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Discussion Starter #1
Hey there. This is my first time posting here, but I've heard great things about your forum over on www.gstwins.com (my normal home *laugh*).

Anyway, my GS is slowly succumbing to various mechanical problems that are getting too time (and money)intensive to fix given the value of the bike (16 years old, and lots of miles), and how much I ride (lots, as soon as I fix one problem, another arises). So, naturally, I'm in the market for a new (or slightly used) bike. And, since I started out on the GS500, the SV is a natural step up, though its not the only bike on my list.

So, I have a few questions for those of you with far more SV knowledge than myself.

Firstly, and most importantly: what is the maintainance schedule like, and how is the bike on reliability? I do a *lot* of riding. At the rate I'm going, probably about 40,000-50,000 miles a year. I work as a motorcycle courier in San Francisco, so I do a lot of riding on beaten up city streets, and a lot of freeway miles as well.... so, I'm curious as to the maintanance intervals for a few key items, mostly:

Valve adjustments, clutch, chain/sprockets, fork seals (do they fail much? I dont wheelie, but I do ride on lots of rough pavement, over curbs, etc), etc. I'm especially curious about valve adjustments, as I read somewhere that the SV needs them every 3500 miles or so (which seems a bit ridiculous).

Secondly, of those maintanance issues, any that are too much work for a pretty damned competent amatuer mechanic to knock out in a saturday afternoon? I'd prefer not to have to take my bike to a shop (and thus not be able to use it for work), if possible.

Third: how well does the SV respond to modifications? Primarily interested in full system, intake/airbox/breathing mods (heard that the bike is a bit choked up in that department), and of course a power commander. If I did all that, and took the bike to a dyno for fuel tuning, would I see noticable performance gains?

Fourth: Reliability issues? Does the SV like to burn oil (big concern of mine)?

Fifth: As I mentioned, I do a lot of freeway miles, usually in the 85-90mph range when I'm carrying a time-critical package. Now, that kind of treatment is absolute murder on my GS's motor. 90mph (indicated, of course, really its more like 83 or so) has the bike spinning at 9kish, on an 11k clock. For hours straight, every day, for months on end... well, thats a lot of stress to put on a motor. How stressed is the SV at those speed ranges, in top gear? I know the SV revs to about 11k... what does the tach read when travelling at 85ish?

Sixth, and lastly: with a combo of commuting and enthusiastic riding, how long do your tires normally last? I'd be running something like Metzler Roadtechs or Diablo Stradas (sport touring tires).

Anyway, sorry for the long, long, long first post. And, of course, thank you for any help you guys can offer. :)
 
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eisenfaust said:
I work as a motorcycle courier in San Francisco, so I do a lot of riding on beaten up city streets, and a lot of freeway miles as well....
Although I'll defer to the bigger gearheads with regard to your technical questions, I gotta say that sounds like a cool job, and an SV will be much better equipped for zipping around the hills and highways than the GS is. (My last ride was a 1998 GS500 which I rode for 5 years.)

Be aware that the SVS will have a more aggressive (potentially less comfortable) riding posture than the GS500. (Unless you have yours equipped with SM bars or clip-ons and rearsets.)

I'd like to work as a motorcycle courier in SF for a summer..... :daydream:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hah. Didnt you ever read Mark Twain? "The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in san francisco". Heh. I can count the number of days I havent needed my thermal gear so far this year on one hand. :cry: :cry: :cry:

I rather like the more agressive position. On my GS, I'm always bent forward and semi-tucked anyway... and I find myself longing for bars that are lower and farther away.
 

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Id seriously look into the DL650 storm. It sounds like it would suit your need very well.
 

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1)http://www.sv650.org/sv_manuals.htm check out the factory manuals on exactly whats involved maintence wise.

2) ditto

3) IIRC ~80hpish at the wheel is normal for a fully modded SV.

4) not that I know of, but Ill let others comment

5)85ish? on a naked about 6k I think....slightly lower on the S. (they have different ratios)

6) The stock dunlops are rocks. IIRC 8k is normal ish for them. Dont really know for others.
 
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stock fork/shocks are downright hazardous. fork will collaps under emergency breaking leading to tire skidding/hopping(1st hand experience, very scary). Rear will wiggle and pogo at the slightest bumps. Rear shock will make you crap your pants if you hit a bump mid corner.

I'm getting mine done after 600miles. I wish I would've done it at 0 miles at the Dealer for free (yeah right). These are relatively cheap but labor will kill ya if you ain't gonna bother with it like me.

On a lighter note, it's very flickable. Engine is very tractable and the power band is very smooth and linear. Bars are high and comfortable. exposed engine bay is easily serviceble.

It also has severe engine braking. For normal street use you almost don't need to use any brakes.
 

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Get a used 1999-2002 naked sv. :D Have carbs. Valve check @ 15k intervals,most don't need it first time :D 80mph cruse, easy all day :) 45-50 mpg,4gal tank=200 miles.They are a kick to ride,you won't belive the differance :lol: Welcome :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the help everyone. 15k for a valve check is quite reasonable. I think I can handle that.

Regarding the DL650: I do like the bike, and have a desire to do some adventure touring, but I also want to do trackdays.... and though I've heard the DL is competent in the corners, I'd rather have an SV for that particulat duty. Also, strangely enough, the DL is more expensive than the SV, and they're almost impossible to find used. DL1000s are somewhat easier to find, but I dont really want a 1000cc bike just yet (unless it was a speed triple. *drool*)

Also, I really want a fuel injected bike. I want the fire-up-and-ride-off ability of fuel injection, not having to worry about a choke circuit, not having to rejet carbs whenever I modify the engine's intake and exhaust components, etc. Plus, I like the throttle response of FI bikes. Perhaps a bit snatchy, but I'd rather have over-responsive throttle than under-responsive throttle. Also, I really want at least some kind of fairing for wind protection. Even a 20% improvement would go miles for my endurance and comfort in the saddle.


Regarding the stock suspension: Whats involved in fixing that? Is it a matter of just revalving the forks and tossing a nice spring on the shock? Or should I just replace the rear shock alltogether and get some good cartridge emulators for the front? But yeah, I know about soft forks/shocks all too well.... my GS is like soggy bread. Suspension bottoms out once or twice a block on SF streets. *laugh*

And thanks for all the advice guys, really. :)
 

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eisenfaust said:
Regarding the stock suspension: Whats involved in fixing that? Is it a matter of just revalving the forks and tossing a nice spring on the shock? Or should I just replace the rear shock alltogether and get some good cartridge emulators for the front? But yeah, I know about soft forks/shocks all too well.... my GS is like soggy bread. Suspension bottoms out once or twice a block on SF streets. *laugh*

And thanks for all the advice guys, really. :)
Suspension is springs and oil in the front, and replacement rear gsxr/zx6/zx10 shock(under $200 total) as a starting point.
 
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