Expected engine life- how many miles will she go? - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-20-2009, 06:58 PM Thread Starter
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Expected engine life- how many miles will she go?

I have had lots of bikes. 3 Goldwings with over 70-90 k miles each. Goldwings go forever. Had an 03 KLR650. Fun Kawasaki machine, but seems to be plagued with lots of engine maintenace "issues". I did the doohickey...was ready for lots of miles but at 13k miles sold it for a Vstrom.

My question is how many miles with routine maintenance do you guys expect out of your bike? I was just reading on the KLR650 website about a guy getting 65k miles out of his 08 before major failure. Granted its a single stroke thumper and has to work hard. Lots of people on there were excited to think that there bike would actually go that far.

I am not happy with the idea of only getting 65k miles. I would like to think I could get many many more with just routine maintenance.

Any high mileage bikes out there? Any major repairs to get there? If there are 08 KLR650s out there with 65k miles on them then surely we have some high mileage V's now.

Would love to read some good info on this....
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post #2 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-21-2009, 07:59 AM
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I expect over a 100K , I have had several high mileage bikes and trust me ,it will be no problem for this modern parallel twin to reach 100K or better.I had a 440LTD back in the day ,it had high 60K on it no issues then.Maintain any machine and it will go a long way

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post #3 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-21-2009, 08:25 AM Thread Starter
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Any internal engine problems noted as yet? Doohickey, doo dad or whatever? I may ought to check the ninja 650 forums to see how long they are lasting. They have been around for awhile and should have some higher mileage answers.

I still read the KLR650 forums. I am always hoping the Kawasaki will one day make that engine bulletproof. Reading those engine forums makes me nervous about my V.
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post #4 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-21-2009, 09:58 AM
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There was one guy from turkey who posted to the forums about having his top end let go and valves shoot all over the place.
I also saw a youtube video of a guy who either smashed his oil filter off or didn't tighten it enough and it vibrated off.

Those are the only failures I've heard about in the past few years.
You won't find another bike with a higher MTBF.
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post #5 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-21-2009, 11:44 AM
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I have an 03 KLR and I'll be passing 90K this weekend. No engine work yet. Just started using a little oil late this summer. It's about time! I've been looking forward to putting in the 685 kit but wanted to get my money's worth out of the original setup first.

I plan to keep the Versys for a long time too. I really don't have any idea how many miles to expect out of it but surely it's good for well over 100K. I guess time will tell. I understand that water cooled engines are machined to closer tolerances and the controlled engine temps contribute to longevity. Things sure have changed for bikes over the years. I bought a new Suzuki GT550 in 73 and thought I was doing great to get about 25K before it was total junk. Those were the bad old days!

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post #6 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-21-2009, 12:58 PM
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There was one guy from turkey who posted to the forums about having his top end let go and valves shoot all over the place.
I also saw a youtube video of a guy who either smashed his oil filter off or didn't tighten it enough and it vibrated off.
'gokhanbolut' from Turkey and 'bornrider' in Alabama had their valves collide with pistons and released from their keepers when accidently over-revving engine.

The guy in Slovakia who had a connecting rod punch through his Versys' crankcase at about 7000 rpm under moderate acceleration, had his engine rebuilt on warranty. He was at 12300 Kms (7640 miles). YouTube video showed the connecting rod poking out of crankcase in front, and trail of oil on the road. Video has been removed:
"I bought it in March 2007... The break in i did exactly what manual said. I dont remember it exactly, but after 600 km i could do 6000 rpm. I do step by step all the things what was written in manual. Next engine i will try dynamic break in (MotoMan). I changed oil after 1000 km, as manual said. Then 6000, and then 11200 (oil, brake fluid, sparks). I use 95 Natural (95 RON/91 USA pump octane), too. It was maintained as my only child... I was told that probably the piston was broken."
"They repaired it well with about 70 new parts. Yes, the piston rod was broken. They said that it was defect of material. They apologize. The approach of Kawasaki dealer was excellent."

