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Old 03-18-2011, 10:03 PM   #31
TNC
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There's another thread going right now along these lines that brought up the electric starter issue for beginners in general and women in particular. I kind of know Charla and Tami...even got to see them ride once. I know a good many of the women on this site are serious riders and quite good ones...a short one on a Honda XR400 comes to mind. I'm asking this as a serious question and not meant negatively to the ladies who've posted here. How important is electric start to you ladies. Most of us guys...even someone my age...can kickstart most any bike, but many of us have no desire to do so again if we can avoid it. But...how critical would the lady riders here classify the electric start on their dirt/DS bike or the consideration of buying a bike with no e-start?
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:14 PM   #32
Hannda
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TNC View Post
There's another thread going right now along these lines that brought up the electric starter issue for beginners in general and women in particular. I kind of know Charla and Tami...even got to see them ride once. I know a good many of the women on this site are serious riders and quite good ones...a short one on a Honda XR400 comes to mind. I'm asking this as a serious question and not meant negatively to the ladies who've posted here. How important is electric start to you ladies. Most of us guys...even someone my age...can kickstart most any bike, but many of us have no desire to do so again if we can avoid it. But...how critical would the lady riders here classify the electric start on their dirt/DS bike or the consideration of buying a bike with no e-start?
I'm not a lady, but I'm married to one. For her, after starting on a kick start bike (2004 KLR250), it became crucial. There were lots of situations where she couldn't get a foot down to hold the bike up so that she could kick it. Not a problem in a parking lot, but a huge deal when the trail you're on is canted down to the left. By the time her left foot hit the ground the bike was leaning towards 10 o'clock and there was no way for her to kick the bike. We sold it and she replaced the KLR with a Sherpa for dual sport and an F650gs for the road. Her enjoyment of riding went up ten fold with that change. YMMV.
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Old 03-18-2011, 11:26 PM   #33
guns_equal_freedom
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I have a suggestion for the XCF-W, change the triple clamps from the 18/20 to the fixed 22 offsets.

It gives a bit more lock to lock clearance plus it makes the bike handle a lot better (IMHO).
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Old 03-18-2011, 11:49 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TNC View Post
There's another thread going right now along these lines that brought up the electric starter issue for beginners in general and women in particular. I kind of know Charla and Tami...even got to see them ride once. I know a good many of the women on this site are serious riders and quite good ones...a short one on a Honda XR400 comes to mind. I'm asking this as a serious question and not meant negatively to the ladies who've posted here. How important is electric start to you ladies. Most of us guys...even someone my age...can kickstart most any bike, but many of us have no desire to do so again if we can avoid it. But...how critical would the lady riders here classify the electric start on their dirt/DS bike or the consideration of buying a bike with no e-start?
For the most part I think kick starting a bike is mostly about confidence and technique unless you're R.eally F.ucking S.hort.

Here's a great pic on Kelly on her CRF....



I think it's safe to say that she'd be physically incapable of kick starting this bike without some assistance from a rock to stand on or something to hold on to, and even then a beginning rider isn't going to want to have to do that. Learning how to ride is frustrating enough without adding that to the mix, especially if you have a finicky 4 stroke that is difficult to start.
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Old 03-19-2011, 04:51 AM   #35
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That last pic of Kelly looks like me riding my 640A.

I needed stilts, but man! did I love that bike!

M
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Old 03-19-2011, 05:10 AM   #36
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That pic says so much. I couldn't do that any more than I could flap my arms and fly. Once started, it would just be a case of riding till I ran out of gas; fall over; pick it up; fill the tank; repeat. That these folks do this, stick with it till they master it, and enjoy it is remarkable.

In my travels I once stopped in Missoula to pick up a chain and sprocket for my bike. The dealership had both BMW and KTM. I stood next to one KTM that I swear the seat lacked about 4 inches of coming to my armpit..

Having shrunk to a towering 5'4", 27" inseam, my new bike with a 31" seat height can get a little testy when stopping on loose surfaces. a lack of strength doesn't help either.

I say 3 Cheers! for the Sturdy Girls!!!
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Old 03-19-2011, 05:21 AM   #37
Region Riley OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hannda View Post
I'm not a lady, but I'm married to one. For her, after starting on a kick start bike (2004 KLR250), it became crucial. There were lots of situations where she couldn't get a foot down to hold the bike up so that she could kick it. Not a problem in a parking lot, but a huge deal when the trail you're on is canted down to the left. By the time her left foot hit the ground the bike was leaning towards 10 o'clock and there was no way for her to kick the bike. We sold it and she replaced the KLR with a Sherpa for dual sport and an F650gs for the road. Her enjoyment of riding went up ten fold with that change. YMMV.


I would never ride a bike that was kick start only. Just getting on the bike is a big enough challenge for me.
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Old 03-19-2011, 06:18 AM   #38
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I feel so left out.
You're a short girl at heart, Charla.
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Old 03-19-2011, 06:52 AM   #39
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This thread is fun! Hi there, i'm Underkill, I'm 5'3", and I've decided to sample every motorcycle they make before picking one...

