Harley Iron 883

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by Matt77, Jan 7, 2012.

  1. Matt77

    Matt77 n00b

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    Hi folks,

    I've been lurking here for a while, reading with envy about where everyone is traveling and what bikes folks are doing it on. Anyway, got myself a profile and this is my first post so apologies if this pops up in the wrong forum ?

    I've been without a bike for 6 years now (last bike was a Ducati Multistrada) and have finally managed to convince the Minster for War and Finance at home that I now need a new bike :clap .

    I'm weighing up a new Harley Iron 883 or one of the Triumph classic twins, the Bonneville, America or Scrambler. All very different bikes

    I keep coming back to the Iron 888 but having never owned a HD, I'd be keen to get folks opinions, esp on the Iron 883. My previous bikes have been a BMW F650 GS and the Ducati Multistrada. I'll use the bike for commuting 3-4 times a week, weekend rides and maybe the odd bit of travel.

    Cheers
    #1
  2. sagebrushocean

    sagebrushocean Harris's hawker

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    Harley dealers are always happy to let you take a test ride. Give it a go and see what you think. You have enough experience to make a valid comparison with your previous bikes and your current needs.
    #2
  3. harfooz

    harfooz FJR1300 / FLHX

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    I too like the Iron 883 and would like its looks and fuel efficiency. I would have buyer's remorse immediately after riding it and experiencing its roughly 1" rear suspension travel :eek1.

    That new '12 blue color is one of the nicest looking paint colors I've seen -- especially combined with the new retro-looking tank decal. The mag wheels are a lot more practical than the Nightster's spokes both for flats and for getting a tire inflated.

    So go get one of the blue Irons and throw on a pair of shocks with slightly longer travel and ride the hang out of it.

    'fooz
    #3
  4. Terrytori

    Terrytori Namaste

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    First up, welcome to the zoo, Matt.

    The Iron will do much , if not all of what you're looking for albeit in a manner
    different from your previous experiences. New suspension front and rear will up its' handling performance and
    comfort factor enormously.
    The motor is ideal for back road / urban commuting but can get a little wheezie on the slab. The relatively upright riding
    position is pretty good up to about 65 mph after which things get kind of drafty. The fuel tank means you'll be stopping
    more frequently for fuel but given the ergos, that's not a bad thing.

    The options exist to make it very much your own including punching it up to 1200 ( as i did with mine ) or 1250 CCs with no real effect on reliability. It's a pretty fine bike out of the box and for very little coin ( suspension ) can be improved dramatically. Or, you can join me and get totally excessive with it. :D

    [​IMG]
    #4
  5. Cakeeater

    Cakeeater Long timer

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    Terry, there are few motorbikes that make me want to knock the rider off and steal it just to be able to ride it ten minutes. Yours is one.

    Cakeeater
    #5
  6. ferrix

    ferrix Been here awhile

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    Both bikes have that classic charm but it seems to me that Triumph is a better bike for all the things you mention: it is better for commuting because it is lighter, better for weekend rides because it handles better and I'd say it has a bit more 'go' than the Iron, and better for travel just because I think feet-forward position gets pretty uncomfortable for longer stretches.

    I would say it is also far less common in your neck of the woods, which I guess could be considered either a plus or a minus. I'd lean towards a plus.

    I don't know how they compare price-wise where you are but unless HD is seriously cheaper or you just want a Harley for no other reason than because it is a Harley, I would go with Triumph.
    #6
  7. 0ldhippie

    0ldhippie Been here awhile

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    I've owned a 883 and ridden a few newer bonnies. The Triumph is a much better bike out of the box. Lighter, more power, better handling, more comfortable (especially for your passenger) and has all the reto kool ya need. I'd get the Scrambler just because it looks kool, but actually the Thruxton has all the good stuff (more power, better suspension) and with a bar change is just as comfortable. The sporty is kool too and has the aftermarket going for it but it will cost ya to get it as good as the triumph out of the box.
    #7
  8. Terrytori

    Terrytori Namaste

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    The Bonnie would be a better choice for long days in the saddle... I know... I've owned one and found it to
    generally posses a more refined feel ... which is pretty much why I have the Sporty.

    You will notice from the Pic above, that the Iron has mid controls rather than foot forward controls you
    imagine it to have.
    #8
  9. Matt77

    Matt77 n00b

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    Thanks for the responses folk.

