• Welcome to Jetboaters.net!

    We are delighted you have found your way to the best Jet Boaters Forum on the internet! Please consider Signing Up so that you can enjoy all the features and offers on the forum. We have members with boats from all the major manufacturers including Yamaha, Seadoo, Scarab and Chaparral. We don't email you SPAM, and the site is totally non-commercial. So what's to lose? IT IS FREE!

    Membership allows you to ask questions (no matter how mundane), meet up with other jet boaters, see full images (not just thumbnails), browse the member map and qualifies you for members only discounts offered by vendors who run specials for our members only! (It also gets rid of this banner!)

    free hit counter

Motorcycles, General questions

4x15mph

Jetboaters Captain
Messages
1,650
Reaction score
901
Points
217
Location
Downingtown, PA
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2018
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
21
I wanted to see who on the forum has experience with motorcycles and riding/touring.

I plan to take a summer tour with my oldest son (21) and will have questions as we plan this adventure. I will probably buy 2 bikes for this one-time tour and we will not hold on to these bikes for the long haul. I am pitching this as a once and done, never to forget, father/son trip.

Initial ideas might be from Pennsylvania up through NY and a destination of Vermont. Plan would be end of summer trip with us taking safety courses and licensing in the summer. Buy the bikes over the next 2 months so we can get them ready and stare at them

Once I see who has experience, I may PM you on certain questions if that is okay. What kind of bike, things to consider, etc.

For now, we are narrowing in on:
- Sport bikes with mine being more upright. 300 Miles/day on a sport bike?
- what is too many miles for a used bike that will be dependable? i.e. is 20K miles on a used bike too much
 

McMark

Jetboaters Captain
Messages
1,249
Reaction score
1,268
Points
207
Location
Monongahela, PA
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2015
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
24
Do you and your son have off road motorcycling experience or totally new to the sport?

I’ve done a trip from Pittsburgh-Erie-Thousand Islands-killimgton VT-New Hapshire-Bangor Maine. Lovely trip.

When we decided to do some touring, we bought a Harley Ultra Classic. There’s a Harley dealership in every town in the event you need service or a part. FWIW in 10 years with the ultra, it didn’t even so much as hiccup.

For mileage I’d try to find something under 15k mikes.

Maybe a sport/tour instead of something like an R1.

I’ve done some distance on my old FZR 600. It’s not like the miles are going to melt away underneath you on a sport bike. :)

A friend of mine rode his 1970 Hodaka 100 street/trail from old Lyme CT to Daytona Beach for spring break. So there’s that :)
 

Speedling

Jetboaters Admiral
Messages
4,800
Reaction score
3,866
Points
337
Location
Cedar Lake, IN
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2008
Boat Model
SS
Boat Length
21
Had a yamaha r6. I was 18 so i told myself it was comfortable. Farthest i rode was under 100 miles.
My Fil has a honda that does him very well and he even went to texas this year.
I would say the sport bikes are just to high strung for long trips and don't have the comfortable cruising torque.
Get 600cc or more.
If i were to get a bike now i would look for a vmax myself.
 

Wayloncle

Jetboaters Captain
Messages
1,635
Reaction score
1,539
Points
227
Location
33080 San Quirino, Italy
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2009
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
23
If you are touring, riding a lot of miles a day, new to riding...I wouldn’t get sport bikes.
I had a CBR954, loved the bike and road it a LOT! But sportbikes are not a comfortable long ride bike, people do it and I’ve done it but there are better options for your situation.
I sold that bike and got a Yamaha RoadStar, I loved that bike as well, big comfortable bike.
There are lots and lots of options, for what you are doing, I’d go with some type of cruiser.

All my opinion of course. And I don’t think you could go wrong with any certain brand.
 

4x15mph

Jetboaters Captain
Messages
1,650
Reaction score
901
Points
217
Location
Downingtown, PA
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2018
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
21
@McMark , no off road motorcycling experience although this will be a road trip. No road trip experience for my son but I had a street bike (yamaha... ) 30 years ago.

I am leaning towards something like the bmw F700, kawi Versys, other as a sport/tourer. My son is definitely focused on the sport bike and he is saying he will put up with the aches for the sport experience. Leaning towards a 600cc. Yamaha's seem pretty expensive for resale and there are not as many around or at least that is what we see initially.

