Thinking about a Victory Cross Country - Victory Forums - Victory Motorcycle Forum
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post #1 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-23-2014, 06:35 PM Thread Starter
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Default Thinking about a Victory Cross Country

Hi, new to the board...

I currently ride an '05 Harley Davidson Nightrain and love my bike. We are going to become empty-nesters in couple of years and cannot picture ourselves in an RV. But we ride the Softail together whenever we get the chance. The idea of getting a touring bike to travel and visit children and grandchildren has become something we are keen on. Being a Harley owner I of course went and looked at Road Glides and the newer Electra Glides. I'm no HD sycophant though, I'm constantly amazed at the Motor Company's dated technology and insistence on dated philosophy (for lack of a better term). I'm glad to see that HD is improving their technology for the '14 Electra Glide and the Road Glide is supposed to get some of that in '15 or '16. I've seen Victory bikes on the road and admire them, but haven't paid them much attention.

So anyhow...

As I am looking at touring bikes, I happen on a series of Youtube videos from some Victory dealer about the engine design of Victory motorcycles. The design seems much more technologically modern and/or well thought out. I've looked at the Victory models and like the looks of the Cross Country Touring. It's still cold here, so I haven't test rode either bike, but I hope to when it warms up. I figure I probably won't get a good answer about Victory from my HD friends, so I've joined here to learn about them.

Concerns. Well even thought the technology is more up to date, that doesn't always mean quality control is. I know what the problems with Harleys are, and sometimes people stick with the devil they know over the one they do not. What are your general impressions of the quality of Victory bikes. So far all I've heard from my HD friends is about "all that plastic". Another concern is the dealer support. Victory obviously doesn't have the base of dealerships and aftermarket parts that HD has. What have been your experiences with break downs on the road and dealing with Victory service departments?

And final question for now, is there anything you wish you knew before you bought your Victory. I'd especially like to hear comparisons from people that have, or had a HD so I can get an idea of what you find different. Since I already have an HD, it gives me a base of comparison.

Thanks.

Last edited by SGT Rock; 01-23-2014 at 10:20 PM. Reason: spelling error
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post #2 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-23-2014, 07:35 PM
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Welcome to the forum. I believe that there will be members here who rode HD's in the past. I was looking at both HD's (Road King) and Victory's (XR & XC) when I landed on my Cross County (XC) this past summer. Loving the bike so far!

Are you thinking about the Cross Country Tour (XCT)?

Good luck as you make your decision. Welcome again to the forum.

2013 Victory Cross Country

Victory Motorcycle Club Treasurer


River Cities Victory Riders (RCVR)
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post #3 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-23-2014, 07:42 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scotchbriar View Post
Welcome to the forum. I believe that there will be members here who rode HD's in the past. I was looking at both HD's (Road King) and Victory's (XR & XC) when I landed on my Cross County (XC) this past summer. Loving the bike so far!

Are you thinking about the Cross Country Tour (XCT)?

Good luck as you make your decision. Welcome again to the forum.
Thanks for the welcome, and I'm thinking Cross Country Tour. They look good in videos, I've looked at a 15th Anniversary close up, but not a real good look.
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post #4 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-23-2014, 07:44 PM
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I have a 05 King Pin and just love the bike .Have driven a few H.D.s and was never impressed with the power or the brakes .I felt very cramped riding the H.D.s being I'm 6'4''although the bikes looked great. That said the only costs have been oil, filters ,brake pads ,and too many rear tires . The bike has never seen the inside of any repair shop I do all the repairs myself .Granted the aftermarket for the Victory line is lacking greatly compared to H.D.s but that hasn't stopped me from doing a few of my own modifications.
Just test drive one before you decide ,your the one that will have to live with your final decision . Oh and if your better half is planning a lot of time in the saddle make sure she is along for the test ride.
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post #5 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-23-2014, 09:36 PM
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Been riding American iron since Nixon.
Still got Harleys in the shed.
Bought this red bike because I won't give the MoCo any more cash. They got enough of mine and ruffled my feathers with their silly corporate BS one too many times.
Not just spite though. I knew Polaris was going to start building Indians and figured since some asshat stole my Indian and the insurance company was kind enough to send me a check I would spend it on a Polaris product until the new Indian got going. I spent it on a Vic thinking that I could get a trade for the new Chief whenever it came out. Well that new Chief is out.
I'm keeping the Vic. Not to say that I won't add the Chief to the brood, but this plastic bagger is just fine. I don't know what to tell you about dealer networks and whatnot. I need to clip my toenails from time to time but I don't have any more idea of how many pedicurists there are than I do Vic dealers. I don't have much use for either dealers or toenail emporiums.

