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Old 02-02-2013, 10:03 AM   #1
dbk23 OP
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Good sport tourer for new rider

Hello Everyone
I will be taking a motorcycle course this spring and getting my bike licence. I want a bike that I can commute back and forth to work with, but I also want a bike I can head out on the weekends for weekend getaways so I am looking for a good beginner bike for sports touring. Yes I have considered the Ninja 250 or Honda CBR 250 but was told will out grow them fast. I am turning 50 years old, stand 5t 10" and weigh 225 lbs. I am looking at the Kawasaki Ninja 650r and the Yamaha FX6R and was wondering what the experienced riders in the forum thought of these bikes to start out? Is there any other bikes I should consider? lso maybe looking at the Kawasaki Versys 650 as a possible option as well. Thanks in advance for taking time to look at my post and hopefully provide some insite. Possibility of getting a used NINJA 500r as well.

Thanks
Darren
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Old 02-02-2013, 10:31 AM   #2
Chris01011
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I was a new rider last year and had a cbr250. It was a great bike, and I'm sure you would have a great time on it. Buy used, since you will probably want to change to something else pretty soon. And that's ok!

I'm on my third bike in a year since I started riding.

Have you considered the Honda NC700x? Easier to ride than the cbr, slightly more power but certainly not intimidating, more comfortable, and similar fuel economy. I picked one up a week ago, and it ticks all my boxes just perfectly.

Good luck.

Chris
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Old 02-02-2013, 10:41 AM   #3
Grainbelt
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Welcome.

You will only outgrow the 250 class if you are big, heavy, and want to ride everwhere at 80mph. I started on a GS500, put 25k on a Ninja 650R, and now ride a Yamaha FZ6 (the 04-09 model, not the FZ6R, which is a different bike.

The 650R, FZ6, FZ6R, and former Suzuki GSX650F are all very competent bikes. Six years and about 60k miles later, I'm still happy with that level of power output. All are modern bikes with good brakes, readily available proper tires, fuel injection, and most have good aftermarket support.

The '12+ Ninja 650R offered in the US does not have rear grab handle mounts, which is where aftermarket hard luggage mounts up, so you're stuck with soft bags. Nice bikes though, I really enjoyed my older model, and have demoed a new one. Great powerband for the street.

The FZ6R is heavier and has lower power output than the old FZ6, but a lot more midrange punch. I've been very happy with the fit and finish on my Yamaha, and the 26k mile valve adjustment interval is nice.

There really aren't any bad bikes out there anymore. If you get a chance to check out the new Honda CB500, they are an intriguing option at about $6k new, with available factory luggage, ABS if you want it, etc. Would be an ideal first bike, in all likelihood.
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Old 02-02-2013, 10:50 AM   #4
BK
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When I got back into riding 4 years ago I got a great deal on a Ninja 250.

I'm about your same specs. (215lbs 46 y.o. 6' tall). If I had to do it again, I'd go with the Versys. The little Ninja is a great bike, but it is not very practical and the high RPM riding at highway speeds wore me out me out.

It is a fun little bike to ride, but much more than an hour of the relatively cramped riding position is enough for me.

I have a KTM 990 now and it's like a 2 wheeled Barca lounger, but I wouldn't have wanted to get back into riding on it!
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Old 02-03-2013, 04:20 AM   #5
Dranrab Luap
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grainbelt View Post