Great input on mileage for used. Thanks
 

McMark

Jetboaters Captain
Messages
1,249
Reaction score
1,268
Points
207
Location
Monongahela, PA
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2015
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
24
I can’t stress how much you will need eyes in the back of your head these days. Always be thinking of your escape route. I asked about experience because in a hurried or emergency situation ingrained reflexes from years of riding can save your life. Don’t get hung up on the sport riding aspect during a long trip. Ride under your ability, not at the edge of your ability. Enjoy the scenery. Stop at a lot of small coffee and diner places along the way. Enjoy the trip. Don’t race for it to be over.

Learn and understand countersteering. Practice emergency braking.
 

BigAbe75

Jetboaters Captain
Messages
1,599
Reaction score
1,237
Points
212
Location
Litchfield, IL
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2019
Boat Model
X
Boat Length
24
I’m not mechanically inclined, and preferred the shaft drive of my Suzuki Intruder 1500 cruiser over the belt/chain drive of other options. I forget what model the Intruder has been replaced with now though.

I would also say that the larger engines just purr along at a fairly low rpm at highway speed. My 1500 felt like it would cruise 70 at not much more than an idle. However, 55 was kind of in that no mans land between 4th and 5th gear. Slightest incline and I’d have to down shift.

My dad has loved his Yamaha vstar and roadstar. He used to have a Honda shadow, but felt like it’s legs were a little short for highway riding.

‘Course, another thing with the larger engines is that they’re heavier. Maybe more stable at speed? But certainly heavier to pick up if it falls over.

I’ve never had a mid-size. I went straight from ATVs and 150cc off road bikes to an 1100 then my 1500. So, I really can’t speak to the 600-750 range much. But they look a lot smaller physically.

Anyway, really just meant to throw out a reminder of the different drive options. Chain, belt, shaft. And a vote for 1100+ engines. And a vote of confidence for the non-Harley manufacturers... they make decent bikes too.
 

rkluck

Jet Boat Junkie
Messages
956
Reaction score
305
Points
147
Location
Lake Hartwell, GA
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2010
Boat Model
Limited S
Boat Length
24
I have done lots of touring and have had multiple bikes or the years. What is comfortable to your son will probably not be comfortable to you. Are you planning on site seeing (basically staying on maintained roads and visiting sites or riding down old dirt roads in the mountains, what are you thinking? Some of the thoughts have to be around cost as well since you don't plan on doing this again. How many miles in a day (100 or 300) makes a difference. Are you planning on staying at motels or camping. This drives more to how much extra weight and room do you need. I have been on two week trips with two people (younger days) on 750s with no problems. My wife and I now stay at hotels now and we ride a Harley CVO limited so it is very comfortable. Don't forget you will to carry several items no mater what including GPS, rain suits, gloves, etc. One thought may be to rent bikes for the trip. That way you know they are solid, if anything breaks it is not your issue and when you are done you are done. You could also rent bikes for day to help decide what kind of bike style you like. There are lots of considerations. I would also recommend you ride a good bit before you go off on a longer trip just to get comfortable. The trip will be memorable of that you can be assured. That is part of the fun not knowing what the weather will be or maybe even where you are headed when you just wander. The sights and smells are so strong. I love to ride and have been since I was about 18.
 

swatski

Jetboaters Fleet Admiral
Messages
10,984
Reaction score
12,467
Points
632
Location
Saint Louis, MO
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2016
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
24
Not to be a wet blanket (and I love, love, love the idea).
But I will say this:
(since this is a jetboating forum and we like sharing advice and experience, lol)
To me, buying a new bike to go on a long trip would be akin to buying a new jet boat - to go to Bimini. Can it be done? - of course. Would I want to do it? - no. There is just way, way, too many things that may (and do) go wrong. And then it really helps to have some experience.

Motorcycle safety class is just not enough to make you aware and comfortable, if there even is such a thing as motorcycle safety these days - way too many distracted drivers to my taste!
I would say - buy a bike and start riding. See how you like it. Run some (shorter) trips. See how you really like it.

I would stay away from sport bikes - entirely. I would gravitate towards the most comfortable bike you can handle. You are getting awesome advice here - already posted above!

Just my 0.02 - since you are asking!


