Author Topic: What other bikes?  (Read 525 times)

Offline davidr8

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What other bikes?
« on: July 17, 2017, 01:48:18 pm »
I currently ride an '06 Triumph Tiger 955i. Great bike however it's a bit dated and small for two-up.
So I'm in the serious research phase of replacing El Tigre.

I'm doing the dance between five different bike models (all used):
ST1300 - ridden two examples
R1200RT - ridden two examples
R1200GS - not ridden
FJR1300 - not ridden
ZG-1400 - not ridden

I'm 5'9" and about 170 lbs and manage my Tiger's 33" tall seat height pretty well. 

I'm curious about how you decided on a Connie and what other bikes you considered.
Many thanks!
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 05:22:19 pm by davidr8 »

Offline B.D.F.

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2017, 02:48:53 pm »
Not really a suggestion but maybe a thought: quite a few people have some difficulty handling a C-14, especially two-up, due to its size and saddle height. An FJR and ST 1300 are about the same, all large, heavy and high saddle height bikes. The 1200GS is a bit lighter but may have an even higher saddle. The 1200 RT will weigh less and have a lower center of gravity than the three other sport- tourers you have listed and I think significantly easier to handle when stopped, backing up, etc. Might be worth considering before buying anything.

Brian

I currently ride an '06 Triumph Tiger 955i. Great bike however it's a bit dated and small for two-up.
So I'm in the serious research phase of replacing El Tigre.

I'm doing the dance between five different bike models (all used):
ST1300 - ridden two examples
R1200RT - ridden two examples
R1200GS - not ridden
FJR1300 - not ridden
ZG-1400 - not ridden

I'm 5'9" and about 170 lbs. for what it's worth.

I'm curious about how you decided on a Connie and what other bikes you considered.
Many thanks!
Homo Sapiens Sapiens and just a tad of Neanderthal but it usually does not show....  My Private mail is blocked; it is not you, it is me, just like that dating partner said all those years ago. Please send an e-mail if you want to contact me privately.

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Offline davidr8

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #2 on: July 17, 2017, 03:57:10 pm »
Not really a suggestion but maybe a thought: quite a few people have some difficulty handling a C-14, especially two-up, due to its size and saddle height. An FJR and ST 1300 are about the same, all large, heavy and high saddle height bikes. The 1200GS is a bit lighter but may have an even higher saddle. The 1200 RT will weigh less and have a lower center of gravity than the three other sport- tourers you have listed and I think significantly easier to handle when stopped, backing up, etc. Might be worth considering before buying anything.

Brian

Thanks Brian,
The weight of the ST and Concours and to a lesser degree the FJR, are a concern for me. I have a gravel driveway to deal with on a daily basis.

The 1200GS Adventure is about an taller in the saddle than my Tiger, the regular GS is about the same height and weight as my Tiger. The empty panniers and top box on a GS can't possible be as heavy as those on the Tiger and I'm used to dealing with that so not too worried about it. That said, I haven't ridden a GS yet.

The RT felt bulky however as you say it's lighter than the FJR, C-14 and the ST. And only a bit heavier than my Tiger.

I do like the 'character' of the Beemers which is to say they aren't inline four's etc. Reliability and repair costs are a bit of a deterrent.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 05:23:08 pm by davidr8 »

Offline maxtog

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #3 on: July 17, 2017, 04:18:04 pm »
I currently ride an '06 Triumph Tiger 955i. Great bike however it's a bit dated and small for two-up.
So I'm in the serious research phase of replacing El Tigre.

I'm doing the dance between five different bike models (all used):
ST1300 - ridden two examples
R1200RT - ridden two examples
R1200GS - not ridden
FJR1300 - not ridden
ZG-1400 - not ridden

All relatively large and heavy.  And, I will tell you that the Concours is the top of the class for those you have listed.  You need to ride one to understand why (and reading the past postings on the Forums will help some).

Quote
I'm 5'9" and about 170 lbs. for what it's worth.

