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:)What a nice group of folks. Must have been 400 HD's and my little Bonny. Everyone was very friendly. Nobody had anything bad to say about my bike. Lots of thumbs up and invites to go riding in the future. We had presents for over a hundred kids and the poker run was my style of riding. The Bonneville has fans everywhere and is a great bike for bridging manufacturing gaps. I was worried I wouldn't be welcome and turns out my bike was one of the more popular bikes there. Great day for a lot of bikers and kids!:)
 

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When I pull up to a ride with Harley guys, one always says "You know the Harley dealership opens in 20 minutes." By the time we get to the first stop, that guy is usually checking out my Bonnie and saying how surprised he is that my bike is outrunning his. True riders respect the heritage and performance of the Bonneville. Weekend pirate types with all the latest Harley sunglasses and tassels will never admit that the Bonneville is a great bike because they paid $25,000 for the Harley image and don't want to feel like they got ripped off.
 

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I did three toy runs this year. Had a blast. Rode with big cruisers and small scooters. I fit some where in the middle on 900 Scrambler. Here in Tulsa , OK it seems that it is mostly Harleys. On all three rides I only met up with three diffrent Triumph riders. There are a lot of Triumph rider here but I just don't see them out riding.
 

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I did three toy runs this year. Had a blast. Rode with big cruisers and small scooters. I fit some where in the middle on 900 Scrambler. Here in Tulsa , OK it seems that it is mostly Harleys. On all three rides I only met up with three diffrent Triumph riders. There are a lot of Triumph rider here but I just don't see them out riding.
went to ours over here in Adelaide. lots of great people and bikes.Also there were a lot of triumphs.so that made the day even better.they reckon there were between 20 to 30,000 bikes that turned up. weather held up as well considering it tried to rain.All in all a great day.I arrived at least half hour before pic was taken,it was just a sea of bikes arriving even then,
 

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In defense (?) of Harley bikes

First off, understand that I'm on a 2008 T100 after selling my 2008 Harley Crossbones which I did NOT like.
That said, I have since ridden, and could be QUITE happy on a 2009 Road King with only a change in the handlebars, and a backrest for Carol.
Those who have ridden one of the '09 FLH frame bikes will know what I'm talking about, and those who haven't won't understand.
IF you can drop $20K or more on a bike and not lose sleep over it, and IF 750 pounds of wet weight doesn't intimidate you, the new Harleys (at least some of the models!) have a lot to offer.
Of course, if you don't participate in many of the activities that the "lifestylers" do, that aspect might not have much appeal to you.
I know that even though we were on a Harley at the poker runs, the fact that Carol and I both wore helmets tagged us as being "them" and not "us", so the bike alone doesn't guarantee acceptance, if that's a factor for you.
Is Harley, Triumph, BMW, or _________________ better? Worse?
Nope. Just different horses for different courses. Each has a model that is better suited for a particular use than another, or appeals more to your eye than the next one does.
I am NOT a strict "brand loyalist". I ride what suits me, and what treats me well over time. Parts availability for a model that's a few seasons more mature is also a factor.
Prior to the Triumph and Harley exercises, I had 7 of the air-cooled BMW twins in a row. They lost me as a customer when they went to the new "oil head" design, with computer-controlled everything, mandating a trip to the BMW "boutique" for routine services that exceeded filters, oil, and MAYBE valve adjustments.
So there ya go. As for the "bang for the buck", I find it hard to fault my current ride, in which I have just over $10K invested ($9k OTD for the bike, and about $11-1200 aftermarket stuff).
The reason I don't just buy a Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Suzuki, or whatever for about $11-12K is that I can't see myself keeping one of those for the next 10 years, as they not only get "reinvented" about every 3 years, but also their molded plastic and stamped sheet metal parts usually don't hold up that well over time.
That, and MAYBE the nostalgia factor, but then I'd have to admit getting OLDER, which just AIN'T happening! :)
Bob
When I pull up to a ride with Harley guys, one always says "You know the Harley dealership opens in 20 minutes." By the time we get to the first stop, that guy is usually checking out my Bonnie and saying how surprised he is that my bike is outrunning his. True riders respect the heritage and performance of the Bonneville. Weekend pirate types with all the latest Harley sunglasses and tassels will never admit that the Bonneville is a great bike because they paid $25,000 for the Harley image and don't want to feel like they got ripped off.
 

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Toy Run

Ive been on 3-4 since getting my Bonne & its always a mazing @ the fest after how many HD boys are gathered around the Bonne lookin real hard!!
 

