Biting off more than I can chew? - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 03:58 PM Thread Starter
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Biting off more than I can chew?

I last rode 30 years ago. I've got the itch again and find the Vulcan 2000 LT Classic irresitable. I'm in good health and good shape, but probably older than most of your fathers. Am I biting off more than I can chew with this bike?
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post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 04:24 PM
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I last rode 30 years ago. I've got the itch again and find the Vulcan 2000 LT Classic irresitable. I'm in good health and good shape, but probably older than most of your fathers. Am I biting off more than I can chew with this bike?
not at all, if you are old it can only make you feel young again,
we are all going to die one day so do all the things you can while you are a live.

its a lot better and cooler than riding around in disabled cart like some old men,

just take your time on it, try it out for size and weight first , to see if it ok for you,
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post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 04:24 PM
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short answer- I would say yes- lol- long answer below

30 years is a long time. I took about 18 months off and I found myself a little nervous for the first few minutes when I got back on a bike. Personally I would take the Basic Rider Class to brush up on your skills and then decide. Its a fun weekend and you will learn something new- always do. These big bikes are not going to be very forgiving when you screw up. Screw up on the bikes at school and chances are all you will be is embarrassed.

I am going to retake it just to get a break on my insurance and make sure my skills are up to par. Then maybe a class or two afterwords for fun. Worst case scenario you spend a couple hundred bucks and talk about and play on some little bikes over the weekend. Nothing wrong with that in my book..
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post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 04:29 PM
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biter, No. go ahead chomp down on this monster bike. it will bark but it won't bite.. you. others maybe, but not you. see that you got yours w/Lettuce n Tomato. good choice. welcome to the crew. out, ponch




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post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 05:54 PM
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Probably would be best and more safe to ride something smaller for a while on varied roads, including some with challenging bends, and under different conditions until you feel competent enough on that to graduate to the 2000. Not having ridden for 30 years, it's not like a person can just hop onto a heavy machine and ride safely and with confidence.
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post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 07:37 PM
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Originally Posted by fundysloop View Post
I last rode 30 years ago. I've got the itch again and find the Vulcan 2000 LT Classic irresitable. I'm in good health and good shape, but probably older than most of your fathers. Am I biting off more than I can chew with this bike?
Well, unless you're over 80, you're not older than my father.

Short list for me; I'll be 60 in April. I have some significant physical problems. My last bike, after owning several street and dirt bikes, was a 750 Honda, sold in 1979 or 80, can't remember.

I bought a new 2010 vn900 Classic LT last August 27th, instead of a vn1700 Classic or a Honda vtx1300, both of which I would have loved to have owned. I bought the 900 because I was very concerned about not being able to handle the weight of a bigger bike.

It took me a few weeks to knock all the rust off of my old skills, but the main thing that I quickly learned was that it isn't strength that I needed to worry about. I dropped my baby twice, the first week I had her. I can't handle the weight of the 900 either. I dropped her because my balance was atrocious, not because of my physical problems. Not many people can hold up a 650lb bike, when it leans too far, any easier than they can hold up an 800lb bike.

So, now I regret my thought process at the time of purchase. I'd be happier with a bigger bike. I don't have many years left and don't have a big budget to waste on these toys. So, I'm stuck with the 900 for a while, maybe forever.

IMO, that's a big point that you need to take into account, when you buy your bike. You say you're an old timer that's in good shape. I say, make the best of the years you have remaining. IOW, take as big of a bite as you dare. You only live once.

2010 Vulcan 900 Classic LT
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post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 08:05 PM Thread Starter
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I appreciate all your answers. As for the course--no question about it. In my state you pretty much have to take a course to get a MC endorsement on your license. But I'd have taken it anyway. After the course, I was planning to look for someone with a big bike who wanted to make a few bucks for some lessons on something closer to what I planned to buy. Maybe the course instructor, maybe someone else.

As for the weight issue, I think Kerry's got it right: Big difference between a 250# bike and a 650# one. But I doubt I could hold up a 650#er any easier than an 880#er. And I do suspect that sense of balance and agility matter more than strength . The 2000 is very low and feels very stable just sitting on it in the showroom. From what I read on forums and reviews, that is probably not an illusion.

I am wondering about riding and maneuvering the bike at walking speeds in a parking lot. My guess is that longer would be more of a problem than heavier. But I would also guess that with a little practice it would no longer be an issue.

Finally, a lot of you have said, in short--go for it; you only live once. And that resonates with me. The saying I've always liked is this: If you avoid motorcycles, fast women, and other risky things, you will PROBABLY live longer. But for sure it will seem longer.
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post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 08:08 PM
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I last rode 30 years ago. I've got the itch again and find the Vulcan 2000 LT Classic irresitable. I'm in good health and good shape, but probably older than most of your fathers. Am I biting off more than I can chew with this bike?
The Vulcan 2000 LT is a beautiful bike. I like the black/cherry one myself, not sure what year it came out (2009?). But I've been riding now for 5 years (after a 25 yr. hiatus), and even with an MSF course and 65,000 trouble-free miles behind me, I still wouldn't get on the V2K. I'd call that "pushing my luck" as my mother used to say.

Find a dealership that has a used one and ask if you can ride it around the parking lot. That'll give you a sense of how it feels at slow speeds. Then I'd find a nice 1500

Be Safe.
_____________
IntheWind
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post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 08:51 PM
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I am wondering about riding and maneuvering the bike at walking speeds in a parking lot. My guess is that longer would be more of a problem than heavier. But I would also guess that with a little practice it would no longer be an issue.
Yes, length is a large part of it, but there are several other issues that come into play as well. How the motorcycle fits you, is probably as big as anything, especially at low speeds. I needed to shorten my distance to the grips, so I could sit straight and still lock the handlebars on each side. Once I did that, my slow speed issues were minimized.

I'm a big proponent of the Ride Like a Pro 5 DVD. Buy it, watch little girls fling big Harleys around some low speed practical exercise courses and watch one of them pick up one of those big Harleys, from a full down position.

After I got my 900, I made up some practical exercises and did them every day, for 30 to 60 minutes. I heard about the Ride Like a Pro DVD here and bought it. It had similar, but better exercises than I'd dreamed up, and more importantly, it had good instruction on how to handle my big bike. To me, it and a couple big bike and motorcycling instructional books have been priceless.

You're looking at the biggest bike that Kawasaki makes. You're going to need to be serious about learning to ride it. It's a beautiful machine that I'd love to have.

If you buy it, don't like it, and wish for a smaller bike, I'll trade you my 900.

2010 Vulcan 900 Classic LT
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post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 09:12 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the offer, Kerry. Hope I never have to consider it. I'm in Maine, so there won't be any riding for another 3-4 months. Your suggestions re videos and books are appreciated. I didn't know they existed.

Mike
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