650 Common Mods? - Star Motorcycle Forums: Star Raider, V-Max, V-Star, Road-Star Forum
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019, 12:22 PM Thread Starter
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Post 650 Common Mods?

Hi all, I just picked up an 07 650 Classic with really low miles for a song and a dance. Only had it a few days but so far I really like it (I've never owned a cruiser before).

In general I'm not a huge fan of spending $1000's on modding a bike for more power, always felt you should just buy a bigger bike if you want more ponies.

Having said that though I've owned bikes over the years where just a few hundred in simple mods can net you some significant gains.

What are the basic / cheapest mods people generally do to the 650?
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019, 12:55 PM
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I won't speak for everyone else here, but here's my experience with "mods" on these bikes (I have had 4). You can spend a lot of money on pipes, intakes, jet kits, ignition upgrades etc...and I have bought bikes with all of this done, but the fact is, on this bike, you just won't really notice it enough...not at my elevation anyway. The only mod that I have seen done, but I never have done it myself, that makes sense to those wanting more "seat of the pants grunt" is to swap out the rear end with that of a Virago...they have bigger gears, thus makes the bike more torquey, but of course that comes at the price of not being as fast on the top end.

Having said all that, if the bike doesn't have an exhaust on it yet, go ahead and getcha one of those (if for nothing but looks and sound alone). My experience with jetting after that has been mixed, depending on the pipes I got. I also did the air box mods before, and other than making a cool loud sucking sound, I didn't really notice any difference either.

Check out 650 CC & D lots of cool good info on there.

Thanks and ride safe.
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019, 01:55 PM
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the single best thing Ive done to my VS650, a few months after I got it, I took a 300 mile round trip on vacation, and had a sea-bag strapped on the passenger seat with a bunch of clothes.

Having something I could lean back into, even just a little, made the bike much more enjoyable on a long ride. Shortly after I got a drivers backrests from Amazon for about $70, used that for a year (a little difficult to line it up where I wanted it). Then I put the trunk on the bike that is in my garage photo.

<= over there (click on the thumb nails till you see the full sized images)

The trunk also functions as a back rest, and its so much easier to use than saddle bags with straps or velcro. It looks odd on the bike itself, but when Im riding it I cant see it, so I dont care. That was about $50 on amazon, but I had to fabricate my own rack/brace to attach it to the fender side rails thru the bolts. So nice for carrying my lunch to work, or stopping for food: push button - lid opens, put bags in, push lid down....

the other big mod was getting my nerve up, pulling the cover off the seat, and both cutting a groove down the middle for my tail bone, and putting about a 6" triangle of foam 1/4" thick on the front of it. That solved two problems, my butt no longer goes numb in an hour, from sitting on my tail bone, and I no longer slide forward into the gas tank on every freaking bump in the road.

After 3 years I got a windshield, thinking it would be like riding a GoldWing on the thruway at 85mph (its not, better than nothing, but not as good as a fairing). I mostly use it when its cold (below 50F) for commuting, or if I know Im going to be caught in the rain, but otherwise the windshields stay home.
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Last edited by KCW; 05-06-2019 at 01:59 PM.
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019, 06:10 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robbz28 View Post
You can spend a lot of money on pipes, intakes, jet kits, ignition upgrades etc...and I have bought bikes with all of this done, but the fact is, on this bike, you just won't really notice it enough...
That's the advice I was looking for, thanks for the honest answer.

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Originally Posted by KCW View Post
... seat ... windshield...
I spent about 4 min in the seat before I knew that would be the first thing to swap out. That and the need for bar risers, the stock handle bar position is too low and far forward. The bars need to come up and back. Gotta have a windshield.

===

I can see this bike getting benefit from a clutch upgrade, stock it feels like there is a bit of slip. Some stiffer springs I bet would be a nice upgrade.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019, 06:36 PM
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Getting a true horse power noticeable gain can get expensive. Most will add some slip mufflers for a better sound and then concentrate on comfort mods. These bikes were made for cruising not racing. Here's a good thread to narrow down some of the members favorite modifications.

https://www.starbikeforums.com/forum...your-bike.html

2001 Vstar 1100 Classic (sold), Cobra Slash Cut full exhaust, Dropped 1 inch with lowering links, ORK, 4.5 inch handlebar risers, Ultimate passenger seat, Passenger pegs moved forward 4 inches, Handlebar clock, KN air filter, Viking saddlebags, Additional rear lighting
Loose nut "me" behind the bars
2006 Harley Electra Glide Ultra Classic

https://sites.google.com/site/vstar1100kb/home
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019, 07:29 PM
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Originally Posted by DukeHam View Post
I can see this bike getting benefit from a clutch upgrade, stock it feels like there is a bit of slip. ....
before you change out the clutch, change the oil and make sure you use a 4 cycle motorcycle oil, or a standard oil that has no mileage enhancers or extra lubricants. The bottom half of the SAE lollypop symbol must be blank for motorcycles.

