Author [NL] [FR] [ES] [DE] [SE] [IT] Newbie with a few questions!  (Read 963 times)

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  • Offline flynvtwn   us

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    Offline flynvtwn

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    Newbie with a few questions!
    on: Aug 17, 2022, 09.50 pm
    Aug 17, 2022, 09.50 pm
    Hello everyone!  I have a few general questions that I would like some real world answers to.  Please forgive me for the NEWBIE-ness of these questions.  After many years without a bike I finally have permission to get one again (kids are finally grown and I think the wife wants the insurance money if I die...could be just to get me to shut up and get out of the house as well).  I'm no longer the young nimble person that I was in my youth when I road sport bikes so I'm looking at sport touring bikes.  The thought of an adventure bike has zero appeal to me.  I'm realistic in that the most off-roading I'm going to do on a bike is the gravel down my driveway. 

    I'm considering 3 different bikes.  Yamaha FJR1300 ES, BMW R1200RT, and the Triumph Trophy.  Out of the bikes I really like the Triumph, but have a few concerns.  Hopefully the group can answers these questions to help me make a decision.

    How difficult are parts to source since the bike was only made in a limited run?  How long are you waiting on ordered parts?

    What do you feel is the realistic mileage that you can get out of this bike?  (I've ridden FJRs with over 100K so I'm just curious)

    I typically work on my own vehicles, but have never worked on a Triumph.  What is the ease of maintaining the bike and performing the general services?

    I'm a big fan of bikes that not everyone has so the Triumph also has some appeal just from that respect to me.  Hopefully I'm asking the right questions.  If there is anything else that I should know please tell me.  This is going to be a hard bike for me to find to test ride without traveling a long ways to try it.  There just aren't many around that are for sale and at a dealer and zero of those are anywhere near me in TN.

    Thanks for your time!

    -Nate 

  • Offline swilkins65   us

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    Offline swilkins65

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    Re: Newbie with a few questions!
    Reply #1 on: Aug 18, 2022, 06.04 am
    Aug 18, 2022, 06.04 am
    The three you mention are the exact three I started looking at in spring of 21.  I found used examples of each in the Phoenix metro are and went and looked at each.  The Trophy got the money for a few reasons but the main one was it was the lowest ride height (I'm a short skit).  Bought my 2013 in 2021 with 18K miles on the odometer for $7K from a private seller.  Bike has the optional top box and optional heated grips.  Only modifications were a lithium battery which I've removed and an upgraded horn that I didn't like (was poorly mounted).  I've met and/or talked with 3 people that logged over 100K miles.  As with cars it just comes down to maintenance and avoiding the dreaded major accident but the bike is certainly built well enough for 100K+ mile longevity.  I had to order several body parts in Jan 2022 when someone did a u turn in the middle of the rode in front of me and while a couple of them did have to come from the UK everything was still available [left and right fairings, saddle bags, turn signal housings, basically all the plastics on both sides of the bike].  I think any of the three you mentioned will ride well but as you said the Trophy is the rare diamond you won't see everywhere.

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    Re: Newbie with a few questions!
    Reply #2 on: Aug 18, 2022, 02.36 pm
    Aug 18, 2022, 02.36 pm
    Like I tell most people that ask me about it when they see it, "It's one of the best kept secrets in motorcycling".
    One of the Founding Members of the Twisted Trophies

  • Offline flynvtwn   us

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    Offline flynvtwn

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    Re: Newbie with a few questions!
    Reply #3 on: Aug 18, 2022, 03.31 pm
    Aug 18, 2022, 03.31 pm
    Thank you for the info.  I have found several examples of the bike with similar mileage for a similar price currently for sale.  It is by far the best deal out of any of the 3 bikes I mentioned.  It has all the bells and whistles that I think I could ever want standard.  Coming from my last two bikes (RC51 and TL1000R) that had a piece of plywood for a seat and zero creature comforts I think I would probably be happy with any of the 3, but I like the idea of a full touring bike that can still play in the turns, but take me for an 8 hour all day ride.  I live in East TN about 2 minutes from twisty backroads and a little over an hour to the Dragon so I know I will still want to be able to go play all the time.  If I didn't know that I will probably end up 2 up with a kid on the back quite often I would get a Tracer 900 GT or the new Suzuki GSX1000GT+.  I'm defiantly not ready for a Goldwing or the K1600 and my dad's Can-am Spyder absolutely scares the crap out of me going around a turn.  Not to mention they are the size of a small house. 

    I'm glad to hear that you can still get parts even if they have to be shipped from the UK.  I was in the Kawasaki dealership in town the other day looking at a concours and the saleslady mentioned that they were struggling to get Yamaha parts.  I don't know how much of that was truth and how much of it was her trying to sell me on the concours that was sitting there.  I think longevity of parts availability is my only real fear of purchasing the Triumph.  I feel confident that I can keep it running as long as I can get the parts to fix anything that goes wrong.

  • Offline pbsrides   us

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    Offline pbsrides

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    Re: Newbie with a few questions!
    Reply #4 on: Aug 19, 2022, 01.34 pm
    Aug 19, 2022, 01.34 pm
    As a new owner of a 15, I cannot speak to all your questions, but as a long time rider whos owned more than a dozen bikes over 30 years, I can tell you its a lot of bike for the money. And as a short jockey, I can tell you its a good fit. USA models came with the low seat standard and I find it comfortable for long distances. Good luck with your search!

