IF all goes well, I will be the owner of a 2014 F700GS low suspension with 3,800 miles by this time Saturday, Sept. 22.
Last night I found a detailed write-up of adjusting the valves. Compared with the tractor-like nature of the R1100 engine, it looks like a daunting proposition. Plus, a newer bike has a computer system that I'm afraid will trip me up — "Setting service-due date and service countdown distance" — if I attempt to do my own servicing, especially valve adjustments.
My question for those of you with F-bikes : Do you do your own maintenance, or take it to the shop? Or, a mix; e.g., change oil, filter, brakes, tires yourself, and take it to a dealer for major maintenance at 12K service intervals? Since the F700GS has only 3,800 miles on it, and I'm sure the valves were checked at the 600 mile service, I should have at least 2,200 miles to decide.
I do all my own maintenance on my 800GS (about the same as the 700GS), some things are easy & others (like valve adjustment) are a real pain. You need to dig down through a lot of parts just to get to the rocker cover, then getting the cover out is more of a BIG pain, then IF it needs a valve shim the cam or cams need to be unchained & lifted.
The good news is once you get past the first valve adjustment & get the valves set correctly the 700/800 usually holds the adjustment for many many miles.
The early 700/800 bikes ate stators like a hungry kid eats popcorn but the later bikes with the opened up holes in the flywheels seem to last a lot longer.
Fuel tank outer seam cracking was another weak spot in the 700/800 GS but removing the little pressure valve in the vent line keeps the tank expansion to a minimum so that goes a long ways towards preventing cracking.
Fuel pumps are non anodized so they are another weak point but if the fuel is kept fresh & bike not stored with high alcohol content fuel the fuel pump issues are mostly preventable.
If you idle around town a lot then eventually the idle control valve will probably carbon up but it isn't a real big job to clean it.
The 700 bike is a nice little bike but really needs a skid plate added if going anywhere near off-road or even on unimproved public roads.
You can buy a Caterpillar yellow "O" ring to put on the throttle side that makes a great cheapo throttle lock (actually works better than it sounds).
I really like my little 800GS for off-roading & even around town commuter usage, you just have to get used to the low speed chain slap & neutral clutch rattle.