A motorcycle parked in front of a tent on a pleasant green campsite
small image motorcycle loaded up with touring gear Home Contribute Contact BAT Chit-Chat BAT Facebook Page BAT Stickers! Ren's Biking Blog Sharon's Biking Blog Guest Posts Bike Reviews Bike Gear Reviews Bike Tips Travel Stories Travel Tips Repair And Restoration Interesting Links Support BAT
Home Bike Reviews

Long Term Review of the Honda SLR 650 - By Ren Withnell

I got me one of these, and what an odd bike, kinda great and kinda rough

Urban Jungle Machine, Honda SLR 650

This information is from my own experience and knowledge, do NOT take this as gospel truth

Fuel Capacity 9.4 litres to reserve, between 95 to 110 miles depending on riding style. Never dared to emtpy the reserve, but at least 20 miles.
Oil Capacity Just shy of 2 litres when only draining the oil in the frame. Hardly any sits in the engine, so I dont drain it and risk rounding the drain bolt in the aluminium. Recommend 2,000 mile changes, 4,000 to 6,000 with the oil filter.
Tyres Front Tyre: 100/90/19, recommend Bridgestone Trailwing, lasts approx 15,000 miles
Rear Tyre: 120/90/17, recommend Bridgestone Trailwing, lasts approx 8,000 miles
Chain and Sprockets 520 guage chain, most suppliers seem to think it is 110 links, but my original had 108, and I've removed 2 links from all 110 link chains sent to me.
Front sprocket originally is 14 tooth, now running 15 for economy and distance. Works fine but you will need to grind a bit of metal to get it to fit (contact me for details)
Rear sprocket is 43 tooth.
Tappet Settings 0.010mm for all four tappets. Be careful I may be doing this wrong but the exhaust tappets are odd. When one is open the other is still tight, rotate the engine some more and keep on checking individual tappets before adjusting.

I bought this not due to great desire to own this model of bike, but due to it being in the right place, at the right time and at the right deal. For some time I've fancied an off-road bike, but I was looking for something a little smaller and easier to handle through the mud.

After my accident I bought the CMX 250 due to its undemanding size and the forward pegs so my knee would not need to bend too much. The SLR, when I first sat on it, did require a little more knee bend but it was still comfortable. And more importantly it's seat height was fine, it seems to be one of the lowest big off-roader's around. There was a good offer in exchange for the 250 so a deal was struck.

Riding the thing for the first time was quite a pleasant shock. Man was this thing quick after the 250. Not stupidly so, not wild and out of control, but it does pull like a steam train. It is comfortable, easy to manage and high up which gives good visibilty. It was also very very lumpy. I've owned 100cc singles, 400cc twins and 400cc fours. This does not prepare you for the 100mm wide piston lurching around beneath your nether regions and delivering great thumps of power every now and then. If the silky smooth life is for you, then don't get a big single. Oh but what joy lies in torque. It's not at all powerful, just a mere 39 bhp, but torque is the thing for me now. I can "phut phut phut" along low in the revs, crack open the throttle and BLAM!, things happen quickly. No gear changes, no waiting on revs and a massive forward surge.

That said...I've just replaced the chain and it has transformed the bike. OK, so it's not silky smooth like a four cylinder bike but it's much more managable now and easier to ride. What a difference a chain makes...

My biggest bugbear with the SLR ownership experience is that it's not a popular model. I'm not bothered about meeting other owners, I like the individuality. It's finding aftermarket parts for it. It is a genuine UK model and as such your local Honda dealer can provide all spares. But try to find engine bars, aftermaket exhausts or Givi rack kits and you might as well pee into the wind. Nope, if Honda don't make it and you can't make one off another model fit, then you're stuffed. My current project is to make some sort of frame to keep my throwovers off the high up exhaust, 'cos you canny buy one!

Off-roading this thing is actually quite pleasant so long as you don't try to go mud plugging through a boggy marsh. The 19 inch front wheel, the tiny bash plate and the rubber footpegs tell you this is a road bike with off-road styling. But don't let that stop you traversing the green lanes and farm tracks. It will cope as well as any big trailie and the low seat height for this class gives me some more confidence to hold the thing upright. Then when you're back on the road it's back to normal.

I like it. But then again I've liked every bike I've owned. It's an all-rounder in an off-road stylie. It's not fast, but not slow, it's not a mud-plugger, but not averse to muddy lanes, it's not a tourer, but comfy enough for distance and it's a good commuter, but uses more fuel than a 125 would. A jack of all trades and master of nothing. Could I recommend it? Yes, but not for any particular purpose.

2 Years and 29,000 miles later...

What a bike. I love this bike. It now has 36,000 miles on it's clock, and it is getting tired. What problems have had?

The rear shock totally lost the plot at 20,000. Off road, 2 up and suddenly the back end felt like a cheap pogo stick, at first I though I had a flat. I bounced home. Hagon required the release of over 250 quid before they would send a suitable replacement. And it's a fiddly old job too. The Hagon works equally well as the original and is more adjustable. Please bear in mind that there was probably 2,000 miles of 2 up off road on the original shock, it had taken some serious hammer.

At the same time the rear wheel bearings decided to give up the ghost. The job of replacement is no better or worse than any other set of bearings I've done, but the first set only lasted 500 miles. I suspect there was a dodgy bearing or perhaps a dodgy person fitting them. The current set at the time of writing now has 16,000 on them, I think I got the fitting right second time round.

The rear suspension linkage bearings collapsed at 32,000. A remarkably easy job to replace them requiring no more thean a good vice and some suitably sized socket pieces for pressing in and out. The cost for genuine honda is extortionate. Be careful during dissassembly to get the bearing numbers and you might save yourself a fortune by buying from a bearing supplier.

The front brake gave me major headaches, it was sticking. I tried all the usual cleaning, lubricating, bleeding and cursing, to no avail. It took me 3 months of messing about and frying front brake pads until it got it right. A combination of old fluid, sticky parts and poor re-assembly on my behalf lead to all the confusion. Again I cannot blame the bike, most of the trouble was my mechanical inability. Works a treat now though.

Other than these things, which considering the mileage, the bike is sorted. Chain and sprockets wear out at 10,000 to 15,000 miles with good care. Tyres about 8,000 for the rear, 15,000 for the front. Fuel runs at 52 to 58 mpg.

So why do I love it? Cos it has more character than any other bike. It is not fast or stylish or cool. It is now very dirty, very rattly and very tired. But when I ride it, it speaks to me. It tells me what the tyres are up to, in miniscule detail. The motor pulls and pulls and pulls with no effort, whatever the load or the hill. It goes very well over farm tracks and easy trails, and with effort can be persuaded over rougher terrain. It will also sit on the motorway 2 up at 80mph for 300 miles and still leave the passengers functional and happy afterwards. It will then scrub the back roads better that the plastic rockets.

I'm gonna miss this bike when it finally gives up. But right now it seems it will never give up. 1,000 miles round Scotland, 2,000 miles in Spain and Portugal, and another 1,000 miles round Cornwall this year might kill the bike and cause me to hate it. Time will tell.

Home Bike Reviews Random Link

Reader's Comments

stewart said :-
Yup. I bought one new used mostly in town over 7 years and only 4000 miles. It is superb fun and doubt there is a better town bike. Good on squirrley roads too but being honest not great for me bbeyond about 30miles as seat is v hard. I had an exhaust made for it but too load and now back with original.
Much underated by most bikers.
I also have a Bandit 12 which is not as much fun in town...elsewhere however the bandit wins.
UTC
Trond said :-
Date 2006-11-29 18:58:26

Hi, wery nice and imformant site you have, thanks.
I`ve bought an black 1997 SLR 650 yesterday and I have just seen it inn a dark picture so I`m very exiting to see how its like in real.
I have to wait some days before the seller ships it to me....
Someone who nows about good links on the web for SLR 650 ?
Regards Trond from Norway....

UTC
Clive Arbon said :-
Hi Trond if you see this email me at c_arbon@hotmail.com I have just bought a 1999 SLR 650 and would like to swap notes.
UTC
Robert said :-
Great information. Couldnt agree more with the review of the bike. Had mine for 5-6 years now and its used for commuting all year round. I too have just hit the 20,000 rear shock failure and ordered a Hagon replacement.
UTC
Allan said :-
Thanks fore you good side, from a new mann on a Honda SLR 650, I dream about summer right now.
UTC
Jan@.be said :-
Thanks for this review. I am first owner of the bike. No problems yet, only joy with very little mileage/kilometers.
UTC
mark said :-
hi many thanks thinking of buying one test riding tomorrow found your comments very helpful
UTC
Ken said :-
Reading your reviews with interest as a dommie owner. Been looking into making a few mods to it for use on the road - got to be honest, didn't know about the slr otherwise would have probably gone for one. prefer the bike without the plastic, so looking for an slr hredlight, maybe a front wheel. anyone know if the engines are identicle?
UTC
Geoff said :-
Excellent review. Thanks!
UTC
Alecwithac said :-
Thanks for the info. I'm gonna be upgrading from a 125cc Marauder and this might be the bike I get. I do over 30 mile a date through city traffic as well as 30 mile round trips to the MCC, as well as rallies and shows.

