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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All-

I have been doing some research and using the 'search' function on this forum. I wanted to get your opinions. I am a complete rookie, never even been on a bike. Always had an interest in bikes though. Well, I am in love with the new Monster 696. I plan on taking the MSF class and learning to ride. I read the Monster 696 is good for beginners, is this true? The cost wouldn't be a problem, so that's not a concern. I am not a big guy either, 5'8" 28 years old. Some of my friends are saying, dont get a Duc, you'll drop it or ding it, get a cheap used bike. Other friends are saying they never dropped or dinged their bikes. So what to do? Thanks.
 

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We really need a sticky about first time bike buyers.

In my opinion it's too big, but it's all about how much risk you want to accept.

Keep in mind you are coming to a Ducati forum to ask what bike you should start out on. It's like going to a Yankee forum and asking who everyones favorite baseball team is.

Get a Ninja 250 to start out on, then after a season sell it and you'll practically exactly what you paid for it and be much wiser and happier.

Good Luck
 

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Well, my opinion is that you need a cheap bike to start, because on the slight chance that you do drop your Duc, you are going to feel very sorry for yourself, along with your wallet. Get a used 250 or 400, cheap to insure, and when you are ready to trade up, you can sell it for what you paid. I know that the 696 is marketed as a beginner bike, but it is alot of bike. The best thing that I ever did was get a cheap bike, and then trade up. I know it might hurt your ego to put around on a tiny bike, but experience is all that you need that bike for. You can then look cool on your Duc 3 months down the road.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
yeah it is an ego killer, but it makes sense. you guys just re-inforced what i was thinking. the black '09 ninja 250 looks badass, even though its a beginner bike, i will look into a used one of those once i pass my MSF. sell it after a while and get the Duc
 

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.

I don't know that the 696 is marketed as a "beginner bike" but rather as an "entry level" Ducati. Kind of like the way the F430 is an "entry level" Ferrari :D

I agree that any new bike is a bad choice for a beginner, not just because you may damge it, but owning a bike seems like a great idea for many. But reality is that many find out too late that it's just not for them and are stuck with a rapidy depreciating lump in their garage.

Best advise would be to take the MSF course before you purchase a bike. Then you will have a better idea of where your head is.

Remember, that 250 can still go plenty fast enough to kill you.

.
 

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Yeah, don't underestimate a 250, you CAN still get yourself in trouble. Have Fun!
 

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yeah it is an ego killer, but it makes sense. you guys just re-inforced what i was thinking. the black '09 ninja 250 looks badass, even though its a beginner bike, i will look into a used one of those once i pass my MSF. sell it after a while and get the Duc

I guess I'm going buck the trend on this one, at least sort of.....

My first bike was a Multistrada 620, I bought it against my better judgement because it was the bike I liked best (actually it was really close with the M620) and money wasn't an issue at the time. It was dropped once pulling into a driveway (no damage). If you're not worried about dropping it, I think a Monster is a good first bike. They have moderate, street friendly power, are light, and easy to ride. They also have good brakes. You will have to be careful. Even though it's entry level Ducati, it can still get you into trouble if you get ham fisted with it.

I've also owned a Nija250 (2003) which was my wife's first bike. It was a major POS. Hopefully, the 2009 model is better, but I would never buy another. The suspension wallowed in corners and pogoed over rough pavement. Any time you applied the front brakes, the front end dove like it was going after oysters. It was light as a feather, which would be a good thing except that it also had a full fairing and that effectively made it a sail. You will feel the cross wind and the turbulence from larger vehicles. Did I mention the brakes suck?

We sold the Ninja and got a 2003 Monster620. It's a better (higher quality), safer, and more confidence inspiring motorcycle. My wife actually enjoys riding now.:D

So all that said, I'd recommend a used Monster620. They can be had fairly inexpensively and will cost less to repair if dropped. Plus it's prettier than a Ninja. :p

Other good (IMO) first time bikes: Ninja500, Suzuki gs500, and SV650 among others. I wouldn't shell out for new on any of them except the SV650, as you'll probably grow out of them pretty quickly.

No matter what you do, test ride as many bikes as you can. There's no other way to know what you'll like to ride. When I started riding, I assumed I would buy a standard or cruiser type bike. I rode 14 different bikes before buying the Multi. That first ride on the Ducati M620 really opened my eyes. :D:D
 

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I have just been through the same thing with my girlfriend. More than anything she wants a Thruxton. She is a complete noob and one thing we agreed on is that she is going to drop her first bike.

My first day riding I dropped my little 250. A car slowed in front of me, I shit myself and grabbed a big handful of front brake. Down I went (unfortunately in front of about 100 people at a bus stop) and messed up the bike pretty bad. That was a typical rookie mistake but it happens. I felt stupid but the damage was cosmetic and since the bike was so cheap I didn't even bother fixing it. I dropped that bike 4 times and then wrote it off. The write off was not my fault but could have been avoided if I had more experience. That was 15 years ago I have never dropped another bike since then.

We have decided to get my girl a cheap 250, if she drops it she won't feel terrible and it won't put her off riding. The Thruxton can wait.
 

