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Took my first test ride on a 2006 955 Tiger, and have a few questions for longtime owners. I currently ride a 2000 Legend and am looking to upgrade- originally was looking at the Rocket (I know, apples and watermellons), but after reading a lot of positive feedback on the Tiger I decided to consider it as well. A note- the bike only had 7 miles on it, so during the ride I had to keep it below 3500RPM, thus not giving me any clear impression of its performance potential. The transmission seemed to be rather sticky at first, but got a little better after the first 15 miles or so. Does this break in over time, or is it something that you just have to learn to deal with? I have never ridden a bike that sits that high before- felt kind of like being in a 2 wheeled SUV- how long does it take to get used to that position? Do you consider it a pro or a con after you have adapted to it? I am just under 6', but can't stand flat-footed on the bike- a little unnerving to me. It seems pretty agile to me, but I didn't really have the opportunity to do any real technical riding- How would you rate it in the twisties? Are there any common mechanical problems that have caused any of you to believe that you made the wrong choice in Bikes? What would you consider the higher end of the envelope to be speedwise on the highway? How would you rate its accelleration- particularly compared to the big bus if you have ridden both? One of the reasons I am getting rid of the Legend is comfort- I can't ride for extended periods without developing knee pain and numbbuttitis- how would you rate the comfort level for long, touring type rides? Are there any issues that would prevent you from using it for day to day commuting (mechanical or comfort)? What made you choose the Tiger over other models? It seems well regarded in terms of performance, versatility, and reliability- are you happy overall, or does it feel like in trying to make it versatile they came up short across the spectrum? Any and all responses will be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
 

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I bought a 2006 Tiger in June 2006 and have just under 16,000 miles on it.

The transmission does loosen up as the mileage increases and I found it helps the most to adjust the clutch cable with the right amount of free-play.

For me the seating position is very comfortable but I had similar ergonomics on my last bike, a 2004 BMR R1150RT. I'm 6 ft tall and I could use more legroom as the pegs are a bit high. I can flat foot the bike even with the seat on the high position.

The large 19 inch front wheel took me a while to get used to after being on bikes with 17 inchers for a long time. The wheelbase is fairly long and there is that large front wheel, but the bike will still go through the twisties quite well.

I have had no mechanical problems. The only problem I have had is an inconsistent and innacurate fuel sender/guage. I have the third sender installed now (under warranty) and it has settled down though it still stays near full for the first 75 miles then drops to a very acurate reading as the tank approaches empty.

Acceleration is excellent. Cruising speed for me with a MRA Vario windshield is a comfortable 75-80 though the bike will go to 120mph or so. The MRA Vario windshield removed most of the helmet buffeting and replacing the stock mirrors and their stalks with CRG bar-end mirrors eliminated the rest.

I use my Tiger for commuting, day rides and touring. Longest day touring has been 550 miles with the stock seat. I have installed the gel seat recently and it seems to be more comfortable than stock but I haven't done a long day with it yet.

The best thing about the 995 is the engine. It is very smooth and pulls well at any engine speed over 2500 rpm. I regularly cruise between 5000 and 6000rpm with little to no vibration.

I chose the Tiger to replace my BMW because the engine is so much better, the weight is lighter, the hard bags are just as good as the RT's, though they take a seperate key, and I have a great dealer 50 miles away.

I do wish my 2006 Tiger had ABS brakes because of the touring that I do. For me, that would be a reason to take look at the new 1050 Tiger. I might move over to a 1050 Tiger in 2008.
 

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Bought mine new in Aug'02, now has 47000 miles on her and it still runs sweet. You've asked lots of questions but in short, once you get used to it you'll love it. Basically, smooth, quick, comfortable and economical. The only issues I had was the seat and the screen. If you do high mileages buy the gel seat. The screen suits some people and not others. I tried higher at first but eventually opted for the "sports" screen.
 

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First, I think these are very wise questions! I wish more people would ask such things when considering a bike that's so far out of the norm as the Tiger is. I pretty much agree with all the responses so far, and will try to address a few of the individual questions further (not necessarily in the same order).

> Are there any issues that would prevent you from using it for day to day commuting (mechanical or comfort)?

Not that I have ever found with mine. It's a great commuter (more on that below), but first a quick cautionary note.

If you are in a situation where your only transportation is one lone bike, then even a single problem of any kind would be a major pain, and that's always a more critical matter. In such a case, you'd be better off with some brand that has dealers every 20 miles along the road. The late 955 Triumphs are tremendously reliable, but no machine is perfect; so when someday it has a problem, you'd want to be sure you can get it dealt with in rapid fashion.

But if you do have alternate transportation for those rare occasions, and/or you do happen to have a Triumph dealer somewhere nearby, the Tiger is a wonderful commuter. The high riding position is a very definite plus for seeing road conditions ahead, and a partial plus for keeping you up at drivers' eye level too. (You should never assume they actually SEE you, however, just because they're looking right into your face. Don't let the height make you overconfident. Always ride as if you're invisible anyway!)

> I am just under 6', but can't stand flat-footed on the bike- a little unnerving to me.

I'm 6'2" but short-legged, so I know exactly what you mean! It may take a little time to learn the appropriate riding habits for this bike, but it's not hard. These include anticipating all stops so you'll end up at a spot where there's an adequate surface underfoot for you to have a little traction; parking in places where you won't have to back uphill from the curb; and breaking the unconscious habit (if you have it) of having a foot off the pegs during low speed maneuvers. You cannot easily stop a tipover with this bike by putting a foot down! (Even if you succeed, you may do yourself an injury; I speak from experience.) You should learn to avoid that situation from the beginning, by practicing low speed maneuvering and learning to depend on judicious application of clutch and throttle to let the bike pull you through. If you pay attention, the Tiger will teach you how it wants to be ridden.

