DC1WD n00b

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supasixfo
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DC1WD n00b

Post by supasixfo » Thu Jul 08, 2010 12:05 pm

good news - finished MSF this past weekend in fairfax. they even threw in a 30 day VA permit for me. (found out that i can take it to CT DMV to get my M designation). Looking to pick up a ninja 250 in the next couple weeks. For all the other DC1WD folks on the board... looking for n00b tips - where to ride, what not to do, what to watch out for, since i have no illusions about what happens when i'll inevitably drop the bike.

I know I need to get geared up, and find a place to put my bike near tysons no garage @ apt :( , but figured those much wiser than me may be able to chime in $0.02.

Also, what to watch out buying new vs. used. there's some place selling new '09 ninjas for $3800, or i can pick up a used '09 w 10k miles for $2500... i know nothing about bike maintenance - is 10k "too many miles" - what should i look for maintenance wise at that mileage besides fluids/tires/pads, etc.
Alvin
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complacent
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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by complacent » Thu Jul 08, 2010 2:53 pm

congrats dude! :nana:

go used all the way, especially for a first bike.

before answering any questions, i have one of my own. what type of riding are you most interested in? do you want to do long-haul distance touring, relaxed cruising, knee-dragging track time, squiddly turbo-busa drag racing, or a mix of the above?

knowing that will greatly help with all recommendations.
colin

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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by supasixfo » Thu Jul 08, 2010 3:10 pm

i loves the twisties. my goal is to be able to navigate the mythical "skyline drive" on a bike. safely. and learn/build up all the requisite skills to do so. i have a few friends that have been riding for a while, so i know i'll be up there sooner rather than later. i guess that fits me into the "knee-draggin' track time" category.

Also - as a rally enthusiast, i'll inevitably have a tendency to explore roads on a dirt bike. i'm assuming that's a whole different category of riding, but i'll hold off on that one till i'm comfortable with being on a bike in general.
Alvin
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complacent
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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by complacent » Thu Jul 08, 2010 3:46 pm

you nailed it - two completely separate focus areas/bikes/gear/styles/etc.

for street, i've said it before and will say it again. all of the fastest riders on the track i've met all started out on small bikes. while the brand new (08-10) 250 ninjas are nice bikes, i certainly wouldn't limit myself to just 250s. If cost is a concern, you may very well want to broaden your search to include some of the 600-650cc twins (duc monster, sv650, etc) as well as some of the 500-600cc parallel twins (kawi, suzuki). everything in that field will give you plenty of room to grow on. having owned at least four sv650's (not all by choice, haha) i know they've got an amazing aftermarket presence and can definitely be made to perform better than bikes almost twice their cost.

another option to consider might be some of the quarter-liter supermotards (Yamaha's WR250X, Kawi's KLX 250 SF) if you want to walk the line between dirtbike and sportbike. keep in mind the thumpers have much higher maintenance requirements though.

if you're looking at a ninja 250 specifically, 10k well-maintained miles are fine. You'll get more that twice that out of the motor if you want. all the other parts will need looking into (head seals, fork seals/oil, chain, brakes, tires, swingarm joints, etc). if a bike has had all its' work done at the dealer, 10k isn't a bad amount of mileage.

if you're looking at sv650's (again, only because i'm familiar) their motors can (and have!) gone to 100k before needing a rebuild. the only bikes that really seem to suffer from higher mileage are inline four super-sports (pick your 600c favorite), and even then because of improper maintenance.

generally the ducs are like anything else out of italy - expensive and need frequent service.

post up if you've got your eye on a particular model or an exact bike - i'd be more than happy to lend an opinion/eye/etc.
colin

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Cereb Daithi
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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by Cereb Daithi » Thu Jul 08, 2010 6:01 pm

Congrats, Alvin!

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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by ElZorro » Thu Jul 08, 2010 6:35 pm

Great news. :)

I can show you some of the roads I ride, nice easy stuff, not much traffic (I usually do my weekly rides early on Sat or Sunday). Skyline isn't that bad, I was out there within a couple months of riding. As long as you're doing the right speed for the corner, your skill level and your bike its all good. :)

Colin knows bike models way better than I do, but I'd add in the Suzuki V-Strom - for the price its a pretty versatile bike that may get you most of what you want.

Once you nail down what you want, let me know, I can ask a couple folks I know who keep track of the used bike market pretty well.
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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by PGT » Fri Jul 09, 2010 10:16 pm

I'd add that a dual-sport isn't a good starter bike. It's a jack of all trades, master of none. There are some sporty 'standard' bikes with comfortable upright riding positions and smaller motors that will be 10x better on the street. Kawi Versys for example http://www.kawasaki.com/Products/produc ... 433&scid=6
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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by scheherazade » Sat Jul 10, 2010 12:19 am

PGT wrote:I'd add that a dual-sport isn't a good starter bike. It's a jack of all trades, master of none. There are some sporty 'standard' bikes with comfortable upright riding positions and smaller motors that will be 10x better on the street. Kawi Versys for example http://www.kawasaki.com/Products/produc ... 433&scid=6
I actually like dual sports a lot. They're like starter-motards.
The light weight gives a LOT of confidence.




