Why you should NOT buy a Ural motorcycle

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

  1. FLYING EYEBALL

    FLYING EYEBALL out of step

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  2. windmill

    windmill Long timer

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    Ural will be offering a bolt on kit for the older rigs that requires no modifications, and its a high quality 18 step adjustable damper. The stock friction damper is simply removed.
  3. Prmurat

    Prmurat Long timer

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    Ski must have been wrong in his assertion..
  4. SilkMoneyLove

    SilkMoneyLove Long timer

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    For steering dampener, just throw a wet towel on it :-)
  5. Rango

    Rango Phaneropter

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  6. Emperorzante

    Emperorzante n00b

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    In Freudian terms a "conversion neurosis," wherein the intensity of desire for the most desired object conflicts with deeply-ingrained social inhibitions against consummating the desire, precipitating a irrational panic characterized by ideation, and sometimes actualization, of violent attack against said object. The most frequently-encountered form is the panic of a homophobe confronting unavoidable interaction with ...

    His highly conflicted attraction to Urals notwithstanding, the author is nonetheless correct: The Ural IS cantankerous, unreliable, funky, prone to more frequent breakdown than most other marques, and dealers are like as not to be "Joe's Lawnmowers" with a side in Urals.

    But this is ADVENTURE riding, right?

    For the very same reasons the author fulminates, a Ural offers a challenge to skill and resourcefulness in every cross country trip, the support received from the few trustworthy dealers that do exist when one of them drop-ships parts to the place of breakdown, and the couple of extra days the event affords to become better acquainted with the locale, the inhabitants thereof, and the human resources for assistance in repair that said folks will inevitably counsel and deliver. In a number of ways, the challenge is similar to cold-season back-country travel by map and compass, where one might meet and share stories with isolated pockets of humanity in their winter quarters, but not so physically arduous that the superannuated are excluded form participation.

    Yes, 'tis true that the Ural is a "substandard" Russian product. But it is the same substandard product, along with a number of similarly substandard but wickedly designed others (e.g., Moisan-Nagant firearms, the T-34 tank), and Ivan's motherwit in keeping them all in motion, that kicked Hitler's ass all the way back to Berlin.

    Russians have been dealing ingeniously since dirt with their substandard products. An alert tourist in Russia will be amazed by the 40, 50, and 60 year-old Urals, Dniepers and Heaven knows what else still giving service as daily drivers, hauling produce or tools, some with ladders slung on the side, each with its own peculiar accretion of owner modifications. Very much like most of the Third World, which has a knack for making all kinds of machines run forever.

    One misses the fun altogether by thinking of the Ural as a motorcycle, to be judged according to all the modern anal-retentive standards of slick manufacture. Nay, not a motorcycle, but kinetic sculpture whose beauty causes folks to break out in raptures wherever one drives it. And as a thing of beauty and joy that brings a sense of participation in something greater than oneself wherever it goes, it is a terrific tool for witnessing ..... heh, heh.

    By the way, I have a Gold Wing, purchased before I learned about Urals. It is for sale because, compared to the Ural, it is, well, BOR-ing. Look up "Arkywing" on the Naked Gold Wing site. It's really cherry, and it will never ... yawn ... let you down.:rofl
  7. 100mpg

    100mpg Self Imposed Exile

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    too long, didn't read.
  8. teamgrizzly

    teamgrizzly Even more advanced n00b!

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    Well said, but I don't think you're helping Bok...er...he who shall not be named's cause. But as a fellow Ural owner, I think you might be well received over at Soviet Steeds. I think you rather eloquently captured the reasons why it is such a joy to ride.

    Translation for 100mpg: It's fun to ride because it's different.

    Mike
  9. Bar None

    Bar None Candy Ass

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    Thanks for the translation, I needed it also.
  10. Montague

    Montague UDF Adventurer

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    I don't see his application to the Governing Council of the Ural Cabal so not sure that he qualifies to buy. We are very selective ever since the error of allowing a certain person who shall not be named to own one- and look at the trouble that has caused!

    The paperwork must be in order before the honor of Ural ownership can be legally bestowed.:clap

    Signed,

    The 1% Club
  11. Poacher Bob

    Poacher Bob Persona non grata

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    Sonny Bargers fake noob?
  12. Montague

    Montague UDF Adventurer

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    1% as in the top of the economic heap defined by Occupy Protesters who see themselves as the 99%..................
  13. lakesuperiorural

    lakesuperiorural n00b

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    I am new here but have been riding cycles for well over 40 years and have a few comments in response to the Ural basher. I do not own a Ural but have a friend locally who does but I have owned Hondas, 2 triumphs, 2 Yamahas and a Suzuki. My son owns or has owned a Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki and a Suzuki. Between us we have over 70 years of motorcycling experience.

    I had a 1 year old Honda that had a crankshaft failure at less than 8000 miles. No dealer in the US had a replacement crank, it had to come from Japan and I waited fron April until October to get it! The bike rusted, as will any bike made of ferrous metals. Nothing new there. The Yamahas I had ate through starters like popcorn. we often had to pull start them with a rope and another vehicle. The Virago I had had an internal oil filter and no dealer EVER had the correct gaskets for it, so access cover always leaked.

    My son bought a brand new Suzuki GSXR 1100 and the first time it was ridden, uopn stopping it, it would'nt restart-the charging system had failed. He had one of his Yamahas at the local dealer for service, dealer parked it on blacktop lot on a hot day, it sank, fell over and busted off the mirror. Dealer refused to replace the mirror. Any make can have dealers who are less than stellar.

