Posts by Category: Buell

Buell July 28, 2020 posted by

WannaBe(emer) – 2002 Buell S3T Thunderbolt

Marketeers at Buell must have looked longingly at BMW’s fanbase and wanted to access some of that longer-than-an-afternoon enthusiasm.  This S3T has all the last year of production improvements, light mileage, and excellent cosmetics.

2002 Buell S3T Thunderbolt for sale on eBay

Late in the Thunderbolt program, Buell had made a lot of updates to the S3T, like electronic fuel injection tailoring the mixture to 101 hp.  The long stroke of the 1203cc Sporty motor, with factory Thunderstorm heads, takes care of providing a healthy 66 ft.-lbs torque at 5,500 rpm.  The almost maintenance-free belt drive smooths out most driveline lash and is lighter than a chain.  Showa provided their multi-adjustable 40mm fork  and underslung rear shock.  Buell’s signature 340mm single disk is up front, with a six-puck caliper, mounted to a set of very pretty fabricated Comstar-type wheels.  The rear exhaust is tucked inside the frame of its way to the central muffler, and can’t get to your leg.  The seat shape was also improved over the years, and the fairing is a nice compromise between local and long distance.

No ownership history is provided, but this S3T has been cared for and shows beautifully.  Seems little needed to be done to improve on the factory’s ideals, with just an intake added.  Its chunky good looks visually prepare you for the 500 lb. riding weight.  The bags are enormous and aren’t an everyday on-off item like the BMW, so they can stay off until a long trip beckons.  Comments from the eBay auction:

Buell’s top of the line bike in 2002 with MSRP of $13,395
Equipped with the Deep-sized Detachable Color Matched Saddle Bags that
have fitted removeable luggage per picture.
Wheels are the factory optional Performance Machine Polished Aluminum.
Factory rated at 101 Horsepower and 90 ft-lbs of torque it is not for the timid.
Fuel Injected and with the Harley Belt Drive it is very low maintenance.
Being the last year of the Tube Framed Buell’s it is a future collectable
especially with the rare color combination. (Volcano Gray / Blaze Orange)
This bike is factory stock with the exception of the upgraded Uno air cleaner
and vinyl rim stripes.
Bike is in very good condition with some minor imperfections.
See scratch on front fender in picture five.
Right passenger saddle bag has a minor scuff on side.
Plastic fuel tank cover has some typical Buell air bubbles in the paint.

The S3T reviewed as a sport tourer that didn’t forget about the sport, with the big torquey lump that made the sections between corners disappear.  Quality control issues seem to have been largely put to bed this late in the game, though even with the isoplanar engine mount stuff wants to come apart.  This Thunderbolt looks unfettered and ready for another 20K miles.

-donn

 

WannaBe(emer) – 2002 Buell S3T Thunderbolt
Buell July 5, 2020 posted by

Secret Weapon – 1995 Buell S2 Thunderbolt

Early in the Buell / Harley-Dave relationship, the racer and design engineer was thought to be the icon’s entreé into sportbikes.  This immaculate S2 has access to plenty of thunder, and every update imaginable.

1995 Buell S2 Thunderbolt for sale on eBay

The S2 had production versions of most of the ideas Erik Buell had been incubating for several years, the quick-steering tube frame, Uni-Planar engine mounts, underslung rear shock and muffler, and extra-large diameter single front disk – all surrounding Harley’s torquey 1203 cc motor.  WP supplied upside-down forks and the unusual monoshock which extends as the chassis compresses is from Showa.  H-D production engineers fitted their belt drive and put their manufacturing expertise into the sculptural exhaust system.  For a bike with planned production of 300 units per year, the frame-mounted fairing, tank and seat console flow together very well.

Obviously owned by a real fan, this Buell looks excellent an has been carefully updated with choice parts, addressing many of the model’s foibles.  As much as the tank bra breaks up the lines of the bodywork, the next owner will appreciate all the scratches the tank doesn’t have.  The auction shares a – video – and says it’s by the previous owner, which indicates that most of the pictures are as well, so a question or two there.  A long list from the eBay auction:

