I have owned my 1998 600v since 1999.bought it with low mileage.is fitted with givi panniers and top box.the mileage is now at 50000 mls.bought it to do a big trip but of course never did it.That is until 2009 i rode it solid for 2 months ending up in romania via the baltic coast 5000 mls and after a few years break in 2013 rode it to the ukraine via france italy serbia bulgaria and romania again.10000 mls.i slept with the bike most nights on the ground.i guess i know a little about this bike.bike is standard apart from i extra tooth on the front sproket.lowers the revs on long straights and was amazing up in the mountains.i stayed away from cities and kept to higher levels when i could.first trip it had standard front sproket which i found to revvy.the extra tooth made the bike more relaxing and also more mpg.i always hated the seat,always made me slide foreward and crushed the old bags.i cut away some seat foam and now sit on a gel pad.so much better.wish i had done it from the beginning of ownership.i change the oil and filter every year +slik 50.i have never adjusted or touched any mechanical parts of the bike ever.still on original rear sproket and 3rd chain.i now use x link chain and in 10000 miles i never adjusted it.just carried an oil can and kept it lubed.had to punctures but was saved from aggravation by putting slime in tubes.
the bike handles good enough for me and is a joy to ride.fitted an extra high give screen and bolted an extra couple of inches of plasic to make it taller.works well.i will never part with this bike.the engine fires first time and the motor is very smooth.
so as you cam guess its been a long affair.my dependable travel companion.i always ride alone
Transalp 600, what its really like to own and keep
I bought the Bike 1 year go. It had been owned by one man for 15 years, and before him, 2 years by the police.
The first mistake...
When the police dismantled the bike, they simply cut the wiring, broke or cut off the lights and left it in a right state, however, with the previous owner, he sorted it down to the basics so it would run.
Then i got it..
I rode the bike for 6 months and started encountering lots and lots iof problems, again like the reviewer above, all problems came at the same time. The breaks seised up, the rear wheel spindle had been rust welded on needing a gas burner to superheat it to remove it, the fuel consumption was around 18mpg with lots of back firing, the wiring had crossed through in places so when the break light came on the rear dash backlight came on, and the fairings, cowel, cowel bracket and more where broken, bent and out of shape, the fan doesnt work, the radiators are so corroded you can they have twisted and the clutch slipps after long runs and hard riding....
I corrected many of the problems, sorting through the wiring loom myself, got a new cowel, replaced around 50 nuts and bolts, new rear inddicators and so on.
My adivice to any buyer is to that ex plice bikes are ok if dismantled properly. if it hasnt had the valve clearences or carb jets done think of future costs. And if fairings and cowel are to badly damaged to be saved, new fairings are £90 each and cowels new are priced around the £280 mark so bring the seller down on price.
Otherwise, the bike is a dream, very comfortable, will take the long distances in its stride, looks good for a 17 year old bike, parts are available at a price, and with that honda build quality engine, you can expect it to last and last. I have never ridden a bike that is better than this, nothin can or will top it!
So simply when buying one, Just dont buy a rough one with to much damage and if fixing one, get a new wiring loom, this will make it a much better bike!
This is my most recent bike acquisition. I bought it to replace my XR400R which was in constant disagreement with my back.
It is 17 years old, but only has 35000 miles.
The bike only develops 50BHP, but uses them well, only really running out of steam in top, when fully loaded. It is good for cruising comfortably at 75-80 mph. Wanna go faster for longer? Buy another bike.
The bike handles really well: rimming the rear tyre and making short work of the mountain roads I rode in France recently. The front end is a bit light when the bike is fully loaded but not excessively intrusive to the ride. The seat is very comfortable and a day in the saddle is feasibile without therapy. I rode from Rostock to Strasbourg in one day on this bike. I was knackered but not overly sore.
Tank range is OK, and the bike benefits from a 21" wheel making the bike more versatile than some other adventure bikes in off-road situations. I have not gone in the dirt much with this bike, but it seems competent.
Reserve kick in after 13 litres are gone.
Beware choosing the rear tyre: I fitted a road biased BT45 tyre and found the profile unusable meaning I had to swap for a 120 instead of an enduro biased 130: a right pain and expense
Maintenance and Reliability:
By all accounts these bikes are supposed to be very reliable. I, myself, have had a few issues. The problem was that they all arose at the same time: a knackered clutch, knackered headrace bearings, knackered battery and knackered sidestand cut-off switch. You can expect to need to replace all of these bar the switch on any bike at some stage. Otherwise it has never missed a beat.
The bike is pretty simple and straightforward to maintain with the exception of the valve cleareances and changing the plugs. The valve covers are a pain to reach on the front pot but, fortunately, aren't said to required frequent adjustment.
The plugs are two per cylinder and those found on top of the cylinder, rather than the sides, are tough to reach. Oil changes are said to be only needed very 8000 miles!! This is impressive, but despite this I still prefer to change it every 4000 miles!
As a solo adventure bike, to be used on overlanding trips, this is a very competent bike, in my opinion, provided a low mileage, good condition one can be located. No matter how good a bike: 17 years old is getting on an bit. The strengths are it's build quality, performance, comfort, and handling. Against? Probably only the age of this model and possibly its lack of power if heavily loaded.