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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings all.
First, my apologies if this is in the wrong place; now on to the question at hand.
My son (5'-10"; 165 lb, ~29" inseam) currently rides a pretty clean 2008 Honda Nighthawk 250. He is used to it but in reality, that bike is pretty bad. The suspension, brakes and lighting sucks and the aftermarket for upgrades are slim - 0. He seems to like the "standard" style; no cruizers and no crotch rockets and says he thinks my bike is "pretty nice".
What do you guys think would be a good follow-on to the Nighthawk? (he has thrown a leg over my Wee and can barely touch the ground with his toes). He has mentioned the Triumph Bonnevilles and the Honda Shadow RS.

TIA
 

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Kawasaki ex-500, aka ninja 500.
If he perfers the naked style, the Suzuki GS500 is almost as good.
 

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Is your bike lowered? If not and he can barely touch, why not a lowered strom? Or does "pretty nice" mean "pretty nice for my old man"?
 

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He can always get a Wee and then lower the bike a bit and/or get a lower seat.

Give him yours after you lower it and then you have a GREAT reason to get a newer Wee or even the Vee.
 

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The Bonne is a standard. The Honda is a Cruiser.

If he wants to stay with a standard selection is limited in the US. Honda has zero.
Kawasaki has the Par twins, not great. The FZ6 used is not a bad idea or maybe the GS. All this depends on how much bike you want him to have at this point of his riding. I'd keep it under 750cc or under on a cruiser, and under 650 on the rest. There is always the DRZ400 SM route, that my sons enjoyed early on in riding. They are tall, but light, and the speed range is lower.

Good luck in your search.
 

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SV650, my wife rides one and it makes me jealous. You can pick them up cheap and modify from zero to full tilt. Wifey had a Ninja 500 before the SV. It was a great stepping stone, but the SV rocks. The big question is how much of a step do you feel comfortable with your son taking. If he scares you with his riding go with the Ninja. If he's a natural, the SV650 will keep him entertained for years.
 

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How old is your son?
 

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Kawasaki ex-500, aka ninja 500.
If he perfers the naked style, the Suzuki GS500 is almost as good.
+1 on the EX500. Can't seem to break them. Neighbor has one from the early 90's w/ 90K on it he commutes to NYC on it. Looks like hell & he has no idea which is the business end of a screw driver. Still runs great. 2nd choice would be a SV 650. Both bikes are cheap and plentiful.
 

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2nd. bike

Also agree EX500, handles pretty decent, has reasonable power, good step up from the 250 that won't immediately get him in trouble, which the 650's might. Makes it's power on the top so have to rev it to make power, doesn't come on unexpectedly. Also it's stone reliable.

If you're searching for one it's also called the Ninja 500.

Bill H.
 

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SV650 for sure. Great bike for the money and a good does-all mount. They are plentiful and cheap. Upgrades by the truckloads available to make it suit his needs.
 

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SV650
Honda 599
Yamaha FZ6
Ninja 500
Suzuki GS500
Ninja 250 (yes, it's still a 250 but it's a lot more bike than the nighthawk)
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Wow! Thanks a bunch guys! I had a GS500 and while a decent bike, it did not impress my son. He and I will look for a Ninja 500 and check them out.
As for budget, his first priority is saving for a car so if he makes a move in the next 6 months, it'll probably need to be $3 - 3.5K. He's 25 but follows my lead on most all things motorcycle. The idea of a lowered Wee is an interesting one too.

Thanks again to all for your suggestions.
 
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