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Old April 7th, 2008, 12:45 AM   #1
boney95
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Default Buell Lightning XB12S

Any of you fellas have any experience/opinions on the Buell Lightning XB12S (2008). I'm in the market for a bike the spring, and this is what I'm leaning towards.

Last edited by boney95; April 7th, 2008 at 01:19 AM.
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Old April 7th, 2008, 01:02 AM   #2
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the kickstands are funky, be aware of that.
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Old April 7th, 2008, 09:04 PM   #3
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I'm also looking at these bikes because:

A) It can't go 150+MPH easily, so I can't go that fast
B) Supposedly have excellent reliability, talking little to any maintenence at all
C) Great gas mileage - I read somewhere 60+ MPG highway once broken in
D) Have a motor made for the street, it's not going to be a stellar power monster, but you don't have to shift it or rev it to put it in its sweet spot
E) insurance rates seem pretty good for them.....


Anyone have an actual opinion on one or own one for some time?? I plan to ride a demo before I decide, but some words from personal experience would be nice
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Old April 7th, 2008, 09:08 PM   #4
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it's a damn harley sportster motor. excellant reliability?
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Old April 7th, 2008, 09:10 PM   #5
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from what ive seen, it looks like a good bike.
but the msrp is 10,5 my buddy just got a R1 for the same price
for the same price id get a R1 but thats just my .02
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Old April 7th, 2008, 09:17 PM   #6
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from what ive seen, it looks like a good bike.
but the msrp is 10,5 my buddy just got a R1 for the same price
for the same price id get a R1 but thats just my .02
Won't be buying new.....no way in hell I'd pay that much for (as stated) a bike with a sportster motor in it (which it is to a degree). You can pick these bikes up used for fairly cheap with low miles (talking 5 grand for 2 model years old).

That goes two ways - either they really blow, or people buy them for the wrong reasons. Again, don't know how true this is, but a lot of people buy them and are disappointed they can't keep up with their buddies GSXR....I have no intention on doing that, nor would I ever try.....I know what
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it's a damn harley sportster motor. excellant reliability?
Thats what I've read Of course, it's all bias stuff from a buell bike forum too.....which is why I'd like some real opinions before I purchase one
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Old April 7th, 2008, 09:20 PM   #7
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Won't be buying new.....no way in hell I'd pay that much for (as stated) a bike with a sportster motor in it (which it is to a degree). You can pick these bikes up used for fairly cheap with low miles (talking 5 grand for 2 model years old).

That goes two ways - either they really blow, or people buy them for the wrong reasons. Again, don't know how true this is, but a lot of people buy them and are disappointed they can't keep up with their buddies GSXR....I have no intention on doing that, nor would I ever try.....I know what
didnt figure itd be new (i sure as hell wouldnt buy a new bike) but just in case i thought id throw that out there
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Old April 7th, 2008, 09:35 PM   #8
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it is a fact that it is a sportster engine. although it has been retuned a bit, but same basic design.

as for the speed, it doesn't matter if it "only" does 150 or if it does 180 it is still way over the speed limit so no a valid point.

I've never ridden one, but I've heard guys say good things about them. However I've also noticed Buell guys are a little sensitive and think they have the best fastest bike ever so I don't know if that's valid.

Get what you like and what you feel comfortable on. If you need more go to the cycle magazine sites where you can read their reviews. cycleworld.com
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Old April 7th, 2008, 09:38 PM   #9
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as for the speed, it doesn't matter if it "only" does 150 or if it does 180 it is still way over the speed limit so no a valid point.

I've never ridden one, but I've heard guys say good things about them. However I've also noticed Buell guys are a little sensitive and think they have the best fastest bike ever so I don't know if that's valid.
I know it doesn't matter that it'll "only" do 150 (in fact, I don't even think they're capable of that fast). That was my point - there is no need for a bike that'll do 180 (like virtually all the inline 4 race replica's are capable of) on the road.

And yes, I agree with you on the whole buell rider thingy too - again, I think that's because they're sad they can't keep up with their GSXR riding buddy.....which is why some non bias opinions are needed - even a lot of the reviews are bias to some degree
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Old April 7th, 2008, 09:49 PM   #10
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for the price, i would get something else, they are not that reliable.... a buddy of mine had one and he was always having issues with it.. but they are kinda cool when they actually run... lol that thing was a wheelie machine, very fun to ride, but lacks top speed.

i owned an '03 gsxr 600 that kept up with my brothers tlr1000 which was another one of those big v-twin sportbikes....
my opinion would be to get something different with that kind of money, you'll be happier in the long run, especially if you ever try to sell it. the buells don't really hold value from what i've seen. i'd say stick to the honda, suzuki, or yamaha sportbikes
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Old April 7th, 2008, 10:29 PM   #11
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The other thing about the buell is if you are tall (at all) you will feel way top heavy on this bike. I am only 6ft 2 and I rode my buddy's buell last year, I felt like a monkey fucking a football. I have a triumph speed four, and it is the same type of bike, it has plenty of speed to it, and the balance point on it is a lot lower. Feels a lot more secure and gets less squirrely during down shifting and sharp acceleration. But that is just my experience, my buddy is damn near my same size and swears by his buell.
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Old April 7th, 2008, 11:41 PM   #12
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I'm assuming you want some sort of sport bike if your looking at the Buells. My point with the magazine reviews is except for the very latest "long" models, I don't recall reading much in the way about how great Buells are. If you want something different and you like the styling then their for you otherwise maybe something else would be good.

