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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
To trade or not to trade...

I've got a chance to trade my '06 Spirit 1100 straight up for a '02 VTX 1800R.

under 10k on mine, 8.4k on the VTX.

Thoughts/comments?
 

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how's the vtx look cosmetically? how's it run? the vtx1800 is a lot of bike.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm not actually going to see/ride it 'til Sunday morning. According to the owner, it's pristine. I do know that it's not gonna lean as much on the Tail of the Dragon as my Spirit does, but I've been wanting something a bit beefier and I think 700 more cc's qualifies.

Have you ridden the 1800? How does it compare to your 1300?

I'll post again after my ride on Sunday.
 

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i haven't rode the 1800's that much. just test rode some after workin' on them in the shop. the 1800 has more power. heavier. little more sluggish in the turns. gas mileage ain't that great. they are great bikes though.
 

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That is a very tempting trade. I'd have to ride the 1800 to see how I liked it though if it was me. The power boost is well worth it, but the bulk would concern me. My bike is almost as heavy as the VTX 1800, but far better balanced. I've sat on a few 1800s, but never rode one. Just sitting on them though you can tell they are bulky, and I got the impression that they are not the least bit nimble. I'd love to hear your impression after a test ride. Keep us posted.
 

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First impression JUMP on it.
But then like the others said, why is he getting rid of it?
1. Weight
2.Mileage
3. Weight
But the bike is FI, it is a powerful bad a$$ ride I hear. The owner may just not be into the extra bulk. My buddy has one, his wife has a VTX 1300r like mine and his boy has the VTX 1300c, his boy and wife both ride the 1800, the boy of course loves it, the wife like the ride underway, but hates the weight other wise!
Keep us posted, I say do it, worst case ride it like you stole it a while then trade again!
Coop
 

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Jim:
If is is "a bit beefier" that you want, the big X will certainly deliver, we think, as it is "a bit beefier" than just about anything else. Based on our (admittedly somewhat limited) observations/experience, the X is a great bike. Best to ride it and see what you think, however. It is a big heavy bike.

We trudge on.
 

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Just my 2 cents. If you are a veteran rider ( years under your belt ) you probably wont have many problems.

The 1800 is heavier and the center of gravity is much higher then your 1300. When the tank is topped off you really feel the difference. Trust me you get on the 1800 and start to take off and turn you will notice the difference right away. The 1800 can be a real handful at low speeds during tight maneuvers. At speed it is like any other bike, tame and behaves itself. Even a Honda factory rep told me in private " the bike is not for everyone. It does have a few handling issues ".

Myself if I was in your situation I would keep my VTX. I will gladly sacrifice some power for better handling.

I have known 3 guys who had 1800's and all of they sold them or traded them off and went to a different bike. I am now wondering if this guy is doing the same thing. Think long and hard on this decision.

Before I get bashed here, the 1800 is a nice bike, but it isn't for everyone.

Best of luck on whatever you do.

Chris
 

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I am gonna jump in here - shouldn't I guess but I just can resist.

I keep reading how the 1800 is sluggish to handle, unwieldy, heavy and just generally a really big beamoth to deal with.

I just don't get it. Nothing could be further from the truth IMHO. Went from the Spirit 750 to my 1800 after owning and riding the Spirit for 6 months.

To be honest, I find the 1800 easier to handle at slow speeds. Now I do have the Spirit and that means a narrow 21" front tire. Makes slow and sharp turns a little dicier than a fatter tire.

It is a bit heavier on top but that takes about a day to get used to - you just realize the weight is higher and you compensate.

The weight is a none issue. Unless you do not have the physical strength to pull it up. Is a might more strain than the 750. The X handles like a dream on the road.

Now to the power issue. There is no issue. You will not believe the difference in power. Can't describe it until you experience it.

So if it is a straight up deal and the bike is in good shape don't jump - leap at the chance.... You are a lucky sucker !!!!

 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
All... I appreciate your comments very much.

First, why? It is an older man who purchased the bike new. He is very small (150lbs) and frankly states the bike is too much for him.

Second, I will ride the bike on a back road Sunday morning ride. I expect to go about 35 miles on roads which range in speed from 25 to 55, then a few miles on the freeway at 75 or so. I will definitely get the benefit of a good try out.

