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What is a bikes Soul


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Discussion Starter #1
I've got a few observations and questions.

I've been confused by the attitudes toward motorcycle manufacturers since I started riding.
There is more insecurity and derision concerning brands in the motorcycle market than any other.

Now that I’m on forums for different brands; I see some important variation in the attitudes.

So, what is “Soul” when talking about the BRAND of a bike?

I understand that having an “un-quantifiable” attachment or desire to own a certain bike. (I feel that way about my Rocket III).

Is “Soul” more than a personal preference?

My “un-quantifiable” attachment to my Rocket is founded in real attributes but; for me it becomes more than the sum of the parts.
However; it is my personal preference and does not diminish the pros or cons of any other bike on the market.
And it doesn't spread to all bikes by the same manufacturer.

On this forum; I hear that metrics don’t have “soul” from time to time. This sounds like insecurity to me.
I find it interesting that "Soul" can be found in an entire line up of some manufacturers and completely absent from others.
I attribute it, in this forum, to the extra derision that the Japanese manufactures seem to receive.
My Euro Mfg forum doesn't seem to have the same insecurity. Nobody talks about “Soul” like it’s something more than a personal love for your own bike.

My thoughts are that it often serves as an easy transference of blame.
Someone has an “un-quantifiable” desire to own a certain bike/brand. For whatever reason (usually cost) they buy something else.
The bike never had a chance to fill that desire, but human nature prevents the buyer from accepting the responsibility of making a poor decision.
The buyer shifts blame to the bike.
They dis-proportionally weigh cons and justify their dissatisfaction by trying to quantify a personal preference by calling it “Soul”.



I could care less what others ride.
But!!! If your hearts not in it; don’t buy it!
You’ll regret it and we’ll regret hearing about it.


But I am still curious about why there is so much emotional drama concerning motorcycle brands.

So for this poll:

A. “Soul” is another way to express personal preference and is only valid to the individual or group who holds that preference.

B. “Soul” is a unique attribute that only some bikes can have. Some people just can’t tell which bikes have it.

C. This topic makes me feel uncomfortable and this thread should be closed.
 

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My bike might have a "Soul" ??

That's the best news I've heard all Winter. If my bike has or if I can buy an after-market "soul" for it, then when I'm dead I can still ride around. I just got to be sure we both end up in the same place. Hmmm... That might be a problem.

Scott, I see you have covered your bets by having two bikes. A "naughty" one and a "nice" one. Good thinking! I'm going to look around for some old scoot ridden by a 1%'er! That should cover the "naughty", and keep the 1700 Classic "nice" as a stock bike should be.

Boy, I'm glad you posted this survey. I'll sleep much better now.
Next task is to see if I can find a couple of after-market souls for the bikes just in case they weren't standard equipment. And we know Kawasaki's optional "soul" would be way overpriced.

Oh Spring needs to get here soon...😢

WEG
 

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wocka, wocka, wocka
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who needs soles, when you got heart?

sit,, youda know'd this was comin.. the only sole any my bikes are gott the ones under the shoes.. now to think on it thems soles often are top of the shoes, then front, then unner, then back.. wth:confused: this whole sole thing is making me hungry.

but now heart. all my beasty bikes got heart. some are big thumpers. some are lil thumpers. butt they pump out a nice toon rollin down the hiway to heaven. kinda puts you in a zen state of mind.. who needs soles when you got heart? jus sayin, poncho
 

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Well all I know is my heart is thumping and my soul feels good when I look down and see that speedo hovering 90.
 

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I think its (A), kinda like falling in love as a teen, unlikely will last a life time, but you feel strongly about it at the time, and swear its something you can physically feel. Guess it can be called personality also.


Sent from Motorcycle.com Free App
 

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Discussion Starter #7
WEG
I think you might be funnin.
But, if you really having a hard time reading between the lines.
I think the idea that some bikes have soul and others don't is BS that insecure people use to justify a preference.

