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i will apologize now, I have not read thru the 5 pages of posts, so if I am posting something that has been repeated I am sorry. I was like you, never rode a bike EVER. I took the safety course that was offered near me. It was a two day course that I was able to get my permit with. Riding a 250cc bike that they had was so much easier than trying to pass the course that the DMV out here in the San Francisco Bay area would have put me thru made it better. I sat on every bike I could, and found a used Yamaha 500 Virago. It took me thru a lot of parking lots and a lot of roads around town that were not as crowded as most. So I learned how to use the bike and how to lean and countersteer. The bike was a POS and I ended up getting rid of it when the carb froze up and getting parts were more expensive than the bike. Had I been smart, I would have gotten a Ninja 250 used. The are a very relaxed riding position, light as hell and looked like a fun bike to ride around town. Heck, I am still considering buying one just cause they are so light and look fun to ride.

I am still what I consider a newer rider, I have only been riding for about 15 years. I learn something new damn near everytime I am on the road. The one thing the course really stressed was ride like you cannot be seen and anticipate what the drivers around you might do. That alone has saved me many times from being a hood ornament. Also, ride your ride, don't try and ride above your abilities and don't try and keep up with the guys you ride with. Ride what you can, how you can and when you can. Once you figure it out, get a good helmet and gear. I have a jumpsuit I got from a friend that I wear on commute to and from work, and I armoured jacket I wear around town. A Tshirt and a pair of jeans are not good gear. Also, have thick skin. I ride with a bunch of Harley guys and continue to this day taking **** from them about my Honda. I don't care, I really did the bike and I can handle it most of the time.

Again I apologize is all of this has been covered, but I was right where you are about 15 years ago, so I figure I would give you my two cents worth, and that is about all it is worth.

Ride safe and have fun
 

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So a bit of an update, my boss/friend got his permit Monday, bought a bike Tuesday, and showed it off at work. He got a Kawasaki Z400, and had me sit on it. Swinging my leg over the back of it hurt, felt like I was doing a split. It was the first motorcycle I ever sat on. Is that something my body has to get used to, and are they all like that? The bright side, I was able to sit up on it just fine without having to lean forward.

Next up, I don't see him yesterday since he was off. Today, he comes up to me and tells me 'Don't get a 400. I was on my way to Hayti (nearby town) and the wind from a passing car nearly knocked my bike over'. So... yeah, I don't know what I want anymore. Are all beginner bikes that easy to knock over? Is it just sport bikes that are like that? I kept hearing sport bikes aren't good for going long distances because they have to fight the wind a lot on highways and such, so is that what he meant? I should also mention his bike didn't come with a windshield, but he made it sound like that wouldn't have mattered in this case.

EDIT: Forgot to mention, I was able to flatfoot his bike.
Wind is always an issue, I get blown around pretty good on the freeway. I have an 1100CC Honda that has solid wheels, and I notice a cross wind will push the lower part of the bike a little. It is all stuff you learn to deal with. I would steer clear of any sport bike as a beginner bike. Anything over 500cc in my opinion is too much bike for a newbie. Most sport bikes are very sensitive, meaning they are very quick to deliver when you roll the throttle and very touchy with the brakes, at least that is what I have heard. My advice is to stay off the highway until you are comfortable with the bike. Ride a lot of parking lots where you can make figure 8's and toss the bike thru the turns. Then move on to city streeets, two lane fairly easy streets. Freeway and highway should be towards the end of the learning curve in my opiion. Cruiser or dual sport have always been said to me to be good starter bikes. There are a ton of 500cc and less bikes here because people buy them, use them for a year or two and then trade up. Again, only my opinion so take it for what it is worth.
 

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Discussion Starter · #103 ·
Yeah I'm still between different people trying to talk me into either a Honda Shadow, or a Kawasaki Ninja. So I'm torn between those two. I hate the way Honda looks, and think the Ninja's look cool, but I'm told the Shadow is easier to ride and can go long distance comfortably. But going long distance might be rare-ish for me and I don't know if more of the 'long distance' rides I plan are considered short enough for a Ninja or too long for them.

