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post #1 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 8:22 am Thread Starter
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best bike for short wife

My wife is a petite lady (100 lbs) under 5' 2". She is not weak (fitness instructor) but she is little. What bikes would you recommend for her as good starter bikes? She is wanting to ride her own motorcycle.

Greg
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post #2 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 8:30 am
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Re: best bike for short wife

As a starter, the Honda Rebel 250 would be my choice.

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post #3 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 8:44 am
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Re: best bike for short wife

Greg, it really depends on what kind of riding she want's to do, and how often. Gail started out on a Ninja 250, and actually did a couple 1500 mile trips on it. Couldn't hold a fork when she got there, but the bike did fine. She eventually moved up to a Suzuki GS500F which has a little more grunt, better on the highway, but she never really got to feeling comfortable at slow speeds due to a lack of seat time. Now she rides a Can-Am Spyder and absolutely loves it. No, it's not really a motorcycle, but she just did 5500 miles out to Utah and back on it.

Seat height being a main concern there just isn't much out there below ~ 29 inches other than cruisers style bikes and the Buell Blast (which I do not recommend). If she likes the cruiser style you have a ton of choices. Yes you can lower just about anything, but at a cost.

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post #4 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 9:34 am
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Re: best bike for short wife

Quote:
Originally Posted by gpolakow
My wife is a petite lady (100 lbs) under 5' 2". She is not weak (fitness instructor) but she is little. What bikes would you recommend for her as good starter bikes? She is wanting to ride her own motorcycle.

keep her in the Honda shadow vlx range (600cc). There are plenty of them around that you can pick up used for low bucks. They havent changed the bike is over 10 years, so they all look the same (except for colors)

that is what my wife (5'4") learned on. it had enough power to keep her interested, and paying attention, but was low enough to flat foot. she drove it for 3 summers, and is now on a Yamaha Star 1100 Custom (Raven).

a co worker bought a rebel 250, and out grew it in 3 months, and had to start all over again on a VLX, after selling the rebel (it was just too small). she is 5'0 and 80 pounds!

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post #5 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 9:42 am
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Re: best bike for short wife

My wife had a Buell Blast for a few years. It was a great starter bike. There are two seats available, and we got both with the bike (used). My wife is 5'5 and used the tall seat.

The only problem we had with the Blast is the speedometer. When we bought it used, the speedometer was not working. Replaced it, and now the new one has quit.

My wife decided that since she drives 50K miles a year for her job, she would rather ride with me and enjoy the view. That is why we bought the LT, for a nice comfortable place for her to ride. I still have my Triumph Speed Triple for riding with the "guys". We have sold the Blast now to a younger guy who uses it for daily transportation. He gets at least 60 MPG, and rides with larger sport bikes often. He really likes the bike.

Gregg
Vancouver, WA
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post #6 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 9:53 am Thread Starter
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Re: best bike for short wife

Thanks for the great suggestions. I think she'll need to try some on for size and maybe just get something to learn on and take the MSF course with, then see if it's what she wants long term.

Greg
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post #7 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 9:57 am
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Re: best bike for short wife

She may also like to try a Suzuki Savage 650. One lunger, but gets along fine.

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post #8 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 10:31 am
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Re: best bike for short wife

Try a Yamaha V Star 650, or 1100. I have a friend who is 5" and has had no trouble with either of them. And, I read that Yamaha is coming out with a 900 or 950 Vstar ( I don't remember which) that actually has a seat height that is about 2" lower than the 1100.
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post #9 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 12:38 pm
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Re: best bike for short wife

Why not just stay with BMW's?

or... a Z50?
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post #10 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 1:00 pm
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Re: best bike for short wife

The best all around bike for learning to ride and experienced riding is the SV650.

My wife is 5'2".
She has personally owned the '94 RF600, '95 CBR900RR, '04 YZF600R and the '02 SV650s.
She likes the SV out of every other bike she has riddin.

It is light.
Comfortable seating.
Not to fast - but not as slow as a cruiser.
Very easy to lower, if need be.

A few tips I always give new riders:
Start on a decent bike. A cruiser style is not the bike to learn on. A naked sportbike is the best. They handle and feel better than other inferior models.

IF you can learn to ride a slow bike fast, then you can ride any bike fast.

