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Windscreen problems - buffeting and noise

inexorable

Well-Known Member
Aug 16, 2018
158
52
58
UK
The Saturday setup was the VStream on the Batzen bracket (adjusted as high as I dared - about half way) AND the MRA defelector extended upwards on top (eyeball height - basically looking directly through the deflector like a mini screen). I could have raised the VStream higher but its heavy. Heaviest so far and on the Batzen bracket it wobbles about a lot more than I'm happy with. A screen frame reinforcement bracket would be an absolute must for me.

It was really cool to be able to hear the bike. Even through the ear plugs. I didn't even want to abandon the bike on the side of the road - first time! But I might as well have been in a car. Biking behind a screen like that isn't biking for me. I'm giving up the screen fight!

Let me rewind a few days.

I couldn't shift the idea that the lid might be playing more than a contributing role in the overall saga. So after work on Tuesday I went digging around and found (stuffed in the back of an old wardrobe) one of my first lids from 25 years ago (or more - let's not dwell on that). I bought it as a spare backup lid and at the time it was one of the cheapest things I could find. A basic no-frills plain lid. No vents. Fixed Visor. Maybe £50 in today's money.

Since then it has been used as a garage door stop, a face shield for breaking up concrete with a pickaxe, a gardening aid for cutting down a tree bush (with thorns over an inch long), a spider house, shelf support, space man hat - and judging from the state of it I'd say a cat's bed, dog toy and possibly a kids football.

I took a few minutes to blow out the obvious cobwebs and sat it next to the gleaming Arai (sitting there looking all smug and sexy in its new dark visor).

Gear on. Boots on. Engine on. Two thirds of a busted old lid on. Visor down aaaaaaaand.... couldn't see a damn thing! The visor is so bashed up I could barely make out the road. I wouldn't want this thing on if I bumped my head getting into the garage let alone coming off the bike 😂

I was a little nervous. I had already tested the VStream so I knew it wasn't much different from the other screens (a deafening uncomfortable mess of a ride). The Batzen bracket wasn't fitted. The MRA deflector wasn't on. I didn't have ear plugs in and I couldn't put the visor down if I got tired of nocturnal bees bouncing off of my eyeballs.

20 minutes later, once out of the noisy traffic and up to 80mph, I was thinking my eyes were getting a little weary from the cold wind abuse... and that maybe I should have remembered my ear plugs because the exhaust and road noise were quite audible - and we all know that even if your ears aren't bleeding they are being damaged over time so you have to wea..... wait what!?!!???? Exhaust noise? Road noise? What?

I pointed the bike at an empty bit and put the visor down. It was noisy. They say your other senses are heightened when you're blind so it may have just been that - but it wasn't deafening. Just noisy. You know, like riding a motorbike at 80mph kind of noisy. I could hear the exhaust! I put the visor back up and it was.... well, almost quiet. Motorbike noisy kind of quiet. The kind of quiet you need ear plugs for but that won't make your ears bleed and kill you after 10 minutes. Beautiful motorbike noisy kind of quiet. And I didn't have the ear plugs in. I heard myself say, out loud, "this is what it's supposed to be like".

I then remembered I bought a mid range Shark race style lid for one of the kids a couple of years ago and rushed back to change into it like a hermit crab on the move. It didn't feel anything like the reassuring comfort of the Arai but better than the old one. But waaaaaay too loud again. I closed all of the vents and it was better but still really bad. With the visor open it was ok ish but only in as much as the constant wind noise was easier to listen to than the echos of turbulance hitting the lid. I'd place it somewhere in between the bedraggled old mess of a lid and the deafening echo chamber formerly know as the Arai.

I came home and put the Arai back on. It was beautiful. Arais really wrap you in and make you feel like they've "got you". Back on the bike though, at 60mph, I was looking for a shortcut home within minutes. Head hung low like someone had stolen my sweets. Things were becoming very clear.

Inside my Arai is a wonderful place for a head to be and in the event that I get taken out by a drunken moron again in the future, it will be inside that lid that I will want my head to go bouncing down the road. However, this wonderful, reassuringly safe feeling, sexy looking dream of a lid just got owned by what's left of a 25 year old £50 plastic fish bowl come dog toy.

