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Discussion in 'Battle Scooters' started by Phipsd, Apr 21, 2017.
Not old, just older and wiser!
My point was this is not good, but a very good engine. With all respect i don't think her Majesty, X or the SW400 can beat it. If the OP's bike has less than 25'000 km, he might feel the pot is tight and vibrate at higher revs (>7000 rpm), but broken in it sings at 8K, just taking a higher tone at 9. Of course it's not wise to ride it in the red zone for any prolonged period, it was noted just to show that it doesn't give up till the top end. 100 mph indicated is almost always available at request.
I've actually had mine up to 7500 a couple of times to move into a safe position to change lanes. It was smooth, effortless, the bike at 8000 km is well broken in. I'm 250 lbs and I live close to the West Coast mountains, so my bike has to work for it's living. You choose to run your bike to the max, I choose not to. A very wise engineer ( Navy Chief father ) once told me that the harder an engine has to work as a general rule, the shorter it's life will be. I need to have my bike last as long as reasonably possible, so it stays stock and I try to not push it too hard, even though the bike will easily do it. It's strictly a matter of personal choice.
Also pushing it harder would mean performance awards. Been there, done that. No thanks.
Remember mine at 8,000 -- was far from broken in yet. Though the way you ride it, there should be no worries 'bout dat.
Besides, have you worn out the V-Strom?
Due to a back injury, I was no longer able to get onto the V-Strom, and after six months, things weren't looking much better so I traded the V-Strom for the Burgman, a bike I could ride. Although I enjoy riding the Burgman It's something I try not to think about
Those who know the Strom 1000 well know that It's an engine that can last hundreds of thousands of miles. That is not the case with a 400 single, no matter how good.
> That is not the case with a 400 single, no matter how good.
Don't entirely agree. Something missing in your calculations. There's an answer in some technical forums. Recommend joining one.
Today was a holiday in the Great White North and likely not much traffic in the City, so I made a run over the Pattullo Bridge and along Canada Way, a part of the city I haven't ridden in for 20 years. Drive, yes and often, ride no. Normally way too much traffic and often gridlock because the old scary Pattullo doesn't have a toll on it; so it's the bridge everyone wants to use. Scary? A recent engineering report said the old bridge built in the 30's could blow over in a big windstorm. No wind today so I thought I would try it out on the scoot. Heading across the bridge and according to the speed sign, I was a little under the limit. Especially on a holiday when there is so much less traffic; Officer Friendly can be extra friendly; so I stick to the slow right lane. It's funny how the lemmings never seem to catch on.
Just as I was passing the sign, a speed demon went ripping past way over the limit. What's this? There's a damn camera, flashing on that digital speed sign. I've never heard of such a thing. Very interesting and not stupid:)
There was almost no traffic In the normally crazy busy part of the city. I found myself really enjoying myself, wanting to go for this ride. It just made it crystal clear how much present day Vancouver traffic sucks the joy out of riding; and why so often lately I just can't be bothered.
Today OTOH was a perfect day. It was a joy to swoop through the corners on the Sea to Sky out to Pemberton. The Burgman is running perfect, 400 klicks of happiness on the bike today even with record temperatures. So today I used SPF 60 baby sunblock, so the sweat pouring off my forehead wouldn't blind me. Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks?
Another great day: Sept can be one of the finest times for riding in these parts. Summer heat is past, yet October rains have not arrived. There is also the awareness that my riding season is near to an end for this year. I can live with rain and I can live with traffic, but the combination with the increasingly heavy and aggressive traffic is no longer a risk I'm willing to take. These days until I'm able to move to a more hospitable riding area, it has to be about quality, not quantity. 10,000 km is a good summer for me, and the Burgman has just turned 9000 km.
Somewhere along the line I forgot to lock my seat and someone stole my AirHawk. I set off yesterday in search of a replacement. Compared to the US the selection of motorcycle accessories here is sparse at most places. The two biggest dealers around are right next to each other, one being the Harley dealer. I'm not ever likely to buy a Harley, now that they have discontinued the one bike I liked; the basic Dyna Superglide, but it is a great place to look for bike crap. Harley people love their crap.
