883 Custom vs. Yamaha

Discussion in 'Sportster Models' started by Crucian, Sep 11, 2010.

  1. Crucian

    Crucian Member

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    Hi All,

    I'm very much a n00b when it comes to HD's. I owned a couple of Yamaha 400 bikes, one was a 400 Special, in the early 80's and had some fun with them. Now I'd like to get a real bike and I'm considering the Sportster 883 Custom, or Low. What's the difference in the Sportster models? I'd probably get an '09 model.

    On my Caribbean island the roads are rough asphalt, lots of curves, and plenty of potholes. Would that be a problem? How will it handle compared to the small Jap bikes I've had? I've also considered the BMW R1200, but it's a funny, complicated machine, and probably hard to repair and find parts for. There are no motorcycle shops here so I'm on my own for repairs. A full-size Harley is just too big for me. :newsmile047:
     
  2. NEWHD74FAN

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

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    Welcome to the HDTalking forum...I know this suggestion is a little off the wall, but I just received my issue of Motorcyclist magazine...and it is dedicated to Harleys!??... really a first, as they usually sprinkle MOCO products once in awhile. Got some pretty good positive reviews and details on the the new models...including the CVOs and the Sporty's!

    As for brand Y, I started my first new bike ownership with them...decent performance and handling, but starting on the 883 as they are now would have been a plus...new technology and decent price points make the HD a bargain for a near 1000cc motorcycle. HD motorcycles are a hoot to ride, torque and character MATTERS!

    By the way, Sporty's were bred with dirt track racing in mind...think XR750's...Carl Rayborn is heavily covered regarding his exploits up to his untimely death in 1973...!
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2010
  3. trickydoc

    trickydoc Active Member

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    actually a full size HD may be better than the sporty. I have both, 07 sporty, and 01 EG Ultra Classic. like to scoot around on the sporty, but love to ride the big bike better ballanced. don't know your size, but I am 63 yrs, 160 lbs, and 5feet 9 inches tall. ride a couple of bikes if possable and decide.
     
  4. Hoople

    Hoople Account Removed

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    Just make sure whatever you buy it's an HD or else you won't get US!:D.
     
  5. Crucian

    Crucian Member

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    ^ Thanks for the tips! I'm a medium sized guy, but the big Harleys just seem huge to me when I sit on one. Acceleration is not that important to me, and the only semi-straight road on the island is only 8 miles long with a stoplight every mile so I won't be traveling long distances. Mostly I'll stick to the countryside as the majority of drivers around here routinely fail to see bikers and run them off the road frequently.

    The Sporty does seem like a bargain compared to a Bimmer, and I do want something with character. The Japanese bikes seem reliable and stable but I'm just not into them. The '09 Sporty Custom 883 is just a great looking bike, and since they've been built since '57 the platform should be solid by now.

    The bike will be stored outside in the salt air. Is there anything I can spray the engine and chrome with to keep it from rusting?
     
  6. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Expert Member

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    Keep it clean and polished, the only down side to newer Sportsters is they no longer have a trap door to acces the transmission, Other than that they are very solid machines:s
     
  7. Crucian

    Crucian Member

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    Thanks Jack! I may go back as early as 2004. I mainly want to avoid the no-rubber, frame-mounted engine with its vibration issues. The roads around here are rough enough without the engine adding to it. Fuel injection might be nice, but means more to go wrong. How good is the stock carburetor? Nothing annoys me more than a carb that never seems to be tuned right. My boat has 12 carbs and it's a nightmare to adjust. :bigsmiley29:
     
  8. 03hdfatboy

    03hdfatboy Member

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    My grandpa lived at the beach the last 60+ years of his life and he rode and old hog (that he left to my uncle :( ) and I asked him one time how he kept the rust away and he said he always kept the chrome good with a thin layer of vaseline about once a week. I figured if it kept his 40yr old bike mostly rust free he must be doing something right. :s
     
  9. nakkers

    nakkers Active Member

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    The 883 Low does have limited rear suspension travel so, that might be something to consider with the roads. The peg feelers tend to find the pavement pretty early too. The standard sporty's suspension isn't everyone's cup of tea either but, it's better than the low.

    I'm a pre-rubber mount and find it does just fine. If you get an 04-05, you get rubber mount and carbed which might be better for self tuning. But you'll find others that support EFI tuning just as well......

    I wouldn't rule out a Dyna or soft tail. Fat Boy lo should be on the radar.

    They are not as big as you might think.........just food for thought.

    As for Yamaha, best to check out a Yamaha forum. You'll be hard pressed to find an opinion of a Yamaha that is favorable over an HD here. :p
     
  10. NEWHD74FAN

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

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    Nakkers does have a point, as brand Y is a bit of a stretch for most here...! As for EFI, it is the wave of the future, but I chose my HD to be an '04 mainly because it had all the new tech 'cept it was carbureted...I like simple and it is "toilet bowl" technology wise, which is very simple...and the CV carb Keihein is stone ax reliable having been on HD engines for over 24 years, giving them plenty of time to work out the nits!

    http://www.hdtalking.com/archive/index.php/t-13448.html
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2010