Picked Up My 2012 DL1000 - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 12 Old 08-28-2019, 07:41 PM Thread Starter
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Picked Up My 2012 DL1000

Finally picked up my 2012 VStrom in Toronto this morning. Went over it with the PO and was pleased with what I saw and reported to me. Had a good ride from Toronto to my sister's in Barrie. Like the suspension and the additions he did for his height. He's 6'2" like myself - made for a good ride. The bike fits quite well. It is different from my GWs but that is to be expected.

The PO sent me info on how the bike operates and how he operated it as follows: "Being a big twin it doesn’t like running below 3k there is no gear indicator but there is an indicator which indicates Overdrive which appears as OD on the dash display... I only ever use it on Highways as on the 2 lane 80 km per hour roads 5th gear is all you need... having said that the overdrive is great for that 130-140 cruising on long distances as it drops the revs down nicely and gives you great gas mileage....as the gas pump is in the tank on most modern bikes and depends on sitting in gas to cool it I tend to not drop it below a quarter tank before filling it up at about 350k... I did get 415 out of a tank once when I was in the middle of nowhere... The gas gauge tends to use the first quarter tank the fastest then slows right down for the rest of the tank.."

Had a quick look at this info and started to pay attention to the 3K threshold and the bike does work much better. Do not like lugging an engine, doesn't matter the platform. I am used to this type of threshold because my '85 1200 is similar, doesn't like to be lugged.

Like the info on fuel economy as well.

He has a light installed to indicate what the charging system is doing. Green all is good - yellow something not quite right - red check system. Before I left the PO noticed an issue when trying the various lights, etc. Took the battery out when I got to my sister's place, took it in for load test. Battery is 2 1/2 years old and the CCA of 200 came in at 75 CCA, battery was toast. New battery installed and works much better. Batteries that are less than around 100% are a detriment to the charging system - hard on the stator and RR. When I get it to my brother's place in northern Ontario, going to look at the RR and determine what it is. It was apparently changed in 2017 along with the stator. Want to know if it is a shunt or series RR.

Other than the above, quite pleased so far. Have a good run tomorrow from Barrie to Ottawa to visit with the daughter and son-in-law. Going to take #11 to Huntsville and highway 60 through Algonquin Park to Ottawa. Should be a good ride.

Using a sheepskin on the seat. I find the sheepskin to be of help on long rides.

More to follow as I get more comfortable with the bike and learn more about it.

Cheers
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post #2 of 12 Old 08-29-2019, 12:22 AM
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Congratulations and welcome on board. If I may suggest 118 is a much nicer ride than 60 IMHO.
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post #3 of 12 Old 08-29-2019, 10:33 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for reading.

Second day of riding and it was quite enjoyable. Started the day off with a good breakfast at Whimpy's on Bayfield Street then hit the road.

Understood the PO text and started to make sure I was keeping above the 3K RPM threshold, makes a difference. Noticed that when I was not paying attention to this aspect the bike would let me know - the engine does not like to be "lugged". I also noticed that there is a wide range of RPM for each gear selection, rather nice when shifting. Getting into the habit of shifting around the 4K RPM mark, and downshifting when at or close to 3K RPM.

The engine works well between 3K and 4K RPM. The engine tone also changes the closer it gets to the 4K range. From my reading about the 1000 engine, it appears that the power/torque band peaks around the 4.5K and 5K RPM range. I noticed when passing if I was over this threshold, the engine did pull but not as quickly when below the 4.5K RPM. Not a big item, but noticeable.

Decided to check the speedometer accuracy against my GPS. The speedometer is 10 Kms light when above 110 KMS, and is about 8 Kms light when below 110 Kms. I have contacted Holeshot and have one of the Speed Healers - Speedometer Calibration units put aside for me.

Checked the fuel economy and used 16 litres in 330 Kms. This translates into 20 Kms per litre - won't quibble over the slight inaccuracy - or some 55 IMPG. Liking the fuel economy. Checked this to determine the range I can expect specifically because of the PO text and depending on circumstances. Like to have an indication of how far I can go before the pucker factor increases.

