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Any opinions on this bike? I am considering a Yamaha 650 Classic as my first bike, money is tight and I'm a beginner so it has to be a bike in the $6000 range, but this one looked interesting. The only thing I dont like is the chain drive...how does that compare to the shaft drive of the Yamaha? Is the added mantenance that much of a pain? And has anyone riden both?
 

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A friend of mine has one... We swapped bikes for a 30 mile ride one day....I think they SUCK!

Really a gutless bike (even after air cleaner, pipes and rejetting), seat was hard; and felt like you were just perched on top of the bike for the ride...I never felt like I was one with the bike like I have on many machines.

I don't know how the Yamaha 650 is but another friend of mine had the V-star 1100 classic and that bike was awesome. Great power for its size, handled well and was comfortable...and yamaha's look better without the radiator stuck on the front downtubes like an afterthought.

Used V-star 1100's can be had for less than your $6000.00 range. I'd definately hold out for a larger displacement unless you want to go with something like the Honda Magna with the V-four 750....that bike will flat out scream and has the good looks of a V-twin.

I hope you find something you like as there is no sadder thing than a motorcycle that doesn't get ridden.
 

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RTod, why don't you just get an 883 Sportster? You can probably get a used one for $6K, or a new one for about $7K.

The sound of the Yamaha is anemic at best even with pipes. The Sportster will give you a good platform you can actually upgrade in years to come (like a 1200 kit).

The Yam will probably run ok, but from what I've read the cornering clearance is somewhat limited. The Sportsters will handle much better and look better too IMHO.
 

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If you plan on any highway travel avoid the 650 and 750 twin's. The smaller bikes have a very hard time keeping up speed. I rode a coworkers had a hard time passing the semi's. Although they are not the V'twin if you are looking for a bike that is realy inexpensive to maintain ad fun to ride look at a Honda Magna. They are a V4 with an exhaust they sound incredible. I inlcuded a link

http://www.motorcyclecruiser.com/roadtests/SportCruisers/


comparing it to other bikes
Seven Sport-Cruiser Motorcycles
The sporting side of cool as demonstrated by the BMW R1200CE Euro, Harley-Davidson FXDX Dyna Super Glide Sport, Honda VF750C Magna, Honda 1500 Valkyrie six, Moto Guzzi Jackal, Triumph Thunderbird Sport, and Victory V92SC SportCruiser. From the April 2000 issue of Motorcycle Cruiser magazine.

One of my earlier bikes was an 84 Magna 700 it would certainly suprise most people looking like a UJM. I now have a 95 Interceptor (V4 750) and a 2003 FXST currently getting some engine work They should make the same HP but the V4 is effortless in the power delivery

There is a dealer in N IL dealer here asking under $4000 for a 98 with less than 5k miles. You just search Cycle trader and you can find bikes with exhaust/paint for the $6000

Give them a look you certainly won't outgrow the motor.
 

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bwbike said:
RTod, why don't you just get an 883 Sportster? You can probably get a used one for $6K, or a new one for about $7K.

The sound of the Yamaha is anemic at best even with pipes. The Sportster will give you a good platform you can actually upgrade in years to come (like a 1200 kit).

The Yam will probably run ok, but from what I've read the cornering clearance is somewhat limited. The Sportsters will handle much better and look better too IMHO.
Cuz a 1100 Yamaha will smoke a 883 and you get more bang for your buck.

Oh and I don't know what Yamaha you heard with pipes that sounded anemic maybe a vmax or something:dunno:
 

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Fitzdog said:
Cuz a 1100 Yamaha will smoke a 883 and you get more bang for your buck.

Oh and I don't know what Yamaha you heard with pipes that sounded anemic maybe a vmax or something:dunno:
Don't know if the 1100 Yamaha will smoke a 883, but my buddies with a stage I upgrade, smoked my bike when I was still running 1450 with SE 203 cams, pipes, aircleaner, ignition....

I think I'd take it now with my headwork and going big bore. Like I said the 1100 classic is a great bike to ride in my opinion....and it didn't sound anemic at all with the set of Cobra pipes my buddy put on it.
 

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Heres the deal. I'd rather have the 750 with chain over a 650 shaft. The shaft is less efficient so it uses more power to run, plus you have 100cc less engine. The chain is easy to clean, lube and adjust. My girl has the 750 spirit it runs pretty well with pipes and carb kit. However around 80 is when it SOUNDS like it tops out, but it'll do more. Suspension is pretty good, brakes and acceleration are good too. You can pick up a very cleann used one with 3 or 4k miles on it for just over $4000. Thats what I'd do, given the choice of those 2.
 

