May 30th, 2007

GS1150ES

my first Buell ride

I went to the local Buell Motorcycles shop in Lawrence (yes, we now have one), and test-rode a Buell XB12X Ulysses, a big, tall "adventure-touring" bike - that is, a motorcycle that's made for both highway and (light) off-road.

The good: Wow, is it fun! I had no idea that an engine designed by Harley-Davidson could have such power: Under full-throttle, I was able to lift the front end without trying in both first and second gears! I expected the tons of torque, but not so much the power. It's really tall, which I appreciate with my long inseam. A wide, comfy seat, too. Decent wind protection. And somehow they were able to get rid of that "about-to-kill" sound you hear from H-Ds.

The bad: 1) As I pretty much expected, it vibrates too much for my comfort - not terrible on the hands, though it would add up after an hour or few - but the footpeg vibration was really too much on my formerly broken foot; on the other hand, I bet those aluminum pegs could be swapped out for rubber ones. 2) I test-rode it for the free messenger bag - exactly the bag I've been looking for during the past couple of years... but they were out. Humph. The salesman put me on a list if they get more in, but I'm doubting it. Ah well, it was a fine ride out along the country highway to the airport and back.

Best,
Chris