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Discussion Starter #1
For one, and I know this applies to most motorcycles, I HATE the break-in period. When the hell am I gonna get to rip shit up? After a thousand damn miles?

Secondly, sometimes it's hard to feel if I've completely shifted up or not. Another person on Cycle World magazine (a test rider) said the same thing. Otherwise, the bike is almost %100 bada$$.
 

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Blue 636,
Try adjusting you shifter down a little. That helped me alot. The break-in I followed is in here somewhere. For the first 20 min. ride take it to 3k to 5k rpms and then let it cool completely down. Next 20 min ride take it to 5k to 7k rpms. Let it cool down. Next take it to 7k to 9k rpms. accelerating and decelerating. Avoid 6th gear each time you take it out during this time. Change the oil and filter while it is still warm after the 7k to 9k session. After that slowly work towards red line. Rev freely in the lower gears. Quik burts of acceleration and deceleration is important too. That helps seat the rings. I had 43mi. on my bike for the first oil change. I changed it again at 500 mi.
 

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Patience young jedi... the gearbox gets better with age (plus you'll develop a sense or a knack for Kawi trannies in time - or learn how to use the force...)

After you get the break in done, a switch to a synthetic oil makes a BIG difference in how smooth the bike feels and how the clutch and tranny feel (much MUCH better...)
 

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What "break-in period?"

(The following is my OPINION and observation; take it as you will):

Mine ('03 636) started life when a dealer principal decided he needed a new track bike. He used a dyno break-in procedure: just like any other break-in, load-unload at various RPMs, complete cool-down, fluid changes, then culminating in trips to redline under load. The time frame's massively compressed this way, however.

Then he took the bike to several race practices, resulting in about 25 heat-up/cooldown cycles. The bike ran like a million bucks, now with about 4-5 hundred miles on the clock.

Then I found out about the bike, listened to it run, and took a test ride. It shifted great, engine sounds fine, doesn't burn any oil or coolant, etc. Seems strong as can be. The bike came with Kawasaki Goodtimes protection until April 2005, too.

Upon purchase, I dumped the oil and replaced with dinosaur special. I then put 250 racetrack laps on the bike, at moderate pace. No problems whatsoever.

Last week I put in another 225 racetrack miles. Mileage is now roughly 880. I changed the oil again; it looked a bit worn-out (non-scientific observation!). Now it has Mobil 1 red-cap, 15W-50. Let's not get into an oil discussion; I merely felt it time to switch to full-synth.

I will perform the "600 mile" service this weekend, once I've located a head gasket and find the proper valve clearances online somewhere. I might have it dyno'd, too.

Observations:

1. Bike burns no oil
2. Transmission’s very slick, loosening just a tad the past two outings.
3. Burns no coolant
4. Seems strong as a mule.

Theory:

I cannot help but assume technology's caught up to us in terms of bike break-in. I suspect Kawasaki (and the other big-4) assume the worst of new riders. By the numbers, 600s appeal to less well-heeled owners, who tend to be a little younger. Many younger people have less time, money, and (most importantly) patience to break-in bikes strictly by the book. I cannot confirm it, observation encourages me to believe "close" is "good enough" for most bikes that'll see mostly street riding, in terms of break-in.

Since 1995 I've broken in three new bikes, two this way and one "by the book." None have given me any trouble whatsoever, hence my willingness to buy a bike broken in this way by a known non-idiot (the dealer).

Hence I don't worry about it all that much. I strongly suspect technology's on our side.

-=DRB=-
 

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all I can say is that I was disappointed that I could not go on a ride with some friends of mine because I was in the middle of my break-in period. They told me that everything is made with such close tolerances now days that the "break-in" period is for the majority of people who have never had a powerful bike before. i.e. it scares them into thinking that they will tear the engine up if they dont follow the "break-in" to the letter. In doing so they keep the revs down, thereby keeping the power down and have a lot less of chance of the bike running away with. I did not believe them but one of the guys we ride with told me that he will take a brand new bike out of the box and walk that thing all the way home on one wheel. He has several bikes and some of them have a lot of miles on them with no problems and the only thing he has done to them is routine maintenance.
 

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I have almost 500 miles on mine and followed Motoman's break in technique. Basically I ran it hard for the first 20 miles, changed the oil and am not being teribly gentle now. I talked with a few friends who race and they said they do full throttle passes on the engines to break them in. So far, so good.

I have two other friends who just bought new dirt bikes and were doing wheelies within the first hour that we were out. No issues yet.

Squidly
 

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I got my red 636 on July 31 and had to drive on the highway to get it home. I asked the salesman about the break in period and he said to just vary the speed on the highway. So on the way home I went into sixth gear and varied my speed between 55 and 75 the whole way, along with going through all the other gears at the tolls. I changed my oil at 600 miles and I now have 850 miles on her. Last night took her up to red line through first, second, and third while racing my friends 02 6r (I smoked him by the way, twice)[:M116] My point I guess is that she runs great especially after the oil change, (Not synthetic yet) and is certainly in a whole new league than my '01 SV 650S. I love it and am currently attempting my first wheelies. Haven't got one up too high for too long but it will come soon.
 
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