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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am looking to start a project on the cheap. My question is what is the power difference in say a 1000-1200 sporty compared to a 500-650 trump. It is my understanding that you will get a better power band from a triumph cylinder configuration as opposed to the standard vtwin configuration. I've just never ridden a British bike only harleys. I like the price of getting into a triumph but I'll have my ol lady on the back a lot and wanna make sure it can keep up with the big twins that some of my buddies have.

A buddy of mine has a 69 triumph 500 basket for $700.
 

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well two of my buddies have 650's a 69 and a 70 and they cant even hang with my 1200 but i could be wrong and they could have to pieces of shits ya know but from what i heard the newer triumps are about equal to a 1200 maybe even a little faster
 

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Generally a bigger engine will make more torque at a lower RPM and in turn have a capability to live longer with less maintenance. Harley parts are everywhere and pretty reasonable especially when it comes to Ironhead XLs. The buy in is higher but the resale is better. A stock bore stroker Sportster is a fast bike and cheap to build. And it will run with a 1200 EVO XL and run away from all but the fastest Triumphs. And S&S is still making the kits and spare parts new for it.
Honestly it all depends on what your going to do with the bike. If you want to do a Trumpet go for it but for my money an Iron XL is a lot of bike for the money.
 

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well two of my buddies have 650's a 69 and a 70 and they cant even hang with my 1200 but i could be wrong and they could have to pieces of shits ya know but from what i heard the newer triumps are about equal to a 1200 maybe even a little faster
I don't even know where to start here...

If they cant even hang, they have no concept of sprocket ratio's, have a stupid 16" on the back, or they cant ride for shit (power to weight, a 650 in a reasonable state of tune should be able to eat most sportsters under brakes and in the corners) and at least keep up if it has the sprockets to do so

If you cant tune a T120, give it to someone who can, you will be impressed...
if not scared
 

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I know things have changed in the last 25 years and I can't say a thing against Sporty's cuz I luv em but back in the day my 750 Bonnie would kick the livin' shit out of any HD products.

When they did the 993 I expect that would've changed but I'm talking early eighties.

Cripes, I was furious when some ricer with fiberglass all over it beat me. How soon I came to realize it was over...:)
 

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In my experience a 750 Trumpet will eat the ass off a 1000cc ironhead Sporty, a 1200 Sporty...kills me to say it, but that's another story.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Wow, this has gotten interesting. My intent wasn't to ask which bike could blow away which bike, however it is kind of interesting to have everyone give their 2 cents. So I'll try to rephrase the question. I'll start off with my history as it pertains to the question. I used to have a panhead (fl 1200). The same size motor in a slightly heavier bike than a sportster. So I understand that a sportster would be quicker than a similar big twin due to weight. This bike will be my only bike so it will have to carry my ol lady at the drop of a hat. The guys that I ride with like to go from 0 to 90 in 2 point (suck the the leather from your seat into your puckered arse) 7 seconds. So my question is does a triumph 500, 650, 750 have the ability to keep up in that situation with a rider on back? Or am I going to be the guy that's a 1/2 mile back trying to catch up? I am simply wanting a comparison to a sporty or even a stock fl pan for that matter.
 

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I can explain it for you, but I can't understand it for you.
 

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Rode my 1968 650 Bonne for the first time today and was really surprised at the power it makes especially at high rpms. Equal to a sporty of its day and a hell of alot smoother . I plan on taking it out for a long ride with the other big twins tomorrow cause it will hang ...Something about those engines i like more and more . I owned an Ironhead and dont hold them in very high regard.

Either way that $700 basket is gonna turn into a $3000 project for it to be any good.
 

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0 to 90 in 2.7!?!?!? KPH, m*a*y*b*e, but never on a Harley capable of running on the street with a passenger.

But, hyperbole aside, SOME Harleys will beat SOME Triumphs, and the other way 'round as well. Comes down to rider technique, how the bike is set up, and what kind of road you're on. If there are a bunch of curves, most any Triumph will leave the Harleys behind. Some of the performance advantages that the Triumphs have is the ability to rev a lot quicker, which can make up for a lot of the torque advantage of a Harley. However, if you're willing to build a T150, there is NO pre-Evo Harley that will be able to SEE you after about a mile...providing you can RIDE...

Cosmo
 

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"I used to have a pan head.""...........that makes you sound kind of dumb.
Why the Hell did you get rid of that? And what is a 500cc motorcycle going to do for you after a panhead? Get my drift?
 
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