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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I’d like to introduce myself. I’ve been lurking for a month or so. My last bike was a 95 883 Sportster, bought new. It looked cool as can be, but it was uncomfortable, sluggish, and had little annoying problems a new bike shouldn’t have. I enjoyed riding my 400cc Honda Hawk more (and it only cost me $200) and I wasn’t brokenhearted when the Sportster got stolen, especially since the insurance company gave me $2000 more than I paid for it.

I’d been out of riding for about 10 years and decided to get back into it last summer. I took the safety class and started shopping for a new ride. If I’d wanted a Harley, life would have been easy- they sure are available now, and pleny comfortable. But, I had no desire for one. I’m apparently now too old for a crotch rocket because they were anything but comfortable. The folks who say they hurt the back must wear some other kind of underwear than me because my back sure wasn’t where I was hurting. The dual sports were kind of cool, but someone must have decided that 5’10” was no longer average height because I felt like I needed a ladder to get on them.

When I looked at the Bonneville, I knew it was what I wanted and I ended up with an 07 Bonnie Black purchased new last summer. I grew up on the back of my dad’s CB500 and the Bonneville looked like what I thought a motorcycle should look like. It was comfortable. It handles better than my Harley ever did, and I really, really liked it.

Then I discovered this forum. You evil, evil, people (especially Mike in VA)!! I started reading about all the stuff one could do to a Bonneville. So, I tried to go easy. I really did. All I did was add TORs and a tachometer at the 500 mile service. It couldn’t hurt, I told myself. I’d keep it under control. No worries.

Well, if I had just done the pipes, I may have been OK. I was going to hold off on the tach, but my wife told me to just go ahead and do it. I like the sound of the pipes, it really is better, but if there is any performance gain, it is slight. But the tach was the killer. To my ‘ears, it sounded like I was really revving it before, but once I got the tach I found out I wasn’t even close. (Go easy on me, my truck is a Diesel, I'm not used to the sound of a lot of RPMs). There is a lot more fun up near the redline than there is near idle, that’s for sure. It didn’t take me long to find out why some of you change the rev limiter, because once I could see where the engine was running, I started hitting it a lot more often.

Now I’m enjoying the bike even more than I thought I could and I want more. All of Mike’s posts and the tons of positive posts from others convinced me to call Bonneville Performance. After a few talks with Bill, now I’m really hooked. Looks like an 1100 is in my near future. I’m wishing I had figured all this out a month ago because April in NC is some good riding weather, but what can I do? Looks like once the itch starts, you have to scratch it. I thank you all.
 

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Bertster,
Nice post. I too, really like this forum. Apparently, they can get pretty cranky around here if you mention oil, jetting and a few other topics which are mysterious to new guys but old hat to others. All in all, there is ALWAYS some brave soul who will answer even the most obvious question. I would have NEVER had taken a wrench to my bike other than to change the oil, now I enjoy working on her as much as riding thanks to the generous and patient help I get from this site. Welcome and be safe.
 

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Welcome, Bert. You need help, but probably won't seek it. That being the case, don't forget to upgrade your brakes. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Brakes, shocks, springs were the first thing Mr Gately talked about. Something about if you are going to make all that power, better be able to stop and steer. I took his advice. I may be sick, but I'm not crazy!!!
 

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Apparently, they can get pretty cranky around here if you mention oil, jetting and a few other topics which are mysterious to new guys but old hat to others.
Yeah, watch your step ... don't mention anything about metrification LOL :D.

Welcome. Happy posting.
 

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Well Bert welcome aboard, good choice of bike and I can see you are having a lot of fun. These motors do respond well for being revved a bit.

You have mentioned Mr Gately, but let me draw your attention to some other vendors www.triumphperformanceusa.com and www.british-customs.com

Carlos at triumph performance USA is getting 115 horsepower at the rear wheel out of a Bonneville he has bored out to 1087cc. Now - if mega tuning is your thing, I strongly recommend you call Carlos - he knows how to get the ponies released if that's your thing. :D And he is a top bloke - very helpful.
 

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Bert....where are you at in NC? Lots of NC riders are on T-RAT, and there is a Charlotte RAT as well.

Derswede
Near "K-Vegas" (a little town, but lots of pretentious people, etc.)
 

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Now I’m enjoying the bike even more than I thought I could and I want more. All of Mike’s posts and the tons of positive posts from others convinced me to call Bonneville Performance. After a few talks with Bill, now I’m really hooked. Looks like an 1100 is in my near future. I’m wishing I had figured all this out a month ago because April in NC is some good riding weather, but what can I do? Looks like once the itch starts, you have to scratch it. I thank you all.
Welcome to the forum. They won't be calling you bert the turtle for long!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'm in Durham- love to hook up with some local folks one of these days.

Prop, do you also like to buy drinks for winos? Got to love you, man!! I never thought I'd get bit this hard.:)
 

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do you also like to buy drinks for winos?
Yes.

Yes I do. :D

If tuning is your thing - go for it! There are folks having a lot of fun wringing serious performance from these motors. Some people like the bike for just what it is - and that's cool too - we welcome everyone here! Enjoy!
 

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Welcome bert.

My best performance advice is to take a few hard earned dollars and attend a track school...you think getting bit by the performance bug is addicting, wait until you can milk the bike for more than you ever thought possible.

Cheers,

--Rich
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Track school is excellent advice. Any good ones you like? I'm in NC. Does it matter what bike you use? One the one hand, it seems like a good idea to use my own bike, on the other hand, nothing performs better than a rental with optional insurance package.

David
 

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Welcome Bert! Funny you metioned buying a tach, I just finally ordered one today!
 

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Bert, wish I'd had the good manners to introduce myself like you have, rather than just barging in like I did a few years back. It's nice to hear a little about each of the people we post with, get their history, what drew them to their bonnie, how long they've been riding etc. Seems a few, including myself started off riding a long time ago, quit for a while then came back to it as a more mature person. It sometimes surprises me, the passion I feel for my bike. Hope the bugs bitten you good and hard.
 

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Hi Bert, Welcome to the forum. There is a lot of advice here and personally I have found the majority of it invaluable.

The following advice was put in for Bonnie-Sunshines benefit.

Inlet valve clearance 6 to 8 Thou.

Exhaust valve clearances 10 to 12 Thou.

Myself I bought my first bike in 1962 and have been riding on and of ever since. All have been Triumphs with the exception of a BSA DBD34 500cc single.

FrankW
 
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