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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,


I want to preface this by saying that I am brand new to motorcycles. I rode my friends 94 CBR600 around a parking lot and thats it. Otherwise my powersports experiences come from ATVs and sxs. I apologize if my questions are very basic. I have been trying to educate myself.

I am looking at 3 bikes as possible first bikes. The shadow aero, the vulcan s, and the vulcan 900. I am hoping to get some advice from more experienced riders to narrow down my choice. Right now I am leaning Shadow or 900 custom. (mainly because I prefer the vtwin sound)
I am not trying to go fast. I just want to lay back and enjoy riding. I do want enough power to merge and pass safely but anything over that is just a bonus.


1. Is a vulcan (either an S or a 900) a good first bike?

2. Will the vulcan (s or 900) reasonably haul a 350 lb dude on the highway?

3. Will the vulcan fit a 6'2 guy well? I think ive read that the custom does not have the adjustable seat or foot pegs.

4. How much maintenance does the chain drive need?

5. What is a reasonable lifespan to expect out of a vulcan? is it like 30k miles, 50k etc?

6. What sort of gas mileage does one typically get?
 

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Welcome to the forum from North Carolina. The S and the Shadow are too small for you. For your height and weight the 900 would be the best bike of the three. It has 50hp so it’s no speed demon but it is a proven model with good parts and accessory availability. They are also an inexpensive bike. Gets 45-50 mpg. Clean belt drive and fuel injection which are pluses.
Personally due to your stature would get a larger bike right away. Many times the other members here have heard me say that bikes are like boats. Once you get used to the smaller boat, you want a bigger one. So if the budget allows, try to get a 1700. Good model and still in production. Also has great parts availability and accessory availability. Try and buy the lowest mileage example you can locate. When you find a bike you can post about it here for opinions on model, price, reliability, etc…
Take a Motorcycle Safety Course. Determine what type of riding you are going to do. City, highway, rural, two up, long distance, or a combination.
Here is Google search. Take the time to read and research so you don’t have any regrets after the sale. Buying from a Private Party will be a better price. Use www.kbb.com to see if prices are in line. Accessories on the bikes will not drive up the price that much. Keep in mind the Private Party price is between Retail and Trade In. Also remember that just because a bike is visually great doesn’t necessarily mean it was maintained or driven properly.
The more prepared and knowledgeable you are will get you the best bike without getting scammed. The members here are very knowledgeable and will be happy to help.

 

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goot post Tourer.

I'm 6'0 and 270 and have been riding a Custom since 2015, but am just reaching the 10K mile marker with not issues to date. There are times that I find myself thinking of something a little bigger or with more power. MPG runs between 40 and 50 depending on where and how I'm riding

my wife has a Vulcan S, and its fun to ride here and there for shorter trips or a day, but not something I want to be on too much or for multiple day trips.

both are find first bikes IMO, but given height and weight I'd stick with the 900 or look at something else
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I am definitely leaning towards the 900 custom. That orange just gets me. Also a part of me wants the vulcan so I can get the plate surak and make star trek puns.
 

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2016 Vulcan 900 Classic
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im 6 foot 7 390 and i love my 900 Classic. Even enough power to haul me and my wife around. Ive done some mods (power programmer, exhaust, and Intake) but as a 1st bike i would suggest it over and over again any day. My choice was this or a v-star 950 and im so glad i went with the 900 classic im in pure love..
Tire Wheel Fuel tank Plant Vehicle
vulcan
 

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So my last bike (first one in several decades) was a Shadow Spirit. I'm 5' 9" and the Honda fit me fine, but I needed to stretch my legs if I rode for more than hour straight. The Spirit and Aero are basically mechanically just about identical. I was uncomfortable on that bike at highway speeds, it got blown around a lot and didn't seem to want to go much over 70 mph or so. It was rock solid reliability wise, but too small for a guy my size. Now riding an '06 Nomad 1600 and loving it. I'd also recommend the 900, or bigger.
 

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Personally, I think the 900 Custom would fit you better than a 900 Classic. The forward mounted pegs give you a more comfortable leg position than the floorboards of the Classic. I rode a Custom for 10 yrs and my 1700 Vaquero for 4. The 900 Custom was definitely a more comfortable position than the Vaquero. Surprisingly, both bikes show a max load of 397 lbs. So technically, they both will handle you're weight. After riding both bikes for 10s of thousands of miles, I would not suggest a 1700 as a first bike.

The additional 200 lbs and a higher center of gravity makes the 1700 more difficult to handle during low speed maneuvers. Tourer is right that many people buy a bike and quickly want a bigger one. But that's not a reason to start out on an 850 lb bike. Your size offers some restrictions on what bike you can ride comfortably, but too many people buy too big a bike to start with and never master their riding skills. Watch videos of Sturgis some time and see how many riders are traveling at parade speeds with their feet duck-walking their bikes to keep them upright, or slam their foot to the ground during a U turn. Quite often that's from starting out on too heavy a bike and never mastering low speed maneuvers. Once you have the skills, you can apply those techniques to bigger bikes, but it's harder to learn in first place on a big chunk of iron.

Of the bikes mentioned here, I can recommend the 900 Custom. But if, after a couple years, you feel the need for more power, then you'll be ready to SAFELY step up to a larger displacement and more weight.

Stay Safe, Enjoy the Ride!
 

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2008 Vulcan 900 Classic
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6’3”, 300lb… ride a Vulcan 900 no problem… I do wish it was bigger when I have a passenger though.
 
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