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Hi, I joined the forum because I have decided to get a Tiger and thought this would be the best place for advice. I would like a 1050 but there are some very good deals for fully equipped 955i's around and I since I want it primarily for touring, the large tank range is a big plus. Is the 1050 a much better bike or would I be happy with the 955i ? Is the set height & high centre of gravity going to be a problem ? I am 5'10 and have been riding a top heavy BMW K bike for many years (couple of stationary drops early on !) Any advice/experiences would be appreciated.
Thanks
Tom
 

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Hi Tom,

Welcome to the forum :):)

I can't speak for the 1050 as I haven't had one, but I can for the 955.

What a bike :eek:

It comes fully tooled up with heated grips, panniers, centre stand, proven engine, relatively good build quality, etc, etc....

Some say the seat is a bit hard but I've only ever ridden Tigers for 15 years so don't know any different !

It will tour 2 up with 3 panniers, tent and tank bag and ride all day without complaining. The long travel suspension will soak up all the bumps.

And if that's not good enough, it will go off road as well !!

It is a bit tall for some short arses, but it can be lowered.

Come and join us 955'ers and forget the 1050 - it's not a "proper" Tiger !
 

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I'm 5'10" and have a 955 Tiger for touring.It has all the kit and has taken us 3 times,2 up,to Europe and been perfect. All day comfort,total reliability and copes with any road conditions. 20,000 miles and still goes like new.I've considered changing for the 1050 Tiger which has better handling,brakes and engine. However the pillion position and standard luggage is not as good so I've decided to keep my 955 at the moment. Then there is the question of cost. To fully kit out a 1050 to the same specification as my bike would be over £10,000. So if you can get a low mileage 955 with all the gear then it is a bargain in comparison.
 

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Welcome Tom...

Not sure if you're going to get a consensus here, we Tiger owners are a pretty biased lot, even when it comes to the 955 or 1050...

You really just need to ask yourself whether the added availability for "soft" roading is what you are after. If it is, then really the 955 is you better choice, yes, the 1050 can go off road, but it's not as well equipped to do it. If off road isn't a consideration, then go the 1050.

Mick :cool:
 

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I've had my 955i for about three years now.
I've looked at the 1050 and there are some things I admire about it as well. Specifically, I like the new forks, the availability of abs and I wonder if it will handle somewhat better with the 17" front wheel. I also think it feels like the peg position and bar position might be slightly better for me.
The 955i does have a bigger tank, comes stock with a pretty nice luggage rack and acceptable side bags. Its weaknesses as i see it are the 'okay' brakes, low end suspension components and a poorly designed seat.
The 955i also turns fairly high rpm at highway speed in sixth. Its not really a problem but it doesn't seem necessary given the torque of the engine, I don't know if this is different on the 1050 or not. Mine also does not shift especially well but I don't know if its a common thing or not.
On mine I did the race tech cartridge fork emulators and a Wilber's shock and the ride is now much improved. I can live with the brakes but I would like to have abs.
When I look at the 1050 I'm bothered by the excessively high tail section (don't bend as well as i used to) and the windscreen being so far from the rider which I would think would make windscreen turbulence even worse than the 955i (which was bad enough).
Like everything I think theres trade offs. At this time I am thinking the 955i has more pluses for me than the 1050 does but that could change in the future.
 

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Looked at both before I bought the 06 955i.

Was looking primarily for a two up bike. The 955i fit the bill well for that purpose. The wife sat on both bikes and did not like the pillion seat position on the 1050. She might change her mind now as she says she is tired of looking at the back of my helmet.

At the time, if the bike would have just been for me to ride, probably would have gotten the 1050 with ABS.

I really enjoy riding the 955i, meets all my demands. Expect to hang onto this one for quite awhile.

Don't think you can go wrong with either one. Test ride both if possible is the best means to help with your decision.
 

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just ny 2 cents from the dutch guy
- first of try try try before you buy, go to a decent dealer and ask for 1 or more test rides (it's your money and certainly these days they will provide some extra service)
- I own a 955i and love the thing to bits. the minor points have already been mentioned. There are some posting to be found on things like the weight and buffeting to be found
- I test drove a 1050 for 2 hours and my conclusion. A much better ride then the 955i. That said my back hurt between the shoulders after that ride . After climbing on the 955i things went back to normal.

so go a try on for size!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
thanks for all the useful info

Thanks for all the good advice. I am going to test ride a 955i and then try a 1050. The attraction with the 955i is the price for a low mileage bike with luggage etc. and the tank range. Although it seems the 1050 is pretty economical too. The trip to the dealers after Xmas should sort things out. The only Tiger I have ridden was the first model in 1995 and I really liked it so I should find these new ones even better.
Cheers Tom
 

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One other consequence that came to mind later is that the 955i now being out of production is done as far as accessories and modifications go. The 1050 is just getting started.
I didn't consider it because I have my 955i pretty much as I want it and theres enough stuff available at this time to suit me but if you are starting out with a new bike you might wish to think about what you are considering doing to the bike and make sure that the pieces are available if you go 955i.
 

