Small bike for wife?


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WingAdmin
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Small bike for wife?

Postby WingAdmin » Tue Jun 08, 2010 12:47 pm



So my wife, who for years has been perfectly happy to sit behind me and go along for the ride, has decided that she wants to try riding for herself. She's signed up for the MSF Basic course, and is thinking about getting a "beginner bike."

She's pretty small (5'3") and would need something that is small (both in size and power), not expensive, not too difficult to fix, and fairly resistant to damage from being dropped.

Anyone have any suggestions?



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thrasherg
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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby thrasherg » Tue Jun 08, 2010 4:50 pm

My wife is 5 foot 1 (I consider that small) and less than 120lbs. I bought her a Honda Shadow 750cc Aero. It has a low seat so she can comfortably touch the floor, it is not a beast of power but has a very easy power delivery and tops out at about 100mph, it has a shaft drive (so low maintenance) we bought a 2004 model with 9000 miles for $1700. I fitted a screen and back rest and she loves riding it.. It was difficult for the actual driving test as it has a larger turning cicle than my ford expedition (Exageration!) so that should be considered but for the money it has been a great bike and I see them regularly for sale for between $1500 and $2000 which for a 6 year old bike seems a very good price. It has a tank range of about 140 miles which is far enough.. In 4 months my wife has put over 3000 miles on it and loves riding it. I also like not having someone on the back of me, so it's a win-win situation.

Definately worth considering..

Gary

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby Jeeper » Tue Jun 08, 2010 5:44 pm

A lot of people feel that something like a Rebel 250 is a great beginner bike, but I disagree. I a lot of the MSF courses use them, which is fine, but once a person gets used to riding a short period of time they're going to want something bigger. Something that can easily handle 55mph traffic or riding more than 30 minutes at a time. Buying that small just means in a short period of time you're going to be looking at trading up to something larger. If you go with a bike in the 450-750cc range, like the Shadow, they are light enough to learn to ride on but big enough to go cruising with others.

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby blackbird » Wed Jun 09, 2010 9:03 am

Just my thoughts: My wife didn't ever sit on the front of a bike until hitting the almost "double-nickle" age. A neighbor had purchased a Sportster sitting on a Voyager kit. It made it so that she could ride, and not have to think about keeping the bike in the correct upright position. My wife decided that she wanted to move up front. She took the safety course on a trike, passed and we found a used Voyager to put on a Pacific Coast(which we had purchased a couple of years earlier). She has been riding ever since, keeps up with no problems with the rest of our group ( the PC is an 800cc V-twin), has all the room she needs for long weekend trips, gets lots of looks/questions when we stop for gas and food and loves to ride it to work when the weather allows. When she doesn't want to drive, we ride 2-up. The PC's are actually going up slight in value because they don't make them anymore and they are great bikes. You can still get parts, although getting more expensive. I have seen PC's easily go to 100K miles and still run strong.

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby colemadad » Wed Jun 09, 2010 4:09 pm

My wife is also just over 5 feet tall. About 4 years ago, I bought a 1978 Honda CB400T. Aside from the fact that it was too tall in the saddle (which I remedied by rebuilding an old seat and cutting out some foam) it was a great first bike. As a matter of fact, I loved riding it too (6'2" 250lbs). In the end I was glad I went small/cheap because she decided that being a back seat driver was more her style. The 400 was easy to re-sell and I'm firm believer in learning on something like that even though an upgrade may have to follow a short time later. Having a great riding season, hope you all are too...

