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Heavy beginner rider, need help choosing first bike

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by MCT, Dec 11, 2011.

  1. G'day all. I'll start by saying that I'm an absolute beginner when it comes to riding bikes. I used to ride when I was a kid, but haven't ever ridden a real bike.

    I'm going to do my pre-learners Monday week and am excited! I've been wanting to do this for years and years.

    So I've spent the last 2 days researching LAMS bikes and just have a few questions for the more experienced out there. I'm quite big, 6 foot and 115 kgs. I originally wanted a cruiser, but I've been told that I'm too big for a 250cc cruiser at my weight, and that I'll outgrow it quick smart, so I started looking at some of the bigger cruisers xvs650, vt400/vt600, xc535 etc, but they are out of my price range which is $5000 max.

    So I've started looking at some nakeds. Do the 250cc nakeds have a bit more poke than the 250cc cruisers? Am I too tall for a 250 naked? I felt a bit silly on a 250cc cruiser...

    I like the sounds of the hyosung gt650, but tbh it scares me, being a mega new rider. This is where I'm a bit stuck. The bigger bikes seem a bit scary for a noob, but I'm assured I'll hate a 250cc.

    I'd still prefer a cruiser, but I'm keeping my options open.

    I appreciate any advice, thanks!

  2. u wont hate a 250cc.. sure u will have times u wish u had more overtaking power but theres other times lack of power may save u from doing something stupid while your still learning
    im 6'4 105kg and been riding a vtr250 for almost 2 years and have had plenty of fun but im definitely looking forward to upgrading early next year

    what are you planning on using it for? commuting, freeway riding, twisties etc

  3. It depends on which 250 naked you mean. Some are faster some are slower. You can search for specs on google to get their power. Power is not everything on a bike though.

    Its hard to say from your height if you are going to be too tall or short because it depends on you inseam not you overall height. Go sit on some bikes.
  4. I'll be using it mainly as a Sunday cruiser, but living in the Highlands there is a lot of twist and hills, plus I'll be riding it on the freeway a bit, if I feel ok being overtaken by b-doubles until off restrictions, we'll see...

    Very little city/suburban riding.

    Still can't decide wether or not to go a cruiser, it's what I want, but I'm thinking a naked might be more sensible to learn on for the 15 months....
  5. you wont be getting overtaken by b-doubles unless you ride like a pussy or own a scooter
  6. Lol, hope not.
    The sooner I get off that 80km speed limit, the better. I probably see a highway patrol set up every 2nd day whilst driving, but I'd be nervous about being a 110km/h freeway straight up, so I'll avoid them until comfortable.
    I only mentioned it because ultimately I'll be on the freeway a bit in the future, so the bike has to be able to do 110 with 115kgs on it.
  7. Go XVS 650 top beginner bike..............i know i have one :)

  8. Then you should definitely get a cruiser. Motorcycling's about passion, not common sense, and why compromise during those wonderful early days of your motorcycling.

    Come down to Melbourne, sit on a heap of bikes. The XV535 and any like it will be too small for you. The XVS650 however sounds like a potential winner. I'm sure there's footpeg extension kits for it (or any such bike) if you find it too cramped.

    The power of any of these middle-weight bikes will be perfectly adequate to you.

    What are you looking to move up to when you have your full license?

  9. Would love one, but a decent example is too pricey...

    I've got $6500 to spend including gear and insurance, so about $5000 less.
    Tough price point it seems...
  10. I agree 100%, but am trying to use my head too, it's not working.

    What I want after restrictions, and what spurred me on to finally get my license, is a Trumpy speedmaster. Mate just bought a Bonny and I love the look of the trumpy's. My old man used to ride an old Bonny as I was growing up.

    It seems the VT600 could be an option now, there's a couple around (~1997, too old?) with $5000 on them. Need to research more about this bike.

    Good fun.
  11. Yeah, that budget might preclude you from any modern middle-weight cruiser (but not some of the quirky '80s ones which come up on eBay here and there).

    I haven't ridden an Kawasaki EL250 / VN250 Eliminator on the freeway, but I believe they have the same engine as the rather capable (for a learner) GPX250? That might be an option. I can't remember what they're like in terms of roominess, but they should be powerful enough for your learner needs as you've described them.

    EDIT in response to above post: if you're prepared to buy from both Melb and Sydney you open up your options http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Honda-VT...Motorcycles&hash=item45feb3a449#ht_500wt_1287
    • Like Like x 1
  12. If I could find the thanks button, I'd use it...
    Thanks for the link, anyone know how much it would cost to respray it black? Hate the blue ;)
  13. oh your in nsw where L platers can only do 80km/h?? thats the shittest law imo it just makes them a hazard to themself and other drivers
  14. I was looking at $5k for a bike but 120+kg and 6'2". Simply had to change my budget or get something I wasn't comfy on. In the end I ended up getting a cb400 2nd hand, and later a new one since it was so good.

    That said, once you get to the business of $7k+ it is worth looking at compro insurance as well, so it can add up.
  15. Yeah, it's crazy...
  16. So you wouldn't bother insuring say a vt600 shadow worth $5k?
  17. Deapends how old you are and if you can transfer a car no claim bonus.
  18. If you can't afford to easily replace it then you can't afford not to insure it, in my book. Unless you're really broke, in which case you at least need third party.

    MCT, a black paint job costs as much as some competent painter near you will charge. It doesn't need to be expensively done by a 'professional' at a shop. But...did blue attack you when you were a child?
  19. OP - I'm 6 foot and a smidge under 120kg.

    Up until 3 months ago I was on a Hyosung 250 cruiser - it will fit you fine.


    It all depends what you want it for and how long. In my case, I knew exactly what I wanted and was only looking for a big LAMS cruiser for 12 months or less and was not prepared to spend more than $5k (as I was saving the $$ for my upgrade bike) so I was happy with planning overtaking moves well in advance and the lack of acceleration uphill etc etc.

    In many ways a 250 is great fun, even a cruiser as you can really learn the limits of the bike and give em a good flogging whilst styling clear of hoon law / instant license loss territory.

    Having said all that, if you're planning on keeping it for a while, go the Yam or Hyo 650. The VStar is by far the more popular but the Hyo is to a bad compromise if you're on a tighter budget.

    Enjoy the ride
  20. Ok, so at the moment it's a 4 year old hyo gv650 vs a 13 year old vt600 shadow...
    Similar price.
    I'd love to hear people's thoughts on that.
    Thanks gentlemen, you've been a great help.