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Looking at small sport streetbikes

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I'm riding a Dual-Sport CRF230F right now, but ive been looking at streetbikes. Sport bikes in particular. I dont think i want anything more then like a 400 or 600. A late 80's CBR400RR would be very cool to find. Can someone give me any tips or suggestions about where and what to look for? I'm a Honda guy, but a Kawi or something would be fine too. No yammies. Period.

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I've been look'n around for a small road bike to run errands on and just for short trips, bid jobs and so on. I don't want to burn a bunch of gas in the cars when I don't have too. I do not want a big fast crotch rocket just something easy to ride but still a little sporty. I'm going with the Kawasaki Ninjette.

http://www.bikez.com/motorcycles/kawasaki_ninja_250_r_2006.php

And their so stink'n cheap!

.

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I need something too. I hijacked a thread regarding a sv650 or a SM for 30 mile commute and here is the response I got:

"THe Yamaha FZ6 would be right up your alley. It has a more upright position then either of the SV trims. The motor, stolen from the previous R6 is a real gem. The main gripe about this bike is that its motor is too "sporty" for the upright seating position. Check out the "reality bike shootout" on Motorcycle-usa.com"

.

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Suzuki GS500F or Suzuki Katanna 600 would be my picks. THose were the two i was looking at when i was considering buying a street bike. However after about a month of deliberation i got smart and realized there are too many crazy's on the road so i bought a KDX instead. :thumbsup:

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katana 750 is a wicked cheaper bike with a more comfortable position. very controllable power, and look very sporty for there design.

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Try and find a decent rz350 anymore. Any anyways its not a beginner bike just because the displacement seems tiny by todays standards.

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Try and find a decent rz350 anymore. Any anyways its not a beginner bike just because the displacement seems tiny by todays standards.

Haha I know I know. Its like saying a YZ250 is a good beginners bike because its not a 450. And Im guessing they are pretty hard to find, but its tamer cousin, the RD400 isnt too hard to get a hold of.

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How could you say no to this machine?

http://www.liebold.com/rz350y.jpg

Main reason would be the 18" wheels.

You're basically restricted to avon supervenoms and dunlop 501s.

Both are actually just fine for street use, but they are bias plys. I have some experience with the 501. It works pretty well, but there is very little feedback.

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I've been look'n around for a small road bike to run errands on and just for short trips, bid jobs and so on. I don't want to burn a bunch of gas in the cars when I don't have too. I do not want a big fast crotch rocket just something easy to ride but still a little sporty. I'm going with the Kawasaki Ninjette.

http://www.bikez.com/motorcycles/kawasaki_ninja_250_r_2006.php

And their so stink'n cheap!.

There are two main issues with the ninjette - it's a good bike and I'm not trying to talk you out of it, but it does have some room for improvement.

16" wheels restrict your tire choices if you want a sticky tire.

Suspension is primitive.

I race (AFM) one of these, the dunlop 501 is the tire of choice for those racing on 16" wheels (afm rules allow the use of weld-ups in production classes). I notice you're in Oregon, if they race ninjettes at PIR, you should be able to find race take-offs pretty cheap, and with more than 90% tread (I sell mine for $20 ea). I would exepct no lack of traction from a race take-off unless you're draging the pegs. The problem is that the stock front tire is a 100/90/16, and the 501 only comes in a 110/90/16. This necessitates the "fender mod" if you want to insure it won't rub at 100mph - may not be an issue for you.

I realize that you want this for a street bike, so forgive the race oriented slant, but I figure I'll tell you what I know, as it's hard to try to second guess what you'd like to know.

Suspension. Unfortunately the two shocks of choice are NLA. The ohlins has been NLA for at least a decade, the Fox TC for a year or two. Works shocks are still available, and a specific gsxr shock can be modified to work - I forget which, send me email (sorenlaf@yahoo.com) if you want me to look it up.

Forks repsond well to the addition of gold valves and slightly stiffer springs. Suspension travel is fairly long, and you don't need things as hard as you might expect.

My wife used to ride a ninjette. My only experience with a stock ninjette was riding hers. It always seemed to have a small traction break at some unexpected point on every ride. I do not have the same problem with my race bike (fox tc and gold valves), so I tend to attribute it to the suspension, as that (aside from the tweeked frame and/or forks/triples on the race bike) was really the only difference between the two.

Engine is pretty bullet-proof. A stock engine will go 4-5 race seasons w/o rebuilding. Figure a race season is about 1500-2000 miles, 95% of it above 10krpm and mostly at full throttle. Weak point in the engine are the rod bearings and associated crank damage.

Stock engine make 27-30hp at the rear wheel.

AFM production rules do not allow carb/airbox mods, so I have no experience there.

