More Bikes From Motorcycle Live 2010

December 8, 2010

As ya know one of the GREAT things about Motorcycle Live is being able to sit on bikes and try them out for size so I did!!!!!!

Here I am on the Ninja :D

As you can see I was able to totally flat foot on both sides when sitting on it.  I found it felt quite slim as well!  All well and good when you’re only 5′ 3″ tall!!!

Next up is me on the CBR600.  Sat on this one I was only able to get the balls of both feet on the floor which quite surprised me considering how I felt on the Fireblade!

Here I am on the Fireblade :D  I was very pleasantly surprised to find that I could get both feet flat on the floor on the Blade.  I wasn’t expecting it to be as small as it is, gawd knows how big blokes manage to ride it comfortable. I felt like it fitted me like a glove!

After the Urban Tiger colour scheme I personally think the HRC colours are the next best.  I just loved that bike and after riding my ’95 Fireblade it felt so tiny.  I may just have to look out for one ina  few years time :D

The photo which makes me giggle the most is the next one!  I’m only little ( 5′ 3″!!!) and have said for almost 2 years that I’d love a crosser of some sort but being as little as I am I reckon I’ll have a few issues!  Yer I know that riding crossers off road is different than riding on the street but you still have to stop sometime without falling over, and therein lies my problem.  The crossers I saw at the show seemed to have seat heights that were mostly about the level of my waist :(

Until we found this one :D

Finally one I can fit on!!! :D


Bikes Girls Can Ride – Updated

August 9, 2010

One of the most common questions asked by girls who are new to biking is “What bike will I be able to ride?”  Well, after seeing it asked a few times on girls biking forums, I asked the girls which bikes they were riding now and what they had owned in the past, what adjustments if any had been made and if they wore boots which added to their height.

I collated the information I recieved and here is a list of bikes that girls are riding right now.

This list is not intended as a definitive guide as to what bike to buy for your height, but shows the kinds of bikes girls are riding about on.

I know that there are other considerations such as leg length, what boots you wear, etc., which also affect which bikes you can ride but I will cover them in other posts.

Under 5’

Honda CB400T -
Honda CBR400RR -
Honda CBR600F (4′ 11″ Owner) – Professionally lowered by DRS of Hull, Boots altered to add height
Kawasaki ZXR400 – Suspension lowered
Kawasaki ER6 (4′ 10″ Owner) – Hagon Shock fitted which lowers bike by 2.5 inches, plus wears Daytona Ladystars
Suzuki GSF400 Bandit -
Yamaha R6 2004 -

5’
Ducati Hypermotard – Suspension lowered, ride height adjuster on lowest setting
Honda CBR600F -
Honda CBR600RR -
Kawasaki GPZ500 -
Kawasaki Ninja 250 (08) – Some foam sculpted out of the seat and on ball of left foot/tip toe of right foot
Suzuki GSX 600F – No adjustment but couldn’t flat foot
Suzuki GSX-R600 K8 – lowered
Suzuki GSX-R600 K6 – - no adjusment but on balls of feet/tiptoes
Suzuki GSXR1000 K6 – Suspension lowered, forks dropped slightly
Suzuki SV650S -
Yamaha R6 (2002)- No adjustment but couldn’t flat foot

5’1”
Kawasaki Ninja – Suspension lowered and on tip toes

5’2
BMW F650GS – No adjustment but on balls of the feet
Honda CBF125 (09) – No adjustment and on tip toes
Honda CBR125 (08) – No adjustment but comfortably on balls of both feet
Honda CBR400RRN – No adjustment
Honda CBR 600 F – Hyperpro lowering kit, front forks dropped.
Honda Shadow 750
Kawasaki 750 Zephyr
Kawasaki ZXR400 – No adjustment
Kawasaki ZZR600
Suzuki 400 Bandit
Suzuki GSX-R600 K6
Suzuki SV650S
Suzuki SV650 – Lowered but feet still not flat on the floor
Yamaha Virago 535 – No adjustment and both feet flat on floor

5’3”
BMW R1200 ST
Ducati 749s – No adjustment
Ducati Monster 695 – No adjustment and on balls of feet
Honda CBR400RR – No adjustment
Honda CBR600 RR (07) – Hyperpro lowering kit and wearing Daytona Ladystar boots and on balls of both feet
Honda CBR900 (95) – Seat carved a bit to lower it, standard shock setting and now pretty much flat footed
Honda CBR 929 RRY Fireblade – No adjustment, but only one flat foot
Kawasaki ER5 – Lowered suspension, carved out seat
Kawasaki ER6-N (2009)
Suzuki GS500F
Suzuki SV650 – No adjustment but on balls of feet
Suzuki SV650S – Suspension and forks lowered, but still on balls of feet
Yamaha FZS600
Yamaha YZF600R Thundercat – lowered
Yamaha YZF600R Thundercat – No adjustment, on balls of both feet or flat foot on one side
Yamaha R6 – Lowered

