Shortcuts for plastic removal and installation
Hours of miserable hours removing the plastic from my bike to lift the
gas tank, and then reinstalling the plastic, have motivated me to find
some shortcuts. This article applies to the 2012 DL650, but similar
shortcuts should work on all models.
- The main shortcut is to not remove the frame covers; removal is not
- Use of allen head sockets and a driver will make bolt removal
quick. You need only two.
Ignore the owner's manual, but see below.
After you get organized:
- Remove the seat.
- For each side, remove only the *front two* frame cover bolts. Unclip the
front end of the cover from the hook. When it's time to lift the tank,
the side covers will flex out enough that the tank will clear them.
- For each side, remove the three visible bolts on the side tank cover.
- Remove the two bolts on the top tank cover, and the plastic
fasteners toward the instrument panel. Unhook the cover as instructed
in the owners manual (not the service manual). Remove the top tank cover.
- Remove both bolts at the head of the tank. A very long socket
- Slide the side tank covers back and off the bike.
- On each side, remove the bolt that attaches the cowling to the
- Lift the tank.
This took me 22 minutes.
For reassembly, consider not installing the top tank cover at
all; it's only cosmetic. Then diassembly will go faster next time,
around 15 minutes for me.
Reverse the above steps, except for the part about the top tank cover
if you don't plan to reinstall it.
Reassembly, without the top tank cover, took me 14 minutes.
If you decide you want the top tank cover back on, this can be done at
the end. It took me about five minutes.
If I can find d-ring bolts to replace all of the hex bolts, this will
go even faster, maybe about 10 minutes in each direction.