1. Welcome to Tacoma World!

    You are currently viewing as a guest! To get full-access, you need to register for a FREE account.

    As a registered member, you’ll be able to:
    • Participate in all Tacoma discussion topics
    • Communicate privately with other Tacoma owners from around the world
    • Post your own photos in our Members Gallery
    • Access all special features of the site

What bike is right for me?

Discussion in 'Motorcycles' started by ziggynagy, Sep 7, 2012.

  1. Sep 7, 2012 at 2:46 PM
    #1
    ziggynagy

    ziggynagy [OP] All Glory To The Hypnotoad

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2011
    Member:
    #66601
    Messages:
    1,327
    Gender:
    Male
    Stoughton, MA
    Vehicle:
    '11 Sport AC 4x4 V6 Auto Tow
    Westin step bars, led dome & map lights, tailgate hoseclamp, BluLogic, MetalMiller emblem, 35 tinted front windows, extra OEM d-rings, WeatherTech front/rear
    Seeing lots of bikes for sale in the Boston area and am finally in a financial situation to learn how to ride/get my M-license. I'm not really interested in racing, popping wheelies, appearing on Tosh.O or getting into brawls with the yakuza :rolleyes: The R6 isn't my style but a scooter isn't really an option since I'd want to go 70+ mph and don't live in SFO. I liked the look of the Suzuki Boulevard but have read some pretty bad reviews of it online.

    Any recommendations on what kind of bike would work for me?
     
  2. Sep 7, 2012 at 2:51 PM
    #2
    paranoid56

    paranoid56 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2012
    Member:
    #83443
    Messages:
    992
    Gender:
    Male
    San Diego
    Vehicle:
    0 double cab taco
    what style do you like? lets start there
     
  3. Sep 7, 2012 at 2:58 PM
    #3
    ziggynagy

    ziggynagy [OP] All Glory To The Hypnotoad

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2011
    Member:
    #66601
    Messages:
    1,327
    Gender:
    Male
    Stoughton, MA
    Vehicle:
    '11 Sport AC 4x4 V6 Auto Tow
    Westin step bars, led dome & map lights, tailgate hoseclamp, BluLogic, MetalMiller emblem, 35 tinted front windows, extra OEM d-rings, WeatherTech front/rear
    I like the style of the Suzuki Boulevard, I think that's considered a cruiser but not sure.
     
  4. Sep 8, 2012 at 11:39 AM
    #4
    Hardscrabble

    Hardscrabble Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2011
    Member:
    #50838
    Messages:
    1,535
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Scott
    McDonough, GA
    Vehicle:
    Timberland Mica 4X4
    Leather seats, WeatherTech's, Access LiteRider tonneau cover, extra D-rings in bed & tailgate. Pelley lightbar with Hella 700FF's. Temp./compass O/H console.
    There's lots of cruiser style bikes available. Check out the websites of H-D, Victory, Honda, Suzuki, Kawasaki, & Yamaha. You're bound to find one that appeals to you. I suggest taking a Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) course. Good luck.
     
  5. Sep 8, 2012 at 11:44 AM
    #5
    superswamper003

    superswamper003 Taco

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2012
    Member:
    #81589
    Messages:
    1,701
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Hendrik
    N. Snottsdale Arizona
    Vehicle:
    1998 4wd TRD 3.4l Tacoma Xcab 313k miles!!!
    Fox Xtended travel coilovers w/resis, AllPro UCA's, AllPro 3 inch leaflets, 1" Diff Drop, 285/75/16 Bfg KO, 16x8 Black Pro Comp Steelies, AP 1.25" wheel spacers in front, 8 inch Rockford Fosgate sub that bumps like your mother, old school deck, downey headers, cold air intake, grey wire mod, e-locker, hurst shift knob, LED Strips, USMC Decals FTMFW, Fox decal, Billet grille, Alarm with no remote, Straight piped to the side of the truck
  6. Sep 8, 2012 at 11:48 AM
    #6
    carcharias