Disclaimer:
I have been riding (on and off) longer than I'm willing to admit - let's just say - I got my bike license before my car license, lol. I would consider myself intermediate as far as my skill level. Currently own and (occasionally) ride two bikes (kind of two extremes of riding comfort and safety!):

1. Ural Retro w/sidecar (a 750cc replica of a 1939 M72/R71 boxer twin, w/strait cut gears, kick starter and mechanical reverse...) - crazy, crazy rig to ride - but kids and dogs love it!

2. Suzuki Burgman 650 Executive ABS (a power scooter w/auto trans w/manual electronic override, ABS brakes, motorized windshield and mirrors etc.) - capable of 100+mph (or so I'm told, lol)

--
 

Neutron

Jetboaters Captain
Messages
1,675
Reaction score
1,878
Points
217
Location
New Bern, NC
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2016
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
24
I have done many tours on my old Bandit 1200 and my current FZ1 and will tell you that while the bandit was more comfortable for longer trips. I have done 400 miles in one day on my FZ1(with and Airhawk seat cushion) my ass was still quite sore.
A full sport bike will kill his back as well as his butt.
I would get him to compromise on a FZ600s or ninja 650 or compatible looks and handles sporty but way more comfortable.
As stated before get some experience before heading on a long trip, get to know your bikes mechanically and understand basic checklists and emergency tire repairs.
Join AMA cause AAA wont tow bikes, AMA will with membership.

Choose bikes with some sort of wind protection.
Storage or ability to add storage.
Fuel mileage and capacity( you dont want a bike that only goes 70 miles between fill ups
Good brakes and suspension is a must. dont want a bike that brakes fade and feels like a pogo stick bouncing you out of the seat
Adjustable suspension is a plus but not available on all bikes

Dont buy old carb bikes, too many issues with elevation changes and cold starts.
 

robert843

Jetboaters Admiral
Messages
4,793
Reaction score
5,530
Points
382
Location
Myrtle Beach, SC
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2017
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
24
I love this idea! I bought my first sports bike at 18 years old a Honda CBR Hurricane. I have probably owned about 15 bikes over the years as I would buy them in the winter cheap and sell close to the end of the summer for more then I paid for them then do it again the next year. For a long trip you will want a sport cruiser stuff like CBR's, GSXR's and R6 and R1 will not be comfortable for a long trip nor will you be able to carry much with you.. I kind of caution the same thing as @swatski buy them now and start to get used to them. These bikes are crazy fast and dangerous machines you will want as much time as possible to get comfortable with them before going on an extended trip. Shooting you on the line it could be upwards of a year before you start to feel real confident in your riding ability. I have owned everything from sports bikes to cruiser style Harley bikes and I always go back to the pure sports bikes I just love the riding experince on them but as whether I would try and put 300-400 miles in a day on one not sure I would wan't to anymore.
 

robert843

Jetboaters Admiral
Messages
4,793
Reaction score
5,530
Points
382
Location
Myrtle Beach, SC
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2017
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
24
Also agree with @Neutron don't buy a carbed bike you will struggle trying to resell it later and cold start issues suck. I wouldn't buy a new bike but I wouldn't concern myself with mileage to much try and find something with under 25K miles and I would buy the newest year I could as that will help with speed of resale after you trip. Also you probably will find the best price now until February as in March you will start to see the used bike market heat up and prices rise.
 

Neutron

Jetboaters Captain
Messages
1,675
Reaction score
1,878
Points
217
Location
New Bern, NC
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2016
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
24
If buying used and its a chain dtive bike inpect the chain and sprockets for wear and check the tension roll the bike and check the tightness in different spots. If it gets loose in spots and very tight in other spots then the chain is junk
 

BigN8

Jetboaters Admiral
Messages
1,645
Reaction score
2,187
Points
252
Location
Corinth, TX
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2010
Boat Model
SX
Boat Length
24
Not to be a wet blanket (and I love, love, love the idea).
But I will say this:
(since this is a jetboating forum and we like sharing advice and experience, lol)
To me, buying a new bike to go on a long trip would be akin to buying a new jet boat - to go to Bimini. Can it be done? - of course. Would I want to do it? - no. There is just way, way, too many things that may (and do) go wrong. And then it really helps to have some experience.

Motorcycle safety class is just not enough to make you aware and comfortable, if there even is such a thing as motorcycle safety these days - way too many distracted drivers to my taste!
I would say - buy a bike and start riding. See how you like it. Run some (shorter) trips. See how you really like it.

