Anyone ride a Honda Rebel? - Page 2 - Honda Shadow Forums : Shadow Motorcycle Forum
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-28-2019, 11:24 PM
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I haven't ridden it yet but I'm working on a friends 1987 Honda Rebel 450. It is very short and the suspension seems soft. Like others have said, What type of riding is he going to do? Each bike type has their own personality. I have a TW200 Yamaha which is like a slow 2 wheeled atv. It is a dual sport, I can hop curbs go through ditches or flooded streets, squeeze through trapped traffic, go down trails, all of which I have done in town where small maneuverability is great. I have a Yamaha Radian, 1986 which is basically an old sport bike with taller handlebars. it zips, cuts, turns and takes off quick and is a blast to ride. Then I have the Shadow Spirit 1100 which is used for kicked back riding or hauling down the freeway. It has the torque to set you back in the seat and I forget there's a 5th gear because in 3rd I can do highway speeds but at least kick it up to 4th. They are all fun so tell him to consider the type of riding, suspension requirements and the power he would like to have.
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-29-2019, 06:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kesanders View Post
I haven't ridden it yet but I'm working on a friends 1987 Honda Rebel 450. It is very short and the suspension seems soft. Like others have said, What type of riding is he going to do? Each bike type has their own personality. I have a TW200 Yamaha which is like a slow 2 wheeled atv. It is a dual sport, I can hop curbs go through ditches or flooded streets, squeeze through trapped traffic, go down trails, all of which I have done in town where small maneuverability is great. I have a Yamaha Radian, 1986 which is basically an old sport bike with taller handlebars. it zips, cuts, turns and takes off quick and is a blast to ride. Then I have the Shadow Spirit 1100 which is used for kicked back riding or hauling down the freeway. It has the torque to set you back in the seat and I forget there's a 5th gear because in 3rd I can do highway speeds but at least kick it up to 4th. They are all fun so tell him to consider the type of riding, suspension requirements and the power he would like to have.

I've got one too, and that bike is a blast to drive, both on the streets and the deep sands of the Huron National Forest in upstate Michigan. That bike is bullet proof.
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-30-2019, 08:36 PM
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Just from my experience. Im 6ft 2inches and 215lbs of Grade A American come and get it. I rode one for the training class. It was small and was slugish getting up to speed. My leg positions made it a bit cramped and prone to cramps. I have an 02 VT750DC shadow spirit and not a problem.

Now it may be fine for him but if you hit up those steep country hills and want to add say saddle bags or a cargo rack on back it will be heavy and really slug over the steeper hills. I usually suggest a bike 500CC or bigger for us bigger humans. Again, just my thoughts and opinion. Others like them fine.
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-31-2019, 09:07 AM
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09 Rebel 250 - bought it 3 years ago and immediately took my MSF course, rode it for a few years as a learner, still have it.

upsides: at under 300lbs its easy to recover from rider mistakes, its forgiving, and if you do go down you can easily pick it up again.
made from '96 to '16 with no changes to anything significant, any part from this "2nd generation" fits any other and parts are still easy to come by.
for a greenhorn, underpowered is a good thing, if you dump the clutch at idle it'll stall instead of rocket out from under you, and leaves a bit more margin for error on giving it too much on a stop-turn-accelerate where it would be easy for a newbie to over do it and overshoot into the ditch on the far side.

simple bullet proof design - this is a great bike to learn maintenance and repairs, no electronicalgadgeticales beyond a CDI, simple mechanicals, easy to follow the haynes manual and LEARN, lots of help available on hondarebelforum.com

Used - Advice to new riders is to plan for an OOPS and drop their bike abut 3 times within the first year of riding so get something cheap and already unprettied so when it happens you only kick youself once not five times.
I get between 65-80 mpg, so its cheap to run, really cheap to insure,



downside: at 6' he'll need to rotate the handlebars forward a tad to get a straight-wrist position. knee knocking is not an issue, no one turns the handlebars more than a couple inches with their feet on the pegs, if you are steering that sharply your feet are down cause you are at or a hair above duck-walk speed.

Its not a great bike for the interstate. on the flats I can keep up with traffic and can get the speedometer to just crease the 80 mark, uphill around here I can maintain 75, nearer the mountains I can maintain the posted speed limit uphill, but that's it. but your friend shouldn't be out on the interstate till he has months of surface road riding under his belt.


that's my experience, I found it to be a great 'starter' bike, and its still a lot of fun to hop on again for a run across the county.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-31-2019, 10:00 AM
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Originally Posted by ShadowGeezer View Post
For a starter bike for a big guy something with a taller stance, but with a slight amount of juice might be in order. Have him go to a dealer and look at Enduro or Dual sport bikes. I was thinking maybe a CRF 350 if he's leaning toward Honda.

