FNG Harley rider - a couple q's. - Victory Forums - Victory Motorcycle Forum
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-19-2014, 02:13 PM Thread Starter
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Default FNG Harley rider - a couple q's.

Hey all. Been riding HD for almost 16 years. Love the Judge, kinda like the Gunner, especially in green.

A couple questions, for guys who have been around for a while.

Back in the days, I had a brother who rode a Vic. It was one of the
old 92s. Everybody liked the bike, but it would gobble oil, and ran bad.

Now, I know that people have said that those old engines required someone to be able to work on them, but that bike had a warranty, and even the dealer couldn't fix it. I've seen a lot of people say that Vics never have any issues. But then, I read the forums, and hear different. If I jump into this thing, and end up with some kind of weird issue, is there anyone out there that'd be able to fix it? Is this common? Does Victory honor their warranty, and how much can you do without having them say, no way, it's modded now.

The second question is, some people say that the Vics have some issues first coming out of the hole. Now, they seem to make up for this in top end, but then, the power comes on later. I've heard that there's a gear change that can be done in order to change the ratio, and get more out of the bottom. Has anyone done this, and is it worth it? Also, can you reflash the computer in order to update the ratios in the ECU, so that the speedo reads right? Am I even close to how it works?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-19-2014, 02:42 PM
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The 92" bikes were Polaris' first foray into big twin cruisers. Took 'em a couple years to get the kinks hammered out, as with any new design. I'm led to believe the later iterations offered were much improved. It's not an issue I've intentionally researched (I have a newer bike with a 106" and used to have a Vegas with a 100"). I can't really speak about them gobbling oil or running bad. Most 92" guys here doesn't seem to suffer those issues. I know transmissions were a bit iffy on those early bikes. That's really all I'm willing to say for sure.

Warranty issues seem to vary by dealer. Really. There are so many conflicting stories here, it's hard to get a straight answer. I don't know exactly what you mean by "weird" issues. I guess that could be the oddball electrical gremlin or some strange, hard-to-explain behavior. But that's the nature of any machine. I've recently seen a bit more chatter about starters on the Cross bikes going out. Not a lot, but enough to notice.

As for power from launch, the Freedom motor comes on a bit later than the HD motor. I recall someone once posting dyno charts showing the Vic producing similar torque at the torque peak of an HD motor, but I don't recall if that chart was from the HD 96" or 103" and I can't seem to track it down. But yeah, the Vic motor's torque peak is bit higher up the tach.

I know underdrive pulleys are available. I'm not aware of a speedo reflash, however.

You can call me Billy. Or Luci. But don't call me Shirley.

Mine:
2011 Cross Roads, crimson red
Lloyd'z ATS, IAV, VFC-III. Vic "High Performance" air filter. Ness Big Honkers. Funsies.

Hers
2015 Vegas 8-Ball

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-19-2014, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
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Appreciate the input. Does the Vic stage one kit address the issue with the bike stalling if you blip the throttle? If you have it done at the dealer, does it affect the warranty?

I have a 2012 FLHR that I like a lot. it's kind of an old man bike tho. I like riding something that I can toss around a bit more, and that carries less baggage. Don't know if I'll get rid of the King, but I am thinking about an addition to the garage.

What year did the 106 motor come out, and is it a huge improvement over the 100? I've talked to Vic owners who either love or hate their ride. There seems to be no in between. If I do make the buy, I hope to fall into the the former category.

I still remember the days when it was nearly impossible to buy a Harley. Back in the 90s, there was a 3 year waiting list. That, plus 5 Gs over MSRP kept me off of a bike for 13 years. Now, I can walk into any Harley dealer and ride out on whatever I want ( and have been known to do just that ) but I am warming up to the idea of the other american brand, simply because I never want to see what happened before happen again. Way too many wasted years that could have been spent riding. Plus, I like the profile on the Vic. Nothing sticks out either side. Very clean.

Any heat issues? I live in South Florida, and we ride pretty much year round. I just had the stage one done on my bike, and it cooled it down a lot. I was wondering if the cruiser ( bobber ) bikes had any heat issues. Know that Harleys don't like it as much in the summer. They get plenty hot. Better now than it was, but on the King, I take off the screen and that helps a lot. Anyways, all the Qs for now I can think of.

