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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-14-2009, 12:44 PM Thread Starter
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Yo

I joined this forum some time ago, but never really posted here. I have been a member of the Yahoo Groups VN750 forum for several years. I am a fleet services mechanic (32 years), and own and ride an '02 Vulcan 750. Jerry.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-14-2009, 01:55 PM
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Welcome back, Jerry! Glad ya remembered about us!! LOL


AKA: Tim & 'The Adventure Cycle' VROC #24567, NEVROC, SteelCity VROC


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Aim for the apex."

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-14-2009, 03:10 PM
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Welcome back to the Vulcan madness Jerry. Judging from your years as a mechanic, you must be an old fart like me. (56 years old).
How long have you been riding? I just checked your other 2 posts, and see you have logged quite a few miles on a pair of vn750s. Have you owned and ridden any other bikes to compare them to?

With your experience as a fleet services mechanic, I would be interested to read about your experiences with the 750 Vulcan as regards reliability and durability over the 125K+ miles that you have travelled on them since 1992.

Of particular interest to me and other members of the forum, I think, would be any
-electrical charging issues, stator and reg/rect replacements, or any r/r relocation,
-spark plug choice, ie. do you recomend the NGK Iridium DPR7EIX-9, as most here do?

-rear spline wear and choice of lube, which engine oil and filter you use,
-what different tires you tried over the years, and your impressions and favorites.

- any mods you have made.

Have you used the bike for long distance rides and holidays? Or mostly for everyday riding and commuting?

I hope you don`t mind the 20 questions thing, but most of us do not have anywhere near the number of miles on our scoots, that you have accumulated on yours. I would appreciate any tips or suggestions that you care to give, that will help me keep my bike on the road for that long. Thanks.

Gordon

1991 VN 750 -"Cosmic Lady" or "Bad Girl"?
Purchased May 16, 2008
Approx.19,300km (12,000 miles)

H-D windshield
Relocated R/R
MF-AGM battery
Fiamm Freeway Blaster horns
F&S luggage rack and engine guard
Kury Offset Hiway pegs
July 13, 2016, Riding on the DARKSIDE now, Classic Radial 165/80-15


TOP TEN THINGS A NEW RIDER/OWNER SHOULD DO. Click on link.
https://www.vn750.com/forum/11-vn750-general-discussion/9127-top-ten-items-you-would-suggest-new-owner-do-his-new-ride.html
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-14-2009, 03:16 PM
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welcome from coshocton,oh

2002 vn750,7800 mile,homemade drag pipes,harley heratige seat,honda sissybar,led rear turn signals,
iridium plugs,marbled,110/90/19 kenda kruz front,
170/80/15 kenda kruz rear,saddlebags.
whats to come****handlebars,highway pegs
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-14-2009, 07:47 PM
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Hi Jerry. Good to see you over here too.

I'm keepin' all the left over parts. I'm gonna use 'em to build another bike!
_____________________________________________
"Black Beauty"
1989 VN750 acquired December, 2008, 6,711 miles
Currently 23,298 miles

Old Blue
2001 Honda CMX250 Rebel acquired July, 2008

1987 VN750 project bike, acquired August, 2009, 33,000 miles and balancer sticking out of the case, currently awaiting attention and parts
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-14-2009, 08:52 PM Thread Starter
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I am 50 years old, became an apprentice mechanic for the City of Chandler at 18, right out of high school, and was made a full mechanic less than a year later. With the advent of all the electronics on newer vehicles, my job title was changed to "fleet services technician" several years ago. I'll be right up front about this, I do not believe in mixing electronics and mechanics, and don't believe electronics belong on cars or motorcycles. I have a '64 Ford Fairlane, and a '66 Ford truck, neither of which has any electronics.


I started riding at age 5 on a Briggs&Stratton powered mini bike, got my first real motorcycle at age 8 (a Bultaco Lobito 125, in non running condition), worked on the farm where I lived to make enough money to buy parts for it, and the farm mechanic helped me rebuild it during the off season, and taught me about engines and how they work. I learned how to ride that bike, then proceeded to buy 2 or 3 more dirt bikes, fixed them up and rode them. By the time I was 16, I had pretty much learned all about dirt riding, and was doing wheelies, jumps, and slides. And yes, I crashed a few times, but was never seriously injured.


On my 16th birthday, I got both my drivers license and my motorcycle endorsement, before noon. I had already bought and fixed up a Suzuki GT380, and was out riding it on the street that afternoon, with my temporary license stuffed in my pocket.


I got into racing MX when I was 18, got hurt several times, and finally gave it up around 20 or 21, when the boss reminded me I was not being paid to show up on crutches. I still ride dirt bikes, but no longer race. I've had 10-12 dirt bikes, my current one is a Honda XR400.



