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Old 05-12-2004, 12:17 PM   #1
blindauer
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Default Re: New Rider

I highly recommend the Suzuki GS500. This was actually my second bike. My first, a Suzuki GZ250, had so little power that I was wanting more after only a few months. The GS500 should have enough to hold you a while, plus there are lots of parts available to soup 'em up if you want more power later. And, there are quite a few available on the used market. You should be able to get a pretty decent one for less than $2K.



Take an MSF course! It's by far the best thing you can do to be a safer rider.
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Old 05-12-2004, 12:18 PM   #2
gbrummett
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Default Dirt Bike

If you have a place to ride in the dirt buy a small dirt bike. Go to the local bike shops and sit on the different sizes and find one thatÂ’s comfortable probably somewhere between 50 to 250 cc range.



Start learning out in a deserted area riding in the dirt or on seldom used gravel roads. It's a much more forgiving environment to learn in both for you and the bike. When you make mistakes in the dirt they arenÂ’t as painful or expensive as on the street. I grew up on a small farm and am glad to have gotten this type of experience before switching to street bikes. When you get really comfortable with the dirt bike and get a little older then you will be ready for the 400 to 500cc street bike range.
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Old 05-12-2004, 01:26 PM   #3
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Default Re: New Rider

I can't speak to the GS500 but the Ninja500 miraculously struck me as both a terrific bike to learn on and fun as all get out for a veteran rider too. This opinion was reinforced by Buzglyd and others at the test. You would probably be wise to grab some dirt time first if that's an option, but for a street bike that is learner friendly that you'll want to keep for a long time, I strongly recommend the "little Ninja that could" as it came to be named.
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Old 05-12-2004, 01:27 PM   #4
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Default Re: New Rider

Your dad has probably given you the best advice of your life. If you value it the way he does, you will listen to him. VWW
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Old 05-12-2004, 01:33 PM   #5
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Default Re: New Rider

NINJA 250 bar none!!! Seriously dude, the Ninja 250 is all good. I'm 5'10" and 225 lbs and I'm just fine on it. It has a low seat height, peppy but forgiving motor, and is super light. It has everything a beggining rider could want. It's a sweet ride. You can find one used for super cheap, thrash it for a couple of years, and resell it for damn near what you paid for it.



There is also the adage, "it's better to ride a slow bike fast than it is to ride a fast bike slow." This definitely applies to the Ninja 250. It's not going to win you any drag races with bigger sport bikes, but stoplight to stoplight most cars don't stand a chance. You can rev it to 14000 rpm and still be within legal speeds. It's a fantastic bike. You won't find a better, cheaper, more rewarding option!



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Old 05-12-2004, 01:42 PM   #6
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Default Re: New Rider

Get that Benelli thing-a-ma-jig that Yosef just reviewed and when you're done scaring the crap out of yourself on it, I'll take it off your hands for a fair price.



Trust me!
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Old 05-12-2004, 01:53 PM   #7
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Default Re: New Rider

Get a Honda 100, or similar bike that you can thrash all day, and crash, without fear of damage to your body, or pocketbook. Don't get something that weighs 500 lbs, if you're 5 foot two, and weight 120 lbs.
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Old 05-12-2004, 01:59 PM   #8
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Default Re: New Rider

Get an inexpensive small displacement dual sport and have fun without worrying about what happens when you drop it. You won't be able to ride anything big, like a KLR650 or and XR650R, because of the height but there are a lot of smaller options out there. Just make sure that whatever you get is street legal (including tires), put oil and gas in it and go have fun.
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Old 05-12-2004, 02:41 PM   #9
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Default Re: New Rider

You're not trying to bait MR. ALLCAPS are you?
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Old 05-12-2004, 03:11 PM   #10
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Default Re: New Rider

The absolutely best way to learn to ride a motorcycle is to start with a relatively mild four stroke dirtbike. In addition to my street bikes, I have a Yamaha TTR250 (I had to beef up the suspension, but then I'm 195 lbs). Someone suggested a smaller dualsport, which I think is an outstanding idea. Buy it used, ride in the dirt a lot where you can push the limits of your skill (which is when you're really learning). If you dump it, no big deal. Ride the bike for a year or so, and you should be able to sell it for pretty much what you paid for it, and go from there.



My first bike was a Honda 400 (many years ago), which was a great starter bike, but I did want more bike within a year or so. If you start out with a dirtbike or dualsport, in a year or so I suggest you look more in the 600 - 750 cc range, which should keep you smiling for a long time. Good luck, and keep being smart about it (sounds like you're off to a good start).
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