AL
UTC
Lobo said :-
Date 25-Jun-2007

Thanks for your article.
I have been riding a borrowed one for one week and I realized that I like it more that I thought I would - for the same reasons that you mentioned - tork, height, and the fact that at 44000 miles it still feels tight and dependable. Maybe its a good upgrade to the NX250...
Paulo.as.Lobo@(googlemail) (Lisbon Portugal)
UTC
Campos said :-
Hi .
I'm Looking for a bike which can easily go around between city lights and rocky trails with a large fellow on top of it. I was considering a 97 slr with 20000 miles already on it , but it seems to be in mint condition. I'd like to know your opinion bearing in mind that I'm a large bloke and not so experienced , do you think this is an advisable buy ?
Best Regards from Portugal
UTC
gary beman said :-
Hi just bought one think its great, any one had a prob with a leaky fuel cap mine leaks down the side of the tank when any where near full and on the side stand.
UTC
don said :-
Iv GOT A VIGOR FX 650 THEY ARE THE 1 THEY MADE AFTER THE SLR . I HAVE THE SAME VEIW THEY ARE A MARMITE BIKE YOU LOVE THEM OR YOU HATE THEM.I LIKE THE RIDING POSSISION I LOVE THE ENGINE AND THE TORCH BUT THE STYLING IS NOT ALL THAT I WILL TAKE IT OFF THE ROAD THIS WINTER AND MAKE SOME COSMETIC CHANGES .FRONT MUDGUARD, HEADLAMP, INDECATORS, AND A FEW OTHERS I WILL GET BACK THEN. NICE SITE .ITS GOOD TO HEAR SOMEONE WITH SOMETHING GOOD TO SAY INSTEAD OF MOANING.CHEERS
UTC
cas hardwick said :-
i ve just bought the honda slr650 and im lovin it its a comfy size its great to have a 650 trials and b able to put my feet down great i love the colour its black with purple graffics i think its a great lookin chunky bike and nippy im out most days my son rides with me as pillion and he s lovin it and its got a great meaty sound great fun
UTC
Mike said :-
I bought one b4 reading this page. It needs the bigger sprocket for motorways (can you tell me the part number I need) Very impressed with bike, never wanted a boring 4 cyl. Dreaming about the Ducati Hypermotard - but £7700!
UTC
fred said :-
just got my dads old 1997 slr. had been sitting in the shed for a few years so in need of some love. new rear tire and rear shock(1800miles) and the odd bits and bobs. this is my first bike.i have just done my first long ride (2days after i got the bike legal!)isle of Skye to Glasgow. good fun, no problems
and as everyone says, i lasted maby 50-60miles before i had to pullover and stop vibrating.the bike is great on twisty roads and ok on fast open roads for short stints.long distance at highspeeds(80-90mph) leaves you slightly tingly.
but a good first bike i think
UTC
fred said :-
sorry, does anyone know if tou can get a braket to fit a small windscreen? i got one but it dosnt fit (the clock cluster bracket is in the way!) or do i have to make one?

UTC
DAVE PARKES said :-
Hello honda people I have a 98 slr650 that has now covered 42000 miles what can I say you are all bang right chains sprokets and rear shockers just get eatan by the thing bought it back in 2000 as a comuter tool but just love the thing starts first time every time does about 50 mpg and is loads of fun it still get odd looks from most people when i blast past if you want to get just a bit more horeses out of the thing chop the silly little baffles out of the exhaust ends and weld a bit of 2 inch pipe in instead makes a loverly noise and abit more omphhh to boot and they still pass M.O.T. as it is at testers desciesion and as they are still original pipes they dont look too hard. However when you adjust the valve clearances you must turn the engine over untill you hear a very loud klaack this is the automatic decompressor leting go the valves wil then go slack and you wil be able to adjust them the clutch join hands with the rear shockers and chains at 42000 miles so I am spending the next two days replacing that only £50 from honda .Take care and enjoy the quirky 650s that you all own
UTC
MAC said :-
Hi and nice review. I've got an 02 FX650, the replacement for the SLR. As you say there isn't much in the way of after-market parts.

I've had the bike for coming up for a year and done about 12,000 miles in that time, taking the bike up to around 22,000 miles. The rear shock is starting to show it's age, however my daily commute is mainly dual carriageway and not too bumpy.

The biggest bug bear is how the bike eats chains and sprockets. The first owner went through one by 4,500 miles and had a scott oiler fitted but I needed to replace it at 13,000 and it's ready for another one now.

I'm interested in the mod for the 15 tooth sprocket as I'm up and down a dual carriageway for most of my commute. If you see this can you e-mail me at mac_600 at hotmail dot com.

Thanks

MAC
UTC
len said :-
Hi,bought my slr 650 five years ago.Done 20k never had to do much to it,apart from change oil adjust chain new tyres plugs Great off road,i live in Wales so Brill along the twisty roads and forestry tracks.Had 68 mpg tried out from dry tank to run dry.Had bad fuel so cleaned out tank and i thought ill give it a run,had spare can so i rode along clear roads at approx 45-55 mph,not as good around towns and off road but still good.
UTC
martin said :-
Cheers for the info on the front sprocket- it has changed the bike !
UTC
luke said :-
just coming up to 2 years on mine after many sports bikes fancied going back to off road roots and keeping licence absoluteley love the strange looks of what is it off others bikers more than happy off road or running around back roads or up n down motorway big screen fitted helps with wind blast glad im not only one who loves it mines bright grn which looks different shall we say all good though def be sticking with big singles
UTC
d3t0x said :-
Cool website! Good work. Good stuff. It very impressive. I will be back!
UTC
Jozef said :-
:) crazy This is site
UTC
mark said :-
Ran one for a year 6-7000 miles worst tyre dunlop only 800 miles from rear 2000 from front. front also pushes on badly on corners but very predictable, best rear hidenau good grip on and off road. My shock went too no warning to no damping hagon replacement v good.A tank can be run to reserve in 77 miles of hard riding you can go through a tank of gas flat out and the engine won't miss a beat.Only other prob sticky front caliper just once after riding all winter.waxoiled bike for winter cleaned up like new then i stuck it in a car at 50 and it'll be back on road soon now.Don't try to race bsa 650s they're lots faster and handle better!on the whole they're incredibly reliable and just another boring honda but i won't be selling mine for the 1k£ i paid for it what else would i get?
UTC
luke spencer said :-
bought my slr a little under 2 years ago and have had nothing but stress freee biking from it not the fastest or most stylish bike out there but still damn hard to beat as a work bike/b road fun bike and very often can surprise the odd sports bike rider or two,lovely,unfortunately house/dog is forcing the sale of my much loved bike and i am resorting to a 5 door mk 3 golf,joy,many new parts and a nearly new mot on this bike £1350 although must go so offers invited any enquieres e mail lauramoore_07@btinternet.com
UTC
Keith said :-
Just done the 15 tooth front sprocket mod, if any one is interested the sprocket I put on was from JT Sprockets (www.jtsprockets.com) and was part number JTF308.15
UTC
Mark said :-
Agree wholeheartedly with the good reviews, I love mine! Anyone know where I might find a manual for it? I'm also toying with the idea of a trails style front mudgaurd ~ any ideas?
UTC
Dave said :-
17/5/2008

Have run my black SLR for 18mths and 6000 miles. Its now at just under 12k. Fuel consumption was close to 50 mpg and now more like 45, due to faster riding. Most of my miles have been motorway ones at rush hour and the riding position is great for looking ahead of the traffic. The bike threads through the traffic a treat.

The bridgestone (trailmax?) rear lasted around 5000 miles and now I have metzeler tourances front and back which are better suited for my road only commute. The old rear went rather square after all the motorway miles, but the chain has lasted well.

I've done all the 2k oil changes and the only time I ever thought it had let me down turned out to be me having knocked the engine cut out switch. Bike still looks nice despite being 10!

Beware that Honda parts can be dear as I discovered with the air filter. I've also changed the flasher relay (honda wanted more than £40, but it turns out to be pretty universal Honda part (got mine from a Goldwing) so sourced a s/h one).

My biggest gripes are the short range from the tank (125-140 to bone dry) and the longer distance comfort. You really get some vibes from the bars, which over my 15 mile trip to work is fun, but 60 miles is much harder work. I've just realised now the weather has improved that winter gloves suit the bike so much better, as they soak up a lot of the vibrations!

I'd just like to end by thanking Ren, as this was the first site I found when looking for the rarity that is SLR info. I'm now looking to move to a Thundercat, but could easily keep this bike forever as its been so easy to live with.
Dave
Ps anyone looking to buy mine can contact me at davesnelluk at yahoo.co.uk I'm j9 M25...
UTC
John said :-
I've had mine for 3 years. Couldn't agree more with your review. Had the pogo stick experience; very strange. When describing the bike to others I simply begin "If Landrovers came with 2 wheels.....".
UTC
gogs said :-
Could have wrote this review myself
so similiar to my experience
Hagon shock transformed comfort of mine
highly reccomendthem
Nice to read somthing about this unknown bike.
UTC
andy from oxford said :-
just got my slr 1 mounth ago its a black s reg with 18000k love it so torquee have owned xts in the past but rate this downside im a big chap so i find the seat hard over 30k and fuel consumpion poor if used on long runs at eney speed
UTC
phylo_roadking said :-
I came to mine in late 1998 after having owned a 1st model Pegaso for some time, and a KLR600 before that...so initially was slightly disappointed by the "pegged" top speed of the SLR...which made me kinda grateful that my local Honda dealer had had a healthy discount on it.
Over the next two years of commuting I put 18,000 miles on it before laying it up for the next 8 years!

The first thing I did was put road types on it - it'll run ANY quality of road rubber, you don't need to go to excessive amounts of money for results. This allows you to really abuse the bike to the limits of adhesion woithput loosing control...AND to make the best use of the brakes.

On the matter of brake - The front master cylinder needs upgraded. The standard one doesn't seem to pump enough fluid, and either the piston or its channel wears very quickly...not to the point of leaking, but to the point of not travelling straight and "hanging up" a little. I upgraded mine with a GT550 master, and it works perfectly with a great gain in power - but without the wooden feel of an outsized and unsuitable piston bore. The back brake however is very weak, and from new for 15,000 miles had tendancy for the "inner" pad to drag on the disc, not to the point of overheating and damaging anything, just premature wear. That eventually settled down - but it still doesn't work great.

From new mine came with a 15-tooth front sprocket - as I found AFTER buying one for the conversion! Whatever you do, do NOT try to change the gearing, stay with the 15-43 combo; anything else makes the bike VERY nasty to use and has the immediate effect of loosing even more top end. There's no excess of power to trade off here. Chain wear IS high....BUT can be changed by one careful piece of maintenace; do NOT run the chain as you would a road bike, but with more slack. This allows you to "plonk" at lowish revs with no tranny snatch. Running any tighter means snatch, the whole plot is nasty to use unless the throttle's loaded, and high wear.

