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Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by Shoganai, May 23, 2005.
HA! JUST the right attitude, guy! Welcome! Looking forward to more from you.
If they are Kawasaki Super Sherpas, in good shape, they are bargains. Consider them. There are many ADVriders who are looking for these. PM Linzi if you want more info and a woman's perspective on it.
Again, if you don't feel comfortable on it, don't get it. But the Kaw Super Sherpa is an ideal beginner dualsport bike.
I was 40 (now 54) and never had an interest in riding.
1st bike was a '90 R100RT that I bought in Los amgeles sight unseen from the MOA News and rode cross-country to the MOA rally that year in Du Quoin,Il.
Well at least that was the plan! I made it across the Mojave and the trouble started.Voltmeter was dropping quickly and i headed south toward Phoenix. It quit completely at 9 a.m. and an hour later someone finally stopped to help.We unloaded his loaded pickup bed,rolled the bike up a hill, and backed hil truck up the hill and guided the bike onto the bed.Ho took me all the way to Phoenix(nearest dealer) from northern Arizona and I gave him $100.I rode all the way in the back with bike.2 days in Phoenix and I was on the road again with a new battery and voltage regulator.On the way to Oklahoma City same problem.Got ther ejust b4 closing on Saturday and waited the 3 days until open again on TuesdayNew battery and something else.Off again and lite and voltmeter going again.Called BMWNA for the 100th time and they said to take the bike to Dallas and Perry would find the problem. believe it was BMW of Dallas. They kindly took me to the airport and i flew home to Orlando,repacked and fley to St Louis and drove to the Rally.Perry had to ride the bike to simulate the problem with meters and guages attached to locate the problem.The wiring harness running beneath the tank and over the frame was being pinched..so that was replaced along with the requesite battery and whatnot and he actually trailered my bike here with BMW paying the tab.
Kept that bike intil I married-big mistake.Both the marriage and selling the bike!
Have had 6 Harleys.1 Ducati 750 Paso,1 Kawa Concours,and 5 BMWs,including the '05 GS that will be delivered next week.
1 accident 2 blks from home at a 4 wat stop-idiot on right pulled out in front and I hammered her door broadside in 1st gear.I lost.That was after I had ridden to Milwaukee and back for the Harley 98th anniv.
The GS is the perfect ride for my retirement in Mexico next year.I have never owned a crotchrocket and it's probably a good thing I waited until 40 to start!
my first bike was a rupp 4 1/2 hp minibike as a pre-teen. i had a lambretta serveta scooter in college 150cc i believe. i'm 51 now and bought a suzuki 1K vstrom 2 months ago. took the msf riders course and readily admit i'm a novice. put 3000 miles so far, and am planning to ride 1500 miles on it over thanksgiving weekend to see family back in TN. my wife is beginning to talk to me again after the purchase. i've always wanted a bike, and 3$ gas helped rationalize it for me. loving it so far. commute most days to work, 45 mpg is twice any other vehicle i own! jet
Not sure why you started with 2.... But
2. I bought a 2002 VRod via Ebay after I saw the bike at a Harley dealership.
3. I am glad I waited! Having the time to develop patience has made it so that I can enjoy riding and not dying (really dying) to be the fastest. Understanding mortality seriously helps.
4. I put 15K on the VRod in a year and at about 10 months in I bought an ST1300. I finally had enough bar runs so I sold the VRod and bought a Ulysses. So that's the two in the garage, a ST and a Uly.
>> 2. What was your first bike? <<
In 1999 at age 42 I bought a used (mint) GS500E. I hated it. Did less than 1000 miles on the bike. Too hard on my back.
>> 3. How do you feel about starting so late? <<
Fine by me. As a kid there was no way my folks would allow me to ride. I had no money while working my way through college. After graduating I got a job and put all available funds into getting a car (used) and a house. Plus in Chicago if you've only got 1 vehicle it needs to play nicely in snow and ice. Then kids came along so many years got in the way. But I always wanted a bike. When the kids got older the opportunity was right. I may enjoy it more because I had to wait so long...
>> 4. What bikes have you progressed to / thru? <<
First a '94 GS500E, then a '91 Harley Sportster (to which I gave a little caf'e racer treatment), then a '96 Buell S2 Thunderbolt, then an '04 DRZ400S (I needed to get away from the pavement) and now I have the DRZ for dirt and a new '06 XB12X Ulysses for everything else. I think my riding has regressed <g>. Most people start on dirt then go to the street, I started on ashpalt and have been going the other direction. I plan to take the Ulysses to Alaska and back eventually. The DRZ will go anywhere. Together they make a great combination - from sport adventure bagger to dirt bike. There are few places I can't ride with one or the other.
