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Discussion Starter #1
Although I am not in the buying mode right at the minute, I find that I am thinking about a few bikes as possible replacements next spring for my still new current ride. Thinking I would get a good idea about some of the bikes I am thinking about by reading model specific forums for each bike, and seeing what owners say about it, I started a several hour review of several bikes. What struck me right away was that while every forum had riders who praise their bike of choice, as would be expected, some were noticeably less exuberant than others. One bike had forum entries that over and over said that their bike was a good ride, or did things quite well, but I never saw the word "love" or gushing comments about how glad they were to have bought this bike. One of the other bikes that I am thinking about was pretty much on the opposite end of the spectrum. Over and over I read comments like "I really love this bike", or, "I am so glad I have a long commute because I get to ride my bike so many miles every day".

I still plan to wait until Spring to decide if I really want to spend the big bucks and trade in a bike I have only had for a bit over a year (and take a big loss on this bike for sure) and will try to get demo rides on all the bikes I am thinking about. But I have to admit that just reading some of the forum threads have already caused a shift in my thinking about which of these bikes is now at the top of my "wish" list.
 

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I find it's usually 50/50 at best on any bike. The thing I always liked about Honda and Harley is the fact that should something go wrong, there's another dealer within a 100 miles generally to fix it when you are on the road.

None of the other brands can match the number of dealerships available as those two. That alone ranks very high on my list. Next is just how often something fails in the first place. That one can be hard to get a good reading on but I hear over and over about the lack of even needing repair with Victory's. So much so I find it hard to believe but you are free to check those forums.

I do find there are just a lot of whiners to begin with though. So anything you read has to be questionable.
 

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I belong to almost every bike forum out there, from Harley, Suzuki, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Honda, BMW, Ducati, Aprilia, Buell, Triumph, Moto Guzzi, Trike forums, Dirt bike forums, Adventure forums--yada-yada-yada:biggrin:

I am the ultimate researcher and will do so until I make up my mind on what bike to buy:)

I always at least sit on a potential bike because comfort is a high priority with me at this age. A short test ride will solidify my thoughts and if the deal is good, I buy.

I remember in Psychology studying something called "Pride of ownership" (And EGO) that make many people try to convince others how wonderful their bike, car, truck, whatever is, even if it isn't true so that their poor decision isn't known to all.:biggrin:

Sam:coffeescreen:
 

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Love it.

I really love my SV1000S and so do other owners. There are not many about, as the model before it had handling problems, and some crappy components.
It cost Suzuki a bunch of sales and they dropped the model.
Even though I love this bike there are a few things I think could improve it. But I say that about every bike.

So what bikes did you find others are all gooey about.

Unkle Crusty*
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The Honda F6b. I was surprised at the level of enthusiasm for this bike, even from obviously happy folks who take the effort to join a forum based on that model. I've demo ridden Goldwings, and for me they always felt just too big and heavy, but based on what I have read I am intrigued and hope to get a chance to actually ride the F6b sometime soon. But even though it is lighter than the standard Goldwing, it is certainly a heavy bike. I'm not sure at my stage of life that I should be even thinking about a heavier bike (especially because this "Goldwing" does not offer a reverse gear).
 

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I'm an owner and a huge fan of the Kawasaki Concours and have spent time on that forum. Of course you've got the cheerleader owners who think EVERYONE would be happier if they owned a Concours, want to ride with other Connie owners and go to annual get-togethers etc.

You also get VERY USEFUL model-specific information on such websites.

For instance the transponder/key fob system on the Connie (KiPASS) is a badly designed and expensive system. You must have the fob AND a key to start the bike. There's NO logical place to keep your spare fob. There are TWO kinds of fobs, active and passive. And most dealers are clueless about the entire system, re-programming, etc. FORTUNATELY a lengthy treatise is available on the Connie site.

Another example: Wiring up heated gloves or a USB port, I learned from the Concours forum that Kawasaki left a spare set of 12awg power/ground wires up near the dash, ready to be used for accessories. This saved me having to remove all the tupperware and run my own wires, all I had to do was hook up and add a fuse to the ACC position in the fuseblock.

That kind of information is simply invaluable. And you can also ask owners advice about maintenance, their impression of various dealers, etc.

If everybody's griping (or chiming in) about the same things (like KiPASS) you can be sure you're going to have to deal with it.

Some things simply can't be ascertained from a website. For instance the Connie simply isn't suitable for a rider under 5'10. Put all those folks in the same room, however, and you might notice the lack of shorties. Or try and get on one.

Warren gave me excellent advice EARLY in my riding career, which was to "Ride every bike you get a chance to." I was terrified of riding OPBs, that I wasn't a good enough rider, might drop their bike, etc. He'd boldly ask everyone he met "Can I ride it?" and a surprising number said "Yes," even the owners of $25,000 custom choppers.

