I'm on the fence about doing my own break-in service but it appears too easy for me to justify paying a dealer $600.

Eatmore Mudd

Moderator
Staff member
I don't think RE's official presence in the US market is more than 10 years old. Even now, there's only about 120 dealership in the US. There aren't a lot of shops with a lot of experience servicing and maintaining these motorbikes. As far as "experienced mechanics", most cats working in service departments are "technicians", not mechanics, and the REs are old school mechanical machines.
Enfield was totally absent here from 1970 to 1995.
Since 1995 there have been three importers. The latest and current one is RENA which took over import & distribution in 2015. They are a wholey owned subsidiary of RE corporate.
 
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m1ckDELTA

Well travelled
Location
California
Enfield was totally absent here from 1970 to 1995.
Since 1995 there have been three importers. The latest and current one is RENA which took over import & distribution in 2015. They are wholey owned subsidiary of RE corporate.

I was under the impression that proper dealerships didn't exist in the US till about 2015 and anyone who wanted a RE had to import it themselves (I guess using one of the three you mentioned).
 

Eatmore Mudd

Moderator
Staff member
I was under the impression that proper dealerships didn't exist in the US till about 2015 and anyone who wanted a RE had to import it themselves (I guess using one of the three you mentioned).
They were real deal exclusive importers with a dealership network.
RENA, presumably with start up backing from the mothership, took operations, warehousing, distribution and advertising from what it was to the next level.
 
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davidteachey

Getting there...
Location
Katy, TX
Thanks for sharing that list.

One of the main reasons I chose the Himalayan over the KLR and other more modern motorbikes is its simplicity; to that end, I almost wish it was carbureted (the roads of the zombie apocalypse will be littered with EFI vehicles). It appears, though, that even the EFI is simpler than most "modern" motorbikes (until the aforementioned zombie apocalypse). Royal Enfield appears to be one of the few manufacturers, if not the only one, producing new motorbikes that are completely user-serviceable. It harkens back to the era of riding motorbikes that precluded the non-mechanically inclined.

As the times keep getting tougher, the demand for simple vehicles that are inexpensive to maintain and user-serviceable is going to grow. The cost for vehicle repairs has gone off the rails; "mechanics" have been replaced by technicians, and keeping a modern vehicle on the road for 30+ years is not possible. Keeping a vehicle well maintained and running for decades has become accepted as a "thing of the past" and the very idea mocked; "Who would want to, anyway". It's possible that RE doesn't see it that way.
I profoundly love the last two sentences of this post. I want to keep my Himalayan until I die of old age, not it. I have previously owned and sold 911SC, XJ-6 Series III, Spider Graduate (totaled), E30 325e, 2nd-gen RX-7, Spitfire 1500, Gibson SG and Gibson Les Paul guitars. MISS THEM ALL, wish I still had them. Advice: KEEP WHAT YOU LOVE, people. I currently have a Jeep and a watch and now a RE that will go with me to my grave. KEEP that good stuff folks......never sell it, just hand it down!
 

MikeM

Well travelled
Location
So Cal USA
If your question is/or if you're concerned about the valve adjustment. The adjustment procedure in itself is really straight forward - the challenging part is the access to the intake valve - by challenging I mean its a game of patience just because the work area is small and tight - the exhaust valve no worries. The first time I did mine it took me longer to adjust just the 2 valves of the Himmy than it takes me to adjust the 8 of my BMW.

My Himmy or I haven't seen the dealer since I picked it up..... My experience with dealerships some are good and some leave a lot to be desired. Some riders only enjoy the ridding aspect of motorcycling others enjoy the mechanics and "tinkering" as well as the ride. If your in the latter group then doing the service yourself is part of the thrill of getting a new bike. My first service I used to sort all the over tight zip ties, wires ran "funky", and all kind of other little things that makes you shake your head. To some that would put them off on a Royal Enfield Himalayan to me it was just more fun tinkering. That's the simple pleasure of such a simple machine.

