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Handling of the DL 1000 A

2418 Views 7 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  2012Whitewee
Hello Troopers,

I've a '14 that otherwise gave me a lot of motorcycle happiness and reliability. I used to have a 650 '12. I've noticed a big difference in the way these two bikes handle curves. On the 650, I used to enjoy leaning on the curves and felt that the handlebar would stay where I put it, copying the curve in a seamless manner. However on the 1000 A, things change significantly. When taking a U-turn at a slow speed in neutral or with little clutch, the handlebar behaves in a way that I dislike: It keeps going in the direction of the curve without any input, which results in having to correct the handlebar back to the correct position to negotiate the curve. Consistently, the handling of curves at normal or high speeds is OK but not quite confidence-inspiring as the 650 was. This issue has been pretty pervasive and has not improved one bit using brand new, top brand tyres, or with different suspension settings (I've got a great Wilber's rear shock and race tech springs for the front). I have two theories:

1. This was never meant to be an "Adventure" motorcycle, the crash bars are too heavy.
2. The front end is too light for the design of the bike, or somehow the weight increase from the 650 was not completely calculated into the 1000 A.

Have any of you experienced this issue? What do you think?

I'll appreciate your feedback and commnents.

Thank you,

1 - 8 of 8 Posts
In assuming you set up the sag.

Some raise the forks 10mm or so. It will turn in a bit faster. Might help with your complaints.

Compared to the 650 I had my 1000 feels much more planted at freeway speeds. I attribute that to better suspension and stiffer frame/swingarm mostly. Bigger motor more rotating mass of course.

I had a fork brace on the 650 and that helped but the 1000 feels like it's on rails (in turns) in comparison. The 650 always felt a little vague I thought.
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Having never owned the Strom 650, I've nothing with which to compare. Curious how long you've owned the DL1000, or perhaps I mean how many miles put on. Guessing you're pretty familiar with the bike, as you mentioned installing new tires (assuming you wore the previous set out!).

My experience with this phenomenon was similar to your description - but on a different bike, a bike I've owned for years ... 'suddenly', the bike was falling into the corner differently, requiring a noticeable and forceful input at the bars to correct. My issue vanished with a fresh set of tires.

Did this issue only recently appear? Or since you've owned it? Can you connect the arrival of this sensation to a recent modification performed on the bike? What about tire PSI? Suspension setting IMO is always a suspect.

Otherwise, I agree with @Spec: my '14 has felt planted in all pavement terrain for the past 10k mi. I trust the feedback this bike provides. BTW, fresh fork oil only improved feel.

Hope this helps and best of luck with the fix!
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Raise the forks in the triple clamps around 10mm, it's still a heavy pig but with that the pig will at least turn. I have a 650 and a 1000, the 650 is faster in the really tight stuff.

I have both because my longer rides are backroads out, motorways home and the 1000 is a LOT less tiring on the home legs.
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Only a comment. My problem with the 1000 was the amount of input into the bars needed to get it to turn, I THINK that's what you are complaining about. On some roads I'd taken the 650 through with no issues my shoulders would ache riding the 1000. Dropping the front end fixed that but the handling still isn't the same as the 650, the 650 is very nimble, the 1000 is slower to respond and requires more pre-planning to get it to corner well where the 650 just did it, but on the other hand the 1000 is far more stable at highway speeds.

I don't think you'll fix all that no matter what you do, the tendency to understeer by default yes, the fact it's slower to respond, no.
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I agree with PeteW, my 650 has always been more fun to ride.

I fully expected to love the 1000 on my first test ride, I didn't, I test rode 3 of them before I purchased one, I knew I could make it better but it would never match my Wee.
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I agree with what others are saying here. I really like the power of the 1000 and it's better brakes and it will eventually totally replace my 650, but the less expensive, and what "some" consider a starter or beginner Adventure bike is really better overall and more fun in my opinion. Their just totally different and I stopped trying to compare the two quite a while back and just enjoy each one and it's personality.
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