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bike was delivered bone stock to me on 10/14/2020. i spent about 10 years customizing my Yamaha V Star 950. for this bike, i plan to do 10 years worth of modding up front over the next several weeks. i will try to detail every mod i do on it here. here she is in the show room and when it arrived to my driveway:

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my first mod is a set of Avon Indian Air Cushion Anodized Grips with Throttle Assist, Part Number: #IN-TO-AIR-90A-B - $71, amazon
love these grips already. and you don't need any glue!! the clutch side grip has 3 set screws that you tighten when you get the grip into position so you can always move it or take it off later with ease. and since this bike is drive-by-wire, the throttle grip doesn't have to connect to any throttle cable and install of both took just a few minutes. the throttle grip has a throttle assist you can see by the thin black strip on the end that is sooooooooo much more relaxing. i put a throttle assist on my 950 very early on and can't imagine riding a bike without one at this point.
apology for the poor shot in my garage, but this isn't the final product anyway. got big plans for the grips coming...

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Love those bikes Bevo. A buddy of mine has a Chieftain that he upgraded with the 116 kit. He also replaced his cam chain cover with a glass one. Looks pretty cool and he gets tons of comments on it.
 

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2006 Stratoliner, 2014 Triumph Rocket III Touring, '81 XS650SH Project
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Good looking find Bevo, Just don't paint it white...
 

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Congrats on the new ride. And hope you have fun with the mods.

Ride smart. Ride often.
 

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Good looking bike. Can't wait for detailed riding impressions. It would be cool if we lived a little closer and I could watch the mods being made in person.
 

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Nice Choice! Love the Indians and love the fact that sales are up. I too want to know the driving impressions.


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2000 Yamaha V Star 1100 Classic Canadian Edition
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The Chieftan Dark Horse is my dream bike. Loaded with hard bags, passenger seat with backrest, apes and full windshield. Seen one set up like this a couple years ago at the bike show in Edmonton...they had to beg me to get off of it and let other people sit on it. :p
 

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Discussion Starter #10
initial impressions after about 50 miles:
haven't really had a chance to get to know it much yet, but my INITIAL initial impressions from my first 2 test rides were that i sit way up taller than my 950 which has a lower seat height and i had the rear lowered 2.25". the floorboards put my feet a lot further forward. so ergonomics would be something i have to get used to. and the clutch lever is a lot heavier than the 950, night and day. i think my 950 clutch is mostly just a lot lighter than most bikes so anything is going to feel heavy by comparison. i was a little concerned about this because i plan on riding this in the city a lot and Austin is one of the worst cities in the country for traffic. but now the clutch doesn't feel so heavy, and will probably feel even better the more miles i put on. i just have to get used to everything.

after getting it and putting a few miles on it the feet position is starting to feel more comfortable. i still feel pretty tall and i've noticed this makes for a higher center of gravity. wind was blowing really hard the other night on my ride home from work. i ride on an elevated highway and then take a curved onramp way up high and was very uneasy as the wind seemed to push me around way more than it would have on my 950 which is about 100 pounds lighter. but the heavier weight doesn't seem like it's going to hinder cornering. the floorboards are considerably higher and i have no worry about scraping them so it seems i have a very wide (?) lean angle with it that doesn't feel much heavier than the 950.

holy cow the power. dyno stats show this is about 100ft./lbs of torque and about 75HP. after my upgrades on the 950 i would guess it is about 58hp and probably 60ft./lb of torque. the Indian is almost twice the engine and definitely feels like it. the power is just immediate and i don't think i've gone wide open yet. there's no need to. it has 3 riding modes - touring, standard, sport. i've mostly been staying in touring mode until i get settled in but did try out standard and sport today. all 3 have power just waiting at your fingertips to push you off the seat. after some mods and ECU tuning i'll probably have those numbers up around 85HP and 110ft/lbs torque. gonna have to dial in the sport mode because it feels like launch control in the lower gears. the driving modes are just different load response maps which can be customized with a fuel programmer. i'll get to all that later.
 

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Super Moderator "Loose Nut"
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Is the felling of sitting higher a handlebar angle difference? Are you leaning as far forward as you do on the 950. Is it where your feet are in relationship to your body? You said you are getting used to it, so a few tweaks on the bars you might find a sweet spot. How's the weight in slow parking lot situations? Is it much more difficult to duck walk backwards. Power sounds great. Sounds like the torque is more than expected. The added lean angle doesn't surprise me, you had the 950 lowered a lot. Cross winds have more bike to catch with the wheels covered more. That might take some getting used to. Since you have a passenger seat on, have you done done any two up riding up? If so, what was the passenger comments? Y'all need to come down to Houston for a test ride, we're planning a Galveston run next mouth.
 

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In my MSF class, one of my instructors said "Most accidents happen with a new bike & within the first 6 months of ownership. Even with the most experienced rider."

I've mentioned this to other really long time riders. And they've all agreed.
Now, this doesn't mean they crash. However, it means that each bike handles different in different situations. And practicing basic manuevors on the regular, especially with a new to you bike. Lessens the chances of a travisty.

Ride smart. Ride often.
 

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We have looked at the Indians for future upgrades. Monica wants a Scout Bobber.
I’m especially interested in the braking and doesn’t the Dark Horse come with a 6-speed tranny?
Your comparisons are like mine with my 950t compared to the RoadStar. The Roadie is making 70hp, and 116 foot pounds of torque and a nice lean angle for cornering.


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2000 Yamaha V Star 1100 Classic Canadian Edition
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I know the clutches on the Victorys are nutoriously heavy...to the point where it will snap the cable...so I'm guessing Indian is using the same set up. When I had my Highball I replaced mine with a Barnett Cable (fortnine.com) it was a whole new world. Super light and smooth, totally worth the $150 I paid for it at the time. Maybe something to look into?
 

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While taking advantage of some of the demo days at an area Indian shop, I noticed that the steering felt quicker, that it was very easy to oversteer due to the rake angle (of course this is comparing to the school bus long Raider). That being said, definitely take your time getting use to the new feel of it. Congrats, good looking bike.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Is the felling of sitting higher a handlebar angle difference? Are you leaning as far forward as you do on the 950. Is it where your feet are in relationship to your body? You said you are getting used to it, so a few tweaks on the bars you might find a sweet spot. How's the weight in slow parking lot situations? Is it much more difficult to duck walk backwards. Power sounds great. Sounds like the torque is more than expected. The added lean angle doesn't surprise me, you had the 950 lowered a lot. Cross winds have more bike to catch with the wheels covered more. That might take some getting used to. Since you have a passenger seat on, have you done done any two up riding up? If so, what was the passenger comments? Y'all need to come down to Houston for a test ride, we're planning a Galveston run next mouth.
it feels higher because it is higher. have to stretch my legs out a lot further to reach the ground when stopped. and the handlebar is angled pretty much straight back towards me but it still feels like i'm reaching for them a bit. and my feet are considerably further forward but i'm starting to get used to foot placement more than any of the other changes.

it actually doesn't feel that heavy in slow speeds and slow turning. i'm actually more confident making steep turns on it than the 950. duck walking feels pretty much the same except, again, having to stretch out my legs a lot more to reach the ground so it's more difficult in that respect.

i think you're right about the wind catching more of the bike. with the full covered fenders they pretty much act like sails on it. i can feel it being pushed even on flat highway with little wind.

haven't done passenger yet as i'm still waiting for passenger floorboards to come in. might be a while before i venture east again, but i'll look you up if i do.
 

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Thing that surprised me the most on the 1800 was with the weight in the wind by a semi is i would blow around but the bike didn't.
 
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