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Hey, y'all. I have very much enjoyed the many interesting subjects and informed opinions in this forum.

I'm struggling with the idea of getting off my Honda Interceptor (aka VFR 800) onto a 650. Besides the obvious displacement and sportbike vs. scooter issues, I just can't seem to break the silly paradigm in my mind about scooters. I've been riding a VFR ('86 and '99) since '89 but without a riding partner here in Katy, Texas, I really don't ride it that much anymore. The kind of riding I do now is mostly to the store and occasionally to work, weather permitting. You can see why I've started thinking along the lines of the 650.

It's weird. I'm 44 now and it seems like I'm going through a mid-life crisis in reverse. I'm not looking at the V-Rod, but rather a downsizing from my current ride. Did anyone else go through this?

We lived in Mexico for a long time and we had a couple of Yamaha 100cc scooters, which were admittedly a kick in the pants. So light and responsive, and they would do a righteous 65 mph with a long enough straight. But the throttle response was just so anemic. I had the thing pinned most of the time...and I wasn't speeding.

I'd be interested to hear the opinions of the current and/or former sport riders now riding a 650 and how you felt when you made the switch and how you feel after you've been riding it for awhile. Do you miss the power? Any regrets? The 650 sure is nice looking. But trading in the VFR...I just don't know if I can do it! I'm sure I'm not the only sport rider lurking in this site trying to decide about this. Help me/us out!

Thanks!
Jeff K.
 

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Re: Trading a sportbike for a burger: ask for extra cheese and a side of fries. :D

I've never had a sport bike, nor ever rode one. I have owned two other scooters, and have ridden motocross bikes, touring bikes, cruisers, and ATVs that I've begged, borrowed, and stolen.

I love my Burgman 650. You may have seen some of my other posts where I've talked about its top speed (112MPH indicated), or its ability to out accelerate almost every car or truck, and some other bikes, out there (0 - 60 in 7.0 seconds).

The comfort factor is a major plus, both on long trips (I've taken several with 250+ mile days) and around town. And of course no sport bike has the built-in storage capacity of the Burgman -- great for carrying personal items when commuting to work, some groceries when running to the store, or a picnic basket and blanket for a trip to the beach with your significant other.

But it's not a replacement for a sport bike; it's a different sort of beast. You have to decide if you're ready to switch. Or do like many have done and keep a stable-full of different bike types.

Pauljo, one of our moderators, is better qualified than I to address this, since he owns a Burgman and a 1000cc V-Strom. Hopefully he'll pop in here shortly.

HTH.
 

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Brian said:
Pauljo, one of our moderators, is better qualified than I to address this, since he owns a Burgman and a 1000cc V-Strom. Hopefully he'll pop in here shortly.
Gosh. I was trying to sit this one out... I've owned standards, sport tourers, full dress tourers, dual sports, cruisers - but never a focused "crotch rocket" sportbike - although some of my "standards" came close after the mods I did to them. So, I thought it better to sit back and see if someone who's owned a VFR or similar bike would comment. I know we've got a Bandit rider in the group.

The V-Strom 1000cc is really a sport touring ride, with a sport bike v-twin, and suspension travel that allows some limited off road use. A weird critter - that is fairly versatile in scope, and a ton of fun to ride. It's got twice as much power as the Burgman 650. 0-60 in 3.9 secs vs 7.0 - and it is still accelerating strongly at speeds well beyond what the Burgman can attain.

I enjoy the V-Strom each time I ride it. But I ride the Burgman much more frequently. I've done three tours this Summer - all on the Burgman. I'll be leaving for Scootercade on it this Saturday. I'll have over 11,000 miles on it when I return - and I just bought it last September. I bought the V-Strom 6 months before that - and I just reached 6,500 miles on it today.

The scooter is just as much fun to ride as the motorcycle. It's smooth and it's quick - and it's handy as heck. On a really difficult tight hilly curvy road - I can actually ride the scooter faster. It handles that well. The quoted 0-60 time in no way indicates the road quickness of this machine. It is really easy to get all the power available working for you. Twist throttle - put in in power mode for the tight stuff. That's about all you need to know. Not so simple with the V-Strom. A magazine tester got a V-Strom to do 0-60 in 3.9 secs - I'm not so sure I could do it. I'm very confident I could equal or beat the 7 sec time for the scooter though - I don't think they really tried that hard.

The motorcycle has one thing the scooter can't compete with - big wheels and long suspension travel - it handles rough road irregularities with a poise that the scooter could never match. The scooter doesn't get knocked offline or anything that scary - but you will feel a few more jolts come through the suspension unless they only have smooth pavement where you ride.

I kept the V-Strom when I bought the Burgman. It is nice to have both - they are a different set of grins. But I know I could live with just owning the AN650. And there would be no regrets.
 