Here's some of the complaints about Victories.

Speakers are too small.
Shrader valve is not in the most convenient location.
You got to get down on the ground to air up the back tire.
Oil light stays on a few seconds after you shut the bike down.
Key location worry that it will scratch the cover decal.
Got to be just so with the gas pump nozzle or you have to pump slow.
Bike doesn't sit solid on a jackstand unless you shim it.
The antenna is too long.
The windshield on the Cross Country is too short.
The windshield on the Cross Country Tour is too tall.
The Vision windshield is just right.
Some peeps get so mad that the factory says oil change is 5000 miles. A lot of these fellas been doing them since back when they were 2500 mile interval and by gawd if 2500 was good enough for a V92 it's good enough for a Cross bike.
Sometimes, now I hope your sitting down when you read this, sometimes there's a little line of oil seepage at the primary gasket. Not a drip or a trail, but oil actually on the outside of a Victory motor. I've even heard of peeps having to actually tighten them bolts some.

Don't let my sarcasm fool you. There is issues that a Harley guy can't help but see, particularly fit and finish stuff. But, it's a fistfull of reliable balls and you can't help but think that the MoCo has been feedng you the short end of the stick in power, reliability, handling and comfort.

Red.
2012
Cross Country Tour.


We can't help it
We just keep moving
It's been that way since long ago
Since the stone age chasing the great herds
We mostly go where we have to go

That was written by James McMurtry
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post #6 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-23-2014, 10:20 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies. This is the sort of stuff I'm looking for.
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post #7 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-23-2014, 11:15 PM
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Howdy Sarge! Glad I poked my head in on this thread. I am a 33 year Harley ridin' veteran. Navy vet too but that's another story. I traded my Night Train in on a Jackpot but in 3 months talked myself into trading it for a Cross Country (XC). They didn't have the tour model in '11 when I got mine so made it into one later.

The technology and power available from the 106 is amazing with just a few basic changes most people with a garage and handy with a wrench can do. The most difficult is the cams but even that isn't all that difficult. An experienced wrench can do it in a few hours. Anyway, like the HD, the EPA has forced a detuned motor to be sold to us. Unlike HD though; we don't need to completely rebuild the engine to make it both reliable and powerful. A Lloydz air filter, Power Commander V with Auto Tune, cams, a good breathing set of muffs and you will be pulling 108/108+ of tq/hp.

If you are into eye candy; things have come a long way in just the last 3 years.

I don't remember the last time I heard of anyone breaking down. Not saying it doesn't happen, it must, but it's rare.

About the only thing I miss from riding Harley's is that certain sound from the pipes. Victory gets close but it has a steady thrum rather than the miss in there to set it apart like HD does. That is neither good nor bad. It just is.

If you switch to Victory be prepared to listen to some smack from your Harley ridin' friends. Some more than others. Some will not understand at all. If you tell them the truth, that you wanted a better made American bike, they will look at you like you're a space alien. No need to ask me how I know.

When I'm asked why I switched I just tell them I was ready to upgrade. That makes them mad but usually shuts them up. Just sayin'. If they push the point I just tell them I was impressed with the higher percentage of American made parts on the Victory's. That definitely shuts them up. Then, if it's one of those really die hard HD guys who thinks if it ain't a Harley it ain't shit; I tell them I ride alone a lot and wanted to be able to leave the county without worrying about breaking down.

