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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Saw a 2007 Vstar 650 classic for sale on CL, for $1500.

Only has 2,400 miles on the odo.

Owner is moving and cant take it with him.

Bike is all original...except... "the front piston makes a clicking sound." ! ?!

I talked to the guy thru CL email back and forth, told him that vstar engines are very noisy, and if the valves are not adjusted they can get pretty tappy tappy tappy.

Went to see it with the hopes of getting a good deal on a low mileage, fully stock 650, that needed a valve adjustment... maybe.

Long story short: the tappet cover had been leaking a bit of oil, and he ended up running the engine dry about 30 miles from home. The engine started making a tapping noise, he drove it all the way home 30 miles with the oil pump sucking air.

After he explained what had happened I told him dont start it up, no need to hear it.

I did not have the heart to tell him he killed his bike with 2400 miles on the odo.

When the valves were last adjusted either the o ring was not replaced with a new one on the tappet cover, or the cover was not torqued down correctly, which let oil seep out.

In spite of the puddle forming under his bike every night, he did not keep an eye on the oil level.

In spite of the new tapping sound growing louder, he drove the bike all the way home 30 miles.

Another example that: its not the first mistake that gets you, its the second one.

The $4 gasket didnt blow his engine,
the oozing leak didnt blow his engine,
the little puddle of oil on the garage floor didnt blow his engine

but once 2.5 quarts had leaked out, that was the end. Riding it another 30 miles home didnt help.

He seemed to be hopeful that someone could buy the bike and maybe replace a few bearings. I could not bring myself to tell him his engine/transmission is 180 lbs of scrap metal.

If someone had a crashed a bike with a good engine, this one still had the original tires with a 2006 date code. Everything else on the bike is like new.

I searched the forum before posting this, and found only a few people that had totally blown engines on Vstar bikes - one of them because the oil drain plug fell out while the owner was riding it.

As I was riding my 2005 Vstar 650 home with 40,100 miles on the odo, I patted it on the top of the gas tank: Good Vstar.. Good boy.... Lets go home and get you in the nice warm garage.....

If there is anything to take away from this: If your bike starts making a puddle on the floor, dont keep riding it

and

check your oil level as if your bike's life depends on it.
 

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What a sad story, but thanks for sharing. It is amazing to think that someone would see oil under their bike and not think anything of it. It would freak me out! I'd probably replace the oil and every seal on it if I saw a drop on the garage floor.
 

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Long time ago when I lived in Tampa a friend and I were driving home from Jai Alai in his 80's something Celica GT. His engine was ping pinging and I still remember the WTF is that look on his face LOL! Before I could get the pull over words out BAM! He had a hole the size of a golf ball in his engine case. I asked him when the last time he checked/changed his oil? "Maybe a year ago". C'est la vie...
 

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Discussion Starter #5
back in the '70s I bought several air cooled VWs with blown engines for $50 to $150.

it was easy back then to find a rusted out car just as cheap with a good engine, and do an engine swap in about an hour.

those days are sadly gone. Someone could talk this guy down to a reasonable price for his bike and do the same thing, if you could find a good 650 engine, and have a really nice bike for a very long time for very little money.
 
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