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Buells, alright/stay away/run away

  1. #1
    Lifer Falko's Avatar
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    Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    Got rid of my sporty bike earlier this year, big mistake in more ways than one. I have the itch to get a fun bike again, but don't want to spend much $$, and want something I can take to track days, and twin is a big plus. Looking around, I've found some Buells for decent prices, but not sure about how good they really are and how much support is out there for them. Any insight would be great. (please don't turn this into a buy an SV thread, next bike will not be Japanese) Thanks.

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  2. #2
    Back marker... jwm2k3's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    Heck yeah, get a Buell.. You'll dig it.

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    Johnny

    Its an Italian bike...Ive had (have?) a few

  3. #3
    LRRS EX #99 Kitt's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    Loved mine, Squirrel can let you know if it's still going well.

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  4. #4
    Rust never sleeps. whynot's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    Lots of Buell support, starting with this great forum:

    http://www.badweatherbikers.com/



    Check with NESR member eboos, he [used to race] a Buell.

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    Last edited by whynot; 07-10-12 at 12:59 PM. Reason: I stand corrected.
    Don't believe everything you think.

  5. #5
    Lifer Chippertheripper's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    He used to race a Buell...

    What kind of support are you looking for? The xb is a tremendous street whip, but it's not suited for the racetrack. Trust me, I tried. I had a 9s lightning and miss it every day. I will probably own another one. You can't kill the motors unless you do stupid shit to them, and their only common issues are the wiring harnesses and leaky rocker boxes.
    For a street bike: absotudleutely.
    For a track mount: meh...you CAN, but you've been warned.

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  6. #6
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    I like buells, looking for one myself.

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  7. #7
    Lifer
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    I'd ride one...

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  8. #8
    is not wearing pants Point37's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    I have a buddy that is getting ready to sell his red Buell lightning...I think it's an 06...he is selling it cause he wants to get a ktm exc...if you are interested shoot me a PM and i'll get you more info

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    Last edited by Point37; 07-10-12 at 09:40 AM.
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  9. #9
    Lifer 03Worc9R's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    Attachment 30490
    Buells are not as bad as most think. Very fun bikes. This was back in the day when Chipper used to actually lead rides!

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  10. #10
    Career Grifter KawiSmurf's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    I've always liked Buells. I think I did a demo ride on every model they offered at one point. I'm still pining for a mint 1125CR. Curious to see what EBR's upcoming models will look like.

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  11. #11
    Lifer nt650hawk's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away


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    Gino
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  12. #12
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    Was one of the many that started riding on a blast. Loved the simple nature of the bike. Learned more about wrenching around on it (more my inquisitiveness than reliability) than I expected. Just recently picked up a 99 M2. Comfortable bike with much punch. Not that I really have too much to compare it to. But super fun, simple, and not a load of them on the road.

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  13. #13
    Lifer DuncanMoto's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    Bulls are awesome, just need to maintain and check it regularly.

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  14. #14
    Lifer PhilB's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    Buells are a lot of fun to ride; great real-world bikes. Build quality was sketchy back in the '90's, but got a lot better when Harley bought in (that was a benefit of the deal). I testrode several over the years, but didn't buy one since I always plan to run whatever I buy for at least 100K, and I was dubious about the Harley-based engines doing that (although I do know one guy who has done it, on an old tube-frame S2 Thunderbolt, no less).

    Harley has committed to supporting them for parts and service for a few years (I forget whether it's 7 or 10), but they haven't promised to be cheerful about it or for the dealers to welcome you with open arms. After that, there's no guarantees, so whoever owns them at that point will need to have a little extra dedication and ingenuity.

    The 1125 Rotax-engined ones should fare better in the long term; they are better bikes to start with, and EBR has expressed interest in supporting them, viewing them more as part of the new generation than the old (and can get the mech parts from Rotax instead of depending on Harley).

    So I wouldn't have much qualms about buying a 1125R or 1125CR. I would only buy a Harley-engined Buell as a short term plan, though, and not expect to keep it for the long term.

    PhilB

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  15. #15
    Lifer Chippertheripper's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    The tube type bulls ARE sportster engines, so Harley will likely have parts for eternity, because I doubt Harley will ever change those engines...
    The xb use a mix of stuff. Sourcing parts shouldn't be too big of a deal, there's plenty of used ones out there, and the consumables, (clutches and bearings) are Harley stuff. Brake pads and all that other junk is made by ebc or somebody anyways.

