Who says V-Stroms lack personality?

Discussion in 'Land of the Rising Sun: ADV Bikes from Japan' started by garandman, Mar 16, 2012.

  1. garandman

    garandman Wandering Minstrel

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2007
    Oddometer:
    6,658
    Location:
    Dorchester, MA / Goshen, NH
    I'm selling my SV650S for sure and want to buy something sporty for track days that can accommodate my worn-out left knee (112 degrees of flexion instead of 120-130). Simultaneoulsy, I've been looking at early to mid 80's R80's, a bike I always wanted to own. As I really don't ride on much more than dirt roads, many of the bikes I've been looking at promise to be able to replace both bikes, so I've also considered selling the V-Strom.

    The V-Strom has responded by exhibiting time and again the kind of viceless performance one comes to expect. Check out the Ducati Multistrada and learn that about 1'3rd of them come back for warranty repairs. Test ride a Tiger 800, which is quicker and more flickable but whose suspension is not quite up to the aftermarket front and rear of my DL650 and is $12K before farkling. Ride to work in 39 degree rain and appreciate the hand guards, windshield, heated grips and stability. Ride for several days without needing fuel, then once again log over 50mpg on regular. Stuff my laptop bag and a bunch of work and workout gear into the Jesse bags with plenty of room left over.

    This is not going to be easy.
    #1
  2. BlueLghtning

    BlueLghtning Riding is my passion

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    5,876
    Location:
    Newnan, GA
    I've owned a couple SV's and on Vstrom #5 now. Heck I even owned the TL1000S (the widow maker :evil). The SV's were great, but after getting used to the Stroms, I couldn't spend much time on the SV any more as the Strom does everything the SV does, just in more comfort. You aren't telling me anything I haven't already figured out.

    I started with on 04 DL650 back in 06 and took it all the way to AK and everywhere else and ended up with 40k miles on it before thinking I wanted to upgrade to the DL1000. Turns out the DL1000 (although a fun bike) is more raw around the edges and not as refined as the 650. Still put 30k on the 1000, but decided the 650 fit my personality better. Went back to the 650 with an 07 and that dual spark head made it even more smooth then previous models and got even better fuel mileage. Then I just kept changing colors going from blue to yellow and finally to orange. :lol3

    There's a lot of nice adv bikes out there and plenty of others I'd love to throw my leg over, but reliability and price, the vstrom keeps winning me over. Plus it helps I've had a Russell Day long seat since the 1st one that now has over 100k miles on it and many other farkles I keep moving from model to model. My 09 model has about 27k miles on it now.

    Good luck with your decision on what you plan on getting. The two weakest points on the strom's are their stock screens and the DL650 seat which is horrible, but both easily corrected. With a madstad and larger windshield, you can be very comfy on a strom and anything other then a stock seat, but personally, the Day Long is king for the long haul, although I do enjoy my Rick Mayer around town for shorter trips.

    When I had both the Yellow and Orange Vstrom for a short while
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And just for comparison, here's the Russell Seat and here's the Rick Mayer Seat
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #2
  3. markbvt

    markbvt Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,966
    Location:
    Georgia, Vermont (that's one town, not two states)
    There's no doubt the Wee-Strom is an excellent bike in terms of utility and practicality. Suzuki did a great job combining a lot of useful features into one bike (which IMO is one of the reasons it's a bit disappointing that they didn't do more to address the Wee's shortcomings). The 2012 redesign seems to make it an even better bike, but they could have gone a bit further -- and it's a shame they reduced the tank size.

    But all this said, the only thing I miss my Wee for is winter riding, and that only because it's mostly made of aluminum and therefore not as prone to rusting from road salt. My Tiger 800 XC is a more enjoyable bike to ride, and does basically everything better than the Wee with the exception of fuel range (and that's really a nonissue around here). The stock suspension is a huge improvement over the Wee's, and of course the Triumph triple engine is just awesome.

    Sure, you would need to get a Tiger set up to best suit your purposes, but the same will be true of any bike.

    --mark
    #3
  4. McB

    McB Joe 40 ouncer

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2005
    Oddometer:
    15,461
    Location:
    North Slope of the Flint Hills
    3rd Wee-Strom here. '05 bought new, sold with 35k on it. Another '05 bought used and sold when job changes limited my riding time for a while. Now on an '08 bought a few weeks ago with 35k, well-maintained miles for well under $4k. Reliable as an anvil and as versatile as a Swiss Army knife.

    At 5'9", it fits well without any mods. The PO had a set of billet bar risers on it, which I removed after a couple weeks of testing to see if they helped anything. The taller Givi screen is OK, I guess, but at speed I don't find much improvement in buffeting over the stock one at its lowest setting. So, maybe it'll stay, maybe not.
    #4
  5. V-Tom

    V-Tom Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2006
    Oddometer:
    932
    Location:
    Port Perry, Ontario, Canada
    I picked up a new 2012 DL650 Monday; I still have my 2006 DL650.

    The 2012 is really quite a bit nicer bike than the earlier generation. Much more refined, sportier feeling, better suspension, etc. You might want to take a hard look at one. It has surprised me as to how much better it feels. With absolutely stiock suspension it feels much better and closer to a sport bike in terms of responsiveness, I now have 800 km and am just starting to rev it a bit and it sure feels much more responsive than my 06, much more like a sport bike.

    ..Tom
    #5
  6. Bill_Z

    Bill_Z Dude! chill,...

