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Old 07-03-2008, 10:55 AM   #11
trenttheuncatchable
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Like Ken said, get a used Ninja 500. It'll carry your weight just fine, gets great gas mileage, and is plenty fast enough. The other option is a smaller cruiser, which might actually be cheaper to insure; Acecycleins could give you some actual numbers.
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Old 07-03-2008, 02:01 PM   #12
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I'm running with the 650 dual sports, Get a used KLR and the $99 tail bag. Best bargain out there and that tail bag can handle some gear. You'll feel right at home with a street legal dirt bike feeling ride (klr isnt going to jump a double). As for riding gear get a helmet that is DOT and Snell approved (stickers on the back) that is full face. Wear it around the shop for at least 20 minutes to make sure it fits well. I'd recomend a 3/4 length jacket and a similar pair of pants. Jeans are only good for 5mph then its skin graft time. Make sure you have gloves and some boots that wont fly off when / if you go down. Ankle coverage is key on the boots as they grind off easily.
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Old 07-05-2008, 09:25 AM   #13
lrredsoxfan06
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Originally Posted by Kenneth_Moore View Post
There is an engineering formula that can take frontal area, drag co-efficient, rolling friction, and a few other variable and come up with an accurate top speed for any given horsepower. But, obviously, it's nothing as simple as 1300cc's = 250 mph. For example: A Honda VTX with 1800cc's can barely make 100mph, a Honda CBX with 1000cc's can come close to 200mph.

While I'm all for the neato 250 Ninja for FNGs, I think you should go for something bigger, a 500 Ninja or it's equivalent if you're into a sportbike, or a 500-650 veritical twin (Triumph Bonneville, etc.) if you want a standard. Or, you might be able to find a used Dual Sport you could afford if you want to take a ride down a dirt road or non-technical trail from time to time.

Here's why I think you can skip the "Beginner Bike" phase: 3 years saddle time on the dirt. Unlike most riders, you aren't going to sh|t your pants the first time the rear wheel starts to slide. You've got all the bike handling skills and control muscle memory already in place. I wish the MSF had a full day of dirt riding in their course, dirt riders who transition to street tend to do really well (Hayden Bros, a bunch of others). Yes, the street is different and presents new challenges, but they are not the challenges that will get a total novice into trouble versus a seasoned dirt rider. You aren't going to drop your bike, are you? Wheelie into a ground loop? Fixate on a tree at the outside of a curve apex? Nah, I didn't think so.

Buying used bikes is not like buying used cars, where the price is the price without much variance. Spend some time looking, and you can find a gem at a ridiculous price, You'll find some guy who's old lady told him to get "that POS motorcycle out of the damn garage NOW!"

Gear: got a CycleGear store near you? I'm not saying necessarily to buy there, but it's a great place to see what's on the market and get a feel for quality versus price, leather versus textile, name-brand versus store brand. Once you narrow it down and get your sizes, buy there or online, depending on the price.

Insurance? Well, we have our own handy-dandy in-house Insurance Dude, Mr. Acecycleins, aka: Kirk. He may or may not cover your area, but he'll tell you what a good price should be. Be sure to have some smelling salts handy. 18 years old + motorcycle = GIGANTIC PREMIUMS!!! How about it Kirk, $800/month about right? (Just kiddin).
Good information, thanks a ton!
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Old 07-05-2008, 09:27 AM   #14
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Buying a used bike that you don't need full coverage on will save you a bundle on insurance. Liability coverage on bikes is pretty cheap.
What type of bikes don't need full coverage? What does full coverage consist of? What does liability coverage consist of?

Just trying to get some ideas because I want to be safe, but I want to save money.

Again, all help is appreciated.
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Old 07-05-2008, 09:30 AM   #15
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Buells are fairly expensive, and except for the Ulysses, might be too 'small' for someone 6'3".

We have a 'newbie' post floating around here somewhere that addresses bikes and gear.

You didn't say how far your commute was going to be. My advice for you: KLR650* or DL650 ('Wee-Strom') and Joe Rocket gear. Helmet: Find one that fits. Spend the money required to get the one that fits. I prefer a full-face hat.

Seeing that you are in Maryland, i should point out that your choice of bike should account for operation on the Interstates and other hi-speed routes. *The KLR might not be the best choice.

Good luck!
Here is Maryland, every day is different. The weatherman will say it will be 100 degrees tomorrow, and then it'll rain with high winds and be 65 degrees. After doing a little research, and with all the help, I think a textile jacket will work well.

Thanks for the help!
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Old 07-05-2008, 09:38 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by 12er View Post
I'm running with the 650 dual sports, Get a used KLR and the $99 tail bag. Best bargain out there and that tail bag can handle some gear. You'll feel right at home with a street legal dirt bike feeling ride (klr isnt going to jump a double). As for riding gear get a helmet that is DOT and Snell approved (stickers on the back) that is full face. Wear it around the shop for at least 20 minutes to make sure it fits well. I'd recomend a 3/4 length jacket and a similar pair of pants. Jeans are only good for 5mph then its skin graft time. Make sure you have gloves and some boots that wont fly off when / if you go down. Ankle coverage is key on the boots as they grind off easily.
A KLR650 would definitely be a good fit if I wanted to remain riding on the dirt. I'm trying to move away from the dirt as I already have 4 wheelers and dirt bikes to ride. I'm really looking for something sporty for the street.

Thanks though.
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Old 07-05-2008, 09:41 AM   #17
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Go get a used Suzuki DR650 for about $3000. It will go anywhere. It will get great mileage and the insurance will be under $400 a year for everything.
$400 yearly for insurance would be OUTSTANDING, but unfortunately, I'm in no need for an off road bike right now.

I wish a sports bike could be that cheap yearly.

Thanks for the advice though.
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Old 07-05-2008, 10:03 AM   #18
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We are not suggesting "off-road" bikes. Those are all street bikes, with a bit of ability to handle unpaved roads. The reason we suggest them is because they have (usually) more leg room than standards or sports bikes.
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Old 07-05-2008, 12:58 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by lrredsoxfan06 View Post
What type of bikes don't need full coverage? What does full coverage consist of? What does liability coverage consist of?

Just trying to get some ideas because I want to be safe, but I want to save money.

Again, all help is appreciated.
Full coverage insures the motorcycle against loss. Any time you have to borrow money to buy a bike the loaner will require full coverage. Liability insurance insures others if you damage them. This is required in all cases.
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Old 07-05-2008, 01:00 PM   #20
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Since you have a lot of dirt experience you should have no trouble handling a... tada..... SV650.
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