Prospective New rider

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by ramitupurs84, Jun 13, 2017.

  1. ramitupurs84

    ramitupurs84 Adventurer

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    Well I went and sat on multiple bikes here's my reports and pictures:

    Kawasaki Verseys:

    Ergonomically it didn't feel good. It really had my knees at a cant. It seemed much lighter than the Vstorm. I didn't really care for this one and neither did the wife.

    Suszki Vstrom:

    A little more ergonomically pleasing to me. Stiffest suspension out of the 3 I sat on. Also the heaviest too.

    Kawasaki KLR 650:

    They had the cherry red variant. Most visually appealing and it seemed to fit me ergonomically. The bike did squat a little when I got on it. I liked it the most and so did my wife.

    Suszki DR650:

    It was next to the KLR but I didn't pay it much attention.

    On all of the bikes I sat on I was flat footed. The KLR seemed to be a good combination of weight,seat height and ergonomics for me. Hopefully the pictures load.

    Helmets:

    I tried on a 2Xl GMax 11d. It was tight on my cheeks but, my chin was touching the front. I tried on a 3XL of another brand but GMAX doesn't make the 11D in a 3XL. I really like the slide down visor. I know HJC makes something similar

    I do have to bring my own helmeted the class. No question there.

    I also picked up a Thor 3XL long sleeve shirt (hopefully this has me covered for the long sleeve shirt requirement especially in July). I also bought some fly racing riding gloves in size 13.

    Attached Files:

    #41
  2. Mofo Flake

    Mofo Flake Incompetent off-road

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    You're supposed to smile for pictures unless you're on a cruiser!
    #42
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  3. ramitupurs84

    ramitupurs84 Adventurer

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    Hahaha. The sales woman was close. I was trying not show my hand then my wife started laughing at me haha
    #43
  4. OliverWinn

    OliverWinn Adventurer

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    You make those bikes look like toys. I would say the KLR looks like it would fit best.

    Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk
    #44
  5. bodine003

    bodine003 Been here awhile

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    Beware of the RK 900 lbs. if it is fuel injected throttle response is instant as is low end torque. The big DR or KLR used will build confidence and get you in a wonder full way to have fun!!! I have been using a F/F Modular helmet for years. Good Luck
    #45
  6. ramitupurs84

    ramitupurs84 Adventurer

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    RK?
    #46
  7. JETalmage

    JETalmage Been here awhile

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    If you get a KLR, don't get the cammo painted one. (One of the dumbest ideas ever for a motorcycle.) Think hi-viz and even then consider yourself invisible.

    Gear up and always wear it. If your dealer doesn't have a full range, go to CycleGear. If I ever see you riding with bare arms, legs, hands, sneakers, I will pull you over and give you the severest tongue-lashing you've ever had--no matter how big you are. ;-)

    DO NOT think yourself "ready" just because you took a weekend class. NEVER think yourself expert.

    If you're not just busting an irresistible gut to immediately go (gag me) "adventuring," the best advice offered so far is to get a decent dirt bike and learn to ride off-road first. That's the best way to avoid panic in the inevitable on-pavement panic situations.

    Do not carry a passenger. You're not ready for it. Besides, motorcycling is an inherently solitary endeavor.

    Handling a motorcycle is largely about handling a motorcycle. Unless you're a big wimp (doesn't sound like it) your size will be advantageous in that regard, in that you should have reach (leverage) and strength to trail ride even a piggish 650 class dual-purpose single.

