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  #1  
Old 09-04-2012, 06:32 PM
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Default sportster 1200 v triumph speedmaster

Has anyone had dealings with both of the above bikes?
both in contention of been my next bike so would like a view from someone who has rode/had both.
Cheers, John
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Old 09-04-2012, 07:39 PM
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Can only tell ye about the speedie good bikes a bit under powered on the older models. The newer EFI can be re mapped and with a bit of fettling can be not too bad.

Not much in the way of after market stuff available in the UK. If yer after bling or performance mods the states are the best place. A lot of folk say to change the rear shocks and put progressive springs in the forks for better handling.

If ye can, change the coils Triumph coils are shite on the Speedies and Americas, go for Nology with wires.

Headlamp is also a bit hit and miss ye could be better with a candle ....
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Old 10-04-2012, 07:08 PM
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Its a sportster all the way for me but you the only one who can decide and if you doubt the Harley best to go with the Triumph. Harleys are a way of life for most owners rather than a performance, I love me Harleys but I wouldnt say any have great handling cornering and all that, but I love em/
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Old 10-04-2012, 08:19 PM
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having previously test ridden both of these bikes in the past, this is my way of thinking.......Triumph...has brakes that well...brake!!!
Triumph...has suspension that well...suspends!!!
Triumph....nothing fell off during the test ride!!!
Triumph....It's British!!!
All of the above the Harley failed on in my opinion......Why you would buy a bike that needs it's suspension sorting so it works and brakes sorting so it brakes and 14 bottles of loctite so bits don't fall off every time you ride it....Well????

But this is just my own personal experience......

Currently saving my dosh for a Speed Master.......say no more.....

Last edited by jakblade68; 10-04-2012 at 08:24 PM. Reason: Oopps
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Old 10-04-2012, 10:05 PM
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Tried the Triumph and found it way underpowered, pretty gutless. Lights were shite. Not at all impressed with soggy suspension and felt like I was sat above the bike if that makes sense. Just couldn't get to grips with it. Just didn't feel like a big bike, sort of fragile and flimsy. Brakes would probably be improved with braided hoses.

Had several Sportsters and I have to tell you that I fucking love them. Only reason that I sold the last one is beause I made it look like a very small bike. (I am not exactly a midget).

DON'T let any of the know all know fuck all idiots put you off a Sportie. For a 1200 they are physically a small bike, but they will pull your arms off. When I sold my last one (Sportster Sport) it had scuff marks right off the edge of the tread. Twin disc front brakes and braided hoses, rear single disc with braided hose were very good even under hard late braking. Comfortable on long rides, very easy to chuck about in town. Tick along motorways at 75 - 80 all day. Ignore all the bollocks about it being a girls bike. Routine and regular maintenance keeps on top of anything that does vibrate. You make it yours and get to know it that way. I have never had a problem with a Sportie. Had 6 of them altogether.

You didn't say if you were looking at new bikes or used bikes. You can pick up a very tidy used Sportster for around £4000. Most of the add ons will already be there, just chuck the chrome shite in the bin or evilbay. Look after it and it will keep its value. No idea on the Triumph prices.

If you are looking at both as possible new bikes, then I would suggest that you get the longest possible test ride on both of them before you part with money.

Chopper
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Old 10-04-2012, 10:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jakblade68 View Post
having previously test ridden both of these bikes in the past, this is my way of thinking.......Triumph...has brakes that well...brake!!!
Triumph...has suspension that well...suspends!!!
Triumph....nothing fell off during the test ride!!!
Triumph....It's British!!!
All of the above the Harley failed on in my opinion......Why you would buy a bike that needs it's suspension sorting so it works and brakes sorting so it brakes and 14 bottles of loctite so bits don't fall off every time you ride it....Well????

But this is just my own personal experience......

Currently saving my dosh for a Speed Master.......say no more.....
Enjoy your triumph, you know little about Harleys, there are a few models that handle well & brake well out of the box.

One of my bikes is the model chopper mentioned xl1200s
fully adjustable suspension front and rear and twin plug heads uprated ignition etc all as stock. A better handling bike than any stock speedmaster imho, and it doesn't need 'loctite so bits don't fall off every time you ride it'.

I'm sure you'll enjoy either bike choprocker, if you were closer I'd offer a test ride on mine.
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Old 10-04-2012, 10:32 PM
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I had a 1200 Sportster - wish I still had it, nowt fell off it!
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Old 11-04-2012, 12:16 PM
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cheers for replies, i am loking at a used bike but at mo thats wot is sort of putting me off the sportsters, i know they hold their money but seems like some people want too much in my opinion.
ws looking at the 1200r, i am lead to believe a sportier lump then the other sportsters and with twin disc up front.
it really is 50/50 and will prob depend on wots out there at a reasonable price.
Cheers.
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Old 11-04-2012, 01:42 PM
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XL1200S (up to 2003) and XR1200R last few years are the sportier models mate.
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Old 11-04-2012, 03:17 PM
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I've had three Sportys so far and would recommend them. Yes they do vibe a bit, and yes mine did suffer a few blown bulbs as a result. Harley frame paint varies something terrible in its quality - we've had six so far, four were excellent two were rubbish. Most other bits and bobs are fine if you ignore the "over shiny" models which often don't last too well this side of the Atlantic. Reliability has been good and parts can be had a helluva lot cheaper than people like to make out...and there is masses of cheap aftermarket kit on eBay. Having said all that, my mate who's had a Sporty, a twin cam Superglide and a V Rod recently traded for a Bonnie and reckons it's the best 'bike he's owned in a long time. I tried it and found it lacking character (feels a bit like a sorted XS650 or CB500T if you ask me), wasn't convinced with the handling when going for it but there's no doubt about the quality and so far it hasn't missed a beat.
Best of luck with whichever you get...
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Old 11-04-2012, 03:36 PM
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Like I said these were my own personal experiences from riding both SpeedMaster and Sporty......However if money were no object i would most definitely go for the V-Rod That i tested too.....Now that was most definitely THE BEST bike I have ever ridden......Not only did it try to rip my arms off, it tried to remove my head too!!!!