Now I'm shopping for a tent and a sleeping bag suitable for motorcycle travel, whether it's with the DRZ or the Uly.
Jim in Santa Barbara
1. After age 30? Yes
2. What was your first bike? 1983 Honda CB1000C
3. How do you feel about starting so late? Upset because it is so cool but glad I didn't because I think I have more respect for the fact that you can seriously hurt yourself (or worse).
4. What bikes have you progressed to / thru? CB1000C ("outgrew"), 2001 Kawa Concours (hit by a van this year) and now a 2001 Tiger.
A lot of that sounds familiar, G-man, even the bar exam part. My good wife has put up with a lot dealing with my adventuresome spirit, and she knew this was coming, but it hasn't made it any easier on her. Truthfully, 15 years ago she put up a fight and won. And, Truthfully, 15 years ago I may have killed myself (she's always right!) But I think she realizes now that I am much more cautious and I'm going to put the time, money and effort into being as safe as possible.
15 years ago I wanted a bike for speed and attitude. Now its about the ride, good fun, fellowship and adventure. I believe in expanding your horizons riding is just one more way to do it...
2. I bought my first bike, an F-650 Classic, early this year at 35.
3. I'm sure I've missed out on a lot of experience, but 2005 was definitely the right time for me. Maturity changes a lot of things...or so they say...I'm still waiting
Began riding at the age of 45 --he did not think that he had the maturity to ride before that. Now I understand he has some big bikes--and the money to buy lots more.
I started riding at 48 years of age this summer.
During June and July I borrowed a pal's 400 CC '84 Honda for weekend treks. Sufficiently hooked, I then took the MSF intro course. About 3 weeks later, the day after Katrina hit, I bought my first (and only) mount. An f650 Dakar.
Since taking possession of El Dakar, I've rolled up nearly 4k miles in the hills and hollows. What a blast! And commuting...well, it doesn't suck on two wheels. Wish I hadn't waited so long.
My riding career began at the age of 10 and ended two years later(to be continued at a later date)
Back then the ride of choice was a Yamaha Mini/Moto 50cc mini bike.
Lots of dirt field cruisin' which led to a brief stint commuting 3mi to junior high(7th grade).
After a move to California my riding career was done and the little Yamaha languished in the garage until it was given to a neighbor.
Fast/forward to 1993(or thereabouts). My buddy, who was riding a lot drags me down to Laguna Seca for the World GP. After seeing the races the seed was planted and it was just a few months until I got my first real ride on the street, courtesy of Dave, a friend of mine in Colorado Springs.
I'm out visiting in CoSpgs and Dave calls and sez lets take the bikes out for a ride. My first thought was that Dave was stupid to offer and I was dumber to even consider it. Well I got over that real quick and found myself taking Daves RD400 for some practice laps around the block. After surviving the brief training session we decided to go for a real ride the next morning.
Well I'll have to say that I was totally pumped and excited about this whole two wheels with an engine thing. Being a rank novice(and a quick learner) I had not a clue what kind of bike the RD was or its cult-like reputation.
So the next morning I show up with another friend(who Dave generously loaned out his '89 GSXR 750 to) and we suit up and proceed to put on 150mi of awesome, mind expanding, first ride cruisin'.
Mind you all, Chris(on the GSXR) and myself(on the RD) are total novices on motorcycles. I know this is a recipe for disaster and yet we finished the ride unscathed. I cant imagine all the mistakes I must have made and was totally oblivious to. I remember thinking that upcoming overpass expansion joints
would surely be my undoing, and as I rumbled over them I survived:eek1
Sounds lame and yet considering my lack of experience that kind of road bump was monumental.
Half-way into the ride we pulled up to restaurant for lunch. As were outside by the bikes another two-up RD400 pulls up, the guy hops off and starts to tell us all about RD's and how he's got a warehouse full of 'em(20 RD's by his account). He sounded credible too! Just a cool moment talking to this guy and his passion/obsession with the RD400
When I got back to CA a few days later I immediately started looking for a bike. One of the guys at work finds out I'm looking for a bike and offers up his KZ1000(I believe a late 70's vintage??) for the weekend for me to ride. Once again I'm thinking, is this guy nuts, loaning his bike out, to me, a self-professed rookie? I ended up taking his KZ for a weekend, nearly killed myself a few times and that was it, I'm hooked on the moto thing.
