Ladies - Women's first bike choice

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amysue529
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#161 Unread post by amysue529 » Sun Apr 05, 2009 11:47 pm

MZ33 wrote:
My boyfriend has been riding for years and incessantly insists that I start out on a 600.
Get a better boyfriend. Seriously. What right does he have to insist on what you ride? Does he like to control everything else in your life, too? Your car? Your clothes? Is he of the disposition that it's his way or no way? What gear does he wear, by the way?

It's tough to be a newbie when you are surrounded by bad advice. You want to be able to depend on them for help and pointers, but you have to be able to trust what they are telling you. It helps to be armed with a little more information: read the Sticky about newbies and 600 cc sportbikes in the Newbie Forum. And FYI, the highest crash rate for new riders were for those that were taught by their friends. Those rates were higher even than those who taught themselves. My guess is that peer pressure and the illusion of expertise have something to do with that. The best thing you can do for yourself is take lessons from a professional instructor, so take the Motorcycle Safety Foundation Beginner Course. They may even have a 250 Ninja or 500cc Buell for you to learn on.

Even if you lower the heavier sportbike, it will be top heavy, and that will be harder for you to handle than for your guy friends to handle. I have a Versys, and though it is 100 lbs lighter than our V Star cruiser, it is much harder for me to move around in the garage. If I had absolutely no experience, it would be a disaster.

When you are ready to sell your Ninja, there will be somebody ready to buy it. It won't lose much value in a year or two.

Okay, I've said my piece. Now for my betters: Lion Lady! Blues! Coffee!! And the rest of you experienced riders! Step up to the plate here and weigh in before I mix any more metaphors!! :laughing:

But above all, amysue,
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Trobairitz
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#162 Unread post by Trobairitz » Tue Apr 07, 2009 10:11 am

Thanks for the encouragement Lion Lady. We are leaning that way but they are so hard to find used and we aren't sure we want to spend the money on new.

Since my post, unexpected medical bills have delayed us for a few months on purchasing a bike for me, but I'll still get there, just might be next spring.

For now I'll enjoy the sunshine riding pillion on hubby's Triumph. Sigh.
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amysue529
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#163 Unread post by amysue529 » Tue Apr 07, 2009 6:06 pm

WELL.... I think that that was a little harsh. I said my boyfriend insisted that I wanted to start out on a 600. NOT that he was forcing me. I am a very independent woman and No, he does not control anything in my life. I do what I want to, when I want to, his approval is not needed. I just looked to him for advice since I have never rode and he has been riding for a while

Thanks for the advice though, I have decided to trust my instincts and buy a 2008 250 ninja. Thanks girls!
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MZ33
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#164 Unread post by MZ33 » Wed Apr 08, 2009 8:01 am

It was harsh on purpose. I have seen many women justify their s.o.'s aggressive stance as "concern". It was more important to me to give you some fierce female backup in case that would help jolt him (and perhaps you) into considering an alternative. Glad it isn't necessary.

Besides, as I said, there are others, such as Lion Lady, who can write an excellent treatise on the finer points of newbie vs. experienced, and male vs. female, riding techniques.

But ride on, and enjoy!

M.
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"Our" first bike choice

#165 Unread post by Thistleback » Tue Apr 14, 2009 10:41 pm

My husband has ridden off an on most of his life. I only rode for a short time in my late teens, then not again until we bought scooters a couple of years ago. I have put a lot of miles on, just around town of course. I love riding, and have been wanting a bigger bike for a long time. With the economy the way it is, we can't swing buying two new bikes this year, so my husband, bless his heart, said we can sell the scooters to buy me a 250. I'll ride on my own for a year, then next year I can move up to a bigger bike (and we'll get two new ones). I wanted a Rebel 450, but hubby wanted me to start smaller. I consented, as I pick my battles, and besides, I'm no spring chicken, and not as strong as I used to be. Anyway, I'm thrilled that he is willing to sell both scooters to get me a new ride! What a guy! 8)

I'm looking at a Yamaha Virago (or V-star) 250. The local dealership is getting last year's trainers back from the motorcycle safety class, and they will sell them for $2995 with full warranty. As long as they haven't been down hard, I don't see any downside to that, do you? They would only have a couple hundred miles on them.

