You are a Beginner and want a 600cc+ sportbike? READ THIS!

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DivideOverflow
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#41 Unread post by DivideOverflow » Mon Mar 12, 2007 7:08 am

Peter Y wrote:
why ask if your not going to listen to them? they are both right... they are also being REALLY nice to encourage you to start on a safer beginner bike. But ill say this to you straight: no, of course your not ready for a 600CC after some little "rigorous" tests. I am sure it's difficult but it is no match with having two or three years of experience on the road... Since you already got your bike there's nothing anyone can do
U know I wanted to ask because I do value all the comments and guidance I get from this site. The fact that the passion I had to get a 600CC outweighed the commentary does not mean I do not take into account what was said.

I had my first weekend with the bike and took it nice and slow. Cautious and alert. I think the issue now is that Im so concious about the fact that this is a fast and powerful bike that I im reluctant to use its speed and power . I dunno if thats funny , ironic or what????
First of all, I noticed that you got a GSX 600... that is a katana, that isn't a race replica bike. It is generally considered the slower version. However, it is a top heavy pig, and I rarely suggest those bikes to anyone, regardless of riding ability.

Your riding requirements aren't that much more than the US, we don't have to wait six months, but we have to do a written theory/traffic laws test, and do a driving test with specific exercises set up (u-turns, fast turns, weaving, emergency braking, running over objects, etc).

Passion is bullshiat. You are an immature person who had to have what you had to have, reason be damned. Everyone: "That isn't a good idea", You: "Well, I don't care what you say, I want it!!"

People come on here are argue their crap all the time. Always wanting to get someone to agree with them. Face it, you made an immature decision, and barely anyone will support you in it. All I have to say is at least you didn't get a GSXR.
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#42 Unread post by Peter Y » Mon Mar 12, 2007 7:27 am

Passion is bullshiat. You are an immature person who had to have what you had to have, reason be damned. Everyone: "That isn't a good idea", You: "Well, I don't care what you say, I want it!!"

People come on here are argue their "crumb" all the time. Always wanting to get someone to agree with them. Face it, you made an immature decision, and barely anyone will support you in it. All I have to say is at least you didn't get a GSXR
Wow u know I feel like im in HUGE trouble now :laughing: I know your intentions are well but honestly Im mature and older enough to handle this(quite older than you may think). You can always generalise and make assumptions about a certain population,(sample of people) however there will always be individuals that dont fit into that population who wil behave, act, perform in a different manner that does not fit with the currently displayed trend. THATS ME.

I agree with your comments on the Heavy bike. Its a true pig I tried wheeling it into my garage and dam it was an effort. The other point is you can get into as much trouble travelling 80Kms an hour than you could travelling 180Kms an hour.

Never the less I appreciate your comments and view them constructivley. My next bike will be a HAYABUSA !!!!!!

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#43 Unread post by Shorts » Mon Mar 12, 2007 7:34 am

PeterY, I think maturity will dictate the way you act on the bike. But, fact is, you're still a young rider, regardless of how mature.

Though I don't agree "passion" is the word for it. If you truly had passion for the sport, you'd actually care about the learning process enough to want to soak up as much skill as possible from a better first bike. Anyway, you made your decision. Take care with it.

Divide was correct in the process of getting a bike license in the US.

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#44 Unread post by DivideOverflow » Mon Mar 12, 2007 8:19 am

Peter Y wrote:
Passion is bullshiat. You are an immature person who had to have what you had to have, reason be damned. Everyone: "That isn't a good idea", You: "Well, I don't care what you say, I want it!!"

People come on here are argue their "crumb" all the time. Always wanting to get someone to agree with them. Face it, you made an immature decision, and barely anyone will support you in it. All I have to say is at least you didn't get a GSXR
Wow u know I feel like im in HUGE trouble now :laughing: I know your intentions are well but honestly Im mature and older enough to handle this(quite older than you may think). You can always generalise and make assumptions about a certain population,(sample of people) however there will always be individuals that dont fit into that population who wil behave, act, perform in a different manner that does not fit with the currently displayed trend. THATS ME.

I agree with your comments on the Heavy bike. Its a true pig I tried wheeling it into my garage and dam it was an effort. The other point is you can get into as much trouble travelling 80Kms an hour than you could travelling 180Kms an hour.

Never the less I appreciate your comments and view them constructivley. My next bike will be a HAYABUSA !!!!!!
I didn't make any claims to your age... you could be 40 for all I care. It doesn't change the fact that you have approached the entire situation immaturely. Here's another clue... EVERYONE who comes on here always thinks they are the exception. "I am so much safer and more mature than everyone else my age ever!!!tehone!!"

I wasn't saying that you would ride irresponsibly, just that you have little experience, so your intentions don't mean a damn. If you get into a sticky situation, you are more likely to be hurt on a bike of this nature, than a more appropriately sized bike for beginners.

