StromTrooper banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
One Last Question (probably).
The V Strom 650's that are in my price range...lower prices, have relatively high mileage. To what degree shall I not be concerned about the mileage on a well cared for, "always serviced" bike? Most of the ads are for bikes with between 50k-90k miles. I know these engines last, but even with religious servicing, I assume things wear out. I feel like I need to jump in when I find a clean bike priced "for me". Input and specifics please? Which very expensive (how expensive) items might I be expecting?
Thanks again!
Jon
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,699 Posts
I would be less concerned with engine mileage but age and general wear and tear (or abuse). A commuter with higher mileage may be less of an issue than a bike that has been sitting outside.

If you have a choice the lower the mileage the better.

But if not meticulously maintained, even a 50k bike will need all fluids changed, I mean ALL, including forks and shock. Other higher mileage issues may be bearings (steering head, wheels, swingarm … ) and electrical systems (connectors corroded, switches). A benefit would be if the bike has a headlight relay kit. That removes a lot of load from the system, so less risk of burned connectors/ contacts/ switches.

Best to judge by the previous owner and what maintenance he has done, what issues he had and he had fixed or maybe better fixed himself. I would probably prefer to buy from a private seller that knows what he is doing and is selling not because there is an issue with the bike, just wanting something newer.

EDIT: Make sure the charging system is working properly, ideally if the PO has a V meter installed and knows the charging voltages.
Anything obvious, like age of the chain and sprockets, tires, when was the last valve check done, the last coolant change, the last brake fluid change ... etc
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
620 Posts
90,000 miles is still 90,000 closer than new to a theoretical end of life.

That said, my bike has 114,000 and still gets me to work every day. It's my only registered vehicle since 2012 and has never been in a shop. How many miles do you expect to put on it?

Change the oil on time, clean the electrical contacts every so often, ride every day and it will serve you well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,942 Posts
Maybe I'm a bike snob, I have purchased many new bikes over the decades, that way, I know it's all been me, my maintenance, my riding, my break in, etc. That costs money though, in depreciation, if or when sold.
That being said, I recently bought a Yamaha cruiser, used, with 22,000 miles. I've always thought 50,000 miles to be the cutoff. Where I'd want to sell a bike, and not have buyers balk at mileage, and where I'd like to stay below, if purchasing, just as a number. I don't consider that to be 'scientific' or reasonable, just my gut feeling, and want.
Most times I search, there are low mileage bikes out there, even if I have to travel hundreds of miles, make it a weekend, or longer fly and ride, have a forum member or friend look it over, if possible.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
620 Posts
Not to be rude but if your budget generally allows a 50,000 to 90,000 mile DL650 maybe you shouldn't be looking for a motorcycle at this point.
To play devil's advocate, that 50,000 mile commuter strom will likely stay reliable. You can pick one up for $2000-$2,500 and it will be cheaper to run than the air-cooled carbureted money pits from '70s that the hipsters are snatching up. And the strom is a better bike in almost every way but looks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
53 Posts
My 2006 DL650 has 70,000 miles on it, runs like new...I'm thinking about a new M/C, but this thing won't break and just keeps on going. Not one failure, but I do all required maintenance at or before it's required, saying that, it's still one of the least maintenance intensive bikes I've ever owned. As well as the most reliable. OK truth be told the original battery died in 2016....piece of shit.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,791 Posts
Gen 2 is more durable than Gen 1.

Around 60,000k's is ~half of the usable life for gen 1. It will need some work, steering head bearings, fork seals and internal sliders. Suspension bushes checked and lubed.

Gen2 that's around 100,000k's.

That does assume decent condition, regular oil changes etc.

FWIW. What goes on the gen 1 bikes is the valve guides and cam chains/tensioners.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
To play devil's advocate, that 50,000 mile commuter strom will likely stay reliable. You can pick one up for $2000-$2,500 and it will be cheaper to run than the air-cooled carbureted money pits from '70s that the hipsters are snatching up. And the strom is a better bike in almost every way but looks.

I'm not questioning reliability. I questioning the decision to buy a motorcycle when money is so limited. The downstream effect adds in insurance, maintenance, replacing wear items and possibly even buying some gear. I guess that's what credit cards and down the road debut consolidation businesses are for. The American norm of having $10,000 or $20,000 in CC debut start with potentially poor decisions like this.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
620 Posts
I'm not questioning reliability. I questioning the decision to buy a motorcycle when money is so limited. The downstream effect adds in insurance, maintenance, replacing wear items and possibly even buying some gear. I guess that's what credit cards and down the road debut consolidation businesses are for. The American norm of having $10,000 or $20,000 in CC debut start with potentially poor decisions like this.
A $2k Vstrom probably won't lead down the hypothetical path to financial ruin, but we all make our bets. I made mine in 2010 right out of college with a $2k KLR650. Never had to take on debt for it, but as you mention it's important to estimate the total cost of riding and be sure you can foot it before making that leap.