    My son also had an XL 250 Honda than quit everytime it rained. Water ran into the electrics and killed it-and it was an enduro machine!

    My Triumphs continually leak, spew, throw oil and generally make a mess. One of the kick starter levers did bust on it as did the guy claim one did on a Ural. On my Bonneville, the internal racketing mechanism on the kick starter failed and locked up. The gas petcocks leak on both, the carbs will flood on occasion and they also will rust. One of them burned thru a set of rings in under 5000 miles which necessitated an engine rebuild-dealer didn't cover that. Valve covers have cracked, both machines have stranded me on the side of the road, they are very unreliable but I still love em.

    I have a Suzuki Cavalcade which had had its regulator fail, leaving me for dead over 1000 miles from home. It also goes thru expensive tires.

    Bottom line, after reading through many, many Ural threads on several websites and talking with my frined who owns a Ural, is that they are no worse than any brand motorcycle. (Incidently, my buddy rode his Ural completely around the USA, to all 4 corners, in one year, logging over 20,000 miles and had NO, yes, NO mechanical problems. So, I can see no reason for bashing the Ural to such a degree. To me, they appear no worse or no better than any other make. They do have their place, though, they are not road racers or setup for high-speed, Interstate flyin. Ask yourself how long would a Harley Ultra Glide or Suzuki GSXR1100 last busting thru the mud roads of Russia or Montana for that matter? Or getting back into a good fishing spot over 10 miles of logging roads? Each bike has its own merits for what it is made for.

    I hope to own a new 2014 Ural in the next 6-12 months. I won't have any problems plunking down my cash.
  14. Montague

    Montague UDF Adventurer

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    The Ural Cabal has convened a special Plenary Session and voted unanimously: you Sir are approved to purchase!

    I am sure you will enjoy your Ural when it comes home with you, good riding.

  15. conchscooter

    conchscooter Long timer

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    I think this is exactly the OP's point. You are comparing a modern Ural to motorcycles from decades ago. My modern Bonneville has 130,000 kilometers on the clock, factory stock, with not even a light bulb failure in nearly seven years of riding. I hope the 2014 Ural delivers on the advertising promise.



  16. BigAround

    BigAround Adventurer

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    I'm happy with mine and that's all that matters to me. :clap
  17. kyudogator

    kyudogator no really, we're not lost

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    6 years ago I decided to succumb to severe mental illness and get a hack.
    Having never driven one I knew from+ years of motorcycles that I was more than likely to beat the crap out of at least the first one. I got a $3000 1996 ural italia, With my faithful canine companion, Gus, I set out to terrorize the roads and backways of N Fl. We ran dirt roads, smashed the chair fender into walls, posts and small trees, blew the cylinder head across a 4 lane highway ( it kept running and got us 500' to a safe pullout), I am in agreement with all uralists in that it is a RPOC. it'slack of power was only exceeded in its inability to stop.
    So after about a year of this silliness, I traded it in on a 2003 Retro ( told you, sever mental illness) with ~15000km on it. It now has 49000. in the last 5 years Gus and I have ridden it to NC, done the "tale of the dragon several times", suffered the main street crawl at bike week. In the last 5 years I have had the alternator go bad and damage a timing gear. The alternator I got rebuilt at a local alternator shop for $40, the timing gear had to be replaced at the dealer $200 P&L, How much would the bill be to replace the timing gear/chain/etc in your ride? Owning a Ural means you will have an intimate relationship with routine maintenance, If you're the type who takes his bike to the shop for oil changes then a Ural is definitely not the bike for you, but then neither is an airhead, Norton, or Enfield

    Recently I took delivery of the all american rig I have been working on, Victory Classic Cruiser for the tug and Clark Stanley Motorworks chair. The first thing I realized was just how well the Russians set up the rig.
    1 No head shake
    2 very slight pull right on acceleration, none at speed
    3 brakes applied properly, no pull left even on panic stops

    Eventually I will have the Vic rig set up the same, But I have the advantage of the Russian standard as to what is acceptable handling.

    Bottom line is
    If you can't or won't take the time to do 90% of the work on your bike no Ural for you.

    however, If you want to learn how to drive a hack and not be worrying if its weird or just normal sidecar weirdness, or even if you really want a hack. Get a post 2000 Ural before investing $30k on a full rig

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/kyudogator/13194209503/
  18. BWeber

    BWeber Been here awhile

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    Ural is a great rig to try out a sidecar for a season or so without breaking the bank. That's what I did for the last 7 years.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  19. RidingDonkeys

    RidingDonkeys Purveyor of Awesome

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    It took 5 1/2 years for you to make your first post. :clap

    Seriously, this could be the best first post ever. Well stated. A Ural is a labor of love. You have to be comfortable with maintenance.
  20. Bar None

    Bar None Candy Ass

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    We might be slow but we were passing all the GS owners in the sand during our ride from Bartow to Ochopee. Then they would pass us on the pavement and then we would pass them in the Florida sand again. :rofl

    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/jlWJEocaWf43HVCi5Al2U2vAnO462cOpmvhpyOCGDFo?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-kzQiHVimQXE/UyXNxJu629I/AAAAAAAAOs0/OlAxrd7upx4/s800/0315141133-00.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>

    Waiting for the GS boys to catch up.:rofl