What do you all think?
[b][size=117]Thistleback[/b][/size]

2005 Yamaha Zuma - Sold
2005 Yamaha Virago 250 - Sold

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[b][size=117]'Red Sonja' 1995 Yamaha Virago 750[/size][/b]

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#166 Unread post by MZ33 » Fri Apr 17, 2009 6:19 pm

Have you taken the Motorcycle Safety Foundation course yet?? There are usually 250cc bikes of several makes and models there, and if you are interested in riding a particular kind, they may be able to accomodate you. You could actually learn the basics on the kind of bike you are thinking about purchasing.

I took the course on the Honda 250cc Rebel, and discovered that it wasn't to my liking--not for puchase. Seat was like a padded plank! My girlfriend, on the other hand, took the class on a 250cc Suzuki but failed the test. When she re-took the test at MSF, she rode a Rebel and just loved it. Passed, then went out and bought one.

If you haven't taken the MSF Basic Riders Course yet, please do--don't rely on your husband's riding experience to teach you. The pro's are not just excellent riders, they are practiced teachers with a professional curriculum. It's an important difference.
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amysue529
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#167 Unread post by amysue529 » Sun Apr 19, 2009 9:26 pm

Well I went out and bought my first bike last week. I have had so much fun on it in just a few days time! I did encounter my first real hate for twisties though. Went down hard on Saturday. My brand new 250 ninja isn't so pretty anymore :frusty: Any pointers on twisties from the ladies? (for after i get it fixed and heal of course) [/b]
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MZ33
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#168 Unread post by MZ33 » Tue Apr 21, 2009 9:26 am

Sorry to hear about your crash! How badly were you hurt?

Twisties are not newbie friendly, I know that. Try re-posting this question on the newbie forum that we have here. You'll hit a wider audience.

:getwellsoon:
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amysue529
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just call me crash!

#169 Unread post by amysue529 » Tue Apr 21, 2009 10:41 am

Well a lot of scrapes, bruises and soreness but nothing major. Now my bike on the other hand, not so pretty anymore. im taking it in for its estimate today. Hopefully they don't total it :oops:
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#170 Unread post by Trobairitz » Tue Apr 21, 2009 6:40 pm

AmySue529, please tell me you wear ATGATT?

Either way, I am glad you are ok and hope you are up and riding soon and that the bruises and scrapes aren't too bad.

I am still waiting on my first bike and not looking forward to gauging how fast to take twisties. Much easier from the pillion I am guessing.

Take care and ride safe.
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Yes, I took the MSF course and passed

#171 Unread post by Thistleback » Tue Apr 21, 2009 10:33 pm

[quote="MZ33"]Have you taken the Motorcycle Safety Foundation course yet?? There are usually 250cc bikes of several makes and models there, and if you are interested in riding a particular kind, they may be able to accomodate you. You could actually learn the basics on the kind of bike you are thinking about purchasing.
quote]

Yes, I took the course on a Rebel and passed. I have been shopping a little for a Virago 250 - I like the way it sits a little better. I'd also like to entertain the notion of a Honda Shadow Spirit though . . .

We got the scooters sold, so now I'm doing some serious shopping.

Paula
[b][size=117]Thistleback[/b][/size]

2005 Yamaha Zuma - Sold
2005 Yamaha Virago 250 - Sold

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[b][size=117]'Red Sonja' 1995 Yamaha Virago 750[/size][/b]

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#172 Unread post by TinkTime00 » Tue Apr 28, 2009 3:50 pm

I'm a newbie rider. I've taken (and passed) my MSF course about a month ago and couldn't wait to get a bike. A cruiser isn't my style and I don't think I'm up for a sport bike yet. I liked the looks of a "standard" and I appreciated the up-right feel of it. I did a little research, mainly looking at what was for sale in the used department within my price range, and I did notice that a lot of the 250s were usually available (and often advertised as "great starter bikes").

