F3S - First 8 Days 1000 miles
Sumitted by: Hal Mette
UPDATE 1600 MILES - extra tidbits
A Spyderlover suggested I was off base when I mentioned all the buffeting I was feeling with the little windshield. He said he used a full face helmet and didn't experience that effect. I tried the full face helmet and sure enough most of the buffeting vanished. Apparently it was the wind trying to lift the 3/4 open face helmet off my head that I was feeling.
I got the driver and passenger backrests installed - surprise, surprise - the BRP backrests are adjustable with a simple allen wrench this year unlike 2014. The backrests are removable in about two minutes by someone who has no mechanical skills whatsoever (I qualify) and the backseat cover has a safety cord attached to it so if you don't reinstall it correctly and it flies off, it won't go far. I guess BRP learned from the flying panels of the oil change on the earlier model bikes. I also mounted my Nelson Riggs tail bag to the passenger backrest. Now I can install or remove it in less than a minute as well.
When I rode the test bike 424 miles the foot pegs were set at 4 and the handlebars one notch further forward. With the handlebars back and the pegs set at 3, the bike fit me perfectly and the quality of the ryde improved enormously. Clearly the proper fit to the machine makes all the difference in how much you will enjoy the ryde. If possible, when you go for a test ride you should sit on different bikes until you find the one that feels most comfortable to you.
At first the buffeting from the wind was irritating compared to the RT, but as I rode more and the weather became hotter, I actually found the wind relaxing and part of the experience. F4 tells me they will have an alternate windshield within 3 months so I may still explore that option at least for cold weather ryding.
I am surprised to note that once I add a couple Nelson Riggs saddlebags (I already have the large Nelson Riggs Tail Bag), I would feel comfortable taking the F3S on a ryde of any distance. Originally I had thought of it more as a local hot rod toy but clearly it can be much more. I find the seating position for the ride for the F3 in the standard seat to be more comfortable than my RT limited. That was another surprise since I expected if it was going to be “more motorcycle” that would mean less comfort, but not the case.
The acceleration is a blast! Sure my Ducati PSE 1000 would blow this away but as Spyders go the F3 is hot. In some of the written reviews I saw mention of a criticism of the nanny kicking in to keep you from enjoying the corners. I am here to tell you that I have cornered at speeds I did not think were humanly possible for a spyder (well over twice the posted speed limit) without ever seeing any sign of the nanny — and I was trying to bring her out. With the low center of gravity of this bike cornering is oh so much more fun than with the other Spyders.
It is a little nuisance to not have a glove box for garage door openers, gate openers, toll pass, and other things you need to access quickly and use frequently. I started with a fanny pack but quickly changed to an ICON mesh water vest with lots of pockets in front & back for my storage. It will be interesting to see how everyone else solves this issue.