    carcharias Giggiddy what what

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2011
    Member:
    #48988
    Messages:
    4,688
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Mike
    Los Angeles, CA
    Vehicle:
    '11 AC MGM OR
    Kings all-around w/ 700lb coils, Dakar leaf pack, TC uca's, DO single hoop bumper, BAMF bolt-on sliders w/ kickouts, Rigid 20" e-series spot/flood, aFe pro-dry, BFG KM2 255/85/16, silver TRD FJ wheels, WARN M8000-s, Access LE, Grillcraft, BAMF lightbar, BAMF rear dif skid, BAMF LCA skids, window tint, Wet Okoles, WeatherTech floorliners, Silverstar lights, led dome lights, Redline Tuning hood struts, center console lock mod, mag-lite mod, extra d-rings, re-routed exhaust, ATO skids, ATO Hi-Lift mounts, pipe tailgate lock, seatbelt alarm delete, wheel/spare locks, Viper 5901, LoJack... WISHLIST: a golden canary that poops platinum
    Get a used, light-weight cruiser you don't mind breaking just until you feel comfortable. Something too heavy will cause problems, something with too much power may scare you, something with too little power won't get you out of jams. Don't just think about the cost of the bike, either. You now have to think of the cost of all the gear, locks, insurance, etc. All well-worth it in the end.
     
  7. Sep 9, 2012 at 2:24 PM
    #7
    ziggynagy

    ziggynagy [OP] All Glory To The Hypnotoad

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2011
    Member:
    #66601
    Messages:
    1,327
    Gender:
    Male
    Stoughton, MA
    Vehicle:
    '11 Sport AC 4x4 V6 Auto Tow
    Westin step bars, led dome & map lights, tailgate hoseclamp, BluLogic, MetalMiller emblem, 35 tinted front windows, extra OEM d-rings, WeatherTech front/rear
    Thanks for all the advice guys, especially the MSF Course. Since this will be my first bike I'm going to stick with Used (maybe off craigslist) and drive that around for a couple years.

    What do you think is a good bike weight to start with? I'm 6 ft, just under 200lbs if that makes a difference. And what are locks? This has been great advice from all as I'm trying to figure out what to budget cost-wise. And never ridden a bike, most of my friends are married and the wives aren't down with 2-wheels.

    Definitely the route to consider. I keep a level head... been into sports my whole life and never broke an arm/leg cause I know my limits. One of the reasons I don't think the ninja-style of bike suits my personality. Any particular makes/models you guys recommend? Looking for something relatively hassle-free to maintain.
     
  8. Sep 9, 2012 at 2:27 PM
    #8
    Rich91710

    Rich91710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2012
    Member:
    #73470
    Messages:
    16,477
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Rich
    Los Angeles
    Vehicle:
    08 Base
    Satoshi with FJ badge, factory cruise, factory intermittent wipers, Redline Tuning hood-lift struts, Hellwig Swaybar, Rosen DVD-Nav
    Vulcan 900 would be a great first bike.
    It gets good mileage, can hold it's own on the freeway, is lightweight has great handling, and it's well under $10k new.

    I have a Vulcan 1600 and rode from Downey Idaho back to Los Angeles in one day with a guy riding a 900LT.
     
  9. Sep 9, 2012 at 2:37 PM
    #9
    kingston73

    kingston73 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2009
    Member:
    #20845
    Messages:
    2,162
    Gender:
    Male
    Here, there, and everywhere
    Vehicle:
    09 SR5 4.0L 4x4
    For less maintenance, especially since it sounds like you want a cruiser, look for something that has shaft drive. Also, look for something mid sized, don't go for any 1000 cc or above. Yamaha star 650 is a good bike, so are any of the Honda shadow variations (lots of different versions of those). If you want a Harley get one with rubber mounting, the sportsters before I think 2007 shook pretty badly because they had solid engine mounts.
     
  10. Sep 9, 2012 at 2:43 PM
    #10
    Rich91710

    Rich91710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2012
    Member:
    #73470
    Messages:
    16,477
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Rich
    Los Angeles
    Vehicle:
    08 Base
    Satoshi with FJ badge, factory cruise, factory intermittent wipers, Redline Tuning hood-lift struts, Hellwig Swaybar, Rosen DVD-Nav
    Sportbike thinking doesn't always translate to cruisers.

