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Old 12-13-2002, 10:53 AM   #11
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Default Vote #2 for the SV650S

I've almost gotten mine to do a term paper for me.
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Old 12-13-2002, 10:55 AM   #12
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Default Re: MO Readers ask which bike to buy...

Is the NightHawk sold under a different name in canada? Looking at Honda canada's models page I don't see it listed.
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Old 12-13-2002, 10:57 AM   #13
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Default Re: MO Readers ask which bike to buy...

For Renato, the Euro-version CB750 is a lot more compact and handy than the North American Nighthawk 750 -- I'd definitely look twice at that bike. Great ergos, reliable as lemon trees in the Algarve, great handling, roomy enough for two.

For JavaDragon, I agree with the previous post regarding the Katana 750. For a little more punch, though, you might check out a first gen ('95-'97) Triumph Sprint. Plenty of power, great handling, and with a 6.6 US gallon fuel capacity, more than adequate for the distances you describe. Extremely comfy, but not a "tourer," plenty of handling capability, but without the splash-boy graphics. And plenty to keep you entertained well into multiple seasons.
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Old 12-13-2002, 11:03 AM   #14
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Default Re: MO Readers ask which bike to buy...

Check http://www.hondamotorcycles.com to see one. I guess Canada dealers don't sell em, but maybe they can get you one if you ask at the dealer. Not sure really but may be worth a try.
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Old 12-13-2002, 11:14 AM   #15
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Default Re: MO Readers ask which bike to buy...

This might sound odd but for JavaDragon, I suggest he look into a used VX800. It's comfortable, has 170+ mile range, good torque and very affordable for a re-entrant rider.
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Old 12-13-2002, 11:28 AM   #16
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Default Re: MO Readers ask which bike to buy...

Welcome to (or back to) motorcycling! You are facing some tough decisions because there are so many good motorcycles out there. Unfortunately, none of them do everything the best, so the only reasonable thing to do is to accumulate several motorcycles (one for two-up touring, one for sport riding, one for dirt, etc.)

Once you have resigned yourself to owning several motorcycles, you now have the much simpler task of deciding which to get first. I recommend making sure that the first bike is good for two-up riding. If you are married or in a serous relationship, it is imperative to get your partner on board early on to generate a mutual enjoyment of the sport. Two-up bikes don’t have to be big and powerful, but it doesn’t hurt. It should be well sprung – check the manufacturer’s specifications to figure out how much load a bike can handle. (By the way, the definition of "good for two-up" changes with time – my wife and I used to do 350 mile days on a Honda 360, but we were 25 years younger and a whole lot lighter back then!)

BMWs have a good reputation as "sport touring" motorcycles, and I have an old airhead Beemer that has served my wife and I well for over 80,000 miles. They tend to be somewhat tall, so they might not work for JavaDragon, but Renato would love a tall GS.

I recommend starting with a used bike – most modern bikes (especially the Japanese models) are very reliable and are not much of a risk to buy used. Test ride everything you can, see what feels comfortable, and buy it if you like it. If it works out, great – if not, sell it and get something else. Or, you can do like a lot of us do - DON’T sell it and get something else anyway!

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Old 12-13-2002, 11:40 AM   #17
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Default Re: MO Readers ask which bike to buy...

Can only give you my experience....

My first bike was a Yahama 600R, plenty of power yet not hard core and easy to ride for long trips, not as radical seating for a sports bike, and the passenger seating is comfy enough (So I was told) Somthing to consider anyway, a much under appriciate bike, still sold today, and can be picked up well in your price range.

My current bike is a Triumph 600TT, not so far removed from my old Yamaha, again the seating and riding position is comfortable and passenger friendly. You may want to also check out a Triumph daytona super sport, a friend I have loves it and does Long rides every other month or so.

Other experiences are Cruise Bikes, I recently rode a Yamaha 1100. Initially it felt great, relaxed and comfortable. But after a while my feet got cold, as did my er... family jewels... and my back started cramping. This was on a nice but cool sunny day in Sothern California.

My advice, test ride lots and see what fits, it's such a personal thing too. Have fun!

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Old 12-13-2002, 12:38 PM   #18
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Default KTM, BMW, etc. - Singles and Twins

Renato, I would steer you to a KTM 640 LC4 Adventure for trail and a KTM Duke II for street. Either will take all you can dish out and ask for more. Really, any of the KTM 640 LC4 series, i.e. Dualsport, Supermoto, etc. would be great for you. As they are all fundamentally the same.

JavaDragon, if your 6 hour trek to civilization runs through dirt roads or anything similar, I would suggest an enduro from KTM, BMW, etc. new or used. At 5'-7" finding one that lets your feet touch the ground might be difficult. If it is paved all the way, then you couldn't beat an SV650s or an R1100/1150, but cruisers like the Suzuki Marauder (800cc v-twin, shaft drive, low seat height, easy maintenance, etc.) would be hard to beat.

As you can tell, I am biased towards singles and twins. I like to keep it simple when it comes to motorcycles and I like the power delivery and sound of these bikes. Gentlemen, good luck with your selection and ride safe.
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Old 12-13-2002, 12:45 PM   #19
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Default Impractical choice for Java Dragon

I'm going to weigh in with a slightly less practical choice for you. A Ducati ST2 seems like it could be the bike for you. The two-valve motor makes great midrange power. If you're handy with a wrench you can adjust the valves yourself. A slightly used model can easily be had in your price range.

Prior to 2001 the bike came with fully adjustable suspension, after 2001 non-adjustable.

It comes with factory hardbags, outlet for electric vests, and it makes better noises and will put a smile on your face far more than the practical choices. It's great handling and fast and comfortable for two people.

It also get 45 mpg and has a 5.5 gallon tank. Dealers are probably few and far between for you which would be the one downside.

My ST4 has been totally reliable and the ST2 is simpler mechanically.
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Old 12-13-2002, 12:46 PM   #20
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Default Re: MO Readers ask which bike to buy...

Buy an '03 SV650s this spring. It's a great bike whether you're 5'7 or 6'1, and you'll really appreciate the fuel injection in Canada. It satisfies all your requirements. They go for $6,300; lower if you haggle. Good luck!
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