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Thread: Eschewing Newer Motorcycles

  1. #46
    Back in the Saddle mcmxcivrs's Avatar
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    I appreciate older motorcycles and cars, but would much rather ride/drive newer ones for the majority of my travels. I have an old car and an older motorcycle. both are fun to take out for an afternoon on a nice day. Both need a lot more attention and care than my newer options. Neither older machine is as worry free to take for a long road trip nor as comfortable or convenient. I like the modern features and options when travelling for long rides. While they are far from necessary, they do surely enhance the ride for me.

    As for being able to work on modern machines, well that is a not as much a difference in the machine but in the difference of one's abilities. For some people, even doing what is considered a simple job on an older motorcycle is an intimidating and exasperating chore better left to the care of others in exchange for some form of payment. Some owners are able to do advanced mechanical repairs while a simple electronic issue will completely confound them and vice versa. Then there is the frequency of needing to do any of it being generally much less with newer machines despite the exceptions that plague the internet discussions.

    Old or new, simple or complex, just ride what you like and stop fretting about what others choose.
    Ed Miller, Calgary, AB
    2008 K1200GT, 2019 F850GSA

  2. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stebe View Post
    I love my '16 RT, but I have to admit I wish I'd never sold my '87 HD FXR Super Glide. Basically, I don't do anything to my RT. Electronic tech is beyond me. I've fixed a flat, added a couple of farkles like bar backs and lowered floorboards, but that's about it. On the HD I tackled most maintenance and upgrades in my garage. Rebuilt starter and front forks, brake calipers, added adjustable pushrods, stuff like that. Pretty much took it apart every winter. I sort of miss that simplicity. At age 67 I must admit that I've been considering a test ride on one of those Royal Enfield 650's.

    Also, I carry maps. People are always saying "Google it", but you can't open up a 30 inch wide google map and get the big picture. That's part of the fun. Or, it is for me.

    Still, the RT is freaking awesome, so, there's that.
    Try the Enfield. More fun than horsepower, but easy ride with only ABS and injection tech wise. Also there are relatively cheap products available for seat, pegs and any other mods you might desire. I bought the INT 650 as a last bike at age 75. However bought an F750 afterwards, though Iím sure the 650 will be the last to go. It is too nostalgic and simple not to keep till at least 80 (I hope).
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    Ď22 F750GS '22 RE 650 INT
    MOA #46783

  3. #48
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    I love the Enfields but the frame must be made of lead.
    I just can't figure out how a bike that is half the size and half the HP of my BMW is the same weight.

  4. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by snotty54 View Post

    .....I'm looking at a CB1100 to replace the Virago. Smooth-smooth 4 cylinder power, fuel injected, abs, hydraulic clutch pull, modern brakes, etc. Similar style to some extent, and the bike is newer (2014). But what I really like is how the thing looks. We don't talk about it much, but standing there viewing the bike as we don our helmets getting ready for a ride, is part of it. It's also a lot of fun selling one and buying another, a bit of adventure, some farkling, and enjoyment.
    I think you'll like the CB1100 should you get one, I know I do. It's not an older motorcycle but it feels a lot like a 1970-80's Honda UJM, only with better brakes and FI.



    My oldest bike is one of the later Airheads but I also find myself attracted to more retro looking and feeling motorcycles such as Moto Guzzi's which I have 2 of. They remise me a lot of Airheads.
    21 V85TT, 93 R100R, 20 XT250, 22 Goldwing. No car is as fun to drive as any motorcycle is to ride.

  5. #50
    Enjoy The Ride saddleman's Avatar
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    I've had my drivers license for 53 years now. I bought my first motorcycle used in 1970. I have only ever bought one new vehicle. I bought a new 2000 year truck & a 28' trailer to move 650 miles south. The moving company wanted around $60,000 for the move. Total cost for the truck & trailer was $25,600. I sold the trailer 2 years later for $200 more than I paid for it & the truck 3 years later for $2000 less than I paid for it. I have always paid cash for every vehicle I have bought. I bought my first BMW motorcycle in 2008 it was a 2004 K1200LT with 42,000 miles on it. I still have it & it has 210,000 miles on it now. My most recent purchase and the newest vehicle I own is a 2009 K1300GT & that might be the last vehicle I buy. I now have 2 cars a 2002 & a 1998. the 1998 has over 300,000 miles on it. I have a 1987 El Camino with 150,000 miles & my wife's 2002 Thunderbird has 132,000 mile. I have 6 BMW motorcycles that run & 2 that I have disassembled for parts. I'll be 69 years old in a few months & I know how to service the vehicles I own & I have spare parts for them. I can't even imagine working on new vehicles today.
    Dave Selvig
    2009 Red 1300GT
    2004 Black 1200LT
    2000 Canyon Red 1200LT

  6. #51
    D'OH! The_Veg's Avatar
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    Not to get on too deep an automotive-tangent here, but since Dave and others mentioned how safety in cars has progressed, this is worth a look. Everybody thinks that the cars of the '50s were tanks and that modern vehicles are just plastic death-buckets but I'm here to tell you it ain't so! The '50s cars were largely empty space with a little sheet-metal wrapped around it, no crumple-zones or any of that stuff. Note that despite the difference in their external sizes, the cars in this video weigh within a mere 200 pounds of each other.



