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Are motorcyclists transients unable to be satisfied?
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metallyguitarded Offline
Road Warrior

United States
Posts: 1,642
Joined: Aug 2014
Post: #11
RE: Are motorcyclists transients unable to be satisfied?
I've only been riding about eight, going on nine years now. In that time frame, I've owned a Kawasaki Vulcan 900 (my first motorcycle) on which I changed out the exhaust, put on a Corbin saddle, changed out the grips, added hard bags and I'm sure more mods I simply don't remember. Then, I traded it in. There was absolutely nothing wrong with the bike. It was comfortable, easy to ride, enough get up and go for my style of riding. Of course, I was still learning and the learning curve was rather steep. I got it in my head that I wanted something faster and lighter but I was still a bit wary of going with a full super sport. After about 15,000 miles on the Vulcan, I bought a Kawasaki Ninja 650.

It was the first year the 650 was offered and the "Ninja" tag was, in my opinion, more of a marketing ploy to give the bike an air of sportiness that it truly didn't deserve. It was a fine motorcycle. An upright, standard with decent power but I soon found that something about the bars positioning didn't feel right. It verged on being uncomfortable and over time I came to the conclusion that it wasn't the bike for me. Although, I appreciated how much lighter it was than the cruiser. I'm not sure how many miles I put on the 650 but it wasn't much before I decided I had to trade it in. This time, I pulled the trigger on a full on super sport.

If there was any consistency to my madness, it was brand loyalty. From the Ninja 650, I landed on a Ninja ZX6R. In lime green no less. I actually loved (and miss) that bike. Everything was better about it, except, of course, the ergonomics. Handling was amazing. The ability to change directions, effortless. The brakes, phenomenal. The gear box was so smooth and that slipper clutch was a great addition. I rode that bike everywhere. It was my daily commuter. My weekend canyon carver. I rode it through the mountains with winter snow on the ground and through the hills above Malibu in the peak of summer. If there was a drawback to that motorcycle, it was definitely the comfort. Or lack thereof. My wrists would kill me on any ride over 40 minutes. An ache that would last for days at times. My aging back started to complain more and more about the aggressive forward lean to the bars. And, if I'm being completely honest, the bike simply lacked a low end. Mid- to high-end power was face peeling. Down low, it was pitiful. It wasn't until I'd hit 5 to 6K rpm that it would even start to come alive. It redlined at 15.5K! Or was it 16.5? It wasn't happy unless it was screaming between 8K and 11K. One day, as I walked to the spot where I had left it, I found my monster chain cut, left open around the post that had secured my motorcycle overnight. Someone had made off with my baby.

I suspect she ended up in Mexico as many of our motorcycles stolen in Southern California end up crossing the border which is only 20 minutes away from downtown San Diego. That, or one of many chop shops that unfortunately operate in the area. I've never seen her again. Once the insurance gave me the value of the bike, I decided I wanted something more classic. Less sporty. Something with character but something less likely to attract thieving eyes. I found a slightly used Bonneville which I paid cash for and happily rode home. Such a different bike from anything I'd ridden up to that point. I was in love with the styling. Although not a true classic, I appreciated the lines and its nakedness. In my eyes, it looked like a true motorcycle. It's the motorcycle I owned when I first met my (second and last) wife. We went for rides up and down the coast. I begrudgingly added a backrest for her comfort even though I thought it destroyed the classic lines. It was fun. But something about the bike left me wanting. This new iteration of a classic motorcycle seemed to lack soul. Or, at least, that's what I told myself. Looking back, I know it was a great bike that to this day would serve me well. I sold it after about a year.

Between 2006 and 2009, I owned the Vulcan 900, the Ninja 650, the Ninja ZX6R, and the Bonneville. Four motorcycles in just as many years. Ridiculous. My habits changed when I found the VFR. A sport-tourer! What a perfect concept! Long-range comfort but with decent power and handling. And, being a fan of many things retro, the revived red, white and blue color scheme of the 2007 Anniversary Edition spoke to me. The sales manager who, by this time, had gotten to know my buying habits rather well, called me before the VFR was put out on the floor. It had only 419 miles on the odometer and had mostly sat in a garage, unused for two years. I've owned it since 2009.

Another confession ... I've gone back and forth with the idea of selling the VFR to more easily afford the changes I'd like to do to the CB. I feel that I'd regret selling the VFR, however, and at least if you were to ask me today, I'd tell you that I'm holding onto the VFR and the CB. My wife prefers riding on the back of the VFR over the back of the CB. That alone is good reason to keep it. It's paid off, insurance is relatively cheap, it has a good sized tank, although somewhat portly, it's much sportier than the CB. I suppose I'll take my time with the modifications to the CB. One motorcycle I hope to have for the rest of my time here on earth. I'm also hoping that's a very long time from now.

