F650GS to V-Strom 650 ? - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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V-Curious A place for those that are thinking about buying a V-Strom to ask V-Strom owners questions

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  #1  
Old 03-27-2012, 03:55 PM
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Junior Trooper
 
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Default F650GS to V-Strom 650 ?

first off, hello all

im gonna cut straight to the chase.
Currently im owning a 2000 F650GS and the decision has been made that it needs to be upgraded. Ive been trying out different Bikes every since last August and somehow I cant reach a decision.

Now the 2 main reasons the GS has got to are as follows. Im doing a lot of long distance touring(mostly paved road but with the odd gravel thrown in) and sadly my little one somewhat lacks the power and comfort to get me from one end of europe to the other. Fully ladden the front wheel becomes somewhat unstable and the fact you have to push it close to its limits to even get decent travelling speed on the highway(130km/h) also doesnt help.
Not to mention the fact that the costs for upkeep are growing steadly(no visit to BMW <400...)

I rode the 2011 V-Strom in august of last year and instantly loved it(at least from a comfort and handling point of view, the looks are a different thing) however im still uncertain wether or not such a "small" bike really delivers the long range capability im looking for and wether or not it can handle me + luggage(a total of 100kg for me + 60kg luggage) without being seriously hampered in the handling department.

so this is where all you V-Strom riders come in ...
how are you experiences in long distance touring with the little one ?
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  #2  
Old 03-27-2012, 04:21 PM
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Cedar City, Utah
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I just sold a 2001 F650GS Dakar. It had a larger front wheel than the standard 650GS, which was nice for off-road travels. Otherwise the bike was equipped for short touring. By "short" I mean 2-4 day trips of about 6-700 miles.

I moved to a '12 650 VStrom because 1) I wanted a more comfortable touring platform for longer rides, 2) a quicker engine response, and 3) a more reliable motorcycle.

All with mild off-road capabilities.

I'll be using the Strom for longer trips; about 3-6 weeks each. I've done a lot of motorcycle touring over the years and have no doubt this bike will serve me well. I find the "handling" quite remarkable.
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  #3  
Old 03-27-2012, 04:40 PM
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My 2006 has over 202,000 km on it. My riding last year was about 57,000 km. I weigh in at around 240 lbs, 109 kg. I live near Toronto, Ontario, Canada. I did two major rides last year. One was to the east coast where I put on about 5,300 km. The other was to Grand Canyon and Death Valley Area where I put on about 10,400 km. In both cases I carried a Topcase and a waterproof bag in the back seat area which had tent, sleeping bags, etc in it. I imagine I had around 50 or 60 kg of luggage altogether but didn't weight it.


On my west trip much of the temperatures were in the 32c to 39c (90 to 100f) with Death valley hitting 52c (126f). Towards the end I had a bit of Get-Home-itis when I was in Utah heading towards Bonneville Salt flats. I ended up heading straight home on the interstates. It was about 3,300 km. Speed limit in Utah was 80mph (about 135 kph) traffic was moving at around 90 mph (about 145kph) so I stayed with the flow, and as I got further east most of the limits were 75 mph (about 120 kph) and traffic usually flowed at around 85 mph (about 135kph).

The bike never missed a beat, it just used a bit of oil (I started the trip with 179,000 km or about 111,000 miles) and had no issues at all in spite of the speed, the heat, and the load.

The DL650 is plenty of bike!

..Tom
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Road Toads Charter Member 2006 DL650: 202,000 km 125,500 miles, 2012 DL650 New March 2012 115,000+ km, 72,000+ miles.


This can help preventing from cars pulling out in front of you (SMIDSY)
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  #4  
Old 03-28-2012, 02:28 AM
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Used to own a carbed F650. Went to a DL in 2006. The DL has a worse turning circle.

That's about it for downsides really, better bike, more power, much nicer on road, less maintenance intensive.

The 2012 version is even better

Pete
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  #5  
Old 03-28-2012, 10:22 AM
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Junior Trooper
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeteW View Post
Used to own a carbed F650. Went to a DL in 2006. The DL has a worse turning circle.

That's about it for downsides really, better bike, more power, much nicer on road, less maintenance intensive.

The 2012 version is even better

Pete
Im curious about the "less maintenance part", especially since I read yesterday that the inspection intervals are 6000km(read it on a big german site, cant finde any info on the suzuki site) compared to every 10000km on the BMW. considering BMWs high price policy when it gets to inspection costs i guess it will amount to the same costs in the end.
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  #6  
Old 03-28-2012, 10:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by libertine View Post
Im curious about the "less maintenance part", especially since I read yesterday that the inspection intervals are 6000km(read it on a big german site, cant finde any info on the suzuki site) compared to every 10000km on the BMW. considering BMWs high price policy when it gets to inspection costs i guess it will amount to the same costs in the end.
Mainly at 6,000 km you have oil changes, which are very easy to do by yourself.


My 2006 was only at a delaer for the 1,000km and 24,000 km valve check. After that I had a local guy take car of tires and chains and that was it. It currentlly has over 202,000 km on it. I suspect my 2012 will require slighly more maintenance as the throttle syncing is not easy to do at home without a special device.

..Tom
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Road Toads Charter Member 2006 DL650: 202,000 km 125,500 miles, 2012 DL650 New March 2012 115,000+ km, 72,000+ miles.


This can help preventing from cars pulling out in front of you (SMIDSY)
SMIDSY detailed report.
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  #7  
Old 03-28-2012, 07:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by libertine View Post
Im curious about the "less maintenance part", especially since I read yesterday that the inspection intervals are 6000km(read it on a big german site, cant finde any info on the suzuki site) compared to every 10000km on the BMW. considering BMWs high price policy when it gets to inspection costs i guess it will amount to the same costs in the end.
The BMW just wasn't as tough as the DL's have been. Bits (like the tail light) broke.
Wasn't bad, and was apparently a lot better than the early FI F650's - but it took more (and more expensive) dealer time. I think BMW extended the service intervals on the later F650's.

I think overall the DL cost ~1/3 of what the BMW did in service costs.

Pete
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  #8  
Old 03-29-2012, 12:10 PM
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I'm with V-Tom on this one. 235,000 trouble-free KM's on my Wee. Many many long riding days and lots of miles. My bike gets loaded down pretty good on long trips, and never an issue really. My first valve shim change (2 shims) only happened at over 190,000km....

Cheers
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  #9  
Old 03-29-2012, 12:15 PM
 
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Location: Cedar City, Utah
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Quote:
Originally Posted by libertine View Post
Im curious about the "less maintenance part"....
Likely you've already visited The Chain Gang at F650.com. If you haven't discovered it already, I would suggest searching/googling two issues: water pump failure and front fork failure. Those are the F650GS sore spots that will, unless you are a do-it-yourself kind of maintenance person, cost $$$ to address... if you decide to address them.
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  #10  
Old 04-06-2012, 09:13 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2011
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Default experiences in long distance touring with the little one ?

I've had mine for almost a year and I've been riding for 4 decades always hoping to make a bike fit ALL my needs since I can only have one bike.
This is the best all around motorcycle I've ever owned. It's a daily driver and last year I had it on several trips of up to 6000 miles. With the seat off a dl1000 and 60 pounds of luggage I was quite happy. The handling was effortless, the mileage stellar and the power very adequate. It's not my old 1100cc/V4 motor but I have few complaints and I plan to buy another one when this one gets old enough to justify a replacement. Givi window and bags plus a new seat and you're ready to tour.
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