Keep the seat occasionally healthy with a rubbing in of BABY OIL LMAO....or else like "regular" Honda dualsports the cover will split along the two-colour heat-welded seam.

Junk the bars for higher and a tad wider - a generic pair of old British-style trail bars worked fine. Makes the bike more responsive, and it's lumpy enough that you don't really miss the bar-end weights.

The seat isn't really long enough for two...I dealt with this by removing the rack, and replacing with a trailie-type "tool bag"...filled with foam LOL

Keep the side stand pivot lubed; for some reason it seems to sieze very easily.

Yes, it has a tendancy to empty the tank quickly - but only if the bike is horsed on. Backroad use stretches mileage FAR more than a gentle hand on a road bike will do!

One problem to watch for; the "enrichener plunger" that passes for a choke can sieze closed or on...as it runs in an unlined drilling in the carb body and will fur up.

I recently revived mine and out it back on the road, and despite having owned - and couriered on - some amazing bikes in the interval I'm constantly suprised by the SLR's handing on road tyres.

UTC
Guy said :-
All good relevant stuff here. I ended up with a hagon shock, works fine over the speed bumps and the bike is still 'interesting' on the wiggles. Mine developed a lot of noise - ate its piston, one rebore and voila, like new! Now does anyone know where a low cost cam with a bit more oomph can be sourced?
UTC
Joe said :-
28/08/08
Well I've had my SLR650 for about 2 weeks now, and what an amazing experience! I bought it for £1200, an S reg '99 with 12k on the clock that had been laid up for the past 2-3 years. It's in brilliant condition and goes like a bat out of hell!
Finding other riders with this bike is difficult, there's not many around, however parts aren't too difficult to find out about. First thing I want to fit is a windshield on this as I just think it'd make it a bit easier to ride in high winds. Otherwise it's very quick, not a high top speed but enough to get you into trouble with the law, and if you're not careful it'll send you flying into your top box - velcro needed!
I'm also on an A2 licence, however I've found specifications that state this bike is 34bhp and since it's 9 years old I'd imagine if it was dyno'd now it'd come in less than 33bhp - bonus!

Sheffield, UK
UTC
mp said :-
Hi,
Greetings for all SLR/FX650 owners:).
I have just bought '99 FX 650 and I am looking for services manual (I have one, but in German;(- do you know, where it would be possible to find such manual in pdf or sth
Thx in advance
Regard
mpilzner@poczta.onet.pl
UTC
Rob said :-
Thanks for this, you lot have all convinced me to go and hae a look at the SLR on the local dealers forecourt! I'm on a UK 33bhp restricted licence, so are there any official specifications that say the bike makes this power, or do i have to get it restricted :-( ?
Thanks
UTC
Joe said :-
Just to add, these is a website I frequent that has a few SLR owners if anyone wants to plod along and share experiences, the more the merrier and all that! http://www.xrv.org.uk/forums/index.php

There's a section in there for Dominator/FMX owners, very similar to SLR's...

I haven't come across any manuals for this bike yet nor do I think it'd need restricting for the 33bhp licence.

Sheffield, UK


UTC
Smut said :-
I've recently aquired an "s" reg. SLR, and although I was'nt looking for one I can only agree after a days riding that it is a lot of fun.It isnt immaculate but presentable, and not too clean that offroading occasionally is an option. It makes a nice change from my usual XJ 650 and gsxr 750. I can only describe it as a 125 with about 3 times the power. It is indeed incredibly light to what I am used to, I can even get it into my Transit van on my own if I have to. It's a bit cramped for my 6'3 frame and the seat is a bit hard and narrow but I can recommend it for filtering through traffic, with more than enough power in the engine and brakes to get you out of trouble. I cant really comment on the handling as mine is badly in need of tyres although it did'nt give me any scary moments. I am torn only by wether to fit it with trail tyres or sticky road rubber.
UTC
brad said :-
hi can any one tell me if i remove baffles do i need to do anything else ive had a slr 650 for about a year and it graet fun i just want it to be a bit noisier
UTC
IAN said :-
HI MATE,JUST LIKE YOU I GOT AN SLR650,NOT THAT I WANTED ONE, OR HAD EVEN HERD OF THEM.
I NEEDED SOMETHING TO GET ME TO WORK AND BACK.(I HAVE A 600 BANDIT,AND ZX750R TO GOOD FOR THE WET).
WHEN I FIRST GOT ON IT I WAS NOT TO SHORE,BUT LIKE YOU SAY ,NO MATER WHAT I DID TO IT IT KEEPT GOING AND GOING,AND I TOOK IT OFF ROAD TODAY, AND IT HELD ITS OWN UP THE STEEP MUD HILLS,
THE ONLY THING I HAVE DONE TO IT IS HIGHER THE SUPENSION AS THE RIDEING PORSTION WAS DOING MY BACK IN,AND NOW IT IS SPOT ON.
I CALL IT MY HUNKOFJUNK AS I HAVE TWO GOOD BIKES.
BUT I MUST SAY WHAT A BIKE IF YOU WANT A WORK HORSE,AND WHAT FUN,MINE HAS ONLY DONE 17,400 MILES ON A 97 WITH FULL HISTORY I WILL BE SORRY TO SEE IT GO AS I THINK I WILL HAVE TO SELL HIR AS I NEED A PROPER TRAILS BIKE, AS WERE I WAS TODAY WAS PROPER HARD AND I DONT WANT TO WRECK THE BIKE AS IT HAS NEVER BEEN OFF ROAD TILL TODAY,AND I FELT BAD TAKEIN IT OFF ROAD.STILL MIGHT KEEP IT AS DONT KNOW IF I COULD SELL IT AS IT HAS NEVER LET ME DOWN,MIGHT JUST HAVE TO GET A CHEAP BIT OF CRAP FOR THE TRACK.
ANYWAY MATE JUST HAD TO SAY WHAT A GOOD BIKE IT WAS AND I WOULD RECORMEND IT TO ANYONE
PS SORRY ABOUT SPELLING(I AM DISLECSICK AS YOU CAN SEE)

UTC
jem said :-
great article I like em to....
UTC
woodlice1 said :-
what a crackin insight into a real owners view of the slr . thanks very much, i think i will try one for myself . cheers !
UTC
Dave said :-
Firstly,dave parkes: i'd love to hear a bit more about the exhaust mod you have done.
Come tell me more about it on http://www.xrv.org.uk/forums/index.php (goto the dominator/fmx board.

I have the workshop manual for this bike in pdf form if anyone needs it.Come into the above forum and start a thread saying FAO truxx and i'll send you the link to the manual.Again i'd love to hear more about this exhaust mod....many thanks.dave
UTC
STEVE WILSON. said :-
Hi Just read your great artical. Just aquired one of these. I noticed the bolts on the cover over the starter motor gears were loose and when I tightened them up the starter locked up. When I loosened the bolts it worked. Any ideas. Cheers.
UTC
Bram Hartman said :-
Dave, can you send me a link for Manual pdf of Honda SLR? FAO truxx
UTC
Ray said :-
Hi
I have a 99 vigor with 10000 miles on the clock
Just getting back on the road for the spring and
i would like to replace the front sprocket to a 15
tooth one after reading your comments what mod is needed please
Also the tyres need replacing at he moment,its fitted with bridgestone trailwings and i would like to fit more road base tyres could you recommend any
regards
ray
UTC
dean said :-
hi have you any idea how mich fork oil i need to put in when changing fork seals cheers
UTC
john said :-
Great review. Here's my little tip-
Fit a K&N filter to get a bit more oomph,
PART NUMBER HA-6505
UTC
Joe said :-
Great reading as i am concidering the purchase a SLR650,once i can get rid of my 2007 125 twist and go transport after recovering from the old heart problem, i can now go back to a better size bike. Ive had 2 x XT600's 1x XT660Ten,and a 1992 Transalp followed by a 2000 Africa twin which was a great all round touring bike altough all have been a tad tall for my 5ft6 and ducks legs,
I like the less plastic than the Dommi and i prosume the offroad side would be simular to the other bikes ive had but with lower seat hight.
UTC
Pheta said :-
Does any one can send me a user/service manual for Honda slr? I have only in german/spain:(
mail: michalcik.p@tiscali.cz
UTC
Tom McGirl said :-
Excellent site, thanks for the effort to make it, I got a Vigor 650 02 plate 2 years ago, still waiting for the affordability to get my licence. The bike is very clean, all works, scott oiler included, only problem I've not been able to start it for the last 5 months. Looking around sites for possible clues. Cheers
UTC
Klas said :-
Very entertaining read!
I am about to get one myself, seems like a nice little allrounder!
Cheers!/Klas, Stockholm
UTC
paul said :-
Thanks for a nice no crap review.I have just bought a 98 model in black,guna try and tart it up abit,not many if any after market bits though.Any one fitted an mx front fender,info please.My other bike is a 95 650 twin Laverda ,so qurkey ime familiar with.The fact the slr isnt popular with the mainstream gives it more appeal.Had bikes all my life Had a brand new bsa bantom 175 in 1970.still rember the reg SAW65H.Ask me what happend yeasterday ime knackerd.fzr exup 1000 was one of the beter bikes i had. Late 70s i had a kh500,yep and surrived.the slr looks like a bike i will keep,grandad,bad back ect that sort of thing.Had a KLR 650 in the 90s,found it a bit cumbersom at low speeds and the frame rusted faster than a metro.Can you get a larger tank for the slr if so is their any tweaking? Thanks again for a nice site.Cheers Paul B.
UTC
Geo said :-
My wife does have an Honda Vigor (same as yours + some extras), I do have an Honda VFR and guess what?

The VFR is parked and I ride the Vigor every time I can as it is lots of fun.