Here's a screen shot of a list of the factory recommended services and intervals I put togetter.View attachment 6775
That is a long list but I do 90% of that weekly on my bike (the Inspection things anyway). Notice most of it is I Inspection. Im a tinkerer, its what I like to do as a hobby.
6824
 

Robert

Well travelled
Location
Holland
The OP is anxious about doing the first service: nothing strange about that if you have not done this before. It may be daunting to venture upon a task that might potentially damage your bike.
However, tappets checking and/or adjusting is not very complicated. You already have done some work on your previous bikes so this job won't be much more difficult. There are several videos on Youtube available to show you how it's done: check these out before you start and repeat in you mind the different steps. Reserve enough time to stop working and check any vid again or ask here on the forum. There is enough info here on the subject (including finding TDC....)
Enjoy the work. It is part of a bonding process between you and your bike. When you work on the bike you get to know it better and understand the way it functions. You will get to know the limits of the bike.
Yes, it is just a piece of iron, but a bike that is loved will last a lot longer: if you take care of it, it will take care of you. I own a 52 year old Guzzi that I know intimately by now, and it always gets me home. Well, short of the time that an exhaust valve broke. But then, who's perfect.
A bike needn't look good, it has to be in good working order. Nothing against a bike that looks good, but if it doesn't work properly then the focus has been on the wrong side.... well, in my opinion....

Just give it a try, the worst that can happen is that you have a box of bits to take to the shop. But most likely doing it yourself will bring you knowledge about your bike and som more confidence in yourself.
 

tom_d

Well travelled
Location
US
I've done my own oil changes, chain adjustments, emergency tire changes, replacing cables, etc., but I've never adjusted the valves on any of my motorbikes. I think all but my first two have been self-adjusting IIRC. The break-in service on the Himalayan isn't terribly extensive overall (interesting, that "free service" column):
This would likely be the easiest motorcycle to check valves on if you happen to have more than one motorcycle. Of all of the adjuster types, this is the most accessible and straight forward, plus there are only two valves. It would be nice if the dealers would always reflect this in their pricing, but they really only get paid for service if you think about it, everything else has tons of overhead. You could try to negotiate with him/her by asking questions, if you know their shop time rates then it would be easier to break down. I suspect that they might be using some flat rates which trend towards more complex machines, but I'm only guessing. With shops having huge wait times, perhaps incentivizing that they do your checkups is not high on the list. If so, that is too bad and a missed opportunity.
Pretty sure the free column is a reference to India, this is sorta a high end machine there. It's a different kettle of fish in the US, it's a smart idea but our system skews in other ways to make that a less competitive feature or else we would likely have that as well.
 

davidteachey

Getting there...
Location
Katy, TX
Oh. My. God. I'm nearly at 300mi on my new Himalayan. Local dealer just said the break-in service will be about 900.00 . Labor 4.5 hrs, oil and filter. He said their hourly rate recently went up from 130/hr to 180/hr. My wife is gonna castrate me. 180/hr!!!! Makes a dude think "change the oil & filter yourself and be done with it'. But damn, it's also like 'insurance'. I have indeed read all of the earlier posts about doing it yourself, but the valve check/adjustment intimidates me. Thinking 'just pay it for the peace of mind'. Aarrgghh.
 

MikeM

Well travelled
Location
So Cal USA
Oh. My. God. I'm nearly at 300mi on my new Himalayan. Local dealer just said the break-in service will be about 900.00 . Labor 4.5 hrs, oil and filter. He said their hourly rate recently went up from 130/hr to 180/hr. My wife is gonna castrate me. 180/hr!!!! Makes a dude think "change the oil & filter yourself and be done with it'. But damn, it's also like 'insurance'. I have indeed read all of the earlier posts about doing it yourself, but the valve check/adjustment intimidates me. Thinking 'just pay it for the peace of mind'. Aarrgghh.
I might consider asking another shop, doesn't even have to be an RE shop, the type of adjustment is found on just about every brand at some point so any motorcycle mechanic can do the valves (same exact system on our 2022 KLX140) . You can do the rest at home.
 

johnny42

Well travelled
Location
NY State
If you pay $900, you deserve to become a castrato. JK. You can get all the help you need right here and/or on YouTube on how to do everything on the 300 mile service. Shit, you can buy every tool you need to accomplish it and still save hundreds of dollars. And then you'll have the tools for the next service. That's how I justify tools that I buy. You can get decent quality tools at Harbor Freight for cheap if you know what to look for and read the reviews.
 

