View Full Version : Opinions Appreciated

28th November 2004, 23:20
Anyone know whether or not the new '05 883 Low would be too low for someone who is 5'9"? I'm going back and forth between the Low and the Custom.

Any advice would be appreciated!


28th November 2004, 23:39
I don't think it would be too low. How does it feel when you are sitting on it? Kinda depends what look and feel you want I guess.

Either way, you can't go wrong with a sporty :D


28th November 2004, 23:45
Ooooh! Where are my manners? I see that was your first post! Welcome rp1975! :welcome

Btw, I sat on a low at the dealer, it was *just* a bit too low for my liking, but that's just my opinion. It's a matter of preference I guess. I'm 5' 8. Hope that helps. :)


28th November 2004, 23:49
Welcome to the forum RP1975! I like the custom myself, but it's really a personal choice for you :tour

28th November 2004, 23:51
Set on it. How does it feel. Do your legs feel too bent when sitting in the boot down position. Can you sit straight, or are you humped over the tank? Do your arms feel stretched or cramped? Take it for a test ride. Does it ride natural? How do your feet and legs feel when braking, shifting, or just cruising? There are many variables to consider. Some minor deficiencies can be corrected by modifications after you buy it; and yes, you will spend a bundle on mods. But if the frame feels to low or not right during your ride, that can't be changed. Go with another model.

Just some thoughts. If your sales person is up to snuff, he/she will put you on the right Sporty.

28th November 2004, 23:52
Sorry, just noticed you are new to the forum :welcome :welcome :welcome

28th November 2004, 23:59
Thanks for the welcomes so far!!! This board has been awesome, and of course, I've been "lurking for awhile"

I feel the best decision is an informed decision, and I didn't wanna go put out the money without finding out first!

Thanks again!

29th November 2004, 00:05
Probably should have also mentioned, this will be my first motorcycle...I'm 47, and the wife (35) and I just completed the MSF course last month. We're both looking to buy motorcycles to ride together. We are both the same height and really like the looks of the Sportsters.

Keep the suggestions comin'! Thanks again!


29th November 2004, 00:12

Welcome to the Forum!!

Heck, get one of each: Custom and a Low. Between the two of you one is bound to like one over the other!!! Make sure you get them the same color so that won't be an issue!!! :D

My 2 cents!!!

29th November 2004, 00:33
Welcome RP1975,
What kind of riding are you planning on doing? I'm 5'8" with an inseam of about 31" and the Custom feels just fine. I like the 4.5 gallon tank on the custom. If you are planning on doing long rides the extra range comes in real handy. I also find the forward controls more comfortable for my old knees. I would go with the bike you feel the most comfortable on. Like someone else said get one of each. You can always add a bigger tank.

29th November 2004, 00:40
Welcome RP1975,
Nice to have you around! A most common discussion in the threads is forward controls and highway pegs to get the legs stretched out for more comfort. If your legs are long enough for forward controls, that's what I would consider. However, try both out before you buy.

Moved On
29th November 2004, 01:18
Howdy, Welcome to the forum!!!

I don't think it's going to be too low for you. I'm 6'2" and ride an '03 Hugger. The Hugger was the old name for the lowered Sporty. I did get forwards, but that isn't really a matter of the seat height. Once your feet are up off the road all Sportsters are the same as far as possible foot position goes since the frames are the same.


29th November 2004, 05:30
The link below lets you compare specs of both bikes
side by side. Just click on Compare Motorcycles in the middle of the page.

Seems I read somewhere in Harley literature that the 883 Low was 40% easier to lift off the kickstand than the other 883 models . . .


29th November 2004, 13:39
Hey RP1975,

Welcome to the Forum. For my 2 cents, I agree with Dar. If your salesperson is as helpful as they should be, they will influence your decision for the better. I really liked the lighter feel of the 883L when I was making my purchase but my legs felt cramped on the pegs and the handlebar positioning put my wrist at an uncomfortable angle. My dealer was very helpful in comparing the 883, 883L, and 883C. In the end, I bought the 883C. The forward controls took less than 50 miles to get use to and now I can't imagine mid-controls. You could always add highway pegs, though. I really like the extra range of the 4.5 gallon tank because I am often well off the beaten path and fuel is sometimes a ways away from me. I've ridden over 2000 miles since I took delivery and the Custom suits my 5'9" frame very well. Try to ride both if you can. If not, collect as much information as you can and go with your gut instinct. You want to avoid buyer's regret with these purchases! Good luck.

29th November 2004, 17:23
It's always about personal choices. It doesn't really matter. Whatever you choose you'll change anyway. It's just the way we are!!

29th November 2004, 23:37
When I bought my 05 883C I was concerned about the forward controls.I'm 5'7".I almost ordered mid mount controls.All my bikes in the past had mid controls.Didn't know if i could get use to the forward controls.But after riding it some,I like the forwards.Took some getting use to though.Being 5'9" you shouldn't have any problem with either model.Maybe you could buy the custom for yourself and the low for the wife.

29th November 2004, 23:45
I'm 5'8.....The Low feels GREAT to me...

I have a custom, but tried a Low at the dealer a few days ago....

30th November 2004, 00:12
My wife was in the same boat as you when looking for a Sportster. At first she wanted the low because it was easier to get off the stand, but when we went to buy, the salesman looked at her on the low and said that he thought she would like the standard 883 better than the low. My wife is 5'7'' and she is glad that we bought the standard.

8th December 2004, 07:19
I am 5'8 and the 883C fits me perfectly. The mid controls cramp me too much. The custom is just right for my height.

25th July 2014, 23:07
Lady rider here having an issue with a loud whining type grinding noise possibly out of the primary at low speeds, I replaced the clutch cable myself about three years ago and struggled a little with it, a bike mechanic said it was way to tight at the top and it might not be adjusted correctly, If that is the noise maker why whine three years later? why not bitch then?

25th July 2014, 23:31
no its not, its not even the lowest bike harley offers, i think thats the softail low or something or other.

it is rather low but we're only talking an inch or two lower than stock, to most thats insignificant especially if you're like me and coming off a bike with a 31.5" seat height. ALL of them are low to me :P

25th July 2014, 23:38
This is a 10 year old thread.

25th July 2014, 23:57
no its not, its not even the lowest bike harley offers, i think thats the softail low or something or other.

it is rather low but we're only talking an inch or two lower than stock, to most thats insignificant especially if you're like me and coming off a bike with a 31.5" seat height. ALL of them are low to me :P

26th July 2014, 01:02
Welcome RP1975
I do not think the seat height to the road will be a problem for you. I think that the problem could be if you have mid controls vs forward controls. I ride a 1986 XLH 883 with mid controls and with forward pegs out front and I find that I ride 99% of the time with my legs on the forward pegs and use my right hell to rear brake and my left hell to down shift and the only time I use my left foot on the mid control is to up shift. I find if I try to ride with my feet on my mid controls I get really bad leg, hip cramps and I'm 5' 9''. I would not recommend a new rider or a long time rider to try and brake, shift this way because you may not be able to move your foot to the brake fast enough to get stopped or slowed down in time. But with the forward pegs I do not cramp up. I ride every day and take long trips often too. Hopefully you may find something helpful to you out of this. Enjoy you new bikes witch ever you choose is right for you and your wife.