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Bought my '07 650 w/ ABS a couple of weeks ago and been riding it to work every day. It runs great, gas mileage seems good (haven't topped it off yet to get a number), and it's a blast to ride. However, I'm not used to riding this bike, and the engine sounds way different than anything I have ridden...so not sure if it is supposed to sound like this, or if there is a problem. Nobody I know rides a V-Strom that I can swap bikes with for a trip down the interstate, so I'll ask the group here.

Engine, especially at highway or interstate speeds, sounds like a very tinny, metallic marble infested, bad quality chainsaw or weed whacker on high. At slower side-street speeds, it sounds more "firm" and "bass rich" like I would expect a VTwin to sound. Of course it is impossible to describe a sound.

I do have a Staintune exhaust, but I can clearly hear the engine itself, especially when tucking down by the tank and listening to the front of the engine. I'm able to differentiate the sounds from the engine and the exhaust.

I'm used to Harley V-twins...deep, constant cadence of noise from the engine, no matter the speed. This 650 sounds very "treble" like, and really like a low quality gas powered lawn tool at high faster speeds.

So...is this what it is supposed to sound like?

Better yet...anybody in the Indianapolis area willing to swap out bikes for a ride this weekend for a few miles? :mrgreen:
 
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A while back, somebody on this forum gave some very sound advice.
He said something like...."Push your earplugs deeper and just drive the darn thing".

With this bike you can drive yourself crazy trying to identify the noises. I used to own a 97 VFR... all very neat and tidy. It sounded the same all the time...lots of gears running in perfect harmony. (All very Honda)

This engine sounds like a washing machine full of wrenches but it's rock solid. No worries.
 

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I am also very new to the bike - 200+ miles. I bought a 2009 650-ABS. I came from BMW K1200LTs and still have a 2011 Can Am spyder. I was very used to the silence of the other bikes. I too asked this forum the same - before I bought it as I was concerned with all the "noise" while on a test ride. I have been reassured from long as well as short timers with the 650. The gears are straight cut and will always seem noisy. I also have a shield on the bottom and have found it reflects the trans noises back up my way. I still find the noises disconcerting but I wear the custom made earplugs I bought at a rally years ago and just ride it. All that said, Do makes sure the oil levels are correct and the chain is properly serviced and in good shape.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
This engine sounds like a washing machine full of wrenches but it's rock solid. No worries.
I guess I may say it sounds like that, especially the faster one goes. If that's the "sound of a Vstrom at fast speed", I can accept that as long it is supposed to sound like that. :mrgreen:

When was the last time the chain was lubed?
Good question. Actually did it a few days ago. No difference to sound, and it's a sound, albeit different in tone than what I am used to, that is coming from the workings of the engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I have been reassured from long as well as short timers with the 650. The gears are straight cut and will always seem noisy.
Same here...used to "quiet" or "stable sounding" engines...not something that sounds so "variable" like something broke loose inside it. Knowing it sounds like this on other bikes, I am now more relaxed about it. I'll have to give the bike a new nickname, something like "Screw Loose" or something similar. :green_lol:
 

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I also came from a Harley but I can not say mine sounds like what you describe when rung out on the interstate. I do hear the chain noise reflecting back when riding next to the concrete construction barriers, but that is about it.

My little twin 650 sounds firm tight and strong at all speeds. I can change the tone of the exhaust with some throttle manipulation and at 90 or 100 mph it is of course spinning fast but sounds good, almost like a Ducati. Yea, I know its no Duke but that is the best similar description I can come up with. I am also running Rotella Triple 15-40, I did notice less engine noise over the factory fill OEM oil.

You said you have aftermarket exhaust, I would start there. From my HD years I know differnt exhaust can play a major role in engine noise.
 

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I think mine sounds better at higher rpms than at low. Kind of tractor like at lower speeds. With earplugs it does sound better!
 

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Also, you have remember that this is a 650, not a 103 cu. in. engine. It will sound different as everything is smaller. But, despite the odd sounds, it's rock solid. Just motor on and enjoy it. Wear earplugs, too. That hides a lot of stuff you don't want to hear.
 