Also, the actual speed has nothing to do with it. There is a guy had been riding 10 years, and logged about 75,000 miles. He had about 2,500 miles on his ZX-14 before pulling an accidental wheelie while trying to pass/merge, looping the bike, and breaking his back. He was a mature, safe rider. But the bike he chose was outside of his skill level, and in a situation where he had to merge quickly, he accidently goosed it and flipped the bike on its "O Ring".
http://www.sport-touring.net/forums/ind ... 667.0.html

Like I said, your intentions don't matter. It has to do with the amount of seat time and experience, which you don't have.
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#45 Unread post by Peter Y » Mon Mar 12, 2007 10:15 am

Also, the actual speed has nothing to do with it. There is a guy had been riding 10 years, and logged about 75,000 miles. He had about 2,500 miles on his ZX-14 before pulling an accidental wheelie while trying to pass/merge, looping the bike, and breaking his back. He was a mature, safe rider.
U know Im not going to pretend that I disagree with the majority of what your saying HOWEVER the whole concept of not having enough experience to manage a 600CC is based on the assumption that im either going to "twist the wrist" accidently or use this power inappropriatley(like in the example above). So If I had a bike with exactly the same specification except that it was a 400CC or something would that fix everything? Would I then have made a smart choice? With technology and R&D in todays environment you are much more likley to "flip" or speed with even a smaller bike than you would with a larger bike. Does a four cylinder sports car pose less a threat than a 8 cylinder sports car?? I doubt it. They are both capable of doing high speeds very very quickly. I do feel Passionate about this and I do feel I can manage this bike. Plus the bike I have purchased is hardly a "Crotch Rocket".

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#46 Unread post by Fast Eddy B » Mon Mar 12, 2007 1:05 pm

Peter Y wrote:
the whole concept of not having enough experience to manage a 600CC is based on the assumption that im either going to "twist the wrist" accidently or use this power inappropriatley(like in the example above). So If I had a bike with exactly the same specification except that it was a 400CC or something would that fix everything?
less torque/power = less driving force, less displacement = less torque/power, so yes, it would.

Peter Y wrote: With technology and R&D in todays environment you are much more likley to "flip" or speed with even a smaller bike than you would with a larger bike.
i've never heard that. i've never felt that having ridden two 125's, a 500, a 600, and a v-twin 1000. anybody else?

Peter Y wrote:Does a four cylinder sports car pose less a threat than a 8 cylinder sports car?? I doubt it.
depends on the driver. let's not talk cylinders, how about bhp? or even better, power to weight ratio? most often, with less experience, less power is safer. it's tough to argue against this one.
Peter Y wrote: I do feel Passionate about this and I do feel I can manage this bike. Plus the bike I have purchased is hardly a "Crotch Rocket".
i have no idea who you are, how you ride, or anything else. with a good attitude, discipline, practice, MORE TRAINING and luck (we all need this) you'll be fine. nobody here is going to stand up and say "get a 600". not even me, and i'm probably the most in your corner.

but no more...if you've got the attitude, the passion and the maturity then you don't need me. so good luck.
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#47 Unread post by Dragonhawk » Mon Mar 12, 2007 3:35 pm

Peter Y wrote:With technology and R&D in todays environment you are much more likley to "flip" or speed with even a smaller bike than you would with a larger bike.
:lol:

That doesn't even make any logical sense. If that was true, then people would be safe on GSXR-750s and killing themselves on 50cc mopeds.

No. Your statement is a completely inane, untrue arguement made by people who know nothing about motorcycles (or basic laws of physics) and are attempting to justify their desire for a bike that is too powerful for them.
[b]Are you a beginner rider?
Have a lot of questions about motorcycling?
Not sure what bike to start with?
[url=http://www.wyndfeather.com/learn/motorcycle.htm]Learn To Ride A Motorcycle - A Step-By-Step Guide[/url][/b]

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#48 Unread post by DivideOverflow » Mon Mar 12, 2007 5:37 pm

Peter Y wrote:
Also, the actual speed has nothing to do with it. There is a guy had been riding 10 years, and logged about 75,000 miles. He had about 2,500 miles on his ZX-14 before pulling an accidental wheelie while trying to pass/merge, looping the bike, and breaking his back. He was a mature, safe rider.
U know Im not going to pretend that I disagree with the majority of what your saying HOWEVER the whole concept of not having enough experience to manage a 600CC is based on the assumption that im either going to "twist the wrist" accidently or use this power inappropriatley(like in the example above). So If I had a bike with exactly the same specification except that it was a 400CC or something would that fix everything? Would I then have made a smart choice? With technology and R&D in todays environment you are much more likley to "flip" or speed with even a smaller bike than you would with a larger bike. Does a four cylinder sports car pose less a threat than a 8 cylinder sports car?? I doubt it. They are both capable of doing high speeds very very quickly. I do feel Passionate about this and I do feel I can manage this bike. Plus the bike I have purchased is hardly a "Crotch Rocket".
It isn't that you will use it inappropriately, but shiat happens. That guy has WAY more experience than you, and he messed up. You aren't flawless. Also, there is a lot more to handling a sportsbike than a standard or cruiser. Power to weight ratio is the biggest issue, but also seating position, weight distribution, slow speed management, rake angle, etc etc etc etc etc. The rake on sportbikes generally makes the steering more precise for corners, which results in being less stable than a cruiser, or more conservative setup. With a Katana, add the top-heavy nature of that bike, and it leads to some shoddy steering characteristics (which is generally why I don't recommend that bike to anyone).