My curiosity is genuine though. I'm really hoping to get input why some people believe their preference should hold a special title like "Soul".

I will admit that it was peaked in a current thread where a poster was asking advice about buying a Vaquero.

Thread link.
http://www.vulcanforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=166402

Scott

PS, just make sure that 1%s bike you pick up has "BALLS" enough hold a title like "naughty". :)
 

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I'm not really concerned about whether or not someone else thinks my bike has "Soul" because I bought it to ride.

It's just human nature. Maybe an evolutionary trait passed down from early ancestors to make us stick with our decisions. When the sabertooth tiger is chasing us we need to have the confidence to commit to going "That way" because turning or slowing down will get us killed. Now we have the same sort of committed "The decision I made was right" mentality that goes to the point of being abrasive to others. Car brands, oil, motorcycle brands, you name it. Everyone has their favorite and anyone who does different is simply wrong. And, frankly, it's pretty silly. But then it seems so obvious we're right; we don't entertain the notion that it's also obvious someone else is right.

Personally I don't get the attachment. I drive a Mustang so I'm supposed to hate Camaros right? Except I think they are really cool. And I'm supposed to hate Harley's I guess? I use synthetic oil, does that mean I'm supposed to rag on guys who use discount bulk conventional oil from wally world? Nah, I just don't get it.

For ME; a Bike's "soul" is it's fit. If you ignore brands and other silliness and just go hop on a few bikes and ride them there's bound to be that one that's just "it". It fits right, feels right, rides the way you want it to; everything about it is just right. But if you think it also must be right for everyone else and anyone who says different is an idiot; well, then, you've lost it's soul! Remember the first time you hopped on it? That bike is just for you!

Chances are, if someone is telling you only H-D has soul, they are referring to their brilliant marketing. H-D is like Apple in that regard. Convincing the world that they are the yardstick by which the rest are measured; regardless of whether their product is actually any better (in fact, often in spite of). And borrowing technologies here and there whilst claiming to be the first. So in other words, it's not the bike at all. It's the sound, style, and "image" associated with the machine. And hey, if that floats your boat, go for it. What's the difference, really, between a $20,000 motorcycle that you just bought because it has a certain 'image', and buying a $20,000 piece of jewelry for the exact same purpose. Except you'll get a lot more fun out of the Harley; I say go for it. But that's kind of wrapping up why someone told you that metrics don't have 'soul'. Because IF you're going to buy a bike solely to slap an image on yourself or to connect yourself to some sort of faux-fraternity, then it's gotta be a Harley. Slap a bumper sticker and license plate frame on your pickup truck, put a "Harley Parking Only" sign in your garage and have a ball. Frankly, the only people who buy metrics, are folks who bought what they wanted to ride not what they wanted people to see them ride; or folks who couldn't afford what they really wanted. I fall into the former category and, in a way, the latter (not that I can't afford it, necessarily; but I don't want to spend that much). I like Harley's but at this point I've never ridden one I liked nearly enough to justify paying a lot more for.
 

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I'm not really concerned about whether or not someone else thinks my bike has "Soul" because I bought it to ride.

It's just human nature. Maybe an evolutionary trait passed down from early ancestors to make us stick with our decisions. When the sabertooth tiger is chasing us we need to have the confidence to commit to going "That way" because turning or slowing down will get us killed. Now we have the same sort of committed "The decision I made was right" mentality that goes to the point of being abrasive to others. Car brands, oil, motorcycle brands, you name it. Everyone has their favorite and anyone who does different is simply wrong. And, frankly, it's pretty silly. But then it seems so obvious we're right; we don't entertain the notion that it's also obvious someone else is right.

Personally I don't get the attachment. I drive a Mustang so I'm supposed to hate Camaros right? Except I think they are really cool. And I'm supposed to hate Harley's I guess? I use synthetic oil, does that mean I'm supposed to rag on guys who use discount bulk conventional oil from wally world? Nah, I just don't get it.