I rode the Rebel during my course, but I didn't feel comfortable in the seat after 2 or 3 hours of riding. So, I knew I wouldn't enjoy it if I rode it for even longer. Our course had a few dirt bikes too, but I found those to be a little high for me. I'm a little over 5'7" w/ about a 31" inseam.

After looking around, I settled on a 2002 Kawasaki Vulcan 500 LTD. I was interesetd in the 750 too. And, even though I've only been licensened on it for under a month (and can only ride when the weekend comes) I've put close to 250 miles on it already! It's an amazing bike for me: it light enough to feel comfortable balancing and I can easily flat-foot it. Also, it's got a 6 speed transmission, so I feel a little better getting on the highway w/ it (although, I've only been on the highway for about 10 miles at a time). It'll even breeze past 70 mph w/o whining. And it's light enough to handle the counter-balancing of tight turns and u-turns.

Not saying that this bike is for everyone; it's just another opinion out there. Enjoy :)
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Ladies - I Found my Virago!

#173 Unread post by Thistleback » Tue Apr 28, 2009 11:37 pm

Found a Virago to bring home. Had it since last Thursday night. Had to make a 7-hour round trip after work to get it, but it's nice! It's a 2005 with !575 miles on it. A few small scratches, but really clean.

It's black - just like the picture I'm using for my avatar. Woo Hoo! I'm having fun! :roll2:
[b][size=117]Thistleback[/b][/size]

2005 Yamaha Zuma - Sold
2005 Yamaha Virago 250 - Sold

[img]http://i804.photobucket.com/albums/yy330/thistleback/P1020009.jpg[/img]
[b][size=117]'Red Sonja' 1995 Yamaha Virago 750[/size][/b]

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#174 Unread post by MZ33 » Wed Apr 29, 2009 7:40 am

:happybikeday:
to you both!!
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New to riding & a bit nervous...

#175 Unread post by Rachelleny » Tue May 12, 2009 10:00 am

Hi all,
I'm new to the forum (& motorcycling) but I didn't want to go to the newbie forum, as I'm looking for some female support.
I live in Manhattan- not exactly a great place to ride. Am 41 & have wanted a bike since I was about 24 but living in this city, not knowing anyone with a bike and being on the small side, I found excuses regarding why not to learn & get one.

But I've decided to embrace mid-life - I'm taking the MSF course in a month, getting my learner's permit this week or next & am already looking into bikes.

Here's where the support comes in... how difficult is it when you first learn to ride by yourself in one of the busiest cities - as I will need to in order to get out to the countryside... I'm most likely getting a 250, or if larger it will be a Buell Blast or Boulevard S40 as they are built small (I'm 5' & 115). I'll be a true weekend rider, as public transport is best in this city. Am I crazy to take this on by myself? Friends & family all think I'm crazy...

I'm really an independent, secure & confident person - but I've never even driven a stick shift car, or a moped & haven't driven a car in years... I know I can, I know I can...

Thanks for listening :)

Rachelle

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#176 Unread post by TinkTime00 » Tue May 12, 2009 10:22 am

First of all, I commend you for making the decision to learn to do something you've thought about. Good job.

As for riding in NYC, I've got mixed feelings about it. I've driven in the city a lot, but never on a bike. You'll be stopping and going a lot. (you know all about the traffic) and you'll likely be in 1st or 2nd gear for most of your activity in the city (maybe 3rd if you hit a break). So, unlike most people I've read about here who are interesting in larger CCs so they can get on the highway, for your city riding, I wouldn't worry as much.

But my advice is to try not to get rattled by all the people around you. I haven't been riding all too long, so I still know what it's like to ride around in a city and have the cars all over be impatient, weave A LOT, have taxis cutting you off, and dealing w/ many pedestrians and bicycles coming from every direction. It can seem overwhelming, esp. if you're concentrating on learning to ride, learning a new (or nused) bike, and dealing w/ the distractions all around.