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby rogertee » Thu Sep 30, 2010 4:10 am

I could say that sounds like a good swap, (but I won't)
seriously, besides my "82 1100 I ride a 2006 250cc hyosung Aquila. I bought it mainly as a commuter because fuel here in New Zealand is so pricey AND it's going up again tomorrow.($1.81 per litre, about $6.50NZ per gallon, $5.00 US) So you see we need small bikes.
I am so impressed with this little Korean beast. It looks good, runs well, is comfortable and has a good turn of speeed when necessary. Most importantly it's low, my wife who is 5ft and a couple of inches can sit on it with her feet firmly planted on the ground.
Look them up on line, and if you can take 1 for a spin. Value for money I think you'll find them hard to beat. Incidently I think the new ones are fuel injected. :D

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby detdrbuzzard » Thu Sep 30, 2010 6:27 am

other than myself my nighthawk 450 has been the starter bike for everyone in my family that wanted to learn how to ride
'99 ST1100, '93 se
'75 cb750k, '79 cb 750f, '79 cb750 superK
cb 450sc, sunL70
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.... william

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby littlebeaver » Thu Sep 30, 2010 11:40 am

What ever you get her can you post photo's, I've seen lots of females riding the smaller sport rocket type bikes, they seem to handle them very well..I am certain you'll find the right motorcycle, all the choices above are good ones...

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby dontech3042 » Fri Oct 01, 2010 12:21 pm

My wife if 5'5" and started off on a Honda Shadow 500. Then quickly moved to a kawasaki Vulcan 750. She has comtemplated on moving to a 1800, but has stuck with her Vulcan because she likes it so much. Great bike reasonably priced for good used ones. Keeps up with our GW group and the tank is not bad at about 150 miles to the tank.

We installed the J&M CB radio on her Vulcan which gives her the CB and she hooks in either her Satelite radio or mp3 player through her helmet. We have found a very good outside speaker system with an amp made for motorcycles (can't remember the brand off hand), but we may move to that next year as an addition. Everything plays through her helmet and works great. She has put on approx 25K over the last 4 years and enjoys it a lot. Plus it got her to stop wacking me in the back of the head if she thinks I am not driving right. hehehe! :D

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby lillbiker » Fri Oct 01, 2010 1:16 pm

a lot of good answers i started on a honda 100, 41 years ago, made it all the way to goldwing 1000 it was heavy im 5' 5" get a used bike that fits first then sell it and get a better bike well worth the time to learn how one ride one right

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby Clayton » Fri Oct 01, 2010 8:16 pm

A few years back I rode a friend's Virago 750 for a while. His wife started riding it when I stopped. She was about 5' 5" (maybe a bit shorter) and seemed to manage it fairly well. Not long afterwards she moved on to a Sportster.

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toy
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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby toy » Sat Oct 02, 2010 9:23 pm

You might want to consider the Suzuki Burgman 400.
Plenty of motor to go on whatever trip that you like.
I know a short woman that can ride one of these very easily and they have a good resale value when & if you want to sell it.

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby Asphalt Aviator » Wed Nov 03, 2010 7:30 pm

Looks like a lot of good suggestions but lets not forget the little Ninja 250. Though this bike is sometimes considered a sport bike it also makes a great beginners bike. Seat height may be a little tall but the bike can be lowered, seating position is good, bike is lightweight, handling is outstanding and confidence building, and gas millage is in the 50 plus range. Though I have ridden many different bikes over the years ( GL1800 at this time ) l always love riding the little Ninja ( we had 3 at one time) and I am 6' 2" and 220 lbs. I know it is not a cruiser but is a great scooter also. Careful you do not get to attached. Whatever you choose just ride safely and have a great time.

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Nov 03, 2010 8:37 pm

My brother in law got a Ninja 250 this past summer, I rode it home from the seller for him when he bought it - a 40 mile ride including a fair bit of highway - and through a torrential summer downpour. Oh how I was wishing for the big fairing of my Goldwing!

Being used to my 1100, the little Ninja felt like a bicycle in comparison. :)

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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby littlebeaver » Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:51 am

WingAdmin, what kinda style bike does she really like? Maybe for Christmas with a big red bow??? Good luck in finding the right bike..

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Five
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Re: Small bike for wife?

Postby Five » Fri Nov 05, 2010 7:22 pm

Where's the drool smiley???


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