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New Purchase - Eldorado vs Cali Touring

Discussion in 'Cal 1400 8V' started by Tonyblaze, Jul 12, 2020.

  1. Tonyblaze

    Tonyblaze Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    First, thanks for having me on the forum. I appreciate the community. I'm 53 years young coming from a 2015 Triumph Thunderbird Commander that I just sold. I enjoyed the bike but never fell in love with it. The plain looks, low speed handling and engine sound just never let me get over the hump. I was looking at the Eldorado when I purchased the Thunderbird originally but was put off by the lack of dealer support in the states. Now I'm back again. I've decided to dive in and take the lack of dealers as a challenge to learn. I'm looking at 2017-2018 Eldorado's and California Tourings. If I get the Eldorado I am definitely outfitting the hard touring bags from the California and swapping to the touring seat with backrest but I'm wondering if just buying the bike with them already installed would be the smarter move. (Heart be quiet.) I haven't ridden either and don't have the opportunity to so the purchase will be a leap of faith from my readings. nearest bike available is five hours away. I know its a heavy bike but so was my last one. Not ideal but acceptable. Everyone raves about the handling at speed so should be good there. Durability is supposed to be good also so check. I need a mount that I can ride the other half on so there's the reason for the swap if I get the Eldorado. I'm torn on the appearances. Love the Eldorado but wondering if I will tire (lol) of the white walls. The burgundy Touring looks pull me also; not as distinctive but seem to have a lasting appeal. Is there anything distinctive between these two models that may be a determining factor in deciding which one to purchase? All the bikes I'm looking at are in the same price range of $10,000-$12,000. A few a brand new. Thanks in advance.

    Sale 1.jpg
     
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  2. DeadEye

    DeadEye High Miler GT di Razza Pura

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    It’s a tough choice.
    I went and sat on a 2019 V7 Racer when I was looking for a second bike, and found it reasonably comfortable, but 5 minutes in a show room isn’t *hours* on the road...
    Unless you have a budy that will let you ride their bike there is going to be some of a leap of faith.

    I was looking for a réaliable dual sport workhorse when I picked up the Honda XR.
    The Moto Guzzi was for longer trips, no dirt ( except when I was looking at a MG Stornello 2000km away) I’m happy with it but there were some things I needed to work on to make it mine, bar risers, exhaust etc...

    You’ll get reasons why we bought, but you’ll have to make your own decision ;) Enjoy
     
  3. GTM®

    GTM® Administrator Staff Member GT di Razza Pura

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    Welcome to the GT Forum, and I hear you on the Trumpet. Almost all of the models have become very UJM appliance like.
    The Eldo gets the nod from me on looks and the fact that it uses narrower wheels and tires (the WWs can be replaced), which allows the bike to not feel it's weight, plus it's throwback to it's heritage with the model name, is a smile and conversation maker. The Touring is a solid platform; Shorter rear shocks, wide tire, but it does have some of the amenities you list. Ride both if you can. Purchase whichever speaks to you. Skim this Forum section to see what improvements I offer to make the bike thoroughly enjoyable, and factor those costs in. Well worth the $ and effort.
    I'm sure some will weigh in here that own both models. I owned a 1400 Custom in 2014, but I've modified and ridden tons since then at my workshop.
    Hope to see you post again with your new Guzzi.
     
  4. Robert Gibson

    Robert Gibson High Miler GT Contributor

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    If the Eldorado floats your boat I would suggest you look at the posts by Garwood, he has done precisely what you mentioned alternatively see what Meldrew has done to his. Fitting the Hepco Becker bags (available in Todd’s store), gives you the option to ride a “naked” bike should you so wish.
    I personally prefer the more modern look of the California.
     
  5. just James

    just James Tuned and Synch'ed

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    One big difference is the handlebars, and therefore the riding position. The Eldorado has much different bars than the touring model.
     
  6. Garwood

    Garwood Maintaining a Low Profile! GT Contributor

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    IMG_20180612_202247.jpg OK, I'll chime in.

    Reasons to buy the Eldorado:
    1 - Better Name.

    2 - Distinctive Look. Especially if you get the fast red one. I have had mine all over the country and it attracts people and comments like flys to honey.