Not much worth.  Standing height says little about leg length, which is what is really important on a motorcycle.  My inseam is only 27.5" or something, and the Concours is quite a challenge (I had to lower the bike, get a lower seat, and use raised boots.... and handlebar risers).  Your body weight doesn't matter much (mine is 150).  Unless you are a huge, powerful person, "man-handling" the Concours isn't going to work, anyway :)  Most people can't make up for things like parking lot mistakes (too slow, tilted too far, slipped footing) like is possible on a 250/500 (I speak from experience).  The Concours feels quite heavy at low speed, but the moment you start moving past 10MPH, that mostly disappears.

Quote
I'm curious about how you decided on a Connie

It had the best performance, most features, best reliability and warranty.   It also looked great and the price was nearly the lowest.  Like I said, really hard to beat.

First you have to ask if this is the CLASS of bike you want- as a sport touring, it has shaft drive, longer wheelbase, lower-end tune, lots of storage and features (which adds to weight/size), lots of wind protection, smooth, good body/leg positioning for longer distance.  It is not as comfy as a full-on touring (like goldwing) but is also a lot more sporty than a touring.  You can't throw it in the corners as fast as a sport bike or get the lower price.   If the answer is "yes" to the sport touring class, then the Concours must be on your list.

My problem with a gravel driveway would be just my lack of legs to help control... that might or might not be a problem for you.  But know that the Concours has an EXCELLENT traction control system that helps with such things- some say the best they have even encountered (gen2).
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Offline B.D.F.

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2017, 07:02:52 pm »
Hey, glad to help if I can and it is not much. It is just that now that the bike is 10 years old, 'we' (the old- timers, I bought mine w/in a month of them being introduced back in '07) have seen this situation time and time again. I am 6'2" and fairly large (and getting larger all the time) and I have had more than a few 'footing' surprises; things like the road dips away just a bit and that foot has to suddenly reach further down. The C-14, and almost all of those on your list, are not easy bikes for large people to handle, and being a bit smaller does not help.

The RT is lighter and even more important I think is that it has a lower center of gravity. All of the in-line 4's and the V-4 Honda you mention are fairly high C.G. machines and so are tough to control with any lean on at all when stopped (or stopping). The RT is a lot more forgiving IMO.

And of course, as you say, there are many considerations between main- stream Japanese bikes and BMW's for example beyond being able to handle them at a stop. The owner has to 'handle' them on maintenance days too.  ;D  By the way, the C-14 is probably the most difficult to do major maintenance checks of the three Japanese sport tourers you mentioned. Nothing horrible but considerably more difficult than an FJR in my opinion due to the engine and frame layout. Checking valve lash on an FJR is easier. There really is a lot to consider before buying any of them I think.

Brian

Thanks Brian,
The weight of the ST and Concours and to a lesser degree the FJR, are a concern for me. I have a gravel driveway to deal with on a daily basis.

The 1200GS Adventure is about an taller in the saddle than my Tiger, the regular GS is about the same height and weight as my Tiger. The empty panniers and top box on a GS can't possible be as heavy as those on the Tiger and I'm used to dealing with that so not too worried about it. That said, I haven't ridden a GS yet.

The RT felt bulky however as you say it's lighter than the FJR, C-14 and the ST. And only a bit heavier than my Tiger.

I do like the 'character' of the Beemers which is to say they aren't inline four's etc. Reliability and repair costs are a bit of a deterrent.
Homo Sapiens Sapiens and just a tad of Neanderthal but it usually does not show....  My Private mail is blocked; it is not you, it is me, just like that dating partner said all those years ago. Please send an e-mail if you want to contact me privately.

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2017, 07:19:42 pm »
Quite frankly, BMW wasn't even in the equation.  The Honda and Yamaha bikes were hideous.   The C14 was the best looking.   
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Offline B.D.F.

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2017, 07:44:14 pm »
Just realized I did not really answer your question.

