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I am currently riding a 97 Honda shadow deluxe 600. It was my first motorcycle. I like it, but it is underpowered and I feel uncomfortable riding it at 70mph down the road. It is like it is all it has got to keep highway speed. I am not looking to race, but want to have power to pass, and not be wound out at cruising speed.

I have about 10k to spend and am looking at purchasing a harley as I have always wanted one. Problem is I don't know jack about them. I went to the dealer today and I really like the look of the softails, but they were out of my price range. The sportsters were the only ones I could afford, and some of them were ok, but others I did not like the look. I am not at all opposed to a used bike, and I am thinking 1200 as a minimum.

I will be mainly riding the bike to and from work (30 miles each way) and taking the occasional trip with the wife on back. Any recommendations on what to look for, and any tips for the new uniformed buyer?

Thanks in advance.
 

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you could probable get a new sportster for that. winter is the best time to buy. find a dealer that sells for msrp and will give you free freight and set up. give this dealer a call Ben Breece in Ohio 419-523-4274 sometimes in the winter they take some off of msrp.

good luck.
 

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bdog1234 said:
I am currently riding a 97 Honda shadow deluxe 600. It was my first motorcycle. I like it, but it is underpowered and I feel uncomfortable riding it at 70mph down the road. It is like it is all it has got to keep highway speed. I am not looking to race, but want to have power to pass, and not be wound out at cruising speed.

I have about 10k to spend and am looking at purchasing a harley as I have always wanted one. Problem is I don't know jack about them. I went to the dealer today and I really like the look of the softails, but they were out of my price range. The sportsters were the only ones I could afford, and some of them were ok, but others I did not like the look. I am not at all opposed to a used bike, and I am thinking 1200 as a minimum.

I will be mainly riding the bike to and from work (30 miles each way) and taking the occasional trip with the wife on back. Any recommendations on what to look for, and any tips for the new uniformed buyer?

Thanks in advance.
Hello, and welcome to the forum :)

If your budget is tight, stop looking in dealerships.

I bought both of my bikes used, ( 98 Fatboy/04 Police Glide ) and I have no regrets.

There is no such thing as a "Harley, within your price range"....light a match to that thought, and enjoy the smoke.

The bikes that are in your price range, you won't like, and the bikes you like, won't be in your price range...hey wait, did I just repeat myself ?? :D

Seriously, if I were you, I would start by checking out the www.Harley-Davidson.com website, and just think about the bike that YOU want.

Don't worry about how much the bike cost, just think about what you would buy, if money were no option.

At that point, I would begin looking for the bike on Ebay.

My opinion is to let someone else take the depreciation hit.

Patience is a virtue here....I must've looked at a dozen bikes over a 6 month period before I found my Evo, and I still end up paying 22k for it...again, waaaay over my "price range."

NOTE: The "buy it now" price means nothing. No matter what the seller is asking, knock 15% off of that price. If they don't want to come down, move on....again, patience is a virtue, don't buy the first thing you see.

You can also find nice used Harley's in Mom and Pop shops. I found my Glide in a little shop north of Indy, with only 965 miles, for 16k, out the door.

I'm a small guy, 6 foot/155 lbs, and there is NO WAY I would ride anything less than a 1340 motor. I have often found myself pegging the throttle on my Evo when I'm on the Interestate, so if you intend to ride 2-up, be patient, save your money, and get yourself a 1440 motor ( 1999-2006 ) model. You can find a nice 1999-2002 Road King for 12-13k this time of the year, if you have cash.

This is the type of motor that you'll be able to grow into, and trail your wife on, without any power problems, if/when you need to pass.

good luck!
David
 

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I would take the 10K, and go find the best deal on the bike you want in the used Harley world. Lot of bikes, and lots of good deals. In the used Harley bike world there are people who bought a bike, rode it 4k in 6 years, and now have moved on to something else, and are willing to deal. Check it out, you will find something worth while. Let us know what you found. I just looked in cycle trader, and without even leaving the homepage I see a 2002 FXD SuperGlide w/1900mi for 11K. Also, 2003 FXD for 10,999.00 with 4900mi has 95" kit and is in Pasadena, TX. Also, a 2002 HARLEY-DAVIDSON FXDL, 4800 mi, in McKinney, TX, for $10,500.00. The world is your oyster, there's two pages of bikes in Texas under 11 grand!

Thorns
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the replies. When I was at the dealer, I was not looking for new. I went to the HD dealer and also another shop that had 50 or so used bikes. There is not much here from private individuals. One question I had is are there any year models that are better than others, or years to avoid? I was looking at a nice 97 sportster 1200 with only 14k.
 

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You can do better than a 97 sportster. You will be wanting to trade up to a big twin in 6 mos.


Thorns
 

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Thorns said:
You can do better than a 97 sportster. You will be wanting to trade up to a big twin in 6 mos.


Thorns
I'd say 6 weeks.

Listen to these guys... 2 up on a sportster... you will hate life and lose even more money when you trade up... and you will trade up.
 

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Check out www.hdtrader.com. You may or may not find what you want in your price range, but it will give you an idea of what is out there.
Good luck!
 

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Thorns said:
I would take the 10K, and go find the best deal on the bike you want in the used Harley world. Lot of bikes, and lots of good deals. In the used Harley bike world there are people who bought a bike, rode it 4k in 6 years, and now have moved on to something else, and are willing to deal. Check it out, you will find something worth while. Let us know what you found. I just looked in cycle trader, and without even leaving the homepage I see a 2002 FXD SuperGlide w/1900mi for 11K. Also, 2003 FXD for 10,999.00 with 4900mi has 95" kit and is in Pasadena, TX. Also, a 2002 HARLEY-DAVIDSON FXDL, 4800 mi, in McKinney, TX, for $10,500.00. The world is your oyster, there's two pages of bikes in Texas under 11 grand!

