The Aging Road Rider Thread

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by everetto, Oct 22, 2017.

  1. everetto

    everetto Been here awhile

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    I see this subject mentioned in various threads, so I thought I would start one for some of us to occasionally post in, if that is ok and if there is not already a thread like this.

    For my part I am 62 and in my head I am still 21 so I still think I love crotch rockets, until I ride them. I had a Pani 1199S a couple of years ago and I really found it uncomfortable, so I didn't keep it long.

    As discussed recently in several other threads, for some of us as we age, lighter weight becomes a higher priority each year, followed closely by bike height. My current ride is a S1000XR which is fairly light, the height is good because it is the factory lowered version, the power is awesome, but it has a chain. It will definitely be the last chain driven bike I own.

    My next bike in a year or two may be my "twilight bike" (not my term, but I saw it here and I like it) and it might be the new FJR, but it will more likely be the new RT because it is lighter and more comfy than the FJR and it will have very comparable power when it gets the variable valve timing and the displacement bump that is coming. Right now I am thinking this could be my perfect twilight bike...

    ...until I give up all together and buy something with 3 wheels...... God that is hard to even think about.
    #1
  2. st3ryder

    st3ryder Been here awhile

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    My concern is not which bike I'll need/buy as my last one, but rather my diminishing skills. They, more than anything else will determine how long I keep riding.

    But an FJR or RT, as a good "seniors" bike? Niether would be on my list. Both would be too heavy and/or too tall IMO. And FJR's are just plain boring unless you give them a good canning, and as per the previously mentioned diminishing skills, including strength and endurance and most importantly reflexes, too powerful. Maybe a kitted out MG V-9, or a TR Bonnie or r1200r might be more to my liking.

    I can feel my ability to pick an entry speed and a line fade as the ride I'm on get's into its late stages. Like this mornoing, was in the saddle for about 2 hrs of some real nice roads, and found myself riding like a rookie the last 20 minutes or so. My bike's not that heavy, maybe 550 topped up with side cases mounted. Not exactly smooth cornering. :(

    But, we'll see. I intend to ride for as long as I can. Read something a while back that went something like this: You don't stop riding because you get old; you get old because you stop riding. :-)
    #2
  3. adventurebound9517

    adventurebound9517 Been here awhile

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    At 67, my biggest problem is and has been for a few years now is that my but is not getting along with the saddle. I've had many bikes and get the same results. My problem is that I like to buy bikes but I don't seem to enjoy ridding any longer. :dirtdog
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  4. dlmarquez

    dlmarquez dlm

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    Tacoma Washington
    I am 67, soon to be 68. I am in pretty good shape, 6’1”, 200 lbs. I have a 34/35 inseam, so tall bikes haven’t been an issue in my past. However I have an arthritic right hip, and throwing my leg over the saddle ain’t the effortless action it used to be.
    I find my self critically evaluating motorcycles based on the following:
    How high is the riders seat with the bike unladen on the sidestand?
    How much higher is the passenger seat? Because when I throw my leg over, it has to clear the passenger pilliion and anything that happens to be attached thereto...much more useful real world data than the riders seat height.
    On my Tiger 800 the passenger seat is about 2 inches higher than the riders seat.
    Also a big factor is how the bike carries it’s weight. In the past I had an SRX600 that weighed about 380 and felt like 325 because the weight was low in the bike.
    The tiger is a tall bike, and the weight is HIGH...especially with 5 gallons in the tank.
    I have been looking at Guzzi V7’s as a possible replacement...the stepover height is 3-4 inches lower, the weight is definitely lower in the frame (V-twin, shaft drive) and the goose is much easier to handle at low speeds and would be much easier either save during a fall, or pick up after the fact.
    Also, the straddle width is a real factor. With the factory bags on the Tiger it takes some legs to stepover, and its tall and wide after the fact.
    Also it seems to me that the big bikes tend to have limited range when turning the forks.
    As a member of the “old geezers on bikes” group, I am looking hard at weight, height, width, and how high the weight is carried.
    More and more I am looking at bikes under 450 lbs..I think for me if I want to continue riding motorcycles I need a light, low, narrow, and easy to ride bike.
    #4
  5. Jeffo

