Celebrating 117,334 Miles

I walked into the garage a few weeks ago and I noticed a few “motorcycle tears” on the garage floor. On closer inspection, the right fork was leaking. It was more a small weep than a full out leak, but it was a leak none the less. Combined with the backfire and lack of riding this motorcycle, I knew it was time to find him a new home.

I just didn’t have the time, tools, or skill to pull the plastics, pull the forks, reset the seals, and replace the oil. I’d just spent 160 on new lights and a control module, 800 on tires and drive chain, and 60 on a battery.

I had to come to the realization that everyone else around me knew:

The needs of keeping this motorcycle up and the growing demands on my time were not lining up.

Selling the Tacoma I used to drive was pretty simple (even at my neighbor’s chagrin “What are you thinking selling that truck?!?!?). Everyone wants to buy that truck. I got just under asking a few days after listing it for sale. Who wants to buy a motorcycle with 100,000+ miles when 20k is considered waaaay high mileage?

I put a simple ad with two pictures to just see what was out there….

2003 V-Strom 1000

It’s time for my V-Strom 1000 to find a new home. The bike’s got 118k on the clock. I’ve added luggage, custom windscreen, risers, Powerlet Outlet, and center stand. Tires and drive chain are new from Santa Clara Cycle. Cosmetically the bike is in good shape and has always been garaged. The bike has a small fork leak and a small backfire on hard deceleration. No oil leaks and it does not burn oil that I know.

Yep – this bike has a ton of miles on it. It’s been good to me. I’ve got a lot of paperwork on service done to the bike as well as ride reports of where it’s been. I’ve babied the bike – I’m just looking for a new adventure.

It’s a great bike with a good history – make me an offer to be the next owner.

I had a number of tire kickers & time wasters. After a week, the new owner popped up. He asked me a lot of really good questions about the bike. He mentioned he rode his last bike to 75,000 miles. The fork seal issue didn’t bother him as he’d dealt with it before on another bike. He just had to clear it with his spouse. After that he went dark. Dang…

Randy and I were wondering if he’d actually be the new owner. We’d had a few tire kickers before (“oh I really want a R1150 but I’ll come look at yours?”, “Does it have ABS?”, “What’s the seat height?”… and so on. These are the things you can Google!

I mentioned that he was coming from a few hours away and that seemed to convince me that he’d be riding the bike away. You don’t drive that far if you don’t have some confirmed interest in the bike. Randy mentioned that I should print off a few photos of the bike in cool places for some cool garage art for the new owner. That struck me as odd, but hey, I’m down with that. Compressing that many miles into 30mins of selecting and printing images was no simple task!

I had a good feeling once he showed up. We talked bikes. We talked war stories. We talked miles. We talked a LONG time. He asked for a test ride after putting up the cash in case it was damaged. Interestingly he asked to see my ID to ensure it matched the title. Kudos on that one.

After the test ride, he was happy and I was happy (well maybe a little bittersweet). He wanted a V-Strom. He’d settle for red, but he really wanted yellow (they only made it 2 years in a near 20 year run). He talked about the places he wanted to go and the adventures yet to come. The SV/TL/DL motors are well done and run well over thousands of miles when cared for. As for the conversation with his spouse? She was a rider too!

The funny thing was he asked me if I had some pictures of the bike when it was out in it’s adventures. I smiled at the wisdom of my partner and noted that there was an envelope for him in the top case.

Hey,

I wanted to wish you the best on your adventures with your V-Strom.  As I’d mentioned on the phone, I bought the bike new with 6 miles on it with the goal of riding it 100,000 miles.  It’s been an adventure.  I’ve journeyed with this motorcycle to all sorts of places.  It’s seen a number of phases of my life and I hope that it brings you as much joy as it did me.

I wanted to include a few photos from memorable journeys so that you might have some art for your garage and a story or two to tell with those who you ride with.

I wish you the best in your time with this bike.  It’s been a great ride for me and I hope you find as much joy in it as I did.

Dan

Thank you for bringing my bike into the next chapter of its life in such good hands. Onward for me with both feet into Chapter 3: Gelände Straße!

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