There really aren't any bad bikes out there anymore. If you get a chance to check out the new Honda CB500, they are an intriguing option at about $6k new, with available factory luggage, ABS if you want it, etc. Would be an ideal first bike, in all likelihood.
No doubt. I think that 500 will catch on as an incredible adult entry level bike. Yeah, the 250's can get it done, but get them up at elevation and need to make a pass on a short straight stretch in the mountains and you'll want more. New riders just don't realize how damn fast you can go from zero to in over my head on a 600 class bike. They'll easily outpace the fastest production sports cars. So the 500 class bikes in a mild state of tune should provide all the power one would ever reasonably need, but allow a little more room for error than the 600 class bikes. At Honda's price point, one of their 500 bikes with ABS and hard bags options should be very appealing to an adult entry rider then serve that rider well indefinitely.
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Old 02-03-2013, 04:46 AM   #6
DaMonk45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dranrab Luap View Post
No doubt. I think that 500 will catch on as an incredible adult entry level bike. Yeah, the 250's can get it done, but get them up at elevation and need to make a pass on a short straight stretch in the mountains and you'll want more. New riders just don't realize how damn fast you can go from zero to in over my head on a 600 class bike. They'll easily outpace the fastest production sports cars. So the 500 class bikes in a mild state of tune should provide all the power one would ever reasonably need, but allow a little more room for error than the 600 class bikes. At Honda's price point, one of their 500 bikes with ABS and hard bags options should be very appealing to an adult entry rider then serve that rider well indefinitely.
lots of good sense right there.
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Old 02-03-2013, 05:51 AM   #7
Grainbelt
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dranrab Luap View Post
At Honda's price point, one of their 500 bikes with ABS and hard bags options should be very appealing to an adult entry
rider then serve that rider well indefinitely.
If at some point I wear out my FZ6, I may even consider a change back to the 500 class. Easy on gas, 120 front and 160 rear tires are available in proper dual compound sport touring models, and for the first time in years I'd have a bike I can actually run through the gears without hitting go-to-jail speeds.
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Old 02-02-2013, 12:32 PM   #8
scotty918
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Suzuki V-Strom 650 or Kawasaki Versys with luggage. Great commuters and more than capable of going coast to coast.
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Old 02-02-2013, 03:17 PM   #9
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Suzuki V-Strom 65
Not great as a first bike unless you're rather tall, it is very top heavy.
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Old 02-02-2013, 12:51 PM   #10
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A used Ninja 500 or EX500 is a great choice. It was very common bike made for a long time, making it easy to get parts and accessories, and is not at all hard to work on. It has a fairly neutral, slightly sporty riding position, and the wind will take all the weight off of your arms when you're cruising. It is nimble and fast enough for anybody to have fun - talking about 13-second flat quarter miles, but the power only comes on at high RPM when you really mean it,, making it very docile and easy going around town. If you want a cruiser, the Vulcan 500 uses the same motor, making it very quick for a 500-class cruiser.
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Old 02-02-2013, 12:59 PM   #11
richarddacat
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Klr650?

Bmw f650?

Bmw k75?
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Old 02-02-2013, 02:04 PM   #12
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Honda NT700V. More of a true Sport Tourer than the bikes suggested by others here. Comes with factory luggage, a lot of used ones have a topcase already installed, shaft drive, ABS optional, heated grips optional etc. I believe Honda has discontinued this model, but there are plenty out there both new leftover and used. If I were looking for an entry level, mid-size tourer it would be at the top of my list.
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Old 02-02-2013, 02:56 PM   #13
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Second the vote for the honda nt700v. My demographics are essentially the same as yours. I couldn't be happier. Only thing I've added is a top case and cee bailey +6. Abs modes are harder to find. Used prices are very reasonable.
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Old 02-02-2013, 03:06 PM   #14
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"You're buying your first bike, not your last one."

Your first bike should be something that is easy to learn on and forgiving of nOOb errors. You'll develop your riding skills more easily, quickly and safely that way.

Buy a decent used nOOb bike like a Ninjette or whatever, ride it for a year and then sell for it for about what you paid for it when you decide to move up.

In that year, you'll not only develop your riding skills more easily but also get a better idea of what you really want in your next bike.

JMHO...

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Old 02-02-2013, 04:33 PM   #15
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FZ6= GOOD! Delta box frame, good swing-arm, good brakes, good suspension, good seat...

FZ6 (Real bike)


(starter Bike) FZ6R is Lame by comparison. Steel tuber frame, Adequate brakes, swing arm, suspension, seat.
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