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Old 09-30-2007, 07:14 PM   #1
newagetwotone
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Alright here goes nothing.

I had never been to a harley dealer before, havn't seen most of them in person but... a friend of mine has it in his head that he HAS to have a harley because "its american." His past bike experince is the MSF course, nothing else. He and i walked around for a while and he drooled over a V-rod and a couple other bikes. I steered him over towards the sportsers figuring i could try and save him from killing himself with a 120 hp deathmachine. He really liked a couple of the sportster 1200s, the Low and the Custom (personally i like the Nightster and the Roadster myself.) He sat down on a couple of bikes and the sales talk begun. I work in sales in a camera store but man i tell you, never heard someone talk so fast and loud that you couldn't hear yourself think.

Personally i dragged him out of there and said he should sit down and read some reviews before jumping at one of them.

Now the question. Would it be a death sentence for him to buy a sportster right off the bat? (either an 883 or a 1200) I've heard that the performance of harleys isn't the greatest, that they are slower. Is this a myth or is BS and can you think of any arguements to get the "buy American" thing out of his head? (guys been my best friend for 8 years, I'd rather not see him kill himself.)

To be honest i wish i had 10 grand, i'd love a 1200N or R.
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Old 09-30-2007, 07:28 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newagetwotone View Post
Alright here goes nothing.

Snippage

Personally i dragged him out of there and said he should sit down and read some reviews before jumping at one of them.

Now the question. Would it be a death sentence for him to buy a sportster right off the bat? (either an 883 or a 1200) I've heard that the performance of harleys isn't the greatest, that they are slower. Is this a myth or is BS and can you think of any arguements to get the "buy American" thing out of his head? (guys been my best friend for 8 years, I'd rather not see him kill himself.)

To be honest i wish i had 10 grand, i'd love a 1200N or R.
It's not too fast for him it's just too expensive to drop. H-D has made Sportsters for 50 years and they'll still be around when he gets some experience under his belt on a cheap bike.

Sportys aren't fast but H-Ds are great bikes and fun to ride.
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Old 09-30-2007, 08:17 PM   #3
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"Fast" is relative. Snobs will tell you that HDs are "slow". A lot of those snobs are dead now. A Sporty might have "only" 50HP but it's still faster than 95% of cars and will go fast enough to kill you in a big hurry. He should start with a smaller bike. After all he wouldn't try to fly an F-16 as his first airplane would he? Motorcycles are more dangerous.
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Old 10-01-2007, 07:57 AM   #4
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I think Sportsters make a great first bike. I personally have known perhaps a dozen people who've started on Sportsters and done well.

Yes, they have power, but the power is very managable. They are heavier than other "starter" bikes, but overall they are compact, easy to handle bikes. They keep their value well, and have a lot of optional accessories available - from bags to fairings. If he's worried about dropping it, a set of engine guards (we used to call them crash bars, but that's not PC anymore) will take care of that issue.

It's not surprising to hear your experience at the local dealer. Many dealers have gone to the car sales model...underpaid, desperate sales people who will do "whatever it takes to make the deal."
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Old 10-01-2007, 08:35 AM   #5
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If his heart is set on a Sporty that's what he should get.....after he learns the ropes on a smaller, lighter, cheaper bike. It's hard enough to get used to traffic and general riding around as it is, a cheaper, lighter bike is just easier to catch if you loose your balance. It's not that the Sporty is too fast and powerful though it'll get you down the road quick enough, it's that they're heavier and more expensive. I'd rather learn some skills on a cheaper bike then step up.
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Old 10-01-2007, 12:41 PM   #6
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I tried to convince him to get a 250 Rebel or something like that he could dump and not cry.
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Old 10-01-2007, 12:55 PM   #7
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I tried to convince him to get a 250 Rebel or something like that he could dump and not cry.
My ex-wife used to cry every time I took a dump.
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Old 10-01-2007, 01:19 PM   #8
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Well i mean if dropped $3000 on a bike i'd cry. to me thats alot of money, i think i'd cry more if i dropped a sporty. I think I'll hit the lottery and buy one...
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Old 10-01-2007, 01:33 PM   #9
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Any bike can be "too fast" if ridden poorly. I'd say if he's got his heart set on an HD, go for it... though he'd be remiss if he didn't at least look at some of Japanese cruisers for comparison -- where they are made notwithstanding.
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Old 10-01-2007, 02:39 PM   #10
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Heck, get an older Sporty!

Decent price, no depreciation. They're torque-y b@astards, so they're harder for the newbie to stall.

They're a HARLEY, so he can buy all the appropriate accessories, and maybe something for the bike.

And again, it ain't how fast the bike is, it's whether you can stop or turn it in time.

Just make sure he throws the pipes away and puts drag pipes, maybe 12 inches long, on it. He'll be the Darling of the Neighborhood.
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