    JET
    #47
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  8. notrivia

    notrivia Been here awhile

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    So ... you want to be a motorcyclist? Everything you have been told here is fine. But consider also that it has consequences, and I am not talking about safety. It is compelling, even seductive... and sooner or later you will find that it involves 'choices' - and those 'choices' will affect your life because motorcycling is also about character, lifestyle, and reputation. To understand those issues, I suggest you consider my thread "A Common Experience" and also read the thread "Big City Commuting" with the inclusion of my personal view on page 4, both here in the topic "The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths". I wish I could recommend more, but I do not know how to find them here in ADVRIDER, although I can assure you that you have found the best possible source for a tyro with quite often exceptional mentors. Good Luck! or as they used to say in the military to people that had just arrived in a combat zone "You'll be sorreeee ..." implying that the glamour carries with it consequences you are not aware of ...
    #48
  9. aldend123

    aldend123 Long timer

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    If you don't already know this, some bikes have preload adjustments available. Preload compresses the spring, making it stiffer.

    The rear spring is either done by turning a knob behind your knee, or more commonly by manually tightening the upper spring seat. The front is by turning a big hex at the top of the fork tube. If the hex adjuster is not provided, then you take the spring cap off and insert spacers between the spring and the cap. Getting stiffer springs is still probably in your future, but cranking down on the preload will still help.


    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Tool pictured makes life easier, but big screw driver and hammer is also common.
    #49
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  10. PT Rider

    PT Rider Been here awhile

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    The preload adjuster just moves the spring mounting point to raise or lower the bike on its suspension. The goal is to minimize the chance of either bottoming out or topping out when a bump is hit. It does not change how soft or stiff the suspension is.

    Trying the feel of a bike's suspension in the showroom tells almost nothing. One may feel stiffer than the other because it has parts that need a few miles to get broken in and freed up. At your weight you'll likely very soon want springs that better suit your loaded riding weight. Think of trying to carry an F250 load with F150 springs.... We often say that motorcycle springs are the correct rate for a 180# rider. I don't know if that's true, but it seems to be very close to being the case.
    #50
  11. ramitupurs84

    ramitupurs84 Adventurer

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    I read the whole post on the Big City commuting. I'm a volunteer fire fighter, never made it to a motorcycle accident. We've had 2-3 fatals in my 6 years with department - we are on a major interstate. I make no qualms about where I am starting at or the nieveness about biting too much off before I can chew it from a skill set. Hence why I've decided not to purchase a cycle or really antagonize myself with looking at CL. I've been doing as much reading as I can vs. looking for a bike if that makes sense.
    #51
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  12. notrivia

    notrivia Been here awhile

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    Thank-you for appreciating my suggestion Ramitpurs84. You are certainly approaching this cautiously and logically. I would suggest, although I don't know anything about your personal life, that you double-check your medical insurance (while being aware that cycle insurance always offers options too) and that in particular, if you are married, that your wife understands that you need some 'adventure' in your life. Many wives will belatedly agree to a motorcycle to 'please her man' only to bitterly regret it later when he is 'gone', worry about accidents - or women he might meet - and then complain in such manner that the bike becomes an inhibition to a happy marriage. Always consider that your motorcycle psychologically represents independence to a wife - the last thing any wife wants her husband to have. So just understand and be prepared for the tensions that could result. Factors that might help would be scheduling rides rather than impulsively going, all the safety gear (I highly advocate Hi-Viz helmets and jackets/vests), and the firm declaration to her that alcohol and riding is verboten. Get her to accept it like a golf outing on a regular basis, and then, if you are 'good', you can plan the trip to Alaska ... someday. The thing is, women hate surprises from the man they love. They're security is tied up in yours. And they don't want to see you hurt. So you have to approach this in a fashion that lets her believe she is the arbiter. Otherwise, she will feel that you are joining the Hell's Angels and turning wild on her. Hope this helps. Oh! and don't park the bike in front of the washing machine. Don't let a Feminist read this either ...
    #52
  13. Jim Moore

    Jim Moore Long timer

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    No, it doesn't make any sense at all. You live in Michigan. By September 15th the harsh winds of winter will shut down motorcycling until next June. You need to buy a motorcycle ASAP. In fact, I would do two things. First, put notrivia on Ignore. Second, go buy a bike.
    #53
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  14. Snowbird