Got caught in some rain this morning, enough to give me an indication of the weather envelope of the bike. I had more rain on my riding gear than I would have on one of my GWs, but this was to be expected. I found the weather envelope was quite good for this style of motorcycle. There was no appreciable accumulation of water on my riding pants, or the sleeves of the jacket. These observation(s) were made while travelling at 100 to 110 KPH. Overall I have to mention that I was quite pleased with the weather envelope of this bike.

This being the second day of riding, I have to mention that I find the front brakes to be quite good, but the rear brake to be on the verge of being non-existent. I have researched the brake issue and find a lot of information regarding the front brakes but not much for the rear. I think one issue is the single piston caliper on the rear. A dual piston caliper would be much better.

Again, an enjoyable ride. More to follow. Cheers
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post #4 of 12 Old 08-29-2019, 10:36 PM
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Congratulations.

However, I for one think you are making all this up. I want pictures for proof.

"If its not broke yet, it can still be fixed"
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post #5 of 12 Old 08-30-2019, 08:00 AM Thread Starter
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Making this up is way beyond my imagination factor. I'm in Ottawa now and will take some pics.

Couple of other items I will investigate and look into installing are self cancelling signals, and possibly cruise control. Like the self cancelling signals for every day and when on long trips cruise control is a very nice feature.

Cheers
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post #6 of 12 Old 09-03-2019, 10:13 PM Thread Starter
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Have had some 1200 Kms of rider familiarization with my 2012 DL 1000 VStrom. So far quite impressed. Has lots of ponies, and is a comfortable ride. Took it to a friends place, he rides an ’06 BMW GSA. He looked it over with me, and was also suitably impressed. We discussed maintenance, and other aspects and I came away with a bit more knowledge.

Spent Sunday on a nice ride from Ottawa to my Mother’s place in Larder Lake Ontario, about an hour south of Timmins. A picture of Earl the bison in Earlton on the way north, first attachment below.

Did some maintenance yesterday, oil change, flush the brake and clutch systems, pump up the tires and such for the trip across Canada to its new home in Victoria.

Left my brother’s place in Larder Lake at 0700 this morning. The other three attachments are of the start of this journey.

Have a schedule as this is not a sight seeing trip, but a get the bike back to Victoria trip. Going to take 5 to 6 days depending. First day is to get to Thunder Bay and have a good night’s rest. This is a 900 Km jaunt, but the roads have been good. Did get some rain for about 2 hours out of Thunder Bay, lasted for most of the final ride in. Bike operated well, and engine likes to be around 4K RPM – about 110 KPH.

So far to date approximately 2100 Kms – a good number of Kms to allow one to get to know a new bike.
Had to use the heated hand grips, came with the bike, as it was 3 degrees C when I left this morning. Hopefully tomorrow will be better, supposed to be a good day according to the weather witches.

A ride like this gives one many Kms/miles to reflect and theorize on what one has read, researched and may want/need to do to his/her ride. I have been doing just this, specifically the electrical system 3 piece alternator system – rotor, stator, external RR, and the engine shifting requirements.

Regarding the engine shifting requirements, I have noticed a definite delineation between the gears.
First is self explanatory, works well from start to over 3K RPM. 2nd works well from about 2750 RPM and above, engine does not like it when I am in second gear below this threshold. 3rd and 4th work well over 3k RPM as do 5th and 6th, but 4th, 5th and 6th work better from 3500 RPM and above. A bit picky, but have the Kms and time in the saddle to wonder about these specifics.

I notice that up to 4K RPM and above, 1st, 2nd and 3rd work well. I notice that 4th, 5th and 6th seem to labour somewhat between 3K and 4K RPM. The engine does pull in this situation, but the sound of the engine is like a muted 1 cylinder engine in double time. Once the engine hits 4K RPM, the engine sound changes and the engine response is much quicker, and pulls harder. My solution to this at this time is to adjust my shift pattern to suit – never like to lug an engine.

