StromTrooper banner

1 - 20 of 35 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
91 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Dear Stromtroopers,
I am considering purchasing a Vstrom 1000 and I would like to hear your opinion!
First a little bit about myself: I'm a PhD student living in Southern California, grew up in Italy riding Aprilia crotch rockets. A couple years ago while travelling through Arizona I bought a 1977 KZ400, a UJM was pretty much all I could afford on a grad student salary so I bought it. I have been working on it ever since and even though I am pretty happy with the results I am growing tired of spending all my time wrenching and not riding. Also I now realize that a straight twin 400 from the 70's is not the best bike to deal with high-speed freeway riding here in SoCal.
Recently I decided that I really need a bike I can trust for any kind of riding, and I need this bike to be cheap given my limited budget. The Vstrom caught my attention because it seems an extremely capable bike, reliable, and probably under-appreciated in the used motorcycle market (good luck purchasing a UJM, a Ducati or a Triumph in the hipster driven market here in SoCal!)

So here is the summary:

  • I need a bike that I can commute everyday with, 10 minutes of freeway riding.
  • Good for weekend getaways where I might right 2 up with my girlfriend (Sequoia, Joshua Tree, Pacific Coast Highway!).
  • Capable of light offroading to go bike-camping.
  • Reliable enough so that I can just deal with regular maintenance and NOT spend all my time fixing stuff as I am doing with the 70s KZ (I am a pretty capable mechanic, I can fabricate, machine stuff too but I am TIRED of fixing things).
  • Able to take me on a Pacific Northwest trip that I am planning to take after my graduation.
  • CHEAP. I think my budget's upper limit right now would be $3500, but the cheaper the better.
I think that a 2004-2005 Vstrom DL1000 fits pretty well these requirements, but I am looking forward to hearing from you. Don't be shy and feel free to mention other bikes if you think they happen to fit the description, but my understanding is that the Vstrom is a pretty compelling candidate when you consider the '' bang for the buck'' factor. I would also be happy to know what mileage range I should be looking for and what known problems I should be aware of.

Thank you SO much!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,909 Posts
Are you married to the idea of a DL1000? The DL650 will do the stuff you're asking for, and will do it cheaper. MPG for the 650 is going to be in the 50's, which will be better than the DL1000, plus the 650 will run on 87 octane fuel. The 650 will cruise along just fine at 75-80 mph, though your mileage is likely to drop into the mid to high 40's (which will still be better than the DL1000). The 650 is lighter than the 1000, which may be a factor for you since you're coming off a KZ400.

I put a lot of two-up miles on my 650 before I traded it; it's a very nice two-up touring platform. My passenger and I took multi-state trips on my 650, with a load of gear, with no issues.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,725 Posts
For what you are saying, just get 650. cheaper to buy, lower running cost (better on gas) and maintenance cost. lower insurance cost and no mechanical issues. also much easier and cheaper to get farkles if you need them (either new or used).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,869 Posts
If you hunt around you might even find a decent WEE (DL650 1st gen) with ABS and all the add ones that you likely want.

The 1st gen DL1000 has more power but has fuelling issues and under practical conditions won't serve you any better than the WEE for what you want it for. I put 35k on mine and we were all over the US and Canada :).

There are may more WEE's out there than VEE's so also likely more choice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
91 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Are you married to the idea of a DL1000? The DL650 will do the stuff you're asking for, and will do it cheaper. MPG for the 650 is going to be in the 50's, which will be better than the DL1000, plus the 650 will run on 87 octane fuel. The 650 will cruise along just fine at 75-80 mph, though your mileage is likely to drop into the mid to high 40's (which will still be better than the DL1000). The 650 is lighter than the 1000, which may be a factor for you since you're coming off a KZ400.

I put a lot of two-up miles on my 650 before I traded it; it's a very nice two-up touring platform. My passenger and I took multi-state trips on my 650, with a load of gear, with no issues.
I'm used to riding pretty fast bikes (yeah disregard the KZ I have now :grin2: ) so I thought that the 1000 was going to be a better choice for comfortable 2 up riding and having enough power to cruise along around here where 80-85 mph is not uncommon... but of course your real-life experience matters! I will take a look at the market and get back to you guys.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
269 Posts
I'm used to riding pretty fast bikes (yeah disregard the KZ I have now :grin2: ) so I thought that the 1000 was going to be a better choice for comfortable 2 up riding and having enough power to cruise along around here where 80-85 mph is not uncommon... but of course your real-life experience matters! I will take a look at the market and get back to you guys.
I have owned 2 DL650s and 2 DL1000s; so, I do really like both models.

