Buying new bike or upgrading the 919 - Wrist Twisters
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post #1 of 24 Old 03-05-2019, 04:34 AM Thread Starter
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Buying new bike or upgrading the 919

I've had my 919 for a year and a half now and I have put about 15,000 miles on it. The only modifications on it are delkelvic CF exhausts, renthal medium bars and I swapped out the mirrors and levers. Also installed a 520 chain and sprocket kit from LDH with stock gearing. I'm pretty sure the fork oil has never been changed and the valves have never been adjusted. I still really enjoy this bike but and I am having a hard time deciding what if I should dump some money into it and keep it for the long haul or just ride the shit out of it as-is for a few more years and get a new bike. ODO is at 31,000 miles now.

The type of riding I do is a combination of commuting, riding twisty roads on the weekends, and doing long multi day trips a few times a year.

If I decide to dump money into it these are the mods I would do:
-SS brake lines
-Replace fork seals + oil
-Racetech fork springs
-Ohlins rear shock
-Find some suspension guru to help me properly set up suspension
-Power commander
-check + adjust the valves if needed

If I decide to just ride the shit out of the bike as is I would still get the SS brake lines and change the fork oil and seals.

How does the 919 with my proposed modifications stack up against a stock FZ09 or other similar, more modern naked bikes? Is it more cost efficient to just save up for a few years, sell the 919 and buy a more modern bike?

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post #2 of 24 Old 03-05-2019, 05:47 AM
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The cost effective part is a bit tricky. When you replace a part with another part, you pretty much never get all your money back. The real value is in you getting the bike you like vs buying another.

The value of doing maintenance work is pretty bad too, if you look at the costs of having the valves inspected and adjusted vs the value you get from that it's not a good deal, but if the bike needs the adjustment, the person buying the bike should reduce the price.

IMO, the value of the 919, compared to other bikes, is amazing. If you can put the bike on the level of a Kawi ZRX or Ducati Monster.

A well cared for 919 can hit 100K, it's been done. Aside from the stock suspension, there's no "known bad" things about the bike. Generally there's plenty of part to modify the bike as you want.

On the down side, even a well equipped 919 doesn't seem to fetch the money as some other bikes. This only matters when/if you sell it.

There's no reason that the 919 can't be the bike you'd love to have, some mods are just too much, like anti-lock brakes. Others are "involved" like the RC51 forks.

Selling a bike that needs work, is generally a lost cause.

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post #3 of 24 Old 03-05-2019, 07:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anuspotatus View Post
I've had my 919 for a year and a half now and I have put about 15,000 miles on it. The only modifications on it are delkelvic CF exhausts, renthal medium bars and I swapped out the mirrors and levers. Also installed a 520 chain and sprocket kit from LDH with stock gearing. I'm pretty sure the fork oil has never been changed and the valves have never been adjusted. I still really enjoy this bike but and I am having a hard time deciding what if I should dump some money into it and keep it for the long haul or just ride the shit out of it as-is for a few more years and get a new bike. ODO is at 31,000 miles now.

The type of riding I do is a combination of commuting, riding twisty roads on the weekends, and doing long multi day trips a few times a year.

If I decide to dump money into it these are the mods I would do:
-SS brake lines
-Replace fork seals + oil
-Racetech fork springs
-Ohlins rear shock
-Find some suspension guru to help me properly set up suspension
-Power commander
-check + adjust the valves if needed

If I decide to just ride the shit out of the bike as is I would still get the SS brake lines and change the fork oil and seals.

How does the 919 with my proposed modifications stack up against a stock FZ09 or other similar, more modern naked bikes? Is it more cost efficient to just save up for a few years, sell the 919 and buy a more modern bike?
I've ridden quite a few newer bikes with the thoughts of eventually replacing the 919 and none of them have come close to making me consider it. I really like the FZ09, but the power delivery is quite different, and doesn't have the intoxicating low and mid range yank that the 919 does, although it has slightly more top end feel. I also didn't find it as comfortable. I've ridden a street and speed triple as well and had simlar feelings about those. I'd love to try out a ktm super duke GT, but that's 4 times what you'd spend on a 919 and all the mods you could throw at it.

For what you have listed as your usage I really don't think (or at least haven't found) a bike that can fit those needs any better or even as good as a 919 can.

