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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 11:40 AM Thread Starter
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More Commuter Bike Options

I've seen some other threads on commuter bike questions, but since I've got other specific needs I thought why not sully up the place and start another thread.

We found a house (yay!! it comes with nice, newish appliances so my appliance thread is sort of moot.) and it's 8 miles from work, down a four lane city parkway that is much nicer/safer than the four lane parkway I have to commute down now. (Which I refuse to ride to work on. It's no fun. None. It's like combat training.) Speed limit is 25-40ish the whole way. I would bicycle, but it's not the best route on a pedal bike, (too busy) and there aren't any bike paths.

I'm looking for something that gets excellent mpg, and is small/easy to maneuver. I'm a girl, so I don't have to worry about wiener jokes and ego bashing, so I was thinking of a new Ninja 250. I'd love a scooter but husband says no step-throughs allowed. Price range would be $5K or less. Maybe a 'tard? It would have to be short though. Can you get any kind of baggage for the Ninja? I had a VFR, and it was too big and heavy for short squirt city riding.

I'd also really love an old '60s-'70s Honda, but reliability, and not having to worry about paying attention to maintenance or breakdowns is important too. I still have my street Hawk, but we thought it would be fun to have something to beat up on and not think about, as I'd like to try to clean up the Hawk and keep her nice.

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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 12:05 PM
pfft.
 
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Go revisit the scooter option. You can park a scoot on the sidewalk and other ingenious locations; motorcycles have to follow the same rules as cars.
Talk to Mopar about it-- his scoot gets something like 80 mpg???
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 12:09 PM
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Motard FTW.

Lower it if neccesary. DRZ400SM is in your price range for a pretty decent used one.
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 12:14 PM
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Scoots still have to park legally just like bikes, but you might get overlooked more because of their size.

Motard or enduro could be lowered, but you might as well just get a standard as there is good reason for the extra suspension travel...they are off-road capable.

Unfortunately, it sounds like scooter is the only real choice for what you describe.
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 12:20 PM
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drz400, drz250, xt225, tw200.....
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 12:23 PM Thread Starter
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I don't think I'll have any luck talking him into a scooter. Not even if I get him a shiny white pleather suit with a blue ascot and change my name to Me'Shell.

Maybe I'll have to show him this. Scoots are badass.


Actually his main issue is that they're too small and not really visible enough, so he's more worried about my safety.

Parking isn't an issue really, we have a parking lot at work, and the front two visitor spots get motorbike priority.

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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 12:27 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dirtbiker View Post
Motard FTW.

Lower it if neccesary. DRZ400SM is in your price range for a pretty decent used one.
I could get used to the height of the DRZ, it's light enough. Make the suspension squishy enough and it would be good. (I've only ridden one owned by a guy a bit bigger than me with super stiff suspension.) That's been on my list of options but wanted to hear it from other people.

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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 12:41 PM
I need them 4 my footsies
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by truckstop View Post
Maybe I'll have to show him this. Scoots are badass.
Check out that guy highside his scoot! That was awesome.
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 12:44 PM
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that video almost made water shoot out of my nose laughing.

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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 01:12 PM
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Too friggin funny, i gotta race mod my zuma if i dont sell it.

its sorta for sale Im too lazy to list it though

ive been rocking the scoot since 04 and have had not more issuse with people not seeing me than I have on the bike. the size difference itst that drastic when compared to the difference between bike and car. plus the seating arrangement is far more upright giving u better visibility

-Jason
CCS AM #31
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 01:37 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for this information, I'll have to pass it along to the hub. When I drove a Miata, I actually had more issues with people not seeing me than I ever did on a bike, so I'm used to being super aware of my surroundings... but you never know.

Speaking of scooters, and since I'm finding silly videos, I'd dig a Scootacar as well. It's like a scooter with a bubble over it... well, and three wheels:



Met this guy, and saw his car on a vintage bike garage crawl in Chicago. Never thought I'd see a car smaller than my Fiat 500.