The DL650 is (by no means) a turtle; but, the power of the DL1000 adds a little more fun and can stretch your arms a bit. As for cruising 80-85, I would take the V all day long. The V will feel more planted, at speed, and still has plenty of passing power. Personally, I like to cruise on the highway where the engine is not working hard. I just feel more relaxed, especially on the Interstate highways. The extra oomph of the V is also appreciated for accelerating to a safer riding position or away from trouble.

Moving on to the wee, one aspect I really love about the DL650 is the tank range. At 50+ mpg, you have around 250-275 mi. between fill-ups. The V will only get in the high 30s to low 40s mpg. I have taken the wee on some long trips and really have zero complaints and I weigh 270 lbs. As far as power goes, the wee is no slouch and really wakes up at 6k revs.

For your cruising preference 80+ mph and 2-up riding, I think the Big V fits the bill. And, if you like the extra power for passing or just for fun, that is another reason to go with the V.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,531 Posts
Well you can kiss the BMW off of the list. :wink2:

"Reliable enough so that I can just deal with regular maintenance and NOT spend all my time fixing stuff as I am doing with the 70s KZ (I am a pretty capable mechanic, I can fabricate, machine stuff too but I am TIRED of fixing things)."

That's a pretty tight budget - even for a good used Strom. With another $1-2k you might be able to pick up a Gen 2 650 - like a 2013 with some miles on it. Otherwise, Gen 1 650.

https://www.cycletrader.com/listing/2011-Suzuki-V-STROM-650-ABS-5000011919

https://www.cycletrader.com/listing/2015-Suzuki-V-STROM-650-ABS-122985726
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,098 Posts
Like my 650 Wee fine and rode 1000 and 650 before buy.Have owned more fast four sport bikes than any thing but so old now don't miss them as much as first few years I stopped buying the fastest thing out every new buy.
The 1000 IMO is a bit better if doing a LOT of 80mph and more freeway but the 650 is not shy about doing it as long as you want.Mine with 58,000 see 100 or more all most every time out if solo.>:)
May be its just where I am at but the older 1000 Stroms seem to go for less than the 650 here. They feel about the same to me but the 650 will lug down way better in high gear and not rowing the gear box all the time in tight cruves. Both great bikes and the 1000 when they went to two into one like the 650 feels much better than the old 1000 to me,more like a big 650 if that makes sense? Either one should do you fine.:grin2:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,869 Posts
The 650 is a much sweeter engine than the 1000. The 1000 is more vibes and in general less refined. Obviously the 1000 has more power and especially the 2nd generation (2014 onwards) 1000 has a lot of low rev torque. Given your budget I would look for a later 1st gen 650.

If you think you need more than 60-ish HP then go for the 1000 and make sure the fuelling has been sorted out and ideally the suspension and front brakes have been upgraded.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,531 Posts
If your graduate degree is an MBA instead of Art History I would wait a few months and pick up exactly what you want. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,909 Posts
If additional power is what you're looking for, with highway cruising ability, two up riding capacity, and off road ability, then you could look at some of the older Yamaha Super Teneres. They've been around since 2010, and they're pretty bulletproof. I have a 2014, and it's my favorite bike ever, but the 2012 and up models might still be out of your price range.

You could also consider an older FJR1300. Now, no one is going to call that thing an off road bike, but if you're talking about riding down things like gravel roads to get to campsites, I wouldn't hesitate to try it. I guess it would depend on what you consider light off roading. It definitely has everything else you're looking for, and the early to mid 2000 models can be found well within your price range. Those bikes were made to eat up miles with two people on them, and the motors have a pretty bulletproof reputation. The difference in weight between the two bikes isn't huge (the DL1000 goes about 520 lbs, while the FJR weighs in at around 582 lbs). If you check on Cycle Trader, you'll see them in the $3000-$4000 price range. You probably couldn't ask for a nicer bike for a cruise up the PCH.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
91 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
...The 1000 IMO is a bit better if doing a LOT of 80mph and more freeway but the 650 is not shy about doing it as long as you want.Mine with 58,000 see 100 or more all most every time out if solo.>:)
May be its just where I am at but the older 1000 Stroms seem to go for less than the 650 here. They feel about the same to me but the 650 will lug down way better in high gear and not rowing the gear box all the time in tight curves. Both great bikes and the 1000 when they went to two into one like the 650 feels much better than the old 1000 to me,more like a big 650 if that makes sense? Either one should do you fine.:grin2:
Could be the same here, I have been checking out Craigslist and I agree with you the DL1000s are going for relatively cheaper than the DL650s and they usually come with much more farkles (and miles :D )!

