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2 years in, ready for upgrade. Vulcan 900 too much?

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Hotchips, Jul 27, 2016.

  1. Hiya all,

    So I finally am getting to have the funds available for my loooong awaited upgrade.

    Now don't get me wrong, I still IMMENSELY enjoy my daily commute on my little Yammy XVS 250 V-Star. She is small and mellow, but she is faultless in nothing going wrong (Like an old Kingswood, just keep on GOING, low maintenance, great!) and looking after me as a noob learner since I had not ridden before and am now the wrong side of 45. A very understanding and forgiving mistress when I was a bit clumsy with gear shifts (oh that's right, that's a DOWN shift...)

    But alas, time to part with my beautiful little ride.

    So I have been researching for 6 months or more, and was looking at either sticking with crusier as I love riding mine, and a bigger one appeals a LOT. Or possibly a Sports Tourer where I am not hugging the tank. I really like the upright relaxed position. Sports Tourers are more sport than tourer, but I at least want to check some out. And in that vein, most research points to Honda's VFR800 as a class winner and ridiculous fun. That along with my Manager recommending a Triumph ST Sprint 1050 - as he owns and loves his so hard he cannot recommend it enough, has me currently shortlisted to....

    Vulcan 900
    just rode the classic (2009), have not tried Custom. I thoroughly enjoyed the TINY test ride around the block. Had to get out of there before throwing my money at rep shreiking "Take it all!! Give me that bike!!!!" I am going back on Sat. to suss it further, show my current as potential trade in, and maybe test a naked bike he recommends as they are more upright and something I had not honestly considered (thought nakeds were just sports without fairing, silly me...)
    The one thing I noticed was it takes some pushing to corner. That big-ass front wheel really needs convincing to drop into a turn - obviously compared to my XVS 250. Probably just need to get used to it??? Other than that a question for those of you who are in the know, I have read the occasional critique that it really needs a 6th gear. Comments specific to that?

    Triumph Sprint ST 1050
    Looking to test ride one. Dealer has one. Will try it hopefully on weekend. Sat on one, very upright. Only a tad forward. I think my wrists would be ok, but any owners - does this tax your wrists at all? Anything to look out for? On my budget (under $7k) I am looking at one that has stacks of klm's, but my boss reckons they are bulletproof and good for at least 100,00 k's. Thoughts???

    Honda VFR800

    Sitting on one, they are definitely more Sports than Tourer. A bit surprising, and might be a deal breaker. Still want to test one out. They are rare, need to find one to test ride. The appeal all seems to be the VTEC and the dynamic boost you get with it. Looks like lots of fun, but riding EVERY day - not if my wrists are going to suffer. (there is nothing wrong with my wrists, but I ain't no spring chicken any more!)

    Oh, and one thing, I'll be ferrying kids to / from school on occasion (only 200m down the road, so no biggie) and have to carry a Laptop backpack to work as well as sometimes a packed lunch. I want soemthing with a rear rack or top box for A) laptop bag/Helmut/Kids school bag and/or saddle bags or panniers. I mention this as I don't know if this should influence my thinking/decision/shortlist in any way.


    Generally, any advice on Vulcan's? The Classic certainly was a beautiful BEAST and I was drooling after a short ride. Freakin LOVED it. Hella-power, had custom swept Cobra pipes that were LOUD (I actually thought they were a bit too loud) and was sooo comfy. Just had to really convince it to bloody corner. My yammy is like butter into a corner. This was a hard push on the handlebar.

    Also, any advice on buying from a dealer and sales tactics I should be aware of? I, like most, get nervous around them and tend to lose critical thinking. I really don't want to impulse buy....

    Please offer comments. Thanks!!! - oh, and when I get something, if you are in Bris, lets go for a riiiiide!!!!! :cool:
    • Like Like x 1
  2. The big Yamaha (Star) 1300 cruiser is meant to be the pick of the bunch. Quite good looking too I reckon.
    The Kawasaki Vulcan also seem to be a decent machine, but why not go the 1500? The classic or the drifter both look good and have a bit of the Indian styling to them.
  3. Cool, will see if any fit budget.
  4. Have you considered the Bolt, HotchipsHotchips ?
  5. As a sprint owner the body position is really good it's a really comfortable forward lean. Never get stiff or sore on my Sprit. In 2008 it became much more upright I haven't sat on a newer one so can't vouch for the revised ergos though. If you want the more upright position than rule out pre 08 models.

    In terms of reiability my bike is up to 65k kms and seems to be still going ok.

    The VFR is down on power compared to the sprint and you'll be looking at much older and higher KMs bikes compared to the equivalent sprint for the same money.

    I'm ignorant on cruisers so I've got nothing to add there at all :p
    • Informative Informative x 1
  6. Hi Mick, Looked at Bolts. Not really something that gripped me, and it looks like it's designed to immediately grip you - or leave you cold. All the one I have seen are single seat set up too, and over my budget. Cheers.

    Hi CBF'd, Thanks for the info. Yes, I did notice the VFR's were essentially out of my price range unless I go older or stacks of k's. I can't wait to get on an ST Sprint and run it. I am hoping it really will be something that ticks all the boxes. Comfy enough for beautiful daily commute, runs up the coast to visit folks on weekends, and maybe some joyrides for once. I like the look of them. [edit] The 2008 and up are out of budget it seems.

    Thanks guys.
  7. Have you had a look at the Crossrunner, Tracer, Tiger etc
  8. I'll check them out. Tracers and Tigers are all $14k+ on the webs. My budget is $7k MAX. CrossRunner look the goods! One with Panniers for $8k - but in bloody Wagga Wagga. LOL.
  9. at least its not out in Whoop Whoop!
    • Funny Funny x 1
  10. My best advice would that even if you're already sold on the vulcan to definitely try other models you're interested in. That way if you buy the vulcan you'll know that you bought the best instead of wondering/regretting.
    • Like Like x 2
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. If your heart is set on the Vulcan get it I reckon.

