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· Registered
6,347 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Alright this was moving along nicely a while back so I thought I'd bring it back again.

I know that everybody has thier opinions on other bikes, but the impression you get from your own bike can be more valuable to a potential buyer. I figure this would be a good place to share your pros and cons of YOUR bike. So share away. Of course bikes you've owned are up for review too. Remember not everybody likes the same bike, so if somebody doesn't like a particular thing about her/his bike, don't get all pissy and out of shape about it.

2002 919

*Comfy ergonomics
*A real life Handle Bar
*Decent seat for long rides
*Underseat exhaust. How is that, and on a Honda.
*No plastic to remove when it's time for service.
*Looks to have a strong aftermarket emerging

*Cheap, budget suspension
*Not as much power as some of it's competition
*No Clock (COME ON, it's got a digital OD and TRIP, why no clock?)
*Underseat exhaust. How is that, and on a Honda. BUT, the wash back from them tends to make you stinky even on short rides.
*Zero underseat storage. Registration and Insurance card barely fit.

· Registered
456 Posts

- great price
- very good real world power
- light and flickable
- little or no plastic to mess with
- easy on insurance
- HUGE fun factor
- great aftermarket support
- V-Twin (gotta love the sound)

- could use a few more horses
- seat a little harsh for long rides
- No clock
- No EFI on pre 03' (drawback for some people)
- on SV no wind protection

· Registered
463 Posts
'01 Ducati Monster 600


- Light
- Looks great
- Sounds great
- Easy to control
- Huge aftermarket
- Very comfortable after getting a new seat
- Carbs, I like 'em


- Needs a little more power
- Likes to fall over sitting still
- Kickstand must be up to start engine
- Too many people ask me what it is and who makes it
- Stock mirror setup sucks

· Registered
41 Posts
2001 Suzuki GS500

Low price.
Insurance is nearly free compared to other bikes.
50+ MPG
Great beginner's bike or commuter.
Cheap to work on and accessorize.
People think it's faster than it really is.

People think it's faster than it really is.
Really soft front suspension.
Not so good stock tires.
Hard to find aftermarket stuff.

· Registered
3,549 Posts
2001 Suzuki TL 1000 S:

Some people claim that TL's (both the S and the R) are "heavy pigs." I'm here to call BS. :) At a stock weight of 420 dry, it may not be a 600 supersport, but it's by no means a heavy weight. After market slipons drop a great deal of weight and an aftermarket TI header set drop a tremendous amount more. The superhawk (it's nearest Honda equivalent, has a dry weight of 426. The RC51 has a dry weight of 430 lbs. The VFR800 a dry weight of 472... The dry weight of the F4i is 370lbs. After an aftermarket exhaust and a few other weight savers (No c/f body work or anything exotic) I'm at 388 dry. :D Yes, there are lighter bikes out there, but there are plenty of bikes out there that are heavier... Need I go on?

Once the geometry and suspension (even stock) are tuned in, it hangs with just about any other bike out there in the twisties (although the suspension is admittedly insufficient for track competition).

  • Gobs of usable power. (Vtwin power curve)
  • Vtwin women pleasing power :redflip
  • Cult Status - You'll be hard pressed to find a more helpful group of fellow riders.
  • Comfortable enough to tour on.
  • Aggressive enough to carve canyons on.
  • Not classified as an "R" bike so insurance is reasonable for a liter bike.
  • Incredible engine sound w/aftermarket exhaust.
  • Like many Suzuki's it shares a large number of parts w/other Suzuki models so finding OEM replacement bits is easy.
  • Reasonable aftermarket support
  • Easy to tweak for power.
  • Handles well enough with a properly tuned suspension
  • Proven motor and powertrain. The TL powerplant is used in 6 different bikes I believe. (TLS, TLR, DL1000, SVS1000, and a couple of foreign bikes I can't recall)
  • Naked bikes are easy to do maintenance on.
  • Eats rear tires for lunch.
  • Rear suspension is insufficient for track use (but "OK" for street use)
  • Somewhat fuel inefficient (for a motorcycle)
  • Stock steering damper needs upgrade (either rebuild or replace)
  • Really built around a taller rider group (at least 5'10" to flatfoot typically)
  • Stock tires need to be replaced and rear tire size needs to be dropped to 180.
  • Like all FI Suzuki's it has a timing retard as a safety / emissions "feature."
  • PowerCommander only supports the TLS w/an outdated PCII. (As opposed to a nice PCIIr)
  • If you're looking for a topseed machine, this ain't it.
  • TLS was "neutered" in 1998 when the TLR came out (lost ~10 rwHP and 6-8 ft-lbs of torque). Call it a "taming of the beast" that was the 1997 model or say that Suzuki wanted the TLR to have better numbers. Either way, it takes a little work to bring a 98+ TLS up to par w/a 1997.

