Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

Beginners track bike?

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' started by currentlyatlarge, Dec 21, 2015.

  1. Ola Netriders :)

    I'm overseas driving a giant van on lovely twisty European roads, 12 months and I'm really missing riding. Also after having a look around Circuit Paul Ricard (and a few rounds thrashing the go-karts there), I've convinced myself to get a bike when back in oz.

    What I'd like to do is trip short, infrequent stretches (~250km country Victorian roads North of Melbourne) at 100+k/h (not one for speeding me), but then take the same bike to the track and push it, whittle times down, build a skill and get my kicks.

    I've ridden a postie (in the city, sometimes like a temporary Australian) in the past, and a range of 125s off road.

    Was thinking about something on the small and light end... But on the 2.5h bi-monthly-ish trip, not so sure... 400cc to 1000?

    Mech is easy enough, so could even get a 'underpowered' bike that has good tuning/aftermarket gains?

    Good rubber, stops, suspension and handling are my main priority, as is price (travel is eating my sub $5k bike fund as I type this). Couldn't give a flying truck about looks or brand.

    Or maybe I just bite the bullet, learn to ride the 1500cc cruiser I can borrow, and grab a trailer and a beginners track bike? But then I'd miss out on the Black Spur detour...

    Any thoughts more than welcome, pretty lost in the sea of "what's a lams bike I can mod to hit 500km/h" and "if you're starting out on the track (insert $15k bike here) is a minimum requirement" posts at the moment!
  2. welcome aboard :) are you on a holiday or working as you drive around those lovely twisty European roads.
    cant help much with the bike but there's plenty of more experienced people who can.
  3. Ha not experiencd at all but the ninja 300 are a top little track bike and corner like a angry snake in the grass.
    There is even a special ninja 300 class.
  4. Do you have a Full License now (or any licence for that matter)?

    If you dont have a license, your stuck on LAMS for at least a year dependent on where you live. And you cant get a LAMS bike and then mod the shite out of it if your restricted.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. If you are young enough, fit enough and bendy enough to fit on one, a Cagiva Mito or Aprillia RS125 is what you need.

    They are LAMS bikes, but, they have the handling and braking of serious race bikes.

    Yeah, the main straights at P.I. or E.C. are pretty boring, but, once you get to the corners...... they are serious fun.

    I admit they are hopeless for carrying a passenger, doing the shopping, or even "cruising", as they don't actually like going slowly, but....

    Hey, if you are in Europe, ask around there....they know of these machines.
  6. I have also heard the aprillia RS 125 is good. Seen one at a track day at ec, the guy on it is thinking of selling it too!
  7. Can't go past a Ninja-300 for the track, fun class to watch as-well.
    Very cheap if you get one which has been 'economically written off' while still having enough power to have fun.
    Plenty of aftermarket fairings and parts available to fix them up ***when you crash***

    Invest in good gear over an expensive faster bike....it hurts enough falling off as it is, before you even see the bike!
  8. I have an RVF400 for this exact purpose :) great fun in the twisties (especially when I get the suspension rebuilt).

    Only downside is that being a 20-year old Grey import, parts can get expensive.
  9. Thanks all!

    JeffcoJeffco It's all holiday, the van's our house for 18 months, but it's all I drive other than the folding pushie under the bed! Miss the zen of being 'corner efficient' although I'll admit it's fun to manage the beast through windy roads, even if it's 20km/h. Spain up next.

    OldmaidOldmaid Nicholai_ChevNicholai_Chev Thanks for the pointer - didn't even know a 300 existed! Will definitely take a peek at those, likewise SIKKO_X2SIKKO_X2 I'll take a peek at the RVF, although expensive parts don't sound too flash ;)

    GoozaGooza I've had my full licence for years now (10, oh feck that hurts. Has it really been 10?) but am still CrazyCamCrazyCam bendy enough for a 125 (and 5'10"). Never heard of this Mito, will look that up too.

    I've seen a couple of track-ready ~600cc bikes on bikesales (is that what site the cool kids still use these days?) and wondered at putting them back on the road with bolt-on headlights, for a kind of plug-and-ride road bike that only takes minutes to strip back for the track... rather than getting a road-legal and going the other way. Seems cheaper on face value to get a track bike and road it, but maybe there's more ADR's and Legal Eagles that route?

    I've got some Googling to do, keep em coming!
  10. A lot of track bikes are stat write-offs, so would require a lot to get them back on the road and would cost a lot.

    A track bike probably isnt the best place to start with a road bike, as a lot of them have been thrashed. Given that you will likely be using it mostly for the road I would suggest getting a good road bike, then setting it up to work best for you with new tyres and suspension setup.

    It's much easier to convert a street bike to track than it is to convert a track bike to street given the RWC and ADR requirements for the road.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. Good point, much easier to get a good fit. Cheaper in the long run to boot.

    I've read SV650S produce cheap track fun with better stops and forks, but the lighter smaller bikes do look like a blast on the twisty roads. The 650 appeals because even hardened up for track, it'll still have a better seat than the 125s... Flip side, who buys a bike for the comfort factor ;)

    So it's two-stroke 125s, vs 4-stroke 300, vs twin 650? What do you wish you had starting out on the track?
  12. #12 Gooza, Dec 22, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2015
    S1000RR ??
  13. 18 months that's sounds like a great adventure :) if you have a chance post some pics :)
  14. If you aren't LAMS restricted, another option is a Street Triple, 675.

    With a modicum of fiddling, the Striple can be a very good road bike and a fairly quick track bike too.

    If you can handle the riding position, a Daytona 675 is, similarly, an option.

    But I guess it's all subject to your priorities.

    If you really want to work at serious track work, then the two-stroke 125s and 250s (if you can find one) are probably the way to go, at least to start with.

    Without bulk horsepower on tap, you have to actually think very exactly and ride very precisely.

    If you have heaps of power it becomes too easy to just blast down the straights and be a bit slack on the corners.
  15. Haha, if you mean the 1000, I think I'd better keep off the litre bikes for a couple of years yet - gotta at least see my 30th!
    • Like Like x 1
  16. This I like the sound of. 10,000km tear down less so ;)

    I'd love a Daytona/Striple, but they start about $1500 outside my (shrinking) 5k budget, whereas there's an end of life Mito out there for 2.8k, and battered SVs going for even less (though there's more to swap/prep on them to up the handling stakes). Aprillias start at 4k...
  17. Jump on track junkies in Australia on Facebook and start salivating about your options.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  18. An older fireblade? There are CBR900RR's around for your money.
  19. the 900s have the 16 inch front rim though which really limits your tyre choices which is a problem for a track bike
  20. I don't think you'd get anywhere near 10,000ks between rebuilds on a 2 stroke. Plenty of them need it before that on the road. The track is going to be far more stress on the internals. Getting 5000ks would be amazing I reckon.
    Also Ive seen plenty of Aprilia 125s for less than $4k. Even the 07 onwards shape with the better brakes can be found from time to time for $3k or less. One went here in Vic a week or so ago with 7,000ks and the Arrow pipe advertised for $2300!
    The RS250's dont come up too often ( I know cos I spent a year before finding mine) and as a road bike it'd be out of your price range. They do come up from time to time in track setup within your budget.