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Honda Magna, or New?

1110 Views 3 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Mad Ogre
Extremely soon I will be buying a bike. Extremely being about October/November.

I will have 6 grand TOPS working with, minus $4-500 for a helmet and $400 for a jacket, $5100 with tax tops.

I'm either going to get a Magna and fix it up to "super sweet" or go for a new bike.

Hey Ogre, what year range should I get if I buy one? I want one of the tail kicking engines, not their new crap in the Magna's.

Now, should I get a Magna? Are they fairly easy to find?

Or should I get a new bike? 800cc range cruiser, Honda or Kawa. Probably Honda because the local shop around here used to sponser me on motocross.
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The year really doesn't matter, but I personally prefer the older style before they went to the low rider thing that they have now. Don't remember when they changed it. early 90's I think.
The V45 is the 750 and the V65 is a 1000... if I remember right.
You are looking for a bike that is in as best condition as possible. The most expensive bikes are the ones that need some work. Look for good tires, good chain, nothing should be dangling. Look for scrapes on the ends of the bars or pipes that will indicate that the bike was spilled. Make sure the front tire is straight with the bars.
A Magna in propper tune should sound like an evil pissed off monster... but not a loud one.
The power band is wide... so the bike should pull strong regardless of RPM unless you are rolling slow in high gears and trying to accellerate... then it will be less strong but it shouldn't be laggy.

These magnas are getting harder and harder to find in good shape.
With that much cash, I'd probably buy something new.

I would jump all over a new KLR 650 and take a road trip in a heartbeat. But that's just me. Honda doesn't have a bike like it. But Honda does have some very nice cruisers. I'm loving the VTX bikes... They have a 1300 sized bike that is slick. They also have it in an 1800.

Have fun shopping around... pick out the bike that just feels "right" and that you love looking at... then you have made the right choice.
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You want a 1983-1986 V65 Magna. That's 65 cubic inches, or 1100cc's. (They also made 500cc, 750cc, and 700cc tarrif-beater Magnas) You can get a very nice condition V65 for under $3000. Check ebay,, and the local paper. Buy one that's already in nice condition that has obviously been well cared for, and you'll be a lot happier. I love my V65, and I have 58,000 trouble-free miles on her.

That being said... if this is going to be your first bike, pass it. It's WAY too dangerous as a first bike... usually even a second.

The 83 V65 is the fastest, the 86 the prettiest. The 83 has aluminum star-spoked wheels and the good carbs, but HORRIBLE handlebars. The 86 has a lot of extra chrome here and there, polished engine covers instead of painted, and the crappiest carbs. The 84 is the most prevalent year. All but the 83 V65 have chrome parallel spoke wheels. Make SURE to inspect chrome wheels, as they are prone to bubbling, flaking, and generally looking like ass.

If you ride a well-running V65, you won't be able to go back to anything else. The mity VTX and Valkyrie are left far, far behind, and most sportbikes can be taken out in a 0 to 100mph drag. The only stock bike that can really compare nowadays is the V-Max... which was originally designed to compete with the very bike you're wanting to buy. You will definately not be happy with any of the current crop of 800cc cruisers. The Shadow is a dog, the Volusia is better but not by much, the Intruder is faster but ugly as sin, and they're all V-twinkies. If you change your mind and decide against the 80's model V65, a used 94-03 Magna is really not a bad choice. It's better than anything else on the market right now, and you can find a nice one for $5000 or so.

Check out for more info on these great bikes.

Also... not to be a jerk or anything... but $500 for a helmet is rediculous. You can get a nice DOT or SNELL lid for $100 to $200. Fulmer makes a great line of comfy inexpensive SNELL rated helmets, for right around $120. There's no need to pay a premium price unless you want all the bells and whistles... and honestly, that's basically lightness, venting, and low noise. So long as it's SNELL rated, it's the same protection. Is a super light, extremely well-vented, and completely quiet helmet worth $400 more than an adequately light, somewhat vented, and not too loud helmet? Not in my world, but then again it's your money.

While you're shopping for a jacket (several nice ones can be had for right around $200), don't forget boots and gloves. I got a really nice set of Alpinestar "Ridge" waterproof boots for $100. I've gone hiking in the boots, I've walked all around the state fair in the boots, and I've been caught in a 4 hour downpour. They're by far the best boots I've ever owned, they're cheap, they're comfortable, and they're waterproof as stated. Oh, and I don't look like a Power Ranger while wearing them. For jackets, I have a classic leather jacket ($175) like the Harley guys wear, and a First Gear Mesh ($130) vented summer jacket. Leather gauntlets for the cold ($30), and First Gear mesh gloves ($30) for the summer.

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Fulmer helmets. I've had two of them. While not the best... they are good helmets for the money.
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