I decided to pop in here and it's a dead zone! What's everyone up to?
I'm still out in AZ, loving it here for the most part. I work at a Tribal hospital, which is classified as IHS or Indian Health Service. It's so much better than slaving away at a corporate chain. I do miss St. Louis though, and plan to come back once Covid is over. Hopefully with a bike so I can sneak out to some of my favorite places.
I moved out here with no bike. Sold my FJ a few days before coming out. In June I got a used '13 1050 Speed Triple. I couldn't make up my mind if I wanted a real dual sport like an Africa Twin (there are a TON of forest service roads, primitive roads, etc out here) or another naked or a sport touring bike.
After riding a new 2019 Speed Triple, used 1290 Duke GT, and used Ninja 1000.... I decided on the '13 Speed Triple. I didn't feel the 2019 was worth double the cost. I love my green one and the price was right. The 1290 I didn't like at all. It got very hot on the test ride, and I felt like it had no bottom end. Whack the throttle and it just lugs and tries to shake itself apart. The upper mid range was pretty impressive, though. The Ninja 1000 was great. I would have bought it if it wasn't dropped by the previous owner. It was butter smooth and felt the fastest, though by the magazine numbers it's the slowest. But one thing I like in motorcycles is low-mid range power and smoothness. My triples all had it, and so did the Ninja 1000. I also considered a Hayabusa.... I actually put a deposit on one but backed out for a couple different reasons.
Funny story. To actually buy the speed triple I ended up driving to flagstaff, taking a greyhound bus to phoenix, riding the bike all the way back to my quarters, then catching a ride back to flag with a coworker. The sales guy thought I was insane. But I felt that was the easiest way to get things done 😂
Put about 4500 miles on Speedy from June to now. Two of my favorite routes are to go north past the canyon north rim and into Utah, through Zion park, then back down through Page/Lake Powell. Another is 89a from Flagstaff down through Sedona, Jerome, and Prescott. Both of these are about 400 miles round trip so the mileage adds up quick. I attached a pic of it in front of a random building I found just off the road on Hopi tribe land. The blue thing with a face is Tawa, which is the sun spirit. In Hopi mythology Tawa is the creator of everything ,basically. I think it looks super cool.
Anyway, Speedy has been a fun bike. It sounds quite good with that Arrow exhaust. Lots of crackles and burbles on de-cel. Feels way more planted than my '99 Speedy or my FJ09 did. But I think it's a bit too refined, and lost some of that hooligan character. It's a little faster than the FJ, but the FJ was kinda fun in that it liked to rev out. The 1050, not so much. It's just a super linear powerband. I'm also living with 8000 ft density altitude, so everything feels way down on power. And on top of that, I have to ride 70 miles of highway (one way) for me to get anywhere interesting, lots of super slab. I wanted something with cruise control and that can't be added to the speedy. I tried the throttle locks. Everyone told me I would hate them and I did. They don't work. It'll slip off, or your speed will fluctuate wildly with wind and hills. So something with a bit more power and cruise control would be nice. Another big thing is dealer support. I've learned a ton from everyone here on bike maintenance and feel very confident doing pretty much anything myself... BUT...... I don't have a garage out here so that can make life difficult. I'm not one to pop a valve cover off and try to measure clearance when a sandstorm could happen any second. The closest Triumph dealer is over 200 miles away down in Phoenix. And there are none up in Utah.
I bugged @SprintST and @Morbo about their bikes and what they thought. I was very interested in a ZH2 or the MT10. Also bugged @ZRX4ME about his thoughts. They were all very helpful. After watching several youtube videos and reviews, debating on value, and their input..... I decided to go with a 2017 FZ10. It's in San Diego. I'll go get it Nov 17th. I made the deposit and they're holding it. They made me a great trade in offer for my Speed Triple, and this particular FZ10 is the right spec. It's in the color I wanted, has the comfort seat, Pilot Road 5's, and swingarm spools already installed. Yamaha dealer is 70 miles south in Flagstaff. Plus there are Yamaha dealers up in Utah around Moab or St. George.
By the numbers, it's quite a bit faster than my Speed Triple despite not that much more hp. The 100-200 kmh sprint is around 4-4.5 sec. Speedy is 6+. FJ09 is 7+. So this is going to be a different animal. Believe it or not, it's within a few tenths of the V4 Tuono, 1290R, and ZH2 in a 4th gear roll on 100-200 kmh. I'm sure those other super nakeds would eventually outrun it but I have no need to go that fast. All of my hooliganing below 200 kmh. Pretty excited to get it. Not sure how much I'll get to ride it this year. The temps are starting to drop to the 20's over night.
I definitely plan on taking the FZ on some baller trips. My work schedule is changing to 7 on 7 off, or 8 on 6 off. So plenty of time to ride. I want to hit 191, Mt Lemmon, Tonto Forest, and Petrified Forest. Also want to head over to Cali. I'm hoping to do some of Angelas forest and/or Malibu after picking up the FZ10. It isn't that far out of the way to come from San Diego north to LA then back over... Like an additional hour or 2.
Somewhere along the way I traded in my car for a Tacoma truck. So that should make hauling a bike easy. Even if it's too cold to ride, just load it up and drive to a warmer area of the state 😀
What's new with everyone else? Anyone else get new bikes or have any plans for one?