Either way, I'm close to needing to decide. Right now, I'm planning buy some equipment soon now that my boss/friend found a motorcycle store nearby I can shop for the equipment in, then I plan to save back up after spending a lot of what I have on safety gear, THEN I need to make a final decision on the bike I want. If it's more than 50 miles, my boss/friend (I call him both because I don't know if he considers me a friend, or just my boss at work) who bought his more than 50 miles away on his permit, has a trailer he brought the bike back with before riding it. So he can help me get a bike long distance. After riding it for a while on my permit, then I'll get a license, THEN I can go to that out of state nearby class because I'm pretty sure it's over 50 miles away.
 

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Yeah I'm still between different people trying to talk me into either a Honda Shadow, or a Kawasaki Ninja. So I'm torn between those two. I hate the way Honda looks, and think the Ninja's look cool, but I'm told the Shadow is easier to ride and can go long distance comfortably. But going long distance might be rare-ish for me and I don't know if more of the 'long distance' rides I plan are considered short enough for a Ninja or too long for them.

Either way, I'm close to needing to decide. Right now, I'm planning buy some equipment soon now that my boss/friend found a motorcycle store nearby I can shop for the equipment in, then I plan to save back up after spending a lot of what I have on safety gear, THEN I need to make a final decision on the bike I want. If it's more than 50 miles, my boss/friend (I call him both because I don't know if he considers me a friend, or just my boss at work) who bought his more than 50 miles away on his permit, has a trailer he brought the bike back with before riding it. So he can help me get a bike long distance. After riding it for a while on my permit, then I'll get a license, THEN I can go to that out of state nearby class because I'm pretty sure it's over 50 miles away.
I have a Honda Sabre 1100. It is shaft drive so no chain to lubricate. Mostly gas and go. Change the oil every so often and the rear drive gear oil and you are good to go. Very low mainanence and easy to ride. I would say if you are looking for a Shadow, look at the 750. Either the Aero or Spirit. In my mind, the Honda is a good bike for a good price. Mine is a Harley wanna be for about half the price and I could flat foot it, which was very important to me. Now, with that being said, I have heard the Nija 250 gets about 80mpg, but I have never verified. It is a more upright position than most sport bikes and to me, was a really nice ride. Here you can get them used for about 2K so it is an affordable choice for a learner. And who knows, you may keep it just to ride around town and the occasional highway ride.

Just remember, whatever you get, ride like you cannot be seen, because most of the time you can't. LOL. My text is 650-296-1779 if you want to talk off line. Good luck with your choice.

RR
 

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Discussion Starter · #105 ·
Thanks but I'm not the kind of person that is going to text or call random people ^^;

Yeah when considering the Ninja, it's not about the speed to me like it is most people. It's about it's looks and comfort. I don't plan to go past any speed limit. One of my co-workers plans to be all about the speed. My boss/friend intended to be all about the speed, but once he actually got the bike, he decided he never wanted to go past the speed limit either. I think that wind from a passing car nearly knocking him over scared him from speed for good.
 

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I didn’t read all of this thread either as it is pretty long and I am late to the party. But here’s my input.

I have read the issues you are having with distance and that’s a bummer. One really great thing about the riders course is you can ride all the different styles and see what you are comfortable on. It sounds like you are heading down the Ninja path. I am a sport bike guy as well — Suzuki for me.

I rode the Honda 300R. It was a blast to ride. I ride an 1100 and the little 300 was still a hoot. My big old lump is quick but getting her through a parking lot is like wrestling a water Buffalo. Jumping on the 300 was easy to zip around and was comfortable to ride all day.

The other choice I’d suggest is the Kawasaki Ninja 300. It is also a solid platform but more sport bike styling. It has higher wider bars that make it easier to control for a new rider and the body position isn’t as severe.

