Notes/Questions after test ride - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
DL1000A - 2017+ DL1000A - 2017 (L7) and later

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post #1 of 16 Old 08-04-2019, 05:55 PM Thread Starter
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Notes/Questions after test ride

I currently ride a 2008 SV650SF with a Sargent seat and superbike bars but am ready for something a little more all day comfy and capable on rough roads.

I think I've mostly narrowed it down to the following bikes but am leaning towards the DL1000 since it has cornering ABS and a 19" front wheel but I haven't ridden the other two bikes yet.
- 2018+ DL1000
- 2017+ Versys 1000
- FJ-09/Tracer 900
- Tiger 800 xrx (looks nice but not sure about maintenance/reliability so I've pretty much eliminated it)

I went down to the local dealer yesterday and tested a used 2018XT that had ~1300 miles on it.

Here are my observations/comments/questions after riding the 2018XT:

1) Seems more roomy and positioning more upright (which is part of what I'm looking for). I'm 6'3", ~220lbs with 34" inseam. That said, the amount of bend in my knees was more than I expected in comparison to the cycle-ergo calculator. I might have to get the tall seat or lowering pegs if I get the bike. The seat didn't seem quite as comfy as my current Sargent based on my short test ride.

2) The clutch engagement point seemed like it was almost all the way to the bars. Is this normal or something easily adjusted?

3) The 1-2 shift was a bit clunky, and I had a couple false neutrals at first. Shift lever throw seemed longer which made for longer shifts, and shifting didn't seem nearly as smooth as my SV in the first couple gears. Is this normal? Does it get better?

4) There's lots of torque down low, and it accelerates nicely but it's weird not having the SV style powerband that makes you want to rev it right up to the redline. I'm assuming I'd get use to this but it has always been fun reving the SV.

5) Steering/suspension in general seemed very good until I went over some road lines/seams/grooves (~parallel to travel direction). The bike seemed to follow these lines and felt very squirrely/loose, it was very disconcerting. Is this normal? Can it be fixed? I only noticed this when in these lines/grooves (which were very shallow, not like a deep rut at all).

6) Front brakes are very sensitive, only needed 1 or 2 fingers as there is plenty of power.

7) The front end/forks tended to dive a bit when hitting the front brakes; probably because the brakes bite so hard initially. Can this be adjusted at all?

I'm hoping you guys can help answer some of these questions to help me decide on the right bike.
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post #2 of 16 Old 08-04-2019, 06:21 PM
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1- 6'1" 33in inseam. Adventure Tech peg lowering kit and Sargent seat. I good for all day(Just did an 800 mile day(15 hrs)home from NE Utah).
2- Hydraulic clutch and not really adjustable. I got used to it and now I'm fine.
3- Yes the 1-2 is a bit clunky. Gets better and short shifting it helps.
4- The acceleration is flatter than my DL650, but the extra torque makes up for it 2 fold.
5- My original tires(Battlewings) were much more that way than Metelzers and Shinkos since.
6- The front brakes(4 pot now) are a great improvment, as is the ABS.
7- Different springs are probably needed to slow the front end dive. 650 was the same way and springs improved that.
26K on mine now and really glad I ugraded.

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post #3 of 16 Old 08-04-2019, 07:12 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks nvr2old. Did the peg lowering kit reduce the max cornering angle much?
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post #4 of 16 Old 08-04-2019, 07:35 PM
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This app will allow you to compare various motorcycle ergonomics. https://cycle-ergo.com/

"There comes a time in the affairs of men, when we must take the bull by the tail and face the situation."
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post #5 of 16 Old 08-05-2019, 06:53 PM
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I share the exact same height, weight, and inseam as you. For me the Suzuki accessory TALL seat fits me perfectly. It's about 1.6" taller than standard, which is very noticeable. I also use aftermarket serrated aluminum foot pegs (sport style) that help gain a little additional legroom, but more importantly extra room for my size 12 boots between shifter and peg.

The clutch lever is adjustable, and can be set to 4 different positions. 3/8" total lever to bar adjustment available. Your test ride vehicle may have been set to the closest to bar setting possible.

I replaced my stock shift arm with one from a TL1000 which gives a shorter shift lever throw. I've had this shift arm on since I purchased the bike new, and (for me) it's a must have (and simple) mod. I can't say that I've noticed any unusual or "notchy" 1st-2nd upshifts. RPM and your own personal style could be a factor, this mod works real well though for me.

I can't comment on your other concerns, except to say that tire pressures and fork/shock settings could be a factor. Many probably dislike the factory Bridgestones, I'm neutral on this until I replace them with something different.

Ones own personal riding style and controls setup probably makes more of a difference than anything. My personal bike feels more like an overweight SuMo than ADV, more street fighter than tourer.
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post #6 of 16 Old 08-05-2019, 07:10 PM
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My son just had a rude awakening about buying Triumphs. Regardless of whether they are good, better, best, or just OK compared to the competition, dealers will not take them in on trade without a significant incentive favoring them.
He had dealers explain that used triumphs will just sit on the showroom floor for a long time next to less expensive new bikes that will sell faster. If you keep bikes forever it may not matter.

He wound up trading his street triple RS in for a KTM 350 XCF. 220 pounds and 52 Hp at the rear wheel on the dyno. The engine makes 60 Hp. I rode it. That 350 is every bit as inspiring as the 500 cc 2-stroke motocross bikes of the 80s and 90s.

