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SkiFastBadly 08-27-2011 01:23 PM

After the Uly...who's changed to something different and is happy with it?
Ok, I think I'm coming to the end of my 'cool bike with personality' Buell experiment. My 07 grenaded at 28K miles, but being a romantic, I picked up a used 08 last spring. The 08, if you know these bikes, was supposed to be improved in lots of ways. Well, the damn thing stranded me in Polson, MT on the fourth day of a 6 day ride. They're still trying to determine which of the known gremlims (ECM, Chaffed fuel pump wires, etc.) are affecting the bike. I had a girlfriend like this in college, she was gorgeous and mercurial and fun to ride, but I dropped her because I knew eventually it would end badly.

So, it's time to think about what the next bike is, and I'd be grateful for any ex Uly riders to chime in.

When I bought the Uly, I was living in Utah, and did a lot of dirt road rides with it. My riding buddies had the typical big KTM 990s, BMW R1200GS, BMW F800GS etc. Now that I'm living in WA, I don't have quite the same riding, and spend more time on the street. I have a Harley Heritage, (which is what I SHOULD have taken on the trip) so I don't really need a cruiser. I also have a Triumph Scrambler which I putz around on and take up Forest Service roads if I'm looking for some gravel etc. So when I think about it, I really want a bike that has the spirit of the Uly, the upright riding position (hey, I'm 55) handles great, can be used for long rides, and good power.

My riding pal insists I need a R1200GS, but frankly, I find the telelever front end sort of weird, and now that I'm not in Utah, I don't know if I need that kind of tractor. But I'm open.

Another thought that's occurred to me is the Tiger. Yeah, I know everyone loves the 800 but I think the 1050 might be closer to the Uly in seat position and power.

I've looked at but have not ridden the Aprillia Dorsoduro. It looks kind of sharp, but I know nothing about it.

Finally, I'm thinking very hard about used. I'm not poor, but I am sorta cheap.

So I know that's sprt of a generic set of criteria and I know it's been asked a hundred times before, but whaddya think?

ram1000 08-27-2011 01:56 PM

I've ridden the ULY and disliked the way it feels off road but on road it is nice sitting up and feels like a DS bike. I like the different technologies combined in the ULY. Power was fair, both my 950 KTM and more so the Vstrom were easily faster but the ULY felt torque every where. I never succumbed to a ULY but if they had put that newer BUEL water cooled motor in something like it I might have. I now have a Dorsoduro and find it the most fun on road of any bike I have owned (60 +-). I wouldn't recommend it though as stopping for gas every 80-110 miles stinks, even if your pouring what you brought into the 3 gallon tank. Other than that you might really like the 1200 DD but I don't care about the upper end of power so much any more, at least as much as I care about handling. The 1200DD should present you with both. I would think you would really get off on your Scrambler though since it serves the same general utility, albeit with little or no power to spare. I love the look of the Triumph 1050 but after the Vstrom 1000 I don't know if there is any reason to pay more for the same utility. A friend just sold his ULY when his Yamaha Tenere arrived and after riding the Tenere It feels a lot like the Vstrom (somewhat bland) except it has better off road manners and wider handle bars.
Oh yea! the BMW front end? What were they thinking???

levain 08-27-2011 04:49 PM


Originally Posted by SkiFastBadly (Post 16726013)
I had a girlfriend like this in college, she was gorgeous and mercurial and fun to ride, but I dropped her because I knew eventually it would end badly.

I had one of those too, and you described the relationship perfectly:lol3:lol3 FWIW, that is how I now describe BMW's after losing brakes twice coasting through a red light because the system sensed a "fault":rofl:rofl

OK, back to your question which I feel qualified to answer. My new Tiger 800XC rocks. I was out on my Uly today for the first time since bringing the Tiger home. I love that Uly, but I now know that it will never be my only bike. I haven't had any problems with my 09, and it is fun as hell to ride. Yes, it has tons of character, but the whole time I was reminded how much I love riding this Tiger. It's the triple. I find it intoxicating. Demo one and see if it works for you. It is a totally different experience, and it is refined beyond belief. The opoosite of a Uly, but don't take that the wrong way. I love my Uly. I'm not selling it, but this is now my daily rider for a reason.

wbedient 08-27-2011 06:29 PM

A couple of questions about your question
How much power is "good power" ?

What do you mean by the "spirit of the ULY" ?

elementalg20 08-27-2011 07:01 PM

I'll just toss this one out there, Multistrada 1200 anyone?

SkiFastBadly 08-27-2011 07:22 PM


Originally Posted by wbedient (Post 16727622)
How much power is "good power" ?

What do you mean by the "spirit of the ULY" ?

Yeah, good questions. By power I mean torque. All my bikes are two cylinder air cooled with most of the power low. I test rode a Street Triple once, but I'm 6 ft and it felt a bet cramped. Also, it was weird having the tach go up to 13K or whatever it was. I'm sure I could get used to it but I like the low end torque of the Buell....and of the Harley, once I did the Screaming Eagle stage 2 upgrade. I don't need 150 HP, but the Scrambler is a bit too low on that juice you get when you twist the throttle of the Uly. By spirit, I guess I mean the hooliganism, and the absolute confidence I have in the twisties.

