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Old 10-29-2012, 03:52 PM   #1
Taelan28 OP
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Maintaining and paying to maintain a bike.

Hey. I've been happy with my starter bike until now. I'm happy for every dollar and mile I've put into it. Aside from being safe, a good reason to buy a cheap starter bike was to understand the maintenance costs and hazards. Due to my living conditions I haven't been able to store it in a good place in the winter and I wont be able to store a new bike anywhere in the winter. I just fire up my bike in the spring and hope for the best. So far new chains, tires, sprocket and carburator have been all to repair after 20,000km and the costs have been minimal (200+/yr) due to the nature of the bike.

What are some maintenance measures I can take when taking care of a 600cc-1100cc naked bike? Things to watch for etc. Should I just drive it and trust the mechanic to know whats up every oil change?

What are the costs involved for a bigger bike?
Chain, tires, sprocket, transmission, brakes, how much do these things cost and how often do they need to be changed?
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Old 10-29-2012, 03:55 PM   #2
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I gotta say thanks in advance. This forum is the best out there--ball of spray, a waterskiing forum is full of self righteous dicks that lack debating skills. Thanks to you guys answering my safety concerns in previous threads I'm still in one piece. I hope that motorcycling is something I continue for a long time and one day I can contribute.
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Old 10-29-2012, 04:01 PM   #3
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What larger bikes are you looking at, exactly? With the amount of users here, there's bound to be people with the exact same bike that can give you exact answers to those questions. For example, my little SV puts a different type of demand on it's tires, sprockets, etc. than something like the big ZRX.

Quote:
This forum is the best out there--ball of spray, a waterskiing forum is full of self righteous dicks that lack debating skills.
Don't be so quick to honor us with your praise. Trying starting a thread about putting a car tire on the back of your bike or about oil, and see what happens
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Old 10-29-2012, 04:13 PM   #4
Taelan28 OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by opmike View Post
What larger bikes are you looking at, exactly? With the amount of users here, there's bound to be people with the exact same bike that can give you exact answers to those questions. For example, my little SV puts a different type of demand on it's tires, sprockets, etc. than something like the big ZRX.
Ducati 796 is what my heart is set on right now. I refrained from saying because I want to hear input from all kinds of bikes.
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Old 10-29-2012, 04:26 PM   #5
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Expense

How much are you willing to dish out for your bike? Those Italian birds are a bit expensive to maintain. Most bikes are not unlike cars. Tires and fluids will be your real expense. If you have a shaft you might save some there over chain drive. Might, because it depends on the brand. Most bikes can be wrenched on at home. Get a good DIY bike mechanics book for your bike and read the forums that apply to your bike as well.

I think you will be very happy with your ride. Just pay attention to it and stay on top of the maintenance intervals and you should be GTG.
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Old 10-29-2012, 05:35 PM   #6
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Maintenance on a Ducati 2V is similar to other brands save for valves, at 6K to 12K mile intervals, and timing belts, about every 2 years. (any bike will have valve service but most have longer intervals).
DIY is a the way to go with any brand IMO. I've found my Monsters valves a bit fiddely to do but there's some great how
to's out there. My 620 is pretty happy at 12K+ intervals as it nears 40K miles. Chain should go 20K+ miles with care.

i will say this - if I wasn't well to do and was paying someone else to maintain my bike - Ducati wouldn't be my first choice,
but I'm a cheap bastard. That said, I love my Monster, it's given me 30K trouble free miles.
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Old 10-29-2012, 05:58 PM   #7
Harry Backer
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When I lived in Kentucky I had a CB750, I kept it under a tarp when not in use. Kept up with mant. and preped it for winter. Did that for 7 years till I moved with no problems. As far as the 796 they are very nice bikes. If you any mechanical abilities you will be fine. Most maint that you may need help with you can look up on u-tube also get a book.
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Old 10-29-2012, 06:00 PM   #8
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(any bike will have valve service but most have longer intervals).

This is not an accurate statement.

There are a bunch of different bikes out there and there are some that do not have valve adjustments as part of regular maintenance.
I have three bikes currently and two of them do not need any valve train adjustments. If I change lifters, I can eliminate it in the third one.
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Old 10-29-2012, 06:10 PM   #9
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Most bikes are easy to work on. They are smaller and lighter than cars, and things ideally are more accessible.

