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Old 10-24-2005, 08:12 AM   #171
teknoman
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Default Re: It's Called Satire, foo!

Gabe I love the uly,but how did you get on it and how did you ride it? I am 1.2 inch shorter than you so it will always interest me how you ride! thanks!
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Old 10-24-2005, 09:33 AM   #172
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Default Re: 2005 Sport Touring Shootout

What contempt this compro has brought out. What amazes me is how people are so upset about what bikes were/weren't included.



I know a lady who tours on a Ninja 250. I've seen a guy tour on a ZX9. I've also seen KLR650 rigged with highway pegs and tall windscreens.



Pretty much any bike can be a touring bike with a few tweaks here or there, but there aren't a lot of touring bikes that can be sportbikes. When you look at bikes like the FJR, RT, VFR, XB12X, and the ST, they are all comfortable bikes for SOMEONE. Me? I couldn't fold up on a VFR if my life depended on it as it's not any more comfortable to me than a Ducati superbike. I've owned an FJR, and in stock form, it's a nice bike. Not the be all end all of sport tourers. That takes a suspension update, and a few other tweaks. The ST1300 is a huge pig of a bike, until you get it rolling, then it hides its weight pretty well. I haven't ridden the new RT, but it seems like a very nice bike, but it ought to be for the GWAD awful price.



So...when I look at these bikes, being 6'5" tall with a 36" inseam and wanting a sporty touring bike that I can ride for hundreds of miles a day without being cramped up, there is really only two choices in this group. The RT and the Uly. Yeah...the ST is alright, but it's simply not involving enough for me. I like to "feel" my bikes and what they are doing. I am a big fan of twins as I appreciate how they make power. The RT seems like a heck of a bike, but I'm more interested in a comfortable sportbike that I can do long distances on. I actually LIKE the wind hitting me. That's sort of the point on a motorcycle. That being said, the RT is a bit heavier than I'd like, and I'm not keen on the linked brakes in the twisties either.



So...that leaves the Buell. Say what you want, but for those of us cursed with long legs and bad knees, it's about damn time someone made a bike for us. I'm sick of my legs aching after a long ride and my only choice for a bike that won't do that to me has a 19" front tire that's skinnier than Karen Carpenter on a diet or a feet forward garbage wagon cruiser. Oh yeah...the Multistrada. I've already got a Ducati in the garage, and if I win the lottery someday, maybe I can afford to maintain two of them. For now, one is enough.



Back to the Buell. Price is a little high for an "American" bike seeing as how exchange rates and such conspire against the Jap and Euro bikes, but it's not way out of whack. I'll be picking up mine at $1500 off MSRP, which I feel is a pretty good deal. It doesn't require ANY valve adjustments....EVER. What a concept! Wonder why the other supposedly "superior" manfacturers can't pull that one off (could it be they enjoy gouging us for the service bills?!?). No throttle body synchs either. It's decently light weight for a bike its size and Buell decided to put a decent seat on it versus the crap that most manfacturers put on their bike. I have never owned a bike, my BMWs included, that I didn't put an expensive aftermarket seat on. Nothing sucks worse than shelling out big bucks for a new bike and sitting on a squishy vinyl seat that has you sitting on the seat pan after a few miles (maybe my 220lb butt is just too much for most seats to handle).



So, for those of you who are closed minded and believe that only an overweight, plastic encased, expensive bike can be a sport tourer, and those of you who think that a sportbike chassis with relaxed ergos and bags qualifies as a sport tourer, take a step back and understand that not everyone can ride that small bike comfortably and on the other end of the spectrum, not everyone wants a huge bike to wrestle through the twisties trailing sparks from the footpegs.



The Uly is a fine choice for the comparison. It's comfortable, has nice bags as an option, gets excellent mileage, and its engine and belt drive are easy to maintain. It has a nice supportive seat that is covered in a ballistic nylon like material that breathes well and allows you to move around when riding aggressively. It also has a STANDARD backrest for your passenger and a pillion seat that is also wide and supportive (it, however, is covered in vinyl...come on Buell...give the misses the nice nylon material too!). It has nice touches like the built in power outlets, and bungee hooks. The muffler is under the bike so it lowers the center of gravity, but better yet, it keeps it away from your significant others legs when they are mounting/dismounting or stretching. It offers you a choice of just about any street tire made from super sticky sport rubber to long life touring tires thanks to its 17" wheels. For those of us who are quite tall, it doesn't have a big windshield that usually dumps copius amounts of buffeting directly on the facesheild of our helmets. A shorter windshield works great and on other bikes I've had, I've ended up cutting the stock screen down or buying a shorter one.



I applaud MO for adding an unconventional bike to the test. Especially since I've plopped my money down on one and I'm playing the waiting game. Before the flames begin, no, I'm not a Harley/Buell lover and I've not sampled the "Kool-Aid" the Buellers are schlepping. I just look at all bikes objectively. What works for me won't work for everyone else and vice versa. Just be glad that we are blessed with a plethoria of choices, and this compro shows a little bit of what's out there from nearly naked "adventure" tourers, to SPORT tourers, to sport TOURERS.



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Old 10-24-2005, 11:09 AM   #173
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Default Re: 2005 Sport Touring Shootout

We all love the latest news about new bikes, exotic engineering, and performance dcharacteristics. Good job, MO. The five bikes reviewed range in price from $12,490 (plus taxes) to twenty grand.



