Kawasaki Vulcan 750? - Honda Shadow Forums : Shadow Motorcycle Forum
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 12:52 PM Thread Starter
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Kawasaki Vulcan 750?

I'm currently riding a 1985 VT500C, and it's been great. It's my first bike, and I bought it in kind of rough shape. Cleaned the carbs, did some paint work, and now it does it's job. But I'm 6'6" and 280 lbs, so it's time for something bigger.

Does anyone have any experience or know of any stories about Vulcan 750's? They seem like reputable bikes, and from what I've read, they are a good fit for taller riders. This is the one I'm looking at buying, it's been converted into a bobber: Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Bobber NEED TO SELL!

Let me know your thoughts on the specific bike, the Vulcan in general, and whatever else you may want to add. P.S. that sissy bar will be on it's way out!

"Faster, faster, until the thrill of speed overcomes the fear of death." -Hunter S. Thompson

2003 Honda VTX1800R
1978 Honda SOHC CB750 K8 (SOLD)
2003 Honda VTX1300S (SOLD)
1979 Honda DOHC CB750L (SOLD)
1999 Harley Davidson 1200 Custom (TRADED)
2003 Honda VTX1800R (TRADED)
2003 Honda Shadow Spirit 750 (SOLD)
2005 Honda Shadow Spirit 750 (TOTALLED)
1985 Honda Shadow VT500C (SOLD)
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 01:00 PM
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The Kawasaki Vulcan is a solid, bullet proof bike, very comparable to the other metric cruisers. Personally, not being the greatest mechanic, this particular deal would scare the heck out of me as is appears the seller knows very little about the bike as he has only had it a short time and has only been doing cosmetic upgrades. Nice price though if you can work on it though. I don't believe that Kawasaki still has the 750, it's been upgraded to the 800 now. Read into that whatever you want. I have a friend that owns an 800 and he loves it. Many miles have been put on it and it is much more comfortable than any comparable Honda. my .02 anyway....

So live your life that the fear of death can never enter your heart. Prepare a noble death song for the day when you go over the great divide.
Sing your death song and die like a hero going home.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 01:55 PM
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My experience...

I own a stock 1992 Vulcan 750 with around 20,000 miles on it. It's a little rough cosmetically, but has been well maintained, and runs very well. The only "known" issues with these bikes seems to be the stator/rectifier and the shaft drive-IF it wasn't lubed right from the factory...

NOTE: One of the best places for info on the VN750 is here:
Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums

It's ironic, but if it weren't for the fact that my stator burned up and proved to be no small hassle to repair, I probably wouldn't be here. (There is a ton of info regarding stator repair hassles/testing/replacing etc. at the website above so I won't bore you with it all here, and save my fingers from typing blisters ). It's because of this that I went out and bought my Spirit.

Ok...with that out of the way.

I found the Vulcan 750 to be a great all-around ride. Very quick in that old-school metric cruiser way-great gearing and downright freakin' "zippy" off the throttle. At 5' 6" I needed/wanted something lower to the ground than my previous GS650 (30" seat height...), but without sacrificing too much performance. The VN750 (Vulcan) is light and handles really well with the Metzlers I have on it. I can scrape pegs and centerstand all day long and she eats it up. At my weight (180 lb) I have no problem keeping up with or leaving behind any bike I've ridden with of the 'cruiser' type. Now, two-up riding isn't as fun, but she can do that as well.

Which leads to my next comments...

The Vulcan 750 is a SMALL bike as far as the seating position and pegs are concerned. While my 29" inseam (hahah...) fits the peg arrangement just fine, I can't imagine anyone with a normal stature being comfortable on a long ride with the stock setup. Even at my size I find myself pushing back over the step in the seat to stretch my legs out. This is impossible while riding two-up, as the seat length is so tight my passenger is literally "on my back" and banging helmets if not paying attention. Passenger pegs are virtually unusable for a normal inseam, and will find your passenger begging for mercy after no more that an hour tops. (Peg extensions are available to lessens this effect...). Now at your stated size of "6' 6" 280lbs", I think you'd be crazy to consider a Vulcan 750! You'd be better off with an old-school standard like a CB900 or even an old Gold Wing! Heck, even one of the older 650s would probably fit you better.

