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First of allI have toadmit that Harley Davidson just may be one of the greatest American success stories this last century and appear poised for even greater success this next century. I think that can be attributed to the focus that Harley has maintained(exclude the AMF period).

What I'm curious about however is the quantity of people willing to pay for a new bike and then elect to strip much of the stock equipment off and upgrade to whatever their budget allows. Shouldn't one expect that the factory issue would be powerful enough to ride and enjoy as is? And the extras go on and on, there's the clothing, the leather, the chrome. I think it's incredible at what the Harley company is capable of selling once the hook is set.

I've owned four Harleys in my riding career thus far and enjoyed each of them. As I have aged however, I find that I'm not so keen on shaking out my neighborhood on a late night departure and early morning return. The goldwing is a relatively quiet and extremely reliable ride. I'm on my third.

Most of the guys I know riding Harleys haven't a clue as to where to begin regarding mechanical difficulties. I hear lots of mumble about chip, computer, dial in etc.. I'm sure that the new goldwings are probably similar but my 85 gl1200 interstate lets me feel like I am in charge and the king of my domain when riding if I break down the first thing I'll do is reach for my tools and begin to repair, not look for the phone book to get the nearest dealer. How do you feel about this? Am I an idiot or what:)
 

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If you want a Harley buy a Harley. Just leave the stock exhaust alone. I don't understand this business of buying a brand new bike and then having the dealer add several grand worth of shiny stuff and straight pipes on it before it leaves the dealership. I suspect the things run just fine and look great on the floor. Can you just buy one and ride it away like that???
 

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shoe on the other foot, why can't most wing owners leave the safety chrome or bling off their bikes when they buy them, let alone hearing aids in the helmet, xm radio, sat-nav........need i go on here?....
 

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taffy australia wrote:
shoe on the other foot, why can't most wing owners leave the safety chrome or bling off their bikes when they buy them, let alone hearing aids in the helmet, xm radio, sat-nav........need i go on here?....
Spot on, guys...My 1st Wing, a new '77, I was the first on the block to trash the spokes and fit those new-fangled tubeless cast wheels...and bolt on some air forks (just a cap-kit with hoses and a gage), progressives and air shocks. Then I stuffed a AM/FM into that ugly optional Vetter dashboard, and cut holes into the Bates bags for 4-way stereo hi-fi speakers that pooped out when wet...I guess we who ride just need to have something we can call our very own??? :coollep:
 

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Hey Bob.... We won't have our $29 quality replacement mufflers if they left the stock exhaust alone....... just kidding... a quarter mile behind a Harley with straightpipes is not far enough for me.... Jimaka WA6SEW (no bling.... and25 year old bone stock Interstate)
 

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retiredintime wrote:
If you want a Harley buy a Harley. Just leave the stock exhaust alone. I don't understand this business of buying a brand new bike and then having the dealer add several grand worth of shiny stuff and straight pipes on it before it leaves the dealership. I suspect the things run just fine and look great on the floor. Can you just buy one and ride it away like that???
yes you can, and I have for over 22,000 miles

fenderhead.... sounds like what I did to my 78 (except the rear speaker thing, but it had two different sdecars over the years as well
 

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taffy australia wrote:
shoe on the other foot, why can't most wing owners leave the safety chrome or bling off their bikes when they buy them, let alone hearing aids in the helmet, xm radio, sat-nav........need i go on here?....
SCORE ONE FOR TAFFY :grinner:

The misunderstanding ,misconception , jealousy , stereotyping and hatred toward Harley Davidson from some people on this forum is amazing to me , I truly don’t understand it . I ride with all kind of bikes and never think twice about their habits or changes to their bikes. And besides do you remember this Goldwing ? Take Care - Jim

http://www.goldwingfacts.com/forums/view_topic.php?id=30035&forum_id=4
 

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Well you see...I can honestly say that I have never added an accessorie of any kind to any bike I have ever owned. I run em the way I found em. Well that ain't true either. I have been known to remove a lot of that extra stuff if it was on there...:cool:

I don't hate Harleys. I actually wouldn't mind having a stock one....
 

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I was going to buy a harley until a friend of mine bought a new ultra classic. When he started that thing it looked like a bucking bronco. I like to ride quiet and smooth and also like gadgets and bling so i have made a few upgrades to my 1500. I love this bike its like owning a two wheel Cadillac that will go thousands of miles with only normal maintenance without vibrating the fillings out of my teeth. Each to thier own but i love the wing.
 

