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Nice bike Geoffrey! I have a ST7 in white which I like far more than I thought I would.
A lot of people are put off by the imposing apparent size of the ST7 but its actually an easy bike to maneuver due to the weight being low down and the very low seat. I bought mine in part due to the low seat as I have a painfull hip, sitting onthe ST7 is the most comfortable I feel all day however my wife has refused to let me park it in front of the tv of an evening.
My 3 years of ownership have mostly been problem free apart from a sidestand switch issue (they get crudded up and corrode) and the known alternator/regulator issue. My alternator failed and was replaced by a cheapo version via Amazon which has been fine for a couple of years now. For peace of mind I fitted a handlebar voltmeter. I do wonder if the start cluch issues have some connection to marginal charging sometimes, even when everythings fully charged the starter motor can sound a little lazy but so far has always done the job.
Let us know how the project develops. Regards, Steve.