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Hey everyone, lately ive been considering gett a sportbike. Ive never ridden one but am extremely interested in it. Im looking at "starter" bikes. I have about 3500 to spend new or used. Im looking at the ninja250r, ninja500r (if i could find a used one for cheap), suzuki GS500F, or suzuki SV650. Are there any others i should consider? im 17 1/2 and have been working my ass off saving up and have finally found something that i am definately wanting/willing to spend it on. Ive read the new rider stickies and such. What should i avoid/research more? Also i am 5 11', 140, is that going to be a problem manouvering the bike at all? my dad has a honda shadow and that thing is really heavy. i know sport bikes are a lot lighter but i was just curious. Thanks very much (also sorry if this has been posted before, im just now starting to search and read a lot of this wonderful forum!)

-DJ
 

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First of all, welcome to SBW! :twofinger (standard greeting)

Sounds like you've done a bit of homework already, reading the beginner bike posts. Also, kudos for actually taking heed of what experienced riders have to say with respect to choice of first bike.

I can't really advise you on what you'll get for your buck over there, but don't forget to factor in the cost of gear and take the MSF. :thumb:
 

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It's good to hear someone with their head on straight.

You'll be fine. I wouldn't worry about your height / weight. Most racers are tiny little guys, and they do just dandy.

Good luck.:thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter #4
sidewaysducati said:
You'll be fine. I wouldn't worry about your height / weight. Most racers are tiny little guys, and they do just dandy.
Thats very good to hear. Thanks. Ill continue to do some research. im still not sure whether i want to go with something that might be easier to learn on (like the 250r) or go with something bigger like the sv650 (if i can get the cash). And about how much does all the gear cost? (necesities would be helmet, jacket, and what else?) thanks much!
 

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Gear all depends on how much you want to spend, you can get helmets anywhere from a buck and change, to over 500. Just make sure all the gear you get is comfy. In total, everything i got came to a lil over 700, with shipping ( jacket, boots, gloves, helmet, and riding jeans.)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Fizzer-aid said:
Gear all depends on how much you want to spend, you can get helmets anywhere from a buck and change, to over 500. Just make sure all the gear you get is comfy. In total, everything i got came to a lil over 700, with shipping ( jacket, boots, gloves, helmet, and riding jeans.)
ya, i definately know that its not worth saving a few bucks in exchange for comfort (learned that with paintball gear) helmet, jacket and gloves are what ill concern myself mostly with. Thanks for the help guys.
 

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Having broken my ankle when I hit some ice on my 50cc scooter, I'll suggest you consider some decent boots as well....just a thought. Make sure to consider your insurance costs as well. At 18, your insurance on anything will most likely be pretty high. For that reason alone, it might be worth it to stick with the Ninja 250. I consistently see those used starting around $2200 or so for a 2003--with cash in hand you can probably get one well under $2000, if not for much less.

I'm looking for my first "real" bike too, at 28 years old (240lbs, 5'10") and it looks like I'll be going with the SV650. My insurance price won't be horrible, but it will be over $250/6 months--and I have 6 other policies with the same company, so thats a discounted price too....
 

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I budget about a grand for gear, but if you stick with textiles you can get away cheaper.
Things to look for.
1. Helmet- Even if you order it online, try some in a store. Find the smallest size that you can possibly squeeze into. Even if its real tight, thats the one you want. The helmet will break in after a few weeks, and become comfy. If you get one that too big it will be loose, not protect you well, and have lots of wind noise. Wind noise has more to do with fatigue on long trips than anything else. For this reason, you may want to get some earplugs, they work wonders. Personally I love the shoei RF1000. Its abit pricey, but its very light, small, quiet and comfy.
2. Jacket. Since you are on a budget, go with something textile. They provide good protection, but cant be reused like leathers. Look into the armor in the jacket, you want a back plate, shoulder and elbo plates. The cheaper units use Dual layer foam, which is ok, but if you see that its got CE approved armor (KNOX ussually) then its much better. Most brands use the same armor pieces so you can purchase better armor later and change.
3. Gloves. Dont even think about riding without them. You tendants are millimiters below the skin, they snap like rubber bands, take years to heal (if ever) and... Well hand injuries just suck. Cant do shit afterwords...
4. Boots. Icon makes several models that are motorcycle specific without looking like a race boot, so you can wear them around.

Oh and welcome to SBW!!!

Edit:
Forgot to mention, check out newenough.com for some great deals...
 

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Economy Gear

Good to hear that you are factoring in gear in your purchase. That's a lot of cash for a 17 year old, and I know it takes away from the level of bike you might be able to purchase, but it is SO critical.

Ballpark figures on some decent, but affordable gear:

Helmet- $250- might want to look at HJC helmets
Jacket- $150
Gloves- $ 60
Boots- $120

Personally, I think that Fieldsheer makes some really nice gear at very affordable prices. Check out the following link:

http://brocktoncycle.com/

Any one of the bikes you are considering would be a great way to start out. My first 2 choices would be the EX-500 or the SV 650. Given your budget, you might be closer to affording the EX-500, but you should be able to pick up a really mint condition one for $2500. Stick to the 1994 and up years for the EX.
 

