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Thread: New rider bike choices

  1. #1
    Registered User rodstanhope's Avatar
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    New rider bike choices

    I need some advice/input. My dad is a beginning rider and in the market for a bike. Please help us in determining the best option for him.

    His details:

    5'8 185lbs 57 years young

    Very limited riding experience other than MSF class and dirt bikes as a kid.

    Must haves and important concerns:

    1. seat height (28" inseam)
    2. weight
    3. Fuel injection
    4. upright/comfortable riding position (my k75 has him too far forward with standard bars and my rt has him just right but just too much mass)

    I appreciate any comments and input.
    Rod
    95 K1100RS
    07 R1200RT

  2. #2
    Registered User 58058D's Avatar
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    Of BMWs, sounds like an F800, possibly lowered, might be just the ticket. My wife is shorter and she thought the K1200R fit just right, but the KR is not available in the US anymore, and may be more power than one needs for a beginner.....
    Jim Douglas '00 K1200RS >135,000 miles my primary bike again,
    Gone: '09 K1300S sold @ 22k mi, '93 K1100RS traded @ 78k mi, '85 K100RS sold @ 44k mi
    '06 Kaw 650R track bike sold
    http://www.seagullbb.com/

  3. #3
    Touring Rider
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    What type of riding...

    What type of riding does your dad anticipate doing? If he is going to ride locally around town, that is potentially one kind of bike. It he is planning on doing some open road riding, that might suggest another type of bike.
    Gary
    Casa Grande, AZ
    2011 R1200RT

  4. #4
    I learned to ride at age 51 on an F800ST. With hindsight, I might have been better getting in those first few thousand miles on something in the 250cc range, but it worked out.

    You can go through the archives on my blog and get the full scoop. (I also have a short inseam--a sports medicine doctor once told me I had the torso of a six footer and the legs of someone 5'6").

  5. #5
    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
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    Pick well:)

    Get big enough, he won't regret not having a good tourer under him. The newbie wears off quickly. Not in the education sense, but in eye candy, all the choices out there. We're never too educated to ride safer and know the m/c rules...IF ya got money, spend a few bucks on another dirt bike adventure type and go play. Get the bigger adventure bike when time seems right. Randy

  6. #6
    Registered User rodstanhope's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GRLambert View Post
    What type of riding does your dad anticipate doing? If he is going to ride locally around town, that is potentially one kind of bike. It he is planning on doing some open road riding, that might suggest another type of bike.
    He's interested in day trips of approx 200 miles in some of the twisties around Georgia/TN. Possibly an overnight trip here and there. I see very little true Highway miles for him.

    I should also point most likely at a very leasure pace. I'm not much of a speed demon either. I kinda envision us taking 6 or 8 hours to cover 200 to 250 miles.
    Rod
    95 K1100RS
    07 R1200RT

  7. #7
    Registered User rodstanhope's Avatar
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    Good thoughts guys. I logged my first 5000 miles on a mid wieght cruiser before realizing I was more inclined towards touring bikes. When converting to BMWs my biggest obstacle was the seat height, and I know that is concerning him as well. I'm leaning toward a cruiser for him as well until he determines his true riding preferences just to accommodate the size concerns.
    Rod
    95 K1100RS
    07 R1200RT

  8. #8
    Registered User rxcrider's Avatar
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    These will be all over the map, but you might find something interesting. I'm looking for a seat height under 32", fuel injection and a relatively mellow motor (regardless of displacement), with a relaxed seating position.

    Suzuki TU250X

    BMW F650CS http://www.bmwmoa.org/flea/detail.ph...=37467&catid=1

    Honda NT700V

    Suzki SV650 (later years, not sure of cut off to get FI)

    BMW K75RT http://www.bmwmoa.org/flea/detail.ph...=37356&catid=1

    BMW F650GS (single) http://www.bmwmoa.org/flea/detail.ph...=37424&catid=1



    Why are you opposed to carburetors? Even if you don't want a carbureted bike for the long haul, it would give you more options for a short term learner bike that you wouldn't cry over if it were droped in a driveway. Small dual sports are easy to ride, stable and forgiving on bumps with a larger front tire, durable and light, but you get stuck with a carburetor and he'd probably be looking for a more comfortable seat. Just a thought - good luck and for your dad getting on a bike.

