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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I used to ride a Suzuki TM 400 and a Honda 750 when I was a young man. Med school, residency, kids, and a new job got in the way and somewhere along the line my motorcycle endorsement lapsed. Every spring I feel the call of the road but this year the desire to ride is stronger than ever. Now that the kids are all grown with kids of their own and I can see the retirement light at the end of the tunnel I am considering another bike.

I visited one of the local dealers thinking maybe something like a Shadow would be a good "welcome back" bike. I found its size to be underwhelming. I am 63, in great health, 6ft 1in, 220 pounds, lift weights several days a week and still work at a job that requires walking several miles each day. I have taken the written test for my permit and signed up for the local MSF course in a few weeks.

I would love to ride the 30 minutes to work every day and some weekend rides. My wife says she is not interested in riding with me although when we were younger she used to say if we were going to ride together she wanted her own bike. She's still not crazy about me riding, in fact a few years ago during one of those spring urges she told me to do something safer like learning to fly. I did just that and enjoyed flying for several years.

Am I crazy to consider buying a used Goldwing (something 2001-present) or should I stick with a smaller bike to get my feet wet?

I enjoy the expertise of this group. Thanks
 

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I would suggest something cheap in the 750cc range. Has enough power to keep you interested and won't hurt so much if you drop it while in the relearning phase. Get the muscle memory back and upgrade in a few months.
 

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Trust me -- for a 30-minute daily commute and some weekend riding, something in the 750-900 cc class will keep you smiling for a long, long time. Of course, nothing at all wrong with a Wing, but for me it would be too much bike for such duty. Save that for when you're ready to ride coast-to-coast!:smile:
 

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American Legion Rider
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Trust me -- for a 30-minute daily commute and some weekend riding, something in the 750-900 cc class will keep you smiling for a long, long time. Of course, nothing at all wrong with a Wing, but for me it would be too much bike for such duty. Save that for when you're ready to ride coast-to-coast!:smile:
That 30-minute commute could always turn into a 3-hour commute on a bigger bike. I did just that on a Harley Electra Glide and then a BMW K100LT. It was 40 miles going to work and 150 give or take, going home. It was a great way to blow the tension of the day off. Then I'd ride 300 to 500 at least one of the days on the weekend. Averaged 25K to 30K miles a year. Everyone should just get the bike they want, after, they get the experience. Get any old ratty bike to learn that. Just make sure it's mechanically sound which would generally mean a bike that is currently a weekly if not daily rider.
 

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Ace Tuner
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I used to ride a Suzuki TM 400 and a Honda 750 when I was a young man. ............
......... Am I crazy to consider buying a used Goldwing? ............
I enjoy the expertise of this group. Thanks
"Am I crazy to consider buying a used Goldwing"

Yes,
No wait, I think that's just me. I like really fast bikes with extreme handling so ... never mind. :devil: Purchase at will.
:wink2: :grin:
 

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Swamp Rat Rider
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Get the Bike you want if the GW feels right and have confidence can handle it go for it .. Managed to do that with a 1969 XLCH and had no training or even a Motor Cycle addenum to your license back then .. Never even sat on one before, but was the ride I wanted and all I needed to make it mine was the Cash to drive it off the lot ..
 

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It's always a safe bet to get back on the saddle on something smaller, but I'd say there's nothing wrong with a Goldwing. They - especially the newer ones - are basically like commuting to work on a fast couch. :)
 
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I agree with The Brain and oldenslow. Something with not a lot of plastic on it. Something that won't hurt so much if you drop it. Just to get your riding skills back up to par and to find out if your urge to ride is just a temporary itch that needs to be scratched or if its something you want to do long term.
 

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Visionary
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HA!
A coworker (who rides a Ninja 650) took one look at my Vision and told me that I rode a Barcalounger to work every day. :)

It's always a safe bet to get back on the saddle on something smaller, but I'd say there's nothing wrong with a Goldwing. They - especially the newer ones - are basically like commuting to work on a fast couch. :)
 

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The Goldwing would be great for the commute but might be a bit much to hanlde ( it's HEAVY!) till you get your skills back up to speed. I took a brief 30 year hiatus from riding myself, then when I got back i rode 20k miles in a year on a Vstar 650 before I went for a slight upgrade and bought my first Vision ( same size/weight class as a Goldwing). I don't think I could have handled the beast if I had tried to jump on it while riding was still a distant memory from my youth.
 

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On The Road Again!
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I've been riding for almost 51 years.

When I first got on my '99 Goldwing 1500, it felt HUGE.
But I quickly got used to it.

As far as I am concerned, it handles like a lot lighter bike than it is.....once you get used to it!
 

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My 85 Harley Electra Glide felt just as nimble as my Honda 400 Hawk it replaced. Part of that was probably due to the added power that helped get me out of trouble as much as getting into it.
 

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The Goldwing would be great for the commute but might be a bit much to hanlde ( it's HEAVY!) till you get your skills back up to speed. I took a brief 30 year hiatus from riding myself, then when I got back i rode 20k miles in a year on a Vstar 650 before I went for a slight upgrade and bought my first Vision ( same size/weight class as a Goldwing). I don't think I could have handled the beast if I had tried to jump on it while riding was still a distant memory from my youth.
This is the only problem I have with a Gold Wing for a newbie, or a re-newbie. I'd expect you to get used to handling it on the road pretty quickly. But in parking lots, maneuvering/slow-walking to gas pumps, maneuvering in to or out of a tight parking spot -- man, a bike that big can be a real bear! One, or two, or more slow-speed or no-speed drops will almost be a given before you get the hang of it. Anything over 800 pounds likes to get moving once you let it get past the balance point -- and it's hard to stop it when it does!:surprise:
 

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ScooterRider
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No ore “crazy” than I was (am) to buy a Royal Enfield!!
Why do you say this? I was thinking about test riding a RE and maybe purchasing one but without the sidecar. Your statement has me wondering now. I think a GW is out of my abilities range right now but the RE is or was intriguing.
 

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Why do you say this? I was thinking about test riding a RE and maybe purchasing one but without the sidecar. Your statement has me wondering now. I think a GW is out of my abilities range right now but the RE is or was intriguing.
Make your own assessment about an RE. Don’t let MY observations be your guidepost.
 

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When is your MSF course? You will have a much better sense of what you really want once you complete the course.

If I had your size, I would either ride a Goldwing or an R1250RT.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks to everyone for the responses. I've enjoyed reading all the recommendations as well as doing research on the used bike market. Needless to say I am spending a lot of time on CycleTrader, Craigslist, Ebay, Facebook ads, NADA and KBB.

I am scheduled to take the MSF course in June since we will be at our Daytona Beach place for a couple weeks in May. Might have to visit a dealership or two while there.

Thanks again to everyone for their input.

Gary
 

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Hey Soup, are your issues with the bike or the sidecar?
 
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