    Back to mo'orsickles, regarding the question of taking my first or second bike to a destination 1000 miles away, my first bike was a K100RT (you read that right: the first motorcycle I owned was a BMW sport-tourer) and my second bike was an R100R. I didn't have the K100RT very long but I did ride it from Dallas to Denver and back, roughly 1600 miles round-trip and did each 800 in a single day. Before that I'd only done maybe 300 in a day. I took the R100R from Dallas to the West Bend rally, and the total mileage for the trip was about 3000. And that bike's ergos sucked for me. It also stranded me once, far-enough from home to necessitate my one single use of the Anonymous Book. Least-reliable bike I ever owned. It dropped a valve at 67K miles 100 miles from home on the way home from West Bend. Instead of fixing it I bought a brand-new 2007 GS, the only bike I ever bought new, and sold the carcass to a guy in Ohio who wanted it for years who fixed it and last I heard was still happy with it.

    I currently ride a 2012 R1200GS. It's fully loaded with all the bells und glockenspiels, but by the standards of today's BMWs it's kinda crude. If I could add just ONE modern feature to it, it would be cruise control, and just so my right-hand could be spared some fatigue on longer trips. Other than that it does what I want it to do and we have a pretty good relationship. I live in the Atlanta area these days and I've ridden this one all the way to Canada. Best bike I've ever had and I intend to keep it as long as possible. The ease of maintenance is a real plus and I can contrast that in my cars as well: I own a 2019 Mazda and a 1970 Lotus. I change the Mazda's oil now and then, and will prob'ly have to replace the tires this year. The Lotus on the other hand is a demanding mistress, requiring a lot of work to stay in top shape and it's totally worth it because the driving is so sweet. One friend likens it to an airhead, but that's a poor comparison because it's no gummikuh in terms of chassis-dynamics. But for an all-day drive, I'd MUCH rather take the Mazda with its heated and cooled seats and satellite-radio, or I'd much rather take the R1200GS than an airhead.
    2012 R1200GS
    "If you can't fix it with a hammer, it's electrical." -somebody's dad
    "It just wouldn't be a complete day if I didn't forget sump'n!" -Me
    http://www.thethingaboutcars.com/

  7. #52
    Registered User McBeemer's Avatar
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    It appears that 99% of the folks here own at least one newer bike, i.e. a bike with electronics of some kind. My original question was focused on someone that chose to only own older bikes, that is something that didn't have anything beyond electronic ignition, EFI, and maybe ABS, but really more airheads. I've gathered what folks have said regarding the expense and complexity but overall it sounds more like the vast majority of folks appreciate all that technology has brought to riding like reliability, safety, comfort, etc.

    It was unlikely that I was ever going to give up my modern bike for just an older bike(s) but I'm certainly even more convinced now. I'm sure I overly romanticize the thought of some Kerouac-esque tour of America on an airhead. Probably better to read about it while I'm doing it on my comfortable, modern bike.

  8. #53
    Quote Originally Posted by McBeemer View Post
    It appears that 99% of the folks here own at least one newer bike, i.e. a bike with electronics of some kind. My original question was focused on someone that chose to only own older bikes, that is something that didn't have anything beyond electronic ignition, EFI, and maybe ABS, but really more airheads. I've gathered what folks have said regarding the expense and complexity but overall it sounds more like the vast majority of folks appreciate all that technology has brought to riding like reliability, safety, comfort, etc.

    It was unlikely that I was ever going to give up my modern bike for just an older bike(s) but I'm certainly even more convinced now. I'm sure I overly romanticize the thought of some Kerouac-esque tour of America on an airhead. Probably better to read about it while I'm doing it on my comfortable, modern bike.
    Maybe the thread title should have been “Eschewing poorly engineered technology”, the avoidance of features that are probably not worth the long term maintenance or replacement cost burden.

    Good engineering provides real value to the end user. It does not “set them up” for difficult or expensive maintenance down the road. That’s marketing’s responsibility…
    Last edited by OldCamper; 03-20-2023 at 03:39 PM.
    -Live as fully as you can as long as you can-

  9. #54
    Registered User STEVENRANKIN's Avatar
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    My bike

    My airhead is comfortable. You don't need modern for that. St.

  10. #55
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    I'd have to say of the several dozen bikes I've owned over the last 45 years of riding, I would ride any of my early bikes, excluding the dirt bikes, cross country. We take a fall trip every year 2 up, minimum 14 states on the "77 R100S, our spring trip, try to do 8+ states, is on the '06 Concours, newest bike I've ever owned, still has carbs, the last year. My wife and I agree the bmw, original seat, is more comfortable that the Councours original seat. If I were to buy a new bike, and I don't intend to, my choices would be an Enfield or W800.
    Dave Hutton '78 R100S (mfg 7/77), '06 Kawasaki Concours, '82 Suzuki GS1100G, '82 Yamaha Exciter 250, '73 TS125

  11. #56
    When I was looking for another BMW last year [ to compliment the RS ], I specifically looked for a Camhead RT. Found a 2011RT with 16K on it, full service records from day 1 for 9500.00. I wanted another Camhead after having a 2012 GS triple black.

    The camheads were the culmination of that air/oil cooled boxers decades long development. It has all the latest technology I'll ever need and I appreciate on long trips.

    I like the 16RS as well, but a NEW bmw model in the cards one day? Nope, I'll keep the camhead and would have no problem selling the 16RS completely farkled out.
    The lion does not even bother to turn his head when he hears the small dog barking.

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