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Old 04-15-2013, 06:26 PM   #16
dceggert
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HD vs. Other

My HD Ultra Classic is in no way appropriate for a new rider. However, if I want to ride from Detroit to Salt Lake City on either the highway or freeway and stop occasionally along the way to take pics or investigate side roads, this is the bike to take.

If I need to go from Detroit to Salt Lake City to get to an appointment on time, the BMW K1200GT is the bike to take.

If I want to ride from Detroit to Salt Lake City and ride a combination of freeway, highway, side roads, and dirt roads then an R1200GS is perfect.

All of these are larger bikes and difficult for new riders but they are what we seem to gravitate to when we realize with experience that the smaller and lighter bikes don't handle these adventures with as much grace and capability.

Riding around town is different and even a DR125SE handles that with ease.
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Old 04-15-2013, 06:28 PM   #17
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"The lifestyle is embarrassing, not all of us HD owners are pirate idiot riders. "


I say Rrrrrrrr !!! we have a couple of pirates at work that did own Jap cruisers before they bought there Harleys & they sure did soak up the life style. They own every style tee shirt & dress shirts, & don`t wear anything but HD wear. They alway give me hell about my BMW`s but most of my wear is from Yamaha & Kawasaki & i don`t own a thing that says BMW.

Back to bikes , i`d say anything 400 to 650 is a good start . If i was a little shorter i`d go & buy a Buell blast for around towner. (an HD but not really)

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Old 04-15-2013, 07:04 PM   #18
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After riding for 40 years and owning and riding over 40 motorcycles of all types I decided that I had to have a Harley. So I bought a new one in 2008. As some have speculated in this thread I, like most other HD owners, bought it just so I could look and feel cool. And that has worked out just fine.
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:17 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by waveydavey View Post
After riding for 40 years and owning and riding over 40 motorcycles of all types I decided that I had to have a Harley. So I bought a new one in 2008. As some have speculated in this thread I, like most other HD owners, bought it just so I could look and feel cool. And that has worked out just fine.
I hope you don`t ride with that green bathing suit
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:23 PM   #20
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I hope you don`t ride with that green bathing suit

That picture's from my BMW GS days. I'm better now.
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Old 04-15-2013, 07:58 PM   #21
single
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One thing I like to ask myself when considering a motorcycle is "would I be interested in this bike if it was identical in all ways except it was made by a different country/company". Personally my answer for every Harley is no, although the Harley mythos does appeal, I would never put down money on one, at least none of the models they have released so far.
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Old 04-15-2013, 09:05 PM   #22
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There are also a lot of us on Harleys that buy them simply because we prefer the "feel" of a Harley. Not even considering riding position, there is a big difference in feel from one bike to another. Engine wise, Japanese inline fours, BMW boxers, Triumph triples, parallel twins, Ducati twins, Japanese cruiser twins, etc., etc. each have a different feel and character. Each style of bike, cruiser, sport, ST, ADV, etc. rides differently. I'm not saying any one is better than another, only that they are different. Naturally, riders who have experienced a lot of these different styles are going have a preference in both engine and style of bike depending on what they plan to do with the bike. And those preferences are not all going to be the same from person to person.

Why one person prefers an I4 when the next person prefers a v-twin, I couldn't say, but I have a good idea why I prefer Harleys. I've been riding over 50 years and when I started, the Japanese bikes were only beginning to show up in the US. Brit bikes were available, but didn't have a great reputation for reliability at the time, so many, maybe even most, of us starting out at that time rode Harleys. Also, my dad was a Harley mechanic, so why would I ride anything else? This meant that the feel of a Harley and it's unique v-twin was what I got used to, and nothing else feels "right" to me. No other bike, and I've owned bikes from all the major manufacturers over the years, provides me the same satisfaction and enjoyment in every day street use or touring.

Sure, the "lifestyle" and status sells a lot of Harleys to Harley "owners". But the feel and sound of a Harley sells a lot of them to Harley "riders" as well. If that's what you like, you can't get it anywhere else. Moto Guzzi is the only marque that comes close, and I've owned three of those over the years also.

It's all just a matter of different strokes, and it's all good.
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Old 04-15-2013, 10:13 PM   #23
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Resale is another reason. Harley's seem to maintain their value. They're also kind of a cultural icon as well for older generations; back to Brando's "whataya got?"

