Understanding the Economics of Track Bikes - 600RR.net
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post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-25-2010, 10:48 PM Thread Starter
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Understanding the Economics of Track Bikes

Hello,

Having all winter up here in Canada to just think about riding has got me pondering as to where my riding is headed as we enter into the new season.

I'm still relatively new at the whole motorcycle thing, but the whole point from the start has been to get on the track. I have quite a bit of track experience in a car, but I know this won't be of much use except through motivation to get started.

I have a 2007 600rr that I bought used in near perfect, all original condition (with a 5 year warranty). From my uneducated perspective it is hard to figure out when it is best to modify what you have (with fairings and sliders and whatever else you need to help prevent damage) and when it is best to buy a pre-prepped track bike. How many track days could you reasonably expect to get away without damage before it would be foolish to not swap out fairings and get some sliders (if any)? As a beginner is it overkill to show up with a track prepped bike, or would it be most practical as a beginner? I've seen some people suggest getting another brand of bike, since parts are cheaper and more available. Is this something worth considering when starting out, before investing heavily in one brand?

I'm not sure if this is an answerable question or not, but I figure some of you have been down this route and may have some wisdom to share.

Also, who of you who have started tracking have given up street riding altogether?

Thanks!

John
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post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 03:35 AM
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No one can answer that for you man. Some people wreck their very 1st td, some go years without a wreck.
It depends on luck, how much you push yourself, and how far you step out over your head, as well as equipment.
For me, personally I rode what I have. Still do, I'd love to get a dedicated track bike but with all the money I have invested in my bike now, its a bit pointless, especially with the mods being more and more track focused.

Depending on what you want to start with, you can get an old track bike for as little as $2k or so, but will it have suspension, good brakes (dependent on age) etc.
Or would you rather just get some track skins and get you suspension on the one you have now?
Also, if you get a cheap old track bike, how long will you ride it before you want to upgrade? That money you spend on the track bike can do suspension now, or maybe a trailer, etc. If you want a pretty modern bike already setup, its gonna cost close to what yours costs as it sits or sometimes even more.

Its a personal decision, based on your budgets, your resources for finding a trackbike, and what you want, your goals. We can all come in and say what we did. But you still have to weigh your scales.

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post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 09:45 AM
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I know a lot of people that have given up street riding after going to the track. I include myself in that figure. Once you go track, you never go back...

If I were you, I would go to a track day with your bike as is. Potentially, you will not like it. While not likely, it has happened. Why not see if it is for you before you start going crazy with the aftermarket?

Order of mods on an 07 is something like this in my opinion:

Better gear, including back/chest protector!
Bodywork
Suspension (rear and front)
Tires
Brake lines
Brake pads
Slipper Clutch
Master cylinder
Calipers
Upgraded stabilizer
Exhaust and fuel management
Engine internals

I started with the engine stuff first, and that was a mistake. A lot of people make it. They think the bike will be faster that way. But, for the money, suspension is the best mod you can buy. It will make you a faster, more confident rider. I advise you leave the power commanders and the akras alone, and get the suspension sorted first. Picking up 5 hp at the top of the rev range won't do a novice any good, but a planted feeling in the corners and good feedback benefit all riders.

Just my 2c



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post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 01:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by powermoose1 View Post
I know a lot of people that have given up street riding after going to the track. I include myself in that figure. Once you go track, you never go back...

If I were you, I would go to a track day with your bike as is. Potentially, you will not like it. While not likely, it has happened. Why not see if it is for you before you start going crazy with the aftermarket?

Order of mods on an 07 is something like this in my opinion:

Better gear, including back/chest protector!
Bodywork
Suspension (rear and front)
Tires
Brake lines
Brake pads
Slipper Clutch
Master cylinder
Calipers
Upgraded stabilizer
Exhaust and fuel management
Engine internals

I started with the engine stuff first, and that was a mistake. A lot of people make it. They think the bike will be faster that way. But, for the money, suspension is the best mod you can buy. It will make you a faster, more confident rider. I advise you leave the power commanders and the akras alone, and get the suspension sorted first. Picking up 5 hp at the top of the rev range won't do a novice any good, but a planted feeling in the corners and good feedback benefit all riders.

Just my 2c
Excellent advice there, I did my first trackday last month and am now hooked. In the order he wrote is what you should concentrate on. Power makes no difference when your new to the track.
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post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 04:40 PM Thread Starter
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Great info. Thanks everyone.

