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Topic: Any problems with the FJR?  (Read 10251 times)

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mlr1968
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« on: August 02, 2008, 10:03:44 AM »

Hi all, been lurking here ever since I got to ride a BMW st 1200 Rt and I have to say I am hooked on sport tour riding. Currently own a Honda 1300 VTX, but I am wanting to upgrade to S/T of some sort. I pretty much narrowed my search down to either a FJR ( hence my post here) or a Honda S/T 1300 ( no post on the Honda forum) I am leaning toward the FJR, primarily because of the lighter weight and more hp. Are there any other issues besides the "ignition switch" issue I  have read about? It will be a little while before I can acquire one, maybe 6 months or a little longer. Another question how is the long day ridability of these bikes, I know my x is OK but after 185 miles I have to stop (gas for one) and relax and stretch out for 30 minutes. So that is one concern. I would assume it would be much longer riding with a comfortable bike like the FJR  Bigok
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« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2008, 11:24:32 AM »

Like most bikes, the seat sucks, so you will need to go aftermarket.
The throttle response is abrupt on the 06 and 07, PCIII and/or G2 mod fixes this problem.
03-05 had the ticker problem, but it looks like you are looking newer.
Most of the other issues have been fixed by Yamaha with recalls - ECU, top bag.

I had an 05 and now own an 07, loved them both.
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« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2008, 11:45:37 AM »

The FJR would be an excellent choice for LD rides, slightly forward seating position than your VTX so your not on your tail bone, but many of us have either modified our seats or had our seats custom, to go further than the few hundred miles on the stock seat (usually iron butt riders).  If you get your FJR in 6 months, you'll be able to get an 2009 version by then, however yamaha does work out the kinks of the prevous problems of the ignition switch, excessive heat, dry shafts and ticking valve noises problems in the past.  Oh by the way, there is absolutely nothing wrong at all about stopping after 185 miles just to stretch out.  I have to stop every hour of riding to stretch and walk around because of my bad hip, plus depending on the temps (summer) when it gets really hot, you want to cool down and dehydrate often.
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« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2008, 12:01:06 PM »

I have an '05 that I've put about 35K on it.  I did have one issue that was covered under warranty - throttle body sensor needed replacing.  The seat has been the weakest link for me though I have done several 400 and 500 mile days.  Recently, I tried out a beaded seat cover which helped and I did a 700+ day using this.

Overall the bike has been great and a real joy.  I love the engine (powering out of a corner in 2nd gear is awesome) and the handling is pretty good.  
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« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2008, 12:15:18 PM »

It's been a real pleasure to ride my '05 FJR.  As said before, the excessive heat and ticking issues on the Gen I bikes ('03-'05) was corrected on the Gen II bikes.  With that being said, not every Gen I bike had a ticking issue--mine doesn't.  Other than the stock seat for long rides, it is a phenominal bike!  It's very sporty, and if the bags are off, it looks like a crotch rocket on steroids!  I don't think the Honda would give you that raw sports bike feel (IMHO, of course).  Now my 2 cents is very subjective, because it's the only ST bike I've owned.  Now I'll let somebody talk up their Honda!  Wink
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« Reply #5 on: August 02, 2008, 12:25:57 PM »

I've been riding an '05 for three years and about 33,000 miles.  Equipped with a sheepskin pad for me and the little lady, a throttle meister and a couple of  easy heat fixes, it has been a superb tourer, with ample power and fifty miles to the gallon of regular gas efficiency.

Shop visits have been limited to routine maintenance, gas and tires.  Oh, yeah, I did the (free) throttle position sensor swap out at Yamaha's request sometime back, but there were no TPS related issues to trigger the fix.

The '05 model was the ultimate in the Generation I evolution.  Generation I's infamous "ticking" problem, caused by premature exhaust valve guide wear, was addressed by Yamaha and fixed on affected engines, even after warranty expiration.  So far, mine hasn't ticked, and neither has the vast majority of that generation's machines.  

Generation II began with the '06 models, and there have been several problems requiring Yamaha fixes.  Some of these problems involve more stringent European exhaust emission standards and the fueling maps required to meet them.

The most troublesome of these appears to have been caused by poor manufacture of the ignition switch wiring.  It appears to affect mostly '06 and '07 models.  Ignition switch wiring failure has left several very angry riders stranded in remote places.  Other crafty Generation II riders have made emergency bypass rigs to get them home, and there is an internet movement afoot to document the frequency of the problem and bring it to Yamaha's attention.