The reason is the clutch is in the oil. The additives they put in car-oil to get another mpg out of your fuel, will make the wet motorcycle clutch slip.

I have never heard of anyone slipping a clutch on any Vstar bike, unless it had one of those 'enhanced' oils, the clutch cable was not properly adjusted (no free play at the bottom end of the cable)... or the clutch was simply worn out.

You can get a stiffer clutch if you like to fan it like a dirt bike and make it grab on the fly, but the stock clutch should never slip.
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-07-2019, 12:11 AM Thread Starter
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First thing I did when I got the bike home was to change the fluids and filters (except the fuel filter, will get to that in the next couple of days). You must think I'm pretty new to motorcycles if you figured I'd use car oil!

Perhaps I used the wrong term in saying the clutch "slips". What I mean is that the 650 is advertised as a beginner / woman friendly bike. There are a number of bikes that deliberately have weaker clutch springs and in some case smaller friction plates to make them easier to ride and beginner friendly. My first impressions are that all 40 ponies are not being delivered to the rear wheel and the clutch could be grabbing a bit harder.

It doesn't feel worn (bike has such low miles anyway) just feels like the springs could be stiffer and grab a bit harder off the line. Barnett makes a performance clutch replacement, anyone tried it out?
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-07-2019, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by DukeHam View Post
... You must think I'm pretty new to motorcycles if you figured I'd use car oil! ...
no, not at all

its important to keep in mind when questions are posted on a forum, the response may come from a person that has not been following all your posts

I try to keep responses general in nature, when someone searches the forum in the future looking for 'clutch slipping' or replacement, this thread will come up, so I try to cover all the bases

as we get to know each other better suggestions and comments will get more to the point, please dont take any overly simple comments personally

by far the most common questions posted here are resolved with cable adjustments, the proper oil, dont put the running bike in gear while the kickstand is down, adding carb cleaner to fuel after a bike has been parked for a while, and the fact that when a battery starts to fail the starter will spin a little bit slow, but the ECM will not fire the spark plugs and the bike will not start...

the usual complaint about the Vstar clutch is the lever is set up in a way that makes the friction zone very narrow. If a person rode a Honda 250 rebel for the MSF beginners course, then purchased a VS650, the difference is very pronounced. That might be part of the reason the clutch does not grab as hard, with the narrow friction zone it would be too easy to stall the bike taking off from a stop.

If you have not looked up the engine HP vs RPM curves yet, the peak HP on a stock 650 is at 55mph in 4th gear, and 70mph in 5th gear. Get out of the highway and have at it WFO at those shift points. The bike does not have a tach, so you cant see if the engine RPMs suddenly climb and the clutch is slipping, but you would hear it.
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Last edited by KCW; 05-07-2019 at 08:03 AM.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-07-2019, 04:37 PM
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I don't know if your bike has saddlebags but for me....they are priceless. Here in Quebec, temperatures vary greatly throughout the summer and it rains quite often. Baggage space is a must. Windshield...I have one and I took it off last summer due to extreme head buffeting. I will modify the attachment points to see if I can get my windshield higher or change the angle more. If that does not work, I will spend the 150 dollars Canadian for lower wind deflectors. A crash bar is another necessity. I have a passenger seat with backrest but since I ride alone, it will be used to hold a sleeping bag and matress and even a pack sac if I have to. I plan to do a lot of camping and fishing. I'm leaving the original exhaust pipes on my bike because I dislike noise. Sure.....the bike is quiet but when you are climbing a slight hill at highway speed, I can turn my head and I can hear that nice rumble from the pipes. In any event, noisy exhausts are going to go away due to the new laws against noise coming out every day throughout N.America. Here in Quebec, all the police will have instruments to measure the amount of noise that comes from the pipes. Another handy item is a USB outlet to charge a cellphone or music player.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-07-2019, 05:39 PM Thread Starter
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It did come with some saddle bags, other then that it's stock. I just ordered some Rox 4" pivot risers. I went out for a couple hours again today and those bars def need to come up and back. Like you I'm very happy with the stock exhaust, I find loud bikes obnoxious.
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