John
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post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 05:51 PM
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oh, i mess your last question, i still ride street and backroads. While im faster through our fav backroads than before i started doing trackdays, i dont push nearly as hard, every now and then i get crazy, but for the most part i just chill and work on form, as best i can and maybe do shakedown runs to test and tweak new mods, like feeling out new brake pads, or suspension and geometry changes, etc.
It also helps me to keep the sanity between trackdays.

This season im doing suspension mods, and i plan on hitting the twisties a few times to get a feel for it and to make final adjustments to where i like the feel and im ready to throw the fat big around the track. :)

No more mod listing, shits is STILL too long

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post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 07:32 PM
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^snik do you use the same bike for street/track and if so do you have stock fairings?
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post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-26-2010, 07:37 PM
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Originally Posted by BLUETORI View Post
^snik do you use the same bike for street/track and if so do you have stock fairings?
Yes, same bike, i still ride on the street.
I ran my 1st 3 days my 1st year with street bodywork, last year i switched to track body work.
its a pita switching back and forth,m but my track partner does the same thing, and we help each other, now we take our time, change oil, safety wire, drink beer and swap plastics. takes us an hour for both if we dont stop every 10 minutes to BS

No more mod listing, shits is STILL too long

03 600RR > 04 1000RR > 06 R6V > 05 600RR > 06 R1 > 09 1000RR > 10 RSV4R :gun:
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post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-27-2010, 02:03 AM
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This was my venture into the track abyss. I started hitting track days with my 05' 600rr for about 1.5 years. I would just tape up the stock plastics, but I did have frame sliders on. When my abilities began to outshine the stock suspension I had to make a choice, do I buy a dedicated track bike or spend the money fixing my current ride up to the capabilities of a track bike. So I did the math:
To upgrade the bike:
plastics $500-800
power commander and dyno $400
triple adjustable rear shock $900-1200
front suspension (springs, valves, and rebuild) $900-1200
rearsets $250
stabilizer $250-400
With just these items you are spending about ~$3200-4250

Next I looked at the cost of a used race bike off the WERA boards. I found a 2004 Yamaha R6 for $3500 with ohilins suspension and a graves SS motor. With all the spare pads, rearsets, gears exhaust systems ectera for another $500.

So I decided the economics was better to just get a second bike, that way I can always continue to ride a bike if my track one goes down. These prices are American, your Canadian prices will be a little more.
As far as damage at a track event, the risk increases the faster you get. As long as you don't ride completely beyond your means, you should be able to hold a steady curve of learning while keeping upright.

I would say run what you got to see if you get the itch to run on the track. As your skills develop, you can revisit this question and it may be more clear for you then.
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post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-27-2010, 02:43 AM
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I had every mod except suspension, wheels and full exhaust by the time I got to the track.
Last year I did the exhaust and mag wheels thing, deals were too good to pass, both costing me less than $1800 total. :)
This year, all I'm doing is suspension and I'm doing both f+r for under $1k cause I shop around like a mawfuka, and found the right stuff from the right guy.
My only concern is, my bike is a 04 and its starting to feel and look archaic next to the newer stuff. But I've got a whole season ahead of me to worry about that.
Once I do this suspension, and this race school its all about seat time, and fitness training. (I'm getting a bicycle this year)

I will say tho, I think if I had the lump sum laying around I'd be shopping for a salvage title 06+ R6 or 08+ 1000rr. But I don't, so I'll continue to run what I have. Plus I love my fat big, its good training hustling her big ass around. :)

No more mod listing, shits is STILL too long

03 600RR > 04 1000RR > 06 R6V > 05 600RR > 06 R1 > 09 1000RR > 10 RSV4R :gun:
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post #11 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-27-2010, 05:03 PM Thread Starter
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Socaltribal: Thats exactly the type of info I was looking for at the start. Thanks a lot. I think I will try to get out on my bike and just keep myself in check (though, some cut sliders and no bottom fairing may be worth considering just incase).

Snik: I can see if you had a lot of mods done already, the decision would be a no-brainer. I don't think we can register salvaged bikes on the street in Ontario, so I'd have to have 2 bikes around (which isn't really a problem, but I had better get saving). This is why I was wondering how likely it is I'd just give up street riding (in this part of Canada the roads are unbelievably straight and the weather is pretty bad - super humid in the summer and snow for 4 months in the winter).

Thanks again, everyone!