The '08's still look pretty good, with few reports of such problems.  I'm kind of hoping that Yamaha will not make any drastic changes in the '09 models, other than refining the Generation II platform.  If that is the case, I just might buy one.  
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« Reply #6 on: August 02, 2008, 12:39:05 PM »

Thanks for the fast replies. An 05 will be fine with me,unless my cash flow is greatly enhanced lol. Seems that all bikes oem seats suck  Thumbsdown my vtx seat was replaced with a mustang, greatly enhanced the ride. I will post as soon as I get the bike. I am going for a ride so see all later.
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« Reply #7 on: August 02, 2008, 08:43:16 PM »

Seats are a subjective thing.  I've done an Ironbutt on my stock seat..so... Shrug

I have a Gen I bike and it's not a ticker to date.  I did have a waterpump leak right after I bought it, was quickly fixed, haven't had a problem since.  Change tires, oil, shaft drive oil...ride it.

Coming off a cruiser you will have to give the ergos some time...it really is a comfortable bike.

I recommend a Gen II bike, even if you're considering used.
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« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2008, 02:31:59 PM »

seats are subjective indeed.

I bought an '07 with 1,177 miles on it July 5th and it now has 6,500 miles on it. I doubt I'll put 5,000 miles a month on it, but it's off to a respectable start, and is doing my 4th documented SS1K in two weeks.

Up to now, a 940 mile day, a bunch of 800 mile days, and yesterday's 640 mile romp to Lake City and surrounds have been great. IMO, the seat is fine - if not a bit soft. I prefer firm and well-shaped, and will likely end up with my zillionth Corbin.

Throttle response is fine in my opinion. I average between 25k & 30k miles a year and it's not an issue. It's a surprisingly good bike, better than I expected. Not as smooth or powerful as my ZX-14 (that accumulated 27k miles), but all around better than anything in it's class.

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« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2008, 10:14:22 AM »

There is much to applaud regarding the FJR; after 30k miles on my '06, here's the things I dislike:

Longest stopping distance I recall MCN ever reporting, at 144 feet from 60 mph. Considering that the bike has 320mm rotors, this is confusing, but confirms my experience.

Just about all FJRs will wobble uncontrollably if you remove both hands from the bars in the 40 to 50 mph range. The obvious solution is to keep at least one hand on the bars... but you asked for problems and that is one. Especially since I've never had another bike with the issue, and especially since Yamaha could have cured it easily at the factory, while the issue can be vexing for an owner.

The seat-- especially the passenger section-- is gawd awful. I had Sargent do a $500 gel upgrade F&R and a reshape to the rear. It still wasn't good, but much better. $400 of inflatable pads later, comfort has been found. Typical of every bike on the market except the Futura.

The paint is soft and the clear coat must set an industry-wide record for thinness.

The windshield scratches too easily.... but the electric raise and lower is awesome.

The sidestand is too vertical, too long and has too small a foot.

The throttle spring is a bit stiff, but worse, the turn in is too abrupt. Abruptness cured by installing a V2 throttle cam.

Stock luggage rack is a joke.

Some of the above has been addressed since '06. You do, however, get a bike that is an unmatched value when compared directly to other bikes in direct market competition. The FJR has no handling anomalies (except as noted above) and comes standard with great bag liners for which most manufacturers charge extra. The dash is great.

As with most bikes, a good dealer can be hard to find. Mine is fair at best... but at least there is one (five actually) nearby.
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« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2008, 01:23:11 PM »

Quote
Just about all FJRs will wobble uncontrollably if you remove both hands from the bars in the 40 to 50 mph range. The obvious solution is to keep at least one hand on the bars... but you asked for problems and that is one.


I've been blaming this on my Avon Storms. What tires are you running. I didn't notice this problem with the Metzler Z6's. I switched to Avons because of the cost of the 'B' rated tire required by metzler.

42K on my gen1 FJR with no problems. Easily the best bike I've ever owned.

Later, Carl-
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« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2008, 01:31:35 PM »




I've been blaming this on my Avon Storms. What tires are you running. I didn't notice this problem with the Metzler Z6's. I switched to Avons because of the cost of the 'B' rated tire required by metzler.

42K on my gen1 FJR with no problems. Easily the best bike I've ever owned.

Later, Carl-


A well balanced good shaped tire will not make the handlebars wobble (at least that rings true with mine). I'm running Avon Storms.
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« Reply #12 on: August 04, 2008, 02:57:53 PM »


A well balanced good shaped tire will not make the handlebars wobble (at least that rings true with mine). I'm running Avon Storms.

That is absolutely, 100% true up to the point you added the Avon Storms.  Storms had a problem when they first came out.  100% of the time, decelerating from 50 to 40 the front end would wobble when you took the hands off.  It was more pronounced on a down hill and the wobble would increase over time to being absolutely violent.  My theory was bad QC on the early ones and rumor has it that Avon fixed it.  Avon doesn't make their tires with balance points which may be an issue.  During the time these events happened there were a good many guys talking about very high weight amounts required to balance the front.  I had to rotate my tire around the rim to get an acceptable weight amount.  I have had no wobble with my current RoadSmarts, two Shinko fronts, and my Bridgestone original.