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I'm heading on one of our local toy runs next sunday, I'll keep you posted....most likely will be the only Bonnie there! :cool:
 

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I'm not bashing Harley's at all, BMWBOB. They're nice bikes and my next bike (in addition to the Bonnie) will probably be a road king. I was actually defending HD guys in that post. In my experiences, the real HD guys are the most welcoming guys and I respect a hard working guy that forks out a year's pay for a top notch bike. The rich weekend guys that refuse to acknowledge that other manufacturers make quality bikes are the ones I get irritated by.
 

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I've been Busted !!!

went to ours over here in Adelaide. lots of great people and bikes.Also there were a lot of triumphs.so that made the day even better.they reckon there were between 20 to 30,000 bikes that turned up. weather held up as well considering it tried to rain.All in all a great day.I arrived at least half hour before pic was taken,it was just a sea of bikes arriving even then,
HeHe !!! Just spotted me on youtube at the toyrun :eek:
 

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limited edition bonneville vs harley's

Went to a gathering of my friends who are all Harley people. Drove up on my '09 limited edition Bonneville. They all went nuts over it. They thought it was a wonderful bike. Spent an hour telling all of them about it.
I never got the same reception when I drove up on my KLR 650!!

Mr. Pete--->
 

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Why NOT bash Harleys? :)

Seriously, I didn't note any undeserved "bashing" in your post.
That's one reason I put a (?) in my title about defending them.
Heck, for MANY years I have referred to the Milwaukee (Now, York, PA) bikes as "Blunt instruments on the cutting edge of technology".
Carol's 1994 Sportster 883 Deluxe was, I'll just say, not my favorite piece of hardware, and I do NOT miss it at all!
With all their warts, given anything like a reasonable amount of maintenance, they tend to have pretty long lives.
A co-worker of mine has an older FLH-series bike with just over 75K on the clock, and never had the heads off the motor.
My former neighbor had a Heritage Classic Softtail, and got to 125K miles before doing a top end job.
As could be said about nearly every other bike company on the market, they have their good points, as well as room for improvement.
One area where I will continue to take them to task is their price: My recent (and PAINFUL!) experience with getting into and out of a 2008 Harley in such a short time showed me what the bikes are REALLY worth, based on the equation where: Value= whatever someone will pay you for the bike.
I would contend that the current, and much inflated price of the new Harleys came about in much the same way that allowed the price of houses to go from somewhere around $30-50K up to the nosebleed regions: The availability of ever longer credit terms with lowered criteria for qualifying.
If every Harley sold were to only those folks who could walk in and write a check for the full price, or (I'll go out on a limb here) finance for no more than 36 months, either the price itself would drop like a rock, or Harley would become one more casualty of our society of "wretched excess".
It will be interesting to see what class of folks are still able to ring the cash registers at the Harley dealers after a year or two of whatever is about to come out of Washington. (PLEASE: NO political "bashing" intended!)
I totally agree that there are numerous other manufacturers making products fully as well deserving of the sort of adoration that Harley has garnered. They just haven't seen the sort of marketing successes that the Harley/NBA/NASCAR franchises have.
Bob
I'm not bashing Harley's at all, BMWBOB. They're nice bikes and my next bike (in addition to the Bonnie) will probably be a road king. I was actually defending HD guys in that post. In my experiences, the real HD guys are the most welcoming guys and I respect a hard working guy that forks out a year's pay for a top notch bike. The rich weekend guys that refuse to acknowledge that other manufacturers make quality bikes are the ones I get irritated by.
 

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I'm not bashing Harley's at all, BMWBOB. They're nice bikes and my next bike (in addition to the Bonnie) will probably be a road king. I was actually defending HD guys in that post. In my experiences, the real HD guys are the most welcoming guys and I respect a hard working guy that forks out a year's pay for a top notch bike. The rich weekend guys that refuse to acknowledge that other manufacturers make quality bikes are the ones I get irritated by.

...I knew it all along
 

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Those who have ridden one of the '09 FLH frame bikes will know what I'm talking about, and those who haven't won't understand.
IF you can drop $20K or more on a bike and not lose sleep over it, and IF 750 pounds of wet weight doesn't intimidate you, the new Harleys (at least some of the models!) have a lot to offer.
Bob, I agree with what you're saying. I rode a '82 TourGlide for quite a few years; I liked it then and I like it now. Here's the thing though. If I was gonna buy another heavy bike for touring, and I was gonna spend upwards of 20K, I can't imagine why I would even consider anything other than a Rocket III. I'm convinced that most HD riders select their brand for one of two reasons - Image or Ignorance. Either they're mesmerized by the thought of a personal Mad Max conversion, or they simply don't know that Triumph has this gold on the market. I nearly fell into the latter category myself. However, after visiting the HD dealer here and complaining about the diminutive size of Sportsters, a Harley-riding buddy at work mentioned Triumph. A five minute test ride on the America was all it took. I use the bike almost solely for commuting to work, but if I was still touring, there'd be a Rocket in the garage instead.
 

