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Thread: What's a Good Starter Bike?

  1. #31
    Registered User clowry's Avatar
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    People thought we were crazy, but when each of our 2 kids turned 16 we signed them up for the MSF course at our local college. Then we bought them a bike to ride. Our daughter started on a Suzuki Marauder 250. Our son is about a foot taller than her and it wouldn't fit him when the time came, so we traded it in on a Suzuki GS500. They both rode for a couple of years before getting a car license. We think it's made them much more aware behind the wheel.

  2. #32
    The Moto Guzzi Griso makes a nice starter bike for girls. Here is a link...http://www.motoguzzi-us.com/motorcyc...iso-8v-se.html
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    ________________________________________
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  3. #33
    I'd rather be riding... spanky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sdpc2 View Post
    I think that starting out on a mid-sized bike is foolish. It seems to me that there are an awful lot of ex-riders out there that would have stayed in motorcycling if they had started out on something smaller.

    If you go to some of the threads on ADVrider, you will see that there are many people that have gone back to smaller bikes and found the true joy of riding again. You don't need a 70hp bike to have a great time. Let her chose what she feels most comfortable on....
    Wow, pretty strong statement there. All I can offer is that my SO started out on a Yamaha XJ550 and almost seemingly quickly outgrew it. I was impressed with the bike as it had a lot of power for its size even with me astride. She then went to a XJ700 and now rides a R1100R quite well.

    Time on the 550; 2 years, the XJ700; 4 years. I bought her the R this July and she's in love (with the bike, too).

    I think that so much of getting a loved one started is listening to them, not pushing them in any way, and letting things happen naturally. Some folks find out that riding just isn't for them and that's okay.
    Regards,
    Randy
    '02 RT
    '06 K12s bumblebee

  4. #34
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    You can make all of the suggestions you want but let the decision be hers. It doesn't matter how good your choice is, if she does not make the final decision, she will never be happy with it down deep. I learned this through living with one woman almost 45 years and our girls of 42 and 39.

    We only think we matter but in the end, we are the sideshow.
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

  5. #35
    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    The correct bike depends on who is riding it. I am in no way convinced a small bike is the best choice, and I'm tired of hearing that you should start that way. It depends entirely on the rider.

    Maybe nobody should start on a Hayabusa, but wtf am I to pass judgment.
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2014 And DRAT! Missed the last one in 2015!

    -Tom (KA1TOX)

  6. #36
    Minnesota Nice! braddog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by osbornk View Post
    You can make all of the suggestions you want but let the decision be hers. It doesn't matter how good your choice is, if she does not make the final decision, she will never be happy with it down deep. I learned this through living with one woman almost 45 years and our girls of 42 and 39.

    We only think we matter but in the end, we are the sideshow.
    Wise words...
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    Brad D. - Member #105766
    '77 R100RS - Black Beauty (big pipe, baby!)
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  7. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by tommcgee View Post
    The correct bike depends on who is riding it. I am in no way convinced a small bike is the best choice, and I'm tired of hearing that you should start that way. It depends entirely on the rider.

    Maybe nobody should start on a Hayabusa, but wtf am I to pass judgment.
    That depends significantly on whether or not it is your daughter who is the new rider. At least it would with me. The OP was asking about HIS daughter. I tried to think like I would if it was my daughter.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://web.bigbend.net/~glaves/

  8. #38
    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PGlaves View Post
    That depends significantly on whether or not it is your daughter who is the new rider. At least it would with me. The OP was asking about HIS daughter. I tried to think like I would if it was my daughter.
    My 27 year old daughter has her bike license. I bought her an MSF weekend four years ago and it poured down rain both days. She doesn't like the same kind of bikes I like (can't stand my K75 or KLX or Vstrom -- in that order), but to date, she has not picked one. It might have something to do with her working 3 jobs and lacking the time. Whatever she ultimately decides to ride is fine with me, though she does tend to favor cruisers.
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2014 And DRAT! Missed the last one in 2015!