A 2V Ducati is finicky with regard to valves, but easy enough. Just different.

You save a lot of cash doing your own work. My BMW is a non-issue. Valve check every 15k. (Only needed adjusted when I got it). Shaft spline lube yearly (I think of it like all the time I saved lubing the chain). Oil every year or 5k miles.
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Old 10-29-2012, 06:27 PM   #10
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I'd set yourself up with an affordable winter storage place before getting anything expensive.

Some bikes are pretty darn easy to work on. One could probably strip and rebuild an entire DR650 in well under a week, while some bikes can (evidently) stump a dealership for MONTHS when they come in with a problem.

Some bikes eat $200 tires, expensive chains, valves, etc. Some bikes need no valve/chain adjustments and go 10K+ miles on a $60 rear tire.

Choose wisely.
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Old 10-30-2012, 08:21 AM   #11
scrannel
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When I was a kid I would undertake... anything. But when I went shopping for my last bike ease of maintenance was not a factor because I just wasn't going to do that anymore, and I can afford to have my bike delivered to my dealer and returned. So, then it became a question of "which dealer can I trust?" So with that attitude I just got what I wanted. If I were planning on wrestling with it myself... I would have compromised somewhere. I have a late model BMW K-Bike (which has been flawless). That being said there are guys on my BMW forum who pull their K1200 engines apart just to try different crank balancers. For the hell of it.

Get on a forum for the bike you like and look around.
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Old 10-30-2012, 12:28 PM   #12
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If you have to leave your bike outside, you need to cover it with something that will protect it from the elements. If you can't afford a decent motorcycle cover, at least get a tarp and cover it with that. Tie it down good so that it doesn't move around much in the wind. I don't know what to tell you about cost, as I take it you are in South Korea. I understand the winters there can be pretty harsh. I would think a good motorcycle cover would pay for itself in one season. Be sure to treat the gas with some fuel stabilizer. It's also probably a good idea to change the oil before winter, and change it again in the spring before you start riding again.

Be sure it is VERY CLEAN when you put it away, and you may also want to rub something like vaseline on any chrome or paint to protect that. DO NOT PUT VASELINE ON BRAKES, TIRES, SEAT, GRIPS, ETC.

Also if you can, get it up so the tires are not directly on concrete or pavement. Put a sheet of plywood or something under it. Your tires will be much happier.

I had a couple of winters where I did not have a garage to keep my bike in. One of those winters I found an elderly lady who lived alone and no longer had a car, and talked her into letting me store my bike in her garage over the winter. The second time I rented a storage unit to keep it in.
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Old 10-31-2012, 05:30 AM   #13
Steve G.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taelan28 View Post
Ducati 796 is what my heart is set on right now. I refrained from saying because I want to hear input from all kinds of bikes.

Any Ducati will have higher service costs than almost any other bike make/model, unless you do your own work, even a 2 valve Ducati. I've owned Ducatis, the reputation they have is well founded in performance, and service expense.
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Old 10-31-2012, 06:14 AM   #14
Guano11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrbreeze View Post
If you have to leave your bike outside, you need to cover it with something that will protect it from the elements. If you can't afford a decent motorcycle cover, at least get a tarp and cover it with that. Tie it down good so that it doesn't move around much in the wind.
Be sure to treat the gas with some fuel stabilizer. It's also probably a good idea to change the oil before winter, and change it again in the spring before you start riding again.
Be sure it is VERY CLEAN when you put it away.
+1, but I recommend springing for the best cover you can afford. I had to keep my bikes un-garaged for a few years (though under a carport and in a very temperate climate). I bought top-of-the-line Dowco's which were very durable, and they fared well. Nothing beats a garage, though....
For comparison, I recently covered a riding mower with a plastic tarp (on dirt, not carported), and it didn't take long for mildew to form and for the bugs to burrow in some of the crevices -- so beware of using a non-breathable tarp.

I also double-dosed the fuel stabilizer. Carbureted or injected, they've always started even after months of storage (learned this the hard way).
And although nearly all owner's manuals recommend it, I've never changed the oil prior to storage only to change it again in the spring. Instead, I go for a longer ride to help ensure any moisture in the oil is evaporated before tucking it in for the winter and I don't touch it again until spring -- no mid-winter startups -- then fresh oil & filter in the spring. Can't say my "moisture evaporation theory" has any credibility, but it makes me feel better.....