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These bikes are definitely not made to sound good. The DL1k sounds better at highway speeds, as the RPM's are reduced significantly.

The sound was the first thing i hated about this bike coming off my Cruiser. I am used to it now.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Also, you have remember that this is a 650, not a 103 cu. in. engine. It will sound different as everything is smaller. But, despite the odd sounds, it's rock solid. Just motor on and enjoy it. Wear earplugs, too. That hides a lot of stuff you don't want to hear.
Completely understand that it is a different engine. I'm sure sooner or later I'll come across another 650 rider and be able to convince them to swap bikes for a few miles. :mrgreen: Until then, I won't worry about the marbles in the washing machine sounds. It did get valves adjusted about 4K miles a year ago and a complete look over before I bought it, I'm sure it is just the natural sound of this particular engine since I haven't blown it up yet.
 

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Try putting the bike on the center stand and turning the rear wheel slowly. I found a few kinked links in my chain doing that. The chain gets tight as the offending link comes off the front sprocket and won't return to straight. The chain tightens up. It did make the bike sound badly. :thumbdown:
 

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For what it's worth

I got the V-strom bug two years ago. A friend had a DL650, then went to a 1000. When he was helping me buy the Glee, he asked the sales guy if the engine noise had been addressed. The salesman started the 2012 and my friend Mike said "oh, Yeah. That sounds much better."

I don't have a problem with engine noises on my sweetheart 2012, but I think the prior years. or maybe I'm just lucky, had an issue sometimes with engine noise. But what the heck, that's OK, the bike is a babe, even if it's sounds a little unsophisticated at times. I had a girl like that once. She had a lot of stuff going for her. I can't talk about any thing more, but I'm smiling.

Best/RR
 

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I make it a point to insert earplugs before starting the bike, and removing them only after the bike is shut off. No sense subjecting myself to the disconcerting effect of all those noises.:mrgreen:
 

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Bought my '07 650 w/ ABS a couple of weeks ago and been riding it to work every day. It runs great, gas mileage seems good (haven't topped it off yet to get a number), and it's a blast to ride. However, I'm not used to riding this bike, and the engine sounds way different than anything I have ridden...so not sure if it is supposed to sound like this, or if there is a problem. Nobody I know rides a V-Strom that I can swap bikes with for a trip down the interstate, so I'll ask the group here.

Engine, especially at highway or interstate speeds, sounds like a very tinny, metallic marble infested, bad quality chainsaw or weed whacker on high. At slower side-street speeds, it sounds more "firm" and "bass rich" like I would expect a VTwin to sound. Of course it is impossible to describe a sound.

I do have a Staintune exhaust, but I can clearly hear the engine itself, especially when tucking down by the tank and listening to the front of the engine. I'm able to differentiate the sounds from the engine and the exhaust.

I'm used to Harley V-twins...deep, constant cadence of noise from the engine, no matter the speed. This 650 sounds very "treble" like, and really like a low quality gas powered lawn tool at high faster speeds.

So...is this what it is supposed to sound like?

Better yet...anybody in the Indianapolis area willing to swap out bikes for a ride this weekend for a few miles? :mrgreen:
Try out the Two Brothers Exhaust you will not hear the engine noise !! They are very LOUD !When is the last time you had the valves adjusted and the oil changed ? and new plugs ?
 

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I can relate. When I got my first Wee, it sounded like the crankcase was full of rocks. Don't sweat it, just ride it.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Try out the Two Brothers Exhaust you will not hear the engine noise !! They are very LOUD !When is the last time you had the valves adjusted and the oil changed ? and new plugs ?
I actually have the Staintune, and today, removed the baffle. Holy cow! It's louder of course...but very, very deep sounding...especially on engine braking...much more so than even my Harley's Vance and Hines Monster Ovals. Me likes. Still hear the engine at highway speed though. :mrgreen:

I can relate. When I got my first Wee, it sounded like the crankcase was full of rocks. Don't sweat it, just ride it.
No problem, gladly riding it. Just wanted to be sure others have the "not very stable" engine sound :yesnod:
 
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