I also found this review when the bike was first released, it seems fairly unbiased. I'll provide an update after tomorrow's ride.

Honda VTX1800C - Road Test & Review - Motorcycle Cruiser
 

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Most of the people who talk about the sluggish and poor handling of the 1800 have never ridden one. It is no sport bike, but several people have a lot of trouble keeping up with me on the twisties. It is all about your riding abilities and skills. As with any new bike they all ride differently and need a learning curve to get used to it. I have no problem scraping the floorboards at high or low speeds and just watch the ride like a pro dvd where a 110 pound girl completes the course on a VTX 1800 the same course that the police bikes qualify on. The 1800 isn't for everyone and if you are afraid of it or not confident in your riding abilities it probably isn't for you. I have a good friend who just went to the 1800 from his Shadow 750 and he didn't find any of the negative hype about the VTX to be true either. He was upset he didn't switch sooner.

 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
The test ride is over...

In fact, it didn't last 5 miles and I barely got out of the parking lot to begin with. I'm not sure if all 1800's are like this, but the front end felt very loose and when taking a slow corner, like in or out of a parking lot, it felt like the handlebars were being pulled out of my hands.

There were a number of cosmetic issues as well, I won't go into detail, let's just say it wasn't a good presentation for a trade.

In the end, maybe other 1800's look and ride better, but I can't justify the trade on this one.

Oh well!
 

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Ok, and my two cents; my bofriend currently owns an 2003 VTX1800 (bought it new) and he is happy with his bike. He has told me it is a "beast" and is a bit heavy at 700+ pounds but he is 6 foot, 200 pounds and doesn't seem to have any trouble moving it around. He most definitely loves the power that the 1800 has, and I can tell you from riding on the back that when he cracks back on the throttle I get jerked back against the backrest. I remember him telling me that the first time he took it out on a test ride the power was so impressive that it took his breath away. He tells me it doesn't get the greatest gas mileage (about 130 miles and his low fuel light ticks on) and loves the lines of the bike and doesn't see himself getting rid of it anytime soon. He currently has 37,000 miles on the odo and also hasn't had any mechanical issues with it. You have got to decide if the weight/bulk/gas mileage is worth the tradeoff for a good deal horsepower under you. Best of luck!
 

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Closest thing to the VTX 1800 I have ridden is the VTX1300 a friend of mine has. It is really hard to compare it to the VT1100. They are just too different, really. I would GUESS it is a lot like the old Valkyries, but not as smooth. Mileage is probably similar, as well. I put a few miles (4000) in the month I borrowed my Dad's Valk, and they are also an awesome ride. I am sure the 1800 is a great bike, just different. Honda makes some of the best bikes on the road.-----Metalguy
 

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Sorry it didn't go well. Sounds like this one you looked at hadn't been well taken care of or maybe a wrecked one or something. I will tell you I have over 41,000 miles on mine and just minor stuff like the Shock bushings being replaced and when i went Darkside i changed the wheel bearings front and rear. Only issues I have had so far only 1 of the wheel bearings was bad the others were fine. Hope you find something you like on a trade don't give up and try a few others. Lots of good bikes in the higher CC ratings out there by all the manufacturers.
 

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The test ride is over...

In fact, it didn't last 5 miles and I barely got out of the parking lot to begin with. I'm not sure if all 1800's are like this, but the front end felt very loose and when taking a slow corner, like in or out of a parking lot, it felt like the handlebars were being pulled out of my hands.

There were a number of cosmetic issues as well, I won't go into detail, let's just say it wasn't a good presentation for a trade.

In the end, maybe other 1800's look and ride better, but I can't justify the trade on this one.

Oh well!
As far as the handling. I would guess at under 10k it probably still had the stock Dunlops. Those tires suck on a VTX. And if he wasn't taking care of it the air pressure may have been low. I know they work fine on the shadow. At least they did on my 1100. But on the X they get sluggish and the back tire starts to cup which makes the front wobble at low speeds. I switched to Avons and it's amazing how nimble a big bike can feel.

But if the thing was in poor condition then all the rest doesn't matter.
 
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