With stock induction, aftermarket exhaust will add little or no power. Productions rules changed in 2006 to permit aftermarket exhaust, dyno reports are of less than 1hp gain.

Muzzy is about the only exhaust game in town, and the engine note is nicer (a 250p race start w/ stock pipes sounds like a heard of angry sewing machines). Nice weight savings, about 10# I'm told.

Don't know about where you are, but here (sf bay area), ninjette race bikes are actually significantly cheaper than street bikes (both used). Plus side of a race bike is that you can find one with good suspension. Down side is that title can be fuzzy (meaning the last 3 owners might not have transfered it, not that it's stolen), street parts may or may not be there, things are often bent, and you know it's been riden hard.

Plus side to a race bike is that buying new parts to upgrade the supsension is probably $800 (down from $1000 since the fox shock is NLA).

I've been quoted $3600 otd from a dealer here (iirc, it was at international motorsports in Oakland), though it's clear that a lot of naieve people have paid $4500 or more. If you buy new, I would not buy the extended warrenty.

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I was considering selling my 230 and getting a CRF250X and dual sporting it... but after doing the math i figured that it was going to be very expensive. Also, i have no friends that have dirtbikes. And ontop of that, the only good place to ride around here besides at my house is the dunes in Coos Bay. My dad is a pysician, and he sees way too many kids come thru with severe injuries from the dunes, so he doesnt like it when i ride out there. That is why i am thinking that a sport bike might be what i need.

I considered the Ninja 250R, but it doesnt look very sporty and i would like SOME power. I guess i would have to ride a couple of different sport bikes to really know what i want. I found some pictures of an 88 CBR400RR, very sporty looking. I think it would be cool to find an older used one like it and just clean it up and ride it. I think i already said that my CRF is worth about 3000, finding something used in that price range is really the only way i could get one.

How do 400-650cc sport bikes do for gas mileage? How comfortable are they for 30 minute trips? Are they ok for carrying the occaisonal passenger?

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I was considering selling my 230 and getting a CRF250X and dual sporting it... but after doing the math i figured that it was going to be very expensive. Also, i have no friends that have dirtbikes. And ontop of that, the only good place to ride around here besides at my house is the dunes in Coos Bay. My dad is a pysician, and he sees way too many kids come thru with severe injuries from the dunes, so he doesnt like it when i ride out there. That is why i am thinking that a sport bike might be what i need.

I considered the Ninja 250R, but it doesnt look very sporty and i would like SOME power. I guess i would have to ride a couple of different sport bikes to really know what i want. I found some pictures of an 88 CBR400RR, very sporty looking. I think it would be cool to find an older used one like it and just clean it up and ride it. I think i already said that my CRF is worth about 3000, finding something used in that price range is really the only way i could get one.

How do 400-650cc sport bikes do for gas mileage? How comfortable are they for 30 minute trips? Are they ok for carrying the occaisonal passenger?

http://www.husqvarnausa.com/2006/06_TE250.html

http://www.husqvarnausa.com/2006/06_TE450.html

No dual sporting required.

These are supposed to good beginner streetbikes

http://www.kawasaki.com/product_detail.asp?product=145&tag=motorcycle

http://www.suzukicycles.com/Products/SV650SK6/Default.aspx

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. And ontop of that, the only good place to ride around here besides at my house is the dunes in Coos Bay. My dad is a pysician, and he sees way too many kids come thru with severe injuries from the dunes, so he doesnt like it when i ride out there. That is why i am thinking that a sport bike might be what i need.

The dunes are MUCH safer than being on a streetbike with a bunch of idiot drivers around you, who can't even see you. At least at the dunes if you get hurt, it's at least partially your fault. Get on the street however, and you can be doing everything right and still get blindsided by a car that doesn't see you.

The key to dune riding is riding with a partner and having him signal to you from the top of a dune if it's safe, or not to jump.

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The dunes are MUCH safer than being on a streetbike with a bunch of idiot drivers around you, who can't even see you. At least at the dunes if you get hurt, it's at least partially your fault. Get on the street however, and you can be doing everything right and still get blindsided by a car that doesn't see you.

The key to dune riding is riding with a partner and having him signal to you from the top of a dune if it's safe, or not to jump.

You can even get hit by someone who is intentionally aiming for you.

This morning coming in a car was broken down in the exit ramp lane. A car had pulled in front of me who didn't see the broken down truck.

A truck was too my left and I started riding the line to go between the truck to my left and the broken down truck.

Well the truck to my left didn't like this one bit and started to speed up so I took off and got around the broken down truck.

Then as I look back this guy in the truck is half in my lane acting like he is going to hit me just as I hit the exit...

Obviously this guy was just being a jerk but too many times I see reports of people hunting down bikers and running them off the road...

It is no place for the timid or unprepared...

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