After I started riding, my dad wanted to get back into it. I talked him out of the Harley and he went with a Goldwing and got more bike for the money according to him.

Gotta say the Harley crowd actually *rides* though. Around here, even on the most perfect riding days I've gone on 3-4 hour trips and consistently counted the vast majority are Harley's or similar cruisers. Maybe 1-2% are sports bikes and you only see them close to the city.
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Old 04-15-2013, 11:39 PM   #24
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Not picking on HD , one of my friends owns a shop , but I don't exactly call that RIDING. HD riders just SIT on bikes going down the road a lot. I don't know what kind of riding there is there , but you're probably not riding demanding roads. Sportbikes aren't designed or bought for touring , so that's why you're not seeing them. There's nothing wrong with touring. I'm 50 years old , I ride better than most people , half my age or not , and I'm not near yet ready for a rolling couch.
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Old 04-16-2013, 06:31 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joexr View Post
Not picking on HD , one of my friends owns a shop , but I don't exactly call that RIDING. HD riders just SIT on bikes going down the road a lot. I don't know what kind of riding there is there , but you're probably not riding demanding roads. Sportbikes aren't designed or bought for touring , so that's why you're not seeing them. There's nothing wrong with touring. I'm 50 years old , I ride better than most people , half my age or not , and I'm not near yet ready for a rolling couch.
When I first bought my HD Ultra Classic I was appalled by the handling of the "rolling couch." Coming from a long line of BMW bikes at the time I was used to a much tighter feel with deeper lean angles. I was second guessing my purchase.

Then one day I watched a motor officer do a u-turn in the middle of a street and chase a sport bike rider who was popping wheelies adjacent to a park. The sport bike rider thought about running and left at a high rate of speed; the motor officer on an Electraglide hung with him. The sport bike rider gave up and pulled over.

I then decided to find out what was wrong with my Ultra as I could not handle mine like that. After asking a lot of questions and hooking up with the right people I found out that is was not the bike; it was me.

A very kind motor officer then gave me some instruction and I was on my way to doing a much better job of tossing the Ultra around and yes, you can toss it. What you need to do is not 'control it' so to speak but 'point it' and let it go. If it feels unsettled you, the rider, needs to get used to that. The Ultra is not a sport bike by any means but it is not just a rolling couch either.

There are two types of HD riders out there and one is much more common than the other. I doubt there are many on this site of the most common variety; those that ride 500 miles a year between bars and bike shows. When I mount my BMW or Ultra I have my Aerostich on, Schuberth helmet, waterproof boots, etc. and I am intending to put some dashed lines behind me. With 77,000 miles on the Ultra's clock now I can say it is actually a pretty impressive ride.

You do not have to participate in the tire kicking, beer drinking, black leather vest crowd with a pirate 'dew rag' if you do not want to!
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Old 04-16-2013, 11:44 AM   #26
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So the wife completed her motorcycle safety course this weekend. She had to do the classroom stuff at the local Harley shop and then did the "range" stuff elsewhere. Most of the instructors are all LEO types and they ride the HD stuff. She also said the stealership guy came in and gave them the sales pitch.

Her question to me was, "Why do people choose a Harley cruiser type bike over a lighter weight, more manueverable bike?" My answer was that different people feel more comfortable on them I guess. I am not an HD fan because they do not appeal to me.

Can anyone else add any insight as to what makes the HD popular besides being part of the "cool guy" crowd? How about what makes the Sport touring bike more popular? The latter being my favorite. If I were buying a large bike I would just buy a Gold Wing. I am not quite there yet, but know it may come someday.

Many of them sit quite low and are easy to ride. They are not like the Panhead choopers from easyriders. Most of them have nuetral ergonomics and are easy to ride around town on. They have decent brakes on them are easy to maintain, relativly cheap to get comon parts for, have a good dealer network and are reliable if they are not highly modified or abused.


There is really nothing that makes the sport touring bike more popular, cruisers are far more popular in the US as a % of overall bikes that are purchased. True Sport tourers are a niche market in the US.

