Why you should NOT buy a Ural motorcycle

Discussion in 'Hacks' started by bokad, May 28, 2012.

  1. Poacher Bob

    Poacher Bob Persona non grata

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    Bokad you ain't...:deal
  2. Schatzman

    Schatzman I Saved Latin

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    There can be only one...
  3. Paint shaker

    Paint shaker Been here awhile

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  4. boatmole

    boatmole Druken Wildebeest

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    In part I agree, Urals are a pot metal piece of shit with serious quality control issues. We have made a hobby of finding low mileage neglected Urals sitting in showrooms as displays, under tarps in garages, shops and carports, flat tires, rotten Russian Rubber. Most were maintenance neglected by the owners and left to rot, yes leaving the bike in the weather will kill it in short order. I've bought, restored and sold 10 of 11 Urals, all ran good as new when sold, all bugs gone. In all the years we've owned Urals only on the road issue had to do with carb going out of sync, 10 minute fix and of course in the 05 vintage final drive seals, just old Russian crappy rubber seals, upgraded seals always fixed the leak. Knock on wood, we never had a breakdown, if we did we carry enough tool to overhaul he Ural, the Ural feels the threat of impending repair, lol. I did have a few things loosen and a clutch pivot pin pop out, all my bad, should have looked it over more carefully, new/old stock purchase, just didn't get around to checking everything, no big deal, dealt with the minor issue and away we rode.

    Yes there are a many upgrades over the years, but essentially the Ural is still basically a 1930's design motorcycle. It's a horizontally apposed 750cc motor pulling a bare bike of 740 pounds in addition to all the other crap we manage to load into them, try that with any other bike and make sure you increase your towing insurance and learn to hum pop-goes-the-Weasel.

    I met a retired Army Sargent from East Coast just arriving 3 months later on his Ural took the long way to get to Tok, AK. guy was carrying 5 10 liter gas cans, spare wheels, ammo cans, more crap than I carry in my flatbed truck, NO ISSUES, it happens. I'd rather be lucky than smart.

    Warranty with any product line depends on he Dealer (the man behind the machine) and the bike owner. We rely on Ski and Sami of Triquest Motorcycles in Santa Clara California. If we do our part to properly maintain the bike they are always there to support the no haggle warranty.

    The bike industry is an endless story of shoddy workmanship and manufacturing from all makes, most you have to fight to get repairs, 5 BMWs 4 bad ones last 2007/2012 R1200GSA had serious issues, but BMW stood behind there product. Our new 2012 Honda Goldwing is a total piece of shit and constant battles with Honda over obvious flaws they call normal, finally fix and prove they were not normal. My Harley Road King sucked a cam chain tensioner and packed it in at 25,000 miles, $10,000 later it ran like new, cash out of pocket.

    Since Harley quit making production sidecar rigs at twice the Ural price, now only Ural remains. Harley is no longer made in America, its made in Malaysia and other parts of the globe, assembled in America. Horrible riding sidecar rig, leaf springs on the tub make me seasick, driver gets beat to death by lack of sidecar suspension. Outrageously poor quality control. Crankshafts need .005 max runout (wobble) to run reliable gear drive valve train, Harley run up to .010 runout with chain drive to pick up the slop.

    No question Urals require more tinkering to keep on the road, but not as much as you think, unless you intentionally trash your bike. We had a nasty accident on a Ural involving a Volvo car backing around a blind turn on the coast, broke my arm, wife got only bruises, on anything other than a Ural we would be dead. Ural only sustained $1000 damage, Old thick skinned Volvo is totaled. Bike repaired sold to friends who rode from San Francisco Bay Area to Brazil with very few issues, truck load of fun and memories. Their Ural "Uri" now happily reside at home in Austria. Respect the machine for what it is, don't try to make it something it's not, take care of like your life depends on it, it does, and you can have a long and very enjoyable relationship. Been married 37 years, Ural is much easier. :lol3
  5. Wolfgang55

    Wolfgang55 Long timer

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    boatmole, I like your write up & agree w/ nearly all.
    But the dealer cannot warranty a Ural. Sure there are major items which should be a no brainer but Ural Management must actually SEE the problem & then, KEEP YOUR FINGERS CROSSED. Why do you think Management wants to SEE before they OK your repairs ? I would understand they will learn more about what breaks but you still have to wait for Ural Management's nod.

    But to sit 3,000 miles away & tell my dealer ''NYET'' to fixing the cracks in our GU sidecar body (still under the new units 2 year warranty) is WRONG.
    Especially when Ural Management approves repairs on other GUs w/ the very same crack issues.

    Have replaced both bearings in the sidecar hub & sidecar u-joint & straightened the secondary drive shaft, I do a lot of water crossings. These items are a result of water intrusion. There really is little or no way to keep water out here. Unless they (hub bearings) were forced packed orginally w/ a marine wheel bearing grease before assembly.

    Just a side note, on our next new Ural, we will do a total disassembly & fill both sidecar hub bearings w/ marine wheel bearing grease.

    I have one of the best dealers in the country. He sent me a seal instantly when I talked to him over the phone. But I do not expect him to go out of pocket for warranty repairs.

    I have gone out of pocket to fix (stop the cracks) on the sidecar body & the above.

    Would Ural Management approve internal repairs to motor or transmission...I would only say that is totally up to Ural Management & not my dealer. But I would trust Gene (dealer) to do the very best warranty repairs or any other Ural related fixins.

    At this time I would never consider paying for an extended warrenty. But I would sock that $ away for the coming repairs.
  6. WVhillbilly

    WVhillbilly Long timer

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    It's good that they are taking care of it. But it sucks to be without your bike for weeks/months during prime riding season.
  7. Snowy

    Snowy Long timer

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    Wow.