Cheers
UTC
flexo said :-
I'm thinking of buying an SLR650 off a mate as a second bike. I've been out on the pillion and it's not bad..
I'm getting too old for sporty bollock rockets,had my days of fun & speed being a despatch rider for 9 yrs in London during the 80s so my Deauville(BRILLIANT) & the SLR will keep me happy..
UTC
John said :-
Cheers, thats made up my mind. Off to the bank...
UTC
Stevo Porto said :-
Hi,Can you tell me the tyre pressures you run as I cant find them anywhere? Just bought an SLR & found your blog intresting & informative.
Thanks Stevo
UTC
Ferg said :-
I just got an SLR 650 with 9000 on the clock, a 1998. Only £1300 - bargain, I would say! Very clean. What I'm after is a screen - anyone know what type of screen will do? Vigor, Domi, or what? Or just put up with the wind?
Great bike - keeps you warm when it's cold too.
UTC
PAUL.H said :-
JUST BOUGHT ONE AS A RETURNING BIKER AFTER20 YEARS.LOVE THE LOOKS AND ALSO THE SOUND THE BIKE MAKES.MINES A 97,BRAKES ARE POOR AND ALSO BIKE IS VERY JUDDERY AT LOW REVS NOT SURE IF THIS IS A TRAIT OF THIS PARTICULAR BIKE ORNOT.NEED TO BE DOING 60MPH IN TOP FOR IT TO PULL SMOOTHLY WHEN THROTTLE IS OPENED ANY LESS AND IT SEEMS TO JUDDER AND FEELS LIKE ITS A MISSFIRE ,DOES IT IN ALL THE GEARS JUST MORE NOTICEABLE IN THE HIGHER GEARS.TOOK THE TIMING PLUG OUT TO CHECK TIMING AND OIL COME FLYING OUT SO PUT PLUG BACK IN.THINK I HAVE A BIT OF WORK IN FRONT OF ME TO SORT OUT THESE PROBLEMS.I ENJOYED READING ALL YOUR COMMENTS AND I WILL POST SOME MORE LATER ON.THANKS
UTC
Pavel said :-
Please, send me somebody details, how to use front sprocket 15 tooth - how to adjust (grind of) the front metal guide for chain.
Regards from Czech Pilzen.
cz.paja.cz@seznam dot cz
UTC
steve clarke said :-
ive just bought one , the same as you "right price,place and time".
sounds as though i got the right bike.
good reading this review..regards steve..
UTC
Dave L. said :-
Hi,
Just got one of these beasts and still getting used to it. Can anyone give me advice on draining the oil (totally) and refill. This thing has been standing a good while and I want to look after it. Great site by the way.
UTC
steve clarke said :-
ANY UPDATES? this was a really good read.
UTC
Joel said :-
Hi guys, your reviews have been a great help when i was looking to get a vigor. Had it for bout 3 months now, cracking bike, just havent got wheelies out of 1st yet lol. Anyway through reading, i see i have a problems others have before me. the front break its draggin and me break lights is always is pressed on by the wind lol. soooo.....the break cylinder from the gt550? which one? also what can be done to make sure the brake leaver returns onto its switch? any help would be great :)
UTC
mark said :-
In the middle of a rebore at the min on my FX650 - think i neglecked the oil level. Obvious piston slap noise. obvious scrapes and scratches on the bore and piston. the rebore of +.5mm has been done. just need to get my new piston and refit it.
had the rear shock collapse at 18k now 19.5k. chain and sprocket lasted 15k but it was well wore. front tyre lasted 17k rear about 12k but they were done(bald).
Love the bike - use it to commute - also have a gsxr600 and cb500 but its the fx i use every day. dont know why - its slow - its agricultural - brakes are crap - it doesnt handle very well - but i do love the low down torque and the bike in general.
UTC
Milo said :-
Hi,I'm thinking about a 15 front sprocket can you please let me know what did you do to make it fit.
Cheers
Milo
UTC
Milo said :-
Sorry Ren forgot to leave you my email,
milo.medawar@btinternet.com
Cheers mate
Milo
UTC
Peter Moore said :-
I have recently bought an SLR which represents a bit of departure from the R series BMW that I previously rode. However, I'm heading in a new direction. I have found the SLR a brilliant wee bike - she's not a speed machine, but that's not what I wanted. Did the usual work (fluid / filter changes...added gaiters to the front forks / changed the fork seals etc), I also put a Metzeler Endruo 3 rear tyre on her, and the grip is awesome. I have also found on this tyre the bike really communicates to you through your back side - you know every detail of the road.

The previous owner had put on a Hagon shock and it looks in good nick, but some green laning might soon put pay to that!
UTC
Ren - Admin said :-
Hi Milo

The front sprocket, if memory serves me well...is normally 14 tooth. When I got the 15 tooth I could not get it "in" with the chain on. This is because there is a curved metal plate, shaped like a crescent with 2 tangs that is bolted in place with the same bolts that hold the sprocket cover on. I did consider not re-installing this plate until I realised what it is for. The plate runs around the outside of the sprocket and chain and it is there to PROTECT THE ENGINE! If the chain comes off, runs loose, snaps or tries to jump the sprocket teeth the piece of curved steel stops the chain ramming into the soft metal of the motor. I also imagine it helps keep the chain in place as it passes over the sprocket.

So DON'T omit this piece of steel. However it is curved to fit over the 14 tooth sprocket. Fortunately it's big enough to take a bit of grinding. From 14 to 15 tooth only makes a small difference in the radius. I simply took the protective plate to the grinder and removed JUST enough metal to get it to fit. I deliberately made it fiddly to fit, safe in the knowledge that the closer it runs to the sprocket and chain the stronger and more effective it will remain.

Cheers, Ren.
UTC
Giles said :-
Nice review,
it helped me choose an SLR about 8 months ago. i love it and being only 5'3 (and a Half) its nice for a bike like this to have a (relativly) low seat
I have just put a Conti escape tyre on the back th replace the rather smooth trailwing (went smooth rather fast, may have been old or my right hand) the conti escape feels great on and off road it only runs out of grip up steep hills with grass/soil.
Enjoy your SLR/fx etc....
UTC
Mike said :-
I have a black P reg one with 26000 miles on it I use it as a commuter to work, I've owned many bikes and it's a joy... Though I fear there may be a crack in the oil bearing frame, the bash plate has fractured down one side and there's some gundgy oil on the plate... Needs a bit of investigation, I havent hit anything... May be vibes...

Either way far nicer than a Tenere the only big traily that was better was an xt 550 but that used to suffer with clutch problems in stop start traffic..

Rgds
UTC
Brian said :-
12/08/2011

Just bought a '99 green SLR and have to say that it is a lot more fun than my last bike which was a BMW K100RS.

The review on this site is well put together and informative, thank you.

If anyone still need a workshop manual then there is a pdf one available here.. http://www.zshare.net/download/541762662254b8b0/