Either of these is an ideal choice that introduces you to a sportier bike without having to deal with the power an in-line 4 engine produces.
 

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Thanks but I'm not the kind of person that is going to text or call random people ^^;

Yeah when considering the Ninja, it's not about the speed to me like it is most people. It's about it's looks and comfort. I don't plan to go past any speed limit. One of my co-workers plans to be all about the speed. My boss/friend intended to be all about the speed, but once he actually got the bike, he decided he never wanted to go past the speed limit either. I think that wind from a passing car nearly knocking him over scared him from speed for good.
Just a offer, good luck in your search.
 

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2018 Kawasaki NINJA 650 ABS KRT
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Thanks but I'm not the kind of person that is going to text or call random people ^^;

Yeah when considering the Ninja, it's not about the speed to me like it is most people. It's about it's looks and comfort. I don't plan to go past any speed limit. One of my co-workers plans to be all about the speed. My boss/friend intended to be all about the speed, but once he actually got the bike, he decided he never wanted to go past the speed limit either. I think that wind from a passing car nearly knocking him over scared him from speed for good.
A NINJA 250 is awesome (I want mine back!!), but it isn't all that fast. It'll keep up on the interstate, but not much more. And while I don't recall exactly how much my mpgs were, I know it wasn't anywhere near 80mpg. You can probably expect to get somewhere in the 60s.
 

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A NINJA 250 is awesome (I want mine back!!), but it isn't all that fast. It'll keep up on the interstate, but not much more. And while I don't recall exactly how much my mpgs were, I know it wasn't anywhere near 80mpg. You can probably expect to get somewhere in the 60s.

You can always swap out a sprocket size, and give you more top end, but keep in mind you will loose some acceleration in the low end, when sprocket teeth are changed, there is always a sacrafice of one for the other (top end Vs. low end)
 

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Discussion Starter · #110 ·
A NINJA 250 is awesome (I want mine back!!), but it isn't all that fast. It'll keep up on the interstate, but not much more. And while I don't recall exactly how much my mpgs were, I know it wasn't anywhere near 80mpg. You can probably expect to get somewhere in the 60s.
Could be fine for me. All the areas around here, top speed is only 65.
 

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A NINJA 250 is awesome (I want mine back!!), but it isn't all that fast. It'll keep up on the interstate, but not much more. And while I don't recall exactly how much my mpgs were, I know it wasn't anywhere near 80mpg. You can probably expect to get somewhere in the 60s.
LOL. I knew it was high, sorry, my bad for overstating. I still love the look of them, and the riding position wasn't as aggressive as I thought. If I can swing it with my wife, I might pick up one on the cheap and ride it around town. They look like a fun bike.
 

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LOL. I knew it was high, sorry, my bad for overstating. I still love the look of them, and the riding position wasn't as aggressive as I thought. If I can swing it with my wife, I might pick up one on the cheap and ride it around town. They look like a fun bike.
Good luck with that"on the cheap" part. Sellers are asking almost MSRP for 10-15 year old bikes!! That , plus any of the ones that are fairly reasonable (and green! ) will take an overnight trip probably. And I hope you have better luck with the spousal unit than I am. Doesn't help that we've been fighting with the dishwasher a lot of late and we just invested in some expensive business equipment. Oh, and for my birthday I want a tune for Bug. I suspect I may end up with a dishwasher instead ( although the tune would be cheaper) and figure on picking up a 250 over the winter when bike prices typically go down 🤞
 

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Good luck with that"on the cheap" part. Sellers are asking almost MSRP for 10-15 year old bikes!! That , plus any of the ones that are fairly reasonable (and green! ) will take an overnight trip probably. And I hope you have better luck with the spousal unit than I am. Doesn't help that we've been fighting with the dishwasher a lot of late and we just invested in some expensive business equipment. Oh, and for my birthday I want a tune for Bug. I suspect I may end up with a dishwasher instead ( although the tune would be cheaper) and figure on picking up a 250 over the winter when bike prices typically go down 🤞
Out here in the San Francisco Bay area, you can pick up one for about 2 to 3K used. Cannot remember how old, but they are out there. Not in as much supply as used to be, but they are there.

