11Kmiles over 1 year on CRF1000L, Manual then DCT. My experiences.

Discussion in 'Land of the Rising Sun: ADV Bikes from Japan' started by Mr. Fisherman, Aug 28, 2017.

  1. Mr. Fisherman

    Mr. Fisherman PROUD 2B Riff Raff!

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2006
    Oddometer:
    12,037
    Location:
    Drinking from the Stanley Cup!
    Last year I was lucky enough to get a 2016 CRF1000L.
    I was not able to get the Tri Color, Red white and blue DCT so I settled on a Rally Red Manual.
    Over the first year I rode the bike hard in many various trails, roads and terrain.
    [​IMG]
    Every time I got off that bike I had a big grin and I loved the bike.
    I dropped the bike on day 2 and broke the left guard and the clutch lever.
    I smoothed out the clutch handle and zip tied the guard and even though I bought new parts, I never replaced them.
    This was one of the most fun motorcycles I have owned to date, and I have owned many.
    I put 5000 trouble free miles on that lightly modified bike, but I had an itch that had to be scratched and I bought a 2017 Tri Color DCT this year as soon as I was able.
    [​IMG]


    I went a little nuts with this bike and farkled the living crap out of it.
    This is the first time I had ever done this with a new bike.
    After picking up the new one and riding it for a day or two I was a bit underwhelmed.
    While the color was stunning, the performance just wasn't the same... at first.
    I knew what was in this bike and I worked to get it out.
    The DCT is pretty different and takes significant relearning in my opinion.
    For instance on day 1 I went ripping up one of my favorite remote roads knowing it was closed due to snow before reaching the top. It was in typical spring condition with frost heaves and pot holes. When I approached these at speed on the Manual bike I knew what to do... double clutch, blip the throttle, unweight the front and smile.
    With the DCT... I didn't know what to do. It was awkward and took me a bit to figure out.
    Also, Coming into a gravel corner hot, Clutch, down shift, feather to scrub speed with the manual bike. With the DCT at first I actually upshifted, panicked, reached for a clutch and a shifter that wasn't there and it was too late.
    The paddle shifters are set backwards from what comes natural to me. I have had to retrain myself.
    At first having the system upshift before I wanted it to was annoying, like sharp corners and roundabouts. Now I switch to manual mode almost without thinking about it.
    [​IMG]
    About day 3 I tried Sport 2 and sport 3. That was what I was looking for and my bike pretty much lives in Sport 3 mode with traction control set to 1.
    I have given up on downshifting before I pass. I have discovered that if I just grab the throttle hard the bike will downshift 1 to 3 gears and shift faster than I would have. It is addicting. It's like kicking in the four barrels on a four barrel carb. Fun fun fun.
    I am learning to overcome the shortcomings compared to the manual bike. Most of that is just training muscle memory and working on technique. The only thing I have come up with that I can't do on the DCT bike that I could on the manual is bump start it. Now I carry a jump starter.

    That brings us to what the DCT version does better...

    Flying the pegs on the DCT bike is amazing. Partly due to the Black Dog pegs I added. Shifting without upsetting the bike geometry can't be explained, it must be experienced. Fantastic. Being able to shift at will without moving your balance while standing is just amazing. I added an extended brake pedal and braking while standing is a non issue now too.
    [​IMG]

    I have had no issues with slow speed maneuvers and really enjoy how easy it is to maneuver this bike into tight spots without the fear of stalling.
    Being able to shift in the apex of a corner to be in the right gear without upsetting the bike geometry is fantastic.
    Being able to stop and apply the parking brake to take a picture or to get off the bike to take a brake seems a lot easier for some reason.
    I have had the DCT far less time than I had the manual bike and I have already surpassed the miles that I had put on the manual bike. It is easier to ride and I have less fatigue than any bike I have ever owned. I can't stop riding it and I don't want too. I added over 300 miles on my last trip coming home, just because I could. I really enjoy it.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    For some reason I seem to be going through tires faster than I did on the manual bike.
    I only got 2000 miles out of my Shinko big block rear and my TKC80 is pretty much toasted at 3600 miles.

    In all I put just over 5000 miles on the manual and I am closing on 6000 miles on the DCT and counting.

    I would be happy to answer questions.
    #1
    krussell, simbaboy, juno and 22 others like this.
  2. neanderthal

    neanderthal globeriding wannabe

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2006
    Oddometer:
    3,043
    Location:
    Here, but lost. Am I lost if i know i'm here?
    On my second DCT. Also went from red, white, black to the HRC red, white, blue.

    Was closing in on 24k miles at the one year mark. Bike got totalled.

    New bike is 4 days old and has 2000 miles on it. Mostly slab. Loving it.
    #2
    Mr. Fisherman and Fat Toney like this.
  3. tremor38

    tremor38 Long timer

    Joined:
    May 30, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,138
    Location:
    Japan
    You've put into words the same impressions I've had difficulty translating to writing.