Pre Riding: Boyfriend at the time (Blinkerfluid on here, now a Fiancee) had a copper SV650S. Took me for a ride on it. Hooked for life. I don't think he knew what he was getting himself into. Sold the SV. I decided I wanted to ride. Don't really know how I came to that conclusion, just woke up one day and mentioned it. We ended up with a beat to hell TTR125L. A very very patient boy taught me how to ride. Sold that one, screwed around for a year, ended up realizing I was an idiot, and bought another one! Same bike, but in much better shape. This one ended up with YZ suspension.

(and no I never rode it like that!!!)

So I was riding the crap out of the TTR down in Florida, upgraded to a KTM 105!

That bike turned into this after forgetting that my bike was shorter than the boys' bikes and we sunk in a mud puddle. literally up to my thighs in mud. not cool.


After this I wanted a dual sport. and being a horsepower junky, I ended up with a very poorly lowered KTM 525. That didn't end well. It also had the massive 'KTM Valdez' tank. Meh.

So I got an XT225. Great little bike. Set it up with every mod imaginable including a custom 5ish gallon tank. (this was before they made one for it). the sheepskin was hilarious. Rode from VA to MO over christmas break. Not my best idea, but we rode the Dragon on new years day. No one else on it. Very cool.



Had a brief love affair with an 883L sporty... this was a rebound motorcycle from selling my Camaro. it was the same color... but alas it didnt' work out. Liked the motor, hated the seating position.


Then came the 640 Adventure... The boyfriend had one. loved it. only problem was. they're not midget approved. obviously.

So we sent the suspension off to Zerodog for 4" of lowering, revalving, and general magic. He rocks. Here's a hilarious picture of our living room, because I like to post stuff!

Yay!!!!

Here's a video if it'll work for me:
http://underkill.smugmug.com/gallery...354_mhnmM-A-LB
but, alas, i'm picky as crap, and ended up crashing this bike BECAUSE of my crash bars. (the Holan crashbar redesign was probably my fault!) Mild concussion and Shoei Hornet trashed. Sigh. I tend to sell bikes once they hurt me... I would buy it back in an instant. Dumb...
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Old 03-19-2011, 07:07 AM   #40
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The Underkill chronicles part2:

So after deciding that the 640 is a "bigger girl" I wanted something a little smaller since I can't really manhandle a 640. sooooo KTM 250XCFW! Great little bike!


Shoulda kept this one too, but at the time in VA all we had was singletrack. and 1. i suck at singletrack and 2. the KTM was hard to muscle through stupid singletrack. Out here in WA it woulda been a blast. but.. sold this one. Sigh. Are we seeing a pattern here? I want the new KTM unobtanium 3000RR. Dammit.

Ended up getting a Ninja 250. Who knows what logic I used to convince aforementioned man-creature that I needed one. but it worked.

Fun little bike! I think I put a 1" link on the rear. Liked the bike in the mountains. Didn't like it on the highway. and I couldn't get the bars up high enough. (yes I had the risers on it) I think I hurt my shoulder more than I thought in the 640 debacle. So I probably used this reasoning to get a "real" streetbike that I could put dirtbike bars on! (logical, right? that's what I thought! the boy just played along again...)
WOOHOO! LOVE!


Then we sold the streetbikes and moved to Washington state. (from Virginia... yard sale! everything must go!)

Where I ended up with this flavor of the week:

KLX 250S. I didnt' mean to shave the seat as much as I did, but apparently my seat was made with 2 layers of foam. but it's pretty comfy. Still not totally cool with the height. I can ride it, but I always end up stopping on hills and uneven terrain, etc etc.. so I have links in the garage for it. we'll see how that goes. Should be a good bike. pretty light, more reliable than the KTM 250. Way less maintainance. AND they make the 351 kit for it.. which should make me pretty happy. Im sure i'll find something stupid to whine about with it, but i'm keeping it anyway..

It's behind that ugly orange thing. (I gotta ride that one sometime! anyone else have someone 'launch' and then catch them? fun times!)
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Old 03-19-2011, 07:14 AM   #41
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Marc
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Old 03-19-2011, 07:35 AM   #42
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Thanks for chiming in Underkill!

Damn, you have been through some bikes!

I hope you find the KLX to your liking and let us know how the lowering goes!
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Old 03-19-2011, 07:37 AM   #43
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Old 03-19-2011, 07:45 AM   #44
Bonnie Abbzug
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Originally Posted by Region Riley View Post


I would never ride a bike that was kick start only. Just getting on the bike is a big enough challenge for me.
I wouldn't ride one either, but I know women that do and it doesn't seem to bother them (Jitters, playznmud... ) I think you have to know your lady and know whether or not it would be a problem for them. Duke started me out on the DT100, which was kick start only, I could reach the kickstart and start it, just not easily, and I didn't enjoy it.

I think I would recommend that you start a woman out on electric start, if possible, just to avoid any unnecessary tears. And, yes boys, there is crying in motorcycling.

Bonnie Abbzug screwed with this post 03-19-2011 at 07:53 AM
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Old 03-19-2011, 07:50 AM   #45
Hannda
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And, yes boys, there is crying in motorcycling.

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