Love is the feeling you get when you like something as much as your motorcycle - Hunter S. Thompson
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post #4 of 24 Old 03-05-2019, 07:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anuspotatus View Post
I've had my 919 for a year and a half now and I have put about 15,000 miles on it. The only modifications on it are delkelvic CF exhausts, renthal medium bars and I swapped out the mirrors and levers. Also installed a 520 chain and sprocket kit from LDH with stock gearing. I'm pretty sure the fork oil has never been changed and the valves have never been adjusted. I still really enjoy this bike but and I am having a hard time deciding what if I should dump some money into it and keep it for the long haul or just ride the shit out of it as-is for a few more years and get a new bike. ODO is at 31,000 miles now.

The type of riding I do is a combination of commuting, riding twisty roads on the weekends, and doing long multi day trips a few times a year.

If I decide to dump money into it these are the mods I would do:
-SS brake lines
-Replace fork seals + oil
-Racetech fork springs
-Ohlins rear shock
-Find some suspension guru to help me properly set up suspension
-Power commander
-check + adjust the valves if needed

If I decide to just ride the shit out of the bike as is I would still get the SS brake lines and change the fork oil and seals.

How does the 919 with my proposed modifications stack up against a stock FZ09 or other similar, more modern naked bikes? Is it more cost efficient to just save up for a few years, sell the 919 and buy a more modern bike?
My 919 is almost 35lbs lighter than stock with premium suspension and pretty much everything you can throw at it without getting really crazy. The difference between it and my 919 set up for touring and Givi's is substantial, way more than you'd think. It just rockets away from a standing start and drops into bends as well as my F4i did. It's truly amazing what Honda did to make it so nimble.

When I rode the FZ09 I was amazed at how much faster it was. I'm not sure why my comparison is so different from Badmoon's but the dyno chart says nothing, below 50mph that bike is a grenade and the throttle is the pin. Power is the only thing better about it and even that could be argued against. I immediately stated noticing how everything about it is inferior to my lightweight 919. The 919 is your Golden Retriever and the FZ-09 is little shithead Chihuahua.

I've ridden my 919 to go test ride an, SV1000, Ninja1000, S1000R, FZ-09, VFR1200, 765R, SV650 and may others I'm forgetting. While impressed by them all, I always get back on my 919 and ride away with a smile. (And a full wallet)
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post #5 of 24 Old 03-05-2019, 03:42 PM
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Keep the 919 for a few more years yet. Yours is barely worn in.

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post #6 of 24 Old 03-05-2019, 05:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ditch View Post
My 919 is almost 35lbs lighter than stock with premium suspension and pretty much everything you can throw at it without getting really crazy. The difference between it and my 919 set up for touring and Givi's is substantial, way more than you'd think. It just rockets away from a standing start and drops into bends as well as my F4i did. It's truly amazing what Honda did to make it so nimble.

When I rode the FZ09 I was amazed at how much faster it was. I'm not sure why my comparison is so different from Badmoon's but the dyno chart says nothing, below 50mph that bike is a grenade and the throttle is the pin. Power is the only thing better about it and even that could be argued against. I immediately stated noticing how everything about it is inferior to my lightweight 919. The 919 is your Golden Retriever and the FZ-09 is little shithead Chihuahua.

I've ridden my 919 to go test ride an, SV1000, Ninja1000, S1000R, FZ-09, VFR1200, 765R, SV650 and may others I'm forgetting. While impressed by them all, I always get back on my 919 and ride away with a smile. (And a full wallet)
How'd you lose 35 pounds?

I know about the Pairs removal, rear foot pegs, LION battery, rear fender, but didn't think that added up to very much, maybe 10 pounds?

What else is there?

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post #7 of 24 Old 03-06-2019, 08:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KarlJay View Post
How'd you lose 35 pounds?

I know about the Pairs removal, rear foot pegs, LION battery, rear fender, but didn't think that added up to very much, maybe 10 pounds?

What else is there?
It all just adds up. Single low pipe is the biggest one, Gilles rearsets are 6lbs, grabrail, gas cap, guages, headlight and the mounts are heavy (replaced with Koso) Chain and aluminum sprockets wear out quickly but this bike costs peanuts to run so I don't care. Even my Penske and F4i forks are 2 lbs lighter. Integrated turn signals, renthal bars, F4i rear axle. One thing doesn't make a different but a couple dozen will.
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post #8 of 24 Old 03-06-2019, 02:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badmoon692008 View Post
I've ridden quite a few newer bikes with the thoughts of eventually replacing the 919 and none of them have come close to making me consider it. I really like the FZ09, but the power delivery is quite different, and doesn't have the intoxicating low and mid range yank that the 919 does, although it has slightly more top end feel. I also didn't find it as comfortable. I've ridden a street and speed triple as well and had simlar feelings about those. I'd love to try out a ktm super duke GT, but that's 4 times what you'd spend on a 919 and all the mods you could throw at it.