If your graduate degree is an MBA instead of Art History I would wait a few months and pick up exactly what you want. :)
LOL .. You're right :D I'm getting my PhD in aerospace engineering by the way, but I'd rather not wait to have money for the perfect bike. I'll be probably out of beautiful California once I graduate so I want to be able to explore now with whatever I can afford. Buying a project bike was probably a mistake but it was cheap and it was an impulsive buy because I missed having a bike. Now that I wasted all summer working on the bike instead of riding it I decided that since my time here is limited I need to get my sh** together and just RIDE.

If additional power is what you're looking for, with highway cruising ability, two up riding capacity, and off road ability, then you could look at some of the older Yamaha Super Teneres. They've been around since 2010, and they're pretty bulletproof. I have a 2014, and it's my favorite bike ever, but the 2012 and up models might still be out of your price range.

You could also consider an older FJR1300. Now, no one is going to call that thing an off road bike, but if you're talking about riding down things like gravel roads to get to campsites, I wouldn't hesitate to try it. I guess it would depend on what you consider light off roading. It definitely has everything else you're looking for, and the early to mid 2000 models can be found well within your price range. Those bikes were made to eat up miles with two people on them, and the motors have a pretty bulletproof reputation. The difference in weight between the two bikes isn't huge (the DL1000 goes about 520 lbs, while the FJR weighs in at around 582 lbs). If you check on Cycle Trader, you'll see them in the $3000-$4000 price range. You probably couldn't ask for a nicer bike for a cruise up the PCH.
Thanks for the recommendations I will check craigslist and cycle trader right away.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
91 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
If your graduate degree is an MBA instead of Art History I would wait a few months and pick up exactly what you want. :)
LOL you are right :D I am getting my PhD in Aerospace engineering. Even though I might have more money in the future I might also have to move out of beautiful California, therefore I'd rather not wait for the perfect bike and just get the most capable bike I can afford now and enjoy the ride. I made the mistake of getting a project bike 2 years ago because it was cheap and I like working on bikes, but I now realize that I spent all summer wrenching and not riding at all :serious:

Like my 650 Wee fine and rode 1000 and 650 before buy.Have owned more fast four sport bikes than any thing but so old now don't miss them as much as first few years I stopped buying the fastest thing out every new buy.
The 1000 IMO is a bit better if doing a LOT of 80mph and more freeway but the 650 is not shy about doing it as long as you want.Mine with 58,000 see 100 or more all most every time out if solo.>:)
May be its just where I am at but the older 1000 Stroms seem to go for less than the 650 here. They feel about the same to me but the 650 will lug down way better in high gear and not rowing the gear box all the time in tight cruves. Both great bikes and the 1000 when they went to two into one like the 650 feels much better than the old 1000 to me,more like a big 650 if that makes sense? Either one should do you fine.:grin2:
I was surprised by how fast people drive on the freeway here, constantly above the limit! So yeah I definitely want a bike that inspires lots of confidence at high speeds.
I noticed the same thing: on the used market so far I found better deals on 05-07 DL1000s than 650s, lots more farkles too !

If additional power is what you're looking for, with highway cruising ability, two up riding capacity, and off road ability, then you could look at some of the older Yamaha Super Teneres. They've been around since 2010, and they're pretty bulletproof. I have a 2014, and it's my favorite bike ever, but the 2012 and up models might still be out of your price range.

You could also consider an older FJR1300. Now, no one is going to call that thing an off road bike, but if you're talking about riding down things like gravel roads to get to campsites, I wouldn't hesitate to try it. I guess it would depend on what you consider light off roading. It definitely has everything else you're looking for, and the early to mid 2000 models can be found well within your price range. Those bikes were made to eat up miles with two people on them, and the motors have a pretty bulletproof reputation. The difference in weight between the two bikes isn't huge (the DL1000 goes about 520 lbs, while the FJR weighs in at around 582 lbs). If you check on Cycle Trader, you'll see them in the $3000-$4000 price range. You probably couldn't ask for a nicer bike for a cruise up the PCH.
Thanks for mentioning other bikes, I will make sure to check out the local listings. To answer your question I want to be able to ride on fire roads and I am planning on hitting some of the easier trails out here in the Mojave.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,531 Posts
For the 1000's there is a vast difference in the Gen 1 and Gen 2. It was pretty well rebuilt from the ground up. Basically, everything was improved. Just something to keep in mind. Brakes (ABS), suspension, weight, lights, traction control, engine output, frame, ergonomic differences(like handlebars closer to ride, etc.) , and more.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
91 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
For the 1000's there is a vast difference in the Gen 1 and Gen 2. It was pretty well rebuilt from the ground up. Basically, everything was improved. Just something to keep in mind. Brakes (ABS), suspension, weight, lights, traction control, engine output, frame, ergonomic differences(like handlebars closer to ride, etc.) , and more.
Thanks for your input. I did find a 05 DL1000 with 35k miles that has: hard bags, skid plates, upgraded NISSIN brakes, two brothers exhaust, fork brace and some other stuff on it for around 4300$ (still a little over my budget). How much would you pay for that? I will keep in mind that if I decide to pull the trigger on an older gen bike I should look for brake and suspension upgrades.
The DL650s I can find are 2011 ABS models for around 3700$...tempting price for a way newer bike but most of them come with no farkles for traveling and offroading.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,531 Posts
The big place I notice the power difference from the 650 to the 1000 is in basic acceleration, interstate passing, and our non-stop Ozarks. I can't go back to a 650 here even though it was a smooth engine. In our constant hills and twisties the 650 is more work (shifting) or fun I guess depending on your perspective.

