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My bike has 4100 miles. I had the dealer do the first maintenance at 600 miles, but I figure that I need to learn to do it myself.

I am decently handy, but have never done too much on the bike. I have done an oil change on my 500, but not on the 900.

I figure I can get what I need at a Target/Auto Zone (or Wal-Mart, if I have to.)

From what I read, it is OK to make the change to synthetic with this change. I should also take out the screen to check for debris.

I plan on changing the oil filter too. Is that really necessary, or just precautionary?

Air filter. Should I stick with the Kawi or get a K&N?
From my reading on here it seems that there is some question about going to a K&N with stock pipes and no engine mods.

I was looking at this:
http://www.vulcanforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=11201

Is there any harm in trying them out?
I have read many threads here about these things, but mostly I am not informed enough to avoid being confused.

Thanks,
Rod
 

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I purchased my bike with 5,200 miles on it. I put in my preference of synthetic and a new filter at that time; I only change the oil once a year so I change the filter every time. I've never checked the screen; may never.

I put in a K&N air filter in the stock air box; noticed a slight positive difference in mid-range (more eager to rev) and all I have is debaffled stock pipes. Ebay has the filter for $48.08 with free shipping (http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-K-N-High-Flow-Air-Filter-Kawasaki-Vulcan-VN900-2006-2007-2008-2009-2010-2011-/400256130070?pt=Motorcycles_Parts_Accessories&vxp=mtr&hash=item5d311fdc16); not much more than the price of the stock Kawa filter but with a much longer life expectancy.
 

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Bought mine new with 3 miles on it. I had the dealer perform the 600 mile check-up. After that, I changed the oil and filter at 3k, 6k and at 9k switched to full synthetic. The tech at the Kawa dealer suggested that I go at least 6k-8k before switching to synthetic to give the piston rings enough time to properly "wear in". And, to his credit, at about the 6k mile mark I noticed the engine felt and sounded smoother - less "sharp", less "metallic".
The air filter was dirty enough to replace at about 12k miles. At that point I replaced the OEM with a K&N. I have used K&N air filters in other vehicles and like having the ability to clean and re-use.
 

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My bike has 4100 miles. I had the dealer do the first maintenance at 600 miles, but I figure that I need to learn to do it myself.

I am decently handy, but have never done too much on the bike. I have done an oil change on my 500, but not on the 900.

I figure I can get what I need at a Target/Auto Zone (or Wal-Mart, if I have to.)

From what I read, it is OK to make the change to synthetic with this change. I should also take out the screen to check for debris.

I plan on changing the oil filter too. Is that really necessary, or just precautionary?

Air filter. Should I stick with the Kawi or get a K&N?
From my reading on here it seems that there is some question about going to a K&N with stock pipes and no engine mods.

I was looking at this:
http://www.vulcanforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=11201

Is there any harm in trying them out?
I have read many threads here about these things, but mostly I am not informed enough to avoid being confused.

Thanks,
Rod
Changed my bike to synthetic at 2,000 bought new. What took you so long.

Always change the oil filter at every oil change. Filters clog up and will hold a pint of dirty oil. Take the filter off first before opening the drain plug.

The stock K&N air filter replacement is very popular with people who intend to keep the stock air box as it does allow more air flow. The stock air filter should be replaced at least every 6 months if you live in a dusty or sandy area. The K&N just needs to be cleaned. Cleaning kit is included with most filters and can be found at most auto parts stores.
The K&N Air filter has a 1 million mile warranty so it will LAST FOREVER, unless damaged, just take it out clean it, and put it back.

Happy Wrenching and Ride Safe.
 

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How many quarts of oil does the 900 take? The dealer did my first (600 mi) change, but I will be doing the rest.
 

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Matt, it takes just over 3 qts. Do you not have an owners manual? Also, I didn't notice any performance change with my K&N filter, but that's not why I bought it. The OEM costs $30. The K&N cost me $50. Even if I only clean it every other year, I certainly expect to be riding this bike more than 4 years.
 

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Byte,

Are you sure about taking the filter off BEFORE draining the oil? Seems like that could get messy.

Okay, a quick couple of notes:

Make sure to get motorcycle oil, or oil with the JASO MA rating on it. Otherwise you'll experience issues with the clutch. I like Valvoline synthetic but everyone is different, there's PLENTY PLENTY PLENTY PLENTY of threads on that so I won't start that here. But my only caution is to make sure to use JASO MA or Motorcycle oil.

It's all very easy to do. I enjoy it, actually! I like getting under my bike and tinkering with it.

OH, Get an oil filter wrench. The filter is in a precarious position and it's hard to get a grip, plus, I've found dealerships like to weld them on or something (okay not really) and they are a PAIN to get off. I got one from J&P cycles online pretty cheap.

Have fun!

John
 

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Matt, it takes just over 3 qts. Do you not have an owners manual? Also, I didn't notice any performance change with my K&N filter, but that's not why I bought it. The OEM costs $30. The K&N cost me $50. Even if I only clean it every other year, I certainly expect to be riding this bike more than 4 years.

