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Old 04-17-2008, 06:39 PM   #136
DC950
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donkey Hotey
Dang, that is a great find. That ad really didn't capture just how ugly it is. It's fugliness just can't be captured in 2D. I saw an amazingly clean one in a parking lot about 6 months ago. It looked like new. I wasn't sure if the owner only pulled it into the light of day 10 times in 20 years or if it had been sitting in the showroom that long waiting for a buyer. Like any bike that old, I spent a few minutes looking at it.

There ARE uglier motorcycles out there but they come from smaller companies that don't have a real styling budget (the Ural cruiser, the Amazonas, Boss Hoss). A company as large as Suzuki really doesn't have an excuse for producing something that ugly. It wasn't as fast as the Vmax or V65. It wasn't a particularly good handler. It wasn't a good touring bike, they had the Cavalcade for that: same engine, almost as ugly. It was a bike with no advantage. I don't remember the prices but maybe it was cheaper than the competition.

Can you imagine some guy walking into a dealership with his checkbook in hand and going, "YEAH! That's what I'm talking about! I want to ride THAT for the next 5 years!"
truer words have never been spoken. I had the misfortune to regularly park next to one at LAAFB. Other than somewhat round tires, it had no redeeming qualities. But I do know why the one you saw was so pristine - the owner is too embarassed to take it out much.
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Old 04-18-2008, 10:36 AM   #137
Sir Not Appearing
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Those Chinese choppers are ridden all over the small town where I live. People ride them like mopeds. But then again, I live in Indiana and I've seen at least 2 plated Aprilia 250's. One of the owners told me you can pretty much plate anything in Indiana with a little patience.

So far the worst bike I've had experience with was an '02 or '03 883 Sportster. No power. No brakes. However, being completely honest, its not a really ugly bike, but performance-wise it was horrible.
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Old 04-18-2008, 05:39 PM   #138
Brooklyn Rob
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Oooo...oooo... I know...I know

The 2002 suzuki dr650 is the worst bike ever.

I had it for a year and a half and then it was stolen. Both summers I had it it was in the shop for the entire summer.
It stalled many times the first day I rode it- brand stinkin' new on the way home from the dealer, a distance of about 15 miles.

When it was stolen, it had like 5 things wrong with it.
Adios and good riddance.

(Rant ends here.)
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Old 04-19-2008, 05:05 PM   #139
Richy
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I had a TX, really enjoyed it when it ran. After the head warped the second time, Yamaha said I was on my own. I sold it and bought a new Harley, never looked back.

Harley goodwilled me a piston/cylinder, etc. for that bike, after the warranty period was up.
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Old 04-19-2008, 07:08 PM   #140
ibafran
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Mechanically, there have been some real losers. And style-wise its hard to pick out something truly awful.

I nominate the Honda 150cc Benley Touring. Yes, the motor was a little jewel. Near zero torque, but 16hp at 10.5k revs. And it had a fully enclosed drive chain that couldnt be beat. The seat had real springs and was surprisingly comfortable for its day.

The solid footpegs and cruddy rear suspension had the hard bits and mufflers dragging with very little lean angle. The leading link front suspension was controlled by fat rubber donuts. The kind of rubber donuts usually seen supporting modern cage exhaust systems. There were no hydraulics or any other mechanical help for the rubber donuts. The throttle cable was internal at the twistgrip and exited the bar at the first bend. When the bike fell on the throttle side, the bar would fold at the throttle cable hole every time.

Style-wise it was ugly everywhere. The front fender was sort of square with a flip at the trailing edge. The forks were stampings welded at the joining seams. The frame was the same stamping welded up. No amount of paint could make this bike look good. The rear fender sort of matched the front with a flare at the trailing edge. Square plastic rear shock covers did not look out of place on this bike. Like the seat and the chain cover, the fenders actually worked well at keeping the filth from the tires off the bike and rider.

In lots of ways, it was a really good bike. But in lots of other ways it was the worst. It could never overcome its flaws. The tubed frame 160cc bike was much better looking and sold well, comparatively.
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Old 04-20-2008, 01:46 PM   #141
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ibafran
Mechanically, there have been some real losers. And style-wise its hard to pick out something truly awful.

I nominate the Honda 150cc Benley Touring. Yes, the motor was a little jewel. Near zero torque, but 16hp at 10.5k revs. And it had a fully enclosed drive chain that couldnt be beat. The seat had real springs and was surprisingly comfortable for its day.

Style-wise it was ugly everywhere. The front fender was sort of square with a flip at the trailing edge. The forks were stampings welded at the joining seams. The frame was the same stamping welded up. No amount of paint could make this bike look good. The rear fender sort of matched the front with a flare at the trailing edge. Square plastic rear shock covers did not look out of place on this bike. Like the seat and the chain cover, the fenders actually worked well at keeping the filth from the tires off the bike and rider.

In lots of ways, it was a really good bike. But in lots of other ways it was the worst. It could never overcome its flaws. The tubed frame 160cc bike was much better looking and sold well, comparatively.
Yeah, the Benly sure is a "polarizing" design. My friend bought one for his father to commute on and it's a pretty cool bike. It's awesome to ride it alongside my brother's 1965 Honda S90, which is a real fun bike too. The S90 is a real revvy bike and the Benly, by comparison, is like a Harley

Also, regarding the TX500 that supposedly was kaput: misadjusted valves were causing low compression! Whew! It's running better than ever and we did a 60 mile ride out to Watkins Glen today. Considering how similar it is to an XS500, the contrast is quite striking: The TX has quiet stock exhaust and looks civilized and classy with its polished chrome and fancy new (correct) paintjob. The XS500 has a loud aftermarket 2-1 system that's been patched with old license plates and clamps , and it has its original black paint and "cafe-style" plastic trim pieces.

