I need some bike advises for my niece [Archive] - Glock Talk

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fnfalman
03-10-2005, 11:25
She's turning 16 in June 05 and I got her lined up with MSF training in July. Her parents aren't too happy that she's interested in motorcycling, but I told them that she's going to ride when she's 18 regardless of what they think so it's best to start her right. They agreed to let her go to the MSF training of which I already scheduled and purchased for.

And they probably won't let me buy her a bike until she turns 18, and as anally retentive as I am, I like to have a plan of attack anyway. So, the poor girl is short. She's a hair shy of 5ft2, and she likes sport bikes.

Assuming that between now and 18, she's going to get good practices (whenever I come home, I'll see if I can rent a 250cc and take her out for practice, etc.), my question is what can she ride being as short as she is? She wants a sporty bike and about the only one that I can think of right now is the Kawasaki Ninja 250. Also assuming that she doesn't get any taller than 5ft2 (her doctor doesn't think she's going to grow any taller) and maybe some decent boots with 1" sole, what can she realistically ride that's sporty?

gixxer11
03-10-2005, 15:49
She wil probably have to lower what ever she gets. I've lowered a couple SV-650s for a little more experienced females. It worked out pretty good. The little ninja is an excellent bike to learn on (the powerband is very gentle, but if you wind it out it runs pretty well for what it is). That's the one I'd go with, too. Unless you want to spend the money and import a two-stroke, or one of the ultra-trick, 4 cyl, 4-stroke 250s from Japan. Glad to hear she is interested in bikes, and has an uncle to show her the right way! Good luck.

fnfalman
03-10-2005, 17:56
Thanks for the headsup about lowering the SV650. How much can you lower on those things? The SV650 has a 30-inch seat height, isn't it?

DaisyCutter
03-10-2005, 20:29
I used to like Suzuki Bandit 400s. They are low and light. However, the little 400cc engine will rev to almost 20,000 RPM. It will go fast if you twist the throttle. The model was discontinued in ~1991/1992. http://banditalley.com/v-web/bulletin/bb/index.php



Another model is the Kawasaki EX500. It's very light and maneuverable. http://www.motorcycle.com/mo/mckaw/00ex500.html

I spent many afternoons sampling these bikes on the used lot of the dealership I worked at as a teen. Nobody really cared, since they were a few years old and cheap to begin with.

Having never piloted a streetbike, I was still able to do figure-8's in a little corner of the parking lot until I was dizzy.

I especially remember the EX500 having really good slow speed manners.

fnfalman
03-11-2005, 09:25
Thanks a lot for the tip, Daisycutter. I had an EX500 and it don't look nuthin' like that!;P I'll have to take a look at its specs and see what the seat height is like and whether or not it can be modified for lower height. I love my niece because she's a good one and she deserves to be spoiled rotten.

gixxer11
03-11-2005, 15:24
I had a Bandit 400 ('91 model). It was a cool little bike. Plenty fast, but it redlines at 14k, and made max power a 12k. I played with it, and put clip-on bars, Kehin FCR33s, Yoshimura full system and it made right a 60hp/32ftlbs at the wheel. Pretty good out of a 400. It had the right power for a first/second bike, i.e. nothing untill 10k so you had to really want it to go. The SVs I lowered were 2in and 3in, respectively. You can make your own "dogbones" or lowering links. If you want to lower a bike try to make it a single shock, it's a lot easier. Just remember a SV 650 will go about as fast as your BMW, they have 70+ hp in stock form. Might be a little much for her small frame/light weight with no experience. SVs aren't joke bikes, they are the real thing!

striped1
03-11-2005, 15:27
get her a dirt bike. she can get one that fits, and have plenty of time in the dirt to learn to handle and ride a bike. Best way to start.

gixxer11
03-11-2005, 15:30
Also, look for Honda CB-1s. Roughly the same as the Bandit 400. And don't forget the Honda Hawk GT. As long as she doesn't mind not having plastic (which is expensive to replace). The V-twins have more punch down low in the rev range, so I'd probably opt for a 4cyl so she'll have to "force" it to go. 400cc 4cyl are dogs down low (which is good to learn on, I think).

fnfalman
03-11-2005, 16:36
As I've said earlier, I have two years yet to worry about buying a bike. By then I should be able to get her trained up right and the first bike should be a good one instead of a beater/learner. But I just want to know in advance what I can and can't do in order to accomodate her lack of height.

