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Old 02-24-2013, 09:51 AM   #31
wsmc831
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Ktm 350 exc.
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:11 AM   #32
trainman
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Because she's is new to off road and you need to learn, that's why flatfooting is important. Some of the bikes that posters here have mentioned here will just get her hurt, or she will have a fear of riding off road. Like one person said, the Yamaha XT225 would be a better choice for a new rider over the CRF250L or the Yamaha WR250R and those 650's are totally out of the question. For us guys that have been riding for a time that's one thing, but don't put new riders on bikes they can't handle, until they learn and get some seat time.

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Old 02-24-2013, 10:15 AM   #33
ccooper
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Look at the new Honda CRF250L. Nothing special, but for $4500 msrp new, I think it's a great value for someone smaller wanting to get started. If my wife would ride it much, I'd think about one for her. If you wanna step up from there, look at the Yamaha WR250R. Lighter, more power, more technology, but about 2 grand higher. Then your back to the DRZ400 and above. Good luck.
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:21 AM   #34
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She said shes 5 foot 8.Shes probably taller than half of the guys on here.
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:27 AM   #35
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Another vote for the Honda CRF250L, FI, six speed gear box, couple gallons of gas, about 320 pounds 34.7" seat height.
HP is 'upgradeable' when you get ready to do so.
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:28 AM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trainman View Post
Because she's is new to off road and you need to learn, that's why flatfooting is important. Some of the bikes that posters here have mentioned here will just get her hurt, or she will have a fear of riding off road. Like one person said, the Yamaha XT225 would be a better choice for a new rider over the CRF250L or the Yamaha WR250R and those 650's are totally out of the question. For us guys that have been riding for a time that's one thing, but don't put new riders on bikes they can't handle, until they learn and get some seat time.

John
I don't think going from a Harly Sportster to a DRZ would be that much of a transition as the actual riding fundamentals are already there ... With a gradual introduction to off road there wouldn't be a problem...
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:32 AM   #37
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Haha!^^

Yup, a Drz 400/wr250 or similar tank of a bike, then a year later a KTM 350/450 and you're set.
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:34 AM   #38
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Hate to be a wet blanket, but your math is waay off!! you plan to ride approx.120 mi. each week to ,work(taking into account bad weather days),then ride 100 mi each way to the dirt(200 mi. total).If you use a 40/60 ratio you would be riding in the dirt approx.360 mi. a week!You would need tires that really aren't suited for someone new.

I would suggest a 80/20 ratio.You could then use a tire better suited for you.Single track should be a year away,however, there are plenty of dirt/gravel/poorly paved roads to keep you busy untill then.Get on the country roads and go riding when you see a dirt road: take it!!


My wife is 5'9" and she 49 Y.O. She got a DR 650 and we did just as I have outlined and she has become a good rider.

She was exactly like you,(wanting to run before she walked)Hell, we ALL are like that or we would be driving cars!!.

After her DR650 took a couple "dirt naps" she realized there might be a little more to riding dirt than she thought.She had been riding for 5 years(Gpz550,Vulcan,1975 goldwing,etc.All bikes I had sitting around) before this.

The DR 650 has a Factory built in rear shock lowering system and you can lower the forks a little in the triple tree.It's simple to work on and you can't kill it.

If speed is a concern, a friend took my wife's DR650 out for a spin after we had done some work on it and came back with a GPS reading of 105 MPH and he weighs 145 lbs.

As far as being able to put you feet on the ground,take the bike and put the front wheel on the curb(like you might find it on rock while single tracking and then decide how much of your foot needs to be on the ground).


I'll post a pic of one of her "dirt naps" later.

Sorry for being so long winded,but,I want to enjoy riding and slow is fast ...
Al
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:39 AM   #39
achile
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You should get something that fits the folowing criteria:
- light
- dirt-oriented suspension
- low maintanace
- road worthy
- smooth power delivery

I'd go for the xr400 or the dr 350 for starters. They're cheap, air cooled and fun. You'll get bored of them in a year or two and find out what you really like: adventure riding or single track.

If you find yourself thirsty for power and fast fire roads...500cc+, otherwise, 250. Hope to have been of use.


p.s: I have a friend riding in the romanian national enduro championship; she started up her competitional life with a wr-f 250 and she loved it(she also had a SUMO setup for it); her current bike is a 250 KTM exc 2 stroke.
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:57 AM   #40
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go find somebody w/a 650 anything, and get them to lay it down on the lawn.... and then pick it up, when you have all your gear on.... and then do it again in about 15 minutes.... and then put it on a hill and stick it on a tree, and do it again....

less is more.... picking up my 250 lb. KTM sux, and i don't even wanna think about anything over 300 lbs.... and when you pick it up, 'yer gonna be tired from riding in the dirt.... just doing dirt roads ain't gonna be so bad, but if 'yer gonna do some enduro stuff, 'yer gonna want light....
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Old 02-24-2013, 11:04 AM   #41
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Originally Posted by davesupreme View Post
go find somebody w/a 650 anything, and get them to lay it down on the lawn.... and then pick it up, when you have all your gear on.... RUN AROUND THE HOUSE SIX TIMES and then do it again in about 15 minutes.... and then put it on a hill and stick it on a tree, and do it again.....
Fixed.
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Old 02-24-2013, 11:07 AM   #42
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I shudder every time this question is asked. You will get 20 recommendations all at odds with one another. Many don't even fit within your parameters. Noob + Single track + 100 miles of highway = compromise.

Being able to flatfoot is important for some just learning. If nothing else it installs some confidence when you make a mistake. Most of these single track recommendation are tall bikes. You can search the webb for the specifications of any bike. Most include wet weight and seat height.

Mine are: Honda CRF250L. Here is a comparison with a DRZ400. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jx1rlj2x0U8. Tells you more than I can about the Honda.

Another choice is the the Suzuki Dr650. It is reasonably priced, physically smaller than a KLR, BMW XL and lighter than all but the XL. A low seat height that is easily lowered more. At 366lb fueled it won't meet most definition of single track bike, but maybe your definition is different.
It will easily meet your highway needs.

You can learn on that bike. Start with pavement and work into dirt mode.
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Old 02-24-2013, 11:55 AM   #43
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What's the budget?
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Old 02-24-2013, 12:17 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by itsatdm View Post
I shudder every time this question is asked. You will get 20 recommendations all at odds with one another. Many don't even fit within your parameters. Noob + Single track + 100 miles of highway = compromise.

Being able to flatfoot is important for some just learning. If nothing else it installs some confidence when you make a mistake. Most of these single track recommendation are tall bikes. You can search the webb for the specifications of any bike. Most include wet weight and seat height.

Mine are: Honda CRF250L. Here is a comparison with a DRZ400. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jx1rlj2x0U8. Tells you more than I can about the Honda.



You can learn on that bike. Start with pavement and work into dirt mode.
I just read a CW test comparison on the 250 DS bikes and the Honda being the heaviest weighed in at 308 LBS dry which I don't think is any lighter than the DRZ... It does look like a great bike at a low price point if your going to buy new..
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Old 02-24-2013, 01:52 PM   #45
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Really, a KTM or Husqvarna 450 is a much better tool for your intended purpose. They have plenty of torque, definitely a lower wet weight than the dry weight of Japanese 250-650 dual sports and top shelf components.

They can handle moderate commute mileage.

Typically they run in the 3-4k price range.
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