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Discussion Starter #1
Hello from the frozen north;

I'm new to this so I'm probably asking all the same old questions again but here goes.
I'm a 6'2", 210lb senior (68yrs). I've been riding for more than 50 years on everything from a 125 BSA Bantam to a Suzuki Cavalcade and Honda 6 cylinder Gold Wing. My current ride is a Honda Shadow Ace Tourer which is a smooth, quiet ride but it's getting a bit heavy (I have a bum leg). Most of my riding is local but I do take an extended tour (two or three thousand miles) once or twice a year, usually alone but occasionally with a passenger.
I have not been able to test ride the Burgman 650 due to the crummy weather but I have several concerns.
1. What RPM are you turning at normal highway cruising speeds (60-75mph)? Is the engine buzzy and/or screaming?
2. What is the wind protection like for a six foot plus rider? Would you recommend the taller windshield or an after market?
3. The brochure states "Direct-type valve actuation". Does this mean you have to adjust the valves or does it have hydraulic lifters?
4. I've read several comments on the ride. Is it as rough as some seem to think or does it depend on the passenger/luggage load?

Thanks.
Dodger
 

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1. approx. 4200 at 60. approx. 5900-6100+ at 75-80. Above 80mph, the rpms start to scream at the slightest throttle increase because the transmission is out of high up there.
AN650 rev's vary with road grade, even in a gradual climb you might gain 100-300 rpm's, along with decreased mpg - keep tire pressure within mfg's spec's.
Accelerating to pass at hwy speeds will swing the rpm's way up. Familiarize yourself with Manual modes before attempting to do everything in Drive mode, especially with mountain grades and lines of cars to pass while approaching blind spot curves and dips in the road.

2. Wind protection for a 5'7" high rider isn't even that good and that means noise. Unless you've invented a noise cancelling helmet, think about the Givi or other brand of taller screen. Naturally, protection from rocks and dust is good with a stock Burgman because of the scooter style leg protection and fairing profile. It is primarily the noise at hwy cruise that nudges an owner toward a bigger screen. The bigger aftermarket screens have handgrip extensions too but I had never caught a rock on my hands during my 4200mi. of ownership of a stock Burg .
If you find yourself bedding down after a full day of riding only to discover ringing ears, look into a bigger screen and foam earplugs. It's not necessarily the speed you ride but instead the mid-day wind components and gusts that wear down ears, arms and dry out eyes. Thus, the vacation headache.

3. Suzuki has a technology spec section on their website that describes in both graphics and text, each kind of cool assembly and part.
A $5700 Nighthawk 750, $5900 Kawasaki Vulcan 750 or $8000 Suzuki Intruder 1400 have hydraulic lifters but not any of the Burgmans.
Many posts here on the board discuss service manuals and procedures for the do it yourself mechanics valve adjustment. Around Arizona, shop rates for valve lash adjustments can run approximately $100 to $350 depending on the shop, competence of personnel plus the number of valves to adjust. The Burgman has a complex bodywork system to address with each service of the engine unlike a conventional motorcycle.
An AN650's upper box has different color screws that are identical in dimension but are called Bolt or Screw depending on each ones place - be careful.

4. The relatively small scooter size Burgman tires can get bounced around unlike a full-size motorcycle. Pot-holes and washboarded dirt/gravel roads are not a Burgy's best friend.
If the suspension settings are adjusted right and tires pressures are correct, you've gone most of the way. The Burgman 650 has front fork protection from rocks and bugs that otherwise ruin the fork seals and make them leak.
The engine doesn't whine at cruise speeds and by the looks of bystanders it doesn't leave any larger of a noise footprint than a high performance small car. Most of the engine noise goes out the exhaust at cruise. Dipping ones head down under the dash while on the highway will reveal the zzzzzz sound of the engine.

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If you're going to store the bike in between long trips, clean it, oil it and remove/charge maint-free battery. I suspect the throttle grip would get stiff out of disuse. Follow the lube point diagram in your book if the bike is going to get frozen, wet, dusty, salty, hot to touch, muddy or stored often.
I would never store a Burgy in the sun but thats my own take on plastics.

A month or so ago an "older" guy was on the board asking about the neat and cool 650.
I played devils detailer and told him if he no longer had muscle mass to pick up a dropped 525+ lb AN650 then sit on a 400 instead.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply ajwood.

Sounds to me like a very noisy busy ride (my Shadow turns about half that many rpm). Don't like the idea of adjusting valves. I guess I'll stay with my Shadow.

Dodger
 

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Doger, my experience with shim and bucket valves is that they typically do not need attention with the frequency of tappets. Although the maual says check e'm at first oil change, the next is 15000. Don't really think that valves should be determining factor.
The B'man is smooth and quick at 65-70. You're tall, so you'll want to read the threads on the GIVI and the Clearview windshields.
 

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I have had my Burgman for over 6 months and have had everything from Ducati superbikes, to a Kawasaki ZX11', Harleys and Triumphs and the Burgman is probably as smooth as any on the Highway. It has a redline of about 8 grand so it is not really struggling at all at 70-80 MPH. Your Honda Ace probably redlines at aroung 5 or 6 I Imagine. Also the top speed on the Burgman is about 110 which is probably higher than the Ace also. I am about 6 feet and was very unhappy with the stock windscreen and switched to a Givi which was amazingly much quieter. Ride is very smooth with no buzz in the bars or floorboards. With the wheels and tires being small you have to look out for potholes more so but it's pretty smooth other than that. I'm taking an 800 mile trip on mine in May and think it will be as comfortable as any other bike I've ridden before on this yearly trip. The nicest thing is the storage. I won't have to bungee as much on with the big trunk and a back pack won't be making my neck and back sore anymore. I'm 53 and getting the aches and pains in the back from age and wear and tear so I think once I got over all the qualms of " It's a Scooter" I'm very satisfied with the Burgman. Valve adjustments are similar to other shim and bucket bikes I don't have my manual at the moment but I'm pretty sure it's at over 10,000 miles.
 

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Good Question about the 650...

Hello Guy,

The reason I didn't go for the 650 was, amongst other reasons, the valve adjustments. Suzuki's description of the valve checking and adjustments is not a trivial task even though their condition should be checked every 15,000 miles. If by chance you do your own work and have to replace a shim, then you have to remove the camshaft (one of two or two if all the valves needs reshimming) and also have a collection of shims at hand. When I was at the Seattle show, I chatted with a Suzuki meachanic and he performed a full service on the 650 and said it is not an easy job. In fact, he went through the trouble of dropping the motor (slightly) out of the frame to make camshaft removal easier. Ok then...I bought the 400.

Timothy
 
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