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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey, My name is Nick, I'm 18 (doesn't mean I'm unsafe and stupid!!!!) and I'm new here (although i been browsing / reading threads here for awhile :rockon) Anyways, I'm deciding on getting a new bike and yes, I understand starting off on a 250 / 500 is a better choice, but I'm just really not inclined for it (I'm narrow-minded :( ). I did some browsing and I heard that the CBR F4i is fairly forgiving and it's a decent learners 600cc bike. I'm rather short (only 5' 8") and small (130ish lbs) - think I can handle it? If not, which 600 bike or am I gonna have to face reality and hit a 250 to start off?

I'll be going to PRS first of course. :D

If I do choose to get the CBR F4i, which year is a good one? I'm looking towards the one's with the digital readouts, rather than pure analog displays. Also, what are essential modifications that I should look for, especially for a begineers bike? ( vortex frame sliders... etc?) Around what price range / km is a good deal?

Lastly, as for gear, is it neccessary to get the pants too for daily riding? I understand it's a lot safer but if I'm just going to the mall or to my frds house, would jeans cut it? Any suggestions for helmet, gloves, and jackets? Are boots a must?

Thanks for those who can answer my million questions. suggestions highly recommended :D:D
 

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I actually found my F4i much easier to ride than my EX500 because it was much smoother (throttle control) and had better brakes and shocks. It has a lot of power on the top end of the powerband but if you are diciplined, you should be okay.

For a first bike, I would say that any F4 that you can get at a good price and is in good mechanical shape would work. At 5'8"... you're not really that short. It all depends on your inseam but you should be able to stand on the balls of your feet while sitting on the bike... and that should be fine.

Is the F4 your ideal bike? People advise getting a first bike as one to practice and learn on for at least a year before replacing it with what you really want. It is quite distraughting to drop or crash a bike you love. I love F4's and while I could have learned on one, I would definitely cry if i dropped or even crashed one because of my inexperience.

Don't worry about modifications. Things like that and frame sliders should not be the selling point over a basic bike that is mechanically sound. You can always get frame sliders installed later.

Gear and brand name is quite subjective. What one person would find adequate, someone else will have a different opinion. For someone new, it is probably much more important to wear all the gear since there is a higher possibility of an accident from inexperience.

I personally try to wear all the gear all the time but I have sometimes worn just jeans, a leather jacket, gloves and a helmet. I wear armoured leather pants when I go on just motorcycle rides but I would wear armoured overpants when commuting, with jeans under. Joe Rocket Alter Ego pants are very versatile and adapt to a wide variety of conditions as they have a waterproof liner. For hot days, you can remove the liner and a panel to reveal the mesh material underneath for ventilation. Jeans are better than shorts but they can shred quite easily, and instantly, when you go down at even a moderate speed.

Good luck on your search and have fun shopping!
 

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so many questions!! F4i is a great choice 2001-date. They are all the same year from year. They are very forgiving and will endure alot. If anyone was to get a 600cc bike as a first bike that would the one I recommend!!
Helmet, jacket and gloves, go with what fits well and is comfortable. Not everyone is the same and different gear will fit you differently. You don't need to spend $800 on a helmet!!! There are alot of great helmets that are both DOT and Snell approved!! Again go with what fits and is comfortable!!. Boots must cover your ankles and all motorcycle boots will give you good protection. Can't wear your runners during your course! Jeans are fine but nothing beats leathers for protection. I wear jeans in an around the city but wear my leathers on group rides or long distance rides. Good luck in your course and welcome.
 

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The great thing about learner bikes is that you can ride them for a year and usually sell them the following year for around the same price you bought it.
I say go with a smaller bike for a year. Next year go with a F4i. You'll enjoy it way more. You may not enjoy the F4i right off the bat if you are just learing to ride.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I understand it would hurt to drop my first bike, which is why I'm deciding to purchase a used bike first. My parents believe I should buy new everything, but im not that dumb :D So basically, a helmet, gloves, and a mesh jacket should suffice for city riding? I'm asking soo many questions because I'm so excited to finally get to ride a bike (eventually... once i take the darn course!!) instead of sitting on my cpu and reading about you guys having fun on your bikes :p So I assume the F4 isn't a very jerky bike but still has the punch. As for the mods, are frame sliders relatively cheap and easy to install? I understand that they're a good modification to help protect your bike if you do drop it on the side. As a beginner, how much should I look into spending for gear? Where to buy?
 

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How much you spend on gear should totally depend on how much you can afford. If you can afford good gear, buy good gear.
That isn't to say you can't save a load of money by buying good used gear (except for helmet, i just dont feel comfortable buying a used helmet).
You can save a bit by shopping online, but i personally prefer stores.
You can save quite a bit by shopping around, i went to three stores for my helmet: RMS, Imperial, and Burnaby Kawi and was surprised to see the difference in just those three stores.