    Jeffo Been here awhile

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    I'm also wanting less weight as i get older. Dont really want a wet weight more than 200 kilos anymore..... and this max weight is likely to go down further the older i get. So i guess i'll be riding smaller and smaller cc bikes in the future, but thats ok, i'm getting less fussy about having loads of power these days.
    Also, due to bad hand osteoarthritis i also need a light clutch now, a DCT could be on the cards sometime, but DCT adds weight to a bike unless new tech for it becomes available.
    But no matter how small or light my bikes may have to be, i cant ever see myself wanting a scooter, a Grom or any miniature like bike, or a trike.
    #5
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  6. Podman

    Podman Rocketman

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    Dublin, Ohio
    65 soon to be 66. 2016GSA 80 miles shy of 24,000 miles. Stock seat. Wish I had more time to ride because there is a lot of beautiful country out there. Since the end of August I have been to Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, new brunswick, several trips to the BRP, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Adirondacks, all over Ohio etc etc. Still absolutely love it. The weight does not bother me you just have to keep practicing. No regrets and hope I can ride for a bunch more years.
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  7. dirtsurfer

    dirtsurfer Adventourer

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    On the road to recovery
    Im 63 and picked up a KTM 1290 Super Adventure a couple of months ago after a 2 year period of riding abstinence due to multiple fractures caused by a drunk driver running into me.
    I find it difficult to distinguish what discomfort I experience is from the degenerative experience and what is a legacy of the crash.

    But I notice 2 stand out things since my return to riding. My on road riding demeanor is toned down a bit and I am more amenable to stopping for a break.

    I have also been prepping a DR 650 for adventure touring and it will get its first test this weekend 28/29 October. I'm riding to a rally 5-6 hours from home

    Sent from my SM-G900I using Tapatalk
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  8. dceggert

    dceggert Been here awhile

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    Metro Detroit - almost like offroad riding
    Well I feel I may be the youngster here at only 58. My wife always told me that men always try to do things with their upper body strength while women tend to think first. This was demonstrated by the short skinny woman demonstrating how to pick a Goldwing back up by herself at the Goldwing shindigs. The point? I don't want a lighter bike.

    What I think I may want though is the expected DCT in the soon to be released 2018 Goldwing. That may relieve the joint pressure of my clutch hand when I get stuck in rush hour traffic commuting.
    #8
  9. motorhead748

    motorhead748 Been here awhile

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    Not where I'd like to be
    I'm 59 and just home from my usual 200 mile loop thru the hills on my brutale. 15 bikes in the garage, I'm not slowing down or at least gonna fight it every step of the way!
    #9
  10. tennmoto

    tennmoto Been here awhile Supporter

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    knoxville area
    I’m 63.75 now and I still enjoy riding. What Bonneville that is so Zen and a 06 Custom Sportster that operates just fine on the back roads. I observe many riders my age getting these big heavy Roadglides and other 800lb plus
    Big rigs . I guess they don’t get it. Smaller lighter is more fun.

    Attached Files:

    #10
  11. Jim K.

    Jim K. Long timer

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    +1 on less weight... & not just because I'm getting older ('tho thats part of it). The only place weight actually might be a benefit is passing/being passed by big trucks at highway speeds. 65-75 HP is plenty, if the bike comes in at, say, 180 Kg.
    #11
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  12. everetto

    everetto Been here awhile

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    Hope I didn't come across as too geriatric in starting this thread. I still ride pretty hard, and a lot. Rode a FJR from Tucson to ABQ 2 weeks ago and did a 2 day 500 mile ride last weekend (yes that is 2 short days, I agree). Did a 750 mile day last summer. My XR is not a twilight bike by any means. But, I appreciate light bikes more a ll the time and I know that none of us can escape the effects of aging. I just want to deal with them the best I can, and keep riding! Maybe in this thread we can share tips (and bikes) that we find work for us to allow the most years of riding possible.
    20171013_092604.jpg
    #12
  13. Dilligaf0220

    Dilligaf0220 Miserablist

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    Un Canadien Errant Neophyte Cheesehead
    As a worn out 43 going on 16 yr old I think I win the award for the "Youngest that Thinks He's The Oldest". Can't wait for the trophy.

