Bikes you didn't like nearly as much as you thought you would.

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by davidji, Nov 18, 2012.

  1. NJ-Brett

    NJ-Brett Brett

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2010
    Oddometer:
    6,917
    Location:
    Southern New Jersey
    You can't test ride many new bikes around here, a few places will allow limited test rides on rare days during some event with huge crowds, so its pointless mostly.
    That is good and bad, depending on the bike.
    Who knows what I really want in a bike, some weird mix of feel, looks, comfort, sound.
    When I was younger, I could deal with uncomfortable bikes much more then I can now.

    2005 Triumph Bonneville, had older ones, thought the new ones would be fun, it was, for a week, then it was uncomfortable and boring, even after upgrades. It seemed heavy and not very powerful, bad seat, bad sound, wallowed in turns. Just not much fun to ride.
    5000 miles and it was gone.

    1200 sportster, liked the look, liked the sound, motor ran ok, the worst suspension of any bike I ever owned, zero lean angle, massive weight, wide, low seat, high mid pegs, the bike seemed to be made for strong dwarfs.
    It was fun to ride, for about an hour tops.
    5000 miles and it was gone.

    On the other hand, looking for a cheap bike to get after a bad crash on a dr650, I got a TU250.
    I am glad I did not get a test ride, I likely would not have got one. As it was, after I got out of the hospital, I found a great deal on a 2 year old leftover new one and had it delivered.
    Geared silly low, no power, on the small side, but after a few easy mods, this has been one of my all time favorite bikes.
    All day comfortable, nimble, ride it balls to the wall all the time without tickets, never needs anything but oil changes, silly easy to ride.

    Bikes I THINK I would really like:
    sr500, Moto Guzzi V7 classic, old Honda SL350, old Moto Guzzi's.
    They would all likely be a real let down but you never know.
  2. Corkus

    Corkus Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Oddometer:
    14
    Location:
    Pleasanton California
    Only 2 and they moved me away from inline 4's, probably for good.

    04 R1 way too much bike for me
    03 FZ1 good bike after the R1 but I never liked it

    I'll probably stick with twins now.
  3. ggrimes2

    ggrimes2 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2007
    Oddometer:
    36
    Location:
    Northern New Mexico; great place to ride
    My kz1000 ltd of 1976 vintage. The thing was beautiful to look at and a bitch to ride. The Goodyear tires wore like iron and gripped the road like a wagon wheel. Light rain in Phoenix on an afternoon the bike would spin the rear wheel in the oil/water at a stoplight. Stepped seat and buckhorn handlebars added to the thrill. The thing would not turn, would not stop and wobbled like a drunken congressman. That motor was its only salvation. Kept the thing for a whole year because I could not afford another bike. Finally sold the thing at a loss and bought a honda 750 supersport and never looked back.
  4. Tim McKittrick

    Tim McKittrick Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2003
    Oddometer:
    1,784
    Location:
    Wasilla Alaska
    I owned a beautiful R1100RS for a time- it was comfortable enough and easy to maintain, but it was so humorless and nondramatic that I never got a lot of satisfaction riding it. It was plenty fast enough and I could keep up with my pals- but it never felt fast and I was never terribly involved with the ride. Ride it hard? Ride it slow? Meh- it always seemed half asleep.

    I got to put a few miles on an '08 KLR, probably not enough to really give it a fair shake- but it felt like I was going to break it. I wanted to apologize to it after a very brief ride- and I never even got it off the pavement.

    I bought a Yamaha 750 Virago (I forget the year- it was a twin shock model with entirely too much chrome) that had gummed up carbs, fixed it and rode it ONCE. I simply didn't get it: EVERYTHING was wrong. Too slow, silly seating position, ridiculous handlebars, limp brakes, vague handling, lawnmowerish exhaust note, the works. It failed to ring a single bell.
  5. Davo-55

    Davo-55 Long timer

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    Oct 28, 2009
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    1,467
    Location:
    Roanoke, Virginia
    There's two of my "wish list" bikes right there. God Bless the op! Now I will not make that/those mistakes
  6. Davo-55

    Davo-55 Long timer

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    Oct 28, 2009
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    Roanoke, Virginia
    Looks like the results are in!! There is no bike that appeals to everyone! Every bike will leave a unique impression on every rider
  7. fixinbones

    fixinbones Tarmac Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,012
    Location:
    New York
    K1300S. The engine was nice but I thought it would be a lot more comfortable than my S1000RR. It wasn't.
  8. vicster

    vicster Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,149
    Owned - 1984 "Last Edition" BMW R100CS. Thing of beauty in pearlescent white. Low bars killed my ulnar (SP?) nerve. R100 bars made it rideable, but there was always something wrong with the damn thing. Oil leaks, diaphrrams, brakes warping, paint flaking, valves constantly needed adjustment,etc. This after 2 great BMWs.

    Test rides - Vstrom 1k with full Give luggage. Love V twins and need a certain amount of practicality. Boring beyond belief on a 15 mile test ride.

    2010 Triumph Scrambler. Really smooth motor, but otherwise cramped and boring. Spotty quality.

    KLR. Hated it. Period. Which is weird because I love my similar DR.
  9. antwon412

    antwon412 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2010
    Oddometer:
    412
    Any bike I've owned actually.

