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Discussion Starter #1
Still waiting for mine to arrive. But in the meantime I'm reading lotsa stuff about things going wrong with them, and getting sort of worried. I've had loads of bikes - early 90's Triumph Trident (bullet-proof, nothing ever, ever went wrong), Ducati 750SS (blew a plug once), BMW R1100GS (nothing, of course, in 30k miles including very fast trawl from Baltimore to Los Angeles) Honda XR400 (indestructibly immortal) and Ducati 748 (non-kevlar cam belt snapped, sort of understandable) but that's it.
Have I got to get a toolkit? And could I go non-stop France to Finland without adjusting anything?
 

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You only hear about problems from those that have them. Those with no problems (99.99% I believe) don't have anything to say. I have 12,000 mi. on mine, and have never had any kind of a problem. I'm sure I am the rule, not the exception.


PS: 97.685% of all statistics are made up on the spot.
 

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Tired of the crap
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cubota said:
Have I got to get a toolkit? And could I go non-stop France to Finland without adjusting anything?
Indications are that the V-Rod is an extremely reliable bike. My girlfriend works for H-D; and I've had the chance to talk with several of their engineers and service people. There are several early model V-Rods at the Talladega test facility with over 300,000 KM on the original engines.

With that said, there are probably a few things to consider if you want to keep your bike trouble-free. First - think very carefully before doing major modifications. I'm not saying that aftermarket exhaust systems and non-standard fuel maps will guarantee you have a problem - but it seems that folks who have done these mods are more likely to encounter issues than folks who haven't.

Secondly - I'd try and adhere to the break-in procedure (i.e. ~3,000 rpms for the first 500 miles/800 km). There are all sorts of arguments about this - but it seems to me to be foolish to purposely ignore the factory's recommendations. It certainly can't hurt anything to do so. And make sure you have the 1000 mile/1600 km service done. Its a chance for the mechanics to check that everything on your bike is in good shape.

Do you need a toolkit? As long as you recognize that you probably aren't going to be able to do any major repairs by the side of the road, its probably not a bad idea. Frankly, a small metric multi-tool, with a selection of hex wrenches (4mm, 6mm, 8mm) and a torx and phillips bit will be all you really need. I've found that some of the fasteners on the mirrors, switchgear, and exhaust system have come loose on extended runs (although applying loctite and torquing them to spec. has cured this)

Lastly, I would recommend that you put a lot of what you read on Internet discussion boards in perspective. By way of example, over the past few years Mercedes-Benz cars have slipped in US quality rankings, while in Europe they have remained #1. Since they are the same cars, made in the same factories, why should this be the case? My answer to this is that US consumers have become almost overly demanding. They believe since they have paid a lot of money for their car, they expect perfection. European consumers, by way of contrast, are more realistic, and understand that even the best product will not necessarily be perfect.
 

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The Tin Man
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I race and ride - 10,000 miles on a 2002 with over 250 passes at drag strip - I would rate the bike as bullet proof - 2 sets of tires and one clutch. Now I over maintain but no signs of wear and tthis bike gets ridden hard - I have probably hit the rev limiter 50 or 100 times. As far as I am concerned it is as or more reliable with anything on the market - the only production problems have been minor bugs - it is an extraordinary machine IMHO.
Kevin
 

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kspz3 said:
I race and ride - 10,000 miles on a 2002 with over 250 passes at drag strip - I would rate the bike as bullet proof - 2 sets of tires and one clutch. Now I over maintain but no signs of wear and tthis bike gets ridden hard - I have probably hit the rev limiter 50 or 100 times. As far as I am concerned it is as or more reliable with anything on the market - the only production problems have been minor bugs - it is an extraordinary machine IMHO.
Kevin
190+++rwhp out of a Box stock motor. :plause: 11k+ rpm on a box stock motor come on this thing is the Best Friggin HD Motorcycle engine Made! :soapbox:
 

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Fireman/investigator
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These are all very good points. Remember, very few people will go through the effort to post "I haven't had any problems today"

There are over 1000 members on this board, and we put some miles on our bikes. Whenever ANYTHING comes up, we try to post it as a heads up to our friends here, just so no one has a problem that could have been avoided. So far, it seems like the V-rod is way more dependable than any of my friends H-Ds. I know it's the only H-D I want to own. Just listen to all these people on here, and follow your owners manual. Enjoy!
Greg
 

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Super Kaz said:
190+++rwhp out of a Box stock motor. :plause: 11k+ rpm on a box stock motor come on this thing is the Best Friggin HD Motorcycle engine Made! :soapbox:
Am i reading this right Kaz, 11K on a factory balanced engine? If so , where the hell do I adjust the limiter? :hyper:
 

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Hard and Fast....Yeah!! That's how I ride her and not a single problem. Part of your research should always include Forums like this to get a fair and Balanced report. The fact that you are here now, should calm any jitters you may have towards the V Rod.
Cheers Derek
 

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african paul said:
Am i reading this right Kaz, 11K on a factory balanced engine? If so , where the hell do I adjust the limiter? :hyper:
The HD Race Tuner! :diablo:
 

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Only been on mine for 3 weeks and I'm scheduled for the 1000 mile service Saturday. Only problem is a cracked glass on the instrument panel. Probably hit a bump too hard on the interstate. Other than that, NO PROBLEMS!! This bike is so awesome!! Lot's of discussions about the V-Rod, but it's the most perfect bike I've ridden. I have owned Hondas, Kawasaki's, etc. This is my first Harley and I'll be a repeat buyer!
 