For what you have listed as your usage I really don't think (or at least haven't found) a bike that can fit those needs any better or even as good as a 919 can.
Since you mentioned the GT, I’ll throw in a few thoughts.

I had a 919 and in October replaced it with a 2016 Super Duke GT.

IMO, it is a severely underrated bike in the US, but very popular in Europe and Australia.
The R is obviously extremely popular in the US.

My personal thoughts are that it is because American riders prefer comfort over sport in their sport tourers. And they GT heavily leans to the sporty side, sacrificing touring comfort (still very comfortable when compared to nakeds and sport bikes).

Because of this, and coupled with a new re-design for 2019, now is a great time to purchase a GT.
The MSRP is $20k (vs $18k for the R), but their are several significant differences to the GT.
Mine was brand new (old stock) and I got a $3500 factory rebate, $2000 additional off from the dealer, and no dealer fees (just taxes).

Here is a current deal on a used (6k miles):
https://www.cycletrader.com/listing/...-GT-5003546844

What the GT adds (over the already great specs of the R):
-More comfortable seating (rider and passenger).
-windscreen
-larger gas tank, that also adds wind protection
-luggage (that comes off cleanly, no racks, in 15 seconds for a naked-ish look).
-heated grips
-cruise control
-my personal favorite: electronically controlled suspension. 3 suspension settings and 4 pre-load settings.

I plan on keeping it stock as the power is more than enough for me and the suspension is already great.
Maybe a slip-on for aesthetics and exhaust note.
So shouldn’t have a lot of extra modification costs that I might have had with other bikes.

I did buy an extended warranty (have 6 years total), something I don’t usually do for anything.
As all that technology and European does concern me a bit.

The GT likes to hang out around 5k rpm when cruising. And has insane torque from that point on.
It has great torque everywhere but I actually felt like the 919 was just a bit snappier from 2k-5k.
But that could have been perception as the 919 is lighter and completely naked.

Either way, it is mental, but yet is completely under control and feels very safe and stable at very high speeds.

As long as you keep the rider aids (traction control and ABS) on, it is a very manageable bike and not intimidating at all.
And the engineers did a great job of not letting you know/feel when the aids are “helping you out.”

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post #9 of 24 Old 03-06-2019, 02:41 PM
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One other way of looking at this is that you already have the 919. You can dump it or ride it out then dump it or you can upgrade it and you'll get more money for it if you sell it.

If the upgrades are $1500~$2000, then you should be able to get 1/2 of that back when you're done if you keep the original parts.

That's 1/5th the price of the other bike.

Point: it's not really that much of a risk to rework the 919 and see how you like it, as long as you do it right.
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post #10 of 24 Old 03-06-2019, 03:47 PM
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it would still be cheaper than buying a new bike even if you refurbish and mod the shiz out of it...


It also depends how long you want to keep it for. over the long run it's still going to be cheaper to own.
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post #11 of 24 Old 03-06-2019, 07:12 PM
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I've been tempted may times by forged wheels but always chicken out, I can't imagine it handling any better than it already does. Best weight savings there is though.

https://motowheels.com/i-8113937-oz-...ornet-900.html

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post #12 of 24 Old 03-06-2019, 08:41 PM
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Almost nothing related to motorcycles is a rational expenditure, at least for me. I don't use it to commute and it is essentially a toy if i think about it.

It makes me happy and I have ALWAYS come home after a ride being in a better place, so to speak.

Bought mine for $2500 with 10K miles, new pilot 4's and front and rear stands 2 years ago.

Unlike most things in my life, cost benefit analysis is out the window though I still try to justify and rationalize...

Just spent 1K on ohlins and new fork springs and I am glad i did it.

Either way you go you will probably end up making the right decision, lol.
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post #13 of 24 Old 03-07-2019, 05:11 AM
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I have a 2007 919 that is "box stock" with about 20,000 miles on the clock. I also have a few other bikes, including Triumph Street Triple R and Aprilia Shiver 750, and Bonneville T100. If my wife suddenly came to me one day and said..."That's it!! You gotta get rid of the fleet and you can keep only one bike," I'd keep the 919. You can certainly find other bikes that have better performance, weigh less, corner better, handle bumpy roads better, get better fuel economy, are easier to work on.......,.,.. However for me, the 919 is the best all-around motorcycle I've ever seen and I've been riding 40+ years now.


