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I've been looking at a black one at the local shop for awhile. I had no idea about the maintenance costs though. The dealer said it was much less than the oriental bikes but you proved him wrong there. Thanks for another great article!!
 

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already...in love...

I understand that just because professionals are required to do comparos, the pick of the litter is not necessarily the best. Lazy, escapist years have been spent sifting through moto-verbiage and obsessing over glossy pages, much like the time my best friend and I got shot at for peeking in a window. As I recall, it was pretty fun.

But eventually it is time to grow up and admit that I am capable of love. Although the latest models are quite good, the best choice has less to do with reason. When I hear her coming, I always look -

The Speed 4 may be one of those bikes. Seems like it could be. Having recently come to a rather pleasurable conclusion of my own - I do applaud the choice.

And...10K is a good number for a test.
 

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"At speeds over 60, a freeway jaunt on a naked bike with upright superbike bars is like an extended upper-body workout as the wind blasts your head and upper torso. Suddenly you feel like a big jackass." OK I stick to my guns that the 600 Super sport with a fairing is the perfect motorcycle. Just Kidding. Hey Gabe first you almost talk me into getting an Aerostich and now that I have been lusting for a big yellow Daytona you have to go an say that your Triumph is reliable. Great article love the side bars about the add-ons... Sean this guy worth every penny you are paying him and more.. Beautiful bike by the way....
 

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Well...

I live in San Francisco, and shop rates are $75-110 per hour. It costs just as much to inspect and adjust valves on a Japanese 16-valve engine...but the Triumph needs an inspection every 8k. You could probably get away with 15 or 16k, but Triumph wants you to maintain the bike carefully.

Only two of my valves were changing clearance, so the adjustment shouldn't be too bad at 16k.

Also, the air filter is $50, the fuel filter is $50, and Triumph wants you to use their special synthetic Mobil One oil...$45 a gallon. My filters looked good enough to keep using, and I used cheaper oil, so I saved some bread.

I don't think the higher maintainance cost would outweigh the other savings in insurance and purchase price: you're saving almost $2000 over the price of a Honda F4i- that's a lot of valve adjustments!
 

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S4 on track and a somewhat OT question: FZ6.

Nice to hear about the S4, Gabe. I'm playing with the idea of getting a track-dedicated bike next year, and that little freak looks like a good choice. I've seen a few used ones for sale. Now if I can only make the committment to travelling to the track days, I'd be all set.

Coincidentally, I was re-reading the MC-USA Reality Bike test today because I've got a friend who's interested in a sporty middleweight standard. Since he's not all that knowledgable, he's relying on me for advice. Poor sucker.

I first reviewed the MOfo comparo and they didn't have a high opinion of the FZ-6. It faired better in the MC-USA test, but still far from great. My question is whether the FZ6 is still reasonably good for a rider who's got a couple of years of experience on an older, smaller UJM and is not likely to push the bike to any great degree. The abrupt throttle response/EFI has got me a little concerned. It seems to me that Z750S is a better buy, even for the higher asking price, but it's an even bigger jump in power. This dude is very responsible and conservative, so I'm not worried about him doing anything stupid. The Z seems like it would be easier to ride, even given the higher power output. So am I right?

The SV-650 is running a distant third because he wants some decent wind protection and it's almost impossible to find a 599 around here.

Any other MO staff or MOrons feel free to jump in if you wish.
 

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FZ-6 v. Z750

That's a tough choice. My instinct is that the Kawi is easier to ride, but the build quality and 26k valve-adjustment intervals on the FZ-6 make it a good choice too. He can't go wrong either way.

I think an SV650 is a better track bike than the Speed Four (after modifying it), but maybe that's just because I was a faster rider when I had my SV. I think the Triumph is just a bit lardy and bland on the track. It's really a great street bike, though.
 

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S4 owner here.



You might have gotten a weirdly set-up bike if the springs were too soft for you. Check preload? (Maybe Sean sat on it for awhile...) I weigh 25 lbs. more than you and my S4 is not overwhelmed at the track at all.



Putting wide bars on this bike ruins it for track days. It upsets the weight distribution of the bike, and IMO, if you can't crank over a 600 with clip-ons, you need to go to the gym.



Oh, and the Scorpion slip-on sounds rad.
 

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Another Speed Four owner here.

I'll second the Speed Shield praise. The comfort zone is increased to 80-85mph(not that I would ever travel that fast!). For the street, leg room can be increased by fitting modified Buell Lightning pegs, although ground clearance is also affected.

Other than a taillight burning out(lucas mfg?), mine has been trouble free.

Since the muffler bolt pattern matches the older ZX6R, owners have a wide selection of pipes to choose from. I chose a Kerker Carbon pipe. A bit loud, but sounds great when heading to the red zone.
 

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Re: S4 on track and a somewhat OT question: FZ6.

The problem with the FZ-6 especially for someone who won't push it is that it won't get out of its own way if you don't push it.

The power curve is way up high and it has very little midrange torque.

The 650 VStrom might be a better choice.
 

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Re: S4 on track and a somewhat OT question: FZ6.

What? Your friend isn't capable of installing a windshield on an SV650? If there's one thing that the aftermarket doesn't have a shortage of it's accessory windshields.
 

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Re: S4 on track and a somewhat OT question: FZ6.

Yup, that's most have said. (Although you guys were more critical than most.) That's one of the reasons I would think the Z750 is easier to ride. Couple the peaky motor with the sketchy throttle and it makes me a little nervous.

I mentioned the VStrom but no one seems to have one of those, either. I'm right in the heart of Supersport/Cruiserland .The owner of my local Yamaha/Suzuki dealer told me they're also having a bit of a bike shortage right now. Take that for what it's worth, but he's definitely got noticably fewer bikes on the floor.
 

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Good aftermarket wind protection for SV650? Anyone?

Dude, I hope you're not suggesting a "windshield" What you really meant was a bikini fairing or a flyscreen, right? I have this picture of an SV with a big 'ole police bike winshield or windjammer and it ain't pretty.

Seriously though, he probably could do it. But he's likely too anal to try modify anything on a new bike on his own--even something as simple as that. We're also talking about someone with virtually no knowledge about bikes. The dealer could do it, too. More likely, I'd end up doing it, thanks very much. My problem with the aftermarket stuff is that you have no clue how well it works unless you hear from someone who has the same bike and setup. I think he wants something more substantial than a flyscreen, and aftermarket quarter/half fairings have a whole host of other issues to deal with (paint, being one). That being said, nothing's out of the realm of possibility. He's gonna check out the SVs this week.

Anyone know of a good aftermarket solution for the SV?
 

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OK. I'm no math wiz, but the headline reads "A Year and 1000 Miles....", which is a big difference from the article heading "A Year and 10,000 Miles..."



When I first saw the headline, I clicked just to see what kind of wuss only does 1k a year :)
 
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