New to Bikes!

by Sara
(Austin, Texas)

Hello! My name is Sara, Im 22 years old and have recently started riding on the back of my boyfriends motorcycle with him. I love it. He has an '04 gsxr 600. I love riding on his bike. I plan to learn how to drive and get my own license. Which of course, means my own bike!

Now, Ive sat on a few different bikes. Most are too heavy for me. I want to say I liked the way a 500 felt? Not sure about anything else.. and in fact, it may have been a 250. My boyfriend confused me. Haha

I'm only five foot four, and weigh about 115. So.. I need a smaller bike. I like the look of the Honda Rebel alright. and I have a soft spot for Rebel anything. haha

Id kill for a Falcon Bullet, but I doubt I can afford that sort of bike right now.

Also, after sitting on the 250/500 the sales man said that I'd have a hard time getting on the highway.. the engine is just too small.. and it's hard.. and not very fast.. etc.

Today, I met a lady with a 250.. and she said she had no problem. Is it just because he is a guy? and rides a bigger bike??

Sorry if I'm confusing you . Haha Thank you for any advice! Safe riding!

Comments for New to Bikes!

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Apr 13, 2010
Ex 500
by: Christine Red Deer AB

When first starting out good to start small gain confidence and move up. Go to your local dealer and sit on a Kawi Ex 500 a small light bike with low seat height but more than enough power for highway my friend loved her's for a first bike give it a try.

Apr 13, 2010
by: Anonymous

Why not try an sv650.

I'm around 5'4 and 7.5 stone (which is pretty light) and I always worried if I'd be able to ride a bike bigger than my previous cbr125.

I acquired an sv650 and was surprised how light (and fast :D) it was. It doesn't have a fairing because its street-fightered up so its lighter than the faired version and I put dogbones on it (which lower the seat so I can put both feet on the ground). Awesome bike and because it's a V twin, you sound like Armageddon when you ride down the road. I'm only 18 and on the small side so hopefully that will give you hope :D

Good luck.

Mar 29, 2010
First Bike
by: Anonymous

I'm also 5'4". I started out with a Ninja 250, they are light, nimble, low to the ground and narrow so you would be able to touch, which is important being anew rider. It did fine on the highway, but did take a little bit to catch everyone, but it will run 110mph all day and gets great gas mileage and everyone I ride with rides a sport bike. The only thing is, you will out grow it quickly. My next bike was a Yamaha 600, by this time I was OK with balance and standing on the ball of the foot at lights. I am now on a Yamaha FZ1 which is a 1000. This bike is great for distance because of the up-right seating position (because we take long weekend trips) but it will definitely keep up with the big boys and do twisties all day.

I'm a sport bike girl but have lots of friends that ride cruisers. I find we usually ride the same type bike our boyfriends or husbands do.

Mar 28, 2010
Same Weight and Height as You
by: Amanda

I bought a Ninja 250R and that's what I have now. I'm also 5'4, 115 lbs. It is a really great bike.

As far as the highway riding goes, once you get used to the highway I think that you will be fine.

When I picked up the bike, I was such a newbie I had a very experienced friend ride it home for me and I followed in my sporty car. I had a lot of difficulty keeping up and he lost me in a matter of minutes.

With a smaller bike you will probably have to search for a lower gear if you feel the need to take off, but I am totally fine going slower speeds so it doesn't matter to me.

I could definitely not handle a bigger bike. Maybe a couple years from now, but now a 250 is just right.

Mar 28, 2010
Try to test ride bikes...
by: Gale

Like you I am new to riding. I bought a Suzuki 250 right after taking the MSF course and loved riding it, but I knew within 15 minutes on the road going 45-55 mph that I would want a bigger, more powerful bike. I did ride it on the highway--it topped out at 68 mph and I never liked feeling that there wasn't any extra power if I needed it. But it handled beautifully. I am upgrading to a bigger bike soon--and the little bikes are not hard to sell, especially in the spring.

Good luck!

