add a plethora of protection farkles.

I sourced a pair of universal hand guards to fit to my Renthal Ultra lows, as to save the levers in a spill. While not the best quality overall, they should serve their purpose fine.
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To protect the engine cases, I added a pair of crash bars from the company Heed. Fit and finish is great, and they keep the bike more upright in the event of a spill.
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Lastly, I added a skid plate. Unfortunately, I could not find any skid plates specifically for the 919 but what I did find was a skid plate for a 2012-2020 Kawasaki Versys 1000. Knowing the bikes dimensions were similar, I decided to roll the dice and try it out. Much to my surprise, the skid plate fit pretty well. All I had to do was re drill the mounting holes and make a couple spacers.
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Next up is a trip out to the Rockies in 2 weeks!
 

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I could say this is the most adventurous thing I've done on a 919 being over a thousand miles from home, by myself, going over a dirt mountain pass but....hackberry road near Rocksprings was a hell of a lot more technical with the caveat being I could have turned around any time, versus the picture where the last 1/4mi was by far the steepest dirtroad I've ever seen. Also did a lot of the dirt dragon in NC on this bike with a buddy on his SV650. 10/10 glad I haven't had to pick this bitch up after a hard semi-enduro session. At 160lbs soaking wet with a roll of quarters in my pocket, the 919 is not an easy lift.
 
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Excellent. So good, I really enjoyed reading this thread on how you modified the 919 to fit your ADV rides.
Motorcycle looks good, keep that shiny gas tank up!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks!

Today I added some auxiliary lighting to make myself more conspicuous while commuting, as well as broadening out my lighting.

The Amber's are on with the low beam, the whites come on with the highs.
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Great thread!

Just wondering - in the process of building the exhaust, did you include an O2 sensor to feed info back to the PCV?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Great thread!

Just wondering - in the process of building the exhaust, did you include an O2 sensor to feed info back to the PCV?
Yes I did, I added the auto tune module and wideband. Under 20% throttle I have AFRs targeted at 14.5:1 and I was able to gain 5-7mpg at cruising speed.

Fully loaded with luggage I see as high as 49.5mpg at 75mph now.
 

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That's a very interesting take! Thanks for sharing your work- there's no such thing as too many pics!
What do you have going on with the windscreen? I have a Puig and about all it does is keep the instrument cluster clean.
Enjoy your Rockies roadtrip and keep us posted!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
That's a very interesting take! Thanks for sharing your work- there's no such thing as too many pics!
What do you have going on with the windscreen? I have a Puig and about all it does is keep the instrument cluster clean.
Enjoy your Rockies roadtrip and keep us posted!
The windscreen is a Honda OEM unit that has had the inside painted black. I also added a generic clip on windscreen Extender from eBay (I believe it's a PUIG knockoff) that I can adjust to suit conditions.

With it fully retracted, it reduces buffeting and places the wind about mid chest level. Fully extended, it kicks it up just past my chin (I can tuck down and fully be in the 'bubble'). Not the perfect solution, but it works for me!
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Cool. I've looked at them, but wondered if it would be worth the money spent. Is that the Mackinac Bridge in the pic?
 

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Crossed that bridge on a Shovelhead in 1985! 4300 mi in 30 days from Texas and back. Drank some LaBatts in Batchawana Bay, Ontario eh...lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Crossed that bridge on a Shovelhead in 1985! 4300 mi in 30 days from Texas and back. Drank some LaBatts in Batchawana Bay, Ontario eh...lol
I can't imagine doing that many miles on a Shovelhead! I helped a friend put together his, and its a vibrating monster. Lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Today I got to ride some more mountain roads to test out the suspension and my tire choice. I'm extremely pleased with both the on road handling, and ability to absorb bumps mid corner.

Dad and I rode up Loveland Pass this morning, and we enjoyed the wonderful views. Off road testing is to come later in the week.
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The 96ci Street glide made it up, with a little huffing and puffing. ;)
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Purty country! I didn't realize you were CO...thought you were MI
They build those HD's a lot better these days
 

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When you relocated the upper mounting point on the rear shock, did you have to drill a new hole? I've read Ken's thread and he didn't say, either
 
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