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Another noob with a bike question.

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Jace_F, Mar 12, 2009.

  1. Hey all,

    I have been reading through the forums on here for a bit and thought it was time I jumped on and registered!

    I am booked in for my pre learners next month which I am looking forward to and I am doing a bit of research on what bike to choose.

    Would love any input any riders out there have. There seems like theres a million options so I have narrowed it down to a few.

    Started off thinking about the CBR125 but moved away from that one.

    Was tossing up a CBR250, ZZR-R250 or ZXR250. Although I am reading that theres alot of love for the VTR250 as well so I have to consider that too! I do like the look of the sports bikes but not opposed a naked bike, plus I am paranoid about dropping the bike and cracking the fairing!

    I am pretty tall, 6'2 and dont want to uncomfortable as anything while riding but it will be for shorter rides and commuting for the most part.

    Any thoughts, ideas or revelations would be much appreciated!

    Cheers one and all!
  2. some details about your age, driving circumstances etc will get you a more in depth answer.

    eg, if you are 18, no alternative transport, will use bike for getting to uni/work, etc you need a more practical bike. People will flame me for saying, but the Across is very practical and would suit your height.
    (I used to commute on an Across to work daily and then on to TAFE so i needed to carry extra stuff and the trunk will easily fit a couple of textbooks, a notebook computer up to around 13-14" + lunch and dinner)

    if you are a bit older and want something to ride on the weekends with your mates, etc then something with R's in the name.

    get your Ps quick (before june) and you'll only have to put up with a restricted bike for 12 months.
  3. I am 28, will be used mostly for travel to and from work as my main transport but would like to be able to take it out on the weekends with mates as I have a few that ride.

    Thanks for the update on P's too. I was wondering when that kicked in!
  4. What do you carry to work? and how far is the trip?
    Will you swap to a car when its wet?

    The Across is sounding like a good commuter for you (i'm biased, I think they're great), but if you're not carrying extra stuff or can manage with a backpack then there are plenty of alternatives.

    ZZR250s are good commuters and VTR250s are a good naked alternative.

    All the bikes are similar power wise so riding with mates on any of them will be fine. the only difference is the street-cred they have and the more street-cred, the more $$$.

    Start looking to book the MOST test soon after you get your Ls as you'll need up to 6-8 weeks to get in and if you book too late you'll be in june which aint good (not much time if you need a retest either). Once booked, ride every opportunity you get in the mean time and practice your slow riding and U-turn in particular, especially if using your own faired bike for the test as they have wider turning circles.

    PS: welcome, where in Syd are you?
  5. In that case definitely good that you've decided against the 125.

    VTR isn't bad but it is on the smallish side so may not be the best option for you. Similarly a grey-import 4-cylinder may not the best if you're relying on it as a sole means of transport - they can be problematic.
    The Across isn't a bad option though, you might also want to consider something like a GS500 - with a tankbag and/or rack carrying stuff shouldn't be an issue (as long as you're not buying furniture ;)).

    Oh and if you're not opposed to the idea of a naked Aus-delivered 250 Bandits and Yamaha Zeals are well worth a look. They're a lot less cramped than a CBR, but just as fast.
  6. Try sitting on all the bikes you're looking at. If the 250's are too short, try something bigger, like a gs500. Just watch out, they weigh ~40kg more than a normal 250cc.

    They'll all do for commuting, but if you want to take the bike out into the hills on the weekend with your mates (who all have bigger bikes), consider something more sporty (e.g. CBR, ZXR).

    Definitely give the 125 a miss, I hear its very short on power.
  7. For your height, I'd definitely go 250 or more, if possible. Of the LAMS bikes I've personally tried:
    - GS500
    - XT250
    - Scorpio
    - ZZR-250
    - Zeal250
    I'd actually recommend the XT250 (An enduro bike). Handles nicely, easy to maintain, and even a few drops will mean much less to an enduro bike than a lot of the road-only bikes.

    In the end, you have to go with what "feels" right to you, so make a shortlist of the possible candidates, and go try them out one by one.

