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Dual sport recommendations for the better half...

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My wife passed her MSF safety class this weekend. First time on a bike and she did great! And now I have created a new monster, she want a bike! :lol:

Tried my DRZ and even with the lowered seat and lowering links was too tall. She is around 5'-7". I'm thinking something in the 200- 250 range but figured I would post here instead of the DRZ forum. Need street legal, but wants to be able to start dirt riding so we are looking for a dual sport. I'm partial to the yellow bikes, but I more interested in getting the right ride rather than a "brand". Also, no total slugs please, as her daily driver is a Vette with a 6 speed. Suggestions and why. TIA

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Kawasaki has a nice 250 dual sport. The new Yamaha XT250 has a lower seat height, but I wouldn't consider it nearly as dirt worthy. It has the TTR250 motor in it, so power is along the lines of a XR250 rather than the peppier water cooled 250 that is in the Kaw. At 5'7" she would be able to touch on the XT... I don't know what kind of lowering there is for the Kaw though. Oooh, then there's the WR250R (I think that's the DS model)... and the Yamalink...

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no total slugs please. Suggestions and why. TIA

Unless she's got some really short legs, at 5’7” she’s plenty tall enough. She just needs to not expect that she can flat foot her bike. For a lot of us shorties, getting a foot down, and sometimes just the ball of a foot, is as good as it gets. You can always have the suspension redone, lowering link, or shave the seat.

As for street legal bikes, are you looking at a 250 something? What kind of riding will she be doing with the bike (fire roads, single track, lots of pavement, gncc?). The only bikes that come with a title are the Husqvarnas and the 08 WR250. KTM has titled bikes, but I think those are only in the 450 and up. Honda has a 230 that is coming out that comes with a title, but don’t know if this falls in the “slug” category.

I have an 07 TE250 and it’s an awesome bike, so there’s my shameless plug for the Huskies.

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Unless she's got some really short legs, at 5’7” she’s plenty tall enough. She just needs to not expect that she can flat foot her bike. For a lot of us shorties, getting a foot down, and sometimes just the ball of a foot, is as good as it gets. You can always have the suspension redone, lowering link, or shave the seat.

As for street legal bikes, are you looking at a 250 something? What kind of riding will she be doing with the bike (fire roads, single track, lots of pavement, gncc?). The only bikes that come with a title are the Husqvarnas and the 08 WR250. KTM has titled bikes, but I think those are only in the 450 and up. Honda has a 230 that is coming out that comes with a title, but don’t know if this falls in the “slug” category.

I have an 07 TE250 and it’s an awesome bike, so there’s my shameless plug for the Huskies.

There are actually quite a few more than you list... but not sure in California. They have some different regulations... not sure how it all works there (for example, my street bike I own had a bunch of added 'smog stuff' that was on the models sold in California... but that was a 2000, not sure what the regulations are now).

I do agree w/NUN... at 5'7", a shaved seat or lowering link should be plenty. I'm the same height and short legged. I comfortably ride a stock DR650 (which has lowering available right on the bike from the factory). I'm sure that will be way heavier and not as dirt worthy as you are looking for though.

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I also agree with NUN, the DRZ should be fine for her. What is her inseam?

Most of the really dirt capable D/S bikes are going to have pretty much the same seat height, with only slight variations. The bikes that sit lower are far less capable, but might be ok for her to learn on. If you go that route, expect her to outgrow one of these "starter bikes" quickly.

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There are actually quite a few more than you list... but not sure in California. They have some different regulations... not sure how it all works there (for example, my street bike I own had a bunch of added 'smog stuff' that was on the models sold in California... but that was a 2000, not sure what the regulations are now).

I think CA is pretty strict now and if a bike does not come with a title, it cannot be plated, which eliminates a whole bunch of dirt worthy bikes that I didn't mention. I'm not sure if the DRZ400S comes with a title, I think the DRZ SM does?

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DRZ400S is a street-legal DS bike in all states. SM is a motard, also street legal. The DRZ400E and DRZ400K are dirt only models and no longer for sale in the US, aside from used. There are a few of these older bikes floating around that previous owners managed to title. They are all basically the same bike, but the full dirt versions came with a few engine differences that make more power, up until '06 or '07. The '07 "E" models came with the same carb as the "S" and "SM" models.

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The DRZ400S is a true dualsport but is a tad tall but you can lower it and also get a lower seat. It also has a bunch of Mods avalible for it as well.

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The DRZ400S is a true dualsport but is a tad tall but you can lower it and also get a lower seat. It also has a bunch of Mods avalible for it as well.

Yup, it is a true DS, and a very popular bike. A quick trip to the DRZ threads will give you an idea just how popular, rock solid and capable this bike is.

Lowering is easy using Kouba links on the rear, slipping the front forks in the triples, and adding a cut down or gel seat if needed.

http://www.thumpertalk.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?s=&daysprune=&f=25

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She can only get one foot down on her toes on my DRZ, and that is with a lowering link and Corbin seat. Looking to buy used and yes, this is a starter bike to see if we get into it and grow into something more capable. Local shop have both a used Suzuki 220 and Yamaha 230, both with 3K miles. (heigth wise I think both will be fine, maybe even a little small) Just looking at them I think the Yama is better overall bike. What is the equilvant Honda model a couple years old? Any comparsion feedback on these models? I think a 250 is as large we want to go for a first bike. And thanks for the feedback.

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