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Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else This is an opportunity to ask any question, and post any notice you wish that doesn't fit into one of the other sections.
Photo by Igor Djokovic, camping above San Juan river, Arizona USA

I haven't been everywhere...
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Photo by Igor Djokovic,
camping above San Juan river,
Arizona USA



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  #1  
Old 27 May 2023
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Bike Maintenance Costs

I always wondered is there any way to know ahead what would be the maintenance costs that I would be inquiring though my travel? Like if I travelled for 3 months, what are the things that need to be replaced? In addition, do you have any guide for beginner biker to do the maintenance on their own?

Thanks!
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Old 27 May 2023
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Very hard to answer your question. Too many variables: type/size of bike, mileage per day, kind of riding, bike starting mileage and previous service history, and on and on.

Wandering around at 150-200 miles a day with a few days off each week will put 3-4,000 miles on in a month, 10,000 miles in 3 months.

Generally, you will need oil and filter ($30USD) every 3,000 miles or so, new tires ($150 each) every 6-8000 miles, a new chain and sprockets ($150) every 12-15,000 miles.

If all the maintenance is up to date, and it's a fairly new bike (5-10 years old) and the starting mileage on the bike is low, you shouldn't have too many expenses.

Almost any bike in good shape can go 3,000 miles with no problems. Most bikes will require some kind of service every 6-8,000 miles.

Ask again when you have a particular bike model in mind, and the answers will be less vague.

..................shu
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Old 28 May 2023
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Hello PyKay:

Welcome to the HUBB community.

It's tough to answer your question with precision because we don't know what kind of bike you have, how old it is, what the previous maintenance history is, and what your riding style is like.

But, having said all that, I think the most accurate answer I can give you is "It's going to cost more than you think." Here's why:

You can divide maintenance into two general categories:

1) Time or Mileage based maintenance - this includes most of the items that Shu mentioned in his response above. Oil changes, tire replacements, chains & sprockets, etc. Don't forget brake pads and brake fluid, which are not inexpensive. Brake service probably costs about as much as tire replacement.

2) Unanticipated Failures - this is very much dependent on the age of the motorcycle and the quality of all prior maintenance since the motorcycle was put in service. If your bike is new (1 -2 years old) and you are the original owner, there is a low probability of unanticipated failures if you have properly maintained the bike. If the bike is older (5 - 10 years or more) and you are the second or third owner, you have a fairly high probability of encountering unexpected component failures, especially if you are not familiar with servicing and maintaining a motorcycle.

Keep in mind that "you won't have a choice" when it comes to doing maintenance and repairs - either scheduled or unanticipated - when you are on the road touring. If you are at home and your motorcycle suffers a failure that leaves it inoperative, you can put it in the garage and deal with it later when you have the time and the money to do so. If you are in a different country, far from home, and the moto breaks down or needs new tires, you have no choice but to get it fixed now, and you won't have much of a choice about what service facility (shop, dealership) you use.

For what it's worth (my situation might not be comparable to yours), I own a 2001 Honda ST 1100 that I have owned since new and meticulously maintained since new. I live in Canada, and ride about 6,000 km a year in Western Europe every summer. I'm at ease with equipment repair (I'm a retired aircraft pilot & aircraft maintenance technician) but I have all the maintenance done by my dealer in Switzerland because I don't have the facilities in Europe to do my own maintenance. I spend about USD $1,500 a year on scheduled and time/mileage maintenance (tires, brakes, oil changes, valve adjustments, etc.). Although my bike is 22 years old and has 250,000 km (155,000 miles) on it, I have only had one breakdown on the road since new. That breakdown was caused by failure of a $3 part that I replaced myself, but cost me $500 in unanticipated taxi & hotel charges.

Let us know what kind of motorcycle you have, how old it is (year of manufacture), how many miles or km's it has on it, the ownership history, and what kind of maintenance you have had done since you bought it, where you intend to go riding and how many miles / kms you plan to ride during your trip, and then we might be able to give you a better estimate of how much money you should plan to spend on maintenance.

Michael
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