RentAGuzzi Motorcycle Rentals & Tours – Los Angeles CA
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Is the v7 Stone (2013) a keeper?

Discussion in 'V7/V9 Chat & Tech' started by v7flier, Oct 5, 2017.

  1. v7flier

    v7flier Tuned and Synch'ed GT Famiglia

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    Hi all,

    I am the 3rd owner of a 2013 v7 Stone. It has a rear seal leak, gear oil, most likely. Bike is not under any warranty, and dealer is 1 hr away, and expensive and says a 2 week turn around. A more local non-certified tech says about $1200 to take the engine apart, replace seals, replace oily clutch and only need the bike for a couple days (if we pre-buy the parts.) It has 25K miles on it.

    So, should I get the service done? And plan on keeping the bike? I just ride it around town, and to work and back as a commuter. No touring. Or should I sell it? Take a bath and cut my losses? I like the bike. Looks cool. Rumbles down the road. But, like most people, I dislike headaches. Too many headaches will outweigh the positives as a stylish commuter. Is this just the first of a trail of tears. I'd like to know before I sink some investment into it both with this fix and perhaps some upgraded shocks.

    Thanks
     
  2. Godfrey

    Godfrey Cruisin' Guzzisti GT Famiglia

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    It all depends on how much you like the motorcycle.

    If it's just a dollars and cents proposition to you, something to commute on, and you get no joy from just hopping on and going for a ride for the fun of just doing that, sell it and buy something new (or used) that doesn't have the problems. That kind of use reduces the bike to a transport appliance, and do we really care when a toaster stops working correctly? Usually no: we just replace it.

    If you like the bike, love riding, and enjoy that particular bike enough, a rear seal or transmission input shaft seal is a pretty easy repair. It's a bit complex because you have to take the engine out of the frame to split the engine and transmission apart, then you have to determine which is the leaky bit and do whatever's necessary to refurbish the seal. But aside from being a lot of parts to dismantle, fix, then reassemble, it's not really all that hard at all. The seal probably costs just a few dollars.

    The '75 850T I bought in 1995 had been sitting in someone's garage for a dozen years. It had no real value. I gave the guy $600 for it, took it home, and got it running. Battery, a few bad seals to replace, carburetors to clean out, etc. Once that was done, I realized that mechanically the bike was in reasonably sound shape. I sportified it: modified the footpegs to be rear set like my LeMans, created brake and gear shift linkages. I had the frame cleaned up and powdercoated. I fitted a set of V7 Sport handlebars and Verlichi headlight mounts as well as a set of BMW bar-end turn signals. I had the tank and toolboxes painted in Italian flag Tricolor. I put Koni shock absorbers on. I rode it to Corbin and had them make a saddle for me that truly worked.

    How much it all cost I didn't keep track of. I did most of the work myself, unless there was welding or fabrication involved. I learned how to do so many things by doing that work I cannot tell you what an education it was. I had the paint work done professionally. All I can tell you is that I owned and rode that bike for ten years and the gods only know how many miles, It remains in my memory the sweetest, most wonderful, most fun to ride bike I've ever owned. I sold it a dozen years ago to a friend, it's passed through two other friends' hands since and all remark on what a wonderful ride it is. It's probably run well over 150,000 miles since I pulled it out of the junk bin.

    Things like that are not a dollars and cents proposition. They require passion and a love of nice things that work, of good rides on sunny days. It requires joy and love in riding and doing the job. Then, it's worth whatever it costs to keep a wonderful motorcycle running.
     
    v7flier, GR1 and Trout like this.
  3. v7flier

    v7flier Tuned and Synch'ed GT Famiglia

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    Thanks for the reply. What an awesome story.

    Well, if I didn't like the bike, enjoy riding it, look forward to riding it, I wouldn't have even bothered to even post. I'm being lobbied to dump it by a previous Guzzi owner here in town. I not going to smack my head against the wall wishing I could have an experience like you. Reality is I'm not made of money, nor time, nor experience with motorbike maintenance. But, I own it, by a sort of happenstance (was cheap and looked cool, and I like Cake), and now that I have it, ride it, I like it. It's just worrying me a bit on reliability - read high maintenance. I'm leaning toward getting the work done. But, if I do, and then something else goes wrong, and it's another $XYZ, I'm going to wish I didn't. I'll be the sucker getting told "I told you so."

    Cheap, Reliable, Fun: Pick two!
     
  4. Godfrey

    Godfrey Cruisin' Guzzisti GT Famiglia

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    I understand completely. I've never had enough money to just shrug off a $1200 repair. It's an expensive investment in what rapidly becomes an older bike.