TIA
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-19-2014, 05:46 PM
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With $1500 bucks you can turn a Vic into a hundred horse monster. With $2500 you can't get a h-d motor with that kind a power.
Heck stock they will eat up a 103"h-d
The motors are strong and built like a rock.
The quality from old to new is like night and day.
95% of the guys have no problems and the ones that do are miner

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-19-2014, 06:04 PM
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First, welcome to the madd house.

Stage 1 from the dealer isn't a good cost/benefit item. Get some mufflers, if you want (stock Vic mufflers do it pretty good but are quiet. Some of us like that), a fuel controller and a breather. Different bikes can use different set ups. Get the thing tuned. You'll be out of pocket about the same $$ but have a much better cooler running machine. The launch is a little less than HD because of the gearing, but after second gear, it is much better IMHO, and don't ride it like a Harley. Vic's like to rev a little, in fact so does the Harley, folks just don't ride them that way.

Stock heat is there. Some whine some don't. Welcome to the interwebs. I live in Texas and it does get a tad warm here. I was OK with the heat, it really just moves around from bike to bike, the pillion said it was a bit much on the XCT, a Dobeck AFR+ Gen 4 fixed that and didn't require a dyno tune to do it. Some controllers don't really need a dyno, some do, all could benefit from it I would guess.

I'm not a Vic connoisseur, so not sure when the 106 was introduced. There have been some issues, I firmly believe Spirit Lake had their head too far up Indian's butt for a while and some of the larger ones have been reported in that time frame. Seems they were handled but some didn't like the time frame. YMMV

Vic has some issues, no doubt. It is a young company in the MC world, and dealers are hit and miss. I'm not a poster child for them and have been ready to toss the bike over the way things were handled, or not so much, by my dealer. Such is the way of business now days it seems. Electrical issues have been corrected and the bike has played nice and done a good job of making up for the early days.

Now the good. As mentioned I have a XCT, tried the Vision, just not for me, didn't bother with any others, but imagine they are along the same lines. This is about the finest rider I have thrown a leg over. Smooth, excellent road manners, agile and just nice. It would be hard to find anything offered right now that would rival all that. After a Wing, it is refined as a tractor, but it is what it is and does it pretty well.

I tried a 14 HD and have to say there was only one thing I didn't like about it, the HD Dealers. If not for that I might be on one. Honda just didn't fit. Yamaha needed to update the Venture and has since pulled it off the market. I loved both Ventures.

All these are touring bikes and not what you are looking at, but hopefully gives a little insight on what to expect. Only other advice is to ride as many as you think you are interested in and a few you aren't to get an overall feel.

Happy Shopping

Some people go their whole life wondering if they made a difference, Marines don't have that problem.~ Ronald Reagan

2012 XCT, AFR+ Gen 4, Lloydz air filter. I don't equate noise with power.
I ride with the Force.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-19-2014, 08:32 PM
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My 2004 92" is solid and runs strong with a good transmission, there seems very few issues that I know and they've only gotten better.

2015 Cross Country (bought new 7/11/15)
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-19-2014, 08:32 PM
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I have been riding over 60+ years, mostly metrics, but cancer and age had me needing a lower seat height and CG. Fortunately, Victory introduced the Cross bikes at that time. I did a lot of research and forum lurking to see what problems owners were experiencing then (late 2009 early 2010) and the biggest grips was lack of T-shirts at the dealer.
When the sale was being consummated, I was asked if I wanted the extended warranty. I replied that my research tells me I won't need it and the dealer said you're right, you'd just be throwing money at me. The only things we see these bikes for are accessories and routine service. They haven't even seen mine for that.
These Victorys are low maintenance and what little there is, is simple to do.
I have never liked cruisers, but Ma Vic made a cruiser that a cruiser hater can love. It is powerful, very comfortable, reliable, gets great gas mileage and carves like a sharp knife.
I too have been reading about Vics having problems, but they are brought on by mods and messing around so take that with a grain of salt. Take a test ride, I know you'll be impressed--I was.

2010 Midnight Cherry XR. 7Jurock, Lloydz AF, ATS, AFR tuned VFCIII, IAV, and T-6 and locally repacked pipes = big smiles. SOLD to a dear friend, so it's still in the family."
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-20-2014, 09:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stretchman View Post
Hey all. Been riding HD for almost 16 years. Love the Judge, kinda like the Gunner, especially in green.

