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Discussion Starter #1
Currently riding a 99 RT.

Looking for a smaller bike. Lots of good recommendations from others to look at the 650.

6' 1" 225 lbs.

Ride 1 up exclusively. Camp a lot. Rode from S. Il to Nova Scotia last year. Doing it again this year after riding to Billings for the MOA Rally.

Looking for a 12 or newer used.

Tell me the upgrades I should be sure that has either been done or I will need to to do make it a comfortable long distance bike.

Seat???

Suspension mods/upgrades?

Windshield?

Bar backs, foot peg lowering?

Bash plate?

Fork or triple tree mods?

Anything else.

I appreciate all info/advice/opinions.

Ride Well
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Also for got to ask

why are there leftover 13's and 14's around?
 

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You are in the right section for the answers to your questions, browse around a bit or use the google search box.........you will get all the info you can stand. The nice and patient members will likely give you some suggestions, but I assure you the answers/opinions you seek are already here. ;)
 

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Tell me the upgrades I should be sure that has either been done or I will need to to do make it a comfortable long distance bike.
Some enjoy the V-Strom right out of the box while others have to make comprehensive modifications before they are happy.

My advise is to get the bike, ride it and then decide what needs to be done to make it as you want it.
 

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Currently riding a 99 RT.

Looking for a smaller bike. Lots of good recommendations from others to look at the 650.

6' 1" 225 lbs.

Ride 1 up exclusively. Camp a lot. Rode from S. Il to Nova Scotia last year. Doing it again this year after riding to Billings for the MOA Rally.

Looking for a 12 or newer used.

Tell me the upgrades I should be sure that has either been done or I will need to to do make it a comfortable long distance bike.

Seat???

Suspension mods/upgrades?

Windshield?

Bar backs, foot peg lowering?

Bash plate?

Fork or triple tree mods?

Anything else.

I appreciate all info/advice/opinions.

Ride Well
I downsized from an ST1300 to the Vstrom and am very comfortable on it. Most have to change seat, as with most bikes. You can look at Russell Day Long, Sargent, and others. Seat Concepts will use your stock pan and replace the foam and cover. The other big issue for me was the windscreen. Two popular options are a Givi Airlow, or Madstad bracket and another screen (could be Madstad). I did put Rox Risers on mine, but it wasn't bad without risers.

If you are at all worried (I was) that a 650 wouldn't be enough, don't. Good luck, and as suggested, see if you can take one for a ride so you'll see if it's for you.
 

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why are there leftover 13's and 14's around?
Because they never sold. I know of a dealer with a left over 12. Somtimes they buy more then they sell and they sit on the floor.

Use it to your advantage if you can. Use it to either drive the price of a used one down or to get a sweet deal on a new one.
 

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Yes, Madstadt bracket is a must to get rid of buffeting, although I've heard taller riders don't experience that as much. Riding in that area, I'm sure u already have heated gear. I run Oxford heated grips and love em. I always recommend going one tooth up on the front sprocket to a 16 tooth. Lowers the rpm on the frwy nearly 500rpm, nicely cruises at 80mph below 6k, and doesn't noticeably reduce acceleration. Good luck!
 

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Currently riding a 99 RT.

Looking for a smaller bike. Lots of good recommendations from others to look at the 650.

6' 1" 225 lbs.

Ride 1 up exclusively. Camp a lot. Rode from S. Il to Nova Scotia last year. Doing it again this year after riding to Billings for the MOA Rally.

Looking for a 12 or newer used.

Tell me the upgrades I should be sure that has either been done or I will need to to do make it a comfortable long distance bike.

First of all, welcome! As BigB said, you can search this site pretty well and find out tons of info. This is one of the friendliest and most helpful motorcycle related sites I've ever been a member of. OK, here are a few quick suggestions. YMMV! :mrgreen:

I also liked Don_T's suggestion...before spending a little, or a LOT, ride it for awhile and then perform your mods. I have made a handful of small mods so far in 11 months of ownership of a 2013 V, yet all together they are probably right at a grand--some folks here have really done a lot to theirs, totaling thousands. Again, YMMV.