UTC
Richard said :-
Got a 97 SLR - last 10 years & only 11k miles - 50/50 off-road. Good bike though not as reliable or well built as previous XT550 - never replaced a bearing on that in 15 years. Had lots of rear wheel bearing problems. Now have a severe vibration gets unrideable at 40-50mph. Just taken chain off and run it in 5th and think it's due to a nasty metallic knock in the gearbox behind the front sprocket - there's a bit of play in and out on the shaft but it spins fine. As it also needs rear shock, fork seals and chain it might have to go - pity really - don't know what I'd replace it with.
UTC
brian said :-
hi-i bought 1 of these 3 years ago and i've loved it and hated it ever since...as a road bike for every day stuff it is top class-but i find that any distance over 100 miles it becomes a right pain for me,off road is a different story-really good,so luv/hate for me..i bought mine without having even heard of them but have since found a cult following around them and i like that in a bike,just wondered if anybody knows of a generic shocker though,y'know-so i can pick up an ebay special on the cheap,elshafto@live.co.uk any advice much appreciated and long live slr650's,,great site by the way and very informative,thanks bri
UTC
Bames Jond said :-
The perfect stelth bike-go places others can't and not be noticed.Honest-even at a bike meet you're invisable.That in my book makes it special.Courier relaible with a fun tug too.
UTC
Walshy said :-
Great review and you've put my mind at rest. Just bought a 30,000 miler that has had new shocke,chain.sprockets fitted so should be ok. I'm looking forward to some light green-laning with my camera and using it for commuting. I'll give some feedback when I've had it a while
UTC
Guy said :-
Mine died at 47K, loss of top end lube. Love her so much going for a fix, I think an o ring failed between side casing and oil pump when I replaced the clutch plates - renew if you ever do this! Hagon shock has now done 30k and needs a rebuild, oil leak - wish it dripped on the cam! Parts for rebuild 120 euro - there some good continental web sites out there.
UTC
Tim said :-
Thank you all for commenting here, Ive been thinking of the SLR FMX for a while, want one with low miles and careful owner in UK, may be asking too much given these are getting on a bit. So all your comments have been very useful to read. I guess they eat chains due to the engine torque and the suspension travel. I also have a ZR7 and found that too low geared, so changed to a one tooth bigger front sprocket and it helped economy and commute, with a bit of grinding to fit as well, so if your thinking of this mod it can provide good results. If youre ever on the A38 in Devon, UK, and see a dayglo jacket on a ZR7 you'll know I still havent taken the plunge. Happy riding to all. June 2012.
UTC
Dr D said :-
Thinking of getting a T reg one for winter and light trailing.
Has anyone tried fitting 650 Dominator parts eg this exhaust to the Vigor: http://www.gpr-motorcycle-exhausts.co.uk/3042/Honda-Dominator-Stainless-Tri-oval.html
UTC
Dr D said :-
Brilliant site for parts. Lings: http://www.lingshondaparts.com/honda_motorcycle_parts_block_selection_M30.php?mod_01=2909
UTC
DR D said :-
Manual at: http://ebookbrowse.com/gdoc.php?id=377780265&url=229e52c0d6de40aa33db9848c906f8d6
UTC
a-gally said :-
I just bought a nice SLR but I am having a bit of trouble with it cutting out from time to time, carbs have been cleaned and new plug fitted since I am new to this machine and its quirks I just wonder has anyone out there experienced anything like it and has a magical fix ????????
UTC
steve Hill said :-
Good rite up.Im looking for one of these and and your long distance commentary has not put me off,in fact has made me more determined to get one.Thanks for that .Steve Northants.
UTC
dave said :-
I've just won one on ebay. Black the same as yours with 25k on the clock. Fetch it wednesday. Got it to chuck on the back of my campervan. Hopefully enjoy it as much has what you have yours.
UTC
brbland40 said :-
Great review and subsequent comments, thanks.
UTC
Stephen said :-
I have the same bike and love it
Only the rear shock has gone
Not impressed with the price
UTC
TC said :-
Nice one
UTC
Mac Skelton said :-
Thanks for your candid report. I was thinking of doing a deal with a friend for an SLR but was a bit wary after reading MCN's review. I have a Yammy fzs 600 fazer, which is a great bike, but I find it too revvy, He wants this. I want a bike that is economical to run and fits my 6foot 3inch frame. Seems the SLR would be a great work bike and general hack. Once again thanks for a more level headed genuine review rather than MCN's sports bike/speed based bias. Cheers Mac.
UTC
Tony said :-
Hi Ren, Like many of your readers/contributors, I was in the right place at the right time and snapped up a 7,000 mile - 2001 fastidiously clean example of an FX650 Vigor in late 2011. It has now done just....10,000 miles. what a great machine, couldn't agree more with everybody. I am 29" inside leg, but soon got around that..! The bike is now "made to easure". The story....Rear shock removed and new fork-end made (25mm shorter).This dropped the rear allowin me to get both feet flat on the floor. Good, but not that good. This had the effect of lengthening the trail and lessening the original steering angle, making it ponderous and dangerously slow, in and out of bends. Resolved this part of problem lowering front of bike, by same amount as rear, by raising fork legs, in yokes, (25mm). Original fork oil, ( a decade old) discarded and replaced with ATF/Power stg oil, to a level I am happy with, and re-fitted horns and their mounting bracket to the UPPER face of the bottom yoke.This allows a little more clearance to keep the top of front mudguard away from horns under headlight. What a difference...!!!! I just can't keep my best mate off it..!! 60 mpg all day, every day. 159 miles to reserve, and then....213 to empty..!! I have an auxiliary tank that will safely take me to a total of 240 miles. Great machine, out of my four bikes, this is the weapon of choice..!
UTC
steve smith said :-
hi all please help i in a ponder i have just bought a yamaha xj 600 division 93 with 19000 on clock full service history and in very good condition i got as a second bike for winter i payed 650 for but i was looking for a trailie style bike but couldn't find one at the time anyway i was in my locale bike shop today day and sods law what was sitting there looking very pretty yes a 97 slr with 9000 on the clock looking like its never seen a dirt road in its life or rain the guy is asking 1295 for it or if i part x the xj i can have for 625 and a good nagging of the mississ i love the xj for its reliability and its mpg about 60 to the gallon if im good but its just a standard road bike were as the slr is good for road and forest tracks wich there are a lot of round were i live in scotland plus i love the looks of the dam thing and the thump of it but my problem is how reliable are they and could it handle the odd 300mile round trip to bolton and back without me being stranded by the road i'm not bothered about speed iv got a xjr13 for that if i had the cash i would buy it in a flash and have 3 bikes but i ain't so the little xj would have to go ): so what i'm asking is what would you do play safe and keep the xj or take the plunge and buy a bike that by the sounds of it can have a few gremlings sometimes help please before i loose me mind my email is stesmith32@yahoo.com cheers by the way i love the site and sorry if i went on a bit cheers 8/1/14
UTC
mabozzar said :-
Ive had neumerous dommies in the past and a Vigor,,, right now im runnin a 97 SLR, 7 k miles on it..bought it from a guy who inherited it an lay it in his garage under a carpet... now its running sweet wi 7k miles onit in fantastic cond, looks like new actually...and its had a new hagon put on there,,,why with such low miles i dont know but it rides hard on the back...front brake needs all 4 fingers,,as with two,, ye hit yer other two fingers an teh brake doesnt get the bite that it needs...I may fit a gt550 as i read above.. I did a 80 mile stunt yesterday..an i can assure you, if ye did any more theyd be calling ye Iron arse... in all honesty...30 mile on this seat is enough,,, its now 32 hours later since i got off the bike,,an me tail bone is still sore... i think il upgrade the seat... im 6`5" an it fits me ok...thinkin o ditchin the std bars fur Dommie ones..or a good set o renthals or street bars... currently runnin Michelin annakkees a know theres too many eee`s an kkkk`s in there but ye know whit a mean.. the chain I feel is slack an i can hear it clicky when riding,, an its pullin off the rear sprock,,so a thik it needs a new one...i did 94 mile an still not on reserve... fur me.. its fast enough fur a 55 year old..its not lightnening quick but good enough,,,bags o tork...as singles are all about tourque
UTC
mabozzar said :-
to me it handles absolutley fine fur a 650 traily... it handles great on the backroads.. in all honesty,,,when are ye gonna exceed 60mph in twisties.. an ye kin get all the fun o the fare wi 60mph even 45 ish an up... did a blast at 90 then back down... unless yer expecting it to handle wi a Rossi onboard... any half decent tyres will do..as the biek will lean an handle more than ye think. these engines are used in at least half a dozen different bikes..an they are well proven since 1987... exact same engine all thru the years,,ive owned 2 FMX an i must say they are a great bike 37 horse on tap... but the slr is just the same
UTC
mabozzar said :-
Steve,, I meant tae say,, ive had a few xjr12 an 13`s ave had a couple o xj600`s an seriously I love them both... id get shot o the xjr..35 tae the gallon..an keep yer xj6 wi 55 plus an capable to exceed a 100 nae bother.. an hae the wee slr fur fun... email me an maybe we could meet up...where ye fae.. am in Murrrrwwwill..Motherwell tae the English Delinquients....tichrich@blueyonder.co.uk if we`r intae bikin we are all delinquients...its great isnt it.....cheers oh an by the way..ive actually owned around 300 bikes...all insured an taxed... thats not 30,,its 300...ave had 17 Xt660`s 6 Klrs...around 10 dommies... 2 fmx... Dr 600, 3 xl 500r, 2 xr 500, 3 xl500`s 3 250`s 2 xl 185...3 125xl...2 100 xl`s ke 125 Kl 250 1 klr 250..2 xr 400`r...xlr250. 3ccm`s 2 pegaso`s one strada pegaso new one.. 4 armstrong 500. around 10 trials bikes..the best being a TLR250 an a Ducat scott 350 4t an many more..an a few road bikes threw in there an 5 Varaderos 100`s. am a bricky,,when am skint a sell an when am flush I buy...
UTC
mabozzar said :-
to me it handles absolutley fine fur a 650 traily... it handles great on the backroads.. in all honesty,,,when are ye gonna exceed 60mph in twisties.. an ye kin get all the fun o the fare wi 60mph even 45 ish an up... did a blast at 90 then back down... unless yer expecting it to handle wi a Rossi onboard... any half decent tyres will do..as the biek will lean an handle more than ye think. these engines are used in at least half a dozen different bikes..an they are well proven since 1987... exact same engine all thru the years,,ive owned 2 FMX an i must say they are a great bike 37 horse on tap... but the slr is just the same
UTC
Max said :-
This bike is powerful to travel above 150km in distance. The major setback is the monoshock not having a rear flap or shield to protect the dust & sand during a raining ride.The chain too wears out fast if not maintain & properly lubed!The tank is too small for long distance and it gets very hot from the exhaust & engine even after a short ride.My odometer reads 52530km.A reliable and responsive engine.
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Hi Max. Yeah, if I remember correctly I saw a mate's SLR 650 with a simple piece of inner tube cut and bolted at the bottom of the airbox. This hung down over the shock to protect it just as you say it needs.

Agree about the tank, mine would do around 100 miles before needing to refill. That's fine for most people but if you're planning on touring somewhere remote it's a concern. I don't know of anyone who made a bigger tank for it.

Any big single will eat chains. It's a characteristic of the engine. Four cylinder motors feed power through the transmission in a smooth constant manner, reducing strain. A single whacks all it's energy in one huge lump through the chain, this takes it's toll. But when it does this it's a whole heap of fun!
UTC
Mike said :-
Awesome bike... Mine is dead currently, but will be rebuilt as a cafe racer/ brat scrambler with a SV mono shock to lower it at the back to retro it... One of those bikes that never had any cred, and now I think they have enormous virtue.. Good performance, reliability and with the back cut and shut a normal cb tank in the front will be rather special... It always handled very well.. Upgrade the brake hoses ... Every time road conditions tried to kill me the SLR kept its wheels firmly stuck... Very impressed...
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Cheers Mike! Sounds like a cool project. I'd never have perceived an SLR 650 as a cafe race...maybe a brat scrambler. I do hope you'll let us see some piccies as you're doing the bike.
UTC
Paul said :-
Hello there.
Great story a bike. I own mine since 2002, model year 1998, 67.000 kms old.
Mostly street use, Corsica, lot of small roads around.
4 years ago got a strange noise in timing.
Found oil pump rotary oilseal worn, changed if (long job), and now all is clear.
Will be please to get pdf workshop manual.
Regards, Paul.

UTC
Bob said :-
I've got three FX650s and one SLR650 now. Love these bikes.
There are no designed in weaknesses in chassis or engine, there aren't many bikes that you can say that about.

