After the Uly...who's changed to something different and is happy with it?

Discussion in 'Land of the Rising Sun: ADV Bikes from Japan' started by SkiFastBadly, Aug 27, 2011.

  1. SkiFastBadly

    SkiFastBadly A beer? Yes, please

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,557
    Location:
    Woodinville, WA
    Ok, I think I'm coming to the end of my 'cool bike with personality' Buell experiment. My 07 grenaded at 28K miles, but being a romantic, I picked up a used 08 last spring. The 08, if you know these bikes, was supposed to be improved in lots of ways. Well, the damn thing stranded me in Polson, MT on the fourth day of a 6 day ride. They're still trying to determine which of the known gremlims (ECM, Chaffed fuel pump wires, etc.) are affecting the bike. I had a girlfriend like this in college, she was gorgeous and mercurial and fun to ride, but I dropped her because I knew eventually it would end badly.

    So, it's time to think about what the next bike is, and I'd be grateful for any ex Uly riders to chime in.

    When I bought the Uly, I was living in Utah, and did a lot of dirt road rides with it. My riding buddies had the typical big KTM 990s, BMW R1200GS, BMW F800GS etc. Now that I'm living in WA, I don't have quite the same riding, and spend more time on the street. I have a Harley Heritage, (which is what I SHOULD have taken on the trip) so I don't really need a cruiser. I also have a Triumph Scrambler which I putz around on and take up Forest Service roads if I'm looking for some gravel etc. So when I think about it, I really want a bike that has the spirit of the Uly, the upright riding position (hey, I'm 55) handles great, can be used for long rides, and good power.

    My riding pal insists I need a R1200GS, but frankly, I find the telelever front end sort of weird, and now that I'm not in Utah, I don't know if I need that kind of tractor. But I'm open.

    Another thought that's occurred to me is the Tiger. Yeah, I know everyone loves the 800 but I think the 1050 might be closer to the Uly in seat position and power.

    I've looked at but have not ridden the Aprillia Dorsoduro. It looks kind of sharp, but I know nothing about it.

    Finally, I'm thinking very hard about used. I'm not poor, but I am sorta cheap.

    So I know that's sprt of a generic set of criteria and I know it's been asked a hundred times before, but whaddya think?
    #1
  2. ram1000

    ram1000 Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,840
    Location:
    Tricities Washington
    I've ridden the ULY and disliked the way it feels off road but on road it is nice sitting up and feels like a DS bike. I like the different technologies combined in the ULY. Power was fair, both my 950 KTM and more so the Vstrom were easily faster but the ULY felt torque every where. I never succumbed to a ULY but if they had put that newer BUEL water cooled motor in something like it I might have. I now have a Dorsoduro and find it the most fun on road of any bike I have owned (60 +-). I wouldn't recommend it though as stopping for gas every 80-110 miles stinks, even if your pouring what you brought into the 3 gallon tank. Other than that you might really like the 1200 DD but I don't care about the upper end of power so much any more, at least as much as I care about handling. The 1200DD should present you with both. I would think you would really get off on your Scrambler though since it serves the same general utility, albeit with little or no power to spare. I love the look of the Triumph 1050 but after the Vstrom 1000 I don't know if there is any reason to pay more for the same utility. A friend just sold his ULY when his Yamaha Tenere arrived and after riding the Tenere It feels a lot like the Vstrom (somewhat bland) except it has better off road manners and wider handle bars.
    Oh yea! the BMW front end? What were they thinking???
    #2
  3. levain

    levain STILL Jim Williams

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2005
    Oddometer:
    7,634
    Location:
    Providence, RI
    I had one of those too, and you described the relationship perfectly:lol3:lol3 FWIW, that is how I now describe BMW's after losing brakes twice coasting through a red light because the system sensed a "fault":rofl:rofl

    OK, back to your question which I feel qualified to answer. My new Tiger 800XC rocks. I was out on my Uly today for the first time since bringing the Tiger home. I love that Uly, but I now know that it will never be my only bike. I haven't had any problems with my 09, and it is fun as hell to ride. Yes, it has tons of character, but the whole time I was reminded how much I love riding this Tiger. It's the triple. I find it intoxicating. Demo one and see if it works for you. It is a totally different experience, and it is refined beyond belief. The opoosite of a Uly, but don't take that the wrong way. I love my Uly. I'm not selling it, but this is now my daily rider for a reason.
    #3
  4. wbedient

    wbedient MoTard

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,315
    Location:
    North Central Washington
    How much power is "good power" ?

