Some notes on the new tires and chain change. First of all, the tires still need some break in, so for the first 200 or so km's I'm really taking it easy. However... on my local favorite downhill asphalt, they gave me some impressive lean angles (now, I was only trying to get rid of those small nipples there!).
Now... after some 2000kms the tires still have those nipples... but I can tell they are a vast improvement over the Pirelli MT80's they replaced. A one day trip to Karpenissi, was a revelation at how stable and secure the tires felt... Especially on that narrow twisting road, I managed to scratch my footpegs a few times! Amazing! On the way back, the same (almost brand new, admittedly) asphalt, was hit by a light rain for the first few km's. The tires held up really well, considering the bike was also FULLY loaded!
Now for the chain and sprockets. I bought the bike used, in 1997. It is a '94 model. The original gearing is 16/43. The first owner had it reduced to 15/43 (from the F650ST), which did the bike a few good things: It made it more lively in standing starts, and quite easier in thick traffic, where, the bike spends MOST of its time. As for the top speed, I could very easily see an indicated 185km/h (115mph) right at the redline (7500rpm).
What was bothersome in the really few times the bike spent time in motorways, was that at an indicated 140km/h (85mph), the engine was buzzing already close to being uncomfortable, at around 6500rpm.
A really short 50km round trip on the motorway, now with the original gearing of 16/43, showed that it can do 140km/h at about 5000rpm, while the "bad" spot is around 5500. I will admit, however, that the bike has lost a LOT of its nerve in city traffic, and now, it needs quite a lot of clutch slipping to move around stopped traffic. Everything in the favor of travelling? We will see...
The new tires, were fitted at Motoroda shop