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Most reliable bike?

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' at netrider.net.au started by TAX123, May 13, 2009.

  1. what would you say is a good old bike in the mid 80's to early 2000's that would be good for short city trips and a once a month long ride, and sometimes standing in the garage for a coupe of weeks without use, and still start first go every time, looks good and is comfortable???

    some say honda's are very reliable but is this across the ranges and ages or just opinion?

  2. Any bike can be unreliable, it depends upon the condition of the bike.

    Having said that some bikes are more unreliable than most.

    There are a heap of bikes that are generally reliable and IMO it'd be impossible to say which one is the 'most reliable'.

    Hondas generally are slightly better finished than many other japanese bikes however.
  3. one tip, get a battery tender or battery fighter. If its going to sit for a few weeks at a time, this will keep your battery healthy and ready to ride.

    Get something comfortable.

    Reliability really depends on how it has been treated in its life.

    Give some more info such as:

    -price range
    -rider size
    -rider experience
    -riding style when out on your once a month ride
    -styling you prefer

    This should help us help you.
  4. so whats the avoid list? so we can count those out
  5. I wouldn't touch an 80s Honda (or any other Honda for that matter) with a ten foot pole, particularly if looking for that sort of plug and play reliability.

    I'd probably be looking at late BMW R80 and R100 variants. Bit big and heavy for the sort of trips you mention but with just the kind of "start first go after a month" ability you'd need.

    But yeah, reliability will mostly depend on history once a bikes been even slightly used.
  6. VTR250.
    starts first time, every time. never had it break down.
    great in the city for splitting, low speed handling etc.
    will sit on redline in 5th all day too, it doesnt mind :D
    happy to sit there for a while, had mine in the shed for 3 months.
    cheap to run, can do almost all servicing yourself if you're a noob like me.
    $13 to fill up, gets 300km.

    what more can you want? :grin:
  7. $2000-$6000
    full licence, no expert
    touring (not forgetting those small round the town trips)
    not naked
  8. yea it was a good bike

    but now with the seized motor, dont know if i will get it going again :(

    might try something different

    dont know if i should step down to something smaller, like gs500f , heard they are very reliable, air cooled twin , but are these very low on power ? havnt had a test ride on one .was also looking at a gsx650f at Sydney City Motorcycles last week, but my wallet might only be able to afford something second hand, how are the zzr600's or the cbr600's ,
    BMWk100rs ok, or too heavy for the local trips?
  9. Another thing to think about is parts availability and cost. With the old cbr6 (yeah yeah I love my bike and like to bang on about it) you can get parts from most wreckers and Honda still keep most parts in Australia. Reliability so far has been faultless (a dead battery and flat tyre will happen on most bikes).

    For $3-4k you can even get one in reasonable condition.

    I'm sure the bimmers are ultra reliable, but I'm a little unsure about parts availability.
  10. VFR800 pre 2002. Bullet proof tourer.
  11. Most bikes from the 80s and 90s are pretty robust, but that doesn't make them reliable in the everyday sence.

    with any bike from the 80s you are going to have to fiddle with electrics and carbies if you ride them regularly.

    So I suggest you look at 90 onwards if you want something you want to be able to trust to go first time.

    Also price comes into reliability too. Getting genuine reliability at $2K is almost impossible. Some guys believe otherwise with their bikes but when you interrogate them about what work they've done to their bike recently you soon find they are doing a lot of work that they are filing as maintenance in their mind.

    So I'd say $4K to $6K would be better at better range to look at.
  12. CBR600F would be a good bike that fits your criteria.

    ZZR600 are good too, but not as common and parts are more costly.

    GS500 should go forever, but don't expect to take off too fast.
  13. Every part you could possibly need, off the shelf (or at least within Australia with superb mail order delivery), at prices that are often cheaper than the Jap equivalent.

    Given your height, price range and likely use, I'd say a K100RS was pretty much perfect for you. I used to use mine on a suburban commute with no probs.

    Only widespread problem to look for is final drive splines. Unless the seller can prove to you that they've been greased by the book, knock $800 off your offer cos that's about what it'll cost to fix with as-new used parts when they let go.

    Other than that, just keep putting petrol in (they like premium) and change the oil every 5000 km and filter every 10, and it'll go for ever. And ever. And ever.

    Just bear in mind that BMs have a lengthy acclimatisation period. Took me a couple of weeks before I stopped missing gearchanges through being insufficiently German about my footwork.
  14. I have a German CEO. his foot is usually up my arse. This explains the gear change.
  15. It's the goose-stepping that does it :bolt: .
  16.  Top
  17. You could probably squeeze a ZZR1100 for under $6k?

    I've heard good things from owners with high kms.

    I loved my Firestorm and they are cheap as chips used. They probably are not the 'best' choice but they are a good workhorse and a very cool bike :cool:
  18. My 1989 ZX10 (what the ZZR1100 was based on) is still going strong

    98,000km and no problems.
    Sure they are not a sports bike by todays standards, but she has enough go, stable at speed, comfy for hours on end, and fine in traffic.
  19. Maybe a Hornet 600?