Gotta get the essentials fixed first, dishwasher being one, LOL.
 

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Discussion Starter · #114 ·
So I think I settled on Honda Shadow. I HATE the way they look, especially compared to the Kawasaki Ninja, but in the long run, they seem like the better bike for what I want to do, which is ride long distances comfortably.

My plan now is in this order:

1. Next week on my next paycheck, to go to a dealership JUST to get gear, like a helmet, jacket, gloves, shoes, pants, etc. (is there anything left? Let me know if I'm forgetting something. Going to make a list on my phone). I don't want to get gear online only to find out they don't fit me correctly. I have close to $2,000 saved up, but I also know gear is around $1,000.

2. Since it'll probably take me another few months to save up after that for the actual bike, I'll have plenty of time and chances to take a permit test while I save up.

3. Either buy a Honda Shadow off of a co-worker who is still back and forth on whether he wants to sell his extra bike or not, or have my boss/friend go with me to check out some used bikes online, and have his trailer help me take it back home.

4. Drive my car to work. Just found out permit holders can't drive at night, and it's night time when I get off work, so...

5. Spend both of my days off riding the bike until I can take the license test.

6. Go more than 50 miles now that I have a license so I can take a MSF course.

7. Buy a cup holder.

8. Let you guys know I got a license.

9. After a few months of riding, MAYBE start a motovlog. Something I been considering after watching a lot of motovlogs while both dreaming to ride, and learning from these videos.

So what do you guys think of all of this?
 

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Discussion Starter · #115 · (Edited)
Turns out a friend of mine who I only recently learned was a biker, told me there's a biker rally in my town today that has vendors selling gear cheap, so I'm going to go to that and check it out.

EDIT: Nevermind. He wasn't there, nobody there knew who he was, there were no vendors, and everyone there kept looking at me like I wasn't supposed to be there, so I just left. And this friend won't respond to me on Facebook, so no point.
 

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So I think I settled on Honda Shadow. I HATE the way they look, especially compared to the Kawasaki Ninja, but in the long run, they seem like the better bike for what I want to do, which is ride long distances comfortably.

My plan now is in this order:

1. Next week on my next paycheck, to go to a dealership JUST to get gear, like a helmet, jacket, gloves, shoes, pants, etc. (is there anything left? Let me know if I'm forgetting something. Going to make a list on my phone). I don't want to get gear online only to find out they don't fit me correctly. I have close to $2,000 saved up, but I also know gear is around $1,000.

2. Since it'll probably take me another few months to save up after that for the actual bike, I'll have plenty of time and chances to take a permit test while I save up.

3. Either buy a Honda Shadow off of a co-worker who is still back and forth on whether he wants to sell his extra bike or not, or have my boss/friend go with me to check out some used bikes online, and have his trailer help me take it back home.

4. Drive my car to work. Just found out permit holders can't drive at night, and it's night time when I get off work, so...

5. Spend both of my days off riding the bike until I can take the license test.

6. Go more than 50 miles now that I have a license so I can take a MSF course.

7. Buy a cup holder.

8. Let you guys know I got a license.

9. After a few months of riding, MAYBE start a motovlog. Something I been considering after watching a lot of motovlogs while both dreaming to ride, and learning from these videos.

So what do you guys think of all of this?
OK. From what I can find, the nearest Tennessee MSF courses near the Bootheel do not offer the license waivers, meaning that you would have nothing to take back to the Missouri DMV anyway, whether Missouri would accept it or not. The West Tennessee Rider Education Program provides training motorcycles for their courses. Looks like the closest one is at Jackson State College.
https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/safety/documents/MotorcycleRiderEducationProgram2011.pdf
I spent a good 15 minutes trying to find online course availability without success, so try the phone number on the brochure.