This would be excellent choice. It will teach the rider balance and operating skills riding in the standard position as most here have learned to do before acquiring a "cruiser" sitting position ride. That being said the tires on these units have a traction factor one has to carefully adapt to otherwise a hoot to ride. Who know's a KLR 650 Kawasaki might be an excellent choice for riding in CA. I prefer single cyl. a.k.a. "thumpers" over twin cyl. in the under 500cc market as they have a better power transfer to the rear wheel. A Rebel 450 though a cruiser position, would be a good choice but a hard find.




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71' CL 100 "Lil' Sista"
99' Valkyrie "Adele"
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To everything there are exceptions.

Last edited by h13man; 05-31-2019 at 10:02 AM.
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post #16 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-31-2019, 01:47 PM
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A Rebel 250? For a big guy? No. ...If your Buddy does go that route though, advise him to get one which is well-used so he can get his money back when he trades-up and sells it.

The Spirit 750 is closer to the Rebel in looks? ...If heís going the cruiser route, and it has to be a Honda, that might be a good place to start.

The Rebel 250? ...is just so small I actually laughed out loud when I sat on it.. and Iím 5í6 ..so thereís that. I used to get cramps after 2-300 miles on my 750 Aero.. so thereís that too.

Thereís loads of very capable bikes out there which a larger framed beginner can quickly come to grips with. I would consider the type of riding he wants to engage in and get a bike more capable of that type of riding. Long term, thatís the best way to invest. In town you generally need better acceleration and better brakes and better maneuverability - cruisers arenít the best choice of bike for in-town city riding IMO. Open highways? ..not much beats a cruiser. if you need to do dirt or gravel roads, better suspension and ground clearance. Lots of bikes out there to choose from in each of those categories.

Best of luck to him!

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


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post #17 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-01-2019, 08:45 PM
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UJM's are a bit better than cruisers for tall guys.
The 1983 VT500C I own now is moderate at best for a 6'3 gorilla...
its a lot more like a UJM than a Cruiser, and that helps a bit,
which is also why there's a highway bar on it for leg relaxation

Some good starter bikes for tall guys are the Yamaha XS400 or XS650,
and pretty much any CB400, 500, 550, 650, etc...
The best starter bikes for tall guys are probably Dual-sports...because they sit tall as heck, which is GREAT for us tall guys...downside is they suck on the highway. So if you are city/dirt, they're perfect...but you quickly notice they'll beat you to death in multiple ways on the highways. Which is why I go right back to UJM's...they do it ALL....City, Highway, Dirt, doesn't matter, they handle everything.
And with that if you stay under 750cc's, you don't have to handle a lot of weight, so that keeps everything Nimble, even if you throw on a set of hardside saddlebags.

End being, a tall skinny guy on a 500-750cc 80's-style Shadow is gonna be one happy camper.
The VT500C with 54HP is more than enough power for him and a gal on the back...it's actually more HP than my old Yamaha Virago 750 had...in fact, more than the current VT750DC @ 45HP...things to consider seriously
The VT750 had 63HP...nice little rocket, that!!


If he's looking NEW, and comfy for a tall guy...the Honda CTX700N may be just the thing.
It also comes either 6-speed, or the Automatic Transmission...solves the whole Shifting Equation that a lot of kids today can't seem to figure out...and OMG, get the ABS...it's worth it!!

Ride paranoid. Don't let anything distract you.
Keep the paint side up, wear the lid & leathers.
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post #18 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-02-2019, 10:01 AM
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My little 1979 CM400T2 after trip from Windsor to Midaland. (White thingy is just an old towel for lower back support.
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post #19 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-02-2019, 10:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Shrek View Post
UJM's are a bit better than cruisers for tall guys.
The 1983 VT500C I own now is moderate at best for a 6'3 gorilla...
its a lot more like a UJM than a Cruiser, and that helps a bit,
which is also why there's a highway bar on it for leg relaxation

What does UJM mean?
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post #20 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-02-2019, 10:48 AM
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I was wondering the same thing so I looked it up. Universal Japanese Motorcycle. The term was used from 1976-1990 before the specific, sport bikes, cruisers, cafe racers were so popular. These were more of a bike that can do it all. I have a Yamaha Radian which fits this category and I like it.
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