And a Battery Tender.....
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Old 10-31-2012, 06:33 AM   #15
Taelan28 OP
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Davyjones is right. Bikes are not unlike cars. I was at the dealership getting maintenance numbers. The guy was informative but a little shifty at times. One moment a chain needs to be replaced every 12,000km and the next it can go for 30-50,000km.

$500 for a new chain, $2-300 for tires, $150 for oil, the quality synthetic kind. All of these things, probably except the tires, last longer than they do on my current bike. Working on my own bike is not a valid option until someone who has earned my trust correctly oversees me fix things to confidence. Yes, even for simple shit like tightening the chain or changing the oil.

When asking the sales guy what his maintenance costs were on his bike he said $1000/yr on 30,000km, I put on 10,000km+ a year and I'd be splitting duties with my current bike, so I guess it would be a lot cheaper. Still, I'm not sure. Insurance is $600... fine. I oughtta pay for it. Possession tax was only $18 a year, but with cars here its something like 1-3% every 6 months (think about that, if you own a $30,000 car you need to pay $300 every six months just to effin have it.)

The sales guy used to be a motorcycle magazine writer here in Korea. He's had surgery 3 times due to accidents YIKES!

The good:Riding the bike again felt better than the first time Wet clutch is better than try, a lot more area to release the handle. Less trouble getting my foot to the gears and operating the bike. My nuts weren't crunched up on the tank like they were last time, but the seating position was noticeably more forward than the BMW R1200 R. 14,000km on a bike is a lot of milage? I think not, cars go 300,000km why cant a quality european machine go 150,000km? Of the two 796s I rode the one with the carbon pipes sounded a lot louder--a potential life saver as my bike now has no bark-- it also handled a lot better and was physically easier to move the wheel.

The bad: The other one with stock pipes was nasty. Something was wrong. It was a lot harder to move the bars. It didnt balance right and felt awful. I suspected it was the tires as when I changed my front, asymmetrically bald tire on my bike this summer it felt completely different. It would have been nice to get out of low second gear, but it was damn cold and I came to get some questions answered and get a feel for the bike. Although operating the bike was easy I don't feel much more comfortable than I was last time operating it over the course of many hours and thousands of km. I cant help but imagine the front wheel slip or get jammed on something and having my head and shoulders slamming into the street. I also kept imagining my hands slipping on the handlebars, my whole body falling forward and then eating it. Is this a possible scenario or am I over-thinking this? Wouldn't I get launched if I high sided it?

Overall I dont fear the bike. I have too much pride in my 2 and a half accident free years, and this believe that since I can control a bike well in first gear that I will be on the fast track to mastering it within a month. Riding that daystar of mine has translated into some bad habits as I have so much control over it. No real close calls, but certainly risky "I think I can do this" type of decision making that translate into reckless driving. Speaking of which. I told myself from the first time I rode a motorcycle. I'm riding it, not driving it, let it take me where I need to go and not demand that it get me there, clearly my behavior on the road does not reflect my habits. My head is not in the right spot and my conscience is telling me: I am not mentally ready to handle a machine of such position and power.

Who the hell in marketing says a Monster, 696, 796 or otherwise was a beginner bike? It should be a goddamn law that everyone gets 250cc or less regardless of weight.

A deal breaker was the sales man telling me that the brake or clutch handle on his monster costs $250. TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTY DOLLARS! I've broken two on my bike in two years. The odds of me dropping my bike are astronomically high and to pay $250 or more each time it goes down is intense. Shit. I drop my daystar and the handle is practically free, as the guy has 7 or 8 hanging on the wall. Bend a handle and bust a signal light and its only $15 and a 8 minute wait. $250 for a handle? Come on guy, are we selling the bikes at a loss and making up for it on the small shit? You'd have to convince me that those handles are more than $5 to produce. I don't believe there is a material or metal on earth that isn't gold or silver that cant be molded into that lever for less than $5.

Taelan28 screwed with this post 10-31-2012 at 06:43 AM
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