Bike prices have kept up with inflation, but sadly the bucks many of us earn have not. There are actually plenty of us out here who earn less in inflation-adjusted wages than we did 30 years ago.



I think the motorcycle press would serve us all well if it occasionally offered "camparos" or "shootouts" on selections of used bikes in various age ranges...something we might be better able to afford when we want to replace our "really old" scoots with some that are not-quite-so really old
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Old 10-24-2005, 11:43 AM   #174
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Default Re: 2005 Sport Touring Shootout

That's easy, the Concours was the inagural member of group 1 (big, plush, fast). It was the original target that the subsequent Honda ST1100 was shooting at. Remember at the time of its' introduction there was not much out there in this catagory. This bike had speed, power, handling (by the days standards), and shaft drive + room for hard bags. What's amazing is how well it has held up in the face of such strong targeted competition, including the ZZR from Kawasaki itself!
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Old 10-24-2005, 12:03 PM   #175
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Default Re: 2005 Sport Touring Shootout

And another thing.... You know I just realized why this class of bike is growing so fast!



Motorcyles sell well in the baby boomer 40~65 year old range. We didn't buy bikes in our late twenties, or thirties(we were raising kids & buiying houses).



Now there are two types of us boomers out there ~ The ones who always wanted a bike but never had one (the cruiser buyers), and those of who rode everything from RD350's to Ninja 900's. We don't fold up well on our hot rod steeds of yore', and sometimes we have to put a signifigant other on the back.



We don't race anymore, we still want to ride fairly fast, we don't want to fall off and break anything, and we want to be comfortable. We are willling to buy the bike, but we don't want to spend a fortune in money or time taking care of the damn thing! (our interests are somewhat more multi-dimensional than they were at age 20).



Consequently the manufactures are building bikes for both of these geezer classes! Ain't we lucky!!
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Old 10-24-2005, 12:45 PM   #176
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Default Re: 2005 Sport Touring Shootout

interesting article, had me laughing a couple of times and helped to kill a few minutes on this borring day, but....



shoot out? sorry excuse for one. I could write a better one just by using manufacturer's info for the bikes, road tests of separate machines from the past and a few pictures to get an idea as to what the bikes look like. it would be harder to come up with the pillion opinion, but since no backseater had a chance to speak here i could wing this one as well and be on par with the article here.



to name 2 problems off the top:

fuel tank size? mpg? and the combinations of those gives what range? ( want this one of the four categories you mentioned in the 7th line above "Fifth Place ..." ?)



this is a pay site after all and i tend to expect more from it than whole bunch of free ones out there. this article just plain p!$$ed me off, as you had some of the most capable machines out there to play with for a thousand miles.



and for the future referance: if you can't come up with descent arguments on your own how about asking for a reader feed-back on what point should be covered in the next comparo, that is if you have the balls to try it again.



$h!tty job guys, work like this makes me burry my head in the sand in shame when i think about recomending this site to my students.



i gotta go before i get really revved up. be back after i cool off.



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Old 10-24-2005, 01:13 PM   #177
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Default Re: 2005 Sport Touring Shootout

same feeling on the Buell, but i'd like to see the Firebolt Long, with XB12X hard cases ( including top case.)

other than that keep your K-bike, i will never part with my '87 K75s, 60k+ on the clock including 9k coast to coast and back run this summer and still pulls of 60mpg.
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Old 10-24-2005, 02:21 PM   #178
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Default Re: 2005 Sport Touring Shootout

Ridiculous article! Sport? RT? I don't think so. Face it, sport means MOTOR baby, and the FJR has it. The RT is pathetic when it comes to getting out of the way. When you can power wheelie an RT for a block like you can the FJR, call me.

There's no replacement for a kick in the ass when you twist the throttle and the RT is just plain uninspiring in that department. Remember your suppose to be talking SPORT here!

If you are all about seat room, you should have just got an LT and called it sporty.

Be advise your stories have to make sense when you compare them to previous stories, and this one in no way makes sense when you look at your previous shootouts, unless there's a new RT in all the MO's writers driveways.

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Old 10-24-2005, 02:47 PM   #179
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Default Re: 2005 Sport Touring Shootout

I forgot to mention that I was riding solo, so things were easy for me. It did rain for the first 200 miles coming home, but my war surplus rain suit kept me dry.



There are very few bikes now days that aren't lots better on long or short trips than my 45. You guys have it very good, and should feel lucky.
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Old 10-24-2005, 03:31 PM   #180
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Default Like walking in a pasture...

You have to be careful where you put your feet! Seriously, when you ride an extra-tall bike like the Uly or the KTM Adventurer, you just have to be careful when you come to a stop that you'll have good place to put one foot, and then slide one leg way down, to get a solid footing while leaning the bike slightly to that side.



You also have to work carefully with the passenger to make sure he or she doesn't upset the apple cart when boarding. Make sure they tell you when they're getting on, and ensure you have a good, solid grip on the bike so it doesn't tip over to the opposite side as they board.



I do a lot of rolling stops through stop signs when I'm riding a bike like that, but that can get you a ticket. Hey, as Sean says, when you're rolling you don't need to get your feet down. You get used to it, but I never feel 100% comfortable.
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