1997 Superhawk - Wrist Twisters
 
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post #1 of 15 Old 08-18-2008, 07:49 PM Thread Starter
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1997 Superhawk

Friend has found a good deal on one of these and would like some input.

So have at it... (Good/bad/ugly/etc.) Thanks.....

http://www.motorsports-network.com/Honda/vtr1000.htm

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post #2 of 15 Old 08-18-2008, 08:05 PM
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On paper underpowered and a little heavy.

in reality, one of the more fun bikes I have ridden. I would buy one of these before I got another RC (unless the RC was "special").

Torquey and fun!

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post #3 of 15 Old 08-18-2008, 09:20 PM
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That pretty much somes it up, fun! I enjoyed the bike!! i don't think that in stock form it had great brakes.

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post #4 of 15 Old 08-18-2008, 09:26 PM
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A '98 was the first street bike I ever rode. It was my brothers and he loved everything but the fuel mileage.

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post #5 of 15 Old 08-18-2008, 09:42 PM
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I've always lusted after these...

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post #6 of 15 Old 08-18-2008, 09:55 PM
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If he found a 97 buy it! They didn't start making them until 98.

Other than that, they're a great bike. I love my 2001.

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post #7 of 15 Old 08-19-2008, 12:37 AM
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I started out many moons ago on Japanese two strokes - remember Kawasaki triples, I had a few of them, then gradauted onto the 1000cc fours when they emerged and loved them. I had scores of them, mainly Kawasaki, Suzuki and Yamaha. My last bike for a while was a GSXR-750, the last one before they went to water cooling, way back in the mid 90's. In all this time, I never was tempted to try a VTwin, mainly because there weren't many around unless you bought a Duc and I never wanted to do that. Well, I had a break off bikes until a coupled of years ago when I decided suddenly to get back on them. I had to own a 1000cc bike but the rocketships that were/are around now frightened me even at the look. They look like they were built to do the job so after about 2 weeks looking around, I decided it was between two bikes,,, the VTR1000 or the Hornet 900 (919 - US). I wanted to try this VTwin thing that everyone raved about so the VTR it was...

I can say I will never regret buying the VTR but I didn't necessarily feel the vtwin thumper power that they all spoke about. It did have lots of usable power alright,, just not what I expected. It took a bit of sorting out and setting up, as follows...
1. Changing fork oil which made the front end a lot more managable over rough surfaces.
2. Braided brake lines, especially the front set - a MUST...!!!
3. Matching the front and rear suspension to each other. This takes a bit of knowledge and time and so many people "think" they can set up suspension but all they do it set it to max out on everything and make the bike as stiff as a board and completely destroy any decent riding, then spend big bucks on exepensive shocks only to find they are marginally better off...
4. Perform the airbox mod. This added one enormous low down increase in power, so much I couldn't believe it. However, it does make the intake a lot noisier and may break some emission laws in some countries - HUH..!!! Who cares about that...???
5. Lift up the fork tubes 10mm or slightly more to quicken up the cornering ability - wow...
6. You may want to get a better exhaust. If you do though it may upset your carburation if you don't get it dyno'd in as the huge carbs on the VTR are as big as you get them on any bike and they are sensitive to intake/exhaust changes, so be warned here.

Tyres, make a huge difference to the VTR's handling,, I suppose like any other bike ever made. I couldn't believe how much a new set changed the bikes road nature. Well before time, I stuck on a set of Bridgestone BT-014's and these made it a different bike and took a bit of getting used to but in the end, I loved them... Tyres are the BIGGEST area of change to the average bike rider and all the acquired knowledge in the world will account for nothing once you stick the new tyres on. It is YOU who has to get used to them, not all those who told you about them... "Try" to choose carefully here...

All things considered, I really loved my VTR, and when I sold it, but 2 months ago, I sighed a little as I really gained some confidence on it after 13 years without a bike. It was a great bike to get me back on the road. No rocketship and no eyeball popper but after a few mods, a well behaved canyon runner.

Oh, I bought the Hornet 900, which was the other choice at the time, and just love it. I am glad I am back on 4 cyls as this is where my heart truly is... I will probably never feel the urge to own another VTwin but I am glad I owned one...

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post #8 of 15 Old 08-19-2008, 07:23 AM
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Nice write-up!

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post #9 of 15 Old 08-19-2008, 09:04 AM
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excellent write up

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post #10 of 15 Old 08-19-2008, 09:15 AM
 
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+1 -


I was working as a Honda tech when those bikes came out - Saw very few mechanical issues with them, most issues were casued by a loose nut behind the clip ons if you get my drift - Comfy bike, good power and almost bullet proof - Id say got for it !

