Originally Posted by Merlin III
I am going to be looking at this bike at the Progressive show this coming weekend. I am trying to feel out current owners on whether or not this bike is comfortable enough to do one up long term (3 months) touring with camping gear? Most seem to be labeling it a "commuter" bike. Thanks in advance for any input.
I have 9300 miles on a 6 speed manual model so what do you expect me to say? The bike ticks a lot of boxes for me. Saturday morning ride bike, long weekend regional tourer, hard pack dirt road explorer. It's cheap to acquire, cheap to insure, cheap to maintain, and cheap on gas. It is amazingly smooth for a parallel twin and is easy to live with for hours in the saddle. I easily did a 1000 mile day on it - stock seat is fine for me - and several 1000 to 1500 mile 3 day weekends. I pack light so the not-a-tank storage compartment of 21 liters and a 46 liter top box has been sufficient locking watertight storage for these mild mannered adventures. For camping I strapped my dry bag across the rear seat. Lots of owners have gone with panniers and top boxes and the bike can carry just as much gear as any other similarly equipped bike.
Now, comfort is extremely subjective. Another bike in my quiver is a Honda ST1300 that is seriously comfortable for long miles and is 110 hp fun in the mountains at the end of 500 mile days. The NC has nowhere near the wind/weather protection it has and some of my friends have questioned me riding the NC to places hundreds of miles away when I have the ST for this. Well, I enjoy different flavors of bikes and the low powered NC is just as fun but in a different way. It represents a new direction for Honda and I appreciate the effort and originality in it. It plows a different furrow in a sea of middleweights. The low revving low horsepower motor isn't for everyone but it works for me.