Saturday, November 7, 2015

This is my new Sportster.

well, I don't really know how else to say this... I went and got myself another Sportster.

Crazy? Probably. Irrational? Completely. Prudent and reposnsible? Well, an argument could be made that these things hold their value well, and, in the case of this particular model, I have a feeling they will re-value with time.

But, hear me when I say that this motorcycle delivers one of the most intense, G-pulling riding experiences I've ever come across.

You feel this one in your guts and in your shoulder sockets, because it wants to rip your arms off.

It is a long, long way away from my beloved previous Sportster. Why? Well, the 2001 Sportster 1200S is very special because although it is essentially the same model I had, on the 'S' variant produced between 2000 and 2003 especially, virtually everything had been seriously upgraded at the factory:

there is fully adjustable suspension front and rear, an oil cooler, improved brakes, a more efficient oil pump, better clocks, cool cast alloy wheels, hotter cams with new high-contact ratio gears for quieter engine operation, a better flywheel, an improved ignition system (single fire), higher compression ported heads with bigger valves and DUAL FREAKIN' SPARK PLUGS! (these are actually the aptly named "Thunderstorm" heads that were fitted to Buell bikes) In addition, the previous owner has fitted an unrestricted Screamin' Eagle (Oh Harley, you can be so cheesy...) air filter and the legendary Vance & Hines performance exhaust system, all working together to produce a sound that is hard to believe.

Regrettably, all this grunt comes at the expense of one feature that played no small role in making my previous Sportster such a wonderful machine: the autopilot.
On the other bike, you could just get on and think "go home" and you'd wake up safe and sound in your bed. With this one, you had better be 100% awake, focused and fully engaged, or it will sock you in the chops.

A big thank you to Marco who helped me pick up the bike from the dealership today.


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