5’4”
BMW F650GS
BMW F650GS (08) – Lower seat and Daytona Ladystar boots and owner virtually flat foot on both sides
Ducati Hypermotard 1100S (08) – Lowering link and forks lowered, seat sculpted and wears Daytona Ladystars.  On balls of both feet.
Ducati S2R 800 (05) – Seat lowered and on balls of both feet
Honda CBR125 (09) – No adjustment but on balls of the feet
Honda RVF 400 – No adjustment
Honda CBR 600 – No adjustment
Honda CBR600fx – Bike lowered, can almost flat foot.
Honda CBR600fx – No adjustment but on balls of feet
Honda Transalp – Seat lowered
Kawasaki ER5 – No adjustment but on balls of the feet
Kawasaki ER6f – No adjustment, almost flat foot
Suzuki Bandit 400 – No adjustment
Suzuki Bandit 600 – Suspension lowered
Suzuki GSR600 – No adjustment but on tip toes
Suzuki GSR600 – No Adjustment
Suzuki VZ800 Marauder – No adjustment
Suzuki XF650 Freewind – Bike lowered
Truimph Speed Triple – No adjustment but on balls of the feet
Yamaha Diversion 600

5’5”
Cagiva 1000
Ducati Monster 620sie – No adjustment and both feet flat on floor
Honda CBR1000 (2008) – no adjustment, one flat foot or both toes on floor
Honda VFR400 NC30 – No adjustment
Kawasaki GPZ500s – No adjustment and feet flat on floor
Kawasaki Z1000 – No adjustment, but on balls of both feet
Kawasaki ZX6R (G1) – Seat lowered
Moto Guzzi Breva 750
Suzuki Bandit 400V – No adjustment
Suzuki GS500 – No adjustment
Suzuki SV650 – No adjustment
Triumph Street Triple
Yamaha Fazer 600 – No Adjustment

5’6”
Honda CB600F Hornet
Honda CB1000R – No adjustment
Honda Hornet 900 – No adjustment and both feet flat on floor
Honda VFR700, 07
Kawasaki ER6 – No adjustment
Kawasaki ZX6R – No adjustment and both feet flat on floor
Suzuki GS500F – No adjustment and feet flat on floor
Suzuki SV650 – No adjustment and both feet flat on floor
Yamaha Fazer 600 – No adjustment but cant flat foot

5’7″
CCMR30 – bought already lowered, same as VFR400
Honda Hornet 900 – balls of both feet, or one foot flat the other ‘balancing’
Honda VFR400 – had space between self and bike!
Honda VFR800 – balls of both feet, or one foot flat the other ‘balancing’
KTM Duke – balls of both feet, or one foot flat the other ‘balancing’
Suzuki Bandit 1250GT – one foot flat, the other almost flat
Triumph Sprint ST – balls of both feet, or one foot flat the other ‘balancing’
Triumph Tiger – tip toes or one foot flat the other flailing!
Yamaha FZ1 – one foot flat, the other almost flat

5’8 and over
Ducati Monster 620
Ducati 916 Monster
Honda CBR 600F
Honda CBR954 Streetfighter
Honda XRV750 Africa Twin
Kawasaki GPZ 500s – No adjustment
Kawasaki Z500
Suzuki GSXR750 Special
Suzuki SV650
Triumph Street Triple

Also take a look at these posts for more information which may help you in your choice of motorcycle

Girls and Modern Sports Bikes,

Choosing Your First ‘Big’ Bike

Daytona Ladystar (M-Star) Boots – Help For The Vertically Challenged Motorcyclist

as well as the following list of posts which cover, by motorcycle brand, the ride height adjustment kits available, so that more options are opened up for you when choosing a motorbike.

Honda

Kawasaki

Yamaha

Suzuki

If you are new to riding take a look at these products which will help you pass your theory, hazard perception tests and motorcycle tests.

For those who have already passed it here are a few recommendations to help you improve your riding.

Lists Updated 25/05/09


Lowering The Ride Height On A CBR900 Fireblade

March 15, 2010

As previously reported I had my first ride out on my Fireblade but there was one small problem :-0  I was on tiptoes on a flat surface and when pulling up at some traffic lights my foot was flailing around trying to find the ground before me and my new bike fell over in a rather undiginfied heap :-(

This photo illustrates how much of my foot touched the floor with the bike as standard

On my ride home I was wondering how I could lower the ride height, but without physically lowering the whole machine, as I knew that growing longer legs overnight wasn’t really an option ;-)  but I still needed to get my bum closer to the floor..

And then I had a brainwave :-)

In the garage we had a spare seat from another Blade which wasn’t needed anymore, so as soon as I was home I was set up on my dining room table with the sharpest knives from my kitchen and the spare seat.   I was going to reshape the seat and carve some of the height out of it.

I very quickly removed the cover from the seat and soon had the sections of foam I needed to remove marked out

Sections of foam to be removed marked up

I then started carefully carving the foam away in strips

Shaving off the slices

This is the seat with most of the surplus foam shaved off..

Basics almost done

Now it’s time to tidy things up a little.. So with VERY careful knife cuts I trimmed and neatened the foam so that it was as smooth as possible.  This was the end result :-)

All neatened up

The finished foam

This photo shows the seat as it was on the bike

This photo shows the stock seat height

and this one shows the seat once I had carved some of the foam out..