Thanks for your input. I did find a 05 DL1000 with 35k miles that has: hard bags, skid plates, upgraded NISSIN brakes, two brothers exhaust, fork brace and some other stuff on it for around 4300$ (still a little over my budget). How much would you pay for that? I will keep in mind that if I decide to pull the trigger on an older gen bike I should look for brake and suspension upgrades.
The DL650s I can find are 2011 ABS models for around 3700$...tempting price for a way newer bike but most of them come with no farkles for traveling and offroading.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
514 Posts
Thought I'd chime in here. When looking at an "older" 1000, be prepared for the (so far) 4 "gotchas":

1. Loose Rotor Magnets - causes charging issues (low voltage even at high revs) - diy fix with j.b. weld if all the magnets are in tact, $290 fix if you buy a new rotor. Can't tell for sure until you remove the left side case...which you probably won't on a test ride.
2. Bad Stator - causes charging issues (low voltage when checking AC volts at the connector). $280 fix. You *may* be able to check this on a test ride, but you'll need a multimeter and a phillips screwdriver, and some time to fish out the connector.
3. Bad R/R - not exactly sure the symptoms, but another $200 to fix
4. Bad clutch basket - easy to determine; sounds like there's gravel in the clutch basket when you release the lever in neutral at idle. $310 - $595 fix.

All these issues are fully documented here. I know because I just bought an 04 1000 with 60k miles, and I'm pretty sure I have 2 or 3 of the 4 issues.

So whatever the person is asking, talk him down by $1200 - $1500 and bank that money for the above fixes.

Other than that, these bikes ROCK!! :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,869 Posts
Thanks for your input. I did find a 05 DL1000 with 35k miles that has: hard bags, skid plates, upgraded NISSIN brakes, two brothers exhaust, fork brace and some other stuff on it for around 4300$ (still a little over my budget). How much would you pay for that? I will keep in mind that if I decide to pull the trigger on an older gen bike I should look for brake and suspension upgrades.
The DL650s I can find are 2011 ABS models for around 3700$...tempting price for a way newer bike but most of them come with no farkles for traveling and offroading.
Has 4 pot calipers up front, thats good. Any word on suspension upgrades? It might have some.
Still way to high priced. I would think somewhere between 2.5 and 3k. Why is he selling? Any charging issues?

DL650. You can pick up used farkles here all the time at about half the new price, especially for the 1st gen DL650. I have some for sale right now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
Just on buying a bike and "farkles" (sorry, that has to be a very American word? :) )

What's a great farkle to you, and great to me, are quite likely to be very different things! Nothing wrong either way but it intrigues me the differences. In any case, once you're living with whatever you buy, you will know what farkles are important to you, and you'll get them then.

What's on the bike at sell time doesn't usually add actual value, but can add appeal.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,725 Posts
Thanks for your input. I did find a 05 DL1000 with 35k miles that has: hard bags, skid plates, upgraded NISSIN brakes, two brothers exhaust, fork brace and some other stuff on it for around 4300$ (still a little over my budget). How much would you pay for that? I will keep in mind that if I decide to pull the trigger on an older gen bike I should look for brake and suspension upgrades.
The DL650s I can find are 2011 ABS models for around 3700$...tempting price for a way newer bike but most of them come with no farkles for traveling and offroading.
way newer and with ABS. You can find a lot of farkles here in the for sale section. Plus the price difference. don't think twice. go for Wee! I used to have 1000 twice as my first V Strom. then one day I rode 650. now I'm on my 650 #8 and never looked back. haven't even got on my VFR 800 since that.
 
1 - 20 of 35 Posts
Top