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Old 01-20-2011, 03:05 PM   #16
SPOFF
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crossthread View Post
"Fat, overweight, underpowered, unreliable, vibrating, massively overpriced step-through POS scooter?

Sure. We can do that."

Oh, I don't know... that Defiant chassis with a 125 hp Buell motor could be lively.

BTW, my local Harley dealer also sells Genuine Scooters, does that count?
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Old 01-20-2011, 03:09 PM   #17
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Yes, it does!

Howdy,

Spoff: Your local HD dealer is selling Genuine scoots? I count that as a "yes". Fairly close, at least. One would have access to a good dealer, parts and service..
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Old 01-20-2011, 04:08 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crossthread View Post
"Fat, overweight, underpowered, unreliable, vibrating, massively overpriced step-through POS scooter?

Sure. We can do that."



(So says the guy who has the H-D Softail in his garage. )



I will tell you first of all Harleys ARE VERY reliable. For one, the Harleys I've had have been far more reliable then all of the Hondas and others, except for the CRF 50. I've found that there WAS a period of time when H-Ds weren't great and everyone doesn't realize that all the other years and especially know their great.

Harleys are great machines. I WILL agree with you that they are priced a bit high, and that it SHOULD be brought down a bit, but look at HONDA!

They were expecting $4,500 and EVEN more out the door for a 150 cc scooter. Thats about $1,800 away from a brand new basic Sportster 883, and well over the price of a nice used Sportster 1200. They HAVE been raising their prices, I mean I remember when you could get an ST 1300 for around $12,000. Now their about $17,000 out the door.

And as for power, yes they aren't the fastest bikes for their displacement. But you know what, they are PLENTY fast for me MOST of the time. They will easily run 85 MPH all day long, and actually the sweet spot is right around 75-80 MPH where they just "feel" right.

Thats one reason they get BETTER MPG than a lot of the bikes their size. The big twins like low RPMs, so they have either a 1:1 or overdrive top gear, so they will run a lot lower than say, a sports bike.

But hell, if you want to go faster just get a used Sport bike. But they accelerate just fine and cruise nice. The weight is there so they feel better on the highway, and don't get blown around all over the place.

But see, Harley IS NOT designing these for performance at all! These are highway bikes, and they do what they were made to do great. Yes, these won't do very well on a drag strip or race track, but I'd like to see you ride a stock super sport bike across America with minimal stops. You may make it, but you won't be a happy camper after endless hours on the interstate!

Yes, you'll say get a goldwing or touring machine. Well, those are big heavy and not that fast either. BUt thats what these so.

I am saying if Harley would make a SCOOTER. Not a big giant scooter, but a real V-Twin scooter with around 250 cc.
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Old 01-20-2011, 04:43 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by btcn View Post
I will tell you first of all Harleys ARE VERY reliable. For one, the Harleys I've had have been far more reliable then all of the Hondas and others, except for the CRF 50. I've found that there WAS a period of time when H-Ds weren't great and everyone doesn't realize that all the other years and especially know their great.

Harleys are great machines. I WILL agree with you that they are priced a bit high, and that it SHOULD be brought down a bit, but look at HONDA!

They were expecting $4,500 and EVEN more out the door for a 150 cc scooter. Thats about $1,800 away from a brand new basic Sportster 883, and well over the price of a nice used Sportster 1200. They HAVE been raising their prices, I mean I remember when you could get an ST 1300 for around $12,000. Now their about $17,000 out the door.

And as for power, yes they aren't the fastest bikes for their displacement. But you know what, they are PLENTY fast for me MOST of the time. They will easily run 85 MPH all day long, and actually the sweet spot is right around 75-80 MPH where they just "feel" right.

Thats one reason they get BETTER MPG than a lot of the bikes their size. The big twins like low RPMs, so they have either a 1:1 or overdrive top gear, so they will run a lot lower than say, a sports bike.

But hell, if you want to go faster just get a used Sport bike. But they accelerate just fine and cruise nice. The weight is there so they feel better on the highway, and don't get blown around all over the place.

But see, Harley IS NOT designing these for performance at all! These are highway bikes, and they do what they were made to do great. Yes, these won't do very well on a drag strip or race track, but I'd like to see you ride a stock super sport bike across America with minimal stops. You may make it, but you won't be a happy camper after endless hours on the interstate!

Yes, you'll say get a goldwing or touring machine. Well, those are big heavy and not that fast either. BUt thats what these so.