Yes the Arai is good. Superb. Excellent. Safe. Perfectly ventilated. The only lid I ever want my head to bounce in (if it ever has to) and yes it looks great in it's new dark visor. The truth though, is that those little pods on the side of the lid where the visor connects right next your ears, amplify and echo the turbulant air the Arica Twin generates to volumes beyond that which this human can tolerate. Perfect in the clean air of the Hayabusa. An insane roaring riot on the Africa Twin.

I'm probably learning important things here.

Anyway, the simplest lid on the market with no ventilation, no clever visor system and no sticky outy clevereness gave me a glimpse of what "might" be possible. Imagine that lid but 25 years on. Lid simplicity might just be the solution here. Does it exist?

That's an expensive question.

Screens were bad enough - how many lids do you buy??? I can't afford the payments on the one I have! 😂

Not the Shark. Even without ear pods that was noisy noisy noisy. Probably ok on a different bike but no good here for me. That worries me slightly. No ear pods and still loud. Hmmmmmmm..... the only difference left is vents? I'm gonna get hotttt!

You can't "test ride" a lid and I need more than marginal tissue stuffed inside a fishbowl for protection so I don't want cheap. Do I get a loan to buy the legendarily quiet schuberth C3 Pro and hope the reviews are right about the quietness but wrong about the suffocating lack of air? ... or do I sell some organs and chance an Arai adventure style lid and hope it's better? It has no "pods" but it does have plenty of sticky outy bits.

Faced with that undesirable dilemma I decided to load up the Africa Twin with the VStream, Batzen, MRA deflector, comfy Arai and bomb proof earplugs for one last try in defiance. Dry day with zero breeze. Had to be worth a go.

It really wasn't that bad as far as noise levels go but sitting behind a screen that tall hiding from the wind just isn't riding a bike for me. Feels pointless and uninspiring. We're back to the start of the post.

So, yeah. The Africa Twin generates terrible turbulant air and I am now convinced I will not find a fix* with any number of screens, deflectors, adjusters, brackets or other mounted wizardry. Ok, maybe wizardry but I don't know any.

* by "fix" I'm talking about the wind roar - the head wobble is fixable.

The only move I have left is to give up on trying to fix an unfixable problem, accept that Honda have expertly designed a pocket of hell mess around my head that I can't change and see if another lid can cope with it any better. Financially speaking, I hopefully have the means for one shot. One lid (if I sell the screens etc). Maybe a Schuberth, maybe a Tour X4, maybe something else. If that fails I will go back to the smallest cut down screen I can make, go on a trip for a couple of days in UK weather and either be able to cope with it angrily or sell the bike and walk away a few thousand quid poorer - never to even look at another Honda without becoming enraged.

See, you lot with your sensible length legs and perfect Africa Twins think adventure bike riding is all about being on the bike for amazing long rides day after day, travelling along unpaved tracks through beautiful remote distant lands and sharing cheese sandwiches with wonderful folk from afar - but no - you've missed the point. The "real" adventure is having the balls to grow yourself to excessivly daft proportions for motorcycling, becoming drawn to a bike that is simply not made to fit anyone near your (apparently daft according to Honda) height, spending thousands you don't have on lids and mods in futile efforts trying to fix the bike and fighting with it every weekend to try and make it tolerable for longer than an hour.

It's not about fun it's about fighting deafening roaring dragons. Gritting your teeth desperately trying to get through every minute. 6 months. 1,000 impossible miles. This is adventure biking done right.

Oh... no..... hang on.... it's about fun isn't it. You're right. I'm jealous.

he he .... vent over ... I'll keep you posted on the next lid when she (cough) money allows.
 
Last edited:

Echo15

Active Member
Feb 26, 2019
15
4
33
Florida
You have just summarized my Triumph Tiger 1050 experience; no one else seemed to have the problems I did.... and my experience with that bike were similar to getting multiple left and right hooks from Mike Tyson. The screen finally came off, and I could live again. I loved that bike, but it hated me.
 

inexorable

Well-Known Member
Aug 16, 2018
158
52
58
UK

vfmoore

Well-Known Member
Gold Rider
Nov 3, 2018
144
55
68
Oregon
I truly am sorry that you are having such a challenge. I am 6' and have found that the Batzen with the 21' VStream windscreen set at or near the bottom gives me a nice quiet place and leaves me clear vision over the top to a point 40'-50' in front of the bike. While not like my Goldwing with a Firecreek Windbender, I am quite happy. I did add the Camel brace to the windscreen support just for the sake of reducing metal fatigue on the welds of the framework.
 

