This is also posted on Total Motorcycle Talk:
For those that don't know what has been the most pressing thing my life for the last few days is something of a dream. The local Cop Shop ordered a specific number of 2009 ST1300P police bikes and decided they didn't need one of them for budgetary purposes. Everybody knows that I'm pretty hardcore biker and they thought (YES!) that I might be interested in buying the extra one. This would keep the deal that was arranged in the first place in place. So I would not only get the bike but I would get the Fleet sale price and the extended warranty. All good so far but I have until I go to work Tuesday morning. to make a decision. Being a civil servant sometimes has its perks.
So today I got a chance to ride a 2007 version of the ST1300 police bike. Not the same but close. Actually, I got a chance to ride the 2009 ST1300P anyway and the ST1300A civilian bike. And all it cost me was pizza for everybody. I just have to think of a way to take it off the price of the bike. I also had to behave for I was around a lot of big muscular men. Some of them with GUNS. I learned respect real quick.
Note: Things are getting a bit tuff out there for Dealers. They're willing to accomodate you in various ways. Just don't be an *ssh*le about it.
Ok, so this morning I got to ride a ST1300A. A black one(the dealer has a red one just waiting for servicing and pickup) and OMG, it is everything they say it is. (I hope Willie D. forgives me.) The first thing I noticed is that even with the seat in its lowest setting, I could get the front of both of my feet on the ground. Not hopeless. A little work with the seat and I can make the front of seat thinner and maybe put my feet flat. It's then I realize it's a stretch to the handlebars. It's actually a stretch to reach anything except the pegs once you get started.
Third thing I realize is that this bike might be a lot of things but one thing it could do without is being so heavy. Its wieght is low so it feels lighter than it is. So you can get in trouble if your mind wanders. It's low speed control is good. Could be better especially with me not being able to put my feet down flat. Once moving, it is a dream. I got out on the highway and rode it to the electronic cutoff. I guess 120+. Had a lawman for an escort so I didn't take the heat but it was an eye opener. It handles like a dream if you keep your mind focused on what your doing. You aren't going to muscle this horse with brute strength. At least I can't but I'm a gurl.
Yes, no matter how hot it was today, I wore my full armor. I may play with stupid toys but I ain't no phule.
The windshield adjustment actually works and is helpfull. Driven normally, the bike soaks up the bumps and rough patches with grace and style. It really isn't that much of a gas hog but it isn't a scooter. The only problem I had with the civilian model was that there was so much of everything that it seemed to be a waste not to use it. Sort of like the one time I rode a lowered Goldwing. But with the ST1300A you could start thinking about going from state to state with little worry. I don't know how it would feel after a few hours in the seat. (it has a 7.7 gals in 2 tanks)
After lunch, everyone gathered around the happy idiot and watched her try and make a fool out of herself. The ST1300P is a different bike in the way it feels. First of all there is the reach to the ground and the wieght issue. It also is a man's bike. The handlebars are higher and more pulled back than the civilian model. This would be a good thing but their spread out a bit more than I could comfortably handle. I guess that is the one thing I could say about the whole experience with it. The guys on the motorcycle squad are all 6' or more and have a great deal of upper body strength. I puttering around a flywieght 5'9" on my best days. However, it seems to made up of more heavy duty parts than the civilian model. It doesn't have the govenor, so speeds are unlimited. It was easier to move slowly and around obstacles better. Pull the pin and it to come on like 1000RR. It accelerates slightly slower (not by much) but comes close to similiar top speed. It has a few faults but this seems to be a problem of wieght and size.
The officers love them. They don't seem to have the problem noted in Europe in the early part of this decade with the Pan whatever version of this bike. Anyway, the bikes after being bought are going straight to a bike builder to be fully modified into Cop Bikes. This rebuilder has a lot experience with ST1300Ps and has never had one with any of the problems the Europeans found with there 2003-2005's. Mine won't get the treatment.
Anyway, I have till Tuesday to think it all out. The handlebars can be fixed because there is a opt. handle bar that pulls back without the wide spread between the grips. The seat can be modified some. If the civilian one is good, the police bike is Awesome. There is one major problem that I can't fix in that the fairing keeps the heat from the motor against my legs and lower body. It was over a 100 degrees today. Add 5 to 15 extra degrees to that and you can have a problem real quick. The motorcycle guys complain about it too but say they would rather have the ST1300P instead of an Electa Glide. The other problem is that it is built for male proportions even more so than an Electra Glide. It also means that I will have to sell all my project bikes except for the Sportster and the Buell. I guess in the final question will be can it become my "go to" bike. If it was a Big Twin, I would give up my Sportster in a minute. But this is an elephant. I can I turn it into a riding horse?
So what does everybody think I should do?
It's good spelling but it Wobbles, and the letters get in the wrong places. WtPooh
My First Custom, Late 90's Sportster, Heavily Breathed On, Big Block, S&S HP Heads, Custom High Performance Pipes. Wickedly fast, Uncomfortable, Front end is a jackhammer. Age 18yrs, Still have the bike!