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Is it me...or the bike?

15 posts from 11 voices
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  1. Kigsby84

    I finally got up enough nerve to take the training course, loved it and bought a VStar 650 Classic. Love the bike-it's very comfortable-everything seems to be in just the right place for my body. The only problem I'm having is with first gear. In training class, I would put it in 1st gear, let the clutch out a little, and it would start moving. I'd pick up my feet, give it a little gas then go into second. No problems. With this bike, when I let out the clutch, even all the way, it doesn't move much and I have to give it gas before it will start to take off. I'm not sure if they just idle the beginner bikes higher and I just need to learn how this bike works, or is the idle on my bike too low? It really comes into play when I have to make a tight right turn at a stop light. I either stall or give it too much gas which makes it harder to turn. Is it the bike or just because I'm still new at this? Can I increase the idle a little to give me a little push? Is that bad for the bike?

    Thanks for your help!

  2. micg10

    welcome to the family. congrats on the new bike, these bikes have a very low friction point on the clutch which means you have to let it almost all the way out before it ingages but thats just normal for these bikes. if you think your idling a little low there is a knob shaped like a flower just under the tank on the left hand side, use that to adjust your idle.

  3. chaser38

    Kingsby, sorry you're having troubles. There are a lot of things that could be going on, including you not being used to the new bike. One thing that stood out to me when I read your post, though, is that your clutch cable needs to be adjusted. Everybody is different (has different preferences), but ideally, you would let the clutch lever out about a 1/4 to 1/2 inch and you would be in the friction zone. You can adjust this yourself easily and most likely the instructions are in your manual. I would start there and then knock off the rest of the suggestions as they come in.
    Good Luck and Good Riding.

  4. yhoower

    You might also check into the Clever which is a modified clutch lever that brings the friction zone in a little closer is adjusting the friction zone isn't enough. Every bike and rider are different you may be fine after riding a while without changing anything.

  5. BikRet

    Welcome from So. Fl, I agree with everyone on the clutch adjustment. Adjust the cable and see where it goes, I had some trouble getting used to mine too. I bought mine in PA, 90% of my troubles were on hills, no matter how small. Make your adjustments in small increments and you'll find your comfort zone.

  6. TheGoltj

    One of the biggest complaints with the 650 is how far out the clutch has to go before it starts to engage. It's perfectly normal for this bike, but it does take some getting used to. My suggestion would be to give it a bit of time for you to get used to it and then it will be second nature to you.

  7. Liwezdeam5

    +1 to all of the above and remember too that you 650 is heavier than the bike you used during the training course. I ran into the same issue with mine, you'll get the hang of it.....

  8. MigejCojode

    Alright one thing that jumps of the page for me is that you let the clutch all the way out and still have to give it gas to move. That is gonna wear out your clutch in a very short time. Adjust the clutch so you have the free play as per the owners manual.

    Like the rest are saying you may stall it when adjusted properly until you are used to the friction zone. Get some practice with it first. Then look at the clutch mods.

  9. zmogejyoe

    Welcome to the forum. Agree with everyone about clutch cable adjustment. Then learn to use that friction zone real well. Other thing to consider is the oil type that was put in the bike before you got it, if it was energy conserving you might get some clutch slip, be sure to use one that is MA (motorcycle) rated on your next oil change to rule out this possibility if the cable adjustment does not do it.

  10. Shebhertezz

    Congratulations on taking the course! I've only been riding two years. Once you get to know your bike, you will have a blast. One thing that helped me as a new rider, was having a mentor who rode with me and helped build my confidence. He answered all my stupid questions. And of course this forum is invaluable for new riders. I don't know what I would have done without this forum as a newbie.

    Welcome again!

  11. tunc

    well did the advice help you with the problem
    didnt get a reply back

  12. Kigsby84

    I've been practicing like crazy and I'm seeing improvement! I've got the clutch and friction zone down - I needed to adjust to the clutch, the clutch didn't need to adjust to me! I still need some work on my u turns and sharp right turns, so I've ordered the Ride Like a Pro DVD and hopefully that helps. We did ride 135 miles this weekend and had a blast! Nice quiet back roads. It was so enjoyable!

  13. Liwezdeam5

    Keep at it. I can recommend the Ride Like a Pro DVD, it was one of my first purchaces after getting my bike. Best of Luck.

  14. Shebhertezz

    I'm still struggling with tight U-turns after 2 years. It will all come in time and with practice. I would also recommend getting the new companion book for the RLP DVD. It gives more detail than the DVD does and I take it out to the parking lot when I practice to refer to....

  15. Kigsby84

    I've ordered the RLP DVD and I hope it gets here in time for the weekend! I look forward to practicing more butterflies in the stomach!


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