Roadside breakdowns, what did you do? - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 12 Old 11-29-2011, 12:39 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Anchorage
Posts: 99
Roadside breakdowns, what did you do?

Question for you from V-Curious. From what I've learned so far, it's not common for wee-stroms to have roadside breakdowns or problems, (the kind that would prevent you from continuing a trip.) But for those of you that have had them, I'm curious in the following:

1) what was the nature of the breakdown/problem/issue

2) was it something you took care of yourself roadside, and if so what did it involve as far as tools/time/knowledge/resources/etc.

3) Or did you have to involve others such as towtruck, the dealer in the next town, a forum member with a pickup truck, etc.

I am mostly interested in problems that happened out of town, further than your circle of friends might typically be available to call for help/ride home/etc.

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post #2 of 12 Old 11-29-2011, 02:31 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Surrey BC
Posts: 1,215
The Clutch handle on my 1000 broke last week on the way home, the portion that holds the actuating plunger for the hydraulic clutch just wore out and broke away, leaving the lever still in place, but unable to depress the hydraulic plunger on the clutch Master Cylinder.
I was able to get the bike a long way without the clutch, but I eventually had to use my trailer to get it the rest of the way home.
Waiting for a new Clutch lever, I have drilled a hole through what is left of the lever, inserted a metal pin bent at a right angle to the plunger and used a portion of a tent peg (the skinny smooth wire type) as my actuation plunger until the new lever arrives...

it is ugly but effective
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post #3 of 12 Old 11-29-2011, 03:30 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Evanston IL USA
Posts: 38,049
I had the two bolts holding the clutch actuator mechanism work loose on a trip to Minnesota. I fixed it using the bike's tool kit. If I hadn't replaced the case bolts with hex socket head types and had the original cap screws on, I would have needed the socket set I always carry to get access. That and buying a new tire from a place that accepted wheels but not bikes was my total on tour maintenance for 75,000 miles.

Pat- 2007 DL650A was ridden to all 48 contiguous states. I didn't quite make it to 17,000 miles on the 2012 DL650A.
Nicknames I use to lessen typing, Vee = 2002-2012 DL1000s. Vee2=2014-2016 DL1000s. Wee = 2004-2011 DL650s. Glee = 2012-2016 DL650s

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post #4 of 12 Old 11-29-2011, 05:56 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Farmington, New Hampshire, USA
Posts: 10,196
I've had my charging system fail 3 times

first time I was scoping out and "adventure" ride in northern New Hampshire about 100 miles from home and about 8 miles away from remote civilization on a forest service road. luckily I had a hicup that got my attention to look at the voltmeter. I got to the top of a fairly steep downhill section and stopped the bike, checked battery connections, unplugged my headlights, and coasted down the hill to start the bike, at first I thought it might come back, but it's cause I was on a mostly downhill, the voltage would actualy climb, slowly from 12.3 back up to 12.8 (but not the normal 13.8) every time I had to get on the throttle it would drop, the more throttle the faster it would drop, I made it back to civilization and the highway, anything over 3500rpm would suck the voltage down and spudder (fuel pump pressure?) I made it 60 miles to the beginning of a long uphill off ramp and started pushing 1 mile later with plenty of traffic, guy & his wife on a harley stopped and asked if I needed gas, I said, no, I need a charging system, he was a christian biker preacher on his way home from a sunday sermon, he said "wait here, I'll be back in a half hour with a trailer

second failure I was riding to my son's house, it failed about 300 feet from his driveway, smooth, level, paved push

third time I was on my way home from a late evening meeting, I got a little warning, unplugged one headlight made it another 5 miles, still had to push about 2 miles, again to my son's house

I don't need no steenkin cell phone

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IBA# 9560
07 Strom 1k (8x,xxx miles)
99 SV650 (135,006 miles)
82 XV920R
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post #5 of 12 Old 11-29-2011, 06:06 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Port Perry, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 12,710
With over 125,000 miles on my 06 DL650, I have been fortunate in that nothing on the road has stopped me from riding on.

I did have a crash that broke my clutch lever and therefore meant I could neither start normally as the interlock switch couldn't be worked nor bump start as it just doesn't work to b ump start without a clutch. Hot wiring the swtich with a piece of wire go it going and I rode home without a clutch.

I also had the starter switch get corroded. BUmp starting worked fine in that case (I recommend third gear.)

I had three flat tires (nails) but my plug kit and air pump fixed that.

If I did have something major I would call CAA as they have motorcycle flat-bedding if needed.


2006 DL650: 202,000 km 125,500 miles, Sold
2012 DL650 139,500+ km, 86,700+ miles. Sold
2015 DL1000 New July 2015 200,000+ km, 125,000 miles.

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post #6 of 12 Old 11-29-2011, 07:59 PM
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Location: Tallahassee, FL
Posts: 2,378
Don't know if it qualifies, but I had a bad flat about 25 miles from home. RideOn didn't work. A local with an air pump get me to a nearby convenience store, where their last can of fix-a-flat did the trick and got me home where I plugged it. I now carry a 12v pump and a plug kit and use Ultraseal.

1985 Honda CB450SC (AUG04 - SEP09)
2004 Honda CN250 Helix (NOV09 - )
2006 Suzuki DL650 (MAR07 - APR15)
2014 BMW R1200GSW (APR14 - )
Lordsmoke, still refusing to obey the voices!
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post #7 of 12 Old 11-30-2011, 09:12 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Farmington, New Hampshire, USA
Posts: 10,196
I'v always been prepared for flat tires, so I don't consider them breakdowns

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IBA# 9560
07 Strom 1k (8x,xxx miles)
99 SV650 (135,006 miles)
82 XV920R
A man with a gun is a citizen
A man without a gun is a subject
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post #8 of 12 Old 11-30-2011, 09:29 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Braintree, Massachusetts
Posts: 8,025
I discovered the limits of the charging system on a November group ride in 2005 or 2006. Pulled over to regroup and the bike wouldn't start. Three or four folks from here pushed and we bump started the bike.

I've been carrying some of the weetle jumper cables from aerostich ever since. Also installed a voltmeter.

-Tom (DL650AL2) (KA1TOX) (E-I-E-I-O)

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post #9 of 12 Old 11-30-2011, 09:30 AM
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Illinois, St. Louis metro area.
Posts: 1,901
Snapped the shift lever on a gravel nap one time. Small pair of vice-grips saved the day.

06 DL1000
2007 Royal Star Tour Deluxe
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post #10 of 12 Old 11-30-2011, 11:44 AM
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: IN
Posts: 626
I've not had a road failure on my '09 Wee in 21+K miles (two years). However, I have had road failures on other bikes that I owned at the time.

A couple of flat tires on a K75 -- fixed with a plug and the compressor that I normally carry.

Then there was the rear drive failure on my K1100LT on the way to a rally near Venice, FL. Fortunately, I was close to Sarasota. I made a call to Beemer dealer. They towed me in and repaired the RD. I was on the road in 24 Hours, and $1K poorer.

'12 Guzzi Stelvio NTX

'09 DL650 ABS (Sold)
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