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#541461 - 11/19/09 10:02 PM question to any Harley riders  
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majordad Offline
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majordad  Offline
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Roanoke, Virginia
I have been considering buying a 2002 up Road King or Street Glide. I would like read opinions from this site from people owning both BMW and HD to compare the two (not trying to start a war, just curious). As it stands now if I bought one I would still keep my RT (against my wife's wishes).

I haven't ridden one yet, however, the RK or SG appear to be a comfortable, long haul bike. This is my primary style of riding but I have to be able to manage in a parking lot. This is why I love the RT because I weigh only 150lbs. The size of the RK or SG is intimidating me a little.


2007 1200RT Titan Silver
#541470 - 11/19/09 10:25 PM Re: question to any Harley riders [Re: majordad]  
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lvnvbiker Offline
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las vegas nevada
I have alot of HDs in my past so I'll take a swing... I would also toss the "Roadglide" FLTRI into the mix to round it out. The Roadking was my first "bagger" and I rode it mainly w/o the sail they call a windscreen, very comfortable like a nice easychair in terms of possition and with regular bars good for quie a few miles even with the wind beating. The Roadking and Streetglide are similar bikes with the screen mounted to the fork not the frame so they are effected by crosswinds and wind in general adding some input to the bars. The Streetglide is basicly a stripped down Electraglide with a less comfy seat and a 3" wind screen that is a fun ride but you still eat bugs. The least known but IMO best riding and looking of the baggers is the FLTRI Roadglide with the frame mounted sharknose fairing. This is the only HD I will own again, and when the economy clears up I will be buying another. It rides as comfy as the Ultraclassic but smoother due to the frame mounted fairing, and don't be afraid of the bikes as at low speed they are easier to handle than the RT. Do yourself a favor and ride the Roadglide, then the others before making a decision( at vegas hd they will let you swap bikes a few times during a rental day, ask at your local HD dealer/rental counter). They are really more similar to an LT than an RT, and maint is super simple on the HD with no valve adjust due to hydraulic lifters. The RT is more responsive and quicker handling than the HDs will be but for long easy cruising the HD is a great bike.


06 R1200GSA Too much fun to be legal!
07 r1200rt (gone to a loving home.)
03 Buell Blast (sold)
97 FLST full custom(gone finaly)
Glenn Willis, IUOE Local 12 Steward, general all around PITA.
#541471 - 11/19/09 10:26 PM Re: question to any Harley riders [Re: majordad]  
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T__ Offline
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T__  Offline
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majordad, you really need to go ride one yourself.. My Harley Electra Glide is actually easier to handle at low speeds & parking lots than my 2009 BMW RT.. Harley uses a reverse upper triple tree that enhances low speed maneuvers & parking lot on-the-lock turns..

As far as comfort goes,, that is a subjective thing.. I actually feel more comfortable at speed on the RT then the Harley.. The upright sitting on the Harley is nice for moderate sit back cruising but I find it isnít as good as the lean forward position of the BMW for long hours of riding..

The BMW is hands down better (for me) at cruising at 85-90 mph for long distances.. Much more precise & better at lane position precision.. The Harley will do it but the BMW will do it with less fuss & muss..

My Harley has a 5 speed & that is OK for back roads & 70-75 on the freeway but at 80 mph up I find I keep looking for another gear..

The BMW braking & foot brake pedal position are much superior in my opinion..

The 08 up Harley dressers are a little different as they a have a more limited steering lock (I think due to the larger fuel tank)..


Bottom line: I like them both but I seem to ride the BMW much more than the Harley if Iím traveling more that an hour..

Twisty

#541478 - 11/19/09 10:33 PM Re: question to any Harley riders [Re: majordad]  
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Tapatio Offline
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California

Have you considered a Victory? I saw a Cross Country the other day and was really impressed. The stock 106 engine will blow away any stock HD.




Sometimes it's a little better to travel than to arrive - Zen & the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
'05 Honda CRF450X
'06 BMW R1200RT
'83 BMW R100 (Gone but not forgotten)
#541482 - 11/19/09 10:44 PM Re: question to any Harley riders [Re: T__]  
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upflying Offline
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upflying  Offline
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Reno, NV
I ride both an '03 Road king and own an old RT. The HD gets ridden every day, the RT once a month maybe.
The HD has a butter smooth transmission and clutch. You can slip the wet clutch all day and it never complains. A bit of shake at idle but it runs smooth otherwise. High resale value, dealers at every corner and fantastic aftermarket support. Lot's of thumbs up from onlookers. The non-ABS brakes are fine for what they are.
The HD has very little cornering clearance and the suspension and ride are primitive. The bike is heavy but carries the weight low. Performance is feeble above 70 mph. It needs a big bore kit, cams and exhust to move but that is expensive and politically wrong due to increased noise and emissions.
A V-Rod Road King would be perfect but traditional HD enthusiasts do not like liquid cooling.
My RT has much better handling, speed, performance and braking. Protection from the elements and touches like heated grips are fabulous. It is also heavy and carries the weight higher. Seating is also higher and it may be a bit harder to handle for some riders at very low speeds.
Transmission is noisy, clunky and notchy but no problems with it yet. Clutch is smooth but not up to a lot of slipping abuse. Dealers are scarce and resale isn't very good.
Really there isn't much in common except two wheels. One is a cruiser and one is a sport tourer.


