Most Important Things to Know For a Motorcycling n00b.

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by MotoMusicMark, Mar 26, 2010.

  1. Ahboon

    Ahboon Re-Cycled

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2012
    Oddometer:
    18
    Location:
    Thailand, Malaysia or New Zealand
    Very true. Indeed, motorcycling is NOT (primarily) a mode of transport! It is a"sport" and to be good at any sport you have to know the rules and practice, practice, practice.......

    Cheers and enjoy the ride.
  2. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    19,747
    Location:
    Begin Op Zoom
    Edited

    If you are not competing then riding is not a sport. :D
  3. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    19,747
    Location:
    Begin Op Zoom
    :huh Bad advice.

    USE THEM MIRRORS and know what is going on back there!

    (Just don't be stupid about it)
  4. Craneguy

    Craneguy British Hooligan

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,030
    Location:
    Riyadh, KSA, Cuernavaca, Mx, Houston, Tx
    I always wondered about this comment. If golf is a sport, what is it if you're playing alone? (apart from a good walk spoiled?) :)
  5. shu

    shu ...

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,093
    Location:
    Colorado
    I agree, that's really bad advice.

    Use your mirrors often,but quickly, as tommy goes on to say. You should always know who's behind you- left, right, and center- and whether they're gaining on you.

    The problem of nearly clipping someone in front of you when you glance in your mirror comes from following too closely.

    ..........shu
  6. DavidBanner

    DavidBanner Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2012
    Oddometer:
    1,163
    Location:
    Planet earf.
    goin fast is easy. stopping is the hardest thing to do on a motorcycle...think about that EVERY time you wind on the throttle.
  7. DavidBanner

    DavidBanner Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2012
    Oddometer:
    1,163
    Location:
    Planet earf.
    mirrors only say "NO"...they can never say "YES"
  8. Mambo Dave

    Mambo Dave Backyard Adventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2011
    Oddometer:
    6,045
    Location:
    11 ft. AMSL
    It makes sense. A check of a mirror can confirm there is something in a lane that you may want to change to, so that you can rely on (to decide to NOT change lanes), but checking your mirrors and seeing nothing there is by no means a good enough check to change lanes in and of itself.

    Twisting one's neck, head and even upper torso (if need be) to put eyes on each lane change is very nearly a motorcycle requirement. So much so that you will see guys who were raised with motorcycles doing it while driving cages for that extra safety factor. It drives non-motorcyclists nuts that the driver is looking around behind them while driving at speed, but it's a good enough habit that it's not worth getting rid of it even if a driver is talented with his mirrors.

    This is also why a neutral-riding motorcycle is probably the best type for street use and commuting. Some cruisers and even more sport bikes put the head and neck in positions that, while totally do-able, make it a pain and/or takes more time (like, milliseconds, sure, but more time) to do the swing-around look. I've owned all three - the cruiser that had my upper-torso leaned back (the worst for a mobile head for lane checks), a ZX-7R that had my upper-torso leaned forward (doing head-checks required semi-contortionism, or looking up under my arm, or letting go of a clip-on to spin the torso and that arm around - I loved the bike and had no trouble doing any of them, but I'm admitting that it wasn't as easy or quick as a J.U.M.), and an old Japanese Universal Motorcycle (and now this DR650) that make head-spinning the easiest.
  9. tommyvdv

    tommyvdv Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2011
    Oddometer:
    420
    Location:
    Belgium
    I agree, not checking your mirrors is awful advice. (i was trying to make a point, but i may have messed up the way i went about it)
    I've learned a bit about myself since i started riding/driving.

    I'm absolutely obsessed with what's behind me. And every time i get myself into a pickle it's due to knowing all too well what's behind me, at the cost of not knowing what's in front of me. And following too close is something i avoid at all costs. One second of staring in the mirrors means you've ignored the road in front for about 30 meters (depending on your speed at the time). Sometimes you should've used that distance to stop, instead of stare at what's behind you.

    In road in front is more important than the road you've covered.
    That doesn't mean you don't need to check your back.

    Check your back if you can afford to take your eyes off the road.
    And if you do take your eyes off the road; keep it brief.

