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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is your R3 a "first step" bike, a "downsizing" bike, or a "just right" bike?

Mods, forgive me if this has been specifically discussed but I've had mine for a month now and have ridden over 100 miles each weekend, really enjoying the R3.

My background was small-bore off-road bikes as a teen, ridden WFO all the time so my bike handling base skills were okay from jumping, berm shots, whoops, and plenty of crashes. I also raced BMX and mountain bikes in expert class, dabbled in road racing and snowboarding and commuted for a few years on a couple of Vespas.

The Vespas sold me on the idea that you can have a blast with not much horsepower if you ride well. I bought the R3 because I wanted the nimble, fun feel of a small bike but with better acceleration at higher speeds, better brakes, and more stable handling than the Vespas. I tried a couple of "real" sport bikes: a Ducati Monster 620 and an MV Agusta Brutale 750s, but the Ducati just didn't fit me right, while the MV Agusta felt like pure sex, fit me perfectly and had the suspension and brakes and handling of my dreams... but one slip of the wrist leads to very serious consequences with 127HP.

The R3 was purchased with a "We'll see" attitude. I might love it, I might like it, and I might feel like, after a few rides up in the twisty roads in the Blue Ridge Mountains, that I should revisit the Italian beauties. So far I love the R3! The engine is just right: keep it over 7,000RPM and the acceleration and shifting are smooth and quick enough to have a blast as long as you're not drag-racing an R1. Light but stable handling, it looks great, and it really has an agreeable personality.

It's not perfect. The brakes are a little vague feeling, and the front suspension seems to be undersprung while damped right, while the rear feels like the rebound damping is too light but the spring rate is about right. The tires sometimes seem a little squirmy when I lean hard but that's probably just my own caution. I'd like the bars a LITTLE lower and am undecided as to whether to just flip the clip-ons while staying above the triple clamp or get the Woodcraft R3s. Finally the rear fender is an abomination.

It adds up though to me thinking this is going to be Option 3, a keeper. I got it so cheap that even sinking $2000 into braided brake lines, better levers, clip-ons, stiffer fork spring and 15w oil and a new shock I have a bike I really like that does just what I want. How about y'all?

1) First step, and expect I'll get a 600 or bigger in a year or two
2) Seasoned rider who likes a fun, compact, practical bike
3) This seems just about right!
 

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Literally none of those options fit me, I have the R3 because here in europe you have to go through progressive steps if you start riding from 16 and cause im 19 this is just another step. I went from a 50cc moped to a YZF R125 and then onto the R3 because yamaha and it'll be R6 or R1 or s1000rr next (keeping the R3 though)
 

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I'll say "just about right" for me. I also have a 600cc and a 250cc CBR (technically my girlfriends but I'm the one who rides it) and the R3 fits perfectly in between. I love my 600 for the rush I get from riding it, but whenever I get on the R3 I just feel at home. I can do anything and go anywhere, for as long as I want. I can take it to the track, hard park it at the cafe and get attention (which it does), or do an 8 hour canyon cruise. The R3 is my favourite of the three hands down.
 

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Bought mine as a brand new rider, thinking it would be a long term first step bike, keeping it 2 years or so. At first I found myself afraid I'd get bored of her quickly as the internet warned me I might.

I didn't. I love this thing more with every passing day. Plenty fast enough for the roads I enjoy riding (actually, realistically, she is too fast at times still) I still plan on buying another bike in that 2 year ballpark, but my focus has shifted completely from possibly replacing the r3 with a bigger sportbike, to keeping her and adding a different kind of bike, maybe a smaller displacement ADV bike. I just can't see myself selling this bike right now, or in the next few years. So I'd say it's "just right"
 

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I bought the R3 after a series of 600s/650 to try out a light bike. I wouldn't say I bought it to downsize to somehung sensible because I still ride it like my old bike, which isn't always in a sensible way. I just wanted a lightweight bike that is easy to throw around.
 

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I'm waiting for my local dealer to get one in stock but The R3 will be my sixth bike. Technically it's an upgrade because I'm currently on a Honda CBR 150 at the moment but my bikes before that were 800cc and 1000cc. for my location the R3 might as well be a super sport though.
 

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I used to/ still have a yzf600r I'm turning into a track bike. I got the R3 for something more reasonable for the street. It completely back fired on me. It makes less than half of the power of my 600, but as I result I'm WOT all the time and get into shenanigans I shouldn't like jumping any small hill or crest.

My only issue with the bike is the poor suspension.
With stickier bridgestone s20 evo's and the tires have way more grip than the front suspension can handle. I get front end chatter when pushing it. Also the feelers on the pegs are silly. Why even waste the materials to add them.

All that being said I love the bike so so so so much. You honestly can't tell it's a twin when you hit double digits on the tach.

Love it!
 

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Mine was stepping down from a Majesty. However, its faster, lighter and more economical. So it was a step up in many ways.
 

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Downsizing. Drunk driver broke my back feet and ankles. Could not comfortably ride my R1 anymore. Too heavy at stop lights.
 

