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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I've just bought an 03 Sv650 S and am looking for some advice.

I have been riding for about 5 years now at this stage but have been off of bikes since January (too broke :( ). I'm moving up from a Bros 400 (Hawk GT for the Americans). I'm won't be insured until Monday morning but took the bike for a quick spin around the front garden which is just deep stones so that was no fun.

Any tips on how I should handle moving from a smaller bike to the SV having been off of bikes for so long?

Also maybe it's just me but it seems that the bike is very unforgiving if you don't "bite" quickly enough when slowly releasing clutch e.g cuts out straight away with very little feedback from the engine before it does so. I'm presuming this is something I will just have to get used to. Dumb question but does the bike have an Auto reserve or am I just going blind as i couldn't find a reserve switch...

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So I've just bought an 03 Sv650 S and am looking for some advice.

Dumb question but does the bike have an Auto reserve or am I just going blind as i couldn't find a reserve switch...

Thanks
Congratulations on buying an SV. You have purchased a capable and forgiving machine, but got yourself into the stepchild year. Oh well. I don't regret mine either.

There is no reserve switch on the k3 SV. Instead you have a low fuel indicator light which on my k3 comes on around a gallon left.

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Congratulations on buying an SV. You have purchased a capable and forgiving machine, but got yourself into the stepchild year. Oh well. I don't regret mine either.

There is no reserve switch on the k3 SV. Instead you have a low fuel indicator light which on my k3 comes on around a gallon left.

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Ha ha why is it the stepchild year?
 

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Ha ha why is it the stepchild year?
It was the first year of the second gen, and they changed a few things in '04 so for those the '03 is unique. Nothing that major tho', the subframe is the main one IIRC.
 

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Look up TPS adjustment and clutch mantra here in the FAQs.
They'll both help with the low input clutch bite problems.

With any new-to-me bike I've never ridden before, completely stationary,
I spend a few minutes figuring out where the clutch friction point is.
Then how much throttle is needed to start moving, then stop. Repeat.

Doing this on a loose traction surface would make it a bit more difficult.
Still do-able.
 

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Welcome back to riding! Wear proper gear and take time getting to know your new machine before getting too aggressive on it.
As for the 03 being different, the tail is a bit higher so the driver seat and triangle shaped side covers are different. Also, on the 03 svs, the driver rearsets/footpegs are higher and set further back than any other year - on the flip side of that, the 03 svn footpegs are lower and further forward than other years.
Aside from the seat and side covers, most second gen parts are interchangeable.
 

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Welcome. You'll find that compared to smaller, more beginner-friendly motorcycles, the SV has a fairly abrupt manner. The throttle response, clutch engagement, initial turn-in, and brake bite are probably more sudden than what you are used to. OTOH, once you get used to it, you will enjoy the greater responsiveness.

The way to happiness is to practice being smooth with your inputs. Abrupt inputs will only accentuate the SV's abrupt manner, and could take you by surprise. Concentrate on learning how the bike reacts to your inputs and on being smooth.

You can also make a few minor adjustments to the bike and to your riding style to lessen the abruptness.

Raise your idle speed to around 1,400 -1,500 rpm. (IIRC, the manual recommends 1,100 rpm.) It won't hurt anything, and it will make your clutch engagement, shifting, and slow speed maneuvering smoother. Also, consult the "Clutch Mantra" on this site, and make sure your clutch is properly adjusted.

When maneuvering at slow speeds, like in traffic or in parking lots, use second gear, not first. First gear is a bit tall on the SV, and, when combined with bike's torque and grabby clutch, can make for an unpleasant experience. The SV engine has enough low-end torque that you won't be lugging it in second, particularly if you've raised the idle speed, and you will find that running in second gear, when combined with judicious slipping of the clutch, will make the bike less likely to buck as you roll on and off the throttle. Save first gear for taking off from a dead stop, exclusively.

Practice the friction zone drill from the Motorcycle Safety Foundation's Basic Rider Course. Also, practice rev-matching on downshifts. The SV has a lot of engine braking force, but once you learn how to combine engine braking with smoothly rolling on and off the throttle, you can attack the twisties while rarely using the brakes. Again, raising your idle speed will help with learning this.

The SV's brakes tend to be grabby. Change to EBC HH pads -- front and rear. Their response is more progressive than the stock pads. Also, play with the adjustment of the rear brake lever until you get it where you are less likely to lock it on application. Again, practice smooth application of the brakes -- don't grab or stab at the levers.

The SV's turn-in can be abrupt. If this bothers you, raising the triple tress (lowering the fork legs in the trees) a few millimeters will make the steering a little slower. Again, take your time and learn how the bike reacts to your inputs. Practice being smooth.

The adjustments to the bike that I've suggested are all easily done, and, easily reversed. Once you get used to the bike, you can lower the idle speed, raise the rear brake lever, and raise the fork legs in the triple trees, back to factory spec., in less than half an hour.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for all the replies guys. And cfreger fantastic answer will follow suggestions to a T thanks mate.
 

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just don't whack on throttle in 3rd in the wet thinking all will be fine!
im sure your all over it by now :)

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