    I took the wife out to our local Triumph dealer and we both liked the America but Bonnie/Scrambler, well its a tough one. I need to ride all the bikes which once I've got new kit I will be doing. I'll keep you posted on how I go, and hopefully, what I end up with!
    #9
  10. MerrellJr

    MerrellJr Adventurer

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    I picked up a 1200C in October 06 on ebay for 7500 It was 14 months old with 250 miles on it. It still had the factory warranty, I may digress to say my mother had a 06 883L and is was a bit low on power to run high speed on the freeway for extended periods. The gear ratio of the 883 trans is different from the 1200 makes for a gret upgrade to build he 883 to a 1200.. Commute wise I like the forward controls. @ 6'-3" I need to upgrade the suspension. HD has done a great job with a quality product and dependability. It is all a matter of preference. I want to add more M/C to my garage. Kids headed off to college are slowing that down . I have ridden the America and really like it. Good luck in your decision.
    #10
  11. 0ldhippie

    0ldhippie Been here awhile

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    The America is a way different bike than the bonnie/scrambler. It is a heavier, raked out, cruiser with forward controls and poorer handling. Plus it just isn't a proper triumph classic kool bike imho. Closer call with the 883?
    #11
  12. stretch160

    stretch160 Been here awhile

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    that is hands down the best looking Harley I have ever seen. I would only change the handle bars if it where mine.
    #12
  13. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

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    Not bad right out of the box either. IMO the 883 Iron is one of the best looking bikes ever.

    While they could use a little help on the suspension (like almost every other bike sold) and they are a bit down on power from the 1200...
    For bombing around town they are an absolute blast to ride. Sustained highway speeds 65+mph are NOT their forte' :deal

    [​IMG]
    #13
  14. Tripped1

    Tripped1 Bitch called me a feminist.

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    Yeah 883s "can" go at highway paces for extended periods.....

    .....so can a 250 ninja, and one is as good as the other at it. :lol3

    Depends if those are what you try them. Of the bunch you listed I'd go for a Thruxton, in the same class though I'd likely get a Ducati GT1000 before any of them. If I'm going to ride an airhead (not likely) I'll take the Duc's overachieving DS please.

    Triumph 270* twin is a HUGE improvement over the 1960s-1970s bikes, but it rather uninspiring. I can't stand the 883, and the 1200 is only really tolerable after a bit of work.

    But I'm not really a fan of air-cooled anything, so its a moot point.
    #14
  15. Terrytori

    Terrytori Namaste

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    As would I.

    I ditched the higher bars in favor of the stock bars, a couple of months back.
    #15
  16. LostViking

    LostViking Long timer

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    Thread Hijack,

    Terry, if your Bonnie looks anything like your collection of Sportys. I'd love to see a picture of it. For comparison purposes.

    Also any pictures of you Iron bagged up?

    Hijack Off.
    #16
  17. Birdmove

    Birdmove Long timer

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    Rode a 2006 XL883 for a while (and a 1984 XLX1000). My XL883 handled the freeway just fine. I also test rode an early Bonneville (just after the new Triumph came out with the Bonneville) and liked it a lot too. The Iron is fuel injected (my 2006 had a carb) and has shortened suspension for the lowered look (my 2006 had standard length suspension). Either of these bikes would make a fine ride.

    Jon
    #17
  18. Terrytori

    Terrytori Namaste

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    Never did much to the Bonnie... I'll try to grab a couple of shots of the Iron bagged up in the next couple of days.

    [​IMG]
    #18
  19. kraven

    kraven Hegelian Scum

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    no kidding. The guy knows how to photograph his machines and must employ an army of oompa loompas to keep them clean too.

    He should be styling bikes for Cobra or HD or someone.
    #19
  20. D-Mac

    D-Mac Been here awhile

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    I've ridden at least one bike from almost every major manufacturer (and some minor ones), but for some weird reason I've never ridden a Harley. I've wrenched on a few though, and over time I've learned to appreciate them for what they are - well built, beautifully finished, and very popular cruisers. Yes, they are heavy and lack the latest-and-greatest tech (never the intent of these bikes anyway), but in almost every case the build quality is top-notch.

    If I owned one, I would definitely get an 883 like Terry's. Lighter (relatively speaking), reliable, great looking, and easily the best value from HD (especially with a 1200 kit).

    Triumph is really making some fantastic bikes too. You should be able to ride both and decide. There are no bad decisions here - it comes down to what moves you. You'll know what you want after a test ride.
    #20