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I've been riding for close to 10 years now, am on my 2nd bike, and have decided that this spring will be moving on to a Wee-Strom.

The main reason I've chosen the Wee is that, of all the people I've talked to that have owned multiple bikes, of which at least one was a V-Strom, every one of them has said the Wee was, hands-down, the best of the lot. Hard to ignore that kind of praise. Regardless, I test rode a few other bikes in the category, as well as a Wee, and found nothing to change me mind.

Switching to the V-Strom represents a bit of a change for me. My 2 previous bikes, a 1983 Honda Nighthawk 550 and a 1998 Kawasaki Concours, while very different bikes, shared some underlying elements: inline 4 engine, shaft drive, relatively easy to work on for a novice, etc.

Now that I've decided to make the move to a V-twin, chain-drive bike, what can I expect to be different?

Obviously, I'll now have to deal with chain maintenance. For those of you that have made similar moves, are there any other significant changes I should be thinking about in advance?
 

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Perhaps less maitenance then on your 2 previous bikes. And the chain is nothing to worry about it as long as you have center stand on your bike
 

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What is your inseam.
 

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I've been riding for close to 10 years now, am on my 2nd bike, and have decided that this spring will be moving on to a Wee-Strom.

The main reason I've chosen the Wee is that, of all the people I've talked to that have owned multiple bikes, of which at least one was a V-Strom, every one of them has said the Wee was, hands-down, the best of the lot. Hard to ignore that kind of praise. Regardless, I test rode a few other bikes in the category, as well as a Wee, and found nothing to change me mind.

Switching to the V-Strom represents a bit of a change for me. My 2 previous bikes, a 1983 Honda Nighthawk 550 and a 1998 Kawasaki Concours, while very different bikes, shared some underlying elements: inline 4 engine, shaft drive, relatively easy to work on for a novice, etc.

Now that I've decided to make the move to a V-twin, chain-drive bike, what can I expect to be different?

Obviously, I'll now have to deal with chain maintenance. For those of you that have made similar moves, are there any other significant changes I should be thinking about in advance?
I own a Concours as well and have owned the 550sc. Both are excellent bikes. The 550 was a wheelie machine!

Strom vs. Concours

  • Better city / parking lot manners, less topheavy
  • Better fueling, better efficiency, worse range
  • Less vibration
  • Less power
  • Less comfort
  • Far worse wind/weather protection
  • Tires will last longer, better tire selection

Strom vs. 550 Nighthawk

  • Taller, more topheavy
  • Better fueling, better efficiency, longer range
  • Less power
  • More vibration
  • About equal comfort
  • Better wind/weather protection
  • Better tire selection

Some general issues to look out for with the vstrom include:
- Oil use at high speeds, and in general
- Worn out sprocket carrier bearings with weather exposure (and miles)
- Worn out clutch actuator (failure to grease w/moly grease, with miles)
- Clogged fuel filter requiring bypass (surfaces around 40-50k miles, though some bikes go far longer)
- Galling of rear axle threads (torque under spec)
- Headlight cutout switch gets dirty and causes super-dangerous no-headlight situation (2005 and 2006 models)

Chain maintenance is bitch, but chains do have their advantages. Expect 17k out of a chain with marginal maintenance.
 

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What is your inseam.
+1

Some riders with shorter inseams do have difficulty getting their feet down. The flip side is that the riding position is very comfortable - the older I get, the more I like my Strom's geometry for leg position.
 

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2006 DL650. 202,000+ km 126,000+ miles.

No issue with headlights ever. Also bike still has original headlight bulbs.

Never had galling on axle threads

Fuel filter clogged at around 145,000 km/90,000 miles.

Never had issue with Worn Out sprocket carrier bearings.

Had to replace the clutch actuator once because the spot weld that holds hte arm on broke. This was around 50,000 miles iirc. (It was driveable, just didnt release fully.)

Oil use: with roughly 185,000 km/115,000 miles when riding at 80 to 95 mph all day in temperatures of 90 to 100°f with a full load would need a liter added at the end of a 1,300km/800 mile day. In normal riding would need to be topped up with a liter or so between oil changes.

Taking care of the chain is an absolute piece of cake if you have a centerstand.

I fully expect to get between 70,000 and 80,000 km/ 40,000 and 50,000 miles on my chains (My current 2015 DL1000 has a bit over 70,000 km/44,000 miles on the Original Chain. The only chain maintenance I have ever done is (literally!) take 10 seconds to lube the chain with Wurth HHS2000 after every fillup and after every ride in the rain. Absolutely never cleaned. It had its first adjustment between tire changes last week (which probably means the front sprocket is getting worn.) The chain should have no problem hitting 80,000 km/ 50,000 miles.

..Tom
 

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Welcome to the Strom side from another COGger! Still new to the 650 so I can't add much to what's been said. I can tell you you WON'T miss the extra 200 pounds of the Concours. You WILL miss the weather protection. The Wee-Stroms seem to have a lot of the same bulletproof rep as the Connies do. They are tall but the lower weight makes a difference. I have a 29" inseam and it's a stretch. I'm very happy with mine, though. Oh yeah, get a center stand!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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As above, my inseam 28". After the weight of the Concours the Wee is a toy. Although less torque makes up for it with up to date tech, I suspect would be faster as it likes to rev.
Loved the Concours but find the lighter Wee much easier to handle and not afraid to explore more backroads and easy off road places that I would ride past on the Concours.
 
