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Friday, September 30, 2016

Decision Made - Sort of - I Think

It has been a month since I posted so I figured I'd best write an update.....

As we researched and narrowed the field regarding bikes we noticed that the 2016 Honda CB500x seemed to tick all the boxes.  Well, ticked all but one.  It is not available with a  gear indicator, which I am used to on the Gladius.  This isn't a deal breaker though.
(2016 Honda CB500x ABS, photo credit to advpulse.com)
Earlier in September we had a week off and one day went to a Honda dealer about an hour or so away.  They had a 2016 in stock and we had every intention of taking it home that day.  Troubadour took it for a test drive and thought it was great.  Unfortunately the salesman had all the personality of a wet-blanket and it was like pulling teeth trying to engage him in conversation.  He gave us what he said was his rock bottom price, $250 off MSRP.  Unfortunately this was still $150 more than the Honda dealer in Medford, a few hours to the south of us.  Alas, the salesman would not budge even a bit.

We decide this personality/salesman did not deserve our dollars.  While we were disappointed, it gave us time to think.  This was on a Friday and we had the following week off.  We hummed and hawed and debated about driving down to Medford, the only other dealer in the State with this bike in stock.

I was reluctant to drive down just for the bike.  Would we have to trailer it home? Would one of us ride it home? Would we ride down two up on the Tiger and both ride back?

On the weekend Troubadour suggested that we drive to Southern Oregon for a hiking trip and he would take his gear just in case we decided to drop in, and if the stars aligned buy the bike.  After more discussion we decided to go ahead and do it but opted to take the Subaru as there was a nice trailer for sale down there and if he decided to purchase it, the trailer could then be hauled home, with or without a bike on it.

Monday morning we packed a small overnight bag and some snacks and headed out.  

(Corvallis, OR to Medford, OR via I-5)
We made it down to Medford by 1 pm.  We found Shinsei Sushi for lunch and they had several vegan sushi rolls and the best seaweed salad I've ever eaten. We then wandered a bit in REI.  I was looking for a hiking book on the area and they had the one I wanted.

From there we scoped out the Honda dealer. They were closed Monday but at least we knew where it was.  It was getting later in the afternoon so we thought we'd best check out somewhere to stay for the night.  Our first two dinner choices were in Ashland, which is 10 miles south of Medford and only 16 miles north of the California border.  We drove to Ashland, home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.  While there we looked at a few hotels online and then looked for one of the dinner places -  Blue Toba.  Closed Mondays, doh!

Notice how we haven't done any hiking yet?  I kept telling Troubadour he lured me to Medford under false pretenses to get me to check out the bike shop. He didn't deny it too hard.

We looked up our second choice restaurant, Agave, on our phones and it too was closed on Mondays.  What the hell? Does no one eat on Mondays in Southern Oregon? Back to the HappyCow app on our phones and our third choice was back in Medford so we decided to find a hotel there.

We stopped at a Best Western and they didn't have any rooms with a king bed, just one with two queen beds. I asked Troubadour if he wanted to sleep in separate beds.  Sleeping with both of us in a queen size didn't even cross my mind.  Nope sorry, look some more. We did find a Comfort Inn that was nicer than the Best Western and it had a king room. available.  We got checked in, looked at the room and decided to find dinner.  

The Siam Cafe wasn't very exciting, just your average Thai food, but with small portions. It certainly was no Woodsman, which we get at home.  At least the place was open.  By this time it was early evening so we just headed back to the hotel.

Morning dawned and we made some tea and ate our raisin bread and peanut butter for breakfast.  We checked out and headed to Starbucks for a latte.  As we were drinking our coffee we chatted about the potential bike purchase and why I had a niggling/gnawing feeling about maybe not purchasing one just yet. The trailer Troubadour was interested in was a bust.  He couldn't get anyone to call him back. So to get a new bike home we'd either have to rent a U Haul trailer, which are pretty heavy for the Subaru to haul, or Troubadour would have to ride it home.

When all was said and done I decided I would feel better selling the Gladius first.  I had just ridden it to Saturday morning coffee and it was making my right hand and forearm sore just riding the 5 miles.  At one point in time I wouldn't have dreamt of letting it go, but it is time. I just don't enjoy it anymore and the fiscally responsible thing to do is to sell it prior to purchasing a new bike.

So, we drove by the Honda shop without ever stopping in, cue facepalm. I didn't want to stop by lest I really be tempted.  As we headed further out the highway I checked out the map in the glove box.  (Yes I really used a paper map).  I noticed we were on Highway 62 heading northeast toward Diamond Lake.  Hmmmm.....Troubadour and PolarBear were headed to Diamond Lake on that Friday for the Dog Face Dual Sport Rally. (I am sure one of them will blog about it eventually)  I suggested we keep going and take the long way home, which meant we could avoid driving part of I-5 and also he could scope out the camping for Friday.