Change the oil and filter every 1000 miles, pour in the amount specified in the manual and go for a ride, check the oil after the ride not before. As the engine racks up the miles more oil will seep into the sump when parked, then when you check the oil it looks like there's non in the tank.
I don't agree with Ren's policy of not draining the oil from the sump, there's a significant amount of oil in there and you want to change it. Just tighten the sump plug to hand tight and it'll be fine. If you think about it, if the bike lives for 60000 miles that's only 60 times the bolt will be in and out, that's not a lot. NEVER use a torque wrench on the sump plug, the torque values specified are for dry un-stretched threads and you will strip it.

Fit an oil temperature dipstick, you want to see 100 - 105 degrees in normal use. Gentle bimbling on country roads will bring that down to 95 degrees.

The thing to watch on these is the rising rate linkage, no-one ever strips and greases it and the bolts that hold the knuckle to the swingarm and the link to the frame seize into the bearing sleeves. It is possible to carefully cut through the bolt and bearing sleeve in the swingarm, if you push the knuckle over to one side. For the bolt in the frame it's necessary to grind it flush at and drill into the bolt from both sides. You can flare the frame tabs a little and pry the link out. The bolts and bearing sleeves are under a tenner each so it's a cheap fix. I usually find the bearings themselves are OK, it's just the bolts the seize.

Exhaust nuts can seize, but that's true of any bike, oxy-acetylene will usually get them off.

The bolts securing the heatshields on the FX are buggers for seizing, if you're planning on keeping the bike get them out and apply copious copper grease.

Make sure you grease the headstock bearings every year, the hot oil in the frame cooks the grease off them and they can turn notchy.
Grease the speedometer drive gear every couple of thousand miles, it is a plastic ring and no longer available as a spare.
Change the fork oil regularly, these are long travel forks and they appreciate fresh oil. If you never go off road 15W will improve the handling but if you do trail ride then stick with 10W. Fit a set of gaiters whilst you have the forks out.

The 15T front sprocket mod is essential, as is removal of the baffle tubes from the silencers. Combined with a 175 main jet and removal of the rubber snorkel from the airbox intake my FX650 will now do a GPS verified 101MPH on the flat with a tucked-in rider. Also as a result of the tuning, under conservative riding my FX will return 60-65 MPG, as opposed to 50-55 MPG in standard trim.

Apply copious amounts of ACF-50 to the wheel rims around each spoke nipple. Use it on the inside too when you take the tyre off to fit a new one. The alloy rim and steel nipples can set up galvanic corrosion when there's road salt around.
The bike is fine for use in winter, but after each ride spray it down with a hose pipe, concentrating on the brake calipers and up under the rear end (don't forget that the mudguard on these bikes is on top of the frame rails). Then follow that with a spray over with WD40. At the end of winter wipe all the accumulated grime off and it'll come up lovely.

Fit a scottoiler and run it at high output, I only need to adjust the chain on my FX once in 1000 miles, it's lasted 12,000 miles so far and I ride off-road frequently. The 15T sprocket mod helps prolong chain life, as does not running the bike in too high a gear for the road speed. I cycle to work and there's a bloke comes past me on an NX650, he must be in 5th gear at 30MPH because the loudest noise coming from his bike is the chain alternatively slapping the top and bottom side of the swingarm!

These bikes like a clean air filter - they're not expensive so just change it regularly.
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Blimey Bob, your thorough! While I agree it's best to change the oil via the sump nut as well as the frame nut I think an oil change every 1,000 miles is excessive?

I never had any head bearings issues although I understand what you say about the hear in the frame taking the grease out.

What mileages do you have on your various machines?
UTC
Bob said :-
2003 FX650 - 14000 miles
2002 FX650 - 21000 miles
2000 FX650 - 15500 miles
1998 SLR650 - 27000 miles

I've always changed the oil on Japanese bikes every 1000 miles, I get a bit obsessive.
It helps that I buy my oil in bulk from a local manufacturer, 20L of 10W40 JASO MA2 Semi-Synth is £32 :o)
I figure oil is cheap and camshafts aren't!
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Pah! Your motorcycles are mere juniors. I sold my SLR 650 with 45,000 miles on the clock and it was running just fine. The lad I sold it to had it a couple of years and sold it for a profit at about 52,000. The motors seem well made and being detuned I guess they're a little less stressed too.

That's a good price you're getting on the oil. I guess it's never what you know but who you know.
UTC
Bob said :-
I hope the engines will last for 52000 miles and more. I'm working on the theory of having enough bikes and spares to keep me going for more than 20 years (averaging 7500 miles per year).
The only thing that seems to kill them is poor oil level control by the owner. The SLR engine is on the bench at the moment, having suffered a scuffed cam lobe and follower. I've only just bought the bike so it's one of the previous owner's fault. Now I'm deciding whether to buy it a new camshaft....
UTC
Henrik said :-
Never saw this one before, I am sure its not been on the market here in DK, rock-solid engine, and light off-road, seems we are at the same corner as the KLE500 that I am dreaming about.

The idea about self-supply with spares and stuck for many years appeal to me also, getting "deep" into just one, or a few, very well selected bikes,..

These bikes from the Japanese "gold-age" will last almost forever, with just a few vital parts needed along the road
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
I understand what you mean Bob. I currently own Honda's CBF125 but it's getting old now at 39,000 miles. I'm asking myself do I stick with it as I know the bike inside out and I have a good collection of spares already. Or do I try something new?

The best thing about the CBF is that it has been a BIG seller and as such there are many spares, aftermarket parts and cheap used examples. That said the remarkably cheap and available spares for the Chinese bikes is also appealing.

My biggest concern about sticking to one model is boredom. My 125 is a great bike but after so many miles maybe I'm ready to try something else.

Henrik, while the SLR650 goes off road quite happily it is not really a bona-fide off roader. It's more super-motard...before super-motards really took off. I found it to be a good comprise between road and off road.
UTC
Bob said :-
Henrik, the SLR / Vigor is pretty capable off road. Ren is correct in that if you try to keep up with a KLX250 you'll struggle, but compared to a V-Strom or any of these ludicrous "adventure" bikes that seem so popular you'll be flying.
I prefer the SLR/FX to the KLE because of the great fat gobs of torque that the RFVC engine delivers at remarkably low RPM. I've just ridden into town on my FX and didn't go over 4000 RPM anywhere.
Ren, yes boredom is a problem. I keep changing bikes but I keep coming back to the FX650, this is the 4th time I've had an FX650 so this time I'm trying to learn from my mistakes and stick with it. There's only one new bike I'd consider buying, the XT660R, but that would involve me getting back into fuel injection and water cooling and all that devilry.
I've decided that what I'll do next time I get bored is to buy something else as well, hammer round on it for a bit, then sell it and return to my FX650.
The problem is that I like the bike so much that I worry about putting miles on it!
UTC
Henrik said :-
KLX is nice, something I might consider also for "out in the hills", but I guess WR250 has an edge in that department, and has to be considered also, I live in both SE and DK and is in the procces trying to get the nessesary papers allowing me SE-registrated bike's, that would allow me "the double" for the same money for tax reasons, (but other downsides), to get on the tracks again quickly I just bought the Hyosung XRX 125, for the time being.

I had a DRZ-400 SM that I rebuilded to endure with Excell whells, so I have a little experience with one-cylinders bigger than just 125 ccm ;-) While the DRZ was the bike I ever loved most, and still miss, I am also aware that the weight was to high, and it was to clumsy on the mountain-tracks, I am next time looking for something much lighter, but still strong, but not SO strong that I have have to change oil and parts every few hours (like KTM).

I fully agree that injection is devilry, becourse it "puts my out of control", and short of tools, with the only purpose of of milking me flat for a rediculess high amount of money when one day, likely soon, I will need to bye a new one, according to the planned obsolescence choosen by factory. (so it is with most industrial designs, things could easely be made to last, but don't), not only the injector, but also the ECU, and pump, is a problem
due to "dependency and overpricing", and obviously the added complexity too

Yes KLE likely need more RPM to deliver than SLR, the force is put over a wider span so to say, I am aware, its a bit more street'ish and civilized.

Water I look upon as an advantage that will eventually make the engine last longer, and keeping a more constant temperature, no probs with water on DRZ

Downside on water is more weight I guess, and that of course is problem, but not so much on my KLE project that is meant to be 75 pct a road bike. Some more parts to maintain also, but nothing that should be a big problem.

I shall try not to harp on to much about the KLE :-) but just mention that its also a modification project, slimming down, moderately, like the example on this foto, just the exhausts will be reduced also,..


UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Your KLR is looking sweet Henrik. I think you are greedy though! 2 houses in 2 countries... Several motorcycles for different purposes... I think you have too much money and too much fun!

You should come to England and be poor and miserable just like me. I am at my best when I am moaning and complaining.

Can I come and live there with you? I don't take up much room and I am house trained.
UTC
Henrik said :-
Hi ,.. I wonder where that ekstra house is that I have yet to see., in Cph we live in a little flat, hehe ;-) also the grass is not that much greener here, to your comfort here ir a fresh shot what I am doing right now, and most time, if not working on the house that is, we can cry together, sniff-sniff,.. (kle not klr)


UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Don't spoil my delusions Henrik! I thought you were living the dream Scandinavian lifestyle not mopping floors in a pokey flat. Gutted.
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Hi Ren,

I stumbled across this by using Google to research the SLR650 I've just committed myself to. No stranger to the model really as I had a Dominator for 3 years about 10 years ago but more recently had a 955i Tiger then a V-Strom 650 (which I note you have a test on as well which I must read). The Wee was a lovely bike but I'm getting too old & decrepit to get it in & out of the garage so went looking for something a bit more manageable.

I originally tried a Mash but the potential depreciation cliff combined with possibly dodgy build quality put me off. Very nice looking bike though, and it set me off on the RFVC track. First thought about XBRs but nice ones are pricey so ended up with a very tidy SLR for well under £1,000 which is unlikely to lose much of that value. Pic below (if it works).

Anyway, just wanted to pop in and say what an excellent site you have here and I look forward to exploring it further.

