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.

Noobie needs help with first bike and questions

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' at netrider.net.au started by revz, Mar 28, 2010.

  1. Hello all,
    I am new to NR and just got my L's about 2 weeks ago. I am now trying to get my first bike and although I do like fully faired bikes, I do understand that I will most likely drop it some time in the near future. In addition I also read that insurance is usually much more expensive for faired bikes compared to naked bikes, especially for learners. Which is why although I considered some of the 250cc faired sports bike (cbr250's,ninja 250r's and zzr250 mainly) at the start, I am now also considering second hand naked bikes (VTR250's mainly). As for riding I would like to ride from city to uni along Monash freeway (VIC), around city and probably for some day rides (if I manage to find a time lol) once I get my confidence high enough. Will 250cc bikes suit my riding purposes? Or would I need something larger? Also will larger bikes such be much harder to learn on compared to 250cc bikes? I have also read up on oggy knobs that will protect the bike when it is dropped. Are these effective in protecting the fairing when the bike is dropped? I am 19 years old (turning 20 soon if it makes a difference) and approximately 180cm tall and weigh 90 or 95kgs. Any recommendations within the bikes I have mentioned just now? And ofcourse I am still open to all other recommendations.
    Thanks in advance for all the input!

  2. when you say bigger bike i assume that means vic has lams?

    If so then get a bigger capacity bike from the get go, perhaps a naked hyo650 or a old ducati monster (preferred by me).

    Also go with a naked bike you may not drop it but theoretically less repair costs if it does happen. oggy knobs do prevent fairing damage though.
  3. Yes VIC does have LAMs
  4. oggy nobs will help.

    vtr250 is a good choice will do 110kmh easy. I hesitate in recommending a bigger bike if you haven't ridden before but it seems you have your head screwed on right so it probably won't be a problem.

    And yes on a 250 you will end up pinning it everywhere.
  5. A 250 will do what you want without any problems. Even an older gpx has enough poke to frighten the cars away from the lights, with a few revs and a little clutch slip.

    You're about my size and weight, so my experience should be similar to what you'll experience.

    However, a larger LAMS bike will be more comfortable, and will have more torque which will make the ride a tad more relaxed.
  6. Get a Suzuki GS500. A fantastic learner bike. Simple bike. Forgiving enough for a first timer but has a bit of extra power available.
  7. Wot 'e sed.
  8. Maybe also look at a CB400 also.

    I had a second hand VTR250, and my only complaint was that the wind was a bugger on the freeway. But I looked after it, didn't drop it and sold it on when it came time to upgrade. All it cost me was the registration and servicing costs, purchase and sale prices were balanced.

    Definately buy second hand first up, because you WILL want to upgrade, you won't feel as bad if you do drop it and the insurance will probably be cheaper.
  9. You say you are most likely to drop the bike sometime in the near future.


    If you ride to the road conditions, ride with a degree of caution, and get adequate professional rider training (not just from your mates), you need not drop the bike.

    (d-heads in cars are another matter).
  10. There is a chance you will drop your bike but I wouldn't let that stop you getting what you want. I've never dropped a bike...yet. Get an old gpx250 or zzr250 and spend $100 on third party insurance. I don't see the point spending more on insurance each year than the value of a bike.
  11. thanks for all the input guys! Sorry for the late reply, was doing assignments since last night till now.

    Yea most people seem to want to upgrade from a 250 after a few months. Or that is what my friends and my dad told me. One of my mates told me to start on a 400 if you want freeway riding as the extra power is there if you really get into those situations where you would need it. Mom still trying to persuade me not to ride lol.

    From the people who I know that is riding now, most of them dropped their first bike. In addition from researching on the net, most people seems to have dropped their first bike at some point. But ofcourse I do know some people who ever dropped their bike. I am planning to get some adequate professional rider training as I the things that I will there will probably save my life some time in the future and less chance of dropping my bike, hence saving some $$$ when reselling.

    yea I got some quotes from insurance companies and some of the quotes on comprehensive costed even more than the bike.

