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Bike suggestions for indecisive new rider

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' started by Riggler, Jun 9, 2016.

  1. CBR500r

  2. VTR250

  3. Ninja 300

  4. CB400

Results are only viewable after voting.
  1. G'day Netriders

    I've had my L's for around nine months now and deliver food for work on a 125cc scooter but am now looking to quickly buy a bike so I can get the skills to do my P's test on a manual license.

    I've done a lot of research for most of the nine months but can't seem to be decisive on the bike I want, I've also researched bikes to grab after my lams and can't decide, which could be a sign to find a really solid lams bike to suit me for 3-4 years, (Tasmania only have to ride lams for one year on P's so can upgrade in 12 months).

    I've locked it down to four bikes I think will go well and I'm not into bikes so much for speed but rather the freedom.

    CB400 2008--> will cost around $5,000

    1999 VTR250 --> Have one going up the road for $1,500, 26,000km (tempting..)

    CBR500r again cost around $5000 with haggling

    Ninja 300 costing around $4000 to $5000

    I'd be getting them all bar VTR250 with ABS (everyone has an opinion on ABS but I don't care how much training I do, if a car pulls out on me I want to be sure I have full chance to make it back home).

    The only thinking holding me back from pulling the trigger on the VTR is unsure of bike to upgrade to and that it has no ABS.

    Please give your thoughts on the above and if you've had any of the bikes before why you choose it and if you made the right choice.

    Cheers guys
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  2. G'day mate. Welcome. Are you tall, short, thin, heavy built? These factors will influence what you end up with.
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  3. Things to consider :

    What kind of riding will you mainly be doing e.g city traffics , touring long distances etc.

    Have you test ride any of the bikes on your list ?
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  4. Don't kid yourself, ABS doesn't give you a "full chance" of anything. It's a great tool to have but it's not a Jesus accessory that will always save you. Nothing will. Your best chance is to forget it has ABS and to learn to ride and anticipate the traffic, THEN the ABS can help you in the situations it's designed for.

    As for the bike, if you're going to keep it for a few years get the 500. It'll be easier to live with longer term.
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  5. Yeah sure sorry Pete and thanks for the reply.
    I'm pretty skinny around 62kg and 175cm but don't carry much fat so it's majority muscle (62kg is still 62kg tho :p).

    The other things I've put into consideration are the CB400 uses fuel the Ninja 300 less so but the VTR and CBR500R average around 3.5L so get a much better efficiency.

    The riding will differ greatly, I study in Melbourne so heavy traffic and lane splitting and then Tasmania is pretty hilly and a lot of 80km roads around the country side, I've only test ridden a Ninja 250.

    I didn't mention it was a Jesus accessory I was just saying that if I do reach the point where the wheel will lock up when breaking it can stop that and rectify any user error in breaking, doesn't make you stop any quicker but can stop a low side. Obviously rider training will be greater than any safety feature you can buy.
  6. >Same height
    >Study in Melbourne
    >CB400 :)

    (I hope you're looking at the tricolour!)
    • Agree Agree x 1
  7. Thanks Domo, yeah the Tri colour one, I have seen the black up close and have to say the finish is absolutely beautiful, a bike you could really feel proud to own and keep polished. What kind of fuel efficiency are you getting out of it?

    I see most people are going towards the higher displacement options, is the VTR a quality bike and a steal for that price or is it worth spending the fair bit extra for something that'll give me a few years?

    Would love to hear from someone with experience of the VTR
  8. Again, you say you don't think it's a Jesus accessory and then think it can catch "any user error". You're still giving it way too much credit. If you hit oil/diesel on a wet road or black ice mid corner you are going down, ABS or no. Remember, it just stops you from locking the brakes, that's all. If you have no traction it's a bit more of a chance, not a "full chance".
    I encourage you to get it if you have the choice, just don't put so much faith in it to always save your ass because it won't.
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  9. G'day RigglerRiggler. The Honda CBR500R is probably the most versatile for city and open road riding of the bikes you've shortlisted. The Honda CB400 is a marvellous motorcycle too; one of the best LAMS models available. As has been said already, ABS or the lack of it shouldn't overly influence your decision about the motorcycle you buy - get the bike that is both most comfortable and caters best for your intended riding.
    • Winner Winner x 1
  10. Thanks Dark Angel, I'll be booking an advanced rider course after my MAST to try and keep myself out of trouble and have a higher awareness of these things on the road. People have been riding without it for a long time successfully, still preferable to have it.