And no, you are not more likely to flip a smaller bike. You are just showing that you know very little about bikes on the market. And yes, a 8 cylinder sports car does pose much more of a threat to a new rider. V8 sports cars are almost always rear-wheel drive, and have massive amounts of torque. It is the torque-steer that will make a FWD difficult to handle, but it will make the RWD car spin in circles. This makes it easier to lose traction and send your car spinning in a circle. I know, I've driven highpowered V8s and highpowered FWD cars. In a FWD car, if you spin the tires, you generally keep going straight... in RWD, it is much easier to lose it. Plus, with the extra torque of an 8, it is 100 times easier to spin the tires accidently. Not to mention, V8 cars generally weigh more, making their handling trickier.

Anything else? You seem to be 0 for 2 so far. Oh, nvm, 0 for 3, you bought a 600 as your first bike.
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#49 Unread post by eaglecatcher » Mon Mar 12, 2007 7:16 pm

DivideOverflow wrote:
Peter Y wrote:
Also, the actual speed has nothing to do with it. There is a guy had been riding 10 years, and logged about 75,000 miles. He had about 2,500 miles on his ZX-14 before pulling an accidental wheelie while trying to pass/merge, looping the bike, and breaking his back. He was a mature, safe rider.
U know Im not going to pretend that I disagree with the majority of what your saying HOWEVER the whole concept of not having enough experience to manage a 600CC is based on the assumption that im either going to "twist the wrist" accidently or use this power inappropriatley(like in the example above). So If I had a bike with exactly the same specification except that it was a 400CC or something would that fix everything? Would I then have made a smart choice? With technology and R&D in todays environment you are much more likley to "flip" or speed with even a smaller bike than you would with a larger bike. Does a four cylinder sports car pose less a threat than a 8 cylinder sports car?? I doubt it. They are both capable of doing high speeds very very quickly. I do feel Passionate about this and I do feel I can manage this bike. Plus the bike I have purchased is hardly a "Crotch Rocket".
It isn't that you will use it inappropriately, but shiat happens. That guy has WAY more experience than you, and he messed up. You aren't flawless. Also, there is a lot more to handling a sportsbike than a standard or cruiser. Power to weight ratio is the biggest issue, but also seating position, weight distribution, slow speed management, rake angle, etc etc etc etc etc. The rake on sportbikes generally makes the steering more precise for corners, which results in being less stable than a cruiser, or more conservative setup. With a Katana, add the top-heavy nature of that bike, and it leads to some shoddy steering characteristics (which is generally why I don't recommend that bike to anyone).

And no, you are not more likely to flip a smaller bike. You are just showing that you know very little about bikes on the market. And yes, a 8 cylinder sports car does pose much more of a threat to a new rider. V8 sports cars are almost always rear-wheel drive, and have massive amounts of torque. It is the torque-steer that will make a FWD difficult to handle, but it will make the RWD car spin in circles. This makes it easier to lose traction and send your car spinning in a circle. I know, I've driven highpowered V8s and highpowered FWD cars. In a FWD car, if you spin the tires, you generally keep going straight... in RWD, it is much easier to lose it. Plus, with the extra torque of an 8, it is 100 times easier to spin the tires accidently. Not to mention, V8 cars generally weigh more, making their handling trickier.

Anything else? You seem to be 0 for 2 so far. Oh, nvm, 0 for 3, you bought a 600 as your first bike.
I agree. V8s are much more dangerous. I've driven many cars, from 130hp I4 FWD cars to 320hp V8 RWD cars, and the diffrence is huge. When cruising around town, you won't notice how different they are, but when you step on the gas going around a corner, you enter two different worlds. the FWD will be more forgiving (understeer) which is why manufctrs make most cars FWD, whereas too much throttle on a RWD, and you're spinning off the road into a ditch. I may not know a lot about motorcycles, but if they're anything like cars (power applications wise), then for beginners, less power is better. Just as 300hp is more likely to put you in the ditch than 130hp in a car, a 600cc bike is much more likely to put you on your "O Ring" than a 250cc, and 250's are capable of that too. My friend had a ninja 250, and he hit a pothole in the road, slipped backwards, accidentally opened up the throttle as he was sliding off the back, and the bike shot out from under him and he went straight to the ground at 30mph. Imagine the much smaller margine of error on a 600. a flick of the wrist can flip you.