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I really don't believe I've seen any hatred for Harley Davidsons on this forum. I've seen partisanship of extolling Goldwings over Harleys. So what? This is after all a Goldwing forum.

I am one of those amused at people who have to have the latest branded clothing whether it be the latest spandex outfit before they can ride their bicycle or all the Harley Davidson shirts, jackets, boots, and probably underwear too. You really don't see all of that with other bike makes.

It doesn't make any difference to me what brand of bike you ride, but I'm not going to call your ride "Jap crap". I'm not going to make a bunch of obnoxious noise to give riders a bad name among non-riders either.

The old "can't we all just get along" stuff needs to work both ways. 'Til then I'll probably smile when I see large groups of bike riders wearing their pirate outfits.
 

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This is a sport which turned into a way of life. Just as when you buy your home or TV. You want all the extra comforts.Same with our machines.We take pride in what we ride,Hence the fued over Harley.

I tinted My car windows,added a speaker system and threw seat covers on.I will do the same accesorizing with my Wing.

i want the Cupholder/drink heater.I want the extra sound system,heated grips and so on.

Harley Owners are no different.They want to have thier machine represent them. The new Wave of Harley owners are not what we stereotype.

And just to end my poiint.I love riding with harleys,cause if you break down with them.They usually carry ebnough tools with them to start a Roadside Bike SHop.:grinner:
 

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I've had three Harleys ranging from a 72 to a brand new 90 and loved them all and yes I did customise them to my taste. Due to finnacial changes I now ride my wing and have also customised it. I feel that we are all brothers in the wind no matter what we ride and the age old battle of mine is better than yours is perhaps based on insecurity and the need to feel superior. I really think that no matter what we ride we should stick together against the things that threaten our existance, laws, ignorant cell-phone drivers and those that " I didn't see the motorcycle,officer" Ride safe and watch over your brother riders. Bob
 

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Ya know, I was watching a show on Discovery when they first came out with the V-Rod. They spent a ridiculous amount of time engineering the exhaust, making sure they could get the sound they wanted, and still meet the federal noise standard or something...

Then, they painted it all with a flat black as I recall, to keep it super-secret and not let anybody get any detailed pics. Or draw a lot of attention. And they did their road testing.

The last thing they did was have Willy G. Davidson come in and take it for a ride. The explanation? Well, it had passed all the technical stuff and tests for stress and performance, handling, etc, but they needed this last test "to make sure... it's... a Harley-Davidson."

OK, ethereal, non-specific, pseudo-magical, hype?

When he returned from his ride, he announced "Now THAT's a Harley-Davidson!" Champagne corks flew, people applauded and cheered...

Oh brother. How many people have I heard say "There's just something different about riding a Harley. It's just...Different..."

Snobbery, hype, "bein' cool", running with the crowd, and this apparent need to run really loud pipes. The attitude that if it ain't a Harley, it ain't a bike, unless it's a custom... That's what makes me biased against HD.

I like to make my own little custom gadgets for my bike, but not to show other people. I don't have to say "There's just something different about a Wing...", I can tell you what I like about it. But, you all already know, don't you? :goofygrin:
 

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As a Harley owner who is working on a friend's '75 GL-1000 (He blew the head gasket on the right bank), I say you are not crazy. I know several Harley owners as well as several "foriegn" bike owners who have their dealer's service department number on speed dial.

However, the same thing applies to cages. I own a "vintage" 1986 Porsche 951 (944 Turbo, 2.5L, 4-Cyl, water cooled, front engine, 5 speed Limited Slip, Konis, Brembos, 15 psi boost, 265 hp, 165+mph) and with the exception of body work and wheel alignments, I do my own work and I wouldn't have it any other way.

The "problem" as I see it is there are more and more "boomer" riders who have been brain washed about not doing their own work (You'll void the warranty, the EPA will arrest you and abuse your wife and kids, etc.), so they don't even bother to learn any thing beyond where the key goes and how to get the gas cap off.

Another "sect" within Harleydom is the "I'm a badass wannabe," crowd. These are the guys that pull off the stock exhaust, throw on a set of drag pipes, and then bitch and whine about "carb farts" and pissed off neighbors. Had they done a little research they would have discovered the stock exhaust it built with a cross-over pipe for a reason, and that drag pips make it nearly impossible to tune an engine for the street.