    XJ I'll be sure to head into sit on the both of them and find which one is most comfortable but I did like the CBR500R's versatility but am drawn to CB400 for as it has both the high end like the Ninja and Low torque of the CBR, and also has very large underseat storage (seriously look it up).
  11. I average around 300kms from a tank, but I ride it like the extreme mofo that I am. You know what's absolutely no fun whatsoever? A CB400 in a high gear. But in all seriousness though if you slip it into 5th or 6th and cruise the whole way it just sips fuel.
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  12. My reservations with the VTR are the following:

    $1500 seems a little too cheap - I've got a hunch you'd have a couple minor or major hurdles getting it running / registered / roadworthied again (whatever the process may be in your area.). Even if the part about never being ridden in the rain is true.

    Maybe the guy is selling cheap because the bike is farked. At the very least check the VIN against the stolen / writeoff register. Its $3500 cheaper than your alternatives, so get a mechanic to check it over properly if you're keen on it. (would hate for you to have a lemon if you need it for work)

    26000 km on a 17 year old bike means its been sitting around doing nothing for a significant portion of its life and that can be a problem - do you know if it runs?

    The thing I'd care about the least are whether or not it'll have enough torque/power etc. My gut tells me you're keen on it because its the right now option, and you're scared you'll miss out on the best deal ever. I'm sure you can steal/borrow/hire a bike for your license test, so don't let that be your justification.

    As for your other options:

    Fuel economy suggests budget plays a role - if so look into servicing intervals for major services. half the valves to do on a 2 cylinder bike compared to 4 will also likely make major services cheaper for the 2cyl options. Worse still if major services on the CB400 are more frequent.

    If you want something that looks good and you enjoy polishing yourself, get the CB400. I can tell you want it more and they are nice. (though I've never ridden one)

    If you really are the most indecisive biker, ever. Then you'll want something different in a fortnight, anyway.

    The Suzuki TU250X looks cool......... It should be fine with your riding profile, also.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  13. Yeah I do have reservations for sure but Tasmania generally has more expensive cars/bikes second hand than mainland but due to slow selling you always find amazing deals if you have the patience, the VTR as you said may or may not be that deal. I've got a couple of good mates that work at the bike mechanics in town (of which there are approximately 3) and I'll get them to check any bike first. Plus it'll be coming with a roadworthy and fresh registration so little bit of confidence

    It is the cheapest option and I'm more interested in the fact I can purchase it and resell for the same or higher value and I'll be left with a nice amount to spend on an advanced rider course and potentially some gear upgrades if I feel it's needed.

    They're a cut above the rest of the learners bike, it seems to be one of the few lams made to quality rather than to a dealership price.
  14. I thought I was the most indecisive new rider! Good to know I am not the only one going through the decision making turmoil :)
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  15. Go the cbr500 I have one and it keeps up with the other halfs vfr 800. Just got back from a three day trip on the bikes with our bags jockey strapped to the back of the bike and it was a good trip. We average over 300kms a day and I keep up well. I used less fuel as well which is really good.
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  16. I love my vtr250 but given the opprtunity I would get the cbr500r
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  17. In my (limited) experience, it doesn't get much easier if you plan to own only one motorcycle at a time! I was well and truly sick of myself after the last bike hunt.
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  18. cheap vtr seems the way to go (as long as its ok mechanically) you can drop it and generally brutalise it without feeling too bad. If your bored of it in a few months then you happen to be coming into spring when lots of learners would be looking for a vtr...

    i love my vtr, if tassie rego was not so backwards (my vtr costs the same in rego as a hayabusa) i would probably hang onto mine as its a fun stress free little bike

    just my opinion, as a noob
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  19. Yeah well at least I have kind of narrowed it down to the CBR and VTR - I think the CB400 uses too much fuel and is the most expensive to buy second hand -

    I'll check the condition of the VTR and get a mechanic to go over it, test ride it and go from there.

    Intrance you are absolutely correct Tas Rego just dumbfounds me, $600 for any bike over 125cc gives people no incentives to stay on the little bikes and I feel like II should buy more cc's just to get moneys worth.
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  20. It's not much different here in NSW. There's no difference in rego between a 250 and a 650, so if you want a middle weight bike you might as well go right to the top of the capacity range and be done with it (unless your heart tells you to buy something specific). By the same token, the next rego class down is insanely cheap, so a 220cc dual sport makes for a really cheap second bike.
    (NSW Bike CTP classes, for reference)
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    • Informative Informative x 1