Motorcycles - Page 210
I started on an 800cc Triumph, which I probably wouldn't recommend due to a slower learning curve that comes with a larger machine. But I did my time in parking lots, took it very slow and was ultimately happy with not having to upgrade right away.
I asked about these on SF a couple years back. They seem like pretty nice pants, although I was researching them again a month or two ago. Looks like everyone is now selling the "City Pant 3" and the consensus seems to be that quality fell down from the earlier version.
Also, today was day one of airbox removal. MOTHERFUCK stripped screws. I had at least 2 today. I got as far as disconnecting the airbox from the bike. I just need to physically get it out. I'm probably gonna cut it into pieces because I don't think removing the rear tire is something I'm up for.
Mine was 400cc. I wanted a CB175 back when I started, but I was forced into a larger bike because my uncle (who was teaching me to ride) believed anything less that 750cc would get you run over. A common sentiment in America during the 1970s - big engines saved lives! I only got a smaller bike because none of them were willing to pay the cost difference for a larger one, but I was moved up because I stupidly told them how much money I actually had, so I was pushed into the largest displacement I could afford. Another sign of the times: all the safety talk was limited to displacement - none of the adults involved cared if I got a helmet, gloves, boots, or motorcycle jacket.
I started on a Ninja 650R (649ccs, ~70HP). I would put it just on the outskirts of good to start on. ~2 years in I love it and don't want too much more for the street. First 6 months I was overwhelmed though to be fair I did learn to ride in NYC. Out in regular country you might be able to get away with it.
First bike ever was a late 1970s Yamaha PW80 that I terrorized my neighborhood from age 10 until 13 when I finally blew it up.
After that it was about a dozen BMW Airheads, a 900SS white frame, a few oilheads and a whole bunch of other stuff.
CC's alone is not a great qualifier.
As stated numerous times, my first bike is a 1203cc Buell. It revs to 6500 RPM, free-revs slowly, and has a linear powerband. You'd have to be a real twat to fuck-up on it. I am far from a good rider, and I'm a pretty shitty driver.
I laid-down my buddy's 600cc R6 when I was 18.
That thing revved about 100x quicker than my antiquated Harley motor and makes nearly 30hp more.
...with HALF the cc's.
I've also putted around on my Dad's R75/6. Try to tell me that 50hp 750cc is too much for a beginner.
Yeah, I'd say that 50hp is too much even in some slow-revving cruiser or tourer, and while different engines make different outputs, a limit like Europe's 125cc for the first year puts every beginner in a pretty safe margin as far as power/performance. America has a bad habit of focusing on the exception when it comes to safety - if a few people survive learning on liter-bikes, eh, good enough. And so you get stories like:
as well as pretty much anyone that's ever worked a bike dealership having tales of people with permits buying too much bike and crashing/dropping it before they get off the lot.
The bottom line is that starting with a small-displacement bike is ALWAYS a good idea. That some people can survive learning on larger-displacement bikes doesn't invalidate the soundness of the principle, and often generates cases that reinforce it. Rather than loophole-ook and nitpick, we should be encouraging the best practice. But noooo...
But honestly, either they were really pushing hard on the economy bike angle, or there is something wrong with my bike (entirely likely there is something eating away the power considering its age). A ninja 250 is probably much faster and more powerful...it honestly doesn't feel any stronger than the 250 nighthawks and the 225 dual-sports I took my MSF course with, although I never tried to push them hard.
It has served me well in the city and on lake shore drive...but I get a little nervous the handful of times I have taken it on the interstate....it seems to go 80 without complaints (although I worry about a 30 year old engine spinning so fast for long period), but once you are going ~70, it runs out of acceleration power for passing.