Your 919 won't get you much for a trade-in value and not much more in a private sale. If you must experiment with a different bike, just keep the 919 and get whatever other bike you think will please you. I absolutely guarantee that if you sell your 919 you will regret it because "they don't make 'em like that anymore." And if you keep it and get something else besides, you'll still ride the 919 and still grin ear-to-ear every time you ride it.
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post #14 of 24 Old 03-07-2019, 08:47 AM
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+1. Given what 919's are worth these days, there just no reason to sell one unless you have to. I'll go ahead and plug my Bandit 1250 though, it feel very much like a heavyweight 919 that's much nicer on the highway. It's the only other bike I've found to be as universally useful as the 919.

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post #15 of 24 Old 03-07-2019, 09:11 AM Thread Starter
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Alright you've all convinced me to keep the 919. I think the big upgrade I am gonna do this year is the suspension. Gonna rebuild the stock forks with racetech springs and possibly the gold valve cartridge emulators. For the rear I'm just gonna bite the bullet and get the ohlins.

Thanks for all the input

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post #16 of 24 Old 03-07-2019, 12:03 PM
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It only stings once, you just have to look at how much you're not spending.

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post #17 of 24 Old 03-07-2019, 12:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anuspotatus View Post
Alright you've all convinced me to keep the 919. I think the big upgrade I am gonna do this year is the suspension. Gonna rebuild the stock forks with racetech springs and possibly the gold valve cartridge emulators. For the rear I'm just gonna bite the bullet and get the ohlins.

Thanks for all the input
A wee detail correction.
Emulators are for damping rod forks.
Valve Kits (Valves and Shims) are for cartridge forks ala 919.

As for the Ohlins, you can't go wrong.
But having it would rather beg for the front fork Valve Kits as well.

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post #18 of 24 Old 03-07-2019, 12:27 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for correcting me.

I looked on the kyleracing site and didn't see any kind of valve kits for the 919 which lead me to searching on other sites.

What is the difference between these 2 kits? If I buy one of these kits, racetech springs, and replacement fork seals, will I need anything else to complete my forks?

https://www.sportbiketrackgear.com/r...lve-fork-kits/

https://www.sportbiketrackgear.com/r...lve-fork-kits/

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post #19 of 24 Old 03-07-2019, 12:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anuspotatus View Post
Thanks for correcting me.

I looked on the kyleracing site and didn't see any kind of valve kits for the 919 which lead me to searching on other sites.

What is the difference between these 2 kits? If I buy one of these kits, racetech springs, and replacement fork seals, will I need anything else to complete my forks?

https://www.sportbiketrackgear.com/r...lve-fork-kits/

https://www.sportbiketrackgear.com/r...lve-fork-kits/
One is the early compression valve.
The more expensive one is the later improved valve.
Then in addition you need a Rebound valve kit.
Do NOT use their High Frequency Rebound valve, noting Racetech says it is not for street use.

Re Racetech's site
Get to Home.
Get to Search and get the list to display, pick Product Search
Now you can enter in the bike details.
Then the page you are really after will appear.
I went with G2-R Compression Valves and standard Rebound Valve, not the HFR Rebound Valve.
Be very wary of blindly following their front spring rate selector in terms of the particulars of the 919.

A bit more for you.

Racetech uses brass for their valves.
Traxxion uses annodized aluminum.
Both rely exclusively on damping force curve shaping by the shim stacks alone.
Ohlins uses brass.
Ohlins shapes with the valve porting and the shim stack.

If you are looking to get the Ohlins from DKR, then why not at least consider getting the Ohlins valves kits and springs from there too?
You get a prebuilt stack that way, unlike the Racetech and Traxxion where you get a pile of shims, then select and arrange in proper sequence.

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post #20 of 24 Old 03-08-2019, 06:24 AM
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Contact LDH for the Ohlins valves, he has them.

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post #21 of 24 Old 03-08-2019, 12:02 PM
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Contact LDH for the Ohlins valves, he has them.
As well as the matching Ohlins oil and Ohlins fork springs.

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post #22 of 24 Old 03-08-2019, 12:24 PM
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Quote:
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmb View Post
Contact LDH for the Ohlins valves, he has them.
As well as the matching Ohlins oil and Ohlins fork springs.
Correct!

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post #23 of 24 Old 03-09-2019, 11:37 AM
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Bet a new bike. Why do you want to ride the same old thing for years on end?

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post #24 of 24 Old 03-10-2019, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Sniper-x View Post
Bet a new bike. Why do you want to ride the same old thing for years on end?
I've tried as have many others, almost everyone regrets selling their 919. The key is to keep your 919 and buy another bike.
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