I would have never realized the Connie was the RIGHT bike for me (largely due to the high revving motor) had I not ridden it and at least a dozen other bikes, including several models of Goldwings. (I'll never know if BMW would have been a better choice for me as I never got a chance to ride one -- they were also somewhat out of reach financially)

So yes, forums good, actually riding a bike you're thinking about buying... much better.
 

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The only time I've EVER heard anything negative about Goldwings is from people who DON'T own one. Everyone I've ever come across that owned one or had actually ridden one has only had great things to say about them.

I love my Harley Fat Bob but I'm not a "Honda hater" (I have a Yamaha R3 also.) Some people get too narrow minded and opinionated about motorcycles. There's a lot of great ones out there for different purposes. Variety is the spice of life.



The Honda F6b. I was surprised at the level of enthusiasm for this bike, even from obviously happy folks who take the effort to join a forum based on that model. I've demo ridden Goldwings, and for me they always felt just too big and heavy, but based on what I have read I am intrigued and hope to get a chance to actually ride the F6b sometime soon. But even though it is lighter than the standard Goldwing, it is certainly a heavy bike. I'm not sure at my stage of life that I should be even thinking about a heavier bike (especially because this "Goldwing" does not offer a reverse gear).
 

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Charlie Tango Xray
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It seems the new style Hondas aren't well received by the old school masses, but the people that own them cant say enough about how they love them. I belong to a model specific forum for my bike, and while I do think my bike is pretty darned awesome, it can turn into a gag inducing love fest on the forum. They'll jump on anyone who brings up another brand bike. I've called out one of the mods several times for steering conversations, and calling people trolls for saying anything negative about our bikes. He has aggressively called me out for suggesting someone test ride another brand bike before they buy one like ours. It seems to hurt their feelings that our bikes will never become more than a lovable nitch model at best. Myself, I LOVE having the only bike like mine wherever I go.:tongue:
If your looking for non-biased opinions about a bike, IMO a model specific forum is not the best place to look.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Of course I would never buy a new bike without riding it first. As much as one can learn about a bike by reading about it, or sitting on it in the showroom, obviously you really won't know if you like riding a bike without riding it. And I fully agree that most model specific forums will be dominated by those who think that their specific bike is the be-all, end-all of motorcycling. Some folks just need to feel that whatever they spent their hard earned money on has to be the best of the best.

But I started this thread because there clearly seems to be different emotional responses to certain bikes, and not necessarily the ones you might think would generate those responses. And maybe the comments have a lot to do with expectations. Although BMW makes some great motorcycles, their forums seem somewhat dominated by people talking about what is wrong with the bike, maybe because they expected a BMW to be perfect. I ride a Triumph Thunderbird, which I really enjoy, and Triumph forums have their fair share of riders who are of the type "if you don't ride a Triumph you're worthless" but most comments are positive. So while gushing admirers certainly won't get me to run out and buy a bike based on an internet forum, the level of positive enthusiasm toward a specific bike certainly did raise my interest in a bike that I knew little about.
 

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An example of the silly Psychology, Ego and Bias of Motorcycle owners is apparent on every Forum.:wink:

When my practically brand new Suzuki C109 Cruiser was ran over by a big rig, in the parking lot of the shopping center, right in front of my Business, I had to wait a good month to get a check from the trucking companies insurance carrier but I went shopping again for another new bike:biggrin::biggrin:

I hadn't had a new Goldwing since 1997. I did have a 99% Goldwing in a new 2000 Honda Valkyrie Interstate I owned so I found myself once again the proud and happy owner of a new 2012 Goldwing:p

That is until I joined a couple of Goldwing forums. I found out that even within the ranks of the Wing crowds there were LOTS of Folks who absolutely hated the new '12' Wing because Honda had changed the shape just a little on the top case and the hard bags!!!!!! OMG, you'd have thought that the world was coming to an end:frown: The '12' Wing had other improvements but those just went over the Zealots heads:confused:

Actually, the F6B and the new Valkyrie are both absolutely fantastic in their design: Take a lot of the touring stuff off of arguably the best bike in the world, make it lighter, cheaper and the masses will respond and they have in a very positive manner.

My new Rocket will do me for a while:biggrin:

Sam:coffeescreen:
 

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........ I was surprised at the level of enthusiasm for this bike, even from obviously happy folks who take the effort to join a forum based on that model. I've demo ridden Goldwings, and for me they always felt just too big and heavy, but based on what I have read I am intrigued and hope to get a chance to actually ride the F6b sometime soon. .......
This is my concern with a Vision. Just sitting on it, it felt huge. But I do have to give it a road test and not just pass by it based on showroom sit time. Test ride is the only way to know unfortunately.
 

