Does anyone here have a motorbike? I just passed my license and wouldnt mind some tips on a good commuter!?
If you just got your license, probably something cheap and not powerful.
ive been riding an old 125 for 2 years so looking at a step up - probably a 5/600cc that can handle the motorway a little better!
I would definitely consider getting one. I drove around in Thailand for a week on like 3 dollars worth of fuel. Amazing.
However, they are dangerous as Hell. Fine if you are single or have a big life insurance plan.
Old, cheap and reliable: 1980-1985 Honda CB 550-750
Newer, great commuters: Suzuki SV 650 any year.
The 1999-2002 are great entry level bikes, very bigginner friendly and still fun after you’ve learned. Take passengers well, etc. The SV650 is widely considered probably the best beginner to intermediate bike out there. And it handles well so some people take them to tracks as well and use them as practice bikes. The 2003-2010 SV 650 is a pretty pimp bike as well, just generally newer and more improved than the prior generation, but costs more. Same positive characteristics though.
Another one I personally like: Yamaha FZ6
A very similar bike to the Suzuki, uses an inline 4 instead of a v-twin engine. Has the same basic idea in terms of characteristics, the older gen covers the same years (1999-2002). The newer gen is just an updated and slicker version. This bike tends to be a little more sporty with a more aggressive rider position (slightly less comfortable) than the SV650. They’re both crossovers commuters (half cruiser, half sport), but the SV650 leans a little more towards commuter / cruiser and the FZ leans slightly more towards sport.
My personal advice is to get the 1999-2002 version of either bike. They will both cost about the same, both are reliable and both hold their value very well, so if you feel the need to upgrade later, you always can. Always start small and simple on your first bike. I can’t tell you how many people let their egos get in the way and buy really nice bikes just to mess them up dropping them in a parking lot or something. — I have a retro looking Honda CB750 (1983) that runs phenomenally (I think discovery gave that exact bike like 3rd best bike of alltime or something) and for some reason, the girls really like it. It was a really popular bike back in its time so almost everytime I stop for gas or whatever, some older guys are always stopping over to ask about it and talk about how they used to have one, which I think is pretty cool. It costs little, won’t devalue, and will keep you from trying to drive faster than you should.
Since you’re in the UK, if you’re considering a classic bike, you may consider the old BSA, Triumph, BMW or the like. Might be easier to find over there:
Agreed. My other advice is don’t be one of these idiots who rides in a t-shirt/shorts without gloves. I stopped riding after my head-on with a car doing 70kph, but am still around and intact thanks to wearing good protective gear. Have fun dude, but always be super super careful.
I rode a GPZ 750 Turbo from Kawasaki back in the day. quarter mile was a bit over 11 seconds at 125mph. I can’t belive it but I used to ride on the freeway with no helmet and only wearing shorts and a t-shirt…at night. I consider myself lucky to be here today
Thanks all for the advice!
I had a look at getting a cheap CB500, at least for the first 6m/1y, but every single one of them seems to have been beaten and modified!
FZ6 seems a great shout Black Swan. I love the look of it! I had considered taking the plunge on a new XJ6 which looks similar (is it a newer version?) but concerned about loosing a sack of money on it soons i drive it out the showroom! Also love the old bikes, but i drive an old MGB so need some reliability!
Personally, I’d get the CB500. Even if it looks a little worn, the engines are rock solid in those things, and with a little cosmetic fix up, they’re super reliable work horses. Still pretty fun to drive too.
Definitely don’t get a new bike. For me, I’d never get one, ever, but definitely not this early in your driving career. If you do decide to get the FZ6 or SV650, I’d heavily recommend using restraint and buying the 1999-2002 generation.