I think two things saved my ass on those two initial rides:
Pure dumb luck and lots of experience mtn/road biking, snow skiing, and skateboarding.
Three sports that require lots of concentration and the ability to "Pick a line".
That theory may be more fantasy than reality and yet those skills coupled with a I'm-a 34yr old-kinda-conservative-guy-who-wants-to-live-to-see-the-next-day might just have been the right combo.
To this day the ride on the RD400 ranks as one of my top three great/perfectly sweet days on a motorcycle!!
'89 Suzuki Katana 750
'86 Honda XL 600
'92 Suzuki DR 650
'94 VFR 750
'01 KLR 650
My favorite trips:
6wks in India on a 500cc Bullet(rental)
My first Baja ride with Brian Halton, George Basinet, Andre, and other assorted cantankerous types.
All the great Dualsportin' I've been doing around CA with the likes of Larryboy, TOBJ, Tumbleweed, and TurlockRick.
My mum said about the same as can be expected: "you buy one of those and I'll end up in a asylum". No motorcycles for me. Something could be said for my mother's opinion, because my little brother slammed into a parked car on his moped, doing 45mph. The moped was fine, my brother not at all, and he probably ruined a professional sports career that night.
When I was 18 I drove a Yamaha SR 500 on a parking lot somewhere, without my motorcycle license, but that was all the push I needed. What a great ride! Lots of torque, a giant handlebar with a sense of total control-fantastic. Still I buried my plans.
More than a decade later my mother died and I decided to go for it after all and get my license. I'm a mechanical kinda guy, and operating moving things is really my thing. My list of licenses and permits is as long as one can get here in my country-exceopt for aviation, can't afford that.
Anyway, the first bike was a '78 SR500. It burnt 5 ignition coils in a row so I sold it. The guy I sold it to has had it for 11 years now and drove 100k on it.
Second the '78 XT500. The SR without the weight. Great. Woops, without the brakes too. Icon of a bike, I restored to new and better: 12 volts, forks stabilizer, stainless steel nuts and bolts etc. Got too dangerous in everyday traffic because of the lack of decent brakes. Started the Dutch XT & SR500 club with a couple of buddies. (www.xtsr500.nl)
Third was a '89 Honda Transalp. A bike that did not talk to me. And you could feel the frame bend in any curve with a bump in it. Not so good.
Fourth a '92 Yamaha XTZ660. One of the best thumpers I guess: lots of torque, least vibrating engine of any big single I ever drove. Had it for 5 years.
Number five was a new old stock '97 KTM ADV620. The orange one with the double low exhaust. A complete hooligan of a bike. What were those Japanese manufacturers thinking? Suddenly I had this bike that was twice as fast, flickable and sturdy as the ones I had before. And lighter to boot! So that was not going to be my last KTM.
My second KTM was a new '00 Duke LC4. 30.000 km with no hassle, until someone stole it.
Guy at the shop talked me into getting a new Ducati Multistrada (august 2003). A bike that made me wish we had a lemon law here. Complete waste of money. Had it for 12 weeks, and it behaved dangerously.
In januari of 2004 I got a KTM ADV 950S, one of the proper tools for people that read these pages. Unfortunately I'm exactly the wrong body height and after a year I had enough of the turbulence. I was getting deaf rapidly (yes, I had it tested).
So since october of 2004 I'm back on a Duke II, a black one this time. Bike number nine, but not the best KTM of the four. I've had a crank bearing and a rocker/roller bearing break. And unfortunately not at the same time.
I drive every weekday, and I need my bike. So now I've got my mind on a Yamaha MT-03, with new warranty (2 years) and less vibrations than the LC4.
I'm obviously still hooked on singles. That little ride on that SR500 in 1978 convinced me forever.
Hope I did not bore anyone too much, drive safely, Pierre
Wanted to ride for years. My buddy had a V45 Magna in college, his brother rode bikes for a long time. Never could justify it, because I could only afford one vehicle (so I told myself). Finally, at age 38, my wife and I had been considering a new vehicle for me. One day I said "I think I know what I want to get."
"Oh yeah," she replied "The Prius?"
"Too many wheels," I said.
