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Discussion Starter #1
Hey everyone! I'm Alex, I'm 20 and I'm looking to get my first bike. I took the 300 dollar safety course and I'm ready to take the plunge but I have no idea what I'm going to get. The problem is I fall in love with everything I see, there is no such thing as a bad bike to me haha. I've looked at everything from yamaha viragos, to ducati monsters, to harley sportsters. Also I know nothing about helmets besides the fit so I'm not sure what brands to consider. Any advice would be appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
one exception

The one thing I will say is I am NOT interested in a ninja 250, so that should cut the number of recommendations down significantly haha
 

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You'd probably help your cause if you said what your budget is and what kind of riding you'll do. Typically, for a new rider without much experience, a smaller bike is a better idea because it is more forgiving of the mistakes you'll make. I got my license a couple years ago and have been pretty happy with my TU250x. Good Luck.
 

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As long as the helmet is "DOT" rated you are good. The important part is to get one that fits and fits well. Not too tight and not too loose. Different brands tend to have different shapes(oval or round) so check as many different brands as possible. Price I feel isn't that big a deal but those that pay to have their helmet "Snell" certified as well as DOT will always be much more. So the key is fit fit fit.
 

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I'll go ahead and say it, no Monster. That's too much torque/power for a beginner.

Are you thinking new or used? What's your budget? We need more info in order to recommend something that suits you.
 

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The one thing I will say is I am NOT interested in a ninja 250, so that should cut the number of recommendations down significantly haha
Watch this video of a Ninja 250 taking down much larger bikes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kz03sQeX02c

What's your opposition to a good-handling bike?

Let me share a quick story with you. 25 years ago when I first got my motorcycle endorsement, I went to take my test on a small Honda Magna. Another guy showed up with his brand new GSXR-750 The state official told us to ride a straight line, make a u-turn, and come back as slow as possible without putting a foot down. I went first, no problem. The other guy dropped it 3 times in that simple exercise. Why? He wasn't going fast. He simply couldn't control that powerful bike, even in a slow movement.

Others here are telling you that large bikes get you into speed-related trouble. I'm adding that it also is more than you can handle at slow speeds. A small bike, on the other hand, is more forgiving and easier to handle.

As the video demonstrates, it's not all about speed, it's about controlling the bike.
 

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If you don't want to go the sport bike route, then maybe look at a Suzuki S40 Savage, a Yamaha SR400, or a Honda CB500. The Monster is a lot of bike for a starter. Depending on how big of a person you are, the other two would also be a handful.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'm looking for used and below 3000, also I'm 6 feet tall and 180 or so. I work part time at a moving company while in school so although I want as light a bike as possible I'm not afraid of something a little bigger. The reason I don't want a ninja is that EVERYONE has one. Also it would be nice if I could easily maintain highway speed and enjoy the bike for a long time rather than out growing it which I'm told is a real problem. To answer the question about my potential use, I want to commute mostly but also take back roads for pleasure, but nothing serious.
 

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You know the most important thing about helmets if you understand proper fit. It is perhaps the most important feature of any helmet because a helmet that fits will be worn. I wear an HJC 3/4 helmet that fits me to a T, but that is me. Other people find that other brands give them a better fit.
For back roads with some highway and commuting mixed in I would probably be looking for a 500cc twin if I were your size. It will run all day at 70 MPH, will probably give you around 50 MPG, will be cheaper to insure than a more performance oriented bike and will definitely let you get your feet wet before moving up to a behemoth like I ride. Another important consideration for a new rider is that you want to go lightly used rather than new. You have to eat way too much depreciation on a new bike and no matter where you start you will probably be trading in a year or two to something that better matches exactly the riding you find you are actually doing.
 

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helmet

Hello, of course any helmet is better then nothing, but DOT and SNELL offer 2 different testing procedures. DOT being the very basic and lowest. SNELL does have more rigorous/higher standards. There are probably even HIGHER rated helmets out there as well...pro racers (motocross, Nascar, etc) are not going to wear DOT rated helmets...bottom line is, Its your head, no possibility of transplant, artificial, prosthetic, wreck your noggin and thats it...
 

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Snell only rates full face helmets. All the pro racers wear helmets rated well beyond any standard we can affort.
 

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I would go with what Calculon said. Your budget plays a role in what type of riding but also it depends on what type of riding you like. Each person has there own feel. I went from a super sport to a cruiser and ended up selling that because I found it cruisers aren't me. So get your foot out there and see what bike fits you. choose wisely, don't waste your money on something you'll get bored of in a month or two. Other people say you HAVE to start on a small bike, but it goes back to what you feel comfortable on and what you can handle
 
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