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Hi all,

I've never ridden a motorcycle but recently got the urge. Looking to purchase my first bike and can't see myself on anything other than a dual sport. This past week, I've sat on a few bikes at local dealers; CRF250L, WR250R, XT250, and the TW200. On paper I really like the CRF250L and WR250R but since I'm 5'10", 160 lbs, didn't like the idea of not being able to flat foot em. I defiantly felt more comfortable on the TW and XT, so I've narrowed it down to those two.

In all honesty, I will likely be riding mostly on the street but hope to spend a lot of time in the dirt as well (I only say this cause I don't know of may trails around where I live; Northeast Ohio). At some point in the future I'd like to do an adventure ride like the trans am trail or even the pan american highway so hoping to purchase a bike that could do either if it came down to it. For the time being I'd like a bike to putt around on and explore the city landscape, find some dirt roads and see where they lead, follow the power lines for a bit, get lost, find myself and have some fun along the way.

Since I'll likely be spending quite a bit of time on the road, I assume the XT is the logical choice... but, man the TW200 is one cool looking bike. Those tires, man. The first time I saw one I was sold haha. I've read a lot of forums, watched a bunch of videos and it seems everyone is in love with their TW. I get the feeling I will be too. Although, I am a bit concerned about its street performance since I'll be on the road a lot. I may sound like a complete noob, but I saw in a video online that it only goes about 12 mph in first gear while the XT can get to about 18 mph. Since I haven't been able to test ride it, I don't really know if the 12 mph first gear will be an issue / annoyance for me on the road. Could any seasoned riders comment on that, does it get annoying when street riding having to shift so soon? I also have a feeling the TW is going to buzzing uncontrollable riding over 50 mph. I don't really plan on doing much highway riding but will likely from time to time, so I'd like a bike that is up the task without feeling like a death trap. Over 50 mph will there be a huge difference between the two bikes (from what I can gather neither is ideal, just don't know how much better the XT will be)? I understand that you can change the sprockets to get a higher top speed but in doing so would I also alleviate my other concern by getting a higher mph out out of first gear? If not, how would I go about doing that? Would other mods like aftermarket exhaust, header etc get more out of first and a higher speed? Am I over thinking it all?

I also see that the XT is fuel injection while the TW is carbureted. I don't know if that will end up bing an issue for me or not. I don't mind letting the bike warm up a bit before a ride around town. However, if I do plan on taking the thing across country at some point will that be an issue?

Thanks for any feedback. Hoping to have a bike within the next month.
 

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Welcome to the forum!! :D

Just put a 15 tooth sprocket on the front and it becomes a much nicer street bike. That will give you a longer 1st gear and it won't be as buzzy at the higher speeds. Cost is about 15 bucks and half an hours work.
Hi all,

I've never ridden a motorcycle but recently got the urge. Looking to purchase my first bike and can't see myself on anything other than a dual sport. This past week, I've sat on a few bikes at local dealers; CRF250L, WR250R, XT250, and the TW200. On paper I really like the CRF250L and WR250R but since I'm 5'10", 160 lbs, didn't like the idea of not being able to flat foot em. I defiantly felt more comfortable on the TW and XT, so I've narrowed it down to those two.

In all honesty, I will likely be riding mostly on the street but hope to spend a lot of time in the dirt as well (I only say this cause I don't know of may trails around where I live; Northeast Ohio). At some point in the future I'd like to do an adventure ride like the trans am trail or even the pan american highway so hoping to purchase a bike that could do either if it came down to it. For the time being I'd like a bike to putt around on and explore the city landscape, find some dirt roads and see where they lead, follow the power lines for a bit, get lost, find myself and have some fun along the way.