SLR650
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Hi Ian. A GRAND! Blimey I'da ripped his hands off at that price, looks like you got yaself a sweet machine if the pic is anything to go by. What's the mileage and the age? I'm starting to think I need another one at that price.
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Yes, it's well under the usual asking price of £1200 - £1600(although who knows whether they actually go at those prices). Asking price was £895 which I was very happy to pay without haggling - unlike the people who've been kicking the tyres on my Suzuki then making insulting offers (or just disappearing).....

It's an S reg 1999 with only 14,000 or so on the clock, runs very sweetly with no knocks / rattles and the wheel rims aren't rotten as so many are.

I lucked onto it with a google search as it was on Allan Hitchcock's Enfield forum, not actually advertised as such, and I was first to reply. Haven't picked it up yet as I'm waiting for the Wee to be collected later today but looking forward to riding it the 30 miles or so home next week.
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Nice cheap one here: but a long way north!


www.gumtree.com/p/honda-motorbikes/honda-slr650-relisted/1130038603 ...
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Hi Ian. If I had the space I'd have that. Mind you if I had the space I'd have lots and lots of bikes.

14000 miles is nowt. Sold mine with 44k on the clock and it was running just fine. Don't understand what you mean about rotten wheels though, if memory serves don't they have ally rims?

They're not all that fast but the grunt is fabulous. Enjoy the ride and lube the chain - a lot.
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Somebody's Transalp wheel:

I understand this happens to DID rims but have no experience myself.



rotten wheel
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Yikes! That's some bad corrosion. I don't recall any issues like that on mine bit then mine was so dirty I wouldn't have noticed.

Someone once cleaned a bit of mine at the local biker spot - I almost didn't recognize my own bike.
UTC
darren said :-
hi i have a slr650 1997 that is difficult to start when hot ? does anyone have any ideas please >
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Start out by checking or replacing the spark plug make sure it's the right one. Also have a look at the carb. Might be slightly rich?

There's tons of stuff online too.
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
The XRV forums (http://www.xrv.org.uk/forums/forum.php) have some knowledgeable people as does the thumper forum (http://www.thumperclub.com/smf/index.php).

I've discovered that getting to the mixture adjusting screw is nearly as hard as it was on my Dominator - mine is slightly weak at the bottom end. I'm going to get one of these: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/111215204887?_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT which is supposed to be only for Harleys but should fit the SLR. Will make adjustment much easier.



Adjusting screw
UTC
darren said :-
Many thanks for your advice and links etc. will make life much easier etc.
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
I've now found the real reason for the stumble thanks to Bobn on the XRV forum I linked to. He says:

"If you look at the pulley that the throttle cables wrap round you'll see that there is a cam profile running around the periphery. This acts on a little lever with a nylon bearing that runs on the cam.
When the throttle is opened the action of the cam lifts the lever and this in turn rotates a shaft set into the carb body. The shaft acts on a fork inside the carb body which lifts the whole slide assembly of it's boss. If the lifter shaft is seized, it will be seized in the "up" position which means that the carb slide will not be seated on its boss when the throttle butterfly starts to open. This can cause the misfire."

Lo and behold when I looked at mine it was indeed seized. I was initially confused by the 2 levers and jury-rigged the spring you see in this picturebut that didn't solve the problem. Worth a look as that device lifts the slide thus upsetting the mixture at idle / starting.




UTC
Ian Soady said :-
ps forgot to mention that the part that actually operates the lifter is that little forked bit just behind the cable.
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
ps again it should be resting on the lever which has the nylon roller rather than up against the stop which is its upper limit ie the position for around 1/4 to WOT.


ps Ren it would be nice to have an edit function........
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Hi Ian. Excellent technical info! I've never delved into the carbs on the SLR so I don't know a thing about them.

Re the editing. The problem with editing is that you'd need a username and password. THAT creates complex data protection issues, security issues, hacking issues and so on. Much as I understand the desire I don't have the time or the necessary knowledge to be 100% certain that a user's important details don't end up in the wrong hands - as per what has happened to several large, professional and technologically superior sites.

I don't want that level of responsibility. Not unless the website starts making me £100,000 per year rather than £100 per year...
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
"I don't want that level of responsibility. Not unless the website starts making me £100,000 per year rather than £100 per year... "

You make money out of it? There was me thinking it was a labour of love......

Seriously I do understand and it's not really a problem. Keep it going.
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
The Google adverts make me about £10 a month. Otherwise it is very much a labour of love Ian.
UTC
Bob (Bobn) said :-
Hello Ian, glad that lifter info fixed your problems. It's quite common on bikes that have been left standing. I wonder how many people have messed about with pilot screws, jets and even drilling the carb slide to try and fix their pick up stumble?
Another snippet for you, it was on an SLR that I discovered the dreaded CV carb static air pressure reference issue. I was riding along a windy coast road on the Llyn peninsula and the bike suddenly started to stumble when the wind gusted. I pulled up and found that the pipe that connects to the carb on the left hand side, near the the TPS had come off. I'd found this pipe previously and figured that it was a breather because it came off the carb and then split into two pipes, one tucks down behind the engine and the other goes up under the seat. Neither end connects to anything, they just hang about. As I discovered that day the purpose of the pipes is to give a static pressure reference for the carb diaphragm. As we know the diaphragm lifts in response to the vacuum created by the engine, but in order to lift the other side of the diaphragm has to be at a higher pressure, specifically atmospheric pressure and that atmospheric pressure is supplied by the aforementioned pipe. When the pipe fell off the carb and the wind blew strongly across the stub in the carb body, Bernoulli's effect comes into play and the effective pressure at that point will be lower than atmospheric pressure. The result was than wen the wind blew, the carb slide dropped so it was literally like I was closing the throttle!
Later on I had an FZR600 streetfighter and I discovered that I could all but kill the engine by lifting my legs up and wrapping them around the frame. The only way I could get it to run properly was to extend the static air pressure reference tubes with a length of rubber hose and ride with it shoved up my jacket (yes really), I sold that one.....
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Hi Bob.

I haven't actually got the Honda back on the road yet as the idle screw was firmly seized in and its slot severely butchered (exactly the same as it was on my Dominator 15 years ago) so I had to make a drill bush to (carefully) drill it out in stages till I could pick out the remains of the threads. Then of course I discovered that the extended screw I'd bought didn't fit......

So now waiting for one to be delivered from Ling's.

I must say I was wondering where the top end of that pipe went as it just dropped down when I disconnected it, but what you say makes perfect sense even though my last encounter with Signor Bernoulli was 40-odd years ago....

Sophisticated things these Keihins. I know where I am with Amals but this is a new learning process (and all the better for it).
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
WOW...I mean WOW!!! Bob(Bobn) you sir are a consummate genius! I have on many occasions experienced on several motorcycles the "CV carb static air pressure reference issue".

The motorcycle will run just fine and dandy mile after mile after mile after mile. Then in strong winds, not always headwinds either, the bike would be hit by a gust of wind and it feels like fuel starvation or the throttle cable has come loose. I'd spend the next few miles expecting the bike to die then I'd turn a corner or the wind would drop and everything would be fine, leaving me puzzled.

I had never ever ever considered the Bernoulli Effect. I am familiar with the principle but the idea that it might cause such an effect on a small, seemingly pointless part of the carb seems remarkable, but now you mention it it is completely obvious.

I guess the idea is wherever the top of the carb is getting it's atmospheric pressure from needs to be kept out of the wind. Durgh.

Thank you so very very much for sharing that.
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Just a quick note to say that Bob's diagnosis of my carb (seized slide lifter mechanism) was absolutely spot-on and a few miles today confirms that it rides like a different bike. I'm very pleased.

I wonder now whether the Dominator I had all those years ago had a similar problem as it was always hesitant on pickup.
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
So ya firing on all cylinders now...all one of them. The internet is an amazing source of information and when you think you're the only person in the world with this issue you sooner or later learn that you're not. Be careful though, there's a lot of misinformation on the internet too.

Glad to hear the bike is running peachy now :)
UTC
Bob said :-
Thanks Ren - I do my best :o)
Actually if you look at the FZR forums it's just packed full of discussions about flat spots and lean running at high speed on street-fightered bikes, I believe that most if not all of this is due the static air pressure reference problem - once the fairing is off the wind howls around the airbox and everything goes tits up....
I bought a TDM850 and rode it home, as soon as I hit the motorway in a strong crosswind I felt it, didn't keep that one long.
Anyway, that's me finished with 90's multi-cylinder Yamahas, they seem to suffer more than others.
I've also had this on bikes with EFI, I recently had a VStrom 650 and it suffered in very strong winds, the airbox nozzle points forwards and a strong headwind gust would pressurise the airbox causing the ECU to think the air density was higher than it actually was, the result was a stumble very similar to that experienced on the SLR.
And finally on my 03 Vigor I felt it a little bit (in Wales again) and I found that the portion of the breather that hangs down behind the engine had drooped a little and was dangling below the engine in free air. I just put a loop in it above the engine so that the end was tucked between the crankcase and the frame and the problem went away.
I think that the inherent simplicity of the SLR/FX helped me to figure this out, if I'd not had the SLR I would never have known what was wrong with the FZR and TDM and those bikes are sufficiently complex that you can never really get to the bottom of the problem.
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
I assume the downward extension of the pipe is to allow any water that gets in to drain away. Good tip to make sure it's not too low though.

The Tiger 955i that I had for 8 years had a connection to the pressure regulator in a similar way. Earlier models connected this to the airbox; my 2005 model had no connection, just a 10mm or so spigot. But as the connector was well tucked away behind side panels I don't think it mattered. It is possible that the pipe was deleted because of exactly the problem you describe as it would possibly be seeing fluctuating pressures in the airbox.
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Cheers Bob. You're right about complexity. Even simple motorcycles are complex with a whole range of reasons why things don't work as they should. As you said the wind blowing over what appears to be some random pipe without a specific purpose just cannot cause poor running...can it...really? Until someone points out the Bernoulli Effect. So how many other hidden mysteries lie behind alternators, spark plug caps, fuel pumps and airbox designs?