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Actually, the F6B and the new Valkyrie are both absolutely fantastic in their design: Take a lot of the touring stuff off of arguably the best bike in the world, make it lighter, cheaper and the masses will respond and they have in a very positive manner.
The F6B has seen a major price reduction due to poor sales numbers.
 

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I am not going to agree with the crowd. I hate Goldwings. Clear enough?

I am not going to say there is anything wrong with them because I just don't know from personal experience. OK, so why would I hate them? Well here it is. I have test driven them enough to know that they are too tall for me, the foot position is too restrictive for me and a decent heel shifter is simply not to be had. Any one of these objections would keep me away from them so when you add it up I have zero interest in ever owning one.

On the other hand, every Honda product I have ever owned, including my Civic, is almost fault free and very reliable. I really wanted to like the 'wing because it fit well with my experiences with that company. If they made one with floorboards to challenge my Vision and a heel shifter I might well own one.
 

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This is my concern with a Vision. Just sitting on it, it felt huge. But I do have to give it a road test and not just pass by it based on showroom sit time. Test ride is the only way to know unfortunately.
Be careful cowboy. If you ride one you will own one is not just a slogan. It is reality. Don't ride a Vision unless you have your checkbook with you.
 

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I'll comment to both of your post with one. I don't care for the Goldwing sold today either. But that engine is solid. The Valkyrie of old was a great platform for a solid touring machine with just a few add ons. And on the platform I have seen heel shifters. But you might still be right that it isn't worth much. I don't know for sure there because I could never found a bike to buy that I felt was priced right. Everyone seems to be very proud of them when pricing them.

Now with the Vision, I can be very hard to satisfy. And no darn machine can ever do that. So if you are up for a bet we can both find out. I honestly don't see how that huge feel is going to go away with a test ride but I'm going to find out. I've got two other brands to check out on top of that so there is no way I'll be riding and buying. Plus it's not a color I like. So I'm looking at another +/- $2k in paint. Not going to be an easy sell.
 

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Go ride it. In less than a mile it shrinks down to feel very good and you will be tossing it around like a sport bike.
 

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The Honda F6b. I was surprised at the level of enthusiasm for this bike, even from obviously happy folks who take the effort to join a forum based on that model. I've demo ridden Goldwings, and for me they always felt just too big and heavy, but based on what I have read I am intrigued and hope to get a chance to actually ride the F6b sometime soon. But even though it is lighter than the standard Goldwing, it is certainly a heavy bike. I'm not sure at my stage of life that I should be even thinking about a heavier bike (especially because this "Goldwing" does not offer a reverse gear).
A F6B parked next to my Vision at Bikefest this past weekend. DANG good looking bike in person. I should have snapped a pic
 

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This is my concern with a Vision. Just sitting on it, it felt huge. But I do have to give it a road test and not just pass by it based on showroom sit time. Test ride is the only way to know unfortunately.
I went from a 750 Shadow to a Vision. When I told my wife the day we went looking that I chose the Vision, she thought I was crazy, and promptly named the bike "the beast". After she rode with me she loves the bike, and after riding it for 3 months it does not feel nearly as big to me.

So if the GW feels big, I saw give it a try if you like it. Try a Vision, too. Maneuver them around in parking lots at slow speed.
 

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Things to look for when "listening" to others about bikes........

on this forum

I have seen a person that has bought a second M-50, and one that has bought a second V-Star 1300

and

one that after no longer having an M-50 still talks favorably about it.......this may have been the same person that bought the second M-50

Many people talk about how great their bike is........until they get rid of it.

My buying 2 Kawasaki 900 Customs doesn't count, I bought one for me and my son after riding C-50, 900 Classic, Stryker, 883, and my brothers 1200, wanted a 900 Custom so I got him one.

Based on what others say on this forum, if I wanted to sport cruiser I would first take a look at the M-50, if I wanted to go with a bike more capable of the long haul, especially if I liked the look of the F6B, I would take a look at the V-star 1300 tourer.

And if I was wanting a heavy cruiser, and going by what others say, a Victory is something I'd look at........there is one person on this board that puts a bunch of miles on a bike riding all over the place and that is on a Victory.

Heavy..........hmmm

One day I went to the Kawasaki store and there was a 2000 Classic, I sat on it and started to lift it off the kickstand, damn that thing was heavy..........last Thursday I went to the Kawasaki store and the dealer(a little guy, maybe 5'6" 135lbs) was riding it from the back to the front door on tile floor, gets outside and he's whippin that thing around like it was nothing.
 

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When you handle these 'big heavy bikes' all the time you get used to where their balance point is and it's nothing to handle them like they are only 650 or 750 size machines. It just takes some time to understand what the machine needs, not what you want to do with it necessarily. There's tricks to handling them.
 
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