Author Topic: A look over the fence  (Read 4995 times)

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Offline Biker Mike

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A look over the fence
on: October 24, 2013, 06:20:44 AM
You know how it is - you've had your present bike a few years and start to think, maybe time for a fresh set of wheels before I take on that next long distance tour.

In my case, I'm currently riding an absolutely brilliant CBF1000F, although to look at, you may be thinking, with all that customising, why didn't he buy a CT in the first place?



Well, it hadn't arrived on the scene at that time.

Looking around the present marketplace and still being very pro-Honda, I see the CT is as close to where my riding style fits as I'm likely to get.



What I'd like to know before taking the plunge though is, is it really a step forward or two steps back?
Is the CT as smooth and effortless to ride as a CBF (I read elsewhere the CT can be a bit snatchy)?
Is it as economical (I typically get 50+ mpg on the CBF)?
Is it necessary or worth investing in and fitting yet another set of HIDs (almost as good as a set of Concorde landing lights)?
Is the screen as good as a CalSci (wind, what wind?)?
What are the real pain in the butt issues with the CT, literal or metaphorical?
And the biggest question of all, are there any members on this forum that have also moved from a CBF1000, either a Mk.I or a M.II and think in retrospect, that it wasn't such a clever move after all.

Mike
(currently resident on CBF1000.com and loving it)

PS - I'm not out to knock the CT. I'm simply trying to justify the investment.

BTW, Just an idea someone might want to pick up and run with.

Some time ago, I opened a thread on the CBF forum entitled 'Top Ten Mods & Accessories'.
I don't see the equivalent here, but then again, I've only just found you folks.

At the end of the day, the list showed what was worth buying and just as importantly, what was worth avoiding. It also included lots or useful comments and the beauty of the thread is that it's all in one place, so easy to locate.

You might find it useful to try something similar here. You just need a willing volunteer to drop the info into a spreadsheet and collate the data and produce a pie-chart of the results.

The idea on the thread was that you stated what you'd added to the bike (no clothing please) and what rating you'd give it based on your experience with it.
For example, if you added a hugger and it turned out to be a waste of space, you'd score it 1, whereas if you added a replacement can and it was the dog's doodahs, you might score it a 5. You also need to name the manufacturer and it's usually best to avoid anything you've built as a one-off.

As mentioned, someone needs to collate the info and build a picture of the data and eventually, you end up identifying both the most popular accessories and the top manufacturers for that accessory.
For each identified accessory (by manufacturer, so you might have several flavours of a hugger for example) , you added the scores and divided by the number of submissions to reach an average rating, then you prioritised by the accessory that has the most submissions, to find the most popular.

I've added part of the data and a pie chart to show what I mean.

Here's an example (although you can see this guy was very enthusiastic about the parts he'd fitted - lots of 5's):
Hagon rear shock 5/5 (Great value for money - so much better than stock)
Baglux tank cover 5/5
Kappa rack (it's the same as Givi rack) 5/5
SW motech quick release system for panniers 5/5
Givi E55 top case 5/5
Givi E41 side cases 5/5
Pyramid Fender extender 5/5 (to avoid steam baths on rainy days)
R&G crash bangs 5/5 (Did their job during an accident but a rock broke the water pump cover so fitted..)
Crash bars from ebay 3/5 (Not a good fit, haven't tried them in an accident yet)
Bodystyle Hugger 4/5 (it has a few cracks probably not a perfect fit)
Ermax screen 5/5 (better than stock , no wind problem but quite a lot of noise, I rate 5 as I haven't tried any other and I hate the OEM)
Motrax Hootaz double horns 5/5 (Great value for money 12gbp)
HID conversion kits  5/5 (55W/35W normal and high beam - the cheapest from ebay, no problem so far, much much brighter than stock)
Led bulbs 5/5 (tail/brake, signals, front wedge base and a few extra here and there - I love them)
Ram mount for ipaq214 PDA which acts as a satnav 5/5 (for both mount and ipaq - cheap and trustworthy solution)
Qstarz gps logger 5/5 (awesome, more than 24hours on battery and more than 8000kms of logging-superb)
Oxford heated overgrips 3/5 (They died quite soon - I had expected something better)
12V lighter sockets (x2) 5/5 (essential if you do big trips)
LCD thermometer for coolant temperature. 5/5 (Very cheap from ebay-probe attached to thermostat housing with hylomar)
Fan switch 5/5 (Just to be on the safe side)
Altered gearing 16/41 instead of 16/43 5/5 (Bike more relaxed, it fits my riding style.I think it also provides better fuel consumption under touring conditions)
Tank bag expandable 4/5 - a cheap one from Louis. I added a fewl clips to it to make refueling easier

Drop me a PM or an email if you want more info, but maybe agree who is going to run with it first, if at all.
Last Edit: October 24, 2013, 07:39:35 AM by Biker Mike

#1

Offline dentonlad

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Re: A look over the fence
Reply #1 on: October 24, 2013, 05:22:22 PM
Hello,

Small world - I was reading that thread on the CBF 1000 forum about a week ago.  I've just changed my Mk 1 CBF 1000 A-7 for a X tourer (I got a demo bike with 190 miles on it at 2.5K off list). As much as I loved the Biffer I don't think I've taken a retrograde step.

