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Old 04-08-2013, 03:13 PM   #16
Joined: Jul 2010
Location: Hotlanta
Oddometer: 2
K6 & k7 rtw

My wife and participated in the first guided circumnavigation by GlobeBusters and Edelweiss. Had to take our own spare parts because GB is a BMW partner and everybody else rode GS bikes. Oil filters, brake pads, chains and sprockets were all that were needed. Bearings are available world wide, but you have to have the specs in metric. I had the electronic service manual which gave me the part number for rear-wheel bearings. Wasn't much good in Russia when we need them. Fortunately, a a couple of posts got me the info, went to a bearing store and swapped them that night.

From our experiences on the trip, the beemers need more work than the V-stroms. All the F800s had to have their front wheels replaced after we finished South and Latin America. My wife bent her front rim in Ruta 40. Put a tube in until we could get the rim pounded out in Santiago. No further problems.
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Old 04-08-2013, 04:02 PM   #17
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Joined: Aug 2009
Location: Two-dimensional, OH
Oddometer: 2,200
I had a 1000 but just riding Canada and AK:

-Brake pads (Do not use organic! Stick with OEM!)
-Fork seals (stick with OEM!). You may want to fashion up a seal installer
-The wheel bearings are a pretty common size (can't remember the conversion number but it's out there). I could get them at an auto parts store. However, the sprocket carrier is a special size readily available through Suzuki. You may want to carry an extra carrier bearing.
-Spare emergency chain. I just stuck with a roller, non sealed.
-Little, tiny squirt bottle of K&N filter oil.
-I burned a little oil after a 1000 miles so I carried a quart. Not sure about 650's but in a serious tumble, crankcase oil gets into the airbox, i.e. you lose some oil and need to replenish. That's another good reason to carry an extra quart.
-Spare throttle cable
-TOOLS! I beefed up my toolkit. I went to Lowes and got a mini-ratchet and all of the sockets needed. I also picked up one of those tire spoons with an axle nut spanner on the end.
-Tire patch is pretty mandatory
-Spare oil filter. You can usually retain the filter after one change. So, you'll be good for 6k-8k miles; depending on how frequent you like to change oil.

Things I did beforehand:
-Tapered steering bearings (A must)
-Stiffer front springs (I ran with aftermarket fork seals and they blew out going up the Dalton. Stick with OEM!) This is owner preference but the stiffer springs did help on the nasty roads. The rear shock handled fine on all the bumpies.
-Organic brake pads (Again, stick with OEM! The solution they spray on the Dalton ate my pads. I had no brakes by the time I arrived back in Fairbanks) Who knows what roads are covered with RTW.
-Barkbusters. OEM's can handle a couple light spills but the Barkbusters can handle more. If something goes out of whack, just manhandle it back in place. If you run OEM levers, might as well shave the ends off. In the event of a spill, you'll bust the ends off anyways.
-Centerstand. We all know DL's don't come with one so get one.
-Route your vacuum ports on your carbs to be accessible from the side. Especially without having to lift the tank. I had extra long pliers to reach the adjustment screw.
-Either buy or make the dealership switch. If your bike gives you a CEL, you can at least find the code.
-Manual on digits. If you have a small PDA, smartphone, tablet, etc. get a digital copy of the manual.
-I never had protection and did fine. I never bottomed out nor crashed hard enough to bash the sides. However, it's still a good idea to protect the bike.

The best thing to know is your bike, inside and out. If you changed everything once, you should have an idea on what to do in the field. Best change everything using what you'll be carrying; not your home tools. Practice makes perfect and the last thing you want to do is rely on something you won't have and then be stranded.
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Old 04-11-2013, 03:13 PM   #18
DL1000 A
Joined: Aug 2007
Location: South of Germany
Oddometer: 27
Originally Posted by Jamie Z View Post
They come factory sealed and should handle water crossings fine.
Sorry, that´s BS. They are open on one side and tend to lose their lubricant.

On the 650, wheel bearings are 6203 and 6204. Get 2RS C3 ones, double-sealed.

07-11 models tend to have the starter button going bust, and the clutch is only designed for ROAD usage. Be careful with the clutch basket, getting blue quite fast.

Switching lever also breaks really quick, you may want to have a tread in it to fix a broken lever with a bolt.

Replace the steering stem bearing against the tappered one before you leave and forget about it.

Some people report a broken speedo sensor, no big deal but annoying.

Remember to travel light, if you have (way) too much weight like "Travellingstrom" you will get into trouble again and again.

And - maintenance. You can easily do oil changes every 10k miles, but check the air filter (and its GASKET !!!) frequently.

You may consider the eastern beaver headlight relay kit, as the connector between the main harness and the headlight harness is designed to fail frequently, especially the yellow and white wires for the main beam.

That´s it, IMHO, have fun with the 650, my 2nd one has 150k km by now.
ABS for the Vee Strom ? It´s been done, see,7839.0.html
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Old 04-11-2013, 04:07 PM   #19
Beastly Adventurer
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Joined: Nov 2006
Location: Spacecoaster FL
Oddometer: 7,390
Go darkside for long stretches of mostly pavement. Use a car tire on the rear. They can be much cheaper and last much longer than moto tires.
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Old 04-12-2013, 12:20 AM   #20
Beastly Adventurer
Joined: May 2008
Location: Helsinki, Finland
Oddometer: 4,427
Originally Posted by castle-of-teck View Post
Remember to travel light, if you have (way) too much weight like "Travellingstrom" you will get into trouble again and again.
Good advice in general.

The DL650 does handle serious overloading much better than many other bikes, though. I had an Africa Twin and boy, did some weight on the back destroy handling on that bike! Not so much on the DL, the frame design is really strong. But of course it would be good to do some suspension work for very heavy loads.
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Old 12-29-2013, 12:20 PM   #21
Redne Dab
Poseur Extraordinaire
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Joined: Sep 2004
Location: Spokane, WA.
Oddometer: 1,102
Originally Posted by kuhjunge View Post
Howdy and thanx a lot for the great ideas, comments and suggestions. I will look into them.

Besides the regular maintenance, I will change the wheel bearings also as an exercise to get familiar with the V-Strom.

I already changed the steering bearing last summer. Based on hints from others, I took the better aftermarket part from here:

Oilfilter is from Scotts and airfilter from K&N - again less parts to take with

Which bike will last longer on this trip: well the answer will come one day

Personally I like the V-Strom a lot, besides the unnecessary plastic parts - however I like the GSA even more

So... How was your trip?
2007 Suzuki DL650ABS
"Aw, isn't that cute, the new one smiles at you instead of the old one glowering at you" -SlowPhil
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Old 12-30-2013, 01:22 AM   #22
kuhjunge OP
3wheel enthusiast
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Joined: Aug 2011
Location: Earth
Oddometer: 488
Cool2 how is the trip?

hehe - the question "how is your trip?" would be more appropriate

So far two H4 bulbs went broken and the Hyperpro rear shock was leaking. Other then that, normal inspection stuff.

I update our repair history once in a while here.
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Old 12-30-2013, 10:25 AM   #23
Studly Adventurer
Joined: Aug 2013
Location: Left Coast
Oddometer: 501
good stuff

good stuff !

not preparing for RTW just yet, but AK and Baja yes

reading and learning .... that V=Strom on the boat crossing the strait sure makes one dream eh ?

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