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post #1 of 22 Old 03-31-2011, 03:55 PM Thread Starter
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Exclamation Complete Newbie needs help

Hi Guys (and girls), I've just turned 18 and have decided to go for my motorbike licence and am looking for a suitable first bike, I'd like something sporty but comfortable because of erratic long distance trips.

I really like the look of the V-strom 650 and was wondering if anyone could tell me if its suitable or not.

First off, I know alot of people say that you should start on a 125 or 250 but in France (where I live) the standard bike licence is up to 34Hp (The test bike is a 600cc) and I'm wondering if there's any point buying a 125 if I can competently drive a 600 (ie. I pass the test). Also for the first 2 years I can only ride a bike with 34HP or less so I'd have to get it limited anyway.

It will be my first bike ever having never ridden a bike before.

For info I'm 1m80 tall (approx 6ft tall) and weigh 70 kilos (approx 160 lbs) which is the main reason I'm not thinking about a 125 or 250 'cos I might look stupidly big on it.

Obviously I can't do much before I get my licence but I'd love to at least have an idea of what would be suitable.

Also does anyone know how to limit the V-strom? I've seen alot of info of people who've bought bikes that are limited and wanting to remove it but nothing the other way round.

Any help would be greatly appreciated

Last edited by Stuntman Smithy; 03-31-2011 at 04:08 PM.
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post #2 of 22 Old 03-31-2011, 03:59 PM
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The small Vstrom...affectionately called the "wee" is a 650.
The big Vstrom...or "vee" is a 1000.
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post #3 of 22 Old 03-31-2011, 04:02 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah I'm looking at the 650, thinking about it I should have said the only limit on the licence is 34HP, not 600cc

Just changed my first post.

Last edited by Stuntman Smithy; 03-31-2011 at 04:06 PM.
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post #4 of 22 Old 03-31-2011, 04:07 PM
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Its possible there may be an aftermarket rev limiter that may work...see who else posts. Most of us want to go the other way and get more HP.

I wonder how they check HP.
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post #5 of 22 Old 03-31-2011, 04:17 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info. Any suggestions about the size? I think the limiting has to be done by a garage, so its ''official'' but maybe not.
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post #6 of 22 Old 03-31-2011, 05:58 PM
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I can't offer anything but my own experience. I bought a Strom 650 at age 40 and it's my first bike...ever. My only previous experience with two wheels was on a mountain bike. I love the Wee! It seems to me that if you have to take the rider's test on a 600cc then you should be able to ride a Strom 650. Maybe I'm missing something but it's not a hard bike to learn and if I can do it at 40 then you can do it at 18.

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post #7 of 22 Old 03-31-2011, 06:02 PM
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Not sure what you mean by size. Most here have 650's. I own a 1000...since its a 650 + 350. So I get another half a motorcycle worth of power.

If you mean are they different in size. No, almost identical except the 650 is a little shorter due to a different seat. The 1000 weighs about 30 pounds more....apparently horsepower is heavier.

Can you ride it...I think so. Is it a good beginner bike.....uhh, thats tougher because I am on bike number 20 or so and an older guy. I started out on dirt bikes and my first street bike was a 350 Honda twin. Both stroms are a little tall and top heavy but I have no problems with it. Some new riders have issues dropping them, but a 250 is easy to drop also.

And finally, no matter if its a 34 Hp bike at 275 pounds or a fire breather at 150 HP, they all will kill you just as dead.

P.S. I am 6-2...my brother is 6-0. We both can ride it fine and flat foot at stop signs. They can be lowered also. I think it would be a dandy first bike.

Last edited by Scott E. Bonds; 03-31-2011 at 06:06 PM.
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post #8 of 22 Old 03-31-2011, 06:06 PM
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I think it's too big for a beginner. A good site for a new rider is *All Things Motorcycle*

Pat- 2007 DL650A was ridden to all 48 contiguous states. I didn't quite make it to 17,000 miles on the 2012 DL650A.
Nicknames I use to lessen typing, Vee = 2002-2012 DL1000s. Vee2=2014-2016 DL1000s. Wee = 2004-2011 DL650s. Glee = 2012-2016 DL650s
See https://www.stromtrooper.com/general-...nicknames.html

Please vote in the poll on what Strom(s) you have at https://www.stromtrooper.com/informat...-you-have.html
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post #9 of 22 Old 03-31-2011, 06:45 PM
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I agree it's a little too big for a beginner. You might be able to do it, but I think it would be way more fun to start out on a smaller engine (small-engine bikes feel much faster/fun at city speeds, btw, because they are lighter with lower center of gravity) and then upgrade when you've outgrown it. Starting out on a 650 means you start out with a steep learning curve and aren't really comfortable for a while - it's just unnecessarily dangerous. I started on a 650 (like I said, it can be done) but I lost count of the number of close calls I had. I also dropped my (more expensive) bike a couple times due to sheer stupidity, and went flying off it once cuz I froze in fear.

Another good site: Beginnerbikers.org. If I had read that site before getting my first bike, no way I would have started on a 650.
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post #10 of 22 Old 03-31-2011, 07:13 PM
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Easy. Just add a skid plate, crash bars, metal panniers, a larger windshield, heated-everything, extra lighting, metal radiator screen, kickstand plate, aluminum chain protector, fork brace, better levers and pedals, highway pegs, a chain oiler, aftermarket rear shock, tank bag and front panniers, and a Givi E52 top case. That oughta slow it down nicely.
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