Hello All, new here, hope to be a part of the community for a long time...
I have been riding 50cc scooters with my wife, (two Honda Ruckus') for the past several years because most of what we enjoy is cruising together on local streets. That changed when I borrowed a friend's 250 and we expanded our radius further. My wife had a lot of fun and we decided we'd like to get into more serious riding.
I used to ride motorcycles quite a bit in my late teens into my early 20's. Then we started having kids and decided it would be best for me to give up motorcycle riding until the kids were out of the house. That time has come.
I have done much reading and test riding the last couple months. Everything from a Honda CTX to a Valkryie, Harley's, Vulcan's, K1600GTL, and others. When I think I've found the bike, I find others that look and feel great. Two bikes I am highly interested in are the F800GT & R1200RT.
The type of riding my wife and I would like to do would be day trips with the potential to go a little longer if desired. I'm 5'9 175lbs, she's 5'5 128lbs. 50% of the riding would be commuting and 50% 2-up riding. I like nimble, but I also like comfort and the ability to do more distance. We will be riding mountain passes since we live in Colorado. I don't want a bike that is too big, i.e a K 1600GTL which I test rode recently. I have plans to ride the F800 and R1200 this week to get a feel for them and I really want one of them to overwhelm me and make the decision easy. I'm torn at this point because of what I've read about ease of riding the F, but I like the capabilities of the R. I know one option would be to start on a smaller, more nimble bike, and trade up at some point. And that has been a serious consideration. I even thought of starting on a Honda CTX with DCT that I would hopefully be able to convince my wife to ride on her own, then I would get a different bike. However, I'd rather buy a bike that I will have for several years and truly love. My thought is to buy used with approximately 25k miles or less, hopefully with some upgrades.
I'm not so concerned about speed, I want reliability and comfort first and foremost. I'm a very cautious and alert rider. I have been commuting 25+ miles a day on a road bike (pedals) for 20 years, and I know how nuts drivers can be. Yes, riding a motorcycle is different, but when it comes to anticipating driver behavior, I have a pretty keen eye. I don't take chances and fortunately, I have never had any major issues on my many miles of commuting. Heat from the engine concerns me on the F and I've heard people say they wouldn't recommend the F for 2-up riding.
Any pointers and things I should be aware of when test riding these bikes from you all would be much appreciated.
Thank you for the wealth of knowledge each of you share. It is nice to have a community to turn to for guidance.