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Old 02-04-2013, 09:27 AM   #46
cug
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I don't think the riding school in Norway or Germany or anywhere for that matter can give you more than the idea how to do it right. Yes, I learned all these things you mentioned on a 5 hour back roads trip with the teacher (teacher on bike as well), and I think I did okay.

Did that prepare me better for riding than the freaking joke they do here in the US? Absolutely. Did that make me safe for a powerful bike with sensitive controls? Absolutely not. But I might just be a slow learner ...
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Old 02-04-2013, 09:41 AM   #47
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I always suggest a SV650 for new riders. Good, solid platform to start your riding on. For you, the V-strom 650 would be more your speed for what you are looking for. Same engine in both.

The best part is you can log some highway miles all day long and you won't grow out of it in a year. Bike and engine have been around for a long time. It's a v-twin with little in the way of vibes. There are a lot of bikes that have popped up in this range that could fit the bill as well, but I always go back to this fantastic 650...it never lets you down.
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Old 02-04-2013, 09:52 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by kirb View Post
I always suggest a SV650 for new riders.
Great suggestion. Just to add to this: the SV650, not the SV650S, because the latter comes with clip-ons and a more aggressive riding position that doesn't leave much leverage.

V-Strom 650 is nice, but really top heavy. Easy to drop. But a great touring bike if you can handle the size. The engine in both is the same and it is fantastic. And super reliable.
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:08 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by cug View Post
Great suggestion. Just to add to this: the SV650, not the SV650S, because the latter comes with clip-ons and a more aggressive riding position that doesn't leave much leverage.

V-Strom 650 is nice, but really top heavy. Easy to drop. But a great touring bike if you can handle the size. The engine in both is the same and it is fantastic. And super reliable.
The V-strom isn't all that bad for the man of the OP's size. 'top heavy' shouldn't be too much of an issue.
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:20 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cug View Post
I don't think the riding school in Norway or Germany or anywhere for that matter can give you more than the idea how to do it right. Yes, I learned all these things you mentioned on a 5 hour back roads trip with the teacher (teacher on bike as well), and I think I did okay.

Did that prepare me better for riding than the freaking joke they do here in the US? Absolutely. Did that make me safe for a powerful bike with sensitive controls? Absolutely not. But I might just be a slow learner ...
I dont mean that your an exerienced driver after 12-15hours, your stil a beginer, but you should have learnd throtlle and clutch control, VFR has som torq and power, but they are not sensitive powerbike, theyr actualy very civilised and easy controleble but thats just my opinion. vfr800 are a very comen beginer bike her, along with ER6,sv650,FZ6 etc
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:26 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by kirb View Post
The V-strom isn't all that bad for the man of the OP's size. 'top heavy' shouldn't be too much of an issue.
it was 5'10" and 235, right?

the issue will likely be inseam length, not mass. It doesn't take much to lose a strom, after all.
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:30 PM   #52
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vfr800 are a very comen beginer bike her, along with ER6,sv650,FZ6 etc
ER6, SV650 doesn't surprise me. Great beginner bikes in my opinion. FZ6 I would not take after riding one because of the over-aggressive steering geometry, and the VFR800 is just in a different league that has exactly none of the treats I like to see in a beginner bike.

But that doesn't mean it's not a bike for you as a beginner. Sure, it can work. I just think it's much more dangerous and much more likely to lead to a less desirable riding experience than a lot of the other bikes mentioned.

Back when I started, a 500 to 600cc twin was the typical beginner bike in Germany. Mainly used Kawa GPZ500, Suzuki GS500, then some single or four cylinder bikes thrown in that were pretty much in the same power, weight, and size category as the ones mentioned before.

The 250cc craziness I have only seen in the US, but that's partly because there aren't nearly as many good medium displacement bikes as there are in Europe. It's changing though. I like the new Honda 500cc line a lot. And even I fit fine on all of them with my 6' frame with long legs and arms.
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:35 PM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kirb View Post
The V-strom isn't all that bad for the man of the OP's size. 'top heavy' shouldn't be too much of an issue.
it was 5'10" and 235, right?

the issue will likely be inseam length, not mass. It doesn't take much to lose a strom, after all. once it tips beyond the point of no return, it sucks. Holding it up with a pillion is a Herculean feat.
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Old 02-05-2013, 02:53 PM   #54
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Yamaha FZ6R and Yamaha YZF-R6

Hey Everyone:
Thank you very much for the advice you have given. I am a bit confused on the Yamaha bikes that were mentioned however. I was told the Yamaha FZ6R would be a good beginner bike because it would not get me into trouble power wise and would be great for a person learning. I looked up the YZFR6 and is that bike not more a racing bike? would it not be more powerful than the FZ6R? I am looking to learn how to ride properly and get comfortable on a bike not kill myself. Thanks again for the advice.

Darren
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Old 02-05-2013, 03:47 PM   #55
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There are a number of posts here about the Yamaha series of bikes, so let me try to clear it up for you.

