Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
BCM
Member Login

Site Notices
Posted: 9/2/2008 6:09:03 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/2/2008 6:10:22 PM EDT by Fnkystuf]
I got my temporary permit about a month ago, and my boss has been letting me ride his Suzuki DRZ 400cc around the parking lots at work. Eventually, I want a sport bike.

A couple people have told me to just get an older 600cc sport bike next. I just don't know if it's a good idea to go from dirt bike to sport bike. I have absolutely no experience other than the couple hours of riding time on the DRZ.

So where should I go from here? My biggest concern is being one of those guys who wrecks their sport bike 5 minutes after buying it!

Edit: Forgot to mention that money is an issue now, but wouldn't be when I graduate in May 09. I'm pretty much limited to a beater bike at the moment
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 7:12:05 PM EDT
At the risk of drinking the kool-aid, and at the risk of recommending a bike I have very little personal experience with, you really can't go wrong with an SV650.

The biggest thing (no matter what you end up buying) is to enroll yourself in an MSF class. I did way back when, and you'll learn things your buddies won't teach you, you'll learn things not covered in the DMV handbook, and you'll learn things that even experience (and a couple of get offs) won't always teach.

I can honestly say it's one of the best things I ever did, and it gave me the (rudimentary) skills needed to throw a leg over pretty much ANY bike, without worrying that it was "too much" for me.

Even a superbike doesn't make gobs of power off idle. It doesn't go fast unless you want it to.

Buy used, and for the love of God don't finance a toy. You can get a nice used SV650 for $3500 - $4000.

Failing that, a beater bike is a bike, is a bike, is a bike. Ride something cheap (and safe - don't buy a project bike for your first ride like my dumbass did), and spend at least a good season on it, riding it every friggin' chance you get (car? what car?) until you decide what you really want.
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 7:12:55 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/2/2008 7:13:59 PM EDT by Repeater]

Originally Posted By Fnkystuf:
So where should I go from here?


Probably off to get some training.  The BRC is a good place to start.  This should get you  your license in most states, as well.  

A sport bike generally isn't a good place for a learner to go in the first place.  The scrunchy seating position encourages newbies to put too much weight on the bars, hindering maneuvering.  

Find a good standard someplace.  An EX500 or GS500E is a good place to start; neither has much for fairings to crash off (just a nose fairing and belly pan for the EX), both have a good selection of tires, and are tried and true, reliable machines that are easy to ride, and help greatly with confidence-building.  Both can be had for a song (under $2000) and provide more than enough power for the street (coming from a guy that rode a Ninja 250 for over 3 years) as well as serviceable braking and suspension equipment.  They come with no surprises, no pretense, and their general behavior will prepare you well for more capable cycles.  

So, I have to ask, what draws you to a sportbike in particular?
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 7:15:07 PM EDT
You can still get an SV650 standard for around 2k if you really shop out there.  It might have high miles but they run forever as long as it's been properly maintained.


HOWEVER, since you are on a budget you also need to consider that your costs for gear and insurance/sales/property tax will be as much as the bike.  

$200 helmet
$150 jacket
$60 gloves
$100 boots
$100 pants

You'll also end up buying hot and cool weather gear like mesh jacket vs leather or cordura jacket.

Insurance could run from $150-$400/year for a new rider.  I would suggest comprehensive unless you can pick up a bike for under 2K.  Most likely your first drop will be at low speed and under the ins deductible.



Honda CB series from old are good bikes, BUT they will also require some wrenching to get them up to speed.  You'll most likely need new tires, brake pads, fuel lines and a complete liquid (oil/filter/antifreeze/brake fluid) overhaul.  Keep that in mind.  If you find a $1,500 CB350-1000 consider the SV that cost $2,500...

Other options are the ex/ninja 250 and 500.  They are good reliable bikes and you won't have problems with resale as they come and go pretty quick.


Good luck, keep us posted.
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 7:16:55 PM EDT
And I'll add, expect to spend about $1000 on decent gear - helmet, boots, gloves, jacket, pants, etc. It adds up quick. And for the love of all that is holy, do NOT skimp on this stuff. I've got scars and busted up knees that ache when the weather changes (at only 29) because my retarded ass decided to skimp on gear like a dumb fuck.

If I was really short on money, I'd invest in the gear FIRST, and use the rest to find a bike. I'm not kidding, either. It's part of the purchase, and it's really part of the bike.
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 7:23:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Subnet:
And I'll add, expect to spend about $1000 on decent gear - helmet, boots, gloves, jacket, pants, etc. It adds up quick. And for the love of all that is holy, do NOT skimp on this stuff. I've got scars and busted up knees that ache when the weather changes (at only 29) because my retarded ass decided to skimp on gear like a dumb fuck.