The new seat height

The next thing to do was to receover the seat so I don’t get a soggy bottom if it rains ;-)

I tried fitting the original seat cover but it was designed to go on a flat seat and I couldn’t get it to fit properly round the new curves so a trip to my local haberdashery shop was called for.   70cm of vinyl fabric (£7.00) later and after digging my staple gun out of the shed I was ready to go :-)

Fitting the vinyl was a bit of a barsteward as it’s quite stiff to begin with but as you start working it, it starts to soften up and give a little.  I also fitted it on the bias so that would also help the fabric stretch into the curves better.  A short time (and quite a bit of swearing) later I was done :-) and the newly covered seat was ready to be fitted to my bike :-)

And this is what it looks like :-)

My newly reshaped and recovered seat on my bike

The end result… This is how much of my foot I can get on the floor now :-)

The end result :-)

Once I was sat on my bike on Sunday it felt soooo much better and I’m sure it will make all the difference to my confidance riding the Blade.  I’m pretty much flat footed on the left side and even though it was a bit of a hassle doing it, it was well worth it to me :-)

I’m not kidding when I say that pretty much anyone could do this to a bike seat, you just have to be careful and take your time ESPECIALLY when cutting into the foam.  If you don’t want to mess up the seat on your bike you could always buy a second one cheaply from somewhere like ebay and then modify it.  It’s definately going to be cheaper and easier than physically lowering a bike.

If anyone reading this needs any further advice, just drop me a message and I’ll do my best to help :-)


Hyperpro Ride Height Adjustment Kits – Kawasaki Models

August 14, 2009

Picture this.. You have found the Kawasaki of your dreams.. But there is a problem! You feel the ride height is either too low or too high for you. But don’t panic with a Hyperpro Ride Height Adjustment Kit you can make your potential new bike a better fit for you.

With one of their height rising kits you can make your motorbike 20 to 30 millimetres higher, with a lowering kit you can lower your bike by 30 to 40 millimetres. THese kits could mean the difference between being able to ride the bike of your dreams comfortably and safely or having to pick another one.

Made from high grade aluminium, the Hyperpro Ride Height Adjustment Kits are designed to safely adjust the ride height of the bike.

Full fitting instructions are supplied with the kits but if you are unsure in any way about fitting the kit, then it is best you take your bike to your nearest bike workshop and have them do it for you.

Please note that when lowering or raising the ride height of your machine you may need to adjust things such as the length of the side stand and also you may need to make adjustments to the front forks.

Check your local dealer, or an online store for prices, availability and ordering information.

If you are a female rider looking at adjusting the height of your motorcycle you may like to take a look at these posts which have more information about girls and the sizes of motorbikes we can ride

Girls and Modern Sports Bikes

Bikes Girls Can Ride

Choosing Your First ‘Big’ Bike

Also see the entries I have done for the different motorcycle manufacturers

Honda Models

Suzuki

Yamaha

BMW

And just so that you can easily find all the information you need, here is a link to the HyperPro website where you can find PDF files which show you by how much you can raise and lower each model of motorcycle by.  This link is for the Lowering Kits they supply, and this is for the PDF list of Height Raising Kits.

Hyperpro Ride Height Adjuster Kits are available for the following Kawasaki motorcycle models.

Please note, I do not sell these kits.  You will need to contact your local bike shop/dealer/garage to purchase one.

KAWASAKI GPZ 500 S (EX 500 D) – 94> (Lowering Kit)
KLE 500 (LE 500 A) – 91> (Lowering Kit)
ZX-6R (ZX 600 F) – 95-97 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
ZX-6R (ZX 600/ GG) – 98-00 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
ZX-6R (ZX 600/ JJ) – 00-02 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
ZX-6R (ZX 636 A/B) – 02-04 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
ZX-6R (ZX 636 C) – 05> (Lowering & Raising Kit)
ZZR 600 – 95> (Lowering Kit)
ER-6 N/F – 05> (Lowering Kit)
VERSYS 650 – 07> (Lowering Kit)
Z 750 (ZR 750 J) – 04> (Lowering & Raising Kit)
Z 750 (WITH ABS) (ZR 750 J) – 07> (Lowering & Raising Kit)
ZX-7R (Raising Kit)
ZX-9R NINJA (ZX 900 B/C) – 94-99 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
ZX-9R NINJA (ZX 900 EE) – ’00-01 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
ZX-9R NINJA (ZX 900 EE) – 02-03 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
KLV 1000 (WV BS) – 04> (Lowering Kit)
Z 1000 (ZRT) – 03> (Lowering Kit)
ZX-10R (ZXT 00 C) – 04> (Lowering Kit)
ZX-10R (ZX10) (Raising Kit)
ZX-12 R (ZXT 20 A) – 00-01 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
ZX-12 R (ZXT 20 AB) – 02> (Lowering Kit)


HyperPro Ride Height Adjuster Kits – Suzuki Models

July 18, 2009

The manufacturers of motorcycle always design their machines for the ‘average’ rider, but unfortunately there is no such thing.  Now if you are looking at buying yourself a Suzuki you may find that you absolutely love a particular model but the ride height is either a little high or low for you to feel comfortable and safe.

