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Old 19th April 2012, 23:30   #1
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Default Advice on buying a motorcycle in USA?

Hi All,
I have come to the states about an year ago, have been driving for about 10 months am looking for a new bike here.

I used to go on long Tours (500 miles + ) on the Royal Enfield Thunderbird) I had back in India.

What bike is recommended for me? (I have never ridden a superbike before)

I was thinking about the Suzuki GS500F (would I outgrow it within months?) or maybe a Honda CBR600F. How about maintaining one of these? I live in CT about 1 hour drive away from NYC.

Link to my ride descriptions (no_sweat is my id)

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/motorb...enfield-3.html


http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/motorb...enfield-3.html

Mods: Please move it to appropriate section

Thanks,
Mohit
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Old 19th April 2012, 23:50   #2
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Default Re: Need advice Buying a Bike in the U.S.

If you're looking at touring as primary use, look for something bigger than GS500, not that it's bad at it, but compared to the speeds done there, it does have low juice for overtaking faster traffic. The CBR600F is better but seems to lack any suitable luggage fasteners. If you can budget for a GSX650F or Yamaha YZF600 (not sure it's still in production) those make capable all rounders, or the Ninja 650 aka ER6f ,which does have a smaller tank capacity though.

If you can really flex the budget, nothing like a VFR800 or Triumph Sprint.
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Old 20th April 2012, 01:20   #3
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Default Re: Need advice Buying a Bike in the U.S.

Why don't you look for a baby Harley (one of the Sportsters)? That seems like the logical progression from a RE.

Last edited by thegame : 20th April 2012 at 01:21.
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Old 20th April 2012, 01:30   #4
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Default Re: Need advice Buying a Bike in the U.S.

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Originally Posted by thegame View Post
Why don't you look for a baby Harley (one of the Sportsters)? That seems like the logical progression from a RE.
It does seem like a step up after the TB, but I am also looking to expand my horizon.
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Old 20th April 2012, 03:25   #5
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Default Re: Need advice Buying a Bike in the U.S.

You didn't mention your budget? Also please let us know if you are ok with a pre-owned or want a new one. Plenty of good tourers here if you plan on doing long drives.

You can look at Honda Goldwing, HD's, Concours, Vulcan, V-Star 950 or Boulevard C50T. Also consider Ninja 650, FZ6R or Triumph Sprint. Hope this helps.

Last edited by chevelle : 20th April 2012 at 03:27.
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Old 20th April 2012, 04:35   #6
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Default Re: Need advice Buying a Bike in the U.S.

Since you are asking, my opinion would be to go <middleweight + entry level + used> for your first bike. By this I mean look at toned down sport bikes (dual sport or cruisers). You will probably be replacing your 'humble' starter bike sooner than you think anyway, but starting off in the 600 cc sector would make sense in your case given your past experience with biking.

The Suzuki GSX6 is one of the universally acknowledged 600-entry level bike here. Do give it a look. If you are ok with used bikes, a decently used (abused) 4 year GSX should come in the $4K window. In general, Honda Kawasaki and Suzuki's rule the 600 cc sport sector. I am not too familiar with the cruiser bikes, but I have had a few friends own the Honda shadow 600 and the Yamaha v star 650.

Check the following out if you are still researching:

Toned down sport bikes: Yamaha YZF600R (not the R6), Daytona Triumph 600, Yamaha FZ6R, Suzuki GSX6, Suzuki Katana 600, Honda CBR 600.

If you are looking for 'regular' sport bikes, the the Suzuki GSX-R, Yamaha YZF R6, Honda CBR-RR, Suzuki ZX-6R are popular speedsters.

Of course if you are looking beyond 600 the barrier (750, 900+) then there are even more options available.
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Old 22nd April 2012, 23:10   #7
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Default Re: Advice on buying a motorcycle in USA?