Thorns
BINGO!!! Thats how I got mine. 2000 Fatboy with 7k miles. Came with bags, crash bar, fog lights, pass lamps, SE II's and air cleaner plus more. 14k for it. I knew the bike that I wanted and just started searching. Even got the color I wanted! Took about 3 weeks.

 

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Don't settle, put your 10g down and finance the rest if you can, and get your self a bike thats going to be comfortable for both you and your wife, if you settle on a sportster now you will regret it soon enough, because if you want to do any touring you won't be very happy on a smaller sporty! and believe me i tried to make my softtail night train comfortable for me and my wife and it could'nt be done, and if she (wife) ain't happy then your not happy! (she'll make sure of that!)
 

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There's some good advice here. I am with bulldog on the idea that the Sportster is NOT a touring bike for most people.

I had a Dyna Low Rider and I had to get rid of it cause I didn't like the way the Dyna handled riding 2-up. It was too uncomfortable for me and her.

There's lots of opportunities (like dealer open-houses or even renting) to identify yourself with your bike.

Believe me when I say that most people that have a Harley they love will tell you that the bike found them - not vice versa.
 

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There has been a lot of good advice here and it is true that there are a lot of garage queens out there for the taking. As far as the softails go, I wouldn't look at anything before 2000 due to the vibration. Any of the Dynas will probably suit your needs and though they're not up to the level of a Roadking or any of the other touring bikes, I think for a first Harley you could get in some great weekend two-up trips. My wife and I have put thousands of touring miles on my Fatboy once I found the right seat.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks again for the replies. I thought I had narrowed it down some, but after reading this I am more confused. Looks like there is a lot out there to choose from.

Let me clarify on what my riding will be, or rather what it has been for the past year with my shadow. I ride it to and from town regualarly which is a 30 mile trip one way. In the one year I have owned it my wife has been on it with me twice. The first time was a test run and the second was a 150 mile or so trip to the lake.We are both in our twenties and she did not complain about it being uncomfortable. We have a 2yr old son so most place we go together he comes along so we take the car. I want a seat back there on the bike so that the optoin is there for her to ride, but in all reality it is going to be 90% me riding solo and 10% her riding with if even that much.

On another note is there a website somewhere that breaks down the diferent models and gives a brief description? A new classified paper came out today and I see lots of bikes described as FXDS , etc. and I have no idea what that is.
 

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bulldog2 said:
Don't settle, put your 10g down and finance the rest if you can, and get your self a bike thats going to be comfortable for both you and your wife, if you settle on a sportster now you will regret it soon enough, because if you want to do any touring you won't be very happy on a smaller sporty! and believe me i tried to make my softtail night train comfortable for me and my wife and it could'nt be done, and if she (wife) ain't happy then your not happy! (she'll make sure of that!)
@gree: Any good size Harley dealer will have many excellent used bikes in tip-top shape. Find the one you want and any good dealer will find a way for you to own it, put some money down & finance the rest.

Life is short, get the bike that keeps you awake at night. I say don't spend 10k and get "almost what you want", put 9 or 10 down on the bike "you just have to have". :clap:
 

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I don't know how complete this list is, but it will give you an idea of what some of the designations mean.

Information on 2006 Models


Sportster XL883

Sportster XL883L

Sportster XL883C

Sportster XL883R

Sportster XL1200C

Sportster XL1200R



FXDI Dyna Super Glide

FXDXI Dyna Super Glide Sport

FXDCI Super Glide Custom

FXDLI Dyna Low Rider

FXDWGI Dyna Wide Glide



FXSTI Softail Standard

FXSTBI Night Train

FXSTSI Springer Softail

FXSTDI Deuce

FLSTFI Fat Boy

FLSTFI Fat Boy 15th Anniversary Special Edition - click "Hormones Rage" for details

FLSTNI Softail Deluxe

FLSTSCI Softail Springer Classic

FLSTCI Heritage Softail Classic



VRSCA V-Rod

VRSCB V-Rod

2006 VRSCR Street Rod - click VRSCR Street Rod panel to view videos and specs



FLHRI Road King

FLHRSI Road King Custom

FLHRCI Road King Classic

FLTRI Road Glide

FLHTI Electra Glide Standard

FLHTCI Electra Glide Classic

FLHTCUI Ultra Classic Electra Glide
 

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That's a great list of the available bikes. By the way, on the older bikes you will see that the models don't have the "I". The "I" means injection instead of carb. FLSTF= carb / FLSTFI= injected.
 

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I bought my 1995 FXDWG on ebay. Was very careful. That was almost 2 years ago and the bike runs like new. The paint is by "Colormania"...House of Kolor paint. If you want to shoot the breeze about buying one off ebay, or at least my experience, just shoot an email to me. I'll send a couple of detailed pics too. The guy I bought it from was happy and so am I. If you click on my profile a small picture pops up after a few seconds.

[email protected]

Good luck, Steve....Pensacola
USMC 1972 - 2003
 

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I can relate to your confusion bdog1234. I am a new harley owner myself and had very little knowledge with these bikes. The only thing I knew was what I will be doing with the bike. I ended up wanting a road king. I combed cycle trader for about 3 weeks before finding my new girl. I ended up saving close to $4000 buying it slightly used as oppossed to brand new.
The dealership wanted $20,500 OTD on an 05 Road King Custom (FLHRSI).
I found one with 400 miles for $17000...talked him down to $16500. And I even got the color I wanted!!!
Morale...be patient. Figure out what you want and don't settle for anything less.
 
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