Juggler01

Active Member
Nov 30, 2018
12
4
33
Thornton Cleveleys
1908

Hi …. I'm 6'4" and yes I "noticed" the wind on my AT - DCT - ADV. I've fitted a simple £20 Air Damm to the Tank / forks and it has definitely made a lot of difference. Worth a try, it improved things for me.
 

Dennis

Active Member
Dec 27, 2017
3
1
31
Kentucky
If you're 6'2", or around that, then you've probably had similar issues. For me, above 40mph this bike becomes unrideable.

I don't know quite how Honda made it so good for some and so bad for taller units like me - but it's bad.

I'm now on my 4th screen configuration and I honestly feel like I just want to throw this bike in a river and walk away.
So disappointed. I think I need help or the bike is going.

OEM Screen
Looks ok, good low speed, useless above 40mph with the seat in any position no matter how I sit.
Extreme blindness inducing buffeting and deafening wind noise.

OEM screen with Batzen bracket
Looks good but performs the same.
Increases lid fogging due to decreased lower airflow.
Extreme buffeting and unbearable turbulant wind noise.

Givi D1144ST tall screen
Looks tall and changes the look and feel of the bike.
Cuts off airflow to the lid vents so fogging is a constant problem - visor has to stay open.
Top of screen is constantly in my eye line and the first few inches distort the view of the road.
Seat in low position - a bubble of respite if I squish myself down behind the screen but I can't ride like that.
Seat in high position - less extreme buffetting than the OEM but still a deafening wind noise.

So far, with all three of these setups, I have to keep fully standing up every few minutes just to give my head and ears a rest. Better even at 80mph.

Givi D1144ST tall screen with Batzen bracket
I've fitted the Givi screen to the Batzen bracket but this looks so tall (even in its lowest position) that I'm nervous about the leverage on the screen frame if I adjust it to be any higher. There's plenty of stories about how weak the frames are. I will try it though and see what breaks.

I haven't taken the bike out with this setup yet - I was too frustrated with it last night and had to get off it. The money and time I've wasted buying this Honda mistake is starting to burn me up and it's never good to ride with the red mist looming. I almost threw the bike on the floor at a set of lights and walked away.

Not sure where to go from here. Even if this last daft setup is better I'm going to be left sat behind a giant screen I cant see over. No airflow, fully fogging up lid. That's not riding a bike. That's just silly.

So, I think I'm left with only 2 options - and I'm desperatly seeking a third.

1. Cut one of the screens down to be as close to not having one as possible
2. Fight the urge to set light to the bike and sell it at a financial loss as quickly as possible

I was so excited about getting this bike. Put everything I had into it. Now I honestly wish I'd never seen it.

Anyone got a third option to save the day?

Note: I ride with a 2017 Arai QV touring lid. It's not a quiet lid but it copes on my Hayabusa at (cough) higher speeds, without anywhere near the same noise issue. So I'm thinking I can probably rule that out?

I went with the OEM tall screen and all problems went away. No buffeting, no nothing, even at high speeds and long rides. I am 6 foot tall. Love it.
 

jkmcgill

Active Member
Feb 1, 2019
18
12
33
canada
I truly am sorry that you are having such a challenge. I am 6' and have found that the Batzen with the 21' VStream windscreen set at or near the bottom gives me a nice quiet place and leaves me clear vision over the top to a point 40'-50' in front of the bike. While not like my Goldwing with a Firecreek Windbender, I am quite happy. I did add the Camel brace to the windscreen support just for the sake of reducing metal fatigue on the welds of the framework.
Is that on the regular africa twin, or adventure sports? I would like to install the 23" Vstream touring windscreen on my 2019 adventure sports, and am seeking to undersand any comaptibiltiy issues. I need about 6.5" of height above the current OEM screen to give me the vision to a point 50' away. Suspect I may need the camel reinforcement as well, but am concerned if they will all be compatible. https://camel-adv.com/collections/honda/products/africa-twin-windscreen-brace. I discovered with some duct tape mockups, that I need the wings on the V stream to block the sides and decrease the wind niose.
 

vfmoore

Well-Known Member
Gold Rider
Nov 3, 2018
144
55
68
Oregon
Adventure Sport. I actually mounted the 23, but it did not give me the clear field of view over the windshield that I had with the shortest one (I think 20.75"). Distribution of my 5'11"-6' is with a 32" inseam. As stated above, I get a clear field of view that is really as close as 30' if I sit erect or about 50' if I slump a bit, but that is using the Batzen adjustable bracket on the lowest setting, which is about 2"-3" higher than the stock mount. Hope this helps.
 
