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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone gone from a T-Bird to the Speedmaster? What are your impressions in making the change? I'm considering moving to the Speedmaster. I'll be doing more day cruising, maybe a weekend trip, but not the long touring rides I took on the 'Bird. I'll do occasional riding with my wife,

My '14 T-Bird LT, which has been a fantastic bike. Taken weeklong trips on it, it's never had a mechanical issue since I got it new. Only problem, it was a little slow for me, so I added the off road pipes and the stage 1 download, which got me over 85 hp on the dyno. T-Bird is heavy bike at 800 pounds, so I want to get something easier to maneuver at slow speeds.

I did take a demo ride on the Speedmaster, but it was a short one so we never got to get on freeway. Still, I liked the handling, very maneuverable and much easier to handle at slow speeds. Love to hear your thoughts.

POSSIBLE ISSUE: By the way, I'm 6'1", 225 pounds without the gear. FYI, my lower back cannot take a pounding, so the rear suspension is one thing I'm concerned about. The T-Bird did a good job of soaking up all the road bumps and divots. How does Speedmaster perform in this department?
Thanks to all for your thoughts! :)
 

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I am 6.1 and 225 lb too. I have a Storm and can’t imagine myself on a speedmaster. Only as a second motorcycle.
It is annoying when I am over 75 miles/h and I feel the wind pressure over my feet and my helmet. I understand that. But, I thinkThunderbirds are better for short rides and sport motorcycles are not so comfortable to do it.
And there is a main point to me: this discomfort at around 75 limits my insanity. I am afraid of sport bikes.
 

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I am 6.1 and 225 lb too. I have a Storm and can’t imagine myself on a speedmaster. Only as a second motorcycle.
It is annoying when I am over 75 miles/h and I feel the wind pressure over my feet and my helmet. I understand that. But, I thinkThunderbirds are better for short rides and sport motorcycles are not so comfortable to do it.
And there is a main point to me: this discomfort at around 75 limits my insanity. I am afraid of sport bikes.
Sorry, I was thinking about SPEEDTRIPLE.
Anyway, in my opinion, there is no better Triumph than Thunderbirds. There is nowhere to go. Sometimes I wonder: next motorcycle? And I really can not see anything in the market that beats a Thunderbird.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Farid, thanks for your thoughts! I totally agree with you on the Thunderbird being one of the best cruisers and long tourers out there. I took mine across Idaho riding 95-105mph the entire time, and it was totally planted and tracked perfectly, plus the engine was just humming along in overdrive 6th gear. I'd love to keep it, but in my 70s it's getting harder to move that bike around the garage and for parking it, etc. Once the T-Bird gets moving it loses the weight, but I'm feeling like I need to get something a little lighter and more easy to handle at slow speed for safety's sake.
 

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I bought my Storm from a 70 year old guy exactly for this reason. It was very difficult to him to handle it due to heavy weight. Maybe a speed master can solve it. At least it will reduce it. If I had this problem, I would choose a Tiger 800. I think a Tiger offers a new number of applications. And it is manageable for a 6.1” person.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Farid, appreciate your comment and thoughts. I'll check out the Tiger 800.
 

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I'll defer to taller, heavier riders on this with regard to suspension; however, I'll add that the move to a lighter bike is just what I needed. Had a 2010 T-Bird that I did a Iron Butt on a few years ago with a stock seat that performed flawlessly (I'm now pushing 70 myself). Now on a 2020 Speed Master and it's great. It doesn't compare with the T-Bird since, as you've said, you're not seeking extreme long-distance riding (which was another reason that I switched) YET, I suspect that I could bag and bungy-cord a larger bag on the back of the SM and get by, maybe not as far for a day of riding. Regarding suspension, I suspect that if the adjustable stock shock that comes on the SM doesn't cut it, that there are other alternatives.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Paul, nice looking Speedmaster! As you mention, there are alternatives for the shock, which was a concern, so that could soak up the bumps. I've read that some heavier riders adjust the OEM shock to the 4 setting. Do you have any experience with settings on the shock? Sounds like it's a good bike, just not designed to do days on end long-distance riding, which is fine for me. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and experience.
 

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I never had a T-Bird but I have a 2018 Speedmaster.

I enjoy the bike for general running about. It should be okay for day and weekenders. The following are some things that I have found:

The pillion seat is not very comfortable for my wife who is fairly tall; maybe okay for a petite woman and short duration rides. I added the Motone risers and a Madstad windshield which makes the 2018 Speedmaster I have far more pleasant. If you don't like the forward controls you have an option to go back to mid-controls.
 

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Paul, nice looking Speedmaster! As you mention, there are alternatives for the shock, which was a concern, so that could soak up the bumps. I've read that some heavier riders adjust the OEM shock to the 4 setting. Do you have any experience with settings on the shock? Sounds like it's a good bike, just not designed to do days on end long-distance riding, which is fine for me. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and experience.
DBrian,

I have no experience with the setting of the shock. It's been good thus far so no need to mess with it, but might mess with it when warmer weather comes and I don't have anything to do. ;-) I wouldn't write off long distance riding necessarily. I've not had the opportunity to go on a long ride, but similar to why Consumer Report won't touch evaluating mattresses, one's rear on a seat may be just fine on long runs. Unfortunately, the only way to find out is to do one. Best wishes on your choice.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I never had a T-Bird but I have a 2018 Speedmaster.

I enjoy the bike for general running about. It should be okay for day and weekenders. The following are some things that I have found:

The pillion seat is not very comfortable for my wife who is fairly tall; maybe okay for a petite woman and short duration rides. I added the Motone risers and a Madstad windshield which makes the 2018 Speedmaster I have far more pleasant. If you don't like the forward controls you have an option to go back to mid-controls.
Miner999r, Good point about the seat... I wondered about that for my wife. That pillion pad that comes with the bike doesn't look to functional. I've already checked out the Corbin dual seat and think that would work.

Can I ask why you added the risers, and how much height do they give the bars? Are you using them with the existing beach bars? I'll check out that Madstad windshield as well. Thanks, DBrian
 

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Hi. Let us know how the Corbin seat works out.

The reason I went with the Motone risers have to do with riding comfort. I found with forward controls and low bars I was kind of folded in half. So just the minor reposition made a huge difference. Also no cable or wiring issues a 15 minute swap. Check the motone site but I think the risers gave 1 inch up and 1 inch back. I wanted to swap out my Harley bars but they won't work as the throttle grip area is not long enough. So I have the triumph high bars and kit on order. But the motone risers themselves make a big difference in comfort.

Mid controls would also be better for me. That way your legs can absorb some of the road shock instead of the spine.

The madstad windshield works very well and blocks the wind pressure at freeway speeds. You can get lowers for that windshield as well. It seems well built and looks okay.
 
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