    Can't find a bike that fits me right. No matter if I get a different seat or bars or anything.
  10. davidji

    davidji bike curious

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,113
    Location:
    california
    Why would you want to have any vehicle in 5th gear at 35MPH? Maybe some diesels. You could pull it of with a flathead, if you could find one that had a 5th gear.
  11. bluesman

    bluesman Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    3,386
    Location:
    Hoegaarden, Belgium
    Interesting - looking back I realize I successfully swerved before I bought any of bikes I did not like :) except first real bike - russian boxer converted to "chopper". I was young and stupid but smart enough to get rid of damn thing ASAP.
    But there was a few I managed to TEST before even thinking about buying....
    Supertenere, new one - test rode it. It's comfy and OK but I actually did not like how it handled and how engine responded to throttle. Felt not as gutsy as my previous sport 90 degrees twin and not as quick on rpms pick up as il4.
    Triumph Explorer, new one. Nice motor but it's about it for me . Too big and I sat too much "in the bike", making it a bit boring.
    Back then - CBR600F. God, this thing was boring, incredible. And slower to 60 than Hornet. Comparing to Hornet 600 I had back then of course. But one heck of reliable bike, seems to last forever with no hiccup.
    Old GPZ1100 - once rocket, 10 years later felt like unserviced volvo 740 on 2 wheels only much worse quality.
    I hated all cruisers I ever tried except I tolerated: Honda Valkyrie Rune (I know, I know, but I rode it on smooth paved road and it handled surprisingly well) - that one I purely liked for tech involved. Rocket III - that thing just...dumb crazy. New Triumph Thunderbird 1600? 1700? I did not even ask - most balanced look and performance in cruiser imo. And not cliche unless customized with stupid chrome bits.
    2 buells - X something 9 and 12 - great chassis, horrible motor.

    The list goes on and on....
  12. the Pheasant

    the Pheasant Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    Oddometer:
    376
    Location:
    Old London Town
    My current Yam 900 Diversion will do it. Most 'fours' will, even if they are sluggish there. The reason I might is that I live on the edge of London and it's 13 miles to the centre, almost all of which are in a 30mph speed limit. If traffic is light, 35mph is mostly OK - go slower and car drivers tail-gate me. There a couple of stretches where it is possible to roll at 35mph for a couple of miles. On them I like to trundle along in a high gear at low revs. The triple didn't like to do this. Maybe I should just ride faster...

    I appreciate the usefulness of being in a better part of the torque curve if circumstances demand and that's exactly what I do; shifting gear is a pretty quick process.
  13. s&s

    s&s Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2010
    Oddometer:
    107
    Location:
    Espoo, Finland
    H-D XR1200. Bike I really wanted to like but it just didn't live up to my expectations. I get more amusement out of my '97 883...
  14. Cos

    Cos Re-Greekified

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2006
    Oddometer:
    10,441
    Location:
    Home
    I guess it all depends on the triple. My Tiger'll do that just fine. The Daytona will too but it's been regeared so I suppose that doesn't count.
  15. warewolf

    warewolf Tyre critic

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2004
    Oddometer:
    2,663
    Location:
    Nelson, New Zealand
    R100GSPD Gutless, lots of shaking, noisy screen, heavy. And that was a well-sorted one with WP suspension and lots of love. Made my Tiger 900 feel like a GP bike. Yet much more recently, riding an R80GS on gravel, and then another sorted R100GS with Ohlins boingy bits, both seemed much more tolerable. Not spritely like I enjoy most, but well-rounded, satisfactory nonetheless and entirely fit-for-purpose.

    H-D something or other, fairly basic 80ci softtail IIRC. Rented one for the day while on holiday in Hawaii, for a relaxing pootle around. Ergos completely all wrong for my body shape and size. Two-fifths of fcuk-all cornering clearance. Quirky handling that varied with speed differently to anything else I've ever ridden. I wanted to like them for what they are, but every positive thing seemed to be drowned out by several related negatives.

    KDX125. I've ridden lots of little bikes and enjoyed them, but this thing had nothing below band, and only a fairly narrow band at all. I thought it'd be a peakier but weaker version of my 200EXC, or like a DR200 but with more zing, but it was just devoid of power. Maybe a longer ride would have helped, but in the end I was spanking it and wanting more all the time even when it was on the boil. Perhaps it wasn't jetted right, or something. Climbing off the 640A straight on to the 125 on rough, hilly tracks wouldn't have helped.
  16. the Pheasant

    the Pheasant Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    Oddometer:
    376
    Location:
    Old London Town
    I guess. The RS would do it but it was oddly rumbly (not in a worn-out kind of way) as if each power pulse could be felt. There was an exact engine speed, IIRC around 2,900 rpm, where it would smooth out almost as if by magic. My feeling was that a heavier flywheel would have helped. Apparently the new 1200 Explorer and Trophy have one.
  17. cls

    cls Long timer

    Joined:
    May 7, 2009
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    1,424
    Location:
    N GA
    I'm not sure where the conflict is, other than in your head. I'm saying the exact same thing: everyone will have a different take on it. Give the reader(s) the option of hearing different input. Most of the bikes listed are reputed to be the "cat's meow," as a general rule. This is the opposing view for the reader to take or leave. Info is (most) always a good thing.

    Pressing on.
  18. cls

    cls Long timer

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    May 7, 2009
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    Location:
    N GA
    I do it all the time, but in 6th gear. The Versys (Also hated here by some.) will do it all day long. The BEST practical, economical, fun public road bike ever, IMO. The perfect point of how folks take bikes differently. Interesting. Very cool, even.
  19. rider33

    rider33 Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,116
    Location:
    The Wilds of Western Wisconsin
    I'll second that. I sold a KLR to get a DL650. It was better technically in nearly every way, I just never seemed to want to ride it. After less than a year I sold it and bought another KLR.
  20. DesmoDog

    DesmoDog Desmo's my dog

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2009
    Oddometer:
    739
    Location:
    Michigan, USA
    You'd love a stock Ducati 996! 35mph means slipping the clutch in 1st gear. I'm only slighty exagerating. In truth my 996 is the worst streetbike I've ever owned but it's still one of the last bikes I'd sell if I was liquidating the aviary.