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Discussion Starter #1
Okay first off, I need your OPINIONS, they will help me choose, but not control my next bike purchase. That in mind, THANK YOU to everyone who gives me some HONEST OPINIONS and help to guide me in this.

First off, some back ground on me, to try to help you along.
I am now 42 years old, have been riding about 15 years or so, with a average of 50K miles a year, so I am NOT a fresh pup to the riding world! lol
My past bikes have been the following:
1) 1972 CB-750 with Wind-Jammer fairing, Bates bags, HD trunk, and
Triple-T heel toe shifter set up
2) 1972 Yamaha XS-650 twin
3) 1979 Yamaha XS-1100C
4) 1979 Yamaha XS-1100 w/Wind-Jammer fairing/bags
5) 1988 Yamaha Venture 1200
6) 1990 Yamaha Venture 1300 Royale
7) 1979 VW powered Styers bodied trike

My riding consists of driving the wife back and forth to work at 100 miles a day total ( in city interstate miles ), pleasure riding to Dallas from OKC to see friends MOST weekends, riding to Denver to see family & friends once or twice a season, and some interstate or two lane black top touring, plus some of the smaller IBA type rides, NOT a IBA rider, but like to do various rides like that (1000 in 24, 1500 in 24 ect) I live in OKC right now, so the riding season is EASILY from Easter to Halloween, that means 14K miles just in getting the wife to and from work, NO pleasure riding or touring miles in that, so my average will easily be 30 plus K a year.

Due to a accident a few years ago, I am coming into some money, enough to walk in a buy a brand new bike, and I have it down to the following.
1) 2010 GL-1800 ( I think the 2012 is UGLY, so it is out)
or a
2) a 2011/12 HD Road-glide Ultra (fixed fairing, dual headlight)

I know there is alot of good natured ribbing of HD here, and this IS a GL-1800 site, but I have seen that folks here do also give HONEST opinions here to when asked for, so I am asking.

:coffee1:
 

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Take your wife for a ride on both, then come back and tell us what color Wing you bought.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thats my problem, I LOVE them both ! I have never owned or ridden a HD for any real distance, but have always wanted one ( the mystique of HD ) and have heard the horror stories of the twin cam motors having various problems.
Plus I am a lurker on the IBA forums and have noticed that for every ONE HD of any model, there are 20 or so GLs, not even taking in the other types of bikes there.
I asked the HD riders I know and I get the old "it is a Harley, enough said!" crap. That does not help! lol
I know that sitting on both bikes in the showroom, the HD feels more comfortable in the saddle and foot position, but does that hold true after 3, 4 or 5 hundred miles in a single day?:roll:
 

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I see you had a Yamaha Venture Royale. So did I before I bought my 05 Goldwing new. The wing is everything the Venture was but more of it;
  • More power
  • Drop dead reliable, it just runs and runs
  • Better handing, way lower center of gravity
  • Way better brakes
  • Better comfort for both rider and passenger
  • More stable at speed
  • Better mileage
  • Fuel injection
  • Much more electrical capacity for accessories
  • More aftermarket stuff available
I loved my Venture and I now love my Goldwing even more.

I can't comment on the Harley. I haven't owned one since the 80's and it was junk.
 

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The Harley is what it is. It is a air cooled Vtwin. And it has a steel frame The basic design is decades old. IT, by its nature will not last as long as a water cooled bike.
The wing is without debate one of the best built bikes in the world. It handles great, rides great and you can rack up the miles.
at 50 k a year you will be inside the Harley in a couple years.

Now for my seat of the pants opinion. the wing hands down. It is faster, and it is just plain fun ride. after almost 80000 miles on gl1800s I still get a smile on my face everytime I ride it. It is a great bike and it works well for touring or everyday use as well(which is what I use it for).
I love the speed and the ease in which it handles.
Good luck with your decision

John
 

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I own a HD and a Wing. The HD is just fine for touring but it does have it's shortcomings compared to the Wing. It does get hot, especially in traffic where it will cook your right thigh. The wind protection is not as good as the Wing either. On the plus side it is easier to work on, there are thousands of aftermarket shops that can and will work on them, there are factory and aftermarket accessories and the dealer network is very good.

The Wing is just a great, smooth, quick touring bike. It's the one I take on the long trips. The S/O loves it. You have to remove a lot of tupperware to work on it. Honda's dealer network leaves something to be desired and there are few independent shops that will work on it.

Having never owned a Wing, but been a HD rider for 20+ years, I rented a Wing for a weekend before I bought one. Most HD dealers have some kind of rental fleet, so go rent one for a few days and make an informed decision based on your own experience plus the opinions you gather here.:thumbup:
 

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I owned different model Harley's since I was 15 until I turned 59 when I bought my first wing.

I am about ready to buy my 3rd wing very soon.

Don't get me wrong, the Harley is and always will be the American Classic and they are real pleasing to the eye. To me they are just not that comfortable after a 500-700 mile day and I do a lot of those when I am on the road.

