Living with a Ural?

Discussion in 'Hacks' started by Thumper74, Feb 16, 2014.

  1. Thumper74

    Thumper74 Adventurer

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    I've been lusting after a Ural for a long time... I live in northern Ohio and my commute is a 25 mile trip on a slab. This weekend, I went to a dealer and kicked tires on a few left over 2012 models, both were 2wd models. The fit and finish seemed on par with any new motorcycle I've owned. I'm seriously considering one for a primary-ish vehicle for commuting, camping, dog rides, etc.

    I currently have a 2012 Suzuki DR650 and a 1997 Sportster 1200 that was dad's (:cry). My only car is a 1999 Ranger with 262,000 miles. It runs great!

    I'm a technician and wouldn't mind the maintenance on it. Are they as bad as 'they' make them out to be reliability wise? The dealer said Ural has been great on part availability, but they are 45 miles away. Am I crazy?
    #1
  2. FLYING EYEBALL

    FLYING EYEBALL out of step

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    Go to Heidnl's and get a '14
    #2
  3. usgser

    usgser Long timer

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    Urals are old designed old tech and weren't designed as a freeway flyer. Once properly broken-in(critical) they'll do the freeway but for the health of the machine think 55-65mph range and IMHO constant 65 not recommended. Mine loves 50-60 all day long. But again if your looking for a freeway flier 70 mph commuter. Wrong tool for the job. If you can live with slower speeds the maint is about as easy at it gets. Parts are easy from the long term established dealers but if you buy new and break it in properly or buy "good" condition used late model(07+) and drive and maintain it within it's design parameters you won't need much parts just normal maint/servicing items. Leave earlier, take the back roads and enjoy your commute.
    #3
  4. Tarka

    Tarka Doesn't wave back.

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    C'mon mate...do a very easy search or two for life with a Ural,having a Ural as a daily user,etc etc etc.

    It's been asked waaaaay too many times.
    #4
  5. professir

    professir Buttugly ol biker

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    EVERYTHING has been asked many times on a forum like this, but each day adds new opinions, new experiences, and a thread from last year will not hold comments from people that just bought one this year and may or may not have DUG through the thousands of threads just to find an old post to comment on.

    Take the time to afford a guy a new fresh take on a previousely asked question. It also makes the guy feel valued.
    #5
  6. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad n00balicious

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    Owning a "new" off the showroom floor Ural is exactly like owning a new off the showroom Model A Ford or a new off the showroom floor MG "A". Uber cool and fun, but NOT a daily commuter on the slab. Ring the poor thing's neck to merge onto the slab and then keep it WFO to try to keep up with traffic. Absolutely nothing left to maneuver with if needed.

    I ran my Ural Tourist all over the freeways in Southern California for little over a year and I always thought twice about maybe there were secondary roads I could take instead of the slab. My current rig (2007 BMW R1200GSA based) I'm up to speed before merging, and I can run at 70 to 75 with traffic all day with plenty of power to maneuver around the knuckelheads gaucking and trying to kill me.

    Ural? Sure! Slab commuting with traffic? NOT!
    #6
  7. on2wheels52

    on2wheels52 Long timer

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    T74, I wouldn't choose either of your bikes (or a Ural) for your 25 mile commute. I can think of many 'better' choices.
    Jim
    #7
  8. drrider1

    drrider1 just running amuck

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    25 miles isn't much of a commute, that said that is about what I do with an elderly 650 tourist. It will trot along at 60 all day, which is about where a bunch of fleet trucks are governed to. Maintenance is strait forward and simple. We also have a post 07 750 tourist which does everything much easier than the old one. Urals are sorta like tractors If slow ain't a problem visit Heindle's and go for a left over:evil You are likely to get hooked:clap

    FWIW, can't imagine life sans Ural:wink:
    #8
  9. windmill

    windmill Long timer

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    Go to Soviet Steeds and read whats being posted about the 2014's by folks who have them, still not a high speed freeway flyer, but definitely takes it to the next level.
    #9
  10. warkshop

    warkshop uncbob

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    Alert to the shameless self promation police,,you are up!

