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Hey guys, I'm a new guy joining the fray. I dig this place. Great people here for sure.

Unfortunately, I have no wheels at the moment, and that's where my question(s) comes in....

I'm gonna be in the market for a new ride. Of course, I'm thinking motorcycle, since they cost less to maintain than a used car in the same price range. At least, I THINK they do, right?

I'm getting roughly $2500 from the sale of my car (it was a POS).

What kinda bikes in that price range should I be looking at?

I know this is a sport bike forum, but do any of you have any advice on cruiser-type bikes also?

Anything I should stay away from?

How much does GOOD (Emphasis on "good" here) riding equipment cost these days? Helmet, gloves, leather jacket, etc... what else should I look for? Rain gear? What's the typical rain gear setup? Remember, I've never ridden before, so all this will be new to me.

Do you guys have any tips for buying used?

I should mention I'm in college (21 years old), I am 6'1" tall, and weigh 165 pounds. This bike will mainly be used just to drive around town (15-20 minute trips MAX). Although I DO want it to be comfortable for roadtrips (2-3 hour trips, nothing big), so I can visit my folks on occasion. I don't want anything for racing Porsche 911 turbos's :D. I guess something light weight would be nice, so that way if I lay it down, I'll be able to pick it back up right?

Thanks in advance for any help you can offer!
 

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Welcome to the wonderful world of motorcycles! It has been my only source of recreation for the last 32 years. Be careful. It can be addicting. Or just a passing fancy.

I expect you will get many replies and they will all bring good advice, but I am going to recommend that you look into two bikes they are both vertical twins. one is made by Kawasaki and is called an Ninja 500. The other is made by Suzuki and I believe it is called an EX500. I am sure I will be summarily corrrected if I am wrong, but I doubt many will argue that I am wrong about these bikes. They are inexpensive light weight and dependable, even used. I believe they will be in your price range.

As for gear, get a helmet, no matter what. DOT approved at the least. SNELL approved is better. Considering your budget, I'd go with gloves next, even if you can only afford some leather gardening gloves. Any type of boot will do. As for a jacket, whatever you have in you closet will do for now. As for rain gear, go with a trash bag for now.

Please understand, I am not trying to insult you. If you can afford better gear, go for it.

I think that all will agree that your best investment even BEFORE you buy a bike would be to spend the $ and enroll in a MSF (motorcycle safety foundation) course. They supply you with excellent instructors and they even supply the bike.

After you take an MSF course, you will have a much better idea about whether or not you really even want a motorcycle.

Avoid Harley-Davidsons at all cost.

Good luck.
 

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since they cost less to maintain than a used car in the same price range. At least, I THINK they do, right?
Well maybe everyone else can help you out. Speaking from the owning to brand new bikes perspective. My first bike, R6, I've probably Spent $150 in 6 months on Maintainance alone.

That does not include the $160 the dealer stuck me with for the "600 Mile Service":finger:. As far as extras, well a $450 Slip on, $200 on Carbon fiber parts, $60 on a K&N filter, $50 - $100 on headlight bulbs, $20 on grips, and I've got over $500 worth of Neon crap on my bike too.

Do keep in mind that a good used bike may be a lot cheaper, cause if you find one that someone else has fixed up and take care of, you're getting out cheaper.

Oh, I just order $1200 worht of stuff for my othre bike, Yamaha FZ1. It's a bunch of expensive water proff luggage boxes. Cool stuff though, SO I'm looking forward to taking a bunch of trips if it warms up for a week or 2

What kinda bikes in that price range should I be looking at?
Not sure, can'thelp you there.

I know this is a sport bike forum, but do any of you have any advice on cruiser-type bikes also?
Actually, the YZF600 is a nice touring bike, but I've also seen like 99 Yamaha FZ1's go for $5000 or less. But that been a 1000cc, I DO NOT recommend you get a 1000cc bike for your first bike. Trust me, this thing is like a sleeping giant.

How much does GOOD (Emphasis on "good" here) riding equipment cost these days?
Well I'm partial to Joe Rocket. And since I own every thing that's High $$ from them, brand new 2002 stuff.
Speedmaster Jacket $430
Speedmaster Perforated Leather Pants $340
Speedmaster Gloves $140
Speedmaster Boots $220

Joe Rocket does sell Rain Gear too. But if you want to get outrageous on the price and "Good" gear, Daniese does custom fit leathers and you can get full suits in any color for like $1500 - $2000. But You don't really wnat anything like that unlesss you have a racing career or more money than me to burn.