Also, MCN can say what they want, I love the brakes on my FJR.  They work great wet or dry.  I have Corbin and stock seats plus an AirHawk and a sheepskin covered gel pad. My conclusion is that seat is OK and what underwear and pants I've got on make a bigger difference than the seat.  On the throttle thing, adjust to it.  There are a lot worse out there.  

All in all the FJR is a great bike.  So is the ST1300 except it AIN'T GOT NO soul  Lol
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« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2008, 10:47:05 PM »

Have an 06  

Handlebars have never wobbled. (keep on good tires)

Put on MCL risers, handle bars angle on the wrist improved also.

VStream shield an improvement.

Stock seat sucks.

G-2 throttle and PCIII removed the flat spots and jerky throttle.

Removed the cats and put on Leo Vinci cans, spins up quicker.
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« Reply #14 on: August 06, 2008, 02:34:26 PM »

143,000 kilometers on a 2004.  Not any major problems. Did change the cam chain adjuster at the second valve check. I figure that was maybe more preventative measure than it was broken.
 
I would buy another FJR.  But only if I can wear this one out.
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« Reply #15 on: August 07, 2008, 04:18:58 AM »

My only breakdown was the ign switch thing, no big deal,easy fix thanks to the internet warning me of it!. Wife and I find the seats perfect for all dayers..Longest day was 2300km and nothing hurt.thats a good sign! Like the man says, biggest  comfort thing I find on my bikes is the shorts/pants i am wearing..huge diff, I find it sucks with blue jeans which i rarely ride in, with my mesh or armor  pants its a great seat! I find its best wind management on any of the big  st's for me, when low it gives you some air unlike some, and its nice clean smooth full face airflow.  I try to avoid putting it way up unless it rains,(where it works fine)  6" lower shield is great when hot out!
Nice forward lean will cure the sore butt/back thing the cruisers give you and allow longer runs once you get used to it, raise that window up tho and you take away any lift and  then get some arm pressure, don't like? get the risers , now your butt hurts, do the seat then..Smile just be aware of that.
Yes the efi calibration sucks off idle big time on my 06, sad for the $. Really noticeable if you also ride other good efi bikes.
 Only time mine no hand wobbles at  that speed  is  when front end light with a full passenger/luggage load, just like all my other bikes. Mine has been fine with the 3 diff makes of tires I have used, all acted diff, but all worked great once used to them, even the el cheapo's worked great!
In the end  my bike doesnt seem to have any problems that keep it from going anywhere or to worry about, just that stupid efi thing. The other things I don't like about it  are just personal stuff and not the bikes fault at all.As in for me its a large clunky bike compared to my other bikes, and i don't enjoy it  solo for those reasons, but for 2 up its the best I have found so far. BTW, biggest diff I found between this and the st13 was the  larger  way higher hunk of plastic in front of you that  made the bike feel even bigger than this one! way too much front end for me! That and premium gas requirement and the st13 has a bit  more low end.obviously  less higher up...otherwise  same thing.  Try them both!..see if its your thing at all! You might not like the weight and the size or ergos, but reliability and distance comfort won't be a problem...Bet you like it! Please buy mine!
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« Reply #16 on: August 08, 2008, 11:27:16 AM »

Why not ask what's right with the FJR?   Headscratch

I like mine a lot and would choose the bike all over again for the same reasons I bought it in the first place. In my very humble opinion, it is one of two of the two best sport-tourers ever built. The FJR will put serious amounts of real estate into your rear view mirrors in remarkably little time if you choose, and have you arriving at your destination just as excited about riding as when you left home.   Thumbsup

It is a very versatile bike.
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« Reply #17 on: August 09, 2008, 09:18:58 PM »

I have had an 05 ST1300 and currently ride an 08 FJR. The ST1300 has a little better wind protection, but besides that, the FJR is better in every other way. Better handling, power, low end torque, better mpg... The ST is a good bike, but it has no soul. I have had 22 bikes and the FJR is the the best of them all.  It does everything really good.

Paul B
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« Reply #18 on: August 09, 2008, 09:31:57 PM »

I have an '07 AE model.  It's my primary transportation, and I ridie it on my daily, 30-mile commute.  My commute is a mix of city streets, interstate, and curvy mountain roads.

It's been a geat ride every day, and the bike has--with the exception of the ignition switch going out on me one morning at 7:00am, it's been trouble-free.  It's the most enjoyable motorcycle I've ever ridden.
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