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#50 Unread post by Peter Y » Tue Mar 13, 2007 3:29 am

Anything else? You seem to be 0 for 2 so far. Oh, nvm, 0 for 3, you bought a 600 as your first bike.
OK OK firstly I would like to thank you folks for taking the time to comment on my arguments. I must say all the responses where constructive, factual (most of the time) & pointed out some really good points to consider.

I could go on arguing this for decades (I work in Marketing :laughing: ) but im not as I dont think Im going to get too many supporters(not in this forum anyway). There would definitly be different views in a Europe forum).

The point is though. I HAVE THE BIKE. The next best thing that I could ask any one of you is:

WHATS THE BEST WAY TO ASSIMILATE MYSELF TO THIS BIKE NOW THAT I HAVE IT.

Shoudl I just go to an empty paddock and mess around with emergency stops, acceleration etc etc??

Practice can only be achieved on the road so I guess the more I ride this bike the more im going to get comfortable & I guess with all the discussion thats taken place Im fully aware of all potential implications that could occur.

NOW on the lighter side : WHO AM I?

Ive been living in the Netherlands for the last three years and prior to that ive lived in USA,Turkey,Australia. I get to travel frequently because of my career(Marketing, Business Development). Im your average white collar employee who has a passion for his family then his new bike.

SO WHATYA THINK??? HOW DO WE SORT THIS BIKE THING OUT?

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#51 Unread post by DivideOverflow » Tue Mar 13, 2007 2:39 pm

Peter Y wrote:
OK OK firstly I would like to thank you folks for taking the time to comment on my arguments. I must say all the responses where constructive, factual (most of the time) & pointed out some really good points to consider.

I could go on arguing this for decades (I work in Marketing :laughing: ) but im not as I dont think Im going to get too many supporters(not in this forum anyway). There would definitly be different views in a Europe forum).

The point is though. I HAVE THE BIKE. The next best thing that I could ask any one of you is:

WHATS THE BEST WAY TO ASSIMILATE MYSELF TO THIS BIKE NOW THAT I HAVE IT.

Shoudl I just go to an empty paddock and mess around with emergency stops, acceleration etc etc??

Practice can only be achieved on the road so I guess the more I ride this bike the more im going to get comfortable & I guess with all the discussion thats taken place Im fully aware of all potential implications that could occur.

NOW on the lighter side : WHO AM I?

Ive been living in the Netherlands for the last three years and prior to that ive lived in USA,Turkey,Australia. I get to travel frequently because of my career(Marketing, Business Development). Im your average white collar employee who has a passion for his family then his new bike.

SO WHATYA THINK??? HOW DO WE SORT THIS BIKE THING OUT?
You're welcome. :wink:

Take a lot of time with your bike in an empty parkinglot. Set up cones, work on emergency braking, maneuvers, slow speed handling, u-turns etc. If you get a chance to do any kind of intermediate or advanced rider's course, do it. Professional instruction a great way to improve. If there are any track schools where you live, I'd save up. Those are probably one of the most grin-inducing things on the planet.

Now, don't get too complacent. Usually a rider will drop a bike within the first couple months, but then again around the 2 year mark (statistics support this) when they get overconfident. I never dropped a bike while I was learning, but I did around that two year mark (and I even knew better).

Welcome to the site, I hope you enjoy your bike safely.
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#52 Unread post by Custom » Wed Mar 14, 2007 4:14 pm

the point is though. I HAVE THE BIKE. The next best thing that I could ask any one of you is:

WHATS THE BEST WAY TO ASSIMILATE MYSELF TO THIS BIKE NOW THAT I HAVE IT.

Shoudl I just go to an empty paddock and mess around with emergency stops, acceleration etc etc??

Practice can only be achieved on the road so I guess the more I ride this bike the more im going to get comfortable & I guess with all the discussion thats taken place Im fully aware of all potential implications that could occur.


SO WHATYA THINK??? HOW DO WE SORT THIS BIKE THING OUT?
I agree with DivideOverflow, work on all that he wrote and i my opion i think learning too control your bike at slow speeds is a vital learning curve that i think alot of riders forget about.

I had a GSX-R600 as my first bike. i also had dirt bikes and took a course before i got my permit. before i was one of those newbies that said "i'll take it easy and grow into the bike" well now i would recomend a first bike under 600 (at min 1 season) not that i have had any spills or close calls but i found my self twist the throdle and trying too keep up too my friends, luckly i was a quick learner and had been on bike before, but I really could have seen something going south very quickly. its hard too control your self with the power at the snap of a wrist.
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#53 Unread post by storysunfolding » Wed Mar 21, 2007 2:16 pm

I stole this from sportrider. THE FORUM PIRATE STRIKES AGAIN!
sedition wrote:One of the most common questions new sport bike riders have is, “What kind of bike should I get?” This question is asked so often that I created a standardized response. Please keep in mind that these are the views and opinions of one person (albeit countless other also hold them) With that said, on we go…
Getting ANY modern 600cc sport bike for a first ride is a bad idea (far, far, far worse is a 1000cc). In fact, it may be nothing more than an expensive form of suicide. Here are a few reasons why;

