Author Topic: CT and Triumph Explorer review.  (Read 4570 times)

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  • Offline shrekster

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    Offline shrekster

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    CT and Triumph Explorer review.
    on: Oct 23, 2016, 08.36 pm
    Oct 23, 2016, 08.36 pm
    I've had my CT for a few months now and have done about 3000 miles, my mate bought a Triumph Explorer last week and yesterday we went out for a days ride from Glasgow to Oban then back down the west coast. We swapped bikes a few times so I was able to get a good idea of both bikes back to back.
    We all know the strengths and weaknesses of the CT, overall I thought the T (Triumph) was a fantastic bike to ride. Comfort wise I thought they are about the same, the seats on both bikes are good for a few hours before any real discomfort sets in. The CT feels taller with slightly higher bars, the Triumph bars are lower and a bit closer to you although I understand they're adjustable back and forth.
    The screen on the T is a bit further away from you, in this respect the CT feels a bit more protective.

    Performance wise the CT consistently pulled out a lead in roll ons, not a huge difference but slightly quicker all the same despite the very high top gear ratio on the Honda, the big H has more torque and feels it on the road. The T engine is a gem, mostly smoother than the Honda but there are certain points in the rev range it feels a little course. The CT engine is very good but there can be a real 'thrum' from it so you know it's not an inline 4. The gearbox on the T is a little clunky but nowhere near as bad as the CT, I find the Honda gearbox is horrendous, far clunkier than any bike should be. One thing I was keen to find out was how the shaft drive felt. On the big H the lash in the drive train is very noticeable, I can hear the shaft clacking and clunking lightly when you hold a 'neutral' throttle position. On the T the drive shaft is far quieter and I couldn't really notice any lash in the system.

    The brakes on both bikes are very good but the CT required a little more effort at the lever when braking hard, other than that they're hard to split for stopping distance.
    One thing I noticed on the T is the throttle is exceptionally light meaning that it's very easy to open it by mistake and on occasion I looked like a learner kangarooing away from junctions, over time I'd get used to it.

    The suspension is where I noticed the biggest difference, for me personally in this regard the T is a joy to ride. It's very plush in comparison to the CT with none of the firm harshness and jarring over bumps, much nicer for long distance touring. It makes me wonder what Honda were thinking with the CT suspension as it feels really stiff after riding the T. On the upside the Honda feels sportier so I suppose it would suit faster riders better.

    I don't know what sort of fuel range the Explorer has but we both did about 200 miles before filling up. One thing that really bugs me is that most manufacturers seem to pay lip service to the lights fitted to bikes, I mean they're mostly crap with a few exceptions. I don't know how good the T's lights are but the CT's are not great. Why can't we get good headlights? And don't get me started about the horn, they really are a sick joke.

    I've no idea what they are like off road so I won't comment, but to sum up for me both bikes are very hard to split, would I change my Crosstourer for an Explorer? It's a tough one, the Honda feels more solid and is slightly quicker, the fairing gives a little more protection, the Triumph has better suspension and that engine is a beaut. It also has a few useful features such as cruise control.
    I'd be very happy if I brought the Triumph but let's just say I'll be keeping my CT for another year.

    Jim.



  • Offline ukstu

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    Offline ukstu

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    Re: CT and Triumph Explorer review.
    Reply #1 on: Oct 23, 2016, 08.47 pm
    Oct 23, 2016, 08.47 pm
    Thanks Jim, nice review. I've ridden the Triumph a couple of times on test rides and would agree with your assessment. Was most impressed with the suspension on the Tex compared with the CT. I have a DCT now and really enjoying it. That coupled with the engine on the CT edges it for me, but they are close.

    Stu

  • Offline Hartley   england

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    Offline Hartley

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    Re: CT and Triumph Explorer review.
    Reply #2 on: Oct 23, 2016, 09.33 pm
    Oct 23, 2016, 09.33 pm
    Shrekster, your review pretty much summed up my thoughts on the two bikes back to back.
     I felt the suspension on the Tex was way better than the CT. One big minus for the triumph on the day I rode it was the heat given off the engine.  I've ridden in 42 degrees on the CT, it'd be unbearable on the Explorer.


  • Offline shrekster

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    Offline shrekster

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    Re: CT and Triumph Explorer review.
    Reply #3 on: Oct 23, 2016, 09.48 pm
    Oct 23, 2016, 09.48 pm
    42 degrees???  Bloody hell, way too hot. West coast of Scotland in October though, I'll happily take all the heat the big T can give!

    Jim.

