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Folks, my girls (wife and daughter) will not ride with me on my Speed Triple. I really don't blame them, but I love my Speed Triple so it isn't going anywhere. So, I am looking for a relatively low cost motorcycle to add to the stable for two-up cruising. I am very fond of the Thunderbird Sport, so herein lies my question;

Do any of you use a Thunderbird Sport for two-up cruising? How is the suspension? Power?

I worked at a Triumph dealership back in 1999 and I rode the standard Thunderbird a few times. Great motorcycle, but the suspension was too soft. I am a big boy at 255 lb.s, but my wife is a tiny 4'9". Combined we are probably the weight of two average people.

Now, I don't mind buying the T-Bird Sport and having to upgrade the suspnesion immediately if all else is right with the bike.

Any suggestions, comments, insults?
 

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Suspension does ok with it, but you definitely want to adjust at least the rear shock (settings are in the manual) before you go any distance two up. In addition to compression and rebound adjustments, I'd throw in some extra rear spring preload too.

Power should be at the very least adequate. In a real hurry? Stick it in 3rd and pour it on, but if you're not careful you'll lighten the load by one pillion rider. :)
 

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l found the seat a bit hard but bought a gel pad and it really made a difference. The two good things l like about it are it only costs $80 and as it is kept on by a velcro strap, you can remove it for short trips or shows.
 

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The TBS is a good choice for cruising and in that mode the suspension should be fine if still in good condition. Advantage of the TBS over the Thunderbird etc. is the adjustable suspension and the twin front discs.

Power is more than adequate, given that lovely torquey engine.

For added pillion security I'd suggest fitting a back rest.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks all! Yes, the backrest was already planned. I will check the seat first before buying a new one. The suspension is a more costly upgrade, though. I don't mind the cost. I have always loved the Thundbird Sport! If it has the grunt, then it just might have to happen. I will be looking for one when I get home from Afghanistan.
 

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Hmm t bird sport yes great bike but you be btr off with a standard bird or legend for 2 up crusing i have the k and q seat plus sissy for the wife and it handles great, but others feel the twin disk for breaking up front is a bonus i have to agreee its well under breaked with single disk having ridin the jap sports bikes nvr had a go on the sport but imo if your looking for just a crusier for wife and kids the t/bird is btr option and the suspention nd brakes can be up graded just MHO
 

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Hawk - personally I think it's more down to what look you want when choosing between the Sport and Thunderbird i.e. the more classic looks of the Thunderbird and some nice colourschemes and whether you want the twin front discs of the Sport.

The riding experience I assume is about the same and you can fit a K&Q seat to the Sport. I've got one, but not used it yet, along with a back rest for when I do longer distances and/or take the wife. Lookswise the K&Q doesn't suit the Sport as much as the Thunderbird but when I want looks I use the single seat!
 

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"Do any of you use a Thunderbird Sport for two-up cruising? How is the suspension? Power?"


Often.

Good.

Great!

I've put nearly 6k miles on my TBS this summer. At least 1000 of them were with my girlfriend (5'4'', ~115-20 lbs). To the beach, through city traffic, twisties... IMO, the bike handles things without a hitch. In fact, just last Sunday, I put it to its most serious test yet: a ride through Angeles Crest Highway. ACH is full of long, flowing curves - not many corkscrews, nothing too tight - and it was seamless at about 65-70MPH average speed. My only little issue was that the foot pegs scrape a little at a lesser lean while two up. Then again, checks and balances... when they'd scrape, I'd calm down a bit. All in all, 0 issues and plenty of power when I want it.

My only real qualm with two up riding on the TBS is probably particular to my bike. I've got clubmans set up and they make the riding position significantly more aggressive than it would be with stock bars. That coupled with the slightly downward slope of the seat will sometimes have her really pushing up against me which isn't so much uncomfortable as it is tiring. I slept like a rock after that 150 mile Sunday last week. Also, when the passenger gets a bit lazy, they have the tendency to slip downward into your portion of the seat. My girlfriend knows by now to avoid that, but when I occasionally have unseasoned pillions, it happens.

Get home safe.
 

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I always sleep like a log when I've done a few miles on a bike. Partly down to the force fed fresh air I think!

My wife has slid into me on some bikes, particularly under braking, and I try and be as gentle and smooth as I can be with her on the back, and so have fitted those non-slip covers to the pillion part of the seat which work well.
 
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