I choose the C-14 in '07 and am keeping an eye open for another bike and would again choose a C-14 right now, and for basically the same reasons:

Compared to the others I considered:

Honda ST1300: too big, heavy, soft and under- powered. Not much sport in that sport- tourer.

FJR: Nice bike, would have been my third choice in '07 and would be no. 2 now. Closest to a C-14 but I prefer the C-14 because of the tetra- lever rear suspension (eliminates shaft jacking, and now after 10 years, has proven to be a spectacular performer), a bit more power, a bit more user- friendly shaped saddle bags, and I like the looks of the C-14 over the FJR. That said, there was a dark red FJR one year that was very, very nice.

BMW K1200GT / K1300GT. This was the bike I was going to buy, all the while ducking like a scared dog 'cause I was wary of being another piece of cannon fodder in the BMW meat grinder. They were deep in the final drive debacle then and absolutely not standing behind their hardware- unforgivable IMO. Also all kinds of software quirks and issues; the gentleman my wife worked for at the time picked up a brand new one and it left him on the highway going home.... he called the dealer and told them where to pick it up if they wanted it back. Seriously.  Not a consideration now as the bike is no longer made.

BMW boxer twins: just not a fan. Like riding a sewing machine IMO. And still expensive to buy and maintain.

Triump Sport Tourer: interesting bike, nice looking bike but less motorcycle than a C-14 for considerably more money IMO. Just not a good value and considerably less powerful than a C-14, this is noticeable on the highway, two- up, at speed when trying to accelerate. Not saying the Triumph will not perform because it will but a C-14 will perform quite a bit better.

I am also in a very different situation than a prospective new owner; I am pretty familiar with the bike, and have accepted and made peace with its particular faults. I know doing a valve lash check / adjust is going to be painful compared to, say, and FJR but I accept that for what I consider the better bike. I do not spend much time adjusting valves but spend most of my bike time riding and so will trade off the easier maintenance for the better bike while riding, again in my opinion. And all of the important faults of the C-14 can be addressed, such as cruise control, and addressed for the life of the bike. It will take me a couple of weeks to 'farkle up' a new C-14 but I know what I want now and know how to get there. Being new to the model, there may be more advantage for you in another bike given that there is a learning curve with all of them. I would have to learn all the subtle quirks of the FJR and then fix those that bothered or tended to strand me; this is done on a C-14.

Keep looking and try to do an honest evaluation for what suits you best. Everyone can recommend but no one can say, I do not believe, what is best for you. At least the majority of us who do not know you and have any idea what you might like and what you might hate on a new bike.

This is a good source of C-14 information, as is the other Concours forum. There is a very popular FJR forum that is also quite good with a lot of knowledge and wisdom about that bike. Scan some forums, take all with a grain of salt and you will probably pick up on some key points that seem important to you. I would suggest after a bit of study, come to each forum with specific questions you develop and see if you can get a useful answer. For example, KiPass is made out to be a really big deal on the C-14 but it simply is not; ask directly about it and some folks will steer you to useful information. Same with the Feejer, the BMW, etc. And, of course, use the 'filter' to skim off the nonsense along the way.

Best of luck.

Brian

I currently ride an '06 Triumph Tiger 955i. Great bike however it's a bit dated and small for two-up.
So I'm in the serious research phase of replacing El Tigre.

I'm doing the dance between five different bike models (all used):
ST1300 - ridden two examples
R1200RT - ridden two examples
R1200GS - not ridden
FJR1300 - not ridden
ZG-1400 - not ridden

I'm 5'9" and about 170 lbs and manage my Tiger's 33" tall seat height pretty well. 

I'm curious about how you decided on a Connie and what other bikes you considered.
Many thanks!
Homo Sapiens Sapiens and just a tad of Neanderthal but it usually does not show....  My Private mail is blocked; it is not you, it is me, just like that dating partner said all those years ago. Please send an e-mail if you want to contact me privately.

