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First time Harley owner (new pony in the stable)

1079 Views 14 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  House O' Pain
I've always loved the look of the Harley Springer (spring vs. forks front suspension) and when Harley came out with the Crossbones springer, it was the perfect retro look to me.
Harley only made the Crossbones from 2008-2011, so they are pretty rare, and even more rare to find one with low miles. I found this one for $16K with only 12K miles and in amazing shape.

Here are some photos:
Tire Wheel Fuel tank Vehicle Plant

Wheel Tire Fuel tank Vehicle Automotive tire

Wheel Tire Land vehicle Fuel tank Automotive fuel system

Tire Plant Vehicle Fuel tank Automotive lighting

Land vehicle Fuel tank Vehicle Tire Automotive tire

Back some 14 years ago when these first came out I couldn't afford one, and about five years ago when I could afford one and looked around, anything selling had too many miles on it. I actually had given up on even searching for this and bought a Yamaha Raider 1900, only to turnaround and sell it on a trade-in for the Crossbones once I stumbled on this one. I anguished over whether I should sell the Raider for this, but I decided if I' was ever going to own a Harley Crossbones, it was now or never.

The dealership I bought this from was a good 2, 1/2 hour ride from where I live, so I had a nice ride home through mostly crowded stop-n-go Los Angeles freeway traffic. The bike split lanes perfectly, and once traffic opened up I was able to appreciate the fun factor of the bike. It has tons of torque and the front springer absorbed the road bumps so well you'd never know it wasn't regular forks.

This bike normally has a spring rear seat, and since I love that retro look, I set about buying one. They sell for about $500 new from Harley, but I got a fantastic deal on a new condition used one for $150.00! I'm waiting on the seat pan and mounting hardware I ordered to arrive so I can put the seat on and will take new photos once I do that.

I'm heavy into modifying my bikes to make them uniquely mine, and I've already replaced the flashy floorboards this came with with the retro black ones you see. I'm going to ceramic coat the pipe heat shields (they cover most of the pipes) black, and have all kinds of plans to make the bike very 'reto' looking.

In case anyone is wondering, I still have my VTX 1300, and still love it more than any bike I ever owned.
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Is this what you mean or something similar ?

View attachment 203786

Yes, similar. Here is the stock bike with the spring seat for illustration. I like the retro look of the spring seat:

Tire Wheel Fuel tank Automotive tail & brake light Motorcycle
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ah man I wanted your Raider, I was serious about that when I posted in the other thread, I would have bought it from you with out a second thought.

nice springer though. post up your build.
Sorry but I had to jump on the Harley deal post haste. No time for private selling, as I rode the Raider down to the dealer, took the trade-in and rode home on the Crossbones, same evening. I couldn't risk having someone else get the deal on the super low miles Crossbones, so no luxury of time. Only time will tell if I made the right choice. That Raider was a sweet bike though...
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Spoiler : I have never riden a springer. Congratulations on pouncing on the bike you wanted. I hope you get many happy miles from it. Are you a straight roads type of guy? I ask because I have known of two blokes who were (and still are ) Harley heads and they both hated the handling of the springers. They are clubee's and like speed and cornering. Not every bike is for every person and I personally like the look. The joys of being a single man, Ill just have that thanks!
I did a ton of research on Harley and specifically the Crossbones before I bought it, (was 'shopping' for one for 5-years). What I learned is that the springer suspension was rated in rider reviews as surprisingly adequate for hitting your 'lines' in turns, even though the mini-apes don't lend themselves to quick maneuvers. The bigger challenge to taking this bike in tight 'twisties' will be how soon you touch down the floorboards with the slight lean angle allowed. No issue for me as my #1 riding requirement is city riding, and my slammed V-Star 1100 got me used to not leaning hard in turns.

Most of the bad reputation the springer front ends have generated comes from riders using cheap, knock off makes added to their bikes, having the bike raked, or simply from ignoring the regular maintenance required of these springers. Your neck bearings wear out fast with a springer. Also, early versions of the springer didn't have the shock the new version has, (notice it in my photo) and the shock makes a big difference to the stability and comfort of the springer front end. Additionally, the Crossbones springer has a built in fork brace, that adds stability. You may notice if you look carefully at the top of the fender in my photo.

All the reviews of springers on the Harley forums seem to indicate a great love of them by the owners, so.....
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I made a quick video of my Harley:

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