Anyhoo... I'll approach the scooter issue again... and maybe look around for a DRZ

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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 01:41 PM
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damnit someone beath me to it, i tore apart an old razz 80 to build something like this

mine will have suspension though

-Jason
CCS AM #31
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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ill_ag View Post
Go revisit the scooter option. You can park a scoot on the sidewalk and other ingenious locations; motorcycles have to follow the same rules as cars.
Talk to Mopar about it-- his scoot gets something like 80 mpg???
i'm pulling off an average of about 72mpg


Quote:
Originally Posted by truckstop View Post
I'm looking for something that gets excellent mpg, and is small/easy to maneuver. I'm a girl, so I don't have to worry about wiener jokes and ego bashing, so I was thinking of a new Ninja 250. I'd love a scooter but husband says no step-throughs allowed.
i'm a guy, i ride a scooter everyday to work, 13 miles each way, i ride in my leather jacket and full face helmet, i dont give two shits what people think, i spend $5 a week in gas.

its really a great commuter bike, its so nimble and i can cut in and out of traffic so easily. i also park it on the sidewalk when i go out for lunch, never had anyone say anything to me about it.

-Mopar

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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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I think we've decided on a DRZ400, I gotta keep working on the scoot idea, but I dig the little Vino. Not the best for mileage unfortunately, but it's better than the Xterra.

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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 07:23 PM
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So what is the average cruising speed of the zuma? I am considering getting one to commute, but if I can't keep up with traffic, I think I'll have to pass.
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post #16 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 07:27 PM
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Quote:
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So what is the average cruising speed of the zuma? I am considering getting one to commute, but if I can't keep up with traffic, I think I'll have to pass.
Joe talk to me on Sunday I'll get you a scooter. Haven't you learned yet, contact me first I have the hookup.

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post #17 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 07:30 PM
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Joe talk to me on Sunday I'll get you a scooter. Haven't you learned yet, contact me first I have the hookup.
I am still in training.

Bring one with you so I can test ride it on the track. Oh yea and bring me that gas can full of 93 octane.
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post #18 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 07:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe View Post
I am still in training.

Bring one with you so I can test ride it on the track. Oh yea and bring me that gas can full of 93 octane.
Make sure you bring CASH!

Hey I can only bring so many things on a trailer. Don't think I haven't thought of bringing a scooter to Norway.

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post #19 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 08:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe View Post
So what is the average cruising speed of the zuma? I am considering getting one to commute, but if I can't keep up with traffic, I think I'll have to pass.
40 average, sometimes 45-50 on days with no head wind when i'm on burb streets. once i get into the city limits of chicago, i'm the fastest guy around, buzzing thru cars and pulling away from everyone.

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post #20 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 09:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MoparBoyy View Post
40 average, sometimes 45-50 on days with no head wind when i'm on burb streets. once i get into the city limits of chicago, i'm the fastest guy around, buzzing thru cars and pulling away from everyone.
You ride a Zuma from Wood Dale into the city? Awesome.

I rode my boss's back from the Yamaha dealership in Lockport to the shop in Justice for him. I thought someone was going to run me over intentionally for going 38 mph down Archer.

He put a bunch of hotrod parts on his and I think it's actually slower now.
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post #21 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 09:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MoparBoyy View Post
40 average, sometimes 45-50 on days with no head wind when i'm on burb streets. once i get into the city limits of chicago, i'm the fastest guy around, buzzing thru cars and pulling away from everyone.
Yep, 40 down RT59 might be pushing the patience of most people unless I end up riding in the median.
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post #22 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 09:18 PM
eeee whas up doc?
 
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Take a look at an Aprilia RS50. One of the coolest bike out there. 50cc, the only thing that I don't like about it is that is 2 stroke.
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post #23 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 09:32 PM
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post #24 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 09:45 PM
eeee whas up doc?
 
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mmm italian beauty

anyone knows what's the mpg on one of these?
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post #25 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-2008, 10:09 PM
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post #26 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-24-2008, 07:25 AM
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Drz 400 SM ftw

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post #27 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-24-2008, 07:31 AM
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Drz 400 SM ftw
+1 40 MPG

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