There’s nothing quite like feeling the open road and the wind rushing against you. If you’re drawn to motorcycles, you likely have always found them intriguing, probably wanting one ever since you were a kid and saw one for the first time. Maybe you’ve even dabbled a bit in the world of motorbikes—renting them on vacation or letting a friend take you out for a ride.

When it comes to choosing the right bike for you and your lifestyle, there are a lot of considerations—the price, weight, gas mileage, stereo system, and many others. One factor few people consider is whether a bike is a good fit for their expertise. Some bikes handle easier than others, meaning that—for beginners—the right bike choice might involve considering the ease of operation and handling. The following will explore one type of bike in particular—the bobber—with special attention paid to how easy it is to maneuver and drive this bike.

What Is A Bobber Bike?

In the broadest sense, a bobber motorcycle is the highest echelon of custom motorcycles. These bikes are often created when someone buys an older or cheaper bike and tweaks the machine until they have the perfect motorcycle. This being said, many vehicle manufacturers have come out with their own versions of the bobber bike. It is debated among enthusiasts which bikes count as bobbers because of this.

Originally, bobber bikes were worked on to create as much speed as possible. Over time a “bobber aesthetic” became established, and for many, the style of these vehicles is a big part of the draw. These are probably the bikes you picture when you imagine Marlon Brando in a leather jacket riding a motorcycle.

Bobbers can be purchased, or bobber kits can be ordered. You can also work on building your own bobber motorcycle. Typically, bobbers have customs lights, moderated bucket seats, shortened fenders, and mufflers replaced with something louder and snazzier. Kits can also be used for color changes or chrome plating.

Always Test Drive Before You Buy

Even if you have some experience, it’s best to take the vehicle you’re considering buying out for a spin. Even if you’re buying a used bike, a test drive is a must. Take note of what feels comfortable—what speeds feel natural? How does it turn? Could you manage the machine on longer drives?

There’s no harm in taking your sweet time to purchase a bike. Make sure the one you end up with is something that you’re happy and comfortable driving as well as something you can manage safely. Consider reading online reviews that breakdown bike features and point out potential problems, say the pros over at Timeless 2 Wheels, adding that you also need to research not only about the particular bike you choose but also the proper maintenance. When you finally pick your bike, you want to be sure you’re keeping it healthy for years to come.

How Would A Beginner Feel With A Bobber?

Bobber bikes are an excellent choice for first-time motorcycle owners for three main reasons. Foremost, the bikes are designed to be light-weight because all unnecessary parts are stripped away. The weight of the bike makes it easier to lift, store, and get the bike started.

Bobber bikes also tend to be minimalist, with fewer parts, meaning there is far less to learn and understand about them. Just like you get to know your own car and the noises it makes, and what it needs from you, beginners can get to know bobber bikes fairly easily. In addition to the above, bobber bikes tend to have a low seat height. This makes them ergonomically friendly and more comfortable for inexperienced drivers on long rides. This riding position also makes maneuvering easier than some other bikes.

Only Build If You’re Feeling Confident

Building your own bike can be a spectacular experience. It’s your bike—no one else has one like it. This being said, if you’re not experienced with bike mechanics, this isn’t recommended. Make sure if you do build your own, you take it to a mechanic to give the vehicle a once over for safety and functionality. Of course, as with any motor vehicle, you should never drive something you’re not confident in your ability to handle. 

If you feel unsafe while driving something, stop—it’s not only yourself that you put at risk when driving something you feel like you can’t manage—it’s all the other drivers on the road and pedestrians as well you are risking. There are numerous classes available to teach the skills required to drive a motorcycle safely and securely. Taking these courses can also lessen your insurance costs, saving you a ton of money over the years.

The above information should give you an idea of whether a bobber bike would suit you, given your experience with motorbikes. As a general rule, bobber bikes make an excellent choice for beginners, but every person is different.