Work and upgrades:
• Borla muffler  
• Piggyback kickstand plate (prevents the motorcycle from leaning too much to prevent a fall)
• Updated ISO’s all around (Buell redesigned the ISO mounts in 2001)
• Updated exhaust hanger (Buell redesigned the muffler hanger mount in 2001)
• Updated primary tensioner (HD/Buell update to all Sportsters and Buell in 1999)
• Updated shifter detent plate 
• Updated crank seal 
• Bronze oil pump gear 
• All new James top end gaskets with jug pigtails 
• KT Performance heat shield 
• Shorai Battery (Lithium light weight battery)
• Original Rear Shock rebuilt by RaceTech 
• Original Front Shocks rebuilt by Lance Kuglar (St. Paul HD)
• Corbin Seat Recovered by Baldwin
• Under seat tote and fairing bags 
• Screaming Eagle CDI Box 
• New signal light control box
• Zero gravity smoke windscreen 
• Updated/late style front rotor (Buell redesigned the front brake rotor in 2001)
• Newer continental tires 
• Jim’s Mega-nut on bead blasted and sealed front pulley 
• CV Performance Carb Kit  
 
Accompanied with the bike:
• Rising road service and parts manuals
• Sales brochures (with some pricing scribbles from 95)
• Borla brochure
• Buell sticker and postcard from the period
• Owner’s manual
• Stock muffler in like new condition
• Rubber stock foot pegs 
• Additional lower belt guard

The T-Bolt sold better than expected right away, and the two companies had several good years together, but eventually applied for an uncontested divorce.  Even though the S2 is on the softer side of sports-biking, the turn and squirt ( maybe even shift ) ride got great reviews.  It’s a strong starting bid for the first real production bike from Erik Buell and friends, but it is a sharp example with all the right upgrades.

-donn

Secret Weapon – 1995 Buell S2 Thunderbolt
Buell March 2, 2020 posted by

Rarely Seen: 2013 EBR 1190 RS Carbon Edition

Back on eBay after last being posted in June of 2019, this rare EBR 1190 RS Carbon Edition is still looking for a new home. Miles are still claimed as 500, with new pics in the ad. All links updated.

Resembling a 1125 RR race bike for the street, the 1190 RS was a homologation machine from Erik Buell Racing in the post-Harley Davidson era. Freed from the Milwaukee boat anchor that powered earlier incarnations of the Buell product line, the EBR series utilized a technologically superior unit from Rotax. Delivering over 175 HP in under 400 lbs package (wet weight, ready to race), the EBR 1190 RS had the goods to take the fight to the top level of Superbike racing – right until the bottom fell out. Ultimately the company was liquidated and thus ended the dream of an American top-tier Superbike offering. But what an offering the 1190RS Carbon Edition was!

2013 EBR 1190 RS Carbon Edition for sale on eBay

The EBR 1190 RS started life as a $40,000+ machine. The Carbon Edition tipped that sum past the $50k mark. But for the money, you received the very best of the best across the board. Start with the Erik Buell exclusives, such as the hollow aluminum frame member that doubles as the gas tank. The single, perimeter rotor front brake is a Buell specialty, offering a zero torque load to the race spec Ohlins front fork under hard braking. Yes, that’s an eight piston caliper gripping that massive rotor. Out back the signature high-arc swingarm operates against another race spec Ohlins product, a TTX shock unit. There are enough adjustments here to provide setup across an amazing number of conditions – or riders. That healthy 175+ HP comes courtesy of a Rotax 1125 mill that EBR bored out and refitted with racing componentry such as forged rods, titanium valves and specialty made aluminum pistons. Other than the wheels which are US-made magnesium pieces, the rest is pretty much carbon fiber. Add up the cost of just some of these components and you will start to see where the MSRP starts to make sense.

From the seller:
Very rare bike. No. 7 of 35 2013’s. New MSRP, set-up like this was just over $50,000. Original owner. Factory race exhaust (Euro) with 93 octane race ECU; lots of Ti and a Lithium Battery Tender. 500 miles +/-. Gentle street break-in miles only. Not quite fully broken-in. I am a retired championship winning racer/mechanic and treat my bikes with respect. Comes with all original parts as well as an uninstalled full Bazzaz system with the quick-shifter and remote. Comes with all the original parts. I uncrated it myself. It has never been in the rain. It has always been garaged or in my living room (all last winter). The engine is hand-built and full of exotic parts. This is literally a racebike with lights and mirrors. It has the most immediate power delivery of any street bike that I’ve owned (of well over 100). Original MSRP for a replacement engine alone was $27,000+/-. The suspension is from Ohlins’ race catalog – not the typical street and track line which is less exotic. Excellent condition. One stone chip in the clear coat which can easily be fixed. I will include a 1/2 case of the required AMSOIL full synthetic racing oil and filter for the break-in service. Also all of the stuff that came with it including EBR tie-downs and the EBR crate tarp. Feel free to take a look if local but please – only if you intend to buy it.

