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Tourer commuter recommendations for the vertically challenged

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' started by bulby, May 10, 2012.

  1. I'm still a bit of a long way from my upgrade, so I'm currently still in the researching phase.

    A bit of a background info:
    I use my bike for commuting to work everyday, rain or shine. The route I take spans a total of around 35 km each way and consists of 80% freeways, 15% 60-70 km/h roads and 40-50 km/h 5% residential area.
    I'm about 5'6" short, with a 29" inseam, and weigh a feather and a half (read: 60 kg). I can put both feet down flat on my Across, but I suspect it's been lowered by previous owners. On the GS500F, I could put both toes down, but could only flat-foot on either side.

    Having said that, basically, What I'm looking for (in Raven's words) is a mile destroyer that is narrow enough to filter comfortably through the West Gate "car park" during peak hours. And as a personal preference, I'd like to be able to put both feet down comfortably. Hence, I'm steering clear away from dual sports / adventures / enduros / etc.

    What I'm not looking for is arm-ripping, mono popping prowess. I agree that they're nice to have. But they're just not a priority for me :)
    Also, I'm hoping to keep the budget under $20k.

    Currently on the top of my "must ride" list is the BMW F800ST.

    So there you have it. Which other bikes do you reckon I should look at and why?

    Edit: I don't mind old bikes (as in late 90's onwards), as long as they've got a reputation for being bulletproof and just refuses to die.
  2. bulby, theres a F800ST on ebay, guys in footscray, low kms, go have a look at it!!
  3. Thanks, goddie. Won't be able to ride it legally any time this year though (restricted license). So I'll hang tight and wait a little longer. Who knows? Maybe I'll find better deals later on.
  4. er6n-l or yzf6r ...both of these make my loin's moist...in saying that i ride a zzr 250 - so i probably can't be trusted.
  5. I think your choice is an excellent one and looks like your mind is made up, so NIKE. :p

    You could also potentially look at the Triump Tiger 800. One of our another 'vertically challenged' NR friend got it a few months ago and he loves it.

    It looks awesome -

  6. LL. I'm actually far from decided. I like the F800ST, but then I'm eyeing a few other bikes too. Just want to know what everyone thinks. Who knows. Maybe someone will come up with a point I've missed. I am kinda prone to accidentally/deliberately miss some key points when making my decisions :LOL:

    The Tiger is a good bike. But may be too tall for me. Chances are, I can only tippy-toe on one side or the other and not both. And that will freak me out a bit much :nopity:
  7. Have a look at a slightly used BMW K1200RS or two. You could get a very nice, fully accessorised one indeed for your budget. Seat height ain't bad (and, I believe, a low seat is/was available) and the CofG is nice and low which makes life easier. Mile munching ability is excellent. Handling is good. Performance is "sufficient" :D. The inline K is also quite slim for a sports tourer so its filtering ability isn't bad. Specially if you get a white one and wear a white lid :twisted:. It's also a real BMW rather than the ersatz F range :wink:.

    And if it doesn't last 400,000 km, there's something wrong with it.
  8. Quick Google search found this info on seat heights for the BMW and Triumph.

  9. Hey Bulby - good luck in the next bike - I always have fun testing things out :D

    Check out Cycle-Ergo for basic geometry and seating position.....

    I'f you're keen on the ER-6n I might know a guy who is about to sell a full power one :wink:
  10. I have a F800ST and it's perfect for what you describe.
    Only problem is it's on the tall side.
    There are however factory options for lowered suspension and a low seat that may bring it within your comfort zone.
    Failing that you might want to have a look at the Moto Guzzi Bellagio.
  11. ^^^ A colleague rides one - technically the correct answer - technically a superb bike....

    Unfortunately after having ridden one...........
  12. Wow.....sorry that image size was intense.......
  13. yeees, but perhaps not as dull as the beemer...
    it has v=tec.
    ok you're right
  14. K1200RS <- winrar!
    Ticks all the boxes on my requirements, is not chain driven (I'm lazy), relatively cheap for what it does, AND it has more power than I'll ever need. And if it's as reliable as PatB says, sounds almost perfect! Although I have to admit, the thought of riding a >1l bike scares me a bit.

    I appreciate all the other suggestions too, though. Keep them coming! :D

    Oh, and I should add that I don't mind old bikes (as in manufactured year 1999 onwards), as long as they've got a reputation for being bulletproof and just keep on going and going and going. Like the Energizer bunny.
  15. I am 5 5" and comfortably ride a 02 zx9 bullitproof yep 193,000 on one of them 70,000 on the other one both still going plus i just bought another one which has 50,000 on her so only just run in.
  16. If only my back could cope with the supersport riding position for extend periods. Even on the across (about 35 degrees forward lean), my lower back would start complaining after anything over 50 minutes to 1 hour.

    What do you guys think of the Yammi FJR1300A? Seems there are quite a number of folks out there who swear by the bike.
  17. I can't guarantee the reliability. I've had excellent experience with BMs, others somewhat less so. However, they are intelligently designed and built from high quality materials. Spares are available off the shelf for pretty much any year and not usually any more expensive than the equivalent Jap bits. Best of all, the manual for my K100s, in the service schedule, has the line "Every 10 years or so......" :D.

    As for riding a litre plus, the Ks aren't too intimidating. They're tuned for torque rather than outright top end, so you can potter around at 2500 rpm quite happily. When you're used to them, they can pick up their skirts and run pretty well too. The K12 has the advantage of useful tyre sizes if you do want to press on a bit. Then, of course, there's the fun to be had stuffing it up the inside of Gixxer Thous at track days :twisted:.

    They're an accquired taste though. See if you can get a decent test ride on a late, cared for example. Don't take the plunge without having at least a bit of a go.
  18. Try a CB400. It has a slightly lower seat than the GS500 and looks better and has more get-up-and-go. All the other bikes described are, perhaps, a little tall for you.
  19. Very nice bike. Saw my first one, all flat black, at Morgan Park last weekend.