I switched because I was looking at putting 5 grand into the Night Train to make it run the way I wanted it to. I was having trouble with the trans having some slop so I thought I'd just take a look at Victory. I rode the stock Jackpot which had the power I was looking for then found the 5 videos online about the differences in motors and kinda got mad at MoCo for selling a sub par engine at a premium price to where I had to add 5 grand and completely rebuild the engine just so it would be what it should have been from the factory. I had an FLHT at the time too. I traded the JP and FLHT in on the XC and have been happy ever since. Even picked up a good used Kingpin I love ridin' too and I never worry about breaking down or burning oil or leaking oil. They just run and run. I change the oil, tires, batteries, and add gas. That's it. Well; besides the usual maintenance stuff like changing fork oil and lubing a few spots like the cable ends. I like to keep the belts lubed with a teflon spray to cut down on wear and belt squeal.

I wanted to ask about the people who say the Victory's have so much plastic. They don't have any more plastic than HD's in my experience. Maybe they are thinking of the Honda Fury. It has plastic fenders and other spots that would be steel on a Vic or HD.

If I were you I would also take a look at the New Indian. I'd sure like to own one.

My last two big twins... I sometimes wish I could have kept them but I knew they would be money pits in the long run.
.

Last edited by BBob; 01-24-2014 at 10:41 PM. Reason: Spelling
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post #8 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-23-2014, 11:36 PM
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I forgot to mention the Lloydz timing wheel. That would be a must have mod too.

My dealership took care of a few issues I had with the XC during the first year. That was the last time I let them do any work on it.
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post #9 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-23-2014, 11:36 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys for the replies. I realize some HD owners are brainwashed. But then I take that as they are happy. One of my favorite quote about motorcycle choices:

“The test of the machine is the satisfaction it gives you. There isn't any other test. If the machine produces tranquility it's right. If it disturbs you it's wrong until either the machine or your mind is changed.”
― Robert M. Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values

So if they have a good feeling about their bikes, they can be happy. For me, this touring bike is going to be about not having to visit a repair shop while on long trips. I'm hoping the quality of the bikes match their engineering.

I've sort of wondered about the plastic comments. It seems to me that it is a comment made in ignorance by someone that hasn't actually touched one. I've also heard that HD is great at chrome finish, except that I've always felt there is way too much chrome on most of their bikes, hence getting a Night Train.

I've been sort of baffled by the MoCo. For a long time they said synthetic oil was a waste of money. Until they started selling their own brand of synthetic oil. Then it was the only thing you should use. They also poohoo beter transmission oils and think that ATF will ruin a primary. The HD primary chain tensioners were archaic, they said aftermarket auto adjusting were a waste of money. Until the MoCo started making their own auto tensioner which was so poorly engineered it causes more problems than it fixes since it can never release tension. But at least they now thing automatic chain tensioning is a good thing.

And everyone knows that HD stands for Hundred Dollars.

I love my local HD dealer, it is like going to your favorite bar. And the HD network of dealers is nice to have around. I've been by the local Victory Dealer and it isn't the same vibe. But I've got a friend that rides a Goldwing (he use to ride Harleys) and he pointed out that at 100,000+ miles with his GW he hasn't missed that support because he doesn't need it. So I have a suspicion that the HD fans' objection to a lack of dealer support is more of a smokescreen than an actual issue. If you build a bike that doesn't break down much, you don't need it. But if you build a bike that can have an odball issue ever 25k-50k miles you better have free coffee and a nice place to hang out for your owners.

I attached a picture of my ride. I love my bike. If I had my way my wife would get her own ride and we would ride together on our own bikes.
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File Type: jpg 2013-12-23 16.59.20.jpg (41.7 KB, 8 views)
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post #10 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-23-2014, 11:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBob View Post
... then found the 5 videos online about the differences in motors and kinda got mad at MoCo for selling a sub par engine at a premium price to where I had to add 5 grand and completely rebuild the engine just so it would be what it should have been from the factory. ...
In case you're wondering, these are the videos BBob is mentioning... Grab some popcorn and enjoy:






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