I am saying if Harley would make a SCOOTER. Not a big giant scooter, but a real V-Twin scooter with around 250 cc.

LOL! I knew I could get a rise out of you with that comment!

Actually, you're right on all counts. The Twin'Cam 88" in my Softail is just an awesome motor. It isn't supposed to be a rocketship, it's supposed to be a highway cruiser. Designed to haul the rider and a ton of gear all day in a nice leisurely manner. It does that exceptionally well. It's even smoother than my old Goldwing was. It's the only bike I've ever owned that I can be going down the road at 75mph and be able to read the license plate of the cage behind me in the mirrors! And it gets near 50mpg on long trips. My Goldwing never broke 40 mpg in its life.

That being said, I don't think H-D would ever try to market a scoot. They have become victims of their own marketing. Big, Badass, and Traditional is what they sell, and no self respecting "rider of fashion" would ruin his image by riding something as wimpy as a scooter. :ymca
Still, it makes you wonder what it would be like to have that motor in a 300-500CC package along with 16" wheels, a CVT and a good steel tube frame like the Zuma has. I'd buy one.

edit: I forgot to mention- my local H-D dealer also owns the local Vespa/Piaggio franchise, in a building next door to the H-D shop. The parking lot can get real interesting sometimes during the hot days of summer! Talk about Mods and Rockers!
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Crossthread screwed with this post 01-20-2011 at 04:53 PM
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Old 01-20-2011, 05:40 PM   #20
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Interesting that we’re having the “Harley argument” in a scooter forum, but let me lend this perspective. I’ve been lurking because I am seriously planning to sell one of my big street bikes in the spring to buy a scooter. (The Honda PCX and Zuma 125 are at the top of my list—this week.) I’m thinking to do this as a hedge against $5 gasoline, which will happen sooner or later.

But if mileage is a major consideration there is another option. An 883 Sportster can be tuned to get 70 to 80 mpg if you know how to tweak one of the old carbureted models. (I would shoot for a 1995 model, give or take 5 years.) In the middle of the New Hampshire winter these show up on Craigslist for less than what a 50cc scooter costs. If you’ve never ridden a Sportster, they vibrate a lot. If you ride them at 150cc scooter speeds, though, they don’t vibrate that much. So it’s possible to have a relatively small but real motorcycle that ridden at scooter speeds gets scooter gas mileage, but still capable of 100 mph if you really wanted to. So you don’t have to worry about highways or the “bigger” roads that you wouldn't take a 150cc scooter on.

And Sportsters are reliable enough. I put 20,000 miles on one with no issues. They aren’t as reliable as a new Honda, but they are as reliable as my 1970s Hondas—which is still damned good. But in my case, I doubt I’d do another Sportster. I’ll probably go with a scooter.
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Old 01-20-2011, 05:42 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crossthread View Post
LOL! I knew I could get a rise out of you with that comment!

Actually, you're right on all counts. The Twin'Cam 88" in my Softail is just an awesome motor. It isn't supposed to be a rocketship, it's supposed to be a highway cruiser. Designed to haul the rider and a ton of gear all day in a nice leisurely manner. It does that exceptionally well. It's even smoother than my old Goldwing was. It's the only bike I've ever owned that I can be going down the road at 75mph and be able to read the license plate of the cage behind me in the mirrors! And it gets near 50mpg on long trips. My Goldwing never broke 40 mpg in its life.

That being said, I don't think H-D would ever try to market a scoot. They have become victims of their own marketing. Big, Badass, and Traditional is what they sell, and no self respecting "rider of fashion" would ruin his image by riding something as wimpy as a scooter. :ymca
Still, it makes you wonder what it would be like to have that motor in a 300-500CC package along with 16" wheels, a CVT and a good steel tube frame like the Zuma has. I'd buy one.

edit: I forgot to mention- my local H-D dealer also owns the local Vespa/Piaggio franchise, in a building next door to the H-D shop. The parking lot can get real interesting sometimes during the hot days of summer! Talk about Mods and Rockers!

Ha, you sure did!

But yes, Harleys are great bikes, and they do what they were meant to do very well!

I have a good laugh at the guys comparing them to sports bikes. Its like wow, your R1 is real fast! It can beat a HIGHWAY cruiser off the line! Big deal! I want to see them take a cross country trip and tour all over with me! Now THAT would be FUNNY! Imagine the complaints these kids would have! I bet they haven't ridden more than 25 minutes at a time!

