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  1. #1
    New Member
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    Newbie and soon to be Harley owner

    Hi from Sunny Southampton (although not sunny at the moment).

    Time has come to buy my first Harley. I've wanted one for as long as I can remember. Been riding since I was 16 (20 years ago). Started on a 1969 Honda C50, a 1989 Yamaha FS16, a 1993 Suzuki GSRX400, a 1999 Honda CB500 and a 2001 GSRX600.

    After some reviews/advise really.

    Love the look of the Iron 883 and the Forty-Eight. Torn between the two. Think the Iron has me on looks but have heard that it can feel a little under-powered. I could buy it with a 1200 conversion......

    Or go for the Forty-Eight which is already a 1200 and buy it with a Stage One Tune.

    Everyone has an opinion so would be good to hear peoples views good or bad.

    Look forward to hearing from you.

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    bluenose-1956 (01-31-2018)

  3. #2
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    Triumph Bonneville
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    I am looking for my first Harley as well. Exciting times. The weather is not a friend right now though, is it?

    I love the look of the 48. If it wasn't for the fact that I can't live with that tiny tank I would have bought one already.

    What about the Roadster?

    I think the Iron looks cool too.... In fact I like most Harleys!

    Try them all.... half the fun is the search.

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    bluenose-1956 (01-31-2018)

  5. #3
    Senior Member bluenose-1956's Avatar
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    May 2014
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    Halifax, United Kingdom.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SotonRider View Post
    Hi from Sunny Southampton (although not sunny at the moment).

    Time has come to buy my first Harley. I've wanted one for as long as I can remember. Been riding since I was 16 (20 years ago). Started on a 1969 Honda C50, a 1989 Yamaha FS16, a 1993 Suzuki GSRX400, a 1999 Honda CB500 and a 2001 GSRX600.

    After some reviews/advise really.

    Love the look of the Iron 883 and the Forty-Eight. Torn between the two. Think the Iron has me on looks but have heard that it can feel a little under-powered. I could buy it with a 1200 conversion......

    Or go for the Forty-Eight which is already a 1200 and buy it with a Stage One Tune.

    Everyone has an opinion so would be good to hear peoples views good or bad.

    Look forward to hearing from you.

    Hello SotonRider,

    Firstly, a warm welcome to the HD Forum UK from Calderdale in the snowy West Yorkshire Pennine's.

    I have a 2011 XL883N Iron, I don't think it's under-powered at all, it's got plenty of power for my requirements. When I was looking for a new Harley I originally fancied the XL1200X Forty-Eight, I went to Leeds H-D to try one out but I didn't like the feet forward controls or the 1.8 gallon tank. I bought an Iron instead from Preston H-D, the Iron was £2K cheaper than the Forty-Eight it has a 2.8 gallon tank and the mid foot controls suit me fine. The Iron returns 52 miles to the gallon, it'll cruise all day at 80 mph and the top speed is 105 mph. There are bargains out there if you decide to buy an ex-demo machine from a dealer, you could grab a low mileage Iron that's already been Stage 1'd at £1K less than a new stock Iron. The Stage 1 upgrade can cost between £1.6K and £2K depending on the chosen exhaust system. Upgrading an 883 to a 1200 at a dealership will also cost around the £2K mark, but an upgraded 883 to 1200 is quicker off the mark than a stock 1200 due to the different gear ratios.

    The choice is yours, but think hard about what you really want from your motorcycle and don't make any rash decisions that you might regret later. Buy the Harley that you really want and you'll have many happy miles and years of H-D ownership.

    Here is a photo of my 2011 Iron 883.

    75da4607b9d444a7859ee60a11c77191 (2).jpg

    Good luck.

  6. #4
    Senior Member Whistler's Avatar
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    Mar 2016
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    Welcome fae the wilds of Fife from a 2016 owner. My Iron is most definitely not under powered. Plenty low end torque and will cruise at 80+ all day with plenty to spare for overtaking. More than fast enough for a cruiser. Also good for 500mls+ trips at a time.

    I had a loaner 48 for 4 days. Great torque, lovely looking but averaged 58mls between fill ups. Also due to the fact I'm 5ft5" it was a bit of a stretch to the bars and the forwards. As a result I didn't find it comfortable. If your tall it might suit you great. Due to cruiser characteristics you didn't really ride it any faster than the smaller iron. My suggestion, test ride both and see what you like
    FTW )

  7. #5
    Senior Member Whistler's Avatar
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    Mine by the way
    Attached Images Attached Images
    FTW )

  8. #6
    Member Face's Avatar
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    Oct 2017
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    Manchester
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    V Twin
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    Hi SotonRider, I'm in the same boat, agonising over which one to get. From my feedback on this forum it boils down to personal preference, what you're going to use it for, and money. I quite like the Nightster but it has a short tank range.

  9. #7
    Senior Member Whistler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Face View Post
    Hi SotonRider, I'm in the same boat, agonising over which one to get. From my feedback on this forum it boils down to personal preference, what you're going to use it for, and money. I quite like the Nightster but it has a short tank range.
    Nightsters were the original dark custom, but for some reason were not a big seller. This might make it rare to get a good one. Very surprising considering the popularity of the dark custom range now, maybe the Nighster was a bike out of time. Not sure what the range was on the nightster, but would suspect it's similar to the iron, which returns over 100mls per tank. This is more than adequate and not impractical.
    FTW )

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    bluenose-1956 (01-31-2018), Face (02-01-2018)

  11. #8
    Senior Member bluenose-1956's Avatar
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    You're right Whistler,

    The XL1200N Nightster has a tank with exactly the same 12.5 litre fuel tank as the Iron. It gives 48 miles to the gallon, I get 52 to the gallon from my Iron.

    I personally didn't like the "battleship grey" powder coating on the engine, and those wire laced wheels will be a bugger to keep clean. The Nightster also had Higher and wider bars than the Iron, it also had a shorter seat which created a large gap between the seat and the tank.

    01070720JW1469.jpg 2012_Harley-Davidson_Nightster_Motorcycle_108609.jpg

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    Face (02-01-2018)

  13. #9
    Member
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    Oct 2017
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    Norfolk
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    Harley-Davidson wide glide
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    Hiya and welcome seton, I use to have a iron I absolutely loved it until my wife decided to want to ride pillion and then it was a little under powered but riding solo it was fine and they are good handling bike on cornering , and a nice looking bike also, I wish I hadn’t sold mine .

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    bluenose-1956 (01-31-2018)

  15. #10
    Senior Member Whistler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bluenose-1956 View Post
    You're right Whistler,

    The XL1200N Nightster has a tank with exactly the same 12.5 litre fuel tank as the Iron. It gives 48 miles to the gallon, I get 52 to the gallon from my Iron.

    I personally didn't like the "battleship grey" powder coating on the engine, and those wire laced wheels will be a bugger to keep clean. The Nightster also had Higher and wider bars than the Iron, it also had a shorter seat which created a large gap between the seat and the tank.

    01070720JW1469.jpg 2012_Harley-Davidson_Nightster_Motorcycle_108609.jpg
    You can see the Iron lineage though. I liked the Nightster, but the Iron flows better
    FTW )

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    bluenose-1956 (02-01-2018)

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