You guys have given some excellent advises and I really appreciate it. The SV is probably still going to be around two years from now and knowing that I can lower it by three inches, that's really help.

I was also thinking of the BMW F650CS. I can lower the seat height to 27-inch with the Wunderlich dogbone and a lower factory seat. It's fairly sporty, but it's a pricey sucker for what you get.

But we shall see. I still have two more years.

I'm just curious but how much oomph does the Ninja 250 put out? Kawasaki doesn't say. If it tops out around 70-MPH then that might not be good enough. I'd hate for her to ride on the freeway and don't have the capability to accelerate and get out of the way of cars and trucks.

gixxer11
03-11-2005, 17:48
Nija 250 will (just barely) top 105mph. Around 30hp at the wheel, if I remember correctly.

USMC79to83
03-18-2005, 14:31
You may want to have her try a Ducati 620 Monster.

They work real well for shorter folks, can be lowered by shaving the seat foam, and can be had for reasonable $$$ used. Not to mention they are a blast to ride!

This girl is just about 5ft4 and rides a standard height M750

<img src="http://www.lauralanes.com/images/lauraonbike.jpg">

MikeG22
03-18-2005, 16:06
I know a number of short girls that ride slightly older Honda 600 F4i's without having to lower them. They are perfect bikes for it, nice and predictable, have enough power that you won't have to go get an upgrade right away, pretty comfortable, etc.

alex954
03-20-2005, 06:39
if shes that short and dont have riding experience get her a kawi 250
if she has some experience get her a old 600 F41
you can also go an get her a 600rr and lower it for her
to be honest with ya
when I was giving riding training to some LEO's in central america I had some short girls taking the course,what I told them is all you need is ot keep the bike straight and tippie toe the bike once your on the road you dont have to worry about it. Some girls would just lean a lil bit to their storng side andd tippie toe just that side

RBR
03-20-2005, 12:26
I'm curious as to what effect it would have on a bike when lowered from the factory set-up. I would guess the handeling might potentially improve with the lowered center-of-gravity. But if your removing several inches of suspension travel then the ride might get harsh. Any chance of bottoming out the forks or shocks unexpectedly?

fnfalman
03-21-2005, 08:44
Bottoming out is always an issue but not when a girl barely weighs 100-lbs soaking wet.:)

Excellent advises, fellows. Thank you.

iceman32
03-24-2005, 18:51
a triumph legend tt 900 its not a sport bike persay but its kept up with most bikes ive run across they've got a 25/26 inch seat height about 70 hp

Chopshopchopper
03-26-2005, 12:22
Then wen she is ready convert to Supermoto. She will be the coolest chick is town.

Check out www.supermotojunkie.com

You can get a e-start kit for it, and it can get up to 100mph in SM trim if you chose the rite sprockets. Of cource chose the rite sprockets and she can top out at 75mph and just have some major low end power.

FrEaK_aCcIdEnT
03-26-2005, 13:03
if u lower a sportbike such as a f4i or 600rr it wont corner as hard cause ur suspension wont squat the same. (from what i understand i might be wrong) on my gsxr 600 i can get the rear lowered via a lowering kit. for the front ive seen them strap them but thats for drag racing and ive seen them slide the forks up slightly in the triple clamps which also affects the handeling characteristics(sp?). but its not to bad. if u want a good book on sport bike riding to teach her some more about how they act and what actions will give u what reactions i would buy this book. i have it and learned alot.
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1&item=7963719146&category=34355&sspagename=WDVW
if u want to learn alot about how suspension acts and how to set it up for her weight(cause i garuntee that with her being a feather weight 100lbs. the bike will be way off in suspension settings and she will get a rough ride) u can get this dvd.

