Skip to comments.Which Bike?
Posted on 04/17/2011 8:44:32 AM PDT by Grizzled Bear
I've been looking at motorcycles. I need something a bit more fuel efficient than my 1-ton pickup! There are two that I really like. One is an 09 Yamaha V-Star touring bike (not used, been sitting at the dealer) and the other is a Harley Fat Boy. Any recommendations?
First question: Are you a rider, or are you a poser?
Grizzled Bear = Harley Fat Boy
what year is the FLSTF?
i also drive a 1 ton dually Silverado and two years ago I went shopping for a good sized bike with an excellent maintenance record or at least mostly trouble free, affordable and with great fuel mileage.
I bought the Yamaha Star 1300 Tourer, much easier to buy than a traditional name brand, I don’t pose at all, the bike gets 50mpg. I love it. Its a water cooled V-twin, fuel injected, belt drive, great styling, lots of power and just plain looks cool.
GB, I fare better in Florida riding my Harley. Not sure about Texas. JMHO.
Check out the mileage they get (or don’t) you might be surprised.
Which are you more comfortable riding? Let your butt decide.
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I rode motorcycles in my early teens. That was about 30 years ago. I took a motorcycle safety course offered on a military base a few years ago with the intention of buying a bike. Had other things come up. This was a northern tier base.
I retired and moved to a warmer climate with a longer riding season and I'm looking for something primarily for a ten mile commute.
I was ready to buy an 800 cc Suzuki Boulevard; but it was already sold. My wife really wants me to get the Harley, but the Yamaha already has some accessories that I like. I'm looking at another $1000+ if I get the Harley and have them added.
The Yamaha was marked down from (IIRC) 13K to 9.
I really love my Victory Vegas
If you just want a good, dependable bike, go with the rice-grinder.
Hey, I’ve been trying to get in a work out. Besides, I’m not fat, I’m fluffy. Alright, I’ll admit it; I’m fat.
It’s a 2010.
Oh yeah, I get 45-50 mpg combined on my Softail Custom (not stock).
Commute to work: 45 miles round 4 days / week 48 weeks / year. Just under 9,000 miles per year. My 1997 S-10 gets 25 mpg. 360 gallons of gas per year. @ $3 per, that's $1,080 per year for fuel. Add in two additional oil changes per year at $30 each (I do my own maintenance). Tires last about 40k, so add the cost of 1/4 of a set of tires ($100). Total per year for commute costs: $1,240.
My Honda gets 50 mpg. 180 gallons of fuel per year @ $3 per is $540. Add in three oil changes at $50 each ($150). Tires on the Honda last about 10k, so add one set of tires per year @ $300. Total per year for commute costs: $990.
The absolute maximum you can save is $350, about the cost of the insurance you will have to pay on the bike. If you have any maintenance on the bike, it will cost 3-5 times as much as equivalent maintenance on your truck. And it will be required about twice as often.
If you want the bike, go ahead and buy the bike. But you will not save enough money on fuel to make a dent in your finances.
Just my 2¢.
K1600 CC and blow right all of them
They V-Star is Candy Apple Red. It’s a pretty bike. My wife has been looking at Trikes.
I see great deals of last years or even two year old showroom models being sold at really great prices, well below half the cost of the “other” brand.
If you want lots of power I would go with the Raider, if you want something thats new go with the Stryker(same engine as the XVS1300), I chose mine because I wanted a cruiser that was also partially a tourer and not massively overweight.
If I were to buy another bike I would probably do some serious looky see into Victory. They are ahead of the curve in many ways. But for the money Yamaha seems to have the best deal,Honda seems stuck in a rut and the others are out there but they don’t seem to have much attention.
Where I live right now in Alaska the local Craigslist is jammed with LOTS of used Harleys, I have never seen so many for sale before.
If you’re a new rider, avoid the fat boy due to the solid front wheel. It looks cool but every cross breeze catches it and if you aren’t experienced riding, it can be unsettling as you end up fighting the bike to stay in your lane.
I picked up a KLR 650 for near the same reasons you describe. I picked a dual sport because I like to trail ride as well. The KLR is a great bike but it’s not the easiest to ride. You sit high on the bike and if you’re short at all, you may have problems.
It sounds like you are more interested in a street bike than anything so I’d probably recommend either a Harley 1200 sportster or a soft tail.
Best of luck!
I’m pretty sure I’m getting a bike, so please add me to your ping list!