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DR_DEUCE said:
Heres the deal. I'd rather have the 750 with chain over a 650 shaft. The shaft is less efficient so it uses more power to run, plus you have 100cc less engine. The chain is easy to clean, lube and adjust. My girl has the 750 spirit it runs pretty well with pipes and carb kit. However around 80 is when it SOUNDS like it tops out, but it'll do more. Suspension is pretty good, brakes and acceleration are good too. You can pick up a very cleann used one with 3 or 4k miles on it for just over $4000. Thats what I'd do, given the choice of those 2.
I have to disagree, shaft drive is very easy to maintain and I really don't see how it can be less efficient? It is all about gearing imho. I think I would have to agree with fitzdog on the Yamaha V-star or maybe even a Honda Shadow 1100, my cousin has one and it is an awesome bike!
 

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VTXJOSH....I didn't say shaft drives weren't easy to maintain...they are almost maintenance free. However, due to the hypoid gears in the assembly, it is COMMON knowledge that they'll consume power just to turn them. The chain is much more efficient. Ever see a drag bike with a shaft drive??? Also there are other bikes I'd rather ride, but the question here was between the Yam 650 or the HON 750. Myself..I have 3 HD's.:chopper: :chopper:
 

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DR_DEUCE said:
VTXJOSH....I didn't say shaft drives weren't easy to maintain...they are almost maintenance free. However, due to the hypoid gears in the assembly, it is COMMON knowledge that they'll consume power just to turn them. The chain is much more efficient. Ever see a drag bike with a shaft drive??? Also there are other bikes I'd rather ride, but the question here was between the Yam 650 or the HON 750. Myself..I have 3 HD's.:chopper: :chopper:
Deuce, I was unaware of that, my last 2 bikes were shaft drive and my current one has over 90hp stock to the rear wheel so I guess I never noticed. Stay Safe!:thumbsup:
 

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Is it the Honda 750 or the Yamaha 650 that you're considering? The title of the thread is different from your post. You've got $6000 to spend? My advice is to buy a used bike. You're already on a Harley oriented forum and after you've ridden awhile, you most likely want a bigger HD. If you blow the $6000 on a new metric, expect to lose half that money when you sell it to move up. If it were me, I'd look for a used, low mileage, 2004 or 2005 HD Sportster. If you buy it right, you won't lose any money on resale. They're nice bikes and you can probaby buy a used one with some nice upgrades included.

The Honda and the Yamaha are both good bikes for everyday commuting and some short highway trips. I've spent some time on the Honda. Neither one are as comfy on long trips as a bigger bike would be. Even on day-long rides, you'll want a bigger bike.

Without a doubt someone will chime in and say they own one and they ride it all day... well, I used to own 800cc metrics too, and I also rode them all day. The difference is night and day between those bikes and my FXDWG. After a couple of hours on the metric, I was looking for a place to take a break and I felt beat at the end of the day. After a couple of hours on the big twin, I have to stop for gas and I can't wait to get back on it. At the end of the day, I am sad to see the sun go down. That's the difference...so no matter what you buy, keep resale value in mind... cause you'll be selling it before long.
 

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I agree I would look at larger bikes also (at least 1100cc or bigger) they are just as easy to ride as the smaller bike IMHO, but I would look at as many bikes as I could before going HD or metric. Believe it or not some people prefer metric.:sofa:
 

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JamieWG said:
Is it the Honda 750 or the Yamaha 650 that you're considering? The title of the thread is different from your post. You've got $6000 to spend? My advice is to buy a used bike. You're already on a Harley oriented forum and after you've ridden awhile, you most likely want a bigger HD. If you blow the $6000 on a new metric, expect to lose half that money when you sell it to move up. If it were me, I'd look for a used, low mileage, 2004 or 2005 HD Sportster. If you buy it right, you won't lose any money on resale. They're nice bikes and you can probaby buy a used one with some nice upgrades included.

The Honda and the Yamaha are both good bikes for everyday commuting and some short highway trips. I've spent some time on the Honda. Neither one are as comfy on long trips as a bigger bike would be. Even on day-long rides, you'll want a bigger bike.

Without a doubt someone will chime in and say they own one and they ride it all day... well, I used to own 800cc metrics too, and I also rode them all day. The difference is night and day between those bikes and my FXDWG. After a couple of hours on the metric, I was looking for a place to take a break and I felt beat at the end of the day. After a couple of hours on the big twin, I have to stop for gas and I can't wait to get back on it. At the end of the day, I am sad to see the sun go down. That's the difference...so no matter what you buy, keep resale value in mind... cause you'll be selling it before long.
I think you're a little out of touch with sportster pricing there buddy. The new and much improved 04-05 models have prices in the 10-$11,000.00 range new and while they may depreciate a little bit, they aren't going to come down near $6,000.00 unless they're wrecked.

Six grand is enough money to be looking at a larger bore metric used, like we've already discussed; and MAY be enough for the older style sporsters as they have lost some value due to the improvement of the line. When the 04 sportsters came out, there wasn't a dealer around that could sell the pre 04 sporsters anymore. Our local dealers ended up giving several away in raffles and radio promotions.

I will say, that the 1100 V-star classic would be a much better cruiser than the older sporsters.
 

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Thank you for setting that straight seahag!!