Telman 08-27-2011 07:24 PM

I went from the Uly to a Speed Triple. More engine, just as upright and a lot of fun. A 1050 Tiger would also be a good choice. :D

larryboy 08-27-2011 09:55 PM

I think you need a HyperMotard. :evil

I hated my Uly(one letter away from Ugly) within 100 miles of brand new and tried like hell to like it for 40,000 miles.

A good option to a Hyper is the old Multi, fantastic engine and the looks fade away when you twist that throttle. The underseat exhaust gets a bit warm, but not nuclear meltdown Uly warm.

A used Stelvio is a great option.

I absolutely had to drop the Uly and go with something reliable that I didn't have to work on to restore my faith in motorcycles and went with a Yamaha cruiser. Like you said, you have the cruiser side covered.

I just traded an XR650R for an 1150GS. I've always wanted to try owning one, but the entry price for new always put me off. I too dislike the funky front suspension and I'm gathering parts to swap it out for conventional forks.

davevv 08-27-2011 09:57 PM

I've owned a GS, a Uly, and currently have both 1050 and 800 Tigers.

Never got along all that well with the GS. OK bike, but not for me.

Loved the Uly as a touring bike. I rode it from Anchorage to Dallas and it was terrific for that trip. Dirt roads, gravel, interstate, two lane, it worked great everywhere I took it. And it's one of the most comfortable bikes I've ever been on for a long period of time. I found it irritating to run around town though. Just too tall and too hot (it was an '07) to be a handy around town ride.

The 1050 Tiger is somewhat similar to the Uly. Mostly street oriented big dually. The great triple engine is super smooth and quite strong. Plenty of fun there if you are looking for it. I really haven't ridden this bike a whole lot, as I bought it because it was a steal and it fits my son like a glove (6'4" and 36" inseam). I don't think it's quite as comfy as the Uly, but my son has never complained and his longest day was about 300 miles. I can't ever seem to pry it away from him for more than a few minutes at a time.

I too had a Scrambler, but sold it when I bought the Tiger 800. The little Tiger has become my every day ride. I thoroughly enjoyed the Scrambler, but the 800 is just so much more capable. The engine is even smoother than the 1050 and has plenty of horsepower, but not quite the grunt. Height and weight work fine for me around town. Good suspension and excellent handling. It would be a very capable tourer as well, if need be.

With the way you feel about your Uly, I'd say you need to test ride the 1050 Tiger. Obviously the motor isn't going to feel the same, but it is pretty great in it's own right and has plenty of torque to keep me happy. Not quite as much as the Uly, but enough. I'm a big fan of twins myself, and really don't care for inline fours, but the Triumph triples have won me over. And used 1050 Tigers can be had very reasonably. Low mileage examples for $7k is pretty common. I got mine with less than 3k miles for $5500, but it's the only one I've ever seen go that cheap.

sfarson 08-27-2011 10:53 PM

Did you ever give a Stelvio a look over? Suggested it in a thread prior to your '08 Uly acquisition. There is a reknown Guzzi dealer Moto-International in Seattle. I hear they are dealin' on Stelvios.

I ride a Uly and Stelvio. There are definitely some parallels, and some diffs, but this "Italian Harley" charms in ways few bikes can.

levain 08-28-2011 05:42 AM

One consideration may be that the Tiger 1050 has been out going on 5 yrs. I would think there'd be an upgrade in the works soon.

ODDSC 08-28-2011 06:05 AM

I was in the same boat. Uly was the perfect bike for me, if it had only been reliable. I was stranded 3 times far from home (1- spark plug blew out of the front cylinder 2- fried ECM 3- wheel bearing) I loved the power band, ergo's and versatility.

Anyway, I have a Suzuki Bandit 1250 now and really enjoy it. It was cheap, it's powerful and very reliable. I can't tell you how nice it is to head out on a trip without that lingering dread of being stranded again. I miss the suspension and seat of the Uly, but the bandit motor has great low-end and rips up to the red line. I put the Uly H-P bags on the Bandit. I also had to put on new handlebars and a sargent seat to make ergos acceptable. It's not quite as accommodating as the Uly for a passenger.

It's not the last bike I'll buy, but it does the job for now!

MXG 08-28-2011 07:32 AM

Bought a Uly in 09 because I read a test and thought it was a cool bike. Other than the looks I hated the thing from day 1. Love the new Multi but in reality its too much money. Maybe 1050 Tiger or Bandit 1250 ( typical Suzuki, underpriced and often overlooked but a great bang for the buck).

wbedient 08-28-2011 08:46 AM

Another Harley?
Sounds to me like you want a torque motor, sit up ergos, more reliable and good for twisties and longer rides.

Ever throught about the HD xr1200? It covers most the bases, but I'm not sure how comfortable it will be for long trips (and storage could be a problem).

ArmyMedic 08-28-2011 09:24 AM

I went from a Vstrom to a Uly and now to a Super Tenere. I have to say that each has been an upgrade from the previous. Vstrom was a nightmare in windy situations, and totally lacked character. The Uly had major grin factor and of the three had the biggest "raw" factor to it. I liked the torque and sound of that engine. I didn't know if I would regret getting rid of it but now that I'm riding the Yamaha, I don't miss it one bit. The Tenere has gobs of power and torque, nice riding position, and a host of electronic goodies that I'm enjoying. No chain or belt to break. Good in the wind. Good in the twisties, even better than the Uly I might add. I feel better about the reliability over the Uly too, not to mention availability of parts in the future.

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