If I was really short on money, I'd invest in the gear FIRST, and use the rest to find a bike. I'm not kidding, either. It's part of the purchase, and it's really part of the bike.



100% correct.  Spend AT LEAST half as much $$ on your ass than you do on your bike.  No matter what you think you ARE going to wreck, be it 5mph or 65mph.  Could be a piece of gravel or a deer.  You buy insurance for your bike, so buy some for your body.  Most of the gear will hold up for 10 years or until you get tired of the design (go plain as possible to avoid that) and I'd much rather, as I have, spent $250 on a nice pair of SIDI boots than spent $2,500 in the hospital for a broken ankle.  When I wrecked if I didn't have my boots on I definitely would have broken something as well as had enough rash that I'd probably have half the skin on my ass down on my knee and ankles.

Link Posted: 9/2/2008 7:34:35 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/2/2008 7:35:39 PM EDT by TacticalPenguin]
check you deductable on you rbike too, some insurance comapnies penalize certain types of bikes with higher deductables....  which I why I am forced to buy parts off of ebay instead of new after smoking a deer...


also, like has been said, GEAR!  i have some really nifty scars and healing bones from laying bikes down (and that is just from THIS year) you will lay them down, even if you ride perfectly the four wheelers seem to like to act like idiots and endanger you, Buy good gear, and buy a bike you can afford after that.

the old CB series of bikes are good to learn on, you are not seated too high ( like on an enduro) you sit more upright (than say a sport bike) and there is not alot of things to bash up on them when you lay them down


oh and as others have also said, ride it all the time everywhere unless yo specifically need a car or truck (groceries or whatever) experience is the name of the game, so get all you can
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 7:41:16 PM EDT
Nothing new to add: buy decent gear, take the MSF course, and get a used SV650.

I wouldn't spend a fortune on gear right now because you don't even know what you want or what will work for you. Get a decent full face helmet, gloves, boots, jacket, and pants, preferably made of leather.

I think everyone goes through a few revisions of gear before they find what they really like. If you buy a $600 Arai and a $1500 Vanson suit today, you will probably realize they don't fit correctly after a few months.
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 7:47:49 PM EDT

Originally Posted By jeremy223:
Nothing new to add: buy decent gear, take the MSF course, and get a used SV650.

I wouldn't spend a fortune on gear right now because you don't even know what you want or what will work for you. Get a decent full face helmet, gloves, boots, jacket, and pants, preferably made of leather.

I think everyone goes through a few revisions of gear before they find what they really like. If you buy a $600 Arai and a $1500 Vanson suit today, you will probably realize they don't fit correctly after a few months.


If you buy a suit from say Z Leathers, it'll be measured and made for you personally.

It's a lot of fookin' money, though. While anything is better than jeans and a t-shirt, I really don't think there's any way around spending close to a grand before all is said and done, unless you make some serious concessions. Then again, I suppose it's almost like carry weapons - the mesh Firstgear jacket in 100 degree heat is better than the Vanson leather suit you left at home.
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 8:10:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Subnet:
If you buy a suit from say Z Leathers, it'll be measured and made for you personally.

It's a lot of fookin' money, though. While anything is better than jeans and a t-shirt, I really don't think there's any way around spending close to a grand before all is said and done, unless you make some serious concessions. Then again, I suppose it's almost like carry weapons - the mesh Firstgear jacket in 100 degree heat is better than the Vanson leather suit you left at home.

I know, I wear a custom 1 piece suit from Syed, but I had to go through a few cheaper pieces of gear before I was able to rationalize the price.

When I first started out I didn't know enough to get a custom suit made, knew what brand of gloves fit me well, what boots fit well, not to mention how poorly my first helmet fit.

I am afraid to even add up what all my gear costs between custom suit, back protector, sidi boots, kangaroo gloves, etc. It would probably cost more than any bike I have ever owned
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 8:13:23 PM EDT
Alright, it's really looking like I'll have to wait until graduation. All the rider courses are booked for the rest of 2008 anyway.

I've seen the SV650 recommended here, but didn't know if it was a beginner or intermediate bike.
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 8:20:41 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Fnkystuf:
Alright, it's really looking like I'll have to wait until graduation. All the rider courses are booked for the rest of 2008 anyway.

I've seen the SV650 recommended here, but didn't know if it was a beginner or intermediate bike.


It's both. And many a good rider on an SV650 has embarrassed many a poor one on a gixxer.