    What do you mean by the "spirit of the ULY" ?
    #4
  5. elementalg20

    elementalg20 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
    Oddometer:
    807
    Location:
    Melcher, Iowa
    I'll just toss this one out there, Multistrada 1200 anyone?
    #5
  6. SkiFastBadly

    SkiFastBadly A beer? Yes, please

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,557
    Location:
    Woodinville, WA
    Yeah, good questions. By power I mean torque. All my bikes are two cylinder air cooled with most of the power low. I test rode a Street Triple once, but I'm 6 ft and it felt a bet cramped. Also, it was weird having the tach go up to 13K or whatever it was. I'm sure I could get used to it but I like the low end torque of the Buell....and of the Harley, once I did the Screaming Eagle stage 2 upgrade. I don't need 150 HP, but the Scrambler is a bit too low on that juice you get when you twist the throttle of the Uly. By spirit, I guess I mean the hooliganism, and the absolute confidence I have in the twisties.
    #6
  7. Telman

    Telman Ulysses Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2006
    Oddometer:
    126
    Location:
    Tasmania, Australia
    I went from the Uly to a Speed Triple. More engine, just as upright and a lot of fun. A 1050 Tiger would also be a good choice. :D
    #7
  8. larryboy

    larryboy Chopper Rider

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2005
    Oddometer:
    15,346
    Location:
    On a set of 50,000 mile tires.
    I think you need a HyperMotard. :evil

    I hated my Uly(one letter away from Ugly) within 100 miles of brand new and tried like hell to like it for 40,000 miles.


    A good option to a Hyper is the old Multi, fantastic engine and the looks fade away when you twist that throttle. The underseat exhaust gets a bit warm, but not nuclear meltdown Uly warm.

    A used Stelvio is a great option.

    I absolutely had to drop the Uly and go with something reliable that I didn't have to work on to restore my faith in motorcycles and went with a Yamaha cruiser. Like you said, you have the cruiser side covered.

    I just traded an XR650R for an 1150GS. I've always wanted to try owning one, but the entry price for new always put me off. I too dislike the funky front suspension and I'm gathering parts to swap it out for conventional forks.
    #8
  9. davevv

    davevv One more old rider

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,397
    Location:
    Just north of Dallas
    I've owned a GS, a Uly, and currently have both 1050 and 800 Tigers.

    Never got along all that well with the GS. OK bike, but not for me.

    Loved the Uly as a touring bike. I rode it from Anchorage to Dallas and it was terrific for that trip. Dirt roads, gravel, interstate, two lane, it worked great everywhere I took it. And it's one of the most comfortable bikes I've ever been on for a long period of time. I found it irritating to run around town though. Just too tall and too hot (it was an '07) to be a handy around town ride.

    The 1050 Tiger is somewhat similar to the Uly. Mostly street oriented big dually. The great triple engine is super smooth and quite strong. Plenty of fun there if you are looking for it. I really haven't ridden this bike a whole lot, as I bought it because it was a steal and it fits my son like a glove (6'4" and 36" inseam). I don't think it's quite as comfy as the Uly, but my son has never complained and his longest day was about 300 miles. I can't ever seem to pry it away from him for more than a few minutes at a time.

    I too had a Scrambler, but sold it when I bought the Tiger 800. The little Tiger has become my every day ride. I thoroughly enjoyed the Scrambler, but the 800 is just so much more capable. The engine is even smoother than the 1050 and has plenty of horsepower, but not quite the grunt. Height and weight work fine for me around town. Good suspension and excellent handling. It would be a very capable tourer as well, if need be.

    With the way you feel about your Uly, I'd say you need to test ride the 1050 Tiger. Obviously the motor isn't going to feel the same, but it is pretty great in it's own right and has plenty of torque to keep me happy. Not quite as much as the Uly, but enough. I'm a big fan of twins myself, and really don't care for inline fours, but the Triumph triples have won me over. And used 1050 Tigers can be had very reasonably. Low mileage examples for $7k is pretty common. I got mine with less than 3k miles for $5500, but it's the only one I've ever seen go that cheap.
    #9
  10. sfarson

    sfarson On a Ride

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2002
    Oddometer:
    2,128
    Location:
    Rockies
    Did you ever give a Stelvio a look over? Suggested it in a thread prior to your '08 Uly acquisition. There is a reknown Guzzi dealer Moto-International in Seattle. I hear they are dealin' on Stelvios.

    I ride a Uly and Stelvio. There are definitely some parallels, and some diffs, but this "Italian Harley" charms in ways few bikes can.
    #10
  11. levain

    levain STILL Jim Williams

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2005
    Oddometer:
    7,634
    Location:
    Providence, RI
    One consideration may be that the Tiger 1050 has been out going on 5 yrs. I would think there'd be an upgrade in the works soon.
    #11
  12. ODDSC

    ODDSC Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2006
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Corning, NY
    I was in the same boat. Uly was the perfect bike for me, if it had only been reliable. I was stranded 3 times far from home (1- spark plug blew out of the front cylinder 2- fried ECM 3- wheel bearing) I loved the power band, ergo's and versatility.

    Anyway, I have a Suzuki Bandit 1250 now and really enjoy it. It was cheap, it's powerful and very reliable. I can't tell you how nice it is to head out on a trip without that lingering dread of being stranded again. I miss the suspension and seat of the Uly, but the bandit motor has great low-end and rips up to the red line. I put the Uly H-P bags on the Bandit. I also had to put on new handlebars and a sargent seat to make ergos acceptable. It's not quite as accommodating as the Uly for a passenger.