(Medford, OR to Diamond Lake, OR via Highway 62)
It was a good route to take and more than once one of us mentioned it would be a nice road on two wheels.  We arrived at Diamond Lake around lunchtime.  We parked at the lodge and decided to walk along part of the paved bicycle path that goes around the lake.  It actually took us by some of the rental cabins and through parts of the campground. Here the camera finally came out.

(Diamond Lake, Oregon)

(Diamond Lake, with a view of Mount Bailey)

(Troubadour at Diamond Lake)

(We saw a lot of ducks)

(And duck butts)

(One of the boat launches at Diamond Lake)

(Another view of the lake)

(Blooming fireweed, looking back towards the lodge)

(Diamond Lake and the boat dock/launch)

(Yet another view of Diamond Lake)
By this time we were pretty hungry so we walked back to the car, explored the lodge a bit and then ate our apples for lunch.  We had a few options for getting home and we chose Highway 138 into Roseburg then up I-5.

(Diamond Lake, OR to Corvallis, OR via Highway 138 and I-5)
We stopped at the Safeway store in Roseburg for a few bananas for dinner and finished up the final leg home.  

The following day we tidied up the Gladius, took the v-strom hand guards off as well as the Givi tail bag and plate, then gave it a good wash.  We listed it for sale but so far have had no bites.  It is getting to be the wrong time of year as we are into fall and winter is looming. Sigh.

So, now I must be patient.  If a smokin' deal came along on a bike we may well pull the trigger fiscal responsibility be damned, but if not I am happy to wait until Spring.  I still have the TW200 (when the new battery arrives next week) and can still ride the Gladius in the meantime notchy throttle and all.

- Au Revoir

" A bend in the road is not the end of the road, unless you fail to make the turn." - Author Unknown
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42 comments:

  1. that Troubadour, quite sneaky..... :)

    the lake looks nice, not many people there eh?

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    1. Not a lot of people there, but more than we thought there would be during the week. The numbers really went up that Friday with the dual sport rally and "ride the rim" event where they close Rim Drive of nearby Crater Lake to motorized traffic for 2 days and it is bicycles only.

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  2. Hi Brandy,

    I heartily approve of Brad's strategy and it sounds like you're not exactly opposed to it either :-) . The CB500X would be an excellent choice. One of our IAM members bought one as a stop-gap because of on-going and expensive problems with his BMW 1200GS. He absolutely adores it, his Beemer is still off the road and he doesn't particularly care!

    BTW, fabulous photos!

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    1. Thanks Geoff. I wasn't opposed to it, just didn't want the pressure of going down solely for a bike. Good to hear of someone who enjoys their CB500x, they sure do get good reviews and are popular on the forums too.

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  3. P.S Forgot to mention that you can get an aftermarket plug and play digital gear indicator for it. I think they're under $50

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    1. I think Bobskoot had one on his V-Strom, or maybe it was his BMW, I know he had one though as he blogged about it. I've always thought the after market ones looked a little odd on the bike though.

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  4. So close...and yet so far....I bet you can just about smell the new bike! Bad dealers suck and they never get much money from me...

    At least you had a nice little break. Hope that Max sells quick and we get to see the new shiny one soon!

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    1. I agree, bad dealers suck, and yes I can just about smell the new bike.

      I don't hold out much hope Max will sell quick, it has been 2 weeks and no bites yet.

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  5. No trailer, no hiking and no new bike but some wonderful photos of the lake.

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    1. That sums it up perfectly, thank you.

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  6. You certainly know how to save money! Geoff suggested a gear indicator, here is what I have on my Kawasaki Vulcan, http://www.healtech-electronics.com/products/gpds/

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    1. Thanks for the link Nikos. That one doesn't look as out of place as some I've seen.

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  7. Beautiful lake pictures, and the air looking so clean and crisp. I have the feeling that it might be a smart move to sell the bike first, and I hope it will turn quickly. It has been given the appropriate TLC, and surely will find the right buyer.

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    1. Thank you Sonja. With the time of year I just feel better selling Max first. My guess is it won't happen until Spring though as it is time for the rains to return.

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  8. Sometimes things happen (or don't) for a reason. In your case, as-yet unrevealed. Looks like there was a silver lining to the trip in the form of Diamond Lake. Beautiful!! BTW, I found a half marathon in Corvallis, just need a push to fly out there and do it and to visit you!

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    1. You coming to Oregon again would be great, especially if you did the Corvallis half marathon. Push push push, we have a Hilton Garden Inn right on campus which is where I think the race starts.

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  9. A great little 2 day staycation, with those sights, isn't all bad. Everything works out in its own time. I think I need to look into a gear indicator for Stella as I keep trying to shift into 7th gear.

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    1. It wasn't a wasted trip by any means. Decisions were made and we got to see parts of Oregon we'd never seen. We even enjoyed Medford as a town which surprised us.

      I look for a higher gear on the TW all the time but I've never done it on the Gladius. Go figure. I guess because I can glance down and check visually rather than manually trying to find 7th.