Sorry, back to the subject.
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post #7 of 16 Old 08-05-2019, 11:02 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys, your input has been very helpful!

I have to admit the test ride tempered my enthusiasm a bit, but it was a very short test ride with almost no turns and the bike seemed to be setup a bit weird for my taste (had a backrest). I found a new 2018XT locally that I might consider and a 2018 base model a few hours away for what appears to be a very good price for the area (~9k new) that is very tempting.

I'm still a little interested in the Versys 1000 but am not willing to spring for the new SE LT+, so it would be without the IMU (cornering ABS). Also, no 19" front tire so pretty much road only which realistically is all I've done to this point. The powerband does sound tempting though. I might try and get a test ride in for comparisons sake.

Any of you guys come from an SV or similar sportbike? Any regrets?
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post #8 of 16 Old 08-06-2019, 09:19 AM
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I had a '13 SFV650 for awhile. After I swapped out the George Jetson muffler for a 2 Brothers and installed the Suzuki gel seat (along with sportier foot pegs and TL1000 shift arm) I really enjoyed the bike. Yeah, I kinda regret selling it. It fit me well, was relatively light weight, inexpensive, and loads of fun. The new SV650x has really caught my eye lately...
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post #9 of 16 Old 08-06-2019, 10:03 AM
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1) I am same height and inseam and I went with the lowering pegs and a taller seat. You will also want to raise the handlebars and possibly a tall windscreen at the same time so you are not leaning forward and in the wind.

2) normal, the bike has stall assist and works very well on hills.

3) 2 false neutrals on a short ride seems a bit much. It's possible the PO adjusted the shift lever to allow for bigger boots. Moving this will make false neutrals more common.

4) You may consider the 650, it has the same engine as the SV. It's not as fast, but it's smoother and like you said fun to rev! downside though is suspension and brakes.

5) Was it a really hot day? I find that mine tends to grab a bit more on hot days. No more so then any other bike i've ever road. Does it still have the factory tires?

7) New fork springs will cure this.

Having said all that, IF I was buying a new bike today for road only use I'd go for the Tracer 900 GT. I feel like they have more leg room. Part of my reason for this is that I have a big touring bike (Vulcan 1700 nomad) and i've owned 4 Vstroms and would likely go for something different. The Tracer is faster, handles better, cruise control, TFT screen, quick shifter, lighter, etc.

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post #10 of 16 Old 08-06-2019, 01:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n8tdi View Post
I currently ride a 2008 SV650SF with a Sargent seat and superbike bars but am ready for something a little more all day comfy and capable on rough roads.

I think I've mostly narrowed it down to the following bikes but am leaning towards the DL1000 since it has cornering ABS and a 19" front wheel but I haven't ridden the other two bikes yet.
- 2018+ DL1000
- 2017+ Versys 1000
- FJ-09/Tracer 900
- Tiger 800 xrx (looks nice but not sure about maintenance/reliability so I've pretty much eliminated it)

I went down to the local dealer yesterday and tested a used 2018XT that had ~1300 miles on it.

Here are my observations/comments/questions after riding the 2018XT:

1) Seems more roomy and positioning more upright (which is part of what I'm looking for). I'm 6'3", ~220lbs with 34" inseam. That said, the amount of bend in my knees was more than I expected in comparison to the cycle-ergo calculator. I might have to get the tall seat or lowering pegs if I get the bike. The seat didn't seem quite as comfy as my current Sargent based on my short test ride.

2) The clutch engagement point seemed like it was almost all the way to the bars. Is this normal or something easily adjusted?

3) The 1-2 shift was a bit clunky, and I had a couple false neutrals at first. Shift lever throw seemed longer which made for longer shifts, and shifting didn't seem nearly as smooth as my SV in the first couple gears. Is this normal? Does it get better?

4) There's lots of torque down low, and it accelerates nicely but it's weird not having the SV style powerband that makes you want to rev it right up to the redline. I'm assuming I'd get use to this but it has always been fun reving the SV.

5) Steering/suspension in general seemed very good until I went over some road lines/seams/grooves (~parallel to travel direction). The bike seemed to follow these lines and felt very squirrely/loose, it was very disconcerting. Is this normal? Can it be fixed? I only noticed this when in these lines/grooves (which were very shallow, not like a deep rut at all).

6) Front brakes are very sensitive, only needed 1 or 2 fingers as there is plenty of power.

7) The front end/forks tended to dive a bit when hitting the front brakes; probably because the brakes bite so hard initially. Can this be adjusted at all?

I'm hoping you guys can help answer some of these questions to help me decide on the right bike.
1. Couldn't tell since I'm shorter and it suits me well.

2. First thing that I've change on the bike was the lever for shorty ones. Easier and have more adjustement. The clutch engage disengage more like 25% of the travel. I can pull the clutch with 2 fingers and have 2 fingers back on the handle bar grip. Perfect for off-road riding.

3. Have the issue sometimes. But less when I adjusted the shifter properly.

4. The joy of having a 1000 over 650...don't need to rev to have the powaa. 😉

5 and 7... at your weight. The fork needs improvement. It's set up from factory for a 160 lbs guy. You have a lot of options. Full cartridge swap... racetech revalving...thicker oil.. all that with stiffer spring. I'm going with the cheapo for now...need money for else where.
Going to be stiffer spring with thicker oil to help with the dampening rebound and compression.

6. All the review go that way saying that the brakes are very effective. Another reason to use shorty levers.

2018 Vstrom 1000 XT yellow stinger
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