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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone,

I've been lurking these boards for about a month now so I decided to finally introduce myself. Purchased the ride the last week of May with 4,701 miles on the ODO. This is my first motorcycle and I feel extremely lucky to have stumbled across it. First I thought I wanted a Harley (sorry, I'm a n00b), then a Japanese cruiser. Sat on a Shadow Spirit, FZ6R, Bonneville SE, 07 Thruxston, 09 Street Triple, Monster 696, just to name a few.

Good thing I asked the salesperson at the dealership what used bikes they had for sale. There was an '01 Thunderbird with just 1400 miles that I thought I was going to purchase, but a repeat customer beat me to it that day. Went to go check out the Legend and knew it was going to be my bike right after I sat on it.

So far I've swapped in some Kuryakn foot pegs because the rubber on the stock ones would keep catching on my jeans, causing me to lose my balance; not good for a newbie rider. Sportier handlebars will be going on this week and I've been able to polish out all the swirls and marring on the paint. Oh, I've got a Monza gas cap on order too.

Power mods will come later; I need a lot more experience riding before I even think about more oomph. Plus, I'm COMPLETELY carburetor-illiterate; I've been modding/tuning and trying to come to grips with the turbocharged direct-injection engine in my car for the past 2 years. This looks like a good place to learn quite a bit about my bike.

:D
 

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Welcome aboard, Mad. Yes, we get kind of creative in here.

4.7 k is a little low for a '00, but not too bad. You are probably better off than you would have been with the '01. She should have been ridden enough to have gotten some most required maintenance. I'd be planning to change the battery by the end of the season, if not already.

How is she running?

Scot
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Welcome aboard, Mad. Yes, we get kind of creative in here.

4.7 k is a little low for a '00, but not too bad. You are probably better off than you would have been with the '01. She should have been ridden enough to have gotten some most required maintenance. I'd be planning to change the battery by the end of the season, if not already.

How is she running?

Scot
As far as I can tell, she's runnin good. My buddy rode the bike home for me and he said he was impressed with it; shifted strong, responsive throttle. His only gripe was the suspension bottoming out on him, but he's a good 100+lbs heavier than me; I'm 5'6" and little over a buck-fifty.

The chain was absolutely covered in crap when I got it. It took me the better part of 2 hours trying to clean it and I don't even know if I cleaned it correctly; used WD-40 on a small section but then it dawned on me that I could be doing more harm than good, so I switched to using Surf City Grime Destroyer. It's basically like P21S Total Auto Wash/S100 Cycle Cleaner, only it has a thicker consistency. The end result was a mostly clean chain. I don't know if it's rust/oxidation, but the center rings on the chain have a copper color to them.

Let's see, what else...I've noticed a small oil leak coming from where the gear selector connects to the transmission. There's also oil burned into the exhaust pipe underneath. Maybe the dealership over-filled the oil?

Battery *looks* like it's in good shape. When I pulled the seat off and checked the terminals, they were clean.

I do have a question though...what's the optimum RPM my motor should be idling? I've turned the screw so that it idles at ~1k rpms.

Hmmm, I should create a sig. that says something like, "Newbie still has a lot to learn!"
 

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Sounds good! We are about the same size. Engine typically idles at just over 1k.

Sometimes they do leak a bit at the selector, generally not much. When you replace the chain, might also want to change the seal there.
 

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Welcome to the best bikes on earth (can't speak to the rest of the planets, as I haven't been there, but some of my students have, mostly during my class:)). Seriously, I cannot think of a better first bike, as the Legend handles beautifully, and has a seat height that lets most folks sit flat footed at stop signs. If you like to spin your own wrenches, this is the bike for you; on the flip side, that means that it is also a piece of cake for any decent mechanic to sort out, especially old school carb men(or women), if you don't like to do your own maintenance. Two pieces of free advice:
1- Read every thread on here, as you will learn more than you thought possible, and be up to speed very quickly. Just don't drive yourself crazy lusting after all of the mods possible on this bike. Ride it for awhile, and then when (notice I didn't say "if") you decide to upgrade things, you'll really appreciate the improvement.
2- Take the MSF rider safety course. Don't throw another leg over your bike until you do. It just may save your life, and it will definitely help you to appreciate what a great decision you've made by purchasing such an awesome bike!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks guys! I feel better now that I know cafetbird. ssevy, I spin my own wrenches on everything I can get my hands on; lookin forward to working on this girl. I've already learned quite a bit just lurking...great stuff here. Before I purchased the bike, I decided to take a private one-on-one MSF safety course to see if I even liked being on a motorcycle. Within a week I had my M endorsement and within another, I'd purchased my first bike, w00h00. Let me just say that I don't even see myself riding the bike on the interstate any time this year. :eek:

Man, I can't wait to get home from work...it's nice and sunny out right now. Prolly 80 with a nice breeze. Gotta get those new handlebars on quick so I can go for a ride!

:thumbsup:
 

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Welcome to the forum Mad...I have a 99 Legend that I bought last year with 3800 miles on it (Obsidian Black). Mine had sat for a while, had been left outside earlier in its lifetime, but with some loving attention (and a small amount of money), she is back to her original mechanical condition.

When I first brought it home, the carbs ran very rough under 4K. Eventually, I had to completely go through the carbs, but first I ran SeaFoam through several tankfuls. This allowed me to ride it for several hundred miles before I tackled the carb removal.

Front fork nose dive is common, but heavier oil and/or progressive springs will fix that. Rear shock can be a tad bit soft...check the threads for rear shock replacement, I've bought my ninja Z11 shock but just haven't had the time to change it out yet.

Everything you will need can be found on this forum...it was extremely beneficial to me the first year I had the bike. There are many folks who post (or who have posted) that are knowledgable in mechanical theory, modifications, and practical experience.