BTW - Look at the 2012 some more, kinda grows on some people, it has on me. When it first came out I thought it was butt ugly; my attitude is not so harsh now.
 

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I own a HD and a Wing. The HD is just fine for touring but it does have it's shortcomings compared to the Wing. It does get hot, especially in traffic where it will cook your right thigh. The wind protection is not as good as the Wing either. On the plus side it is easier to work on, there are thousands of aftermarket shops that can and will work on them, there are factory and aftermarket accessories and the dealer network is very good.

The Wing is just a great, smooth, quick touring bike. It's the one I take on the long trips. The S/O loves it. You have to remove a lot of tupperware to work on it. Honda's dealer network leaves something to be desired and there are few independent shops that will work on it.

Having never owned a Wing, but been a HD rider for 20+ years, I rented a Wing for a weekend before I bought one. Most HD dealers have some kind of rental fleet, so go rent one for a few days and make an informed decision based on your own experience plus the opinions you gather here.:thumbup:

I own both also and agree with everything except maybe the wind protection. The Ultra has plenty with the lowers and the closer proximity to the fairing. At 50K a year you would be better off with the Wing. My Ultra's left me stranded a couple times in 51,000 miles.
 

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For the riding you have been doing I'd go with the wing...
 

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I still have my Royale (86) and in many ways it is superior to my '04 Wing. The suspension on the Royale is superior. Seat is better (for me), but the Wing is smooth, more powerful and offers better protection in rain and from heat/cold.

Others have mentioned that with the miles you ride, the air cooled Harley will need a rebuild while you still have a few years left in the Wing.

I haven 't owned a Harley, but did put 600 miles on an '09 Ultra a couple years ago, and found it to have plenty of power (but not near as much as the Wing, still, the HD had more than enough for two up touring), to be comfortable and completely modern in every way other than the engine.

Heat off the HD is a consideration, and two-up touring comfort for your passenger, your wife should ride with you for more than a few miles on both before you decide, with the miles she will be on it, she has to be an equal partner...right? :cool:

No matter what, you are lucky to have the choice in front of you!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thank you again to those who have posted, definitely some food for thought here.

I did barrow my buddies 2011 Electra-glide limited with the 103/6speed and it was very nice. Not the same bike I want as his is the handle bar mounted "BAT WING" fairing and I want the "Shark nosed" frame mounted one, but other than that, the same bikes.

I have not found anyone who will lend me their Wing , yet! lol I do want to take one out for a little while, maybe a 100 miles or so, to get a true feel for it. We shall see what happens. . . .

As I have seen posted here many times, we do "Have to keep mamma happy, or ain't no one happy" ! lol Her vote is for the HD as the seat for the wing is a bit wide for her short legs, unless fitted with the Kury Transformer pegs, then she likes both the same. As she puts it, they both make her just as comfortable, just in different ways.
 

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Due to a accident a few years ago, I am coming into some money, enough to walk in a buy a brand new bike, and I have it down to the following.
1) 2010 GL-1800 ( I think the 2012 is UGLY, so it is out)
or a
2) a 2011/12 HD Road-glide Ultra (fixed fairing, dual headlight)

I know there is alot of good natured ribbing of HD here, and this IS a GL-1800 site, but I have seen that folks here do also give HONEST opinions here to when asked for, so I am asking.

:coffee1:[/QUOTE]

I would make a list of things you hate...
Then match the bike to the things you like.
If you run 1,000 miles cruise control is very nice...
If you run 2 up then an intercom would be nice.....
If you run something that vibrates ya need a better seat on long haul.
if you run a loud bike then ear plugs will help....
Basicly MAKE a list of what you like & don't like & consider if the bike fits a long haul or a go to town senario. Then go test ride one.
Venture was a good machine in its day... but you needed to be tall for it to fit.. :)
For me I got an 06 GL1800 last year & only put 15000 miles on it this year.
I got friends the run BMWs & HDs & GWs. different folks differant rides.
HD guy generally run speed limit or under & ride on sat. The BMW guys run much harder & like twisties. I ride with the BMW guys much more than
GW or HD. My fuel mileage ave. goes from 26 to 43 depending on who, when, where, or which group of riders I run with that week end.

There is no best bike for everything.
There is "the best bike" for a single purpose,
everything else is a compromise.
 

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Get a 2010 Wing. It is simply a better tourer than the Harley.

You can get good deals on a 2010. Colors are getting limited. Lots of YELLOW left because you love em or hate em. It is the last American Made Goldwing.

2012 rear end is ugly
 

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One thing that isn't mentioned is the noise factor. Not a knock on louder pipes, but do you want to listen to a HD for 700 miles a day. On the Wing you don't hear it. Heck I followed a GL1800 from Emporia, KS to Davis, OK and he has some pipes that were a bit louder. No way near a stock HD and by the time I got there I was not a happy camper. I guess this makes me a real old fart since I don't even care for louder pipes on a cage.
 
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