Once up on a time, Yamaha had two 600cc bikes: the YZF600R and the XJ6 Seca II. They eventually introduced the YZF-R6 as their supersport bike and continued to sell the YZF600R as a more street oriented, sport touring bike. The YZF-R6 remains in the lineup as the track-focused supersport bike used for homologation in AMA and World Supersport racing. The XJ6 was no longer sold in North America. In '04, the all-new aluminum framed, fuel injected FZ6 was introduced and soon the YZF600R was discontinued. The FZ6 was sold until 2009, at which point the most recent generation of the XJ6 was reintroduced to North America under the more familiar FZ6R name.

So, go back to the Yamaha site, and if you look at the current FZ6R, that is a very competent, modern, mildly tuned bike that has plenty of aftermarket support and would do you very well as a first bike.
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Old 02-05-2013, 03:48 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by dbk23 View Post
Hey Everyone:
Thank you very much for the advice you have given. I am a bit confused on the Yamaha bikes that were mentioned however. I was told the Yamaha FZ6R would be a good beginner bike because it would not get me into trouble power wise and would be great for a person learning. I looked up the YZFR6 and is that bike not more a racing bike? would it not be more powerful than the FZ6R? I am looking to learn how to ride properly and get comfortable on a bike not kill myself. Thanks again for the advice.

Darren
Not the R6. Definitely not the R6.

They were talking about the FZ6 and the FZ6R

The YZF is a street legal track weapon. Noooo touchy.
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Old 02-05-2013, 05:45 PM   #57
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I'm going to again re-iterate that you should start on a 250. Seriously, just buy one for a couple grand, learn to ride in a few months, then sell it for a couple grand. There is no risk to you.

A FZ6R is a heavy motorcycle. Yes it has a friendly, easy power band, but it's heavy, expensive, cheaply made, and probably not the bike you will want to keep for sport touring. Why waste the money?

For the first few months, your riding technique will matter more then whatever you actually want to do with your motorcycle, and the best thing to learn on is a cheap, light, flick-able 250.

I also think the Honda 500 series is a terrible choice just because it's brand new. You're going to spend 7 grand on a bike (after taxes and fees) just to learn? And it's not even the bike you really want anyway?

It seems like madness to me.

Trust me, learn to ride on a 250, you will know exactly what bike you want after a couple months, and you have a much better idea where to spend your hard earned cash on a bike you can keep for years.
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Old 02-06-2013, 08:21 AM   #58
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I agree with single. Forget what people tell you about out growing the 250, that is a bunch of crap. There are two things that I am sure of; you will probably drop your first bike at least once, if not more and you will learn how to really ride a bike well on a small one(250-350). You need a bike that handles well, is light in weight and has enough power to do the speed limit on secondary roads, but not so much that it gets you in trouble in the turns. I started riding in 1968 when most bikes were small and a CB750 was a big bike.
The point is that the foundation that you acquire now will serve you well for as long as you ride. Here is the advice I give new riders when they ask, although it is not what the young bucks want to hear. Buy a small(below 500cc) used bike, ride quiet back roads at first and ride them often, even if someone else needs to take the bike to them in the beginning. Get comfortable on the bike and how it handles, then start riding faster, find some curvy roads and practice, don't ride with other people at first because my slow through a turn is way over your head and the temptation too keep up with everyone else is pretty strong. Ride the bike for one year and you will be surprise how well you can keep up with other riders on larger bikes, then get something bigger if you want.
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Old 02-06-2013, 08:40 AM   #59
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Back in the ice ages when some of you guys learned to ride, there were 55mph limits, drum brakes, frames that flexed like rubber, and horrible bias ply tires. I was more terrified riding a 1978 XS400 at 60mph than I have ever been on a modern bike at 90.

Any of the 500s or ~70hp 650 twins and 600 fours mentioned here are perfectly serviceable beginner bikes (for a mature adult like the OP) and have plenty of handling and braking to manage the power that allows for 75mph interstate travel.

The worst feeling in the world is overtaking a car on the interstate at a snails pace while they ignore their blind spot and start to creep into your lane. I will never buy a bike that I intend to 'sport-tour' on that can't get me out of that situation with a twist of he wrist. As always, ymmv.
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Old 02-06-2013, 09:34 AM   #60
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Any of the 500s or ~70hp 650 twins and 600 fours mentioned here are perfectly serviceable beginner bikes (for a mature adult like the OP) and have plenty of handling and braking to manage the power that allows for 75mph interstate travel.
Agreed. That "250cc is it" is total overkill. What a beginner needs is a compact, easy to handle, non-aggressive steering, non-aggressive power producing bike with wide handlebars and a neutral, upright, comfortable seating position.

All this is to reduce the amount of attention the bike needs to get all attention and that tiny little bit of newly learned experience on the riding, not holding the bike under control.
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