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Old 07-09-2009, 05:05 PM   #1
don meyer
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Default downsize to mid size touring bike

At the age of 70 I'd like to downsize from a Goldwing to a mid size metric bike. I want to buy a bike that is easy to moneuver at low speed. I am looking at Suzuki Boulevard, Kawasaki vulcan 900 & Yamaha 1100.

Which would you all recommend & why?........thanks Don
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Old 07-09-2009, 05:11 PM   #2
12er
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I'd think about a BMW R1200r, your used to a boxer already and low COG. Its got the forward lean so your lower back wont be beat to hell by a cruiser and with wide bars for easy turning. Its lighter than a cruiser and still has hard luggage if you choose. Will out hustle the wing and your two options above by far but still offers a mellow smooth power curve and abs, heated grips, adjustability etc etc. Stop by and take a demo ride, if you like it pick up a couple year old offering in decent shape and your set.

Last edited by 12er : 07-09-2009 at 05:15 PM.
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Old 07-09-2009, 05:42 PM   #3
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Take a look at the Gladius. Very nice bike, with some bags and a windscreen it would make a fun, easy handling, mid size cruiser.
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Old 07-09-2009, 05:49 PM   #4
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The Kawi 900 is a very nice looking bike. However, I agree with the above posters. Consider something like the BMW mentioned, or perhaps a Triumph Bonneville would suit you nicely.
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Old 07-09-2009, 07:11 PM   #5
don meyer
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I have owned 3 BMW's in my youth & find them too expensive now. I am looking for a used metric v-twin for less around $4,000.

All suggestions appreciated.......Don
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Old 07-09-2009, 07:30 PM   #6
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Quick search on cycle trader found a 04 r1150r with all options (windshield, custom seat, hard bags) for $4900 hence my initial suggestion being your coming from a wing.

But what kind of riding are you looking to be doing, how tall are you and how is your back? Bad back and foot forward controls are not friends. Are you still looking to do some touring? Do you live at elevation? Interested in looks, comfort, power?
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Old 07-10-2009, 02:40 AM   #7
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I will be just riding locally less than 100 mile. I did not realize forward controls were hard on your back. I appreciate that info for I have had 2 back operations & continue to have problems. I am 5' 9" tall.

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Old 07-10-2009, 05:01 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by don meyer View Post
I will be just riding locally less than 100 mile. I did not realize forward controls were hard on your back. I appreciate that info for I have had 2 back operations & continue to have problems. I am 5' 9" tall.

Don
As a physical therapist, I concur that forward controls are no good for persons with back problems (unless you augment with a lumbar backrest). The best ergonomic position is the horse rider position -- feet underneath you, knees slightly bent, gently lumbar curve, with shoulders nice and relaxed. It's funny because, depending on one's height, many of the H-D cruisers (Road King, Ultra Classic, etc.) put the rider in a relatively decent riding position. Maybe H-D actually knows something after all...
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Old 07-10-2009, 09:01 AM   #9
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Those are all cruisers, but if you are open to standards, I'd say check out a used Kawasaki 650R or Z750S. You could possibly find one for around $4K.
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Old 07-10-2009, 09:27 AM   #10
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In the Cruiser world a standard sporster may be your only ergo option, but they are top heavy. Though at 5'9 you may be able to make other options work. Just a lot of trying on to do and making note of your back alignment (you want something your feet can take some weight off if need be). The kawasaki 650's (EN, Ninja, versys) all offer a standard riding position with wide bars and reletively light weight. A Suzuki SV650 (not the s) with an aftermarket windshield would make a nice ride or an older used bandit 600, or Trent's z750s suggestion. Same with a honda nighthawk 750. Hit the shops and try on all you can, then once you like something hit craigslist or cycletrader and see what you can find in your price range. Not many bikes you can go wrong with nowadays as for reliablity and what not if the previous owner didnt soak it in warm salt water.
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