If you want to stick with the naked style bikes, the the Yamaha FZ1 is nice, but is inline 4. If you want a little older, the Honda Super Hawk was a nice bike with a V-twin. If you stick with the jap bikes they are all for the most part pretty reliable. Just get what you like.

Oh, and the bike only goes as fast as you twist your wrist. Any motorcycle, even slow ones can easily break the speed limits.
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Old April 7th, 2008, 11:42 PM   #13
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I figure the buell is a bike that someone would buy that did'nt want a Jap Bike(non American). They of course have the Harley sound with the "naked/retro look". I've heard that the newer models are indeed reliable. Buell's are not supposed to be classified with the Jap Bike, they're a different breed of bike. As for the cost, every thing out there new is around 10,5. The reason I would buy new is the fact that you don't know what the previous Monkey owner did to it, how he rode it (beating the Hell out of it), laid it down, etc....The crucial 500 mile break in is very important to the life of the bike, with some a-hole who dosnt have the patience for this can ruin your experience with your used bike. I've also heard of guys that are over 6'4 riding Buells and have no complaint. There are different models with different seat heights/lenghts etc...I don't know if I'm being biased myself, but I've heard nothing but good things about them.
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Old April 7th, 2008, 11:44 PM   #14
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Oh, if it matters I ride a Honda CBR 600 F4i. It has a single piece seat and is fairly upright seating position (for a fully faired sportbike anyway). I'm 6 foot tall and I'm pretty comfy on it. I'm looking at buying a Corbin seat though for longer rides...

I would recommend this bike.
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Old April 8th, 2008, 12:03 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oz97tj View Post
it is a fact that it is a sportster engine. although it has been retuned a bit, but same basic design.

Uh, I own a Lightning and you don't know what the hell you're talking about. The current model is not an Evo motor. In fact, Buell hasn't used the Evo for years. The current motor is a liquid-cooled 72° twin.

The older ones are not reliable out of the box, but there is basically a long, proven list of corrections to make that take care of all the issues. The newer motors are said to behave better than the last of the Evo's, but the new-for-08 motor is just that - brand new. I probably wouldn't buy one until next year simply because its a new model.

They have a lot of power where most riders do not expect it - more torque at idle then a lot of the metrics do at peak. The bike can fly out from under you at a standstill (not by dumping the clutch) and they are easy to lift up at speed. Mileage is pretty good and the new model has a 5.6 gallon tank. They have also historically not been kind to riders over 5' 9" or over 180 lbs due to packaging constraints.

I would not recommend them to anyone that does not have experience with twins and certainly wouldn't suggest a new one to a non-experienced rider. I went from a 1990 CBR 600F to a 2000 X1. I might as well have had no riding experience at all. Had to learn the machine all over again.

I don't let any of my friends ride my bike because they will fucking crash it immediately. I will also never sell it because there is nothing else out there that sounds like an Evo-powered Buell with an empty race can.
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Old April 8th, 2008, 12:19 AM   #16
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The Buells look great and from what I understand handle great too. Lots of low end torque to get you out of the corner. I kinda look at the Buells as a cult bike. If you don't like the cookie cutter jap bike thing than jump on a Buell. Just my unqualified opinion.
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Old April 8th, 2008, 12:35 AM   #17
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The Buells look great and from what I understand handle great too. Lots of low end torque to get you out of the corner. I kinda look at the Buells as a cult bike. If you don't like the cookie cutter jap bike thing than jump on a Buell. Just my unqualified opinion.
Well said...A cult bike, just like a vehicle/4x4 Jeep cult. I see no problem here except for a loyal Camaraderie for those who want to be different. For those who may want to learn more about Buell, here's a Forum to go to. www.buellxb.com or http://www.buelletinboard.com/forums...isplay.php?f=8

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Old April 8th, 2008, 12:51 AM   #18
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id say the thing looks pretty cool imo
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Old April 8th, 2008, 02:59 AM   #19
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IMO it sounds like you just want a cruiser. If you want a Harley buy a Harley, if you want a crotch rocket buy a crotch rocket. By what it sounds like you want a road bike with some power but not too fast. Something that gets good MPG and you plan to ride quite a bit. I have known alot of people who bought crotch rockets only to have them up for sale the next year. If I was looking to get a bike for DD and weekend cruises I would be looking at the new Jap V-twin cruisers. There is no way no how that Harley will be as reliable as a Jap bike.
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Old April 8th, 2008, 03:46 AM   #20
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IMO it sounds like you just want a cruiser. If you want a Harley buy a Harley, if you want a crotch rocket buy a crotch rocket. By what it sounds like you want a road bike with some power but not too fast. Something that gets good MPG and you plan to ride quite a bit. I have known alot of people who bought crotch rockets only to have them up for sale the next year. If I was looking to get a bike for DD and weekend cruises I would be looking at the new Jap V-twin cruisers. There is no way no how that Harley will be as reliable as a Jap bike.

You're right about the power (torque). This is what I'm interested in, the power you can use during street riding, not the 150mph+ highway. And I don't want to be all bent/leaned forward as a crotch rocket rides. A XB12s is not a crotch rocket if thats what you implied? A Harley dosnt have enough speed/sporty-ness for my wants, except the V-Rod, but thats out of my price range. I guess what Im saying or trying to gather here is some positive comments on the Buell before I buy one (9,500), not that I need it but it helps my conscience.
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