So, my answer: Yes.

Unfortunately for all of you. I've taken the next few weeks off from work. That means, you are likely to get many more rambling, lengthy posts such as this. Especially if it continues to rain as it has been!

"People are more violently opposed to fur than to leather because it's safer to harass rich women than motorcycle gangs." - A. Sayle
12-18-2014 04:27 PM
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The ferret Offline
Forum Moderator

Ohio
Posts: 18,758
Joined: Apr 2013
Post: #12
RE: Are motorcyclists transients unable to be satisfied?
Wow, after reading that whole thing, I had to scroll back up to see who wrote it....

J/k MG... And I think it's a familiar story round these parts apparently. I know it sounds familiar to me.

Enjoy the vaca.

.
2014 DLX and 2006 ST 1300
"a good chunk of life's problems can be solved by going for a ride"...Guth ..... "daily" ...Ferret
12-18-2014 04:47 PM
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metallyguitarded Offline
Road Warrior

United States
Posts: 1,642
Joined: Aug 2014
Post: #13
RE: Are motorcyclists transients unable to be satisfied?
(12-18-2014 04:47 PM)The ferret Wrote:  Wow, after reading that whole thing, I had to scroll back up to see who wrote it....

J/k MG... And I think it's a familiar story round these parts apparently. I know it sounds familiar to me.

Enjoy the vaca.

Haha! That's ok. So did I.

"People are more violently opposed to fur than to leather because it's safer to harass rich women than motorcycle gangs." - A. Sayle
12-18-2014 05:08 PM
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ClassicVW Offline
High Mileage

New Jersey, USA
Posts: 1,415
Joined: Aug 2014
Post: #14
RE: Are motorcyclists transients unable to be satisfied?
I should have packed a sandwich along to read that whole thing!--- Just kidding ya too! Enjoy your vacation! Beer

--George
"The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day that you find out why" -- Mark Twain
(This post was last modified: 12-18-2014 05:54 PM by ClassicVW.)
12-18-2014 05:54 PM
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Flynrider Offline
Road Warrior

Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 2,573
Joined: Apr 2013
Post: #15
RE: Are motorcyclists transients unable to be satisfied?
(12-18-2014 11:06 AM)The ferret Wrote:  How about you? Are you guilty?

Not guilty. I tend to do a lot of research before I buy, then stick with what works. Before the CB1100 was my '93 CB750 which I bought new in '96 and rode for 17 years (and still ride several times a week). The main reason for picking up the CB11 last year was because I didn't think the 750 would last me the rest of my life. Neither of these bikes is going anywhere soon. I'll probably leave them to my nephews in my will Tongue

It's not just bikes either. I've been driving the same truck for 15 years and flying the same plane for 20 years.

I do know a few people that have incurable cases of the wantsies. A pilot friend in Tucson buys a plane, spends a fortune to "make it his own", then sells it for something else in a year or so. I've known him for about a dozen years and he's at least that many planes.

Phoenix, AZ
2013 CB1100 - Big Red
1993 CB750 Nighthawk - Tahitian Blue
12-18-2014 06:36 PM
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Guth Offline
Forum Founder

Portland, OR
Posts: 3,115
Joined: Apr 2013
Post: #16
RE: Are motorcyclists transients unable to be satisfied?
Such behavior doesn't just apply to motorcycles. I feel that the Internet is at least partially to blame (and yes, I get the irony here). There are plenty of other forums out there for just about anything you can imagine: cameras, hi-fi gear, guitars, etc., etc.. On pretty much all of those forums you'll find stories of similar purchasing tendencies. When people start chatting it up with others about a shared interest that they are all fairly obsessive about, their perspective begins to change. Every shortcoming is now being scrutinized not just by themselves, but by all these other guys as well. In addition, when someone acquires the latest and greatest example of whatever it is they are obsessed about, the differences are usually built-up to the extreme (this one blows the old model away in every respect, blah, blah, blah).

Next thing you know, people are itching to do away with something that that they had been pretty happy with in search of something supposedly much better only to end up repeating this cycle over and over again. Behavior which might have struck someone as excessive when examined in isolation no longer seems so abnormal in a forum of like-minded individuals. In turn, for many it becomes easier to justify actions that might not have seemed so normal in the past.

On the extreme side of things, forums like this one are to obsessive-compulsive personalities as taverns are to alcoholics. It's typically more fun to hang out with those who share your vices than those who don't.

(Interestingly, I lifted some of the above text from a post I made on a guitar forum a few years back. The topic was why guys buy so many guitars.)