  • Offline thogland   us

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    Re: Newbie with a few questions!
    Reply #5 on: Aug 19, 2022, 06.10 pm
    Aug 19, 2022, 06.10 pm
    I went through the same process when I bought my '15 Trophy. There's two "camps" in the S-T area - the sport-type and the touring-type. Sport is the FJR, Concours, etc - a sport bike that's had the ergos, tuning, etc. tweaked for more comfort, but no audio etc. The touring is less sporty but has audio systems, cruise, electric screen etc. (Yeah, that's way simplified, but it lets you narrow down what you want in a bike.) A lot of "what will work" is answering "what am I going to do?" - if you want to tour all over the country or do short weekend trips, for example.

    For "sport", the FJR is the gold standard for reliability (across the whole segment, actually), but was pricey for it's lack of amenities (audio etc). The Concours was cheaper than the FJR, but again - no amenities. The BMW was more expensive as a 3-4 year old used bike than any of the rest were new, but has all the bells and whistles you'd want. The Trophy was much cheaper than all the rest and had everything - CC, audio, electric screen, electronic suspension, etc.

    I wanted comfort and audio, plus no chain - I want to ride, not maintain all the time. (I also don't have time to spend learning how to do all the maintenance.) Having said that, I first looked at a Concours, as it was on sale at a price I couldn't resist ($9900 new) but it sold before I could go look at it. After that, the Trophy was a no brainer. (Note that there was nothing Honda or Suzuki when I shopped).

    If/when I replace mine, I'm leaning to the FJR ES. No audio, but all the rest is now there (the general equipment level on all these bikes has improved in the last 5 years). It lacks any sort of character, but as I get older I'm leaning to comfort and reliability over character. All of them will be as reliable as anything else, and keeping up on regular maintenance will usually let them go for many years with no issues. Most important after ergonomics is probably your dealer - if you DO have an issue that dealer is the difference between a good and bad experience, and a good Triumph dealer 15 minutes away is much better than a lousy Yamaha dealer an hour away.

    The Trophy has an engine sound that I like - the triple has character - and has a great combination of low-end torque and high-end power, but it's top heavy due to it's design. The FJR (and all I4s) sound boring to me, and are much more biased to high-end power. The BMW's twin just doesn't do anything for me, but is better at torque than the I4s. All will get good mileage if you keep the revs down; the Trophy is sensitive to the screen height though - you can go from 50mpg to 40mpg by raising the screen halfway. The FJR and RT are the aftermarket kings - *everything* out there is sold for them :-) but the Concours and Trophy still have a few goodies available, and I didn't need much to make mine Work Just Right(tm). Mainly the Russell Day-Long seat.

    Having said all that, the road-oriented adventure bikes make great S-T options. Higher seats and positioning give great visibility in traffic, longer suspension gives more comfort, has all the ride modes, etc. but don't have the onboard audio like the Trophy or RT. The big Triumph Tiger is the same drivetrain as the Trophy and since it's a popular option there's lots of parts availability and mechanic familiarity. You might not want to completely discount one of those.

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    Re: Newbie with a few questions!
    Reply #6 on: Aug 20, 2022, 12.45 am
    Aug 20, 2022, 12.45 am
    The Trophy's riding position is good for miles of highway droning to get to the fun stuff and very adequate in the twisty bits.
    One of the Founding Members of the Twisted Trophies

  • Offline STJIM   us

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    Offline STJIM

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    Re: Newbie with a few questions!
    Reply #7 on: Aug 20, 2022, 01.55 pm
    Aug 20, 2022, 01.55 pm
    *Originally Posted by flynvtwn [+]


    I'm glad to hear that you can still get parts even if they have to be shipped from the UK.  I was in the Kawasaki dealership in town the other day looking at a concours and the saleslady mentioned that they were struggling to get Yamaha parts.  I don't know how much of that was truth and how much of it was her trying to sell me on the concours that was sitting there.  I think longevity of parts availability is my only real fear of purchasing the Triumph.  I feel confident that I can keep it running as long as I can get the parts to fix anything that goes wrong.
      Ya, I bet she was trying to sell you the Concours - I also have a C-14 myself, BTW.   It's a nice bike but I prefer the Trophy for long distance riding.  For shorter rides,  I prefer my Concours.  It's a fun bike and for me, and scary fast ( thanks to the variable valve timing )  when taken up to the higher revs.
    But you can't beat the Trophy for using regular gas ( I usually run mid-grade ) and the better gas mileage compared to the Concours and FJR.  On a recent IBA after I filled the tank, the computer said I had 422 miles left on that tank of gas.  And the weather protection is really good on the Trophy.

    I wouldn't worry about parts availabilty for either the Trophy or FJR.   

    I would be concerned about the parts cost for the BMW, tho. I was surprised to see there are quit a few used parts available for the Trophy on EBay.   I boiught a spare driveshaft ( $50 ) and 3 ignition coils ( $40) recently.  These aren't high failure items.  I just couldn't pass up the deal - cheap insurance ! A new drivesaft for the Trophy is about $375  and for a R1200RT is $1,300 .   In 115K miles my buddy went through 2 drivesafts on his BMW - the first one was covered under warranty, the second nada.  He "spun" the first one and the u-joint failed on the second.

    The FJR is a great bike, but it doesn't fit me well.  It has a reputation for being "bullet-proof".  I don't know if the Trophy is better or just as good as the FJR.  My Trophy fits me and I have no complaints except the RDL seat I have on mine is a bit too high.  I think I know why the Trophy comes stock with the "low-rider" seat.  The high seat height may be why the Trophy didn't sell well.  I have a set of lowering links on order, BTW.

    I would say  the Trophy, FJR or Concours are all great bikes,  depending on what type of riding you are into and how each fits you.

    Just my 2-cents.
    Last Edit: Aug 20, 2022, 02.02 pm by STJIM
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