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V-Strom Customization

This page is a run down of some of what I've done to my V-Strom

September 28, 2005
Bought Bike New!

I called around, after deciding to grab one of these and a dealer 40 miles away had two '05's on the floor:  blue & red.

I had to have the red one!  So I rode right out there on the Concours, determined to leave it there.

For those who like to compare deals, I traded in my '87 Concours (which I only had for about 5 mos.).  Paid $6849 (incl. dest., not incl. sales tax) for a "left-over" unit just uncrated a week earlier.  They gave me $1560 for the Concours!

When I got home, I adjusted throttle cable play: too loose; changed the "pm/am" clock error; adjusted tire pressure.


Windscreen adjustment.  The wind buffeting became annoying, so I played around with spacers and going to the highest (unofficial) setting for the screen.  Much better.  Still going to play some more with angle.





May 2006: bought 27" Tall Cee Bailey.  May cut down if wax can't keep rain water off.  Hard to see through in rain, but what a nice ride behind this screen!

Update:  I cut 4" off the top.  Sad to say, some buffeting is back. I bought a MadStad adjustible bracket and we'll see how that helps.


MADSTAD Windshield Bracket

Click HERE to see more of my pics on this product.


I hacked off the top of the stock screen with a rotozip.  It's a bit rough looking, but it works great--no buffeting!


UPDATE:  I really never ride with this set up.  Not since I wrote the original review here have I ridden with this screen.  I try every spring and it just doesn't seem to work well...




O-ring Throttle lock.  This technique isn't working at all. 

And the Wide Crampbuster is a must.



Rubber band Throttle lock...I stole this idea from another forum rider!  Works great, gotta get use to using two hands to operate. Top:  rubber strap stowed.  Bottom: rubber strap in action.

UPDATE:  once I installed my heated grips, the gap was too large between throttle cable housing and grip.  Had to scrap the technique.  Haven't looked into a thicker band, but that could work.


Suzuki Knuckleguard Installation:  This was pretty easy.

UPDATE:  The best add-on for sure.  Buy these if you haven't yet.


Inexpensive "Fenda Extenda" product.  Two mudflaps from JC Whitney for $5.  I used Superlock fastener material to secure it.


Givi knock-off top case

Bracket went on with a little inginuity: bolts upside down with rubber thread covers.

Little rubber bumpers were placed on the bracket to reduce the amount of play when case attached.  Case IS waterproof!

Also, you can see my Nelson-Rigg expandable saddle bags.  I rode in some serious rain with these.  Chose to use heavy duty garbage bags as liners vs. the clunky rain covers.  They work great and store a bunch of stuff!

The other bag on the seat is a waterproof Baja bag.  Be careful when mounting these bags!  They have no mounting points and this one squirmed around a bit on its maiden voyage.

You can also see a beaded seat in this shot.  I haven't used them enough to really make a decision on when/where to use them for the most comfort.


Cheap Saddlebag Support:  don't laugh, it works!  Click HERE for more...


There are other alternatives to the MadStad support available, I don't think Mark is marketing this product currently.



Aerostich heated vest access.  If I need access to the wire to plug in my heated vest, I can remove this section of bodywork and it's right there!


Garmin GPS V:  You gotta get one of these!  It's not state-of-the-art tech, but it's still damn good for the price.


Auxillary fuse panel.  6-circuit fuse panel from auto store.  Run a hot lead from battery to panel.  Use Aerostich "Posilock" connector to ground accessories to battery.

I currently have my heated vest and GPS wired via this set up.  Plans are to add a voltmeter and air horn (sitting on work bench!) to this panel also.




I've since added a 12-volt adapter plug.  I wired this directly to my "always hot" fuse block.  See arrow.  Ignore the red square, this plug goes to an orange 5 amp fuse on the far left.


Using a motorcycle jack with the V-Strom

It ain't pretty, but I figured out how to use my motorcycle jack with the V-Strom.  A center stand would be a better way to go.  If you have these items, you can support your bike for front tire removal.  Click HERE for details...


Rox Handlebar Risers

I installed these after contemplating about getting them for almost a year.

I did have to remove the gas tank and re-route a bunch of stuff to get them on with the ability to not stretch cables and hoses.  At first I had the bars mounted higher.  I felt like they were too high, so I brought them back as far as I could without hitting the cowling.  Man, I love these things!  Well worth the money.

UPDATE:  The best add-on for sure.  Buy these if you haven't yet.



Kimpex Heated Grips + Thermometer Volt Meter install.

I decided to put my heated grip kit and voltmeter/thermometer on the bike right before spring.  I had the body work off, so I figured this would be a good time.

Bottom line:  heated grips are worth the time and effort.  Voltmeter is good to have, but I had to move it since it caused wind buffeting believe it or not.

Click HERE for install photos.


Speed Bleeders for simple brake fluid changes.  www.speedbleeders.com

Click HERE for install photos.


Installed a set of these foot pegs in a few minutes.  The price for them was $12.95 + S&H from www.d2moto.com.  Part Number: FP008, doesn't list the vstrrom, but they fit good.

I've wanted a wider peg for when standing, primarily through small towns to give the butt a rest.  This price was too good to pass up.  We'll see how they work out...



Stebel Nautilus Air Horn install. 

I've had this horn sitting in my garage for over two years in a box and decided this would be a '08-'09 winter project. 

I bought mine else where, but twisted throttle has all you  need to do this right:  click here.  Make sure you get a relay.  Simply hooking this horn up to your existing horn wires won't work.

Part of the reason why I haven't installed this yet is that I rarely use my horn.  To be honest, in most situations, if you have to use your horn to prevent a collision, you should have been paying more attention!  I said "in most situations," so therefore I decided that I'd rather have this horn for those other situations.

See INSTALL page for more...



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