Originally Posted by DarrenM
From my research preperation for the GS involves...
replacing of head and wheel bearings with quality items
changing oil return hose to allow easy water pump access
stronger sub frame and side stand bolts
quality hose clips
good radiator protection (especially where it meets the frame)
high quality MX fork seals
Annoying maintenance issues...
fuel regulator / filter
valves require a lot of parts to be removed for access (a good thing as it means you check the bike more thoroughly)
head bearings require a special tool
have to drain an oil tank (can be done without removing as stated in manual)
Problems I am aware of and can plan for...
Ignition trigger fails and takes weeks to source (carry spare)
Fuel pump failures (buy assembly from a breakers, take only the pump)
Water pump (carry spare, replace every 20k)
Shims (check sizes before departure, carry spares)
I have read forums and there do seem to be 'electrical issues', most of which seem to be caused by loose connections to the battery. A GS911 will help with fault diagnosis.
How Bad is a Well Maintained F650GS.
That last question is impossible to answer, as you never know how well a bike is maintained by listening to their owners.
I would agree with some of your mods. Being the radiator guard for which chicken wire (the stuff with the fine holes) works well so far, and the foam between the frame and the radiator is tested and works well.
The clips are easily done and I did that one because I didn’t like the look of the OEM ones. But really, when would you have to take them off.
There are a few options on the chain gang forum on the oil return line. Depending on how much money you want to throw at it, it can be taken care of.
I agree on the subframe bolts, but haven’t seen any issues with the side stand bolt. But in saying that, I never felt that I could sit on the bike while on the side stand, so this could be something I should have a look at. Thanks for the tip.
I also agree on it being not such a bad idea to take a lot of stuff off to do the valve check. Because it’s a good excuse to change oil properly, clean the filter and check the battery fluid level (if you have one of those batteries). It’s still is a bit of a pain though.
The waterpump issue sucks but is well know.
As for the electrical issue I agree with the loosening of the battery bolt and also the side stand switch, but other bikes also have this as I experienced myself. The voltage regulater has also failed on some F’s.
The others I’m not sure about. The steering head bearing thing is hard to judge for me as most people (I reckon) don’t grease them up when they get the bike. Same for the swing arm bearings. This is something that got pointed out to me when I did a maintenance course. I added heaps of grease on my brand new one, and they were not very greasy at all when I looked at them. I’ll bring some spares, but will be interested to find out the mileage of the OEM ones. As for the tool for this. I didn’t use one greasing the bearing, and while scanning the FAQ on the chain gang on this topic didn’t see a mention of it. Do you mean the socket with the 2 prongs on it?
Similar for the fuel regulator that has the filter integrated. I added a separate fuel filter
just before it and will be interested to see if that will keep all the crut out of the regulator. Can only find out.
Also for the seals. I’ve put some sealsavers on them and am interested to see how long the seals will last. I’m still taking some though. Honda do them as well apparently.
Don’t think you can call the shim thing a problem. Just comes with the valve design. Most people from what I read don’t have to change them often.
I quite liked doing a ‘few’ mods (which I would have done on any bike I would have bought for an overland trip) as it’s a good opportunity to get familiar with the bike. Something I didn’t do on the last trip which turned out to be unnecessarily ‘interesting’. I might have done things reducing the longevity of the bike. But that’s someone else’s problem now.
Other mod I have done are:
Removing the possum scraper, oil drain valve, bar risers, centre stand (thrown in by dealer), bash plate extension guard, centre stand bash plate
, engine guard, fairing guard
, NB’s crap flap
, luggage racks (only fitted the rear
one so far), battery upgrade, Fastway foot pegs, Stebel horn, spotties
, volt meter
, mirror upgrade (FAR hinged ones), stainless steel oil filter, foam air filter, headlight protector, front sprocket cover, fork spring and emulator, an 8 circuit accessories wiring loom
, tool tube in front of the bash plate, Philips xtreme headlight (keeping the stock ones as spares. Need spares anyway, might as well get some better ones and fit them).
Mods still on the list are: flexible indicators, shocks, flexible oil return hose, maybe handlebars but probably can’t be bothered.
I would have done the big stuff in any case but wouldn’t have done if I wouldn’t have bought this bike for an overland trip. But than again, I probably wouldn’t have gone this bike either.
Parts out of the ordinary that I’m taking other than some I mentioned above are a spare oil pressure sensor, valve and some engine side cover gasgets just in case. Needed them on the last trip.