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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hopefully soon, I will have the money to get my first bike. This will be my first motorcycle, though I've ridden a few before. At the moment, the choice is between the 250R and the 500R. I have enough money for the 500R, but I am wondering if a beginner such as myself should get the 500 instead due to my having to use it on the highway. After all, the saved costs of getting the 250R instead is quite a bit for a college student.

Since I will be riding this back and forth between San Antonio and College Station (a good 200 miles), I need to take into account max speed, stabilization at those speeds and also crosswinds.

No, I am not trying to do the "But im an exception" or any of that junk to get a 600cc. This is purely a question of whether it is comfortable to ride the 250 over long distances compared to the possible benifits of the 500 and whether the extra $1800 is worth it.
 

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On the highway you'll enjoy the extra power from the 500. Commuting 200 miles with either one isn't too bad, I've had sunday rides that were 350+

Just make sure to have some money to buy a good jacket (leather or textile) and helmet and gloves. Jeans and boots are okay, but leather or textile pants and motorcycle specific boots are even better.
 

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I haven't had a chance to ride a 500, but i do own a 250 and i don't like to ride it for long distances. The seat to me is just not comfortable over long distances. For short around town stuff its great. BUT that is just my opinion.
 

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Welcome fellow Texan!

If you'll be commuting from SA to College Station, then you'll probably be commuting on both I35 and state Highway 21- probably at speeds of 70 MPH. The 500 would probably be more comfortable for you at that speed, i.e. less motor RPMs at cruising speed. Plus, the extra 80 pounds of heft for the 500 will also add to highway stability. The 500 will be less likely to be affected when passing a large truck at higher speeds.

The 250 will get close to 70 MPG on the highway while the 500 averages 45-50 MPG.... both better than any car, especially with gas creeping towards $2 per gallon again..

I guess it also depends on your height. The 250 accomodates shorter riders easier due to a lower seat height.

If you have enough money for the 500, and are comfortable with your riding skill level then buy the 500. That would be my choice.

Jason
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I am 6' so I will have to ride a 250 before I can judge it to be comfortable for me or not.

As for the price. I am getting $4000 from my parents for a "car." So as of now, if I get a motorcycle I am paying for it from my own pocket. Hopefully this will change after I take the MSF course this upcoming weekend. If I do get the $4000 from them, I am either going to get an '05 250R or an '04 500R because the Kawasaki dealership is trying to hawk off all the '04 models to make room for the newer ones. The bike I buy will almost definitely be new, because I am just sick of owning used vehicles and having to deal with their problems. So at most, I will need to pay $800 out of pocket for the bike itself, then however much is necessary for safety gear. This likely wont be too much of a problem if the '04 500R's are on sale right now for just over $4000.

I wont be riding up to college station for a good 8 months, seeing as how I am only a senior in highschool right now. So that means that in the mean time I will have plenty of time to practice with which ever bike I buy, so by the time I need to ride on the highway, I will at least have some experience with the bike.

Texas tends to be warm even in winter and the lowest the temperatures get is around 35. So what riding gear do you suggest I get? I will likely only get one jacket / pair of pants and just wear extra layers underneath them for warmth, so as long as the gear isnt extremely thin then the temperature shouldnt be a problem. The only major thing that I will need to account for is price.
 

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Consider

Consider the prices in your insurance as well. Then get serious an dlook at tires tha tyou can get for each model. 16" for the 250R and 17" for the 500R. look carefully at the tires available...for your touring...also look at the weight involved with your books and bags to put on your bike and where they will fit. I'm a big 250R pusher...it is easy on gas and easy on insurance, and maintenance. Top end is just over 100 MPH, but loaded down it will take longer to get up to 75...still, flairing your fairing some to give you better aerodynamics, shaving your rear fender, getting a racing or touring windscreen, even a Corbin seat ther are many things you can do to get more economy, and many things you can do to decrease economy but improve power. Changing gears, changing exhaust pipes, changing carb internals...air filters/pods...clipons, rearsets...If you are into saving some cash and getting some gear the 250 is great,, but th e500R will give you great years of riding as well...
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Sorry, I wont get into UT. I slacked off way too much my freshman, sophomore and junior years so my GPA is like a 3.9 and I am THE FIRST PERSON in the bottom half of my class, so I cant get in with the top 10% rule. Although I can easily get into A&M because they have the 1300 or above SAT and top half rule.

I would like to do all of that to a 250R, but it seems as if it would be quite a bit of work and all the modifications may even cost me more than the difference to begin with! Although I am sure that by doing all of those to my bike I would learn it much more and only further my own experiences.
 

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Go sit on the 250 at the dealership or if a friend has one even better. As far as riding on the highway you can change your front sprocket of the ninja 250 one tooth larger and be more comfortable. (15.00 DIY)

I wasn't sure if I got it right if you were going to get a car and a bike or use the money for the car to buy a bike?????? If you get the best of both worlds car/bike you may want to get the 250.

