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{Moved from General} Suitable bike for learner?

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' started by ssadam, Jun 14, 2014.

  1. #1 ssadam, Jun 14, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 14, 2014
    Hi I'm a biking novice having just got my l's. I am on the lookout for a small bike and am thinking about a cb125e. I spend my weekends at nowra nd weekdays in Sydney and was thinking of learning on this bike on country quiet roads around nowra and eventually riding it up to keep as my commuter bike in Sydney once I got proficient enough. My question is whether a bike like this could be ridden to Sydney on l's? Would, for example, it be able to get up the escarpment at Wollongong? Or am I better off getting the same bike in Sydney? It's a very tempting package price from the honda dealership in Nowra that I haven't been able to match in Sydney but there is no point if this bike couldn't be brought up to Sydney once I was experienced enough.

    Any advice is much appreciated.

    Read the Forum sticky thread
  2. I'd not like to see you combining your learning processes with a ride like that on a 125 on a regular basis. You really should be getting a 650 LAMS bike, or a 250. You need at least to be able to keep up with highway traffic, and have a bit in reserve when you need it, than to be tapped out at full throttle for the whole ride....
    • Agree Agree x 2
  3. A cb125 will be too tiring to ride that trip regularly. As Hornet says, have a look at the bigger engined LAMS bike.
  4. It would not be a regular ride just a once off to get the bike back to Sydney. So it's sounds like it's not beyond it's capabilities?
  5. As an occasional mild road rager (all internal) the Berry to Gerringong stretch is the world's worst stretch of road for getting impatient at slow drivers. Its a fair whack without an overtaking lane. If you can't keep up with the speed limit try to get behind someone else who cant either, wait at berry or Geringong for a nasty looking van or truck. I've seen some really nasty behavior on this stretch of road for people just driving at a pace they are comfortable with. And in a vulnerable vehicle like a 125 you will face a big risk from morons.
    • Agree Agree x 3
  6. I have to agree with the comments above, I rode from Nowra to Kiama on a 250 years ago, it seemed to take forever, now I have a 650, long rides are so much better, the 650 is heavier and you need a few days on the bike to get used to it, I recently watched a stack of safe riding videos and practised on quiet roads, mingling with traffic is dangerous, lots of luck!
  7. Try a GS500.

    Similar style of bike. Low seat, easy to ride, and enough grunt for highway work.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. Mate, it would be a fine bike for a wee commuter in Sydney.
    It would be a fine bike, as a learner bike, down in Nowra.

    The, once only, trip, Nowra to Sydney is doable, but, to be honest, you wouldn't want to make a habit of it.

    I've not ridden that particular 125, but, I suspect, on the freeway, you'd have to settle down and tuck in behind a nice big truck who is pushing his speed limiter ever so slightly. ;-)

    But, fair goes, that wasn't what the bike was designed for.
  9. I had my 125 from May to September last year. It's great for for learning and as a runabout.
    I did a few highway bits on it and can say that it's not the most comfortable feeling.
    Hills, unless they are short or with little traffic... forget about it. She'll struggle and you'll feel frustrated at having nothing in reserve.
    As a one off run... go for it. Pick a good time of day/week and don't push yourself too hard.
    If you can find a wingman to go along with you... even better.
  10. Put it on a trailer and tow it to Sydney. Or ask them to deliver it, preferably included in the price.
  11. anyone who badmouths a 250's capabilities to do that stretch can suck my crusty knob

    i've done many trips from sydney to narooma (some 3 or so hours further south)

    on a gpx 250 ....a zzr 250...and a zxr 250 - all could happily sit at 140 consistently from what i've seen on youtube videos of these bikes but in my experience they did the speed limit fine and had no real issue with hills or overtaking..

    i dont doubt someones capabilities but if they don't have the mentality or budget to go for a 650 straight up - then i wouldn't advise them to go that route....id advise a 250 over a 125 any day of the week though, commuter or not....you'll get the itch to take the bike on the open road eventually and you will be both sore and sad at the sack of shit a 125 is for anything but commuting.

    buy a old ass 250 - that way you won't be upset when you either drop the bike or someone hits/scratches it and it'll still be well within your tight ass budget - dont hesitate to put a call out to riding friends to check out a second hand bike for you (i'm sure for some beer a netrider would happily help out in this department)
    • Agree Agree x 1
  12. 250 would do it fine. I did Melbourne to Adelaide on a VTR. However, it was VERY windy (always is out west) and having to keep up with bigger bikes was tiring. The next smallest bike in our group was a street triple, and they were cruising at 130 nearly the whole way. I'm wringing the guts out, trying to keep up - I was a big lump on a little bike - and one of them has the audacity to ask if that was my first group ride???