Do your research and check the reviews. An amazing bike in near-new condition for well less than half of the original price. This is a very rare and special bike that you can buy, ride and enjoy and not see a big drop in value over time. The RS’s are almost certain to appreciate in the future. I’m only selling because I no longer see myself tracking it and I’m getting into a nice cabin cruiser. I reserve the right to end the listing early.

Thanks for looking! As noted the stock exhaust, ECU, turn signals, etc are all included…

Today Buell as an H-D company is no longer. EBR had a brief flash before it also fell by the wayside. But of all the bikes Erik has touched, the 1190 RS is certainly the most technological. This is the apex of the path Buell was on, and the Carbon Edition represents the best of the best of the last. Only 100 1190 RS bikes were planned, and few of that number were the final Carbon models. This is as exclusive as any homologation superbike, but without the star power or Italian mystique. That is a shame, as these late edition EBRs are as capable as any bike of the era, and continue to be amazing riders to this day.

This particular 1190 RS Carbon Edition example has a claimed <500 miles on the odometer - which means it has not even been fully broken in! It has all of the goods included, and the seller has the stock pieces to go along with the ride. The bike looks very clean, well cared for, and includes a photo of its indoor parking spot. This has obviously not been abused, and with the low mileage one might consider this nearly new. Which brings us to the elephant in Erik's room. Buells in general are wonderful, iconic and unique motorcycles. As a low-volume manufacturer, many Buell models can be considered rare. But as an American manufacturer, EB has never quite reached the collector status deserved by the quality of his creations. Thus you can sweep up this lightly used 1190 RS Carbon Edition for a fraction of the original MSRP asking price (probably lower than we have ever seen). There is likely a future for key EBR models in the market, but that future looks to be quite a few years hence. Until then, my vote is that someone needs to pick up this bike and ride it like it was meant to be ridden. We need a hero to make the world a better place. Check it out here – and Good Luck!!

MI

Rarely Seen: 2013 EBR 1190 RS Carbon Edition
Buell December 24, 2019 posted by

Win-Win – 2008 Buell 1125R

The penultimate Buell came with Rotax power, and a typically edgy Buell design.  This owner would like to split the difference between the trade-in value and dealer retail, a righteous thought.  An afternoon of detailing might push this 1125R over the goal line.

2008 Buell 1125R for sale on eBay

Rotax supplied their turn-key twin, a masterful use of 1125cc’s to make 146 hp.  Buell’s signature innovations are all aboard, the fuel-in-frame chassis, single 375mm rim-mounted front brake, and mass-centralizing exhaust.  Showa contracted for 47mm front forks, and the piggyback-reservoir monoshock, both multi-adjustable.  The seemingly overstated side radiator scoops funnel air under the rider to exit beneath the seat.  Buell’s earlier experience with the quiet and maintenance-free drive belt led them to design it into the 1125R as well.

Despite the “storage wars” presentation, if the routine maintenance hasn’t been overlooked, this Pennsylvania 1125R might just need some elbow grease to be sharp.  The exhaust could be hi-temp painted, ceramic coated or there are any number of aftermarket specials available.  No accident damage is readily apparent.  From the eBay auction:

Miles are higher than posted in picture, it has over 8000 miles. I drive it to circulate fluids so it remains in good shape mechanically. it starts, runs and drives perfectly. I’m trying to sell it to buy my fiancé her own bike she could ride comfortably since she’s short it doesn’t fit her well. I know what it blue books for and what a dealer will give me on a trade in but I want to sell to someone who would get it for a better price from me than from a dealer.

Despite their recent agreement on the not-invented-here powerplant, Harley would shortly change their corporate mind and shutter the Buell brand altogether.  This shaky support has to be factored into the next owner’s offer.  It’s a lot of bike for the ask, but a good relationship with a knowledgeable indy would be a big help.  In the right situation, it could be a smashing resto-rider.