Personally, I like a machine, any machine for what it is. I have a 2003 883 Sportster, and I love it. It's paid for, and its mine. I took off a set of aftermarket pipes and replaced them with a set of stock pipes and cored (no baffels) mufflers. The bike is quiet at idle,it will "bark" when I twist my right wrist, it will keep up with and even pass some H-D Big Twins (like by buddy's '02 Dyna Wide Glide) and I get 55 mpg on mid-grade pump gas.
 

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03Sportster wrote:
"... The "problem" as I see it is there are more and more "boomer" riders who have been brain washed about not doing their own work (You'll void the warranty, the EPA will arrest you and abuse your wife and kids, etc.), so they don't even bother to learn any thing beyond where the key goes and how to get the gas cap off...

Another "sect" within Harleydom is the "I'm a badass wannabe," crowd. These are the guys that pull off the stock exhaust, throw on a set of drag pipes, and then bitch and whine about "carb farts" and pissed off neighbors. Had they done a little research they would have discovered the stock exhaust it built with a cross-over pipe for a reason, and that drag pips make it nearly impossible to tune an engine for the street...."

I rode with a few HD guys awhile back, mostwere new to cycling:all had cell ph's,some hadHDdealers on speed-dial,& none knew how to work onbikes! The bikes were super clean&beautiful!

They wanted to be partof the biker "thing" with their matching chaps, vests, jackets,boots, gloves & helmets. (reminds me of the Japanese local's, that's another story...) getting a Harley was motorcycling to them, including the"attitude".

During a break under the "Redwoods", they were intrigued by my bike: lack of chrome shining things, blk body (stkgold pin-stripes) , blk rims, lg blk "ammo-cans" for s-bags & who did this/that& what shop I take my bikes to; told them I did it & do all maintenance work on all my bikes, their response- WOW!:cheeky1: (it's nothing compared to what some of you guys are doing)

They figured I knew "something" since I did my own mechanical work (very little on a goldwing- that's why I got one) so the conversation turned to exht sys'. Some wanted to change them for either: appearance, performance &/or safety (loud exht).

Startedgroovin' onthe "hug-a-tree" thing when I heard "safety" & "loud pipes" in the same context.:shock:Instead of explaining pro's/con's, I told one of them to start her bike,the rest,compare the front/back decibels & figure out what safety-factor is being used to it's advantage....

I havepersonally seen discrimination amongst Harley's own kind; for some reason the big-twin crowd looks down on the smaller Sportsters. How can something faster, lighter, & better handlingbe called " a beginner's bike", or even worst a "girl's bike". (remember these are quotes,so no shooting....)

Wouldliketo get a Harley one day (Sportster- can't shake my racing roots), mainly out of curiosity sake-I'm still keeping theWing.
 

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kevin wrote:
First of allI have toadmit that Harley Davidson just may be one of the greatest American success stories this last century and appear poised for even greater success this next century. I think that can be attributed to the focus that Harley has maintained(exclude the AMF period).
So Microsoft, Coke and IBM are out of the running then? :baffled:

My feeling would be that the best place to ask a serious Harley question might be on a Harley board. :stumped: Maybe?
 

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big choice, gl1800 or a v-rod, i know where my money is going and it won't have honda on the tank.....:cool:
 

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It is still just down to a case of "different folks different strokes"

I watched Wild Hogs last night, nearly wet myself laughing, but funny as it was, in the real world, who cares what types ride? :baffled:I prefer to take each fellow on a more individual basis, if they are friendly to me, then I am friendly back. I am not particularly one for brand bashing, everyone rides what they want to and thank goodness there is still the choice to be had.

I guess if any group were to be pigeon holed, then we Wingers are just as likely candidates, and if that is because we are seen as, like dressers, friendly and old gits, then so be it, I have been that way since I was 22 and aint about to change.

If Harley guys and gals want to spend their money on after market gear then that is great, thank goodness for the freedoms to do so.
 

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We do it because we can. It would be a boring world if we all toed the same line and did everthing the same. I'm always thankful that we live in a part of the world where "customizing" doesn't mean tying a wooden crate to the back of a rickety old bicycle to haul chickens to market.
 
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