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I'm sure these questions have been asked many times before but I'm new here so here goes. First, Is the maintenance on a wee within the reach of an average garage mechanic? I've been riding a KLR for 6 years now and have learned to enjoy the valve adjusting and doohickey replacement and all the rest. Any special tools or skills needed? Second, I feel silly for asking this but some stroms have silver wheels, most seem to have black ones. Is this year/model specific or is it a owner/custom thing? (BTW which color is faster?) Thanks
 

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...First, Is the maintenance on a wee within the reach of an average garage mechanic? I've been riding a KLR for 6 years now and have learned to enjoy the valve adjusting and doohickey replacement and all the rest. Any special tools or skills needed?...
I am often surprised at how few tools are actually required - I am seldom required to go beyond basic a Craftsman socket set, hex sockets, and combo wrenches, plus some larger sizes for axle removal. Getting into steering head and frame work will require a few more specialty bits. Oh, and fork damping rod removal requires a special tool, or simple workaround. Oh, oh, one of the cover bolts to access the front sprocket is deep with limited clearance. You should be fine.

Is the V-Strom maintenance intensive?

...Second, I feel silly for asking this but some stroms have silver wheels, most seem to have black ones. Is this year/model specific or is it a owner/custom thing?...
Both. Some early owners stripped and polished their rims. Some recent models (maybe some older ones, too, I don't recall) are silver from the factory. Early models had silver frames/swingarms, too.

DL650 Through the Years!

...(BTW which color is faster?) Thanks
'06 Euclase silver metallic - it can take Ducs in the twisties, 'Busas on the straights, and holds almost every speed and endurance record in motorcycling, though the owners are all to modest, self-confident, and good looking to deign to officially register such banalities.
 

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Former 2x DL650 owner; moved onto Super Tenere ES
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Not sure if you purchased yet or not ... but these are very easy bikes to work on. The battery/starter/lack of choke makes starting very reliable even if it has sat awhile. Nothing like fuel injection. With such good fueling spark plugs also seem to last a long time. As said before, very few special tools aside from very large hex/allen key for fork damper rod and special tool if you ever wish to replace steering stem bearing (usually good for 25,000-30,000 miles or more if 100% road use). Valve adjustments are infrequent (rarely out of spec before 20K, sometimes double that) but do require inexpensive shims rather than a simple screw to be tightened. But checking the valves is essentially the same as your KLR.
 

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Pretty easy to work on but what they are neglecting to tell you...and which pisses me off on a "sort of dirt bike" is the tank must be removed to R&R the air filter.

Now at home this is a 1 to 2 hour hassle with little bits and pieces to keep track of. In the woods...I would not think of even trying to look at filter unless the beast sucks up a slug of water or such. On my XR, two quick clips and your in filter land.

Yes, I know its a V twin with a perimeter frame.

Other than that little detail...its just another motorcycle.
 
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