Bob
Reno,NV

2014 HD FXDC
2001 HD FLHPi (former work bike)
2009 HD FLHPi 103" (former work bike)
1972 Honda CT-90 garage queen

Logical politics is the Holy Grail of oxymorons.
#541483 - 11/19/09 10:44 PM Re: question to any Harley riders [Re: Tapatio]  
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Deadboy Offline
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West Slope, CA
I have ridden an 09 road king twice lately (friend's new bike) and must say given the historical design limitations it is one hell of a nice ride. The new motor (96"), frame (much more stable with no "wiggle") and the 6 speed transmission are all major improvements in my opinion, and I have ridden an older twin cam not that long ago. Not my cup of tea (I owned a shovel long ago and liked it a lot) but a very well put together bike all in all. Weight truly shouldn't be an issue, the HD's are know for carrying their weight down low, but if you really want a bagger/cruiser I would give the new Victory models serious consideration, the few people I know that own them are very happy.


Deadboy
2004 R1150RT
2003 SV650
#541484 - 11/19/09 10:45 PM Re: question to any Harley riders [Re: Tapatio]  
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FLrider Offline
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St. Petersburg, FL
What is it that you want to do with the bike? If you are looking for a long haul tourer, then you already have the perfect bike.

If, instead, you are looking for an around town bike, then maybe the RK and SG aren't the only choice.

I will tell you one thing. The ABS on the RT is awesome. I will NEVER own another bike without ABS.

If your decision has been made to buy between the RK and SG, I have ridden both and in my humble opinion, the RK is winner. Easy to ride, low center, remove windshield and EASILY removable saddle bags allow you to change the "look" of the bike.

There is a ton of them out there! You should be able to steal one.


1200GSW
#541515 - 11/19/09 11:55 PM Re: question to any Harley riders [Re: majordad]  
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Dave_C Offline
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Dave_C  Offline
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Lancaster, CA
Originally Posted By: majordad
I have been considering buying a 2002 up Road King or Street Glide. I would like read opinions from this site from people owning both BMW and HD to compare the two (not trying to start a war, just curious). As it stands now if I bought one I would still keep my RT (against my wife's wishes).

I haven't ridden one yet, however, the RK or SG appear to be a comfortable, long haul bike. This is my primary style of riding but I have to be able to manage in a parking lot. This is why I love the RT because I weigh only 150lbs. The size of the RK or SG is intimidating me a little.


I do think a Harley would be a fun 2nd bike for cruising around. You should practice your riding skills so that you understand the balance of the motorcycle and can control it at low speeds, regardless of your size. Any of these heavy bikes are too big to try to muscle around. There are some books on how to ride like a pro with some good tips.


2006 R1200RT (Favorite all-around bike ever)
1995 R1100RS (sold)
1985 K100RS (sold)
#541524 - 11/20/09 12:23 AM Re: question to any Harley riders [Re: majordad]  
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baggerchris Offline
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baggerchris  Offline
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Mountain Ranch; Ca.
Having ridden both for years here is my opinion;

For really high speed comfort (over 80, long distances, like Nevada hwy 50 or 6) the RT wins.

For really twisty roads like Ca. hwy 36, the RT wins.

For me, on just about anything else, the HD wins.

My wife Tessie would NOT ride on the RT having found the HD to be so pleasant

Right now I have a HD and a F650GS single and life is good.


Baggerchris

1972 Honda 90
1997 HD FLSTC
2011 F650GS twin

"All men die; some never live"
#541526 - 11/20/09 12:29 AM Re: question to any Harley riders [Re: baggerchris]  
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Matts_12GS Offline
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Matts_12GS  Offline
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Enfield, CT
+1 on the road glide.

I also have a line on where you could find the prettiest softail deluxe cheap if you wanted it..


Matt


2005 1200GS (Traveller)
IBA 37694

" ...if no one among us is capable of governing himself, then who among us has the capacity to govern someone else? " --Ronald Reagan
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