1. Knowledge of Subject Matter

When anyone starts something new they find themselves at the most basic point of the “beginner’s mind”. This is to say that they are at the very start of the learning curve. They are not even aware of what it is that they don't know. A personal example of this is when I began Shotokan Karate. The first day of class I had no idea what an “inside-block” was, let alone how to do it with correct form, power, and consistency. After some time, and a lot of practice, I could only then realize how bad my form really was. Then, and only then, was I able to begin the process of improving it. I had to become knowledgeable that inside-blocks even existed before I was aware that I could not do them correctly. I had to learn what the correct elements of inside-block were, before I realized that I did not have those elements. After I learned, I was then able to aspire towards the proper elements. This example is to illustrate the point that it takes knowledge OF something in order to understand how that something works, functions, performs, etc. Now lets return to the world of motorcycles. A beginner has NO motorcycle experience. They are not even aware of the power, mistakes, handling, shifting, turning dynamics etc. of any bike, let alone a high performance sport bike. Not only does the beginner lack the SKILL of how to ride a motorcycle, they also lack the knowledge of WHAT skills they need to learn. Acquiring those skills comes only with experience and learning from mistakes. As one moves through the learning curve they begin to amass new information…they also make mistakes. A ton of them.

2. The Learning Curve

While learning to do something, your first efforts are often sloppy and full of mistakes. Without mistakes the learning process is impossible. A mistake on a sport bike can be fatal. The things new riders need to learn above all else is smooth throttle control, proper speed, and how to lean going into turns. A 600cc bike can reach 60mph in about 3 to 5 seconds. A simple beginners mishap with that much power and torque can cost you your life (or a few limbs) before you even knew what happened. Grab a handful of throttle going into a turn and you may end up crossing that little yellow line on the road into on-coming traffic…**shudder**. Bikes that are more forgiving of mistakes are far safer (not to mention, more fun) to learn on.
Ask yourself this question; in which manner would you rather learn to walk on a circus high-wire (1) with a 4x4 board that is 2 feet off the ground (2) with a wire that is 20 feet off the ground? Most sensible people would choose (1). The reason why is obvious. Unfortunately safety concerns with a first motorcycle aren’t as apparent as they are in the example above. However, the wrong choice of what equipment to learn on can be just as deadly, regardless of how safe, careful, and level-headed you intend to be.

3. “But I Will be Safe, Responsible, and Level-Headed While Learning".

Sorry, but this line of reasoning doesn’t cut it. To be safe you also need SKILL (throttle control, speed, leaning, etc). Skill comes ONLY with experience. To gain experience you must ride in real traffic, with real cars, and real dangers. Before that experience is developed, you are best suited with a bike that won’t severely punish you for minor mistakes. A cutting edge race bike is not one of these bikes.
Imagine someone saying, "I want to learn to juggle, but I’m going to start by learning with chainsaws. But don’t worry. I intend to go slow, be careful, stay level-headed, and respect the power of the chainsaws while I’m learning". Like the high-wire example, the proper route here isn’t hard to see. Be “careful” all you want, go as “slow” as you want, be as “cautious” as you want, be as “respectful” as you want…your still juggling chainsaws! The “level-headed” thing to do in this situation is NOT to start with chainsaws. Without a foundation in place of HOW to juggle there is only a small level of safety you can aspire towards. Plain and simple, it’s just better to learn juggling with tennis balls than it with chainsaws. The same holds true for learning to ride a motorcycle. Start with a solid foundation in the basics, and then move up. Many people say that “maturity” will help you be safe with motorcycles. They are correct. However, maturity has NOTHING to do with learning to ride a motorcycle. Maturity is what you SHOULD use when deciding what kind of bike to buy so that you may learn to ride a motorcycle safely.

4. “I Don’t Want a Bike I’ll Outgrow”

Please. Did your Momma put you in size 9 shoes at age 2? Get with the program. It is far better to maximize the performance of a smaller motorcycle and get “bored" with it than it is to mess-up your really fast bike (not mention messing yourself up) and not being able to ride at all. Power is nothing without control.

5. “I Don’t Want to Waste Money on a Bike I’ll Only Have for a Short Period of Time” (i.e. cost)
Smaller, used bikes have and retain good resale value. This is because other sane people will want them as learner bikes. You’ll prolly be able to sell a used learner bike for as much as you paid for it. If you can't afford to upgrade in a year or two, then you definitely can't afford to wreck the bike your dreaming about. At the very least, most new riders drop bikes going under 20MPH, when the bike is at its most unstable periods. If you drop your brand new bike, fresh off the showroom floor, while your learning (and you will), you've just broken a directional, perhaps a brake or clutch lever, cracked / scrapped the fairings ($300.00 each to replace), messed-up the engine casing, messed-up the bar ends, etc. It's better and cheaper to drop a used bike that you don’t care about than one you just spent $8,500 on. Fortunately, most of these types of accidents do not result in serious physical injury. It’s usually just a big dent in your pride and…

