Cruisers - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 07:11 AM Thread Starter
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Cruisers

We are planning to buy a cruiser for my wife. We went to check some out yesterday. On our list were the following:
  1. Harley Davidson Superlow
  2. Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom
  3. Suzuki M50

We have some specific criteria that excluded everything but cruisers (= seat height) and narrowed it down to these based on other criteria:
  1. Ease of handling
  2. Cast wheels (for the ability to patch while riding)
  3. Touring capability (reasonably large tank, availability of bags, a windscreen, etc)
I was surprised that #2 really reduced the candidates, though was happy to see that the Suzuki C50 was also available with cast wheels (one dealer had two).

So far it has been easy. The Vulcan 900 custom feels pretty big and the front wheel is tiny. We didn't care for that. The HD was beautiful but uncomfortable (seat). The M50 and C50 both felt great (I preferred the M50). We're not sure if the floorboards are to be preferred or not (C50 has them, M50 has pegs). My wife was only able to ride a Vulcan 900 Classic, but not long enough to decide if she liked the floorboards or the heel-tow shifting.

So I think we're deciding between an M50 and a C50.

Anyway, I was surprised by how much I liked the cruisers, especially the M50 (or any Suzuki M* cruiser). I am not sure I will ever own one, and neither of us got to ride one, but who knows.
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post #2 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 07:33 AM
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low seat... ducati monster? suzuki gladius?

In a world full of people, only some want to ride. Isn't that crazy?
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post #3 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 08:26 AM Thread Starter
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Not sure about the Ducati, but the Gladius is not low enough. She actually got to sit on one Saturday and it was quite a bit too high. She needs a seat height around 27-28 inches to be comfortable.
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post #4 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 04:25 PM
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I find Harleys have great paint, chrome and powder coating finishes and interesting styling but seem to be over priced and under performing for what they cost. The Japanese seem to build better VTwin engines and smoother shifting transmissions, at least that was the impression I got after riding a Fat Boy and XR1200 on a demo day the local dealer had.
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post #5 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 04:40 PM
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One of my riding buddes has the M50. Very nice bike (for a cruiser) He has hard bags on that look good and is considering a widshield. The brackets for the windshields cost as muchor maore that the damn screen!

All in all that Suzuki looks very good, performs well, is very reasonably sized at some 800 ccs and works for touring. Ususally found at a great price too for all that it offers. So yeah, I see your point.

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post #6 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 04:47 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, ATYC. Do you happen to know what bags your buddy has? Hard bags would be an improvement over those leather things.
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post #7 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 05:56 PM
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I just came off the C50. I rode it for 4 years. No problems at all. I loved the floorboards and the heel toe shifter. The engine sounds like a sewing machine on steriods, lots of tapping and clicking. It also screams pretty hard at 65MPH & up. The Versys purrs like a kitten in comparison. The C50 is ~150 lbs heavier than the Versys, but has a low seat height.

My good friend had an 09 Kawasaki Vulcan and he came off the C50. He has had zero problems with both.

Good luck in your search!
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post #8 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 06:38 PM
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Quote:
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Thanks, ATYC. Do you happen to know what bags your buddy has? Hard bags would be an improvement over those leather things.
Not exactly, and the bike is currently in storage. He installed real low profile ghost racks so there would be really nothing to see when the bags are off. Funny thing is, he never took the bags off all year!

They are high gloss, black plastic, lockable and top opening and are very similar to (if not exactly the same as) these:

http://cgi.ebay.ca/GA-MOTORCYCLE-V-R...uck::goodidea:

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post #9 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 06:41 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks very much!
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post #10 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 06:54 PM
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I see a lot of national cycle hard saddlebags on the Suzukis...

http://www.nationalcycle.com/catalog...iseliner.shtml
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post #11 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 07:07 PM
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I really like the styling on the M-50 and one of it's best points is that it is fuel injected. That eliminates a lot of problems. I wouldn't recommend the M50 for two up riding. Just a little under powered for that. The big wheels get a lot of attention. I had an S-50 for a while but I'm just not into cruisers.

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post #12 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 07:27 PM
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While straightaways and bars may not be the only means(to an end) your wife may have....This bike and article I found interesting. M-109

http://www.nationalpost.com/cars/sto...?id=725936&p=2

I've heard the term "garage ornament" used on this site before,
this may be an almost perfect example, but take it out of the garage and she'll surely be noticed.

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post #13 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 07:43 PM
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Did you look at the Honda VT750's?

Low mile C50/M50's seem to be readily available and dirt cheap. At least the few times I looked around for one.
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post #14 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 08:09 PM
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I was leaning hard toward the S50 when i saw the versys then it was game over.

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post #15 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 09:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by objectuser View Post
.................................................. ........................................

We have some specific criteria that excluded everything but cruisers (= seat height) and narrowed it down to these based on other criteria:
  1. Ease of handling
  2. Cast wheels (for the ability to patch while riding)........
I was surprised that #2 really reduced the candidates.........

Ease of handling, enough to patch a tire while riding?
I'd like to see anyone do that on any bike!!!
Okay I'll shut-up now.

Don't Get Cabin Fever!
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post #16 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-28-2011, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
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Ease of handling, enough to patch a tire while riding?
I'd like to see anyone do that on any bike!!!
Okay I'll shut-up now.
You've never seen me ride.
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post #17 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-01-2011, 02:28 AM
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Did you consider Triumph Speedmaster or America?
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post #18 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-01-2011, 02:41 AM
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My wife has a Suzuki C50 and has just finished a track day, we have gone all over the South Island NZ on some really challenging roads and the C50 has performed very well. She is 5'6 and weighs 60 KG's or 132 lbs and handles the bike really well but it is a heavy machine to park and handling on twisties is not even on the same planet as my mighty orange V.



Here one of fastoman's daughter sitting on my wife's bike when she came to visit us

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post #19 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-01-2011, 07:01 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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I see a lot of national cycle hard saddlebags on the Suzukis...

http://www.nationalcycle.com/catalog...iseliner.shtml
Nice! Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by dallasdon View Post
I really like the styling on the M-50 and one of it's best points is that it is fuel injected. That eliminates a lot of problems. I wouldn't recommend the M50 for two up riding. Just a little under powered for that. The big wheels get a lot of attention. I had an S-50 for a while but I'm just not into cruisers.
Yeah, one up is the plan. I think the only area where that engine is not ideal is highway. But I've also read of people changing the gearing ... not sure how big a deal that would be.

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I've heard the term "garage ornament" used on this site before,
this may be an almost perfect example, but take it out of the garage and she'll surely be noticed.
That was how I first really "saw" the M-bikes. There was an M109 as I was leaving the racetrack one day (I take my car on the track, not my bike ). I talked to the owner about it for a while. That's a lot of bike!
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post #20 of 38 (permalink) Old 03-01-2011, 07:15 AM Thread Starter
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Did you look at the Honda VT750's?
That was one of the first bikes we thought would fit. But one thing took it out of the running: spoke wheels. We could always replace the wheels, but it there were other options that had them stock. Also things took it out of the running: spoke wheels and I kept reading that it

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Did you consider Triumph Speedmaster or America?
I did look briefly Triumph, but we didn't go sit on any to see if she liked them. I think they are both nice bikes, especially the Speedmaster. I think if she hadn't felt good on either the M/C50 or the Vulcan we would have considered one. They're a little more expensive though, and there are far fewer dealerships in case we needed one in backroads Texas.

Now, if the Tiger 800 was 4 inches lower, that might have been irresistible.
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