However, I don't think you're crazy at all. I think it's great and I'm sure there are more than a few people in and around the NYC area who will ride with you (as soon as you're comfortable). Have fun, be safe, and ENJOY. :D
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Thanks TinkTime00

#177 Unread post by Rachelleny » Tue May 12, 2009 10:28 am

Thanks for the positive reinforcement. I don't plan on riding around the city - but just through it to get to the highway (thus the possibility of something slightly larger than 250). Two guys I work with have bikes - but both have them outside the city & both are over 6' & have been riding a long time. Some of their advice is based on their personal knowledge which is obviously different from mine...

Thus, hearing from someone like you is truly helpful!

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#178 Unread post by redrider » Thu May 28, 2009 3:59 pm

Hiya, I'm new here. I'll be taking the motorcycle rider program class in the fall. Actually I'm on a waiting list--all the classes were full for the entire year--but hopefully I'll get in. :shock: I'm tall, 5'10", 138 pounds, and like the LOOKS of the cruisers. But I'm very open to getting whatever feels comfortable. I'll probably get a used first bike. I have an experienced male rider friend who'll help me choose my bike. He has a Honda sport bike (not sure of the model) as well as a Valkyrie cruiser. I'm thinking about looking at the Shadow Spirit 750. The bike will be my 40th birthday gift from my generous hubby (who doesn't ride... at least not yet :P ), which actually isn't for another 18 months. Anyway, I'll be sure to post what bike I decide on.

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#179 Unread post by buellbabe » Sun Jun 07, 2009 7:07 pm

Hiya, I have been a member for a while but due to various reasons (life too busy!) i haven't posted much...
Anyways a friend sent me a link to something on here and I thought it was about time I did some posting LOL.

First bike choice? I am 5'3" and I went from a trailbike straight onto a Harley. It comes down to what you are comfortable on, if it has good handling then weight shouldn't be an issue...until you drop it hahahahaha.
Which brings me to another point, I have a rule that if I can't pick it up then its too big for me...

Another rule is that if I can't touch at least one foot to the ground then its too tall for me...

My current ride is an X1 Buell. I have had it for almost 9 years now and absolutely love it. But it IS a tall bike and if it weren't for the fact that the seat has been greatly modified I wouldn't be able to touch the ground!

Someone made a comment about 2" making a lot of difference and that is soooooo true. Before I demo a bike I always check the specs to see what the seat height is LOL.

I don't really think that cc's come into it when picking a bike that you like, some people think that you are less likely to come to grief on a 250 than you are on a 600 but I totally disagree with that. There are some wickedly fast 250s out there!!!
Rider skill level is a BIG factor in choosing a bike and another point I would make is that its good to listen to other peoples advice but don't let yourself be talked into something that isn't right for you.

But how do you know if it IS the bike for you???

EASY! Take it for a demo ride and you will know!!! When I took my Buell for a demo ride I was really only riding it cos the HD I wanted wasn't available.
Well at the end of the day I asked if I could take it out again and the next time I rode it I bought it!!!!

It just felt so totally right :D
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#180 Unread post by Harleybabe » Sun Jul 05, 2009 11:30 pm

Hi there.

I am new here and just looking through the topics and thought I would post. My first bike was a Honda 400, and until last Friday was still my current bike. I have had many comments from other riders that it was a great bike to learn on. Unfortunately that size bike is unavailable now. It was a great commuting bike, and could even keep up with the "Big Boy Bikes" on our highway rides.

I would recommend making sure you are comfortable when sitting on it, being able to reach handle bars with a slight bend in the elbow, and being able to be flat-footed when straddling it. Since I am a short rider, I opted for center controls rather than forward controls. The HD 883 and 1200 have the same feel as my old Honda, but with a little more power, and the Honda 750 is a nice starter bike too, if you like the cruiser style.

Just my 2 cents

HB
2008 HD Sportster 1200
1979 Honda CM400T

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