6. EGO.
Worried about looking like chump on a smaller bike? Well, your gonna look like the biggest idiot ever on your brand new, but messed-up bike after you’ve dropped it a few times. You’ll also look really dumb with a badass race bike that you stall 15 times at a red light before you can get into gear. Or even better, how about a nice R6 that you can’t ride more than 15mph around a turn because you don’t know how to counter-steer correctly? Yeah, your gonna be really cool with that bike, huh? Any real rider would give you props for going about learning to ride the *correct* way (i.e. on a learner bike). If you’re stressed about impressing someone with a “cool” bike, or embarrassed about being on smaller bike, then your not “mature enough” to handle the responsibility of ANY motorcycle. Try a bicycle. After you've grow-up (“matured”), revisit the idea of something with an engine.

7. "Don’t Ask for Advice if You Don't Want to Hear a Real Answer".
A common pattern:
1. Newbie asks for advice on a 1st bike (Newbie wants to hear certain answers)
2. Experienced riders advise Newbie against a 600cc bike for a first ride (this is not what Newbie wanted to hear).
3. Newbie says and thinks, "Others mess up while learning, but that wont happen to me" (as if Newbie is invincible, holds superpowers, never makes mistakes, has a “level head”, or has a skill set that exceeds the majority of the world, etc).
4. Experienced riders explain why a “level head” isn’t enough. You also need SKILL, which can ONLY be gained via experience. (Newbie thinks he has innate motorcycle skills)
5. Newbie makes up excuses as to why he is “mature” enough to handle a 600cc bike”. (skill drives motorcycles, not maturity)
6. Newbie, with no knowledge about motorcycles, totally disregards all the advice he asked for in the first place. (which brings us right back to the VERY FIRST point I made about “knowledge of subject matter”).
7. Newbie goes out and buys a R6, CBR, GSX, 6R, etc. Newbie is scared of the power. Being scared of your bike is the LAST thing you want. Newbie gets turned-off to motorcycles, because of fear, and never gets to really experience all the fun that they can really be. Or worse, Newbie gets in a serious accident.
8. The truth of the matter is that Newbie was actually never really looking for serious advice. What he really wanted was validation and / or approval of a choice he was about to make or already had made. When he received real advice instead of validation he became defensive about his ability to handle a modern sport bike as first ride (thus defending the choice he had made). Validation of a poor decision isn’t going to replace scratched bodywork on your bike. It isn’t going put broken bones back together. It isn’t going graft shredded skin back onto your body. It isn’t going to teach you to ride a motorcycle the correct way. However, solid advice from experienced riders, when heeded, can help to avoid some of these issues.
I’m not trying to be harsh. I’m being real. Look all over the net. You’ll see veteran after veteran telling new riders NOT to get a 600cc bike for a first ride. You’ll even see pros saying to start small. Why? Because we hate new riders? Because we don't want others to have cool bikes? Because we want to smash your dreams? Nothing could be further from the truth. The more riders the better (assuming there not squids)! The reason people like me and countless others spend so much time trying to dissuade new riders from 600cc bikes is because we actually care about you. We don't want to see people get hurt. We don't want to see more people die in senseless accidents that could have been totally avoided with a little logic and patients. We want the “sport” to grow in a safe, healthy, and sane way. We want you to be around to ride that R6, CBR600RR, GSX-1000, Habayasu, etc that you desire so badly. However, we just want you to be able to ride it in a safe manner that isn’t going to be a threat to yourself or others. A side note, you may see people on the net and elsewhere saying “600cc bike are OK to start with”. Look a bit deeper when you see this. The vast majority of people making these statements are new riders* themselves. If you follow their advice you’ve entered into a situation of the blind leading the blind. This is not something you want to do with motorcycles. You may also hear bike dealers saying that a 600cc is a good starter bike. They are trying to make money off you. Don’t listen. *(I consider anyone with under 30,000 miles a noobie).

