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MCN  says:

You Ask/You Answer: The cost of servicing

"The cost of servicing my bike (2009 Ducati 848) isn't horrendous, but it is significant, as it was for the CBR600RR I had before it. The parts aren't too expensive, it's the main dealer labour rates that ramp it up – and I'm not arguing with their need to charge those rates, but I'm sorely tempted to do some of...

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  • Posted 2 years ago (30 January 2013 09:45)

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Sep 09

Posts: 905

Rogerborg says:

Hmm, OK, I admit it, I did use a garage, once.

I even provided the parts to save them any excuses, but it still took them two weeks to complete the work, and they bodged it. Serves me right for trying to support a local business, I suppose.

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Jan 10

Posts: 126

get a good dealer

I don't touch my bikes. I get my local extremely good honda mechanic to do everything. I put a few quid aside for the cost around £35 per hour get your finances right and get a reliable expert to do the job. For me owning a bike is about riding it and keeping it looking as good as possible. But I can appreciate there are thousands of home mechanics who love tinkering, not for me though.

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Aug 02

Posts: 3293

eatcs01 says:


Not Ball. I've not had any dealings with them. I'm talking about Dave Barkshire.

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Feb 10

Posts: 159

ducatigav says:

nothing off the cards if you feel upto it  and im sure like many others there is always a friend who the go to guy when ur struggling only thing i get done is tyres as there not much in it and i havent bought the kit to do it yet

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Oct 09

Posts: 40

Vortex52 says:

Maintenance cost

I do not touch my bike either! It's my life on 2 wheels and I only take it for proper servicing at Steve Jordan Motorcycles, they are brillhant, very competent mechanics with a very fair pricing.

Sometimes you have to compromise, some feel the prices are hight but when you take in consideration the safety aspect of having a bike properlly serviced and the piece of mind, it is worth it!

Put feww quids aside daily and you won't feel the costs!

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Aug 02

Posts: 3293

eatcs01 says:


I service everything on my ZZR600 (with the exception of valve clearances, as the cams need removing to change the shims). I even change my own tyres. When I've serviced it, I KNOW for certain that the oil and filter have been changed. I KNOW for certain that the brake calipers have been stripped, cleaned, regreased, bled up and got new pads if required. I KNOW the carbs have been balanced.


There are many aspects of the service that you cannot see have been done. I get the satisfaction of knowing how my bike works. If I get a strange noise or vibration appear while riding, I will have a good idea of what the problem is, and if it's likely to be something that needs sorting ASAP, or can wait until the ride is over.

I know of a bike for sale at a dealer that has "Full service history". I KNOW that when it was traded in, it certainly DIDN'T have FSH as it had missed one service, and I had serviced it myself, and hadn't written in the book.

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Aug 06

Posts: 11

inewham says:


I'd always done my own servicing but after 25 years of simple 2strokes I bought a Triumph. Scared by stories of complex engine management systems and valve shims I took it to a dealer to make sure that at least the first service during my ownership was done right. It was a three week nightmare that cost me over 900 quid. The actual problem (which I found!) turned out to be that they'd stripped one of the screws that held the idle air control valve together. They hadn't actually done the shims either, just a compression check.

After that I just bit the bullet did it myself and found that valve shims are pretty easy to do, the electronics on a Triumph at least are straight forward etc. Since then I've done all my own 4 stroke servicing on the Kawasakis I've had since. Its really not that difficult.

However if you have more moeny than time or nowhere to get out of the weather I can see the argument for paying someone else but I'd look around for an independent rather than a main dealer

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Sep 10

Posts: 837

CBR11X says:

I do it myself, have done for years. Get a workshop manual and study it before attempting the job. Although I've never had to resort to this myself, with digital cameras, it's easy to take photos of each step you take dismantling the bike, and then view them in reverse order to put the thing back together if you fear getting lost. Use ziplock bags to keep the bolts and screws in. I use a different bag for each section of the bike, if the job is a big one. You do need the right tools, buying a decent spanner, socket, and allen key set shouldn't cost you a fortune. My advice though, is to get a good ratchet and excellent screwdrivers. The cheap ones that normally come in a set are crap and you'll do a lot of damage if they slip. My main advice is to be patient and don't try to rush the job, set aside a whole Sunday for instance. A few bottles of beer, a couple of mates and some tunes blasting in the background all make for a good day. Also find a forum for your bike. You'll get lots of help and advice. Buy parts online and you'll save money too.

I'm not sure how the laws work in the UK, but here in Australia, you do not need to take your bike to get serviced by the dealership to keep your warranty in check. Any licensed mechanic will do. Many dealers here imply that warranties will be void, but it's illegal for them to do this. When I owned a service station it was sweet as I'd stamp the log book with my own stamps. When I took my old GSXR1100 to get a starter motor oil seal replaced under warranty, the manager tried to pull a swift one on me, but I told him that if he didn't replace it, I'd call the department of fair trading and he quickly changed his tune.

When I bought my CBR1100XX, I was appalled at the shoddy work of the dealers. The sump plug was loose, the radiator hose was loose and the tyres were 10 psi off the recommended pressure straight out of the crate. I took the bike to a local father & son shop who did the mandated servicing for the first two years, after that I did it on my own.


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Jul 10

Posts: 272

piroflip says:

main dealers are..........

rip off merchants.

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Nov 03

Posts: 471

kl595 says:

It's too expensive. The Triumph 12k service is a killer and usually comes in at £600+

My Fazer 1000 only had major service intervals of 25k which made it much better on the pocket.

Triumph, and others too, need to start having longer service intervals or reduce their labour rates or better still both!

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