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    Thread: Question for those that haven't been riding since birth.

    1. Member blue70beetle's Avatar
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      04-05-2012 02:39 PM #26
      Quote Originally Posted by SpclAgentD View Post
      I actually hear it's better to take the class when you have no experience with motorcycles, so you don't go in having to change bad habits to good ones. Your first experience is likely to stick with you throughout your riding life. It's easier to create habits than it is to break a bad habit (at least for most people)
      Let me be sure I understand you correctly...if you've ever ridden a motorcycle, it's better to not take a class? You go on to say it's easier to create habits than break them, so presumably a new rider would benefit from a class, because then they'll only learn good habits. Right? I'm having a hard time getting my head around the idea that someone who has been riding a while would be better off not having someone tell them what they're doing wrong and how to improve.

    2. 04-05-2012 03:18 PM #27
      Quote Originally Posted by blue70beetle View Post
      Let me be sure I understand you correctly...if you've ever ridden a motorcycle, it's better to not take a class? You go on to say it's easier to create habits than break them, so presumably a new rider would benefit from a class, because then they'll only learn good habits. Right? I'm having a hard time getting my head around the idea that someone who has been riding a while would be better off not having someone tell them what they're doing wrong and how to improve.
      I think what he's saying is that if you're starting from zero, it's better to take the class first, then get a bike than to ride around for a few months and then take the class. Obviously, more training can never hurt no matter how much seat time you have on a bike.

      miscbrah,
      Have you ever taken the class? In my opinion, they spend a little too much time on ultra-low speed "stupid motorcycle tricks," but there are definitely large portions that translate directly to the street. For example: having never ridden before taking the class, I just about sh!t myself when they busted out 4x4s to ride over, but quickly found out that it was no big deal. Now think of how many new guys (or even old guys) have probably went down trying to avoid an unavoidable object rather than just hopping over it.

      All of the practice on emergency braking is also invaluable. If you can't stop from 20 mph, what makes you think it's wise to just jump on the highway and crank it up to 70? I could go on, but if you didn't learn anything from the MSF, you either weren't there, or weren't paying attention.

    3. Senior Member FlashRedGLS1.8T's Avatar
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      04-05-2012 03:47 PM #28
      Quote Originally Posted by Spinnaker View Post
      Take the MSF, buy a mint UJM, read up on the risks, have fun
      x2

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      04-05-2012 03:55 PM #29
      Quote Originally Posted by miscbrah View Post
      I'd recommend that at a minimum
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    5. Member SpclAgentD's Avatar
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      04-05-2012 04:57 PM #30
      Quote Originally Posted by gr8shandini View Post
      I think what he's saying is that if you're starting from zero, it's better to take the class first, then get a bike than to ride around for a few months and then take the class. Obviously, more training can never hurt no matter how much seat time you have on a bike.
      Yes, he is correct Thank you!
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    6. Member abawp's Avatar
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      04-05-2012 05:50 PM #31
      Quote Originally Posted by gr8shandini View Post
      I think what he's saying is that if you're starting from zero, it's better to take the class first, then get a bike than to ride around for a few months and then take the class. Obviously, more training can never hurt no matter how much seat time you have on a bike.
      This was what I did at 26. Having never ridden a motorcycle before outside of some very slow and short parking lot maneuvers, I wanted to get more instruction so I knew how to operate it. Best $130 I ever spent. Even though they allowed people to use their own motorcycles it was nice to use the loaners simply because I wasn't worried about dropping it, they were well battle-scared so another dent or ding wouldn't hurt. It certainly helped ease tensions when, like mentioned earlier, they broke out the wooden plank for us to run over. If I were on my own bike I probably would have crawled over the plank and learned nothing but because it was on an already beat up motorcycle I didn't care and was able to learn the skills.

      If you have any doubts as to whether or not it's for you, at least take the (subsidized) MSF course. At the very least you'll get to crash someone else banged up and dented motorcycle and have fun doing it.
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    7. Member Spinnaker's Avatar
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      04-05-2012 08:30 PM #32
      Quote Originally Posted by miscbrah View Post
      is everyone timid with old age? lol. The class is definitely a good resource but riding circles in a parking lot, on a tiny scooter, isn't going to prepare you for the road.