Pros -
Great mileage
Light and easy to ride
Lower cost to insure
Easy to maintenance - anybody with a little time and the ability to read can do it.
If you crash - there are lots of part available for cheap
Has good resale value in case you want to later upgrade to another bike
Awesome for canyons - fast in and out of turns.
Lots of powerband to push through.

Cons
Will never be a 500 in displacement - will need to use the gears smartly
Although Pirelli makes a nice Sport Demon tire for it - if the 500 has 17" rims there are way better rubber choices.
Initial breakin speeds are slow!!!! change that front sprocket.
Suspension is terrible. How much do you weigh?
 

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Southbound35 said:
Welcome fellow Texan!
The 250 will get close to 70 MPG on the highway while the 500 averages 45-50 MPG.... both better than any car, especially with gas creeping towards $2 per gallon again..
creeping towards $2? Wow, over here in Orange County California it is already $2.50 per gallon for regular.
 

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Bah, just get a 500... everyone else does ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
1Adam12 said:
Go sit on the 250 at the dealership or if a friend has one even better. As far as riding on the highway you can change your front sprocket of the ninja 250 one tooth larger and be more comfortable. (15.00 DIY)

I wasn't sure if I got it right if you were going to get a car and a bike or use the money for the car to buy a bike?????? If you get the best of both worlds car/bike you may want to get the 250.

Pros -
Great mileage
Light and easy to ride
Lower cost to insure
Easy to maintenance - anybody with a little time and the ability to read can do it.
If you crash - there are lots of part available for cheap
Has good resale value in case you want to later upgrade to another bike
Awesome for canyons - fast in and out of turns.
Lots of powerband to push through.

Cons
Will never be a 500 in displacement - will need to use the gears smartly
Although Pirelli makes a nice Sport Demon tire for it - if the 500 has 17" rims there are way better rubber choices.
Initial breakin speeds are slow!!!! change that front sprocket.
Suspension is terrible. How much do you weigh?
No, I am getting $4000 strictly for a car. As of now they are saying "No motorcycle" and that means I cannot use the $4000 towards a bike. Hopefully though, after taking the MSF course I will be able to use that money for the bike. As of now, I am thinking of just getting the 250R because I will likely avoid touring all the time between San Antonio and Dallas. Instead I will avoid my family (like most college students) except for when I want money.
 

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If you get a vehicle for $4000.00 think truck possibly - It will be able to haul your 250 to and from and be useful for many years to come. You could even consider going with a Jimmy/Blazer and get a bike hitch.

Something like www.joehauler.com to put on the back - you can travel at any speed with that set up vs having a trailer for the bike - reduced speed on the highway. The pickup will do just as well by thowing it in the back of the bed and just get a canyon dancer. www.canyondancer.com to keep your bike in place.

You could always do the same for a regular car and outfit it with a hitch.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Good point! I guess if I am mandated to only cars / trucks, then I will choose a cheap truck that will be able to haul my future motorcycle. I currently have like $9,000 in stock from when I was a baby, so I could always use that to get a motorcycle.
 

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You are in TEXAS

YOu are in TEXAS! The new models are coming out soon and you will be able to see bikes all over the place for sale. A great place to look is near/on the Military bases. People are getting transfered out and all over just about the time schools end...so that is the time to buy if it is from a military base...other wise when the new models come out you will find some trad ins and you may even qualify fo ra good student loan, or even justa flat out loan...better to have cash an dbuy a 250R outright, to keep your insurance down, way down...another place to check is the salvage yards...not only can you find insurance writeoffs that need just new firings an da new seat, but the parts to repair it as well. Nothing difficult...Once you have decided upon the exact model, order your Service manual from Beartooth 1 800 556 3098 and ge the discount and the book will show you nearly everything that you can do and then some things that you can't do by yourself...
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yeah, I am waiting for the new models to show up at my local Kawasaki Dealer in Universal City. Once they do, the 04 500R's will be hawked off for likely $4200 or less. Although if I get a 250R, I will get a brand new 05 because I can afford them and the new paintjob is sweet. :)

Likely I will avoid buying a used bike except for the reasons you pointed out such as a spareparts machine. Need a new fairing? No problem...i have all of them on this $500 bike that doesnt run.
 

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Prices that low in Texas?

The 2005 500R balck with silver...price? how about the price on a 2005 250? Do they have any ideas on the Out The Door price...Curious...because we have a dealer that is way to big for his britches up here...actually a couple of them...I won't mention names, just look at Johnson County, Kansas, south-south-west of Kansas City...
 

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for a ninja 250 i don't think thier gonna give you a low OTD price because its msrp is already low at 2,999 but i have seen a 2004 ninja 250 new for only 2,799 and i can't seem to find the site for that. So you might want to consider the OTD price for a ninja 250r. BTW does anyone know what site that was??? i've been searching and can't seem to find it

JaMEs
 
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