    The V*650 is extremely anemic on the freeway.
    My club had a couple of members that had them and they were always fighting to keep up with the group. One member upgraded to a V*1300, the other left the club.

    I would not go smaller than a 750-800 class in a cruiser.
     
  11. Sep 9, 2012 at 3:51 PM
    #11
    TRD6Speed

    TRD6Speed senior member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Member:
    #55779
    Messages:
    756
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Bill
    East Hartford, CT
    Vehicle:
    08 TRD Sport Access Cab
    885x with 5100s and top plate spacer for full 3", RCD extended 5100s in rear, dakars, flip kit, LR UCAs, tint, shorty antenna, in channel rain guards,BHLM, blacked out emblem, OEM side steps, weathertechs, debadged, rear diff breather
    Rich is right when it comes to cruisers......way more weight. A 800 would be a good bike to learn on and still be powerful enough to ride for awhile before you want more.

    I used to ride jap bikes...........but I am loving the new Triumph Bonnevilles. Great looking bike that offers plenty of fun and comfort.
     
  12. Sep 9, 2012 at 4:48 PM
    #12
    Rich91710

    Rich91710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2012
    Member:
    #73470
    Messages:
    16,477
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Rich
    Los Angeles
    Vehicle:
    08 Base
    Satoshi with FJ badge, factory cruise, factory intermittent wipers, Redline Tuning hood-lift struts, Hellwig Swaybar, Rosen DVD-Nav
    Gal in our club had a Bonneville America.
    She had no trouble keeping up except when we were returning from Arizona and bucking heavy headwinds, but even my Vulcan 1600 had trouble.
     
  13. Sep 9, 2012 at 5:38 PM
    #13
    ziggynagy

    ziggynagy [OP] All Glory To The Hypnotoad

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2011
    Member:
    #66601
    Messages:
    1,327
    Gender:
    Male
    Stoughton, MA
    Vehicle:
    '11 Sport AC 4x4 V6 Auto Tow
    Westin step bars, led dome & map lights, tailgate hoseclamp, BluLogic, MetalMiller emblem, 35 tinted front windows, extra OEM d-rings, WeatherTech front/rear
    Guys, this is awesome and exactly what I was looking for! There are a few Vulcan 900's selling used around me (1,2,3) and am also looking at a Bonneville. From reading, both of these bikes are belt drive rather than shaft drive... no idea what that means yet, just curious if that's a good/bad thing?

    Any other bikes/items you'd recommend? My to-do list also includes MSF Course, gear and of course insurance.
     
  14. Sep 9, 2012 at 5:45 PM
    #14
    Rich91710

    Rich91710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2012
    Member:
    #73470
    Messages:
    16,477
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Rich
    Los Angeles
    Vehicle:
    08 Base
    Satoshi with FJ badge, factory cruise, factory intermittent wipers, Redline Tuning hood-lift struts, Hellwig Swaybar, Rosen DVD-Nav
    Belt drive is more traditional. It's quieter than chain.
    As far as maintenance, honestly belt is not bad at all compared to shaft drive.
    My 1600 is a shaft drive and it's a bit of a pain to reinstall the rear wheel after changing the tire, and the shaft slip fittings and universal need lubrication just like any driveshaft.
    The shaft lube, as well as swingarm bearings, are just things that I do when I change the rear tire (every 10-15k).

    Belt is better than chain for sure.
     
  15. Sep 9, 2012 at 5:59 PM
    #15
    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2010
    Member:
    #39131
    Messages:
    29,089
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Mike
    Massachusetts
    Vehicle:
    '13 Ford F-150 SCREW
    F-150 Mod
    I agree with pretty much everything Rich said in regards to starter cruisers. My dad used to have a Suzuki Maurader 800 that was a nice little bike. He's about your size and ran that bike for about 5 years before upgrading to a bigger cruiser. That bike has good power and was comfortable.