· Registered
7,590 Posts
2001 Speed Triple

*Comfortable ergonomics for the most part
*Real handle-bar
*Aggressive naked styling (UNIQUE looks and easy to service)
*License-endangering low-end torque (non-stop wheelies)
*razor sharp handling (flick, flick, & flick some more)
*steel braided brake lines (out-of-the-box endos!)
*GREAT horn (on mine anyways :redflip )

*Numerous annoying little problems
*Mirrors show nothing but elbow
*Gets a little nervous at high speeds
*No wind protection (I won't install the flyscreen!)

· Rule #34
14,714 Posts
Bandit 1200 S and non faired (97-00)

Torque! Wheelies worse at low speeds than even the R1.
Comfortable leg room, comfortable reach to bars
Smooth seemless power.
Ease of maintenance
Sportbike spec wheels accomodate popular tire sizes.
Aftermarket! You could biuld this bike 3 times over with all the parts available.
GSXR1100 Forks(1986) fit, GSXR750/1100 shock(older gsxr)
Power can be upped 15-20hp with a slip on and rejet.
Engine is a bit rackity (Oil cooled)
Seat pushes your nuggets into the tank.
Stock suspension is weak
Cheap chrome plated plastic
stainless headpipes tarnish easily

· Directionally Challenged
1,473 Posts
My Baby

2000 Buell M2 Cyclone

PM Wheels
Chin Fairing
Touring Bars
Forcewinder Intake w/breather apparatus
D&D Slip On Pipe
Race Ignition Module
Banke Shift Lever and Rear Brake Lever
Banke Peg Risers
CRG Bar End Mirrors

Gobs of Torque
Super stopping power
Tight handling characteristics
Ability to tour, even two up
Ease of maintenance
Potato-Potato sound (if you're into it)
It can mix paint at idle :D

It's a Buell (reliability issues et al., though I've had no problems)
Lower pegs limit cornering clearance (though I rarely put them down)
Not the highest power (78rwhp and 78 rwftlbs. with above mods)
No under seat storage
No helmet lock
Having to explain what it is anytime you stop for gas

I really love this bike, and I have it to the point now where it's just about perfect. I will probably eventually do some head work, but I love the way it is now. It's far from perfect, but so am I. Feel free to PM me with any questions re: Buell. I would be happy to answer.


· Registered
6,967 Posts
Hawk GT

V-twin power (torquey)
Twin-spar aluminum frame (trick stuff for '88)
Single Sided Swing Arm (just plain trick!)

Light (or at least it feels light)
Great for shorter riders
Comfortable (below 80) tallish bars are great around town, and for longer rides
You don't get much more Cult Bike than a Hawk
_The Best_ support community out there anything you need you can find on the
Easy to ride
A million aftermarket parts for it. Two brothers raced them extensivly, and created a
huge aftermarket parts bin for them
Infinatly upgradeable - RC51 front end? 90hp motor? all Carbon Fiber body work? It's
all been done You never have to grow out of this bike
If you own one, you will fall in love with it

stock suspension is way to soft for anyone over 110lbs
horrible range ~100mi/tank
kinda pricy for a 10 year old bike (but worth every penny)

My Hawk:
Fox Shock, f4i front end (tripples, forks, wheels, brakes), supertrapp exaust, home-brew rejet, !airbox lid, sargent seat, CF tail, famesliders, buell bikini faring, passing gear

· Moderator,
8,091 Posts
I echo Hawkers comments but must add that his bike has the high drag paint and though it gets better gas milage , actually has a lower top end than the 89-91 Hawks . :redflip

Hawks rock . My Hawks aren't mere motorcycles , they are family members . Stock , they are wheezy , have an annoying 100 mile seat and tank range and have sucky suspension but spending time and $ on your Hawk is just part of the experience . Motorcyclist compared the 954's handling to the Hawk's last year ; John Burns also commented that the Firebolt was in the same league as the Hawk for a backroad carver on MO : pretty high praise for a 14 yo bike regardless of size !
The best thing about the Hawk is how it truly can be all things to all people : some have heinous fairings , oversized tanks and GPS units installed for touring , some are ratted streetfighters , some are just honest commuters , and quite a few are still capable of giving anything out there a run for its $$$ when the roads really tighten up . Having a Hawk also get you memebership into the best moto-frat. out there - the Hawklist .