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I've got about 6500 miles on my '03. Most of the oil and coolant leaks have either been solved or are just weeping now. The bike runs rich and uses oil at a rate of 1.1qts/1000miles.

I'm still waiting to see if the oil consumption improves (HD says it's not excessive, I think they're just hoping the problem goes away -- which it might).

So, I've had problems, but nothing that would prevent me from purchasing again.
 

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CUBOTA, I've had my 2003 since Aug 2002 and have 8300 miles on it. All I've had to do is tighten some minor fasteners when they loosen up over time and miles. No leaks, no problems. I do carry a small toolkit because I always have and a tire kit for fixing flats on the road using CO2 cartridges. I doubt my experiences are unusual.
 

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coming up on 8k on a 03 ,not one problem and doesn't use any oil[syn]...if I'M not doing 80+ she must be parked.......Do change every 2000 miles.
 

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Riding the good life
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Almost 15K on mine, beat it like it was stolen, and it wants more. IMHO, if you are looking for a near perfect motorcycle experience, you do well with this machine.
 

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Twisted!!!!!!!
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I think it indestructible after the abuse.

I agree with most here. I've had many and truly really DRIVE them all. I think motorcycles in general are excellent machines, most well built from the outset. 1982 YZ80, indestructible, earlier YZ250, air cooled, never broke, Kawasaki Tecate 250 was the best three wheeler ever always smoked the ATC 250, had an RD 350 autolube thing also very dependable, Suzuki sportbikes ruled then the allmighty R1, amazing performance. The four wheeler TRX250 was indestructible, everything done to it, no breaks to talk about either. I love big air tricks, all off roaders took a huge pounding. I used to find Harleys laughable, still do with most.

Unlike with cars. My mustang fell apart in a couple of years. The GMC Z71 truck was a true POS in overall quality, plastic thingys coming appart. The Thunderbird, oh the Thunderbird, that is truly a work of art in shittery. The Barracuda was truly a good car and was a 68 year model. So in general I said and did not buy american built motor vehicles for a while. Then the Tundra, THAT is a rock, built in USA. The prelude, NOS, full suspension, a rock. The Mitsu Eclipse not as solid but oh so fast, all custom perf, no breaks either. Now the Sequoia, supercharged, SOLID, except the trans but that really was my fault, built in USA as well. BMW's in between, amazing, simply amazing cars.

So got me a V-Rod against my better judgement. Proved me so wrong. I drive it like it's a sportbike except for the wheelies and endoes. I swear to you I do not concern myself for it breaking. No HD break in procedure, my own recipe. Only about 3500 miles, on the second set of tires, this Metz200 is also dying quick, dump the clutch with a bit of throttle, second gear, smoke the tires. I'll race your granma at any stoplight, ALWAYS looking for it. Racing many sportbikes and getting smoked all the time, I don't care. VTX's are just so so easy any time. Several other VRods many times beaten except the one with the big pistons so what.

:blahblah: Talk all this crap for what? ZERO, but ZERO breaks. Amazing! This V-Rod motorcycle? Have to say it is the best motorcycle I have owned, simply the best, so huge and so small. So much fun and so beautiful. I wouldn't doubt the V-Rod.

The only american cars I would buy? Corvette or Viper. Harley? Yes I did because of the V-Rod. It does not compare well actually. It's a beautiful Sportster that can wheelie. Maybe it's the riding. Probably it's me :rolleyes: .
 

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Talk to the boot!
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18k+ on an '02 with zero problems!

Been riding this this like a banshee since day one. Went cross-country with a buddy of mine, also on his V-Rod, to Harley's 100th in Milwaukee. Rode through miles and miles of desert, froze our arses off in the Vail Pass, got cooked in Kansas with the 120 degree heat wave, and not once did the bike even stutter.

Hell, it could take it WAY more than we could. People were asking us along the way, "Where's your support van?" Yeah, right. No trailers allowed, either! Have you seen "Birth of the V-Rod" on the Discovery Channel, or the DVD? This bike has had the most intensive R&D done on it -- Harley spent over 6 YEARS working on it. Once I saw all the work, dedication, and love put into this bike from Willie G. on down to the rookie design guy, I had to have it. As an Engineer who likes all things mechanical and appreciates both form and function, I had to have it. As an ex-dirt biker from days younger who had a hankering to get on two wheels again, Harley came out with the bike that said to me, "You have to have me"

And so I do. :notworth:
 
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