A recent example for me. Fazer FZS 600 early model, carburetted. Wouldn't start on a cold morning. Turning over fine but just not going. No bump start either. Finally started on a jump start from a car battery. Why? I suspect...I don't know but I suspect...the battery had enough charge to turn the starter but not enough left to run the ignition computer. So why didn't it bump? There should be enough charge to run the computer if the starter's not being cranked. Maybe the computer needs a full 12.8v to fire so even if it's slightly low then no go. A new battery sorted the issue.
UTC
Moss said :-
Grate bikes
UTC
mark said :-
So eleven years into ownership, oil changed every 2000 miles, gt550 master cylinder dominator shock and forks, pushed through top yoke about 45 mm and moved onto tourances running about 35 psi. Fitted rentals too they just feel nicer with bark busters to help keep my hands dry. However now I'm having a starting issue. It only clicks from the solenoid sometimes and you need to push it backwards in gear till it clicks,decompressor? Then it'll start on the button. The battery is showing 12.7 v I think either the decompressor has an issue or the starter.it's done 10000 miles in the last year but the previous 9 or 10 but for the odd riding lesson for my son
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Hi Mark. I'm not aware of a decompressor on the SLR650, that's usually associated with kick start machines. I'd be looking at the starter and starter clutch. It's unlikely to be the starter solenoid but it's easy to get to and check so have a look at that first.
UTC
Ian Soady said :-
It does have an automatic decompressor that lifts one of the exhaust valves slightly (which is why you need to follow a specific procedure for setting valve clearances). But I would doubt that's the problem.

Bobn who has posted in this thread has some experience with fixing a starter motor (see www.xrv.org.uk/forums/forum.php) but I'm not sure whether that's your problem. I would also agree with Ren the starter clutch is a prime suspect.
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Decompressor? Well I never. Ian you are a true source of knowledge.
UTC
mark said :-
Thanks for your help guys I'll check the clutch first chance I get. Just a bit of info the dominator forks are longer thanthe slr s but drop through the forks ok the shock is slightly shorter but that's maybe how I had the hagon set. Fork bottoms are the same everything swapped straight over. Feels much firmer tho which I prefer. Cbr600 f shocks also fit but are 3 inches shorter so if you want to lower it...
UTC
Bob said :-
Yes, there's a combination centrifugal decompressor and anti-kick back lifter on the right hand end of the camshaft. It works below 600RPM (cranking speed) and moves out of the way when the engine spins up.
Your starting issue just sounds like a tired battery to me, voltage measured off-load isn't an accurate indicator of battery condition. Alternatively maybe new starter bushes may be needed.
The only failure mode I'm aware of for the starter clutch is that it will slip (the starter motor and starer clutch will whir away but the engine won't spin). If you're just getting a click it means the battery and starter combination can't overcome the compression of the engine. By rolling the bike in gear you will be spinning the engine over a little and it may well end up at a point in the stroke where the starter motor can get a run-up at it.

I did recently recover a starter that had a worn output bearing, the bearings are a special size and not available. I built up the shaft with the MIG welder and turned it back to fit a standard bearing. But I don't think this is your issue.
UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
The internet is an amazing source of information that otherwise would never have been known. Thanks Bob. It seems you're something of the engineer too. The idea of building up weld and turning it back is something I would do except for 1 minor issue. I have absolutely no such skills whatsoever. Anyhow I'll be coming to you next time I need something turning up.
UTC
mark said :-
Hi thanks for the advice on the starting issue it was the starter motor bushes had all but worn away. Now I'm trying to un seize the carb slide lifter thingy, any tips
31/01/2016 15:48:48 UTC
Caoilte said :-
For those of you looking for a manual

http://d3sty.eu/shadock/temp/Honda_SLR650_Servis_manual.pdf


d3sty.eu/shadock/temp/Honda_SLR650_Servis_manual.pdf ...
09/06/2016 21:32:54 UTC
Caoilte said :-
Also, a good website if you're looking for part numbers

http://www.cmsnl.com/honda-slr650_model1249/
www.cmsnl.com/honda-slr650_model1249/ ...
09/06/2016 21:39:53 UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Thanks Caoilte, some very useful links there. How have you come across these? Are you an SLR owner?
10/06/2016 04:42:55 UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Having enjoyed the SLR for a year or so (although not many miles) I decided it was time for a change and went for this (see photo).

I've never had a four so thought it was time. I haven't ridden it yet but it's in exceptional condition for a 23 year old bike and I'm looking forward to tailoring it for my particular whims.

Apparently it's also known as a "Big One" (which it isn't, being quite petite although very well proportioned).



CBR400
14/10/2016 09:53:38 UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
CB400 Super Four! Oh I have such sweet memories of this bike. I had one from the company when I was a motorcycle instructor. I put well over 70,000 kilometres on it and it never missed a beat. The only issue was it ate it's reggy reccy once.

I never once opened the motor, just changed the oil and filter. Apparently, but you really should check this, it has hydraulic tappets and as such they'll not need adjusting. Full stainless exhaust.

Smoooooooooth as silk and quite gentle below about 6k revs then it starts to get interesting above. They're a fabulous machine. I do hope you'll write me a review once you've put a few miles on it.
14/10/2016 12:10:15 UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Yes, I've heard nothing but good things about them. I'm not sure about hydraulic tappets as the (humorously translated) Russian workshop manual I've found doesn't say that (as far as I can tell) and someone else said they were essentially CBR600 based. Not that I know anything about them either.

It did cross my mind that something like this would be ideal for Sharon if she wasn't intent on having a new shiny bike......

Yes, will put some words together but as a softy (me not the bike) it probably won't see tarmac for a while. I'm looking for another seat to add an inch or two in height as my knees are a bit cramped as standard.

I found this bike via Gumtree in Scotland and felt £1,000 was a very fair price, even adding in the £140 or so it cost to have it delivered to me.
14/10/2016 12:48:16 UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Sharon has tried to sit on one - there was one for sale up here in Preston a good while back. Too tall! Yes I know you won't believe it but she was tip-toed. I used to own a NT400 Bros once upon a time too but they're rarer than hen's teeth, but narrower and lighter than the Super Four so that would be worth a shot for her. If only they could be found. Parts were a pain in the derrière because they are rare.

The motor casings are the same as the CBR400 but I'm fairly sure the internals are different. Beware when looking for parts as many folks confuse it with the CB1 and the CBR400. I'll add a pic of the CB1...

Honda CB1
14/10/2016 14:41:17 UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Yes, I'm still trying to get my head around the different model designations. Just to make it even more confusing my Russian workshop manual calls the CB1 the Super 4 and the Super 4 the 400N (which last time I looked was the superdream)....

I think the CB1 has gear drive to the camshaft as far as I can make it out, referring back to an earlier conversation, whereas the SF has more conventional chain.

Hopefully I won't be looking for too many parts......

I agree that having an uncommon bike can make life difficult. My Sunbeam for instance (currently having the barrel honed as I've worked out the tightening up was caused by insufficient clearance).
15/10/2016 09:47:32 UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Honed huh. I thought a man of your calibre would be able to fix that with some wet-n-dry and a few patient hours.
15/10/2016 11:44:17 UTC
Ian Soady said :-
I know when it's better to pay somebody else........
15/10/2016 15:20:15 UTC
Nil H. said :-
july 2017

Brilliant,
thanks to Ren and all posters here.

I was looking for a XT500 type of bike.. a local dealer ( rural portugal) said "" those are hard to come by, but i have a client who has an slr 650 for sale.."" .
a WHAT??...so i googled it and came across this site...sounded just the right bike for me so i went and had a look in the next village...impeccable, black and purple, 19 years old, 15.000km.

He wanted 2000 euros for it, i gladly paid them.(i know, it sounds expensive, but it is like that in portugal--but then road and housing taxes are ridiculously cheap here).

Had it for 8 months now, did around 3000km on it and the only minus is the lack of range and high fuel consumption. But it handles the gravel (and in winter: mud..) tracks to my farm here fairly well, and i use it mostly locally, for shopping and visiting friends and trips out into the nearby mountains. Previous owner adapted it so it can carry a givi topcase. He also already put in different front brake pads, and the front brake is fine. rear brake could be a bit more responsive.

this week i had a 15peg sprocket mounted, (i have no workshop here) cost me 25 euro all in.

and it lost a bit of its quirkyness, but thats fine with me, only downside is that breaking on the engine in first gear on steep downhill graveltracks with loose topsoil is not as easy as before.

It had Mitas Dakar 09 tyres on it,till now they have hardly worn, and do well on tarmac too. I took off the small windscreen, i much prefer the wind into my chest instead of my helmet, cause it made so much noise i could no longer hear the engine roar, which is half the fun of riding it...
I am 64 now and no longer insist on insane topspeed, as long as i can see anything 4wheeled i overtake as a tiny speck in my mirror within seconds...

Thanks again to all posters, a great reference in case of future problems.

Now i will try and find a larger tank for it, and rubber dampeners for the steering bar (is that the right term-not native english speaker) to reduce vibration.

be well, ride safely, Nil.

22/07/2017 20:07:53 UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Thank Nil! Your English is excellent. Yes my biggest frustration with the SLR650 was the tank range. I'd usually do around 100 miles (160km)and then fill up. The bike can do a little more but I didn't want to get stuck by the side of the road with no petrol.

One of the things that made the off-roading better for myself was the low seat height. While it's not very low it is lower than many other bikes. Being somewhat nervous on the dirt it is reassuring to be able to get my feet firmly flat upon the floor.

I hope I'm still playing around on two wheels when I'm 64. Enjoy the ride and thanks very much.
23/07/2017 08:00:33 UTC
 

Post Your Comment Posts/Links Rules

Your Name

Your Comment

Captcha
Please enter the above number below




# 21
image used for spacing
Valid HTML?
305
Admin
Classifieds