One thing I really appreciated about buying a VFR was the excellent support from online forums – VFRdiscussion and VFRworld. VFR motorcycles must attract a ‘special’ kind of buyer and rider because they document everything. Every type of maintenance, alteration and equipment addition has been documented on those two sites – encyclopedic knowledge.
Well, buying a XL1000V Varadero has not been the same experience. I read an article that suggested that only 300 of them were sold in Canada. If that’s true, I certainly have a rare bird of a bike. Also, that means that there are only a handful of forums online and not a lot of background or support for the bike, even worldwide where they sold considerably more.
Luckily, Honda engineers are practical and reuse similar parts, measurements and accessories between bikes and adding new gear becomes less guesswork.
None of the Varadero forums definitively noted whether certain Ram mounts for GPS would fit in similar locations. For whatever reason, many riders have fabricated odd and strange makeshift mounts to fit the bill. Well, plain ol’ Ram mounts will work on the bike and have been engineered and tested for the bike – much safer and much less crazy looking. Also, I like to have the GPS in a fixed location so it is easy to see and not moving around with the handlebar which seems odd and counterintuitive to me.
GPSCity.ca is actually local to Calgary and had all the parts that I needed including the power cable for an aging Garmin Zumo 550 GPS.
What’s required for mounting the GPS and SPOT on the bike:
- Power Cable
- RAM-B-309-1U Motorcycle Handle Base (attached to front brake reservoir)
- RAM-B-347U Rectangular AMPS Plate (attached to Zumo cradle)
- RAM-B-231-NHU Rail Plate with 1 inch ball (attached with tank bolts – has extended height 1″ ball)
- RAM-B-201U-C Long Arm B-Socket (raises GPS above fuel tank)
- Hardware store (Home Depot) – 6mm x 40mm Coarse Thread Cap Bolt
This will mount the GPS to the tank bolts and the SPOT communicator to the front brake reservoir. Easy peasy and took about 1/2 an hour to set up.
Here are the results: