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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've read the threads on here with many posts about how this bike isn't a beginner's bike, so I'm curious, what are you guys considering a "beginner" ? Someone learning how a motorcycle's clutch works? Someone that's only ridden the dirt but not the street? Or am I still a beginner:


I've been riding a TW200 for 8 months now. Purchased it brand new and have already put 2500 miles on it, maybe 400 of it on dirt. I bought it to commute to work, 40 mile round trip into big city Little Rock, and explore trails. I'm a professional driver for a delivery company, where I have to be extremely cautious and aware of all the crazies on the road. I'm really glad I got my bike after I started driving professionally, I somewhat had already trained my brain to "drive like no one can see me." I'm also glad I bought my first bike brand new because it forced me to take it easy through the break-in period and really learn how to operate the bike. Even on my little 200cc I never went to full throttle until I hit 1000 miles.

Anyways, the performance of the FZ-09 really attracts me to it, and the price hooks me. Though I have considered getting an R6, would it be easier since it has less torque than the 09? Or would getting a new 09 force me to again take it easy through the break-in period, and letting me learn how to handle the bike before I release its inner beast a thousand miles later? :cool:
 

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I consider myself a street beginner, even though I road my 1st street bike 35 years ago. I probably have less than 5000 street miles, but I do have dirt experience, and I do not regret buying the FZ09. The reason I never bought my own street bike earlier in life was that I lacked the discretion and discipline to stay out of trouble. If you have the discipline to take it easy while you gradually get familiar with the bike, and you have previous dirt or street experience, the FZ09 in "B" mode will serve you well.
 

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You aren't a complete beginner, but yes I'd still say a beginner. There's a huge performance gap between the TW200 and the FZ 09, I'd prefer that the 09 be a person's 3rd bike at the earliest.

The R6 is a high performance bike and the rider's position can take getting used to. I'd suggest a bike with a more relaxed position and 40-70HP. I didn't look up the HP for the TW200 but guess that it can't really do highway speed or is a dog at it. A 40HP bike will do highway speed just fine (top speed getting up around 100MPH) and a 70HP will feel like a rocket to you.
 

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Get the FZ-09. Enrol in an MSF course, if you haven't already. Be aware that it has a significant amount of power, and ride accordingly. Your biggest problems are going to be all the other characters you've got to share the roads with.
 

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Get the FZ-09. Enrol in an MSF course, if you haven't already. Be aware that it has a significant amount of power, and ride accordingly. Your biggest problems are going to be all the other characters you've got to share the roads with.
+1 on the Motorcycle Safety Course. I was surprised at the defensive strategies I hadn't thought of. Here in Texas, it substitutes for the state riding test. Class I took had bikes available as well. Definitely time/money well spent.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
You aren't a complete beginner, but yes I'd still say a beginner. There's a huge performance gap between the TW200 and the FZ 09, I'd prefer that the 09 be a person's 3rd bike at the earliest.

The R6 is a high performance bike and the rider's position can take getting used to. I'd suggest a bike with a more relaxed position and 40-70HP. I didn't look up the HP for the TW200 but guess that it can't really do highway speed or is a dog at it. A 40HP bike will do highway speed just fine (top speed getting up around 100MPH) and a 70HP will feel like a rocket to you.
yeah I'm only at 16hp right now. I don't ride the main interstates around here with the 18-wheelers. What would be an in between bike?

thanks for the replies guys
 

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SV650 is a good in between bike, as is a FZ6R. I started in the dirt when i was 16 or so, then i got a FZ6R last year and got the 09 about 9 months after that. I got the 09 too fast, but i learned quickly.

The biggest reason the 09 isn't a bike to be bought lightly is throttle control. With little experience its hard to get used to the quick throttle on the 09, all the power is instant. Also even as a light bike its pretty heavy. My wife's ninja 1000 although heavier and more powerful has a much less brutal throttle response.

With your TW200, a run away throttle, or a falling bike isn't as much as a disaster as it is on the 09.
 
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yeah I'm only at 16hp right now. I don't ride the main interstates around here with the 18-wheelers. What would be an in between bike?

thanks for the replies guys
My vote goes to an sv650. It's a good all around bike for commuting, racing, touring... whatever you want. They're cheap, forgiving, reliable, lots of aftermarket and used parts, etc.

The FZ is not going to be very forgiving of mistakes. Too much thottle at the wrong time can be disastrous. Sure there's B mode but let's be honest, would you really use it? Whatever you decide, be safe out there :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
I would definitely use the B mode while getting used to it. I am concerned about the increased power, but also worried about the emergency braking, especially in corners. My TW is light enough I can recover easy. Not sure how aggressive the brakes are on a sport bike.

I definitely don't want to end my riding career early by progressing too fast. A KLR650 looks appealing. I had always planned to keep my TW200 after I get a sport bike because I'm a real adventurous guy that loves exploring old dirt roads and trails deep into the forests, I also like to take long trips out to our state parks. The TW gets real tiring after 60 mile or so. Looks like a KLR650 would be a big step in power, but that 35" seat height is ridiculous!

edit:
I'm 5'10" and 160 lb by the way
 

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I would definitely use the B mode while getting used to it. I am concerned about the increased power, but also worried about the emergency braking, especially in corners. My TW is light enough I can recover easy. Not sure how aggressive the brakes are on a sport bike.

I definitely don't want to end my riding career early by progressing too fast. A KLR650 looks appealing. I had always planned to keep my TW200 after I get a sport bike because I'm a real adventurous guy that loves exploring old dirt roads and trails deep into the forests, I also like to take long trips out to our state parks. The TW gets real tiring after 60 mile or so. Looks like a KLR650 would be a big step in power, but that 35" seat height is ridiculous!
The FZ isn't great for long distance either unless you want to make a lot of mods, and B mode is still a lot of power.
 

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I know there has been a lot of discussion around the FZ-09 as a first bike. But I'd like a few honest opinions, I have been riding the last 10 years both motocross, enduro racing and trail riding just a brief riding background. But just recently have had to make the decision to switch over to street riding as the most available means to keep riding. I'd like to feel that I am generally mature enough to keep myself out of trouble in moving to the street. I'm looking for a bike that I wont to quickly outgrow, as I'm quite used to throwing a bike around in the dirt. I know these are two separate worlds in many respects, but any advice would be appreciated.

Just as a note the FZ- 09 is the only bike within my price range other than going straight into building something that I feel some sort of connection with. As a designer its hard to settle for something that you would instantly see wanting to change. I have also taken a ridden weekend safety course.
 

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I had a WR250F that I plated, mainly for forest road use. Brake dive & road handling were bad, of course. I don't think dirt experience can be over-emphasized as a plus for street or track riding. Brings to mind a run up in the Haans Peak area near Steamboat CO not long ago. I ran into a group trail riding, and they asked if I'd like to tag along. They proceeded to shag up a fire road, 6 strong, with me trailing through some pretty bad dust. I backed off at ~60 for visibility, just in time to see a hard right coming fast on the gravel with major exposure/consequence outside the turn. All I could do was pitch the bike sideways before the turn and apply throttle. I made the turn, but I think I had some help from the man upstairs. I think running some braking drills in the dirt would be a good way to learn modulation & control that'll transfer to the street. I've been hitting the binders on the 09 pretty hard, when safe, to start to learn the limits.
I would definitely use the B mode while getting used to it. I am concerned about the increased power, but also worried about the emergency braking, especially in corners. My TW is light enough I can recover easy. Not sure how aggressive the brakes are on a sport bike.

I definitely don't want to end my riding career early by progressing too fast. A KLR650 looks appealing. I had always planned to keep my TW200 after I get a sport bike because I'm a real adventurous guy that loves exploring old dirt roads and trails deep into the forests, I also like to take long trips out to our state parks. The TW gets real tiring after 60 mile or so. Looks like a KLR650 would be a big step in power, but that 35" seat height is ridiculous!
 

