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The bike as transport. Suggestions?

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by MichaelR65, Apr 13, 2015.

  1. What is the most practical bike for "everyday" use?

    This forum is populated by enthusiasts of many different types, and that is great. Motorcycles engender emotional responses and some passionate beliefs. Happily NetRider is inclusive and accommodates all interests. Sports bike, cruisers, adventure bikes, all have a place. My particular interest is a 30 year old BMW R65. OK so I am not so young and in no great hurry!

    But maybe the bikes which excite our passion are not the most practical as everyday transport. Slipping down to the bank on a large touring bike, blinged up cruiser or big capacity sports bike is perhaps not so great. Anyway, who wants to leave your pride and joy in a shopping center car park. You could take a car but where is the fun in that?

    We all know that one bike is never enough. The solution must be a spare bike for occasional riding, but what? I have considered a scooter, postie bike, stuff like that, but can't come at it. I have now come the conclusion that maybe a Honda CB 250 is the solution (howls of laughter!!) .... cheap to buy, cheap to insure and register, just a practical knock-about. But seriously, when performance and style are no longer important what is there?

    Anyway, I will look for a CB250 (any one got one in the shed?) but what else fits the job? Ural with a side car? Large capacity scooter? Any suggestions?

    (keep it clean! )
  2. My GSXR600 is my sole method of transport at the moment, and has been for the past 3 weeks, as I wound a bit too much boost into my WRX and lifted the heads. It's made things a bit tricky, but good management allows me to handle most problems.

    So at the moment, a GSXR is the most practical for me haha
  3. I use my cb400 for everything except the grocery run(I borrow a car for that), I consider it extremely practical.
    If I were to buy something specifically as a spare bike for doing the quick runs and parking in bad places I think a Honda cub 90 would be the go.
    Cooler than a postie bike and you can still strap a milk crate to the back for loads of storage space, has the rego/insurance/running cost benefits of small bikes while still being interesting.
    Oh! and you can put a little basket on the front to keep your ice cream cool on the ride home. Stylish~ :cool:
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  4. I've got a little scooter with a top box I ride around town. Pretty much a perfect commuter if you don't need to go faster than 70kph.
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  5. I commute to an office job on my CBR500R. I have a rack on the back with a bag I've learnt to lack with a laptop, office clothes etc. If I need more space I carry a pack.
  6. Hi Michael.

    Yes, I agree that the CB250 is a pretty good option.

    For that matter, the wee Honda scooter that you had was probably just the thing for ducking down to the bank or whatever.

    Even cheaper for rego/greenslip and uses even less petrol.
  7. Anything upright, light and with a good fuel economy ticks most boxes as a good commuter.
  8. gs500 or one of the ktm singles.
  9. I'd think in terms of "doing it all" it would be hard to beat an on/off road bike around 500cc. Plenty grunt, can cruise easily, can be a workhorse, plaything, commuter, etc. And an older one would be cheap and you wouldn't care if it got the odd bump or scratch. So along the lines of XT KLR DRZ etc.
  10. I'll pipe up with another vote for a scooter, certainly for town use.
    performance wise there are plenty available that can keep up with city traffic, storage is gernerally great and running costs are lower than any 'proper ' bike.

    I commute using the K1300R though because it's a good do it all bike and my commute involves McCarrs Creek and it'd be a crime to ride a scooter up/down that road rather than a bike.
  11. I just got back from a 4WD camping trip in Northern NSW and in the last camping ground there was an older guy with a Suzuki TU250x. He was very happy with it. Very classy looker in the Cafe racer style. Haven't done any research but I could end up with one down the track. That said my bike is an older bike ( Yamaha FZX750) and pretty good to ride around town!
  12. Suzuki Across ;)
    Man-bag is really handy
    Doesn't go too bad under 100KMH for a 250cc
    Mine has 60k on the clock and still going strong
    You can pick them up fairly cheap
    Heaps parts available from wreckers
    Only con is the fuel tank being smaller compared to other bikes
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  13. It's the age old "how long is a piece of string?" question. It depends entirely on what your "everyday use" actually is. For me, the most practical transport for "everyday use" doesn't have an engine.
    • Like Like x 1
  14. Scooters are cheap and good at what they do, but it's just the one thing. If you want more tricks, V-Strom 650 will do everything from crossing the city to crossing the world, without being expensive and without being boring.
    Dream large, I say.
  15. Aye, but Michael already has a BMW 650.
  16. As a CB250 owner currently restricted (here in Tasmania) to 80 kph, this is all the bike I need at the moment. It is very manageable about town, but a bit lacking on the open road. So while it may be all the bike I need (for now), it's not all the bike I want!
  17. 'Everyday Use' is different for everyone, I commute from the outer West of Melbourne into town so my choice for at least 15 years has been a VFR800. Great freeway, good in traffic and a blast at the weekends. I've also had Honda 250 road bikes and a couple of chook chasers, a dash of big tourers and a flirt with a fat cruiser. All had their good points, none where all rounders like the VFR.

    I've just changed, due to an old wrist injury playing up, in the last 2 weeks to a 650 V-Strom and I am loving every minute of it. Only question is why haven't I had one before.
  18. Ah yes, the cool factor :) That would be a nice additional quality as long as it did not compromise practicality.
  19. I think the question you've got to ask yourself is do you go places? ie. Use it for travel. It's hard to reconcile a 250 if you'd like to go anywhere very distant, or carry much. A bike with a larger engine is a more relaxed ride and any of the current bikes will seem very "busy" compared to that Beemer.

    Nothing much wrong with the CB250. Even simpler would be a Yammie Scorpio - not quite a Postie bike, but getting real basic. I know someone with a 400 Burgman Scooter - It is surprisingly good, though very scooter like with a gearless transmission. However, it is large for a scooter, the upside being it has a huge space under the seat for storage. I could come at any of these, or even an RS125, or Sachs Madass, if I was only about getting around the place, and not carrying anything or going anywhere beyond 20 or 30 km, apart from the Burgman, which is very comfy and roomy, or the CB250.

    I agree with Ozriders vote for the VFR800 - great bike, but I sense that you are not looking for more power. That is a world away from what you've got. The 650 Vstrom is an excellent all purpose bike. I'd have one if I did more dirt roads, or is it I'd do more dirt roads if I had one. I also could live with an SV650 Suzuki, a W650, or W800 Kawa (there is not much between these two)

    Look a lot, define your needs. What do you really want and will a specific choice limit your options for the uses you do or might have?
  20. Well that's the beautiful thing about the cub, it was designed first as a practical motorcycle(that's why the posties were based on them), but managed to get the cool factor later on due to it's neat little timeless looks. Great little bike.