Thanks to companies such as HyperPro you can still have the bike you want as you can adjust the ride height so that the bike is a perfect fit for you.  The HyperPro Ride Height Adjuster Kits can make the motorbike up to 40mm lower or 30mm higher.

Made from high grade aluminium, the HyperPro Ride Height Adjustment Kits are designed to safely adjust the ride height of the bike.

The kits come supplied with full fitting instructions but, as always, if you are not sure you will be able to do the job it may be best to take your bike into your nearest bike workshop and have them do it for you.

Don’t forget that if you are adjusting the ride height of the bike you may also need to adjust other things such as the length of the side stand as well as the front fork set up.

If you are a female rider looking at buying a motorcycle and you are unsure of which model to go for, then these entries may help you, or at least give you an idea of what sorts of bikes other girls are riding.

Girls and Modern Sports Bikes

Bikes Girls Can Ride

Choosing Your First ‘Big’ Bike

I have also produced entries on the following motorcycle manufacturers so you can see what other kits are supplied by HyperPro.

Honda

Kawasaki

Yamaha

BMW

Here is a link to the HyperPro website where you can find PDF files which show you by how much you can raise and lower each model of motorcycle by.  This link is for the Lowering Kits they supply, and this is for the PDF list of Height Raising Kits.

HyperPro Ride Height Adjustment Kits are available for the following models of Suzuki Motorbikes

Please note, I do not sell these kits.  You will need to contact your local bike shop/dealer/garage to purchase one.

DR-Z 400 S ’00> (Lowering Kit)
DR-Z 400 SM ’00> (Lowering Kit)
GS 500 E `89> (Lowering Kit)
GSF 600 N BANDIT `95-`99 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
GSF 600 S+N BANDIT ’00> (Lowering & Raising Kit)
GSR 600 `06 (Lowering Kit)
GSX 600 F `98> (Lowering & Raising Kit)
GSX-R 600 `96-`00 (Lowering Kit)
GSX-R 600 ’01-’05 (Lowering Kit)
GSX-R 600 `06> (Lowering Kit)
GSX-R 600 ’06-’07 (Lowering Kit)
RF 600 R `93> (Lowering Kit)
RF 600 R `93-`97 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
DL 650 V-STROM `04> (Lowering Kit)
GSF 650 (S) BANDIT `05> (Lowering Kit)
SV 650 ’03> (Lowering Kit)
SV 650 N `99-`02 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
SV 650 S `99-`02 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
GSX 750 F `98> (Lowering & Raising Kit)
GSX-R 750 ’00-’05 (Lowering Kit)
GSX-R 750 ’06-’07 (Lowering Kit)
GSX-R 750 W (T>) `96-`99 (Lowering Kit)
RF 900 R `94> (Lowering & Raising Kit)
DL 1000 V-STROM ’02> (Lowering Kit)
GSX-R 1000 ’01-’04 (Lowering Kit)
GSX-R 1000 `05> (Lowering Kit)
SV 1000 N ’03> (Lowering Kit)
SV 1000 S ’03> (Lowering Kit)
GSF 1200 BANDIT `95-`99 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
GSF 1200/S BANDIT ’00> (Lowering Raising Kit)
GSF 1250 BANDIT `07> (Lowering Kit)
GSX-R 1300 HAYABUSA `99> (Lowering & Raising Kit)


HyperPro Ride Height Adjustment Kits – Yamaha Models

July 8, 2009

As I seem to be working my way through the different bike manufacturers and listing which models you can buy a HyperPro Ride Height Adjustment Kit for I thought I would do the Yamaha motorcycle models next.

With one of their lowering kits you can lower your bike by 30 to 40 millimetres while with a height rising kits you can make your motorbike 20 to 30 millimetres higher. This could make all the difference to you feeling safe and comfortable on the bike of your choice.

Made from high grade aluminium, the HyperPro Ride Height Adjustment Kits are designed to safely adjust the ride height of the bike.  Full fitting instructions are supplied with the kits but if you are unsure in any way about fitting the kit, then it is best you take your bike to your nearest bike workshop and have them do it for you.

Please note that when lowering or raising the ride height of your machine you may need to adjust things such as the length of the side stand and also you may need to make adjustments to the front forks.

Here is a link to the HyperPro website where you can find PDF files which show you by how much you can raise and lower each model of motorcycle by.  This link is for the Lowering Kits they supply, and this is for the PDF list of Height Raising Kits.

If you are a lady rider looking to get a bike and are unsure of what bikes you may be able to ride, please check out the following posts as they should give you more information on the bikes you will be able to ride.

Bikes Girls Can Ride

Girls And Modern Sports Bikes

Choosing Your First ‘Big’ Bike

Also check out the following posts which cover the other models of bikes you can get the HyperPro Adjustment Kits for:

Honda

Kawasaki

Suzuki

BMW

Here is a link to the HyperPro website where you can find PDF files which show you by how much you can raise and lower each model of motorcycle by.  This link is for the Lowering Kits they supply, and this is for the PDF list of Height Raising Kits.