John
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post #12 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-27-2010, 06:26 PM
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what ive seen is this, race bikes with suspension under $4k tend to be very old, pre 03, usually having carbs, not FI.
for something newer they tend to be beat up if they do have suspension, or essentialy stock with track skins.

No more mod listing, shits is STILL too long

03 600RR > 04 1000RR > 06 R6V > 05 600RR > 06 R1 > 09 1000RR > 10 RSV4R :gun:
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post #13 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-27-2010, 06:46 PM
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Give up street riding? Never. The only time I enjoy my commute to work is when I'm on the bike. The track is great for when you want to drag knee and haul ass without fear of cops, potholes, roadkill, idiot cagers, etc.. But what if you just want to take a relaxed ride around town with your lady? Or take a ride through the mountains or your favorite twisties when you call out of work "sick"? I say if you love riding, you'll ride. It shouldn't matter if you're going 170 on a track or 35 in your neighborhood.
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post #14 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-27-2010, 07:19 PM
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yeah, i couldnt totally give it up either. I do ride a lot less, and ive thought about it, but couldnt do it.

No more mod listing, shits is STILL too long

03 600RR > 04 1000RR > 06 R6V > 05 600RR > 06 R1 > 09 1000RR > 10 RSV4R :gun:
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post #15 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-29-2010, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Matdady1 View Post
Give up street riding? Never. The only time I enjoy my commute to work is when I'm on the bike. The track is great for when you want to drag knee and haul ass without fear of cops, potholes, roadkill, idiot cagers, etc.. But what if you just want to take a relaxed ride around town with your lady? Or take a ride through the mountains or your favorite twisties when you call out of work "sick"? I say if you love riding, you'll ride. It shouldn't matter if you're going 170 on a track or 35 in your neighborhood.
Loving riding has nothing to do with it. Risk mitigation is the reason I don't ride the street. A few get offs caused by car drivers will change your mind.

Secondly, the bike is no longer fun to ride at street speeds. You know you could go so much faster. I'd rather not do it than be bored by it.



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post #16 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-29-2010, 11:57 AM
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Loving riding has nothing to do with it. Risk mitigation is the reason I don't ride the street. A few get offs caused by car drivers will change your mind.

Secondly, the bike is no longer fun to ride at street speeds. You know you could go so much faster. I'd rather not do it than be bored by it.

My point can't be argued. If you truly LOVE to ride, why would you limit yourself to only riding on a track? Do you have any idea how many beautiful roads there are in this world? Sure, I love going fast and feeling the rush of speed, hence the decision to buy a sportbike. But that's only one side of riding, which is clearly the only side you prefer.

The other side I was referring to was enjoying scenery, time with friends, discovering new roads and traveling, etc.. Risk mitigation is bs. If you're that concerned with the risks, you'll sell the bike and buy a Prius. Last time I checked, there were plenty of people who got seriously injured/killed at the track. Not everyone needs to push the envelope to the edge of disaster to have fun on 2wheels.

If you're "bored" with riding a bike at street speeds, I don't think you're in love with riding. As many would agree, true love is unconditional. Your condition is that you have to be going fast, or not at all. At best, you're in "like" with riding.
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post #17 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-29-2010, 12:35 PM
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My point can't be argued. If you truly LOVE to ride, why would you limit yourself to only riding on a track? Do you have any idea how many beautiful roads there are in this world? Sure, I love going fast and feeling the rush of speed, hence the decision to buy a sportbike. But that's only one side of riding, which is clearly the only side you prefer.

The other side I was referring to was enjoying scenery, time with friends, discovering new roads and traveling, etc.. Risk mitigation is bs. If you're that concerned with the risks, you'll sell the bike and buy a Prius. Last time I checked, there were plenty of people who got seriously injured/killed at the track. Not everyone needs to push the envelope to the edge of disaster to have fun on 2wheels.

If you're "bored" with riding a bike at street speeds, I don't think you're in love with riding. As many would agree, true love is unconditional. Your condition is that you have to be going fast, or not at all. At best, you're in "like" with riding.
Your point can't be argued? You are arguing it right now...

Risk mitigation is bs? I am sure there are other things you do that you don't do in high risk areas.

Example:

Do you have sex in the street? No. Why? Because there are cars there to run you over. But, if you truly loved sex, you would. It is unconditional...that is the logic you are trying to use...

I could give a **** less what you think of my riding though...but try not to use such lazy logic in your arguments. It really makes you look like an incompetent moron.



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post #18 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-29-2010, 12:52 PM
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Your point can't be argued? You are arguing it right now...