    Just...wow.

    I saw a nice Ural and got to thinking...


    Then I read through all this.


    The OP was right about a lot of things from the look of it. I aint talking about Urals.


    This has been an entertaining diversion, but I think I'll stick to BMWs. They shit me, make me wanna stab random Germans in the face, and posts on forums from other owners have me searching IP addresses and sharpening my hunting knife...but fuck me...it beats the shit out of Ural ownership from the look of it.

    I never realised how lucky I had it. I have seen the light...blessed be the name of BMW..
  8. Montague

    Montague UDF Adventurer

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    Had a K bike for 10 years.

    Have a Ural since 2007.

    K bike stranded me twice; expensive repairs that required a flatbed ride to the dealer.

    Ural has not ever been towed to dealer. It has had minor issues but all were fixed by me at the side of the road and then able to carry on.

    Overall, Ural is more road reliable.

    Not everything you read on the interweeb is true.

    Carry on as you were.

  9. Audaciter

    Audaciter Long timer

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    My current bike also had some of those infamous "Y U NO ISSUE RECALL" type issues. The bike has been brilliant, including some undeserved thrashing that I've given it.

    The truth is that far more people post on the internet when something goes wrong than when you have another uneventful day on the bike.

    There is ALWAYS going to be somebody that doesn't like what you purchase. Everything from your bike to your favorite brand of coffee. Somewhere, somebody thinks you are idiot for buying what you did.

    Only way to deal with 'em? Tell them to F' off and ride your own ride.
  10. cpres

    cpres Been here awhile

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    Have had broken stuff on the Ural, they treated my like a king and all is right now. Love my Ural not gonna trash talk it even if it is not fast. Very hi smiles per mile.

    Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk 2
  11. Heyload

    Heyload Remastered Classic

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    I think that pretty much sums it all up, right there.
  12. KawiVA76

    KawiVA76 Been here awhile

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    Own a 2008 BMW R1200R, own a 2010 Ural Taiga. Love them both and they both have their purpose. Don't write off the Ural. They're quirky, but as solid as any machine I've ever owned. Except my wifes 96 VW Cabrio, now that was a disaster, lol.

    Mike

    Sent from my SPH-L900 using Tapatalk 4
  13. claude

    claude Sidecar Jockey

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    Just curious how many here have had other sidecar outfits prior to the Ural and how many have a Ural plus another outfit. No motive for this question just curious. We considered becoming a Ural dealer a while back after they called us but didn't have the money to purchase the three they wanted to get into it. Just as well we are quite busy as is. I think Urals are cool and they are what they are. Newer ones have come a long way but it seems they are still not a simple gas and go type machine for many. Those who have been disappointed with them probably didn't expect this and all. Those who like them love them and ,yes, that's cool.
  14. Montague

    Montague UDF Adventurer

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    Fair question. The Ural was my introduction to sidecars due to affordable price and the 2wd potential on trails (note I did not say off road).

    I now have hacked the ST for my wife's comfort for longer highway trips but I doubt I would have started down the sidecar path without the Ural due to the high cost and complications of having a hack mounted to an existing bike.

    The Ural lives at our rural weekend home where it will still be thrashed about on the back roads and trails.

    Sends shivers up my spine to say, but without the Ural, I might have ended up on a Canam Spyder..................
  15. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad World's Foremost Authority

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    We bought a used 2007 Ural Tourist (1 wheel drive) as a fairly inexpensive way to see if a sidecar was a good fit for us. We used it for a year (about 5K miles) and sold it for what we paid for it. Current rig is a 2007 BMW R1200GSA with a DMC sidecar.
  16. Snowy

    Snowy Long timer

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    Do they sell the 2wd in a left hand chair setup, or is it only for the chair on the right?

    This doesn't mean I'm coming to the dark side.

    What sort of suspension upgrades are there?


    Nope, still not crossing over...


    Long range fuel tank options, you can only carry so many Jerry cans?


    Performance (snigger) upgrades....are there?

    Someone said they put GS airhead engines in them. Hard to do? On a modification scale of 1 to 10....1 being bolt on, and 10 involving pipe benders, a machine shop, a TIG, a book on frame building, and 8 cases of beer?
  17. SilkMoneyLove

    SilkMoneyLove Long timer

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    Only 8 cases of beer? :-)

    I would think it would be easier to hang a hack on a GS than to wedge the GS drivetrain in a Ural.

    Gas cans are easy, aux tank is only going to give you another gallon = another 30 miles.

    As for performance, the 2014 are FI, so that is the best performance bump, with related beefed up parts to match ( final drive).
  18. cpres

    cpres Been here awhile

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    Ural had warranty and I was afraid of unsafe backyard built rig. Since I bought a Ural my dad bought a Harley Davidson rig, I want a freeway flyer rig and another Ural to keep the Retro company, right tool for the job you know.

    Ural rig and Harley rig are very different tools, Ural hack is more comfortable per my wife.

    Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk 2
  19. roscoau

    roscoau Been here awhile

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    My Ural is my first outfit. I looked around and the Ural was good value given performance wasn't an issue. I wanted something I wasn't afraid to work on since that is part of the ownership experience I wanted.

    I bought a 2009 Tourist and am still in love! It certainly isn't for everyone, but that's ok; if it was maybe it wouldn't be right for me.
  20. Duckworth

    Duckworth Taking the high road

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    The Ural is my first sidecar rig and the reason I wanted it was precisely because it is NOT a gas and go machine. I have another bike that is, and it has become boring. I wanted something different that needed more owner involvement and a chance to build up my shade tree mechanic repertoire. Mine certainly needs more attention than a modern bike, but has proved itself to be much more reliable than I had anticipated when I got it.