I would stay away from sport bikes - entirely. I would gravitate towards the most comfortable bike you can handle. You are getting awesome advice here - already posted above!

Just my 0.02 - since you are asking!


Disclaimer:
I have been riding (on and off) longer than I'm willing to admit - let's just say - I got my bike license before my car license, lol. I would consider myself intermediate as far as my skill level. Currently own and (occasionally) ride two bikes (kind of two extremes of riding comfort and safety!):

1. Ural Retro w/sidecar (a 750cc replica of a 1939 M72/R71 boxer twin, w/strait cut gears, kick starter and mechanical reverse...) - crazy, crazy rig to ride - but kids and dogs love it!

2. Suzuki Burgman 650 Executive ABS (a power scooter w/auto trans w/manual electronic override, ABS brakes, motorized windshield and mirrors etc.) - capable of 100+mph (or so I'm told, lol)

--
What he said....... I have been riding since I was 16 and I'm now 45. I've owned all kinds of bikes and been through motorcycle safety class 3 times (once for military base permit and twice for speeding). Those classes are a joke as it relates to real world experience. Are they worth it.....sure, but they can't prepare you for all the shit you will encounter.

I would definately not buy 2 new bike for this. I would stay away from the sport bike. I had a Suzuki GSX-R 750 in my twenties and even though I was in shape and fit as hell a long road trip on that thing would kill my lower back. They just aren't made for that. A more upright BMW style touring bike is what I would lean toward. I also like the idea of renting the bikes vs. buying. You might need to get motorcycle drivers license endorsement though. Have the endorsement on your license will atleast make it easier to rent. Although being 21 and not 25 might also cause a problem renting the bike. I bet you could work out a long term rental too.

I've heard many people talk about the PAcific Coast Highway as one of the best motorcycle trips you can do. That is on my bucket list for sure.

Either way good luck. And as every motorcycle safety instructor has ever said to the class before it is finished, "there are 2 types of motorcycle riders, those that have fallen and those that will fall". Not to rain on your parade but if you are going to take on this endevour it's worth saying. Gear is your friend. Dress for the crash. I always shake my head when I see a husband and wife with there tank tops and bandanas riding down the road on there $30,000 Harley like they are invincible.
 

swatski

Jetboaters Fleet Admiral
Messages
10,984
Reaction score
12,467
Points
632
Location
Saint Louis, MO
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2016
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
24
Choose bikes with some sort of wind protection.
x10 on this
Even with full fairing - there will be plenty of wind in your face! - so no worries there.
W/o wind protection you just get beat up, and it can get brutal after a while.

--
 

Speedling

Jetboaters Admiral
Messages
4,800
Reaction score
3,866
Points
337
Location
Cedar Lake, IN
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2008
Boat Model
SS
Boat Length
21
I can’t stress how much you will need eyes in the back of your head these days. Always be thinking of your escape route. I asked about experience because in a hurried or emergency situation ingrained reflexes from years of riding can save your life. Don’t get hung up on the sport riding aspect during a long trip. Ride under your ability, not at the edge of your ability. Enjoy the scenery. Stop at a lot of small coffee and diner places along the way. Enjoy the trip. Don’t race for it to be over.

Learn and understand countersteering. Practice emergency braking.
I don't ride anymore because a girl cut me off and i had to decide me or the bike into the minivan. Bike hit and got spun under the van and dragged. I rolled behind the van. I was in full protective gear but had a horrid bruise on my side and couldn't go up stairs for a few weeks.
Loved every second of riding otherwise!
 

4x15mph

Jetboaters Captain
Messages
1,650
Reaction score
901
Points
217
Location
Downingtown, PA
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2018
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
21
Great input everyone, thanks and keep up with the feedback and advice. I wasn't clear originally so wanted to note that I will be buying used bikes. We plan to get used to them and get them all set up (think winter mods).

We will plan to have a very relaxed schedule, we will stay in hotels along the way, and if it rains we will not be riding. We plan to see the mountains of NY and Vermont and visit family on our way back down through Pennsylvania.

I am leaning towards an adventure or sport tour bike. It is more upright and I can put bags on it if I want.