http://www.traxxion.com/store/detail.asp?product_id=SUS4V

i have it also and he explains everything. some of it is a little technical but its not bad at all! but after a few viewings u learn how suspension works very well. u learn how to troubleshoot it also! i.e. too stiff in rear. could be alot of things. he tells u what to look for. now he may be a suzuki guy but he has done alot for the racing scene on many bikes. not just suzuki. hope this helps. good luck and make sure she always wears her lid ;) im 5'7" and seat height on gsxrs is 32 inches. its close to being a stretch but i can get a different spring rate that is for my weight 120 lbs. which will allow the bike to act better in corners cause it needs to squat and load the suspension to corner good. for now i have just preloaded my spring slightly to get the proper sag that i want. glad to hear ur making her take the course first it will help when she goes to get her liscense cause they do the driving test and written test there. and in my msf class we used honda rebel 250s they act like u havnt sat on a bike b4.

ok i just read this over again and it looks like im trying to get her into racing lol... thats not the intent. this will just give u a very good understanding of the "sportbikes" properties and the more u know the more u will know what to do in an emergancy situation!

norton
03-26-2005, 18:17
Originally posted by fnfalman
She's turning 16 in June 05 and I got her lined up with MSF training in July. Her parents aren't too happy that she's interested in motorcycling, but I told them that she's going to ride when she's 18 regardless of what they think so it's best to start her right. They agreed to let her go to the MSF training of which I already scheduled and purchased for.

And they probably won't let me buy her a bike until she turns 18, and as anally retentive as I am, I like to have a plan of attack anyway. So, the poor girl is short. She's a hair shy of 5ft2, and she likes sport bikes.

Assuming that between now and 18, she's going to get good practices (whenever I come home, I'll see if I can rent a 250cc and take her out for practice, etc.), my question is what can she ride being as short as she is? She wants a sporty bike and about the only one that I can think of right now is the Kawasaki Ninja 250. Also assuming that she doesn't get any taller than 5ft2 (her doctor doesn't think she's going to grow any taller) and maybe some decent boots with 1" sole, what can she realistically ride that's sporty?

Good thing that her parents won't let he have a bike until she's 18. very few 16 year olds are mature enough to operate cars, let alone street bikes.
I agree with who ever said get her a dirt bike. best place to learn about traction, throttle control, braking. Getting the feel for a dirt bike moving around under you provides the rider with skills she will find useful on the street.
Most of the really good motorcycle road racers train in the dirt, or have a dirt track background.
The MSF course is a good idea. Besides, by the time she turns 18 she might find she has other interests besides motorcycling.

Mad Ryan
04-02-2005, 18:03
It's waaay too much bike for her at first but the new R-1 is really low compared to the R-6 and the last generation of R-1's. It looks more like the Ducati's than a japanese sportbike. Start her on a lowered SV for a few years and pick her up a used 2005 R-1 with low miles in black... Yes, definately black... ;)

Litespeed_67
04-13-2005, 18:52
Just convince her she wants to do track days until she turns 18 and find a nice TZ125 or RS125 for her. She will learn a ton while on the track that will make her much safer on the street when the time comes. She can pretty much flat foot the 125 easily and it has enough power to flat out embarrass the big bikes when the course gets twisty (the fact you never slow down allows this).

Of course I am biased because I own a TZ but it's still a sorta good idea.

Cirric
04-14-2005, 01:30
http://www.buell.com/en_us/bikes_gear/blast/blast/index.asp
Buell Blast - $4595
Seat height :
Standard: 27.5
Low Profile: 25.5

I looked at them for my wife (5'2") - but decided on jetskis instead.

I guess it depends on your (or Her?) definition of Sporty. My wife likes things like Buells and Hummers (H1 4-door Open tops, NOT H2s)