The VFR 800 has a distinct “Jekyll and Hyde” personality. Honda have somewhat of a reputation of producing bland/characterless motorcycles. I think the current model VFR is their attempt at denying this trait, although it is not the most convincing attempt at doing so. In my mind, it’s at least 20HP short of being a wild child.
At low revs everything seems typically Honda. The ride is vibration free, it’s quiet and well behaved (well apart from a slight fueling glitch from zero throttle) As the revs rise, so to does the vibration. By the time the engine switches to use four valves per cylinder (6600RPM) it is well and truly noticeable.
I don’t mind this trait, although after the silky smooth power delivery of my last two Hondas it came as a bit of a surprise! I have had comments from pillion passengers who found the vibrations felt through the foot-pegs to be excessive.
One of the simplest ways of reducing vibrations is to provide rubber dampeners. The idea is to provide a rubber insulation between any metal to metal contact where the vibrations can be transferred. Providing a rubber sleeve that holds the threaded bolt hole insulating it from the sub-frame would be the most effective solution. This was a bit beyond my modest ambitions. My solution involved $2 worth of tap washes purchased from the local markets.
Firstly, I removed the pillion peg bracket from the sub-frame. It’s held in place by two 8mm Allen key head bolts.
The small round tap washer sits between the bolt head and the bracket, whilst the flat tap washer sits between the bracket and the frame.
The additional thickness of the two washers now means less bolt thread is used to secure the pillion peg brackets. To counter the possibility of the bolts working their way loose, loc-tite has been applied to the bolt threads.
The result is noticeably* less vibrations are felt through the foot peg brackets. There still is some, so don’t expect it to be a “magic bullet” solution.
* It is noticeable, with a one from one test success rate. I made this alteration to one foot-peg only and an “uninformed” pillion was able to spot which foot-peg had less vibrations. Mission accomplished!
Please take a minute to read my disclaimer before replicating this modification.