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post #21 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-30-2016, 05:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Bethany1972 View Post
This will still be a ways off, but I'd like to start researching now. Hubby and I are just finishing up our second season of riding. I've got just over 3,000 miles under my belt. I'm hoping to take an intermediate or advanced riding course next year to "polish" my skills. I think it is safe to say that we are going to continue riding, and will probably be adding some distance. My Shadow is perfect for what I bought it for and I don't plan on selling it. Day trips are fine on it and it's a great cruiser for "around town". I do start to get uncomfortable after about 100 miles or so.

I want to start looking into more of a touring-type bike that I would be comfortable on for hours at a time. Something I can load for bear and take on weekend trips...maybe even camping. Something that is going to cruise at freeway speeds without thinking about it. My concern is my size. I am only 5'2" and my impression is that these types of bike tend to be taller. I am also hopeful to have something that we could easily take off on dirt roads, in addition to highway.

So where do I start? Any initial recommendations?

Well I'll tell you what @Bethany1972 ; one of my favorite things to do is go bike petting.... er, I mean bike shopping. I like going to every dealership that will let me in the front door. I'll sit on every bike in there. If you go with hubby, you sit on the bike and then once you stand it up, he holds the front tire between his legs so you can put your feet on the pegs/floorboards and see how it feels I the riding position. Most bikes will pretty much go anywhere you want to go. Sure, a Triumph Tiger will handle soft dirt a little better than a Harley WideGlide, but both do fine on solid dirt roads. Don't let looks and size fool you. You will be able to stand a big 1900cc Star Raider up easier than it's little sister, the 1300cc Stryker. It's just the way they're balanced. For smaller statured riders, I think the Star Bolt is quite nice but I think it wouldn't look or feel right if you added much luggage capability to it. The only dualsport that I'm really familiar with is Kawasaki's KLR. and I'm really not that big of a fan of it. Not a real good dirt bike, yet sluggish as a street bike.
Swing by your local BMW dealership and check out their GS line-up. Check out Triumph also. Plenty of short (er) statured riders handle them with ease.... there's just a technique to learn. Nice thing with both Triumph and BMW dealerships is they both tend to offer test rides. So does Harley and Victory. Japanese dealerships seem to be hit or miss. Personally, I'll be damned if I'll spend a couple of thousand dollars on a bike without riding it for 15 to 20 minutes first, I don't care what name is on the case.
Either way, you get to go bike shopping!!!!!!! I wish you were close and I'd go with you. We'd have to swing by a sporting goods store so I could look at guns and cammo for a couple of hours...... I mean minutes... then go find a small brewery and have a beer and talk about what all we've seen! Enjoy!!

So live your life that the fear of death can never enter your heart. Prepare a noble death song for the day when you go over the great divide.
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post #22 of 36 (permalink) Old 09-30-2016, 07:05 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by squidchief View Post
Well I'll tell you what @Bethany1972 ; one of my favorite things to do is go bike petting.... er, I mean bike shopping. I like going to every dealership that will let me in the front door. I'll sit on every bike in there. If you go with hubby, you sit on the bike and then once you stand it up, he holds the front tire between his legs so you can put your feet on the pegs/floorboards and see how it feels I the riding position. Most bikes will pretty much go anywhere you want to go. Sure, a Triumph Tiger will handle soft dirt a little better than a Harley WideGlide, but both do fine on solid dirt roads. Don't let looks and size fool you. You will be able to stand a big 1900cc Star Raider up easier than it's little sister, the 1300cc Stryker. It's just the way they're balanced. For smaller statured riders, I think the Star Bolt is quite nice but I think it wouldn't look or feel right if you added much luggage capability to it. The only dualsport that I'm really familiar with is Kawasaki's KLR. and I'm really not that big of a fan of it. Not a real good dirt bike, yet sluggish as a street bike.
Swing by your local BMW dealership and check out their GS line-up. Check out Triumph also. Plenty of short (er) statured riders handle them with ease.... there's just a technique to learn. Nice thing with both Triumph and BMW dealerships is they both tend to offer test rides. So does Harley and Victory. Japanese dealerships seem to be hit or miss. Personally, I'll be damned if I'll spend a couple of thousand dollars on a bike without riding it for 15 to 20 minutes first, I don't care what name is on the case.
Either way, you get to go bike shopping!!!!!!! I wish you were close and I'd go with you. We'd have to swing by a sporting goods store so I could look at guns and cammo for a couple of hours...... I mean minutes... then go find a small brewery and have a beer and talk about what all we've seen! Enjoy!!
Sounds like a fun day to me!

"Camille"
1998 Honda Shadow ACE 750
May 2016 Ride of the Month Winner!

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post #23 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-01-2016, 06:54 AM Thread Starter
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I saw a 1300 Deluxe at a shop, I'm no specific fan of red, but my oh my...

and it sits REAL low

2015 Yamaha V StarŪ 1300 Deluxe Rapid Red Stock: 006226 | B & B Cycle & Marine

That sure is a beauty!

"Camille"
1998 Honda Shadow ACE 750
May 2016 Ride of the Month Winner!

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post #24 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-01-2016, 07:00 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you all for your suggestions! I will definitely check out the Yamaha 1300. But I am also really intrigued with the BMW GS types. I'm thinking of going with something really different than the cruiser. Best of both worlds.