Harleys aren't THAT slow! The V-Rod can keep up with some older sportsbikes off the line, but it's still much more comfortable for touring.

Yes they don't handle that great on twisties, but find me a cruiser that was built to cruise that does! Those Twin cam motors just rock! Vibration is also not so bad on the newer models either. It is great, just enough at idle to feel like a real twin, yet very smooth on the interstate which is nice after hours of riding.


And as for the scooters. You have a good point Crossthread. But you know if they wanted to, they could change the whole approach to scooters. Instead of little inclosed tiny wheeled vespas, they could build nice chrome scooters.

They could advertise: Want 80 MPG without looking like a wimp or geek? Want an easy automatic? Check out, etc. Get some good advertising, make it look real cool with an open engine and CVT, yet keep some of the main scooter features like some kind of storage, great around town maneuverability, etc. And try to price it correctly!

I know it is not very likely, but who knows, IF they do get in trouble by the average rider age and all that, it has potential. But then again, the maxi scooter crowd is not typically young, although I am and I also like Maxis! But thats not typical.

BUT smaller displacements are, and beginners are looking for something that they aren't afraid to get on. A Sportster isn't THAT big, but its still a pretty heavy machine to pick up when you dump it in a parking lot! MAYBE a Sportster 250 would be AWESOME!

You know they are trying to appeal to more young riders. For example when they bought MV Agusta. Although they sold that company as far as I know, their trying. For example the new XR 1200. Its not gonna sell that great though, because its still not a real quick bike with a standard sportster engine.

Heres what they need to do. The XR 1200 WITH A V-ROD MOTOR! Now THAT would be a bike!
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Old 01-20-2011, 06:59 PM   #22
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Actually, a standard Sportster--that is--one without the lowered suspension--doesn't handle too bad. My 2006 XL883 has the longer standard suspension and mid controls. The forward controls can scrape in the corners. Suposedly the first thing to scrape on a standard XL is the forward exhaust heat shield. I haven't scraped anything on mine yet-but I'm 57 years old and want to live to be 58.

An unwise choice by HD is to drop all the Sportsters with the standard suspension (exception is the newer XR1200s) in faivor of the lowered models. Read any road test of the new "Super Low" and you will hear that cornering clearance is a major drawback. It's probably ok if you just putt around like an old gray bearded grandpa, but I mostly live for the corners, but like a torquey tractable V-Twin that handles pretty well. Can't afford an XR1200 right now.If I was rich I'd buy a Waken.
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Old 01-20-2011, 07:31 PM   #23
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Harley recently shut down Buell and sold (or are selling) MV Augusta so they can concentrate on their "core" customers, ie air cooled V-twin cruisers. Even the V-rod hasn't gone over very well in the US. Don't hold your breath on Harley making a scooter in the near future. Of course, if gas prices skyrocket and cruiser sales drop way down, they might change their position.
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Old 01-21-2011, 07:16 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by klaviator View Post
... if gas prices skyrocket and cruiser sales drop way down, they might change their position.

While I'm sure they have the engineering and expertise to make a killer scoot, fuel prices would have to get sky high, and STAY there for H-D to consider anything smaller than the XL 883. It would take extreme financial circumstances for them to step so far outside the cruiser box they have built for themselves. Heck, they invented the cruiser style, and they will never willingly change that.
You will notice that ALL successful scooter designs have come from places where fuel prices are astronomical and the income of the local population is relatively low. When the demand for cheap, fuel efficient transportation gets loud enough, and goes on long enough, even the most hidebound manufacturer has to listen if they want to stay in business.
But, by the time H-D heeds the call, the market will have already been taken over by Japan, Taiwan, Italy and China. They will then claim they are being unfairly competed against by cheap foreign competitors and demand the government institute a massive trade tariff on the import of any motorcycle over 50CC. (Does this pattern sound familiar? Think early eighties Japanese motorcycles over 700CC.)


