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Whatever you want to ride is a good track bike. If you want a big liter twin, go for it.

If you want to race, a faily recent 600SS is a good choice.

If you want to race CHEAP, a SV650 of either style is good. Also probably the best bike for learning to ride faster on.

If you want to race CHEAPEST, then a 250 or 500.
 

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Discussion Starter #23
I'm going up tomorrow afternoon to check out what I'm thinking could be a great possibility for me:

'02 F4i track bike with 16k miles. Clean title and registerable if I was so inclined.

Racetech revalves front and rear
Catalyst track fairings
Woodcraft rearset and frame sliders
GPR stabilizer
-1 front / 520 conversion
Erion racing slip-on

I won't say the price, but it's right. Is the F4i a good bike to get my feet wet at the track with and will it continue to be a good track bike once I have some experience under my belt? One thing that I question is the conventional forks... but come to think of it SV650s have the same and we all know how popular those are for track use...

Interested in your guys' input.

-Ryan
 

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Mediocre Strafer
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I had one and thought it was a very good intro track bike. There was something weird with the clipons - I think there's not room for them above the triple with the stock setup, or below, or something odd about them. That I don't remember means it wasn't critically important. You can't (typically) run at Laguna Seca without the stock muffler, so ask if they have it or try to eBay one. And be damned sure the bike frame, forks, etc. are straight. Mine wasn't. :(

(edit: here's one - CRB 600 F4i stock pipe 2004)

I enjoyed mine while I had it. Conventional forks are easier to change oil on anyway. When you say "revalved", does that mean one of RaceTech's gold valve emulator kits?

KeS
 

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I started doing track days on my stock CBR954 and never looked back. Just buy what you can afford. 600, 929 V-twin, It really doesn't matter. You will be able to learn just as much regardless of the bike for a very long time. Yea a lower HP power bike will be more forgiving with excessive throttle inputs so most people recommend starting on a smaller bike. But you already ride a 1000 on the street, so hopefully you already have decent throttle control. So I say buy whatever you can find a good deal on.

I never think "I wish I had a newer, faster bike" while on the track. There is also something satisfying about passing someone who is riding a brand NEW BMW1000rr with my 9 year old bone stock CBR954 :).
 

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Discussion Starter #27
Right now I'm torn between two seemingly great options, both within my price range:

'02 F4i - track ready, 16k miles, clean title
Has race fairings, rearsets, slip-on, levers, suspension redone with Racetech stuff, comes with stands. This bike has been used recently and runs well.

'03 600RR - track bike, needs new fairings installed, 3k miles, clean title
Has new race fairings included - unpainted. Has Arata full titanium exhaust, Penske rear shock, Lindeman revalved/resprung forks
Bike has been out of use for 6 years. It runs great, but it would need a thorough go-over, probably flush all the fluids and definitely new tires (I doubt 6yo tires are trustworthy). He lowsided it at the track and stopped using it after that, which is why brand new race fairings are included but not installed.

Obviously, the full titanium exhaust and Penske rear shock attract me to the 600RR - if I can get more for my dollar, if I decide to resell I can make more back. The fact that it has been sitting for 6 years has me cautious though. But, the 600RR is more appealing to me on an attractiveness scale - the undertail exhaust is safe from lowside damage, and it probably has more ultimate ability than the F4i... but the F4i is basically a turn-key ready to ride at the track package whereas the 600RR would need a looking-over and I'd need to paint the fairings and mount them...

What do you guys think? I'm sure everyone will say "just get whichever makes you happy, both will be far more capable than you when you start out" but which one would you choose if you were in my shoes?

Oh, and the 2003 600RR has conventional forks too, so that's a non-issue. No inverted forks for either of these bikes.

-Ryan
 

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600RR.

Replace all of the fluids on ANY track bike that you buy. This includes the forks and servicing the shock.

Six year old tires are bad idea on anything.
 

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I know guys who have raced both bikes and I've ridden them both on the track. They're both relatively capable machines, but eventually you'll want a newer, more compeitive bike if you ever decide to make the jump to racing.

I'd take whichever one is in better shape, but I'd definitely lean towards the RR.
 