Yamaha Ride Height Adjuster Kits

Please note, I do not sell these kits.  You will need to contact your local bike shop/dealer/garage to purchase one.

DT 125 R/X `91-`05 (Lowering Kit)
MAJESTY 250 SV `98> (Lowering Kit)
MT-01 `05> (Lowering Kit)
XG 250 TRICKER `06 (Lowering Kit)
FZ-6 FAZER `04-’06 (Lowering Kit)
FZ-6 FAZER `04-’06 (Lowering Kit)
FZR 600 GENESIS 89-93 (Lowering Kit)
FZR 600 R `94-`95 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
FZS 600 FAZER `98> (Lowering Kit)
MT-03 ’06> (Lowering Kit)
YZF 600 R6 `98-`02 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
YZF 600 R6 ’03-’05 (Lowering Kit)
YZF 600 R6 `06-`08 (Lowering Kit)
YZF 600 THUNDERCAT `96-`03 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
SZR 660 `96> (Lowering Kit)
XT 660 R `04> (Lowering Kit)
XT 660 R `04> (Lowering Kit)
XT 660 X SUPERMOTO `04> (Lowering Kit)
XT 660 Z TENERE ’08> (Lowering Kit)
XT 660 Z TENERE ’08> (Lowering Kit)
YZF 750 R `93-`98 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
YZF 750 SP `93-`94 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
YZF 750 SP `95> (Lowering & Raising Kit)
TDM 850 `91> (Lowering Kit)
TDM 900 ’02> (Lowering Kit)
XJ 900 S DIVERSION `95> (Lowering Kit)
FZ-1 FAZER `06> (Lowering Kit)
FZR 1000 EXUP `89-`95 (Lowering Kit)
FZS 1000 FAZER ’01-’05 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
FZS 1000 FAZER ’01>(Lowering Kit)
YZF 1000 R1 `04> (Lowering Kit)
YZF 1000 R1 `07-`08 (Lowering Kit)
YZF 1000 R1 ’07> (Lowering Kit)
YZF 1000 R1 ’07> (Lowering Kit)
YZF 1000 R1 ’07> (Lowering Kit)
YZF 1000 THUNDERACE `96> (Lowering & Raising Kit)
BT 1100 BULLDOG ’01> (Lowering  & Raising Kit)
V-MAX/ VMX 1200 `93> (Lowering Kit)
FJR 1300 ’01-’05 (Lowering & Raising Kit)
FJR 1300 `06> (Lowering & Raising Kit)


Lowering Kits From M & P (UK)

January 29, 2009

M & P do a fantastic range of ride height adjuster kits if you need to lower your motorbike so it is a better fit for you. 

The kits, which come supplied with full fitting instructions, allow you to modify the height of the machine by either changing the shock linkages or the shock heads. 

Although you can fit them yourself they do recommend fitting by a specialist workshop, especially if you have any doubts about your ability to fit the kit correctly. 

Motorcycle lowering kits are supplied, by M & P for the following motorcycle models

Aprilia

650 (Pegaso), 650 (Pegaso (Fuel Inj)), RSV 1000 (Factory), RSV 1000 (Mille), RSV 1000 (Mille), RSV 1000 (Mille R), RSV 1000 (Tuono), RSV 1000 (Tuono)

BMW

F 650, F 650 (Funduro), F 650 (Scarver), G 650 (XCountry), G 650 (XMoto), F 800, F 800, R 850, R 1100, R 1100, R 1150, R 1150 (Adventure), K 1200, K 1200 (K40), K 1200 (Sport), R 1200, R 1200 (Adventure)

Buell

1000 (XB9R Firebolt), 1200 (XB12R Firebolt)

Cagiva

650 (Raptor), 650 (V-Raptor), 1000 (Raptor), 1000 (V-Raptor), Honda XL 125 (Varadero), XR 125, CBF 500, CBF 500 (ABS), CB 600 (Hornet), CB 600 (Hornet), CB 600 (Hornet ABS), CB 600 (Hornet Faired), CBF 600, CBF 600 (ABS), CBF 600 (Faired), CBF 600 (Faired ABS), CBR 600 (F), CBR 600 (F), CBR 600 (RR), CBR 600 (RR), NTV 600 (Revere), FMX 650 (Supermoto), NT 650 (Deauville), NTV 650, XL 650 (Transalp), VFR 750, VFR 800, VFR 800 (ABS), CB 900 (Hornet), CBR 900 (Fireblade), CBR 900 (Fireblade), CBF 1000 CBF 1000 (ABS,) CBR 1000 (Fireblade), CBR 1000 (Fireblade), XL 1000 (Varadero), XL 1000 (Varadero), XL 1000 (Varadero ABS), CB 1100 (X-11), CBR 1100 (Blackbird),

