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Old 03-15-2012, 02:54 PM   #41
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Tell him to get a Honda fury if he MUsT have a chopper. Much more practical and easier to ride.
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Old 03-15-2012, 02:57 PM   #42
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I have a neighbor that owns a similar custom chopper. During the summer I see him washing it at least once a month in his driveway. When back in his garage it parks under a full cover. In 5 years I have yet to see him ride it, not even once! Sounds like fun to me, haha

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Old 03-15-2012, 03:11 PM   #43
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Lighten up guys. Here's dude that wants to get into motorcycling. Period. If he's got the money to buy whatever bike he wants, I'd say, more power to him. It's obvious most here are into sportbikes and don't much care for cruisers, much less custom long bike. Recognize that there are just as many, if not more, that feel the exact opposite.

Live and let live.

Is that chopper ideal for a first bike? No. Can someone learn to ride on one? Absolutely. My next door neighbor bought a HD RoadKing as his first bike. Decked out with the Police Package, it weighed more than 800 lbs. He rode it around a few few weeks before taking it through the grueling week long Police Qualification Course - and passed. Now he can run circles around my sportbike - literally.

My advice: let him buy what tickles his fancy. Sounds like he's at an age that don't really need a lecture. Heck, he could be the CEO of the company one of you work for. Do advise him to seek rider training as soon and as much as possible.

I would love to go ride shotgun with his bike, whatever that may be.
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:13 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TomballD View Post
Tell him to get a Honda fury if he MUsT have a chopper. Much more practical and easier to ride.
And almost as ugly as most of the custom jobs...

At least it has a more sane steering geometry and enough brake for the engine...
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:15 PM   #45
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I told him to get a DRZ400SM to learn on but he's 40 and not into aggressive riding or anything. I think he might be leaning towards a cheaper cruiser like a used VTX 1300 or Boulevard m109r to get started on.
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:18 PM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Volfy View Post
Is that chopper ideal for a first bike? No. Can someone learn to ride on one? Absolutely. My next door neighbor bought a HD RoadKing as his first bike...
A RoadKing is about as close to a chopper as my HD is to my CBR
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:18 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Volfy View Post
Lighten up guys. Here's dude that wants to get into motorcycling. Period. If he's got the money to buy whatever bike he wants, I'd say, more power to him. It's obvious most here are into sportbikes and don't much care for cruisers, much less custom long bike. Recognize that there are just as many, if not more, that feel the exact opposite.

Live and let live.

Is that chopper ideal for a first bike? No. Can someone learn to ride on one? Absolutely. My next door neighbor bought a HD RoadKing as his first bike. Decked out with the Police Package, it weighed more than 800 lbs. He rode it around a few few weeks before taking it through the grueling week long Police Qualification Course - and passed. Now he can run circles around my sportbike - literally.

My advice: let him buy what tickles his fancy. Sounds like he's at an age that don't really need a lecture. Heck, he could be the CEO of the company one of you work for. Do advise him to seek rider training as soon and as much as possible.

I would love to go ride shotgun with his bike, whatever that may be.
Oh nobody is questioning that he can ride whatever he wants. The original question was if we recommended it as a good bike for a beginner.

An HD Road King is actually a of a good first bike. VERY stable, very forgiving, and one of the best handling bikes out there in terms of real world riding. Yeah yeah - i know - some of you are going to say that it can't hit the same speeds in the corners as a supersport, but at normal legal speeds, a good rider on a Road King can stay right on your - if not pass you on the inside. Those big HDs are a lot more nimble than you think.

Back to the OP, yes, he can buy whatever the he wants. I think its great the guy wants to get on two wheels. Is a chopper the best choice for a newb? No - not anymore than I would recommend a newb go out and get a supersport.
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:25 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drumboy View Post
I told him to get a DRZ400SM to learn on but he's 40 and not into aggressive riding or anything. I think he might be leaning towards a cheaper cruiser like a used VTX 1300 or Boulevard m109r to get started on.
If he's looking at cruisers, one of his best bets is a V-Star 1100. Extremely forgiving for a newbie, enough power that he's not going to get bored with it, reliable, and one of the very few smaller bikes with triple discs.

Yes I'm biased because I used to have one, but I bought it for the reasons I noted. Most bikes in that size are running a single disc up front and a drum out back. Maybe you get lucky and have discs front and rear, but I don't know of any other mid-sized cruisers with triple discs. (again, talking USED here...)

The M109R, while less of a problem than a long-rake chopper, is still not a great newbie bike. Its a muscle bike, not a cruiser.

If he wants a more aggressive look in an easy to handle bike, look at the Yamaha Stryker. Its a V-Star 1300 pretending to be a muscle bike.
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:26 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bevo View Post
A RoadKing is about as close to a chopper as my HD is to my CBR
Wow - you're not raggin on HD?

Wait - who is this in Bevo's account?
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:26 PM   #50
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WEIGHT, would be a huge prob. w/ that HD Road king as a first bike.
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:29 PM   #51
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WEIGHT, would be a huge prob. w/ that HD Road king as a first bike.
Nope. Not at all.

Weight doesn't mean a thing once you're moving. As long as you can get it off the side stand, you're fine. In many ways, that weight might be better for a newb as it is going to be less affected by tar snakes, highway grooves, wind, etc....

