Small bikes are just much more fun!
“It is a well known fact that small capacity motorbikes are great. Some will admit to it proudly. Some may consider it. Some will never ride a small bike out of principle or is that maybe just because they are a bit too big themselves?…”
Most of us started off on them. Maybe as field bikes, or 50cc learner mopeds/scooters and 125cc commuters. Many of us moved on as soon as possible to bigger bikes, because we could. It’s what we did. The unwritten rule was that the bigger bike you rode the better and more experienced rider you became. I suppose an element of this is true perhaps. I for one have no shame in admitting I did exactly that! I even still own big bikes but I enjoy the small bikes more.
Who can honestly say that they can ride a big capacity motorbike to its limit. Certainly not safely or legally on the roads. I totally get it on a track, but then isn’t that what many of these machines were designed for? Are these bikes comfortable to go out for a ride and enjoy? I always came home with sore wrists and back ache. Dressing like a sweaty power ranger was never comfortable or pleasant. Ok so we don’t all have to go mental on sports bikes. There are alternative big bikes out there. 1000cc Tourers maybe? Been there, done that… A big, heavy thing it was. Comfortable, most certainly. If I was planning on sitting on it all day long on a motorway and travelling to Spain, perfect. But is that really fun?
“It is more fun going fast on a slow bike than going slow on a fast bike”
Fun, to me is riding smaller twisty roads where there is less traffic and more to see. A friend rides his RXS100 harder and faster than his big Kawasaki 900. The idea too of being able to wheel a bike out of the garage quickly and easily is appealing. If the whole thing is an effort to get the bike out it often becomes more of a chore and you don’t ride as often. With a smaller bike you don’t feel the need to go as far to get the same enjoyment. The ride is proportional to the size of the bike. You can turn popping to town into a little adventure on a Mobylette, but it would be not worth the hassle on a big heavy Harley Electra glide.
Due to the smaller size, small bikes are arguably cheaper to purchase and keep on the road. They take up less space at home. Small bike owners often have several because of this. The bikes become more personal, like an outfit to wear. Which one shall we take out today? A friend of mine has named all of his!
GFOSB is all about removing the stigma associated with riding a smaller bike. Why should you feel embarrassed? It is great to see women, older folk still riding, and the youngsters just starting out. Almost all the people I know who ride small bikes have big bikes too. There is no separation, we are all bikers! Big bikers please acknowledge small bikes on the road with a nod! It amazes me that when I ride the tiddler, riders don’t nod back… Most would agree they ride their smaller bikes more often. When did you last ride yours?
“Less is more”
Travel and adventure on a small bike is totally under rated. If you want to travel, surely you want to see new things and take all the sights and smells in, not just blast from A to B quickly. Small bikes are perfect for this as you will find yourself on smaller roads, stopping off more easily at interesting places along the way which you would have missed. Rather than munch miles, many even carry a small bike on the back of their camper van and just enjoy the fun roads at the end destination. The possibilities are endless!
There is a great social circle with small bikes and you will quickly become part of a group and soon be sharing breakfast ride outs or off on a touring holiday together. It is all about having a good time at the end of the day and enjoying the ride along the way.
So what qualifies as a small bike?
Under 250cc is classed as a small bike by todays standards. Anything from a 49cc Solex to a 250cc YBR commuter bike. GFOSB is about getting out meeting like minded people, riding and having fun. Whether is a Sunday ride out with friends, attending a moped “show and shine” with your pride and joy or a commute to work. Or just maybe a worldwide life changing trip? Anything goes!
Popular small bikes for travel and adventure seem to be the classic Honda Cub. Simple reliable engineering. Mr Honda new what he was doing and they became the biggest seller of all time world wide. With a few tools and some basic knowledge you can work on these at the road side if you had too. Many people have ridden these around the world with little issue. Parts are also readily available.
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