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Discussion Starter #1
Finally got my '09 Vegas 8 ball on the road today. This thing is going to take some getting used to. I've owned nothing but sports bikes since I started riding about 10 years ago. I learned on a Honda shadow and tooled around on a couple HDs but this is the first cruiser I've owned.
Pros
Comfortable as a lazy boy. Spent about 2 hours, 100 or so miles, on it today and I feel like I could have spent all day on it without any aches or pains.
It pulls like a freight train. Torque is there on idle, no waiting to rev for power.
Cons
Brakes. Looks like I'm getting close to needing new pads but this thing will definitely not stop on a dime.
Ground clearance. First turn from a stop sign and I was grinding the feeler on the peg.
Damn that transmission is noisey. Almost sounds like a baseball card in a bicycle spoke when going and it thuds when you shift.

I need to get used to the low red line on this thing. The engine speed I'm used to cruising at is above what this thing will spin at. Because of that I might have had it running a little on the hot side. After a little while it would start to backfire if I shut the throttle quickly. I'm not sureif iit's because I hadit running hot or because of the exhaust and intake without any computer work.
I also need to remember not to give it so much gas when taking off from a start. It pulls away from a stop at normal take off speeds without needing to gas it before the clutch is all the way released.
I split the miles. 50 or so solo and the rest with the wife on the back. She loves it. It's comfortable for her and she's not laying on my back when we're on it. I didn't notice her much back there but she's a pretty good passenger in general.
 

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EBC makes 100% better brake pads then stock
Remember front break first. Rear brake first will put you into a slide and you will crash.

Don't blip the throttle it will kill the motor
 

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+1 on the EBC pads, but get the HH. I put cheapy pads in the rear so it lessens the chance of a lock up.
Preload the shifter and you'll get smoother and quieter shifts.
I find that very little throttle movement is needed when shifting. Chopping the throttle many times results in decel popping.
 

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I use LYNDALLS pads, just ordered a set for the front of my Vegas.
Much better stopping power and feel though theyll never be in the superbike league.
 

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I now have EBC HH pads all around on XC, they do improve the braking feel and power....but don't expect miracles.
Learn to use the torque of the engine not the horsepower. I barley ever have to rev over 3500 rpms and I don't putt-putt on the bike.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the advice on the pads. I've used EBC pads before so I'll probably go with them. Never heard of Lyndalls before so I'm a little leery about them.
I'm not really concerned with the rear brake. From riding sports bikes I've become accustomed to using the front only 99% of the time. It's just a little strange for me to go from a bike that will lift the ass end under braking to a bike that feels like I'm trying to stop an 18 Wheeler Flintstones style.

I'm sure I'll get used to all the differences. I really do like the bike, it's just not what I'm used to. It's a nice change of pace.
 

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We all ride differently, don't we? PaiN hardly goes over 3500 RPM and I hardly go under it when working twisties. Corners are taken at @ 4K and pulling away the revs go to 5K many times. The 106 is a dual personality engine.
 

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This here is me sticking my nose where I have no business but... if you are not entirely unlike the many sportbike expats who now ride Vics then you probably looked around and said to yourself that there's more to riding than hugging the tank.

Since no one bike is all things to all men you have one that brings other pleasures to your experience but some things you took for granted are gone in the trade off.

The machine can be tweaked to recover some of what you feel is lost but really, it's the part between the seat and the handgrips that requires the most modification. The bike is what it is. If you dig its essence then develop a working relationship with its warts.
 

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These things don't start out especially competent, but most things are easily improved upon.

Brakes: Change out the fluid to a good synthetic DOT 4 like Valvoline. Get some sintered (HH) brake pads on it... and when it needs rotors there are some good choices in lighter/better rotors as well.

Handling/suspension: Better than OEM tires is easy enough. The rear shock pre-load can be made a bit stiffer and some good fork oil like Amsoil 'Shock Therapy' 10W will also help. Since the bike is obviously limited in cornering clearance, you will learn to ride gentle arcs instead on sharp angles. You can't go in deep and late apex these things... you have to plan a more smooth and conservative line... but you can do better through a twisty section than people think.

Not much you can do about the trans... it's loud. You'll get used to it. Keep the shift linkage well lubed and the clutch cable ends well greased and change the oil often... that's about all you can do.

Performance: This is something you can have if you want it. A decent airbox like S&S/Lloydz or Torque tubes, a good 2-1 pipe, a timing wheel, and Power Commander w/dyno-tune will have it running exponentially better, stronger, cooler, and it can rev higher too. You can add cams, compression, inches, turbo, supercharger... The limits are Lloyd's imagination and your wallet. www.lloydz.com

Comfort: Nothing like a good seat, and the bars are easily changed if you want. I know it's hard to get used to the feet-forward thing for you... but it will feel natural after a while.

Good luck with your new toy.
 

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All good advice H-C, but DOT4 brake fluid is not synthetic. DOT5 is syn fluid, good for racers but not advisable for street bikes.
 

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LYNDALLS is a top quality pads.

