'18 VStrom 650XT - Yamaha FJR Forum : Yamaha FJR Owners Forums
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post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 08-19-2020, 09:18 PM Thread Starter
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'18 VStrom 650XT

just picked up this fine machine last night, it's 9 mnths new, comes with Suzuki 4yr warranty, 8K km female owned, mint and with two Givi cases included. After just 2hr ride all I can say it's a sweet ride, smooth tranny, plenty of torque, heated grips, TC, ABS, knobbies that are surprisingly smooth on asphalt. Love the color scheme and golden spoked rims.
Before I start digging through VStrom forums, I would like to hear from this FINE forum, from any of you that owned one of these, would like to hear on ANYTHING relevant to this bike (good and bad), suspension settings, recommended aftermarket improvements / farkles, and of course recommendation on chain lube, tires and motor oil.
My '17ES finally got some company :-)
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"If FJR and VStrom 650XT don't make you Grin from ear-to-ear,... there is something wrong with your Face"
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Last edited by Damir; 08-19-2020 at 09:29 PM.
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post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 08-20-2020, 08:21 PM
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Well, it looks cool enough.... I had a new '06 and very lightly used '11. Good all around bike that didn't do anything particularly well, then at least..... however, they changed it in '12 up, so hopefully improved... bound to be.
Just ride it..... Stromtrooper forum has lotsa info, decent bunch over there. Tons of stuff available for Stroms.

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post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 08-20-2020, 08:52 PM
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Damir, good lookin scoot, what kind of weight is it and seat height ?

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post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 08-20-2020, 11:16 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by RaYzerman View Post
Well, it looks cool enough.... I had a new '06 and very lightly used '11. Good all around bike that didn't do anything particularly well, then at least..... however, they changed it in '12 up, so hopefully improved... bound to be.
Just ride it..... Stromtrooper forum has lotsa info, decent bunch over there. Tons of stuff available for Stroms.
Thx Ray, yes 24 hrs later I love it, was pleasantly surprise of: torque, handling and smooth shifting. I bough it without even test ride, I read enough about these bikes and all positive reviews. I tried some gravel and some light off road today, the new motor is sweet, just enough power throughout the range, good second bike for light gravel and trails. And the price is right, some electric bicycles cost more.

"If FJR and VStrom 650XT don't make you Grin from ear-to-ear,... there is something wrong with your Face"
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post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 08-20-2020, 11:32 PM Thread Starter
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Damir, good lookin scoot, what kind of weight is it and seat height ?
Thx Steve, yes a good, reliable and affordable entry level ADV bike, that does most things well, my first impressions are very good.
The Spec sheets say:
SEAT HEIGHT (IN) 33
WET WEIGHT (LBS) 476
I find it very nimble and flick-able, word of caution when doing tight U-turn the bike has a tendency to start falling, so ride the rear brake to bring it back up.

I also got a brand new "lower seat" with this bike, that is about 1" lower then OE seat
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"If FJR and VStrom 650XT don't make you Grin from ear-to-ear,... there is something wrong with your Face"
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Last edited by Damir; 08-21-2020 at 12:46 AM.
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post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 08-20-2020, 11:37 PM Thread Starter
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Day 2, trying some light gravel and pasture meadows :-)
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"If FJR and VStrom 650XT don't make you Grin from ear-to-ear,... there is something wrong with your Face"
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post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 08-26-2020, 12:56 PM
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Congratulations on your purchase, Damir.
Having owned both, I prefer the 650 over the 1000 V-Strom. Yes, It's less refined and less powerful, but it does everything so well. The motor is bullet proof, very smooth, runs on 87 Octane fuel and requires very little maintenance. Unlike the FJR, your V-Strom should come with Iridium spark plugs. Those are good for at least 50,000 miles. I use Maxima Chain Wax (with every other fill up). First chain lasted 24,000 miles. Every other chain has lasted around 20,000.
The Stromtrooper forums have lots of information should you ever need it. Your bike seems to have most accessories. I would only recommend adding a center stand.
Some might suggest lowering the suspension to make it handle a little "better". I do not recommend that. Doing so limits your ground clearance and makes it more difficult to lift on center stand.

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post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 11:00 AM Thread Starter
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Congratulations on your purchase, Damir.
Having owned both, I prefer the 650 over the 1000 V-Strom. Yes, It's less refined and less powerful, but it does everything so well. The motor is bullet proof, very smooth, runs on 87 Octane fuel and requires very little maintenance. Unlike the FJR, your V-Strom should come with Iridium spark plugs. Those are good for at least 50,000 miles. I use Maxima Chain Wax (with every other fill up). First chain lasted 24,000 miles. Every other chain has lasted around 20,000.
The Stromtrooper forums have lots of information should you ever need it. Your bike seems to have most accessories. I would only recommend adding a center stand.
Some might suggest lowering the suspension to make it handle a little "better". I do not recommend that. Doing so limits your ground clearance and makes it more difficult to lift on center stand.
Thank you Red, I agree, after only a week all I can say; "it's a great bike", I am surprised how well it handles and it has plenty power, and it's always nice to switch from asphalt to gravel, I can see why the ADV market is so popular. One FJR + one "do it all" Strom (or others) is highly recommended per garage yes they both make me grin
Givi airflow is in the mail, still looking for center stand, yesterday I used my "pit stand" to clean and lube the chain, and it works perfect the bike is easy to keep upright while sliding the stand from behind. Also will get some decent Aux LED's and maybe a medium size top box. As far as height I am happy with the way it is no adjustment needed. Joined the Stromtrooper but tbh don't like the format of the site (will have to figure out how to navigate for better experience), this (FJR) forum layout is way better to me. Cheers

"If FJR and VStrom 650XT don't make you Grin from ear-to-ear,... there is something wrong with your Face"
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post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 11:16 AM Thread Starter
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a few more nice Vstrom pictures from beautiful Alberta
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"If FJR and VStrom 650XT don't make you Grin from ear-to-ear,... there is something wrong with your Face"
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post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 01:44 PM
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a few more nice Vstrom pictures from beautiful Alberta
Will you quit posting these amazing pics while I'm at work please??? Sheesh, it's very hard to concentrate when all I wanna do is go there and ride. Btw, it's only going be 104F here today, and I see that it is 65F where you are...

J/K obviously, great pics and I may be looking to add a 650XT at some point soon myself. Ride on!!!
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