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id look for something just a little bit sharper personally. 03-06 zx6rr, 05+ gsxr, just about any FI R6 etc

F4i is a sport touring machine compared to any RR, they existed at the same time.
Hell i'd definitely take an SV over an F4i
 

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Discussion Starter #31 (Edited)
id look for something just a little bit sharper personally. 03-06 zx6rr, 05+ gsxr, just about any FI R6 etc

F4i is a sport touring machine compared to any RR, they existed at the same time.
Hell i'd definitely take an SV over an F4i
03-06 zx6, 05+ gsxr, FI r6, all of those will be higher in price than an SV or F4i - not saying that that's bad, but it's hard to ignore that I could get on the track with a dedicated bike for $2k.

Oh, and I am afraid of 636's/zx6-rr's: my buddy had one that blew the motor at 12k miles of street riding, after being well maintained its whole life.

I see the SV and the F4i being very similar - both have slightly higher bars (hell, the naked SV has bars - like, motocross status bars). I could convert the F4i to clip-ons, and it already has rearsets to get proper ground clearance, so position-wise, it could be RR-ish. Suspension-wise I see them as being very similar too; both have conventional forks and rear shocks that need a replacement/revalve and respring to become really capable, and this F4i has just that - revalve/respring front and rear, so I don't see why it's suspension would be any less capable than a similar SV's...

Tell me what I'm missing that makes it less desirable for the track than an SV.
 

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you can race the SV and be competitive, and you cant with the F4i. It's worth putting a little money into an SV to make it more competitive. It isn't worth putting a dollar more then you have to in an f4i.

For track days it'd be fine. The SV is just fine too, but theres a class for them :D
 

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Discussion Starter #33
OK. An SV is good for racing. An F4i is good for track days. I getcha.

Since I'm coming from a standpoint of having never taken a moto to a track, I've got at least a year of trackdays to go - minimum - before I'd be considering even the notion of racing. This is why for now I'm mostly looking for a bike that A) gets me on the track for the least $ possibly - which is why I'm looking for a turn-key trackbike that is already prepped and is not in need of repairs and B) that I can get at a really good deal - something I can sell when the time comes and get my money back to put into a more competetive bike if I want to start racing.

I figure in a year or two if I want to race, an '05 zx-6RR or something similar that is nice and sharp and competetive will be a little less expensive than it is today, plus I'll be able to pick one up without all the learning miles/probably low-sides that will be associated with learning track riding.
 

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Discussion Starter #34
Just wanted to say thank you to everyone who helped guide me in the right direction!

I just met up with the guy with the 600RR this morning and saw/heard/rode the bike in person.... and bought it. I couldn't resist. It's got a few things on the to-do list (paint and hang the new bodywork, flush all fluids, get new tires) but it was too good of a deal to pass up, and should be a very capable machine for me to learn track riding on.

The details:
2003 600RR, 3k miles, clean title, registration current
Fully safety wired and prepped for WERA requirements
Morse race bodywork (all new)
Penske 8983 rear shock - tuned by Lindemann
Forks valved/sprung/tuned by Lindemann
Arata full titanium exhaust
PCIII with maps for 91 octane and race fuel

I know it's not going to be as sharp as a some of the newer stuff, but I expect it to be plenty for me to learn on, and I can always sell the parts off of it for what I paid for the bike ;)

Thank you all!

-Ryan
 

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BTW, no one here believes you until you post pics. :)

Just kidding, but pics would be nice. Congrats on your purchased. It definitely sounded like a good deal in your write up.


I like Penske/Lindemann suspension setups.

KeS
Is Lindemann Engineering still in business? I only ask because didn't he just pass?
 

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good call on the rr over the f4i, i think you'll be very happy with it. Dont kid yourself 03+ honda RRs were designed to be track focused bikes, it will be a great tool to learn on and truly would even be competitive on the track at everything but the most wide open tracks where that little bit less weighht and more power would really matter. Thats probably only worth a second or two anyway so itll be a very long while before its the bike holding you back :)

Good luck. And pics or it never happened!
 

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BTW, no one here believes you until you post pics. :)

Just kidding, but pics would be nice. Congrats on your purchased. It definitely sounded like a good deal in your write up.




Is Lindemann Engineering still in business? I only ask because didn't he just pass?
Umm, don't know anything about it other than I just saw a trackday invite over the holidays promoting their presence. Hope all's well.

KeS
 

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Discussion Starter #40
Pics will be coming soon - picking it up tomorrow afternoon!

Is Lindemann Engineering still in business? I only ask because didn't he just pass?
Looks like Lindemann did pass away, judging by their website "about us" section:
About Lindemann Engineering |
but it looks like the business is still operating.

-Ryan
 
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