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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all,

I picked my '14 FZ-09 up over the last summer with a few mods and I'm looking to just tweak things a bit to make it perfect.

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Background: I have owned quite a number of bikes, and this is my bike for, as I like to put it, "terrorizing the neighborhood". I currently also have a 2014 V-Strom 1000, an '00 SV650N fixer-upper that'll hopefully be my moto-gymkhana bike, and just picked up an '07 SV650N (my 4th SV and 1st 2G SV, fuel injected, FINALLY). Before the Vee I had a 2013 Ninja 1000, which I loved to death and which I'll probably buy another of once the 2020+ model is under 10 grand (I want the new farkles and cruise, etc. for long-haul trips).

OK, so, my FZ has from what I can tell, the following mods:

  • Full Akrapovic system
  • What I believe to be a VCycleNut tune (not a fan of this, more detail in a minute)
  • Tail tidy with taillight integrated signals and flush front signals
  • Seat Concepts seat
  • Frame sliders
  • Radiator guards
  • Bark busters with integrated signals (which I've actually since removed)

So, I'm fine with most of the stuff the PO did, but I'm not a fan of the tune. It's quite stumbly at low RPM, the throttle response is marginal, especially in A mode, which, much to my chagrin, it's set to start in. When I had the Ninja, I sent the ECU to Ivan's Performance and had him flash my ECU. The difference on that bike was night and day. Just off-idle was butter smooth and it still had plenty more power across the rev range. Since it's a street bike, the low RPM stuff matters a lot to me. I'm sure I'll get that with Ivan's tune, but I figured I'd ask since it has a full Akra system, is there an airbox mod or anything I should do before I send it to him to help the bike breathe a little better, or is that not necessary on the FZ?

Also wondering if there are any little farkles/quality-of-life improvements to be made that people recommend. I'm going to peruse the forum too but figured I'd ask here too.

I love the bike so far, it is an absolute riot. It's hilarious not being able to keep the front wheel on the ground. It feels a little dicey at speed so I might consider a good steering dampener to prevent head shake at high speeds.

I also bought the ZG flyscreen (somehow managed to score a brand new one for $30) which I think I like, though not 100% decided on. More recent potato pic of that update:

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Anyway, hope to see you all around, and excited to have this awesome bike. I already know it's a keeper.
 
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Before spending money on an Ivan's flash, reach out to VCycleNut to see if he has some thoughts on the current flash. He's a site sponsor and possibly knows more about the '09's system than anyone. I have no experience but would think from his reputation here that he could make it right. It's worth a try.

As for the steering damper, is the suspension stock? These bikes respond well to a bit of extra rear ride height. Some of the aftermarket rear shocks allow for adjustment in length. As little as 6 mm can make a big difference. Look around the site, there has been a lot of discussion on this.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Before spending money on an Ivan's flash, reach out to VCycleNut to see if he has some thoughts on the current flash. He's a site sponsor and possibly knows more about the '09's system than anyone. I have no experience but would think from his reputation here that he could make it right. It's worth a try.

As for the steering damper, is the suspension stock? These bikes respond well to a bit of extra rear ride height. Some of the aftermarket rear shocks allow for adjustment in length. As little as 6 mm can make a big difference. Look around the site, there has been a lot of discussion on this.
I did reach out to VCN and will have to get back to him once I pull the ECU so he can tell me what was done with it, etc. It's more to do with what the PO requested than VCN's tuning skills I'm sure.

The suspension is stock. I'd prefer to keep it that way ideally since it's not going to be a track bike I don't want to invest a ton in suspension, nor do I want to have to cut/modify anything if possible.
 

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I don't track my '18 but will tell you that doing the suspension is well worth the money. Changing the fork oil and springs will make the suspension better but it will never be good, especially the 1st gen. The pogo-ing really is unsettling.

I went the cheaper route with a Stoltec valve kit, new springs and a K-Tech Razor Lite shock and really like the feel.
 

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Nice bike! I was possibly looking for that screen too since i have a red fz as well. Where did you find it for so cheap?
 

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Welcome to the gang. Thanks for providing a great introduction. Enjoy and stay safe.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Nice bike! I was possibly looking for that screen too since i have a red fz as well. Where did you find it for so cheap?
Hey Stickman, thanks! I found it on eBay. I found a couple of them at that price from two different sellers so you might still be able to find one. I'm pretty happy with the quality and while the red stripes don't perfectly match it's pretty close, and maintains a stock-ish look/feel. I'd probably just keep an eye out there in case another one pops up.
 

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WElcome! As far as suspension, I would say you can not beat Ohlins NIX30 dining utensils up front and a K-Tech Razor R in the rear to replace the "MyPillow" shock out back.

As far as quality of life that's to each their own. Ergonomics is huge for me and I want my FZ to be a lady on the street and whack on the track. So I have woodcraft clip on risers that I keep upwards on the street for long hauls and reverse them for track use. Yamaha OEM Comfort seat, good luck finding one. Give it a month and it will feel night and day. Woodcraft reasets as needed for leg room.

Only other items I would recommend would be a USB charger and quadlock mount. I have one for my iPhone and it is night and day.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I've no doubt that putting $1,500 into suspension would make the bike better, just questioning whether it's worth it for street-only riding. We have 3 SVs laying around that are more likely to be ridden hard/turned into track bikes. Maybe in a year or two once I've done some serious work on my skills at the track (and gymkhana) I'll consider taking my "nice bike" (the FZ) to the track. I have crashed my old SVS at the track as a results of a little overconfidence in the rain under hard braking (forks were bottomed and I hit a bump) so I'm not keen on taking my gorgeous FZ out there just to wipe out again. She's just too pretty for me to bear the thought of track rash.

I'll for sure be putting a USB charger on it (just did battery tender plug on the '07 SV, this bike is next for electronics).

I did hear back from Dave/VCycleNut and he said he didn't have info on the tune since it was a while back but that he'd give me a break on the flash since he's tuned that bike before. I'll be sending my ECU in soon. In the meantime, I managed to snag an OEM seat and rear fender for $40 in case I need either of those in the future.
 

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Like I said, I don't track my bike. I did go a cheaper route than cartridges and an upscale shock. The difference on the street is amazing in confidence and predictability.

I don't remember what the cost of the springs/valves and shock was (and frankly don't care) but I don't think I spent over a grand.
 

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I just got my 2014 model back from the shop. They installed Öhlins OEM replacement springs in the front fork. The springs cost me 150$ and are 9.0N/mm instead of OEM 6.5N/mm. Fixed all the problems I had with stock frontfork. I also adjusted the rebound. Best money spent hands down.

Considering the airbox mod also. Anyone done it?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Yeah, I'll probably do that @SouthSweden - I'd also like to hear about the airbox mod since it's mentioned on various sites. It seems you just trim the snorkel down, but from what I've seen there doesn't seem to be much rhyme or reason to it other than giving the airflow a more direct path to the filter. I'd love some more insight into this and will probably do some forum searching now and report back if I find anything.
 
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