Risk mitigation is bs? I am sure there are other things you do that you don't do in high risk areas.

Example:

Do you have sex in the street? No. Why? Because there are cars there to run you over. But, if you truly loved sex, you would. It is unconditional...that is the logic you are trying to use...

I could give a **** less what you think of my riding though...but try not to use such lazy logic in your arguments. It really makes you look like an incompetent moron.

Aww.. Poor wittle guy's all upset? Calm down junior, Daddy will change your poopoo diaper in a minute. What's up with all the anger? If my "lazy logic" makes me look like an incompetent moron, your unprovoked name-calling makes you look like a hyper-sensitive emo FAGGOT.

And for the record, I have had sex in the streets. You should try it sometime. But remember to put on the knee pads when you're taking it from Lance or Bruce, as the asphault isn't too forgiving. Consider it risk mitigation, pansy bastard.

Another thing, I didn't offer any final judgement about your riding. Hell, if you only love going fast, then phucking great!! Who gives a $hit? I was talking about the general love of riding, and how it transcends a closed circuit and top end speeds. If you don't get it, you don't get it. At no point did I say your choices were wrong, only your reasoning.

Were you by any chance that kid who was crying on youtube, asking for people to leave Brittney alone?

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post #19 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-29-2010, 04:24 PM
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A track bike is a highly efficient engine that is extremely good at what it does: Turn large amounts of money into brief but intense moments of joy.

basically the economics of a track are as such,

money goes in > > fun comes out.

Having only a track bike increases the intensity of post track day withdrawals and increase the need to go back and spend more money.

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post #20 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-29-2010, 04:27 PM
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Aww.. Pool wittle guy's all upset? Calm down junior, Daddy will change your poopoo diaper in a minute. What's up with all the anger? If my "lazy logic" makes me look like an incompetent moron, your unprovoked name-calling makes you look like a hyper-sensitive emo FAGGOT.

And for the record, I have had sex in the streets. You should try it sometime. But remember to put on the knee pads when you're taking it from Lance or Bruce, as the asphault isn't too forgiving. Consider it risk mitigation, pansy bastard.

Another thing, I didn't offer any final judgement about your riding. Hell, if you only love going fast, then phucking great!! Who gives a $hit? I was talking about the general love of riding, and how it transcends a closed circuit and top end speeds. If you don't get it, you don't get it. At no point did I say your choices were wrong, only your reasoning.

Were you by any chance that kid who was crying on youtube, asking for people to leave Brittney alone?

Your complete lack of a response is unsurprising to me. When I expose that your logic is unsound, you try a different tactic. Go figure.

You don't love riding. You love nature and hanging out and such. riding is the vehicle that allows you to do so. It sounds like your bike is sorely under used. You should probably get a scooter and GTFO a race replica forum...



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Your complete lack of a response is unsurprising to me. When I expose that your logic is unsound, you try a different tactic. Go figure.

You don't love riding. You love nature and hanging out and such. riding is the vehicle that allows you to do so. It sounds like your bike is sorely under used. You should probably get a scooter and GTFO a race replica forum...

LOL, lack of response? Great come back, btw. You didn't expose anything, other than the fact that you're sensitive and have no grip on logic whatsoever.

So what you're saying is that anyone who chooses to ride track AND street (which I do) is sorely under-using their RR? Are you serious? And you think my logic is flawed? You sir, are a douche bag. I enjoy both, because I LOVE riding. You're only into the track because you can't stand going slow on the streets and it's too dangerous (fragile lady-boy that you are). I might be looking at this the wrong way all together. Are you trying to stay healthy for your MotoGP debut? I wasn't aware Tampax signed a new rider. You're the best, period! Spray some champagne down on me from the podium. Pretentious poser assclown!
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post #22 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-29-2010, 11:21 PM
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to answer the OP, its perfectly ok to start trackdays with a stock bike. its probably better that way so you get more acquainted with your bike first before doing mods. As you get more practice and tracktime, its good to start investing in mods like track plastics, good tires, suspension, etc.

As to the arguement of giving up street riding for the track, its on a personal basis. If you feel that street riding isn't safe for you for whatever reason (family or risk of injury) then its your choice. Track riding is great and very addicting, but can also be a financial pit. Street riding has its perks of having more freedom to ride anytime and is generally cheaper. Both share the risks of injury, although partially less on trackdays.

