Batteries not included

March 18, 2015

battery box

Changing the battery on a VS700 Intruder is such a joy! Not just because I have a brake rod on one side and a rectifier on the other covering up the connection bolts mind. Though that can be hours of family fun to navigate around. No. The best part is that the battery drops out of the bottom of the bike and I only have 3 inches of low side clearance to work with.

Let the fun begin!

Well, fun for someone anyway. I’m sure there is a bunch of engineers over at Suzuki still laughing about that one. I don’t know if it is still this way after they renamed the Intruder to the Boulevard line of bikes but I wouldn’t doubt it. A running joke like that around the office is too good to fix.

Lucky for me the parking area at my place is gravel and not paved. After securing the stand on a block of wood so it doesn’t sink into the ground and tip the bike over I just dig a hole under the box to drop the battery out with. I know, real high tech stuff huh? With no space to slide a lift under this beats the hell out of trying to kill yourself with a scissor jack.

Or so I’ve heard I mean. Ahem.

So I’ve been up to the shop and traded in the old battery. Cleaned all the wire ends and checked for pinches. Dug my trench to install the new battery and only then do I notice it.

Top and front posts.

old battery

To say the least I was not having hours of family fun at this point.

Same exact battery yet sometime over the last three years the posts were changed. Are they looking at the same bike I am? To be fair with the shop I have checked a bunch of sites and they all say this battery is an exact fit for me. And sure, I should of checked the battery they pulled instead of just matching serial numbers.

Still.

You can’t go in from the top or the front on a VS700. Even with triple jointed tools it still doesn’t work because the battery case top that snaps down after install has no room for top or front bolts. There is a hole in the side for it.

The shop at least didn’t screw me and leave me stuck with a battery I couldn’t use. None of the XT16B-A1 types there had the right terminals. I was able to trade it in and go a step up to a XT16BS-1 with side facing connections for $20 more. Same height but a tiny bit thinner and I had to suck up the space with a bit of foam so it wouldn’t move. Not a perfect solution but whatever gets you down the road eh?

Since the swap I have not been able since to find a XT16B-1 with the right terminals searching online. There IS a replacement for it on one site I found listed UB16B-A with the right ones but I don’t know how old that picture is. Something to keep my eyes out for while I wander through other shops this spring.

The bike certainly likes our new battery and is sounding great. Fired right up after sitting since November. If the battery is my only stumbling block heading into the riding season then I’m calling it all good.

The mirrors I ordered over the winter to fix my broken ones actually fit. Wonder of wonders. The stems are a little longer than the old ones and I can even see better than I could before. The weather is getting warmer, only 36 degrees last night so we are staying above freezing. Won’t be long now.

Hope your spring tunes are all going smooth out there and I’ll see you on the road.

.

The West Report

The opinions expressed in The West Report are the author’s own. Feel free to repost or share, we just ask you credit or link to this article as a source.

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