New Rider looking at V-strom - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 16 Old 02-16-2012, 02:32 AM Thread Starter
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New Rider looking at V-strom

OK, I am new to the forum and fact finding to see if this is the right bike for me. I'll give you the facts and if anyone has any input I would appreciate it:

I will be a somewhat new rider. I rode for a little while about twenty-five years ago (Honda 600) but just didn't have the time and lifestyle to support further involvement. So I am going to consider myself a new rider. I am looking for a bike that is going to be easy to ride. Guy at the bike shop said V-Strom would be a good match, but he may have just wanted to sell a bike.

I plan to ride one day a weekend out in rural parts of San Diego and may go off blacktop about 5% of the time. I would also like to use the bike for around town and a couple of trips to work every month. I want something that maneuvers well in traffic and can be comfortable on a longer ride (no longer than 4-5 hours).

I am 6' 1" and weigh 230 pounds and also want to know if the 650 is going to be enough to drag my big frame around town or is the 1000 a better choice. I am not looking for a power-house bike and really don't have any intention on going past CA speed limits, but at the same time I want enough punch to get out in traffic.

I really just want a bike that is fun to ride, easy to maneuver, and versatile. If ego or "show" was involved I guess I would be looking at a Harley like most men my age (46) but that just doesn't interest me.

So I am looking for any input anybody may have. Also I was wondering if anyone had any current purchasing experience that may help: dealer, ebay, craigslist and what to look for if buying used.
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post #2 of 16 Old 02-16-2012, 03:14 AM
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First, the 650 will happily haul you around at freeway speeds. For two up riding at freeway speeds you may not like it as much. I'm a few inches shorter than you and about 20 lbs heavier. I ride a 1000, I chose it because I was doing a fair amount of 2 up riding when I bought it. Right now I'm totally a solo rider and the 1000 is a power house. The Vee and Wee (1000, 650) have fairly high center of gravities and as such aren't as stable at low speeds as some other bikes. I went from a cruiser to the Vee and it took me a few hours to get used to. I ride about 16k miles a year.

I used searchtempist.com to scour craigslist for Vee's within 500 miles of me and that worked out well. Spend some time on the board to know what to watch out for and ask a few questions we have some very knowledgeable people here. If you are even slightly mechanically inclined you will have no trouble doing a pre-buy inspection on your own for a used bike....
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post #3 of 16 Old 02-16-2012, 04:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MedPlt View Post
First, the 650 will happily haul you around at freeway speeds. For two up riding at freeway speeds you may not like it as much. I'm a few inches shorter than you and about 20 lbs heavier. I ride a 1000, I chose it because I was doing a fair amount of 2 up riding when I bought it. Right now I'm totally a solo rider and the 1000 is a power house. The Vee and Wee (1000, 650) have fairly high center of gravities and as such aren't as stable at low speeds as some other bikes. I went from a cruiser to the Vee and it took me a few hours to get used to. I ride about 16k miles a year.

I used searchtempist.com to scour craigslist for Vee's within 500 miles of me and that worked out well. Spend some time on the board to know what to watch out for and ask a few questions we have some very knowledgeable people here. If you are even slightly mechanically inclined you will have no trouble doing a pre-buy inspection on your own for a used bike....
What do you call "freeway speeds" over there?
My Wee-Strom comfortably does two up and luggage at 130/140kph with enough left for overtaking [remember these things have a 6 speed gearbox, use it. And they run to 10k+ on the tacho, once again- use the rev range they are designed to run in].

The top heavy feeling applies to most taller bikes, these are not cruisers but adventure tourers and are built to that format.

The Wee [and even the Vee] is damned near bullet proof in the reliability stakes.

I've had 17 bikes [the Wee is actually number 16, an old KLR950 is number 17- my "practice" bike for rough dirt trails].

The bike before my 09 Wee-Strom was a BMW R1150GS- a money pit

The Wee is the best all round bike I have ever owned, commuting-day riding, dirt roads and trails plus long distance touring are all done with no effort.

Definitely the bike to have on the top of your list from what you have described as your needs in a bike.

Ock. in Oz

I ride naked and unafraid.

Windsor (near enough)
NSW
Australia
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post #4 of 16 Old 02-16-2012, 08:35 PM
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650 plenty for one up

for single riding -plenty of power. im your size- its fun, easy to ride and good ergs
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post #5 of 16 Old 02-16-2012, 09:12 PM
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I am only 5'8" - 210# and most importantly I am coming off a 2007 FZ1. The 650 for me has plenty of power. I also have a larger Cee Bailey windshield, Pelican panniers, skid plate, and crash guards on it. My main riding partner has an FZ1 and only when I ride with him do I notice how much faster the liter bike is. As a self-described "somewhat new rider" the 650 will be much easier for you to get used to again. I have found it much more enjoyable pushing a less powerful motorcycle vs having to be careful with the liter bike.
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post #6 of 16 Old 02-16-2012, 10:14 PM
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6'3" 310 and the 650 is my daily driver and play thing.
My 1000 is my long distance machine.
I actually prefer my 650 but when riding with buddies with bigger bikes my 650 struggled with me and gear to maintain the speeds they did (80+)for long hauls.
I think you will be just fine with the 650
Mike

2007 Blue DL650 V-Strom - running out of farkle's to do so bought the VEE
2006 SILVER DL1000 - Running out of Farkles also!!!
2017 EX300 Kawasaki Ninja
Las Vegas, NV
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post #7 of 16 Old 02-17-2012, 08:33 AM
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I think if you can comfortably get both feet down while sitting on the bike then it is a perfect match for what you want. The insurance savings on the 650 are significant in my area and it will run all day at 80-90 mph just great.
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post #8 of 16 Old 02-17-2012, 08:21 PM
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6'3", 277 here. I hmmmed and hawed, too, way back when about the 650 or 1000. In the end I opted for the 650 and love it. It'll do 85 -90 on interstates, no sweat. but frankly, I avoid slabs for the fun of surface roads. Ya wanna ride slab? Do it in a cage.
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post #9 of 16 Old 02-17-2012, 08:41 PM
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I agree with the comments above.

For comfort, consider an aftermarket seat and windscreen, and perhaps moving the handlebars and maybe lowering the foot pegs. Get the strom and ride. The general consensus is that the 650 is more nimble and smoother running. The 1000 has more power, but the 650 is ample.

One tip...the strom feels top heavy when going very slowly until you get used to it. When coming to a stop, for the last few feet make your stop and get both feet down, then look around. Many of us have dropped our stroms when stopped or about to stop, and you don't need to join our group.

And take a training class. Take a suitable more advanced training class each year until you've exhausted all regional possibilities that are suitable for you. I believe you (and each of us) will be a better, safer rider and enjoy the riding more.

"Older people who are reasonable, good-tempered, and gracious will bear aging well. Those who are mean-spirited and irritable will be unhappy at every period of their lives.

"Let each of use properly whatever strengths he has and strive to use them well. If he does this, he will never find himself lacking."

Marcus Tullius Cicero
44 B.C.
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post #10 of 16 Old 02-18-2012, 02:26 PM
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I'm 6'4", 220 lb and I've done over 30k miles on a ninja 250 in about 3 1/2 years. I'm in the minority though, in that smaller is better, but it's a lot more fun to ride a slow bike fast than a fast bike slow

2007 Wee-strom
2001 Ducati 900SS (Sold, but not forgotten)
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