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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In reference to the last line of the article: "Do any MO readers own a Titan? Is it a good bike? A good company?" this is the reason they're doing badly, eh? I can't ever remember seeing one on the street, let alone knowing anybody who has one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
What's your reason for not wanting Indian to do well? I'm just wondering if your reasons are the same as mine!
 

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Perhaps the market has reached a saturation point for that particular style of motorcycle. My opinion is that they did nothing to distinguish themselves from the other billzillion cruiser models that are available.



Maybe more different take on the crusier genre would have help.To be honest I couldnt, tell you what seperates a Victory, ExcelsiorHenderson, Polaris and Indian.



 

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They're pretty much all the same bike. Nothing really does separate them. But cruisers don't have to all be the same--I can sure tell you that the Valkyrie, the R1200C, the Magna, and the Royal Star (not road star!) have a bit of uniqueness factor.

UNIQUE BIKES=COMPANY THAT SURVIVES!!!
 

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Roadload writes:

couldnt, tell you what seperates a Victory, ExcelsiorHenderson, Polaris and Indian.
That's not completely fair. A Victory, made by Polaris, is a completely new cruiser. Designed from the ground up. As is/was the E-H. Not one part of either bike is shared with a Harley-Davidson. While both bikes look very similar to a Harley to a non-cruiser rider, they are very different to those that do.

On the other hand Titan, Ultra, Indian, Big Dog, et al. are all nothing but Harley clones. Parts bin bikes really. They are powered by Harley Evolution knock-off engines that are stuck in Softail (or hardtail) knock-off frames, then tweaked to beat the band. They are soul-less assemblies of Harley-like parts.

Sure most of them are more extreme, more powerful, more unique than a stock Harley, but they are also more expensive and in 10 years won't be worth squat. Nor will you be able to buy a replacement part.

That being said I'd love to ride a Confederate bike (http://www.confederate.com/) . They at least started with a new sheet of paper when laying out the bike. Only the engine and teardrop tank are copied from Harley. Just ignore the white supremist, "south will rise again" overtones of the founder...

IMHO unique cruisers: Moto Guzzi Jackal, Honda Valkyrie, BMW R1200C (ugly, but unique!)
 

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Roadload writes:

couldnt, tell you what seperates a Victory, ExcelsiorHenderson, Polaris and Indian.
That's not completely fair. A Victory, made by Polaris, is a completely new cruiser. Designed from the ground up. As is/was the E-H. Not one part of either bike is shared with a Harley-Davidson. While both bikes look very similar to a Harley to a non-cruiser rider, they are very different to those that do.

On the other hand Titan, Ultra, Indian, Big Dog, et al. are all nothing but Harley clones. Parts bin bikes really. They are powered by Harley Evolution knock-off engines that are stuck in Softail (or hardtail) knock-off frames, then tweaked to beat the band. They are soul-less assemblies of Harley-like parts.

Sure most of them are more extreme, more powerful, more unique than a stock Harley, but they are also more expensive and in 10 years won't be worth squat. Nor will you be able to buy a replacement part.

That being said I'd love to ride a Confederate bike (http://www.confederate.com/) . They at least started with a new sheet of paper when laying out the bike. Only the engine and teardrop tank are copied from Harley. Just ignore the white supremist, "south will rise again" overtones of the founder...

IMHO unique cruisers: Moto Guzzi Jackal, Honda Valkyrie, BMW R1200C (ugly, but unique!)
 

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Re: ####'S

My only comment here is to the statement that Honda makes 90% of it's own parts. That's flat out not true. What Honda does do is order them in unearthly quantities and get them from companies at an extremely low price. For example, I know for a fact that the CBR line for motorcycles are supplied with footpegs, engine mounts, and other little bits and pieces by a small company in Ohio. Think about what a pair of OEM pegs costs you, and then think about this: Honda buys those pegs for 90 cents apiece and their supplier still makes almost 50 cents a peg for themselves. What's killing these smaller companies is low volume as well as not being as into the industry to know who to get their parts from in the first place.
 

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Titans, Quality, and Victory Bikes

Throughout the postings here there's been a lot made of Titan's lack of build quality: things falling off, electrical problems, etc. Folks that ride day in and day out want to feel a strong sense of confidence that when you go out to the garage, the bike will start, run strong, get you to where you're going, and back; all without difficulties. No one wants to be embarrassed by the side of the road cause their bike crappped out.

What about the Victory bikes by Polaris? I've heard different stories about their quality with snowmobiles... Are their bikes strong and consistent? Do they give that sense of confidence?
 

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Re: The harsh one

Gee, have a court battle against a company that was privately funded, actually had a design that wasn't cloned, and use "badge engineering" to develop a bike! They suck, absolutely suck. Check out the web site and find out what makes their "scout" an Indian, why they say its the genuine badge on the tank. May they rot in hell.
 