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  16. #16
    Lifer Falko's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    Does and for how long will Rotax support the 1125? I found one I am interested in, but not sure if it is a good idea yet. Or if I really need one...

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  17. #17
    Bike Junky FireboltEric_MA's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    For street they are great bikes. A little heavy, and takes a bit more effort to turn in than a modern sport bike but still a great street bike. I may get another one soon.

    For track they are explosions waiting to happen.

    Another warning from a past Buell owner...

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  18. #18
    I've been here before. Mustang's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    Quote Originally Posted by DuncanMoto View Post
    Bulls are awesome, just need to maintain and check it regularly.
    Just like any other motorcycle - no more just because it's a Buell (less in some respects, since you have no chain maintenance). All I've done to mine is change the oil/filter regularly, adjust the primary chain and clutch, and swap brake pads and tires.

    As Gino mentioned, I'm selling my XB9S after 4+ awesome years. It's a more-than-competant street weapon, and quite fun on the track or serious twisties (read: Deal's Gap) as well. My only qualm with it track-wise is I need to change the fork oil (never done it) as it's a bit bouncy right now.

    You won't keep up with SS bikes (with a pre-Rotax Buell) on the straights, but anything past that just depends on your riding skill. Tons of torque. An XB9S will top out ~126 indicated, but do you really need to go faster than that?

    I absolutely love the bike. I get bored with toys very easily (a new car at least every 2 years, used to be a new bike every 6-18 months), but I've had my XB since Feb. 08 --- if that tells you anything.

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  19. #19
    Lifer typeone's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    i had an XB12S, loved it. should have never let it go.

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  20. #20
    Lifer Falko's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    Well, definitely not going to be racing it, just plan on some track days. I don't ride well, so grandma on her honda scoot would take me on the inside. I don't care about super performance, just want something that feels good, and not cookie cutter.

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  21. #21
    is not wearing pants Point37's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    Quote Originally Posted by Point37 View Post
    I have a buddy that is getting ready to sell his red Buell lightning...I think it's an 06...he is selling it cause he wants to get a ktm exc...if you are interested shoot me a PM and i'll get you more info
    he rode it into work today...he took the firebolt fairing off and swapped out the bars but has all the original parts


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  22. #22
    Rust never sleeps. whynot's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    I owned a 2009 1125R for a couple of years, fabulous bike. I change bikes too often, so I sold it (and got the Street Triple R.)

    Reasons for selling? Nothing really all that bad, but I can think of three, all easily overcome. One was dealing with H-D dealers (for warranty). Plus I could never get the ergos right on the R model, while the CR has handlebars, so that would have been a better choice for me. The Rotax puts out a lot more power and therefore lots more heat than the Harley-powered models, so the fuel tank/frame got pretty warm, and heated up the gas pretty good. Buell fiddled with tank breather hoses, but the main fix (as of 2010 anyway) was to install the California charcoal canister. Just some thoughts on my experience. So if I were considering one again I think I'd spend more time on that Buell forum to see what others have experienced and have done.

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    Last edited by whynot; 07-11-12 at 11:09 AM.
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  23. #23
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    I had an '07 XBss which I loved, and now have had an '08 1125r since brandy new. The XB's seem bulletproof with their Harley motors, mine was a XB12 and I have heard the XB9 is actually more fun to wind up... The 1125 was rushed to production and done to Erik Buell's spec with Harley handcuffing him at every corner. I haven't had any of the 1125 problems that people speak of. Mine has run like a top, even with the stock exhaust/tuning. The stock exhaust WILL rust out up here in New England, mine did and I know of at least 3 others that have. They rust from the inside out so no chance of catching and fixing. The '09 and '10s had stator issues, but had other updates over the '08. My bike has a Barker exhaust and PC-V tuned up at Seacoast. I have none of the lugging issues and can run mine around at 2500-3000k all day (but who does that). The frames do get hot, hot, HOT! I added insulation to the inside of the frame/fuel tank and the bike runs cooler both on my legs and oddly on the coolant displayed temp. Upgrading the rotor/pads up front to EBR spec stuff improves feel/fade up front greatly.

    Nick

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  24. #24
    Lifer nt650hawk's Avatar
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    think my ears are still ringing. Holly hell

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    Gino
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  25. #25
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    Re: Buells, alright/stay away/run away

    HEY! I resemble that remark!!!

    You should ride it now Gino, totally different since you rode it last.... Oh and your ears won't hurt..... as bad

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