    I just have to day this. That Old Sportster of your dad's would make a most excellent sidecar tug. Zero Indiana Jones effect but you could have a fun rig that would be very usable for a lot less money. At the risk of Ural owners wrath everywhere i'd also say a more reliable tug.

    [​IMG]
    #10
  11. 4PawsHacienda

    4PawsHacienda Been here awhile

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    As a very happy Ural owner my opinion is it's the wrong tool for the job you specified. Doable but probably would lead to disillusionment and early sale by another pissed off (and on) former Ural owner.
    Wark has a viable option and is a neighbor of yours.
    #11
  12. Bobmws

    Bobmws Curmudgeon At Large

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    I agree!
    You should take the time to visit Bob and speak with him about a sidecar for your sporty. Click on his user name for a link to his website.
    #12
  13. warkshop

    warkshop uncbob

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    :DThanks for the support guys. I think it important that folks know there are always choices to be made, just jumping on the current bandwagon may or may not be right for someone.
    Sidecaring done at the more basic levels i'd argue can be just as much fun as when done full tilt. It is all about the needs/uses/goals of the person involved.

    1200, pre rubber mount Sportys can be vibratory at higher speeds but there are fixes for that, not all perfect but viable. The bike has a very rigid frame and suspension, easily up-gradable suspension too. This is an easy bike to service, normal maintenance is super easy. No carbs to sync, no valves to set. Good brakes and the torque to weight ratio is awesome,,,,think power slides on gravel roads! Such fun!

    And! easy to rig a hack to,,,,i keep looking for the downside,,,? :D
    #13
  14. windmill

    windmill Long timer

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    If you don't want to draw "Ural owners wrath", why do you choose to take cheap shots at them every time you shill your wares here?
    There are legitimate reasons why a Ural isn't right for everyone, but your presentation makes one wounder why you don't simply let your products stand on their own merits.
    #14
  15. warkshop

    warkshop uncbob

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    I would point out that the OP was seeking input. Since most who responded were singing the glories of the Ural I was merely proposing an alternative. Though you would not know it from many of the folk on this forum not everyone is so impressed with said Urals. Like many things in life Urals have pluses and minuses,,,,it strikes me folk are bit slow sharing the full reality of the negatives. Much 'happy talk', and it seems rather thin skin!

    "Shilling my wares ", forgive me for both trying to make an honest living and also not offend anyone in the process,,,,,give me a break. You can please some of the people some of the time,,,,,,,,,,
    #15
  16. windmill

    windmill Long timer

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    Maybe if you want folks that have respect for your choices and opinions, you could show a little more for theirs.
    #16
  17. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad n00balicious

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    I personally don't think that anything said here by Warkshop was over the top and in fact there was some pretty good advice as to potentially hacking the Sportster the OP says he has. You foil heads have your own web sites for your favorite brand of sidecars. You should learn to not get your panties in a bunch when someone (in the industry or not) has recommendations other than buying a Ural. You are not coming across as well as you might think.
    #17
  18. windmill

    windmill Long timer

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    I compleatly agree that there are many excellent reasons for hacking a Sportster and many other bikes, that's not the issue. I don't snipe at others folks choices and preferences, all I ask is to recieve the same courtesy.

    I an not the only person who has noticed his comments.
    #18
  19. Bar None

    Bar None Long timer

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    Sad to see someone like warkshop having to use negative selling to push his product.
    #19
  20. JustKip

    JustKip Long timer

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    No "Indiana Jones effect"?
    You weren't trying...
    https://shop.rycamotors.com/springer_front_end_chrome.html

    http://freedomsidecars.com/sidecars/bullet.html

    I'm gonna have to go with the foil hat crowd....
    Not true. There was quite a mix in the earlier responses, with a consensus building that a Ural was NOT the right tool for a highway commute.
    What you're selling, Bob, appears to be well built, fairly inexpensive, and mostly lacking in artistic flair. There's a good market for that, but the chip on your shoulder towards both Ural and higher end builds does not serve you.
    #20