Maintenance and mods done to my 2002 Virago 250


Motorcycle Maintenance ... Be sure to oil the clutch cable and clean the battery terminals. Someone told me once that you would work on a motorcycle for four hours for every one hour that you rode it.

Added three LED rear brake light/running lights (Signal Dynamics, tmiledtechnology, and the 3.9 x 2.1 inch light described in my August 15 blog).  Most bikes have insufficient rear lighting so I believe that you should increase the brightness of your brake and tail lights by about four times and your turn signals by about two times.

Added Brake light flasher – flashes both the stock brake light and LED brake lights.

Added four 1.3 inches wide x 0.7 inch depth tmiledtechnology LED turn signals – two on front fairing lower edge (I wired only the turn signals, not the running lights) and two mounted under the seat and facing sideways (I wired both the turn signals and the running lights).  Most motorycles have poor side lighting, and this really helps. 

Added ¼ inch fuel filter (already has a screen in the tank).
Installed NGK Iridium plugs.
Oiled clutch cable and choke cable, about 40 drops each of 3-in-one oil.
Added 2nd ground wire – 12 guage.
Cleaned battery terminals.
Added SWM centerstand from European model XV125, not a direct bolt-on, had to modify a little.
Removed side stand.
Changed front sprocket to 17 tooth.
Raised seat 2 inches.
Moved footpegs back about 12 inches.
Added breather filter (lost breather function of stock air filter when I added aftermarket air filter.)

Changed oil and filter,  for the oil, I used a mix of ½ quart VR-1 20w-50 and 1.2 quart Shell Rotella T 15-40 (per long-time Yamaha mechanic John Underwood (xsjohn) –  “great oil, reduced engine noise, can’t use 100% VR1 since it is so slick and has so much zinc in it can make the clutch slip”).

Changed fork oil – used Rotella T 15-40 – forks hold 8.3 oz each 4.7” from top fully compressed w/o springs, added an additional spacer 1 1/16 x 1 5/8 long from Home Depot #12871-62497-1, which is a 5/8 inch PVC coupling 25¢ each, is very tight to put in, raised front end maybe as much as one inch.

Re-torqued all front fork mounting bolts.

Added front fork brace.  The heavier fork oil, 1 5/8” added spacers, and fork brace reduced front end wag. (note: do not remove stock front fender – the stock front fender bracket is approx 3mm steel and functions as a light-duty fork brace.  Make sure the 4 bolts are tight.)

Cleaned and sanded rear brake shoes – it still squeals so I need to do it again and do it better.

Replaced chain with RK standard chain – a low cost but decent quality chain ($24.61 plus $6.99 shipping)

Added a deer whistle – I know it makes sound but I am not sure if it actually repels deer.

Added 1987 Yamaha mirrors (from Venture 1300 XVZ1300) and mirror extenders. The old Yamaha mirrors are my favorite mirrors -very high quality.  (I used to like Roadhawk mirrors, but one of the mirrors fell out so maybe they are not

I like the Yamaha mirrors from the 1980's and 1990's - they are well made and solid. Mine say "Superbike GP" on the back.

glued very well.)  I’m glad the mirrors are black, because to mount mirrors on a Virago 250 that has non-stock bars you have to bend the mirror stalk downward a lot – maybe 45 degrees –  and doing that can damage the stalk especially if it is thick, so you have to touch it up with paint.  Because of the Virago 250 stock bars, the mirror mounts are turned more inward than average.  I should have just gotten two bar mount clamp mirror adapters, that way I would not have to bend the mirror stalks.           –Les S.

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2 Responses to Maintenance and mods done to my 2002 Virago 250

  1. Anton says:

    Is the oil full synthetic or not ?

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