I had been bombing around on my old Kawasaki since this August. It was my first bike and served me well. I have just over 5K miles on it since I bought it. Best $900 I ever spent.......add new tires, cables, bearings etc.....well, closer to $1500 but you get the point.
Heres a picture of the aged beast....1980 KZ1000 (same age as me)
Its looks pretty good and runs strong but its got Kerker 4 into 1 exhuast with NO baffles.....loud as hell. It also has K&N pod filters......which work great if you dont want to ride in the wind or rain. Turbulence at higher speeds in heavy wind causes the bike to run like ass.....if you want to tuck your legs in around the filters your good to go. Good bike but I was looking for something a bit more quiet and perhaps rider friendly.
I found a 2001 Yamaha V Star 650 on Ebay for a decent price ($2400) and bought it......a 20 hour road trip later and we were home.
This picture was taken just a few days ago....I had it out for a PGR ride in probably the last of the 50+ degree weather for the season.
Its definitely a pig compared to the KZ. The VS 650 will pull me and my wife along just fine at 75 to 80 mph all day long.....we just arent getting there in a hurry. I can run thru the gears and be stopped at the next light on the KZ - definitely a HUGE difference in power.
I also wasnt to impressed with the brakes.....you would think an '01 would have far better brakes then something almost 30 years old.....but nope. The VS has a sinlge disc up front and a drum in the rear.....my old KZ has dual disc up front and disc in the rear.
So Im not going as fast or stopping as good.....but Im not loud and obnoxious and Im a bit more comfortable.