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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am sure many of you guys have gone through this, and I will appreciate all input here.

My wife has never ridden a bike before, and I've decided that I want to get her one so she can come riding alongside me , instead of looking at the back of my helmet the whole time.

Our initial thinking was to get her a 400 (kawasaki ZZR 400) to start off with, send her to lessons and get her comfortable on a bike before she is allowed to go out riding by herself, but speaking to my dealer this morning made me think about this in a totally different way.

His recommendation is to rather get a small on/off road bike, say a 175cc or so, and get her to ride that for 3 - 4 months until she is completely comfortable with the controls of a bike, and then get her the 400 or whatever she wants then - obviously because the 175cc is much smaller, lighter, easier to manoeuvre, etc.

She'll obviously still go for lessons on top of that as well...

What do you guys reckon, I'd rather let her wait for a while before she gets the bike she wants, than have to bury her because she wasn't ready for it yet...
 

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I would get her something "girl-friendly" like a Honda Rebel 250 for several reasons:

1- It has a very low seat height and so will not be intimidated.

2- It is extremely light for a bike, being a 250cc

3- It is capable of highway speeds so she can go from parking lot cones to open road with no issues on being able to keep up.

4- it is ONLY 250cc's, I know some buddies of mine taught there girls how to ride on a Suzuki Savage 650, or Rebel 450, but for my opinion, no novice rider should have access to that much power since they still THINK like cagers. The power to weight ratio will blow them away instantly and anything bigger than a 250cc bike may give them premature throttle-fever. Just my 2 cents.

P.S. As far as the dealer recommendation to get a small on/off bike, well I think that is a BAD idea unless she will be on/offing ALL the time, those dual purpose bikes handle differently and you do NOT want to ride in the rain with knobbies for tires, if you are serious about teaching her to ride, then let her experience the full spectrum of riding, such as getting caught in the rain and knowing how the bike will handle under those conditions. A true STREET bike is the only way to go. Good Luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
RubenAlonzo said:
no novice rider should have access to that much power since they still THINK like cagers.
Thanks Rubin,

you hit the nail on the head with the above, although I fully agree with all your other points...
 

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Lamonster said:
This is how I did it but she is not on the street. I would say get her in the dirt first and then to a MSF class. :doorag:
http://lamonster.com/firstbike/
+1
Dirt first so she can learn all the controls, and counter steering and stuff. She doesnt need moguls or anything, just a place to ride without cars and distractions.
If you have a place that is paved where this can be done I would buy a used rebel like mentioned above and she can do circles and figure eights in the parking lot.
AND be sure she has full gear so she feels very safe!!

Sledzep
 

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MSF COURSE HERE WAS THE WAY TO GO. Bought her a 250 Suzuki and sent her to the course. This was a woman who could not even drive stick shift cage. She is now a very good safe rider, and we didnt have to get a divorce.
 

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bolinrj said:
...and we didnt have to get a divorce.
Trying to teach a loved one to ride a motorcycle, in my experience anyway, is an exercise in frustration :realmad: I've tried with a few family members and it just led to everyone involved getting pissed at each other. Letting someone with no emotional ties (MSF class) teach them is the way to go, I think. They can be firm with them without it becoming personal :duck:
 

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While I agree with what a lot of you are saying, I think it also depends on the person. I taught myself to ride on a 800 Marauder. The next year, I bought the wife the same bike. I taught her how to ride on that. She did great and is still doing great. Never had any problems. We've gone on some really long rides together and we ride around town almost every day. We live in Milwaukee, so there's a lot of traffic, but she does fine. Now she has an `06 C50C and still doing fine. I would still suggest a smaller bike and MSF, but I think it all depends on the person. Good luck. :bigthumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
RubenAlonzo said:
P.S. As far as the dealer recommendation to get a small on/off bike, well I think that is a BAD idea unless she will be on/offing ALL the time, those dual purpose bikes handle differently and you do NOT want to ride in the rain with knobbies for tires, if you are serious about teaching her to ride, then let her experience the full spectrum of riding, such as getting caught in the rain and knowing how the bike will handle under those conditions. A true STREET bike is the only way to go. Good Luck.
Very valid point there that I havent considered, thank you for highlighting that!
 

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Lamonster said:
This is how I did it but she is not on the street. I would say get her in the dirt first and then to a MSF class. :doorag:
http://lamonster.com/firstbike/
Thanks for the link :bigthumbsup: .................... I really enjoyed the videos , it reminded me of my dad teaching me how to ride on a 75 Yam GT 80 :doorag:
 

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I reciently bought a gs 500 for my girlfriend, I have been wondering how im going to teach her. I was thinking of riding on the back and reaching over doing the controls and have her hands on mine so she can get the feel of things. Well see kinda scary :eek: ::) :eek:
 
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alwyn said:
I am sure many of you guys have gone through this, and I will appreciate all input here.

My wife has never ridden a bike before, and I've decided that I want to get her one so she can come riding alongside me , instead of looking at the back of my helmet the whole time.