I have owned around 30 or so street bikes, close to 20 of them bought new. All different sizes and types. I have racked up over 400,000 miles on the street, I would have to say the Vulcan 750 is my all time favorite street bike. It's not the absolute best at anything, but it is very good at everything. I have never crashed on the street, or ever even dropped a streetbike. I got all that out of the way with dirtbikes. I have had quite a few close calls though.


I have never had any electrical issues with either bike, the only electrical accessory I have ever hooked up to it was a pair of heated gloves, which I still use when riding in temperatures below 30 degrees or so. I did replace the stock battery with a Westco on the '02 Vulcan, as soon as I found out about them. First one lasted just over 5 years, despite my having let it become completely discharged a couple of times. I'm on my second one now. I have not made any modifications to the electrical system.



I have always used standard NGK DPR7EA-9 plugs, changed about every 10,000 miles.

I got lucky on the rear spline thing, I spotted it in the owners manual, bought a Clymer manual, and went ahead and did it after the first 5,000 miles or so. I used to use plain old moly wheel bearing grease, and did it about every 10,000 miles, more recently, I have switched to Guard Dog GD-570 Moly Paste, but still lube the splines about every 10,000 miles. I've been told this is to often, but IMO, better safe than sorry. I am a bit disappointed about the spline thing, I have owned several other shaft drive bikes, including an '84 Goldwing Aspencade, and never lubed the splines, there was nothing about it in the maintenance schedule in the owners manual. I consider this to be a design flaw, the drive shaft should have been designed so the grease would be sealed in, and only have to be relubed if taken apart. But, it is still better than a chain.


I have used Bridgestone, Dunlop, Pirelli, and more recently Metzler ME880 tires. Believe it or not, I was more satisfied with the stock Bridgestones than any of the others. I almost always got around 20,000 miles out of them. I'm on my second set of ME880s, I got about 17,000 out of the last set. The Dunlops and Pirellis are 10,000-12,000 mile tires, I won't be using them anymore. The bike handled very well with any of the above tires.

I have used several brands of oil filters over the years, including OEM Kawasaki. I currently use Emgo filters, both oil and air filters. I do not clean the air filters, I replace them every 10,000-15,000 miles with new ones from denniskirk.com. The one oil filter brand I would not recommend is Fram. I installed one of those once, and it was completely plugged up, the oil light didn't go out, and the oil level didn't drop in the site glass. I immediately shut the engine down, removed the oil filter, went and paid twice to much for a Kawasaki filter, and it worked just fine. I have also used a variety of oils, but lately have been using Mobil 1 synthetic 20w50 v-twin motorcycle oil, changed about every 3,000 miles. I get the oil and filters from denniskirk.com, and order enough to total $75, so I get free shipping and no tax.


The one thing I never had problems with on the '93, but had nothing but problems with on the '02, was the cam chain tensioners. The originals failed at about 17,000 miles, I messed with them several times, got another 5,000 or so miles out of them, I replaced them with a brand new set of OEM Kawasaki tensioners, which lasted about 10,000 miles, and they started making a lot of noise again. I finally gave up and went to manual tensioners about 5,000 miles ago, so far no problems. Since they have never changed the design, and I never had any problems with the ones on the '93, I think it is just a quality control problem.


I have made a few modifications, but nothing to the engine, intake, or exhaust, other than removing the CA evap system, and the complete air injection system. (I am not a believer in emissions controls either, another reason why my car and truck are so old) The Vulcan 750 engine should last over 100,000 miles, but I believe the way to make that happen is to leave the intake and exhaust stock.


I have the Kawasaki extended backrest, luggage rack, saddlebag mounting/turn signal relocation brackets, and the bolt on leather saddlebags from Kawasaki. I have removed the license plate bracket and light, and bolted the plate directly to the fender, by drilling 2 new holes in the plate, and using the existing holes in the fender. Looks a lot cleaner to me. I have a personalized plate "VN750", so those guys on their huge cruisers will know what just passed them. I also installed a flag mount, as I am a member of the PGR. I replaced the round mirrors with rectangular mirrors from a Honda Rebel, installed a Memphis Shades Shooter windshield, replaced the grips with foam ones, installed fringe covers on the levers, relocated the horns, one on each side of the bike, down close to the bottom of the radiator cover, facing outward, removed the Kawasaki emblem from below the headlight, and installed a leather tool bag. I removed the Vulcan 750 emblems from the sidecovers (well actually, they pretty much removed themselves), and polished the round aluminum plates on both sides of the engine with Simichrome polish after most of the writing wore off.