I went from riding 250 2-strokes as a kid, to nothing for years and years, to a 750 crotch rocket.
The 750 is heavy (for a small guy like me), and not very forgiving.
I respect the bike, I respect traffic, I stay clear of 'the limits', and the bike treats me just fine.

I've never had a bike where I could put more than my tip toes down. The few times I've ever gone down [on asphalt] were all related to poor footing.
I'm personally not at all bothered by a scratch here and there, but if you want to save yourself the embarrassment of falling over, I'd get something on which you can firmly reach the ground.

(Although, for now I'm selling my bike to pay down my car asap - so no more tipping over incidents for me for a while. My next [street] bike will have ABS and T.C.. I'm not gonna pretend that I'm hot shit and it wouldn't help me :P.)

-scheherazade

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complacent
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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by complacent » Sat Jul 10, 2010 12:24 pm

PGT wrote:I'd add that a dual-sport isn't a good starter bike. It's a jack of all trades, master of none. There are some sporty 'standard' bikes with comfortable upright riding positions and smaller motors that will be 10x better on the street. Kawi Versys for example http://www.kawasaki.com/Products/produc ... 433&scid=6

I'm very much inclined to agree with this. Knobby tires on the street are NOT the way to learn. Everything you need to get a "feel" for will be much more difficult and much less forgiving with knobbies on the street. Nevermind how often you'll be replacing tires in this area...

That being said, I *love* the idea of a motard on the street as a first bike. Light, not too powerful and will be a much better bike than you are rider for the foreseeable future.
scheherazade wrote:My next [street] bike will have ABS and T.C.. I'm not gonna pretend that I'm hot shit and it wouldn't help me .)
I also very much agree with this. I can't get over the difference having one or the other has made on my day-to-day riding (FJR 1300). I'm 100% sold. ABS alone has literally saved my bacon three times. If you're buying a new bike, it should be on your list of must-haves.
colin

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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by scheherazade » Mon Jul 19, 2010 11:36 am

complacent wrote:Knobby tires on the street are NOT the way to learn.
I was thinking dual sport with street tires.
Like the Yamaha WR250X
http://www.yamaha-motor.com/sport/produ ... /home.aspx

-scheherazade

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complacent
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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by complacent » Mon Jul 19, 2010 4:09 pm

scheherazade wrote:
complacent wrote:Knobby tires on the street are NOT the way to learn.
I was thinking dual sport with street tires.
Like the Yamaha WR250X
http://www.yamaha-motor.com/sport/produ ... /home.aspx

-scheherazade
that's a seriously fun bike. it'll do staircases.
:twisted:
colin

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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by ElZorro » Mon Jul 19, 2010 5:30 pm

I'll add one more note here: helmet + armoured jacket = really really good idea.
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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by PGT » Tue Jul 20, 2010 8:30 pm

scheherazade wrote:
complacent wrote:Knobby tires on the street are NOT the way to learn.
I was thinking dual sport with street tires.
Like the Yamaha WR250X
http://www.yamaha-motor.com/sport/produ ... /home.aspx

-scheherazade
well, my dual sport had street tires and it was still a bit much for a 'beginner' bike. Too tall, too hard to get it to lean over. Took supreme confidence to ride even moderately fast

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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by supasixfo » Wed Jul 21, 2010 8:52 am

thanks for all the replies and suggestions. I'm narrowing in on the ninja and sv650 - going to see what's avail out there - try to test drive both! I thought real hard about the Yamaha WR250X. That looks like it would be awesome for dirt trails on the weekend, but for now i think i will have enough gaining xp on the road. if i pick up a dirt bike, it will probably be for just dirt.

in regards to equipment, have an sa2005 helmet i use for racing - i think i've heard the only diff between sa and ma is that the sa ones are fire retardant. definately plan on picking up a jacket - as far as boots go, anything special about those? i went to coleman powersports and they are like $200-$300 a pair.

cheers,
alvin
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ElZorro
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Re: DC1WD n00b

Post by ElZorro » Wed Jul 21, 2010 5:31 pm

I'm wearing a $30 pair of leather work boots I picked up at Target, they cover the ankle and offered good abrasion resistance. Depending on if you care about style or not, and depending on the pegs and foot controls, this may or may not work for you.
Jason "El Zorro" Fox
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