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Discussion Starter #1
Just want to ask your views on Honda vs Harley and other brands ( way to many to list ) Let's make it's more of a Challenge. Where what I don't want to hear about price points, the shacking, or bike falling apart. I would like to see also some Honda vs Suzuki as well pros and cons. I think this will be a fun debate to have I just ask no person attacks and please little to no cursing. I know when brand passion comes up things get heated. But I want to keep this informative and fun thanks


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If you want to make it a valid discussion you might try to limit the replies to those that have any actual experience with a brand or actually know anything about what they're saying.

Lots of people like to shovel $hit without knowing anything about it. :coffeescreen:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
If you want to make it a valid discussion you might try to limit the replies to those that have any actual experience with a brand or actually know anything about what they're saying.



Lots of people like to shovel $hit without knowing anything about it. :coffeescreen:


Your right. I just kind of typed kind of fast on my brake. I have owned a few Harley's and honda's so I really don't have a hate for Honda. I know from working on and owning a 91 Suzuki intruder I am not a fan of Suzuki because to me they were hard to work on and where the battery was caused a lot of problems around winter time. But I always like hearing not only pros and cons by why you like your brand of bike. At the same time I don't want the same answers we always hear. I could go on and on why I like Harley and Honda. For different reasons but I am not a brand or cc snob


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In my garage I have an old Honda, an old Yamaha, and two HDs. I recently sold my Suzuki. I'm a fan of all brands. But as you can see, I do enjoy HD. My Ultra is my most used bike by far. What I like about the HDs is the very low maintenance and repairs. Despite so many people talking about poor HD reliability, I've found it not true. Between the two bikes, I had a sticky cruise control switch on the 2007 Ultra. That's it. Everything else has been routine maintenance. And routine maintenance is easy. With hydraulic lifters, air cooling, and belt drives, they are very low maintenance machines. I enjoy working on motorcycles, but I enjoy riding them more. And I don't like having to pay others to do elaborate or expensive maintenance. Neither of my HDs (2007 and 2006 model years) have been back to a dealership for anything.

My Suzuki was a maintenance headache. But mostly because it was a SuperSport bike that was abused by previous owner. My Yamaha XT350 is a tank that never needs anything. And the Honda is a '76 model that just needs TLC due to vintage aging.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
In my garage I have an old Honda, an old Yamaha, and two HDs. I recently sold my Suzuki. I'm a fan of all brands. But as you can see, I do enjoy HD. My Ultra is my most used bike by far. What I like about the HDs is the very low maintenance and repairs. Despite so many people talking about poor HD reliability, I've found it not true. Between the two bikes, I had a sticky cruise control switch on the 2007 Ultra. That's it. Everything else has been routine maintenance. And routine maintenance is easy. With hydraulic lifters, air cooling, and belt drives, they are very low maintenance machines. I enjoy working on motorcycles, but I enjoy riding them more. And I don't like having to pay others to do elaborate or expensive maintenance. Neither of my HDs (2007 and 2006 model years) have been back to a dealership for anything.

My Suzuki was a maintenance headache. But mostly because it was a SuperSport bike that was abused by previous owner. My Yamaha XT350 is a tank that never needs anything. And the Honda is a '76 model that just needs TLC due to vintage aging.


I'll tell you I love the older Honda's and Harley's. Ike I said above I had a Suzuki. I don't think I would get another one to many repairs. As fair as fixing my own I was worried fixing my 09 superglide when I had it it was efi. That bike is gone as the Suzuki.


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I don' have a problem with any brand of bike. I personally made the choice to ride a goldwing for most of my riding. I think a lot is the exposure we got as kids. I was raised with the Jap bikes from the late 60's on. As stated before, I really like the quiet smooth power.
 

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So as a new rider (800miles since Jan) I the Shadow was a perfect choice for me for my first bike. I am really grateful that I don't have a 800-1000lbs bike to learn on. The price point was a lot better (I know you wanted me to skip that part) but that means more plastic which is good for weight but when I see a HD and the higher attention to design detail and know of the increased power and stronger sound. I still look forward to the day when I upgrade to either a HD (like the Slim S) or perhaps a Indian Chief which is so classic it gives me goosebumps. Anyway, I like that my Shadow does have the same styling cues as the more expensive dream bikes (HD Fatboy and such) I have been asked a few times if it's a Hog (obviously by those that don't know much about bikes) and that does make me smile (just being honest) but I tell them it's a shadow. I have gotten lots of complements on the Phantom saying things like "it's the perfect James Dean look" but only in a modern bike, so that's cool.