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Good one

That was funny! LOL you hit the nail on the head. Most of the lack of tolerance is the brain washing that occures via HD folk. If you want to wave at people and have them wave back you need a Harley. If you cant afford the bike you can get the immage with the clothing. I ride lots of different brands and would never go so far to say one sucks. They all have their quirks, and like children we love them.

I don't know if BMW would sell though what do you offer a family with everything. Ford tried once.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Re: Around here HD riders wave if you wave, sportbikes don't

I have to say, quite honestly now... I put 600 miles a week on my bike, I've put 11,000 miles on my "new" bike (new to me, anyhow) since I got it in May, and it's a bad idea to generalize about any type of rider. Some of the Harley guys wave at me, and some of them don't. I wave at everybody, I see a lot of bikes on the road during my commute (that's why the mileage is so high) and a few customs. It's wrong to say "Harley Riders don't wave" 'cause some of them do.
 

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Gentlemen, it appears that your focus is wandering...

...is it not an "apples/oranges" comparitive analogy to cite a 45* V-twin, a 70* V-4, and a 180* opposed flat six in your commentary? Surely, you are sufficiently astute to acknowledge the inherent potential power and subsequent limitations unique to each design..

But since you have broached the subject, permit me several observations:

As stock bikes all three have considerable merit, but none are perfect. Consider the V-Max, an outstanding and highly efficient motor in a chassis it doesn't deserve, suffering indeterminate handling in every attitude but straight ahead. I've only seen a few (arguably "stock") which actually ran in the 10s (with outstanding pilots); most run in the mid 11s, and some only in the 12s. I'm certain the operator is a salient factor. They can be rebuilt, but the availablity of parts other than dealerships is somewhat limited. As for the Valkyrie in stock form, the 12s are consistently comfortable and it's still an extermely reliable machine. If you wish to penetrate the 11s, it can get somewhat expensive... the 10s even moreso. "Can you say 9s?" Sure, can you say 75%+ of the original cost of the bike? Priced any factory speed parts lately? There is a small aftermarket which could supply your need for speed, but it is very expensive and somewhat exclusive - but don't dispair, if your funds are adequate you may be invited... If you want to rebuild a Valk and keep it reasonably stock (and therefore reliable), that's a much more manageable proposition (but not cheap).

A Confederate Hellcat is a minimalist design intended to be easily rebuilt by the owner, for generations. The V-twin aftermarket is a staggering enterprise whose annual cashflow is described in terms of billions (US); one may reasonably expect it to continue in some form. A Hellcat in stock (EPA/DOT approved trim & state of tune) will run mid to low 11s consistently. Massaged by a competent tuner and ridden well, it can play in the 10s at will. This is not idle speculation; anyone can watch as Confederate tests these bikes in public at open tracks and events. Getting into the 9s would likely negatively impact the reliability factor, after all it is still only a (somewhat dated?) 45* V-twin. The chassis is more "road-race" than cruiser (the sportbike crowd actually has an easier transition/adaption phase than cruiser riders at test ride opportunities/events). The downside is, of course, the initial expense (cost of the bike) at about $25K (US), but a Confederate is intended to be around long enough to be articulated in one's last will and testament.

How much will anyone be willing to "invest" in that V-Max or Valkyrie... over the next generation or two? I would likely just opt for a new one every three or four years, but by the time I'd had three or four "new" ones, I'd have spent considerably more money, wouldn't I?

Lest we lose sight of the facts, let us review the dogma... Motorcycling is fun, if you're not having any, go do something else. Motorcycle manufacturing and sales is about money, if you don't have any, you can't play. Marketing is about seperating you from your money, if you have some - they want it. The trick is to have as much fun and keep as much money as you can over the long run... and that's called life.
 

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I am a Harley machanic in Japan and I have worked on a few Titans. They use some of the best quality parts available. They handle well and run great.



One bike we had in recently had multiple problems. After the Titan dealer couldn't fix it the customer came to me. We found a crack in the engine case. The bike was about 3 years old. The Titan dealer came and took some pictures. We had a new set of cases in about 2 weeks. They also included a complete gasket set. I was very impressed with the speed at which they processed the claim. The bike has ran fine ever since.
 

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A most interesting discourse..

..and it seems that we do indeed largly agree. And, I may have learned something in regard to the aftermarket supercharger/blower application on the Valkyrie. I had previously seen prices in the $9K range, but that was also for a fuel injection/blower application, and frame strengthening (it certainly ran in the 9s, but was not streetable). However, my point about the "apples/oranges" analogy was to articulate that all unique designs have inherent limitations, and the recognition thereof is the genesis of different classes in (drag) racing. Road racing presents very different parameters and motor design evolution is seemingly cutting edge; twins and in-line fours push the envelope admirably. My thoughts, in closing, are that all competitive endeavor enhances motorcycling in general - and all enthusiasts benefit.
 
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