It took her a minute to get it, and her next words were "You can't." 5 minutes later I had her convinced I'd be safe, take the MSF course, blah blah blah. Also threw in that it would be cheaper to keep my 10 year old truck and buy a used bike for four grand instead of spending ten or fifteen thousand on a new car. In another 5 minutes she said "Maybe I'll get one, too." That would have been cool, but she has not chosen to follow through with that. I kept the truck and got a used 2000 Shadow 750 in August of 2004. Put 12,000 miles on it and got my 2005 DL 650 this past November.
I wish I had started sooner, but maybe it's better that I waited until some (probably not most) of my youthful stupidity ran out.
Mid July, 2001, I was a last minute fill-in for a MSF Beginning Rider class. On August 8, I drove off the lot on a new BMW R1200 cruiser. Scarriest day of my life. :eek1
I was 51 years old. I started riding so I could take advantage of the HOV lane for my commutes, and to get out on weekends to do a bit of sight-seeing here in the Pac.Northwest.
February 15, 2003, I bought a 1150GS. March 15, 2004, I bought an F650GS Dakar.
The best money I spent on motorcycling was the Reg Pridmore C.L.A.S.S. in 2003. Taught me a lot about pavement riding. Also money well spent was for a 2-day class at the BMW Enduro Training Center in Hechlingen, Germany, in 2004.
To date, I've ridden them over 90,000 miles. No tickets (been stopped several times, but I had a clean record - still do thanks to some nice cops - even the one stopped me doing 87 in a 55 zone in Oregon ). No crashes - except in the dirt which have been too numerous to count.
And if you think you got it bad, at age 55, I'm in the process of selling everything I own so I can spend about 4 years riding around the world on the 650... I leave in April.
I almost got a Nighthawk 450 when I was 17 - was going to sell my gas guzzling Cordoba and buy a bike for transportation while I was in school. The guy test driving the Cordoba wrote it off, and few other vehicles in the process, so I was out the car and the bike. Always wanted a bike ever since and so decided it was time when I was 35.
My first bike was a V-Star 650. When I bought it I didn't have my license so had it delivered by the dealer. Took the MSF and some private lessons (had the instructor pick it up and deliver to my house for the lessons). Took Advanced Rider, Street Skills, Motorcycle Maintenance courses and annual refreshers. Have also done a few track days which I can highly recommend.
I got the VStar because it was real pretty, I liked the sound, and I could plant both feet solidly on the ground. I thought that was a good thing - in hind sight though it's limited what I think its possible for me to ride. She was such a heavy bike and I never got comfortable handling her.
I couldn't believe the difference when I sat on the F650GS. She looked so much bigger than my VStar but was so much lighter. So, I bought an F650GS. There's a lot about the 650 I love but throughout the last couple of seasons have decided a bike like the 950 Adventure what I really want. I think the 950 will open up more the style of riding I enjoy and want to do more of.
I don't mind having started later but feel I've acquired a few inhibitions as I've gotten older and feel them dampen my riding fun factor. Or maybe they were always there and just never challenged myself like riding does. I'm trying to break through these now without being stupid. There are times I think about all the riding I could have done but spend much more time thinking about all the riding I'm going to do.
I'm 42--but all the girls say I look much younger.
1) Tell your mom, "IF I WAS THINKING, I'D NEVER HAVE GOTTEN THE BIKE. FORTUNATELY, I WAS FEELING." You see, Mrs. Shoganai, I have a cousin who rides, who, last June, got me to commit to a San Diego-La Paz trip. I said yes just to get him off my back. Then (and I know some of you will moan--but just STFU) I saw Long Way 'Round.
Like a fookin' bomb went off in me.
That was it. I started doing the research--I started asking every biker I knew for input, I climbed all over the net poring over gear, bikes, and places like this, I found out I shouldn't just go get the F650GS Dakar straight off the bat because I would be beating up the wrong bike while I made my mistakes. So I went out and found a used...
2) DRZ400S, and I love the hell out of it. Passed MSF and have the appointment for my license on the 22nd. Figure I'll have my growing pains on the Suzuki, and once I'm comfortable riding, trade up to the Dakar.
