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Discussion Starter #1
Dear Suzuki,

I see a lot of negative comments in this topic area and I just wanted to add my 2 cents worth. Some people will probably take issue with a lot of what I say, but that's OK. Everyone has their own opinion, and it would be a boring world if everyone agreed on everything. This is my own opinion.

Suzuki, I would like to THANK you.

Thank you for a reliable and bulletproof engine, gearbox, and drivetrain. I have no use whatsoever for a larger chain, a smaller chain, shaft drive, belt drive, imaginary drive, photon drive, or any other kind of drive. The 525 chain that you chose to put on the V-Stroms works just fine. The engine on my 650 hums right along, it never misses a beat, and I have no concerns about engine or gearbox related failures or problems on the road.

Thank you for the ergonomics. I like the stock handlebars, the stock windscreen, and the stock seat. I don't want forward or back or up or down bars. I don't want a barn door screen or a non-existent screen or an electric screen, or a heated screen. I like the one that you chose to put on the motorcycle. I did add a Madstad adjustable windscreen bracket but that was the only change I needed. I like the stock seat just like it is. I had a Suzuki gel seat, I still have a Spencer seat. I prefer the stock seat and it has worked quite well for over 23,000 miles. I don't want highway pegs or a bunch of extra lights mounted on the front or MOTO-GP style shifting or spoked wheels or solid wheels or a gear position indicator or anything else. Regardless of what people say the mirrors are just fine and I have an excellent field of view behind me.

Thank you for not putting luggage on the motorcycle. I have the freedom to choose what I want on the bike, not what you decided I should need in the way of luggage.

Thank you for the sensible tires and wheels on the bike. They don't need wider or narrower or taller or shorter. They don't need to be strictly street or strictly dirt, they are fine just like they are.

Thank you for continuing to offer a non-ABS option. Contrary to what a lot of people believe not everyone wants ABS. The brakes you have on the motorcycle are good, not spectacular but good.

Thank you for the extremely good headlights, the protection from the fairing, the large gas tank, the tail rack, the analog instrument cluster, the controls, and pretty much everything else about the machine.

In short, thank you for an excellent middle-of-the-road motorcycle. It was designed so that it allows owners to mold it to their style of riding, be it more street- or trail-oriented without being stuck with a bunch of "Stuff" that they don't want or feel a need to change. The price reflects this and rather than paying for a motorcycle with a number of things that will be thrown in the corner of the garage we have a lower price tag and the choice of what we add to our bikes.

To each their own, as I said it's all about the freedom to change the V-Strom to the way a particular owner chooses to ride. In my personal opinion if you could change one thing about the V-Strom, my recommendation would be: Absolutely Nothing. There is nothing wrong with this motorcycle and you did a marvelous job of the design. I would not change anything.

Regards,
Scott Craig
Nashville, TN
 

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Well written. I agree totally. And really at this price , what if you do have to change something. It's not worth worrying about. :)
 

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+3 on this. It's a great bike out of the box, but you can tweak it to your hearts content. After almost two years, I'm loving mine as pretty much stock. What are "farkels" anyway? :D What ever you want them to be.
 

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+4

I love the bike and of all the farkles i put on, the best was my arse.

Also really love the 5.8 gallon tank.
 

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+4 - well said. (I'm not even going to mention getting at the spark plugs). If only even I won was as well thought out and worked as well.

Safe rides
Bob
 

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Sorry - "If only everything I own was as well thought out and worked as well - including my kepyoard and bifocals!"
 

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Good post, I love mine. After about 3K in farkles it's damn near perfect!!!!

But they're the farkles I WANT and not something that Suzuki forced down my throat that was designed to satisfy the lawyers and not work in the real world (as well as probably costing twice as much as I paid).
 

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+5 That's pretty much what I was thinking when I bought it. I was riding to work today thinking that I really don't want any other bike. 3 or 4 bikes maybe, each to excel in it's own subject area. But for one bike, the V-Strom 650 is it.

The cost of this bike has allowed me to spend nearly 2 grand on it - not a single necessity!
 

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The Wee bike is one of the best right out of the box. Suzuki gave us a great bike that can be farkled to our personal taste and need. I will never love my bike but I sure do like it more than most things in my life. When I ride I whistle, smile and wave at cows. Yup, life is good.
 

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Well - I love my bike. It just keeps doing what I ask of it and asks nothing in return (except for gas, of course). No need to dick around with it, or fine tune it and it looks best dirty. I love it!!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Well, I must say I'm glad to see a few people who understand my point. I see sooooooo many posts on this forum complaining about this or that, complaining that Suzuki should do this or that (or MUST do this or that, DAMN IT!), complaining about a "Brand new bike and I have to add [insert item here] just to get it the way I want it". Thsy just don't see the point. Of course Suzuki could add shaft drive or belt drive, they could add a windscreen the width of a garage door and the height of a 747 that flips over and hooks on the tail light, they could add luggage large enough to hold half of the Library of Congress, they could add ten lights up front and 18 on the back, they could add highway pegs. If they did they would have to change their name to Harley-Davidson though.

The point is that Suzuki aimed straight down the middle of the road. A lot of people don't want all this "Stuff" on a V-Strom. If the V-Strom had shaft drive or belt drive I'd probably have gone with something else. If they had humongous windscreens I'd have gone with something else. There are a number of things that people have posted as "Must Have Additions" that would have prevented me, and presumably some others, from buying a V-Strom. I LIKE the middle-of-the-road that Suzuki struck.

I've kept a list of complaints about the V-Strom, and many of them are just plain absurd. For virtually every "Real" gripe there is someone with the exact opposite gripe. For example, I see complaints that the windscreen needs to be taller and then I see them that it needs to be shorter. I see comments that the seat needs to be higher and I see commments that the seat needs to be shorter. Suspension too soft, suspension too hard. Needs street tires needs dirt tires. All of these tell me that Suzuki's aim was dead on the money because what they built is arrow-straight down the middle ground. Otherwise EVERY comment would be to one extreme or the other.

I think Suzuki did a great job and it annoys me when someone posts a message saying that "Suzuki needs to add this or that" when in reality what they mean is "My personal preference would be that the V-Strom had this sor that". Just because one person wants something added doesn't mean that everyone else does.
 

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I keep wanting to change or add something, but a $16 gell seat cushion, crash bars, and a cheapo $50 JCWhitney Tail bag just to get me started. Now everytime I want to change it or "make it better" the choice is always buy the farkle or spend the money on gas, meals, and campsite. So far I keep choosing to ride rather than farkle. I keep wanting to complain about some part of it but the fact is my Wee meets all my needs, most of my wants, and embarasses much "better" bikes on the twisties, and smokes Dual Sport bikes on the logging roads, and is more than fast enough to get me in trouble. I keep thinking I'd change the seat, but for $400 I can do a lot of camping, riding, and eat a lot of good breakfasts. Besides a seat good for long highway miles sucks off road, I do both so I'm assuming the compromise between wide soft and cushy, and thin narrow and hard is probably just right for how I ride. Same with the windshield, bigger would be nice for the highway but a pain for the dirt. Dammit I even like the foot pegs. The only thing I woujld change is the front blinkers, they break too easy if you tip the bike over and if you ride in Florida sand it's not if you tip over but when. My gripe with all modern motorcycles is that a parking lot tip over can cost you big bikes. When I become dictator of the world I demand that all motorcycles be engineered such that a tip over can cause minor scratches or similar cosmetic damage. Without crash bars a minor tip over can cost you a couple hundred bucks.
 
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