    The DCT bike is so much more than I ever expected it would be.
    As you also have conveyed, it requires an acclimation period longer than just a test ride. Through day two, I was still grabbing for a clutch that wasn't there and flippling my foot at a non-existent shift lever. Once those habits subside is when you can really start enjoying what the bike offers. I very rarely, if at all, miss having a clutch anymore. Very impressed, and a bit surprised, with the off-road prowess ad well.

    Best for everyone to use S3 mode for the first test ride as D mode short shifts for max economy. .

    Sent from my SC-02H using Tapatalk
    #3
  4. tqjunkie

    tqjunkie Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2016
    Oddometer:
    35
    Fisherman you pretty much nailed it,at first I thought my purchase was a big mistake and I should have bought the manual, until I found sport mode 3 this totally transforms the bike into an extremely fun ride,it is like night and day difference from the useless D mode,and once you begin to figure out all the other options for shifting it only gets better,can't say enough good about DCT, but the one thing I miss about not having a clutch is not be able to get the front end up when needed for logs and such on gnarly trails but the bike is not really designed for that type of trail anyways so not a big deal as I plan to get a real dirt bike for that stuff some thing that is about 300 pounds lighter.
    #4
  5. BaldKnob

    BaldKnob I Wanna Ride

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2013
    Oddometer:
    1,033
    Location:
    SENC
    That ^^^ was a mouthful.
    #5
    dmason likes this.
  6. BigDogAdventures

    BigDogAdventures Fart Letter

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2003
    Oddometer:
    6,202
    Location:
    Mt. Vernon, Illinois
    Hey Fisherman------------good down to earth info-------thanks !!!
    I bought a manual and won't go to a DCT any time soon as I've spent a wad on mine to get it set up like I wanted it.
    When I bought mine (very early on) no one really knew how well the DCT works---------I think I'd luv it.
    Got a Rekluse clutch on 2 of my smaller bikes already and luv them----so I am use to not going for the clutch lever.

    BigDog
    #6
    Mr. Fisherman likes this.
  7. Motor7

    Motor7 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2013
    Oddometer:
    841
    Location:
    East Tennessee
    #7
  8. tqjunkie

    tqjunkie Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2016
    Oddometer:
    35
    pardon
    #8
  9. Motor7

    Motor7 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2013
    Oddometer:
    841
    Location:
    East Tennessee
    He is referring to your one really really looong sentence ;) Note: I ain't no engrish major either....lol
    #9
  10. Scoobynut

    Scoobynut Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Oddometer:
    831
    Location:
    SW N. Dakota
    To be fair, here is KenCM's reply when someone asked him if he was in manual or auto mode etc when going down the steep grade:

    "Not certain whether manual or not, but definitely in 1st.
    I switch between manual, drive, and sport(2) depending."

    Doesn't the DCT have a built-in hill descent function? Maybe you need to be in a certain mode for it to work? Also, the rear abs can be turned off on the AT. Sounds like he didn't drag the rear brake when he could've.
    #10
    Mr. Fisherman likes this.
  11. Motor7

    Motor7 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2013
    Oddometer:
    841
    Location:
    East Tennessee
    Later on in the thread he tried it in both manual and auto with the same results. Granted, Ken rides the extreme ragged edge on a big bike, so this might not be an issue to most DCT owners. I don't remember any discussion of a hill decent function.....might PM Ken about that.
    #11
  12. Scoobynut

    Scoobynut Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Oddometer:
    831
    Location:
    SW N. Dakota
    I read about the hill descent function in one of the technical papers published by Honda. Would have to do some digging to find it though. Not sure if it would've mitigated Ken's situation or not, but might be interesting to know for sure.
    #12
  13. Fat Toney

    Fat Toney Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2004
    Oddometer:
    7,724
    Location:
    Washington State
    Lack of engine breaking...that's a good one! Hahaha!
    Paddle downshift is far from rocket science, but each to his own.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #13
    Mr. Fisherman likes this.
  14. tqjunkie

    tqjunkie Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2016
    Oddometer:
    35
    oh! thanks for the interpretation .
    #14
  15. tremor38

    tremor38 Long timer

    Joined:
    May 30, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,138
    Location:
    Japan
    There is no difference in engine braking between manual bike and DCT, but you must put the DCT in manual mode if you want the full effect. There is an incline/decline sensor that will cause eariler downshifts, but it's much better to be in manual mode to select your gear of choice for the steeper offroad stuff. S3 wILL cause the earliest auto downshift, but it's not quite aggressive enough, IMO.

    Sent from my SC-02H using Tapatalk
    #15
  16. Mr. Fisherman

    Mr. Fisherman PROUD 2B Riff Raff!

