What's Changed in 20 years


Hello, Busars

Well, after years of wanting a new bike and finally putting the old one in it's grave (or close to it), I find myself choosing the Hayabusa. My reasons for doing so are numerous as I am sure you have all noticed that this bike seriously rocks. I hope I can avoid all the usual "Too much power for a newbie" talks by saying that I am, sadly, well over thirty and have been riding since I was 16. Lots of Klicks (Canadian for a bit under a mile) under the belt and I hope I am past the point of doing too many stupid things other than checkin out the tweenaged girls at the mall.

That said my, question to you all is this, (A bit tongue in cheek) “what has changed since my last bike, an 83 GS1100E came off the lineâ€.

I'm a bit of a slow mover when it comes to dishing out the cash involved here and have been going back and forth for years about my GS's retirement but when I noticed a large split growing in the frame I decided that the time had come. I'm a larger style guy (6'3", 225lbs) and the fit and finish of the Hayabusa have played a big role in my decision. Even the litre bikes seem a bit small for me these days. I think as the bikes get lighter they start to make em for the smaller people. Also, I’ve liked to push my GS hard over the years and have always found it very annoying that it was so heavy in the corners. Don’t get me wrong, I loved that bike, but cornering was not its strong point. I think the Busa is going to be a good fit for me as I am not interested in any sport tourer and a simple upgrade to the Bandit is not going to be good enough. Having ridden one recently I have to say I think Suzuki has missed something there. It’s missing that oomph that made my GS1100 rock. Don’t know why, it’s just not there. They’ve tamed it to death.

Anyway, if anyone has had experience making the kind of tech, speed, power transition that I am making, from the old school to the new, please give me your comments. I’ve read all the newbie list stuff so please be specific if you have something to say. Comparisons to a GSXR750 are not going to be useful in my case.

P.S . Is there any way I can get one in red.
Hmm, good write up.  Upgrading from an '83 GS1100 to a new Busa is like trading in a Model T for a Porsche 911 Turbo !!  Refinement, stability, ergonomics, finesse, comfort and power.  Granted the GS1100 is no slouch in the power department, you won't believe the amazing torque of the Busa engine at virtually ALL in the RPM range.

I upgraded to the Busa from a '97 Bandit 1200, (essentially not much different then an '83 GS1100 !!). The difference was night and day regarding handling and I couldn't believe how flickable this big 1300 cc machine was !!

True that the Busa is one of the physically largest sport bikes out there now, but the seat height may be quite low for someone your height.

Regardless though, I'm pretty sure you'll love the Busa and as for a red one ? Hmmm, not sure yet, rumour has it the '04 will be available in red. ;-)

Oh and welcome to the site BTW.
Hey Red, Pretty Much what Bandit said. Give MonsterSpeedFreak a shout though, or RubbersideDown. Both of them are in your general area and both may have some better more specific insight than I can provide.
In general over the last 20 years I am pretty sure that allmost everything has changed in the bike world. Bikes are lighter, rubber is better, motors are more efficiant, suspensions are better, on and on...

Oh and welcome...
Hmmm... 2004's in red you say?

Crap, that puts a whole new wrench in my plans. There is both a 2002 (new I think) and 2001 selling in my area right now and I am planning on going down and starting the paper work on one of them soon. A good deal at 1300CAD$ (list) for the new one at least. I expect the 2004 to be much more expensive and I really can't (shouldn't) justify it just for the colour.

That said, I have never had a bike or car that was not red and, as I am still alive, I don't want to wreck a good thing, or, on the flip side, a black/bad thing with me on it.

It's nice not to hear anyone crapping on my GS1100. My plan for the Hayabusa is just to start slow and let the bike tell me what it can do. Sort of like the horse whisperer but with more leather.

The only thing that I am worried about would be getting a rocket that has no off button. I am hoping that, with the Busa being a bigger engine, it will have a fatter power band that will let me just cruse out if I am feeling mellow. Peaky 2-strokes suck for anything off the track.

I also plan on going for longer weekend rides with the wife and would never want to place here in a position to feel the fear which I suspect most people here tend to enjoy :devil:. In addition, even though it would not be ideal, I know that I will end up taking it to work in the summer and I would feel a bit stupid riding something that is going to jump up the guy in front of me's bumper every time I take my hand off the clutch.

That reminds me, I had an uncomfortable situation with my GS once where a cop decided to tail me for a couple of clicks and I discovered, to my horror, that I actually had to slip the clutch in third gear to keep my bike under the ridiculously low speed limit. I think he must have been distracted that day because I got away with it. I also developed a whistling in my helmet once that sounded exactly like a siren. Needless to say I didn't have many fun rides until I got that fixed.
The busa is great in that it has power all across the power band but it isn't going to jump up the tailpipe of the guy in front of you unless you wrench down on the throttle too hard. I've found the busa to be very tame when I want it to be, and just plain wicked when that's what I want. She gives me exactly what I ask for. If only I could find me a woman as cooperative!!! :D

The busa isn't gonna fire up, blast through the gears and top out unless you tell it to do that. It is hell on wheels, but it is controlled hell as long as you have the willpower to control it. I think you'd be VERY happy with a busa. Wouldn't swap mine even for any other riding machine in the world, two or four wheels. It is truly that awesome! :super:
Oh yeah... You can have 'em any color you want if you know a good painter. ;)
Well, I got one.

It was actually a harder choice than I anticipated. I test rode a 2002 Busa and a Honda 954RR and really liked the Honda. Very fun bike with great breaks. After comparison with the Busa though I think the Suzuki is a better all around bike. I love the power all over the band and it is way more comfortable, for me and a passenger. It is quite a bit heavier than I thought but smmoooooth... like the Cadi of bikes. I am used to the weight anyway as my GS1100 was a bit of hefty, as I mentioned here before.

It is so stable that I feel very relaxed even when it is leaned over (though I haven't done much of that yet :-) ).

Now starts the difficult break in period. Hate that, but it has to be done. Does anyone know if there is a good way to improve the breaking ability of the Busa? It seems like this is the only weak spot I can see on the bike. It has under breaking power for the weight.

(Should now be changed to SilverStreak)
Congratulations, Red GS... A cure for your Front brakes? Well first take it back to the dealer and ask them to bleed them. They are supposed to do this when they uncrate the things but it allmost never gets done. See how that feels. Then Install a set of quality aftermarket stainless or Kevlar braided front lines. IT will make a world of difference. Still Not Happy? Try some aftermarket brake pads. Welcome to the Busa Club, now get up to General and introduce yourself... If you want to change screen names, now might be a good time to just re-register before you get too many posts and people start Identifying you as Red GS...