Have you ridden any of the big HD's? I'm not trying to be a - im asking sincerely. Lots of people think they are big ungainly toads which cant corner for - then they ride one.
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:39 PM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Volfy View Post
Lighten up guys. Here's dude that wants to get into motorcycling. Period. If he's got the money to buy whatever bike he wants, I'd say, more power to him. It's obvious most here are into sportbikes and don't much care for cruisers, much less custom long bike. Recognize that there are just as many, if not more, that feel the exact opposite.

Live and let live.

Is that chopper ideal for a first bike? No. Can someone learn to ride on one? Absolutely. My next door neighbor bought a HD RoadKing as his first bike. Decked out with the Police Package, it weighed more than 800 lbs. He rode it around a few few weeks before taking it through the grueling week long Police Qualification Course - and passed. Now he can run circles around my sportbike - literally.

My advice: let him buy what tickles his fancy. Sounds like he's at an age that don't really need a lecture. Heck, he could be the CEO of the company one of you work for. Do advise him to seek rider training as soon and as much as possible.

I would love to go ride shotgun with his bike, whatever that may be.
Agreed. As hard as it is for a lot of you to imagine, some people don't want a sporty or practical bike. Some people just like impractical toys. Sort of like the whole low rider truck scene. Sure a raised truck would be more practical but whatever. Why put street tires on a dirt bike that only gets 40 miles on each fill up and requires an oil change every three weeks? Because it's flippin' badass that's why!!
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:43 PM   #53
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Quote:
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Nope. Not at all.

Weight doesn't mean a thing once you're moving. As long as you can get it off the side stand, you're fine. In many ways, that weight might be better for a newb as it is going to be less affected by tar snakes, highway grooves, wind, etc....

Have you ridden any of the big HD's? I'm not trying to be a - im asking sincerely. Lots of people think they are big ungainly toads which cant corner for - then they ride one.
they are fine at speed, and if he learns how to corner ok, thats all dandy

its stopping, turning at slow speed, in traffic when they drop them most commonly.
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:47 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by RACER X View Post
they are fine at speed, and if he learns how to corner ok, thats all dandy

its stopping, turning at slow speed, in traffic when they drop them most commonly.
All those things are due to rider error having nothing to do with the weight of the bike.

Forget to put your foot down, grab a handful of front brake through a corner, look down instead of where you should be going - do any of that on any bike and you're gonna fall down go boom.

The big beasts just have a lot more weight to remind you not to be so stupid again.
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:56 PM   #55
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The big beasts just have a lot more weight to remind you not to be so stupid again.
agree 100%
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Old 03-15-2012, 04:02 PM   #56
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I'm not suggesting the RoadKing = custom chooper. Point is: both are very far from what most consider a good starter bike.

I just know that if I'm 52 and my garage is full of RUF Porsches and Lingenfelter Corvettes, there ain't no way I'm buying a "starter" bike. May be all he want is to go putt-putt around the neighborhood on beautiful sunny Sunday afternoons. Can't think of a better ride than a custom chopper for that.

That was what I did when I first got back into riding last yr. Except it was with a cheaper factory chopper (Suzuki S83).

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Old 03-15-2012, 04:05 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by Volfy View Post
I'm not suggesting the RoadKing = custom chooper. Point is: both are very far from what most consider a good starter bike.

I just know that if I'm 52 and my garage is full of RUF Porsches and Lingenfelter Corvettes, there ain't no way I'm buying a "starter" bike. May be all he want is to go putt-putt around the neighborhood on beautiful sunny Sunday afternoons. Can't think of a better ride than a custom chopper for that.
Driving a RUF or Lingenfelter is not the same as riding a motorcycle - you know that.

I am a firm believer in freedom to ride what you want - but - if asked my opinion on a good first bike, I'm going to give it and tell you why.

I still think a long-rake chopper is a damned stupid idea for a first bike - especially if he's going to putt-putt around the neighborhood. Choppers are great on long straight highways. They suck when you throw them a corner or situations requiring rapid maneuvering.


p.s. an S83 is not really a chopper. It still has a sane level of rake, properly sized tires, and brakes matched to the power. VERY different than a Big Dog for example.
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Old 03-15-2012, 04:11 PM   #58
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they are fine at speed, and if he learns how to corner ok, thats all dandy

its stopping, turning at slow speed, in traffic when they drop them most commonly.
I was fine when I hopped off my 580 Pound KZ on to my Dad's 750 Pound HD, It's actually easier at a slow speed then one would think, Eyes where you wanna go and all that junk still applies. then again--if it's your first bike I can see how a heavy HD would be a problem.
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Old 03-15-2012, 04:22 PM   #59
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Don't know about your neighborhood, but mine won't allow any "rapid manuvreing". Even if I could, I wouldn't anyway. At the pace I rode my S83 last Summer, I could've easily ridden a long bike and be just as safe. And yes, I have ridden real custom choppers before. Canyon carvers they are not, but they are nowhere near as horrible as you make them out to be.

They are low to the ground and allows a new rider to feel confident at low speeds, especially if the rider is not very tall. A whole lot better than a powerful sportbike that forces the new rider to put a lot of weight on a touchy throttle, while tip toeing on a hight seat at low speeds.

For a new rider, most of the riding at first is going to be at crawling speeds.
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Old 03-15-2012, 04:25 PM   #60
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They all do provide them but if you wanted to ride your own couldn't you just say that someone drove it there like we all did before the MSF was required but we had to take a driving test at the DPS?

That might cause trouble with the school's insurance.


At one time that worked at DMV, but I understand they started checking the license of the person who supposedly rode, and if he didn't have a license got a ticket and you failed.
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