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2006
    Oddometer:
    12,037
    Location:
    Drinking from the Stanley Cup!
    I have found 2 things that work for me but I am still experimenting.
    While I have hopped small 3 to 4 inch logs and a bunch of rocks of similar size, it is pot holes and rocks I have the most experience with.

    It is counter-intuitive, but quick downshift while blipping the throttle helps with potholes. Bigger the pothole bigger the blip and in some instances I either down shift 2 gears or really reach for throttle and the bike will downshift 1 to 3 gears faster than I can. That is a committed move and you need to be ready for what comes next and in many instances be prepared to scrub some speed which I do by switching to manual mode as soon as the down shifts have completed allowing for the generous application of engine braking.

    I have been on some pretty gnarly down hill descents on loose material.
    At first I was a bit paranoid because there is no clutch to manually feather and in drive or the lower sport modes it just wants to shift up. Not good.
    What I discovered by testing is that G mode helps in any drive mode and that manual mode is best. Downshifting in manual mode will drag the rear like an anchor. Blipping the throttle while sliding will reestablish steerage.
    When I was into 4 wheeling I would never consider an automatic because the manual transmission was far superior. The DCT is NOT an automatic and the technology used properly is fantastic. To learn how takes an open mind and commitment.

    To get the most on descents incorporate G mode, but the best control in these circumstances is in manual mode. Also, turning off ABS to the rear will allow you to drop the anchor. I have done extensive testing on downhill loose surfaces and rear ABS OFF will stop shorter, but ABS on will give you more control. Sometimes I like it off to kick the rear around and steer with the rear, but more often I prefer the added control and leave it on.
    #16
  17. Mr. Fisherman

    Mr. Fisherman PROUD 2B Riff Raff!

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2006
    Oddometer:
    12,037
    Location:
    Drinking from the Stanley Cup!
    This was a gnarly, greasy somewhat steep nasty decent I did on the manual before my friend descended on his KTM.



    #17
  18. Mr. Fisherman

    Mr. Fisherman PROUD 2B Riff Raff!

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2006
    Oddometer:
    12,037
    Location:
    Drinking from the Stanley Cup!
    So, I have to mention that I have had my share of problems with the new DCT bike.

    First, I had a failure of the Outex tubless conversion on the rear wheel.
    I did not install it and can't speak to the care that was taken on the install.
    It failed crossing a desert basin in very high heat at high speed. Thank goodness for the Cyclops TPMS I had installed before this trip. I was able to get off the highway before the bead broke.
    The tire was leaking through the spokes. When we pulled off the tire the spoke seal had failed and de-laminated halfway around the rim. There was no repairing it.
    [​IMG]

    To make matters worse, after a friend went to get me a tube and we installed it using the Baja No Pinch tool. I let it sit inflated in the sun for almost an hour before departing. I only made it about 20 miles before it was flat again. I didn't have a spare because the tube that was purchased was the only one the remote shop had.
    I had to wait in the sun for about 3 hours to get towed to a shop.
    [​IMG]

    It turns out the tube looked pinched. Go figure. The shop that installed that tube had a spare and I added it to my load. I haven't had another problem, knock on wood. That bead would be a bugger to break roadside. I need to sort that out. I plan to try the outex kit one more time doing the work myself and taking my time to get it as good as I possibly can. Tubless is the way to go. I noticed that my tube tire runs quite a bit hotter than the tubless. Another benefit of the TPMS. No more reusing tubes when I change tires. I'll keep the old ones for spares.

    Problem 2 was the dreaded, it won't go into gear issue. This happened in a very remote spot and my heart sank when it happened. I turned the bike off, then started it again and let the oil pressure build but it would not go into gear.
    Fortunately, I had read about this and knew what to do. I turned the bike off and rocked it back and forth, started it again and all was well. Went into gear and no further problems.

    Problem 3 was the dreaded flashing dash and no start. This made me think that my switch gear was suspect, but I found that someone (maybe me) had pushed the kill switch. I switched it and varoom, started no problem.

    I think the "stuck in gear issue" (won't go into gear) may be from turning it off in gear mixed with oil that could likely use changed. This was at about 4000 miles on that crankcase of oil which is longer than I would usually run it. I know the manual says 8K changes, but they also want to sell you another bike. Oil and filters are cheap. I plan to keep it changed a bit more frequently.
    I also noticed I had more false shifts with the manual version as I got above 3K miles on the crankcase oil.

    More as I think of it. Open to questions.
    #18
    juno, vgreno2000 and Fat Toney like this.
  19. Scoobynut

    Scoobynut Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Oddometer:
    831
    Location:
    SW N. Dakota
    Problem 1: Not the bike's fault.
    Problem 2: Not familiar with this issue. Open to debate.
    Problem 3: Not the bike's fault.
    #19
    Jimo368 likes this.
  20. TALLGUY

    TALLGUY Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2008
    Oddometer:
    598
    Location:
    IOWA
    Good Review.
    #20
    Mr. Fisherman likes this.