There is one major modification I made that I made that I am hesitant to bring up, because I got so many negative responses about it back when I did it, but that was over 25,000 miles ago, so it is now proven safe. I removed the right brake disc, caliper, and hose. It did not require replacing any parts to do this. Everybody thought I was crazy, but I tested it extensively out away from traffic, and IMO, it performed as well as the dual disc setup, but was more controllable. I made several stops from 100 mph down to 0, holding the front wheel on the verge of lockup all the way. The stopping distances and times were uneffected. I was still able to easily lock the front wheel, which I felt was just a little too easy with both discs. The front brake is now easier to modulate, less prone to accidentally locking up, there has been no brake fade, or abnormal wear of the disc or pads. I use EBC non metallic organic pads. I have never had any issues with this setup, under any conditions. Many much larger heavier bikes only have one front disc. I am not recommending anybody do this, only stating that it worked very well for me.


I almost never use the bike for commuting, which I define as going somewhere you HAVE to go, like work or the store. To me, commuting is no fun, no matter what you do it in or on, and it is handier to take the car. 99% of the time it is used for recreational riding only, and most of that is long trips. I rarely ride less than 100 miles at the time, and have crossed the country and back several times. The Vulcan 750 with saddlebags and a T-bag is ideal for use as a solo touring bike, due to it's reliability, comfort, and ease of repairing flat tires. Plus it seriously out handles a Goldwing, an older one anyway.


Sorry for the super long post, I hope it doesn't crash the server. I type about 90 WPM, I'm faster than our secretary, so I tend to write a book before I realize it. If you have any more questions, just ask away. Jerry.

I am a motorcyclist, NOT a biker.


1997 Vulcan 750, purchased about a week ago
2006 Sportster 1200 Low
2013 Royal Enfield Bullet 500, converted to carb
2001 Yamaha XT225, heavily modified
2004 Honda Rebel 250
1979 Vespa P200E
2002 Vulcan 750 parts bike
1994 Yamaha XT225 parts bike

Last edited by VN750Rider/Jerry; 12-14-2009 at 09:08 PM.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-14-2009, 11:07 PM
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That was nice to read, Jerry. Interesting. While I don't put on nearly as many miles as you do, I really enjoy my baby, even when commuting. I work so much and so hard that I find riding home on my 750 takes away all the stress of the day.

My stock Bridgestones only made it to about 10,000 miles for some reason. I'm replacing them with Pirelli's this weekend and I hope they handle well in the rain, which is what I think is the most important feature of whatever tire I'm buying. I found I had a few minor skids with the Bridgestones, even on dry pavement, but nothing unmanageable. But I purchased the tires before reading your post on my Pirelli thread, so I'm already stuck.

Anyway, welcome to the forum and glad you're posting more frequently now.

Rubyrick

MY BABY...
'05 VN750
16,000 miles +
Kawi tank bib
Kawi rear rack
Small windshield
DEKA M/F battery
VN750.com Grill Cover
LED license plate frame
Clear Alternatives LED brake light
Cortech mini tank bag on rear rack
Pirelli MT66 Tires: 110 front / 150 rear
Splines lubed when tires installed at 10,650 miles
Splines lubed again at 14,400 with stubby valve stem install

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-14-2009, 11:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OlHossCanada View Post
Welcome back to the Vulcan madness Jerry. Judging from your years as a mechanic, you must be an old fart like me. (56 years old).
How long have you been riding? I just checked your other 2 posts, and see you have logged quite a few miles on a pair of vn750s. Have you owned and ridden any other bikes to compare them to?

With your experience as a fleet services mechanic, I would be interested to read about your experiences with the 750 Vulcan as regards reliability and durability over the 125K+ miles that you have travelled on them since 1992.

Of particular interest to me and other members of the forum, I think, would be any
-electrical charging issues, stator and reg/rect replacements, or any r/r relocation,
-spark plug choice, ie. do you recomend the NGK Iridium DPR7EIX-9, as most here do?

-rear spline wear and choice of lube, which engine oil and filter you use,
-what different tires you tried over the years, and your impressions and favorites.

- any mods you have made.

Have you used the bike for long distance rides and holidays? Or mostly for everyday riding and commuting?

I hope you don`t mind the 20 questions thing, but most of us do not have anywhere near the number of miles on our scoots, that you have accumulated on yours. I would appreciate any tips or suggestions that you care to give, that will help me keep my bike on the road for that long. Thanks.
I second the motion!

2011 Suzuki VSTROM DL650 with ABS Purchased Jan 28 now with 39,000miles WRECKED JAN 12 ,2013
"To strive, to seek, to find, not to yield."
05 Vulcan 750 26,050miles *Traded in*
Ventura guards
MadStadt mount
Givi windshield/Heated grips
Backoff
Riderbeads
Givi 52 topcase
Pat Walsh Crash bars skid plate
OEM centerstand
Headlight modulator
Battery tender
Aquarium thermometer with forward probe mount
Admore LED Lighting/Givi E36N panniers
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