      I did however, read the state manual on operating a motorcycle before taking the permit test. I'd recommend that at a minimum
      It will prepare you with so many little bits of knowledge that you need to survive on the road. Every MSF instructor finishes the class with 'congratulations, you can now ride in a parking lot'.

      For example, a non-rider recently asked me the other day if I use my back brake more than my front. That one misperception could cost you your life on a first ride out.

    8. Member nhbubba's Avatar
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      04-05-2012 08:45 PM #33
      Quote Originally Posted by Tinker Toy View Post
      I do not agree that carburetors are inherently troublesome. They gave good service for about a 100 years.
      I would largely agree. My beef with older bikes is the parts sources are starting to dry up. Not sure I'd be willing to wade into that myself.

      Suzuki SV's or Kawi parallel twins (EX 500, Ninja 650, etc) would be my pick for a first bike. Carb'ed or otherwise. ... Or even 2nd or 3rd bike. I dream of adding one to my garage myself.
      Quote Originally Posted by miscbrah View Post
      is everyone timid with old age? lol. The class is definitely a good resource but riding circles in a parking lot, on a tiny scooter, isn't going to prepare you for the road.
      MSF isn't taught on scooters 'round here. Usually they are 125's or 250's.

      Now if you are one of those posers that thinks 125's and 250's aren't "real bikes" or some such, then you can just GTFO.

    9. Member turbinepowered's Avatar
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      04-05-2012 09:10 PM #34
      Quote Originally Posted by miscbrah View Post
      is everyone timid with old age? lol. The class is definitely a good resource but riding circles in a parking lot, on a tiny scooter, isn't going to prepare you for the road.


      Quote Originally Posted by nhbubba View Post
      MSF isn't taught on scooters 'round here. Usually they are 125's or 250's.

      Now if you are one of those posers that thinks 125's and 250's aren't "real bikes" or some such, then you can just GTFO.
      What this guy said. My MSF course featured a TW200 as the smallest bike in the course, with Vstar 250s, TU250s and XT250s making up the bulk of the bikes represented.

      I /want/ one of those little 250 runabouts. The XT250 I was riding for my bike portions was fun.
      Quote Originally Posted by zukiphile View Post
      There is an area of a normal brain that lets the owner know the object works and needs to be left alone. Not all of us have it. It is like being colorblind.

    10. Member Mtl-Marc's Avatar
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      04-05-2012 09:15 PM #35
      And don't forget to get proper gear too.



      This guy has no clue... ^^
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    11. 04-05-2012 10:21 PM #36
      LOL state a differing opinion and everyone gets all butt hurt. I even said the MSF is a good resource, however I do not believe it to be the be-all end-all some people tout it as. Familiarizing yourself with basic techniques (such as the front vs. back brake, noted above) should be common sense.

      I have taken the course, only to comply with the state requirements. The MSF didn't exist when your grandfather hopped on a motorcycle for the first time, and kids aren't sent before getting on a dirt bike.

      Heck, fans used to be made so that you could fit your whole hand through them... and your parents probably have all of their fingers.

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      04-05-2012 10:35 PM #37
      My advice to the OP is to go for it. Take a class if you can, have a buddy teach you if it's not an option. Read books, get further training, etc.... Just go out and give it a go basically. You may like it, you might not, but you'll never know until you try. But don't get a 70s UJM as your first bike. If you really dig the look, get a use Triumph Bonnie instead.

    13. Member nhbubba's Avatar
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      04-05-2012 10:50 PM #38
      Quote Originally Posted by miscbrah View Post
      LOL state a differing opinion and everyone gets all butt hurt. I even said the MSF is a good resource, however I do not believe it to be the be-all end-all some people tout it as.
      Read again, or stop hunting for a fight, whichever you are up to.

      Nobody called it the 'be-all' of anything. It's a great place for the OP, or any rider, to start.

      The MSF solves way more problems than it creates. It's worth the money, worth the time. Just do it and then move on. Hell, you'll probably get an insurance discount.

