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Why don't you guys have Service Manuals?


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I don't mind helping with questions. Most of us here do.

We get lot's of un-informed questions. Many come from me.

So how else do you learn, without asking?

It's called a Service Manual.

How can you own a dirt bike without a service manual?

I don't get it.

It's a Honda, but it's not a Honda Car!

It's a high-performance off-road machine.

But in my opinion, without a service manual for your bike you will eventually have major problems with the bike, with your maintenance methods, or your repairs.

I believe it to be a minimum responsibility, like having a drivers license.

OK, I'm done.

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How does one rotate the air in their tires? Can I use Astroglide in my forks? 🤣

I've always bought service manuals for every single bike I've ever owned, only because I'm a cheap bastard and can't see shelling out the ridiculous hourly shop rates just so some high school drop out can cross thread all the bolts on the head cover after he rotates the air in my airbox with the air in my tires. 🙂

For me, it's a toss up... I'm not sure if I like riding more than working and tinkering on bikes. Naw... I like riding way better! 👍

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Well said, Blue! A good shop book for your ride is an essential. I'm a cheap bastard too when it comes to mechanic fees so I try to do as much of my own work as possible plus I'm very particular and want things done right. I've yet to find a mechanic who can tighten a bolt or route cables and hoses correctly....no offense to anyone but I'm very picky about such minor things.

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I am, in no way, trying to slam shop mechanics. Some of them are absolute geniuses when it comes to all things on two wheels. I haven't met one yet, but I hear that they do exist.

Case in point; I purchased one of my street bikes new a few years ago, and was given a complimentary first service. Basic stuff; Oil change, check the chain slack, pump up the tires, adjust the clutch lever, so on and so forth. When I went to leave the dealership, the clutch cable was so tight, I couldn't even get out the driveway! There were greasy finger prints all over the plastics and seat. When I brought this up with the service manager, he pulled out an old oil soaked, greasy shop rag and proceeded to blend the grease to make it a nice even coating.

The next time the oil needed to be change, I went to do it myself, but found that most of the bolts holding the fairing on the bike were cross threaded, placed in the wrong order and in the wrong place. I had to purchase all new bolts. The oil filter was on so tight, I had to use a hammer to punch a screwdriver straight through it to leverage it off. I'm glad I didn't opt to have them check the valve clearance!

I feel that if I do the work myself, I know what to expect out of the machine I'm riding. I know that all the bolts have been properly torqued to factory specs (because that's what my service manual says) and won't come loose, or be over torqued and snap at the worst possible moment in time.

The added benefit of having a shop manual, besides saving money and gaining piece of mind, is that you learn a little something every time you crack it open, whether it's on this brand of bike or another. After awhile, a lot of the bikes become almost identical in nature or very similar in procedure, and the routine maintenance becomes second nature, but when you venture into unknown territory, like into the bowels of the transmission, a service manual is an absolute necessity.

If that is too much for you to handle, then take it to your local dealer and ride away in complete bliss.

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I don't mind helping with questions. Most of us here do.

We get lot's of un-informed questions. Many come from me.

So how else do you learn, without asking?

It's called a Service Manual.

How can you own a dirt bike without a service manual?

I don't get it.

It's a Honda, but it's not a Honda Car!

It's a high-performance off-road machine.

But in my opinion, without a service manual for your bike you will eventually have major problems with the bike, with your maintenance methods, or your repairs.

I believe it to be a minimum responsibility, like having a drivers license.

OK, I'm done.

Not everyone is mechanically inclined or wants to be. I have a buddy that rides dirt bikes, and his tool box consists of a glass jar with vise grips and 2 screw drivers. I’ve worked on his cars and bikes since high school. He’s an intelligent guy but I would get a little nervous if I saw him thumbing through a service manual.

I advised him to buy an xr400 about 10 years ago and he takes it in twice a year for maintenance. If I lived closer I would only charge a few beers to do the work. Then again, he doesn't come on forums asking what oil to use.

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