KiPass keeping you up at night? Fuel gauge warning burning your retinas? Get unlimited peace and harmony here: www.incontrolne.com

Offline O.C.

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #7 on: July 18, 2017, 12:03:38 am »
Over the years (since 2009)  I've had 4 C14s, but my advancing years and a couple of serious health issues forced me to look for a lighter more manageable bike, I wanted to remain loyal to the Kawasaki brand because I have had soooo many over the years and they are both good and reliable, so I changed my last C14 for a Kawasaki  Versys 1000

This bike is over 9 stones lighter than my previous C14 and whilst it maybe doesn't have the street presence of a C14 (and no shaft drive) it is a superb all rounder which does everything that I can ask of a bike

Its worth a look  :)   
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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #8 on: July 18, 2017, 05:35:12 am »
Just realized I did not really answer your question.

I choose the C-14 in '07 and am keeping an eye open for another bike and would again choose a C-14 right now, and for basically the same reasons:

Compared to the others I considered:

Honda ST1300: too big, heavy, soft and under- powered. Not much sport in that sport- tourer.  UGLY

FJR: Nice bike, would have been my third choice in '07 and would be no. 2 now. Closest to a C-14 but I prefer the C-14 because of the tetra- lever rear suspension (eliminates shaft jacking, and now after 10 years, has proven to be a spectacular performer), a bit more power, a bit more user- friendly shaped saddle bags, and I like the looks of the C-14 over the FJR. That said, there was a dark red FJR one year that was very, very nice.  UGLY

BMW K1200GT / K1300GT. This was the bike I was going to buy, all the while ducking like a scared dog 'cause I was wary of being another piece of cannon fodder in the BMW meat grinder. They were deep in the final drive debacle then and absolutely not standing behind their hardware- unforgivable IMO. Also all kinds of software quirks and issues; the gentleman my wife worked for at the time picked up a brand new one and it left him on the highway going home.... he called the dealer and told them where to pick it up if they wanted it back. Seriously.  Not a consideration now as the bike is no longer made.  LIKE TOTALLY UGLY

BMW boxer twins: just not a fan. Like riding a sewing machine IMO. And still expensive to buy and maintain.  NOT EVEN GOING THERE, NOT ENOUGH POWER

Triump Sport Tourer: interesting bike, nice looking bike but less motorcycle than a C-14 for considerably more money IMO. Just not a good value and considerably less powerful than a C-14, this is noticeable on the highway, two- up, at speed when trying to accelerate. Not saying the Triumph will not perform because it will but a C-14 will perform quite a bit better.  QUITE NICE LOOKING, BUT NOT ANY DEALERS WHERE I LIVE.



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Offline Tree

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #9 on: July 19, 2017, 12:05:08 pm »
I love my Concours.  I'm 6'-2" with a 32" inseam so the ground control is no issue.  I made the switch from a Honda VTX 1300S.  Nice cruiser but not sporty by any means.  BIG difference in terms of ride height.  The connie blows it away in every category (IMO) so I have no remorse.

I do like the look of the Triumph and it attracted me in terms of available tech items which were stock.  I'd get one as a second bike if I had the $.  It was well reviewed as far as I have read.  The previous posts point out the lower power but if you travel 1 up most of the time it might not become an issue.  One item to consider is that it has been discontinued and will no longer be produced.  Which begs the question - Why?
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Offline maxtog

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #10 on: July 19, 2017, 03:37:14 pm »
I do like the look of the Triumph and it attracted me in terms of available tech items which were stock.  I'd get one as a second bike if I had the $.  It was well reviewed as far as I have read.  The previous posts point out the lower power but if you travel 1 up most of the time it might not become an issue.  One item to consider is that it has been discontinued and will no longer be produced.  Which begs the question - Why?


Are we talking about the Triumph Trophy?   http://www.triumphmotorcycles.com/bikes/adventure-and-touring/trophy/2017/trophy-se-abs  Could find nothing definitive about it being discontinued.

