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Is 250cc a good place to start?

Discussion in 'Moto Club' started by Heckler&Koch, May 3, 2006.

  1. Heckler&Koch

    Heckler&Koch

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    I want to learn on a 250cc but my friend says its for sissies. I don't care but i'd like some imput from you wonderful GTers.
     
  2. coldmcrider

    coldmcrider

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    I think a 250 is a reasonable size to start. Starting out with a motorcycle this size you won't be intimidated by power and you can concentrate on building your riding skills.

    Insurance will be cheaper. Initial motorcycle cost is less, and operating costs will be lower than a big bike. You can spend the money you save on good riding gear.

    In a year or so, when you have more riding skills you can probably sell the 250 for close to what it cost you, and move on to a larger bike.
     

  3. Jtemple

    Jtemple Geek

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    I agree. Spend the money you save on some nice gear. Get a neutral color, so when you're buying a bigger bike, you aren't wearing blue gear on a green bike, or something to that effect. I bought silver gear - cooler in the summer than black, and goes with any color of bike.
     
  4. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

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    Your friends are idiots.
     
  5. Motor-T

    Motor-T Windbag

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    If all goes well this is your first bike, not your last.

    How many people started driving a V-8 muscle car? How many of those people had that car 6 months later? ;)
     
  6. DaisyCutter

    DaisyCutter

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    A 250cc streetbike is fine to learn on. However, most riders outgrow them very quickly. Regardless of what smart people say, there is a generalized sissy connotation with riding the small 250cc streetbikes. My dislike is has nothing to do with displacement. I've generally found the 250cc streetbikes to have very vague throttle and brake response. That is probably of good benefit to novices though.

    The 500cc bikes are nearly just as easy to learn to ride.

    FWIW, most people are too concerned about cc's.
     
  7. Motor-T

    Motor-T Windbag

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    DaisyCutter,
    You make a good point.
     
  8. Heckler&Koch

    Heckler&Koch

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    what riding gear? its almost summertime i'm wearing a wifebeater with flipflops.:supergrin: Great advice everyone.
     
  9. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

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    Get yourself some mesh gears. They're not as good as leathers but they beat the hell out of wifebeaters. Not to mention that they are more affordable as well.

    Here is an example: http://www.newenough.com/firstgear_meshtex2_jacket_page.htm

    There are several manufacturers for mesh gears (jacket, pants and gloves), and the prices varied accordingly. Some of these jackets have better armours than others (hard CE-certified foams versus soft foam). Some are made out of better mesh than others. The price ranges from $400/jacket to $100/jacket depending on what features you want on it.

    These mesh gears are light and breezy. It's like wearing a T-shirt but not.
     
  10. Lone Wolff

    Lone Wolff Tire World...

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    I had this same concern last fall. Ended up getting a 2005 Yamaha Virago (250cc v-twin) with one mile on the ODO for $3350 out the door.

    I'm 6'0, and 200 lbs. The bike frame is probably just a hair small for me, but for commuting to work and running errands around towm, this is a great bike for me. They aren't going to stop making bigger bikes, so they will always be available when I want one.

    Like coldmcrider said, these small bikes are being sold used for damn near the same amount as new ones. I figure the small amount of loss I will incur when I sell it will be money well spent on developing skills.

    My Virago will get to 75MPH (maybe more, I haven't pushed it real hard yet) and that's plenty fast enough for my current tastes. It doesn't get there as quickly as larger bikes do, but to each his own. PLUS it gets me about 70MPG, so it's affordable as hell to operate. Full coverage insurance for me is $170 for a YEAR.

    I was lucky enough to ride on all 3 (Suzuki GZ250, Yamaha Virago, & Honda Rebel) of the major 250 street bikes in my MSF course before I bought one.
    FWIW, I would rate them 1)Yamaha, 2)Honda, 3)Suzuki.

    If there were more bikes available in the 500-600 cc range I probably would have considered them, but only Kawasaki had a 500cc cruiser, and only Honda has a 600. Yamaha and Suzuki have 650 cruisers, but they were nearly double the price of my 250.

    Ask yourself what you need in your FIRST bike vs. what you want in your NEXT bike.

    Jusy my $.02.
     
  11. Texas T

    Texas T TX expatriate CLM

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    Since no one else has brought it up, I'll ask...

