Reader Question: Some Bike Advice?

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Here’s the latest reader question, along with my reply!

Sam writes: On Wednesday I saw a guy riding a green and white Kawasaki Super Sherpa – decked out with a rack and a couple big saddlebags (probably for BO); pretty cool bike! Bet you would have liked it.

You know anything about Yamaha TW200s? I tried sitting on a Kaw KLX650 (the dealer didn’t have the older KLR) and a Suzuki DR650, but I had a heck of a time getting my leg over the seat on both. It wasn’t too bad after I was on it, but their seat heights didn’t inspire confidence in the “jump on and go” department. I asked the salesman about the TWs and he said he hoped they had some coming in a “month or two,” but he did say they had a lower seat height. I hope to see one when they come in. Unfortunately, I wouldn’t have the dough for a new one. ūüôĀ

My reply: The T200 is very Sherpa-like and for that reason I think you would like it. It does have a lower seat height and it’s air-cooled (a simpler, less-maintenance design). It also has really fatty tires, which makes it fun as hell to rooster tail with. It used to have a kick starter – but now is electric start only. It still has a carburetor. No EFI!

The thing is really cheap, too – about $4,500 sticker which I would bet means you could buy one for less.

But try finding a used one – ideally with a kicker. I bet you could pick up one for around $2,500-$3,000 in excellent shape with very low miles.

. . .

Got a question about cars, Libertarian politics – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!

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  1. I ran across this video of foolish people without masks At least they had helmets and eye protection.
    What do you think? Do you find noisy old bikes to be some fun experience, or should they be banned?
    What would you do if doing 55 and Stay Alive if a hellion went around you at what is known as “Breakneck Speed”
    I do not get your hostility to a brain bucket. Goggles to keep big splashes of bumblebees out of the eyes
    It was of utmost importance to conceal injury on a two wheeler from the betrothed and then the wife. Admitting the slightest MC related ache and pain was cause f0r DEEvorce and worse.
    Eric, You should wear a bucket just fo r your ability to be able to speak intelligibly with the next girlfriend.
    I have an old Bell that is not cosmetically pretty. The grinds would have been on the skull without it, just as I saw on the semi surviving unhelmeted Harle doofs.

    • Hi Erie,

      I have a full armored Alpinestar suit with knee pucks, armored gloves and boots – for track days. On the street, I usually wear street clothes and despise helmets as they dramatically take away from the fun of riding for me. The feel of the sun on my face and the wind in my hair. I am not an idiot and understand there is theoretical “risk.” Something might happen. But I weigh that against the actual reward of riding enjoyment.

      Other people make similar risk-reward calculations and I don’t deny their right to do so. For example, most people don’t exercise and many are significantly overweight, both of which are probably just as actually “risky” as my riding a bike without a bucket over my head!

      I’ve been riding for 30-plus years and so far nothing bad has happened. Sure, it might. Just as the guy who is 30 pounds heavy and sits on the couch al weekend glued to the TeeVee might have a premature heart attack.

      I refuse to stop living for fear of dying.


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