  9. #9
    Registered User rodstanhope's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rxcrider View Post
    These will be all over the map, but you might find something interesting. I'm looking for a seat height under 32", fuel injection and a relatively mellow motor (regardless of displacement), with a relaxed seating position.

    Suzuki TU250X

    BMW F650CS http://www.bmwmoa.org/flea/detail.ph...=37467&catid=1

    Honda NT700V

    Suzki SV650 (later years, not sure of cut off to get FI)

    BMW K75RT http://www.bmwmoa.org/flea/detail.ph...=37356&catid=1

    BMW F650GS (single) http://www.bmwmoa.org/flea/detail.ph...=37424&catid=1



    Why are you opposed to carburetors? Even if you don't want a carbureted bike for the long haul, it would give you more options for a short term learner bike that you wouldn't cry over if it were droped in a driveway. Small dual sports are easy to ride, stable and forgiving on bumps with a larger front tire, durable and light, but you get stuck with a carburetor and he'd probably be looking for a more comfortable seat. Just a thought - good luck and for your dad getting on a bike.
    Kinda intrigued by the F650CS...

    Good point on the carbs, Guess I'm thinking he will have this bike forever!! We all know that's not likely.
    Rod
    95 K1100RS
    07 R1200RT

  10. #10
    Mind is not for rent
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    Tell him to search Craigslist for something 600cc or smaller. He can probably find something for less than $2500 he can learn on and not feel horrible when (not if) he dumps it. It would be lunacy for a new rider to spend a ton of money on a bike that he's going to learn on.

    Once he gets some miles on his beater, then he can sell it for about what he paid for it and step up to something nicer.

  11. #11
    Registered User rodstanhope's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 05Train View Post
    Tell him to search Craigslist for something 600cc or smaller. He can probably find something for less than $2500 he can learn on and not feel horrible when (not if) he dumps it. It would be lunacy for a new rider to spend a ton of money on a bike that he's going to learn on.

    Once he gets some miles on his beater, then he can sell it for about what he paid for it and step up to something nicer.
    I'm thinking this is a good approach. There's so much to learn about riding and about one's preferences in bikes. There's alot of bikes out there for around $3k that can make you smile!
    Rod
    95 K1100RS
    07 R1200RT

  12. #12
    neanderssance man sedanman's Avatar
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    How about a Bonneville? Not terribly heavy, enough power for later without being intimidating now. Classic looks, modernized running gear.
    Paul
    "Friends don't let friends ride junk!"
    2011 R1200RT

  13. #13
    Registered User
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    BMW F650gs low/ seat suspension option, great handling, ABS
    Triumph Bonneville, classic looks, fuel injection, easy handling, negatives no ABS not so great for more than 50-100 mles
    I ride a 1200gs for touring and a Bonneville for around town

  14. #14
    Registered User SeabeckS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodstanhope View Post
    I'm thinking this is a good approach. There's so much to learn about riding and about one's preferences in bikes. There's alot of bikes out there for around $3k that can make you smile!
    +1 on that, help him find a decent shape middleweight bike, 500-600cc, and encourage him to ride it a lot. Take a beginner's class MSF course or something similar if available where you live. Given that he rode dirt bikes in his youth, he'll pick it pretty quickly I bet. And...if he decides it isn't really his cup of tea, he has got a ton of money invested.

    Cheers!

    PS. As an aside...I'm sorta old, but started my moto experience with a 305 Scrambler. A few years after that, I got a 450 Honda...and I thought it was "BIG". Funny how perceptions change...LOL
    Bill Johnston

  15. #15
    just hangin' out 2bikemike's Avatar
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    As an over 50 rider my main concern is comfort. If a bike is not comfortable, I and probably your Dad will not ride it. He needs to start visiting the dealers in his area and see what he likes.
    keep it light enough to travel.....
    '04 R1150RT
    '81 Honda CB650 Custom

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