For ME; a Bike's "soul" is it's fit. If you ignore brands and other silliness and just go hop on a few bikes and ride them there's bound to be that one that's just "it". It fits right, feels right, rides the way you want it to; everything about it is just right. But if you think it also must be right for everyone else and anyone who says different is an idiot; well, then, you've lost it's soul! Remember the first time you hopped on it? That bike is just for you!

Chances are, if someone is telling you only H-D has soul, they are referring to their brilliant marketing. H-D is like Apple in that regard. Convincing the world that they are the yardstick by which the rest are measured; regardless of whether their product is actually any better (in fact, often in spite of). And borrowing technologies here and there whilst claiming to be the first. So in other words, it's not the bike at all. It's the sound, style, and "image" associated with the machine. And hey, if that floats your boat, go for it. What's the difference, really, between a $20,000 motorcycle that you just bought because it has a certain 'image', and buying a $20,000 piece of jewelry for the exact same purpose. Except you'll get a lot more fun out of the Harley; I say go for it. But that's kind of wrapping up why someone told you that metrics don't have 'soul'. Because IF you're going to buy a bike solely to slap an image on yourself or to connect yourself to some sort of faux-fraternity, then it's gotta be a Harley. Slap a bumper sticker and license plate frame on your pickup truck, put a "Harley Parking Only" sign in your garage and have a ball. Frankly, the only people who buy metrics, are folks who bought what they wanted to ride not what they wanted people to see them ride; or folks who couldn't afford what they really wanted. I fall into the former category and, in a way, the latter (not that I can't afford it, necessarily; but I don't want to spend that much). I like Harley's but at this point I've never ridden one I liked nearly enough to justify paying a lot more for.
just had to defend against a slight on facebook when i said i would never buy a vulcan 2000 again, it a great bike, I love them but goldwing valkyries, victory visions and cross countrys, and roadliners could do it for me too, not gonna have blind loyalty to a brand, as far as a soul my last vulcan 2000 i was in love with it, we had many magical rides until the crash, I love my current one, but feeling after i make her mine with sadlebags, easy brackets, highway bars etc, maybe i will love her like i did dirty diana
 

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"Frankly, the only people who buy metrics, are folks who bought what they wanted to ride not what they wanted people to see them ride; or folks who couldn't afford what they really wanted. I fall into the former category and, in a way, the latter (not that I can't afford it, necessarily; but I don't want to spend that much). I like Harley's but at this point I've never ridden one I liked nearly enough to justify paying a lot more for."

One of the best statements ever.
 

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I like the answers by Ponch and Romans.
.....
That being said, IMHO, to me a soul refers to a living breathing person or animal. I know we have souls, not sure about the critters. Just like a bike does not have a heart in the traditional or physical sense. Bikes of course have oil pumps and oil is the life blood of the bike. So there is yet another contradiction to consider or muddy the water so to speak.

What I consider to be the heart or maybe the soul of my bike is also partially the feeling I get each time I ride knowing my bike will get me from point a to point B reliably and safely. I also am comfortable jumping on my bike and just hitting the highway as long as I keep an eye on the gas. Day or night alone or with others, I have no concerns about my bike mechanically. Yes things happen on the road, but sometimes it is our fault and sometimes not. My bike is not blazing fast, but I feel it has enough torque and power to tow another bike if one breaks down on the highway, rather than ride 30 miles or so to town call someone and ride back. I carry extra gear to make sure we all get to town and can wait at a safer place.

Sometimes I feel others come up with a new buzz word or phrase trying to signify they and their bike are better than mine or others. That to me is an insecurity issue for them, not me. We all ride for the freedom and the enjoyment, period. Lastly, regardless of the "badge" or brand if I encounter a bike on the side of the road I will stop to check on folks and offer whatever meager assistance I may be able to provide, be it gas or a jump or a phone or even a slow ride (tow) to the next town. I do not feel I am better than anyone else. I am merely me wishing we could all get along and enjoy our time on 2 wheels.
 

