2004 Honda Shadow VLX600
This is the most complete motorcycle that I have ridden in over 20 years of riding
Since the purchase of this bike, I have replaced a 3 year old battery.
After running approximately 8000 miles, I replaced the chain, sprockets, front seals on the forks and both tires. These were all maintenance items. The front seals failed due to former owner living on a dirt road that required a five mile trip to nearest paved road. This includes regular oil changes.
The VLX is a fantastic bike for commuting and light touring. I find it heavy enough to be stable in wind and truck winds, but light enough to perform well on curvy roads. The height is low enough to fit riders under 5'10 or so. Taller riders can add extensions and be a little more comfortable. The performance is great considering the size of the motor. It has handled extremely well in emergency stops and swerves. The mileage was around 57-59 MPG. When changing sprockets and chains, I lowered the back sprocket from the 44 tooth factory to a 41 tooth. This raised the mileage by 2-3 MPG and helped the top cruising speed; the stock gears are a little under geared for speeds over 55. They will run 70 mph all day, but are a little buzzy/"vibrations" after about 57. The sprocket change stopped that up to around 65 mph.
This bike is very good for a rider re-entering the bike riding world. New riders can handle them if they will use a little caution and take it slow. This is a very good bike for the ladies as well to get some safe seat time and work up to a bigger machine.
I have ridden bikes from 50cc to 1100. This bike is my choice for what I need. Great gas mileage, comfort, performance and reliability. Not to forget it also looks great. I ride 60 miles a day, and 15 of it has over 51 curves.
I have the following additions that make this bike as comfortable to ride and use. Memphis Slim windshield, saddle bags, highway pegs, backrest with luggage rack and a Mustang seat that I would definitely recommend. I am 5'8" 180 lbs and it fits like a glove. I plan on keeping it rather than moving up. If you want to tour with a passenger, you will need to probably go at least with an 800 or bigger.
Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 4th December, 2015