that's my 2cents...your mileage may vary
 

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Discussion Starter #8
So as a new rider (800miles since Jan) I the Shadow was a perfect choice for me for my first bike. I am really grateful that I don't have a 800-1000lbs bike to learn on. The price point was a lot better (I know you wanted me to skip that part) but that means more plastic which is good for weight but when I see a HD and the higher attention to design detail and know of the increased power and stronger sound. I still look forward to the day when I upgrade to either a HD (like the Slim S) or perhaps a Indian Chief which is so classic it gives me goosebumps. Anyway, I like that my Shadow does have the same styling cues as the more expensive dream bikes (HD Fatboy and such) I have been asked a few times if it's a Hog (obviously by those that don't know much about bikes) and that does make me smile (just being honest) but I tell them it's a shadow. I have gotten lots of complements on the Phantom saying things like "it's the perfect James Dean look" but only in a modern bike, so that's cool.



that's my 2cents...your mileage may vary


Back when I had the money the shadow was my first new bike. I had a older goldwing that was the most comfortable bike. I got t boned on the gold wing. But yea the shadow is a great bike.


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Jap for sure. Best reliability, engineering, and smooth high power delivery with several different looks and better value. That's my opinion from my experience and everything I've read . I'm into sportbikes and cruisers so....That's what i go for. I have ridden harleys and jap bikes. I ride with a friend who has a 15 road glide. When we are at a stop light, he is shaking so violently, I think he's having a seizure sometimes. I know it's the engine mounts, but wtf. Gotta love the harley sound though as long as it's not ridiculous loud and shaking your windows at night. I don't like that I can't say I would prefer a harley. I am American and have been for almost 50 years. Here is an example of that awesome engineering: I like the part at 0:39 where it looks both ways. I might just get one so I could say I'm taking my bike for a walk.

 

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I'm pretty Switzerland on the issue. I like and own Harleys, Hondas, Kawasakis and Suzukis. I haven't found much 'reliability' difference between them (excepting 70's AMF-era Harleys, but that's a known issue). I find that all of them are highly reliable IF you do regular routine maintenance on them, and all of them can leave you roadside if you don't.

I'd add that the #1 'routine maintenance' I recommend is: park it inside. I see more bikes with more problems from living outdoors all the time than anything else: things crack, dry out, get sun-damaged, rain-damaged, even simple dirt and oxidation from being outside can muck up the works, etc. Yeah, sounds simplistic, but IME it's completely true: I'd take an older "indoor" bike than a newer "parked on the street" bike most any day.

The topic raised here I -can- address - having worked on hundreds if not thousands of bikes - is the ease of maintaining/working on them. To me it's not a marque-thing because it varies tremendously by model and year. For instance, generally, Honda CB inline-4's are easy to work on/maintain, while v-twins (shadow) are more of a pain and v-fours (magna) are horrible. Suzuki Vulcans are a bit easier to work on than Yamaha Stars, while Ninjas are easier to work on than Gixers. And -every- Japanese marque has gone through periods of "let's make the service department's life hell" with engineering 'innovations' for no apparent reason... Special-tool-requiring swingarm bolts, etc.

Harleys are generally easy to work on, and I do appreciate that about them, though the simpler ones like Sportsters are noticeably easier than Glides and similar.

Honda, for a long time (until recently) seemed determined to keep the rubber-hose industry afloat with insane nests of hoses running everywhere (coolant lines running through the carb AND the frame AND the airbox???). Then again you get the occasional bike where you figure the engineers were ex-mechanics: little things like managing to only use 3-4 bolt-head sizes on the whole bikes versus "let's use every size from 6mm to 32mm somewhere, plus hex-heads, star-heads, philips-heads and more. Oh, and those delicious "anti tamper" bolts in a few places too. Yay!"

So to me one simply can't say any brand is 'easier to work on' than another. It's granular to a model level, at minimum.
 

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I always have and always will prefer Honda over all, In my opinion with out pulling and lengthy serious information their motors are much more reliable and can keep on goin' for as long as you care to own it
 

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Coolant running through carbs? You mean like on my vtx? I know they come up with some crazy designs. It was for keeping it nice and toasty when cold. My cbr 1000 manual says to remove swingarm to remove reservoir(to replace coolant)! Yeah. ...like that's happening. $5 suction hose from harbor freight, rinse, drain, and repeat. That baby is never coming off. There are lots of alternatives to the "special tools". Like a sock instead of a clutch holder. But, I bought the $30 one for my cbr which has a slipper clutch. I also have the motin pro clutch holder.
I have always been a fan of yamaha and honda. Honda because they are the best "street ", race bikes and have always fit me best plus I've ridden them mostly since I was 20 and always had no trouble.
I looked into getting a bmw s1000 and the cbr had a much better review for street use since the mid range is better.