I'd recommend something like this. Seriesly.
2011 Honda Silver Wing with ABS.
Something tells me this is about to get uglier than a “Maryanne vs Ginger” thread!
Mine is the 2009 in Galaxy Blue, I installed the Star engine bars, a chrome radiator grill, HID headlight, LED tailights, a specially made tricked out ball milled Rox Riser and replaced the cables and lines with plastic coated braided stainless ones.I did some mods to the fuel system as well.
I went from not rising for 30 years to a 1980 Honda CX 500, rode it for two months and then immediately went to the Star 1300.
I also look at commuting the same distance, but with my gas at $4.15 right now my Silverado with its 496 cubic inche gasser engine it just bleads my wallet dry and I have to do a tradeoff of other weekly items just to keep it on the road.
And buying another vehicle is absolutely out of the question, I want to be debt free, not in over my head on some worthless hybrid.
Riding a bike is way more expensive than driving a car or truck. But if you need to sell that idea to a certain higher authority I understand............
My truck gets about 12 - 16 on a gallon of diesel. We’ve just gone up to about $4 to the gallon. Even if I’m only getting 40 to the gallon of gasoline (cheaper than diesel) I think I’m doing a bit better.
I had a pre-08 Connie. Wonderful machine.
Those are nice; but my back can’t deal with a crotch rocket.
I have never seen any bike animosity here at FR, unless its disgruntled poser-trolls from DU.
I do suggest whatever you get is whats comfortable to you, otherwise I would say look for fuel injection first, shaft or belt, I have both, each has its attributes.
Windshields I cannot live without in my older years, and I am partial to a water cooled engine.
My R100 is like a dream. A little pricey to maintain, but sure is sweet. I’m currently looking for some hard case bags and brackets but have not been able to find any of that vintage. Any suggestions?
Are you gonna wear a helmet?
I hear you on the back thing, a good sized cruiser is what you need. Not a full dressed touring bike unless you have that in mind, I never ride two up or havn’t yet but the 1300 can do it effortlessly, another hot selling Star bike is the 950, and then there are the older 1100 models.
I wouldn’t own either one!!
or a RUB
A BMW sure ain’t a crotch rocket. They are the best touring bike in the world IMHO. My R100 weighs in at 750 pounds. It’s more like a truck.
I thought about a scooter and if I lived in the town, I’d get one. Unfortunately, part of my commute is through a very rural area and over some dirt roads. I think that would tear up a scooter.
When I get near the town, there’s a lot of traffic, including semis. I want to be sure I’m fast and maneuverable.
Once inside the city, a scooter would be perfect.
I’ve got a 1995 Triumph Thunderbird...inline, water cooled 3 cylinder 900...LOVE IT.
I live in Alaska, it doesn’t have any helmet laws.
Alaska also has some outstanding medical services for head injuries as well.
But seriously I ride without a helmet most of the time unless its bad weather, I do have a massive windshield on my bike but I have been peppered by debris. This year I will probably wear mine more often, its a Hawk modular, not expensive, has an internal flip up like an aviators tinted shield inside.
I meant good natured animosity. Like the Ginger and Maryanne debate. Of course, some smart aleck always throws in “Mrs Howell.”
After looking at the bug strikes on my pickup, I will definitely get a windshield!
Or some real smart alack throws in Gilligan
Sounds like a good price for the Harley and it will certainly hold its resale value way better than the Yamaha. The Yamaha is quieter, smoother, and better for long distance travel, but may only be worth about half of what you paid for it in a few years.
I live about a mile down a gravel road in a rural subdivision, and I am immediately on a two lane major north-south road full of tourists and truckers in heavy high speed traffic, the 1300 will run circles around them. And even on near freezing mornings it starts right up as its fuel injected, no choke at all.
It does pretty darn good on gravel after I went to a radial Metzeler tire and there is an amazing new trend of installing a certain car tire on the rear that really makes it handle the gravel and the rain much better and is cheaper to boot.
I havn’t gone that route yet though. I might in the future.
The seats are adjustable and there is three manufactures of custom seats. If you have never tried a BMW, you will find they have more comfort than you think. They are also smoother on the road. A Harley will shake your back unless it is a VROD.
My brothers helmet saved his life last year. He had a 2006 VTX1300 with 40,000 he put on it. Never know when you’re gonna kick the back out and dump it, or come up on a MOOSE, or a hundred other things that will kill you. He told me he had close calls every time he rode.