I think any Japanese 250cc "Cruiser" is a crappy bike. Why not buy the better handling/looking standard version?
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Old 04-20-2008, 02:07 PM   #142
Bald Kirk
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Madura Mayhem 2008...

will be held this year in "the carpet capital of the world" Dalton Georgia.

Tickets are limited so get them while they last.

http://www.lk3000.com/madura/
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Old 02-02-2013, 01:56 AM   #143
roguetek
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1979 Harley Davidson Ironhead Sportster
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Old 02-02-2013, 06:02 AM   #144
Aj Mick
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wpbarlow View Post
Yes, it was a decidedly US perspective. But that makes me wonder- were there bikes that were successful here in the US that were turds everywhere else?
Any Harley I would have thought. Although they do sell a few in many countries, it is mainly the image, not the machine. They may have a place on US highways, but outside that environment they seem to have little going for them..... Mind you the same could be said for a few other heavyweights, such as the Gold Wing.

In most of the rest of the world more nimble machines are a much better proposition.

In England I had a Honda CB 250 RS on which I explored much of the British Isles, and parts of Central Europe. A guy who used to drop by at the pub I lived in had a well tarted up Harley, on which his annual milage was less than I would do in one July (my usual touring month, post sheep shearing and prior to harvest).

But then it is different strokes for different folks. He got a kick out of his over priced ornament, while I got my jollies out of a bike that cost me 500, and took me thousands of miles over several years..... before it was stolen.
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Old 02-02-2013, 06:24 AM   #145
toy4fun
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In 68 when the honda 90s were hitiing the streets my dad went to Sears and bought this 130CC POS, it was candy apple red. The magneto front light was useless unless you reeved the engine way high, the rear brake made out of pot metal broke one day and was not repairable. Stood up on the front pegs and the bolt broke (no it was parked). It had a key that looked like a handcuff key, you put it in a hole in the headlight and pushed it down and back, it could be replaced with any rusty nail. The rear shocks broke in half and could not be replaced I used some old car shocks that I drilled holes in to mount. It sucked a valve one day but we were able to get engine parts and get it running again. I hated that thing but I loved my dad for getting it!!!!
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Old 02-02-2013, 09:41 AM   #146
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Honda VF 1000, can't think of the year. It had the 16" front wheel, which made the handling 'interesting' especially at slow speed's. Cam chain tensioner's, well they just didn't tension, used lot of oil , only had something like 40 000 km's on the clock, i had to carry a bottle of oil with me. Honda fixed all that with the VFR in '86, i had the '86 and the '93 models, nice ultra reliable bikes.
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Old 02-02-2013, 11:32 AM   #147
blkhrt81
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When we are talking terrible motorcycles, we have to keep in mind the context of the times. I have had a Mach 1 Kawasaki, 500 triple, terrible on gas and peaky as beejesus but really, I thought it handled ok and if you flogged it, it ran fine. Rode a TL1000S for awhile and then passed it on to my son, he loved it, especially after upgrading to an Ohlins rear shock, again it was a pig on gas. I even had an AMF FLH, and I really liked it, ran fine, always started, best seat and weather protection I'd ever had up until then.
The old Brit bikes all had weak lubrication systems, some worse than others but all were minimal at best. By the late 60s lots of us teenagers (with the mechanical aptitude of clams) were buying them of 50s vintage and beating the shit out of them. Oil changes, do you have to do them? Small, cloth wrapped wiring that's been out in the weather for 10-15 years, looking back, it's kind of a wonder that as many ran as they did.
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Old 02-02-2013, 04:07 PM   #148
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1981 cr250r/450r Honda

Maybe not the worst ever, but the worst I ever owned. The clutch basket bushing was a steel bushing, not a bearing. It would seize solid on the starting gate and ram the bike into the gate with the clutch lever still pulled in. After many updates you still had to wait until the last second to put it in gear.
The rear suspension geometry was screwed up. The shock shaft would snap off and pitch you over the bars. I broke the stock shock on both bikes, and a Fox shock three times on the 450. I disassembled the 450 at the end of the year and threw it away in pieces. I hated that bike so much, and couldn't sell it to any one with a clear conscience.
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Old 02-02-2013, 05:21 PM   #149
davidji
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roguetek View Post
1979 Harley Davidson Ironhead Sportster
This was a good discussion to perform thread necromancy on. Hadn't seen it before. Thanks.
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Old 02-03-2013, 02:08 PM   #150
O.C.F.RIDER
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aussijussi View Post
Honda VF 1000, can't think of the year. It had the 16" front wheel, which made the handling 'interesting' especially at slow speed's. Cam chain tensioner's, well they just didn't tension, used lot of oil , only had something like 40 000 km's on the clock, i had to carry a bottle of oil with me. Honda fixed all that with the VFR in '86, i had the '86 and the '93 models, nice ultra reliable bikes.

Back in the early 80's 16"front wheels were the way to get these locomotive wheelbase bike to turn quick. I put a 16"er on my '85 K100RS, '80 Pantah race bike, and my '80 900 SS.........they worked great. My VF1000 has a bit over 20,000 miles and doesn't burn a drop of oil and the cam chains are quiet as a church mouse. Note: it DOES have the Amol oiling kit and updated cams and rockers. Oh, and it seems, at least to a know-nothin'like me, to handle quite good once it's got a good shock, stiffer fork springs, and it's set-up correctly. Back in the 80's I wouldn't have pissed on this thing if it were on fire, but I have to say after putting a few thousand miles on it last spring & summer.....I REALLY like it! And I love the looks. And it sounds soooo cool with the open 'Trapps.

Chris
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