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2009
    Oddometer:
    460
    Location:
    Crab Orchard, KY
    I have a 2011 and have been feeling the itch for something new and more dirt worthy. Every forum that I've visited in my shopping has recommended keeping the Wee and buy an additional bike to scratch my itch for something new. Many riders have, as many here have testified, sold their Wee/Vee to regret that decision and bought another Wee/Vee. In one case, the rider bought the same bike back from the person to whom he'd sold it. I guess I'm keeping my "Turtle." I know these are great bikes, and I really love it while I'm riding it. I just have to find a dirt bike to thrash when I get the urge for some technical off-road stuff. Gotta love that Wee! :freaky
    #6
  7. garandman

    garandman Wandering Minstrel

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2007
    Oddometer:
    6,658
    Location:
    Dorchester, MA / Goshen, NH
    Wait - you forgot to mention that the Tiger 800 is twice the bike! :rofl


    I did look at it and was kind of underwhelmed. But did not ride it. And of course if you don't buy the Adventure the only color is Orange.

    Triumph also has a sales prevention tean. "I'm interested in a black street 800 with ABS." "We don't have any." "When will you get one?" "June or July." Those will be 2013's and also include Blue.

    As I also want to test ride the Ninja 1000 ABS and a couple others, I'll wait and see. The 2012 V-Strom is much close to my needs than the prior version, but I'm big enough and carry enough stuff most of the time that an extra 10 ftl lbs or torque would come in handy. But that's a slippery slope as you start going down in mpg as you go up in power. The Triumph 800 did feel a little stronger than the BMW F800ST I rode last season in a track session.
    #7
  8. No False Enthusiasm

    No False Enthusiasm a quiet adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Oddometer:
    6,052
    Location:
    Small Town, Texas
    Seems like many brands have this obstacle... hard to understand, particularly in the down market.

    I've enjoyed my '06 Wee, with Madstat plus screen and ATV seat cover... will be installing Sonic Springs at .85 up front and consider alternatives for shock upgrade.

    At 33k miles, I hope to take it to 100k and beyond...

    NFE
    #8
  9. Reposado1800

    Reposado1800 Juicy J fan!

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2006
    Oddometer:
    5,815
    Location:
    5th and Main
    I splurged on my DL650 suspension and have to say it completely transforms the bike. Intiminators, fork brace and sonic .95 springs up front and a progressive suspension 465 shock with remote preload in the rear. Jeez. It works great. No need for another bike. Just love the one your with.
    #9
  10. garandman

    garandman Wandering Minstrel

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2007
    Oddometer:
    6,658
    Location:
    Dorchester, MA / Goshen, NH
    An update. The SV650 is sold and I have an 08 Tiger 1050 ABS with Penske suspension upgrade. Wonderful bike.

    And for commuting in and out of city traffic (my so-called life) I still prefer the V-Strom.

    [​IMG]
    #10
  11. Pecha72

    Pecha72 Long timer

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,820
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    The 2012 is overall a better bike (I´ve got a K7 and the new one) - and the tank size thing puzzled me at first, too, but looks like the new one is even less thirsty, so range will remain just about the same, very good for a stock tank actually.
    #11
  12. BlueLghtning

    BlueLghtning Riding is my passion

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    5,876
    Location:
    Newnan, GA
    I've still yet to ride the Tiger 1050. I've ridden the Sprint ST and enjoyed the motor, so I figure with the more comfortable position and similar motor, I'd enjoy it. Was going to ride one at a local dealership that was used and for sale, but the battery was dead.

    I also haven't thrown my leg over either of the Tiger 800's. I'm afraid of what I mind find if I do. :lol3
    #12
  13. V-Tom

    V-Tom Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2006
    Oddometer:
    932
    Location:
    Port Perry, Ontario, Canada
    I live in Canada and got a basic model in Black. Too bad you guys are limited down there.

    I have over 27,000 km or close to 17,000 miles since I got it March 12 and really love the bike!

    ..Tom
    #13
  14. greywolf

    greywolf Unpaved road avoider

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,035
    Location:
    Evanston IL
    Orange? Black?

    [​IMG]
    #14
  15. MoBill

    MoBill Smiles when says dat

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2007
    Oddometer:
    13,845
    Location:
    NJ
    Pick up a slick 12 tomorrow...cannot wait!! All the DL talk has me spinning a hole in the floor.
    #15
  16. garandman

    garandman Wandering Minstrel

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2007
    Oddometer:
    6,658
    Location:
    Dorchester, MA / Goshen, NH
    Awesome!
    #16
  17. malibu_dan

    malibu_dan Adventuring Mystic

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,618
    Location:
    Middle Tennessee
    So, Bill... you're going to have a WR250 AND a DL650 in the stable?! That sounds like the perfect combination of bikes!

    Oh, wait--that's what I've got. Thanks for validating me... :freaky
    #17
  18. neparider

    neparider Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2008
    Oddometer:
    334
    Location:
    burbs of scranton
    Hey MoBil, maybe I'll keep up with you on the rail bed?

    I really enjoyed my Vee, 58K worth.

    Wish you the best.

    Tim
    #18
  19. BlueLghtning

    BlueLghtning Riding is my passion

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    5,876
    Location:
    Newnan, GA
    Haha, same here. 09 DL650 & 08 WR250R. Well I got a DR650 also.

    Then my wife has a BMW F650GS, Ducati 696, and XT225. Our garage is a little full. :lol3
    #19
  20. kingofZroad

    kingofZroad Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2009
    Oddometer:
    356
    Location:
    Montrose, CO
    Greywolf, what do you have in that paint job?
    #20