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post #11 of 15 Old 08-19-2008, 09:47 AM
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annoyingly short range - only thing that makes more fuel stops is an HD Sporster w/ a peanut tank

loads of fun - fun, everyone that rides one will tell you

reliable - honda engineered&built

the range doesn't matter so much if you're just out joy riding, plan accordingly and have fun. a few suspension mods will yield worthwhile benefits.

i know there are colors available besides red but that bike just deserves to be red and ridden.

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post #12 of 15 Old 08-20-2008, 07:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ratdog View Post
annoyingly short range - only thing that makes more fuel stops is an HD Sporster w/ a peanut tank

loads of fun - fun, everyone that rides one will tell you

reliable - honda engineered&built

the range doesn't matter so much if you're just out joy riding, plan accordingly and have fun. a few suspension mods will yield worthwhile benefits.

i know there are colors available besides red but that bike just deserves to be red and ridden.
It's so funny about the mileage (or at least poor mileage) than lots of VTR owners talk about. The very worst I got was during the running-in period, simply because of the use of revs and the gearbox,, but even then I still got reasonably good mileage. The very worst I ever got on the road was in the order of 16.5 km/l which is about 45 mpg imperial, most likely around 40 mpg US,, but that was racing a few friends around the hills one fine day. I wasn't exactly going balls out (like a maniac) but I didn't stick around, you know..!!!

The best I ever got was 20.2 km/l - 57 mpg Imp - approx 50 mpg US. That was pussyfooting around just after I changed the rear sprocket by 2 teeth more and got a 2 into 1 pipe made for it and I was just trying her out for mileage, but I will never do that again because it was boring,, as I stuck it in top geat and left it there all day - Yawnnnnn..!!!

The funny thing about it was though,, whenever I went to top it up at the gas station, no matter how good-a-mileage I got, it always seemed that the fuel indicator was on a low position, even if I only went say 160 kms (100 miles) or 200 kms (125 miles). I always had the urge to never go past a gas station, just incase it ran out,, or so it felt. The highest miles per fill I did was about 270 kms - approx 170 miles. and the fuel indicator was on the last bar. My brothers indicator (also VTR1000) was flashing red but I myself have never witnessed this. Yet if you add it up, you should be able to get well over 300 kms per top in a 19 litre tank. I was NEVER game enough to try it.. Hmmmm...!!!

As a comparison, I am getting about 19 km/l - 53 mpg Imp (high 40's US) in my 919 and it varies only a little no matter which way I ride it and I feel I can go past many gas staions without fear of running out in the middle of nowhere...

Funny that....

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post #13 of 15 Old 08-20-2008, 08:34 PM
 
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I wish I got 45mpg on my Superhawk. If I was lucky, and felt like going slow I could squeak out about 100 miles before the RLOD (red light of death) came on. Mine was jetted and geared up. Talk about torquey fun. I have a 954 front end on it which makes a huge difference.. especially in the braking dept. It was very quick and nimble, like a 600 on steroids. Very fun bike, but Im moved up to a 954RR.

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post #14 of 15 Old 08-22-2008, 08:29 PM
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There are all sorts of mods for the VTR and I wished I could have tried a few more but I never was one to spend wads of cash on any bike. I thought more about getting another bike with those extra bucks in the future. Apart from the exhaust I got for mine and the braided lines (which any VTR owner has to do anyway), I performed minor or nil cost mods, which made a whole lot of little gains that added up to an almost completely different bike altogether after 4 or 5 months of owning it. It's even arguable as to whether a new pipe of any description would make an appreciable difference to most owner/riders. I truly think the 2 into 1 I got merely reshaped the power curve. It revved more freely up top but I rarely used the top end for more than the blink of an eye, but I am sure I may have lost some bottom end power. Who knows...

I am no strapping great hulk of a guy either so that may have helped in the fuel mileage department...

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post #15 of 15 Old 08-24-2008, 06:36 PM
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Cool bike. Especially for the money. Not as comfy as a 919 if you plan to put on some miles but more capable on the track if you like track days. Only tried my friends on the street but the did see alot of his tail lights on track days. (in the 9ers defence my friends 'hawk had forged 12.5:1 pistons and ported heads and he had racetech masaged forks) Can't say I cared for the twin (shakes too much at lower revs to really enjoy all that low end torque people rave about). If you get one with the low exhaust, it will scrap and lever the rear tire off the ground.

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