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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 12-03-2014, 11:07 PM Thread Starter
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Longevity questions.

Here in just a short few weeks, I will be acquiring my dads 1700 Vaquero that he bought brand new in 2011... literally has less than 3500 miles on it.

This year, even with my bike being down until late March, I put over 10k miles on it and managed one cross country trip... now, being almost 20 years old and not taken care of by the previous owner(s) I've had my fair share of failures, rotted gaskets, float needles, and just general 20 year old rotted old crap that's needed replacement... other than that it has been a rock solid bike that I would not hesitate to run across the country as hard as it could be run, and none of the issues I've had were anything that would keep it from getting me home. Yeah it leaks oil, but it's an old ass harley evo... it is part of the ownership experience.


With that being said, I want to hear from some 1700 owners who RIDE, who put 10,000 miles or more a year on their bikes. What are the issues you've had, what has fallen apart, what has needed replacement, major failures?

I'm no stranger to turning wrenches... look at what I ride. My point is, I don't want to give up a reliable, solid machine that I am highly attached to for something that has no sentimental value, and the only reason I would want it is to have a reliable bike that I can jump on at a moments notice without turning a few wrenches to make sure stuff is tight and ready to go.

Thanks guys.

1996 Harley Davidson FXDS with a lot of stuff. Yes, it's fast, yes it will pull the front tire in 1-3rd. No it's not a stock evo.

2011 Vulcan 1700 Vaquero
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 12-03-2014, 11:31 PM
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I have a 2012 Voyager, basically the same bike with a trunk. Bought new july 26 2013 with 0.3 miles. Right now its at about 23,350. Rear tire I replaced at about 6,500, and the front at 11,000. Replaced both with Commander IIs. Still have the front on it, but changed the rear at about 15,500 because I was about to go on a 3,000 mile vacation and wanted a good tire on for the return trip. The Commander II would probably made it easy, but wanted to be sure. I went darkside for te 1st time, but when this tire is done, I'll finish off the Commander, still has 4-5/32 of tread. will be getting close to brake pads needing changed, closer on the rear and the right front but will do them all at once. Only a couple issues on mine, but neither have left me stranded, more of a pain than anything. My 1st issue is the 1st thread.
https://www.vulcanforums.com/forums/s...=slow+starting
After being in the shop for this with them being unable to duplicate it, it hasnt done it since. They think it was bad gas, possible. The 2nd is also more of an anoyance than anything, but still continues today.
https://www.vulcanforums.com/forums/s...hlight=cutting
With this said, I wouldnt hesitate to go cross country at a moments notice on it.

2005 800 classic
2012 Voyager ABS
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 12-04-2014, 06:30 AM
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I will be closing in on 50000 miles on the '10 voyager by year's end.
The issues you are having with your Harley are from lack of maintenance.
Look at the maintenance schedule in the owner's manual for the vaquero. If you want a reliable bike for the next 20 years (200,000) miles, you will have to maintain it.

That means changing fluids, lubing bearings, replacing hoses and other rubber bits. There are parts that wear out and have to be replaced. The key is replacing them before they fail if you want to travel without issue. Kawasaki makes very good motorcycles, and even their budget KLR 650,has a reputation as a world traveller.
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 12-04-2014, 07:25 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rick View Post
I have a 2012 Voyager, basically the same bike with a trunk. Bought new july 26 2013 with 0.3 miles. Right now its at about 23,350. Rear tire I replaced at about 6,500, and the front at 11,000. Replaced both with Commander IIs. Still have the front on it, but changed the rear at about 15,500 because I was about to go on a 3,000 mile vacation and wanted a good tire on for the return trip. The Commander II would probably made it easy, but wanted to be sure. I went darkside for te 1st time, but when this tire is done, I'll finish off the Commander, still has 4-5/32 of tread. will be getting close to brake pads needing changed, closer on the rear and the right front but will do them all at once. Only a couple issues on mine, but neither have left me stranded, more of a pain than anything. My 1st issue is the 1st thread.
https://www.vulcanforums.com/forums/s...=slow+starting
After being in the shop for this with them being unable to duplicate it, it hasnt done it since. They think it was bad gas, possible. The 2nd is also more of an anoyance than anything, but still continues today.
https://www.vulcanforums.com/forums/s...hlight=cutting
With this said, I wouldnt hesitate to go cross country at a moments notice on it.
Sounds like yours has been a pretty good bike then.

Quote:
Originally Posted by twowheeladdict View Post
I will be closing in on 50000 miles on the '10 voyager by year's end.
The issues you are having with your Harley are from lack of maintenance.
Look at the maintenance schedule in the owner's manual for the vaquero. If you want a reliable bike for the next 20 years (200,000) miles, you will have to maintain it.

That means changing fluids, lubing bearings, replacing hoses and other rubber bits. There are parts that wear out and have to be replaced. The key is replacing them before they fail if you want to travel without issue. Kawasaki makes very good motorcycles, and even their budget KLR 650,has a reputation as a world traveller.
May be maintenance, but it wasn't my maintenance. You post as if I'm a stranger to owning motorcycles or maintaining them... I'm not, and have probably built/rebuilt more MC's than most people on here.