The bike has a relatively long wheelbase which can fool you into thinking it's roomier than it actually is (is accomplished by raking the front fork out a few degrees). But trust me-it's tight, and much tighter than my '99 Spirit 1100.

Overall, I still really like mine, and plan on getting it back on the road to use as a daily driver so that I can save my Spirit for two-up riding and longer jaunts. When I jump on the Vulcan after riding the Spirit it feels 100 lbs lighter and the response is much more sport-touring than the more sedate (dare I say "lumbering" Spirit?). The Vulcan vibrates way less, and I can actually use the mirrors over 45 mph! When I get on the Spirit after riding the Vulcan, I feel like I'm on a "big bike" that I can stretch out on and actually carry a passenger comfortably on. Each bike has it's merits and I enjoy them both.

Lastly-with all the beautiful STOCK Vulcan 750s out there I would avoid going anywhere near someone else's "bobber project". If you want a bobber-BUILD IT. That way YOU control exactly what's been done and how. Most "bobbers" I've seen out there are done by kids with hacksaws, black spray paint, and wire clippers. There's just no way I want my hard-earned cash going into something like that. Any bobber done right (and they are out there), should not cost you LESS than what a stock bike is going for-a sure sign it aint right in my opinion. So if you want a bobber someone did up properly, find a guy who knows what he's doing and buy his. Again, just my opinion-but as mentioned already above-the guy in that ad doesn't seem to know what's up with that bike. On top of that, it's "been sitting" which only adds to the probability of trouble.

Just some things to think about....


Last edited by Mongrel; 07-23-2011 at 01:58 PM.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 02:28 PM
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The entire Vulcan line are rock solid and awesome bikes. I have owned the Nomad and currently my wife has the 1500 classic which I am getting ready to sell. Their handling is superb. I would have never considered getting rid of either of our Vulcans if it were not for us getting out of biking. We love them, their handling characteristics and their power.

I question a 750 made by any bike company for someone your size. You may want to hold off, save some cash and step into their Classic 1500 or maybe consider the V Star 1300. Both have floorboards and offer a much better seating arrangement which will make it more comfortable for you.

At 6'6 and 280 lbs you really need to consider a bigger bike. Whatever you buy, if it doesn't have floorboards then consider a forward control conversion to make it more comfortable for you.

Best of luck.


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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 02:54 PM
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Mongrel is spot on. The Vulcan 750 is a great bike, but it is very cramped. An old roommate I had back in the 90's had two of them. The power was good, but I really felt cramped on them. I later had a '99 Vulcan 800, which had much more room for both the rider, and passenger. Last I spoke to the old roommate he had moved on to a Vulcan 1500, which is probably what you should be looking at if a Kawasaki is what you want to ride. At your size going smaller doesn't make much sense.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 03:08 PM
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I recently picked up a 2002 Vulcan 800. It is a strong running bike. Has good power, not great. It is great in town and good on the highway. Changing out the stock 17 front and 42 rear to 18 front 40 rear for better highway, should drop the cruising rpms about 500 rpm.

The only thing I would say is, I am 6 foot 160 lbs, I would be very afraid that you would not be comfortable on the 750.

They replaced the 750 and 800 Vulcan with a 900 in 2004. I would not look at anything smaller than an 1100 for your size.

Doesn't matter what you ride, just that you do!

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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 04:33 PM
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The VN 750 is a fine bike and as far as I know they only have one flaw that is a bit troublesome- they mounted the r/r behind the exhaust 'goat' and it can get hot and screw up the stator. (or if the battery fails it can screw up the stator) It is recommended to move the r/r of remove the goat and buy a quality maintenance free battery. Here is the thing -unlike the shadows to get to the stator you have to remove engine and split the case.

All above is easy to avoid and the bike runs great, no bogging, will accelerate from without bogging down from any rpm.
My wife has a 2002 model.
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