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Old 10-23-2012, 03:58 PM   #46
Barnone
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I'd stay away from the pre 1980 CX500s. Many stator problems. Bitch to change out.
Ninja 250 is a good recommendation after you take the basic motorcycle riders class.
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Old 10-23-2012, 05:55 PM   #47
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Just out of curiosity I looked at Hartford, CT for ninja250s on craigslist. There's a ton of them! I have no idea if Hartford is near you.....I never thought about it, but fall is probably a great time to buy a bike in states where the winters are cold.
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Old 10-24-2012, 12:58 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by XS500RUS View Post
What 650s are those?
Yea it was an overstatement. The EX250 does have more HP than the Suzuki Savage 650 though, and the Buell Blast. Point is it works for highway work.
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Old 10-24-2012, 11:42 AM   #49
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I have a blast in the garage, its fun but nasty, half a sportster engine is NOT smooth, unless you are used to riding a paint shaker. On off clutch, lots of burn outs by mistake, ugly looking bike, not easy to work on, but for some reason it is sort of fun to ride.

I say get a used low mile TU250 for under $3000.00.
FI, bullet proof motor, 80 mpg, 320 pounds and comfortable even 2 up, easy to service, practical, nimble and fun.
It will run the interstate up to 80 or 85 mph, but not up hill.
A ninja 250 if you like that sort of bike, anything old will need lots of love and care, and parts.

Craigslist is your friend, I got a tw200 with 250 miles on it for $900.00 and a dr650 with 5000 miles for $1500.00, both were great bikes and great buys.
With a great buy, you have to jump quick.
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Old 10-24-2012, 03:35 PM   #50
sam handwich OP
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I stopped by a dealership today just to sit on a bunch of bikes and get a feel for different seat heights. Turns out I'm freakin short. Even the ninja 250 had me on tip toes. I guess I'm looking at cruisers after all! Hoping to find some that don't look quite so cruiser-ey. Yes, I'm difficult.

The honda rebel was my first bike and while it was fun I'm definitely looking for something with a bit more power.

I have a preconception of cruisers being not particularly nimble. True?
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Old 10-24-2012, 06:25 PM   #51
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I have a preconception of cruisers being not particularly nimble. True?
Pretty much. Though if you watch some video of police rodeos, you would never know it. An expert rider can do amazing things on a police Road King or Electraglide. I said earlier the Guzzi California is probably the best handling cruiser ever built, but I still wouldn't call it "nimble". It just means they have more lean angle available and will hold a line through a corner better than most other cruisers. "Nimble", to me, is a 175-250cc dirt bike.
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Old 10-24-2012, 07:24 PM   #52
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Might check out the yahama vstar 650 (but I'd be surprised if you could find a good used one in your price range). It's kind of too bad for folks who want something light, but a little more power than a 250 - all that is out there in cruisers is a 250 or jumping up to a 650 (and a lot more weight). Honda made a Rebel 450 back in the 80s....

It's not a good freeway bike, but I'm really enjoying my xt250 on twisties! Haven't had it on the dirt yet except for once on a dirt road - going to be taking a class soon. I think it's the lowest seat you can get in a dual sport.
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Old 10-24-2012, 07:38 PM   #53
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think about a hyosung gt250. seat might be a bit tall but looks better than a ninja and is cheaper. and do not forget you will be wearing moto boots when you ride which can add quite a bit of height over street shoes. mine are like an inch and a half. go back to the dealer and try on boots as as well as bikes and see how it feels.

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Old 10-24-2012, 08:11 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by MightyChosen1 View Post
My suggestion in that price range would be an Yamaha XS-650. The made them for around 15 years and parts are pretty easy to find reasonable. You should be able to find a decent one for $1500.


Do you plan on doing your own maintenance? I have to warn you tht an old bike can put a dent in your wallet fast . A local guy I know bought a nice old CB-750 for $700 but it had not been ridden in years. By the time He paid a local shop to go thru the carbs, mount two new tires and fix some electrical problems He was into the bike almost 2 grand.

And I'll second that notion, what else is there [apart from maybe a Guzzi 850 ?]

Done right, the old XS650 holds its own in any company!!
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Old 10-24-2012, 08:29 PM   #55
Transpomgr
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Originally Posted by cartejo5 View Post
My arse.................

Then in its hayday 1978



and now summer this year



Z650 - great choice, quickish, economical and just good fun.
Dammit! That looks exactly like my first bike! Made me tear up a little. Great choice, but I may be a bit biased by my first love.
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Old 10-24-2012, 08:30 PM   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sam handwich View Post
I stopped by a dealership today just to sit on a bunch of bikes and get a feel for different seat heights. Turns out I'm freakin short. Even the ninja 250 had me on tip toes. I guess I'm looking at cruisers after all! Hoping to find some that don't look quite so cruiser-ey. Yes, I'm difficult.

The honda rebel was my first bike and while it was fun I'm definitely looking for something with a bit more power.

I have a preconception of cruisers being not particularly nimble. True?
The seat height of the ninja 250 is actually 31", which is pretty tall. The Buell blast has a seat height of 27,5" (or amazingly 25.5" with the low seat option), which you might find more comfortable.
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Old 10-24-2012, 08:48 PM   #57
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How 'bout a 1996 EN500C LTD Kawasaki Vulcan?
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Old 10-24-2012, 10:03 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by sam handwich View Post
How 'bout a 1996 EN500C LTD Kawasaki Vulcan?
A friend of mine put about 16,000 miles on one in two years. I was told it was really more like a ninja 500 engine in a cruiser frame.
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Old 10-24-2012, 10:11 PM   #59
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as cruisers go I like the whole vulcan line. I had the vn750 vulcan for man years (1993) and it was a hoot to ride and looks pretty good (after I replaced the couch seat with a corbin)
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Old 10-25-2012, 02:46 PM   #60
Barnone
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Originally Posted by sam handwich View Post
How 'bout a 1996 EN500C LTD Kawasaki Vulcan?
Good choice. You should be good height wise. Rock solid motor and bike. Mine was the older model with belt drive and mag wheels which I prefer. Plenty of juice.
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