    3 - if you like the look, but want the California amenities, you can add them. Mine has the California hard bags, top box and large factory windshield. A "Caldorado".

    4 - Unique. Not many around, compared to the already scarce California. You'll belong to an exclusive club.

    5 - White Walls

    6 - Todd likes Eldorados best!

    Reasons NOT to buy an Eldorado:
    1 - They are sometimes confused with Cadillacs.

    2 - You may get tired of being the center of attention at McDonalds, Burger King, Taco Bell, Applebys, or Chasens. They do get noticed.

    3 - If you like the look, but want the California amenities, you HAVE TO add them. I recommend a Corbin saddle over the Guzzi touring saddle.

    4 - They are unique. Not a lot of aftermarket stuff available, but the same goes for the California.

    5 - White Walls. If you like them, and want to keep them, it requires planning. Especially on trips. They have to be ordered in advance.

    6 - Todd likes Eldorados best. Consequently there will be lots of fun, expensive, effective, expensive, pretty, expensive, stuff available for you to put on your Eldorado. Couple that with generous support from GuzziTech and you will be a happy motorcycle rider. And remember, you don't get what you don't pay for.

    Reasons Not to Buy a California:
    1 - Boring name increasingly associated with wackiness.

    2 - One needs to look twice to recognize it's distinctiveness. Mostly people will just walk past them in a parking lot. You won't make many new friends that way!

    3 - Not much to add to them. They are pretty complete. If you like adding doodads and tassels, there won't be much for you to do.

    4 - Not exactly "Unique", but not plentiful either. If you are going to buy something that requires special dedication and the ability to find the minimal number of dealersships extant, why not go with something above and beyond.

    5 - White Walls! Are they even available for Californias?

    6 - Todd doesn't like them best (but he doesn't play favorites).
     
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  7. Robebop

    Robebop Tuned and Synch'ed

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    I just changed over from WW tyres, I put a set of Michelin Commander 3 on, new model tyre and find them very good.

    upload_2020-7-14_7-33-16.png
     
  8. Robert Gibson

    Robert Gibson High Miler GT Contributor

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    Reasons Not to Buy a California:
    1 - Boring name increasingly associated with wackiness.

    Ouch!! That hurts.
    It’s what you don’t see that counts.;)
    12E33703-7EB6-4ACA-9850-AE28F1809011.jpeg
     
  9. Garwood

    Garwood Maintaining a Low Profile! GT Contributor

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    California is a wonderful state. Beaches, mountains, deserts, farm country, history, entertainment, great motorcycle roads, GuzziTech, interesting people, great weather....it has it all. Which is why it also has over 30 million people, high taxes, intrusive government, and (in many places) crumbling infrastructure.

    I lived there for 56 years. 26 in LA and 30 in the SF Bay Area. LA was a great place to grow up in the 50s and 60s. The hardest decision of my life was to move away 15 years ago. I still miss many aspects to the Golden State. And where I am now, one must learn to love winter. And while it's not for everyone, living in a smaller, less populated, place has been good for me. It's a bit like stepping back in time. Locks are not big sellers here. Four cars waiting at one of our three traffic signals is considered a jam. Two of the bigger hazards to motorcycle riders are deer and pronghorns. You know your neighbors and getting your lawn mowed when you go on vacation isn't a problem.

    And we have our own brand of "wackiness". Horses ridden up main street, everything closes the first weekend of hunting season, frozen water mains, "Longmire Days" (look it up), a head of lettuce and a tomato is considered a salad, the best hamburger shack in town is closed on Sundays and Mondays, the Highway Patrol doesn't between midnight and 6AM.

    So we all have our crosses to bear. I did my best to raise my daughter to appreciate rural things. And where is she now? Splitting her time between Los Angeles and Minneapolis! And loving it! She and her husband are currently looking to buy a house in Hollywood. They probably won't be seeing much of me, unless they come here. Maybe that's their motivation?
     
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  10. DeadEye

    DeadEye High Miler GT di Razza Pura

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    Nice list ;)

    Reasons to buy the Eldorado:
    1 - Better Name.

    5 - White Walls

    6 - Todd likes Eldorados best!

    Reasons NOT to buy an Eldorado:
    1 - They are sometimes confused with Cadillacs.