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Scott,

I cannot answer your poll as the answer I feel fits is not up there, sorry.
 

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if it looks like a duck... shoot it?

Scott, I cannot answer your poll as the answer I feel fits is not up there, sorry.
watt is the answer?... then, watt was the question?..
thumpity, thump, thump, thumpity, thump, thump, thumpity, thump, thump, thumpity, thump, thump, thumpity, thump,,, yeah its got a heart beat.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Scott,

I cannot answer your poll as the answer I feel fits is not up there, sorry.
I'm sure I don't know the answer either. :)

Just a couple of guesses.
 

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watt is the answer?... then, watt was the question?..
thumpity, thump, thump, thumpity, thump, thump, thumpity, thump, thump, thumpity, thump, thump, thumpity, thump,,, yeah its got a heart beat.
Now you're just trying to confuse things.:turtle::watermelon::lamp:
I'll never figure it out at this rate.
 

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OK, FINE!!!!!! “Soul” is a unique attribute that only some bikes can have.
...
Why is it that only "some" bikes can have this soul you speak of???
"B" is the closest answer, but I figger ALL bikes have a heart or soul or some point where the rider and bike become one, and not in a weird transformer kinda way Ponch. Nyah. :)
 

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OK, now I'm really confused... The answer isn't in the list, Scott doesn't know the answer, Rms38 would rather have a Hardley but they cost too much, Punchie thinks his new bike is a rabbit and goes "Thump thump thump" like the rabbit with Bambi, dean just made it worse by giving up and yelling at us...

And I can't find that "little shiny thing" that might be it! And no matter where I look even eBay, you can't find a motorcycle soul or heart. Even on a Goldwings which has everything you ever thought of that could be stuck on a moving object! Expresso anyone?

I figure it's all about throwing a leg over a mass of hot steel and tickle' all the senses at the same time. Woo Hoo! ��

(Still funnin, Scott)

WEG
 

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Ahhh, all this "soul" stuff is way over my head. I prefer "character", then the brand thing might can come into play. But a used bike can really take on the 'character' of its owner just like an automobile can. That's tangible, something I can grasp.

My bike is not blazing fast, but I feel it has enough torque and power to tow another bike if one breaks down on the highway, rather than ride 30 miles or so to town call someone and ride back.
Dean, you mentioned this twice. Have you actually ever done that or seen it done? I'm really curious as to how that would be done. I've pulled and been pulled in autos many times and the key is brake control which might be a little touchy on two wheels. You carry rope with you? And where would you hook onto a bike?

I hope I didn't misunderstand your statement. Like one of our member's signature states; "Better to be a fool for 5 minutes than the rest........"
 

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Ahhh, all this "soul" stuff is way over my head. I prefer "character", then the brand thing might can come into play. But a used bike can really take on the 'character' of its owner just like an automobile can. That's tangible, something I can grasp.
I've read all of the replies, and couldn't quite find the word I was looking for - but I think it's "character".

One's definition of "soul" can be very different from another's. If you're a deist, your definition won't be the same as that of an atheist. But, if a motorcycle has a soul, it comes with it from the manufacturer.

But, the character of that motorcycle . . . the personality of that motorcycle . . it comes with time and experiences. What roads have your motorcycle seen and ridden? Who has ridden with you? What have you learned while riding her? Has your motorcycle seen you love, seen you make love, slept beside you? Have you been angry while riding her? Have you been stormed on? Ridden when the temperatures were below 30 and above 100? Have you cared for her, maintained her, and sometimes abused her? Who are the people your motorcycle has been near?

A motorcycle's character grows on the highway, and a brand-new motorcycle has as much character as the "biker" that has barely ridden out of the state.
 
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