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Ouch. Was this a motorcycle accident or were you in a car?
I was supposed to be on my bike but a family member had the bright idea I would be safer in Thanksgiving traffic borrowing a car. I was in a PT Cruiser and a Toyota Tundra barreled into me at 65mph, prefect square shot to the rear on the frame. Wiped me out good. Still having a ton of issues from it. The R3 is helping me to recover and slowly move around.

Rode my R1 once after and the seat was too high. I always want to leave my ankles at 90 degrees and the R3 is at least an inch lower. Problem I am having now is I came from upgraded suspension off a Graves race bike, and now it feels like I am cruising around on a pogo stick.
 

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"Just Right." It's everything that's great about a motorcycle to me: graceful around town, and just terrifying enough if you wring it. Plus giving me 58 US mpg overall.

There is not a thing I don't like about this bike.

I do have a Street Triple on my list, but not as a replacement, just as a torque-everywhere comparison/contrast ride. (I do this with cars too. I wonder if anyone's named the disease yet? ;))
 

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"Just Right." It's everything that's great about a motorcycle to me: graceful around town, and just terrifying enough if you wring it. Plus giving me 58 US mpg overall.

There is not a thing I don't like about this bike.

I do have a Street Triple on my list, but not as a replacement, just as a torque-everywhere comparison/contrast ride. (I do this with cars too. I wonder if anyone's named the disease yet? ;))
Boys with their toys syndrome?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
"Just Right." It's everything that's great about a motorcycle to me: graceful around town, and just terrifying enough if you wring it. Plus giving me 58 US mpg overall.

There is not a thing I don't like about this bike.

I do have a Street Triple on my list, but not as a replacement, just as a torque-everywhere comparison/contrast ride. (I do this with cars too. I wonder if anyone's named the disease yet? ;))
Funny, I am scheduling a test ride of a Street Triple just for fun. I love the R3 but am not nuts about the brakes and suspension, and there are times I'd appreciate more roll-on torque in town. I doubt I'll change, but it looks like an amazing ride.
 

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Funny, I am scheduling a test ride of a Street Triple just for fun. I love the R3 but am not nuts about the brakes and suspension, and there are times I'd appreciate more roll-on torque in town. I doubt I'll change, but it looks like an amazing ride.
The brakes suck stock. Either upgrade to SS, SS+pads, SS+Pads+MC+Caliper, or a combo with any of the above. The suspension can be fixed, just remember its a low cost bike with low cost components. Sticking $1400 in suspension components on the bike still leaves you with a bike cheaper than the 650 line up.

I dont understand the need for more torque in town? For me in town implies heavy traffic and thats the last place I need to be rolling on lol. On the free way I would like more out of the bike at 85ish but I believe this is about the best you can do for a bike in the small displacement class.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The brakes suck stock. Either upgrade to SS, SS+pads, SS+Pads+MC+Caliper, or a combo with any of the above. The suspension can be fixed, just remember its a low cost bike with low cost components. Sticking $1400 in suspension components on the bike still leaves you with a bike cheaper than the 650 line up.

I dont understand the need for more torque in town? For me in town implies heavy traffic and thats the last place I need to be rolling on lol. On the free way I would like more out of the bike at 85ish but I believe this is about the best you can do for a bike in the small displacement class.
I just find sometimes in middling-speed riding - 40 or 45 on a four-lane road around Atlanta - I'd like to squirt ahead without flicking around to get in the 7,000 RPM range.

Yeah, I've done the math too, and am pretty sure I'm keeping the R3 for the foreseeable future. The engine and overall handling are just amazing and I'm not gonna do track days so I think a little stiffer front spring (Ohlins maybe with a preload adjuster) and a good shock, plus some investment in brakes and I'll have a keeper.

I rode an MV Agusta before getting this bike and kept thinking "If MV made a 400 I'd buy it in a heartbeat" for the handling and brakes and feel, but that engine and quick throttle were WAY overkill for the real world, or at least MY real world.
 

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Funny, I am scheduling a test ride of a Street Triple just for fun. I love the R3 but am not nuts about the brakes and suspension, and there are times I'd appreciate more roll-on torque in town. I doubt I'll change, but it looks like an amazing ride.
I hope you'll post a comparison when you've had the opportunity to ride the Triple. Since I'm not even close to taxing the brakes or suspension on the R3, I'm sure the ST3 will be loads of slightly more relaxed fun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I hope you'll post a comparison when you've had the opportunity to ride the Triple. Since I'm not even close to taxing the brakes or suspension on the R3, I'm sure the ST3 will be loads of slightly more relaxed fun.
I'm not really pushing it either, but once in a while in mountain curves it feels like the front is kind of buried (if that makes sense) while the rear is a little bouncy. It was only a couple times in corners on uneven pavement so not a big deal.

I'm really nitpicking: I guess for the brakes and suspension it is about the "feel" of being a bit soft and vague. I can certainly ride as fast as I like with the stock setup, but the easy-chair ride and braking just seem "off."
 

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2) Seasoned rider who likes a fun, compact, practical bike
I own the R3 and a Grom. The Grom is super fun around town on 45MPH roads. The R3 is my go to for anything faster then 45MPH.

Both bikes can be ridden hard to have a ton of fun without attracting unwanted attention.

I have owned/ridden everything from 125's to 1000's and have settled on the small displacement bikes. They fit me well and the cost of ownership is low.

Ride safe!
 
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