I decided to try Holeshot first, since I also wanted to check out Honda's NC 750. Being a scooter guy, I like the idea of the 'frunk' and the DCT. As an ex-BMW airhead guy, I also like the idea of low end torque, a low CG and durability. That fantasy lasted until I sat on it, it was horrible. How could the folks who build the GoldWing ( or even the 500X!!!) design such a medieval torture device? A new seat, bars and windshield would be the minimum; or I could just ride my Burgman. Easy choice.
In the parts department, no AirHawks. They did have a Saddleman gel pad that they said had replaced the AirHawk with customers. I thought WTH, I'm here, I'll take a look. It was a much softer gel than what I've tried before, it was worth a try.
It turns out it does work, kind of. Almost immediately it felt moderately uncomfortable and three hours later it still felt moderately uncomfortable. On really long rides I find a change can be almost as good as a rest, so I think it will be useful, but I still want an AirHawk.
The ride itself was grand. Lots of tooling around on empty farm roads except for the occasional huge tractor hauling an equally huge load on an absolutely perfect day. Heading home near sunset on old highway No 7, I stopped for Subway when things became too blinding. I noticed things were unusually quiet. Unknown to me a hundred miles up the road near the Hope slide on the Crowsnest highway; a speeding SUV hit a truck, the passengers were ejected in a fiery crash. When some government workers stopped to help, the driver of the SUV stole their truck and took off. The woman passenger of the SUV was killed. This happened in an area without cell coverage. The highway was closed for nine hours, so no traffic.
Who says Canadians are boring?
Back to the future on the Burgman: I decided to go for a blast up the Sea to Sky Hwy on the Burgman. A sport bike it's not, but smallish wheels, quick steering for near 500 lbs, a very low seat and a long wheelbase are a recipe for fun on open sweepers. The long wheelbase means that the 400 has to lean over further to turn and compared to an Adventure bike, I'm already seriously close to the road. YeeHaw!!!! Fast? No, but slow bike fast and all that. What fun:)
Heading past Squamish, the wind picked up in a major way and I realized there was no way I would make it to Whistler with the sudden increase in fuel consumption. 400cc have to work hard bucking wind, especially on hills.
For the first time there is also the chill of Fall in the air. It was necessary to fuel up on chili at Wendy's. This is serious roadfood. It goes back to a cold wet Fall trip up Cali No. 1 on my WaterBuffalo. Throughly chilled, I hit a Wendy's in desperation and saw chili on the Menu. I can still recall the warmth spreading from my toes upward thirty years later. It was the most wonderful feeling. I was reminded of that today.
The Burgman took me back in another way.
The Burgman has modern brakes, suspension, tires but it lacks the rigidity of a modern motorcycle. It's not a flexi-flyer like that old Buffalo which could go into a death wobble in a heartbeat if pushed too hard, but I can feel the Burgman bend if pushed, especially in high winds. Sitting forward like I would on the open highway didn't work on this mountain road today. It just made the flex at the front more apparent. Sitting back made the steering much heavier and the bike much more reluctant to corner. The muscle it took to bend it over regardless, countered the gusty winds and stabilized the steering.
I found myself back in an old groove and automatically countering the wind without conscious thought, like I did on my old Suzuki Intruders back in the day. In terms of steering suspension and brakes; the Burgman 400 is a far better handling bike than those beastly old cruisers, but the long rusty skill set and that ability to adapt, from the bad old days, came back . I suddenly felt way more comfortable on my scoot, managing the mountain curves and the gusty winds effortlessly. I was having flashbacks to bikes and conditions long past that I hadn't thought about in years.
Maybe it's a reason why I find myself liking this bike so much . It has a taste of the old-time chocolate flavour without the chocolate mess:)
At 8K Km it's still tight, very much so. The engine might give uncomfortable pulsations so one might really think it's going to be destroyed. But as it loosens up, it begins asking for more. Ain't a razor bike it may be, but it nicely combines sporty behavior with comfort of a chopper, and one can often find forgotten stuff in the trunk at stops.
I know my bike will loosen up more. My Citycom didn't run it's best until it had 20,000 km on it. Still, even with 9500 km it is seriously quick off the line for a scooter. I usually try to avoid heavy traffic, but sometimes around here it's unavoidable to get to the good stuff. The short gearing Suzuki has put on these newer Burgman's makes the bike very responsive dealing with that traffic.
