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Thread: Indecisive Newbie

  1. #21
    Senior Member Indecisive Newbie
    Indecisive Newbie

    Bike: 2015 NC700X DCT, 2005 R1150R, 2011 R1200GS
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    Imho.... ABS is not a "bad" thing in itself but Front Wheel Lockup on a motorcycle is almost always a BAD thing.

    I agree that learning to ride in the dirt or on the rocks (having ridden motocross and trials) was definitely beneficial in terms of learning to "feel" what a bike is doing. It has probably saved me a great deal of trouble over the years.

    ABS that is built around a bad set of hardware or, more likely, bad programming can be less than perfect. If an ABS is actually capable of inceasing braking forces to the literal 'edge of traction' and then backing off a fraction then, in theory, it should brake as hard as any human can and still prevent lockup. But bad sensors, bad brakes, or bad programming will defeat that capability. And, how many of these programmers have ever ridden a motorcycle?

    I can see how, especially in deep sand or gravel, plowing straight ahead, on an upright bike, with a locked front, might stop faster than a front wheel that is not locked up but that seems to be an exception to the abs rule.

    Again, IMO, just because someone had a problem with ABS in a specific car, by a specific manufacturer, in a certain model, built in a certain year, that is no reason to curse all ABS systems and ignore their benefits. A rough analogy.... My first cellphone weighed 8 pounds, had a shoulder-strap and the battery only lasted 23 minutes. I would never have purchased another one if I judged all cellphones by that one.

    I personally would not cross an otherwise near-perfect bike off my wishlist just because it has ABS. I love my NC700X and still, after almost 5 years, think the NC with DCT is as close to the perfect commuter bike ever built. And, with a nice seat, it makes a terrific (and very capable) light touring bike, right, IBA Rob?
    >T
    I may be getting older, but I refuse to grow up.

  2. #22
    Member Indecisive Newbie Dellaster's Avatar
    Bike: 2012 KLX250S
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    Quote Originally Posted by Olythom View Post
    ...
    I personally would not cross an otherwise near-perfect bike off my wishlist just because it has ABS. I love my NC700X and still, after almost 5 years, think the NC with DCT is as close to the perfect commuter bike ever built. And, with a nice seat, it makes a terrific (and very capable) light touring bike, right, IBA Rob?
    >T
    Thanks for your input. I didn’t intend for this to turn into an ABS debate thread, but it’s been interesting and informative to read various opinions.

    I’m no longer crossing the NC-X off my shortlist, whether DCT+ABS or manual. It will likely come down to what “used” deal I come across that’s not 2/3rds of the way across the US from me. In the winter... in the snowy parts of the country.

    Also remaining on the shortlist are the newly improved 2019 Honda CB500X and the BMW F700GS. It’ll be unlikely to see the former for sale “used” any time soon and the latter with low miles and a decent amount of farkles can actually be found for about the price of the new 2019 CB500X ABS out-the-door. Downside is that most F700GS bikes I’ve seen advertised have lowered suspension and/or seat, which I do not want at all.

    (Disclaimer: I am a former BMW motorcycle owner—R90/6—so I have a serious soft spot for them that defies rationality. That, in the end, might tip the scales, everything else about a deal being roughly equal.)

    We’ll see how the chips fall.
    Last edited by Dellaster; 22nd July 2019 at 13:18. Reason: Clarity
    —Ted

  3. #23
    Senior Member Indecisive Newbie
    Indecisive Newbie

    Bike: 2015 NC700X DCT, 2005 R1150R, 2011 R1200GS
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    The other two bikes in my garage are a 2005 R1150R (incidentally, the abs was removed by the previous owner) and a 2011 R1200GS so I know about developing a soft spot for the Beemers.

    Can I ask how you plan to use the NC700 or other new bike? Commute, putt around town, road trips, racing in the twisties?
    >T
    I may be getting older, but I refuse to grow up.

  4. #24
    Senior Member Indecisive Newbie
    Indecisive Newbie
    DirtFlier's Avatar
    Bike: 2013 NC700x/w DCT
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    My thought is that ABS & DCT are always combined for ease of production. That way, besides the colors they'll only have bikes with manual trans and other bikes with ABS/DCT.

    Dellaster - your fear of DCT problems not being fixable in your garage is moot. You could have the same worries about fuel injection, electronic ignition, etc. I have 25k miles on my 2013 DCT bike and it has run all that time without any problems. :-)
    Last edited by DirtFlier; 22nd July 2019 at 13:29.

  5. #25
    Member Indecisive Newbie Dellaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DirtFlier View Post
    My thought is that ABS & DCT are always combined for ease of production. That way, besides the colors they'll only have bikes with manual trans and other bikes with ABS/DCT.

    Dellaster - your fear of DCT problems not being fixable in your garage is moot. You could have the same worries about fuel injection, electronic ignition, etc. I have 25k miles on my 2013 DCT bike and it has run all that time without any problems. :-)
    Yup, that’s about where my thinking on it has ended up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Olythom View Post
    The other two bikes in my garage are a 2005 R1150R (incidentally, the abs was removed by the previous owner) and a 2011 R1200GS so I know about developing a soft spot for the Beemers.

    Can I ask how you plan to use the NC700 or other new bike? Commute, putt around town, road trips, racing in the twisties?
    >T
    Sorry, all that preliminary stuff got left behind in the newbie welcome megathread. I’ve been full-time RVing and semi-retired for over eight years. Now that I’m fully retired I think starting next year I’ll want to do some US & Canada adventure touring on a motorcycle w/camping gear. Lots of forest roads—dispersed camping—in the US at least, along with getting to the trailheads for day hiking. Nothing gnarly off-road. I’m a sedate forest road rider even with my KLX250S. I bet most of it I could do on a Harley if I didn’t mind getting it dirty.