I have thought about the possibility of changing the front sprocket to 16 instead of the OEM 17 tooth sprocket. This would change the RPM for each gear as the engine would have to spin a little faster to achieve the same aim. I don’t see much benefit for the lower 3 gears, but maybe for the upper three in that the engine would rev to 4K RPM sooner for a lower speed. Just a thought.

Regarding the electrical system, I am not a fan of large rotor/stator assemblies. Removed the 500 watt stator from my ’85 LTD FI model GW and installed an external auto alternator. This is done quite often on these older GWs, and works quite well. Found a thread on the VStrom Riders international forum about this very issue. A fellow installed an external alternator on his DL1000. Very well documented and finish looks is quite professional. Here is the thread: https://www.vstrom.info/Smf/index.ph...c,15655.0.html

I have been noticing how the charging/electrical system on my VStrom has been reacting to the various loads, especially now that it is colder and I want to use the heated hand grips. The lights have been upgraded so that both lights can be on at low and high, or back to original configuration.

There is a charge light installed that goes from red to yellow to green depending on electrical system load. Not as good as a gauge, but will do until I get home.

I’m quite intrigued with the install of an external alternator, and will be looking into it further.
Tomorrow is another day on the road. Heading to Winnipeg, a shorter jaunt of just over 700 Kms. Time to get some shut eye, 0600 comes early. Have found that when trip planning, if the ride is 500 Kms (approximately 300 miles) and the average driving time is say 6 hours (averaging 50 MPH), I need to tack on an extra 3 hours approximately for the more frequent gas stops, getting dressed, undressed – similar to snowmobiling. So riding time tomorrow is estimated at 10 hours or so. Today it was just over 12 hours for the 900 Kms.

More to follow, Cheers
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Earl The Bison.JPG (396.2 KB, 4 views)
File Type: jpg Entering LL.JPG (510.3 KB, 3 views)
File Type: jpg Morning of start.JPG (361.8 KB, 3 views)
File Type: jpg Out of Garage 2.JPG (490.6 KB, 3 views)
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post #7 of 12 Old 09-04-2019, 06:54 PM Thread Starter
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Day 2 has been and gone. Started a very cool 4 degree C morning at 0615. Wish I had known there was a heated clothing connection would have brought my heated gear, at least there are hand warmers. Another 700 or so Kms of rider familiarization.

Had cold temps and fog in abundance for the first 2 or 3 hours of travelling from Thunder Bay to Winnipeg. Started to clear up around 1000 and was quite pleasant after this.

So far construction in Ontario and Manitoba has not been fraught with significant delays. The road construction I saw when I delivered my Mom and sister their new van was paved and made for a good ride. The roads in northern Ontario are generally quite good as are the roads in Manitoba.

The pics attached show the bike leaving Ontario and entering Manitoba. Stopped at the geographical centre of Canada, adn looked at some old farm implements. Have to have some pictures to validate the trip.

Have been operating the engine so that when in gear specifically 3rd and above, have been using 4K RPM as the benchmark while in that gear. Has been working well, will continue to do so for the remainder of the trip. Only time I won’t is when the road speeds fall in between gears. Give up a little fuel economy, but better for the engine.

Todays reflection is about the wire size from the stator to the RR. The PO had the RR recall done and informed me that he had a new stator installed at the same time. Had a look at the RR that was installed and it is quite different from the one depicted in the OEM manual.

The wire size of the new RR is at least 14 gauge if not 12 gauge. I noticed the wiring from the stator to the RR connector was rather small, probably 16, but not more than 14 gauge wire, shouls be at least the size of the RR wiring. I have learned that automotive makers as well as motorcycle OEMs use the minimum size wire that will safely work direct from the factory. This does not allow for any additional loads, hence the need to do additional wiring for add-ons, not splice into the OEM wiring harness, MHO.

The stator wiring is “run” in the wiring harness with a lot of other wiring, and enclosed in a sheath. Wire of any size can be over amped for short durations, but this is as long as the wire is in free air. Enclosed in the wiring harness sheath does not allow for this. Makes me wonder what temperatures are being dissipated in the wiring harness considering the power that the stator makes.