Responsive power and killer brakes make my 400 a great bike for around here. If I could have only one item on my wish list, it wouldn't be more power, it would be a stiffer frame, but 95% of the time I find it's fine and a real pleasure to ride. I especially appreciate the large bodywork and excellent wind protection with my 16.
The CVT work wonders -- you feel like nothing is going on at all, almost stalling. But then looking at the speedo realizing your actually already there
I used to commute on the Pattullo Bridge every single day because that was the only legal crossing between South of Fraser and North of Fraser on my 49cc. It was certainly a gong show with traffic. I would've preferred taking the Port Mann if I could.
I was on what would be an awesome 300F road today, the Dewdney Trunk Road. A small nimble bike would be just the ticket for the switchbacks and twisties. It was fun but work on the Burgman 400.
I used to ride with a scooter group and they would have 50cc friendly rides. They were great fun for everyone ,but then the group would want me to herd and run interference over the Alex Fraser or through the Deas Island tunnel for a gaggle of 50's in the gong show. I don't have a death wish so I had to give up my rides
I used to live out that way and drove Dewdney Trunk Road often. Awesome road.
I was on a group ride with my riding school and one of the guys has a CBR 125R. He was doing 60 up the Alex Fraser, claimed the bike would not go faster, which is funny because my bike could do at least 90 up that hill. I think he just wasn't used to having to redline the engine for power compared to his SV650. Anyway I had to follow him because the rule is we don't abandon fellow riders (we were way behind the rest of the group) and I thought safety in groups. It was scary though. I couldn't imagine having to accompany 49ccs on that bridge that could probably only do 40 up the bridge.
My attitude is that if a rider wants to ride a 50, then ride it where it is appropriate. Expecting another rider to take you over a big, steep, high speed, high density bridge shows a complete lack of common sense. It's just too freaking dangerous; and riding a bike in heavy traffic is dangerous enough even if you are being sensible and careful.
50 years ago I could get away with stuff like that on my Honda 90 Cub because there was about 5% of the traffic on the roads I rode that there is now. Also in those days 50's and 90's were everywhere. Car drivers likely had someone in their family who had a small bike and was out on the road. Drivers would look out for bikes. I had cars follow me at night with their brights on so that I could see where I was going. That kind of consideration would never happen now. Now it's strictly dog eat dog and cars are bigger
It was terrible on my 49cc. Drivers would be impatient and pass me, only to get stuck in traffic 100m later. Hurry up and wait as they say. Too cheap to pay the Port Mann Bridge tolls but got pissed off that a 49cc was holding them up? Sorry dude, passing me got you to work zero seconds faster.
Another run on the Dewdney Trunk Road, my second. It's funny how perception changes things. The first time I found the road by accident and in following the road it seemed both a long run and challenging. I didn't really know where I was going to wind up, and I made a number of wrong turns. Today the road seemed much easier and way more fun and a much shorter run. Same road , same bike, same rider.
Not only did the road feel different, so did the Burgman. Some days the clutch works perfectly and other days I get on the bike and it feels grabby. Today was a happy clutch (and rider!) day. Today I could coast along slowly in a long line of traffic and when it was time to go it engaged smoothly without having to stop. The way it should. In a grabby mood, if I ease it on the bike noisily shudders. If I then grab a handful the bike, if not perfectly smooth; at least takes off in a reasonable fashion.
It's certainly usable, but not really fun in the stop and go like my SYM Citycom. Everyone seems to say that the 400 Burgman is mainly a city bike. Not from where I sit. It can be made to work, but it doesn't like it. In contrast, if I'm riding where I'll never need to accelerate form a slow coast; it's awesome. Backroad touring, open highway and mountain hills are meat for the beast.
What really seems to help is a very slow crawl up my steep driveway when I get home. Then it works much better when I go out the next time; at least for awhile. For touring? Yes yes yes. For my everyday commute? No thanks.
When researching a larger scooter to replace my, too small for me SMax, saw allot of stuff about the Burg 400 clutch. For some people it didn't seem to work good for them. Kinda scared me off. Could never figure out why they never made a clutch that worked for everybody.