    1. What is your intention for the bike? Around town, commuting to work (how far, what kind of roads), touring, camping?

    2. Will you be taking an MSF class?

    3. How big - height and weight - are you?

    4. How old are you?
     
  12. J.R. Bob Dobbs

    J.R. Bob Dobbs Nerd

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    I got my first bike, a 1986 250 Rebel, last summer. For a beginner it had plenty of power and is light and docile enough that I didn't crash it, and as I gained confidence it was fun (yet safe) to ride it hard. I put about 5000mi on it before I craved more power.

    Sold it for exactly what I paid for it (buying used is the only way to go IMO).

    I've moved on to a CB750 and I found the transition from the 17hp Rebel to the 75hp Nighthawk was *very* easy. However I believe if I'd started with the 750 I'd have been much more likely to drop/crash it.


    I believe if I'd started with a 250 Ninja (the other bike I was shopping used) it would have stayed around here a little longer, as I hear they're a blast. Same price range as the other 250's.
     
  13. Heckler&Koch

    Heckler&Koch

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    1. I'm just intending to ride around town, no dirt roads. I just want to practice, would like to graduate to touring or riding on the mountains.
    2. Yes
    3. 5'5 200 (fat that hasn't turned into muscle yet)
    4. 24 yrs old I've been wanting to ride since I was 16 but wanted to mature a little bit before getting a bike.
     
  14. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

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    A Ninja 250 will be perfect for you. Cheap to buy (cheaper to buy used and there are lots of them around), cheap to maintain, cheap to feed, cheap to insure, fast enough to get you up to freeway speed (at 200-lbs you'll be able to get up to 85-MPH on that little thing), definitely fast enough in town, fun as hell in the mountains.

    Find a used one and ride it hard six months to a year and then trade up if you feel like it.
     
  15. BikerRN

    BikerRN

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    As others have said, your friends are idiots. You should be riding for yourself and not your friends, so who cares if what they think?

    Take care and ride for yourself. 250cc's will get you in trouble if you don't respect it, but will be forgiving of mistakes as well. Learn to ride, then move up.
     
  16. Heckler&Koch

    Heckler&Koch

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    no not all my friends are idiots just A Friend!
     
  17. Texas T

    Texas T TX expatriate CLM

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    I fully concur. I was about your age when I bought my first bike, a KZ650. I (obviously) didn't kill myself on it, but I was lucky. I think starting out on a 250 Ninja (or similar) is a perfectly acceptable way to get your feet wet.

    Before I bought my current bike I had all the gear purchased first - helmet, gloves, boots, jacket, pants. THEN I took the MSF class. THEN I purchased a bike. I'm afraid that if the bike had come first I would not have been as attentive to the other parts of being a motorcycle owner.
     
  18. BikerRN

    BikerRN

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    My apologies sir. In this case it is one person that, if it were me, I wouldn't be calling them a friend. However that's me, and I'm content to be with the friends I have.

    Motorcycling, like any skill, is something that is built on a foundation of basics. It is easier to learn to ride a 250 than a 1000 Superuberpooperscooperduperscoot. When you wanted to run 1000 meters you first had to learn to walk.

    The 250 is the "baby steps" so that you can ride a long time and be safe doing it. Take care and have fun.
     
  19. Texas T

    Texas T TX expatriate CLM

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    http://www.buzzle.com/editorials/2-25-2006-89806.asp


    According to safety records, hundreds of soldiers have been killed or injured in motorcycle accidents since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and surprisingly, there have been more deaths by motorcycle than combat deaths. Almost 350 soldiers have been killed on motorcycles in that time, compared to 259 killed while serving in Afghanistan. Nearly 1,000 more troops have been injured while riding motorcycles.


    I can't vouch for the authenticity of their numbers, but I have no reason to doubt it. This is just an example of guys with a lot of testosterone letting their little head out-think their big head in terms of how to get started in riding. Don't let yourself fall into that trap.
     
  20. JAREDG21

    JAREDG21

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    It really depends where you are going to be riding it. In a small town with little traffic yes buy as said before you will out grow ikt quick;ly. JMO I don't reccommend 250 to most people simply due to lack of power. Yes it is easy to have to much power but to little can be dangerous to because you don't have enough power to get away from idiot cagers. I reccomend you look for a used bike, something with a little age and some scratches. Suzuki sv 650, suzuki bandit 400 or 600 gs500, ducati 600 monster are some great bikes and can be had for 3500 or less if you shop around enough. Also these bikes have much much better brakes and tires.