I would HIGHLY recommend signing up for a class in Tennessee to learn basic skills. Drive your car over there. Then purchase a 500cc or smaller motorcycle so you can take the license test in Missouri on a bike similar to what you were riding in class. And, by gum, if you want that NINJA 300, buy it!!! It'll be fine on the highway; I rode mine on the highway all the time (you'll get used to the wind, don't worry about it) and even did a trip to the Dragon on it.
https://www.motorcycleforum.com/threads/tales-from-the-dragon.240496/#post-2615649
Have fun riding that bike for a year or two, then go from there.

We expect a rider course report from you soon!!!:D(y)
 

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Discussion Starter · #117 ·
OK. From what I can find, the nearest Tennessee MSF courses near the Bootheel do not offer the license waivers, meaning that you would have nothing to take back to the Missouri DMV anyway, whether Missouri would accept it or not. The West Tennessee Rider Education Program provides training motorcycles for their courses. Looks like the closest one is at Jackson State College.
https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/safety/documents/MotorcycleRiderEducationProgram2011.pdf
I spent a good 15 minutes trying to find online course availability without success, so try the phone number on the brochure.

I would HIGHLY recommend signing up for a class in Tennessee to learn basic skills. Drive your car over there. Then purchase a 500cc or smaller motorcycle so you can take the license test in Missouri on a bike similar to what you were riding in class. And, by gum, if you want that NINJA 300, buy it!!! It'll be fine on the highway; I rode mine on the highway all the time (you'll get used to the wind, don't worry about it) and even did a trip to the Dragon on it.
Tales From The Dragon!!!
Have fun riding that bike for a year or two, then go from there.

We expect a rider course report from you soon!!!:D(y)
Hell I thought Dyersburg was the closest. Then again my friend/boss told me they HAD a motorcycle store that closed a while ago, so that may be outdated info too.

Also I keep getting told Kawasaki Ninja's aren't good for long distances. So now I'm confused again.
 

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Hell I thought Dyersburg was the closest. Then again my friend/boss told me they HAD a motorcycle store that closed a while ago, so that may be outdated info too.

Also I keep getting told Kawasaki Ninja's aren't good for long distances. So now I'm confused again.
Yeah, I saw Dyersburg listed but found even less on their website. Give them both a call, see what you can find out! (y)

Who is telling you this about NINJAs?? Did you read my thread (Sorry, I forgot that's a 650 thread, but I've ridden there on my 300, too.)
Wheel Tire Fuel tank Helmet Plant

Sure, they're no Goldwing, but it's all a matter of personal preference. In addition to some intrastate trips for work, I also toured to the Dragon on my Shadow 750 with extra gel in the seat, an Air Hawk, and crash bars so I could put my feet someplace else. But my butt hates cruiser position for very long, so I switched to sport bikes and sport tourers. And I LOVE the rear seat on a Goldwing, but I have no interest in riding one.

Everybody is different. Get what YOU like. Your first bike won't be your last bike.:D
 

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Discussion Starter · #119 ·
Usually different motovlogers, people I work with, and the internet. Since they all say your main sitting position is leaning forward, and I don't have that great of a back for long periods of forward leaning.

Also haven't read it. Saw the post just before leaving to work, and currently on lunch.
 

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Usually different motovlogers, people I work with, and the internet. Since they all say your main sitting position is leaning forward, and I don't have that great of a back for long periods of forward leaning.

Also haven't read it. Saw the post just before leaving to work, and currently on lunch.
My NINJAs have been fairly upright. The NINJA ZX series bikes are more forward-leaning. I can't do the hunched-forward stuff for very long either. Go sit on some at the dealerships and see what you think. You may find just what you're looking for!(y):cool:
 
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