Originally Posted by BronkoRob
alright scrambler gurus...i got a question.
in the market for a new bike this fall. im a vintage fanatic, but my next bike i want modern reliability, good brakes, and modern suspension. the scrambler seems to be a good mix from what ive read, still working on the other 1000 pages of this thread though.
my 3 bikes in the mix right now are the scrambler, sportster, and a monster. I know all different bikes, but they fit my price range and seem like good commuter bikes. i have never owned a triumph or a ducati, but had an 87 sportster. it had issues when i got it from crap fixes from previous owners, and it was only a 4 speed. so im putting that behind me and have heard good stuff from the newer bikes. im not familiar with the triumph and ducati quirks and issues.
right now number one is the scrambler though. i love the desert sled look, and i like the idea that i can take it on some dirt roads and truck trails in my area and do some exploring. I have a dirt bike, so im not looking for a true dual sport, but like i said i like that desert sled look, and wouldnt mind getting it dirty once in awhile on reasonable terrain.
do the scramblers come with a different suspension setup than the other triumphs to make it more "dual sportish" or is this just a bonneville with high pipes? what are the other differences that are specific to the scrambler?
also to all you guys that got one, what were your other choices when you were looking for a bike and what pushed you towards the triumph?
Here's the abridged version of my conversion:
- Saw a photo, got curious
- Sat on the first matt khaki custom machine at a bike show
- Got that feeling
- Took a test ride
- Grinned a lot
- Bought one
- Lots o' miles
- Scraped pegs
- Falling off in the loose stuff
- More grinning
Basically it is a Bonneville with high pipes and fork gators, but with one major difference: the 270 firing order is far superior to the Bonnie's 360 degree operation of the same motor, providing less top-end (but who cares about that on a long haul) more torque and an even sweeter sound. This is in no way a Dual Sport bike, but that - as I'm sure you've seen in this thread - really doesn't mean you can't hit the trails with it if you just commit and accept that it aint no KTM.
That said, you will need to switch out the crappy standard shocks and fork springs - even for spirited road riding. Ditching the immensely heavy exhaust really helps the handling too. Oh, and the tyres - those OEM Bridgestones are washy as all hell. Saddle's a bit on the plank side too. New pads and discs aren't a bad idea either. Beyond that lighter, stronger rims are on the list.
With just half-decent suspension, you can still ride the wheels off the thing without getting too deep into jail territory if you ever do get clocked. And when it does get a bit out of shape (which it will), you get plenty of warning, so it's much more 'shits n' giggles' than 'shityerpants' when the front pushes, or whatever. Obviously, a few more ponies wouldn't do any harm (aint that always the case!), but a decent air filter and free-flowing exhaust system helps the thing breathe far better. Rip out the AI while you're at it too.
As you may have guessed, in my humble opinion there are some essential mods required out of the crate if you want to work the bike hard on various surfaces. On any other bike, that'd be a deal-breaker, but with a Scram' it's different. It's not supposed to be fast or climb like a mountain goat, it's just meant just to be a nice bike - what you do with it (tootle around the countryside, split lanes on the way to work or take off around the world or whatever) is your business. Two wheels good - pretty much the essence of motorcycling. And stripping them down or tarting them up is all part of the enjoyment because it's a bike you can truly make your own. Especially because it's real easy to work on and doesn't have a load of baffling electronics waiting to let you down in the middle of nowhere - particularly if you go for the pretty much bomb-proof carbed version.
Essentially, out of all the bikes I've owned, this is the one that makes me grin the most. That's why I bought it and fully intend to see all the zeros on the odometer at least once more. I recently emigrated from the UK to the US, but instead of doing the smart thing by selling it and buying another over here, I'll be shelling out far too much on shipping, duty and going through hell to import and register it, because I irrationally decided this one's a keeper. What is also interesting is that, for some reason, out of all the machines I've owned it also happens to be the one that makes my non-riding mates consider getting a bike too.
Plus, Scramblers look better a bit beat up and dirty, which is a result.
My advice: give it a go. At least take a test ride. They hold their value well too, so you can always chop it in for something else if for some reason it doesn't quite do it for you.