8. HELP IS ON THE WAY!!!
Speaking of help, this is a great time to plug the MSF (Motorcycle Safety Foundation) course. The MSF course is an AMAZING learning opportunity for new riders. The courses are offered all over the USA. A link for their web site is listed at the bottom of this post (or do a Goggle search and check you local RMV web page.). The MSF course assumes no prior knowledge of motorcycles and teaches the basics of how to ride a bike with out killing yourself (and NO, just because you passed the MSF course it does NOT mean your ready for an R6, GSX, CBR, etc). They provide motorcycles and helmets for the course. It is by far THE BEST way to start a life-long relationship with motorcycles. In some areas if you pass the course your motorcycle license will then be directly mailed to you. This means that you DON’T HAVE TO GO TO THE DMV, AT ALL!!!). That alone should be enough reason to take the course. Also, in some states you will get a discount on your insurance after you’ve taken the course. But wait, there is more! Some manufactures (Honda, Yamaha, etc) offer rebates if you take the course and then buy one of their bikes. Check their web sites / local dealers for details. I can’t plug the MSF course enough. It the best deal going for new riders. Period.
By the way, the short answer to the question, “What should I get for a first bike?” is as follows; (1) First choice, a used bike that is 500cc or under. A new 500cc bike is good, but it would suck if you dropped it. Plus, it will depreciate in value the second you drive off the dealers parking lot…not good when you want to resell it for that brand new R6, GSX600, CBR600, etc. (2) Any used OLDER 600cc sport bike (like 1980’s, early 1990’s). Go here http://www.clarity.net/adam/buying-bike.html for the most compressive guide on “how to buy a used bike” that has ever been written. (3) Any other used “standard” style of motorcycle.
Good “sport” type bikes for a first ride are as follows:
Honda: early 1990's Honda F2, F3, F4, 599
Kawasaki: Ninja 250cc, Ninja 500cc, early 1990’s ZX-6E or ZZR600.
Suzuki: GS500E, early 1990’s Katana 600cc, SV650*, SV650s*
Yamaha: early 1990’s Yamaha YZF600R*
*Suzuki’s SV650 and Yamaha’s YZF-600R can be quite a handful for a new rider, but they can also make great bikes.

Also, a GREAT book to check out is “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Motorcycles, 3rd edition”. The book coves everything from picking out a first bike, simple repair, anatomy of an engine, how to buy a used bike, riding gear, tips for surviving on the road, racing, etc. You can check this book out almost any major bookstore, http://www.amazon.com, or http://www.idiotsguides.com MY ADAVICE FOR ANYONE LOOKING TO GET INTO MOTORCYCLES WOULD BE TO BUY THIS BOOK AND READ IT COVER TO COVER ABOUT 2 OR 3 TIMES. AFTER YOU HAVE DONE THAT, THEN TAKE THE MSF COURSE. You’ll go into the course with some great information that will greatly enrich and hasten your learning experience. It will also give you a HUGE advantage on the written test at the conclusion of the MSF course. Trust me on this one, buy the book. At the very least, go hang out at Barnes & Nobel for an afternoon and read as much of the book as you can until they kick you out of the store.
I hope this information was helpful, and feel free to email me with any questions. I haven’t even mentioned riding gear. Get it. Wear it. People who wear a tank top, flip-flops, and shorts while riding don’t look so cool when it comes time for a skin-graft (or when a bee goes up their shorts). There are two types of motorcycle riders: those who have crashed, and those who will. Dress for the crash, not the ride.
A number of people have emailed me recently and asked the following question, (1) “I have ridden a friends street bike a few times, and grew up riding off-road bikes. With this history, would I be OK on a modern 600cc bike?” (2) I’m a bigger person, should I get a larger cc bike to compensate? The answer to both is “No”. Off-road and street riding are totally different worlds. Granted, someone with off-road history knows things like shift patterns, how to use a clutch, etc but the power, weight, and handling of street bikes are a different ball game altogether. As for larger people, additional height or weight does not mean that a bike is going to go “slower” to a degree that would in anyway justify a larger bike. Someone who weighs 250lbs can get themselves in trouble just as fast on a R6 as someone who weighs 150lbs. If you are taller, you’re going to be cramped on almost any sport bike. The best advice is to sit on a number of bikes and see which fits your body the best. Note, this does not mean that you should get a new GSX-750cc as first bike because it fits you better than a 1991 Honda F2 (a much better choice for a first-time rider). Once you got the basics down, then you can go for that better-fitting GSX-750cc, but not beforehand.

-chr|s sedition
Boston, MA
chris.sedition@gmail.com
http://www.msf-usa.org (web site for the Motorcycle Safety Foundation)

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“Z_Fanatic” / sbw.sportbikes
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Jerry Gowins
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#54 Unread post by Jerry Gowins » Sat Mar 24, 2007 1:02 am

I haven't ridden in 30 years, and am thinking of getting back into it now that the kids are all grown and gone. Just starting my research (I have a lot to learn) and probably will not buy a bike for at least a year and after taking the motorcycle safety course.

I really appreciate the articles posted here, and the arguments against newbies on 600cc sport bikes make perfect sense to me. However, I understand that cruisers are a different beast and I want a cruiser (looking at the Kawi Vulcan 900). I am wondering how, or if, the guidelines for engine size for a newbie cruiser rider are different.

Any input from you experienced riders is appreciated!

Thanks!!

Jerry

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Johnj
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#55 Unread post by Johnj » Sat Mar 24, 2007 2:13 am

My advice is to take the MSF then buy a used 250cc to 500cc bike. Ride it for a year then move up.
People say I'm stupid and apathetic. I don't know what that means, and I don't care.
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Always wear a helmet, eye protection, and protective clothing. Never ride under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

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Dragonhawk
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#56 Unread post by Dragonhawk » Sat Mar 24, 2007 2:30 am

Jerry Gowins wrote:I haven't ridden in 30 years, and am thinking of getting back into it now that the kids are all grown and gone. Just starting my research (I have a lot to learn) and probably will not buy a bike for at least a year and after taking the motorcycle safety course.