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jkmcgill

Active Member
Feb 1, 2019
18
12
33
canada
My stock screen is 21", and I need another 6", so hopefully I'm thinking about it correctly, that I will pick up 2" with the 23" Vstream, and the other 4" with the Batzen.
 

vfmoore

Well-Known Member
Gold Rider
Nov 3, 2018
144
55
68
Oregon
That might work well. I actually have a Cycle Gear here in town so I ordered the mid-size screen and told them if it was too tall I would be returning it and ordering the replacement. I did so in about 48 hours, as mounting it and setting the Batzen at the bottom did not work. With you having a few inches on this old man, the 23" might be just perfect.
 
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Black99S

Well-Known Member
Aug 25, 2016
127
73
118
BC, Canada
I've got a Schuberth E1. I leave the peak on for gravel roads and the bush. I pop it off for pavement.
Can't fit a Swegotech because of Giant Lop tank bag. Have MRA Sport wind deflector that makes a 75% improvement over stock.
Yup. at 5'7" it's the worst air management I've had on any bike in 49 years of riding.
 
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BlackRockFox

Active Member
Nov 14, 2018
16
3
33
England
You have just summarized my Triumph Tiger 1050 experience; no one else seemed to have the problems I did.... and my experience with that bike were similar to getting multiple left and right hooks from Mike Tyson. The screen finally came off, and I could live again. I loved that bike, but it hated me.
I had a T1050 and it came with an MRA screen which was excellent
Tried the OEM and it was awful, as you say
Great bike
 

HerrDeacon

Active Member
Sep 12, 2018
24
9
33
Canada
I've got a Schuberth E1. I leave the peak on for gravel roads and the bush. I pop it off for pavement.
Can't fit a Swegotech because of Giant Lop tank bag.
So the tank bag doesn't help? I had to take the peak off my helmet and considered making something like the Swegotech but thought when I added the tank bag it would accomplish pretty much the same thing. Sounds like it doesn't.
 

Cuchulainn

Well-Known Member
Gold Rider
Aug 10, 2017
697
258
168
Denver, CO
www.rmmrc.org
I've got a Schuberth E1. I leave the peak on for gravel roads and the bush. I pop it off for pavement.
Can't fit a Swegotech because of Giant Lop tank bag. Have MRA Sport wind deflector that makes a 75% improvement over stock.
Yup. at 5'7" it's the worst air management I've had on any bike in 49 years of riding.
Which Giant Loop tank bag do you own? I use the Swegotech with a Giant Loop Fandango tank bag on mine.
 

Black99S

Well-Known Member
Aug 25, 2016
127
73
118
BC, Canada
Which Giant Loop tank bag do you own? I use the Swegotech with a Giant Loop Fandango tank bag on mine.
Can you post a pic of your install. If it works for you I'll buy a Swegotech and try it.
I've got the Fandango Pro. I found a template on-line for a Swegotech-like part and made a cardboard piece to test fitment. Had to cut the cardboard up quite a bit to fit around the Fandango mounting pad front strap that goes forward around the steering head. Thus assumed I'd be hacking the Swegotech up and loosing any potential benefits.
 

Cuchulainn

Well-Known Member
Gold Rider
Aug 10, 2017
697
258
168
Denver, CO
www.rmmrc.org


It goes around the filler cap somewhat, but moves out of the way and I haven’t had any issues pulling up the cap.



Side straps tied down and such.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 

superfunkomatic

Well-Known Member
Have you beaten the buffeting issue? On my VFR I tried about 5 different screens, cutting one down, building one up and absolutely nothing made the wind noise and buffeting any better. On my KLR I tried every screen available and finally just before giving up hope found one that made riding the bike bearable. I felt like I'd won the lottery on the AT that I didn't really have to change much. I also figured that helmets would be a factor but my RF1100 and Hornet X2 Shoei helmets work similarly (even with the beak/peak). I agree it's incredibly frustrating, have you tried high/low seat adjustment? Maybe adding a bit of padding on the seat to lift you up to see if you'd be in cleaner air? Maybe changing seating position a bit (more forward or backwards). Keep on experimenting and hopefully, you'll get it. 👍
 

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