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Posted: 7/21/2008 5:23:10 PM EDT
I am thinking about purchasing a 2nd bike, a cheap bike to ride to work. I ride 18 miles one way, with about 3 miles being in a small rural town with a few stop lights, and the rest being a two lane highway, 55mph, out in rural area. I have been looking for a mid '80's naked standard from the big 4 Japanese makers, been looking at 500-750cc's. Would prefer shaft drive, air cooling, and overall the least amount of maintenance necessary. Would also like it to get 50mpg. Give me some ideas. Thanks.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 5:32:21 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/21/2008 5:33:10 PM EDT by TruckinAR]
500-700cc, shaft drive, cheap.....
hummmmm pick two of those and get back to us



OH, what is yer idea of "cheap"?
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 5:34:49 PM EDT

Originally Posted By TruckinAR:
500-700cc, shaft drive, cheap.....
hummmmm pick two of those and get back to us



OH, what is yer idea of "cheap"?


Yea i figure the first two are doable. Throwing the 'cheap" into the mix is the problem.

Cheap to me is not paying a super inflated price. I don't mind paying a little more for a bike that is super nice.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 5:41:07 PM EDT
So we are on the same wavelenth...
I need a temp sensor on my XRL.
I can get a temp dipstick for $53 OR I can get a new digital dash computer WITH temp. for $109 ( it has a tach, temp, speedo, two trips, hour meter, clock, max speed indicator, max RPM indicator, idiot shift light, Outside temp.,a stop watch, and a few other things)

right?
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 5:49:18 PM EDT
This isn't quite what you've asked for but here goes.

Suzuki s40. 650 cc, belt drive (not a shaft but equally maintenance free), air cooled, and cheap (in my book). You can buy one new for $4000. A used Savage can be had for $1200. Virtually same bike since the 1980's. Big single cylinder, low maintenance, and near bullet proof. The wife's gets mid 60's for fuel economy, and easily hauls my 240 lbs around at 60 mph all day long.


With the exception of shaft drive the S40/savage has it covered.

Link Posted: 7/21/2008 5:51:49 PM EDT
Did I get in before the sv650?


Oh, good....
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 5:53:50 PM EDT

Originally Posted By CasualObserver:
Did I get in before the sv650?


Oh, good....


I wouldn't mind an SV650, but around my parts, they are few and far between, and when you do find one, they beat to hell and still asking $3000 for it.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 6:04:08 PM EDT
I say a BMW
SV650
DR650
KLR650
XR650R...ok not really but they are hawt....

Gs650
er um even a Wee/V strom

perhaps a kawi Versys

Your choices are limited by yer imagintaion
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 6:07:21 PM EDT
Kawasaki 250 Ninja---you can get over 70 mpg on it--will run close to 100 mph if needed--cruise all day at 70 mph.
Kawasaki has been building it a long time--reliable and you can pick up a barely used one cheap---cheap to insure, low maintenance ---just a good commuter bike.

Dipper
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 6:14:55 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Dipper:
Kawasaki 250 Ninja---you can get over 70 mpg on it--will run close to 100 mph if needed--cruise all day at 70 mph.
Kawasaki has been building it a long time--reliable and you can pick up a barely used one cheap---cheap to insure, low maintenance ---just a good commuter bike.

Dipper


Last time I was out...104mph indicated (and climbing ever so SLOOOOWLY before I ran out of road).

I generally don't like them (I hate the engine, it revs incredibly slow), but they are not bad bikes. Incredibly light, very little steering effort needed.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 6:16:52 PM EDT
1100 Honda Sabre

you can find um used for a decent price and it has shaft drive
It however is lquid cooled and is larger than you want
not sure what they get MPG wise I would guess in the low 40s
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 6:35:28 PM EDT
2005 Honda 750 Aero

About $4,500.00

I am getting 55+ MPG either speeding or cruising. Shaft driven.

Holds 3.7 gallons

I am using it to get to work as much as possible to fend off the gas monster...

RW3
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 6:42:05 PM EDT
There is a fellow with a mechanicly sound if cosmeticaly ugly Magna here in Vt for 1k
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 7:12:14 PM EDT
Any mid sized dual sport would be perfect. Simple, great on gas, cheap used, cheap to insure, handles great, versatile, and easy to work on.

Win/win/win/win/win.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 7:56:41 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/21/2008 7:59:15 PM EDT by band-aid-master]
Hyosung GT250. Naked bike. V twin, oil, and air cooled. Easy to work on. You could get one out the door for < 4K, with a 2 year warranty.

Hyosung GT250

Dealer locater says there are 3 dealers in Indiana.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 8:43:06 PM EDT

Originally Posted By hotrodtba: Would prefer shaft drive, air cooling, and overall the least amount of maintenance necessary. Would also like it to get 50mpg.


1992-2003 Honda Nighthawk 750 is almost a dead match for what you want. It has chain drive, but otherwise, it's air-cooled and the valves are adjusted automatically. 50MPG isn't hard to come by on them, either.

The older Nighthawk 700S actually even has the shaft drive. They're a great bike with a pretty rabid fan base, as well. They don't come cheap if they're in great shape ($2500 or thereabouts) which isn't low for a bike produced from '84 to '86, but it's not a bad way to go.

Just realize that any of these bikes will be a compromise. For your cheap, you'll get a poor tire selection, squishy suspension, and brakes that aren't the greatest in the world. But reliability, ease (or lack) of maintenance, efficiency, and overall ability to withstand a lot of abuse and day-to-day riding are the high points.

How cheap are we talking here? An older K75 BMW might be doable for about $3500... the brakes and suspension are better than the old Japanese bikes, and that little triple will run forever. But you'll have to do your own valve maintenance. Again, 50MPG is practically a given.

Old small-block Moto Guzzi perhaps (V50/V65) if you're feeling eccentric - simple, run forever, easy to maintain, and 60MPG is within reach, too. Brakes and suspension were usually better than most anything else from the period, as well.

There are plenty more... it all depends on what you have to work with, and what's available at the time you happen to have the money!
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 10:36:35 PM EDT
An old BMW airhead twin.
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 12:08:30 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/22/2008 12:09:00 AM EDT by mo98]

Originally Posted By Dipper:
Kawasaki 250 Ninja---you can get over 70 mpg on it--will run close to 100 mph if needed--cruise all day at 70 mph.
Kawasaki has been building it a long time--reliable and you can pick up a barely used one cheap---cheap to insure, low maintenance ---just a good commuter bike.

Dipper


not on an 08 i get 56mpg hauling my fat ass around and a top speed of 85mph indicated so about 77mph with a 10% speedo error.
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 6:15:57 PM EDT
Maybe you should spring for a tune uphock.gif
I haven't road a 250 Ninja that was that weak.

Dipper
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 6:27:10 PM EDT
My first bike was an 83 Honda CB650SC. I bought it from a friend for $500. It has all the features you list (650CC, shaft drive, stupid reliability).
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 8:24:49 PM EDT

Originally Posted By hotrodtba:
I have been looking for a mid '80's naked standard from the big 4 Japanese makers, been looking at 500-750cc's. Would prefer shaft drive, air cooling, and overall the least amount of maintenance necessary.



Yamaha Seca 650.


Honda Nighthawk 750

Link Posted: 7/22/2008 8:31:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Dipper:
Maybe you should spring for a tune up or loose 100 lbs.
I haven't road a 250 Ninja that was that weak.

Dipper


Its got less than 1400 miles and i'm working on the weight. 225 and 5'10 I'm built like a man not a little girl
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 9:21:28 PM EDT
Kawi Concours - sport touring's version of the KLR650.

Brian
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