    5 - White Walls. If you like them, and want to keep them, it requires planning. Especially on trips. They have to be ordered in advance.

    6 - Todd likes Eldorados best. Consequently there will be lots of fun, expensive, effective, expensive, pretty, expensive, stuff available for you to put on your Eldorado. .

    Reasons Not to Buy a California:
    1 - Boring name increasingly associated with wackiness.

    4 - Not exactly "Unique", but not plentiful either. If you are going to buy something that requires special dedication and the ability to find the minimal number of dealersships extant, why not go with something above and beyond.

    5 - White Walls! Are they even available for Californias?

    6 - Todd doesn't like them best (but he doesn't play favorites).

    Personally I can’t tell them appart ;(
    - Duck -
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2020
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  11. John L

    John L Cruisin' Guzzisti GT Famiglia

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    Love my Eldo. With a few Cali extras it's a bike for all seasons. The white walls are a pain to keep clean but I like the look of of the black tyres better anyway. The Cali seat is more comfortable for the pillion. Takes about 20 minutes to change it to full on tourer. I did worry about the chrome panels on the tank deteriorating over time but 5 years and nearly 60,000kms on, they are as good as new.

    eldo1c.JPG eldo1g.jpg Chelle (2).JPG
     
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  12. slobyk750

    slobyk750 Just got it firing!

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    Thanks for the picture of the Eldo with blackwalls as the red and black works well. I don't think it would be as effective on the black Eldo as it is almost "too much black". But the WWW are a pain to keep clean but not as bad as my former bike. My Eldo works great and Garwood that Is a lovely little town of Buffalo. Up 16 is a good ride and beautiful country. I too live in SoCal and the place was great in the 50's and 60's. 70's weren't too bad but then it went downhill in the 80's+. One thing is for sure, the smog is much improved in LA as I used too live in Sherman Oaks and work in Hollywood and sometimes from our house up near Mulholland drive you couldn't even see the valley on bad days. Much better now. The only advantage to being in SoCal if you ride a motorcycle, is you can do it year round.
     
  13. Tonyblaze

    Tonyblaze Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    She's on the way here. Estimate is for Monday. I'm a bit nervous. First time shipping a bike.

    123_1002.jpeg
     
  14. Garwood

    Garwood Maintaining a Low Profile! GT Contributor

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    This thread has incentivized me to quit writing and go riding. Tuesday I leave here for a 1200 mile solo trip. I will be circumnavigating Yellowstone National Park without actually going into it. First day from here (Buffalo) to Livingston, Montana. Wednesday it will be through Missoula, Lolo, and on to Salmon, Idaho. Thursday, Salmon to Dubois, Wyoming, by way of Victor, Idaho and Jackson Hole. Friday it will be back home to Buffalo via Thermopolis and US 16 over the Bighorn Mountains. Being retired here is such a burden!
     
  15. Tonyblaze

    Tonyblaze Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    Safe travels and take pics!
     
  16. Meldrew

    Meldrew Cruisin' Guzzisti GT Contributor

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    If a pillion is a priority for your requirements my opinion would be to swap out the seat for a Corbin which you can order with backrests for rider and passenger. Get yourself a Hepco becker rack, available as rack, rack with back rest or back rest only, that way you can add the C bow pannier frames and get the Hepco becker buffalo bags. Hepco also do a nice luggage roll to match the bags if you don't want/require a top case. The Hepco rack and bags should work out cheaper than the genuine guzzi items with the advantage that its a lot neater look with the bags off. I believe all the Hepco stuff is available from Todds store if required. Another advantage is you can swap back to the Eldo rider saddle if you want to go solo. white walls look nice but a pain to keep clean, at next tyre change mine will be all black. Word of warning, the Hepco pannier fittings WILL NOT fit with the Moto guzzi rear rack as i found out to my cost, modification required, so keep it all Guzzi, or all Hepco Becker.
    Oh, and get rid of the rear shocks, they bounce you round like jelly on a trampoline,I've got shock factory units on mine fully adjustable and made to measure to my weight/riding style, I think Todd can supply these as well or something similar.
    Once you have done all that and if you have any money left:rofl::rofl: get the full fuelling package ordered from Todd, a set of new performance mufflers or full exhaust system and you will have a fully sorted Guzzi to enjoy,
    Happy riding,
    Ron aka Meldrew.
     