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I bought my first and only Wee to date this summer. I have to say I have found it a bit challenging in parking lots at times simply because of the top heaviness. No problems just have to be mindful of the weight. But it is absolutely the most fun bike I have ever ridden or owned! Surefooted and great for traveling or playing in the corners. It has a feel that'll grow on ya pretty quick. The engine,.. or should I say, "THAT engine!!!" I love it. I just wish the speedos were accurate. I had a feeling something was amiss and learned I wasn't the only one by hanging out here on Stromtroopers. Enjoy.
 

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Chain Maintenance
I love shaft drive bikes but until someone starts making them again (in the ~650cc range) I'm happy with the Wee.

I'm using a TUTORO chain oiler purchased from AdventureTech that works fine and is so easy to install.
Tutoro Auto - Deluxe Edition - AdventureTech, LLC.

I also advise getting a center stand, if just to change and check your oil.
And welcome to this forum!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I own a Concours as well and have owned the 550sc. Both are excellent bikes. The 550 was a wheelie machine!

Strom vs. Concours
Better city / parking lot manners, less topheavy
Better fueling, better efficiency, worse range
Less vibration
Less power
Less comfort
Far worse wind/weather protection
Tires will last longer, better tire selection

Strom vs. 550 Nighthawk
Taller, more topheavy
Better fueling, better efficiency, longer range
Less power
More vibration
About equal comfort
Better wind/weather protection
Better tire selection
I appreciate all the responses, but this is exactly the kind of information I was looking for -- thanks!

One point on your Concours vs. Strom comparison: When I first decided it was time to think about replacing the Concours, I began looking for something that would give me all the things I liked about the ZG1000, but in a smaller package. After a fair bit of looking, about the only bike that fit that bill was the Honda NT700V. Good weather protection? Check. Shaft drive? Check. Hard bag set-up? Check. Centerstand? Check. I test rode one and didn't feel it was under-powered, as I'd heard some say. But in the end, I just couldn't get over the looks. No matter how much I told myself it was basically a 3/4 Connie, it'll always look like a motorcycle/scooter hybrid to me. Blech.

See for yourself.
 

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I appreciate all the responses, but this is exactly the kind of information I was looking for -- thanks!

One point on your Concours vs. Strom comparison: When I first decided it was time to think about replacing the Concours, I began looking for something that would give me all the things I liked about the ZG1000, but in a smaller package. After a fair bit of looking, about the only bike that fit that bill was the Honda NT700V. Good weather protection? Check. Shaft drive? Check. Hard bag set-up? Check. Centerstand? Check. I test rode one and didn't feel it was under-powered, as I'd heard some say. But in the end, I just couldn't get over the looks. No matter how much I told myself it was basically a 3/4 Connie, it'll always look like a motorcycle/scooter hybrid to me. Blech.

See for yourself.
How much of 2up do you need? Unlike Connie Wee doesn't have the rear air shock preload and needs spring upgrade to work well 2up.
 

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... After a fair bit of looking, about the only bike that fit that bill was the Honda NT700V. Good weather protection? Check. Shaft drive? Check. Hard bag set-up? Check. Centerstand? Check. I test rode one and didn't feel it was under-powered, as I'd heard some say. But in the end, I just couldn't get over the looks. No matter how much I told myself it was basically a 3/4 Connie, it'll always look like a motorcycle/scooter hybrid to me. Blech.

See for yourself.
I looked at and rode the NT700V as well. To me, it felt underpowered and just didn't speak to me. I really wanted it to work.
The Wee did NOT feel underpowered and DID feel right in some way that's hard to articulate. It still, does!

Yesterday when I tried to check my oil I found that she's got the winter blues, with the cloudy oil view window. Guess I'll have to put that off until my next oil change or March / April :(
 

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Chain oilers are your friend.
 
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I went from a 2007 FJR1300 (similar to the Connie) to a 2013 "glee adventure".

Things I miss from the FJR:

-Wind/weather protection (needed upgraded windshield to achieve)

-Shaft drive

-smooth and fast

-stock heated grips and controller


Things I don't miss:

-weight

-heat


Things I like more on the glee:

-lighter weight

-better riding position

-easier to move around the driveway

-better and larger storage

-no engine heat blowing on me constantly


Things I don't like on the glee, compared to FJR:

-very wide with the side boxes

-wind and weather protection not as good, even with all sorts of aftermarket windshields and deflectors


Ultimately, I wish I had both bikes. One day....

Enjoy the Wee. It's different, not necessarily better or worse.
 

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I just changed up to a V 650 from A 2008 KLR and love it.
I can do long distance and back roads. so far after 9 bikes it's my favourite.
I just need some more off road worthy tiers.
Oh and it's great for camping.
 
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