    But here's my 2c worth on the VFR800, if you're not too concerned about getting a newish model, try getting your hands on a 5th gen (1998-2000) VFR800. I picked up one for 3,500 and it come a with ventura rack, heated grips, touring screen and a after market pipe with 70k on the clock. I ride it daily as a commuter and it's one of the most comfortable bikes I've ridden, a lot more comfortable than the latest VFR. It handles surprisingly well for its weight and is great for long distance riding with or without your partner on the back. The engines are bomb proof so don't be too concerned about high kms, just make sure the oil has been changed regularly.

    You're also not really going to loose any money on resale either if you become bored with it in 12months and it's hard to beat the sound of a V4 :)
  12. You don't mention your size only the size of your little Yammie. I'd be considering the Honda VT750s as a suitable mount upgrade from a Yammie. You will find it steers easier than the wider tyred cruisers. I have a mate who rides a Vulcan 900, swears by it. His wife has a Yammie XVS650 Classic. They agree the Vulcan steers cleaner or easier than the 650. So of the fat front tyred bikes it seems the Heaviest is the Suzuki like the C50t then the Yamaha 650.1100. the 1100 isn't current anymore and then the Kawasaki which you have ridden. Back to Honda you should consider the Deauville as a useful replacement for the Yamaha. You will find some of the old stuff very easy to ride, as with most used bikes, its all about what you are willing to pay for. I have 230thousand on my BMW when I parked it to do duties as a carer. The day I get it back out and go again will be a great day. The bigger the bike the dearer it is so the older it will need to be to stay under $7k. But if you go searching in your area I'm sure you will find a hundred bikes to choose from. One thing to consider is that at town speeds some huge bikes are cumbersome the more moderate sized bikes can be wheeled out from where you parked it when ducking over to such and such where the bigger stuff is like find herculese before shifting it off the curb. Personally the more back suspension travel you have the happier you will be at the end of the day. Every days ride is a good one, but some bikes can punish you for the privilege.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  13. Sprints are great bikes, very versatile, quick and reliable. The only issues I know of are the reg/rec playing up, which is a simple and relatively inexpensive fix, and I found the fairing directed hot air at my legs. That's great in winter but not so awesome in summer.
    Vfr800 are great bikes too. The latter 6th gen bikes are better than the early ones. The vtec has a more abrupt kick in on earlier models and can unsettle the bike mid corner, apparently. 5th gen vfrs are fantastic aswell, getting a bit old but still considered the best vfr ever made. I miss my one dearly and wouldn't hesitate to buy another one if I was in that market. Also I'm yet to hear a better sounding bike on the road. If the ergos are an issue you can get risers to give a more upright position, this also applies to the sprint aswell.
    Cruisers I can't comment on as I've had zero experience outside of riding a Honda shadow for 20min.
  14. I am 6"2'. The Yammy is freakin tiny under me, but it's fine. But I am looking forward to a more suitable size.
  15. Oi, what's wrong with Wagga Wagga.

    In all seriousness, my advice (as always) is to ride EVERYTHING you can afford and buy the one you like the most. But by the sound of it "The Classic certainly was a beautiful BEAST and I was drooling after a short ride. Freakin LOVED it. Hella-power, had custom swept Cobra pipes that were LOUD (I actually thought they were a bit too loud) and was sooo comfy." your pretty taken with the Vulcan. But just a warning - if you think the 900 Vulcan had "hella-power" wait till you ride something like the VFR or Sprint.

    Anyway, good luck and have fun shopping
  16. Yeah, but that's because I was still on my shopping and test riding high. Now I have a days distance and have calmed down, I think many more rides are needed. I'm a bit Shit at resisting car/bike salesmen. Will be looking at a few this Sat.
  17. Well as already advised, ride as many as you can. As to salespersons remember you're the one with the dollars so you're the boss, be prepared to negotiate, just because they have a price on a bike doesn't necessarily mean that's the best they can do, quite often you can get them down a bit especially on second hand bikes, most dealers don't like having second hand bikes sitting on the floor for too long, they prefer to move them on fast and will quite often come down quite dramatically on price! Try them and be prepared to walk if they won't come to the party price wise.
    Have a look on www.bikesales.com.au I just had a quick look setting search criteria to Brisbane, dealer used, price range up to $7500 and capacity over 600cc and 252 used bikes jumped up including an 07 Honda VT750 with reasonable mileage for $4990 at a dealer and an 09 Vulcan 900 with quite low mileage for $6250.
    As to type of bike, whatever suits you best ergonomically and suits your riding style best.
    • Like Like x 1
  18. Other than your current bike, have you ridden many others?

    It might be worth you having a look at some of the 'big bore' sports tourers like the Bandit 1200/1250, Yamaha FZ1 etc.
  19. The Vulcan 900 won't be too big after the little Yamaha. I went from the virago 250 to a vstar 1100, and never had an issue. But, I would suggest you ride other styles first. Do you really want a cruiser? The other bikes are not cruisers by any stretch. Personally I went from a cruiser to an upright adventure tourer mainly because of the ergonomics.
  20. Not I e. Test rode the Vulcan, that's it. Will look at any/all on the weekend that are available.

    Yeah, was bigger but felt sweet. Not too big at all. And yeah, want to ride other styles really to see if something like a st Sprint 1050 is agreeable as then I can commute and take on twisties maybe! Don't get me wrong, live the ergonomics and ride of cruisers, just want to see what else might get my attention. *as long as I am upfright - not straining wrists.