Do you guys have any tips for buying used?
Research the type of bike you want first. Listen to what everyone hear has to say. Then look for the specific bike you like.

Although I DO want it to be comfortable for roadtrips (2-3 hour trips, nothing big), so I can visit my folks on occasion. I don't want anything for racing Porsche 911 turbos's . I guess something light weight would be nice, so that way if I lay it down, I'll be able to pick it back up right?
Any Sport Touring bike is a nice bet for you. And don't assume that just cuase it's a sport tourer that it won't keep up with Sport bikes. And Most Sport Bikes will out run a Porsche 911. My R6 does 165 and the FZ1 pushes 180. As far as picking it up, I can toss my R6 around if it falls over, and that's about 370lbs. My FZ1 is close to 500lbs, but it's a taller bike. I'm sure I could pick it up. And as far as laying it down, the object of riding and gaining expereince is not to lay it down. I've dropped my R6 at stop signs and while doing very slow turns, but never while riding. I never try to push my self to far.

One last thing. I and everyone else here will Highly recommend that you take the MSF course. If nothing else, for $100 you will gain expereince that you didn't have. I never knew how to ride before I took this course. I finished and passed on Sunday and went and picked up my bike on Monday. If I had not taken the course. There's no way I could have ridden it off the lot.

Good luck and stay safe. I look forward to eharing what you bought. Take some pictures!
 

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LMAO...I forgot the brain bucket. Like desmo SNELL is better than DOT. I've got an AGV that I paid $200 for. It's Snell and I love the Ventilation. That's very important too, you don't want to sweat to death inside your helmet. A hot brain makes slow decisions.

Oh and I'd recommend you start off with the 500cc bikes too. They're lots of fun and fast enough if you know what I mean. My R6, even though it doesn't seem like it would be, it's a big step above a 500. My "little" bike is torque as H**L!

I told you everyone would say MSF coruse LOL
 

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w/your size i would NOT recommend the ex or ninja 500. although in your price range i think that you would be uncomfortable on it... & for a 1st bike u need to feel comfortable.

really the only thing i could think of is an older honda f2/3, an early 90's model could be had for that price. however 2500 down on a 96/97 model should put u in the ball park of less than 100 a month.

GOOD equipment can easily cost you 2500$.. my leathers alone retail at $1250, gloves 100, helmet 500+, boots, armour, etc.. but start w/the absolute best helmet u can get.. arai, shoei, any thing that is dot 95 & fits well.. the other stuff u can accumulate later.. i still ride 90% of the time w/an old harley type jacket i picked up for $25 from a biker friend (the other 10% im in my 1 piece).. its very heavy & left me w/absolutly zero road rash over 2 accidents (1 breaking my femur). the helmet is #1 priority saftey gear in my book.

w/your size i would shoot for a f2/f3, sv650, 600 ninja e model, all early to mid 90s w/exception of the sv650 of course. just make sure u r comfortable on it.. u may even want to consider an older 750 (yzf, vfr).

MSF & other rider training are invaluable & i highly recommend them.
 

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Well I'm also a new rider, and from newby to newby I think you should go with what you want, because regardless what you get you will have to learn on. But if you want good advise go with somethin light like a GS500 or a 250/500 EX Ninja. All these bikes will help you, but GS500 might be heavier but faster, the EX 250 is light and very slow, but a great learners bike, the EX 500 is also light but not that fast either.
I messed up and got a 750 Ninja for my first bike, but luckly it rides like a quick 600 and not like a true 750, but the [email protected]#in bike is FAST, and it aint no learners bike, but i'm learnin:hurl: :confused:I think!!
 

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i'm also a joe rocket person and if you are not going to ride like a freak go with a joe rocket meteor 3.0 jacket. it's waterproof , has a zip out liner, and has body armor in it so you could wear it all year long.plus the bonus is that it's under 300$.
 

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Alouthgh these ppl are giveing realy good advise go with what you like the best. Don't let someone talk you out of a bike you realy like. I did that and now every time I ride I wish I hadn't , But to take there advise and consider it.Umm go with a sport bike. If you have to get a cruiser then don't get a hardley. There expensive , cold natured , and always have something wrong with them. I also took the msf course. It was great. Alouth most of it was boreing becouse I should have takein the advanced class and I took the beginer. It was still fun once we got to driveing skills. Umm my pick for bike would be the ninja 500 for a beginer bike. My choice in gear would be joe rocket. If you live in a warm climate and ride alot dureing the summer the joe rocket pheniox (I think thats how you spell it) is the best thang ever invented. It has good ventaltion.

