Name: Philip Boncer
Home: San Diego, CA
Occupation: Pharmaceutical Engineer
"I really wanted a two-cylinder sportbike, preferably with no fairing, but there wasn't much on the market. The only twins were the Ducati and the Buell. Then I saw a magazine article on the Monster 900 and it was exactly what I was looking for. I plunked down my $10,000 and hoped I liked the bike when it arrived. I had to wait three months, but it worked out great. I bought it new and have been using it as daily transportation ever since, 160,000 miles so far!
"I use it for trips and touring, fun rides and scratching around canyons, but mostly I use it for the daily commute. I'm a consultant, so I see several clients a day and the Monster helps me carve through San Diego traffic.
"It's a little beat-up, sure. I've never had a garage since I've owned it, so between the ocean air and that, I knew it would never stay pristine. But I decided I was just going to keep it running right and not worry about how it looked.
"I replaced the front fender with a fuller, wider fender from an 888 right away because I didn't think the stock one would protect the fork tubes. I put on bar-end mirrors and, at about 30,000 miles, braided-steel brake and clutch lines. Those are about the only modifications I've made.
"The alternator bearing went at 122,000 miles, so I repaired that and put in new piston rings at that point. The bores are still good, cross-hatching visible and all that. I put in a new clutch basket at 140,000 miles and that's pretty much it.
"I've taken it to the Grand Canyon, up to the Bay Area, to Laguna Seca and camping at Big Sur. I can do about 700 miles a day on it, but the back seat is only good for about 50 so when my wife rides with me, that's when I get a good whack on the back of my helmet! I thought about getting something better for two-up, but my wife just got her license. After she's done practicing on her little Honda 250 Nighthawk, she wants a Monster 900 of her own."