I picked up an '89 PC800 at the end of last Fall. Have already put 1 or 2 k on it just puttering around within 100 miles of home. Am getting ready for a week-long spring break trip to destination: unknown.
Call me a strange 20-something but after having learned to ride on a mid 80's big metric cruiser and tried out a variety of newer cruisers, sport bikes, dual sports, etc, the PC800 is the best fit for me. It is an incredibly pleasurable bike to ride. And at 6'2" it is one of the few bikes I'm actually comfortable on for more than 30 minutes at a time.
For those of you who like beer, the trunk is the PERFECT size to hold three half racks with ice. And there's enough room on the passenger seat to bring a tent/sleeping bag/snacks so once you and your buddies have finished off all that beer, you don't have to worry about riding home. If that isn't the best bike ever, I don't know what is.
As for taking a PC800 off the pavement, sure it's no dual sport but I have taken mine on plenty of gravel roads and a few muddy slick logging tracks without incident. And that was on street tires. A few people have found passenger car tires that fit on the rims well and give the bike enough knobby tread to do more serious off-roading. Although I think if you're going to get into the off-road realm, it'd be better to get a dirt bike or some sort of dual sport.
This bike is certainly not for everyone. If you like conforming to the Harlie crowd or the Stromtroopers, move along. But if you don't mind being different and having a lot of people give you WTF looks as you drive by, then give the PC800 a shot. The worst that can happen is someone makes fun of you for being comfortable and having enough room to pick up groceries.
In case anyone on here doesn't know about it, there is a wonderful community of PC800 riders over at pc800.net
. They're a great bunch of people who have helped me out a lot as I've been working on upgrading and fixing up my PC.
1989 Honda Pacific Coast PC800 "The TARDIS"
1980 Yamaha XS850SG (no name... YET!)
1979 Honda XL500S "The Gangly Giraffe"
(former) 1984 Honda Shadow VT700 (never named)
Contrary to popular belief, the PC800 is a capable off-pavement machine.