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Consider the physical dynamics, more importantly, test ride your dream machines, to determine what ergonomic agony you'll be in after an hour of riding. That should narrow the field considerably. Yeah, that Monster, FZ, Buell, et al, are all eye candy, but after the honeymoon, what will your skeletal and muscular systems be communicating to ya?
 

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Re: FZ-6 has lots of legroom

Huh? The current VFR's look goofy as hell -- older style was slammin' though.

I personally think having the engine partially or fully exposed -- as on naked, quarter or half-faired bikes -- looks like a "proper" motorcycle and fully faired bikes look odd. Mind you I think some full-faired are sexy as hell, but deviate from a true motorcycle look.
 

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At 6', of the bikes I've owned, my '04 WeeStrom is one of the most enjoyable, well-rounded bike I've ridden. It's fast enough (my old ZX9R was too fast), handles well (with better rubber and a fork brace), is easy to maintain (good ol' SV650 engine), gets decent mileage, and is comfy for 1000+ mile rides (I replaced my buffety stock screen with a Verio touring screen). It also has good around town torque in the low rpm band (the Fz6 is a revver), so you may prefer the laid back engine over a rev happy one.



It's not as sexy as 1098, or as sporty as a GSX-R, or a raw as a Speed Triple, but I'm past my clip-on hunchback riding and find the upright seat and wide bars give me a relaxed command of the road. Nuff said.



Go sit on some bikes at dealerships and check craigslist for some awesome bike deals.
 

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if you're learning again, may i suggest a suzuki bandit, but the 600s version.

600s' can be had for a very reasonable price, and they won't rip your arms off if you acidentally open up the throttle. on the other hand, they have more power than a learner needs, and are definitely fast enough to pass sport cars. the riding position is very comfortable, they get around 40+ mpg, the engine is simple and very reliable, there are tons of after market parts for them. all that and a half fairing for highway touring.

i mention the 600s bandit because it would be a decent bike for a biker re-entering the sport after so long away....that is, you are likely to drop it once or twice on your journey towards reacclimating yourself to the world of riding, and you might want to have a learner to get you through the dangerous "drop, curse, scoop up your pride and drive on" phase.

i am biased because that is what i did with my suzuki bandit 600s. i learned on (and dropped) the bandit so that, with a new bmw 1200 or buell ulysses, i didn't have to.

if you read the frugal fliers article here at MO.com, it will help you to compare the bandit 600s to your old nighthawk.

good luck in the search :)
 

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XB-9SX

Buell XB-9sx "City X" Has a fantastic -almost dual purpose- riding position, but has a sportbike chassis and great handling.
 

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Snuggles
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Buell Ulysses

BMW R 1200 GS Adventure

BMW R 1200 GS

KTM 950 Adventure

Suzuki V-Strom

Triumph Tiger

XB-9sx

Yamaha FZ1

Yamaha FZ-6

Kawasaki ZRX

BMW R1150R

Suzuki Bandit 1200s

Suzuki bandit 600s

Triumph Speed III



So, when everyone was preaching that they wanted and we NEED tiered licensing legislation you guys meant that the first tier (and someone that hasn't ridden in 15 years IS a first tier, especially since he is just signing up for the safety course) would be bikes between 65hp (DL650) and 129hp (FZ1)?!



I had no idea. If that's the case, than bring on tiered licensing. I was so very wrong. I am sorry I doubted so many of you on this forum.

 

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Yes- he'd be tier 1 w/ option of testing for higher tiers based on his manditory training class results.
 

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Snuggles
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But there is no mandatory training class right now. The current safety course does not prepare you for the above listed bikes.



Yet, we are recommending these as a first bike from a 15 year layoff from a rider that has an undefined skill level?! And that level is pointing more to quite low than high.

 

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i see your point, BAR; and i am for tiered licensing. but i suppose we are all assuming his current skill level to fit our opinions. me included.

this guy might have had 15 years riding experience before he took his 15 year break. he has a license. if the OP has minimal riding experience, then i would definitely recommend something more like a gs500f or yamaha virago 250.

can the original poster give us a little more info about his riding history and skill level?

cheers :)
 

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Just for the record, I was one of the ones that was saying that tiered licensing is idiotic for precisely this reason. If this guy's been out of the game for 15 years, he's at least 30 years old and also has enough sense to take the MSF course before buying a bike. Obviously, he can't be trusted with anything bigger than a Rebel 125.
 

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The Toad
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This is the Central Scrutinizer

You are correct. Re-education orders are being issued for those who have failed to follow proper orthodoxy.
 

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BMW. I'm 5-6 and hate most of them, but you may love them. Many BMW models are tailor made for tall guys. Plus, you can test ride a wide variety of BMW models; BMW dealers are good about that. If you like the Monster, you might one day want to look into a used motoguzzi centauro;

see http://www.motorcycle.com/mo/mcguzzi/centauro.html

That's a -big- oss naked italian bike. They look killer in metallic roulette green with red accents, and sound amazing.
 
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