"Camille"
1998 Honda Shadow ACE 750
May 2016 Ride of the Month Winner!

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post #25 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-01-2016, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Bethany1972 View Post
Thank you all for your suggestions! I will definitely check out the Yamaha 1300. But I am also really intrigued with the BMW GS types. I'm thinking of going with something really different than the cruiser. Best of both worlds.
If you are heading in that direction, the GS 800 really is a nice bike and better off-road than my Tiger. The Bigger GS's, the 1200's .. Mmmm.. Check out the KTM Adventure too - being shorter, they seemed to fit me better..

My Tiger XCX with its WP (KTM) suspension and a slightly detuned speed triple engine. .. Phhhhh ... Haha.. ..If you can.. try one. ..you can run that bike all day in second gear, off-road, and it'll pull from about 1mph to 50 without generating additional heat. I almost never have to use the clutch in that gear off road, it just doesn't struggle or stall.. loads of power, easy to control and smooooth... On-road.. It's a Huge amount of fun! Easy to maintain as well.

The heavier cruisers and touring bikes are better at eating up highway miles (they just are), but I find myself yawning a lot on my Vic', it's kinda like driving a car while riding on the interstate. The Tiger.. Just.. A little less tuned for massive amounts of miles, but really, a Fun bike!

.
Family, Friends, Love and Life..
Take Care and Ride Safe,
Mark..


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post #26 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-01-2016, 12:29 PM Thread Starter
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I saw that you can get a 1200GS with a lowered seat height of 31", where that didn't seem to be available on the 800. The seat height is 35" on the 800 so that's a pretty substantial difference!
The other thing to consider is that I certainly won't be buying new. That's why I figured if I could get it narrowed down to a few models, then I could be on the lookout for a great used deal that can't be passed up!
I paid a few hundred over book for my Shadow, but for $2,500, it can't be beat for the looks, miles, and all around great bike that it has been!

"Camille"
1998 Honda Shadow ACE 750
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post #27 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-01-2016, 02:02 PM
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I had a KLR650 and defiantly a longer in seem than you and found it to be way to tall for comfortable tossing off road and too small to ride on the highway. I sat on both of Marks bikes and they felt tall to me but he is shorter and handle them fine so it's a ballance thing. I didn't have the chance to ride them but both seemed very comfortable. If your looking to go off road a lot with it all the comets Mark made I'd agree with. Fix your ACE up to have more power, I helped my son get his 02 ACE going real good! That will give you a good tour bike for not much money then get something made for more off road for that. It's just to hard to have one do it all bike because it won't do any of it real good. I have a gravel long driveway and a lot of gravel turnoff to turn around on our road and handle them all fine slowly. So if you're only going off for little bits in light stuff and not for fun offroading, fix up your ACE and have one great bike! Risers, floorboards etc will help tremendously with the distance you can go as you can see from reading about all my upgrades. As bad as my knee and back are I can ride my bike further than driving the car before needing to stop and strech. You could also get a little more agrees I've tires that won't hurt your highway rides but help off road. It's just really hard at shorter hights to get a decent off road bike unless you can hold the weight with one leg at stops.

In new home!
14' Pantom
God Bless

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post #28 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-02-2016, 06:31 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by pastordave1 View Post
I had a KLR650 and defiantly a longer in seem than you and found it to be way to tall for comfortable tossing off road and too small to ride on the highway. I sat on both of Marks bikes and they felt tall to me but he is shorter and handle them fine so it's a ballance thing. I didn't have the chance to ride them but both seemed very comfortable. If your looking to go off road a lot with it all the comets Mark made I'd agree with. Fix your ACE up to have more power, I helped my son get his 02 ACE going real good! That will give you a good tour bike for not much money then get something made for more off road for that. It's just to hard to have one do it all bike because it won't do any of it real good. I have a gravel long driveway and a lot of gravel turnoff to turn around on our road and handle them all fine slowly. So if you're only going off for little bits in light stuff and not for fun offroading, fix up your ACE and have one great bike! Risers, floorboards etc will help tremendously with the distance you can go as you can see from reading about all my upgrades. As bad as my knee and back are I can ride my bike further than driving the car before needing to stop and strech. You could also get a little more agrees I've tires that won't hurt your highway rides but help off road. It's just really hard at shorter hights to get a decent off road bike unless you can hold the weight with one leg at stops.
Thanks for the input.
As I posted in another thread, I rode my husband's bike today, and really liked that too!

"Camille"
1998 Honda Shadow ACE 750
May 2016 Ride of the Month Winner!

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post #29 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-02-2016, 06:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Bethany1972 View Post
Thanks for the input.
As I posted in another thread, I rode my husband's bike today, and really liked that too!
Nice, moving on up!

In new home!
14' Pantom
God Bless

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post #30 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-02-2016, 07:35 PM
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Originally Posted by pastordave1 View Post
I had a KLR650...
Everybody should ride a KLR at some point in their lives. They're the one bike in the world that can do, quite literally, ANYTHING "kinda OK" and absolutely NOTHING "really well."

Bethany, FWIW, my Valk handles gravel just fine. Darkside rear tire helps tremendously.

Don't be afraid of a larger bike, especially if you're keeping the Shadow for around town. Once you're rolling, you'll be fine.



There's no such thing as "Spare Time" or "Free Time" or "Down Time."
Time is time. All you have is "Life Time." GO.
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