By way of comparison from my point of view. The X tourer is taller and heavier, however, I only really notice the weight taking it off the side stand.  I'm 5'9" with a 29" inside leg and am not having any problems with putting my feet down.  No snatchiness round town - I think it's better in slow speed traffic than the CBF (but not as good as my NC700X).  Economy - I used to get anything from 45 - 60 mpg from the CBF with an average, like yours of 55.  My first tank on the X tourer has just given me a shade under 45, however, it has been subject to a certain amount of "spirited" riding and possibly some hard acceleration. I would expect it to improve with some more miles under its belt and a touch of restraint on the throttle.

From a comfort point of view seat wise, it may just have the edge on the CBF. I've just done three hours and haven't felt a twinge, where I could only manage two on the Biffer.  Mine has the taller Honda screen (currently on high setting) and I'm getting wind buffeting my helmet whereas my CBF had the Givi screen and the wind went over my head. Screen set ups are very individual though and I may not yet have found the right one (after 3 days!).

It was really the engine that sold it to me. It's awesome. On the CBF once I was in 6th I was looking for 7th. On this 6th is more of an overdrive but will still pull up trees and put you in licence losing territory very, very quickly......

oh....and there's none of this chain cleaning and oiling business.  Hope that's of some use, but there's no substitute for a test ride.
Experience is the name every one gives to their mistakes - Oscar Wilde.

#2

Offline Biker Mike

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Re: A look over the fence
Reply #2 on: October 24, 2013, 05:48:30 PM
Cheers DL.
Sounds like you got a good deal on the new bike.

Also sounds like a decent test ride's going to answer some of my questions.
That just leaves the long term owner experiences.

Can't say I'm too impressed with the luggage from what I've seen close up.
What are the load limits Honda state for the top box and panniers please?
I don't generally overload, but the stock cases do look a little fly-weight for such a bike.

I just checked some local facts and figures.
My panniers, currently loaded for camping, weigh in at approx. 12kg each and my top box (a 52 litre Givi Maxia 3) when loaded for my last foray into Europe weighed 18kg (including the case), although I didn't have panniers at that time (or camping gear).
Clearly a need here to re-distribute, but it gives an idea what I expect to run with.

I'm thinking the stock luggage will need to be upgraded to cope and to offer better security
(I think my wife's Samsonite vanity case is stronger and more secure than the Honda top box solution).

As for your buffeting problem, there's a shedload of postings on the CBF forum that will no doubt also be relevant to your problem.

See also the technical pages on the CalSci website for a better explanation of the cause and in the meantime, try spacing the screen on your CT further off the mounting brackets to allow a better backdraft which should help nullify the air turbulence rolling off the top of your screen.

Mike

#3

Offline Eltar

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Re: A look over the fence
Reply #3 on: October 25, 2013, 06:34:04 AM
First,  :400: to the forum. I am in the middle of a 5000km Balkans trip, and even tho I do not own aCBF1000, 2 of my best buddies do and I frequently ride it as we swap bikes at all times. Cell phones are not the best tools to write long texts, I hope I will be able to answer at least a few of your questions and shed some light on what a CT is in your comparison. I hope fellow members will do that before I arrive back in Istanbul this Saturday.

Enjoy your stay on the forum.
average on my VFR1200X

Bikes owned: CBF250 - '08 V-Strom DL650 - '09 ST1300 Pan European - '13 VFR1200X - '14 Fazer 8

#4

Offline Eltar

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Re: A look over the fence
Reply #4 on: October 27, 2013, 10:40:38 PM
Hello once again. I got back home yesterday after a 2 weeks ride, so I will put my 2 cents to try and answer some questions you had in mind.

I love riding the CBF1000 whenever I get the chance. That is a bike that feels like home no matter what sort of road bike you are used to. Its like the bike that all other models evolved from, imo. That's how much I respect a bike some may call too generic. Comparing that to the CT, I can say the CT is even smoother, with regards to the engine. It is by no means snatchy, I will go on to say its the least snatchy, on par with my previous Pan-European. It is not the most economical one in the market and I think you will be consuming 5-10% more that the CBF when you ride like you want to feel its real power. But believe me, it is going to be worth it.

On this trip, I rode together with 2 '13 GS's. Their average was 5.6L/100km whereas mine was 6.0/100km. We were constantly in touch with each other and my observation is that whenever we had to ride in city traffic longer than usual (it was rush hour, bad timing, or whatever the reason) my consumption went up much faster than theirs. The V4 is somewhat hungry. But from 3rd gear on, its gone, when compared to similiar bikes. When I am on a long tour, I tend to ride at low revs. Other than that, it requires a strong will not to fall into the V4s evil seduction.