There. I think I've stirred the pot enough for this morning. My work here is done.
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Travel too fast and you will miss all you are traveling for." -Louis L'Amour-
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Old 01-21-2011, 07:47 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Crossthread View Post
While I'm sure they have the engineering and expertise to make a killer scoot, fuel prices would have to get sky high, and STAY there for H-D to consider anything smaller than the XL 883. It would take extreme financial circumstances for them to step so far outside the cruiser box they have built for themselves. Heck, they invented the cruiser style, and they will never willingly change that.
You will notice that ALL successful scooter designs have come from places where fuel prices are astronomical and the income of the local population is relatively low. When the demand for cheap, fuel efficient transportation gets loud enough, and goes on long enough, even the most hidebound manufacturer has to listen if they want to stay in business.
But, by the time H-D heeds the call, the market will have already been taken over by Japan, Taiwan, Italy and China. They will then claim they are being unfairly competed against by cheap foreign competitors and demand the government institute a massive trade tariff on the import of any motorcycle over 50CC. (Does this pattern sound familiar? Think early eighties Japanese motorcycles over 700CC.)


There. I think I've stirred the pot enough for this morning. My work here is done.

Yea I do think the chance is very very slim. BUT I could see them making a 250 cc cruiser or something along those lines.
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Old 01-21-2011, 08:26 AM   #26
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Harley was on the right track with Buell and MV, but screwed that up. They dumped more $$ in to Buell to close it down than they did the whole time they owned it...and turned down offers from BRP to continue the 1125 line (Can-am could use a sport bike and Rotax already made the engines).

They paid nearly $100 mil to buy MV and upgrade the plant...then sold it back for $4 a year later...

They can't market anything that isn't typical HD. The dealers don't want to sell anything that isn't typical HD. That business model will fail for anthing outside the box.

I think HD will go down in a pile of flames before they figure out how to do anything beyond a crusier. They do have the talent, but are held back by management and WillyG.
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Old 01-21-2011, 08:55 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Crossthread View Post
While I'm sure they have the engineering and expertise to make a killer scoot, fuel prices would have to get sky high, and STAY there for H-D to consider anything smaller than the XL 883. It would take extreme financial circumstances for them to step so far outside the cruiser box they have built for themselves. Heck, they invented the cruiser style, and they will never willingly change that.
You will notice that ALL successful scooter designs have come from places where fuel prices are astronomical and the income of the local population is relatively low. When the demand for cheap, fuel efficient transportation gets loud enough, and goes on long enough, even the most hidebound manufacturer has to listen if they want to stay in business.
But, by the time H-D heeds the call, the market will have already been taken over by Japan, Taiwan, Italy and China. They will then claim they are being unfairly competed against by cheap foreign competitors and demand the government institute a massive trade tariff on the import of any motorcycle over 50CC. (Does this pattern sound familiar? Think early eighties Japanese motorcycles over 700CC.)


There. I think I've stirred the pot enough for this morning. My work here is done.
I bought one of those Harelys during that time period-a 1984 XLX1000 Sportster. That's the one that got 66 mpg!! By the way, as I understand it, HD went to the government early before the three years were up and had them end it early. That was a three year tarrif on Japanese motorcycles over 700cc I believe. What was amazjing was how quick the Japanese big four changed designs on many of their 750 models to squeeze them in under the 700cc limit.
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Old 01-21-2011, 09:39 AM   #28
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The biggest problem for Harley Davidson is the new management are a bunch of Wall Street men who have never ridden a motorcycle.

I predict a disaster like the 1970s when they were owned by that... bowling alley company.
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Old 01-21-2011, 01:13 PM   #29
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SPOFF,

Welcome to the scooter forum. This is great place to find what type of scooter will be fit you. You are not alone in moving down the displacement ladder. There are many here that have found that riding a scoot near its upper limit can be tons of fun.

You were looking at 125-150cc scoots.. how do you intend to use it?

Scoots are very convenient commuters, too.
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Old 01-21-2011, 03:55 PM   #30
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Harley was on the right track with Buell and MV, but screwed that up. They dumped more $$ in to Buell to close it down than they did the whole time they owned it...and turned down offers from BRP to continue the 1125 line (Can-am could use a sport bike and Rotax already made the engines).

They paid nearly $100 mil to buy MV and upgrade the plant...then sold it back for $4 a year later...

They can't market anything that isn't typical HD. The dealers don't want to sell anything that isn't typical HD. That business model will fail for anthing outside the box.

I think HD will go down in a pile of flames before they figure out how to do anything beyond a crusier. They do have the talent, but are held back by management and WillyG.

I know, its a damn shame. I actually liked Buell, they had that cool beefy motor sound with a supped up Sportster motor, yet had really fine performance and handled great.
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