if your going for a 2001-2003 600 range, check out Suzuki SV 650's, Yamha 600R, or Honda F4i. Stay away from GSX-600, Yamaha R6, Kawi ZX-6R, Honda CBR6000RR. Those bike are not really entry level street bikes. If you want to go back to like mid-1990's you can look at lot of different 600's as they didn't have quite as much power and torque as the modern one do.
as for gear, it should fit snug like football pants or something. they idea is that when you crash, you dont want the gear to be lose on your skin. if it slips, then grabs again, then slips again while your sliding across the asphalt it can be really bad.
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AIM: chR1s sedition
2003 R1 (black / red / hell-fire)
"All black, no bling"