Kawasaki

EX 500 (GPZ500S), KLE 500, ZX 600 (ZX6R), ZX 600 (ZX6RR,) ZX 600 (ZX6RR), ZX 600 (ZZR600), ZX 636 (ZX6R), ZX 636 (ZX6R), ZX 636 (ZX6R), ER 650 (ER6N), ER 650 (ER6N ABS), EX 650 (ER6F Faired), EX 650 (ER6F Faired ABS), KLE 650 (Versys), KLE 650 (Versys ABS), ZR 750 (Z750), ZR 750 (Z750), ZR 750 (Z750 ABS), ZR 750 (Z750S Faired), ZR 750 (ZR7), ZR 750 (ZR7S Faired), ZX 900 (ZX9R), KLV 1000, ZR 1000 (Z1000), ZR 1000 (Z1000), ZR 1000 (Z1000 ABS), ZX 1000 (ZX10R), ZX 1000 (ZX10R), ZX 1200 (ZX12R), ZG 1400 (GTR1400), ZX 1400 (ZZR1400), ZX 1400 (ZZR1400 ABS).

KTM

640 (Duke 2), LC4 640 (Supermoto), 990 (Superduke).

Suzuki

GS 500, GSF 600 (Bandit), GSF 600 (Bandit), GSF 600 (Bandit Faired), GSF 600 (Bandit Faired), GSR 600, GSX 600, GSX 600, GSXR 600, GSXR 600, GSXR 600, RF 600, DL 650 (V-Strom), GSF 650 (Bandit), GSF 650 (Bandit Faired), GSF 650 (Bandit Faired ABS), SV 650, SV 650, SV 650 (Half Faired), SV 650 (Half Faired), XF 650 (Freewind), GSX 750, GSXR 750, RF 900, DL 1000 (V-Strom), GSXR 1000, SV 1000, SV 1000 (Half Faired), GSXR 1100, GSF 1200 (Bandit), GSF 1200 (Bandit Faired), GSX 1300 (B-King), GSX 1300 (Hayabusa).

Triumph

600 (Daytona), 600 (Speed Four), TT 600, 675 (Daytona), 675 (Street Triple), 955 (Daytona T955), 1050 (Speed Triple), 1050 (Tiger).

Yamaha

DT 125 (R 3MB), DT 125 (RE Electric Start), DT 125 (Supermoto), XT 125 (R Trail), XT 125 (X Supermoto), FZ 600 (FZ6 Fazer), FZ 600 (FZ6 Naked), FZR 600, FZS 600 (Fazer), XJ 600 (Diversion), XJ 600 (Unfaired), YZF 600 (Thundercat), YZF 600 (YZF-R6), 660 (MT-03), SZR 660, XT 660, XT 660 (SuperMoto), YZF 750, TDM 900, XJ 900 (Diversion), FZ 1000 (FZ1 Fazer), FZ 1000 (FZ1 Naked), FZR 1000 (Exup), FZR 1000 (Exup RU), FZS 1000 (Fazer), YZF 1000 (Thunderace), YZF 1000 (YZF-R1), BT 1100 (Bulldog), VMX 1200 (V-Max), VMX 1200 (V-Max US Import), FJR 1300, FJR 1300 (ABS), 1700 (MT-01)

 

Take a look at my other posts concerning bike height

Ride Height Adjustment Kits From HyperPro

Daytona Ladystar (M-Star) Boots – Help For The Vertically Challenged Motorcyclist!

Other Helpful Posts Include

Choosing Your First ‘Big’ Motorbike

Girls and Modern Sports Bikes

Bikes Girls Can Ride


Choosing Your First ‘Big’ Motorbike

January 27, 2009

There are so many things to consider, beyond price, when choosing your first ‘big’ motorbike after passing your test, and I thought the easiest way to do this was to write this from my personal point of view as a female rider.  If there are other ladies out there facing the same dilemma then maybe, just maybe, reading about the things I had to consider may help you in your choice of motorcycle.

I will try and briefly list the points I had to consider when choosing my bike.  Things like the physical size of the bike, its engine size, and the fact I had a restricted license so had to consider how a restrictor kit would affect my choice of bike.  What the seat height was, how wide it was and how much of my feet would be on the ground when at a standstill.  Where the centre of gravity of the bike was and how balanced I would feel on it.  And lastly what type of bike to buy and how old a machine I would get.

The Seat Height
The first thing I considered was the seat height of the bike.  I’m 5 foot 3 inches tall with an inside leg measurement, wearing my bike boots, of 32 inches (odd proportions as over half my height is legs!) and I’m about the 8 stone mark so I’m not exactly well built!  The physical size of the bike was as far as I was concerned rather an important issue. 

I had learned on a cruiser style 125cc and after riding that and being so low to the ground I was convinced, when choosing my next bike, that I would be happier being able to get all of both feet on the ground.  So I was looking out for a bike which wasn’t too tall. 

Being able to get all of both feet on the ground isn’t necessary.  Some people aren’t bothered by it, while others are.  I just found it made me feel that little bit more confident, especially when moving the bike around with the engine switched off, for example getting it in or out of the garage.

Don’t forget you can lower a bike if your heart is set on it.  Check out my posts on Ride Height Adjuster Kits to see what your options are in that respect.

