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Discussion Starter #1
It has been more than 15 years since I owned and rode a motorbike. I have just turned 60 years old, and I would like to start riding again. I will tell you a little about why I stopped riding, which may help explain why I have chosen now to get back in the saddle.

I used to be part of the hedonistic Rock ‘n’ Roll sect, so in keeping with that, my last bike was a Z1000ST Hard Tail Chop. It looked beautiful, although had distinctly challenging handling characteristics :). In 2002 I was diagnosed with the big C, and sadly it was at an advanced stage. I had surgery and was treated with Chemotherapy. After making an initial recover, my follow-up care went awry, and I became very ill again. It took a long time to obtain a correct diagnosis, and I didn’t work for a couple of years. Needless to say I was at this point somewhat weak and relatively broke.

After returning to poorly paid Part-Time work, I had a major re-think regarding my options. Owning and riding a motorbike was not high on my priorities, and I found myself just ignoring the whole biking fraternity, and merely reminiscing on my previous chosen lifestyle.

Sadly the big C returned again 6 years ago. I had further surgery, which knocked me back, but I managed to return to work within a few months. Anyway, I reckon that I must have been evil in a previous life or something, as sure enough that f#cking disease returned again last year. Once again it was at an advanced stage. I had Surgery again (not much left of me to cut out now :roll:) and then 6 months of Chemotherapy. I was very poorly again and off work for 9 months. I have however just returned to work last month on a very Part-Time arrangement. So I’m now thinking that while those were the cards that I was dealt with….. why shouldn’t I get a bike and start having some fun riding again.

So that is the background, and now the reason for joining this Forum.

I concluded that I will be more comfortable on a mid-sized machine, so after looking at the many options now available, I decided that I want to stick with Kawasaki, and that the ZX6R is the bike for me. The choice of model version however is somewhat overwhelming me at the moment. I will delve deeper through the years of manufacture, but I wondered if any advice would be forthcoming from members on here.

I assume that the later machines are the more refined, but are there any series that would be best to avoid? I’m drawn to the fuel injected models, which narrows it down a bit, and I think that a 636 could be more desirable. I plan to spend around £3,000. Some advice would be appreciated to help me make a decision.

Regards, Pip.
 

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Welcome out Pip! Wow man! What a story!

And my sentiments are.... GET A DAMN MOTORCYCLE!!

Enjoy your life and make it the way you want it brother... I think you've got the right mindset.

If you're liking the 636's you really can't go wrong with a B model ('03/'04). The '05/'06 is nice too but there have been those with ECU issues due to the undertail exhaust getting it too hot but that's pretty much it. I'm pretty biased on the '09-'12 myself :D But it's a 599 so if you're after the extra 37cc's then it's out of the running. In your price range I'm sure you'll be able to find a decent example of a good 636.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for your welcome and reply.

You are of course correct that I should indeed just "GET A DAMN MOTORCYCLE!!"

I had been looking at the '05/'06 model, but obviously I don't know anything about it's long term history, so thank you for the little nugget of information.

Pip.
 

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Pip, ride. Best therapy there is. Welcome back.

I'll second the '09-12 bracket..really stiff suspension, tho..13+, more street oriented, and more cc.

Any of these things go like stink. The ergos are dedicated.... Pretty cramped if you're above average size imho.

I prefer side of low mount exhaust, so the under seat models aren't as appealing. Too much heat on the posterior. Awkward options for mufflers, too.
 

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I can't imagine you're gonna be comfortable on a ZX6R being 60 and having had multiple surgeries. What about something equally as quick but a little more upright?

Either way, power to you, I would get one if I were in your boots.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you RJ for the '09/'12 recommendation, and advice on the exhaust routing. I'll answer your comment regarding the riding position below.

I can't imagine you're gonna be comfortable on a ZX6R being 60 and having had multiple surgeries. What about something equally as quick but a little more upright?

Either way, power to you, I would get one if I were in your boots.
Thank you Liam for your suggestions regarding my comfort and suitability for buying a ZX6R. What I will say here is that I don't look like your average 60 year old guy, and certainly don't act like one who has just been through the treatment that I have. I am naturally very fit and agile, which I find very important for my other passion of riding my large collection of Retro Mountain Bikes.