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I think the term 'beginner' is very subjective. I would not recommend the FZ as someone's first bike, nor does a moped qualify one as 'experienced on two wheels'. That being said, I think anyone with years of dirt riding or MX experience probably have an advantage with regards to bike control and fundamentals. Maturity and self control would be highly recommended before purchasing a bike with the grunt of an FZ or any Supersport for that matter. I've seen and known too many people who think they can go out and buy a 100+ hp bike and not get into trouble and end up wadding it up in the first month. Highly recommend taking an MSF course if you'd like to learn the fundamentals or polish some rusty skills-very worthwhile. The FZ is not a difficult bike to ride if you respect the bike and your own personal skill set. Just ride within your capabilities as you learn what the bike can do and stretch your limits as your experience and comfort level grows. A cheap MSRP doesn't necessarily mean entry level, and too many times people buy the most speed they can afford with little regard to their own personal limits.
 

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Maturity, Self Control, and Experience

I've addressed this issue. My view is not considered popular on this website. My opinion is my own and is not to be considered as a responsible FZ-09 Forum's Statement. I hope your decision for your next motorcycle is the correct one for you. If I "lost" my FZ-09 I'd buy another ASAP. Be safe and the best of luck. Dr R :angel9::):angel9:

http://www.fz09.org/forum/6-fz-09-g...-recommend-starter-bike-before-fz-09-a-7.html
http://www.fz09.org/forum/6-fz-09-g...-09-probably-isn-t-great-beginner-bike-3.html


UPDATE: After much consideration I am stating The FZ-09 is NOT the best choice as the First Motorcycle for the General Population; however, I believe there are exceptions. We all differ in in the God Given Talents we are born with and develop. I consider dirt bike experience excellent. I think quick reflex, good judgment, experience with other motorsports, martial arts, sports, a healthy respect and appreciation for high horsepower, training courses in motorcycle riding, and advise from experienced riders are all prudent. This is only a partial list. Most Importantly: Ride within your limitations and slowly expand them.:angel9::cool::angel9:
 

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May I ask a question...these riding modes.....Not just the fz09, but all that have them...

Now, lets take a beginner. We'll put him on a mode with less power. Let him get familiar with the bike, then change the power delivery. Really? Why not reduce braking power, too? If we cna find a few more things to alter, we'll make it an entire different bike from what its supposed to be.
 

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May I ask a question...these riding modes.....Not just the fz09, but all that have them...

Now, lets take a beginner. We'll put him on a mode with less power. Let him get familiar with the bike, then change the power delivery. Really? Why not reduce braking power, too? If we cna find a few more things to alter, we'll make it an entire different bike from what its supposed to be.
I see "B mode" as a convenient, more forgiving alternative to the factory "STD" & "A mode"-a tool to ease into the power of the bike or use in slick conditions. Both throttle and brake require proper modulation for good control, but I hear a consensus on the "snatchy" throttle, and not so much criticism of the brakes. Lot's of experienced riders are paying good money to have the drive by wire smooth out. I would think a beginner is more likely to get into trouble with the FZ09 throttle than with the brakes, by a good margin. Lastly, doesn't "supposed to be" included "B mode"? The 3 mode system is part of the FZ09, like it or not. One could recommend a bike with ABS, but isn't that a bandaid on the tack?
 

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I know there has been a lot of discussion around the FZ-09 as a first bike. But I'd like a few honest opinions, I have been riding the last 10 years both motocross, enduro racing and trail riding just a brief riding background. ..... I have also taken a ridden weekend safety course.
You might be new to the street but are an experienced rider, you don't have to think which control does what, and I'm guessing you've raced some of the higher HP classes so you are used to things happening in a blink.

Sounds to me like the 09 is a reasonable bike for you, great that you've already taken a class, I guess it was for beginning street riders? Continue learning though reading, classes, practice etc. Give yourself time to learn what is different on the street etc, you should be fine.
 
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