They're plenty of fun, and I found the one I rode easy to ride. The motorcycling world is full of too many bench racers, in my opinion. They read magazines and forums, instead of just riding the damned things.
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 8:23:56 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Fnkystuf:
I've seen the SV650 recommended here, but didn't know if it was a beginner or intermediate bike.

It is both and more to a degree that few if any other bikes can claim. I would not hesitate to put a family member on one as soon as they were out of MSF and practicing on their own. On the other end of the spectrum, I have been thinking about picking one up for myself to race and I have mostly ridden middle weight supersports.

Not many (if any) other bikes can take you from parking lot to expert roadracing.

The SV650 is a much better street bike than any 600 super sport. The 600s have no low end torque and are absolutely gutless below 9000rpm. Downshifting 3 times and revving the piss out of an engine just for it to get out of its own way is no fun on the street.
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 8:32:53 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Subnet:
It's both. And many a good rider on an SV650 has embarrassed many a poor one on a gixxer.

They're plenty of fun, and I found the one I rode easy to ride. The motorcycling world is full of too many bench racers, in my opinion. They read magazines and forums, instead of just riding the damned things.

Spot on. In fact, I would say most riders of the same experience level will be faster on the SV than the GSXR on anything but a long straight.

Most people are sitting on a bike they cannot use anywhere near its potential, and could ride faster, longer, and be more comfortable on a different bike, but they won't even consider it because they are riding spec sheets.
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 8:43:03 PM EDT

Originally Posted By jeremy223:

Originally Posted By Subnet:
It's both. And many a good rider on an SV650 has embarrassed many a poor one on a gixxer.

They're plenty of fun, and I found the one I rode easy to ride. The motorcycling world is full of too many bench racers, in my opinion. They read magazines and forums, instead of just riding the damned things.

Spot on. In fact, I would say most riders of the same experience level will be faster on the SV than the GSXR on anything but a long straight.

Most people are sitting on a bike they cannot use anywhere near its potential, and could ride faster, longer, and be more comfortable on a different bike, but they won't even consider it because they are riding spec sheets.


Plus motherfucking one. I've passed guys on R1's on my Buell powered chopper in the twisties. Is my bike technically better? SHIT NO. Not by any stretch of the imagination - not in any measurable way, other than looks if that's your thing.

Here's my thing on motorcycles (and most cars, really) - There's only so much a sane person will (or rather should) do on public roads. It all comes down to rider experience/skill and comfort level. There are a lot of bikes that:

1. Are capable of more than I am and...
2. Are more capable than the roads an conditions I'm riding them in.

At some point, you've got to consider how you'll *actually* ride the thing day to day (and be honest with yourself) and decide whether or not doing 200+ mph is really worth sacrificing other things.
Link Posted: 9/2/2008 8:46:02 PM EDT
Pretty much echoing what everybody has said on here. One thing I'll add is never pay "full price" for gear. If you start surfing the online sites like New Enough, Revzilla, Motorcycle Closeouts, you can find lots of good gear on clearance and the hit to your wallet will be less. You can get a Power Trip DTP leather jacket from New Enough for $99. An HJC CL-15 helmet is on clearance from several places for around $70. Start buying gear now in bits and pieces so you'll be ready when you get your bike. If you're commuting to school/work you'll probably also want to invest in some luggage as well.

I started off on a GZ250 (250 cc cruiser) and for me, that was the way to go. I bought used and ended up selling it for a few hundred more than I paid for it which more than covered the taxes/registration. Then I went with the crowd and got an SV650. Much better motorcycle although it does have pretty strong engine braking.

If you haven't already, sign up for an MSF BRC class - it's only $25 in Ohio and you can bypass the BMV road test if you pass the skills test at the end of the course.
Link Posted: 9/3/2008 1:14:35 PM EDT
Take MSF course.  Then SV650 or SV650s or check out the DRZ400.
Link Posted: 9/3/2008 8:29:56 PM EDT
I fully intend on taking the rider's course next year. I was just tossing around the idea of buying an enduro or something in the mean time. The DRZ400 is a lot of fun, but now I realize that I can't afford anything at the moment.

Why do I want a sport bike? I don't know... I'll admit that there's no rationale behind it, I just like them. I don't dislike other kinds, they just don't have the same appeal to me.

It's just very difficult to get an idea of where I stand in terms of skill. I understand that many people just get on bikes and go, but my personal experience tells me that if something has a 99% chance of success, I'll be the 1%. It sounds like I'm overly cautious, hopefully the rider's course will boost my confidence.

When I told my coworkers that I was considering a Ninja 250, i basically got laughed at
Link Posted: 9/3/2008 8:35:39 PM EDT
wait one more month. Colder weather and outsatnding credit card bills will force some 10,000+ bike owners to sell before winter. It happens every year, again and again.

