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Still thinking about buying a DL2. The no.1 complaint about the Wee is that it has "no soul". It's a great bike, but it's not an exciting bike (it's also been my experience with it... Happy to take it for a ride, but never happy + excited).

Is the new engine on the 2012 a little more exciting? Has the Wee gained a little "soul" in it's new version? Thanks again for sharing.
 

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You only heard that kind of talk around here from one protagonist, who finally packed it in for lack of support.
 

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Whenever "soul" or "character" is used in the same sentence as "Japanese" it is always preceded by"no". Especially the better the bike, the more likely it is to be described in that way by Euro bike riders.

Bill
 

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bikes only have soul when they get miles on them. until then they're just machines. a v-strom with 70K on it has more soul than an MV that stays parked in the garage IMHO...
 

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Definately agree with that! Once a bike gets some miles under its wheels, picks up a scratch, graze or scar and acquires that 'world-weary' look it has more character.
My Wee is starting to get that way, especially after last night when I dropped it in the garage :bom_veryangry2:
 

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One way to give a bike soul is to baptize it. Ask Black Lab how. :biggrinjester:
 

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... especially after last night when I dropped it in the garage :bom_veryangry2:
I need to practice getting it off the swingarm stand by myself. It was close, so very close to denting the wife's new Subaru.
 

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2nd post and just bought a 2011. Having a background in the dirt and commuting on dual sports when I was younger this bike spoke to me. While I wanted a road bike something about this bike spoke to me as far as my soul. So far it is living up to expectations.
 

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Saying that a bike has "soul" is a tired motorcycle journalist catchphrase used when you lack the vocabulary or intelligence to accurately describe what it is you like or don't like about a bike.
 

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I forget which writer but one of them who was a former professional road racer in the 70s, mostly on Ducatis said something like:
"Everything I ever had that actually worked was called a soulless appliance by somebody."
That said, I recall thinking my '05 was a pretty bland bike, I sort of expect the same from the '11 I'm supposed to be getting, but I expect it to make a good pack mule. I can't imagine that some refinement of the engine in the '12 is going to really change that overall feeling.
I think if you want 'soul' from your bike (and thats important to you) and you don't get it from a wee strom, then you probably simply have the wrong machine.
 

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Saying that a bike has "soul" is a tired motorcycle journalist catchphrase used when you lack the vocabulary or intelligence to accurately describe what it is you like or don't like about a bike.
Yes. It's right up there with the phrase "visceral quality" used each and every time a motorcycle journalist reviews a cruiser.

As for the Wee having soul, it's not a Ducati Hypermotard, a 70s Norton in a featherbed frame, a Suzuki Water buffalo, or an early CR500, but when I get out on my all too few riding excursions, it stirs my soul. And I will say that even with the qualification that one of the main reasons I looked at the Wee in the first place was its practicality - not exactly a harbinger of "soul".
 

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An Akrapovic exhaust might help....:thumbup:
Having soul, that's the feeling I get when I look back on a great ride with family & friends. We talk about how our bike got us there & back & about how much fun it was. I don't really care what bike I took, it really is all about the ride, the whole experience, it's the people who give the bike sole. Sure there are bigger faster bikes but they really all do thew same thing. I have only 200 miles on my new wee, but I already feel connected to the bike which is about the way I feel. Someone else could get on this bike & have a totally different feeling & maybee say it has no soul. So I feel it's the person's connection with the machine, not the machine it's self.
 

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I need to practice getting it off the swingarm stand by myself. It was close, so very close to denting the wife's new Subaru.
Well if you need practice getting it OFF the swing arm stand then you surely must have had help getting it UP ? I know a couple of days ago I put my 2011 up on the swing arm stand for the 1st time and it was a bitch by myself. Getting it down was a piece of cake, just make sure the kickstand is down, the bike is in gear, then just pull up on the stand, push forward and towards the side stand, it can't go anywhere with this method. I had my 2009 on the race stand as I call it several times and once I lost it over on the high side while putting it UP. This gave me new respect for paying attention when doing this but IMHO it is a 2 man or 1-man and 1-wife job (getting it UP on the swing arm stand). :biggrinjester:

BTW I guess you are talking swing arm or race stand and not center stand ... If you are talking center stand we are not on the same page. This is my 3rd Strom and I think I am going to break down and spend the money for a center stand for this one.
 

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I had a 1973 triumph Daytona. That bike had soul. It also had Lucas electrics and Amal carbs that would corrode if left sitting for more than week, forks that would dive at the slightest hint of front brakes, and valves that need adjusting at every oil change. But when it ran it was a wonderful bike.
My next bike was a Honda CB750. By comparison it was a soul-less bike. Sewing machine smooth and totally reliable.

Fast forward to today. I've got a Goldwing and a V-strom 650. The Goldwing has been termed as one of those soul-less bikes. I have to disagree. Its got the power and can keep up with the sport bikes in the twisties. It just takes a little more effort to push the 900 pounds into the turns.
The V-strom also has personality and none of the reliability problems associated with "bikes with soul". Twist the throttle past 5K rpms and the ride can be quite sporty. I'm still learning the V-strom's riding style but what I'm seeing so far, I like.
 

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Well if you need practice getting it OFF the swing arm stand then you surely must have had help getting it UP ?
Gettin it up was no problem. Go slow and engage the left side, lift the bike slowly until the right side picks up and then lift all the way.
Going down was the problem. The lift arm is basically on the floor and lifting requires being at the rear of the bike. I just need to make sure the bike leans left (into the side stand) instead of right when it comes down.
 

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It ain't just bikes that people argue about lack of soul. I've heard it about old jeeps vs new jeeps, old guns vs new guns and yes, music:beatnik::green_lol:



Just take those old records off the shelf
I'll sit and listen to 'em by m'self
Today's music ain't got the same soul I like that old time rock and roll

Don't try to take me to a Disco
You'll never even get me out on the floor
In 10 minutes I'll be late for the door
I like that old time rock and roll

Still like that old time rock and roll
The kinda music just soothes the soul
I reminisce about the days of old
With that old time rock and roll

Won't go to hear 'em play a Tango
I'd rather hear some blues or funky old soul
There's only one sure way to get me to go
Start playin' old time rock and roll

Call me a relic call me what'cha will
Say I'm old fashioned say I'm over the hill
Today's music ain't got the same soul I like that old time rock and roll
 

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If someone else says " Soul" to me I usually think of quirks, more in line with a bikes character. the HD rumble, the Duc sound at mid to high RPM that sort of thing. Bikes to me have a soul based on the relationship you have with them. How many people talk to a bike when it is stuck, fallen or won't start ? I know I do and use some unkind words. I know if it has Soul when it starts up or I get it upright again due to my pleading. Had to be listening..
 

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It definitely seems that quirky, unreliable bikes are usually the ones credited with having "soul." I think it's because you have to talk to them so much. You know, like begging and pleading when they won't start or praying that they won't get you killed on some dangerous road.

My DL650 is so comfortable and perfectly farkled for my needs that it takes almost no effort to ride it. I find my mind wandering a lot and I no longer get that zen-like experience where you forget all your worldly troubles. Maybe I'm just getting old. I'd hate to think that I might have to buy a ratty old Ducati or something to get the old feelings back. Nah, I'll just try taking my windscreen off or switching back to the painful stock seat for a while.

Mike
 
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