I’ve been thinking about picking up a new bike for a while now. I really enjoy riding the RT, but the maintenance costs, both in terms of time and money, have soured the relationship. I had been looking at the Dyna Switchbacks, because they’ve got bags but still have some performance. So I went up to American Eagle Harley Davidson to talk to the sales people and throw my leg over a bike or two.
When I got there, James and I started talking about bikes, and I tried the Dyna on for size. It just wasn’t my thing. I’ve gotten really spoiled with the RT’s fairing, a lot more than I thought I had. So we went over to the Road Glides. These are full sized FL touring bikes, which are a lot heavier than what I’ve been riding. But the fit and feel of them! I had to take this one out for a test ride. James got me set up, and I went over to the Rider’s Edge lot to do some figure eights to get comfortable with it before heading out on the road. Despite my misgivings, it handled well and didn’t feel nearly as heavy as it is.
Feeling a little more confident, I went and explored the neighborhood behind the dealership for a while, getting used to the handling, braking, and acceleration. It was comfortable and easy to ride around on surface streets, including taking some U-turns. Eventually, I got on to I-35E and headed south. This is not a good road right now, what with the ongoing construction, but the Road Glide’s suspension handled it well. Handling was good, throttle response was great. Any time I needed a little oomph to pass a truck, it was there. I actually messed up and missed my exit, which forced me to go a lot further south before I could get turned around to get back to the dealership. That gave me the space to test the cruise control, which sealed the deal for me.
I got back to the dealership, checked back in with James, and started talking numbers. We got to a figure that was good for both of us, including a very reasonable trade-in amount for the RT, without any real hassle. At that point I called Heather, talked it over with her, and headed home. Once she got home from work, we headed back up so that she could try it on for size. It got two thumbs up, so I’m heading back up tomorrow to sign the papers, hand over some cash, and bring a new bike home.