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Vash said:
I budget about a grand for gear, but if you stick with textiles you can get away cheaper.
Things to look for.
1. Helmet- Even if you order it online, try some in a store. Find the smallest size that you can possibly squeeze into. Even if its real tight, thats the one you want. The helmet will break in after a few weeks, and become comfy. If you get one that too big it will be loose, not protect you well, and have lots of wind noise. Wind noise has more to do with fatigue on long trips than anything else. For this reason, you may want to get some earplugs, they work wonders. Personally I love the shoei RF1000. Its abit pricey, but its very light, small, quiet and comfy.
2. Jacket. Since you are on a budget, go with something textile. They provide good protection, but cant be reused like leathers. Look into the armor in the jacket, you want a back plate, shoulder and elbo plates. The cheaper units use Dual layer foam, which is ok, but if you see that its got CE approved armor (KNOX ussually) then its much better. Most brands use the same armor pieces so you can purchase better armor later and change.
3. Gloves. Dont even think about riding without them. You tendants are millimiters below the skin, they snap like rubber bands, take years to heal (if ever) and... Well hand injuries just suck. Cant do shit afterwords...
4. Boots. Icon makes several models that are motorcycle specific without looking like a race boot, so you can wear them around.

Oh and welcome to SBW!!!

Edit:
Forgot to mention, check out newenough.com for some great deals...
i dont agree with the helmet fitting.. it should just be "snug" not extremely tight.. have someone that is certified in fitting helemets fit you..
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Didnt know equipment was that expensive, good to know. I found This bike on cycletrader and thought it was perfect (very close to where i live in SoCal too). Also sorry if that link isnt allowed, im not sure if this forum is sponsored by a specific site or anything? just let me know and ill edit it out or mods can get rid of it at will. The bike looks clean, i have just about that much, but i might be able to knock off a hundred or so if i talked to em. Always gotta start out lower :) I am sooo excited to start learning how to become a decent rider. Are there any good sites for buying motorcycle gear online? ill go google for em right now but if you guys have any specific ones in mind thatd be great! Again, thanks for ALL help, much appreciated.

edit-Also, helments w/ shields, is it weird to ride with them up, or if they have one is it normal to pretty much always ride with them down? just curious, no flames :p Im liking the HJC CL-14, looks decent and within my budget at about 125, should i spend more?
 

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its good to see a new rider looking into safety and keeping to a bike that is a good starter bike. i dont see peeps riding whith the shield open plus most helmets have vents you can open to keep you cool and if it dosnt have a vent it probly a very cheep helmet. welcome to sbw there is alot of good info here .
 

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I am with docta all the way. Your first helmet should be something around $100.00 to $150.00 (DOT or Snell approved) being at the lower price range & not close to the top line helmets.

Squeezing it on your head is like putting the vice grips to the most tight point, closing them on one of your ringers & feeling(???) the pain will go away in a while is closer to said above assumption.

True helmets do fit in better after a week or two. STILL there are helmets for round or square headed sort of people & others with more oval/slim heads. So first you have to find out what shape head you have & look for said types of helmets.

Far to many might be offered with a perfect fit, only to them (as a helmet feels so strange & tight) they will demand far, far larger a fit to the largest in stock to in some cases the XXLarge a shop will have to order in. A week or so later they are back for a better fit & THINK they can simply swamp the used helmet for the newer one. Note I am speaking like a salesman & that I use to be from '47 till '98. The helmet cannot be exchanged for another to even a more costly one. Have you noticed that you cannot try out underwear for the proper fit? Almost the same story in crash helmets.

Like a few yrs ago when the salemen from shops that were going to be trained by the Aria people as to exactly how to measure & fit a person. The Aria people found that over 75% of the people, there, for the course, & so somewhat experienced m/c riders yet even they did not know a proper fit on their own heads as said 75+% were with helmets of one size to large.

Reason I suggest you go for an inexpensize, not a toy helmet, crash helmet & come a year or two down the road you will know so much more about the pros & cons of the helmets & so this time a PROPER fit. That is why I buy mine at the local m/c shops--not that they fit me, but I try them out for fitness, still I have woren the same size Shoei since around '84 so this time I might(?) order through the 'net this year.

You try riding with a helmet of the wrong shape or to tight & you will have continual headaches, a bit to large & it will tend to want to lift off your yead at around 60mph or higher speeds.
 

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DJS2 said:
very close to where i live in SoCal
Have you checked out Bert's Mega Mall? It's about 15 minutes from where you live, and they have an absolutely flippin HUGE selection of new and used bikes. Even if you're not gonna buy from them (last I checked, they didn't have any used ninja 250 or 500s), it's still fun to just check out the stuff they have.
 

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Without question is is almost like a god-send when we have a prospective m/c buyer/rider with his head screwed on properly.

Reminds to way back in late 40s when so many purchased a 125cc two-stroke to learn on, then step up was to something like a 'used' 350cc & yes we gave them good money on the trade-in for the 125 (just a bit of cleaning up & IDEAL used bike for someone new), then possibly a used 500cc to possibly a bit later on a NEW 500cc & a rare, rare few progressed up to the almighty 1000cc V-twin Vincent HRD.
 
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