Jamie I'm not sure if you knew this or not but metrics do come in sizes larger than 800cc:chopper:
 

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Somewhere in there I meant to type that 2004-5 Sportsters were improved, but he could pick up an older one for under $6000. Then I had a brain fart, got confused, the coffee hadn't kicked in, the drugs hadn't worn off, and I f*cked up! ... :duh?:

Yeah, you can get a used metric for $6000 and you can get a big one. But if it was me, I wouldn't. I'd get a used Sportster, ride the tires off it and save up for my next bike.. then I'd sell the Sportster, get almost all my money back and buy a bigger HD . Some of you guys would get the metric, and I won't argue with that route.. I used to ride used metrics all the time because it was all I could afford, so I've sort of been in this guy's shoes.. but he has $6K and that's enough to step right into a decent HD, so that's what I am recommending because to me HD is by far the better bike...

Either way he goes, he will be a winner because he'll be riding..and that's what makes life fun - you get to make your own choices on stuff like $6000 purchases. :thumbsup:
 

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JamieWG said:
Somewhere in there I meant to type that 2004-5 Sportsters were improved, but he could pick up an older one for under $6000. Then I had a brain fart, got confused, the coffee hadn't kicked in, the drugs hadn't worn off, and I f*cked up! ... :duh?:

Yeah, you can get a used metric for $6000 and you can get a big one. But if it was me, I wouldn't. I'd get a used Sportster, ride the tires off it and save up for my next bike.. then I'd sell the Sportster, get almost all my money back and buy a bigger HD . Some of you guys would get the metric, and I won't argue with that route.. I used to ride used metrics all the time because it was all I could afford, so I've sort of been in this guy's shoes.. but he has $6K and that's enough to step right into a decent HD, so that's what I am recommending because to me HD is by far the better bike...

Either way he goes, he will be a winner because he'll be riding..and that's what makes life fun - you get to make your own choices on stuff like $6000 purchases. :thumbsup:
Some great points!!!
 

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I came across this review of "middleweight" cruisers at motorcyclecruiser.com. I scrolled down to the conclusions and this is what they had to say...and I think it applies nicely here:

Before you buy one of these "middleweights," assess your needs carefully. There are no dogs in this quartet -- especially in terms of performance. All of the bikes will pace or pull away from bigger twins. All should hold together well enough to provide reliable daily transportation. But each one has strengths and weaknesses.

So what do you want an 1100 to do? Are you planning to travel? The V-Star 1100 Classic is the best choice in the class, but the Aero can also provide lots of long happy miles. Or do you need a street fighter for the ride to work? Depending on whom you ask, the Sabre and the Sportster are the winners there. Is riding with a passenger a big part of your plans? The Aero is the roomiest. Plan to play on winding roads? We'd pick the Sportster. Are head-turning looks important? The Aero scored highest on all of our style meters and provoked the most apparent envy from casual commentators. It also looks the biggest and most elegant. Plan to customize or hop-up? The Harley has boatloads of options. But you want a custom that isn't another Harley? The V-Stars enjoy the best aftermarket support of the rest.

Since we left some 1100 V-twins out, other possible best-1100 questions are answered by bikes we didn't include. For example, which bike would we pick as the most reliable? That would be the Honda Shadow Spirit, which is smooth and has enough history to have ironed out most bugs. Any of the other Japanese bikes would also be good choices, but the aging design and vibration of the Harley worries us slightly. However, Harley riders in general enjoy the best national dealer base. Want even more sporting flavor? Harley's Sportster 1200 Sport should get your attention. Moto Guzzi's Jackal is also an inspired sporter, though its 1100 V-twin doesn't follow the tandem layout of these bikes. Is saving every purchase dollar important? The other V-Star, the $7899 Custom, has many of the V-Star Classic's attributes for $200 less.

But all of these bikes are bargains if you measure their performance and quality against the ranks of big twins. The 75 percent solution can provide comparable performance and quality with a slight loss of torque and prestige.
 

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Had a Honda Shadow A.C.E. Rides like a weed eater over 65mph. RPM's are so high. If you can go with a larger engine I'd suggest doing so. Else it makes for a good around towner.
 

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I also think you should go with an 1100cc bike instead of the 750. There is a HUGE difference in the ride/handling. I have a '93 Honda Shadow 1100 and have ridden a Honda Shadow 750. Night and day difference. The 750 seemed sluggish and under powered to me. It took forever to get up to highway speeds, especially with a passenger. I also have an '06 Night Train, but am still in the break-in period so I haven't had a chance to really open her up...

You can pick up a used Honda Shadow 1100 for somewhere in the 2-4k range, depending on the year and condition. Mine has 66k miles on it and is still running strong. Check out ebay or craigslist. Anything '93 or newer VT1100 (Shadow/Spirit) is basically the same bike. Little change over the years.

Since it will be your first bike, I would go used and non-HD. Alot less painful to drop a cheaper bike (price wise). Yes, you will drop it (while moving or not) at least once and ussually within the first year. Its a statistical truth... Good luck...
 
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