    Hope that'll clear it up :)
  10. catweasel67

    catweasel67 Honda XRV 750 RD04

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2009
    Oddometer:
    9,821
    Location:
    Vienna, Austria
    I'm with the no mirrors boys on this one. To me they're a supplement. If you can't turn your head and take a look then you need more practice. They're like indicators/blinkers - you should know how to indicate a manoeuvre without them, same as you should have a level of awareness of what's around you without mirrors. Once you can do that, then I'd suggest you're good to go with mirrors.

    If you can't do a decent lifesaver (the look over the shoulder before switching lanes or overtaking) then you need more off road (parking lot etc) practice.

    Same rule applies to driving a car btw.

    Worth remembering that mirrors are pretty easy to break - if you can't ride safely without them.....

  11. potski

    potski Wiley Wanderer

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2007
    Oddometer:
    572
    Location:
    In the mountains
    You WILL come off a bike if you ride enough.. For you, wear the right kit and for the bike fit crash bars. BE PREPARED !

    Even if you are not generally mechanical, try and get into the habit of working on the bike yourself rather than relying on others; it's cheaper, you are self reliant, and it will give you pride.

    Cheers
    Potski :freaky
  12. Ahboon

    Ahboon Re-Cycled

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2012
    Oddometer:
    18
    Location:
    Thailand, Malaysia or New Zealand
    This thread is for "noobs" so I realy don't want to get into a semantic discussion however: -
    1) Depending upon one's interpretation, "sport" does not have to be a competition (Scuba diving? Mountaineering?).
    2) I compete with the traffic most days.
    3) I don't measure my manhood by the size of the bike that throbs between my legs.
    4) I have been around long enough not to feel the need to prove myself over and over again - my ego just isn't that dominant.
    5) Enjoy your "sport" - whatever it may be, but get a life.
    Have a nice day..
    Cheers...
  13. Ahboon

    Ahboon Re-Cycled

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2012
    Oddometer:
    18
    Location:
    Thailand, Malaysia or New Zealand
    Use your mirrors. Glance in them every few minutes - more frequently in traffic. What is behind you can be more dangerous than what is up front.
    Before overtaking or changing lane, always double-check (as suggesed above) by actually taking a quick look back to cover the blind spot that the mirror does not.
    Maintain a minimum of 2 seconds between you and the vehicle in front of you - more when the road surface or visibility is less than ideal.
    Enjoy the ride.
  14. braindigitalis

    braindigitalis Wet weather sucks!

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    78
    Location:
    Mansfield, UK
    "only a fool breaks the two-second rule". Leave a two second gap in good conditions, 4 seconds in rain and anything up to 10 seconds in snow or ice...
  15. catweasel67

    catweasel67 Honda XRV 750 RD04

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2009
    Oddometer:
    9,821
    Location:
    Vienna, Austria

    In snow and ice I prefer to leave a day or two :)
  16. LuciferMutt

    LuciferMutt Rides slow bike slow

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2008
    Oddometer:
    11,603
    Location:
    New(er) Mexico
    Ditto. Hell I won't even drive a cage, even a 4WD one, in snow/ice if I can avoid it.
  17. braindigitalis

    braindigitalis Wet weather sucks!

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    78
    Location:
    Mansfield, UK
    Its amazing how many people here just seem to be able to decide not to go to work just because its snowing... I'm expected in even if it were ten feet deep in water snow and ice! Slave drivers...
  18. Craneguy

    Craneguy British Hooligan

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,030
    Location:
    Riyadh, KSA, Cuernavaca, Mx, Houston, Tx
    When I worked in NYC I had a Land Rover discovery as a company vehicle. It was my job to go fetch the accounting department if their normal cars were snowed in.

    They loved seeing me show up when they thought they were going to have a snow day...not! :D
  19. ianmp

    ianmp *****

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2009
    Oddometer:
    107
    Location:
    California
    I disagree. The most dangerous way to ride is casually. The most important thing for beginners to learn and veterans to remember is that you have to be fully engaged, enjoying the sport every time you swing a leg over the thing.

    If it's on a bike, it's not a commute... it's a ride, even if it leads to work or school and back. As soon as you get on the bike in a flustered mood, or in a hurry, or with a bunch of pressing concerns, you are fucking up.

    source: >100,000 miles, >$10,000 in tickets >$260,000 in medical bills

    -Ian
  20. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    19,747
    Location:
    Begin Op Zoom
    I agree.

    If you are racing then it is a sport. I commute every day. :D

    You don't sound like someone that should be giving advice to n00bs. :lol3