Mar 27, 2010
by: Anonymous

I know nothing about crotch rockets. But as far as cruisers go, I've owned over 10. Reason for that was to find the perfect bike. Regarding weight, I own an 1100, my husband a 1500. I'm 5'2 130, can handle mine just fine, his is a bit too heavy for me, mostly because it stands taller. Engine size should not intimidate you. It's the height and style you need to pay attention to. Take the class and then look in the classifieds. If you're comfortable, most owners will let you "take it for a spin". HD holds events where you can test drive their bikes. I have years of experience behind me. As a new rider I recommend you buy a 450 at the very least and above. Most of us who love to ride will end up on the highway, and you will need the power. Keep in mind it takes a little time to find a comfort zone with any bike you may purchase.

Good luck

Mar 27, 2010
First Bike
by: Anonymous

I will say that you will probably ride a 250 in you safety course, and will get the hang of it fast. Just because you're not a big girl, don't think for a second that you have to get a tiny bike. I know women who are barely 5 foot tall and ride Heritage softtails that are 1200 cc's. I started on a xv750 Virago, and still have the bike after 3 seasons. It's not a heavy bike, not tall, or can be lowered with ease, has plenty of torque for the highway, good in the city, or country roads. Good handling around corners, and looks good . I suggest you take the course first, then go shopping for your bike. I know very few who keep they're first bike for more than 4 seasons, then step up to something bigger, to what they really want. When you do get your license, you can go to dealers demo days and try a few. The other point to ponder is, what style of bike do you prefer. A sport bike, or a cruiser. The other question is, what type of riding will you be doing? Long distance, short jaunts etc. You will get a lot of people telling you what to get, but you are the only one that knows what feels right for you. So have fun and work hard at your course, and enjoy looking for your first bike. Cheers

Mar 27, 2010
I Love My 250!
by: Fiddler

After I took the MSF class I owned a gorgeous 900cc Triumph for a year, but it was just not a fit for me and I eventually admitted to myself that I needed a different bike. The big bike was just too heavy. I could handle it, and there were no incidents, but it wasn't the bike for me like I originally thought it was. In my search for my next bike I sat on everything I could find and fell in love with a Ninja 250r. And yes the sales guy thought I was nuts. I knew the Ninja 250 was neither big nor powerful, but it felt light and nimble, it was cute, and as it turns out it is amazing on the twisties. Being about 5'4 this bike fits like it was made for me. I DO take it on the highway. A lot. It'll do over 100, but 75mph is fast enough for me unless I'm passing (which is not difficult), and it can cruise at highway speeds all day... and get 65mpg doing it! It is actually easier on the highway than my old naked (unfaired) bike. I'll likely get something bigger someday, but this is the bike for me, for now. I guess I grew out of my 900 and bought a 250.

Mar 26, 2010
250 or Not
by: Dawn

You have to ride what feels good for you.. I have to tell you this.. When I wanted to get a bike for the first time I wanted to get a 250. My fiance' told me that I would grow out of it very very soon and i wouldn't be happy with it anymore.. I stuck to my guns and got a Yamaha virago 250.. It is a freaking great little bike.. I am 5'2 and although it does fit where my feet are firm on the ground. I did grow out of my bike with in the first 1000 miles or so.. I am currently on 4000 miles since may of last year on the 250..

My fiance has a Honda ACE 750 I ride that just fine too.. it is twice as heavy as mine..and a little taller.. and much more power

the virago does fine on the highway but it does top out at a pretty low speed.. I commute so i ride a lot in town and it suits those needs quite well.. I would suggest you make a list of what you want in a bike.. how much you will ride.. every day.. once a week .. how much comfort is needed.. for longer rides or shorter rides...and then visit as many dealers as possible.. and ask questions until they throw you out : )

Good luck on your search!

Mar 26, 2010
New To Biking
by: Robin

Hi Sara,

I am new too but can say this...I rode a 250 in my safety class. It was light but not comfortable. Knew it wasn't for me. I am 5'1" almost and 118 pounds and 53 yo. I bought an 06 Ridley Autoglide 750. 440 pounds and I can handle it...well..I am still learning but it feels right... I needed something low to the ground...this seat is 24.5 inches so I can put my feet flat on the ground. Bike is quite balanced. Hope this helps..you sound so enthusiastic..am sure you will find the one that feels right to you too!!!

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