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post #1 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-04-2012, 01:38 PM Thread Starter
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Question Daughter's First Bike

My daughter is looking for her first bike.

She is 5'6" and about 200 lbs.

She was thinking about a 250, but we are afraid it might not have enough pep to cruise at highway speed. We then thought about a Suzuki S40 (600cc), but have been told it is a little light (wobbly) for highway speeds above 65.

I want something for her that is not too heavy, handles the interstate well, and capable of going on long distance rides.

I was thinking about the Vulcan 750, but I am open to other suggestions. I also want a bike that is relatively easy to maintain.

I know the 750 used to have problems with the stator going out. Do the later models still have this problem? Does it require you to remove the motor to replace it? I would have had to on my 85 Vulcan 700.

Thanks for any input.

Preach
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post #2 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-04-2012, 02:37 PM
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I have recently went played this game with my wife. She was a bit afraid of riding and did not have a lot of confidence in herself but really wanted to ride. I found her a Kawasaki Eliminator 125. Now this bike is not suited for anything other than backwoods and in town riding. Actuality a bit on the dangerous side because of the lack of power. But it was worth getting since she had never rode any motorcycle before. After a few months of that bike she wanted to move up. We found a 1995 Honda Shadow 600 VLX Deluxe. That bike can go 65 or so easily but it gets buzzy and only has 4 gears. But was a great bike for her to really learn on and the seat height is LOW, which was not an issue for us since my wife can sit on my V2k and flat foot with knees bent. I have no experience with the Kawasaki 750 or Suzuki Savage but I might not would count out the Vulcan 500, never road one but with the parallel twin it might surprise ya.

1985 Honda Nighthawk 650 (First Bike)
2004 Vulcan 1500 Classic (First Big Bike)
2007 Vulcan 1600 Meanstreak (Love Affair)
1999 Yamaha 1100 V-Star Custom (Right Price at the Time)
2008 V2K Classic (Favorite Vulcan)
2014 HD Ultra Limited (Bells and Whistles)
Who would have thought I would grow up to become "Spatially Educated" and play Connect-the-Dots for a living.
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post #3 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-04-2012, 03:12 PM
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i always tell people, think of the bike that you really want, then buy the one that is 2 notches down. you can always work your way up later, i see alot of guys, not so much girls, buy what they think they want usually based on their egos and find out that riding isn't that much fun/it scares the sh!t out of them, OR they end up getting hurt. girls don't seem to worry as much about rockin the 250. also, highway stability is something important enough that the factory engineers ensure on EVERY bike, not just the big cruisers.

on a personal note, i've been thinking alot about the new kawi baby ninja... why not a lil 250 just to zip around town in?

95' 88
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post #4 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-04-2012, 03:15 PM
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post #5 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-04-2012, 03:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazy88 View Post
i always tell people, think of the bike that you really want, then buy the one that is 2 notches down. you can always work your way up later, i see alot of guys, not so much girls, buy what they think they want usually based on their egos and find out that riding isn't that much fun/it scares the sh!t out of them, OR they end up getting hurt. girls don't seem to worry as much about rockin the 250. also, highway stability is something important enough that the factory engineers ensure on EVERY bike, not just the big cruisers.

on a personal note, i've been thinking alot about the new kawi baby ninja... why not a lil 250 just to zip around town in?
Also keep in mind a 250 ninja or 250 Honda CBR is worlds different than a 250 rebel or nighthawk. A 250 ninja is a fun little bike to zip around on.

1985 Honda Nighthawk 650 (First Bike)
2004 Vulcan 1500 Classic (First Big Bike)
2007 Vulcan 1600 Meanstreak (Love Affair)
1999 Yamaha 1100 V-Star Custom (Right Price at the Time)
2008 V2K Classic (Favorite Vulcan)
2014 HD Ultra Limited (Bells and Whistles)
Who would have thought I would grow up to become "Spatially Educated" and play Connect-the-Dots for a living.
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post #6 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-04-2012, 04:29 PM
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A women's perspective

I am an inch shorter than your daughter and a tad big heavier and I have been riding the Vulcan 1600 classic for about 6 months. I started with a "scooter style" 250 that I rode around for two weeks and took and passed by endorsement test. I continued to ride the 250 for about another 6 months getting my confidence and skill level to a place where I felt comfortable test driving other bikes.

I know some other women riders and they all advised me to get something bigger than I think. Unlike what crazy88 said, I think with women you need to think what you want and then get the next step higher. We women tend to be a little more reserved. I was thinking that I would want 900ish. Then the deal of the century fell into my lap for my Vulcan 1600 Classic and even though I was a little hesitant I jumped on it. I had riden my husband's Electra Glide and the power was fine, it was just WAY TOO BIG!

Here I am 6 months later and have riden with big groups of both women and men and have no problem keeping up and/or riding 200+ miles in a day. It cruises right along at 75 with no issues.

My advice? Start on something small and easy to gain confidence and skill, then get something larger than SHE thinks she wants, not you. (Big difference between what I thought I wanted and what my hubby thought I should get).

Good luck and Safe Riding! I'd love to hear what you all settle on.
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post #7 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-04-2012, 04:41 PM
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My suggestion: Have her sit on several, as comfort is gonna be as important as anything else. The Yamaha bikes (900, 1100 sizes) are a bit lower, good bikes and highway capable. The Kawi 900 is nice too (about the same size as the older 750's and 800's), but it depends on her feeling when she's perched on it.

Main thing is, have her practice a LOT. That's the key. Slow, steady, out of the way, A LOT. She can get used to just about anything.

...and wish her luck from the Vulcan crowd!

BACA Pretzel - Flyin' the highways in OK!
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post #8 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-04-2012, 04:57 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JollyGirl1600 View Post
My advice? Start on something small and easy to gain confidence and skill, then get something larger than SHE thinks she wants, not you. (Big difference between what I thought I wanted and what my hubby thought I should get).

Good luck and Safe Riding! I'd love to hear what you all settle on.
Ultimately it will be her choice, of course. I just want to make sure she is safe. If that means starting out on a used 250 to build her confidence and then selling it to get a bigger one for highway use, that could work as well.

Preach
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post #9 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-04-2012, 06:03 PM
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I know this is a Kawasaki form but I bought my wife a 250 Yamaha Virgo, now call a V-star. I installed a windshield and sissybar with a rack. 75 mph is about wide open on this bike. I think it weighs about 350 lbs., about 75 MPG. It is an in town and country road bike. Wife rides it all over God's creation. My oldest son used it to get his license. I have 5 different friends that own Harley's and every one of them used it to get there motorcycle driver’s license. I have pictures of them just in case I need something in the future. It’s like riding a bicycle. The best part is there is a line of people that want that bike if I ever sell it but I have a 14 year old wants it next.
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post #10 of 43 (permalink) Old 06-04-2012, 06:28 PM
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I rode a Honda rebel 250 once and I didn't like how it felt, shifting was awkward and it wasn't a comfortable feel
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