    Mostly road riding, however, cruising the highways at moderate speed (I have never been a fast rider). Mountain twisties are fun for me, too. Again, at moderate, sane speeds.
    Last edited by Dellaster; 22nd July 2019 at 13:53.
    —Ted

  6. #26
    Member Indecisive Newbie Dellaster's Avatar
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    I think the BMW F 700 GS is finally eliminated from the sentimental favorite slot on my short list.



    This isn’t the first time I’ve come across a lack of anything but regular 87 PON gasoline. Both my motorhome and KLX250S require premium 91 PON, so the occasions stick out in my memory. But today I discovered that not only is the in-Park gas station like this, so is the one just north outside the boundary of Grand Canyon National Park, North Rim. For other grades you must travel to a Chevron station in Jacob Lake, 50 miles north, a 100-mile round trip. Looks like I need to dig out my gasoline siphon if I want to do more riding here, with 1.5 more months left in my volunteer gig. Now where did I put it?

    The BMW needs 91 PON, the NC7X is happy with 87. I didn’t think it would ever be a big deal in America. I was wrong.
    Last edited by Dellaster; 31st August 2019 at 17:19.
    —Ted

  7. #27
    Super Moderator Indecisive Newbie 670cc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dellaster View Post
    I think the BMW F 700 GS is finally eliminated from the sentimental favorite slot on my short list.

    This isn’t the first time I’ve come across a lack of anything but regular 87 PON gasoline. Both my motorhome and KLX250S require premium 91 PON, so the occasions stick out in my memory. But today I discovered that not only is the in-Park gas station like this, so is the one just north outside the boundary of Grand Canyon National Park, North Rim. For other grades you must travel to a Chevron station in Jacob Lake, 50 miles north, a 100-mile round trip. Looks like I need to dig out my gasoline siphon if I want to do more riding here, with 1.5 more months left in my volunteer gig. Now where did I put it?

    The BMW needs 91 PON, the NC7X is happy with 87. I didn’t think it would ever be a big deal in America. I was wrong.
    You would know more about your location than I would, but I think you’re at fairly high elevation at the Grand Canyon. I’m thinking that’s possibly why they don’t bother with higher octane gas. I’m from the flat Midwest, but when I go to the foothills in Colorado I see 85 octane available as the norm, whereas 87 is as low as pumps go near me in the Midwest at 700 feet above sea level. Where you’re at, thinner air, less air drawn into the cylinder, less cylinder pressure, less need for high octane, etc. I’m guessing manufacturer recommendations for octane assume worse case conditions for sea level.

    Personally, I refuse to buy any engine that requires more than 87 octane.
    Last edited by 670cc; 31st August 2019 at 20:29.
    Greg
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  8. #28
    Member Indecisive Newbie Dellaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 670cc View Post
    You would know more about your location than I would, but I think you’re at fairly high elevation at the Grand Canyon. I’m thinking that’s possibly why they don’t bother with higher octane gas. I’m from the flat Midwest, but when I go to the foothills in Colorado I see 85 octane available as the norm, whereas 87 is as low as pumps go near me in the Midwest at 700 feet above sea level. Where you’re at, thinner air, less air drawn into the cylinder, less cylinder pressure, less need for high octane, etc. I’m guessing manufacturer recommendations for octane assume worse case conditions for sea level.

    Personally, I refuse to buy any engine that requires more than 87 octane.
    I’ve heard the same thing since I was a kid, Greg, but have never seen any manufacturers’ official okay on using lower octane at high altitudes. And as you can see in the photo, it’s the normal 87 PON, labeled as Regular, with up to 10% ethanol.

    Although 87 PON might be safe while the vehicle is here at 8300’ (2530m), most people are going to leave with it still in their tanks and travel to much lower elevations where manufacturers’ recommendations and knocking apply... I would guess that’s one reason they wouldn’t officially state that it’s okay even if it was. Jacob Lake isn’t much lower, they sell all grades, but the through-highway peaks there and goes back down a couple thousand feet each way before you drive very far.

    It’s a good question. Maybe someone else knows the answer?

    Edit: I wonder if it’s a legacy of carburetors, which couldn’t be easily adjusted for thinner air? It seems like I don’t see octane drops at altitude (e.g.- regular at 85 PON) as often as I used to.
    Last edited by Dellaster; 1st September 2019 at 06:03.
    —Ted

  9. #29
    Member Indecisive Newbie Dellaster's Avatar
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    ... And then I find out that the computer can be software remapped for low octane at the dealer if I want. Those who have done so report no noticeable power or mpg change.

    BMW, the sentimental favorite that won’t die.
    —Ted

  10. #30
    Member Indecisive Newbie Dellaster's Avatar
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    And the winner is... a 2013 BMW F700GS! Glacial Silver Metallic, 7k miles, farkled (mostly OEM stuff) to the point that it only truly needs rear bags/luggage before going anywhere I want (though if course I might tweak some things as I get used to it). ABS, with a big switch to turn it off at need, but no other electronic rider aids on this one, as I wanted. Under $6k and located right along my route to Yuma for the winter. A ranger said upon hearing about it: “wow, maybe it’s fate?” It does make me wonder. Agreement made, deposit sent.

    My thanks to everyone here for great info and encouragement. Special thanks to those who kindly put up with my inquiries and even sent more photos of their NC7X bikes for sale on this forum.

    I do regret that I won’t get to add to the “What I did on my NC700 today” thread. No choice can be perfect, alas.
    —Ted

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