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Old 04-23-2012, 02:10 PM   #1
vacantstare OP
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R1200c general inquiry

I find myself missing my airhead terribly, and also in the position of wanting an around-town and occasional weekend bike that can do 2-up. These two influences together have me thinking that maybe an r1200c is the bike for me. I know, it's not an airhead, but it's not too far away in the family tree. I also know that there are dozens of better 2-up touring bikes, but I like naked bikes, and I am not a big fan of traditional v-twin cruisers, so the r1200c seems like a good alternative.

So...question 1- what's this I hear about the sidestand? Seems people hate them.

question 2- are there decent pillion seats available? I like my g/f, and I don't want her to hate riding on the back.

question 3- how is an r1200c 2-up?


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Old 04-23-2012, 02:43 PM   #2
One Less Harley
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It has a different riding position than an airhead, feet a little forward. May not be an issue for you but it doesn't allow one to weight the pegs very well. Just feels foreign to me. Two up should be fine, lots of torque from that motor. A single throttle body for 2 cylinders.

If I remember right the side stand is a little far forward but not as bad as the self retracting ones on some airheads.
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Old 04-23-2012, 04:44 PM   #3
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The local dealer's wife had a '98. She said it was fine, but after '98 the suspension was softer, causing the sidestand to drag.
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Old 04-23-2012, 08:28 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by vacantstare View Post

question 2- are there decent pillion seats available? I like my g/f, and I don't want her to hate riding on the back.

question 3- how is an r1200c 2-up?
She doesn't necessarily have to ride on the back

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Old 04-23-2012, 08:34 PM   #5
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Location: Alexandria, VA
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Good bikes, fun to ride casually. Not very quick due to the detuning and single throttle body. They handle pretty well, and have comfy seats with accomodations for the passenger in factory and aftermarket support. They tend to be quite reliable, and easy to maintain, and are, argueably, the best looking of the cruisers.

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Old 04-24-2012, 11:34 AM   #6
Joined: Jun 2008
Location: Bay Shore, NY
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I've owned one for the past 6 years and average 7-8,000 miles per year on it. I'm also one of the moderators of, which you're more than welcome to join. I've done local riding, to 550+ mile days, including 6 consecutive rides on the Dragon (because it was there). Its a great bike. Will do up to about 110 mph (but don't tell anyone I told you) which is plenty fast for me. It has plenty of torque, and acceleration is just fine. I've ridden in bright sunny weather, hellacious downpours and driving sleet. The bike holds the road perfectly, gives great feedback, and has a strange suspension that doesn't dive no matter what you try to do. The ABS has saved my ass plenty of times. Most of my riding is two-up, either with my wife or 14 year old son. My boy has ridden with me since he was 6. Neither has ever complained about comfort. The suspension is adjustable for varying weights and riding conditions, but I did just yesterday install a set of $1400 HyperPro shocks to make it even better. You've got about a half dozen options for a comfortable passenger seat/grab rail/back rest combinations, but they're too complicated to discuss here. For $5000-$8000 you can find many low mileage, highly optioned bikes on Craigslist right now. The boxer engine is bulletproof and will outlive all of us. The bike does have its issues like well-known final drive failure issues, hard to find electrical gremlins, etc., but nothing many other new, computer controlled, fuel injected, shaft drive bikes don't have too. Its very comfortable (I'm 6'2" with a 34" inseam). My legs are not cramped at all, and I did get a Russell DayLong Seat to raise me up another couple of inches, as well as get me more comfort and heat. The bike will draw attention where ever you go, so be prepared. Also, you will be more accepted by Harley and Metric Cruiser owners, and basically disliked by other BMW owners. Don't ask me why-you'll see for yourself. They only made the R1200C and R1200CL from 1998-2004. Most parts are still avaialble through the dealer network and are pretty steep. Many aftermarket accessory companies dumped us years ago, so you have to find and hoard the discontinued "good" stuff. Any more questions, please feel free to ask, or just join our site, and ask away. We welcome new members or just inquisitive shoppers. Hope to see you there.
Larry "Rocketman"

P.S. The bike only came with a sidestand, and it leans a little more than other bikes, but works just fine. One of our members is manufacturing permanently mounted spring-loaded center stands as we speak.

Roketman screwed with this post 04-24-2012 at 11:46 AM
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Old 04-24-2012, 11:41 AM   #7
Joined: Jun 2008
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OH yeah...forgot these:

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Old 04-24-2012, 12:20 PM   #8
Eric R. Shelton
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Location: Fargo, ND :(
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I still think the R1200C is one of the most beautiful and comfortable bikes I've had the pleasure to ride. Sadly, I couldn't bring myself to buy it because I felt like it was a gutless wonder. (And the Multistrada 620 I was looking to replace was only 63 horsepower. That's how underpowered I felt the R1200C was.) My understanding is that the engine was downtuned significantly in the C because they gave up the paralever in the rear for looks.

However... If you don't care about that, the flip side is that it's still a gorgeous bike and the only cruiser (for a while) that I felt got the essence of cruising down in the looks department without selling it's soul and trying to copy Harley's looks. It may be a cruiser, but I didn't feel like it was a result of a brand pretending to be something it wasn't. I wish the Japanese makers would still produce UJMs like the CB750 and play to their strengths- I jokingly refer to their big twin cruisers as "turkey bacon" because it's like they're impostors. The R1200C isn't. It is what it is, and proud of it. And that's pretty cool.
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