    Once again thanks for all the inputs everyone :]
  12. You're a fairly big lad (or gal) so don't discount a big traillie. It would fit you better and handle everything you describe with ease. Or perhaps even better something like Kawasaki's KLE500.
  13. Can't recommend the GS500 highly enough for a first bike that's got what it takes for freeway riding. I have commuted on mine along the ring road and tulla freeway and have needed the extra grunt a couple of times to stay a couple of steps ahead of trouble. It's a very simple bike, great for learning on, and cheap as chips to run (5L/100KMs).

    Coincidentally, mine is for sale, check the bikes for sale thread if you're interested!
  14. Hey mate

    I'm a new rider and I am pretty much the same size as you height wise 182CM and weight wise 87KG and I have a GS500F. First bike and I am really enjoying it. It is a much easier bike to ride for me than the CB250 I rode at Stay Upright. I don't feel like I have my knees up around my ears.

    So based on my vast experience ... get a GS500 :LOL:

    Better yet see if you can ride a few different bikes to get a feel for what you like and don't like.

    Fun Ha!
  15. +1. Ride every bike you can get your hands on and buy the one you like the most.

    Having said that, given your build I'd suggest you look at the bigger/taller bikes. My son was 183cm when he started learning and found most learner legal bikes (the ones we could afford)too short so we got him a KLR650 with 17" rims and road rubber. So something like that might be worth a look. The bonus with these is that you can have 2 bikes in one. Put the 17" rims on and you've effectively got a motard for on the road, put the dirt rims on and you can head bush.
  16. thanks for all the replies!
    I guess I'll start looking at bigger bikes as well.
  17. i have been in a very similar position to you, i'm 19, 181cm but about 100kg.

    have a look at dirt bikes with supermoto/motard wheel as b12mick suggested. thats what i have (i'm in victoria with LAMs) and it is the most fun i've had in the twisty corners and has really taught me how to cope with the bike moving around.

    initally what i did was rode around the streets on non street legal knobby tyres, as these are very vague and you have to concentrate really hard to feel the difference between them fully letting go and just the knobs rolling around. this gave me the initial feel of the limit of adhesion at a (reletively) low speed compared to full on road bikes.

    once i got the hang of those tyres and could comfortably hang it out exiting corners i stepped up to some tyres called Pirelli MT/90 which is a tyre suited for road/dirt riding with a bias to road. did the same thing as the knobbies, just kept working at it until i could ride the wheels of it.

    then i went to full supermoto setup and now knowing what the bike moving around feels like i certainly have the confidence to ride within my abilities with any sort of things to happen.

    anyway to bike selection...

    i'm biased but i think that you should look at trail bikes. sure they dont look like moto gp bikes but if you get riding off road it will significantly help develop your skills as a rider alot quicker than on the road, because you have to deal with slides and changing surfaces alot more.

    maybe a drz 400e or drz 400sm (sm comes with supermoto setup as standard, e is the enduro one) would be the ticket for you, lighter than nearly any roadbike, loads of support, quite reliable and if you choose to go the supermoto path theres endless aftermarket goodies as the americans love them!

    my supermoto is a wr450f (link to thread here https://netrider.net.au/forums/showthread.php?t=111081 ) and i ride it to uni most nice days (150k round trip) and it sits on highway speeds and above quite easily.

    there also isnt much to damage on a fall either which is an upside. and insurance is nothing like road bikes! so much cheaper!
  18. The Kawasaki ER-5 is another good LAMS bike worth a look, better donk and a bit more stylish than a GS500. I put 40,000 hard kms on one in 12 months with no dramas.

    Good luck!
  19. Either one is a winner. Mate had one back in the day. Looked almost exactly the same as my old GS500E.

    Still miss that old P.O.S. :nopity:
  20. I think it will be more than a few months before you want to upgrade if you are just learning and have never been on a bike before and i think proper breaking, looking ahead and keeping in your little safety bubble (aka buffer zones) will be so much more effective at getting you out of trouble and avoiding it than power.
    Also my Mum attempted to persuade me not to ride and now a few years on she is the prowd owner and rider of her own motorcycle. hahah.

    Every one has been in your shoes with no intention to drop the bike and confidence. Just like everything in life you should plan for worst case senario and assume that you will at some point drop it.

    I think you should just get on as many bikes as you can since confort in my mind is the most important thing for getting your first bike. No matter how many people recommend a bike, if you are on it and feel unconfortable you won't really be paying 100% attention to you riding and whats going on around you which makes you more prone to make mistakes.