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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
And I'm sold.

Over the last couple weeks I got a chance to drive both a base Streetfighter and the Monster 1100S. I'm about 190lbs and 6' tall for reference sake.

I have to admit that I thought I was going to like the Monster 1100 more, but honestly the ergos (for me anyway) just didn't match up. First it feels bit like you're sitting in a bowl as the seat has a rake forward that pushes you into the tank (not so good for the family jewels...). The seat rake limited my ability to move around in the seat much as I would continually just end up sliding back down into the same valley. The reach to the bars was fine for me and comfortable, even after long periods of riding. They are flatter, wider and less raked back than the Streetfighter bars. This made me feel like my elbows and arms were out a bit more kind of like the Hypermotard, but not as upright. The pegs on the M1100 seemed a bit higher than the last S4R that I rode and a little further back (my memory is fuzzy though). Either way the total ergos for me felt like my legs were more pinched with my feet closer together than my knees (which are forced farther outward by the largish tank/airbox). Couple that with the lack of room or ability to move much in the seat, my arms feeling like they were out in the wind pulling rudders on both sides and I just couldn't warm up to it. The M1100 I rode was new with less than 100 miles on the clock, so the shifter was a bit stiff, but no worse than any other dry clutch Ducati. :) Overall the power was decent on the M1100 and with the Ohlins the bike really takes a nice set in corners and tracks really nicely even over the bumps. If you're on the fence considering a more upright ride, I'd still take the M1100S for a spin if you can.

So next was the Streetfighter and without even turning a wheel I could tell that it just fit me better. The seat was nice and roomy and not as sloped as the Monster. The peg placement felt roomier and I like the fact that the bars were narrower and raked back a more than the Monster. For my height and torso length, I think the reach to the bars was just about perfect. The indents in the sides of the tank let you get your knees tucked in more and that lends itself to a much more compact feel compared to the M1100.

I was lucky and got to ride for about 2 hours (albeit in some nasty humidity and heat) and I'm sold on the Streetfighter. The power is impressive. This thing will loft the front wheel every chance if you let it. Just shifting your weight a bit more over the front of the bike makes a huge difference in keeping the front wheel down. Whereas the superbikes have a healthy portion of your body weight on the front end, the Streetfighter is aa little more of a balancing act. The bike I rode had about 175 miles on it so I took it easy and didn't blast it to redline, but there is still plenty of grunt down low to get you in lots of trouble. Engine-wise the bike I rode didn't seem to have any flat spot issues around 3,500 RPM like other have reported. I tried a variety of roll-on and straight acceleration runs and couldn't feel anything that was noticeable. If I had any complaints I'd say that the vibrations that came up through the bars can get old after a long ride. My right hand in particular was tingling quite a bit at the end of the ride from the higher-frequency vibes. I'd be curious if this is consistent from bike to bike as my left-hand didn't see to be as bad. It wasn't annoying enough to make you stop riding or to change my mind about the bike.

Handling and ride were very, very good on the base model. I forgot during most of the ride that I was riding a base-model and later wondered how different the S version would be. Ride itself was really impressive - very smooth while soaking up the bumps really well. I wouldn't call it firm at all. If you've ridden a Triumph Street Triple R, the base Streetfighter will feel luxurious in comparison. That said, turn-in and control was excellent. The bike goes exactly where you point it, feels solid and planted and overall exhibited no twitchy-ness in the handling. My Sport Classic is far more of a handful than the Streetfighter.

The only other complaints I'd have are with the turnsignal controls. I'm sure I would get used to them over time, but I felt like the controls themselves were small (especially when wearing gloves) and shaped in such a way that activating the switch can be tricky. I felt like my finger was slipping off or having a hard time getting a grip on the curved surface. I do have larger hands so maybe that's part of it and I'm sure your mileage will vary. Otherwise the rest of the switchgear was fine and the display was easy to read in almost all conditions. It is a little low and forward, but 20 minutes into the ride I didn't think twice about it.

The clutch was typical dry-clutch Ducati with firm and direct controls. Getting into neutral requires a little more finesse than other bikes I've owned, but I've also had worse. At a stop you do need to pull the clutch almost all the way to the stop to get it into neutral. As I normally ride with two fingers on the clutch, this takes a little adjustment. I didn't think the clutch was overly stiff as compared to most Ducati's, but if you're coming from a Japanese bike, you'll find there is overall more work involved. :)

As for the heat shield and my right foot - the way I ride I have a tendency to ride with my foot on the outside portion of the right peg, only coming in to use the rear brake from time to time. I have size 12 feet so I was worried that the heat shield would be more of an issue, but for me and the way I plant my foot I didn't have any issues.

In the end I was sold. I wouldn't hesitate to get a base model - it is a hell of a lot of bike. My problem is that I want black and I want a contrasting frame and wheels, so mine will be an S when I finally pull the trigger.

Any questions or clarifications, feel free to ask.

Cheers!

-jamie
 

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Jamie
Interesting report thanks. Black with black wheels .... per your photoshop.... looks great.
Gift card in the mail yesterday. thanks
 

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Jamie

If you want any spacers making i can get some done & send em to you for a small fee..

Ta
 

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Nice writeup!

Ducnut, I dropped my Hyper off at DucSea for 7500 service and think I spotted your black S sitting there - absolutely gorgeous! Congrats
 

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Thanks parkcrf. Can't wait until I get the goodies onto it.
 

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I guess a yes or no won't do huh.

I just wanted you to see the pics Ken. TBH i dont know how you ride (toes on pegs etc). So i cant really give you a yes or no as you may get some & think they are a pile of shit, all down to the induvidual.
If you think they may be for you then if you want send us a PM..Ta
 

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The Engineer (Tell your mom hey)
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put a little effort into finding something,, don't make blackie spoonfeed you.. geez
 

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The Engineer (Tell your mom hey)
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I have to apologize, I should not have commented on you're asking Blackie all that.. it was his place to do so if he felt it necessary.
but for you,, It must be hard to wear a helmet ALL the time. So I can understand not wanting to look for a thread or type for that matter. My mama always taught me to be nice to the special kids.. so I'm sorry. :)

I figured even though you are from Arkansas you could still figure it out.
Flynbulldog: I'm trying to play nice now. :)
 

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I have to apologize, I should not have commented on you're asking Blackie all that.. it was his place to do so if he felt it necessary.
but for you,, It must be hard to wear a helmet ALL the time. So I can understand not wanting to look for a thread or type for that matter. My mama always taught me to be nice to the special kids.. so I'm sorry. :)

See that's the thing about Arkansas. The whole mama thing (the sister too). All that inbreeding causes mental illness.
 
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