I really appreciate the articles posted here, and the arguments against newbies on 600cc sport bikes make perfect sense to me. However, I understand that cruisers are a different beast and I want a cruiser (looking at the Kawi Vulcan 900). I am wondering how, or if, the guidelines for engine size for a newbie cruiser rider are different.

Any input from you experienced riders is appreciated!
Engine size is irrelevant. What matters is power output. Larger engines are not always more powerful.

For example, a Moto Guzzi Breva is a 750cc bike, but it puts out less torque and horsepower than a 500cc Kawasaki Ninja.

As a beginner, you want something that has a smooth power-delivery with peak-torque that is up pretty high in the RPM band. That way, if you make a mistake and grab too much throttle from a stop, you won't loop the bike into a wheelie.

This site has a great beginners guide. I wrote one too. Check it out here:
www.CaliforniaBikeNights.com/learn
[b]Are you a beginner rider?
Have a lot of questions about motorcycling?
Not sure what bike to start with?
[url=http://www.wyndfeather.com/learn/motorcycle.htm]Learn To Ride A Motorcycle - A Step-By-Step Guide[/url][/b]

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Looking to buy a bike.

#57 Unread post by jackc34 » Sat Mar 31, 2007 1:56 am

Hi,I'm just buying my first motorcycle,I wanted a Sport bike,I saw 2006 Honda Intercepter on the Honda site,But after reading the post about 600cc bikes and beginers I thought I should ask you guys what would be a good bike,

My other choice even though it's not as cool looking was the Ninja 250.

Can you guys give me any seggustions? :?

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Re: Looking to buy a bike.

#58 Unread post by Scoutmedic » Sat Mar 31, 2007 9:21 am

jackc34 wrote:Hi,I'm just buying my first motorcycle,I wanted a Sport bike,I saw 2006 Honda Intercepter on the Honda site,But after reading the post about 600cc bikes and beginers I thought I should ask you guys what would be a good bike,

My other choice even though it's not as cool looking was the Ninja 250.

Can you guys give me any seggustions? :?
Have you checked out the Beginner's Guide? There are also stickies and the Learn To Ride A Motorcycle page which is now downloadable in PDF format (Created and maintained by Dragonhawk).

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atom
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#59 Unread post by atom » Sat Mar 31, 2007 9:02 pm

WHATS THE BEST WAY TO ASSIMILATE MYSELF TO THIS BIKE NOW THAT I HAVE IT.
the best ways to assimilate yourself to the bike are to:

1. find a big "O Ring" blender and toss the bike in and then jump in while its on "puree"

2. cut off a little bit of your skin at a time and glue it to the bike until the bike is covered and then remove your bones and replace structural components of the frame with your bones, easier on trellis-type frames

3. use your own blood instead of gasoline and swimmers/saliva instead of oil

4. if your bike is liquid cooled, connect an artery to the outlet of the radiator and a vein to the tube going back to the engine

there are other ways, be creative!
When the devil came, he was not red,
he was chrome and he said "come with me"
-Wilco

2006 Aprilia Scarabeo 50 4T
2005 Moto Guzzi Nevada 750 ie

Peter Y
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#60 Unread post by Peter Y » Mon Apr 02, 2007 6:38 am

1. find a big "O Ring" blender and toss the bike in and then jump in while its on "puree"

2. cut off a little bit of your skin at a time and glue it to the bike until the bike is covered and then remove your bones and replace structural components of the frame with your bones, easier on trellis-type frames

3. use your own blood instead of gasoline and swimmers/saliva instead of oil

4. if your bike is liquid cooled, connect an artery to the outlet of the radiator and a vein to the tube going back to the engine
Just an FYI for you Im actually doing great with the bike. Cautious, pro-active & steady. No need to be a smart "O Ring" (unless your just behaving naturally). Ive spoken to at least 30 different experienced riders in the Netherlands and not ONE has agreed that a 600CC is too big of a bike. Im still a strong believer that the Pre-exam lessons and the rigid requirments expected of you in the exam in Europe is way more advanced than the requirments in North America right now. You talk about a MVSF course but we have a course that is numerous times more intense and detailed and that is absolutley compulsory for every driver in the Netherlands. Not optional like it is for your folks. I just came across a 23 year old guy yesterday with a Brand New GSX-R as his first bike. It was never a discussion of too big too powerful. The average time it takes for a license in Holland is four months due to the intensive lessons/training curriculum. You cant say there is anything even similar in your part of the world.

So now that I have pissed off your folks on that side of the world Im hoping you all acticulate how wrong and inexperienced my commentary is. :( Be sure to be constructive though huh. Derogatory, destructive behaviour get you no where :laughing: :evil: :twisted:

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