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Big bikes: Rocket 3 vs Harley?

Lazyrider,
I know it will be regarded as blasphemy here, but the Rocket 3 just doesn't work for me.
My image of a Triumph is a lean, light, easy to ride, fun bike. This was developed back in the days of the classic Triumphs, when I owned a BSA Rocket (650 cc, single carb model).
I have seen some Triumph Rocket 3 touring models which looked a lot more appropriate than the bare model, since they now resembled other touring cruisers.
This, of course is no real criticism of the Rocket 3, just a subjective statement of taste.
The more I ride my lightly modified T100, the better I like it.
That said, should circumstances evolve to the point where it makes sense to do so, I would not hesitate to pop for a new Road King for what it can do.
Of course, that would mean finding a way to store 2 bikes out of the weather, which is not part of my current reality.
Horses for courses, my friend. The T100 works well for what I use it for, and the Road King, IMO, would be a little better for the longer two-up trips when hauling a little extra cargo.
Bob
Bob, I agree with what you're saying. I rode a '82 TourGlide for quite a few years; I liked it then and I like it now. Here's the thing though. If I was gonna buy another heavy bike for touring, and I was gonna spend upwards of 20K, I can't imagine why I would even consider anything other than a Rocket III. I'm convinced that most HD riders select their brand for one of two reasons - Image or Ignorance. Either they're mesmerized by the thought of a personal Mad Max conversion, or they simply don't know that Triumph has this gold on the market. I nearly fell into the latter category myself. However, after visiting the HD dealer here and complaining about the diminutive size of Sportsters, a Harley-riding buddy at work mentioned Triumph. A five minute test ride on the America was all it took. I use the bike almost solely for commuting to work, but if I was still touring, there'd be a Rocket in the garage instead.
 

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+ 1 Bob. I loved my 89 FLHS and my 08 T100, both for different reasons. That FLHS was just great for two up touring and my Bonneville takes me back to the my roots in motorcycling. I can't wait for spring...
 

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I have to agree with some others that an HD would probably be my choice for a 2 up tour bike. I love my 07 Bonnie, it's my artistic release in life. Mod - Ride - Wrench - Ride - Repeat. I have an 89 Goldwing I bought for 2 up with momma. It's seen better days. Unfortunately as much as I love the Triumph line-up the Rocket to me is just plain ugly. I know it's a great bike with gobs of power, I just can't get past the look. To me it looks like a 3 cyl. Boss Hog. I have made fun of HD for years mostly just to tease the posers. Back in the late 80's I actually work the HD assembly line in York PA. I think the quality, fit and finish on a Harley is like few other bikes. It's the cost of ownership that is the deal breaker.
 

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When I pull up to a ride with Harley guys, one always says "You know the Harley dealership opens in 20 minutes." By the time we get to the first stop, that guy is usually checking out my Bonnie and saying how surprised he is that my bike is outrunning his. True riders respect the heritage and performance of the Bonneville. Weekend pirate types with all the latest Harley sunglasses and tassels will never admit that the Bonneville is a great bike because they paid $25,000 for the Harley image and don't want to feel like they got ripped off.
You obviously have a good understanding of the situation...
 

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I know that even though we were on a Harley at the poker runs, the fact that Carol and I both wore helmets tagged us as being "them" and not "us", so the bike alone doesn't guarantee acceptance, if that's a factor for you.
I understand that some folks prefer the cruiser, standard or sport riding position. I understand why someone would like the Harley sound, looks and image. I understand that the look of outdated (or no) safety equipment goes with the vintage or retro look.

What I don't understand is why a good helmet would tag someone as "them".
 

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I understand that some folks prefer the cruiser, standard or sport riding position. I understand why someone would like the Harley sound, looks and image. I understand that the look of outdated (or no) safety equipment goes with the vintage or retro look.

What I don't understand is why a good helmet would tag someone as "them".
No misunderstandings here... :rolleyes:
 

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Some of my friends ride HD's. I ride a Speedmaster. One of the rare pleasures in life is bagging out each other's bikes. We also bag out each other's riding skills. It's what makes the world go 'round... :)
 
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