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Should I go for a sport bike or a dirt bike?


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Hey guys, I'm trying to move from 4 wheels to 2 wheels. During the summer, I'm mainly just looking for some fun riding (for electric dirt bike for teenager), nothing too extreme, I don't even think I'm going to go on the highway. I just started looking, but either with a cbr250 or ninja250/300 OR a dual purpose dirt bike, I'm thinking of going.

I've never ridden a sports bike before, so I think the dirt bike is going to be more comfortable because I don't have to hunch all the time. Do you guys have any pros/cons about which way to go? I'm not looking for something wild.

Is anybody willing to comment on the comfort of a sports bike? Also, I'm 5'4 " so I'm not sure whether I'm scared of the variables in the equation that have a tough time mounting those bikes.

Edited by Areba21
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Back in the day my better half and i were motorcycle safety instructors. Since childhood i've owned and ridden bikes from all the major Japanese brands and can't say one is any better than the other. Bikes owned in childhood were, for example, 50cc Honda minibike and XR100 Honda dirt bike. Motorcycles owned in adulthood include Kawasaki Ninja 600, Kawasaki Ninja 750, Suzuki GSXR 1100 and a Suzuki DR650. They were all very reliable.

The DR650 was my favourite, dual purpose 'thumper' engine, but sitting upright wasn't more comfortable. At highway speeds, anything more than ~80 km/hr, the upright position and lack of windscreen made for an unpleasant and tiring ride. The sportbike allowed alternating between semi-upright and laying down on the tank but is harder on the wrists. So maybe depends on how much future highway riding vs slow, short trip city riding. I'm older now but aside from that i would not ride a motorcycle on the streets anymore. Where i live car drivers have gone crazy last 20 years, busier roads and lots more tailgating, speeding, hit and run accidents. Not worth losing your life or being permanently injured for a bit of fun - video games are safer :)

The bikes you are looking at are relatively small displacement so your physical stature shouldn't be a big issue. If, however, you can't keep both feet flat on the ground while sitting on the bike stationary then look for something else. Dual purpose motorcycles typically have a taller seat height, primarily off-road suspension travel, so if you can't pass the sit/feet flat test don't bother. Also IMHO if you don't have the physical strength to pick up the bike if it's laying on the ground, you're over your head. Again only IMHO, not everyone has the aptitude to ride and many 'bikers' should stick with four wheels.

This forum isn't the best place to ask for this advice. It's unclear how much riding experience you have. If you haven't already, take a motorcycle safety course that offers practical training before making a decision. Here most courses provide bikes for learning. Then you will know better if getting a motorcycle is still what you want.

Edited by Wunderbar98
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Hi again Areba21. The above post was edited, the childhood dirtbike was a Honda XR100 (not CB). I also owned a Yamaha trail bike in there somewhere but don't recall the model. If you go the motorcycle safety course route and there are competitive schools, all things being equal pick the school that provides a variety of motorcycle makes and models for practical training. This should help with your street vs dirt/dual-purpose decision.

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What you essentially want (IMHO) is a "scrambler", i.e. a bike with a lowish seat/baricentre and large handlebar, very manageable for a new driver, that runs smoothly on road but that can do even some light off road or dirt track .

The original Ducati Scrambler (to give you an idea):


The current models (1100) are stupidly powerful, the 800 is already more than enough:


the 400 is a de-powered version that would suit you anyway, no idea if these are common/affordable in CA.

But there must be "similar" models from other manufacturers. :unsure:




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