I HAD one when I bought it....but the wife cleaned my work bench area and a "few" things disappeared. Thanks.
 

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I HAD one when I bought it....but the wife cleaned my work bench area and a "few" things disappeared. Thanks.
My better half knows better than to clean or throw away anything in my shed / workbench area, because I then would have to go clean out her makeup drawer or worse yet the room where she keeps all her Crosstitch patterns and I would have to throw out everything I deem unnecessary. Dare I say that's almost everything!:eek::D
 

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Byte,

Are you sure about taking the filter off BEFORE draining the oil? Seems like that could get messy.
Yup you have never seen me trying to get that (*&(^(*& filter off for the first time, full pan of oil sitting under the filter to catch the oil and me with a crow bar, you get the picture, was not a pretty sight.:eek:

Yes lets not start any oil wars, to many men have needlessly shed blood over that subject. Translation Use what you like, as long as it is good for the bike.


OH, Get an oil filter wrench. The filter is in a precarious position and it's hard to get a grip, plus, I've found dealerships like to weld them on or something (okay not really) and they are a PAIN to get off. I got one from J&P cycles online pretty cheap.
I have information from reliable sources that the Oil Filter that is originally installed at the factory is installed by an 800 lb Gorilla with a 6 foot breaker bar.:eek:
 

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Yup you have never seen me trying to get that (*&(^(*& filter off for the first time, full pan of oil sitting under the filter to catch the oil and me with a crow bar, you get the picture, was not a pretty sight.:eek:
I can see your point. I may not remove the filter first, but at least break the "weld" thats holding it. ;)


Sent from my Motorcycle iPhone app
 

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My first oil change was done at the dealer along with the infamous once over. My next change I did myself. I quickly found that I would need a wrench and bought cap with 3/8 drive. The 800 lb gorilla had tightened the filter so much that the wrench rounded off filter.For the first time in my life I was forced to use the screwdriver thru the filter trick. The case was paper thin and the screwdriver actually ripped about 1 1/2" before the filter broke loose. Now I don't let them replace the filter if they have to drain the oil. But then I've only had the dealer work on it twice: 1st service and 1st valve check.
 

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I did the 600 mile oil change myself a couple weeks ago. Was planning on having dealer do it but there was about a two week wait to get it so I asked the tech what all was involved with the 600 mile check. He said it was mostly just an oil change and then would deal with any issues I have with the bike. Since all is well I decided to do it myself. I bought all supplies from dealer to the tune of around $30 and it took me about an hour. It was one of the easiest things I've ever done and by no means am I much of a mechanic.

Out of curiosity does anyone know roughly what the dealers charge to perform the 600 mile service?
 

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In May'07 I paid $123.57. That included an oil change followed by thorough torque check and once-over. The way the shop was set up I could watch the mechanic from the showroom and he had a checklist and I could see that he actually put a click-wrench on at least a dozen bolts. It looked like he checked every bolt head he could get to without disassembly. Since it was my first new bike I felt it was well worth it.

On a side note, the shop that sold me the bike wanted $450 because "they need to check the valve clearances". Both shops were Kawi dealers and the one I liked closed its doors about a year later. Guess you can't make an honest buck in that business.
 

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I did the 600 mile oil change myself a couple weeks ago. Was planning on having dealer do it but there was about a two week wait to get it so I asked the tech what all was involved with the 600 mile check. He said it was mostly just an oil change and then would deal with any issues I have with the bike. Since all is well I decided to do it myself. I bought all supplies from dealer to the tune of around $30 and it took me about an hour. It was one of the easiest things I've ever done and by no means am I much of a mechanic.

Out of curiosity does anyone know roughly what the dealers charge to perform the 600 mile service?
Mine only charged me for the oil and filter themselves, no labor. He didn't even charge full list on that stuff.
 

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I did the 600 mile oil change myself a couple weeks ago. Was planning on having dealer do it but there was about a two week wait to get it so I asked the tech what all was involved with the 600 mile check. He said it was mostly just an oil change and then would deal with any issues I have with the bike. Since all is well I decided to do it myself. I bought all supplies from dealer to the tune of around $30 and it took me about an hour. It was one of the easiest things I've ever done and by no means am I much of a mechanic.

Out of curiosity does anyone know roughly what the dealers charge to perform the 600 mile service?
Mine wants to charge me about $200....wondering if I should do it myself. I guess I might as well spend the money on a torque wrench and other misc tools not currently in my box.
 

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Greystone, you'll need 2 torque wrenches. One in ft/lbs and one in in/lbs. A lot the bolts are too small for most ft/lb wrenches.
 

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Yep, did mine at 600 mi. A tech 6607 filter and 4 quarts for Rotella 6T from Wally World. Took about 15 min. Hardest part is taking the regulator/rectifier off (in front of the oil filter).
 
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