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Old 10-28-2008, 11:18 AM   #1
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Default New member/new bike advice needed...

New member here looking for some advice for a new bike...

A bit about myself...I consider myself a fairly new rider (been riding since Oct 2007, and only about 1000+ miles under belt). I just moved to Florida from Maine and had to sell my 2002 Honda Shadow ACE unfortuantley. This was my first bike and really liked it, though I wasn't big on the chain maintenance and stock seat got old after a few miles. It fit my build ok (6'0", 178lbs) as well. I mostly rode (and plan to ride) non-highway roads, with most being fairly smooth (especially here in Gainesville/Alachua, FL...very nice places to ride around here).

Anyway...I've been looking at mid-size cruisers again, and definitely would rather have a shaft or belt vs. chain, and don't really need/want something massive or super fast. I do like speed when needed (passing, etc), but I enjoy just cruising around...I also am not sure if having an air-cooled bike vs. liquid here in Florida is a big deal or not. It sure get's hot...

Given my size and experience, I don't want to get over my head with my next bike. I wanted to see if anyone would have any advice as to what might be a good fit or comparable to my ACE.

So far, I have done some online research, and these caught my eye:

- Yamaha VStar 950
- Yamaha VStar 650 Custom or Classic (I know of a used 2006 for $4,700)
- Honda Shadow or Aero 750
- HD Sportster 883 Low

I know of a couple dealerships around here where I can probably go sit on/check out these in person, so that's my next move. Has anyone had any time on these models, and care to share any input?

Just from research, I really like the 950. Not sure if I want/can go the new route a moment price wise, and wasn's sure re: size of engine/weight (i.e. if it would be too much)...though I really like the styling. I've read several reviews/articles too, and they all seem pretty positive. The VStar 650 Custom/Classics seem nice, and as listed above, I know of a mint used one available locally. They remind me a lot of the Shadow I had. The Aero seems pretty much like what I had in the ACE, except for having a shaft drive, and engine difference. I've always liked the Sportster, but have yet to check them out...

Anyway, any input would be great. I plan on going out this weekend to sit on some, so hopefully I'll have some good luck...

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Old 11-11-2008, 10:52 AM   #2
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Location: Boynton Beach, FL
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I'm VERY happy with my 2008 Honda Shadow Aero! Take a look:
$7250 out the door brand new...

I am going to change the seat - buying a Mustang seat, and then the bike will be just PERFECT! I love Honda - cars, bikes, generators...doesn't matter, they run great!

I live in Palm Beach - wish I could ride up in your neck of the woods...all the snowbirds are here now, and it's like riding through a war-zone.

Keep us posted.
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Old 11-11-2008, 11:31 AM   #3
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Wow, that bike is beautiful! I'm actually looking at a used 2006 Aero right now that's about $6,500. A bit pricey for used, but it's at dealership...hell, going new might be worth it if I'm going to end up paying that much anyway. I love the color/two tone on your Aero...congrats...
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Old 11-11-2008, 11:40 AM   #4
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You've picked a segment of bikes that are overlooked buy today's "bigger is better" consumer. Good for you. Looking to the used market may not get you the shiney new toys available today, but you will find something you like for less money. I know you were in the 650-950 cc range, BUT- if you back up a few years you may be able to get slighly more motor for the same or less money than a new bike. Like: Honda VTX1300 or VT1100. The VTXs are just now hitting the $5000 and under territory and the VT1100s are coming in at $3800 for real good examples. Kawasaki VN900/VN1600s. Vulcans are great bikes. The 900 is newer, but used models should be hitting the market around $6000 and under and 1500s are easily in the $5-6000 area. Moto Guzzi has the California models. If you're not familiar think Italian Harley. They are an old company with great history and the bikes are unique. They make 1000/1100 cc bikes that will sell for $4k or in that area. Suzuki made the orginal Intruder for 20yrs. An early 2000 model can be had for $3500. The 1400 is a better motor than the 800, but both have good torque so it's your choice. Yamaha's classic Virago 1100, too. Nearly bullet-proof design. Also, you can start looking for mid 90s Evo Harleys if you pony up some $7-8k.
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