Good luck with your new Legend...they are great bikes and you will really enjoy it. Don't be afraid to ask questions here, that is what this forum is all about.
 

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Congrats on your new ride.

I have the same bike (model year and color). It's been a hoot to ride and really only requires a minimum amount of modifications to make it a great all around ride. If you were to change anything out start with the suspension. The rear is suspension leaves little to be desired. I dropped in a rear shock from a Thunderbird and it made a big difference in the rear and put progressive springs up front.

Other then that my bike is stock and has been relatively maintenance free. Since I was sixteen I have owned at least twenty other street bikes over the years and this is one of the few I plan on keeping. I hope to give this bike to my son when he is old enough to get his own bike. All I can say is enjoy the ride!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks again. I'm just trying to take care of little stuff right now. The helmet, clothing and tax/title/licensing are keeping me from doing anything major like a suspension upgrade.

I did swap out the stock handlebar for a superbike type and I like the feel and position much better; my back is straighter without feeling like I'm in too much of a sportbike position. That and the angle at which I twist the throttle is much better. I broke my right arm close to the wrist many many moons ago and the bones didn't heal correctly so flexing my wrist at a certain angle is an exercise in futility.

Got the tank off for the first time last night so I could add coolant. I honestly think I've done more maintenance to the bike in the past two weeks that was ever done in the past two years! I think I'll enjoy working on the bike as much, if not more than riding it!
 

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I have a 99 Legend I bought new. Thought I would keep it for 5 years and get something different. Ten years and 40,000 miles later it runs like a top and I can't seem to part with it. I do my own maintenance except for valve clearance but it hasn't needed shims yet! Have fun with that #2 spark plug and air filter. Not so bad after you do it a couple of times. Enjoy it and be safe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
First lengthy ride today! About 4 hours and over 100 miles. I'm happily exhausted. Towards the end of the ride, I started experimenting with shift points. I'd say I got a good introduction to what the bike likes and doesn't like...and especially what *I* like and don't like.

:D
 

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I started experimenting with shift points. I'd say I got a good introduction to what the bike likes and doesn't like...and especially what *I* like and don't like.

:D
I find that while hard in the twisties, I like to keep it in the 5-6k RPM range. That gives good control entering and good power exiting the turns....
 

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shift points

I just rode my buddy's new 2000 Legend home for him yesterday. It was about a five hour ride, and I deliberately took the fun roads and stayed off the slabs as much as possible. The bike he purchased is all stock, while mine has an 18 tooth front sprocket, Thruxton needles, 42 pilots and TORs. Mine also has a ZX11 rear shock, progressive front springs, and handlebar risers and a king/queen seat (which I took with me and swapped onto his bike after the first few hours). It was very interesting to have such a great opportunity to compare the handling, ride and performance of the two bikes. On his stock bike, I found myself often trying to shift up one more gear for cruising, which of course wasn't there. I also found myself shifting into 2nd much sooner coming off a dead stop, or revving it pretty high if I was coming from a dead stop into a left hand turn. I think the 18 tooth gives you better cruising rpms, and a longer acceleration period when leaving a dead stop, without sacrificing performance in any way. For my region's terrain and my style of riding, the 18 tooth seems like it keeps the engine in a better rev range without so much winding up. Just something to keep in mind when it's time to change the chain and sprockets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Quick question...

If the rear spring is completely compressed, i.e., all the threads on the pre-load adjuster are showing, then bottoming out is going to happen a LOT faster, right? What tool do I need to back that out (basically rotate those plates upwards)?

Or should I just start saving up for a new Hagon rear shock or ZX11 shock? I already want some Pazzo adjustable levers, heheh. :eek:

cafetbird, I still need to work on the twisties. Translating what I've learned from HPDE's in my car to the bike needs to wait until I'm more comfy on the bike.

ssevy, I'll *definitely* be looking into the 18 tooth sproket when it's time. What you describe is exactly what I'm looking for. There were more than a handful of times on my ride when I wanted a sixth gear.
 

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There is a tool (which I bought:() to adjust the lock rings, but honestly, it didn't work worth a turd. I used a straight punch and a small dead blow ballpein hammer, which did the trick just fine. I sprayed some lube on the threads first (WD40 is fine), to clean the road grime off, and then it is just a matter of backing off the top ring until it is loose, and then you may be able to spin it by hand. Since the bottom ring is holding back the spring, you'll have to use the punch to turn it. Just be careful not to mangle the notches all up when you're doing it. Personally, I would just get a ZX11 shock and take the stocker out. Keep it though, as I think Irlmike talked about swapping the heavier stock spring onto the ZX shock to make a hybrid which works better for 2 up riding. If you always ride solo, the ZX11 will be just fine as is. I ride 2 up with mine, and since doing the front end upgrade, it doesn't bottom out anymore.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
...Personally, I would just get a ZX11 shock and take the stocker out...
This seems like the path of least resistance...any suggestions on the best place to purchase one? On my ride yesterday afternoon I started lifting my @$$ off the seat a bit before each big bump I encountered. Not cool when I'm paying more attention to the surface of the road than what's up ahead. :mad:

For now, it's all solo riding but I always keep stock parts. As always, thanks for the advice.
 

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I found mine on ebay for about $35. The prices can vary widely, but if you are patient, one will come along. I also have a ZX9 shock with the remote adjuster which I bought for the same price, thinking it would be better for 2 up. Irlmike has a new post about adding the stock spring to the ZX9 to improve it, but I decided to keep my ZX11 after doing the front end, as this cured my bottoming out on turns 2 up. If you want it, I'll gladly part with it for the $35 I paid plus shipping. Just send me a pm if you are interested.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
PM sent ssevy!

:D
 
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