Why Did You Buy a Retro Styled Bike?

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by fireflyr, Dec 5, 2012.

  1. kraven

    kraven Hegelian Scum

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    I get the classic styling without the shyte electrics and suspension parts.

    Win-win. There's a CB1100 in my future. :deal
    #21
  2. Bar None

    Bar None Candy Ass

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    #22
  3. DesmoDog

    DesmoDog Desmo's my dog

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    +1

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    And there is no depreciation. I bought that bike for $700. Well, it's been a few years now. And I did put few bucks into spiffing it up a bit. But still. :D

    Seriously though I did look at retro styled bikes as opposed to the real deal. I have multiple bikes so in the end the real thing had more appeal.

    As for why I wanted retro anything, that was heavily influenced by my purchase of a new Ducati 996 in 2000. That bike quickly cured me of my infatuation with sportbikes, I was not worthy. (Don't get me wrong, I loved the bike, still own it in fact. I just realized it's potential was wasted on me).

    I like retro styled bikes because though I like older bikes in general, they can be a pain to live with.

    As for current retro bikes, I thought I'd love the Guzzi V7. Then I saw that red frame and hubs and whatever else. Ewww.... maybe if I can find a used one someday that I can tear down and refinish. But then again I've always had this silly desire to build a Sportster in the way I wish the Motor Company would....
    #23
  4. Durangoman

    Durangoman Yeah its me!

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    Cool Factor--- off the charts.... :clap

    2012 Triumph Bonneville T-100

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    1989 Honda GB500
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    :1drink
    #24
  5. Josephvman

    Josephvman I'm the Decider

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    If you ever want to double your money I'll give you $1400 for it :D



    #25
  6. ZZ-R Rider

    ZZ-R Rider Captain Fantastic

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    OMG!!! Serious Retro-lust right there!!!!
    #26
  7. scrannel

    scrannel Scrannel

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    Still have my 1974 Ducati 750GT. But therein lies the difference: like a late 60's Ferrari, it's very street worthy today. It's smooth, fast (enough), handles well and (mine) is dead reliable. I don't have to go out and find a "retro" styled Ducati, the real (old) one works just fine. But like 60's Aston Martins, old English bikes are not wonderful on the road today. So, if you like those looks, the cool retros make sense. I'll keep my Ducati.
    #27
  8. PhilB

    PhilB Long timer

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    When I got mine, the "retro" trend hadn't happened yet. But I got it for the same reasons. I wanted a sporty bike with adequate performance, light and nimble, with a 2-cyl engine because I like the sound and feel of twins better, and with no fairing because a motorcycle should have a visible motor. It's not a fairingcycle. Basically what I wanted was a Norton Commando with modern reliability and service requirements.

    At the time (1993), no such thing existed. The only sporty 2-cyl bikes at all were Ducati and Buell, and the Buells then were not yet up to standard.

    Then Ducati debuted the Monster, and that was exactly what I was looking for. So that's what I still am riding.

    PhilB
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    #28
  9. Tim_Tom

    Tim_Tom Been here awhile

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    +2

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    Picked up my '82 Suzuki purely because it was cheap, running, and all the parts were there in good shape. Since then done many, many upgrades to it, and it does whatever I want it to do. Blast down the local back roads? Check. Comfortably eat up highway miles? Check. Ride for days on end cross country? Check. It is also the easiest thing I've ever worked on and maintenance is simple and rewarding.

    I have looked and thought about getting a Bonneville, and I quite like how they look, but I don't see the sense it paying out 10K for a bike that doesn't do anything better than my old Zook. Now if I didn't already have the Suzuki, a Bonnie with upgraded suspension and a breathed on motor would top my list in bike wants. :wink:
    #29
  10. drooartz

    drooartz Been here awhile

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    Among my motorcycle history have been a W650, '07 Bonneville, and most recently a '73 R75/5. I just, plain and simple, love the style of bike from before the hyper-segmentation that we see today. These are what a motorcycle is supposed to look like to me.

    Keep in mind that I'm 40, so not young anymore, but still too young to have had one of the originals when they were new, or to have even longed for them when I first discovered riding. I bought my first bike in 2000 long after the originals were gone, and as someone who came of age in the late 1980s, motorcycles didn't look much like these three.

    Best year of riding ever for me was on the Bonneville. Took it everywhere, long trips, commuting, you name it. I know folks here complain that it's slow, heavy, poor handling, etc. For me it was perfect in those areas. I loved the handling -- it fit perfectly with my ability level and desires. I knew exactly what it could do and where its limits were, so I could ride it hard enough to have fun without the fear that I was gong to get over my head. If it had a larger gas tank (I want the range) I'd still have it.

