Friday, September 4, 2009


August 3, 2009 - Monday

Over the past weekend I got to abuse an XB12XT Ulysses from my mechanic. (The Beastie's getting new handlebars and new levers in a new edition and is relieved from my bad weather biking for a couple weeks.)
Anyhow, I got to use the Ulysses. Michi, the handsome young fellow in charge of sales and rental at my mechanic's, turned two blind eyes in order to let me have the Uly for three days. Seen as how I'm still supposed to drive 25 kW, it was awfully decent of him to hand me the keys. He joked that if I crashed it he'd say thanks for letting them sell another machine.
I assured him I'd bring it back quite undamaged. Which, grudgingly, I did. (Undamaged, but not unscathed. The foot pegs got somewhat scratched in the curves. I can actually get them on the ground with the Ulysses! I rarely manage it on my little Beastie.)
That Ulysses is one fun bike. With its longer wheelbase, broad seat, higher gravity center and longer spring deflection (compared to my XB9), it's easier and more comfortable to drive. The 15 extra horsepower are nice too. And the cases are quite practical. If I were any sort of practical-minded in all things motorcycle, I'd ditch the CityX and buy me a Uly.
It'd be much better suited to the trials and tribulations I put my bike through. It's a breeze to ride on mud, dirt, compost and gravel; the belt is better protected. It's also more comfortable to drive on long, boring stretches like autobahn because the wind protection is better and I sit somewhat straighter.
I'm seriously considering buying one as a second bike, and for tours. But only after Silver is road-worthy again. I don't have 15'000.- on the side for a third motorcycle before then.
If the Beast isn't ready to hit the road next weekend I can have the Ulysses again then. But I hope it is. Despite the comfort and ease of driving Buell's tourer, I definitely miss my feisty, nervous, 85-horse streetfighter. I can't wait to see what sort of difference the streetbar and adjustable levers make.

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