A couple questions, for guys who have been around for a while.

Back in the days, I had a brother who rode a Vic. It was one of the
old 92s. Everybody liked the bike, but it would gobble oil, and ran bad.

Now, I know that people have said that those old engines required someone to be able to work on them, but that bike had a warranty, and even the dealer couldn't fix it.
You could as easily and with the same amount of truth have substituted the brand name of any product sold in a multiline dealership, any motorcycle or farm implement or jet ski.

Quote:
I've seen a lot of people say that Vics never have any issues. But then, I read the forums, and hear different.
Well that it false. It's a machine, really it's a car. Not the four wheeled variety but in it's complexity and in its engineering and manufacturing technique. This is a mass produced vehicle defined on a virtual palette, tested within mathematic confines and built on an automated assembly platform to maximize efficiencies and minimize deviation from spec. Do Dodges have issues? Go to Dodge forums for the answer. How about Lexus? Prius? Grove? Mann? They all have forums and they all have issues and those issues are aired on their enthusiast forums.

Quote:
If I jump into this thing, and end up with some kind of weird issue, is there anyone out there that'd be able to fix it?
Yes, there are notable shops and wrenches whose names appear regularly here and elsewhere. Maybe your geography makes one of them a viable resource. Then there are local reputable dealerships who have inhouse skilled mechanics and a sense of purpose that translates into quality service. That's a harder nut to crack. You will not find out how the local is unless you test the waters.
Then, the other side of that coin is local dealers who are hacks or so overwhelmed by low sales volume and low service ROI carrying Victory that they just don't invest the commitment to the brand that results in superior service. Methinks they are easier to find than the high level performers.
There are indies out there who can massage life into anything that spits and bangs. You might have luck in that arena but again, it's a crap shoot. The dif with indies is their parts stream for Vics runs through dealers. Tough getting a deal but then again if the dealer is a buffoon and the indie is stand up, the extra time and coin is well spent.

Quote:
Is this common? Does Victory honor their warranty, and how much can you do without having them say, no way, it's modded now.
First, these questions are not valid in a fishbowl. Victory is a product vying for the same dollar as a laundry list of manufacturers of like products. Excepting Harley, which uses a unique model that they have been able to afford to cultivate and harvest due to a primary factor in their market appeal being the tacit agreement between HD and the client that the client will pay a premium for a middling product and then to continue to dig deep, waay deep into their pocket regularly subsidizing a variety of peripheral revenue streams.

Other manufacturers, Victory included, sell the product and only marginally sell the "experience". They all do it to varying degrees, but they all fail.

Is this common? What, weirdness? Well, Hondas have weird issues, Kaws too. You can't find a Ural that doesn't raise an eyebrow. Ever talk to a Ducati owner? Apparently they are haunted by the tortured souls of Ducati owners passed. So yes, Victorys have weirdness. Comparatively very little weirdness which is a pity for those of us wwho populate this forum because the same issues coming up time after time gets old. I vote for weirdness.

Will there be a white knight in the wings to fix possible weirdness? Yes, yes there will. It's just a machine, rather it's just an amalgam of the six basic machines. Quite a bit more complicated than an inclined plane but not rocket scientry. Now, who that is and what you have to do to get your machine in that persons competant hands is the variable, just like almost every other vehicle bought at a multi line dealer.

Factory warranty? Victory has a lousy factory warranty reputation. Not alone. Not good but not unique. They will honor their commitment but unlike some highline manufacturers the sense is the onus of accepting responsibility is lacking. They suppose you are trying to pull a fast one until facts demonstrate otherwise. On a 20 thousand dollar Kia that may be a reasonable approach. I think less so on a 20 thousand dollar motorcycle but that's elitism ain't it. Peeps worry about mods but it's rare as houndsteeth that mods get you in trouble. Certainly if you beef the mill and dump the bottom end on the dragstrip then chances of factory repair is zip and a set of cams not installed by a factory authorized shop is a ticket to nowhere, most everything else is not going to be a reason to lose sleep unless it directly is attached to the failure that you are looking at Ma vic to cover.

