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Ironsomething
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I'm new to this group and thought I might be able to get some thoughts and feedback. I've been riding for about 30 years, all *** bikes and one Triumph (old Daytona, loved it!). I've decided that this year I'm going to finally get my first Harley. I know that most choices are made on personal taste and every one has their own and I love the looks of some of the big twins like the FXD and Night train (V-Rod's just a bit too wild for me, price and looks!). I'm more of a sport rider with an occasional short (100 mi) trips. Because of my personal tastes I am really drawn toward the XL1200S and figured that this would be a good first Harley. Problem is that I can't find one. I've had two dealers tell me that they just are not as popular as the XL or Custom so thay don't carry as many. I find that hard to beleive. The Sport has dual disks in front, adjustable suspension, higher compression (a few more HP) and dual plugs. What gives? Am I missing something here? Even Ebay has more used XL's and C's. Am I making a bad choice?
Thanks for listening and ride safe!
Rovert
 

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EvilMonger
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8,793 Posts
Personally I would pick the FXD. You should find a place that rents in your area and test drive the ones your interested in. Test driving any of the 1200 sportsters would give you enough feedback to know if you really want the sport.
 

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Yea the Sporty sport is a very fun bike. Light (for Harleys) nimble and quick. I personaly like the way they look too. If you want one then get one, have your dealer order it for you. As to the BT issue, the FXDX is the sportest of all the Big Twins. Should not be hard to find them. The XL1200 sport are hear in the local dealer all the time. How you end up with what you want...
 

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Try a Deuce?

I went from a 1200 Sporty to a Deuce. In the process, I was fixed on, first a Superglide and then a Wideglide. Even considered a Softail Classic. Could not make the proper connection and tripped over a Deuce one day and figured to give it a shot. Love my bike. See the connection here?:D
 

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I'm with everybody else - I started with a sporty, fun bike, but outgrew it quickly and moved on. Try renting other bikes to make sure of what you want up front.
BigG
 

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Ironsomething
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845 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks guys for the responses. After much reading and sitting on lots of different bikes (can't test ride with 2 ft of snow here) I decided to order the xl1200 sport. I think I'm going to be hppy with my choice and I figure that if I'm not I can always sale it and not take too much of a loss the way the re-sale values are and move on to a bigger bike.
Happy riding!
 

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FOG
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I'm probably the ultimate "expert" on your question. ;) I sold my last scoot, a H-D (FXRT) in '95. I'd had metric bikes most of my life. After retiring to Texas, I got the H-D urge again, looked around and figured a 1200S would do fine. I got a '03 1200S in August, changed the seat (seat sucks) and other things to make it better. While I loved the 1200S for short rides (great suspension, acceleration), it just wasn't right for me.....a bit small, short leg room, wife didn't feel comfortable on it and way too many vibes.

I traded it in early December (got my full price back) on a FXD. The FXD is much better for the riding I do.....short trips up to 150 miles. I changed the seat and added highway pegs (also on the 1200S) and a Memphis Shades windshield. It fits me and mama much better. The only downside is the suspension is a bit soft, especially the fork springs, but that's easily fixed. If I had it to do over again, I'd probably go with a FXDX (better suspension) with cast wheels and put on a good seat and highway pegs.

There you have it from....."been there, done that." :)
 

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rovert, enjoy your bike, I owned a 1973 Sporty for 15 years and most of my riding was just what you are planning, fun bike, but just not good for tourning. When I can afford a second bike I would like to find a used Sporster sport (I saw a red one, new, last years model at a dealer for around 8 grand). I really like the idea of the hotter engine and better suspension in the sport. Lets see pipes , bigger carb , high flow and you could be pulling wheelies in no time.
 

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Ironsomething
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Yep, I think this will be a good start into the H-D world. I'm not a big guy (5'8", 180 lbs) so the Sport seems to be a good fit and I probably won't be doing any touring right away so thats not an issue. I'm not too concerned about the vibes, used to have an old Triumph and while it could be annoying I still loved it. I do agree that the seat on the Sport model sucks - hard as a rock. That'll be the FIRST thing to go. After I ride it for awhile and break it in I'll do the Stage One mod to it. What I liked about the Sport was that because of the high comp heads and hotter cams it does'nt seem like I need to break open the motor and do a Stage Two mod unless I want to get REALLY radical with it.
Thanks for all the help, you guys are great and I've learned allot on this forum and its helped me make an informed decision.
Rovert
 

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Rovert - I own a '98 XL1200 sport ( and a Road King). I love my sporty ! It's fast, reliable and great in the corners. You'l enjoy it!

Jane
 

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Hey rovert, check out Jamestown HD in Jamestown NY (Southwest corner of state). Give Joe a call. I know they had a XL Sport on the floor but I don't know for sure if it was a 1200 or not. I just bought a 95 FXD from Joe and was very satisfied with the deal. They'll deliver within 100 mi but I suspect you're beyond that. Also, they sell for MSRP. Not sure if that's just for orders, or if they sell off the floor for MSRP too. I'd think with the economy what it is, they'd sell whatever they could for MSRP.

Chilly
 

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BikerJo said:
Rovert - I own a '98 XL1200 sport ( and a Road King). I love my sporty ! It's fast, reliable and great in the corners. You'l enjoy it!

Jane
Sportsters are definitely fun bikes. It's cool that you have two such different machines to enjoy. Today, huckelberry1 (Lisa) was over at her Mom's. Her FXDL cried for attention. I had to oblige. Got to rid her Dyna, and followed that up with a ride on my Dresser. Very different but both a LOT of fun. You can never have enough bikes around!!!!
 

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You will love it. In my (admittedly biased) opinion, the Sport is one of Harley's best kept secrets. They do not sell as well as the 1200 Custom (at least 10 to 1 is my guess) for one and only one reason...the standard chrome on a Custom. Most folks just want the look, they opt for a Custom. A lot fewer (like me) are gearheads and opt for the Sport. If (when?) I want a bigger bike, I will keep the Sport if possible. Enjoy it!

'03 XL1200S White Pearl
"Cotton Picker"
 

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Ironsomething
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845 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thats what really drew me to the Sport, it seems like a real sleeper and as I am also a gearhead I can appreciate some of the nice things the factory has done with the base 1200 motor. When you start with a motor thats already been breathed on and has more power, any other mods is just gravy and the HP only gets that much better!
 
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