3) I've always wanted a bike, but I've had a history of carelessness and car wrecks, and I KNEW I'd kill myself on one. But then LWR hit, and after having run a couple of marathons in the last few years, I knew my old body won't heal as fast as it used to. So I'm doing everything I can to stay safe--pretending I'm invisible, ATGATT, practice, and I'm looking forward to more training. When I lived at home, Mom told me, "You are NOT going to have a motorcycle as long as you live here." I mentioned it again when I moved out to college, and the response was, "You are NOT going to have a motorcycle as long as I'm sending you money." And now, she's terrified again--but maturity and hindsight have engendered a bit of wisdom and even more respect for her, so for her sake (and mine), I think I'm finally mature enough to take on the responsibility of riding.
4) None, but that Dakar (maybe an 1150GS, if I spend any more time on this board) is sitting there at Brattin Motors, patiently waiting for me. I don't dare pay her a visit until I'm worthy.
Good job! Will youse please keep us posted about your trip? I would love to follow you wandering the world. Drop me a PM if you visit Holland,OK?
I was always lusted after motorcycles since my teens. Learned to ride in Chicago in the late 60's (age 17 approx.) a friend taught me on his Honda 160 and then I rented a Honda 90 on occasion. Unfortunately I didn't buy till much later.
Life got in the way, but I woke up in 1982 and bought my first bike, a new 1982 BMW R100RT. Took a MSF class where I learned how to pick up the RT during numerous slow speed spills!
In 1987 I converted the RT to an RS.
In 1989 I bought a new '89 BMW K100RS
In 1992 I bought a new '92 BMW R100GS
In 1999 I bought a new '00 KTM LC4 AdventureR-the blue/orange one, YES!
In 2001 I bought a new '00 BMW R1100RT
If I had bought a bike at an earlier age, I probably wouldn't be alive because I suffer from Extreme Right Wrist Twistitis. I still have this affliction, the only difference is that the brain is interacting more frequently at this age.
I've taken Reg Pridmore's CLASS 3 times, once at Sears Point and twice at Laguna Seca.
Life has gotten complicated and I've been without a bike since '03!:eek1
My next ride hopefully will be a 950/990 Adventure.
Started at fifty. And I guess this post will serve as my introduction.
I have always liked motorbikes but . . . I was a fast bicyclist and thought I'd die too fast with a motor. I retired early and live in a small town where lots of us obey the speed limits. Speed just isn't so important any more. Without a rush hour and 50 miles to the nearest freeway, my driving is more relaxed than ever before.
What was I thinking? I came around a corner and saw a sign on a bike: "$350". I was thinking "I can afford that". It's a 1975/76 Honda 360 and kinda fun. Maybe not the last word in adventure bikes, but probably not my last bike either. ATG (for ATGATT) cost more than the bike, and I've put that much again into upgrading the lights to halogen & LEDs. The bike was cheap and I'm hooked.
What do I think of starting so late? What late? I have the rest of my life in front of me! For me I started at the right time. I'm rarely in a hurry to get anywhere, but I stretch the speed limit by a few MPH sometimes. I have several years experience fixing a 1959 pickup and maintaining whatever cheap sporty car happens to be the daily driver).
My volunteer work falls into two categories. Some needs a pickup-load of tools and materials. Some needs just me and a few notes. Is that a great excuse or what?
I have not yet progressed through any bikes, but I'll tell you how I ended up in AdvRider. On another forum, I'd ask questions about gravel or dirt or rain and the responses were usually DON'T! YOU'LL DIE! Even a neighbor says to stay off "Old County Rd" since I'd just have to wash the bike afterwards. (Well, yea. And if you never ride it you don't have to bother with gas either.) I end up lost on unpaved roads and call it fun. I'm making luggage now and plan two week-long trips for '06. I may not be a real year-rounder, but there hasn't been a month yet without a ride. So I like the attitudes on AdvRider even if I'm still a poser weenie.
Rode 50cc and 180cc scooters in high school but my parents made me buy a VW Bug instead when I dumped the scooter at 15mph. Swore I'd get a motorcycle as soon as I moved out, but of course, the real world had other plans: rent, school, graduate school, career.
Finally got my license and a real motorcycle nearly 6 years ago at age 31. It's my primary hobby and I spend an inordinate amount of time and money on bike-related activities and purchases. Luckily my girlfriend rides too....she got the idea from me (before we were dating) and got her license a year before I did as I proctrastinated!
Been through a lot of bikes in a short time (still own the ones with a *):
Guzzi V11 Sport
Honda CBR F3
I semi-jokingly curse my parents for not letting me start as a boy, and regret not making it happen when I went to college. I really enjoy the experiences I've had and the people I've met riding. But I do think I avoided some danger by learning in my 30s rather than my teens or early 20s.