    The fker got a speeding fine, so Karma dealt with him.

    Anyway, if I'd been alone or with like minded people it would have been fine. But I think a 125 is a bit small if it's a LONG way. If I'd known they were going to go that fast (yes, I asked, and was assured to the contrary), I'd have put the bike on a trailer and towed it over. Hence my suggestion, especially if it's a once off.

    How far is it anyway?
  13. I'm heading towards my P's on a CB125E. Love it for round the suburbs - would I go more that 30kms away more than once a week? Nah. Its for work up to 70 kph for brief periods. Sure it will go some more but thats why there are bigger bikes and motors. Syd Nowra would be a nice ride on the right bike.
  14. IMHO alot of learners are daunted by many aspects of riding. The size and how difficult the bike is to handle is the first consideration. But that should be the last consideration. Going for a 125, you will most likely out grow it in a few months. A 250 is still very light and easy to handle. And it will give you that little bit more when you need it. You won't find a 250 that has huge squirts of power come on suddenly (Unless you buy one of the older 250 2 stokes, and they are not learner legal). You won't find much difference in fuel economy between a 125 and 250 for commuting. But the 250 will be much more confortable. After a few more months you will have outgrown the 250 as well, so the 300, 400 & 500 cc bikes will all do you for a longer period of time (Learners and then your period on red then green P's.) Going for a learner 650, you might be put off by the available power as well as the weight of the bike. But if you are serioulsy commited to riding, maybe the bigger bike is the way to go. In my opinion, the Ducati Monster 659 is the ultimate learner bike.Triumph are also bringing out a Street tripple 660 in Lams and they too will do for commuting or the long country ride.
  15. I forgot to add, I had a day with a Ninja 250 as a loan bike while mine was being serivced. Damn it was slow, but at least I could keep up with freeway traffic and had a little in reserve, so I could pass something with enought of a wind up.
  16. Bloody hell!

    You mean your dick DIDN'T shrivel up and drop off?
  17. I got myself a CBR500R as my first/ learner bike.....I am so glad I did not get anything smaller (y)
  18. Not all 250's are created equal.

    My first bike was a GN250, I'd highly recommend one. BUT ONLY if you ride around town with the occasional short trip in 80km zones. The most terrifying ride I've had was on that bike traveling between Gundagai and the Wagga turnoff on the Hume Hwy - I was holding up B doubles on hills.

    I hear good things about the Ninja 300.

    Another suggestion (although I don't find them comfortable - a lot of fun though) is look at the 650cc dirt/trail bikes - DR650/KLR650/XT660.
  19. +1 for a bigger bike first up from a new noob ;)
  20. No.

    Over the years I have been involved with quite a number of new riders and some of them got talked into buying bigger, heavier bikes than they could reasonably handle.

    Once you are riding the bike, it's weight tends to go away, but, if you own, and live with the bike, you have to be comfortable in getting it out of the shed/garage and back in again.

    I have known (not in the biblical sense!) quite a few ladies who have been talked into buying bigger heavier bikes, who eventually gave up on learning to ride, because getting the bloody thing in and out of where it was kept became such a drama.

    Fine, if you are a six foot tall rugby prop forward, a 200kilo bike is a piece of piss to roll out, but, if you are a five foot nothing, wee lady(or bloke, not to be sexist), it can be a bit of an issue.

    Depends on the 125.

    Those that think they are bored riding certain 125 two-strokes, probably don't know enough about riding.
    (BTW, I am not trying to encourage learners onto 125 two-strokes.)

    To me, the most important thing for a learner, buying their first bike, is that they are comfortable handling it and sitting on it, and, it does upset me when I hear the business of the existing "bikie" talking his/her other half into a bigger heavier bike than the partner really feels comfortable with.