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Discussion Starter #1
I've been riding my 250R for a couple of years now. It is my first bike. I ride my dad's Road Star (1600cc Yamaha cruiser) quite a bit too. I like the ease of handling the 250 and I'm a careful rider, but I frankly get tired of shifting so much to get going and to get around in traffic, and I'm not a big guy at all. I also find the seat pretty uncomfortable for longer hauls, though I have changed the grips and they feel great now. Of course, the Road Star is very comfortable because of it's size, but it is a lot of work in the stop and go stuff. I'm afraid the 500 won't be enough of a difference in torque and weight to get me the reduced shifting and smoother and more comfortable ride I would like (at a bargain price). I bet a lot of you have made this move, and I'd really appreciate hearing how it turned out. Thanks.
 

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I just went straight to the 500. I have a friend with the 250 and the only reason he keeps it is because his family rides it as well. He told me I'd be bored with it very quickly as he was but it's economical. I agree. I like my 500. It suits me just fine. I get over 50mpg and it accelerates more than enough for the street. I find it much easier in twisties than larger sportbikes. That's just me though. Find one to test ride and make your own decision.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, the issue is really torque curve/shifting frequency and seat/crotch comfort after an hour or so.

I guess is just boils down to the ease of riding. A much broader torque curve and wider gear ratio would be greatly appreciated. My 250 is really peaky, and I hate wringing it's little neck to get into the power band. Is there a major difference there?

And just more overall smoothness and comfort is a pretty big deal for me too.
 

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for me, the 500 is VERY comfortable, and 75% of my riding is city traffic with the remaining part being twisties, the 500 is excellant for this stuff. I gutted the stock cans and adjusted the carbs a little richer to get better power, and it really goes from 3750-10k quite well. of course the power starts really showing in the 7-9k range, but I dont typically ride in that rpm area.
 

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I'm a suburban commuter w/ a 24 mile round trip w/ 1/3 of that on highway.
My height is 5'10", weight is 190... dry. ;)

I won't lug the engine below 3500 yet generally don't go above 7000.
It works for me... never had any trouble staying ahead of, or moving w/ traffic using that range.

While you're weighing various factors keep in mind that seats can be changed, replaced for a couple hundred, or rebuilt for a lot less (but w/ more uncertainty). If rear-end comfort is a big part of the equation, maybe it shouldn't be. If you get a bigger windscreen that'll make longer travels better too. Windscreens are relatively cheap.

My 500 accelerated, stopped, & cornered better than the various Harley's, Honda & Yamaha highway cruisers in my MSF course yesterday. Must certainly be cheaper to insure, maintain & run than they are as well.
 

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I started out on a 250 as well and made the move to a 500. The 500 is a much better bike. I feel more confident handling it than I did with the 250. You really don't have to shift all too often either. I couldn't go back to the 250 now. The only advantage that bike has is its higher mileage, and I don't mind paying a couple of bucks at the pump anyhow. If you have any questions, I'll try my best to answer them.
 

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Buy the bike, that best suits your riding style and preferences. Riding long haul highway and two-up? Better to go with a cruiser. Doing more streetlight to streetlight, with the occasional passenger? Stick with a 250 or 500.
 

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Did the round trip NWPA Cleveland NWPA trip yesterday... 250 miles. This was on an '89 EX-500. Very doable and plenty of torque to spare riding at Highway speeds. The only thing that was really making me uncomfortable on this bike was the 42 degree weather at 75 mph!
 

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As far as comfort goes I find it fine even for highway trips. Lets not forget that even a car or trucks seat get uncomfortable after a certain amount of time. Drive for 9 days going anywhere from 1000-400 miles a day. Yes, Only stopping to fill gas and maybe eat. The bum hurt worse there then spending a few hours droning on the bike. And yes the mileage went in that order. First couple days 800-1k miles each. Last part was 400-600 maybe. All I did was drive and sleep...haha. Luckly I had company. When I drive back alone, that will suck. I just hope I don't have to(alone that is).
 

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i do more mountain riding on my '05 500... sometimes my boys start to complain, but its a really great ride, third and fourth gear are very good for almost all traffic... you should not be hitting 6th except for cruising on the interstate... its a very good ride, everywhere from sport to commute to leisure.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for all the feedback guys. I guess I'm concluding that there is a pretty big difference between these two bikes. The 500 has double the torque and apparently a much broader curve based on what I'm reading here, and in the online reviews. So that's good. About 52 horsies isn't bad either. My dad's Road Star only has 58 hp, and it's a 1600, but it has a ton of torque.

Sounds like the seat might be a little more comfortable, probably wider, and the extra 80 pounds or so will probably smooth out the road a little. Thanks again.
 

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furyskater911 said:
i do more mountain riding on my '05 500... sometimes my boys start to complain, but its a really great ride, third and fourth gear are very good for almost all traffic... you should not be hitting 6th except for cruising on the interstate... its a very good ride, everywhere from sport to commute to leisure.
You need to do an old Bullrider's trick...get em situated before you get on....LOL
 

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im gonna wait for a year or two, and get a used one. used ones are hard to come by now since they just came out/the price is close to new. my friend/riding buddy has a 650 and just shelled out like 700 bucks in accessories. (undertail, windscreen, rear tire hugger, grabrails, i dunno what else.
 

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250 to a 500 is not much of an upgrade. I'd say go for a 600.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I'm going to try for the Vulcan 900. Not much price difference, and looks cool. Shouldn't have a torque problem, and it ought to be comfortable.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I feel really comfortable on my dad's Road Star. I may just talk him out of it. I ride it more than my bike now anyway.
 

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MattR said:
if you have put over 10-15k miles on your 250, i'd say you could consider a 650 or a 600.
if you've been riding for a couple of years, you're probably ready for any bike that will make you happy
just take it easy on the throttle
 
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