One more thing, i would really advice you to not buy a bike before going through PRS and getting your license. You never know how long before you actually are ABLE to ride a bike. I know someone who got a bike, but still hasn't the gear/license and are now wondering about winter storage for their bike.

Also after riding, you'll have a reference point about bikes. F4's may sound great (and probably are) but you may end up falling in love with a ninja 250 at PRS. (i know i did)
 

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I understand it would hurt to drop my first bike, which is why I'm deciding to purchase a used bike first.
If you are willing to do that, why not get that smaller cc bike? It would only be for just a year. You will find it less intimidating and learn so much more from riding it. You can push it and ride it harder without getting into as much trouble as you would on a F4i. A smaller cc bike would cost less and be less to insure. The amount you save can be put towards riding gear and your next bike. And when you sell it, you'll more likely get back about the same amount of money you paid for it.
 

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Smooth Operator
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hey man, i have some gear for sale super cheap... save some money, and when you decide your ready to upgrade to a better bike you can upgrade your gear at that point.... get some beater equip. and bike, and take er easy for a few months, then upgrade.... thats what i did, and i dont regret it at all.
 

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I think you're going about this the right way, asking questions, getting info, and taking the course first. I did exactly the same thing, and it paid off in the long run. I did however start on an older bike ('84 Fj600) which gave me the chance to get really comfortable with the newer, more powerful bikes (03 F4i), even though I went from one 600 to another. Something else that helped me was I got all my (basic) gear first, and did the course in all MY gear, which made the transition to MY bike more comfortable because I only had to adjust to the bike, not the feel of the gear, and how it all works together. You reeeeallly don't need a bike until you're mostly done the course anyway 'cause you can't ride it. On the topic of gear, for me it's easy - Get the best gear you can afford, trust me, it's worth it!

Lastly, some first hand advice. Don't ride that new bike until you're in the later stages of your course. The road experience I got in the final days of my course taught me to look for things that you just don't look for in the cage, and saved me from at least 2 potentially serious incidents. The evasive manoeuvres we practiced in the lot gave me the experience, reaction, and control that most certainly saved my life on one very scary occasion. All three near misses came before I even got my licence, and I know that the things drilled into me during the course are what gave me the basis to recognize and avoid some really bad shituations.

Best of luck out there!
 

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welcome (soon) to the world of riding...
it's fun, trust me.

as far as bike goes...the advice you'll hear from everyone is to get an older bike (say 90-99), spend a year or 2 learning on it, dropping it on occasion, then sell it and get a newer bike. you'll be amazed at how expensive cracked fairings are, and you *will* accidentally drop it in the parking lot.

all that said...we all know that bikes look sexy, are sexy, everyone thinks they're sexy, and we're compelled to get the nicest one we can afford.

this is ultimately up to you...but keep in mind that even a '92 250cc bike will be able to beat most cars in a straight line, and no contest for a '92 600cc bike. most new riders who want the latest sportbike doesnt realize how

f4 / f4i's are nice bikes, revs smoothly, shifts like butter. 5'8 height isn't a problem...you should be able to flatfoot your bike

gear is good. how much and which brand is personal preference...but gear is good. a salesman at a quality bike shop will be able to answer all your questions...

snell + dot helmets are highly recommended...the $$$ ones are made of nicer material, ligher, quieter, but offer similar protection to cheaper ones like HJC.

most of all..have fun riding
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
kamen rider Quote:
Originally Posted by ntan
I understand it would hurt to drop my first bike, which is why I'm deciding to purchase a used bike first.


If you are willing to do that, why not get that smaller cc bike? It would only be for just a year. You will find it less intimidating and learn so much more from riding it. You can push it and ride it harder without getting into as much trouble as you would on a F4i. A smaller cc bike would cost less and be less to insure. The amount you save can be put towards riding gear and your next bike. And when you sell it, you'll more likely get back about the same amount of money you paid for it.
As Osama said, I will complete the course first then decide whether to jump straight to the F4i or the 250. He has a good point about whether I might enjoy the 250 a lot, which I'll find out through the course.

As for dewdar, I'm not really interested in the "speed" aspect of the bike. I understand they go fast and I respect that, so I'm not really tempted to test it out since I still got my education to live through -SFU Engineering baby!!! :rockon Doesn't mean I wont speed just a tiny lil :p I just love the way the Honda looks and hopefully, from what I heard, without killing me when I jump onto it. I also have lotta respects for the brand :)

Overall, thanks for all the replies :) I'll definitely take this slower instead of rushing in. Thx lots for the suggestion about getting my own gear prior to taking the course - sounds like a great suggestion. I just thought I should maybe purchase a bike now since from what I understand, will be cheaper as people want to avoid storing the bike through winter (wants wrong with that anyways!??!?) Hope to see you guys on a bike meet for newbies one day! (Next spring hopefully?!)
 
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