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    I really liked the R75/5, and might get another. But the flip side is that these original bikes are now getting on 40 years old, and no matter how reliable some of them are, that's still a lot of years for a bike. I've got one old crock already (a '70 MGB) and dealing with the extra maintenance of an older bike isn't really appealing to me right now. My R75/5 really needed a full teardown, and I just couldn't do it, so out the door it went. Replaced by a F650 that I just haven't warmed to, so that bike will be leaving in the spring probably to be replaced by another Bonnie, or maybe a V7 Special, or maybe another /5 (i the new CB1100 had a larger tank, that'd be on the list as well). We'll see.

    So I guess I don't see them so much as retro, rather as being what I want in a motorcycle -- just like I don't consider a modern Jeep Wrangler to be retro, it's just what a Jeep is supposed to look like.
    #30
  11. DJGypsy

    DJGypsy Ewok Taxidermist

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    simplicity & fun. plain as that. i rented one for a weekend, and i was hooked. got the stupid smile-while-riding and everything. it's not pretentious or assuming, it's just a simple motorcycle.

    for me particularly, it was one of those "just right" kind of bikes. not a rocket, but not a slug either by any means. comfy enough for me to go all day. the bike's capabilities also fit my ability as a rider. i'm not rossi, but i can still drag my pegs all day if i want to. the chassis comes alive when you get over 70 mph. you can feel it flex a little and move with you as you fly through sweepers. the feedback from the chassis is great. it's a bike that doesn't have to go 150mph for you to have a good time. additionally, when you shift your weight to the side of (or off of!) the seat and get nasty in a fast corner-- oh my-- i think i can hear the bike speak to me. more like shout for joy that i'm using it for it's intended fun purpose. this thing corners so predictably, it's really let me playfully explore my limits without having to do 150mph.

    the engine is always predictable, willing and friendly, serving the right amount of push & bark (with non-stock pipes) to give you a thrill. it's the same old deal of it being more fun to ride a slow bike fast instead of a fast bike ridden slowly.

    it's also affordable- decent tires are $200 a pair, full coverage insurance is less than $20/month. there is also it's mechanical simplicity. did i mention it's gorgeous?

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    #31
  12. 83XLX

    83XLX Been here awhile

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    I suppose mine isn't a retro-styled bike, but more of the real thing. Good old 1950's engine technology with electronic ignition, decent brakes, tubeless tires, and a good carb. The classic looks, feel, and tradition are what appealed to me. I'm not a "Harley guy", but I wanted a Sportster ever since I saw one up close as a teenager in the late 1960's. I've had this one for 22 years so far, and still love it. It's been very reliable (I have maintained it properly) and about my only complaint is the vibration at high rpms. It turns 30 years old in January. :D

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    #32
  13. smokymtn

    smokymtn n00b

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    I have almost 30,000 wonderful trouble free miles on my 2000 W650. Would love to have a newer bike, but can't find any bike with the looks and feel .......best bike I have ever owned.

    Roy in Tennessee
    #33
  14. EetsOK

    EetsOK Been here awhile

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    Not everybody wants the latest greatest thing. I have ridden many of the latest greates super sports out there and they wonderful bikes but, there is a certain charm to a retro bike. The bikes of yesterday were not speicalized bikes that were essentially a one trick pony liek we have today. There had to do everything.
    My bikes need to be comfortable enough to tour on, have a sporting edge as well as be reliable, practical city bikes and commuters. I like a little flash too. That's why I've had the T Bird for so long. Other bikes I cross shopped were the Speed Triple, the Kawi ZRX 1100 and Suzi Bandit but the 3 cylinder won out and the T bird was just a titch more comefortable than a Speed Triple.
    #34
  15. acap650

    acap650 acap650

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    I'm at 21K and all is well. These Ws seem to last indefinitely if maintained and not messed with. The only new retro vertical twin available here, the Bonnie, is great but larger and heavier and feels more modern to me than the W. The Guzzi V7 is closer in size to the W and is what I would consider for a retro bike these days.
    #35
  16. shipman

    shipman don't sweat minutiae

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    I got a retro-styled biked because I wanted something mechanically simple and easy to maintain myself, without having to remove a bunch of plastic to get to the engine:

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    2011 Suzuki TU250X
    #36
  17. zooomgovroom

    zooomgovroom hooligan-esque

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  18. Ed-B

    Ed-B Adventurer

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    #38
  19. zooomgovroom

    zooomgovroom hooligan-esque

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    build one and give them some inspiration/incentive !!!
    #39
  20. Penderic

    Penderic Format C:/u

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    I have had many hours and memories riding classics when they were new models, and not all of them were great.

    When I thought of choosing between a classic and a modern retro, it was easy once I found the right retro model for me. The looks, sound and comfort (emotional level) are important- I don't need a lot of speed anymore, but decent handling and good brakes are nice to have. (practical level)

    Here is my lil' Guzzi again: Good sounding twin, 2 nice exhaust pipes, lovely symmetry, handles, brakes and feels comfortable --- It has modern materials, push rods, is air cooled, has screw type valve adjusters 2 each side only, and shaft drive. (no chain adjusters yeah!)

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    I am really enjoying this motorcycle.
    #40