c881 of the UK Versys forum was at 67200 kms (41731 miles) in January of this year... A 'Kawette' french forum member was at over 80000 Kms (49709 miles) in November 2008 with his well maintained and un-abused ER-6f when he sold it and got a new 2009. His engine took 1/4 liter of Castrol synthetic "Power1 Racing" 10W50 between his 60000 and 72000 kms oil changes. No oil accumulation in pickup hose at base of airbox by the crankcase vent. No coolant loss, no leaks or any problems whatsoever.
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post #7 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-21-2009, 01:31 PM Thread Starter
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Hey Spiderman, I had an 03 KLR650 too. I wish I had kept her. I wasn't afraid to take it anywhere-even with a little trail and rough terrain riding she looked good and ran good. The v is still too pretty to scratch. I hope this post keeps going. Very good information so far.
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post #8 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-21-2009, 02:48 PM
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Hey Spiderman, I had an 03 KLR650 too. I wish I had kept her. I wasn't afraid to take it anywhere-even with a little trail and rough terrain riding she looked good and ran good. The v is still too pretty to scratch. I hope this post keeps going. Very good information so far.
Thanks Highpsiguy. Yup, the old Killer has been good to me. I took it through several mountain passes this summer in Colorado. Geared it down and stripped the extra weight off. It did a good job. And I agree, the Versys is just too pretty right now to do any of that kind of stuff with it. I guess that's the advantage of having more than one bike. I've also got a Rokon for the really serious off road stuff.
Here's a couple of pics of my rides. They both have a few add ons.
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post #9 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-21-2009, 04:26 PM
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There's oodles of miles in the old versys I'm sure, with suggested valve inspections at 24,000km, do really think it'll be worn out at 3 or 4 adjusts? lol ..It's a really tight engine when new (I have yet to add oil)and the old kawasaki vertical twins from the eighties were known to run forever..... Like any piece of machinery, maintain it well and it'll last a long , long time.

Last edited by scooter650; 11-21-2009 at 04:28 PM.
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post #10 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-22-2009, 05:07 AM
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it's a shame we just can't ask Kawasaki hey guys, was your engine designed to run for 80 k or maybe 200k when properly maintained?
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post #11 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-23-2009, 03:41 AM
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it's a shame we just can't ask Kawasaki hey guys, was your engine designed to run for 80 k or maybe 200k when properly maintained?
Kawasaki's answer will be something like this... "Our engine are build to last the life of the bike when properly maintained..."

Whatever that means...

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post #12 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-23-2009, 11:31 AM
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Kawasaki's answer will be something like this... "Our engine are build to last the life of the bike when properly maintained..."

Whatever that means...
That means it will work until it breaks.
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post #13 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-23-2009, 12:00 PM
 
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I visited a link to a list high milage motorcycles. Most of them were Goldwings. Some of the 'Wings had 300,000 miles on 'em.!!! Don't remember any Versys' on that list. LOL.
I would think a liquid cooled low stress tuned motor like the Versys has should last a little while.
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post #14 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-23-2009, 01:14 PM
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I've heard of a few (read two) people who have had dropped valve problems outside the forums.
theres a good few versys on the UK site which have done in excess of 20K miles, theres one guy Tonny IIRC has doen in excess of 65K Kiliometres.

I guess it all depends how you treat the engine, how you service (primarily the oil changes and oil level) it and how you treat it, how much High Rev's you use. i think you do need to keep a close eye on the oil level, the initial quantity is around 2.9 litres and low oil levels may mean very little oil left

as to whether the bikes will reach 100K miles or more who knows.

its not really well set up as a long distance tourer, or at least as the goldwings are, so its still early days yet for people to break the 100k barrier. on my current mileage I;ll let you know in about 5 years time
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post #15 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-23-2009, 03:11 PM
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Kind of surprise there are hardly any high millage versys out there... Versys has been around for quite a few years, especially in other parts of the world...

I used to ride around 5,000+ miles in 3 months and that's about 20,000+ miles in a year... Now that I am unemployed, and gas prices has gone up quite a bit, I don't ride as much as before but still put over 1,000+ a month... My point is I am sure there is someone out there will ride a whole lot than me... May be they just not belong to any forums...

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07 Suzuki GSXR 1000
07 Yamaha FZ1
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06 BMW K1200 GT
05 Suzuki Vstrom 650
01 Yamaha Vstar 650
90 Yamaha FZR 600
7x Yamaha Enduro 125
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post #16 of 55 (permalink) Old 11-23-2009, 03:24 PM
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the bikes been out for around 3 years im aware of a few that are reaching the 50..70K mile age, but they are few. average UK mileage is supposed to be 2..4K per year. but the Versys seems to attract many higher mileage riders.. cant think why that is
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post #17 of 55 (permalink) Old 12-12-2009, 03:14 PM Thread Starter
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post #18 of 55 (permalink) Old 12-12-2009, 10:46 PM
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My guess is that using high revs all the time will damage it sooner, The vibrations get very bad at those rpm's, my guess is that the vibration is what causes all the problems, I try to stay below 8,000 rpm's
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post #19 of 55 (permalink) Old 12-13-2009, 06:37 PM
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The only thing I would worry about is the bottom end, if the top end needs a rebuild you can do that in your garage in a weekend for cheap. Even still I cannot see any reason why this bike doesn't go over 150k.
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post #20 of 55 (permalink) Old 12-13-2009, 09:01 PM
 
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I don't ride as much as I used to, but I have 48,300 miles on the V. Sure hope to get at least 150,000 miles out of it.
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