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I've had my 955i for about three years now.
I've looked at the 1050 and there are some things I admire about it as well. Specifically, I like the new forks, the availability of abs and I wonder if it will handle somewhat better with the 17" front wheel. I also think it feels like the peg position and bar position might be slightly better for me.
The 955i does have a bigger tank, comes stock with a pretty nice luggage rack and acceptable side bags. Its weaknesses as i see it are the 'okay' brakes, low end suspension components and a poorly designed seat.
The 955i also turns fairly high rpm at highway speed in sixth. Its not really a problem but it doesn't seem necessary given the torque of the engine, I don't know if this is different on the 1050 or not. Mine also does not shift especially well but I don't know if its a common thing or not.
On mine I did the race tech cartridge fork emulators and a Wilber's shock and the ride is now much improved. I can live with the brakes but I would like to have abs.
When I look at the 1050 I'm bothered by the excessively high tail section (don't bend as well as i used to) and the windscreen being so far from the rider which I would think would make windscreen turbulence even worse than the 955i (which was bad enough).
Like everything I think theres trade offs. At this time I am thinking the 955i has more pluses for me than the 1050 does but that could change in the future.
I agree with everything Joe said, except the suspension comment. I've owned numerous motorcycles over the years, and while the 955i Tiger's Kayaba forks are non-adjustable, I find them very well sorted for my weight (~170 lbs) and riding style (relaxed to mildly-aggressive). The Kayaba shock is also much better than my previous rides -- and considerably better than the pogo-stick Triumph stuck on the roadies. I also think the brakes have great bite, especially for two-pots. Mine's a 2005 model, and I know there were a number of handling changes made over the pre-2005 model girlies (eg. single rate vs. older triple rate springs, etc.). See link in my signature for details on changes made to the 2005+ model girlies

Also, look here for an honest review of the '05 Tiger: http://www.powersportsnetwork.com/enthusiasts/prof_review.asp?code=83

The only downside to the 955i is that it is now out of production. While I was able to find everything I needed for mine, a person just starting out might find the availability of aftermarket options increasingly scarce.

++ The 955i is also a great two-up machine for short distance touring.
 

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Having owned neither a 955 or 1050 (but having ridden both), there are definitely more qualified responses than mine here....

But although I LOVED the 1050 motor, if my primary consideration were touring comfort, it would be the 955 for me hands down.

I'll admit to being a bit biased in this next comment, because I currently ride a Steamer, but I really do like the 955 better overall. I like it's quirky looks, vs what I view as the "UJM" looks of the 1050 Tiger. I'm a big guy, and the 955 felt more roomy, too. I say I'm biased here because, really, I think I liked the 955 so much because it felt much like my 95 - a bike I absolutely love - only faster, and with better suspension. Is the 1050 a more qualified "sport-tourer"? Of course it is. But is it a better bike? That simply depends on your point of view.

Either is a wonderful motorcycle, but if you're willing to sacrifice a little power and suspension quality (and the 955 is no slouch in either of those departments, BTW) for a little more touring comfort, you can't go wrong with the 955.
 

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The suspension may work much better for someone of a lighter weight, I'm north of 200 pounds and that could certainly make a difference. Naturally, it also depends a lot on what you are comparing it with.
I also may have made the 955i's suspension sound worse than it is. Its not awful as delievered, I just feel there is considerable room for improvement and I feel mine did benefit. But then again there is room for improvement on just about everything made except perhaps some really top end bikes and then they can probably at least benefit from fine tuning for the rider.
FWIW I doubt if the 1050 is by any means state of the art either. They do appear to be a fully adjustable cartridge fork which should, in theory, have a better potential.
 