Welcome to the wonderful world of motorcycleing.:cool:
 

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scotty said:
I agree with Desmo.

I think he's thinking of the Suzuki GS-500, though. The EX-500 IS the 500 Ninja.
Thanks. Yeah, GS500. That is what I meant.
When you get old, three things go; vision, hearing,and............wait......I'll think of the third thing in a minute................zzzzzzzzzzzzz.
 

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desmo079 said:
Thanks. Yeah, GS500. That is what I meant.
When you get old, three things go; vision, hearing,and............wait......I'll think of the third thing in a minute................zzzzzzzzzzzzz.
Des..wake up...

sure hope your able to stay alert on the track...:D

if not..maybe you should let me keep your new bike till ya get some alertness.....:D :D ;)
 

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A Honda Nighthawk would be a good choice. There are a wide variety of years to choose from, but the 90s are all the same and have not changed to this day. You can get an early 90s Nighthawk for $2500. Check out the CB750 Nighthawk site on Yahoo with 1500 members. Stay away from the Nighthawk 250 unless you are desperate for a small bike.
 

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OK, here comes the advice from an old fart...

Gear:
If you have to go cheap, this is the route. Helmet, I would always buy new. Something like a HJC over the internet should be about $110 to $130. There should be some good deals out there now because every few years the government updates the requirements for DOT and Snell and I think that has just happened recently. This means the dealers want to get rid of their older stock.
I got a set of Joe Rocket gloves on closeout on the net for like $35, check out newenough.com .
Leathers...Ummm...you may not be able to afford good leathers now. Check out some of the non-leather items, they are cheaper. Also, leathers go on close-out this time of year, so look for sales. If you must have a new set of leathers, you can pick up sales in the $299 to $399 range (2 piece suit, I would not go with a one piece on a daily worn suit). While these may not be the best name leathers, they WILL protect you enough if you go down. I would also suggest you look on ebay. You are of a normal (to bike riders) build and there will be lots of leathers in you size available. Just search for "leathers". A friend of mine got some 10 year old Dianese leathers for like $135 earlier this year.

Now the BIKE...drum roll pleasseeee...
I would not recommend the EX500 or the Suzuki SV or the Honda Nighthawk.
This guy does not sound like he is going to have the money to upgrade when he feels like it. He expressed what I feel is a desire for a sportbike. He needs something dependable that he will keep for a while. I recommend bikes in this order (remember, these are MY preferences):

Early Honda CBR600 F2 or F3, 1990 to 1996. Bulletproof and lots of them out there.
1992 to 1996 Suzuki GSXR600 or Katana, both solid and cheap (I know some out there do not like Katana's but HEY, it's a sportbike!).
1991 to 1996 Kawasaki or Yamaha 600.

You should be able to find samples of these bikes in the $2500 range right now (winter has the best prices). I got my Yamaha FZR1000 for $2700 with low miles, I had to drive from VA to GA to look at it and buy it, but it was worth it. You will want to have a friend that knows bikes go with you to check it out. Do not look at modified bikes (except maybe an exhaust). Do not look at track bikes or crashed bikes. You will want something stock and with low miles. Personally, I would stay away from bikes with over 20-25K miles on them. Although the newer water cooled bikes can last for lots of miles, you can never tell how many times the tach has bounced off the rev limiter. I would insist on low miles. Happy hunting and let us know if we can offer any more help (unless you don't like posts this long Ha Ha).

PS Also take a training course.
 

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Desmo definatly knows his stuff. I also agree that anyoine thinking of purchasing a bike for the first time should invest in an MSF course. All of my buddies and I take one about once every two years, advanced of course, just to "refresh". As for bikes the Suzuki would be good i think
 

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No offense intended wayno, but the EX500, SV650, GS500, and the other bikes you bagged on ARE sportbikes, just not the highest powered ones. But they are on the cheaper end of the scale, great for riding around in town as well as the occasional long distance hop, and are a lot of fun to ride. These bikes are significantly cheaper to insure than a "purebred" sportbike.

I do agree with your adding the Katana to the list. For his purposes, the Kat 600 or even 750 would be stellar. (I didn't get the impression that he intends to upgrade any bike significantly anyway)

As for gear, buy a good Helmet, gloves and always ride in long pants and ankle-protecting shoes. For a jacket, make sure it has elbow/lowerarm, and shoulder pads. I also personally look for a jacket with a lot of zippers for vents, as you'll find the temperature can change drastically from one side of town to the other.

Maintenance wise, bikes are a lot more demanding than a new car. They need a lot more attention than your average car, but then again, if you do the bare-minimum basic maintenance on your bike, it will run like a clock. If you're looking for something you don't have to think about, don't get a bike.