One big upside to buying a bike, you join an uncommonly resourceful community of riders willing to share knowledge and experience. I started with no mechanical skill and in a few years learned enough to do all the maintenance myself. That small investment of time will pay off quite a bit over a lifetime.

To OP, in addition to the bike, gear, insurance, it's wise to have a few hundred bucks set aside for unplanned maintenance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
A $2k Vstrom probably won't lead down the hypothetical path to financial ruin, but we all make our bets. I made mine in 2010 right out of college with a $2k KLR650. Never had to take on debt for it, but as you mention it's important to estimate the total cost of riding and be sure you can foot it before making that leap.

One big upside to buying a bike, you join an uncommonly resourceful community of riders willing to share knowledge and experience. I started with no mechanical skill and in a few years learned enough to do all the maintenance myself. That small investment of time will pay off quite a bit over a lifetime.

To OP, in addition to the bike, gear, insurance, it's wise to have a few hundred bucks set aside for unplanned maintenance.
True a $2,000 motorcycle by itself won't ruin you financially but it can add a couple drops of oil to the slippery slope towards financial slavery.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Thanks for the input guys. My budget constraints are imposed due to practicality. I am moving life toward a zero debt goal and low cost of living. I believe in that and the reduced stress it brings. I can "afford" a new bike, but it makes no sense to me as this is not my primary vehicle, which I consider a luxury item. That said, I will be cautious not to have an imbalance between cost and condition. I will be picking up my license tomorrow and continue to look. Only about 6 weeks left in our "normal" riding season here in the mountains. We'll see how this works out. I appreciate and listen to all your advice. Thanks for taking the time to share your knowledge. I look forward to seeing some of you on the backroads by next Spring.
Best,
Jon
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
16,866 Posts
Nothing wrong with treating yourself on occasion, I’m debt free and love me some luxury items from time to time. Of course motorcycles to me aren’t luxury items, they are mental wellness items. Get the bike you really want for crying out loud, but if you’re a new rider I don’t believe the Stoms are a wise choice overall for you.....not yet.

Not sure about your link sir, looks like trying to drum up business imho.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,791 Posts
My wife and I had only a bike in the first few years - it cost me $200 a couple of years earlier. Adjusted for inflation that's probably your ballpark number. I'd have to say that saved us amazing amounts of money compared to a car or public transport and wasn't impossible to live with, even the weekly shop was possible - wear a backpack.

I'd say a DL is at the better bet end of the spectrum, BMW or Ducati and I'd be questioning your sanity. You can still get a bad one though so if you can get advice from someone with bike experience please do that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
620 Posts
For a cheap intro to motorcycling, you also should also consider the Honda CB500X. They're smaller, lighter and less powerful than the strom which should be fine given it's not your only vehicle. They should also be a bit simpler to maintain.

It's a nice goal to be debt-free. I got on-board with that very early in my career, and am now well on the path to financial independence of the "Mr. Money Mustache" variety. My bike-only lifestyle is a big part of the strategy.

Cool photo work. I imagine you could combine passions and ride out to many of these beautiful places.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Thanks again. The link was meant to show "what I want to get myself into" with this type of bike. Backroads and the occasional dirt road. Camp and access trails further afield. Honestly, not a sales ploy. I will remove the link to stay in good standing regardless.
I did pick up my first M1 license today. I will keep you all posted if my ownership status changes.
Be Well,
Jon
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
16,866 Posts
You most certainly didn't have to do that, you are in good standing here. :smile2:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
91 Posts
The link was meant to show "what I want to get myself into" with this type of bike. Backroads and the occasional dirt road. Camp and access trails further afield. Honestly, not a sales ploy.

I did pick up my first M1 license today.
Congratualations on the new license endorsement!

My Gen 1 DL650 with street tires eats a good bit of gravel in its diet, but my DR650 single sure makes any given dirt or gravel section more fun simply by being able to relax and watch the scenery rather than having to pay so much attention to every rut and bump in the road. Of course, a few knobs on the Wee`s tires would be a more fair comparison as far as dirt-ability goes. Assuming you are in the Tahoe area, feel free to contact me for a test comparison. Neither bike is for sale but both are prescuffed, scraped up, so another drop or two is no big deal. Actually, I think the DR rather enjoys rolling around to scratch those itchy side panels in the dust from time to time. Offer open as long as the weather holds.

Brian
Lemmon Valley
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Thanks for the input guys. My budget constraints are imposed due to practicality. I am moving life toward a zero debt goal and low cost of living. I believe in that and the reduced stress it brings. I can "afford" a new bike, but it makes no sense to me as this is not my primary vehicle, which I consider a luxury item. That said, I will be cautious not to have an imbalance between cost and condition. I will be picking up my license tomorrow and continue to look. Only about 6 weeks left in our "normal" riding season here in the mountains. We'll see how this works out. I appreciate and listen to all your advice. Thanks for taking the time to share your knowledge. I look forward to seeing some of you on the backroads by next Spring.
Best,
Jon
Sounds like you are doing the right things financially and I hope you find a suitable motorcycle to fit your needs.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top