Seat???

Personally, I like the seat. It looks good and to me, is one of the more comfortable stock seats I've ever had. I do use my trusty old AirHawk cushion for longer rides. Seats are very personal though.....



Suspension mods/upgrades?

A fork brace is strongly recommended. It made a huge difference to me. A member here sells them.... beautifully machined and less than a Ben Franklin. 5 minute install.

Windshield?

Again, I like the stock one. I like the wind. (AeroStich Roadcrafter and tight Shoei helmet). This shield gives you a few inches of up and down adjustment (less than, 10 minutes to rig it). Again, just about as subjective as a seat. Ride it awhile first.

Bar backs, foot peg lowering?

Handlebars fit me beautifully the way they are. Again, very subjective.

Very good seat to peg ratio--just hair over 21 inches. I am 6', 210, and am very comfortable. I did not like the stock foot pegs so opted for off road style...pricey at $135.00, but install was simple, the company rocked on a small problem I had and fixed it immediately, free). Fastway pegs.


Bash plate?

I don't go off road much anymore. One complaint some have is that they throw a lot of engine noise up to the cockpit. I intend to go without one...but many strongly recommend them. Your choice here. A front fender extension (still on my To Do list, will assist in keeping trash hitting your oil filter, exhaust and engine).



Fork or triple tree mods?

Fork brace! ;-)

Anything else?

Well, if you plan on camping, then saddlebags and tank bag will be needed. So will a rear trunk. Bestem makes a nice one for $85.00. Givi is nicer, but much pricier. Other brands exist too. My Givi tank lock bag is a definite keeper.

Also consider engine guards to help limit damage from a drop. Some guards, on some bikes, cause vibrations at certain RPM's. I just bought some from a member here who was having major vibe problems. Knowing this, I mounted mine using neoprene washers, torqued everything to specs and am very happy with them (Givi bars). This is also VERY subjective for some.... and some bikes have NO problems, some have a very legitimate complaint. Your mileage can vary greatly with engine guards.

CENTER STAND for chain maintenance. Absolutely! My FIRST mod! I opted for the Suzuki one...had it thrown into the deal when I bought it.



I appreciate all info/advice/opinions.

Ride Well
Good luck with your decision. I haven't looked back after buying my V-Strom last April. A few tweaks here and there and except for one or two more things (electrical bus, possible add on lighting (but the stock lights are excellent), that'll be about it for mods for me. I like to filter through traffic when it is safe to do so, so saddlebags are not an option for me. I have a couple of great waterproof duffle bags that'll hold everything I could ever need if the travel bug bites me hard enough.

And there are still enough leftover 13's and 14's that you should be able to get a brand new bike for not much more than a good used one.



Cheers!

Pat
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the replies.

At my age, this might be my "last bike" so I want to gather as much info as I can.

It will warm up enough soon for a test ride.
 

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It's always good to have a new viewpoint!
 

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The Vstrom 650 is an excellent choice as a go to bike. As a previous forum member suggested buy and ride it in stock form and then decide what mods if any you would like. I find suspension mods the best bang for buck on any bike. I have installed an Elka rear shock and Racetech front fork internals on mine. Although the stock suspension is okay these mods are just amazing in terms of ,comfort on the long haul on poor roads and also handling. Other accessories I have fitted include:- hand guards, radiator guard, SW Motech skid plate, SW Motech engine crash guard, SW Motech foot pegs, Protaper handlebars, SW Motech tool box, SW Motech gear and brake pedals etc.

I know you will enjoy this bike not matter what farkles you choose. Enjoy !
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks. I appreciate specific recommendations. Seems that most agree the suspension upgrades make it much, much better.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
When buyers say Out the Door price, is that exclusive of tax, title and plate?
 

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Bud,
Usually, OTD includes all costs.

Some things to consider:

1. Some people may purchase a bike in a different state. In that case, OTD does not include tax and plate(registration). They need to pay that in their state.
2. Others may purchase a bike in their own state and pay everything to the dealer, OTD.
3. Just to muddy the water a bit, some states do not charge tax on purchases so that OTD price is less.