    -Tom (KA1TOX)

  9. #39
    Jack Herbst
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    My wife started on a Harley Low Rider and never looked back. Great bike for the ladies. I t has a 24" seat and she flat foots easily.Low Low center of gravity. It was designed for smaller, shorter riders. Unlike all BMW's which we would all prefer our wives to ride, it is not ungodly tall with a high center of gravity. 1200 twin cam engine.

    Jack
    "All my life I wanted to be somebody. Now I realize I should have been more specific."

  10. #40
    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaherbst View Post
    Unlike all BMW's which we would all prefer our wives to ride
    Brand loyalty mystifies me. I like certain bikes and the manufacturer doesn't matter at all. I know that's anathema to many around here, but I'll take the common ground that does exist.
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2014 And DRAT! Missed the last one in 2015!

    -Tom (KA1TOX)

  11. #41
    Fuse lit.... PittsDriver's Avatar
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    I would get her the biggest best most capable bike she can handle and assume she'll grow in to it. I think a lot of money is wasted on "starter" whatevers instead of buying the thing you really wanted/needed.
    2012 K1600GT, Vermillion Red (for the epic road trips) (gone but not forgotten)
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  12. #42
    Registered User donbmw's Avatar
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    My advice is to have her take a Motorcycle training course for the learing of how to control a motorcycle. Then looke for a motorcycle of 400CC or larger to actual ride. She may find that she will want to go on longer trips than what she would on a 250cc bike.

    When I started riding my brother inlaw had started at the same time. He was able to use a friends 175 for learing and I was able to use it to. I then bought a 500cc bike and am glade I did. I was going every where on it and a small cc bike would not have worked except for just going around town.

    Don
    1975 R90/6, 1980 and 1982 R65, !959 TR3A Triumph Car

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by PittsDriver View Post
    I would get her the biggest best most capable bike she can handle and assume she'll grow in to it. I think a lot of money is wasted on "starter" whatevers instead of buying the thing you really wanted/needed.
    Really?

    Here's some of my resoning to start small-

    How do you know what she can handle before she even begins to ride?

    How many beginners get in over their head with something too powerful or too heavy or too tall for them and they crash or have multiple drops in the driveway and parking lots ?

    How many beginners feel intimidated from the beginning with something too heavy or tall and just give up?

  14. #44
    Dee G flymymbz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ClassicVW View Post
    Really?

    Here's some of my resoning to start small-

    How do you know what she can handle before she even begins to ride?

    How many beginners get in over their head with something too powerful or too heavy or too tall for them and they crash or have multiple drops in the driveway and parking lots ?

    How many beginners feel intimidated from the beginning with something too heavy or tall and just give up?
    This.

    This is why I started out on a lowly Honda Rebel. No way in hell would I have ever been able to learn to ride on my Guzzi Cali EV. Or the R850. Had I not been able to learn to ride properly on a bike that I was comfortable on, I'd have given up a long time ago. Either from sheer frustration, or because I was seriously injured in an accident.
    Too damn many bikes to list

  15. #45
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ClassicVW View Post
    How do you know what she can handle before she even begins to ride?
    Well, you can observe whether she's a total spaz or a smooth athlete. You've an idea of her strength. Can she ski? (I think skiing is a pretty close analogy)

    You can also tell, frankly, whether she drives a car well. Often distracted or on top of it?

    Just as I wouldn't force a daughter into a microcar as a first car (what's safe about that?) I wouldn't by rote assume the smaller the better for a motorcycle. Women spend a lot of their lives being assailed by men as to their incompetence and this is yet another place not to do that.

    I recall setting up camp in the Jackson Hole KOA on the way to Missoula 1984. It was raining and our group had come through major WY road construction where it seemed they'd taken the old road down to bedrock. It was a fun challenge to say the least on my R100RS. Another group of bikers at the campground contained a young woman who had her "maximum bitch" going. She was on some sort of KAW 250 chopper-look bike. Of course she was po'd--she was on probably the worst bike ever for going somewhere. On a comfortable BMW instead--maybe not so much I've always thought since.

    Starting them out on crap is the wrong approach IMHO. Don't think "paying your dues" sells to their crowd.
    Kent Christensen
    21482
    '12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S

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