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deneb 09-04-2011 02:10 PM

How tall is to tall?
I'm 6'9 and recently spent a good deal of time looking into road bikes (the kind with pedals) only to find that the proper fit would cost me more than I really wanted to spend. I suspect motorcycles are less bit less sensitive to this kind of thing but thought I'd ask sooner rather than later this time.

I'd basically like to know how tall is to tall and what accommodation / extra expenses does rider my height encounter. I have read that DP bikes are a good place to start for taller riders but it was the mention of the Bandit 600 that peaked my interest. I'm looking more towards commuting and don't have much interest in dirt other than to learn on it. Any suggestions, recommendations or insights would be appreciated.

Easy Rider 2 09-04-2011 02:21 PM


Originally Posted by deneb (Post 266077)
I'm 6'9

I'm looking more towards commuting

insights would be appreciated.

How about an inseam insight ?? :cool:

How you end up fitting depends, in part, on whether you have long legs or a long torso.

How far is your commute......and on what kinds of roads ??

The "standard" advice pretty much applies to everybody; that is, find a location nearby that offers the basic MSF course and take it FIRST......then worry about buying a bike after that.

When it comes time, visit dealers and SIT-test all kinds of different models. If you have cash in hand (or look like you do), you might even get some test rides. That won't happen if you don't already HAVE your motorcycle endorsement.

And last but not least, there are MANY other discussions already on here about "what should I get for a first bike". Most of THAT "wisdom" applies to everybody too.

deneb 09-04-2011 04:07 PM

I can get away with a 36 inseam on the pants but the true inseam (common when fitting for a bicycle and measured from split to heel) would be 41.5. My torso is fairly short by compassion but my arms are pretty long. I weight in around 185 and lanky is generally the word of choice.

As for the commute, it would be of various lengths but rarely over 40 miles round trip. Mostly country roads but all are asphalt and fairly well maintained. Interstates would be rare and avoidable but I would like the option. Its possible I may move and travel in the city circles at some point in the future but I much rather learn on the back roads first.

The MSF coerce is definitively on the to do list and is something I plan to do wither or not I actually end up buying a bike at all. Although I believe the bike provided during the course is on the small side. Any good way to work around that or is it more of a non issue?

I'm actually working in Alaska this summer and there isn't a bike shop to get a 'feel' for things. Currently I'm mainly trying to get an sense if this will work and what my options maybe for when I get back. Most everything I've read points me more toward a mid size bike to start with, but I may be overly prone to believe a taller guy on a 250 isn't the most ideal arrangement as well. The real concern is when a bicycle is stretched out to fit me, the cost sky rockets and I'm hoping to avoid that on a motorcycle. If a modification or two can make a big difference on a used bike then I'm happy to go that route but if a custom made frame or the like is require then I'm out.

Thanks for the feed back

Easy Rider 2 09-04-2011 04:34 PM


Originally Posted by deneb (Post 266081)
Interstates would be rare and avoidable but I would like the option.

Any good way to work around that or is it more of a non issue?

but I may be overly prone to believe a taller guy on a 250 isn't the most ideal arrangement as well.

Best to avoid Interstates during your first riding season regardless of what bike you have. A smaller one would make for less temptation.

Most folks don't have a serious problem with the bikes at MSF.
You can PAY for a slightly different course at a Harley dealer and get a bigger bike to train on.

All 250 bikes are not created equal. The Suzuki GZ 250, for instance, is a cruiser style with "forward" controls.

And now it's probably time for ME to shut up.......because I really can't appreciate your situation because I am at the OTHER end of the spectrum.......with a 28" inseam......and often can't reach the ground.

Do read the other new rider threads, please.

czsummy 09-04-2011 10:01 PM

klr 650 in the threads before that seems to be the best bike for tall people, i'm 6'3 i ride i ninja 500r, my friend is 6'6" he rides a gsxr 600, but dual sports give a nice upright seating postion with the 90 degree leg bend

pushrod 09-06-2011 06:51 AM

deneb, most "Dual Purpose" bikes are not really designed for off-road. They are the two-wheel equivalent of SUVs.

That being said, you will probably find that the KLR or DL 450/650 bikes will fit you better. They are a bit buzzy at highway speeds, but otherwise are very capable bikes.

The only 'street bikes' I can think of that have your kind of leg room are the Harleys with forward controls, especially the Dyna Wideglide, and the BMW R1100S Boxer Cup Replika. No kidding! A buddy has one, and the seat is WAY up there!

First things first, though. Get the MSF course out of the way.

And, welcome to the site!

The Spaceman 09-06-2011 07:16 AM

The HD Dyna Wide Glide used to have the longest seat to peg reach of any bike sold in the US. Not sure if its still true.

deneb 09-06-2011 11:14 AM

Thanks for all the input and the warm welcome.

Its nice to know there where some of my options may lie and that a DP maybe more of what I was looking for than I initially thought. At first glance many of the taller riders in the forms seemed to focus on 900+ bikes. I guess its more common to learn when one is younger and have the cc grow along with the height.

I know I'll be in a better position once I take the MSF course and have chance to go sit on a few, but as that is at least another month away, I did have one more general question that I like to hear a knowledgeable opinion or two on. Given my height and that I don't really see myself ever getting a 900+ bike would a buy once and done approach (like a naked 600ish) be a reasonable approach or should I just get that out of my head and opt to trade up from a smaller DP bike as the budget allows? In a more general scene I guess what I'm asking is: are ridding skills roughly more related to familiarity with a bike and the riding position or is it more of once you learn the basics things are pretty much the same from the beginners perspective kind of thing?

Oh and can anyone recommend a place where I might be able to find gear in my size? Mail order with a great return policy is pretty much the standard fair with me and I was just wondering knew of a good place to start the search.

Thanks again!

pushrod 09-06-2011 11:29 AM

The engine size (in cc's) is secondary to the type of engine, and the bike it's in.

We generally advise 'newbies' to start with a pre-owned small (size and engine power) bike. Why? You'll probably drop it as you learn to ride, so a small used bike is cheaper to fix. Especially if it's a naked, so there is less plastic to buy.

The lower-powered bikes are recommended to reduce the chance of the 'rapid acceleration'-related problems.

That being said, if you get a large displacement single cylinder or twin, you will have more of a tractor motor, which is 'friendlier.'

Your particular problem is that your size puts you out of the smaller bikes.

If you have the maturity, and full control of your right wrist, you can safely ride any bike made. It's then a money question.

The above comprises all sorts of generalities, if you didn't already note that.

AFA clothing: You are going to have to look around. I have no experience with 'Tall' sizes. Look at each vendors 'Return Policies'.

Hopefully our freakishly large comrade, "12er" will chime in here. From what I understand, he shops in the 'Kodiak' section of the clothing stores.

Easy Rider 2 09-06-2011 02:12 PM


Originally Posted by deneb (Post 266138)
that I don't really see myself ever getting a 900+ bike would a buy once and done approach

So.......there IS the problem with most new riders. Too many pre-conceived notions. :rolleyes:

The only riders I know who did a "one and done" are those who had a BAD crash and never went back.

There are a few bikes with 900 cc twin engines that aren't really all THAT big.........and a really LOT in the 750-800 class.

Point IS.......don't automatically rule out anything, especially as your "next" bike. Suzuki makes a nice medium cruiser M-50 or C-50.

Get something you can live with to train on; that might be a 250 or it might be a 750. Keep an open mind.

The other common disease of new riders is over-thinking everything. It looks like you have a touch of that too.

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