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No experiance with the Honda Rebel, & I won't go into the electrical nightmare my Shadow turned into. But I'll suggest another you might want to look at, the suzuki savage or what ever they are calling it now. Its a 650 single, for a small bike its got enough power to haul what you want and is still small enough for a beginner.

I had one in 01 and rode the mess out of it, probably would still have it had the situation not gotten to where the "toy" had to go. But we've all been there at some point.
 

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I rode a few of them back in the 80's. I still think it would be fun to have a 450 Rebel. Good beginner bike. I just don't remember what the word was on reliability/longevity. I would guess that if they didn't fair well that Honda would have dropped the line a long time ago. . . but it's still here and still puttin' down the road with the big boys, that should say something. That's my 1.98427 cents :)
 

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My first ride was a honda nighthawk 250, which is the same engine as the rebel, just a little different styling. Great bike, cheap, economical, easy to maintain (with one exception), lightweight --- great bike for a beginner.
The only thing I didn't like about it, and later didn't like about the honda nighthawk 750 was the chain drive. A real pain to properly maintain. Would nearly break my heart to polish all those spokes then have the chain spray some lube on them.
 

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I knew a lady rider in the CMA that had one with 20,000 miles on it. It had bags, windshield, crash bars and pegs and sissy bar, fringe and all! She said it was just the right size for her. It was her 2nd one. She wore the first one out! It was still running but leaked and smoked so she got her another. That seems like a good testimony to me.
 

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Can't go wrong with the Rebel!:) They are a great quality bike pretty bullet :)proof. And keep their resale value the best, at least in this area!
 

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I've been looking around at other forums and on-line reviews for this bike and all seem favorable for this scoot. Anybody on here with any first hand experience (yourself or acquiantance)?

I put 5000 miles on my '06 Rebel (250). Commuted 110 miles r/t to work and it never let me down. It turned a consistent 60mpg in all wind conditions and would run 80mph all day.

And it gave me immense pleasure to park it under the "Victory" sign at Polaris Spirit Lake:D

 

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Congrats to your son on his new ride. VERY nice looking bike!
 

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I got to use a Buell Blast for my safety class. It is a fun bike and great for beginners. You would have to go used, obviously. I recommend getting something used to start out on anyway. Give him about a year before getting something shiny and new.


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I got to use a Buell Blast for my safety class. It is a fun bike and great for beginners. You would have to go used, obviously. I recommend getting something used to start out on anyway. Give him about a year before getting something shiny and new.


Sent from my Motorcycle iPad app
Oops. Just realized I was too slow. Congrats, it's a pretty bike. Love that color.


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How tall is the boy? I did my MSF training on a rebel (both times) and the square battery cover cut into my thighs so badly I had trouble walking afterwards.... It isn't really a problem when you are riding but trying to move the bike around or at lights can be a pain. Any shorter that 5'2" and I would suggest looking at the Suzuki (I think it's called a Boulevard?) or the Kawasaki Vulcan 500.
 

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Late to the party but the MSF safety course here in MA used to use the Rebels and is now largely populated by the nighthawks. I'm scooting around on a Ninja 250 and so the nighthawk felt just fine. They were in remarkably good shape considering they must get dropped all the time at the classes - three of the students dropped bikes in the two days I was there. But, I would give a plug for an older Ninja 250 too - it's not as aggressive as the newer ones and there is hardly any lean and I'm short, only 5'4" in shoes.
 

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Not sure if anyone is still reading this thread, but I just picked up a 99 Rebel for my GF about a month ago. Originally she purchased a V Star 650 but being new to riding with nearly zero seat time the 650 is just to big for her to learn on. So, we picked up a nice used Rebel. Overall I really like the bike. I've recently signed up on the Rebel forum and learning about it. For the most part you just can't kill these bikes. They are very forgiving, easy to work on due to the simplicity of the bike and perfect for a beginner. Not bad looking either.
 

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Hello Jim,

Yes, I'm still checking in on this thread from time to time. I'm clearly not getting any negative reviews. The subject, for me anyways, is not dead yet because my son has been too busy to move ahead with it yet. I guess you were one of the few lucky enough to get your hands on a used one because out this way they are all scoffed up quickly by the organization running the motorcycle safety courses.
Quite a few used Rebels down my way. The MSF folks use them as well, but I think they stick with new or late model around here. Sorry to hear they are in such short supply up yonder in the North.

You and your son need to road trip down to western NC., You can pick up a used Rebel and cruise the blue ridge parkway at the same time! Good luck on your search.
 

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the Rebel is a nice bike but I prefer the Virago 250 or the V-star 250 or another good starter bike is a Virago 535 and all can be found on craigslist pretty reasonable

just my .02
Ron
 
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