    But: Moto Guzzis are basically very durable and reliable bikes. A seal or two going bad doesn't mean the bike is going to die—after all, it's only four years old, and 25K miles is not a lot. That's four or five oil changes. Have the work done: it's a big job and for most people a bit too much. Be sure you bring it to a reputable shop where there's someone who you can talk to, ask questions of. Learn to do the light maintenance even if you don't ordinarily do it yourself but because it helps you understand what's what and ensure that you get the right things done. Keep an eye and an ear out for problems. The more you know and understand, the more reliable your motorcycle will become, and the more durable too.
     
    v7flier likes this.
  5. Trout

    Trout High Miler

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    Like Godfrey my avatar is an 850T that I got really cheap because: "Nobody can make it run".
    There was a spring missing on the choke slide on the left carb, used a spring from an old pen, rode the bike for many years.

    You are in a place I have been in myself & there is no easy answer.
    I'm going to contradict myself & be both pro & con Guzzi (or any mechanical device).

    I have had machines that I pumped $ after $ into until I got sick of looking at it & just knew that it was junk.
    Sold it or gave it away then watched the new owner keep it trouble free for many miles.

    I have had machines like my 850T that went for many, many miles with no issues.

    I have had machines (1400 Guzzi) that had every known issue plus some & decided to bail out on it before sinking more money.

    This will sound a bit odd but when it comes to motorcycles money is the least deciding factor.
    The minute you buy a bike new or used you may as well forget about the cost.
    What matters is will you be happy with that bike once the issues are worked out?

    You are the third owner of this bike, I'm pretty sure one of the previous owners is a member here & I remember him posting some of his disapointments with this Guzzi & his decision to sell it.

    Why did the second owner give up on it?
    Problems with the bike or was his expectations not met?
    If it was problems with the bike I might be thinking about moving on but if he just didn't like the bike then I'd be prone to keep it & fix it.

    I have bought a few Guzzis were I became the 3rd or 4th owner of a "troubled" bike & with just a little bit of time & investment had a very solid machine. The thing in my favor was the fact that I had a shop & could work on them.

    Dang shame that you can't hook up with some one who could supervise while you did the work.
    These bikes are really simple in design.
    Oh well I've rambled on enough.

    Just remember: "There are no wrong decisions, just learning opportunities".
     
    v7flier, john zibell and Godfrey like this.
  6. v7flier

    v7flier Tuned and Synch'ed GT Famiglia

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    Yup, I know the 1st owner. He is trying hard to convince me it's a nightmare in the making. I believe he's being honest, and since has first hand experience with the bike, then perhaps he's right. But, no one can see the future. I'm new to the game, so everything is a chance to learn, even if the lesson is "don't ever do that again."

    I think an ideal situation would be to do the work myself with a mentor. I have the room in my garage, but no tools. Something to think about.
     
  7. john zibell

    john zibell Moderator Staff Member GT Famiglia

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    No tools is a problem, but solved by buying tools. Do purchase quality tools. Don't get the el cheapo stuff. You don't need Snap On quality, the lowest quality I would say is Craftsman or Kobalt. Low quality tools can damage fasteners and your hands when they fail. If you have to take the clutch out, special tools will be needed. I found that buying the special tool pays for itself. Also get a good tool box to organize your tools. These will be a lifetime investment so don't be afraid to take the plunge. You will need seal drivers but you don't need the Guzzi special tool ones. There are sets available that will cover most seal sizes. I hate to speculate on the dollar value of my tool investment, but I have and will use them a great deal. I am still using tools I purchased when I was a teen (50 years ago) and they are still good.
     
  8. Kev M

    Kev M Cruisin' Guzzisti

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    Kobalt is pretty damn good stuff for the price. I keep it with my Snap-On stuff.
     
  9. vagrant

    vagrant Cruisin' Guzzisti GT Contributor

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    "It has a rear seal leak, gear oil, most likely"
    I'm a bit confused. is this the front transmission seal you think is leaking? the rear main on the engine? or the rear end / differential?
    Guzzi's shouldn't have a transmission or rear main seal issue with that few miles unless overfilled and that's highly likely based on the incompetence of some people. Now the 13's did have some rear drive seal issues but nothing worth selling the bike over.
    Have you cleaned the whole bike up and changed all fluids with the right amount of the right stuff?
     
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  10. Trout

    Trout High Miler

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    Is there a Vo-Tech school in your area (Vocational Training) or are they even around anymore?

    In New Jersey there were two that I remember was in Cape May & the other in Mays Landing.
    The auto shop teachers in both schools were real decent people & would sometimes recommend a "top" student to take on jobs.
    The one in Mays Landing would take on projects for extra credit & worked on cars, trucks, bikes & boats "in house".

    Ten or so years ago when I still had a shop I would have told you to "bring her on", there has got to be somebody in your area that would be willing to help.
     
  11. Godfrey

    Godfrey Cruisin' Guzzisti GT Famiglia

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    The first owner sold a bike that was less than four years old. Whether he had a good time with it or didn't like it, or had problems, and whether whatever problems he might have had were the fault of the bike or the fault of the owner and/or whomever serviced it, well, that's impossible to say. But I'd take anything he says that negative with a grain of salt.

