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 1983 Honda Virago 750 as a starter bike?
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Detroit Slim
Starting Member
8 Posts

Los Angeles, CA

Peer Review:

Posted - 03/31/2005 :  12:59 AM                       Like
Hope this is the right forum for this... I'm a newbie who just got out of motorcycle school, and finally got the license. I'm shopping for my first bike, and out of the gate, was looking for a 1994-96 Kawasaki Vulcan. I liked the bike, and have gotten to sit on one, and it's at the upper end of my price range. (~$2500)

Essentially, I want to get a decent street cruiser to cruise around Los Angeles, and take day trips to the desert, San Diego, maybe Vegas on a wild ride.

Tomorrow night I'm going to look at a 1983 Honda Virago 750. The owner claims it has a clean title, and 9400 miles on it. It's also right in the ballpark of what I can afford. Does anyone have any feedback on this as a starter bike? How does it compare to a Vulcan? What should I look for or be concerned about in buying one?

I'm spending time poking around in the forums here, but any feedback, or advice on finding and buying a starter bike would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Cash Anthony
Female Administrator
1470 Posts

Houston, Texas


Magna 750

Posted - 03/31/2005 :  1:52 PM Follow poster on Twitter  Join poster on Facebook as Friend  

Assuming the bike is in good mechanical shape, the Virago could be a perfect starter bike for you. That's also depending, of course, on how your body is shaped and whether you like the footpeg position, saddle proportions, etc. In terms of power and scale, however, a 750 Virago has enough power for you to cruise very comfortably and is built very low to the ground, to give you confidence when you paddle it around with your feet that you won't drop it.

A number of women in my old riding club, the Lone Star Ladies, picked that model for their first bike out of MSF classes and seemed to enjoy theirs thoroughly.

I rode one from Houston to San Antonio for a friend who had moved and needed it ferried over, about 230 miles. Since I'm used to my Honda Magna, I found it felt a little 'cramped' (and I'm about 5'3", so I didn't have long arms and legs to contend with)...but I think that was just because it was "different," and my '86 Magna is pretty tall.

With a 750, you'll have a bike that you can enjoy for quite a while before you feel you've outgrown it. My only concern would be that you might have trouble finding a dealer (assuming you want a dealer) to work on it for maintenance. Parts for older bikes can be hard to find, and some dealerships here in Houston simply refuse to work on anything older than a 1990 model. The Vulcan is a beefier bike and probably somewhat harder for a newbie to handle, I would think.

Good luck on making your choice.

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Starting Member
8 Posts

Hazel Park, MI

Posted - 04/21/2005 :  12:28 AM
Please don't buy a Virago, worst bike I ever had. Number one the thing eats gas like it owned an oil well, about 90 miles on a tank and 2 the starter sounds like a coffee can full of marbles being shaken very hard when the starter button is pressed and it only gets worse as the starter parts wear and there are a bunch of gears that all have to fit together just right or that starter just slips out of engagement, a very poor design destined to wear out fast and prone to failure.
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