davidteachey

Getting there...
Location
Katy, TX
If you pay $900, you deserve to become a castrato. JK. You can get all the help you need right here and/or on YouTube on how to do everything on the 300 mile service. Shit, you can buy every tool you need to accomplish it and still save hundreds of dollars. And then you'll have the tools for the next service. That's how I justify tools that I buy. You can get decent quality tools at Harbor Freight for cheap if you know what to look for and read the reviews.
Thank you ever so much johnny42. My mind is racing right now, but I'm sure I can to a lot of this stuff. I can change the oil & filter, lube stuff and torque stuff, inspect the "inspect stuff". I may have an independent cycle mechanic I&A the valves. Thanks again mate! I love my new Himalayan, and want to use it for years to come.
 

m1ckDELTA

Well travelled
Location
California
This would likely be the easiest motorcycle to check valves on if you happen to have more than one motorcycle. Of all of the adjuster types, this is the most accessible and straight forward, plus there are only two valves. It would be nice if the dealers would always reflect this in their pricing, but they really only get paid for service if you think about it, everything else has tons of overhead. You could try to negotiate with him/her by asking questions, if you know their shop time rates then it would be easier to break down. I suspect that they might be using some flat rates which trend towards more complex machines, but I'm only guessing. With shops having huge wait times, perhaps incentivizing that they do your checkups is not high on the list. If so, that is too bad and a missed opportunity.
Pretty sure the free column is a reference to India, this is sorta a high end machine there. It's a different kettle of fish in the US, it's a smart idea but our system skews in other ways to make that a less competitive feature or else we would likely have that as well.
Here, all the dealerships are eurobike dealers so the RE is the redheaded stepchild; the put upon stepchild that fights back and beatsthe snot out of the bullying favorite siblings.

The irony is that REs are outselling the high-end eurobikes at these dealerships by a vast margin, as soon as they arrive, they're sold if not already a pre-order. The RE corner is bustling with shopping customers while a cold wind blows through the other deserted showrooms like it's night in the Anza-Borrego.

If RE keeps up the good work it's gonna be a rude wake-up call in the US for other brands.
I've done my own oil changes, chain adjustments, emergency tire changes, replacing cables, etc., but I've never adjusted the valves on any of my motorbikes. I think all but my first two have been self-adjusting IIRC. The break-in service on the Himalayan isn't terribly extensive overall (interesting, that "free service" column):

View attachment 6761

Soooo, the tappet tool won't be here for another week, and I wanted to be done with initial break-in so I bit the bullet for a little under five Bennies. I looked at it as an opportunity to check out a dealer closer to me and I'm glad I did. As all of the RE dealers (so it appears) it's a eurobike dealer; in this case, BMW. The cool thing, however, was seeing the line of police bikes, from several different departments, queued up for service and pickup.

If people who ride motorbikes professionally trust their lives to this service department, so can I. I'll still start doing my own service once I have everything I need but I now know there is a place to go, one I can trust, for anything else.
 

MikeM

Well travelled
Location
So Cal USA
If people who ride motorbikes professionally trust their lives to this service department, so can I. I'll still start doing my own service once I have everything I need but I now know there is a place to go, one I can trust, for anything else.
I think the service on the police bikes is covered by the purchase. Not that there is a reason to avoid the dealer service centers but in this case I dont think they have an option. LOL Glad you found a closer dealer.
 

Roy Gavin

Well travelled
Over here when the cops bought 36 BMW bikes the insisted on another six bikes for free so they always had 36 running.
They also paid less than $10,000 for bikes retailing for more than twice that .
These bikes are probably not in for service, but repair, since the turn of the centaury BMW's quality has been dismal, with every possible part cheapened to lousy off brand parts which just don't work, and they make no effort to upgrade them.
Total crap, just look at the second hand prices as a clue!
 
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johnny42

Well travelled
Location
NY State
Think like this......EVERYONE that does their own valve adjustment did it once for the very first time. They decided they wanted to do it for whatever reason, and they did.

We're all just saying YOU should be the next person that does it for the very first time. We all did.......

And....my 2020 Goldwing has both lock nut and shim under bucket valves. I've never done shim under bucket. But I will in 10,000 miles when it's due.
 

Laserman

Well travelled

UnSupervised

Finally made it
Location
Cedar Rapids, IA
Did anyone else find removing the oil screen to be a real bitch? My first oil change and I thought perhaps it may of been installed incorrectly but, it was done properly. I thought it might rip apart under my pulling on it.
 
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