Since I'll likely be spending quite a bit of time on the road, I assume the XT is the logical choice... but, man the TW200 is one cool looking bike. Those tires, man. The first time I saw one I was sold haha. I've read a lot of forums, watched a bunch of videos and it seems everyone is in love with their TW. I get the feeling I will be too. Although, I am a bit concerned about its street performance since I'll be on the road a lot. I may sound like a complete noob, but I saw in a video online that it only goes about 12 mph in first gear while the XT can get to about 18 mph. Since I haven't been able to test ride it, I don't really know if the 12 mph first gear will be an issue / annoyance for me on the road. Could any seasoned riders comment on that, does it get annoying when street riding having to shift so soon? I also have a feeling the TW is going to buzzing uncontrollable riding over 50 mph. I don't really plan on doing much highway riding but will likely from time to time, so I'd like a bike that is up the task without feeling like a death trap. Over 50 mph will there be a huge difference between the two bikes (from what I can gather neither is ideal, just don't know how much better the XT will be)? I understand that you can change the sprockets to get a higher top speed but in doing so would I also alleviate my other concern by getting a higher mph out out of first gear? If not, how would I go about doing that? Would other mods like aftermarket exhaust, header etc get more out of first and a higher speed? Am I over thinking it all?

I also see that the XT is fuel injection while the TW is carbureted. I don't know if that will end up bing an issue for me or not. I don't mind letting the bike warm up a bit before a ride around town. However, if I do plan on taking the thing across country at some point will that be an issue?

Thanks for any feedback. Hoping to have a bike within the next month.
 

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Perfect 1st bike. It will not be the best dirt bike or the best street bike unless you push it with some mods in either direction. But it is very easy to maintain and unquestionably one of the most forgiving bikes you can ride and own. A few months into ownership if you need more of a bike you can either sell the TW or buy another and keep it.
The used market for sellers is pretty darn good. Depreciation seems to be minimal if you end up buying new and don't invest in too many after-market accessories.
Sometimes a hard thing to do.
 

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I got a TW as my first bike and I absolutely love it! I've only been riding for about two months now, but everyone, including a bunch of guys on our ride out at Rampart yesterday said, "that's the perfect bike for you!"
I'm 5'10" and 130 and was adamant that I was able to put my feet flat, which I can easily with the TW. I also wanted to be able to pick it up myself since on the dirt, you'll definitely at some point have to pick it up.
My husband and I do mostly dirt and trail riding so I cannot speak much to the street riding. But the few times I have taken it on the street we were only doing 40mph and I kept looking for "6" the gear! That being said, I don't have mine geared to ride on the streets so it's not the bike, it's me :)
On dirt the TW is wonderful! It's forgiving enough for a beginner, yet the performance is absolutely there to keep up with "the big boys" once my skills catch up!
I don't know much about the XT, but I do know the TW is perfect for me and many others, AND it LOOKS cool as heck!
Good luck, have fun and if you do go with the TW, send us pictures!

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Yeah buddy, you will love the TW, its a great starter bike......but as many of us have found, its also a great bike to have if you have been riding for years! The 15t sprocket upgrade is super cheap and easy, and you will appreciate it on the road, however I would say that you should ride it stock first for a while you can see/feel/appreciate the difference the 15t makes just for the sake of knowing how both feel.

I use mine all the time, and occasionally catch some flack from my other riding buddies on bigger bikes about my "mighty tdubs" but it bugs the heck out of them that they cant drop me on the trail, haha, but on the open road, thats a different story. Around town, back roads, and such, the tw is great, i have taken it on highway trips, and it works, but its not the best for sure, but it can be done, just dont thinking you are going to pull a power pass on anyone. With the 15t i can easily hold 55-60, and reach 70 when needed. It is very stable at speed, and never felt twitchy or wobbly.

Wide tires on the bike are not only cool, but super useful. I also have a drz400, and i have to say i ride the TW offroad a bit more, being super silent, its easy to get onto any trail you want without anyone bothering you. You also have those large tires to get you where every you need to go, sometimes i just jump into the woods and start exploring, its a blast and ballhooting through the woods is probably the most fun type of riding for me.

Dont get me wrong the XT is a great bike, and is a bit more modern with the fuel injection and such, you will be happy with either bike. But go with whichever one you like better. I live in SW PA, so I am guessing our riding conditions are pretty similar.

Are you buying new or used? If new, both bikes tend to hold their value well. If buying used, your going to be be able to find a TW for a better price most likely because they have been made for so many years, you can go back quite a few years and they havent changed besides color. The XT's used dont seem to be much cheaper than the new ones, and they are pretty rare around here, so people are asking a premium for them.

Best of luck and let us know what you decide.
 

