Thinking of switching to a sport bike. - Sportbike Forum: Sportbike Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-07-2004, 05:16 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2004
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Thinking of switching to a sport bike.

Here's my situation. I started riding a cruiser because it was my first bike and that was what was available. That was about 5 years ago and last winter I bought a Honda Shadow. I thought I liked cruisers, but I find that I'm really just trying to ride this thing like a sport bike, and the 52hp is starting to get to me. It's not really even that comfortable on long rides, and since my girlfriend has a car now and I rarely ride with a passenger my very last reason to keep riding cruisers is gone.

Anyway, since I am TOTALLY new to the sport bike scene, I was wondering if you guys could give me a rundown of my options. I don't have money, so it's gotta be something used I can buy with the earnings from a 2003 Shadow Sabre. Also, I'd like to not go from one extream to the other. In other words, let's keep my chin off the tank.

Right now I'm considering a CBR600. They look like great bikes and I love Honda.

I'm also pretty short and the high seat hights of sport bikes worry me a bit. So, lower seats are better.

What sucks is that I've never ridden one before and since it's summer, none of the dealers have any in for me to even find out if I like the damn things better then my Shadow. Oh well.

Any feedback is apreciated. Thanks!
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-07-2004, 08:35 PM
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Depends upon what yr the 600 Honda four is. Also if the saddle height on the fours then to worry you I would say take a good look at the Suzy SV-650 or the SV-650s. Both have a slightely lower saddle height thought the 650s is with more of a lean forward riding position while the 650 has a more standard riding position as so many of the Brit irons & some of the better Jpn bikes did before the fad became extreme lean forward riding positions or their attempt to dominate the Harley world with less expensive but HD like Cruisers.

Two yrs ago the SV-650 was switched over to fuel injection system so there should be a good number of them avaliable with carbs as so many wanted the latest. Also it was only two yrs ago that they (American Suzy Distributors) started bringing in the SV-650s so prior to that was the SV-650 in the States while SV-650s in Cdn & Europe.

Good bike as it was designed to be a bike that would be fun to ride & so many have made modifications & put it into road racing form so proof that it can trot is so requested by the owners.

STILL if you are dead set on a 600 four then two bikes to look at being the Yamaha YZF600r (not the R6) & the Kwacker ZZ-R600 & previously called the ZX-600R as both bikes are very competitive to each other YET are not to the extremes of some of the latest hot trotting 600s. Still both will really honk.

I was on mine (Yamaha 600r) to-day for a 6 hr run, in the rain unfortunately, on the hwy when some chap in a cage started to give me trouble so down two cogs & the bike shot up to 'on pipe' to where it really trotted in higher revs & speed as I shifted up along with some bends & that left him behind on a max 100KPH hwy when I was clocking 185 & then 210KPH, but still more revs & power ifI so wished. So neither are slouches to ride.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-07-2004, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
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Well, there are two bikes near me that I'm going to try out. A Speed Tripple, which may just grow on me (I like three-cylenders) and a VFR, which I also like but has 13,000 miles. We'll see!
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-08-2004, 05:14 AM
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I did the exact same thing as you. I bought a Shadow VT1100 and rode it for two years. Not comfortable for long trips and had no guts. Bought a VFR800 and am loving it. Much more comfortable, more power, better handling, better brakes, etc. I'm very happy with my choice.

My VFR had 6500 miles on it when I bought it. I now have 29000 after two years. If it was treated right, don't let the miles scare you.

Mark Zeilenga
2000 VFR800Fi (Pearl Yellow)
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-08-2004, 09:45 AM
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13000 miles is nothing. If it runs well and looks good for the price it's a hell of a bike. A very ballanced bike as far as no chin on the tank but tons more grunt than the shadow and good suspension. I personally don't care for the linked brakes the VFR has now but if you're a newer rider it's probably a really good idea. It's probably a really good idea for me too, I just don't like the manufacturer essentially telling me I don't know how to brake and trying to fix me through technology. Speed triple looks fun too.

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-08-2004, 01:21 PM Thread Starter
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Yea, I don't know how I'm going to like linked braking either. Seems like it would suck if you got a flat. But it would help in emergency braking situations when 70/30 is most important but you are least likely to do it.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-08-2004, 04:39 PM
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Ever since I read about some models being with linked up brakes I have simply by-passed them in any interest. Simply to independent a rider I guess. Like I reject ABS brakes on the rear of my truck & why the stupid read I do not know.

Still even coming to a gradual stopping & the rear wheels tend to do the ABS hopping. Not so when I drive a friends truck or his wife's car both without ABS. Neither of those two will by cages with ABS brakes.

Sorry guys, so back to the what the VFR is like.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-08-2004, 05:17 PM Thread Starter
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I just got back from riding a Kaw ZX-6R. Damn, that was nuts. The whole time I was just like "Holly crap, I'm riding on my face and I'm going to die."

All the weight was on my palms and they were sore after the first 5 minutes. Time to find something a little less extream.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-08-2004, 10:39 PM
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The VFR might be just the ticket for you. They also tend to be bought by more experienced or serious riders for just the service you seem to be describing. This translates to, on average, better maintenance, not whipped, therefore not as risky to buy used. Reasonable comfort but plenty of go and handling when you get the urge.

Also, don't let the sore palms bug you too much just yet. You have to learn how to sit a sportbike so that you're not resting on your palms. It's true that some of the newer 600's are so aggressive that you almost have to be running track speeds to be comfortable but the less aggressive ones will hurt too, until you learn to sit them right. It takes a little time. Good luck.

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-09-2004, 03:57 AM
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For normal everyday riding I never noticed any difference in the linked brakes vs. normal. The only negatives I've heard from people who have actually used them are that they aren't very good on the track.

I've always liked the VFR, and it's one of the bikes on my list for when we are ready to buy again. From the reading I've done it seems to consistently get called the best all around bike on the merket.

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