    14. Member Spinnaker's Avatar
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      04-05-2012 11:01 PM #39
      That pic makes my skin crawl

    15. Member blue70beetle's Avatar
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      04-05-2012 11:14 PM #40
      Quote Originally Posted by miscbrah View Post

      I have taken the course, only to comply with the state requirements. The MSF didn't exist when your grandfather hopped on a motorcycle for the first time, and kids aren't sent before getting on a dirt bike.
      fwiw, people texting, eating a cheeseburger, and putting on makeup while pretending to drive didn't exist then either. Roads haven't gotten easier to navigate since then...and there are a lot more cars (operated by people who are both more distracted and more impatient) than there were in years past.

      I don't get all bent out of shape about safety, but I do think there's a lot of value in being sensible...

    16. 04-06-2012 12:35 AM #41
      I don't fit your description as I've been riding on the road since I was 15 and got my first two wheeled motorized vehicle years before that.

      Get the mid 70's Honda. They are bullet proof. You can get a good starter bike, say a 1975 CB360 in great shape for $800. You should be able to ride one in good shape 3-4 years without doing anything more than a oil change at the start of the season.

      The only parts that are expensive on these bikes are the pipes but you can stick all sorts of aftermarket pipes on them that are cheap.

      The 360 will stay with traffic just fine. It's a mid sized bike so it's easy to handle for a new rider. Their brakes were leap years ahead of the bikes of the recent past. I ride pre-1977 bikes exclusively and I'm never left stranded. (that is, with the Japanese bikes)

      I agree with those who state that taking a riders course if you've never rode before is a good idea. Also, never ride in shorts or sandals. Not only are you asking for trouble, you look really stupid.

    17. Senior Member Mk1Racer's Avatar
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      04-06-2012 08:27 AM #42
      Quote Originally Posted by pknopp View Post
      Get the mid 70's Honda. They are bullet proof. You can get a good starter bike, say a 1975 CB360 in great shape for $800. You should be able to ride one in good shape 3-4 years without doing anything more than a oil change at the start of the season.

      .


      While I agree that they are reliable, you're talking about a bike that's over 35 years old. If it hasn't been ridden semi-regularly, and maintained, you're in for some surprises. Gummed up carbs, dried out gaskets and seals, etc. And I don't know of any bike that you can ride for 3-4 years w/o doing anything other than an annual oil change. Well maybe if you ride
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    18. Member blue70beetle's Avatar
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      04-06-2012 09:57 AM #43
      [QUOTE=Mk1Racer;76770984]

      And I don't know of any bike that you can ride for 3-4 years w/o doing anything other than an annual oil change. Well maybe if you ride

    19. Member Spinnaker's Avatar
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      04-06-2012 10:54 AM #44
      A used Bonnie would be more coin but has the elements of style with modern reliability.

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      04-06-2012 11:47 AM #45
      Quote Originally Posted by Tinker Toy View Post
      I do not agree that carburetors are inherently troublesome. They gave good service for about a 100 years. I have two bikes with carburetors; both over 25 years old. Each has never had the carburetors cleaned and both start without issues in the Spring after Winter storage. Unleaded gasoline and storing with fresh gasoline in the Fall makes this possible.

      Much has been said so I will add a thought that is unique and possibly unpopular. You should not need 75 or more horsepower to enjoy a ride on a bike. 40 horsepower will easily carry you down a freeway at 70 mpg for as long as you can sit on a bike. I graduated from a bicycle; have not forgotten that and still love not having to pedal.
      Newer carburetors function just fine, basically anything with CV that are properly adjusted will run perfectly and not inhibit your ability to learn to right. However, trying to jump onto a CB650 or CB750 Honda with slide carbs is not an intelligent way to learn to ride. They're very touchy at small throttle angles.



      For what it's worth, my first time on a motorcycle was at 23, now 29 and still love to ride. I don't think it's age that causes people to give up on riding, it's easy for people to get a bike just because it sounds like fun at the moment. I remember a neighbors son having a series of Hondas growing up with I was

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      04-06-2012 02:09 PM #46
      Quote Originally Posted by Mk1Racer View Post
      12k miles a year on a bike is impressive. Live in Cali or the South?
      Massachusetts. I ride all year long. Snowy days, and days under 30 degrees are really the only days I consider off-limits.