Mohit- You are living in probably one of the best parts of the world for motorcycle riding and exploring just all the backroads of New England itself can take many many......so dont delay any further Myself & wife may be briefly passing thru CT on a bike in a few days...if you are some where along our route maybe we could meet up.

Your bike purchase will depend on budget, primary purpose of riding (touring or track days etc), 2-up riding, your physical height-weight etc.

From the kind of traffic & riding in US, ideally the bare minimum I would suggest is a 650cc and above. If you love touring, you will not go wrong with it and unless you are doing too much of 2-up riding the Suz DL650 will be an excellent bike...Again if you are particular on a inline-4 engine (smoother than V-twin engines), then the choice gets wider, but once you have answers to the above questions, forum members in the US should be able to give you a better suggestion ESP FROM THE RIDING/USING PERSPECTIVE IN US.
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Old 23rd April 2012, 10:01   #8
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Default Re: Advice on buying a motorcycle in USA?

As most people mentioned your budget and exact purpose will determine the kind of ride best suited for you. You could pick up an 08 busa / 14r for around 8k depending upon location and condition and can do amazing two up touring and cover alot of miles very fast and fairly comfortably. ( some suspension settings / after market seats/bars/grips make it very comfortable to ride ) .
If you into hardcore sports touring spanning many states you could look at the BMW K1300GT , the kawa concours or the honda ST1300. I am obviously talking about big displacement bikes here with enough grunt that you can keep for a long time without the worry to upgrade.
If you only into touring and dont really want to be sporty about it you can look at the Honda gold wing or the victory cross roads. The other end of the spectrum includes the Harleys. I personally dont like them but if it suits your requirements they have a few models that would fit the bill. So all said and done , there are atleast 2 dozen bikes out there but suggesting one for you will entirely depend upon your requirements. The best part , you can pick any of these at great prices in the second hand market.

Last edited by bigron : 23rd April 2012 at 10:07.
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Old 23rd April 2012, 12:47   #9
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If you are mechanically inclined then yes a HD is easy to maintain and ride...
I beleive you said you used to do tours on RE, so you know about being a part of RE group and stuff.
Riding a bike in USA is luxury and not necessity so if you wanna have the luxury then I guess you need to get more than a bike
I'd say get a HD and you'd be part of the lifestyle...
I owned 2 HD's in USA and moved back to IND and carried one along with me...

If you are into lotta touring then look no further than a BMW 800GS they are amazing machine for touring and if budget is your concern then probablya Triumph Tiger 800XC (pls stay away from 800) its no match when you compare with GS800

If you are looking for Naked bikes with upright riding style then look no further than FZ8 its cheap and amazing performance IMO

As everyone pointed out Budget is important & whether you want a new or pre owned...
If you are going for a cruiser then i'd say (stay away from all the imitations) get a HD, you'll get a lifestyle with a cruiser and obviously the resale is much higher..

A HD commands more resale than a new metric cruisers..

Example: I'm taking a hard look @ buying a Rocker C (2009 used one for 18k) The new ones are almost @ 20K so not a lotta diff...

Get a sporty 1200 and you'll be happy and you can find a lotta used ones who would have done lotsa upgrades on HD so you dont have spend a time/money upgrading...
Ride it, if you dont like it sell it and move to another one

Last edited by aah78 : 24th March 2014 at 03:15. Reason: Posts merged.
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Old 24th April 2012, 00:52   #10
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Default Re: Need advice Buying a Bike in the U.S.

Quote:
Originally Posted by no_sweat View Post
It does seem like a step up after the TB, but I am also looking to expand my horizon.
Not necessarily Harley, you can also look at japanese cruisers. I have a C-50 and it's very comfortable for long distance touring, although I don't do those.

Before making up your mind, sit on the bike and check stance, back rest etc. now I find my bike would be better if I have arms 2 inches longer. Looking for handlebar extenders, or might move to commuter type bikes since I don't do long rides.

most states have DMV sponsored courses, take those and you can get a chance to sit on some other bikes as well (need to get a temp permit first for that).
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Old 24th April 2012, 01:56   #11
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Default Re: Advice on buying a motorcycle in USA?