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About 4 weeks ago, I traded in my 02 Honda CBR600F4i for a
04 Burgman 400. It took me over a week to really get use to it.
I've been riding since 1985, here are some of the bikes I had

85 honda elite 150
84 honda interceptor 500
89 kawasaki 600 ninja
89 honda hurricane 600
00 kawasaki 250 ninja
02 honda CBR600F4i
04 burgman 400 (current bike)

All my friends (with sportbikes) were asking me why, and were
kind of laughing at me behind my back, but i didn't care.
Well, lets look at it this way. Everyone has different needs.
why doesn't everyone drive a nice sportscar, instead of a 4x4 or a minivan, because people have family with kids and others need a truck for off road work.
So, I use mine to go to work mon-fri 30min city & 10 min highway.
Didn't need all that power anyways for the city with the CBR600.
The burgman 400 is more comfy, better gas mileage and cheaper on insurance. Also lots of storage space, I carry all my rain gears with me
now and a small electric compressor because I now have a 12v outlet in the glove box incase i have a flat in the middle of no where.
 

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Good question,

I have 5 bikes ...R80GS, Vespa, V11 Moto Guzzi, Suzuki 450 and 400 Burgman. Everytime I enter my garage which one do pull the key out for? The 400 of course. Its great mount in the city and doing the small chores like going to the store, picking up the odd item from Home Depot and visiting relatives up the street, the 400 gets the nod everytime.

I attended the BMW national rally in Spokane WA and took my V11 sport. Great bike, lots of power but with the heat and the seating position I keep thinking about getting a 650 as well. Everytime I took a break (aches and pains exasberated by the buzz of the big 1100 cc engine) I thought who needs all this power. It also only gets about 40 mpg. Would be nice to own both and I just may. Thinking is the just a start.

I rode the 650 and thought maybe its just too big. I will be taking the 400 to the western Washington rally and I tell you, I can fit both my tent and sleeping bag underneath the seat (55 liters of storage) so all I have to take is my back pack for all the rest. Uhm...sport bike or comfort??? Power or comfort??? Frankly I think after 600 mile day comfort will win out everytime. Buy the 650!!!
 

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HELLO
I HAVE DRIVEN A 900 & 1000 KAW LTD FOR THE LAST 15-20 YEARS AND AS OF THIS SPRING I HAVE A SILVER 650 BURG. I DO MISS THE POWER OF THE KITTED 1000 BUT THE LAST FEW YEARS MY WIFE AND I ONLY PUT ON APPROX 1000 MILES A YEAR. SO FAR THIS YEAR TO DATE WE HAVE 2500 MILES ON THE BURG AND WILL NOT GO BACK. IT'S A GREAT RIDE.
GOOD LUCK AND DON'T LOOK BACK!!
 

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Jeff,

At 43, I’m close to your age. I had a 2002 ZX-6R before I got my 650 scooter. I really enjoyed the sportbike and was totally into strafing corners in the mountains of NC and VA. I had even taken the two-day moto course at Road Atlanta (big fun).

The scooter is not in its element at ton up speeds, or WFO in the corners. When I first got it, I kept scraping the center stand and the rain deflector in the turns. Also, note the suspension issue others mention above.

I’ve relaxed my pace and ride my Burgman with respect to its nature; quite a bit faster and more nimble than a cruiser, but not as fast a sportbike. It’s very enjoyable, almost soothing. I ride it much more than I drive my car. I would not go back to a sportbike as my only moto. I look at others on repli-racers now and think, “very stylish, but how do you use it?”
 

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BMW R1100R for Burgman 650

At 61 I've ridden alot of motorcycles but no scooters until I tried a Burgman 650. That's all it took. I traded my BMW on it and I'm gtting rid of my CBR1000F. The Burgie is that much fun.
 

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Switching to scooter from a sportbike

I thought long and hard prior to buying the Burgman 650. I traded in my Triumph Sprint ST after someone backed into it and damaged it. It was an awesome bike and I almost dropped 11K to buy a new one. Money was a factor but my riding style played the deciding factor.

I would drive fast and take the corners very well but I wasn't crazy and really wasn't using the full potential of the Sprint. I commute 35 min to work and drove the cycle often. Burger doesn't overheat and is very nimble compared to Sprint w/ the hard saddlebags. Oh did I mention no clutch which is very positive when stuck in traffic because a moron has crashed and the highway is at a standstill. Suspension on Burger is rougher but Sprint was really smooth so maybe that's an unfair comparison.

Wife likes comfy seat and floorboards of Burger. Truly it was a wise purchase and I don't regret it. We ride 80mph on hiway and I take curves almost as fast as I did w/ Sprint. Insurance is way cheaper (I have Dairyland and pay $75yr w/ no accidents) I can ride on a trip w/ plenty of storage space and after 4K miles, it has been very reliable. I'm 35 and some cruiser friends thought I was crazy. I just smile, twist n go, and wait for them at the next intersection!
 
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