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Thoughts on purchasing a first bike

Discussion in 'Motorcycle Talk' started by ezjones, Aug 3, 2012.

  1. I'm torn between a 2005 Ducati 620 dark and a 2008 FZ6. Which bike has more bang? I'm favoring the Ducati simply because it's a Ducati.
  2. RedKat600

    RedKat600 Vintage Screwball Staff Member

    FZ6 way more bang and more comfy too, IMO. Basically an R6 with different cams. Mine dynoed out to 91 HP after a PowerCommander and Pipes. Ducati is a bit underpowered for a 620 IMO. I hope you know how to work on bikes or have deep pocket books for maintenance if you get the Duc.

    If you like the V twins, give the SV650 a look too....great bikes, low maintenance with a proven track record.

  3. I'd not favor the Ducati simply because it's a Ducati, for a first bike :)
  4. Bet you'll get to learn more about working on bikes this way; info coming
    just from unreliable 7th hand rumours you understand...

    EDIT: also consider SV650, even if you didn't ask for more suggestions.
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2012
  5. james1300

    james1300 Track School Dazed

    This is your 1st bike? More Bang? :angry7:
    Pullman. Where are you going to store it?(theft prevention) Can you afford full coverage insurance?
    The bikes your asking about are not beginner rider bikes.
    If you just tip-over the Duc in a parking lot, it can cost a thousand to make it right. MAINTANCE costs are HUGE. As are the maintance intervals. Meaning they are more frequent than other bikes.
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2012
  6. I'd love an SV but i'm struggling to find one near me. Everything I've read says to buy the FZ6, but my screaming teenage libido says "buy the Ducati, the FZ6 is an old man bike."
  7. james1300

    james1300 Track School Dazed

    That's B.S. The FZ6 is an R6 that allows a more up-right seating position with wider bars and a more useable powerband.
    That bike will, 'spank you like a rented circus monkey'.

    "Better do your homework then, 'make an informed decision".
    Wanna see some 'Wider Bared bikes'? Up right seating positions? 'Watch and LEARN'.

    These are NOT old man bikes. If you find an SV, get a BUS TIcket and go get it!
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2012
  8. No doubt the FZ6 could kick the Ducati's butt in terms of performance. I guess I'm more vain and I'm taking looks into account. Thank you all for the great advice.
  9. james1300

    james1300 Track School Dazed

    Look. I'm NOT trying to 'bust your bubble'. It's great to have dreams and goals.
    But, the bikes your looking at are expensive to maintain and repair.
    I don't want you hurt.
    Tires cost alot. Maintance costs alot @ $80.00-$100.00 an hour for a shop to do maintance. Insurance is gonna be HIGH.

    If I where a young man looking for a 1st bike and, this is me. If I wanted a performance bike that I could afford. Have a TON of fun learning to ride. A Bike that I could learn to ride and maintain. I'd look at a Suzuki DRZ 400 SM.
    DR-Z400SM - Supermoto, street legal, comes standard with 17-inch (430 mm) sportbike inspired wheels, oversize front brakes and USD forks.
    400cc's. Crazey fun. Ton's of performance upgrades available. BIG brakes. A single cylinder, water cooled engine. Handles like a jet fighter and you can afford to insure. Something if you drop it, you pick it up. Dust it off and
    get back to riding. It's a single. 'You' can tune it. Learn on it. It's quick. and Tires won't break your bank. Plus, performance tires are available.
    Like This>>
    I'd have enough money left over to buy 'the BEST riding gear and helmet available'
    Head to toe.
    But, thats me.

    OK, this has 'old man' music. But its worth a watch.

    It's quick...

    Don't be this guy!
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2012
    kd7svh likes this.
  10. I agree with James here. You shouldn't buy something because it is a certain brand. Buy something that will fill the role you need it to. Since this is your first bike, it is pretty darn possible that you will either drop it in a parking lot, drop it at a slow speed, or dump it in a corner (not saying you will, but it is likely for new riders). Since the maintence costs and parts are expensive on the Duc, save money right now and get a Japanese bike to get used to being on two wheels. Than, after getting used to riding, buy something better like a Ducati. You have the rest of your life ahead of you to ride, take it slow and don't screw yourself over with something that you might not be able to afford to maintain/fix/ride.