The original screen is gonna suck if you dont want any wind. There are various products to deal with that, MRA and Givi Airflow being the most popular. I haven't changed the original screen after 18.000kms on the bike. I am 33, I love to feel some wind, esp when the original screen produces no buffeting at all for me. The visor is closed, but there is no upward/downward push or anything, no matter the speed (and yes, I did hit the bottom of the line). I am guessing that the short screen was mainly picked by Honda because of aerodynamics. I may be having too much faith in Honda crew tho  :002: Like I said, if you want the wind to be gone, you will need to spend a little cash on it and it will be gone. I see you are no stranger to fitting stuff on your bike to suit your needs, so no problem I guess.

You won't be having any pains, as the bike is as solid as any Honda can be, and that means really a lot to me. The issues you will see owners complaining about are mostly minor stuff. The saddle is the best I ever had, including my old Pan, so you won't be having any literal aches either, unless you need something extra no matter what bike you ride on.

There are 2 things I would change on my bike. Both are somewhat related to the fact that I do love to go offroad whenever the oppurtunity presents itself. One is the suspension. I don't wanna be the crybaby, as I do tend to bring this issue up every now and then on the forum, but while I think the suspension is not horrible, I expect a little bit more from Honda's top adventure/dual purpose bike. It would meet the expactations of 95% of the owners easily, but I have to admit I find myself noticing the differance when I swap bikes with friends and ride the new GS or Triumph 800.

And one thing I notice when fully loaded is the weight of the bike. I am not of a small build, 1:84 and 85+kg, and when FULLY packed for the road (1x46 + 2x33 Givi Trekkers + tankbag) I couldn't help but notice how much easier the other bikes operated while parking. And no, I am no newbie to the manevouring game in tight spaces. It may sound like a small issue, but it leaves its mark when you experience it while touring for 15 days straight. That whole weight disappears when you get to 10kmph. Good thing is, when I take off the luggage, I feel like I own a new bike. Thats how much it differs for me. I wanted you to know it since you mentioned you go camping, iirc.

Regarding the luggage: Honda luggage fits the bike like no other, but the majority have chosen to go for other brands. Some couldn't justify the price, some didn't like the alu-like looks, some didn't like their sturdiness. It is a personal thing, can't say more than that.

Of course, all that I have said means rubbish. You will go and test it and either fall in love with it like I did or you won't. I personally love my bike, I would at least suggest anyone to try it.
average on my VFR1200X

Bikes owned: CBF250 - '08 V-Strom DL650 - '09 ST1300 Pan European - '13 VFR1200X - '14 Fazer 8

#5

Offline Biker Mike

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Re: A look over the fence
Reply #5 on: October 28, 2013, 08:32:41 PM
Many thanks for sharing those observations.

The GS's 42mpg sounds fairly close to what a lot of Mk.I CBF riders get, but the CT's 39mpg would be a little hard to swallow after getting 55mpg from my Mk.II.

It's got to be worth a test ride at least though... and if I'm seduced, so be it.

 :018:

Mike

#6

Offline veejay

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Re: A look over the fence
Reply #6 on: October 28, 2013, 09:33:44 PM
You will average 45 - 48 mpg on the CT. Brilliant bike other than dipped beam which is appalling and the suspension needs tweaking, as stock settings are poor. All of the little niggles can be sorted though - best bike I have owned, and I would definitely buy another.
Honda luggage is flimsy and the top case leaks. Mine cracked and I was given a Pan Euro top box as a replacement by Honda uk. That is a far more substantial box and looks amazing on the CT. Side cases don't leak, are nice and light and very easy to attach and release. Have fun  :152:

#7

Offline Saxon747

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Re: A look over the fence
Reply #7 on: October 28, 2013, 09:37:13 PM
*Originally Posted by Biker Mike [+]
Many thanks for sharing those observations.

The GS's 42mpg sounds fairly close to what a lot of Mk.I CBF riders get, but the CT's 39mpg would be a little hard to swallow after getting 55mpg from my Mk.II.

It's got to be worth a test ride at least though... and if I'm seduced, so be it.

 :018:

Mike
The CT's 39mpg ??  :187: Maybe if you were hooning around all day in 1st 2nd & 3rd  :084: , but as most will tell you , the CT on open roads either manual or DCT, will return close to 50 mpg . In some cases has been proven to return over 51mpg, while still letting the V4 growler do what it does best .

I have done 6150 miles on mine since Feb this year, and not had a single issue or complaint. The answer is like you said, is to have good test ride, and judge for yourself .Then report back with your verdict , as to whether it's a runner or not ?  :305:

Good luck.