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Please please please please start on a Ninja 250. I own the one you see below. Riders of all shapes and sizes are asking me what it is, followed by, "I wish I had one!"


Ride this around for a year or two, then trade up


 

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Discussion Starter #10
thats a good looking bike, i saw nice all black 09 ninja 250. had 500 miles on it. looked amazing. $3800. that should hold me over til i get the 696
 

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Here my take on this.

I really don’t see the 696 as a "too-big/fast/powerful/expensive-for-a-beginner" bike. In Europe they use 696's as training bike for their version of the MSF...

It’s all about the rider responsibility and natural aptitude for riding in general.

I really good advice, someone already had, is to go through the MSF course. Preferably at Harley Davidson, they use Buell Blasts which are almost as heavy as 696 … Once you are through the course you would know whether you are ready for something faster and more expensive than a training motorcycle. Also, ask your MSF instructor, see what he thinks, after you are done with course... Most of them are pretty "forthcoming" in the matters like this...

I’ve seen many people go to Gsxr 750, and R6’s, and so on right from the start and are just fine. Yet riders with years of experience crash, drop, and skid their bikes in spite of how long they have been riding. And there are people who have been riding for 20 years and still cant ride for sh*t… :mad:
I know a few people like that!

I personally may not be a good example, but years ago (20!) I had a Czechoslovakian Jawa 350 Sport, rode it for 2 years. Then it happened so that I didn’t ride for about 16 years, before I got my S2R 1000 new from a dealer.

At that point I just completed the MSF course at the local HD dealer. After almost 16 years of not being on a bike, I was practically a complete noob. I mean, I knew where they clutch and brakes were, but I was no rider by any means.

For a first few weeks after I got the bike, I tried not go faster than 65 mi/hr when on highway, didn't ride with a passenger (simply because its somewhat of different story than just riding alone), and tried to stay around town (gym, Starbucks, cigarette runs, etc). I suggest you do the same. Its like with any activity that might put you in danger, take smaller steps. Not necessarily “baby steps”.

Also be very picky who you ride with in a group! Bad practices and, sometimes, competitive feelings may get in a way of safe riding behavior.

Most importantly buy and always wear GOOD gear!!!

Cheers
 

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yeah it is an ego killer, but it makes sense. you guys just re-inforced what i was thinking. the black '09 ninja 250 looks badass, even though its a beginner bike, i will look into a used one of those once i pass my MSF. sell it after a while and get the Duc
Shazeh,

Don't let ego play a part in it. Anyone can point and shoot with a "big" bike but you will find that most of the best riders learned to go fast on a small bike. It teaches you control and finesse. For a good rider its all about skill through the turns, not squirting through the straights.

Check out this kid on his 28hp Honda passing 1000cc bikes at The Streets of Willow Springs. This is what its about :D

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kU6x...xxion.com/minigp.aspx&feature=player_embedded

Ride safe, Spencer
 

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I think I might buck the trend (slightly) here. I don't think the 696 would be too much for a beginner as long as they are realistic, responsible, and make sure they have good gear.

The first motorcycle I ever rode was a ZX-9R. That definitely taught me the importance of being smooth with the controls and inputs (I didn't even use any throttle to roll off in 1st gear until about the 6th time I rode it!). I had about 4-500 miles of parking lot and street time on it and thought I was hot shit and then proceeded to fail the license test miserably.

So I took the MSF on an actual maneuverable and noob-friendly bike (TW225) and came away much-improved and ready to roll. I rode sparingly after getting my license and waited about 5 months before finding a bike I wanted. I saw the ZX-7R of my dreams and let my brother talk me into being convinced that I could handle it. I kept a cool head on my shoulders and never did anything stupid with it and traded it off for my S2R with a single 0 mph drop to its (and my) record.

If you can pass the MSF, I think you'll be able to handle a 696. You might want to look into this, but I'm pretty sure I read in Motor Cyclist about 6 months back that a few schools are doing the BRC exclusively with 696's. No better way to know if you can do it and want it than spending 2 full days on it....
 

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If you can pass the MSF, I think you'll be able to handle a 696.
I agree with Crarrs. If you've passed the MSF, the 696 should be fine as a first bike. It's all about the rider, though. Remember, it's easy for a beginner to go fast on a bike. It's not so easy for a beginner to avoid road debris and unpredictable drivers while going 90 though...

The 696 is a great bike and can get you into alot of trouble rather quickly. If you respect that, you should be fine. And oh- get a set of framesliders...just in case.
 

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The Monster 696 was my first street bike but not my first bike in general. I've been riding dirtbikes for years.

Anyways, I bought the 696 and I'm pretty stoked on it. It's fun to ride and even more fun to tweak on.

I would buy whatever you feel you can handle. Just like you, when I saw the new Monster 696 I had to have it. I've always dug on street bikes but this bike is the one that made me step up and buy.

Get what you want. Just remember, don't go in over your head.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
question about thefts.

i live in a condo complex and have a common garage area, indoors obviously. do these suckers get stolen alot? would i be ok in common garage?
 
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