    I wouldn't worry too much about the "flash" factor of the bike. The sportbikes you mentioned look the coolest, but I'd say it's best to worry about improving your riding skills first. (You are indeed likely to drop your first bike and all that....)
  8. i'm 28 (in june), 6'2 and have an '08 cb400 which is bloody fantastic. do a search on here, theres an entire massive thread on them.
  9. Cheers for all the help guys, Il check out all the ones suggested.

    Any thoughts on if its best to buy private or from a dealer somewhere?

    Oh and I am in Maroubra BTW. :grin:
  10. Hey Jace_F,

    I've got a ZXR250 but I'm not going to tell you go get one. I only bought mine because it was cheap and it looked good, plus it's a nice quick-ish bike for me to play with on the weekends.

    However, I did like how it felt when I rode it around compared to the other bikes. This is the important thing because you may have your eye on a few bikes, but if it just doesn't feel right when you test ride them, I'd be looking at the next one on the list.

    For commuting purposes, you may want to get a lighter and more nimble bike (so a 250 most likely) and perhaps one with a little bit of storage (unless you're intending to use a Ventura rack/tankbag/tailbag). If you check out the ZXR or CBR, you pretty much have ZILCH storage capacity. A VTR250 has wads of storage space in comparison.

    My tips would be:
    a) Know your budget
    b) Know what you want to use it for (which I'm sure you do)
    c) Shortlist a few bikes that fit into your criteria and test ride them
    d) Start ticking them off or crossing them off if you like them/don't like them
    e) With your vastly reduced list, start hunting for bargains. You will obviously be able to get a better deal privately, especially if the seller is desperate to sell.

    Once you've looked at a few bikes of the same make, you can pretty much know what's a good deal and what looks shonky.

    I know I'm probably stating the obvious but I hope that helps you out.
  11. Well like what other people said earlier the flasher the bike the more $$$ it's going cost. I'm also 6'1 and rode a cbr250 for 16months. I did find it quite craped. My knees would be out side of where they're suppose to go on the tank :? Other than that nice to ride around on. I pretty much used my cbr250 for commuting to work and uni everyday(only form of transport). In 12months I put in almost 30000km on the bike. It was very reliable.

    Other than the cbr I might recommend the gs500. They should be good for a teller person. Also what was mentioned before is the across. It has very good storage space. I think it's a tiny bit bigger than the cbr. I have ridden one and it doesnt seem to be as cramped as the cbr.

    As for getting it privately or at the shop, I think it comes down to weather you're mechanicly minded or not. If you are then getting it privately might be the go for you. Since I think you can look after it. I'm pretty sure someone here would be happy to give you a hand when looking for a bike.

    One last thing, might be relevant to this topic. What's the new P's thing? I'm pretty sure I've passed that point. Just curious.
  12. New P's rule for riders is any rider under 25 has to have to have their P's for 3 years (I believe like the P1 and P2 restrictions for cagers).

    I'm not 100% sure on when the cut-off date is though, but they said that it's in June.
  13. Not just under 25, under 25 and hold their unrestricted car license, as for when in June, the wording suggests the 1st of June. "As of June".
  14. Hmm not sure about the ZXR, but the CBR has a couple of litres of storage space under the spring-loaded pillion seat. Enough to hold a 2L container of milk. Also attached are two helmet hooks for locking your helmet(s) to the bike.
  15. I'm about 6'1 or a little more, just recently picked up a GS500.
    Rode it 90kms to my olds place without any comfort issues, then from Sydney to Newcastle the next day, even with a bag full of crap on my back I felt fine, not cramped at all.

    It also pulls quite well from about 5k rpm onwards if you're a little heavier.
  16. Oh yeah, I think the ZXR has a little tray thing whereas the CBR has a cubby hole sort of layout. In any case, it's pretty spartan in comparison to other bikes. I guess that's the trade off with a more sports focused bike.
  17. you can fit 50 bucks worth of KFC in an Across :p
  18. Or a feotus.
  19. Which is essentially the same thing if you get chicken nuggets, on reflection.
  20. hahahaha.

    Thanks for all the pointer all, gives me an idea of what kinda thing I am looking for.

    Anyone have any thoughts on the GPX250 or RS250 as well. I am hearing the GPX is pretty good but not much on the RS250.