The Width of the bike
The width of the seat and bike can be an issue as well.  If the bike is wide then obviously your legs will be further apart when sitting on it.  Sorry ladies but it is true!  You may find that sitting on a wide bike will have you on tiptoes where as a narrow bike of similar height will enable you to flat foot.

The Weight Of The Bike
This was rather important to me as well, being small and slim.  I didn’t want to have a bike I would need help moving around, it would be very annoying (and possibly a tad embarrassing!) if I needed help moving it round all the time!  Once you are used to riding a larger bike the weight will become less of an issue, as it has with me.  

The Centre Of Gravity
How low or high the bikes centre of gravity is may be an issue.  With a lower centre of gravity the bike may feel more stable for you.  Where as one with a high centre of gravity can feel top heavy.  When I first sat on the GSX-R750 I realised how high its centre of gravity was and was afraid if I leant it over the weight might catch me by surprise and I would drop it, and that wouldn’t be a good thing to do! 

Yes, more considerations! This bike-buying lark is a minefield! ;-)

The Engine Size
As I have previously mentioned on this blog I passed the UK restricted motorbike test on a 125cc bike.  This basically means that I am restricted for two years from the date of my test as to what output any motorcycle I ride can have.  Any bike I buy must have a power output of less than 33bhp, or be restricted to that by other means. 

So when looking for a bike I checked the list of ones with power less than 33bhp and decided I didn’t want any of them!  So the next step was to check which bikes could have a restrictor kit fitted so they were under the 33bhp.  I soon found that there are loads of bikes which can be restricted! 

So there were plenty I could choose from, but when you consider my previous points the field was narrowed down again.  I had to choose a bike that would take the restriction happily, after all what’s the point of buying a small, light, narrow 1000cc bike and then restricting it? None as far as I could see! So a bike with a 400cc-600cc engine seemed the way to go, the choice of which model depended on all the rest of the issues I have already mentioned. 

New Or Older Bike
As much as I would have loved to ride out of a dealer on a brand new bike I decided that this was really something I didn’t want to do.  My first big bike was going to be the one I carried on learning on, the learning curve just doesn’t stop once you have passed your test!

Chances are you will at some point drop your bike, and which would you swear about more.  The brand new bike you have just bought or the 15-year-old one which already has a few dings?  I would really swear at both but, in all honesty, if it was a new bike the swearing would be more profane and a whole lot louder!

Me? I went for the older bike..

Lastly.. :-D

What Type Of Bike
Cruiser, Tourer, Dual-Sport, Commuter, Sports?

This seriously comes down to personal choice.  I personally love the sports bikes (and the old Z650’s) but my new baby had to be a sports bike.  The best advice I can give is to go to as many bike dealers as possible, see what sorts of bikes ‘float your boat’ and make sure you sit on as many as possible until you find the one which feels just right. 

Following advice from my nearest and dearest I settled on the Honda CBR400RR.  Easy to restrict to 33bhp, small enough that I can reach the ground very easily, light enough that I can move her around and a low center of gravity which means she corners like she is on rails.

Am I happy with her, and my choice, after almost a year?

:-) You bet I am! :-)  

You may also want to take a look at these posts which contain more advice and tips.

Bikes Girls Can Ride

Girls And Modern Sports Bikes

Daytona Ladystar (M-Star) Boots – Help For The Vertically Challenged Motorcyclist!


Daytona Ladystar (M-Star) Boots – Help For The Vertically Challenged Motorcyclist!

January 21, 2009

Are you riding round on a motorbike wishing you could get just a tiny bit more of your foot than your tip toes on the ground when you come to a halt? Aside from buying a short bike in the first place what other options do you have out there to help?

There are several things you can do.

Shave some of the foam out of the seat.

Soften the suspension a bit so that the bike sinks down a little more when your bum is on it.

Physically lowering the bike with a height adjustment kit (see the posts in the Ride Height Adjustment Category).

Unfortunately both of the last two options will affect the handling in one way or another, even if only by a little bit, and you will have to do it to every ‘tall’ motorcycle that you may buy in the future!

What if I was to tell you that there is another option, which does not involve any kind of adjustment to your bike? If anything it adjusts you!! And that is to treat yourself to a pair of Daytona Ladystar Boots.
daytona-ladystar-boots

Daytona Ladystar (M-Star) Boots

Now, for those not in the know, these are absolutely brilliant for the vertically challenged amongst us, and yes at 5 foot 3 inches that does include me too! The boot’s sole incorporates a built in 2.5cm lift as well as a 1cm thick sole! So put these babies on and you are immediately 3.5 cm taller! How cool is that? :-)

Wearing a pair of these may just make all the difference between a costly tip-over and a good save if your bike starts to unexpectedly go over with you on it.  And the best part of it is that they look just like a regular pair of boots and so no one will know you need help to be able to touch the floor more on your bike.