This picture was taken 25 days after finishing the Chemotherapy. It was on my 60th birthday at the top of the Worcestershire Beacon. I have climbed it many times in the past, and I was determined to climb it post treatment. As you can see I am slim, and you'll probably understand from the picture that I am still very capable of physical challenges. I have had a sit on a couple of ZX6R bikes since the picture was taken, so I do know a little more now about the riding position. There are certain comparisons to a Cross Country Mountain Bike!

Worcs Beacon 25 days after treatment by Philip Mock, on Flickr

Pip.
 

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Wow Buddy, you have had quite a few of obstacles too deal with recently. I applaud your tenacity and perseverance to overcome that Shit. There is absolutely no reason to NOT ride again. Life is short. I am gonna enjoy my time here and I see you are gonna do the same. You are lookin good. If you could use some good used gear, let me know. We look to be approx. the same size. I could help you out and donate some stuff to get you on the road and be safe about it. Us old guys have to stick together ( I'm 54 now) so keep the Faith......
 

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Dude, you're a badass.

I have an 07 but I can't speak much on the ergos of it. It's got a superbike tail and rearsets which changes things quite a bit. It's been reliable for me. I believe that generation may have had a recall or something like that with the valve cover gasket leaking oil (not verified, it's just sticking out in my head) but otherwise they don't have any issues that I can think of. They're a 599 so again, they lack the extra 37ccs over the 05/06 (which is one of the best looking bikes ever made IMO).

They're all fast. They all handle great. They're all reliable with the exception of a minor bit here or there.

Show us what you get and do some track days!
 

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Welcome to the show, and congrats on your recoveries!

The '13 and up ZX6Rs have a few things that make them worthwhile, especially for street riding. Relatively soft suspesion, Traction Control and ABS are pluses and the relatively torquey 636 motor is nice as well.

Please get some riders training as well (California Superbike School is in the UK).
 

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Welcome, I’m 64 and am partial to the 13 and newer ZX6Rs. Recently traded my 14 in on a BMW F800GT and really miss the Ninja. The extra midrange of the 636 is nice and it’s still got lots of top end power. Mine had ABS which is great for the street. Previous bike was a CBR600RR which I put clip on risers, a Sargent seat and a touring windscreen on. The Ninja had non of that but was just as comfortable. Rode as much as 600 Miles in a day on the Ninja. BMW is great for long trips loaded with lots of stuff but what a terrible engine. Makes a descent amount of power but vibrates and makes noise, Ninja wasn’t quiet but it made fun noise. Brakes are good and it handles very nicely. Can’t believe the amount of heat it puts on the rider in hot weather. One of my projects is to add some plastic pieces to direct the airflow better. It does make a descent bit of power but I miss the playfulness of the Ninja.
 

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Hi and welcome I too have been through what you have in 2016 and now in June had right side of liver removed am back at work and ride when ever I can.

I have a 2005 with a few mods and upgrades done great bike just need to find a way to keep the throttle closed a little before I get a ticket lol

O yeh I'm 62 in November a hot radox bath sorts out any aches and pains.

Any year you get will be fun.

Phil
 

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Hello Pip, welcome to the forum.

I'm 59, bought my 06 for dedicated track riding. Don't think I could do all day on the street which is why I have another bike. (not used much)

Your an inspiration to keep coming back, wish you the best. I just had a C scare the petscan came back OK so there just doing ct scans to watch the abnormalities.

Don't know what they have for tracks in your area, but if you can DO IT.
Sure makes an old body feel young, will also remind you to keep in shape.

Look forward to a picture when you get your ride.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thank you one and all for your words of encouragement and welcome – it all helps, and is very much appreciated.

A quick update:

I had a meeting with Oncology today to discuss the results of my first post treatment C.T. Scan and Carcinoembryonic antigen level blood test. It was great news, and there appears to be no Cancer present – what a relief!

I have also started the ball rolling with regards to a Colostomy Reversal, which could be done in as little as 6 months’ time – result!:)

Onwards:

I have now seen a few suitable 636 bikes for sale from 2003 and 2005 that I like. However, after such a long break from riding, I think it would be somewhat irresponsible to jump onto one of these machines and ride it straight home from the seller.

With that in mind, as soon as I was back from the hospital today, I booked a Motorcycle Refresher Training Course. It will take place locally next Monday, and it lasts for 3 hours. The bike on the course that I will be using is the 2017 Z650 liquid cooled parallel twin. It seems to be referred to as a naked sportsbike .

