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Original Article:
Choosing the Right Type of Motorcycle

Please discuss the Motorcycle.com article Choosing the Right Type of Motorcycle in our Motorcycle Forums below. Use the reply button to let others know your comments or feedback on the article. Constructive criticism is always appreciated, along with your thoughts and personal opinions on the bikes and products we have tested.
 

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"You're a no-nonsense individual. Let others have their trendy dual-sps that never set rubber off the tarmac, or super-fast sportbikes stuck idling in rush hour traffic. You don't understand why anyone would want a radio on their motorcycle, let alone one that weighs nearly half a ton. No, you want something simple, efficient, comfortable and inexpensive: a pure motorcycle experience."

That's actually a pretty accurate description of where I'm at with motorcyles these days. Especially the radio part...

I started with two "standards" (RC-350, CB550), then the cruiser (77 Low Rider) for almost 20 years, then the sportbike (VFR 800), then the Sport Touring (Concours 1000), and finally the "Adventure" (DL1000). Now I'm back to the beginning with a standard.

Looking back, I used the Low Rider like a standard, with removable screen and bags. The Connie was a solid bike, but heavy and pretty old by the time I got it. It definitely was best on long rides on the super-slab; not so much around town. The DL was a very flexible bike with some sportbike characteristics but also a bit of sport-touring with the luggage, so in a way it fit some of the "standard" parameters.

There's lots of gear out there for the CB like cowlings, luggage, seats, etc. Outfitting it with removable luggage should make it like the FXS: a cruiser in town and a usable (but not ideal) touring bike for the few occasions each year I travel on the bike.
 

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About the only thing that doesn't work for me anymore is a sport bike. Fortunate really since they get proggressivly smaller as I unfortunately don't. Anything I can put some kind of bags and a windshield on works because I try to use the bike for as much as possible.

I can stuff my jacket in the bags and go to a Dr's appt.or stop on the way home from work and fill the bags with groceries, with a windshield and my Hippo Hands I can ride in anything less than a snow storm if I wish, or jsut relax behind the screen and enjoy a sunny day without getting blown off the back of the bike.

Verstilaty is the key for me, any kind of DP or Harley model will work for me because they can all be fitted and set-up the way I want them, any narrow focus bike would good as a toy only.
 

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With all the aftermarket bits these days, the line between the standard, sportbike, supersport seems to blurr. Bars, pegs, seats, luggage can all serve to take a track bike to the road as good as some factory definitions, maybe better.

Standards can be made more sport oriented with power upgrades like exhausts, intake mods, some engine work perhaps, and definately suspension upgrades. A set of forged wheels would make huge differences in a lot of cases. A lot depends on budget of course.

Wonder how much cross-pollination is being done these days aftermarket-wise by consumers, rather than searching for the factory definition of what type of riding someone wants to do? Years ago I think people used one type of motorcycle to do lots of different things (racing, street, dirt, etc) and that has been what has contributed to the developement of more category-specific bikes.
 

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Well stated.

With all the aftermarket bits these days, the line between the standard, sportbike, supersport seems to blurr. Bars, pegs, seats, luggage can all serve to take a track bike to the road as good as some factory definitions, maybe better.

Standards can be made more sport oriented with power upgrades like exhausts, intake mods, some engine work perhaps, and definately suspension upgrades. A set of forged wheels would make huge differences in a lot of cases. A lot depends on budget of course.

Wonder how much cross-pollination is being done these days aftermarket-wise by consumers, rather than searching for the factory definition of what type of riding someone wants to do? Years ago I think people used one type of motorcycle to do lots of different things (racing, street, dirt, etc) and that has been what has contributed to the developement of more category-specific bikes.
I concur. No wonder so many riders customize their rides.
 

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Wonder how much cross-pollination is being done these days aftermarket-wise by consumers, rather than searching for the factory definition of what type of riding someone wants to do? Years ago I think people used one type of motorcycle to do lots of different things (racing, street, dirt, etc) and that has been what has contributed to the developement of more category-specific bikes.
It may be that its gone full circle. THE ADV bike style's popularity could be because they are fairly good at a lot of things. The Multi especially seems to do well touring, sport riding, off-pavement. Hate to say it, but my Vee was more versatile out of the box than my "standard" CB.
 
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