-donn

Win-Win – 2008 Buell 1125R
Buell October 4, 2019 posted by

Black and Blue – 2008 Buell 1125R

Not often seen with the factory full fairing, this early 1125R has been on display since just 1,385 miles.  Dusky blue wheels and frame set off the gloss black fairings, all in excellent shape.

2008 Buell 1125R with just 1,385 miles !

In its first Rotax year, Buell was just getting to know the Austrian V-twin with 146 hp.  5.6 gallons of fuel was carried in the frame, more central than the “tank” looks.  The engine is dry-sumped so the muffler is underneath the block instead of engine oil.  Buell’s Zero Torque Load brake is up front, its 375mm rotor bolted to the rim with the caliper inboard.  The composite drive belt saves 4 pounds of unsprung weight and a lot of fussing.  The side-by-side nose is nicely resolved and fairing lowers incorporate the cooling air scoops.

 

Shown by what seems to be the original owner, this late Buell has been carefully garaged, and might only need new rubber to take command of the road.  Small turn signals replace the factory mirror mounts.  Comments from the eBay auction:

this bike has only 1,385 miles on it, adult owned, never in rain or dropped or raced…comes with all stock parts and a full factory shop manual….has Eric Buell performance computer, Barker exhaust, flush turn signals, bar end mirrors…stock tires and rear should be replaced due to some checking from age…bike is like new…full optional fairing…

After 15 years of H-D factory support ( it would last just one more year ), the 1125R had sharp production engineering, low maintenance demands, and monstrous power and torque curves.  With just a couple of mods, this one is quite close to a new machine and apparently mishap-free.  Not so many pictures, but more could be requested, and the Make Offer button beckons.

-donn

Black and Blue – 2008 Buell 1125R
Buell August 23, 2019 posted by

Eleventh Hour – 2008 Buell 1125R

Erik Buell finally convinced his overseers at H-D to use the turn-key Rotax twin, and it became the basis for Buell’s most modern sportbike.  Unfortunately, a new management team saw the brands as diverging, and pulled the plug a couple of years later.

2008 Buell 1125R for sale on eBay

As an engineer, Buell stressed three themes in all his designs – lighter weight, mass centralization, and chassis rigidity.  The 1125R makes strides in each of them, with a stamped and welded aluminum frame which also serves as the fuel tank.  The 1125cc V-twin is an integral part of the chassis, providing the swingarm pivots and supporting the underslung exhaust, not to mention 146 hp.  The classic Buell Zero Torque Load front brake is larger than life at 375 mm, with the eight piston caliper mounted inside the rotor.  Harley pioneered use of belt drive instead of a chain, and it saves the 1125R a few pounds and quite a bit of maintenance.  The adjustable Showa suspension and alloy subframe could accommodate a theoretical passenger.

Like so many fairly extreme superbikes, this 1125R has been ridden just 2,674 miles and barely personalized, with only a license plate mount and levers to show.  Luckily the chain-driven cams of the Helicon engine don’t suffer much during long rests, and should require just an oil change before setting off.  The matte blue frame and wheels accent the black bodywork nicely, and all look undamaged.  From the eBay auction:

This 1125R is stock with the exception of a license plate re-locator to tuck it closer to the rear fender and the levers have been replaced with shorter (and more comfortable) machined aluminum, black anodized – see pics.
Everything is 100% functional and in excellent condition.  There is a new cover included.

With a low starting bid, the new owner will get a big helping of superbike for the money, though support might be the elephant no longer in the room.  The drivetrain should be service-able by any indie with Aprilia experience, with special parts needing a little searching.  But you can only pick two, as the old adage says – performance, economy, or reliability.  Too bad the mother ship didn’t find a buyer for their very sporty fledgling.

-donn

Eleventh Hour – 2008 Buell 1125R
Buell August 4, 2019 posted by

1992 Buell RSS1200 Westwind

Few riders could have foreseen the roller coaster ride Harley-Davidson in store for Erik Buell, but a previous owner of this RSS1200 Westwind saw a future classic in the big twin.  With just 1,800 miles this gem is very original and has been protected from life’s bumps and bruises.

1992 Buell RSS1200 Westwind for sale on eBay

Buell had recently started to specify the 1198cc Sportster powerplant, and used the new isoplanar engine mounts to tame the drumbeat of the 61 hp but very torquey engine.  The mill hung in the factory’s own ladder frame, using the engine case to locate the front of the underslung pull shock.  Up front the suspension was more conventional with upside-down WP forks, and the dual front brakes with six-piston calipers pre-date any Zero Torque Load patents.  Sharing space under the engine is a short Supertrapp exhaust, fairly inadequate but at least lightweight and centralized.  The monoposto seat is cleaned up substantially from the previous flip-up dual seat.