Then buy an SV650 as your first, can't go wrong with it.
Link Posted: 9/3/2008 8:57:14 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Fnkystuf:
When I told my coworkers that I was considering a Ninja 250, i basically got laughed at


Oh? What kind of motorcycles do they ride to work?
Link Posted: 9/3/2008 9:16:10 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Subnet:

Originally Posted By Fnkystuf:
When I told my coworkers that I was considering a Ninja 250, i basically got laughed at


Oh? What kind of motorcycles do they ride to work?


One rides nothing. He wants a brand new Yamaha R6 as a first bike. I don't think he has any experience besides riding the DRZ too.

The other has a GSXR 600. He said the very first time he rode a bike, it was a Harley that he stalled & dropped a couple times. I think he's a decent rider now, but that's not how I wanna start!
Link Posted: 9/3/2008 9:29:12 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Fnkystuf:

Originally Posted By Subnet:

Originally Posted By Fnkystuf:
When I told my coworkers that I was considering a Ninja 250, i basically got laughed at


Oh? What kind of motorcycles do they ride to work?


One rides nothing. He wants a brand new Yamaha R6 as a first bike. I don't think he has any experience besides riding the DRZ too.

The other has a GSXR 600. He said the very first time he rode a bike, it was a Harley that he stalled & dropped a couple times. I think he's a decent rider now, but that's not how I wanna start!


Kinda what I figured. Typical.

I used to work with a guy who gave me shit when I got my first bike - a 1981 Yamaha Virago. Said I needed a real bike, like a Fatboy (if you ever hear someone generically refer to all big twin HD's as a Fatboy, you can immediately dismiss everything that comes out of their mouths for the rest of your life. It's kind of a handy barometer, actually).

He had a Harley wallet, Harley tattoo, Harley shirts, Harley blanket, Harley pictures on the wall, Harley hat, Harley bandana, Harley boots, Harley bumper sticker, Harley Zippo, Harley...you get the idea. Know what else? No motorcycle endorsement and most importantly.....NO HARLEY!

"Someday", he said.
Link Posted: 9/3/2008 9:45:09 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Fnkystuf:
When I told my coworkers that I was considering a Ninja 250, i basically got laughed at


Fuck your coworkers. The Ninja 250 is an awesome bike....fast and agile, and fun as hell.

Lots of people don't like my Vstrom, my Harley riding brother calls it the "stork", but I don't ride for anyone else's enjoyment or approval. I love my bikes, they're not a fashion accessory, and they make me happy.
Link Posted: 9/3/2008 10:05:17 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/3/2008 10:08:37 PM EDT by DuraToTheMax]

Originally Posted By Fnkystuf:
When I told my coworkers that I was considering a Ninja 250, i basically got laughed at


There are worse things than being laughed at by people without a clue. Let me give you an example;

Yesterday I was at the Honda dealer looking over what remained of their '08 CBR600's, seriously considering taking one home at $1,600 off MSRP. All they had were a few silver ones and one red one. I wanted the red one but it was already sold and dude was on his way back to pick it up, I was told .

This kid shows up, about 21 and I engage him in a conversation about his new bike.
After a few questions, turns out that this is his first bike, he has no license, not even a permit, has essentially no riding experience (from what I gathered). Meanwhile the salesman is handing him the keys and telling him, "Now you be careful, ok?".

I pull out my MSF card and give his gilfriend the 800 #. I try to tell the kid about cold tires, looking where you want to go, etc. I myself am a new rider but am at least licensed and aware of the dangers.

I watch this kid pull out (after stalling twice) into rush hour traffic, on his first bike, a supersport and feel like I'm watching someone dangerously close to serious injury or worse, and completely unaware of it. Don't be this kid.

There really are worse things than being laughed at
Link Posted: 9/4/2008 3:55:23 AM EDT

Originally Posted By swingset:
[ my Harley riding brother calls it the "stork",



Link Posted: 9/4/2008 4:11:42 AM EDT

Originally Posted By JohnnyMcEldoo:

Originally Posted By swingset:
[ my Harley riding brother calls it the "stork",





Shaddup you Buell-o-phile. My Stork is more comfy and holds more luggage, so there.

Link Posted: 9/4/2008 4:16:59 AM EDT

Originally Posted By swingset:

Originally Posted By JohnnyMcEldoo:

Originally Posted By swingset:
[ my Harley riding brother calls it the "stork",





Shaddup you Buell-o-phile. My Stork is more comfy and holds more luggage, so there.



It really is a comfy great handling bike no doubt.
Top Top