Opinions on XL1200N as a first bike?

Discussion in 'Sportster Models' started by Hog_Heaven, Jun 16, 2008.

  1. Hog_Heaven

    Hog_Heaven New Member

    sweetest looking stock harley out there (shh.... dont tell the nightrod I said that)

    Ive always wanted a harley, but I never knew I could actually afford one.

    One of my buddies is a salesman at a large Harley dealer here in STL and I just found out that I can get a brand new nighster for 10k or slightly under out the door.

    Now I always assumed that nice harleys were 20k+ and I never looked into it.

    but if I can get a brand new bike (paritally financed) for 10k out the door that is a smokin deal in my opinion.

    great mpg, awesome looks, reasonable price etc.... im just having a hard time finding reasons not to go get it today.

    however, im trying to be reasonable about big purchases and do my research.

    Ive never ridden anything other than dirtbikes and atv's..... is there any reason I would NOT want a 1200 sportster as a first bike? id look at 883s, but I dont want to be wishing id have gotten more 6months into it when I get used to it.

    Im responsible, and bikes scare the (edit) out of me so Id be taking it very easy until I got comfortable.

    id go with a bigger bike like a vrod or nice crusier, but $$$ wise thats not very practical and id feel more comforatble starting on a sportser since its smaller and (guessing) easier for a new rider to learn.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 16, 2008
  2. Sharky1948

    Sharky1948 Junior Member

    Lots of opinions on whether the Sporty is easier or harder to ride than the bigger ones. I got a 1200 Custom as my first bike and haven't had any issues. I would definitely go for the 1200 if I were you. I think you'd be sorry not to have the power after a short while. I think if you've ridden dirt bikes AND have taken MSF Basic Rider course, you'll be fine.

  3. jterby

    jterby Member

    go for it! I had never ridden a bike but wanted to all my life. I took the DMV written test for my permit, then immediately the local MSF course. I also glad I did, I wouldn't try this without that. Anyway, I left my ego out of it... wanting a bigger harley, but even with my good credit I felt I should start smaller and more practicle. So, I bought my Nightster and haven't looked back! I will admit I had them deliver it, so I could practice around the house before any serious riding. I got it on a Saturday morning and rode it to work on Monday morning. I love it, man. I've only had it a few weeks and have over 700 miles on it. I commute to work here in southern CA, 5 days a week. I took the crazy CA freeways by the second week. It so small and very easy to control, with my lack of experience or technique.
    That's why in my newbie opinion, as a Nightster owner I say go for it. Oh, funny thing this morning at starbucks... this dude thought it was some heavily modified bike (his words). I laughed telling him it's almost totally stock.

    Safe riding and have fun!

  4. hjacobson1

    hjacobson1 Active Member

    I too have a Nightster. I went for the solid black and added many trinkets over the past few months. Now have about 2400 miles on it and love it. Owning many other bikes (6 at this point from Japanese Manufacturers), I can tell you that it runs smoother than any of them.

    That being said, I changed the suspension, because as Hobbit pointed out, its really low as stock, and the stock shocks on mine had no damping effect at all. A trip to the web and Progressive fixed for the rear and front and now it's my best handling bike.

    I do have a couple of concerns though. You don't mention taking a rider course - which I have required of each of my three kids before getting on any motorcycle on the street. Please make sure you get the right training so you don't become just another statistic.

    2nd concern is that you say that bikes scare you. This is just another reason to get the training. I believe that most HD dealers have a training program. Go and complete this training and see if bikes still scare you. I'm thinking that upon completion of the course you will either have a serious case of the gotta have's, or you will walk away complete. Either way you've only spent a couple of hundred bucks to find out.

    Best of luck in your quest!
  5. Baggh

    Baggh Active Member

    Go for it! I can tell you from first hand experience that you'll get used to it very fast and be happy with your purchase for years. If you're going to be making payments be sure its for something that continues to make you smile while signing your name to the check. Those bikes look awesome\badass.

    I rode dirbikes for years but still wanted to play it safe making the jump to the rode. A few months ago I purchased a '07 Suzuki Savage 650 (ok... a Boulevard but that name is stupid)... the first week owning that thing I was regretting it. Wayyyy too small! Good bike but small. I made one payment and certainly didn't beam with pride when I signed the check. That bike didn't make it to it's second payment.

    I traded it in on my current '06 XL883. I've had this bike for a month tomorrow... and I love it. It looks badass and I have been enjoying modding the heck out of it (put a tach kit on it tonight and smoke turn signals\ Sidekick seat last weekend... the list goes on and on)... I luv it! Thing is... I haven't written my first payment for it yet and I already wish I would have gotten a 1200N. but... I wanted to stay financially smart and careful. I will keep this bike for a year or 2 (to get out of negative equity and enjoy my mods) BUT... ... ... ...

    I'd be smiling a heckuva lot wider if I was writing out that check every month for a 1200N.

    Go for it man... and luv it.

    USMCCWO5 Junior Member

    I bought this bike for my wife, who has never ridded a motorcycle. She loves it and rides it to work since taking the basic rider's course (MSF). In fact I have put almost a 1000 miles on it when doing mods to my road king. It goes!

    My only complaint-dang that tank of gas goes quickly, although the gas mileage is great.

    I hope you take everyone's advice and buy your first HD. I can't see how anyone would regret it.
  7. 77IronHeadMike

    77IronHeadMike Member

    Awesome bike. I agree with Sharky get the 1200 you'll enjoy it more/longer. Schedule a test ride at your local HD dealer, it'll win you over. Besides, it's a Harley (nothing sounds like it), and fit and finish beats the metric bikes hands down.. metal blinker mounts, paint, quality, etc. Also Maintenance costs are on the level if not a little LESS than other bikes in it's class (figuring break in, first oil change and first tune up). Let us know what you end up with!
  8. Hog_Heaven

    Hog_Heaven New Member

    Ill enrolling in the 4 day course at one of the local harley dealers today, and after work im going by one of the local delaerships to talk numbers.

    my buddy that is now seeling harleys is off today, So im going to his biggest competitor and Im gonna see who gives me more for my money and let them fight over it.

    Ill be putting 5-6k (more than half the cost of the bike) down and financing the remainder, plus ive got good credit. This is a garunteed sale, done deal in my eyes. I know exactly what I want and have the means to get it. I suspect any salesman would love more customers like me Lol.

    either today or tomorrow ill be the PROUND new owner of an 08 nightster :D

    So now on to a more important question..... Whats on deck for mods? throw some suggestions out fellers
  9. jterby

    jterby Member

    Try the bike for a week or so and see what you think of the suspension. You can look at my question about that from the other day. Many sportster, I'd mireto the point Nightster owners soon opt out girl the progressive suspension 412 rear shocks & the fork springs. Also see what you think about the sound. I know my neighbors sure appreciate when I leave for work evry day at 5 am, but its the quietest harley (stock) I ever heard. I will mist likely go with a muffler slip on mod soon. Good luck and have fun. Its a great bike!

  10. lwloeksmanto

    lwloeksmanto Member

    My oppinion : Go for it!
    I had my 1200N with Screamin Eagles muffler on it since august last year, proudly be a daily rider in Indonesian street/road condition and this is my first HD. Now have about 4800 kilometers without any training. Just plug n go...

    Lots of peoples here talking about it. It was easy and smooth to ride it... so don't be worried, except you are really a newbie on motorcycle.

    XL1200N .. I love it!
    hmm.. anyone had a ideas which saddlebag fits on my Nightster?
    And to be pleased to contact me if anybody had a stock side mount plate for Nightster..

    Last edited: Jun 18, 2008