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The suspension may work much better for someone of a lighter weight, I'm north of 200 pounds and that could certainly make a difference. Naturally, it also depends a lot on what you are comparing it with.
I also may have made the 955i's suspension sound worse than it is. Its not awful as delievered, I just feel there is considerable room for improvement and I feel mine did benefit. But then again there is room for improvement on just about everything made except perhaps some really top end bikes and then they can probably at least benefit from fine tuning for the rider.
FWIW I doubt if the 1050 is by any means state of the art either. They do appear to be a fully adjustable cartridge fork which should, in theory, have a better potential.
Point well taken. I guess I am a bit of a fly weight. However, for comparison sake... my beloved 2003 SV1000S had fully adjustable cartridge forks and I can say, without a shadow of doubt, that my Tiger's forks have been MUCH better for me. :D
 

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Point well taken. I guess I am a bit of a fly weight. However, for comparison sake... my beloved 2003 SV1000S had fully adjustable cartridge forks and I can say, without a shadow of doubt, that my Tiger's forks have been MUCH better for me. :D
I don't know about you being a flyweight, it might be more of an indictment of me being an overweight.:eek:
You're right having cartridge forks is not a guarantee of good performance. I have an SV1000 naked and the forks were definitely not good out of the box, very harsh. There again, a bike built to a relatively low cost. In fact you will note in '05 (I believe) Suzuki went a step further in cheapness and made the cartridge unit sealed, making it quite difficult to improve.
On my SV I went with Racetech gold valves and springs and that improved the situation a lot. Its not as plush as the Tiger but its not meant to be, street bike vs pseudo dual sport.
I think a lot of makers save production costs on suspension and brakes, plus you can only make these things to cover so much range in rider weight and style. It makes quite a bit of sense when you consider it from a bean counting perspective.
Out of 50 some odd bikes I've owned I don't think there are any that came with really good suspension, including my 1150 GS, my current GL1800 and several others you would think might have. I'd like to see some of the makers offer an 'S' model with higher end suspension for a bit more than stock. It could be done a bunch cheaper than you and I pay if we choose to upgrade but I assume there is not really much of a market for it.
 

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I don't know about you being a flyweight, it might be more of an indictment of me being an overweight.:eek:
You're right having cartridge forks is not a guarantee of good performance. I have an SV1000 naked and the forks were definitely not good out of the box, very harsh. There again, a bike built to a relatively low cost. In fact you will note in '05 (I believe) Suzuki went a step further in cheapness and made the cartridge unit sealed, making it quite difficult to improve.
On my SV I went with Racetech gold valves and springs and that improved the situation a lot. Its not as plush as the Tiger but its not meant to be, street bike vs pseudo dual sport.
I think a lot of makers save production costs on suspension and brakes, plus you can only make these things to cover so much range in rider weight and style. It makes quite a bit of sense when you consider it from a bean counting perspective.
Out of 50 some odd bikes I've owned I don't think there are any that came with really good suspension, including my 1150 GS, my current GL1800 and several others you would think might have. I'd like to see some of the makers offer an 'S' model with higher end suspension for a bit more than stock. It could be done a bunch cheaper than you and I pay if we choose to upgrade but I assume there is not really much of a market for it.
Joe;
I couldn't agree more. Being close to the "average" weight range, I seem to get lucky with the usual factory suspension packages (eg not Ohlins or Elka :rolleyes:) being adequate. The Tiger seems to be surprizingly well above adequate for me in comparison.

My current beef with the motorcycle industry bean counters is that they are offering USD suspension on more and more of their models at very attractive price points now, and fooling many buyers into thinking they're getting "improved" suspension. We all know that suspension is not created equal (as evidenced by our discussion about the SV1000 forks). I'm a bit of a function over form person anyway (that's why I ride a Tiger :D), so bling doesn't do it for me.

My original point was simply that while non-adjustable, the forks on the 05+ Tigers were really well sorted (for me), and personally, I would rather have the older tech forks that have been sorted and work, then lower end USD cartridge forks that don't really work (as in the case of the SV series).

If I had a problem with the 955i forks (and perhaps when they wear out I will), I would rather spend an extra $1000 on something like the Traxxion Dynamics AK-20 Axxion Cartridge Kit and know I'm getting quality cartridge forks set-up for my weight and riding style, rather than "upgrading" to a motorcycle with bling USD forks.

http://www.traxxion.com/store/detail.asp?product_id=AK-20

http://www.traxxion.com/cruisers/cruiser_package2.shtml

http://www.traxxion.com/ak-20applicationlist.shtml
 

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suspension

Suspension on the 07 Tiger is squishy, comparing it to my FZ1, but squishy can be a good thing depending on road quality. Houston roads are full of bumps, potholes, random debris, construction zone surfaces - basically horrible. That squishy suspension makes it a very comfy ride. I sailed over a two by four a few days ago, no problem.
 