??Did that clear it up??
 

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Bud, I'm 6'3 200lbs. Had a 1996 RT. Lot's of Beemers, Triumphs, Ducatis etc... love them all but my fox orange 2012 DL650 is my favorite bike. Have a Tiger 1050 and a K1200RS and if I could only keep 1 it would be the V-strom. The engine is great, second only to the 96 900SS Ducati. The aftermarket is awesome so you can custom tailor these things. I have an RDL, Madstad, different handlebars, lowered pegs, tit is amazingly comfortable and it handles well. It could use more power, after riding a ZX-14 you realize that any other bike could use more power, but it is fun and never strains, the little engine that can. I am so thankful Suzuki makes this bike and I don't know how BMW can sell bikes for 20k when this is being made. The FJ-09 is the other one that will put a hurting on GS sales, it's a new era for bikes and no longer is bigger and more expensive necessarily better. Kind of the Honda Accord of bikes, you can spend more but you won't necessarily get a lot better.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Bud,
Usually, OTD includes all costs.

Some things to consider:

1. Some people may purchase a bike in a different state. In that case, OTD does not include tax and plate(registration). They need to pay that in their state.
2. Others may purchase a bike in their own state and pay everything to the dealer, OTD.
3. Just to muddy the water a bit, some states do not charge tax on purchases so that OTD price is less.

??Did that clear it up??
Yes, clear a mud. :hurray:

It's hard to compare prices when it may or may not include all those other things.

A apple to apple comparison of price for bike alone, without taxes, tag, title would help.

The reason I'm asking is that I talked to a dealer today that has a leftover 14 650 for $7,099. Seemed to be a reasonable price.

Talked to another dealer that advertised it for $6,999 but that didn't include the $495 setup fee. :headbang: When I objected he then went into the "make me an offer" mode and I don't play that silly game and told them that I wouldn't be buying from them because of that. He then told me they would beat anyone else's price. Again I told him that I wouldn't be buying from them.

Will test ride on on Sat. We will see.
 

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a caution re any part will fit your use

Hi Bud,
If you buy new -- and for your 'last bike', why not -- you will probably buy a bash plate. I have a '12 650 and initially bought the SW Motech one. However, that gave so much mechanical noise feedback to the rider/me -- that I sold it and got the Givi one. That is far better in terms of the bounce-back noise issue.
The Givi crash bar's on the other hand -- look terrible, compared to the SW Motech ones (IMHO). You'll need bar risers (or higher bars) if you stand up on gravel roads -- and if you stand up a lot -- you'll be grateful of wider footpegs. I bought the SW Motech ones -- which are perfect, but pricey.
An option to a different seat -- is to use an air seat -- like the AirHawk. Unfortunately, it's the dearer one with the inward curve to the front edge, that better suits the V-Strom
Great choice -- and it will be your last bike -- because you won't get sick of it. It does everything pretty well.
 

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Hey Bud, Here is what I found and had provided to someone else last week:

I have more info for you. Note this is for a leftover 2014 dl650a at my local CT dealer.
8549 MSRP
7499 less discount of 1050
6999 less discount from Suzuki of 500
7298 added 299 destination
7397 added 99 prep
7496 added 99 doc fee
This is similar to what the Rockingham NC dealer is doing on ebay. (7495)

from here we add CT sales tax and new registration 128 and 476
8100 OTD

IMHO - 7K for the bike is probably fair. Dest, prep, and doc fees are all negotiable but a dealer has to make money to stay in business and service you in the future. 300-400 is acceptable to me, the 500 they quoted above may be OK because I really like who they are and this was without any haggling. YMMV. Registration and tax have to be paid and each state has their own rates.
 

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Mirrors

"...get the bike, ride it and then decide what needs to be done to make it as you want it.[/QUOTE]

Agreed. The only exception I would have looking back would be be to order the Aprilia Tuono mirrors and replace the stock ones before doing anything else to ease helmet-level turbulence. The mirror swap is the best advice I have found so far on this forum.

Howard
 
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