If you rode a Goldwing and rode an Electra Glide, you may still buy the Goldwing, but you would also understand what makes ElectrGlides so popular to so many people for eating miles on interstates and fun backroads.
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Old 04-20-2013, 07:51 PM   #27
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in 2005 i bought a brand new sportster 1200r,

i was 23 at the time, still have the bike, and its still a fucking awesome do pretty much anything bike. about to turn 23k miles on it, been pretty much bullet proof.


i lean towards old bikes and 'new,' old bikes, and the sportster R surprisingly was what i was looking for when i test rode one. other bikes being considered and tested at the time were the monster, bonnie t100, thruxton, and sport classic 1000.

i still want a thruxton in a bad way, although it killed my wrists, and i would definately take a scrambler and use it properly
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Old 04-25-2013, 01:01 PM   #28
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The Multistrada would be an awesome bike for her if she learns up for a bit on the small bike.

Harley's are kind of nostalgic to me. They cost a lot more than a similar bike made by another brand. Engines are air-cooled for the most part and get toasty in the summer. They vibrate a LOT and are very heavy for their size (to me) yes I'm a woman. If you want a bike to modify, Harley's have by far the most out there available to them. One of the HD if not their main huge seller is their sound.

The tourers are a lot smoother and have more modern technology in them. Exhaust can be very quiet, which some people can't stand. They are neither a sport bike or a cruiser at all. Sport Touring bikes also don't need a lot of mods. They are built well equipped from the factory. Some have adjustable seats, digital interfaces, temp gauge, gas gauge, fairing compartments, power window, removable hard-bags, adjustable shocks... A trunk is about the biggest mod for a tourer.

If I'd compare them to cars they Harley's are the muscle cars and sport tourers are more of a luxury performance car
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Old 04-25-2013, 01:55 PM   #29
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The Multistrada would be an awesome bike for her if she learns up for a bit on the small bike.

Harley's are kind of nostalgic to me. They cost a lot more than a similar bike made by another brand. Engines are air-cooled for the most part and get toasty in the summer. They vibrate a LOT and are very heavy for their size (to me) yes I'm a woman. If you want a bike to modify, Harley's have by far the most out there available to them. One of the HD if not their main huge seller is their sound.

The tourers are a lot smoother and have more modern technology in them. Exhaust can be very quiet, which some people can't stand. They are neither a sport bike or a cruiser at all. Sport Touring bikes also don't need a lot of mods. They are built well equipped from the factory. Some have adjustable seats, digital interfaces, temp gauge, gas gauge, fairing compartments, power window, removable hard-bags, adjustable shocks... A trunk is about the biggest mod for a tourer.

If I'd compare them to cars they Harley's are the muscle cars and sport tourers are more of a luxury performance car
Hardleys are the [aircooled] Volkswagon Beetles of the motorcycle world.
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Old 04-25-2013, 02:40 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by GodfatherofSoul View Post
Resale is another reason. Harley's seem to maintain their value. They're also kind of a cultural icon as well for older generations; back to Brando's "whataya got?"
It clearly says TRIUMPH on the gas tank, not sure why so many people think he rides a H-D. Even back in the day it wasn't all Hogs there were Indians (Superior to H-D), Triumphs, BSAs, Vincents (held the record for the fastest bike longer than any other bike in history) etc.


Quote:
Originally Posted by GodfatherofSoul View Post
Gotta say the Harley crowd actually *rides* though. Around here, even on the most perfect riding days I've gone on 3-4 hour trips and consistently counted the vast majority are Harley's or similar cruisers. Maybe 1-2% are sports bikes and you only see them close to the city.
You're right the Harley crowd does ride, but I still think that for every 10 you see out on the road there's at least that many or more that are garage queens that only serve as ass jewelery once or twice a week for a run to the local bike night or bar.

A lot depends on where you live too, when I was living in the Bay area, I'd say Harleys were out numbered by other bikes that you would seen out riding in the twisties. Here in Colorado it's another story, I'd have to say that Harleys and Cruisers in general make up at least half if not more of the bikes on the road. I live off of a twisty paved mountain road and I rarely see sportbikes I think this has to do with A) The local culture and B) There's a lot of MF'ing speed traps up and down the entire front range.

To say H-Ds have the lowest seat height and they're the ONLY option is B.S. there's a lot of others with similar seat heights and why you wouldn't buy one as your first bike over a H-D is beyond me.
http://www.examiner.com/article/comp...e-seat-heights
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