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I just rode my 2008 1000rr for the first time today and I thought I would write down my thoughts. Don’t know if any of you guys considering a bike might be interested or not but here goes:

I am 38 years old and have been riding motorcross bikes for most of my life, and street bikes for about 20 years. I used to race a limited amount of WERA novice on a 1996 GSXR750, and did a moderate amount of track days, and Bargy race school, so I mostly know what I am doing on a bike. This was almost 13 years ago, however, and I have not ridden since then.

I started thinking about a new bike (mid-life crisis) a few months ago. I thought I would try something different since I had only owned sportbikes, so I took a long demo ride on a Ducati Hypermotard. I will be honest, I was not really that impressed. The riding position seemed comfortable at first for an old guy like me, but at speed the wind seemed to push you back too much. The bike was fun, but not really too exciting. I had expected massive torque, (I had never ridden a V-twin before) but the power and feel and even the sound just under-whelmed me. The brakes were touchy and the fork had some dive to it.
I hated the electronic tach. Bike looks great except for the stupid front fender.

Giving a different type bike another try, I tested out the KTM 950 or 990? Supermoto. I really wanted to like these bikes. I did like the KTM somewhat more. The bike seemed lighter to me than the Hypermotard, although it is not, and seemed to just handle a little better. The looks and fit and finish (orange plastic everywhere) did not excite me however. The motor was again about the same, not that impressive to me. Front fork was very soft, and the bike had lots of dive under braking. Maybe this could be dialed out with some compression damping, I don’t know. Again, the upright seating position, and with all of that wind pushing against you with no fairing, the bike was less comfortable at speed than I thought. About 80-90 mph seemed to be the comfortable max. No tach at all. All the sophistication of a dirt bike with the weight of a street bike. Oh, yeah, and they also wanted $15,000 for it.

I guess for the “massive torque” of a v-twin I have been hearing about, I would need a 1098. I just don’t think the riding position would be practical for the street. Maybe I will get to try one soon.

I am not saying that these bikes are bad by any means. They are what they are. All of these statements are just my observations and opinions, nothing more. I had just expected and hoped for more excitement. All I wanted was a super-fun street ride. I decided I would just get another sportbike.

A 600 would have been just fine for me. They have plenty of power for the street or track in my opinion. The 600rr has a great comfortable seating position or so it seemed from sitting in the showroom, and is very light. The look is a little dated for me.
The R6 is beautiful but I think would be very uncomfortable for the street.
GSXR 600 is too heavy, heavier than the CBR1000.
New 2009 ZX-6, I really liked, but they wanted $10,000 + OTD. No option to buy used yet.

What about the 1000’s?

GSXR too heavy.
New R1 too expensive, No option to buy used yet.
ZX-10 too heavy and didn’t like the looks.
1098 race ergonomics too uncomfortable for the street.

That left me with the 2008 CBR 1000rr. I really like the modern look of this bike and it is the lightest 1000, with a reasonable, comfortable seating position. I got a 2008 LE with 380 miles off of ebay for $7,900; no tax. The bike is in perfect condition, like new. This is value for the money IMO. It is a great time to buy a bike.

Now to the point: This bike feels so small and light, not like a 1000. The riding position that seems so leaned forward while sitting still is just right with the wind hitting you, and even better of course the faster you go.

I remember when I rode the first street bike I ever bought for the first time, back in 1991, a GSXR1100. I remember thinking after that first ride that I would never be able to turn the throttle more than a quarter of a turn, or rev it past 6000rpm. It was that fast. Of course you get used to it.

I had the same feeling today during my first ride on the 1000rr, despite my greater experience level, because it has been so long since I have ridden. (Thinking to myself in the helmet…) “I will never be able to turn the throttle on this thing any more than one-quarter turn or rev it past 7 grand.” The level of performance is light years ahead of the other bikes I mentioned at the beginning of this long rambling story. Those bikes felt like normal fun motorcycles that you just ride normally.