    I have never sold a machine to someone that I thought was a nightmare. It might not have been great for me, but heck: what works for me doesn't work for nearly any of my moto friends either. So I find it very difficult to take someone trying to convince me that what I know is the right machine and the right thing to do with that machine seriously, just like I find it very difficult to berate someone because they happen to love some bike that doesn't suit me at all. The Ducati Scrambler I bought in July is a case in point: There's a huge community of Scrambler owners who are in love with the bike. I found it a miserable thing to ride, and painful. But if I sold it to someone and they really liked it, who am I to judge?

    The same thing goes for the decision of whether to put money into a bike that needs some care or not. I've put oodles of cash into bikes that were technically worth nothing, and most of the time it came out a great thing. A couple of times (like that same Ducati) I realized that I was wrong, it would never be what I fantasized, and I had to pull out and call it a loss.

    ———
    If you're afraid to fall down, you'll never stand up.
     
  12. v7flier

    v7flier Tuned and Synch'ed GT Famiglia

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    I don't believe the transmission was over filled. I do think synth is in it. Wouldn't the breather need to be clogged to cause pressure at the seals?

    I'm going to replace the gear oil, clean it up, and see what happens next. I've been led to believe that if the clutch doesn't slip, then there is no big deal. Ride it until then, and then do the work. Could be next week, or next year.
     
  13. vagrant

    vagrant Cruisin' Guzzisti GT Contributor

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    somebody could have filled it to the top while on the side stand not level. find the end of the breather hose remove the fill plug and see if you can blow through it easily.
     
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  14. v7flier

    v7flier Tuned and Synch'ed GT Famiglia

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    good idea - blow test - will do that.

    As for overfilling, after the oil started appearing around the inspection cap, I put the bike in a front wheel stand, which had it level side to side, took the gear oil cap off, and a couple teaspoons dribbled out. But, perhaps the oil has been seeping into the bell housing for awhile, and the oil was actually filled with more then a couple teaspoons initially. So, now that I think about it, I guess I know nothing.
     
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  15. v7flier

    v7flier Tuned and Synch'ed GT Famiglia

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    Hopefully someone can make sense of these by filename. I downloaded these manuals from here at GuzziTech.

    v7-service-13.pdf - ought to have gear oil details, doesn't
    2013-v7-em.pdf - details about the engine
    v7-om-13.pdf - like service, but less detail
    v7-parts-13.pdf
    V7-clutch-adjustment.pdf

    Any others I should I have?

    Also, none of these seem to give detailed information about gear oil service. I would like to review it, but can't find it. v7-service-13.pdf has transmission oil, engine oil, and other procedures with pictures, but I can only find the volume of gear oil to be 1L, and type. Perhaps I'm missing a manual?
     
  16. JACoH

    JACoH Cruisin' Guzzisti GT Site Contributor!

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    Just reading your posts here, no tools, no experience, sell it, get a Honda.
     
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  17. v7flier

    v7flier Tuned and Synch'ed GT Famiglia

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    LOL, you sound just like someone else I know. So there's two you that think I should sell. Did you jump the Guzzi ship for a Honda?

    I do see your point. My next post might be "how do I completely delete my GuzziTech account and all post content?"
     
  18. john zibell

    john zibell Moderator Staff Member GT Famiglia

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    If you are willing to put the time and effort into learning how to work on your bike it can be rewarding. Also just because the information you are looking for isn't in the manual for your specific bike, doesn't mean it won't be in a manual for an earlier bike of the same series. Guzzi manuals are infamous for lacking detail (though not as bad as Ducati) so don't give up and you will find what you need to know. That is how us old guys got to be knowledgeable, and we didn't have the internet!!
     
  19. v7flier

    v7flier Tuned and Synch'ed GT Famiglia

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    Current plan is to work on winning with this bike, not letting it beat me. But, if I loose, buy a Honda, not another one of these. But, there is something really sweet about this ride. Seems worth trying a bit longer.
     
  20. vagrant

    vagrant Cruisin' Guzzisti GT Contributor

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    actually with Guzzi it's best to take the answer you get from 4 out of 5 responses. it will be more accurate than the book.
    rear drive from my old memory 170 ml about 5.6 oz but it's easiest to get the bike level and fill it up to level from the hole that's at 9 O'clock. use Mobil 1 75-140.
    six speed uses 1/2 liter of oil the 5 speed 1 liter. use Mobil 1 75-90
    the engine uses 1.8 liter of 10-60 I prefer Motul. reasonable if bought on the internet. about $45 for 4 liters to your door. the older V7's have a oil drain hole in front and in back. drain both. filter is in front I change at the first service then every other service. the 2017 has just 1 drain.
    remember the castings are thin. don't over torque the fasteners.
    If you overfill the engine oil it will spit it into the air box and you will need a new filter.
    for what it's worth the Kobalt tools at Lowes are darn fine tools. the newer Craftsman suck.
     

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