Son is pretty set on sport bike still so ew will have to take breaks when he figures out his back is in bad shape. Fortunately he is in great shape like kids are these days at 21
 

thorsome

Well-Known Member
Messages
13
Reaction score
8
Points
52
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2015
Boat Model
AR
Boat Length
19
I’ve owned more than 20 bikes and as I’ve gotten older, they’ve progressively gotten more touring oriented and less sport oriented. My current ride is a Kawasaki concourse 14. Had a cbr1000 prior to this.
I agree with everything that’s already been said, but offer a couple of different comments:
1) whatever you ride, you’ll want a fairing/windshield. Adjustable windshields are a plus and some bikes have this feature.
2) you’ll want to have a mini air compressor and tire plug kit.
3) twice the bikes results in twice the opportunities for problems. Ensure y’all have a plan for getting help if something goes wrong. Our riding group has someone take a truck/trailer for trips to the mountains and we swap out driving the tow rig. Just so happened on a past ride that one of the riders went down and we needed the truck to get his bike home.
4) get the quietest/best helmets you can afford. And get a set of helmet communicators. The ride is a heck of a lot more fun when you can talk to those in your group.
5) three hundred miles in a day is easy to accomplish- on the first day. Plan on riding progressively fewer miles each additional day.
6) I wish my dad had done this with me. You rock!!!
7) I doubt this will be a 1 time thing- especially if you both love riding. And especially since you have more than one son.
 

djetok

Jetboaters Captain
Messages
1,307
Reaction score
1,318
Points
202
Location
Edmond, ok
Boat Make
Yamaha
Year
2015
Boat Model
SX
Boat Length
21
I have had many sport bikes in my life time and have had many long rides with friends. 100 miles on my r6 , r1, gsxr 1000 , 750. Out of those bikes the r6 was the most comfortable, if you can say that about a bike. It is the tallest bike out of the lot. It will kill your back!!! My hyabusa was better than all of those but was a beast to throw around the corners. Since you said touring. I would ride a dual sport bike. Like a triumph triple , or a japenese street fighter. I personally like the Japanese bikes and the limited maintenance. I had a Ducati 948 that had to have the valves adjusted all the time. It got expensive. If you can find a ninja 12 r that would be a great bike as well. I rode a buddies 12 , he rode my r1. He kept trying to get my to switch back. I ignored him because my back hurt and we were a long ways from Tulsa.

If your son is hell bent on a sport bike a 12r sits way more up right and can be ridden many miles, but not like a touring bike. I even found one in your area on cycle trader.

Ps I just re read your post and as a former owner of a r6. I would not ride one more than 100 miles. If you do just fill up the the tank a 1/4 at a time because he will want to stop about 40 to 50 miles in.
 
Last edited:

Peelz

Jet Boat Junkie
Messages
408
Reaction score
316
Points
147
Location
SE IA
Boat Make
Glastron
Year
2004
Boat Model
SX
Boat Length
17
as far as what bike to get.... so many options...how much we spending? LOL

for reference: I ride a 2002 BMW R1150R. its the best multipurpose bike Iv'e ever owned. and CHEAP! Tours brilliantly. 1230 miles in two days is my most so far...but could do more. In fact, just about any Beemer with the boxer twin, makes a great tourer. you can get good R's under 5 grand. and wont lose your arse when you sell. comfortable, not slow... engines like butter and quiet. I ride mine in the dirt, gravel... rain... does it all really.

not mine, but it looks just like this......

https://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/NzY4WDEwMjQ=/z/GLEAAOSwh-1W5B2V/$_86.JPG


disclaimer: I'm realistic though. If you dont like tinkering on your bike... or spending money on ridiculous dealer service....do not buy an older BMW or Harley. Personally, I LOVE working on mine, its pretty simple, never lets me down....Would suggest my model to anyone.

I wouldn't ride an r6 300 miles in a day unless I was running from the cops! lol

NOW: the realistic choices.... a one time adventure.... find some used Yamaha FZ's. fz1 or fz09 and throw some bags on em... would do you just fine.

the frugal guy in me says look at hondas 700 engined bikes as well. they sip gas...

on your trip:

-take breaks. dont get in a hurry (i cant help it, always do), stay hydrated, take a few aspirin (helps discomfort) hearing protection.

but, best advice i can give you: have fun! and for at least one leg, turn off all electronics, and take a backroad. There is a surprising amount of bliss in not knowing where the f*** you are. I found this out when i lost my phone to a rain storm 10hrs from home once.... sucked for a little bit... but then. peaceful. :)

i hope to do this with my son one day.
 
Top