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TW for the win indeed!
I started my motorcycle life 18 years ago on a TW. I had so much fun on that little damn bike it made my face hurt.
Sold it a few years after I moved to Cincinnati, since I didn't have a place to keep it.
Fast Forward 18 years, and 6 bikes later, 2 of which i still have and are 1200cc monsters - I'm getting my Dad's old TW later this year, and I might be more excited about the TW than the two beamers sitting in my garage :D
They are wonderful bikes. And yes - that Thick Wheel really sells it :D
Lets be honest, we're all a little biased here for the TW, which also stands for "The Win!"!
Seriously though, you'd love either bike I am sure. If you can test ride both of them - that would be the best option to see which one you really like.
 

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Agree with what the others have said. Check out the post I just made a few hours ago. I've owned A LOT of bikes over the years; everything from a cheap, Chinese 75cc motorcycle to a full fledged street bike. I've owned 3 TWs. I keep coming back to them. Had a CRF250L. Modded the hell out of it and ended up selling it.

My wife and I have taken 1,000 mile trips on our T-Dubs, loaded up to the hilt with camping gear (thank you Cycleracks!). As others have stated, slap a 15T counter sprocket on and it'll pull an honest 70 mph all day long on the flats. No problem at all at 55 - 60 mph. To be honest, I found that the low center of gravity and low front fender actually made the TW even MORE stable than the DR650 at speed, and the DR had no problem cresting 100 mph.

The TW will be incredibly confidence inspiring; get into a little trouble: Put a foot (or both) feet down. Flat. Try your hand at off roading and the going gets tough... pull a Fred Flintstone and paddle walk your way through whatever section you're struggling with while feathering the clutch and throttle.

You simply can't go wrong with the T-dub.

The last thing to consider: If and when you are ready to sell it, you'll have a flock of people banging down your door as soon as you post on CL. They hold their value like no other bike out there. The last TW I sold saw 6 people contact me within 20 min. of posting my add. I bought my 2010 with 145 miles on it back in 2011 for $3000. I sold it this past summer for $2750 with nearly 4000 miles on it.

That being said, don't sell it. Every time I've sold a TW, I've regretted it, big time, which is why I'm on TW number 3. My current bike will be passed on to my kids and we'll probably be adding a second one to the stable this summer as my wife is ready to get back to riding again.

They are THAT good. Buy one.
 

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Welcome to the forum. Just remember that you are asking about a TW 200, on the TW 200 forum, haha :) It is a great little bike. IMO the cutoff for reasonable cruising (without the engine "feeling like it's going to blow up") is 55 mph with stock gearing. As you know, you can gear taller. The TW can be geared to do pretty well at 60 mph on the highway, although it won't pull hills very well with that setup. I really didn't like what that gearing did to it off road, though. The TW is more fun the lower you gear it.

There is definitely a significant difference between the TW and the fuel injected XT: the XT is much more highway capable. It can actually make a really nice highway bike, if geared for that, without destroying the off road performance. I've done multi day adventure rides with hundreds of highway miles on a lower-geared TW, but I definitely wouldn't recommend that, lol. A properly geared XT can relatively excel at that, though. Also, IMO, the fuel injection is much nicer, but that is mostly personal preference.
 
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All I can say is after maybe 8 or so years from my last motorcycle ride I drove nearly 800 miles RT (google maps added the extra 100 or so:( ) to pick up a used TW200 in Springfield MO.
Once I got it off the carrier and levers and mirrors adjusted I took a couple of very short try it out runs before taking it up and down the street a couple times. Surprising after all those years I still remembered how to shift gears and use the brakes. Looking forward to some dirt roads and small hills next. BTW I am well past the retirement age.
 

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Welcome to the Forum! No need to tell you how great the TW is. All has been said.

My recommendation is that you take a course on Motor Cycle safety like Ride Well etc... Then get the bike.

Learning proper safety is imperative.

Many folks thought they could ride a motor cycle only to find out they did not!

Here's just one!

I have witnesses some folks not understanding this and have been seriously injured!



Jim
 

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I have 2 bikes. A 2005 TW and a 2014 CRF250L and I like them both a lot. I'm 6' tall and 270 lbs.