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Thats interesting about Traxxion having a fork kit for the '06 Tigers. I thought they were damper rod forks but perhaps they can be converted? Or maybe they were a cartridge of a different type.
In any case it would be interesting if anyone has installed one and what their experience is.
Traxxion gets a lot of buzz in the GL1800 world for being a vast improvement on that bike.
Certainly, as noted in a later post squish isn't all bad. Bikes like the Tiger are to a certain degree about compromise. You can't really expect it to have Superbike like suspension and at the same time soak up rough stuff like a dirtbike, thus middle ground is needed.
 

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Thats interesting about Traxxion having a fork kit for the '06 Tigers. I thought they were damper rod forks but perhaps they can be converted? Or maybe they were a cartridge of a different type.
In any case it would be interesting if anyone has installed one and what their experience is.
Traxxion gets a lot of buzz in the GL1800 world for being a vast improvement on that bike.
Certainly, as noted in a later post squish isn't all bad. Bikes like the Tiger are to a certain degree about compromise. You can't really expect it to have Superbike like suspension and at the same time soak up rough stuff like a dirtbike, thus middle ground is needed.
Joe;

Traxxion does the AK-20 kit for all Girlies 1999-2006. And yes, pre-2005 girlies have damper rod forks. I assume the 2005-2006 girlies also have damper rod forks.

I actually inquired about the cost of a Traxxion upgrade, here's the response I received:

We do have an AK20 kit for the 05 Tiger with fork caps that will give you external preload and rebound adjustment. Price for the kit and fork caps is $1149.95, installation is $150 including a full fork rebuild, seals are $25, and return shipping would be around $20. If you bring us the bike, we charge $75 to remove/replace the forks.

We have installed the kit in quite a few Tigers, it dramatically improves the front end on that bike, getting rid of the mushy feeling, controlling brake dive, and improving bump absorption.

Let me know if you have further questions.

Best regards,

Dan

I bet with that upgrade, no Tiger owner would complain about the front end! ...other than bringing out the limitations of the shock, which you would also want to replace to match the performance of the AK-20 front end. Not a bad price considering the cost of aftermarket forks, or an eBay USD bling solution that would still need a rebuild.
 

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I've never heard anything but good about Traxxion so I imagine it is of very high quality. I doubt I will do it since I've already done he emulators and springs and am pretty happy with that. If I hadn't though and needed to get inside the forks anyway, say to replace a seal, it would be very tempting.
Curious that since they've been doing them a while we've never had a poster who has had one done and can give a report.
 

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I've enjoyed reading this thread, the new Tiger seems to have been accepted for what it is.

I hopefully can bring another perspective to this question based on my recently buying a Daytona 955 and ridden a Cagiva Navigator. These two bikes have really sharpened my perspective on what I'm looking for in a ride.

The Daytona is an awesomely fast bike, not in the same league as Japan inc machines sadly, but fast just the same. When I step off the Daytona on to the Tiger I have to tone down my expectation of what the bike can do on the road. I found myself spinning up the rear Tourance on Tigger the other day going up a mountian pass, great fun, but all happening a fair bit slower than what can be achieved on the Daytona. With respect to all those guys that post in saying how they saw off sportsbike riders on their Tiger, it only happened becuase they are fast riders, not because they have a fast bike. If two riders of equal ability set off on a 955 Tiger and a modern sportbike on a reasonable road surface, the Tiger is going to get smoked.

The Cagiva was interesting because it runs an 18" front wheel. Again, a little sharper on the road than my 955 Tiger, a little more awkward off road.

O.k if you are still reading, here's the point: wheels sizes, suspension length and riding position make a huge difference in the way the bike rides. A good rider can blur those differences, but that doesn't mean they dont exist.

I love my 955 for it's all round ability and it gets offroaded fairly often. There are significant compromises in its on road performance brought on by its geometry and long suspension travel, but I'm willing to live with those to get the things I really enjoy about the bike.

The 1050 moves the compromises further towards on road use. That 17" front wheel gives it great turn in, it's lighter and more responsive and goes like stink. Its compromised on gravel roads because of this, but it does maintain a great riding position for this kind of work and it can do it, just not as well as the 955. I don't like the pillion seat, but that is a subjective preference my wife and I have. In fact, one day I may get one, to go alongside either the Tiger or whatever adventure bike I finish up with. A great ride.

If you need that all round performance, get the 955. Honestly ask yourself if you are going to ride gravel and dirt that often and if the answer is yes, go get one, you'll love it.

If however you come to the conclusion that off road is not a big part of your riding, get the 1050. It's a sharper, lighter tool that will give you lots of joy on road and the occasional foray off bitumen.

Enjoy the search, its one of the best part of owning a bike!
 
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