> How would you rate its acceleration-

I have ridden the Legend's sibling, the regular Thunderbird. That was a fine family of machines, but the Tiger's acceleration is definitely better. There's lots of torque available at all speeds.

> One of the reasons I am getting rid of the Legend is comfort- I can't ride for extended periods without developing knee pain and numbbuttitis- how would you rate the comfort level for long, touring type rides?

I've spent five hours at a time in the saddle of the Tiger, then climbed back on after refueling and rehydration to ride some more! If the gel seat is still available, you may want to consider it, though there is a bit of a break-in period with the gels and not everybody finds them enough of an improvement to justify the cost. I like my gel seat a lot, but I also swap back to the plain seat from time to time when I want some slight extra stiffness for my lower back. The gel's main advantages for me are less chafing of the thighs and less pressure on the sciatic nerves... although the latter wasn't evident until after the seat had time to take on my own shape a little better.

> What made you choose the Tiger over other models?

I didn't, actually. It chose me.

At the time, I'd already had my Bonneville for a year, and had just ordered a centennial year Harley Sportster that was due to arrive later in the summer. Wasn't even thinking about another bike at that point, but after the dealer finally convinced me to test ride a Tiger, it just sort of followed me home.
 

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Welcome Steel,

A few others have answered, or opined on your questions, so I won't add too much.

A couple of things to note.
1) You may find a high pitched vibration about 3,500 to 4,000 rpm. No-one knows really what causes this, but making sure your chain is adjusted to about 10 mm over the recommended will lessen vibration. Most of these bikes do it.
2) Check it very thoroughly for oil leaks. Mine has a porous casting just near the neutral switch (left of bike as you sit, just above the gear lever) The fix is replacement cases and while its warranty, and I've only ever heard of about 3 other examples, it's a big PIA. I'll be going down the patching route first.
3) The more you ride it, the more you'll love it. I had a 99 Speed Triple, and whilst the accelleration is less than the S3, it's got a lot more torque. I also ride an 82 Harley FXB, so I'm used to swapping around. The Harley is a baby bike compared to the Tiger.
4) Handling isn't as sharp as the S3, but it's still pretty good. Because of the height, you do feel like you'll run wide sometimes, but use your weight into the corners and it will keep up with most average riders on good handling bikes. May even pass some of the not so good riders.
5) There isn't much that will accelerate like the Rocket III. The Tiger won't go near it, but will be a much better all rounder for touring and commuting. I've commuted a couple of days on a Rocket and while it was easier than a full dress Harley, it was still heavier than the Tiger, which is better for commuting than the Speed Triple was (IMO)

I've done 12,000kms in 6 months mostly commuting about an hour each way every day. It's the best commuter I've had so far.

Hope this helps in some way, but in my opinion a bike purchase like this is more emotional than practical.

Mick:cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks to all of you that took the time to respond. It has definitely given me something to think about. I have all but ruled out the Rocket as the bike for me- if I could have both, I would, but I think that the weight and the handling on it are going to be deal killers at this point.
in my opinion a bike purchase like this is more emotional than practical
Definitely true for me as well. Though I do try to consider pros and cons, I usually just wind up dancing with the girl that moves me the most.

Diego- good advice regarding whether its the only transportation I will have. Fortunately I have a reliable auto and there is a Triumph dealer fairly close. Thanks again for all of the responses. If there are any other comments or input, I would greatly appreciate it.
 

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Hi Steelbreeze. I had a 01 Tbird before my 07 Tiger. The Tbird was a great bike, but like you I felt a bit folded-up on it during long rides. I am very impressed by the long-distance comfort of my Tiger in comparison. On the highway or on a back road it is at home. It's particularly more fun in the twisties with the extra cornering clearance and lighter weight. On the highway it is much more solid, and a good deal faster.

I use my Tiger for commuting most days. It is completely comfy, very versatile, great in the rain and adverse weather, but most of all it's fun. I have a Givi box on the back and can haul stuff around or pack-in my rainsuit easily.

I consider the high seat height a definite pro once you get used to it. I remember when I tested my first Tiger, a 955i, and I had a very similar daunting feeling of sitting up so much higher and feeling the extra bit of falling when cornering. It doesn't take long to adapt to a taller bike.

The transmissions get better over time, so don't worry about it too much at new.

Why did I choose it over the other models? I held onto my Tbird for many years while I tested many bikes from numerous manufacturers. The Tiger 1050 was the one I liked best, simple as that. I never considered a Rocket.
 

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You seem to have made your mind up. But I will ad my 2 cents as well.

I have owned 18 different bikes from dirt to street, cruiser to sport. Liked them all for different reasons, at different times in life. My 05 Tiger is the BEST all around functional bike I have EVER ridden. If you must only own one bike this is it.

Enough speed and torque to make life fun, excellent handling. Great to commute, great for long rides ( I live in the Florida Keys, to get ANYWHERE is a long ride). Great solo and just as much fun/easy handling 2 up. Plus with hard bags and a top trunk you can take all your "stuff" with you, and still blast past 1/2 the bikes on the road. I like the high seating you can see OVER many of the vehicles on the road, plus I think it helps you to be SEEN!! And you get used to leaning it a little at stops.

I have installed the high windshield and the gel seat. Also a throttle lock. All work great. Best of luck and enjoy the ride.
 
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