Our initial thinking was to get her a 400 (kawasaki ZZR 400) to start off with, send her to lessons and get her comfortable on a bike before she is allowed to go out riding by herself, but speaking to my dealer this morning made me think about this in a totally different way.

His recommendation is to rather get a small on/off road bike, say a 175cc or so, and get her to ride that for 3 - 4 months until she is completely comfortable with the controls of a bike, and then get her the 400 or whatever she wants then - obviously because the 175cc is much smaller, lighter, easier to manoeuvre, etc.

She'll obviously still go for lessons on top of that as well...

What do you guys reckon, I'd rather let her wait for a while before she gets the bike she wants, than have to bury her because she wasn't ready for it yet...
Sorry if this was already posted, I'm at work and can't read all of em...

1. MSF class available? If so, gotta gotta do it. Then she can feel confident to test ride a bike and get what she wants after passing the class

2. If no MSF class, I'll leave it to experts on here to give their 2 cents but I think its best to get something that she may want to get rid of soon... something she isn't scared of... Carrie has a vulcan 500 and its a great little bike and she's trying to sell it now. it has served its purpose and she's done great with it.

be safe and good luck
 

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I taught my wife this summer. She never rode a motorcycle before and she was petrified. She is now riding on her own and is getting better and more used to it everyday.

I bought her a Boulevard S40. The S40 is a very beginner friendly bike. It only has one cylinder and the throttle is not jumpy. At the low end it's very much like a Rebel, but it does have the high end for some expressway riding. Its about the same size and weight as the Rebel, but it is capable of much more. I started by taking her to a very big parking lot and taught her exactly like the MSF recommends. I even bought 30 cones for her to practice the maneuvers. It took most of the summer, but like I said, she is now riding on her own and in some ways she rides better than me. She never learned any bad habits. She loves the bike and I'm happy I bought the 650. She is signed up for the MSF course later this month. I'm taking it again with her. If I didn't start her out before the course she would have never passed it. They don't spend very much time with riders that are completely green.

If you are serious about teaching her, let me know and I will give you the $60.00 worth of cones that I no longer have a need for.

I love riding with my wife on our own bikes. Much better than two up!
 

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chucks son said:
I reciently bought a gs 500 for my girlfriend, I have been wondering how im going to teach her. I was thinking of riding on the back and reaching over doing the controls and have her hands on mine so she can get the feel of things. Well see kinda scary :eek: ::) :eek:
Always start with the friction zone exercise and than the power walk. Eventually she will put her feet up on the pegs and start to turn. Go very slow with her and be very patient. If my wife can do it so can your GF. :bigthumbsup:
 
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Alwyn.....wives, girlfriends, kids, old men.....it makes no difference.

Start 'em on a dirt bike, so they can learn to handle adversity.....and they'll learn about the things you need to do to make a bike do what you want it to, at the same time.

Not to mention, the consequences for a mistake are not as "great".

Can ya start 'em on a road bike and have them survive?.....Sure you can, but, there's no substitute for experience in as many situations as possible.
 

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chucks son said:
I reciently bought a gs 500 for my girlfriend, I have been wondering how im going to teach her. I was thinking of riding on the back and reaching over doing the controls and have her hands on mine so she can get the feel of things. Well see kinda scary :eek: ::) :eek:
That's a great way to get BOTH of you hurt! You need to learn to opperate the bike solo long before riding with a passenger. :yikes:
 

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My girlfriend became interested in riding her own after being a passenger on my Intruder 800. She bought one just like it as a first bike, went to the MSF and rides great. I took her out before she took the course and we went over the controls...let her sit on, then walk the bike...and finally had her start it up and ride in the parking lot. The course made her a way better rider, but we still practice together...she likes my tutoring :doorag:

Seriously, unless you have a lot of cash to burn I'd start her off on something in the 650/800 class of bikes with low seats. Anything smaller and you'll be buying another within 6 mos of her finishing the MSF. With a bike in that class (that she picks) you'll be out of monies for accessories. Take the time to practice together, its good for both of you, and soon you'll both be on M's.

Ride safe...Ride Far

Devilish
 

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You will enjoy the Wife riding next to you(or staggered behind you!!)I taught my Wife on a Suzuki Marauder 800 also.They are very light and low,and they won't get bored with them a few months down the road.Besides that,it's the bike we rode two up on for years!I took mine to a completely empty parking lot for weeks and just let her drive around and get used to the controls and feel of the bike.Then she signed herself(and me) up for the MSF course.That should be a definate thing.She rides her own VTX 1300c around now and does quite well at it!You'll both love it,just be patient with her.
 
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My wife is interested in riding as well and I made a deal with her. She takes the MSF course and passes it and I will buy her a small used bike to start. Once she rides it with confidence then we will buy her a larger bike. I will spend as much time as needed to help her as she is my most precious gift in this life with my daughter. We have alot of large parking lots in our area so I figure we can work in the parking lots to work on the turns and stopping, etc. She will only ride when I am with her so that way I can keep an eye on her. She said to me over the weekend: Can I get a Goldwing Trike with an automatic transmission?? I said sure, that would only be about $36k, can I get a new Corvette while we are at it. I think a Honda Rebel is in order to start. :p :p
 
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