Keep in mind if you were a sport bike rider you had dual disc up front now you have only ONE and thats poor stopping power so you have to use the rear brak

wish it was a mandatory law that all bikes have dual disc up front
 

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To me these are just the growing pains coming from a sportbike. I felt the same at certain points. Its a riding style thing too. Sport brake are almost going to be better because they're designed for those high speed stops and maneuvering. You're also stopping a lot more bike (weight-wise) than you probably were before. I had to constantly keep the word cruiser in my mind when first riding my vic because a good part of me was just treating it like a sport bike with a different riding position. So the urge to perfect your holeshot off the line, hurl yourself deep into a corner and compensate with lean, and using hair trigger one finger brake and clutch pulls to make hard cuts in and out of traffic around obstacles, won't port over directly. I will say I was pleasantly surprised how much came over with a vic with transitioning to a cruiser (also test drove an M109r, and some other cruisers-- vic happened to be closest to a balance I was looking for, between pull, looks, maneuverability and dependability). As many other members have mentioned there are upgrades to improve the stock options but also keep in mind how your riding style is matching up with the machine you're on till you've had a minute to acclimate yourself and break some old habits.
 

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All good advice H-C, but DOT4 brake fluid is not synthetic. DOT5 is syn fluid, good for racers but not advisable for street bikes.
Nope... DOT 5 is silicone based. Not compatible with a DOT 3-4 systems. It will destroy the rubber parts. Synthetic DOT 3-4:




DOT 5 / Silicone
http://www.tbmbrakes.com/silicone_brake_fluid_vs__conventional_brake_fluid
"DOT 5 fluid uses silicone as its base. DOT 5 is specifically a silicone based synthetic. Silicone has none of the problems we have described above because it is not hygroscopic so it does not absorb moisture. Also, it does not attack paint, so spillage is not a problem. However, it does have some major drawbacks. First, it is extremely expensive often costing 5-10 times as much as polyglycol fluids. Secondly, and more importantly, the compressibility of silicone fluid is very unstable throughout the temperature range encountered in normal usage. As the temperature increases, the pedal travel necessary to compress the fluid changes, resulting in unpredictable pedal height."

Effect on Brake System Seals
"Another factor is the effect of silicone brake fluid on the seals found in standard brake systems. Ethylene propylene rubber seems to lose durometer (hardness) when exposed to certain silicone fluids. Although not the case with other synthetics, it is very true in the case of silicone. This results in a change in the size and an increase in the wear rate of all rubber components in the system. Some silicone fluids affect rubber more than others."




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Wahlll dang it awlll! Ya learn somethin' every day. I wasn't aware of syn DOT 3-4. A problem with DOT 5 is that it is not hygroscopic and will allow moisture to accumulate in the lowest regions and that would be the calipers. That causes corrosion. So is DOT 3-4 syn gonna do the same thing? If so, you want the old fashion stuff in your bike's system.
 

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Wahlll dang it awlll! Ya learn somethin' every day. I wasn't aware of syn DOT 3-4. A problem with DOT 5 is that it is not hygroscopic and will allow moisture to accumulate in the lowest regions and that would be the calipers. That causes corrosion. So is DOT 3-4 syn gonna do the same thing? If so, you want the old fashion stuff in your bike's system.
The difference is that DOT 5 is silicone based... DOT 3-4 is Glycol based.

Synthetic DOT 4 has the same properties as any other DOT 4 fluid. All I use is synth DOT 3-4 from Valvoline in all my ****.
 

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at least with this bike you shouldn't fall over the bars while breaking hard! cheers

Though, cross country / magnum have dual disc front brake. It's breaking way better! Same with Indians.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Finally got around to swapping out the pads, my local Victory dealer had the EBC pads in stock. Also blead out the front brakes while I was at it. Between the pads and bleeding it stops a lot better. Better than the Harleys I've ridden.
Put about another 100 or so miles on it. Adjusted my riding style and how I shift, the backfiring is 99% gone so looks like it was how I was riding it.

Couple things I noticed this time out. The turn signals cancel themselves when left on too long. Not sure if they are supposed to but I noticed it twice.

The gas light is a little strange. It doesn't seem to be on or off. It seems to start out dim and get brighter. Again, not sure if it is supposed to do this.

I really like the bike for what it is. I won't be getting rid of my sport bikes any time soon but this bike does what it was made to do and it does it very well, cruise.
 

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Finally got around to swapping out the pads, my local Victory dealer had the EBC pads in stock. Also blead out the front brakes while I was at it. Between the pads and bleeding it stops a lot better. Better than the Harleys I've ridden.
Put about another 100 or so miles on it. Adjusted my riding style and how I shift, the backfiring is 99% gone so looks like it was how I was riding it.

Couple things I noticed this time out. The turn signals cancel themselves when left on too long. Not sure if they are supposed to but I noticed it twice.

The gas light is a little strange. It doesn't seem to be on or off. It seems to start out dim and get brighter. Again, not sure if it is supposed to do this.

I really like the bike for what it is. I won't be getting rid of my sport bikes any time soon but this bike does what it was made to do and it does it very well, cruise.
Turn signals and gas gauge all perfectly normal mate.
I find once the light stays on if I accelerate and can put it out I still got about 3 litres left...once it gets to the stage where you cant put the light out there's only a couple of litres left .
time to look for fuel.
Once you log a few trips and divide distance by gas usage youll work out how far you can go.
 
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