Now I know that there are short guys out there that may struggle with riding some motorbikes due to the seat height, but please don’t feel left out. The larger sizes of the Daytona Ladystar boots are know by the masculine sounding M-Star, so even the vertically challenged guy can wear them without affecting their masculinity ;-)

The boots start at a European size 35 and go through to a size 43. They are only available in black, no bright colours (or pink in the case of the guys sizes) on these babies. A comfortable fit is achieved with both zip and Velcro closures on the legs and with Gore-Tex ™ waterproofing your feet will stay dry as well as warm.

The heels and ankles are armored and will provide protections from abrasion and impact. They also have a reflective patch on the heels, which may help the inattentive drivers around you see that you are there. And for when it rains they have a built in shower proof edging at the top of the boot.

Now the only complaint I can honestly see with these boots is the price. At about the £250 mark they aren’t the cheapest pair of motorcycle boots out there on the market BUT if buying a pair means you can ride the bike of your dreams then surely they are worth it.

Plus.. You may well find that the cost of the boots is less than it would be to have your bike adjusted to fit you!

Plus.. As and when you change bikes they go with you!

Ok.. I know I am really extolling their virtues but they are quite simply a brilliant boot and if you are tired of having to replace bent levers as your bike tips over too easily on you, then maybe, just maybe these are the answer you are looking for.

Check your local dealer, or favourite online store, for details about pricing and availability.

You may also want to take a look at these posts which have more information about choosing a bike and the kinds of bike girls are riding.

Bikes Girls Can Ride

Girls And Modern Sports Bikes

Choosing your First ‘Big’ Bike


Girls and Sports Bikes

January 11, 2009
raven-and-cbr400
It’s not that many years ago that the sight of a girl on her own motorbike would have the male riders absolutely stunned to silence. Nowadays motorcycling is no longer the domain of the testosterone-fueled man and it is quite likely that you will see women out on the road on their own bikes, and a growing percentage of the girls are riding sports and supersports bikes.
I’m one of them!! And I love it!!
Now, I must admit that I’ve not seen many men stunned into silence when I’ve pulled up on my bike and taken off my crash helmet but I have seen quite a few chins hitting the floor! And it still makes me giggle even now to see it happen :-) and in all honesty it is still quite a common occurrence!

I am no longer the ornament on the pillion seat, and never will be again as I now HATE going on the back of a bike with a passion! I no longer feel safe, as I’m not in control of the bike back there.

Things are getting so much better for us girls now. Ever since the Fireblade was first introduced back in 1992, the motorbike manufacturers have realised that a decent power to weight ratio could result in smaller, slimmer and more powerful machines, which are perfect for us girls.

Now I may be too small height wise to ride a 1992 Fireblade, unfortunately at 5’ 3” my body is too tiny to reach over that huge tank safely, but there is absolutely no reason at all why I cant ride a newer Fireblade, as well as many other newer sports bikes on the market now.

I looked at the weight of the Fireblade over the years and have noticed that weight wise anything after the 2002 Fireblade is pretty much the same weight as my 1992 CBR400 Baby Blade! So guess what I want to own one day!! Now I know it will be a taller bike, but after having ridden a sports bike for a few years and getting used to the weight, having to have both feet flat on the floor, while preferable, will not be so much of a necessity.

Today’s motorbikes steer almost with a glance in the right direction and are incredibly light and powerful and they are getting so much smaller that they are almost perfect for us smaller female riders. Not long ago I saw a guy on Suzuki riding towards the pedestrian crossing I was waiting on and I was convinced it was a GSX-R600. It was only when it went past me that I realised it was actually a 1000cc bike! I was so amazed I had to wander back round to where he had parked up to make sure and yes, it definitely was the litre bike! I could not believe how tiny it was, I would easily fit on it!

The good thing about being a girl and looking at bikes like that is that I imagine that as we are smaller they would be less cramped for us to ride. The guy I saw on that GSX-R1000 looked as if he was dwarfing the bike and had knees and elbows poking out all over the place. I’m sure I would have looked much better on it :-)

The other advantage for us girls on sports bikes is that generally we are lighter as well :-) which means our bikes will go faster than the same bike with a much larger and heavier man on it :-) woohoo!!!!!

That’s the part I like.. Yes I may be little, my bike may ‘only’ be a 400cc one but with only 8 stone in weight on it she goes like hot stink with me on her :-) and she is so much fun.

I found this list of ‘recommended’ bikes for girls,

  • Aprilia RS125
  • Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade
  • Honda RVF NC35
  • Honda VFR400 NC30
  • Suzuki GSR600
  • Suzuki GSX-R750 K6
  • Triumph 675
  • Yamaha YZF-R6
  • but if you check out this post as well Bikes Girls Can Ride to see the kinds of bikes being ridden by girls right now.  You will soon see we are not really limited with the bikes we are able to ride.

    Choosing Your First ‘Big’ Bike will provide you with some pointers for when you are choosing a bike.

    Plus now you can check out these posts about Ride Height Adjustment Kits for the different makes of motorcycles.

    Honda

    Kawasaki

    Yamaha

    Suzuki

    So come on girls, get off the pillion seat and on to a bike of your own. The choices, bike wise, for us girls are so much better now, and with a little ‘tweaking’ the choices are widened even further in some cases :-)

    You wont regret it, I promise :-)


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