The TW is a great in town commuter and a lovely mountain dirt road tool. I can relax and enjoy the scenery a lot more with it's mild power and wide tires. On back highways and good gravel roads it easily cruises at 45 and can do 55 (orig, gearing)

The CRF250L will carry me at 65mph and does well off road. It's just my choice for travels further afield. I did lower it with a lowering link and that makes it easier to mount. Plenty of power for regular cruising and getting up hills.

Both bikes are set up with hand guards, nice CycleRack, bar risers.

If at this point I HAD to got to just one bike the little TW would most likely win out. Just love the little guy! (but it wouldn't be easy to let the CRF go!)


Rudy in the mountains of Montana
 

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I agree with what most people have said on here. I think the TW is a very good first motorcycle. But if you are leaning towards mostly on road riding I might lean towards something a little bigger. But you will lose the rock steady feeling of the TW and the confidence inspiring low riding position, and both feet on the ground, feeling.
The XT and TW are both good first bikes, or long time trail and slower town motorcycles.

I also agree that a motorcycle training course is very helpful. And you WILL learn something you have never thought about or hear about before. The more you ride on the streets, with other vehicles, the more you need to know and be aware of.
 

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Like others said, the TW200 would be better as a first bike. But here's my reasoning.

As a new rider, there are 3 main things to consider in a bike:
  1. It must be stable on the road = The low center of gravity, large tires and great ergonomics makes the TW very stable on not only paved surfaces, but also bridge grates, loose rocky soil, gravel, grass, mud, or just plain rutted dirt road.
  2. It must be forgiving of mistakes = While with practice you can pop a wheelie, the TW's engine isn't going to toss you on your butt if you skip a gear or get froggy and crank on the throttle a little too hard.
  3. It must be powerful enough to keep you out of trouble = This doesn't mean you can twist the throttle and pass traffic on the interstate. But it does mean the bike is nimble enough to get you around obstacles and it will crawl over or out of just about anything short of a mud bog.
And that's the beauty of these bikes. They aren't too powerful to get you into trouble, but are stubborn and nimble enough to get you out of trouble if you get a little too adventurous.

And besides that they're just plain FUN. Even for so many of us on this forum who own several other bikes we've found the TW consistently ends up being our favorite ride.

Buy the bike. Even if you eventually feel like you out grow it, you won't regret it.
 

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I have two that I got so wife and I could ride together in the nearby forests. It is her first bike. We got them about 2 years ago. It has been excellent for her. Initially she crashed a few times, and thanks to the low speeds and seat height of the bike she didn't get hurt too much. She seems to enjoy riding it, as long as the weather is good. I found it to be a very good choice for teaching her how to ride... way better than a bigger and heavier bike would have been.

Only down side I can think of is you might want something more powerful in short order. I have been riding for over 40 years and it is my 20 or 25th bike, something like that. I have owned a slew of dual-purpose bikes, sport bikes, even a couple liter class sport bikes. I still think the TW is a lot of fun, particularly running around my small town and up in the forrest. Gnarly trails are great on the TW.

Just know the bike is horrendously slow and always will be. Plus the jetting on at least the newer ones is ridiculously lean... as are all late model carbureted bikes that I am aware of.

I hope to get a KTM Duke or Super Duke for my next bike, but I plan to keep the TW.
 

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Ditto to most of the previous comments.....

Curioius what the XT forum is telling you about our beloved T-dubs ...... I'm certain they are swaying you in their direction and if not, that is reason enough to get a TW ..... you won't find a forum as friendly as this one :D
 

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Lots of good advice and support here. The T-Dub wins hands down in the unique category and anytime we are in a group it draws some attention. I have multiple bikes but the T-Dub is the best city bike because it is: easy to maneuver, all terrain capable, and super simple to maintain. I personally avoid FI and prefer carbs, but I have lived with carbs my entire life. My reasoning is this: if I make a mod I can adjust carb with ease in my driveway. If I make same mod on an FI bike I have to pay dealer to refresh FI controller (about $150 around here).

Last point, the T-Dub is FUN and the following pic is at the end of a day where we rode 20 miles in dirt and then 60 or so on back roads near Wilson Creek, NC.

https://photos.smugmug.com/Other/Brown-MT-OHV-and-others/i-ZhwdqxR/0/M/P1030534-M.jpg
 
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