    It's not the last bike I'll buy, but it does the job for now!
    #12
  13. MXG

    MXG Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2011
    Oddometer:
    39
    Location:
    Camrose,Ab
    Bought a Uly in 09 because I read a test and thought it was a cool bike. Other than the looks I hated the thing from day 1. Love the new Multi but in reality its too much money. Maybe 1050 Tiger or Bandit 1250 ( typical Suzuki, underpriced and often overlooked but a great bang for the buck).
    #13
  14. wbedient

    wbedient MoTard

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,315
    Location:
    North Central Washington
    Sounds to me like you want a torque motor, sit up ergos, more reliable and good for twisties and longer rides.

    Ever throught about the HD xr1200? It covers most the bases, but I'm not sure how comfortable it will be for long trips (and storage could be a problem).
    #14
  15. ArmyMedic

    ArmyMedic Flyin' Elvis, UT Chapter

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2007
    Oddometer:
    493
    Location:
    Salt Lick Sity
    I went from a Vstrom to a Uly and now to a Super Tenere. I have to say that each has been an upgrade from the previous. Vstrom was a nightmare in windy situations, and totally lacked character. The Uly had major grin factor and of the three had the biggest "raw" factor to it. I liked the torque and sound of that engine. I didn't know if I would regret getting rid of it but now that I'm riding the Yamaha, I don't miss it one bit. The Tenere has gobs of power and torque, nice riding position, and a host of electronic goodies that I'm enjoying. No chain or belt to break. Good in the wind. Good in the twisties, even better than the Uly I might add. I feel better about the reliability over the Uly too, not to mention availability of parts in the future.
    #15
  16. jphish

    jphish Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    Oddometer:
    622
    Location:
    Tumwater Wa
    Hey Skifast' - Sorry for all your Uly troubles...but Damn Man, you gotta quit drinkin the coolaid! As you know, I'm also a recovering Uly owner. Though I gotta say, i had 28K pretty trouble free miles out of my 08' - well, at least the last 20K anyhow. I did enjoy that machine - but with 5 bikes in the garage and wifes car sitting out all last winter, & to secure a measure of "domestic tranquility" for this winter - something had to give. Just have the 2 tigers now - 06' Girlie & 11' XC. I think you're on the right track in considering a tiger as replacement. I rode a 1050 before I bought the 955, and liked it. This was in 09' - way before the 800 was unveiled. My thinking at the time was I wanted a dirtroad worthy touring machine - the Girlie had better tire selection with the 19" front wheel & plenty of performance from the litre triple. Now - with the addition of the 800 in the line up - & I had a "do over" - I'd probably go with the 1050 for touring and the 800 for dirt road / camping / fishing adventures. HOWEVER: If you're looking at a ONE bike replacement that will do dirt roads AND be a capable adventure tourer - the late model Girlies would be worth looking at. An 06' if possible, as it had the cast tubeless wheels,1050 cases & head, and breather reroute, and after 15K mi, has been pretty trouble free. After a Uly, ST1300, Kawi 1500 classic, I did enjoy NOT lubing a chain - But the KLR at least kept me in practice. I do like the 800 - but if I could only have 1 machine, & wanted to limit my economic trauma to between 5 & 7 K$ - I'd probably get a Girlie, with the Roadie as my second choice. Either one would would be a Good choice. (PS: My riding partner has an 08' 12GS with 35K trouble free miles - but you're simply not going to get one for the price of a good tiger) Just got back from a 2 week Fishing trip thru Id, Mt, Wy - Girlie is crying for some warm water & soap and relief from 6" thick bug gut coating. Good luck with your next aquisition. Toodles, j
    #16
  17. Supertoon2

    Supertoon2 n00b

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2010
    Oddometer:
    7
    Location:
    Bromont, Qweebec
    I had my Uly for three years, tried a Dl1000 for all of 2 months and now am enjoying this. Basically a perfect "uly"

    Attached Files:

    #17
  18. dgrs2

    dgrs2 Where'd I leave my knee??

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2003
    Oddometer:
    1,657
    Location:
    Jim Thorpe, PA
    That's what I would have suggested. Rode one recently and it is as close to the Uly as you could get. KTM SMT990.
    #18
  19. DLdeano

    DLdeano Ridin' all I can

    Joined:
    May 24, 2005
    Oddometer:
    951
    Location:
    N. Georgia, USA
    +1...different bikes with lots in common. I loved my Uly, but am easily as smitten with the Guzzi. My Stelvio has been trouble free for the close to 8k miles I have put on it. It is diiferent, great fun to ride, runs well and does everything...not to mention there are some good deals out there.



    [​IMG]
    #19
  20. JTucker

    JTucker Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
    Oddometer:
    2,270
    Location:
    West By God Virginia
    I find that hard to believe. More reliable, more power sure but a Super Tenere better in the twisties? :huh
    I guess I'm going to have to ride one and see. Is it an appliance like all the Japanese bikes I've ever ridden?

    I've been checking this thread out as I know I'll need a replacement for the uly one day, hopefully there will be some other bikes available by the time I need something because nothing really appeals to me right now. The 800xc is pretty nice but they're kind of small for two-up and the subframe welded on scares me. The Stelvio is a nice looking bike as well, it probably has the character I'm looking for.
    #20