2013 CB1100: Placed deposit on Nov. 12, 2012; Received delivery on April 5, 2013.
12-18-2014 10:10 PM
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lola Offline
Running Like a Top

Los Angeles,Ca
Posts: 382
Joined: May 2013
Post: #17
RE: Are motorcyclists transients unable to be satisfied?
In a Span of a 18 months My Coworker had 4 bikes from a Harley Fatboy that he sold to get a KTM990 adventure then felt the ktm was too much for the daily grind so he sold that to get a bmw Rt1200... After a couple of months with the RT he Got bored with that and replaced it with a 2014 BMW R1200GS. I don't really over analyze what the next guy is doing or why their mototrcycles are going through revolving doors.. funny things is today While on lunch break kicking it under a tree both of us looking at our bikes my coworker blurts out that he'll be selling the GS soon to get a KTM 690 enduro!?! I then look at him in disbelief and just said cool man another bike for me to test ride.... I love the enthusiasm of these type of motorcycle nuts! if they could only have them all Smile

money pit
12-19-2014 12:08 AM
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Rocky Offline
Road Warrior

Nova Scotia, Canada
Posts: 2,024
Joined: Apr 2014
Post: #18
RE: Are motorcyclists transients unable to be satisfied?
I'm not guilty either, but I have a couple of friends who are - and I don't get it - but that's just me.
I've owned all my modern bikes since new and intend to keep them.
I've owned the vintage Triumph since 1995 and the BSA since 2000.
I just turned 77, but as long as I can swing a leg over them, they will be in the stable until I can't.

Still rockin', rollin', and ridin' after all these years
'67 BSA 441 VR, '70 Triumph Tiger 100, '02 Honda CB900F, '06 Triumph T100 Bonneville, '14 Honda CB1100A
12-19-2014 04:01 AM
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CIP57 Offline
High Mileage

NY & NC
Posts: 1,413
Joined: May 2013
Post: #19
RE: Are motorcyclists transients unable to be satisfied?
(12-18-2014 10:10 PM)Guth Wrote:  Such behavior doesn't just apply to motorcycles. I feel that the Internet is at least partially to blame (and yes, I get the irony here). There are plenty of other forums out there for just about anything you can imagine: cameras, hi-fi gear, guitars, etc., etc.. On pretty much all of those forums you'll find stories of similar purchasing tendencies. When people start chatting it up with others about a shared interest that they are all fairly obsessive about, their perspective begins to change. Every shortcoming is now being scrutinized not just by themselves, but by all these other guys as well. In addition, when someone acquires the latest and greatest example of whatever it is they are obsessed about, the differences are usually built-up to the extreme (this one blows the old model away in every respect, blah, blah, blah).

Next thing you know, people are itching to do away with something that that they had been pretty happy with in search of something supposedly much better only to end up repeating this cycle over and over again. Behavior which might have struck someone as excessive when examined in isolation no longer seems so abnormal in a forum of like-minded individuals. In turn, for many it becomes easier to justify actions that might not have seemed so normal in the past.

On the extreme side of things, forums like this one are to obsessive-compulsive personalities as taverns are to alcoholics. It's typically more fun to hang out with those who share your vices than those who don't.

(Interestingly, I lifted some of the above text from a post I made on a guitar forum a few years back. The topic was why guys buy so many guitars.)

I have to personally disagree with the above comments. From a personal prospective I have never been influenced of justified my actions because someone else was either doing it ( on a forum) or said it was okay to do the same. I believe this is the first forum I've been on which a topic like this has even come up for discussion.

What you are talking about is justification, how one persons sickness can make you justify your actions. I would consider it more of a compulsive hobby than an addiction and to put it in the same class as a alcoholic to a tavern is just incorrect. The alcoholic or addict has three paths in life, Recovery, jail or death. I don't see someone buying a guitar, surf board, camera equipment or motorcycle going to jail or following those three paths.

Addiction works in the complete opposite of your post, addicts will find people who are as sick as them or worse, then comes isolation, if your one of the lucky one's there will be intervention and recovery.

1982 Suzuki GS1100EZ
12-19-2014 05:39 AM
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Tezza Offline
1st Service Completed

Queensland Australia
Posts: 172
Joined: Nov 2013
Post: #20
RE: Are motorcyclists transients unable to be satisfied?
Only ever sold 1 bike and I still have all the rest. I seriously regret selling that bike. It was a 1942 WLA Harley. sold it for $3k and ended up helping the guy restore it. I still have CB1100,Kawasaki Z1, Suzuki T500, Suzuki T350, Suzuki T250,3 x DS6 Yamaha, 2 X 250 SRX Yamaha, Honda XR400R, Honda S110, Honda CB550F and XLCH Sportster.
(This post was last modified: 12-19-2014 05:55 AM by Tezza.)
12-19-2014 05:48 AM
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