Mine makes ~ 25 hp more than stock ( why yes , that _is_ a slowly burning fuse you hear ! :laughing ) and weighs in at 320lbs with about a cup of fuel in the tank . Um , I don't want to mention that it woulda been cheaper to have saved pennies over the years and bought a 748 but where'd the fun in that be ?

· Forum Leader,
17,536 Posts
Hawker said:
My Hawk:
Fox Shock, f4i front end (tripples, forks, wheels, brakes), supertrapp exaust, home-brew rejet, !airbox lid, sargent seat, CF tail, famesliders, buell bikini faring, passing gear
passing gear :twofinger

I echo what Hawker and Joel said...

Umm I rode about 450 miles this past weekend on mine and MY GOD i can't wait for the Fox shock to arrive :eek: The seat sucks after about an hour, but when the road was tight i was having a blast :D

My hawk:
F2 front end (forks, brakes, wheel etc) w/stainless lines and LE redone forks, supertrapp uberloud exhaust, green foam in place of tail section tabs, unipods, might have wiseco pistons--not sure cause the sticker was there and I havent checked, all black paint, and a passing gear.

· Registered
1,430 Posts
the zrx's

I have owned both the 1100 and 1200...
now I have a mix.....

The zrx is a greet bike,I am to fat and old to be dangling over a tank all day...I perfer the upright ergos of this bike{much like the bandit} . These two bikes are very simular, but I feal the zrx has a just slightl better sping and suspention package....
I like the 12oos motor,but the shorter wheelbase and slightly higher swingarm pivoit on the 11oo makes it feel abit more racey..

Did I mention big wheelies. want to loft one a zrx or bandit, or hell why not a sv650.(the sv is to cool,but thats another story).......

good price.value for the buc.
good power. not busa power but???
good brakes
comfy ergos...your wrist and back will love you...
What a trunk. You could hide jimmy hoffa in there...
easy to work plastic
lots of hop up parts....not as many as the bandit
cheap insurance , as my agant said{it's not a ninga bike?}
doesn't make girls ass look fat ,,,unless they are..
Handles well for a heavy bike...Maybe its just them gummy h2's
neat gpz style...

old gpz style
a bit heavy
long 150mph plus runs will rip your neck off....plastic is for sissys
friends don't want to give it back when you switch bikes...
will not out sell the new z1000 and maybe dropped from the line?
Would like to see the 1100 frame and swing arm back..

· hope the sheep are happy before the shearing
2,727 Posts
I really enjoy my bandit 1200S 2nd generation. it is so comfortable to ride. the big bore torque and smooth engine has everything i want . i am an older rider and 150MPH was easy and without effort. I do not need anything more.

re camed engine this year for even more torque / 10 more ponies
good under seat storage.
have now pegged the Speedo at 170 indicated. [ not true speed ]
37 -42 MPG not bad
great head lights. projection type
great 6 piston brakes same as busa
handles very well.
little plastic
center stand - for easy chain service and soft dirt
great seat front and back
really fast bike

have to earn the respect with the sport bikes. which it does
478 lbs dry.
puny horn , replaced with AIR HORNS
air / oil cooled. never been a problem , had them all my life
has a larger oil cooler on the Gen 2 bandits

· Registered
6 Posts
Triumph Trident 900

I ride a 1996 Triumph Trident 900 with the following mods (so far):
DynoJet Stage 1 Jet Kit; K&N Filter; Triumph/Nissin 4-pot brakes [from a 95 Daytona 1200]; Galfer Green pads, SS lines & 310mm rotors; RaceTech .95 springs & Gold Valve Cartridge Emulators; new Dunlop D220's; Front fairing from a 96 Sprint; Corbin Dual Canyon sport; LoobMan chain oiler.