I like the looks (although not as much as the Concours) and instrumentation is very nice (similar to the Concours, too).  It would be a good challenge to the C14 for features and comfort, not sure about reliability.  Priced considerably higher though, less power, but a few additional gadgets.  3cyl no VVT, /3 less warranty, fewer dealers... but hey, it has cruise control!
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Offline Tree

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #11 on: July 19, 2017, 06:41:44 pm »
Are we talking about the Triumph Trophy?   http://www.triumphmotorcycles.com/bikes/adventure-and-touring/trophy/2017/trophy-se-abs  Could find nothing definitive about it being discontinued.

I like the looks (although not as much as the Concours) and instrumentation is very nice (similar to the Concours, too).  It would be a good challenge to the C14 for features and comfort, not sure about reliability.  Priced considerably higher though, less power, but a few additional gadgets.  3cyl no VVT, /3 less warranty, fewer dealers... but hey, it has cruise control!


Triumph Trophy.  The gadgets were cool.  I saw a side-by-side review of it vs. 3 other sport tourers on a YouTube feed (the Concours being one of the others).  Finding a gently used one is actually proving to be more difficult than I thought it would be.  It appears that they actually are OK machines and no one is getting rid of them.
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Offline maxtog

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2017, 09:27:53 pm »
Triumph Trophy.  The gadgets were cool.  I saw a side-by-side review of it vs. 3 other sport tourers on a YouTube feed (the Concours being one of the others).  Finding a gently used one is actually proving to be more difficult than I thought it would be.  It appears that they actually are OK machines and no one is getting rid of them.

The entire USA sport touring market is a small one.  So the Trophy will be a splash in an already small pond due to the factors I mentioned before- expensive (like BMW, but not as much), smaller number of dealers (compared to Kawasaki, Honda, and Yamaha), and lesser known name (less mind-share, opportunities to see/ride them, groups).  In this lineup it will likely go like this for number of sales (based solely on observation):

Kawasaki/Yamaha  (I won't guess which is more, sales numbers are few and far between)
BMW
Triumph
Everyone else (Honda dropped out of the market, at least for now)
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Offline COGnosticat0r

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #13 on: July 21, 2017, 01:11:22 pm »
Have you looked at a BMW K1300GT

150 pounds lighter than a C14, more power and handles like it is on rails.  A couple of weeks ago I traded with a buddy while riding the Cheharola Skyway and that bike was really a pleasure to ride.  Hard luggage, electronic cruise control ABS ESA  etc etc  and you can find one fairly cheap, they only made them 2009 and 2010
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Offline maxtog

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Re: What other bikes?
« Reply #14 on: July 21, 2017, 03:50:46 pm »
Have you looked at a BMW K1300GT

Certainly an option, but if used.  No question it is a nice bike.

Quote
150 pounds lighter than a C14

K1300GT:  667 wet
C14ABS:  690 wet

That is 23 pounds , not 150.

Quote
more power

Barely/maybe.  1/4 mile and 0-60 are essentially identical.  And yet the BMW gearing is much lower- 1,250RPM higher at cruise. 

Cycle world:

"in just about every area of on-the-road significance, the Concours either equals or surpasses it."
"[The] Concours [...] motors along the highway in comparative silence, smoothness and steadiness."
"No matter how you slice it, the Concours 14 is a whole lot of motorcycle..."
"Even in a straight line, the Concours is a little easier on the rider than the K1300GT."
"when you attack backroads with resolute aggression, the big Beemer starts feeling a bit top-heavy [compared to the C14]"
"[Both] handle curvy roads amazingly well for their bulk and size, but we have to give the nod here to the Concours."

Quote
and you can find one fairly cheap,
The one you were comparing to the Concours had a $22,000 price tag.... a staggering almost $9,000 more.  So although you might be able to find an affordable one now, used, a used Concours would be just as much lower, retaining that $9,000 gap.

Quote
they only made them 2009 and 2010

Multiple sources show 2009 through 2011.  But I don't know if that included USA or not.
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