  17. Tonyblaze

    Tonyblaze Tuned and Synch'ed GT Contributor

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    Alrighty then. Guess I have my work (and money) cut out for me. Bike came today. Everything seems to be in order ecept that the dealer mailed the paperwork, manuals and tags so riding for me longer than around the block. First impressions:
    • The bike is easily much lighter than my Triumph Thunderbird Commander by quite a bit. I can easily move it around my garage. I had to specifically plan how to pull my Thunderbird in because if I got boxed in it was a wrap.
    • The rear fender does rattle like a bunch of squirrels playing with nuts in a can. Over the off-season so I can take my time I'll be removing it to apply the fender fixes in other areas on this forum that I read. I'm not mechanically inclined so this will be an aspirational goal for me.
    • As weird as it sounds I never enjoyed riding around the block as much on my previous bikes as I do this one. Initial reactions but the handling seems to be very nice. Can't wait to get it up to speed.
    • Wouldn't white marker paint have been more logical to use than the yellow they used for the bolts and other attachment points??
    • No self canceling turn signals? Really....?
    • Those spoke looks intimidating from an upkeep standpoint. Looking to find a coating to put on them right away to prevent the corrosion/leaking problem complained about in the forums. As far as the white walls go I need something routine to do as a calming project anyway.
    • Seating position = :h:
    • Accessories that I need (yes, it is a dire need) in order -
    1. Pillion back rest so I need to sort out which seat combination I'm going with. I don't think I like the side profile of the Corbin plus the break in period is too damn long. Most likely be going with touring saddle.
    2. I need bags. I know I have to coordinate this with the whole seat/backrest stuff. I definitely feel like the C-Bow is the way to go cause the bags will come off at times.
    3. Bike jack/bike lift - bite the bullet and spend the money
    4. Agostini exhaust. I'm neutral on the looks over stock but the sound is exquisite. :h:
    5. Medium wind screen.
    6. I need to get decent helmets for my wife and myself. We have sport bike helmets now. Won't do for the Eldorado crowd.
    7. Passenger floor boards. I like the operation of the stock pegs but it was the same situation on my Triumph and she liked the floor boards much more for being able to change position.
    8. Miscellaneous doodads here and there like upgrading fluid reservoirs.
    I'm excited, anxious and intimidated cause I'm four hours away from closest dealer and like I said, not mechanically inclined but its never too late to learn. See you out there.

    20200720_110254.jpg
     
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  18. FrankZ

    FrankZ Tuned and Synch'ed GT di Razza Pura

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    Congratulations on your purchase!
    I see on another post your inquiry about any nagging problems. I've owned my Eldorado for 4 years, now has 23000 miles. I have never regretted my purchase. I've had a couple of problems during that time. Only once did it not make it all the way home, but it was within walking distance. There's plenty of support on this forum, should you have any issues. My biggest gripe about the bike is the poorly designed rear fender/support, which is documented in this forum. I check for looseness of it regularly, now that it has come to my attention, seems to be holding up okay so far.

    I don't think you'll be disappointed with the bike.
     
  19. Meldrew

    Meldrew Cruisin' Guzzisti GT Contributor

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    Congrats on the new bike, if you like the rider saddle consider getting the Hepco Becker back rest with or without rack and get the pillion perch re profiled with new foam and cover for your passenger. That's what I did and the missus finds it really comfy and I got to keep my rider saddle, bonus. I would certainly go down that route before swapping out for a one piece touring seat, and probably a lot cheaper. Reference passenger floorboards, the Guzzi ones are quite large (and horrendously expensive) and you may find you catch your heels on them when putting your feet down. Have a look at kuryaken mini floorboards or get in touch with Todd for a 'one off'. Enjoy your new ride.
     
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  20. Robert Gibson

    Robert Gibson High Miler GT Contributor

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    Kuryaken mini floorboards are nice but no adapters to fit the Guzzi. I used Honda adapters to fit the mini boards to my BMW cruiser as there were none available for that either. I would imagine adapters could be made, (CNC skills anyone?) to fit the Kuryaken boards on the the proviso that it was the owners responsibility regarding fit.
     

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