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Bike for Grandson

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This post might be better in the General Section but I don't know anyone there so I am posting to you folks that always have the correct answers.

I have 2 children and 5 grandchildren and no one has ever wanted to ride even though my garages have had bike in them since 1953.

I know have an 11 year old that wants to ride. I stopped my daughter from buying him a bike that was a 50cc frame with a 125 motor installed. Junk!!!

He has now finished a 2 day off road school riding a Honda CRF70. He has all the protective gear but no bike yet. The instructor said he only had one problem with my grandson and that was he would not stop smiling. Smiled riding, smiled crashing, smiled talking about riding, etc.

Now my question. He is not a big kid. 4"5" and 73 lbs. I want to buy used because I think a year riding and he will be moving to another bike.

What is a good choice for a kid you want to learn the correct way to ride, do his own maintenance, etc.?

What would you put your son or grandson on to learn?

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I've had about 10 kids learn on a $300 1986 XR 80. I've had it 8 years. First my now 18 year old daughter used it, then my now 13 year old son is on it. I like the fact that it has a clutch, 5 speed and kickstarter. Might as well learn it all. As he's getting bigger, I'm looking for some XR 100 wheels to extend its usage through the summer. Then its gonna be too small for the kids and just right for Dad.

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X2 on the XR Honda,s hard to beat em, tough as nails, easy to start, easy to ride, and take abuse very well.

all my kids started on a XR of some sort.

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TTR 90 is a really good bike, It is heavy, but has a low center of gravity so it is real easy to pick up...

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The ttr 90 is a good bike but its quite a bit smaller than an xr 80. It actually might fit him better. My son has a friend on a ttr 90 whose just under 5' and he's looking to move up since its too small for him. The automatic might make it easier to ride but all the boys on the xr's usually started off in 3rd and stayed in that gear til they learned to shift.

When sizing up any bike, I use 2 drills.

1. Throw the bike down and have them pick it up. About 5 times.

2. Have the rider lay down on the ground, gently lay the bike on top of them. Then have them get out from under it. About 5 times each side. You don't always land on your back or stomach.:banana:

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My 12 year old twin boys have been riding CRF80's for the past 3 years. They have TTR125's in the garage as their next step. I just bought a KX100 that would have been a better next step for the racier of the 2.

Edited by jffsnlsn
update

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Let's see, my sons have gone through a myriad of bikes before graduating to full size. We've had these:

Z50

XR80

KLX110

YZ80

It all depends on the pocket book and how they want to ride (track, trails, etc). I found the 110 the best learner bike even though shifting isn't standard. It lasted the longest as far as a trainer since I put in a manual clutch when the time was right. As they get taller there are easy options to convert them to fit. Also, as an adult you can use it as a pit bike with many possibilities.

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Man, I wish I had a grandpa like you when I was a boy. I had to wait 'til I was all grown-up before I was allowed to get my first bike.

I hope your grandson realizes just how lucky he is to have such a cool grandpa!:banana:

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Just to easy to do it on the X box . You know its just like the real thing

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My son rides a CRF150F with USD fork conversion. He is about 5' 1" and 95lbs. He handles the bike well. He has had my TE450 on the rear wheel for a good distance. He just loves to ride and it is an awesome thing, to ride with family.

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We have a 2000 XR 80 an also an '88 XR 100. These bikes are in near perfect shape and start on the second kick...even after sitting all winter! I have two daughters, 12 and 15, that have been riding for a few years and have not out grown the bikes yet. I'd start with an XR 80 or 100 and work up from there. In most cases, you can sell it for what you paid for it. The XR's are reliable, easy to handle and will build confidence for when the kid needs a fire breather. Good luck and have fun! You're a terrific grandfather! That first bike is a great memory for all of us.

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