    Also, take the MSF, it's a great idea for beginners. They also generally have cruisers, dual sports and sometimes a small 250cc sport bike that you can try out while taking the course.
     
  16. Sep 9, 2012 at 6:05 PM
    #16
    kingston73

    kingston73 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2009
    Member:
    #20845
    Messages:
    2,162
    Gender:
    Male
    Here, there, and everywhere
    Vehicle:
    09 SR5 4.0L 4x4
    I kinda forgot about belt drive, yeah that's a pretty good maintenance free thing to have. the other thing I forgot about was liquid cooling vs air cooled. air cooled will be less weight and parts and maintenance but won't be as good if you are driving in stop and go traffic often. those kawi 900's are liquid cooled I think, all the ones you listed looked good.

    what do you think you'll use the bike for? that would help narrow down the types of bikes .
     
  17. Sep 9, 2012 at 6:05 PM
    #17
    Rich91710

    Rich91710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2012
    Member:
    #73470
    Messages:
    16,477
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Rich
    Los Angeles
    Vehicle:
    08 Base
    Satoshi with FJ badge, factory cruise, factory intermittent wipers, Redline Tuning hood-lift struts, Hellwig Swaybar, Rosen DVD-Nav
    Even though my "#1" is my Vulcan 1600 (that I converted to a bagger), I'd love me a Marauder as a commuter bike!
    95 miles a day isn't bad in the Taco, but sometimes when I'm in heavy traffic it'd be nice to be on 2 wheels, but the Vulcan's MPG is only about 8 better than the taco.
     
  18. Sep 9, 2012 at 6:09 PM
    #18
    A_Ninja_Racer

    A_Ninja_Racer Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2008
    Member:
    #9789
    Messages:
    760
    Tampa, FL
    Vehicle:
    08 PreRunner TRD Debadged
    There are both Pros and cons to each shaft or belt driven options.

    shaft:

    Pros: Virtually Maintenance free with the exception changing the gear oil occasionally.

    Cons: You loose more torque with this option, if there is a failure it will be a very expensive repair. and from my personal experience with my chain driven ninja and my shaft driven vtx the rims and tires are harder to remove for tire replacement and other such tasks on the shaft driven option.

    Belt:

    Pros: Less Torque loss (especially a pro for sub 1k cruiser motors) if a belt brakes all you do is lose power to the rear wheel. replace the belt and your on your on your way.

    I have heard that their have been advancements in belt technology that are allowing belts to last up to 100k.

    cons: belts stretch and loose teeth. which require replacing. this means you need to constantly monitor belt tension and tooth health.
     
  19. Sep 9, 2012 at 6:10 PM
    #19
    Rich91710

    Rich91710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2012
    Member:
    #73470
    Messages:
    16,477
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Rich
    Los Angeles
    Vehicle:
    08 Base
    Satoshi with FJ badge, factory cruise, factory intermittent wipers, Redline Tuning hood-lift struts, Hellwig Swaybar, Rosen DVD-Nav
    Ya... All of the imported cruisers are liquid cooled. Yamaha was the last to switch over. Kawi and Suzuki have been liquid for over 10 years now.
    It can be a maintenance headache if you don't stay on top of it.
    If the dealer does a proper PDI you'll be okay, but I would still pull the tank and snug the hose clamps down.

    With EPA regs, it's only a matter of time before Harley and Victory are forced to go to liquid cooling.
     
  20. Sep 9, 2012 at 6:13 PM
    #20
    Rich91710

    Rich91710 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2012
    Member:
    #73470
    Messages:
    16,477
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Rich
    Los Angeles
    Vehicle:
    08 Base
    Satoshi with FJ badge, factory cruise, factory intermittent wipers, Redline Tuning hood-lift struts, Hellwig Swaybar, Rosen DVD-Nav
    Ya... belts are pretty solid now.
    I used to hang on the Beartooth and Delphi forums and never heard of a belt failure. It's just another maintenance item, same as a chain.
    When you change your rear tire, fully inspect the belt just as you would a serpentine belt.
     
To Top