    Here are some of my suggestions: FZ6, SV650, Ninja 650r, Versys, and many others are great bikes for beginners and even are still great for more advanced riders :mfclap: They are also easy to maintain if you have a toolbox and some time, and usually are pretty bullet-proof.

    Just my $.02 here, whatever you choose is up to you, though many people on here would be happy to help you if/when you ask. :mrgreen:

    I'm 21 and I figure I can start with something easy, than move up if I feel the need later. Saves me money and lets me learn things about the bikes I get.
  11. +1 For the SV650

    picked mine up for 1400 with 7k on the clock and have loved every minute of it. Plenty of power to keep you happy but wont eat you alive if you make a mistake. Cheap cheap cheap maintenance, repairs, insurance and so many parts available for it. Being my first bike I was involved in a lowside and am happy I chose the cheaper bike. Shit happens and I would have been (and so would my wallet) devastated if it was a more expansive bike let alone a Ducati!

    It's a fun reliable bike and throw a GSXR front end on it and it turns in to a canyon monster! I'd recommend searching high and low and go where you got to go to get one!

    Good luck
  12. All I can contribute to all the suggestions is this..........



    that is all.
  13. jnicola

    jnicola Shredical

    Here's my take on a first bike purchase for anyone.

    This is your FIRST bike, not your LAST bike. Don't buy a bike based on what will last you forever. Get what's right for now, sell it, and then get another. That being said, this also being your first bike means you're going to make all your stupid first timer mistakes. I know I know, you're responsible and cool calm and collected and going to be smarter than the stupid 18 year old frat kids... except everyone says that... then they drop or ding or sometimes even crash their first bike. Get a shitty first bike, make all your mistakes on said shitty bike, and then sell it for a minimal loss.

    Of course you can get the Ducati, drop it, and when you're picking it up off the ground you can think to yourself "Boy I wish I had dropped a piece of shit bike instead of this Ducati..."
  14. The FZ6 is a great bike. And the undertail exhaust is one of the best looking I've seen on any bike. That gets my vote!
  15. I agree with what everyone has said. Don't get me wrong, Duc's are fucking sexy machines, but I am glad that I got a Ninja 650R as my first bike. I've dropped it once and have dumped it once, and I don't give a shit. It's got character now, and looks like it's been ridden, because it has. If it were a Duc, I'd probably have put a bullet between my eyes.

    As like the others said, this will not be your last bike, so get something that is inexpensive, yet looks and performs awesome, and learn to ride and have fun. Anyway, whatever you choose, ride safe man.
  16. RedKat600

    RedKat600 Vintage Screwball Staff Member

    FZ6 has expensive maintenance costs???? With a 24,000 mile valve interval, all it needs is oil, spark plugs, and tires. Insurance is also cheap. It's considered a sport tourer. For 24 bucks a month, we have full coverage on it. Comp, collision, towing, the whole shebang. Really doesn't get much better than that. Plus it gets 45-50 MPG depending on how you ride it. The worst I got even after it was tuned was 40 railing it hard.
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2012
  17. The FZ6 is a pretty mean first bike. If you're learning on your own after MSF, a 250/500 would be better. 250s suck on the highway though.

    I love mine. Fantastic highway bike and near 50mpg. Bike handles just fine in the city but mpg really suffers.

    The seat height is a little on the high side so if you've got short legs, you're going to be really prone to dropping it. Long legs = get out of jail free card.

    The stock bar on the FZ6 sucks- awkward wrist angle. FZ1 bar swap to fix.

    2007+ have updated brakes, FI mapping, windshield, swing arm. Build quality is very high on these bikes.

    My bike had 2 previous owners. First bike for both, kept dropping it and gave up before 3k. How will you do?
  18. If you could possibly hold out for an SV650, I would say its the Ducati you don't mind dropping, especially once you put suspension work into the SV. Stiff little chassis, room to grow in terms of what bolts on to it (gixxer front ends, any number of half a dozen rear shocks). I'd consider the Kawi 650R a parallel to the SV, though with lower HP numbers.

    Not that I have anything against the mentioned bikes, but I also know what that first bike is like... after 4 years with it. You want something you don't question, nor a bike you could ever fear.

    If you want a lot of spunk without a lot of speeding tickets... there are sumos too. DRZ400 and the like..

    If one is determined, any bike can become a good first bike, that is one point I would like to enforce. You'll get what you want..
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