This Honda feels like an electric smooth, super-lightweight cruise missile that corners on a dime. You only have to think about turning, and it is there. I am truly wondering if I will ever find out just how fast it really is. There is no way I could hit the rev limiter at full throttle on the street. I live on a great curvy road in the country that I know well and love to drive in a car. It was fun on the KTM taking the curves on this road. They don’t even feel like curves anymore on the Honda. I would have to be going way too fast for the street to even experience what it would be like to really lean this bike over.

To those who haven’t tried a sportbike in a while, you owe it to yourself to try a recent one. The Honda is so so smooth, and I was not intimidated at all by it. I used to have a ZX12 at one point. That was a little intimidating. This little Honda is just so easy to ride. I am 5-7 190 pounds and fits me great.

Did I make the right choice? I love the bike, but I wonder if I will ever have the satisfaction riding it anywhere near its capabilities. Maybe as a street bike it really is too much. Of course I knew this would be the case before I bought it. I don’t care though. Just the thrill to be on it today was worth it to me.

I apologize for this story being long and boring; I really just wrote it for myself anyway for the record. I thought I would post it for anyone else in case it might be of any help comparing a few modern and very different bikes. I have found my recent experience enlightening.

If anyone is interested, I can post a much better review to follow after I have had a few months of riding under my belt to get used to the speed again.

John F.
 

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you made the right choice. it's a fkn amazing bike. handles like a 600, big power, and a compact modern look. the more you ride it, the more you'll love it. trust me.
 

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nice right up. you definitely made the right choice. give it some time and the right road and you'll be pushing your limits on that bike.


BTW-Welcome.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the welcome.

Rode about 75 miles today. The biggest difference between this and my old bikes seems to be that it just handles so sharp. Almost like a knife edge at very slow speeds. I am having a little bit of trouble getting used to it at 5-0 mph as I come to a stop. Almost seems like the front tire is very steep, as it wanders slightly back and forth right before you stop. At speed the handling is a dream.

I think the exhaust valve is opening and closing right at 4k rpm, and this is kind of annoying when you are cruising right at that engine speed. The transmission is kind of clunky, this bike does not shift as smooth as my 1996 GSXR750. That bike had a great shift feel, very positive.

Gearing is very tall in first and second. Needs a smaller front sprocket I think.

The ergonomics are great for me, I'm about 5-7. Love the tiny, light feel of this bike.

Power feels about the same as my old bikes as long as you only rev it to 8k!! Ha.

Thanks again for the warm welcome. Can't wait to get to the mountains!
 

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Thanks for the welcome.


I think the exhaust valve is opening and closing right at 4k rpm, and this is kind of annoying when you are cruising right at that engine speed. The transmission is kind of clunky, this bike does not shift as smooth as my 1996 GSXR750. That bike had a great shift feel, very positive.
Perform the Exhuast valve modification so you dont have that annoying sound change. it take less then one minute. no joke.
and the Transmission cluck shifting will go away after about 2k miles. mine did.
 

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I recently had a similar experience.

Having ridden an '01 F4i for several years (bought new, now 21k miles) I just (two weeks ago) bought an '08 LE on eBay for $8000, 465 miles on it. It feels 100 lbs lighter, thrust is instant everywhere, and I doubt I'll be able to use all the capability. I'm sure 90% of the difference is between the extra cc's and how much the game has moved since 2001, but there's no doubt it's an astounding bike.

I remember feeling the same way when I got the F4i, upgrading from an '87 CBR600F.
 

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you made the right choice. it's a fkn amazing bike. handles like a 600, big power, and a compact modern look. the more you ride it, the more you'll love it. trust me.
so true, so true.....
 

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Thanks for sharing your experiences... and :welcomesign:
 

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Congrats.

Did you check to see if your bike needs the updated clutch?

Either way, at the present mileage or a little more you will start to notice everything getting smoother, RPMs, shifting, and engine braking. Gearing is tall, -1/+2 is a common/popular mod.
 

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Great write up. I enjoyed reading it.

I have no prior bike to compare this one to (it's my first sport bike). But it sure feels amazing to me.