  • Offline bampy

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    Offline bampy

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    Re: CT and Triumph Explorer review.
    Reply #4 on: Oct 23, 2016, 11.24 pm
    Oct 23, 2016, 11.24 pm
    I've ridden both and plumped for the CT my mate bought the Explorer at the same time. The CT has been ticking like a Rolex ever since, the Triumph broke down six miles after he took delivery and it took three weeks to figure out there was a problem with the cruise control he has also had problems with the engine luggage and electrics. I lost faith in Triumph when they blatantly started copying BMW that's what the Explorer is all about.

    I prefer the ergonomics and the engine in the CT and as far as European bikes go it's all well and good having fancy suspension and different engine modes etc but these are the very reason why BMW are currently rated the most unreliable manufacturer just above the Chinese.

    They produce superb bikes but unless you can afford to change the bike before the warranty runs out you need very deep pockets. Yes the Jap bikes are not as good to look at but they just keep on going and that's top of my list.




     

  • Offline whitegloss

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    Offline whitegloss

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    Re: CT and Triumph Explorer review.
    Reply #5 on: Oct 24, 2016, 06.29 am
    Oct 24, 2016, 06.29 am
     :0461:

  • Offline Paul82

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    Offline Paul82

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    Re: CT and Triumph Explorer review.
    Reply #6 on: Oct 24, 2016, 06.31 am
    Oct 24, 2016, 06.31 am
    *Originally Posted by bampy [+]
    I've ridden both and plumped for the CT my mate bought the Explorer at the same time. The CT has been ticking like a Rolex ever since, the Triumph broke down six miles after he took delivery and it took three weeks to figure out there was a problem with the cruise control he has also had problems with the engine luggage and electrics. I lost faith in Triumph when they blatantly started copying BMW that's what the Explorer is all about.

    I prefer the ergonomics and the engine in the CT and as far as European bikes go it's all well and good having fancy suspension and different engine modes etc but these are the very reason why BMW are currently rated the most unreliable manufacturer just above the Chinese.

    They produce superb bikes but unless you can afford to change the bike before the warranty runs out you need very deep pockets. Yes the Jap bikes are not as good to look at but they just keep on going and that's top of my list.

     

     :0461: :0461:

    Yes! could not agree with you more bampy! My Previous bike was a Triumph Tiger 1050 & it was nothing but problems for 8 years! Be I persisted with be because my Dad & I are dont like anything to beat us.

    But the final problem with it is not fixable & so sick of it. When its hot, sometimes it wont start & it acts like a flat battery, let it cool down & it starts fine. So dangerous if I accidently stall it at traffic lights & it wont start again!

    Anyway, the CT is just so good for me now & I'm loving the reliability, Im looking forward to many years of the Honda just keep on going!!  :001:
    Last Edit: Oct 24, 2016, 06.36 am by Paul82

  • Offline Paul82

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    Offline Paul82

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    Re: CT and Triumph Explorer review.
    Reply #7 on: Oct 24, 2016, 06.52 am
    Oct 24, 2016, 06.52 am
    *Originally Posted by shrekster [+]
    The suspension is where I noticed the biggest difference, for me personally in this regard the T is a joy to ride. It's very plush in comparison to the CT with none of the firm harshness and jarring over bumps, much nicer for long distance touring. It makes me wonder what Honda were thinking with the CT suspension as it feels really stiff after riding the T. On the upside the Honda feels sportier so I suppose it would suit faster riders better.
    Jim.

    FYI, the reason why the CT suspension feels so harsh over bumps is because the fork springs are too weak, it's majorly undersprung.

    If you get the forks revalved & heavier springs to suit your weight, the harsh stiff feeling disappears ;)



    The reason why weak springs feel too hard & stiff is because the spring is so weak that when your riding & go over bumps the spring is forced into areas of compression that it is never designed to be in & the feedback it gives is very harsh.

    Get heavier fork springs that actually suit you & the bike's weight, then the spring compresses correctly, easily soaks up all the bumps, no more harsh feeling on bumps, feels so much smoother, so confident, stable in corners & doesn't dive under braking.


    The CT forks really need fixing. I don't know how you guys up with it. So bad & scary & HORRIBLE in corners. That top heavy flopping/falling feeling you get leaning the CT into a corner, new suspension completely fixes that.  :169:

    Now my suspension on my CT is even better than the Explorer!  :001:
    It's not electronlc active suspension, but who needs that! Set it up rite once & you never need to touch it again! (except for the rear preload)

     :031:
    Last Edit: Oct 24, 2016, 07.00 am by Paul82