I've yet to give up street riding; I just ride less street miles and ride very defensively. IMHO its a good compromise to have a dedicated trackbike and a separate streetbike if your budget affords.

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post #23 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-30-2010, 01:53 PM
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To the OP, sorry for jacking your thread with this business of "loving to ride." It's silly of me to get into an argument on the internet. And it's rude of me to argue about it on your thread. Have fun on the track.

To Matdady...who's senstive now? Name calling? Look at your post man...

Don't start an argument by declaring absolutes that are, in fact, your subjective view points...that is your error...ride all you want...once you collect enough metal in your body, maybe you'll see it my way...



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post #24 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-30-2010, 02:32 PM
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To the OP, sorry for jacking your thread with this business of "loving to ride." It's silly of me to get into an argument on the internet. And it's rude of me to argue about it on your thread. Have fun on the track.

To Matdady...who's senstive now? Name calling? Look at your post man...

Don't start an argument by declaring absolutes that are, in fact, your subjective view points...that is your error...ride all you want...once you collect enough metal in your body, maybe you'll see it my way...

I apologize Moose, I get carried away sometimes. I can see where you're coming from. Sorry to hear you've had such bad luck on the streets. We may disagree on a lot of things, but one thing is for certain. We both have exquisite taste in bikes. Therefore, you don't deserve my insults. I'll save them for the gixxer squid down the street. Keep it on two-
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ad you two came to your senses. :)

No more mod listing, shits is STILL too long

03 600RR > 04 1000RR > 06 R6V > 05 600RR > 06 R1 > 09 1000RR > 10 RSV4R :gun:
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post #26 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-30-2010, 04:42 PM Thread Starter
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Hey guys, I'm just glad everything worked out! It's no problem that we got a bit off topic...

Tribal: Thanks for that post. Very direct and informative.

George: I see what you are saying about the withdrawal. It was hard to put the bike away for the winter, but it gets easier with time. I'm guessing it would be a similar effect.

Snikwad in post 12: From what I have seen on the classifieds on this site and r6-forum, you are right about the types of bikes. It seems quite rare to find a bike with suspension done and in good condition for anywhere near my budget. I'd imagine parting out the suspension and going back to stock before selling would bring in more money and be worth the hassle.

Thanks again everyone!

John
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post #27 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-30-2010, 05:29 PM
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Originally Posted by blu_in_green View Post
Hey guys, I'm just glad everything worked out! It's no problem that we got a bit off topic...

Tribal: Thanks for that post. Very direct and informative.

George: I see what you are saying about the withdrawal. It was hard to put the bike away for the winter, but it gets easier with time. I'm guessing it would be a similar effect.

Snikwad in post 12: From what I have seen on the classifieds on this site and r6-forum, you are right about the types of bikes. It seems quite rare to find a bike with suspension done and in good condition for anywhere near my budget. I'd imagine parting out the suspension and going back to stock before selling would bring in more money and be worth the hassle.

Thanks again everyone!
i think it def is. a good f + r suspension will fetch you over a grand MINIMUM used, and thats low end stuff. so imagine someone with Ohlins Cartridge and shocks. they can take it off sell it for around $2k and still ask a good price for the rest of the bike on stock suspension.
I see people say they want to drop $3k-$k on a track bike and im like, that can get you a used rear shock and new fork internals and change for plastic and new gear. And you wont have to come up with the lump sum to do it. you could spread it out over months.

So to me, i say ride what you have. if i could, at this point that im at with trackdays. if i could, id buy a used track only bike and throw some money at it. OR what id really love to do, is get a Duc and make my RR track only.

No more mod listing, shits is STILL too long

03 600RR > 04 1000RR > 06 R6V > 05 600RR > 06 R1 > 09 1000RR > 10 RSV4R :gun:
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post #28 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-30-2010, 10:23 PM
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Originally Posted by snikwad View Post

So to me, i say ride what you have. if i could, at this point that im at with trackdays. if i could, id buy a used track only bike and throw some money at it. OR what id really love to do, is get a Duc and make my RR track only.
That would be awesome. If only i can find a sugarmama i'll do the same

* * 600RR Ex-Track Junkie * *
Current bike - Yamaha Liquid Silver R1


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post #29 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-31-2010, 01:04 AM
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^ lol, i know right. GF needs to hit the lottery or somthing

No more mod listing, shits is STILL too long

03 600RR > 04 1000RR > 06 R6V > 05 600RR > 06 R1 > 09 1000RR > 10 RSV4R :gun:
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