I will be investigating this when I get home to determine what may need to be done if anything. Will start a new thread to discuss what I find at that time.

I am also of the opinion that the new RR is still a shunt RR, not a series. Not an issue because it is probably made with more modern components.

This brings me to another issue regarding power supply for an FI engine. Power is everything. Without a good, hopefully clean power supply, all sorts of issues can arise. I am a fan of an external alternator for an FI engine. Had a stator (500 watt) failure on my ’85 GL1200 Limited Edition FI motorcycle. Instead of replacing the stator I installed an external automotive alternator. There have been a good number of this install on 1000, 1100, and 1200 Goldwings. Honda recognized the need to have a better power supply for its Goldwings and the 1500/1800 Goldwings have external alternators instead of a stator assembly.

Found a thread on the VStrom Riders International regarding this specific issue. Here’s the thread: https://www.vstrom.info/Smf/index.ph...c,15655.0.html

Good reading and very interesting. The fellow did a very nice job of the install and finish. I have a preference for a three wire, actually a four wire alternator install, but space constraints on the Vee required a one wire alternator install.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Leaving Ontario.JPG (391.5 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg Entering Manitoba.JPG (373.3 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg Centre of Canada.JPG (320.2 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg Old Farm equip.JPG (402.5 KB, 1 views)
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post #8 of 12 Old 09-08-2019, 12:24 PM Thread Starter
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Day 3 – Winnipeg to Medicine Hat – just over 1000 Kms

Started off early, on the road by 0630 Winnipeg time. Had light rain for the first 30 Kms or so. Had breakfast and gassed up at the Husky truck stop west end off Winnipeg. Breakfast all inclusive, including coffee and taxes $10.00, pretty good.

No more rain after breakfast, but remained cloudy until around 1030. Roads were good, some road construction, but nothing that would slow one down – 80 KPH in construction zones.

Learning more about the bike and how the engine/gearing works. Using 4K RPM as the threshold for all gears 2nd and above – working well.

Finished off the day in Medicine Hat around 1830, so approximately 13 hours on the road – pretty good time when on a bike. Have to have more fuel stops, and butt breaks.

Have started to muse about my final post. Lots to think about.

Took some pictures along the way. First attachment is the melding of wind power, farm land, endless road and the Vee looking on. Second attachment is at Indian Head, a small town in Saskatchewan, the Vee with the Indian Head sculpture. Third is a wind vane just outside Swift Current (Speedy Creek), and the last is the good bye to Saskatchewan and hello to Alberta.

Cheers
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Green power - endless road - farm land.JPG (345.2 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg Indian Head- Sask.JPG (400.9 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg Swift Current Weather Vane.JPG (155.3 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg Leaving Sask for Alberta.JPG (302.7 KB, 0 views)
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post #9 of 12 Old 09-08-2019, 12:39 PM Thread Starter
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Day 4 - not supposed to be the last day but was. Started out a nice morning in Medicine Hat, see attachment. Had planned on taking a few more pictures along the way, but when I stopped in Calgary at 0800 Alberta time, 0900 Victoria time, had a text from cousin and she wouldn't be able to meet. Talked to Sonya in Victoria and we decided I could make the ferry to Vancouver Island. The downside was that there would not be stops for photo opportunities, or for any extended periods.

With this determination, set off for home. Traffic and road construction increased the pucker factor, and it got quite warm in the interior. Stopped for gas only.

Bike took the "iron butt" ride in stride, got a good workout going over the Coquihalla. 14 hours and just under 1300 Kms and I was on the ferry home. Another 300 Kms could have claimed success for an iron butt ride.

Although a long day, was good to get home.

Going to recap the trip and put thoughts down on my first impressions.

Cheers
Attached Images
File Type: jpg North to Calgary.JPG (337.9 KB, 1 views)
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post #10 of 12 Old 09-09-2019, 03:44 AM
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wow, dont they sell motorcycles in BC?

just kidding, great way to get accustomed to the new ride. thanks for bringing us along.
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