Took it out this morning, down the 101 to Kanan Dume, over to the beach, down PCH and back over Topanga. Beautiful weather, I could not have been happier.

I just need to get it to the track so I can really see how far this thing leans. On the street I just am not going fast enough to warrant big lean angles, so I still have the dreaded chicken strips. But they're getting thinner!
 

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Perform the Exhuast valve modification so you dont have that annoying sound change. it take less then one minute. no joke.
and the Transmission cluck shifting will go away after about 2k miles. mine did.
Elighten me on the Exhuast valve modification please, it's annoying...and welcome to you jwfrazier.

PS! The GSXR isn't that heavy and there are some poretty nice words on it from different tests and real rider reviews now.....in contrary to the silly MCN thing :cool:

Cheers

-Narve
 

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...Gearing is very tall in first and second. Needs a smaller front sprocket I think....Power feels about the same as my old bikes as long as you only rev it to 8k!! Ha...
-1 tooth on the front sprocket is a common and inexpensive mod. It reduces need to slip the clutch when starting in 1st, also improves acceleration. Cruise rpms only go up a little. See www.gearingcommander.com to experiment with different gearing configurations.

Although the CBR feels incredibly fast, it's actually mildly neutered on the top end to meet an EPA noise regulation. The power can be restored with one of these two similar products:

Bazzaz Z-Bomb: http://www.bazzazperformance.com/in...n=com_virtuemart&Itemid=26&vmcchk=1&Itemid=26

Power Commander Ignition Retard Controller: http://www.powercommander.com/powercommander_iii_usb/powercommander_ignition_retard_controller.aspx

The bike will also handle better if you have a suspension expert set it up for you.

Fast as the CBR seems on the street, only on the track can you really unleash it and appreciate it. Check with your local trackday organizers, such as NESBA or Sport Bike TrackTime.com.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
RamVA, I posted a reply to you in another thread a little while ago. You must have gotten the one on ebay in Indiana. I had my eye on this one as well, but I bought the one in MS one day earlier. (It was a little closer to me). Mine is a LE also with 375 miles for $7,900. I hope yours was as perfect as mine, and congrats on a good deal!

I have not had the clutch recall done yet. When I was out riding today, at one point I hit a false neutral between 5th and 6th gear. I don't know exactly what I did, but I have never had a bike do this before.

The bike is pretty stiffly sprung on both ends IMO. The bike seems to follow every little small bump, instead of soaking them up. I set the preload on the rear all the way soft, and the preload on the fork 4 turns out from full hard to get the approx sag I need. I think it needs maybe less compression damping on the fork, but I dont know if I should turn the rebound damping up or down to match less compression damping. Any suggestions?

Thanks again for all the comments!!
 

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i found the same thing with my suspension... i found softening the dampimg helped me get a satisfactory setting. the adjusters do not need much of a turn to make a difference 1/4 of a turn was noticable on mine once i set the sag and started to tune it to my liking..it took me ages to find a good setting and i found turning it one full turn on the clickers put me way out from what i was trying to achieve
 

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Great review

I'm sitting here in the same situation that you were in, 37 years old coming off a cbr1100xx, picking up an 08 cbr1000rr. Your review made me feel more at ease about the purchase. thanks, and hello to the board.
 

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RamVA, I posted a reply to you in another thread a little while ago. You must have gotten the one on ebay in Indiana. I had my eye on this one as well, but I bought the one in MS one day earlier. (It was a little closer to me). Mine is a LE also with 375 miles for $7,900. I hope yours was as perfect as mine, and congrats on a good deal!
Yep, that's the one. I had to have it shipped to me, but it was worth it, bike is very clean, and has the rear seat cowl. I had to have the clutch update done, but that was pretty painless.
 

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Elighten me on the Exhuast valve modification please, it's annoying...and welcome to you jwfrazier.

PS! The GSXR isn't that heavy and there are some poretty nice words on it from different tests and real rider reviews now.....in contrary to the silly MCN thing :cool:

Cheers

-Narve
That mcn article was a joke!
 
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