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  Topic Review (Newest First)
07-30-2019 07:59 PM
VN750Rider/Jerry Finally got the rear tire replaced, balanced, and back on the bike. Did the spline lube. Went out to the shed (it's 137 degrees in there) and removed all the accessories from the '02 and started cleaning things up. Still have to do the front tire, remove the emissions crap, put on all the accessories, and a few other things. If the front brakes are as grabby as the ones on the '02, I'll make the same modification. Also going to swap seats, my '02 seat is in better shape than the '97 seat.
04-23-2019 03:42 AM
VN750Rider/Jerry Tires came in. I pulled the back wheel and final drive. Splines look good. They had grease on them, but I don't know what kind. I changed the oil and filter. It still has the air injection and evap systems on it, which have to go. Hopefully next weekend I will be able to get the back tire on and the rear end back together. It is charging, but the stator didn't fail on the '02 until 75,000+ miles. This one only has 21,000, and I doubt I will ever hit 50,000. Not in good enough condition to ride much anymore. Main reason for getting another Vulcan was comfort. Not in a hurry, to hot to ride. A long hot summer ahead before it is cool enough to ride. Comfortably that is.
04-13-2019 03:24 PM
VN750Rider/Jerry Still on advrider.com Things have gotten better. The Shadow Spirit was always one of my favorite bikes, though I've never owned one. It has everything needed for long distance touring. A simple v-twin with about half the parts of a Vulcan 750 engine, shaft drive, tubeless tires, and it was comfortable and looked good. You could put saddlebags, a backrest (and use a T bag) and a tank bag on it. You could put a Harley type windshield on it. I always thought it would make an excellent solo tourer.

But I have had two bought new Vulcan 750s, and have almost 200,000 miles on them combined. I had my 2002 all fixed up with over $1000 worth of genuine Kawasaki accessories that are no longer available. The splines and rear drive are like new, in fact pretty much everything is near perfect but the engine, and there are a lot of good parts on that. The '97 I just bought runs great, I don't hear any cam chain noise, but I still have the TOC tensioners from the '02. I will also put the '02 seat on the '97 because it is in better condition, and extremely comfortable.

The Vulcan 750 is an oddball cruiser. It will actually outrun the Shadow 1100 with a lot less displacement. That is both good and bad. The Vulcan motor is more like a sportbike motor. It makes power, but you have to keep it spinning. The Shadow just kind of lopes along. The Vulcan has a top end rush the Shadow doesn't have. After the '02 Vulcan engine failed, I bought an '06 Sportster 1200. For local riding it is the most fun bike I've ever had. It shakes like a paint mixer, and makes a beautiful sound through the aftermarket exhaust. It feels like riding a jackhammer leaving a stoplight. But the same things that make it so much fun for shorter rides cause issues on longer rides. The vibration and sound become tiring after a couple hundred miles on the freeway. The seat is nowhere near as comfortable as the Vulcan. So when I was just perusing Craigslist, and say that Vulcan only a few miles away, at a very reasonable price with low miles, I just had to go look at it. An hour later I was on my way to the bank to get the money. I have new tires ordered for it from Dennis Kirk. They still had the original Bridgestone Exedras that came on it new. They are 20,000 mile tires. I am now 60 and disabled, I don't ride as much as I used to. I doubt I will ever wear out those tires.
04-13-2019 09:23 AM
GDI Vulcans are hard to beat, aren't they, Jerry?

I used to read your posts over on Adventure Rider years ago. They were kind of hard on you over there as I recall, but I always thought you made a lot of sense. I was riding a '99 Honda Shadow 1100 at the time, though I'd had an '86 Vulcan 750 years earlier. There had been so many years in between, that I'd kind of forgotten how much different the Vulcan was compared to the Shadow at that time. . . . I think I may have even suggested that you try a Shadow at some point. There's just no comparison in my opinion now!

I sold the Honda because it was just so damned boring! I have to take some of the responsibility for that myself as part of the trouble was how I rode it. I had this silly idea that I should ride around with it in top gear on the highway. The Spirit model is geared way to high for the power on tap. It barely had enough power to make it up hills. If I could have just been happy in 4th gear, I'd probably still be on that bike.

Suspension wasn't adequate for 2-up either though, and at one point my back was hurting when I rode it for a month straight while my other bike (a Kawasaki, LOL) was in the shop for "electrical problems". That's another story, but no sense going there. No doubt that Honda would have run a long time, but I found that I just didn't care. I just didn't like it enough.

I'm commuting back and forth to work on the Kawasaki when the weather here will allow. Have had it out 3-4 times in the last 3 weeks. It's warming up really slowly up here this year, so will be a while before I'm riding every day. I just love my 750 for that purpose. Very responsive and comfortable, and it's set up just the way I like it.

04-10-2019 03:17 PM
OleDirtyDoc Did Kawasaki even make OEM manual tensioners?

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04-08-2019 07:37 PM
VN750Rider/Jerry Unlike oem manual tensioners, the TOC tensioners have no instructions for adjusting them. I adjusted mine both at the same time, one with each hand, turning them in and out till the noise just stopped, and tried to get them even.

I got this bike just as riding season here in southern AZ is coming to an end. I have it in what used to be my living room. I'll put new tires and anything else it needs this summer, as well as take all the accessories off the '02 and put them on it. The '97 has the crash bar, which I never had before, but nothing else. It is still original, stock exhaust and intake. So I have good replacement parts for everything but the engine. In order for a '97 to have such low miles, it must have sat for a long time, and that concerns me a little. I had just replaced the stator in the '02 about 20,000 miles before the engine failed. I am tempted to just do an engine swap. Besides being extremely dirty from sitting in the shed (AZ dust) the '02 is in good condition. It was always over maintained. I like the color of the '97 better, but the tank, fenders, and side panels could be swapped as well. Amazingly no rust in the tank of such an old bike with such low miles. It was obviously well cared for, cosmetically anyway. No sun damage.
04-08-2019 12:21 PM
OleDirtyDoc Maybe the tensioners were too tight?

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04-08-2019 11:17 AM
VN750Rider/Jerry It is possible that my cam chains were damaged by the original stock tensioners before I switched over to the TOC ones.
04-08-2019 09:52 AM
Knifemaker I'm not positive about this, back before you were a member a gal named Gypsy reported doing over 120,000 on her bike, and Tom? The guy that owns TOC supposedly had over 140,000 on his.

Not sure of the extent of repairs done however to reach that.
04-08-2019 09:38 AM
ubertalldude damn, over 100,000 miles out of the vulcan engine? that's gotta be one of the highest miles I've ever seen reported on here, that's awesome!

glad you're getting back into one, there's a real charm about these bikes despite all their quirks...
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