Anything with Harley in the name is not an option for learning how to ride.
Harley's handle like crap. All a buell is, is the crap that fell off of the Harley's in the manufacturing plant assembled in a different configuration.

If Harley's are such great bikes why do the majority of Harley riders never break 45 MPH?

Visit
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post #11 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 1:22 pm
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Re: best bike for short wife

+1 on Hoog's experiences with the 250 and Mikes blurb above. Also, there are about a half dozen (econo) 250 bikes out this year, and some, like Kawi's 250S could mean you lose the wifie to the dirt! I agree the Honda Rebel is a great starter bike, but way too slow for any meaningful riding down the road.

Good luck! I never thought of my wife as "short" before I tried to fit her to a motorbike...now I think about it often! There are not that many choices.

Pete Jessen
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post #12 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 2:06 pm
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Re: best bike for short wife

You just have to keep in mind that a 250 may get old real quick as she starts to develop her riding skills.

I would think a 750 or an 800 crusier would be a good beginners bike. Low to the ground, not overly heavy, not a lot of get up and go but enough power to keep up with the big boys.

Any crusier will do- Honda and Kawa make great bikes.

Rob V.B.
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post #13 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 3:36 pm
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Talking Re: best bike for short wife

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeERideWNC
If Harley's are such great bikes why do the majority of Harley riders never break 45 MPH?
Because there are law abiding citizens never going faster than the posted speed limit???

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post #14 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 5:05 pm
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Re: best bike for short wife

W took the test on a Rebel, but did NOT want one. Got her a 250 Virago - ok bike, but very wrong riding position for her. We had looked at a factory-lowered BMW F650GS (a 2001), but even that was tippy-toe for her. She tried the Spyder, loved it, ordered it, and had it almost a year. We spent a lot of this year farklizing it. Russell seat is coming next week - she got SERIOUS!!

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post #15 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 5:44 pm
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Re: best bike for short wife

Wife started on a V-Star 650. Lowest stock seat height available that we found. She's 5' 3".
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post #16 of 19 Old Oct 22nd, 2008, 9:19 pm
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Re: best bike for short wife

When my wife started (2 1/2 years ago) I advised her to get something more than a 250 or such as she'd quickly outgrow it. We found a brand new left over Moto Guzzi Breva 750 at a nice price. This bike seemed a bit much to her at first but she quickly adapted and said it was actually easier to ride than the MSF 250's.

Getting the bike low so she could reach flat footed was a huge boost to her confidence

I lowered the bike with Works shocks and front ride height adjustments, added a full windshield and H-B bags and she was soon touring. She had over 10,000 miles in 2 years.

Now I'm shopping for an R1200RT low suspension bike for her (Sandstone Beige preferably). She says she'll never let her first bike go, but we'll see! She took a low R1200RT for a test ride last week - now I need to come up with some cash!

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post #17 of 19 Old Oct 23rd, 2008, 6:11 am
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Re: best bike for short wife

When my wife started riding she must have sat on every bike manufactured by every company. Twice.

After a lot of discussing with other women what they ride, she bought a Suzuki Burgman 400 has her 'starter' bike. She really likes it, and has taken a number of solo 300 mile per day trips on it. Dead reliable, and the ability to haul a lot of stuff under the seat is a big plus.

She's looking to make a change next spring, possibly to a Silver Wing, a 650 Burgman or the new Yamaha T-Max. Definitely a scooter.

Thing is, I really enjoy borrowing it for rides to the store and any other excuse I can come up with. If BMW offered an 800cc scooter, I'd trade my LT on one in a flash.

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post #18 of 19 Old Oct 23rd, 2008, 6:45 am
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Re: best bike for short wife

Yamaha 650 is what a friend rides. Just her size and she's about 5'4". If she's gonna be a real rider, she'll move up fast. So, whatever you buy, you'll probably be trading it in for something bigger soon enough. My wife rides but not on the road. She's just not aggressive enough to take on traffic. I'd rather she ride behind me and she likes it that way, too...........

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post #19 of 19 Old Oct 23rd, 2008, 8:25 am
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Re: best bike for short wife

Quote:
Originally Posted by gpolakow
My wife is a petite lady (100 lbs) under 5' 2". She is not weak (fitness instructor) but she is little. What bikes would you recommend for her as good starter bikes? She is wanting to ride her own motorcycle.
r1200
or r1200gs

Tom

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(the only bmw's in the stable)
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