    22. Member nhbubba's Avatar
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      04-06-2012 03:08 PM #47
      I think a lot of people quit riding because of climate, family pressure (read: wife says so), or a close call. Traffic is nuckin' futz these days. In the end they just don't end up using the bike as much as they figured they would. At some point it becomes tough to justify the tires and insurance and upkeep if you only ride the damned thing 3-4 times a year or something.

      This is why I ride something I can commute on. If I can't ride it to work, I won't ride it enough to justify having it.. in my mind.

    23. Member JWoody's Avatar
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      04-06-2012 08:59 PM #48
      I started last year when I was 36. Took the MSF a month or so before my 37th birthday. Its been about 9-10 months or so with about 5800 miles in the last year on my 1125CR. I'm not so sure I will be getting another Liter bike next go around. Something in the 650-750 range. Perhaps an 848 EVO.

      Don't get me wrong, had her up to the limiter enough times in 2nd-5th and enjoyed removing nearly all my chicken strips;about 1/8" left or so. Enjoyed every minute of it even in the heaviest rain and cold weather. Been longing to ride since I was in my late teens early 20's.

      My father has me beat though. He started riding HD's at 47 and has ridden across the country several times over the years. My parents have gone just about everywhere on 6 different HD's throughout the years. They are in their late 60's now and he just picked up a new Fat Boy last Fall. Still riding...

      -J

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      04-07-2012 05:48 AM #49
      OP = me exactly 1 year ago. I was 41 last spring and finally pushed myself to do it. Actually my wife did. I have loved but not owned bikes ever since I laid my eyes on my neighbors Honda vfr Interceptor back in 1985. I decided to go the responsible route and take the MFS course which was exactly what I needed. I have always been able to pick up new things very easily such as snow boarding, longboarding etc pretty easily but I felt that I wanted to do it right and I am sure happy that I took the class. Yes, it is a little rudimentary but really gets you in responsible riders state of mind. I picked up a brand new Honda CBR 250r last summer 1 day after the class. Despite all the elbowing by others for going the 250 route I still think it was a smart decision. The bike is as fast around town and up to 70mph as your average car which allowed me to "push it hard" without doing anything outside the scope of the law and the scope of my beginner skills. I am a speed freak and like to push the mechanical limits by nature so this bike has kept me from getting in over my head. I say "go for it". Do it right. Take the class. Get good helmet, jacket, gloves and boots and do a LOT of research on what bike you feel would be best for you NOW for your skills.
      Studies have shown that all decaying mammals smell exactly the same. So what if you want the smell of dead whores but can't afford to risk a lengthy jail sentence? Try a dead cat. Just slip it under the seat and no one will be the wiser. They will get in your car and say " Dam ******, you gots a dead hooker in the trunk?" and you can smile and just say " I'll never tell".

    25. Senior Member Mk1Racer's Avatar
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      04-07-2012 06:05 AM #50
      Quote Originally Posted by blue70beetle View Post
      I would agree that there will probably be other maintenance required, but I think the point was these are very reliable, so only minimal, infrequent repairs would be required.
      I know it wasn't your post, but you can't tell a new rider that they can by a 35 y/o bike and expect to do nothing to it but change the oil every year for 3-4 years. As I said, you can't expect to do that w/ a brand new bike. I do agree that the old Honda bikes are pretty reliable. Honda makes reliable stuff. Cars, bikes, mowers, quads, etc. It really is hard to go wrong w/ a Honda.
      Quote Originally Posted by sucking chest wound View Post
      Massachusetts. I ride all year long. Snowy days, and days under 30 degrees are really the only days I consider off-limits.
      Excellent. I ride 6k-7k a year, and I think that's a decent amount. But then again, I don't really ride when it is below 40, and I won't intentionally go out when it's raining (mostly because I hate cleaning the bike after riding on wet roads). I have no problem going on a 250-300 mile 'ride to nowhere'. Jump on the bike in the morning and head out. Get back whenever. Rode up to Mass. and back 2 years ago w/ my buddy to look at a bike (he bought it). That was a 550 mile 'cruise'. Only downside was being on 684 in NY. That road SUCKS!!!!!
      Quote Originally Posted by atomicalex View Post
      Hey, don't forget the anarchist car chicks. We are angry and have whips!

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