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  10. Its been a long time since I had a bike to sell but I remember the feeling that when it's time it's time and it got me impatient. Happily the Bonneville has no value to anyone other than me at this point so I just keep on riding it and it keeps going. My dog is interfering more with my riding than anything else.

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    1. You are lucky that you found the bike you love so much. I can't imagine you with anything other than your Bonneville. Rusty seems like such a great dog. A perfect reason for riding less.

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  11. You can't start a post with a pic like that! I had to skim all the way to the end to see what happened. Now I gotta go back and pick up the details. Think I saw some nice Diamond Lake pics in there somewhere...excited to hear the end of the story when it occurs :D

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    1. Sorry, my bad. I didn't think about that picture showing up in news feeds first.

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  12. As a two time Honda owner/rider , I can only endorse your choice. I'm currently on an eight day trip, and have encountered all sorts of weather. Yesterday I had to drive for some distance through water which almost reached the pegs, and the Honda just keeps on going on. Good luck with your choice.

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    1. One of the big plusses for Honda is the reliability. I've heard such good things about them. Nice to know you are experiencing the same with yours.

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  13. I was pleased to see that you didn't spend money at a dealership that employed a salesperson who really didn't want to sell a bike. I've let deals go for less than $150 and have yet to regret it.

    You'll get the right bike at the right time. In the meantime, it's nice to see that you both enjoyed a nice time, anyhow.

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    1. We are at a point in our lives where we can choose where to spend our money and I refuse to give it to a salesman or a dealership like that.

      When we ought our Fiat 500 two years ago we bought a color that wasn't my first (or second) choice because we really got on well with the salesman who was also the manager. That makes a huge difference and he got our money rather than us going elsewhere for a different color or better deal.

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  14. Anyone who doesn't easily shoot the bull simply doesn't belong in sales--and in motorcycle sales, no less! When was the last time you met a rider who couldn't talk on and on, especially about rides and riding? Hell, motorcycling taught me to talk to strangers, and I've discovered that I really enjoy it. (I'd bet that that salesman isn't a rider. I'll get off my soapbox now.)

    At least your trip wasn't a total bust: You got a great seaweed salad, and you visited Diamond Lake.

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    1. Yeah he really made us wonder, but at the same time he said he'd worked there for decades. Just odd.

      Seaweed salad over marinated cucumbers, yumm!

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  15. Glad you passed on that lousy sales guy/dealer. So sad that expectations in the MC industry are so low.

    Boy you are patient though...it's been a long time since I changed bikes (yikes, 6 years???) but once I get the bug, everyone better get out of the way. ;-)

    But you still have bikes to ride so it's all good. Hopefully the bike karma will deliver a great deal for you when it's time!

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    1. Thanks Lynne. Some days it is hard to be patient, but patient I must be. I bought Max in March of 2011 so come spring it will be 6 years for me too.

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  16. no more pictures of bikes until its the new ride ok

    looks like a interesting trip although not a bike buying one
    the right deal will come along for you

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    1. Sorry mate. Didn't mean to elude that I'd purchased one. Of course it is the one I hope to buy.

      I'd buy a used one as they have several 2014's out there, but they made so many changes for 2016 that it is worth the extra dollars and the wait. We aren't sure what the 2017's will be like. No one seems to know, but one shop did tell us no changes in color schemes. Not sure how they know if no other dealers do.

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  17. Brandy, the right one will come to you when its meant to! Who knows maybe the 2017 version will have all the bells and whistles you want and that it may make the price on the other one come down a bit.

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    1. Since we are heading into fall and winter and we've had a fair bit of rain the last week or so, it is making it easier to be patient. Now with 75 degree weather forecast for the weekend it will be harder to be patient.

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  18. Damn thought I'd see some pic of a new bike in your drive way, your really drawing this one out aren't you Brandy. :)
    Hope you can get it sooner than later.

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    1. Not yet. Must be patient. Drawing it out yes, but I am looking for the right bike for the right price and as Geoff mentioned, it has to speak to me.

      Sooner is nice but we are heading into fall and winter so no rush.

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  19. Hang in there with the sale. I sold 2 scooters in January, so it CAN be done! LOL

    Exciting stuff....

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    1. Still no bites, so we will wait and list it in the spring. We usually get 2 weeks of nice sunny weather in February. That might do the trick.

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  20. Those are gorgeous photos! I was there this summer, but you hit on an even better day. Making $$ decisions I do not like, even when I'm excited about the potential score. If it helps, I am always happy with the result, even if it takes a year :) Trust your gut, pull the trigger when it feels right......It's never really wrong !
    Don

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    1. I am not sure how we managed to get here on such a sunny day, but we'll take it.

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  21. I've also recently decided (sort of, I think) that the CB500X will probably be my next bike. But don't worry, I'm primarily looking at the pre-owned market, so we're not in competition for Oregon's scarce supply.

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    1. It seems like such a great bike the sticks the boxes. I am still surprised that Honda hasn't released any info on the 17's though. There was a big change in features for 2016 so most of what we see come up used is in the 2014 range. Pretty white color though.

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