I really,really wanted a Sporty until I rode one and had all my dreams dashed in one 2 1/2hr ride....Hey Ho that's life. It was probably just too small for me and wasn't impressed by the bollocking the salesman tried to give me when I handed him back the rear light/number plate that had fell off whilst out. He seemed to think it was my fault....Tosser!!!!

But hey these are only all our individual opinions and each one of us differs.......At the end of the day the choice is yours, test ride both and make your own decisions.

Whatever you choose......Have fun and ride safe....
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  #12  
Old 11-04-2012, 03:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mc Nasty View Post
XL1200S (up to 2003) and XR1200R last few years are the sportier models mate.
i believe there is the xl1200r too.
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Old 11-04-2012, 05:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Choprocker View Post
i believe there is the xl1200r too.
It's pretty much the same as base model bar alloys and double discs. Not as good as either of the ones I mentioned in any way.
R is for roadster, not race or racing.

Last edited by Mc Nasty; 11-04-2012 at 05:25 PM.
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mc Nasty View Post
It's pretty much the same as base model bar alloys and double discs. Not as good as either of the ones I mentioned in any way.
R is for roadster, not race or racing.
know wot you mean m8, knew it was for roadster it seems to fit the bill for me more than the others, flat low bars also digging the cast ally wheels model, not many out there though, plenty of 883 versions though.
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Old 11-04-2012, 11:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Choprocker View Post
know wot you mean m8, knew it was for roadster it seems to fit the bill for me more than the others, flat low bars also digging the cast ally wheels model, not many out there though, plenty of 883 versions though.

http://www.totalmotorcycle.com/photo...r1200Sport.htm

that's the exact same as my sporty, last of the solid mount sportsters.
Quote:
2003 Harley-Davidson XL 1200S Sportster 1200 Sport

High compression and high performance cams send a high performance message.
Dual spark plugs and triple-disk brakes mean quadruple the excitement.
Fully adjustable suspension and sport compound tires add to the thrill,
and the textured sport seat and electronic tachometer round out this
high-octane package.
With its chrome exhaust, unique graphics and classic styling,
the XL 1200S Sportster 1200 Sport is an eye catcher as well.

Key XL Sportster ® 1200 Sport characteristics

-Rigid mount 1200cc Evolution® engine
-High compression, dual-spark plug cylinder heads
-High performance cams
-Black powdercoated engine with polished and powder-coated covers
-Triple-disc brakes
-Premium, fully adjustable sport suspension
-Sport compound tires
-Textured sport seat
-Chrome staggered shorty dual exhaust
-Low-rise stainless steel handlebar
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Old 12-04-2012, 07:33 PM
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Seems a bit strange trying to compare an 800 to a 1200, its obvious the 1200 is going to have more guts. Its like saying the 1200 sportster is gutless compared to a 1700 Thunderbird storm. Its like saying Classic 80's bike wanted, RD250DX v Laverda Jota

Now I tried a bog standard 883 harley and an 800 Triumph and found the Triumph more responsive. Both were strangled by emmisions crap but the Triumph was cheaper to get to how it should be, and not being 6 foot plus fitted me better.
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by excalibur View Post
Seems a bit strange trying to compare an 800 to a 1200, its obvious the 1200 is going to have more guts. Its like saying the 1200 sportster is gutless compared to a 1700 Thunderbird storm. Its like saying Classic 80's bike wanted, RD250DX v Laverda Jota

Now I tried a bog standard 883 harley and an 800 Triumph and found the Triumph more responsive. Both were strangled by emmisions crap but the Triumph was cheaper to get to how it should be, and not being 6 foot plus fitted me better.
yes and no, the triumph comes in at 865cc and about 61 bhp, the 1200 is abot the same.
not sure of torque etc but i presume the 1200 is more.
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Old 16-04-2012, 09:10 PM
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i went for the 1200 sportster xlr
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Old 16-04-2012, 09:17 PM
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Nice One - Character!
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Old 16-04-2012, 09:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Choprocker View Post
i went for the 1200 sportster xlr
Just don't take it out in the Rain or you'll Void the Warranty
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Old 26-08-2014, 06:23 PM
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just seen this thread.
Harley lasted 2 months, could not get on with it, more the engine otherwise was a good bike apart from the suspension, that was shite.
sold it and bought a triumph Bonneville, since then had a thruxton and now back to a newer Bonneville, I love em.
when I jumped on the Bonneville it really showed how heavy and how bad the brake were on the Harley but you get use to that and ride accordingly.
Am now looking for a speedmaster to go with the Bonneville.
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Old 27-08-2014, 07:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Choprocker View Post
just seen this thread.
Harley lasted 2 months, could not get on with it, more the engine otherwise was a good bike apart from the suspension, that was shite.
sold it and bought a triumph Bonneville, since then had a thruxton and now back to a newer Bonneville, I love em.
when I jumped on the Bonneville it really showed how heavy and how bad the brake were on the Harley but you get use to that and ride accordingly.
Am now looking for a speedmaster to go with the Bonneville.
Should have listened to me in the first place.......never fails.....knew ye would make the right decision in the end
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