Thanks to all of the folks for your replies. I have a motorcycle permit right now and will be doing a MSF safety course next month (didn't get dates sooner) for the License.

Looking at the posts here and research online, I think I'll go for a Used Bike first to get hang of the things first (more bang for the buck) then later go for a new when I am comfortable with the kind of riding done here.

I also did a lot maintenance on my RE but was able to survive due to a good mechanic there. I think I'll stick to low-maintenance bikes (Read: Japs) here so that I don't have to bother with getting my hands dirty / worry of things going ka-put on the highway.

I am looking for a budget of about 5K now and think can get decent used bike here - If I find a great bike, I might go for a bit more.
Now, the phase of trying / choosing / praying begins.
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Old 24th April 2012, 07:04   #12
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Default Re: Advice on buying a motorcycle in USA?

Firstly I would suggest you get to a showroom and see how the bikes suit your sitting posture, I'm saying this cause I was a ardent fan of R6 and when I sat on it for a while I kinda felt uncomfortable and thats something you dont want happening. Since you want to do long rides, I'd say go for a Ninja 650R or FZ6r or even Sv650( i personally dont like its looks though) These are comfortable, great beginner(in US) bikes. Try and stick to 600cc for now, once you are comfortable and gained some experience, go for 1l engines.
If you want cruisers, Suzuki C50, Yamaha Vulcan come at low cost. Or like Shrini78 suggests pick a HD, they are expensive and used ones cost as much as new. But the ownership makes up for all that.

I'm also in the market looking for a bike and Ninja 650R, primarily since its going to be my first, easy to maintain, can get used ones under 5k(less than2yrs old). Atleast in the West there is a huge demand for 650R and am still struggling to get hold of one. Similarly I considered Monster 696 but yet to spot a used one for sale :(
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Old 26th April 2012, 09:11   #13
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Default Re: Advice on buying a motorcycle in USA?

Man if I were you, just type in "motorcycle yakaz" in google and you get a site with thousands of listing (you need to type in the search box) which one you are looking for

IMO better than cycle trader...
With 5K budget you best bet would be to buy from a private party, with dealer most of the time you'll end up paying doc fee+processing fee+dealer prep fee all those crappy add on which will cost you another grand...
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Old 24th March 2014, 02:47   #14
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Default Re: Advice on buying a motorcycle in USA?

Hi everybody,

I am contemplating a motorcycle for the daily office commute of about 30 miles one way and weekend cruising of the maximum possible stretches from Cincinnati.

I am used to doing 1000 kms a day on my TBTS back in India and love riding.

I am getting options on craiglist for less than 9000 for FJR 1300 and ST 1300.

Would the experienced members be able to guide me to a reliable touring machine in that kind of budget?

Also,what would be the process to obtain the motorcycle endorsement on my car license?

Regards

Himanshu
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Old 24th March 2014, 04:30   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhardwhu View Post
Also,what would be the process to obtain the motorcycle endorsement on my car license?
Hey, are you a 365 day rider or a warm weather biker?

Check your OH DMV website, they'll have all the information for applying for your motorcycle license.

For motorcycle license, you'll have to go through pretty much the same process as a car license.
This includes a written test for your learner permit & a DMV road-test.
If you pass, they'll endorse your car driver license with the motorcycle license.

If you want to brush up on your skills, then you can do a rider course from a motorcycle school. The largest and most popular one is MSF (Motorcycle Safety Foundation) but there are others around that might be cheaper.

You can do the MSF course after getting your learner's permit.
The MSF course is all-inclusive, meaning you'll do in-class & on-motorcycle sessions. You'll give your motorcycle test at the end of the course itself.

This is an expensive option though, so as you're already an experienced rider in India you might find it too basic for the price.
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