Good luck whatever you decide! :D :cool:
 

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Hammer 4 said:


Des..wake up...

sure hope your able to stay alert on the track...:D

if not..maybe you should let me keep your new bike till ya get some alertness.....:D :D ;)
It's MEMORY not alertness. But thanks for your kind offer.:D
 

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919 said:
A Honda Nighthawk would be a good choice. There are a wide variety of years to choose from, but the 90s are all the same and have not changed to this day. You can get an early 90s Nighthawk for $2500. Check out the CB750 Nighthawk site on Yahoo with 1500 members. Stay away from the Nighthawk 250 unless you are desperate for a small bike.

I agree with 919, I have a 1997 Nighthawk 750 and it is a great bike. Great for tooling around town or even tossing around in the mountains. Granted you will not win any races on it but it has enough power to keep the riding fun, but NOT (whoops, left this out) so much that it will toss you if you make a mistake. I now have a 2001 GSXR 750 which is awesome but I still get on the nighthawk and tool around, its a fun bike. In comparison to my gixxer - can you say "Comfortable"!!!

919 How do like that 919 I read mixed reviews on it.
 

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minfinger said:
since they cost less to maintain than a used car in the same price range. At least, I THINK they do, right?
Well maybe everyone else can help you out. Speaking from the owning to brand new bikes perspective. My first bike, R6, I've probably Spent $150 in 6 months on Maintainance alone.

That does not include the $160 the dealer stuck me with for the "600 Mile Service":finger:. As far as extras, well a $450 Slip on, $200 on Carbon fiber parts, $60 on a K&N filter, $50 - $100 on headlight bulbs, $20 on grips, and I've got over $500 worth of Neon crap on my bike too.

Do keep in mind that a good used bike may be a lot cheaper, cause if you find one that someone else has fixed up and take care of, you're getting out cheaper.

Oh, I just order $1200 worht of stuff for my othre bike, Yamaha FZ1. It's a bunch of expensive water proff luggage boxes. Cool stuff though, SO I'm looking forward to taking a bunch of trips if it warms up for a week or 2

What kinda bikes in that price range should I be looking at?
Not sure, can'thelp you there.

I know this is a sport bike forum, but do any of you have any advice on cruiser-type bikes also?
Actually, the YZF600 is a nice touring bike, but I've also seen like 99 Yamaha FZ1's go for $5000 or less. But that been a 1000cc, I DO NOT recommend you get a 1000cc bike for your first bike. Trust me, this thing is like a sleeping giant.

How much does GOOD (Emphasis on "good" here) riding equipment cost these days?
Well I'm partial to Joe Rocket. And since I own every thing that's High $$ from them, brand new 2002 stuff.
Speedmaster Jacket $430
Speedmaster Perforated Leather Pants $340
Speedmaster Gloves $140
Speedmaster Boots $220

Joe Rocket does sell Rain Gear too. But if you want to get outrageous on the price and "Good" gear, Daniese does custom fit leathers and you can get full suits in any color for like $1500 - $2000. But You don't really wnat anything like that unlesss you have a racing career or more money than me to burn.

Do you guys have any tips for buying used?
Research the type of bike you want first. Listen to what everyone hear has to say. Then look for the specific bike you like.

Although I DO want it to be comfortable for roadtrips (2-3 hour trips, nothing big), so I can visit my folks on occasion. I don't want anything for racing Porsche 911 turbos's . I guess something light weight would be nice, so that way if I lay it down, I'll be able to pick it back up right?
Any Sport Touring bike is a nice bet for you. And don't assume that just cuase it's a sport tourer that it won't keep up with Sport bikes. And Most Sport Bikes will out run a Porsche 911. My R6 does 165 and the FZ1 pushes 180. As far as picking it up, I can toss my R6 around if it falls over, and that's about 370lbs. My FZ1 is close to 500lbs, but it's a taller bike. I'm sure I could pick it up. And as far as laying it down, the object of riding and gaining expereince is not to lay it down. I've dropped my R6 at stop signs and while doing very slow turns, but never while riding. I never try to push my self to far.

One last thing. I and everyone else here will Highly recommend that you take the MSF course. If nothing else, for $100 you will gain expereince that you didn't have. I never knew how to ride before I took this course. I finished and passed on Sunday and went and picked up my bike on Monday. If I had not taken the course. There's no way I could have ridden it off the lot.

Good luck and stay safe. I look forward to eharing what you bought. Take some pictures!

Sure glad you didnt include your address as well.....
 
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