    Snowbird Cereal Killer

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    I vote for the KLR, just a many others have. I could never figure out their popularity until it was the only bike that fit a list of requirements that had cropped up when I was searching for another bike to add. In short, the KLR-- although far from lightweight-- it is the lightest bike that is large enough to carry two full size adults. My passenger and I together weigh more than your 300 pounds and you'll be hard pressed to find a roomier motorcycle. The exception might be if you want to get some sort of cruiser with stretched out ergos, none of which would serve your stated riding goals. As far as KLR power, I rode up a paved mountain road two-up with a group of three other bikes I'd expect to be more capable speed-wise, all single riders, and had no trouble keeping right in the hunt simply by using the KLR's mid-range grunt. In the end, the KLR is a serious choice for riders of any experience level and I find myself recommending it often. You should be able to find one in the sweet part of availability for about $3k with about 20k miles.
    #54
  15. aldend123

    aldend123 Long timer

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    Understood, but it should still help in the short term. It's better than nothing.
    Careful, there's such a thing as reading too much. There's no shortage of over-analyzing stuff around here. I know this because I do it myself from time to time. :D At some point, you gotta get some seat time. This will increase the value of things you learn, and also change your perspective a little on which things you think are worth caring about.
    #55
  16. ddavidv

    ddavidv So money, but doesn't know it.

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    Your ability to flat-foot a KLR proves that you are some sort of neanderthal. :lol3
    Don't be put off by the 'sag' in the suspension when you sat on it. The KLR, being more off-road oriented, is designed to have more travel in the suspension. That said, the stock suspension kind of sucks (built to a price). An aftermarket rear shock and some new front springs (Progressive is a good choice) will be a vast improvement should you decide the stock stuff isn't good enough.
    With your size, lack of experience, budget and finding the KLR a good ergonomic fit I think you found your bike.
    #56
  17. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Long timer

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    I'll kinda mirror the above. If the KLR felt good to you, start there. You'll likely change bikes a few times as you learn what you enjoy, and don't enjoy. With a KLR, particularly a used one, you can pretty well get your money back, and you're not out a fortune should you destroy it. They are very tough capable bikes.

    I'll also mirror the comments about you being a new rider, so don't go riding with you wife yet. You need to master riding first, and that takes time and practice. The time will come to go riding together, but it's really not here yet.
    #57
  18. ramitupurs84

    ramitupurs84 Adventurer

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    Awesome. I'm 100% sure I'm going with the KLR. There are quite s few on CL and on FB. I saw this one (blacked out the fellas name. Feel weird sharing it. Not because I'm in love with it - you want it message me and I'll give it to you). A couple of had the doohickey mod but this one is crazy low miles. I've been reading up on what I need to look for but is this something I'd pursue when I am ready.

    Unfornunately - I can't post the screen snip: 2007 KLR 650, 1000 miles.
    Ad:
    Great deal on a KLR 650. Must get rid of and looking for a good home. Only 1000 miles and well maintained. It has been garage kept and like new.
    #58
  19. ddavidv

    ddavidv So money, but doesn't know it.

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    Oh yeah, the doohickey...
    Not terribly hard to do. If you buy one and want help doing it just post up in the KLR forum and chances are someone will offer to assist. I was able to borrow or rent the tools the couple times we did them here.
    Eagle Mike sells the upgraded tensioner and the 'new design' spring.
    Don't believe any dealer that says it is an 'internet myth' like mine did. I think we did mine and a total of three other bikes and half of them had broken springs.
    #59
  20. shoeb

    shoeb Been here awhile

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    Great to hear you taking a smart approach to riding. Don't let anyone scare you, it's really not the kamikaze mission people make it out to be. Just take your time when you're learning, have a ton of fun, and post up some adventures!

    If you're a mature man with a half-decent head on your shoulders, your instincts should be a good guide through the learning curve; if something feels wrong, or risky, or unsettling, there's probably a reason. Trust your gut. Hope you enjoy the ride!
    #60