--You're probably too tall for any of the automatic clutch bikes.
--You should be able to put both feet down flatfooted while on the bike, which I think helps build confidence for new riders.
--Fourstrokes have more "manageable" power delivery for new riders.
--Should you move on to another bike, these have good resale value.
--Either bike can be made street legal with a baja kit, if that's important.
--Both bikes are very reliable.
Find someone to teach you how to stop, before you learn to ride. I forced my boys to spend hours starting (learning the clutch) and stopping (learning both brakes), before I took them "riding". Don't ride without gear. Everyone on the forum pretty much agrees to dress for the crash. Don't get sucked in by the youthful trend towards "minimalist gear". Wear it all: helmet, chest protector, kidney belt (not just for kidneys, also lower back protection), knee pads, boots, elbow guards, gloves, padded shorts. Welcome to the sport!
yeah everyone is telling me that in the beggining i'll be falling alot!!! and my parents won't EVER let me ride without protection!! and i know i'm suppose to! it is important for me to make is legal on the streets since i live in the city!! i'll be able to drive it around...people are saying i should get the XR100:eek:
I agree with Kalitude. You are tailor-made for the TTR-125L. It is far superior in suspension, handling, and fun to the XR100. And, there are more mods and goodies for the TTR than you can shake a stick at! So you won't outgrow it anytime soon. I would highly recommend the 125L not the regular 125. You will want the disk brake and larger tire at your height.
I would not recommend the XR200 for you as you are just beginning. It is a much heavier bike and for your size, I think you would have a problem picking the bike up. And believe me, you will need to pick the bike up alot! I only started riding a little over 3 years ago, so I haven't forgotten.
True, you do fall a lot. I'm still going through that phase...and prolly never will get out of it! :p
One thing you really need to determine before you buy a bike is the type od riding you'll be doing. If you are riding trails, four-stroke is the popular way to go (of course, I like to do thing the hard way :confused: ) If you want to race, two-strokes are the way to go. Also, do you have the money to buy a newer bike such as the TT-R125L, or the money to maintain a two-stroke? A good point someone made...stick to the dirt before riding street. A VERY good piece of advice. My sweet sixteen is this saturday, and I'm not even thinking about getting a motorcycle permit. Its SOOOO dangerous on the road these days. I am going to wait until I'm REALLY good (lol, like thats happening any time soon) until I get a street bike.
I will probably incur the wrath of the thumper tribe for saying this, but an 80 Expert or even better, a KX 100 might not be a bad choice. Yes, four-strokes are easier to learn on because of the more manageable power, but if you plan on moving up to a more competitive 4-stroke like a YZ 250F or a 2-stroke, you will have to learn a lot of skills that you don’t need on a TTR or XR. I had an XR 200 for my first bike at age 19 and recently bought my newest bike, a 2001 KTM 200. It is one of the most tame 2-strokes out there (except maybe a KDX) and I still find myself taking SO MANY steps backward now that I have a fast bike.
On a 4-stroke, you don’t have to shift as often or use the clutch nearly as much. On a two-stroke, learning how to feather or fan the clutch is imperative. 4-strokes also have a lot more engine braking, meaning when you let off the throttle, the bike slows down. On 2-strokes this does not happen and when you come to rely on that, you can get in trouble. You don’t learn throttle control as fast on a 4-stroke, especially an XR, because they have far less power and aren’t very responsive. Also, the suspension and handling on 2-strokes is usually superior to that of 4-strokes. One disadvantage of 2-strokes is they do require a little more maintenance. And they have a different type of power that can get out of hand. Read my description of the difference between the two engine types at www.kalitude.com for more information.
If you do buy a 4-stroke, I’d recommend the TTR if possible since they have far more updated suspension and brakes than the XRs do.
Bike selection is more a matter of temperament and preference than size and gender. If you are competitive, brave, and like living on the edge, you won’t be happy with a 4-stroke very long. It is true that they are easier to learn the basics on but no matter what you buy, it’s going to be a while before you’re comfortable with balance, throttle control, and shifting and braking. I urge you to take an honest look at the type of person you think you are and your riding career intentions—whether or not you decide to race, now or in the future—and make a decision based on that. Most men and many women learn how to ride on 2-strokes so it is far from impossible. You will just have to learn to twist that throttle lightly! Remember, bikes only go as fast as you tell them to.
E-mail or send me a private message if you have any other questions. You will get a wide array of different answers to this question since it’s a subject we’ve debated many times.
Originally posted by Mark C.
"Or you could find a older XR that would be much lower since the XRs been out since 1974."
In which case a early/mid eighties 6 speed XL125s or XL185/200 would be a good bet.
These bikes are more than competent in the dirt, and are 100% street legal.
(no modifications nessisary.)
Better hold off on the street till your 16 though! :eek:
There is no right or wrong answer here. I simply stress that beginners should not feel that a four-stroke is the only sane option. I wish I had begun on a two-stroke! I would gladly trade a slightly longer learning curve for the frustration I feel now when I can't do things on a high-end bike that I could on my old one. I know I need to use the clutch more than I do, and shift more, and use the front and rear brake independently for different braking techniques, and many more things that would be habit now had I learned them from the beginning. Four-strokes do have disadvantages as well as advantages, one of those being that they can reinforce bad habits since they are so forgiving.
Also, I don't want Abbie to see two-strokes as frightening. She is at a far more ideal age to begin learning now than I was, when I had a full-time job and full-time college classes.