  • Good lookin'
  • Rock solid steady up to 120 (maybe more...)
  • Tons of torque
  • Great riding position (I'm 6')
  • It's unique around here (except for the one other Trident owned by a now-friend; his is black/rd, mine is the "good" color- green/cream):cool
  • Sounds cool - cross between a v-twin and I-4
  • good for "light" sport riding- not a track bike... yet.
  • Reliable
  • Lots of cross-over parts: Suzuki carbs and brakes and probably other stuff. I heard that wheels also used by Honda.
  • 6.6 gallon tank
  • Lots of nice comments and talkin' to strangers
  • Heavy
  • sluggish without mods (see above)
  • OEM parts are EXPENSIVE and hard to come by.
  • Not making parts for Trident any more- everyone is moving on to the 955i powered bikes
  • Almost impossible to find aftemarket stuff. Thank G_d for eBay. Still looking for a 3-1 exhaust.
  • did I say Heavy yet?
  • need all metric tools

All-in-all a good bike. Pretty damn good with the mods. I'd recommend it to anyone.

· Directionally Challenged
1,473 Posts
I always like the Trident when it came out. It just looked right to me. too bad it's down on the performance stuff, but it osunds like you can have some fun modifying it. I'd love to see some shots of it, and you're right the cream and green was the best color combo.

· Registered
7 Posts
Pros and Cons of the '03 Firebolt

2003 Buell Firebolt XB9R

*Lightweight (about 445 lb. wet).
*Naked, minimalistic styling.
*Incredible handling (52 in wheelbase, 21 deg. rake, 3.3 in. trail).
*Monster braking power.
*Comfortable riding position for my size (I'm 5' 6.5" and 170lb).
*Oil filter (spin-on) easy to reach and remove.
*Air cooled with cooling fan assist.
*Electronic fuel injection (DDFI) and Ram Air intake.
*Dual Projector headlamps.
*Belt Drive.
*Very unique and cool exhaust sound.
*V-Twin with enough power for my needs and wants.
*Easy suspension adjustment front and rear.
*Nice instrument cluster includes a clock and low fuel light.
*Effective windscreen.
*Low fuel trip meter comes on automatically when you
get down to 0.7 gal. and counts miles travelled.
*Very good fit and finish.
*Low maintenance mechanically.
*Low maintenance Surlyn molded-in-color bodywork.

*Overpriced relative to similar, popular sportbikes.
*Poor fit of the rear cowling covering the pillion.
*Noisy 2-speed cooling fan.
*The horn is not loud enough.
*Aftermarket is essentially non-existent (but evolving).
*No lockable helmet hook.
*Mirrors too bulky and short.
*H-D/Buell dealers and mechanics SUCK!
*Harley-Davidson connection comes with a lot of
undesirable baggage I have to deal with constantly
as a Buell owner.

· Registered
502 Posts
Re: Pros and Cons of the '03 Firebolt

XB9er said:
*Harley-Davidson connection comes with a lot of
undesirable baggage I have to deal with constantly
as a Buell owner.

... And dealers don't feel any need to stock any parts either. I feel like I'm at an Acura dealer who resents also having to sell lower margin Hondas.

· Registered
440 Posts
Random said:
'01 Ducati Monster 600


- Light
- Looks great
- Sounds great
- Easy to control
- Huge aftermarket
- Very comfortable after getting a new seat
- Carbs, I like 'em


- Needs a little more power
- Likes to fall over sitting still
- Kickstand must be up to start engine
- Too many people ask me what it is and who makes it
- Stock mirror setup sucks

I agree with the power, it needs more. I have a 99 so I dont have the kickstand prob. But my kickstand has a spring so as soon as you take a little tension off of it, it springs up. I dropped once when I first got it. Other than that, great bike.

· Registered
68 Posts
I'm riding a 2002 Buell M2L. I bought the vulcano gray on orange frame with PM wheels. I love it. The wife hates it. It must be good.
I've done the normal mods. Pipe, jetting, drill and tweek carb, rocker gaskets. Aux LED brake lights.

Cool bike, what is it? All the time.
1st, 2nd, gear wheelies just above idle.
Sounds great with a Supertrapp ID pipe.
Handles well once you tweek the suspension.
46 mpg if you keep it under 70.
Sqiuds stare in disbelief when you smoke them light to light.
Good seat, ridiing possition easy on the back.
Vintage motor is easy to work on.
OEM parts are cheap.
Insurance is cheap.
Good all around bike.

Cool bike, what is it all the time.
Eats rear tires.
Aftermarket parts are not cheap.
Cold blooded even after rejetting.
No helmet lock.
PM wheel are SOBs to clean.
Squids smoke you after 100 mph
Rev limmiter.
My spelling still sucks even with a new bike.
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