Besides which is it? I mean if you are on the fence over having a resource for competent wrenching then isn't it that competent set of hands you are going to have putting parts? Or, if you are capable to go all up in your machine then the need of local wrench magnificance is not that big a deal after all I would think.
Meh, to each his own.

Quote:
The second question is, some people say that the Vics have some issues first coming out of the hole. Now, they seem to make up for this in top end, but then, the power comes on later.
You peruse these forums for awhile and see the dyno charts of the stock, damn close to stock, and kiss stock goodbye motors, then go looking at other similarly configured motorcycle charts from other forums. The answer is plain and a source of rightful pride for the powerheads among us Vic folk.

Quote:
I've heard that there's a gear change that can be done in order to change the ratio, and get more out of the bottom. Has anyone done this, and is it worth it?
So, yes, yes there is. No I have not done that tweak to this motorcycle but I have done it again and again to previous steeds. Ah but for a chain drive we can alter the entire powerband of a bike in about a half an hour. Anyway, be careful for what you wish. Not to put words in your mouth but I would have said something like "So I have owned my Vic for awhile and yes it has balls but there is a riding condition that causes me to think, man I need to leave more rubber at the light and less pump at the top of the speedo because I am compelled to run eighths better. I'm going to juggle ratios." But that's just me. Maybe you like counting clouds from every stop sign.
It's not a particularly complex operation assumming you are tooled up but it ain't changing a chain sprocket in either time or money so not like you get the notion to try it out in the morning to see if you like it, then switch back after lunch if you don't.

Anyway, Victory is like Subaru. Some of the styling cues make me go hmmm but the engineering is undeniable. There's a little thought that went into the ratios and for most riders there is ample abilty to get yourself in deep with what it will deliver right out of the box.

Quote:
Also, can you reflash the computer in order to update the ratios in the ECU, so that the speedo reads right? Am I even close to how it works?
Maybe, but my money is that it would likely require a hall pass from the factory. There's other ways to skin that cat but I am a shadetree dummy and there are lebtukal geniuses here who could thread that needle for you I'm sure.

Here's a concept. Ride the damn thing. They let people with opposable thumbs and a motorcycle endorsement do that and if the opposable thumb thing is a high bar I think you could probably fool them if you stick vienna sausages in the fingers of your gloves. Kidding aside. Get thee hence. Ride them. I would love to say that I have been riding Harleys for 16 years but that would be doing an injustice to the other lifetime I been riding Harleys. Old RICZ got me beat though. Whenever he went to school they didn't have history. When I went all they had was the history of RICZ. I ain't a hater, still keep a couple of hawgs in the shed, but I would like to think that I know a good machine from a less good machine. Warts included what we have here is a case of that. Ride the damn thing then you tell me.

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 #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-20-2014, 12:45 PM
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Despite all the sound advice here, ESPECIALLY Pop (the Bambino of forum posting, he really doesn't leave much for anyone else to say after he responds), there is a single point I can still address.

LiT is correct in that a dealer-outfitted Stage 1 upgrade is not an especially good value for money (I think you pay for convenience and speed of modification there), my wife's Vegas had the full Stage 1 loadout, and neither of us ever experienced stall from throttle blip. In fact, blipping the throttle in 2nd gear at about 30 mph, and the bike would make a fair effort to kill you.

I might also add that Vegas broke her on owning anything else. Too bad Vic ain't still rolling 'em off the line in midnight cherry. If it came down to right bike, right price, right time, she'd settle for an 8-Ball, but I think if asked how she liked one, the answer would be "It's great! too bad it's black."

You can call me Billy. Or Luci. But don't call me Shirley.

Mine:
2011 Cross Roads, crimson red
Lloyd'z ATS, IAV, VFC-III. Vic "High Performance" air filter. Ness Big Honkers. Funsies.

Hers
2015 Vegas 8-Ball

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-20-2014, 01:08 PM
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Hey Pop, I learned a helluva lot of history and lived what they (should) teach now. I learned enough history to know that the Louisiana Purchase ain't what someone brought home for Walmart in Baton Rouge.

2010 Midnight Cherry XR. 7Jurock, Lloydz AF, ATS, AFR tuned VFCIII, IAV, and T-6 and locally repacked pipes = big smiles. SOLD to a dear friend, so it's still in the family."
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