Pip.
 

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Better ergo overall, similar performance in the low end, without the top end performance.

~60 HP, vs. 100+ (peak)
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Hello again. If you glance back to my first post, you’ll see that nearly 18 months ago, I planned to get a bike again, and the motivation behind that decision.

To cut a long story short, the reason that I stopped posting on here was initially a complication with regards my work situation, and coming up to date, my heath condition. I’ll leave the detail for the time being, as it doesn’t make for comfortable reading…… however I would like to say that I can now proudly join you lot as a ZX-6R owner :cool:.

It is a 2006 ZX636-C6F in somewhat unassuming silver with most of the Decals removed. I realise that that any ZX-6R can look incredibly dynamic and striking with full on Ninja livery, but I quite like this bike’s denuded minimalism.

I bought it from a dealer for a lower price and less mileage compared to some others that I was looking at. Anyway, I took it for a test ride today, and was delighted with how I felt immediately comfortable and confident on it.

When I got back from my test ride and settled up, I thought about riding it the 35 miles home, but they offered free delivery, which was the more sensible option. It is due here next week, when I can take some better pictures and give a ride report. For now though, here are a few from the dealer’s advertisement.

2006 ZX636-C6F by Philip Mock, on Flickr

2006 ZX636-C6F_1 by Philip Mock, on Flickr

2006 ZX636-C6F_3 by Philip Mock, on Flickr

2006 ZX636-C6F_2 by Philip Mock, on Flickr

Pip
 

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Hello again. If you glance back to my first post, you’ll see that nearly 18 months ago, I planned to get a bike again, and the motivation behind that decision.

To cut a long story short, the reason that I stopped posting on here was initially a complication with regards my work situation, and coming up to date, my heath condition. I’ll leave the detail for the time being, as it doesn’t make for comfortable reading…… however I would like to say that I can now proudly join you lot as a ZX-6R owner :cool:.

It is a 2006 ZX636-C6F in somewhat unassuming silver with most of the Decals removed. I realise that that any ZX-6R can look incredibly dynamic and striking with full on Ninja livery, but I quite like this bike’s denuded minimalism.

I bought it from a dealer for a lower price and less mileage compared to some others that I was looking at. Anyway, I took it for a test ride today, and was delighted with how I felt immediately comfortable and confident on it.

When I got back from my test ride and settled up, I thought about riding it the 35 miles home, but they offered free delivery, which was the more sensible option. It is due here next week, when I can take some better pictures and give a ride report. For now though, here are a few from the dealer’s advertisement.

2006 ZX636-C6F by Philip Mock, on Flickr

2006 ZX636-C6F_1 by Philip Mock, on Flickr

2006 ZX636-C6F_3 by Philip Mock, on Flickr

2006 ZX636-C6F_2 by Philip Mock, on Flickr

Pip
welcome Pip. Great choice and a new beginning. No time like the present. Been dealing with prostate cancer myself over the past 10 months or so. There's been talk lately of issues with the lead screw in the side panels that attach to the tank. Seems that a too long screw can puncture the tank. Might be worth checking that....
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
Rightyho, I started this thread a long time ago, but at last we got there.

First trip out was to fill up with fuel, and then make my way to an empty Sports Field Car Park just up the road from me. I practiced some tighter and tighter figure of eights, which is something that I was shown on my refresher course. Then off out along a winding country road that I know well, with a lot of varying double bends and flat straights.

I am pleasantly surprised at how comfortable I feel on this motorbike, but I can only assume that it comes from years of riding Mountain Bikes with a full on stretched out Cross Country Racing set-up; Saddle higher than the flat Bars:cool:! I love the way I can get tucked into the bike, in contrast to the set-up on the bike I was using for the refresher course. I’m probably saying something that you lot already know, when I say that it is a really flickable machine.

Anyway, I stopped off for a few pictures on this somewhat damp February morning:

ZX6R 140220_6 by Philip Mock, on Flickr

ZX6R 140220_7 by Philip Mock, on Flickr

ZX6R 140220_4 by Philip Mock, on Flickr

ZX6R 140220_1A by Philip Mock, on Flickr

Pip
 

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Good on you, Philip!

any day in the saddle,and above ground is a winner. :) Bike looks to be in good nick, I like seeing braided brake lines.
 
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