My vn900 and v2k were reliable machines, but it seems that 1700 owners have more issues than both vn900 and v2k owners combined from what I read on here which is where my concern comes from. None of them seem like major issues, but the kind of nitpicky garbage that winds up costing you a lot of money anyways; that is my concern...

1996 Harley Davidson FXDS with a lot of stuff. Yes, it's fast, yes it will pull the front tire in 1-3rd. No it's not a stock evo.

2011 Vulcan 1700 Vaquero
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 12-04-2014, 08:13 AM
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The 1700 is a solid platform and yes, there are some little niggly things as all skoot have, some common to the 1700 and some common to all skoots.

Just do as you know how and what to do with ur experience. My Vaq has proven to be as you expressed, a jump on and go kinda skoot.

I bought mine April 20, 2011 and it now has 68,346 mls, it would have more but have also amassed over 4000 mls on the Busa during that time. Can u tell which is my favorite skoot to ride? Add onto prolly over 300 dyno runs says even more bout that engine.

Enjoy the Vaq, it may not be a "charismatic" as a Harley, but it's a good solid skoot.

RACNRAY

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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 12-04-2014, 08:51 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RACNRAY View Post
The 1700 is a solid platform and yes, there are some little niggly things as all skoot have, some common to the 1700 and some common to all skoots.

Just do as you know how and what to do with ur experience. My Vaq has proven to be as you expressed, a jump on and go kinda skoot.

I bought mine April 20, 2011 and it now has 68,346 mls, it would have more but have also amassed over 4000 mls on the Busa during that time. Can u tell which is my favorite skoot to ride? Add onto prolly over 300 dyno runs says even more bout that engine.

Enjoy the Vaq, it may not be a "charismatic" as a Harley, but it's a good solid skoot.

RACNRAY
That's the kind of stuff I like to hear. Thanks!

1996 Harley Davidson FXDS with a lot of stuff. Yes, it's fast, yes it will pull the front tire in 1-3rd. No it's not a stock evo.

2011 Vulcan 1700 Vaquero
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 12-04-2014, 09:43 AM
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Since I don't know you, or your history with bikes, my response was written to provide the most information. I have not had any issues with my Voyager in the 50,000 miles I have put on it. I also don't mess with trying to eke out more performance from the bike so I don't run into those related issues that people post.
If you are truly looking for the most reliable bike you can buy, then buy a basic Honda UJM. It will be reliable, but boring.
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 12-04-2014, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmanv2krider View Post
Sounds like yours has been a pretty good bike then.


May be maintenance, but it wasn't my maintenance. You post as if I'm a stranger to owning motorcycles or maintaining them... I'm not, and have probably built/rebuilt more MC's than most people on here.

My vn900 and v2k were reliable machines, but it seems that 1700 owners have more issues than both vn900 and v2k owners combined from what I read on here which is where my concern comes from. None of them seem like major issues, but the kind of nitpicky garbage that winds up costing you a lot of money anyways; that is my concern...
I passed 30k miles on my bike a little while back.
I've had NO serious issues other than cracking the bearing cage in the steering head bearings while I was greasing them. Using a plastic bearing cage is cheap as hell; but pinching it was MY fault; so I can't really blame the bike.

I think you will find more complaints; but not more issues.
The 900 and the V2K are basic bikes; without many bells and whistles. (not to say they aren't great bikes in their own right)
Most of the bikes that make up the 1700 line have more 'standard options'. The buyers pay more and expect more. So any shortcoming is amplified.

Scott

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Last edited by Scott_in_TX; 12-05-2014 at 12:46 PM.
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 12-04-2014, 11:51 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott_in_TX View Post
I past 30k miles on my bike a little while back.
I've had NO serious issues other than cracking the bearing cage in the steering head bearings while I was greasing them. Using a plastic bearing cage is cheap as hell; but pinching it was MY fault; so I can't really blame the bike.

I think you will find more complaints; but not more issues.
The 900 and the V2K are basic bikes; without many bells and whistles. (not to say they aren't great bikes in their own right)
Most of the bikes that make up the 1700 line have more 'standard options'. The buyers pay more and expect more. So any shortcoming is amplified.

Scott
That is very true.

I hate to give up my evo sled but it's time... I'd rather have an FXR but right now I'm not in a position to buy one and rebuild it down to the frame and wiring, because everyone knows every FXR out there has been rode hard and put up wet.

1996 Harley Davidson FXDS with a lot of stuff. Yes, it's fast, yes it will pull the front tire in 1-3rd. No it's not a stock evo.

2011 Vulcan 1700 Vaquero
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 12-04-2014, 05:25 PM
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I have put 30,000 trouble free miles on my 09 1700 Classic which I purchased new in October of 2011. I have never had to add oil between changes and never a problem as I speak. So far I would say a damn good bike for the price and I have surely not babied her.

Current stable:
2009 VN 1700 Classic
2001 Kaw ZX12R
1983 Suzuki GS 1100E
1986 Goldwing 1200 Interstate
1984 Harley FLHT--rat glide
past rides:
1974 XR75
77 CB 550K
73 CB750
81 LTD 1000
83 XJ 750
83 VIRAGO 750
78 XS 1100
01 CBR 600
93 CBR 900R
01 1100 SHADOW
93 KATANA 600
79 KAW 750 TWIN
05 250 KTM
86 XL 600
plus many more
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