It looks like the second owner ( of three ) was the superfan, going through the comprehensive brake rebuild, fork swap, and fastener-level refinishing.  The seller has owned the RSS for 5 years, and kept the notes from the everything-but restoration:

Finished in Transparent Ruby Red. An original single seat bike, not converted from RS twin seat. This machine has been rebuilt over the last 4 years to original and as delivered condition from a very original low mileage bike. It is not a restoration, though in the interest of mechanical functionality tires, brake and fuel lines, chain, battery, caliper and shock rebuilds have been performed. 

All original decals are on frame, with original paint excepting side stand which was powder coated. All chrome has been redone to show standards, including truss head bodywork screws, and banjo bolts. All Wellnuts have been replaced. Fasteners used in the rebuild are zinc di-chromate where originally used, otherwise plating is bright zinc. This bike had a chrome chain guard which appears to be original and remains in place, though I cannot find any original photos with a chrome guard.

All bodywork is original and shows no signs of damage. The paint was buffed to a high gloss by a professional restoration painter, it was not repainted. Windscreen is the original Gustafsson piece, headlight cover was remade and drilled to fit the fairing in California by Cee Bailey Plastics. The fuel tank was cleaned and recoated inside with modern sealant not reactive to unleaded ethanol fuel. No gas has been put into tank since recoating. Electric solenoid fuel valves were removed, cleaned, new wiring spliced, new gas lines throughout. Napoleon mirror identification decals were made as original, as was the fuel reserve switch decal. 

Buell fans might be out there, looking to complete the pre-Harley section of their collection.  Or maybe this could just be a smashing occasional rider, its exhaust note, big fairing and unusual color certain to grab some eyeballs wherever it goes.  Either way, the mechanical and cosmetic work make it even better than new, and though the starting bid is up there it looks like it’d be worth it.

-donn

1992 Buell RSS1200 Westwind
Buell July 4, 2019 posted by

Carbonated: 2013 EBR 1190RS Carbon Edition

Today – of all days on the calendar – it seemed appropriate to post this magnificent Erik Buell Racing 1190RS Carbon Edition beauty with nothing but delivery miles on the counter. Claimed to be crated (not sure what that means as there is no crate in sight in the pics), this is as close to a brand new EBR that you can buy without dealing directly with Erik himself. And as far as brand new EBRs go, the 1190RS was the ultimate form of Buell street bike greatness, made right here in the land of hot dogs, baseball and fireworks. Yee Haw!

2013 EBR 1190RS Carbon Edition for sale on eBay

As written elsewhere, the EBR 1190Rs took its roots from the 1125 race bike. The Rotax-sourced mill was bored out in Michigan and fitted with components made right here in the states. This was a homologation machine for the aspiring racer, and would certainly have been a serious player on the SBK scene had the Buell business model not tucked the front under trail braking, while diving to the apex of the tricky series of hairpins best known as the corporate investment partners complex. When the hero angel investor pulled out of the deal (no hero, indeed), momentum and traction were lost. EBR chalked up a stunning DNF as a business, and ceased to exist.

From the seller:
Crated 2013 EBR 1190RS Black

The Carbon Edition bikes were the final of the final editions of the final EBRs ever made. Only 100 of the 1190RS units were ever planned, and records are uncertain as to whether or not that number was accomplished. A much smaller number of these 1190RS models were to be decked out in full carbon regalia, making the 1190 RS a rare bird. Even more rare is the fact that this one sports only THREE accumulated miles. Forget the nearly 180 horsepower, the race-spec Ohlins gear front and rear, the multi-adjustments available to the professional rider and everything else that makes this bike a missile in the making. You could PUSH this bike the three lousy miles it has traveled. And while I’m sure Erik Buell would see the cruel irony in one of his creations becoming a collector item, my understanding of the man was he thrived on problem solving; the 1190RS solved the problem of American-born speed in an amazing fashion. Priced right in line with other offerings we have seen, you can light the fuse on this new EBR for just over $25k (or best offer). Happy Fourth of July everyone, and Good Luck!!

MI

Carbonated:  2013 EBR 1190RS Carbon Edition