New rider!

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New rider!

#1 Unread post by jon_p » Wed Jul 22, 2009 11:55 pm

I have never ridden a motorcycle before. I've ridden mopeds and the like, and have been on the back of motorcycles before. Both my mother and her husband ride every weekend, and occasionally do police escorted rides in huge groups, or just ride with their friends. They know a lot of riders and there seems to be a big riding community in Orlando! I have wanted to get my motorcycle license for some time now and am going to sign up for the safety course at the local harley shop in the next week or two. After that I'm going to look for a bike so that I can ride with my mom and stepfather. They both have a lot of riding experience and are very knowledgeable riders, and have given me a ton of advice. They are also more than willing to show my the ropes so I can gain experience riding. I feel that getting my first experience on the road with a few experienced riders is a good start! So anyway, I'm looking for a starter bike and I think I want to get into riding a sportier bike rather than a cruiser. I would be riding up in CT mostly (though living in orlando currently) and I've heard the suzuki gs500 has problems starting in cooler weather so I was looking more toward a Ninja250. Those were really the only two legitimate options I've seen. I also read up on the suzuki sv650 as maybe being ok for beginners but I don't really know. Im pretty much leaning on the ninja as I think its the least expensive and probably the safest choice. What do you guys think?

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#2 Unread post by wrecks » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:08 am

:tricycle: Welcome! Both the Ninja and the SV are good choices.
cag 50cc (pit bike)
91 Ninja 250 (sold)
2k6 GSXR 600 (taken out by cager)
2k6 XT 225
2k8 CBR 1000rr
2k9 DRZ 400sm

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#3 Unread post by blues2cruise » Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:30 am


Ninja 250 is a great bike.

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#4 Unread post by Wrider » Thu Jul 23, 2009 2:28 am

:welcome: to the site!
As far as bikes starting in cold weather. Almost all bikes have that trouble stock. I know my sister's Ninja 250 is almost impossible to get warmed up to ride when it's under 50 degrees outside. Don't know on the GS500, only have experience with one in Phoenix in +70 degrees.
As for the SV650. If you get the 03 or later years they switched to fuel injection, which is definitely a good thing.
All in all, since you have a basic concept of how a bike handles (mopeds) and there are others around you with high levels of experience, I'd suggest the 03 and later SV650 to you.
Have owned - 2001 Suzuki Volusia
Current bike - 2005 Kawasaki Z750S
MMI Graduation date January 9th, 2009. Factory Certifications in Suzuki and Yamaha

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#5 Unread post by jaskc78 » Thu Jul 23, 2009 7:09 am

Howdy and welcome. I've got a ninja 250 and it's awesome. so long as you don't go into it expecting to ride it from CT to Orlando it'd make a great first bike, but i've never heard anything bad about the Suzukis, either. i will tell you, though, that fuel injection would be a HUGE plus in my book because the ninja doesn't much like being cold--and i'm in Tucson so "cold" is a relative term here. it starts easy enough but until it gets fully warmed up it doesn't like quick throttle inputs or staying running during deceleration, although i think that may be partly due to my idle setting.

Go sit on each of them and buy whichever one makes you smile the biggest. i weigh about 230 lbs in my gear and the ninja doesn't have a problem moving me around town so don't worry about engine size so much unless (like i said) you plan to use it for extended rides or sustained highway speeds. good luck with it all and you might get some good opinions down in the brand forums, too, if you want to ask there.
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Currently waiting on a new hip before I can get a new bike.

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#6 Unread post by PioneerUrban » Sat Jul 25, 2009 7:08 pm


I recommend that you go and sit on A LOT of bikes, before you choose.

It took me buying three different bikes, before I finally found the one that was right for me. I have a thread on it further down on the first page.

You have to be comfortable on your bike, otherwise you will have a hard time learning to ride.
Current Ride:

2005 Honda Rebel 250

Used to own:

1992 Kawasaki Ninja 250: Sold
2001 Kawasaki Eliminator 125: Sold

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#7 Unread post by zeligman » Sat Jul 25, 2009 11:40 pm

the hard part is that 'sitting' on a bike doesn't really cut it - as a new rider, even with the M endorsement, the dealers would not let me test drive any bikes. So... the only bike I actually rode prior to purchase was a honda rebel. I'm a big guy and the forward controls felt way more comfy sitting than the straight up and down.

I ended up buying a beautiful 02 suz volusia vl800, that i have been riding for two weeks now, and find that my knees -especially the right one, aches horribly after about an hour - all the braking. It's also possible that it is a function of the age of my knees as well - LOL

so, gotta figure out what to do about that.

so, see if you can actually RIDE some of the bikes you're looking at... it might help save you some ache and $$ in the long run :)

just my .02

and, WELCOME! coming to these forums has almost been as much fun as starting to ride - the people here are helpful, experienced, and a lot of fun!
still recovering - back to crutches, then walking with a stick, then running - then hopefully riding again!

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#8 Unread post by Velocity » Sun Jul 26, 2009 9:23 am

Yeah, sitting on the bike is a poor substitute for actually riding it, preferably for more than five minutes. Sitting on it can help you rule out some bikes as just utterly uncomfortable and unsuitable, though.

Reading some reviews can give you perspective on what they're like to ride (seat comfort, vibration, braking performance, etc.), but that depends on the quality of the review, and is of necessity filtered through the reviewer's own preferences, which may or may not coincide with yours.

Still, it's a start (sitting on the bike). And from the dealer's point of view, even that represents some risk, and having some faith in you. I forget which web site I was on in the last twenty-four hours where a dealer had a bike that had tipped over in the showroom, had had to replace a mirror and a scratched muffler, and could no longer sell the bike as new.
Current ride: 2007 Yamaha Virago 250

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