I've been looking at getting a suzuki m109 though and selling my vtx even though they are bullet proof ( just for some more power).Only bad thing on the vtx is the Honda steering bearings which a quick replacement with all balls fixes.
I use to ride my ex girlfriends soft ail which I didn't care for. But I always liked the sound. It had a bad ass paint job too. Skeleton bones on red. There were only a couple hundred made. Also rode a vrod that I didn't care for.
I'm just going by what I've read and my own personal experience. Most of the reports I read ranked the japs as most reliable manufacturers. If u do a Google search for most reliable motorcycle , one of the first things you'll see is " not harley" Lol. But, Consumer reports actually puts harley in the middle better tHan ducati, triumph and bmw. But you never know who's paying who. German engineering?
The inline 4s are easy to work on but the twin I have is much easier when it comes to valve clearance (shim vs non shim ). Plugs on my twin are easy to get to compared to the 4's. Etc.
 

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I've owned them both (two of each).

I tended to try and do as many mods to the Honda's that I owned, as I could, (American Classic Series) to make it as much like a Harley as I was able, till finally I was slapping myself in the head, for not just buying what I was trying to emulate, and went out and bought one. Now U'm on my SECOND Harley.

Yamaha makes a really durable and playable guitar, and I would highly recommend them to a beginner. They make guitars that look like a Martin.

But there is NOTHING like a real "Martin!!" Both guitars are playable, and you can get some decent sound out of a Yamaha, but it just ain't the real McCoy!
 

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The ride and drive is different on all brands. I ride a BMW R1200RT because it fits me (meaning like a good coat, not personality) and is comfortable. I used to own a Honda and while they are much more reliable than the BMW and more cost effective, it was not as comfortable (seating position). I do not like a ride that has my head tilted back 100% of the time. Having the choice to do so when digging into corners as on my R, is what I prefer. No other bike has provided that riding position. My experience with Harleys was during their ill fated AMF ownership period where just riding the bike five miles would always have something vibrate off of it - like the break peddle or clutch handle. So my opinion of Harleys is not one to be trusted.

I think all brands have their strengths and weaknesses - it all comes down to personal preferences.
 

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Don't have a lot of Honda Time and more Harley Time than Many Riders will ever have .. So no sense in comparing here .. But have been around all makes enough to know Honda makes a Fine Ride, but I prefer American Iron and at my age have no plans of changing .. Will Just add the 1972 CB350 I owned was as close to bulletproof you are going to find, and during this AMF era totally enjoyed having a Ride could just walk out Crank and Go ..
 

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So as a new rider (800miles since Jan) I the Shadow was a perfect choice for me for my first bike. I am really grateful that I don't have a 800-1000lbs bike to learn on. The price point was a lot better (I know you wanted me to skip that part) but that means more plastic which is good for weight but when I see a HD and the higher attention to design detail and know of the increased power and stronger sound. I still look forward to the day when I upgrade to either a HD (like the Slim S) or perhaps a Indian Chief which is so classic it gives me goosebumps. Anyway, I like that my Shadow does have the same styling cues as the more expensive dream bikes (HD Fatboy and such) I have been asked a few times if it's a Hog (obviously by those that don't know much about bikes) and that does make me smile (just being honest) but I tell them it's a shadow. I have gotten lots of complements on the Phantom saying things like "it's the perfect James Dean look" but only in a modern bike, so that's cool.

that's my 2cents...your mileage may vary
What motor size does the shadow come in?
Is yours new?

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Back when I had the money the shadow was my first new bike. I had a older goldwing that was the most comfortable bike. I got t boned on the gold wing. But yea the shadow is a great bike.


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This guy had a shadow and we traded bikes one day.
It was a 6 speed, IIRC,
Because if I remember correctly, it had lights to tell you what gear you were in.
But he said he didn't know it was a 6 speed.
He was pretty high all the time though.

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Discussion Starter #19
This guy had a shadow and we traded bikes one day.
It was a 6 speed, IIRC,
Because if I remember correctly, it had lights to tell you what gear you were in.
But he said he didn't know it was a 6 speed.
He was pretty high all the time though.

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Shadows are great bikes the 750s have good power. If I wanted a cheap new bike I get a shadow 750. Un like most people I have two brands I like Honda and Harley


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Discussion Starter #20
This guy had a shadow and we traded bikes one day.
It was a 6 speed, IIRC,
Because if I remember correctly, it had lights to tell you what gear you were in.
But he said he didn't know it was a 6 speed.
He was pretty h]



Shadows are great bikes the 750s have good power. If I wanted a cheap new bike I get a shadow 750. Un like most people I have two brands I like Honda and Harley


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