    [​IMG]

    I first realized I was getting up there trying on a ZX-10, when a kid passing by tugged on his dad's sleeves shouting "Dad LOOK, there's a monkey humping a football!!!!"
    I tried a bespoke cruiserish Eyetalian sportsbike. From 1978. But the Guzzi 850 T3 was just a tad not quite it. Maybe when I'm sixty, but I'm not sixty yet.

    Been quenching the thirst with 90's Kwak's, comfy real world all day ergo's, and a fistful of "OMFG" in your right hand.
    I did talk a new girlfriend into riding...and I had too much getting her ZZR250 Ninja plated. Hell even had a real helmet lock, remember those?

    I could live with a 300lb, 2/3's of a real bike, 88mph top speed wound up to the 14k redline, bike.
    Don't think they ever sold them in the States, mores the pity.

    [​IMG]
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  14. choppahead

    choppahead Been here awhile

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    Well as one of the younger riders (60) I'm finding my Scout checks off a lot of boxes for me eg: 100HP, low COG, low seat height, 570lbs wet. But the small tank and riding position are the peas under the princesses mattress. I think it's worth trying some fixes. It's a real fun bike. Had it through upstate NY, around Lk Superior and along Lk Ontario this summer. I lust after other bikes, but while being retired gives me lots of time to ride, unfortunately not as much $ to spend...

    IMG_1472.JPG
    #14
  15. JerseyBiker

    JerseyBiker Living the life!

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    63 here. Totally agree with lighter being better. Over the last 10 years there have been 30 or so bikes or scoots in my garage. Now down to just a 300cc Honda Forza but she keeps me out and about including just returning from a 4 day 1500 mile trip to Biketoberfest.

    Not having to put a leg over a saddle saves a lot of pain but I am really missing a motorcycle and plan to get another again soon.

    To paraphrase/steal a saying " I plan to ride forever. So far, so good"
    #15
  16. choppahead

    choppahead Been here awhile

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    Amen! Friday I was out on a local twisty road. Came around a tight corner and saw three full dress Harleys stopped and a fourth down in the ditch. Took seven of us to hoist that big decker back up on the road out of the muck. Rider and bike were ok though.

    As the majority of riders age I think there’s gonna be lots of big touring bikes on the used market.
    #16
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  17. bfd70

    bfd70 Long timer

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  18. steve gs

    steve gs Been here awhile Supporter

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    Yes, this topic may be posted on other threads but I saw it here, so......

    Never giving up. Good fitness (bicycling, hiking, walking, paddlesports) and dietary habits over the years pays dividends when we hit our 60's and beyond. Still work it.

    Ride just about everything (dirt, street) except cruisers and stratolounges; prefer the classic sportbikes (FZ, VFR's, GS's, GPZ's) of the 80's and early 90's. Love the 2 strokes of the 60's, 70's, and 80's (of which I had several); still have my 125 GP bike and can ride it. Ride within the limits of conditions and traffic. Just consider myself an average rider.

    Did trackdays up until about 10 yrs ago on a 250 Ninja and Aprilia RS250; plan to do a few trackday weekends in 2018 at my favorite tracks. Was detoured with work, other passions, and a couple of injuries but trackdays keep me sharp and I know it. Rider training is key regardless of our age. For the young it trains and tempers recklessness and for the seasoned rider it sharpens our reactions and mental clarity.
    #18
  19. Scooterdoodler

    Scooterdoodler Long timer

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    66.

    Selling my Indian Vintage in the spring wife is selling her Softail Deluxe as soon as she can find a buyer.

    We sold our 2008 GL1800 last fall.

    The GL was getting heavy (900+ lbs) and wasn't being used for what it was designed to do.

    The Indian is just more motorcycle than I want to keep paying for.

    The wife's Harley has been replaced by a 125hp R1200R.

    I'm really just getting burned out on big, heavy, very expensive motorcycles. I want lighter, more powerful, better handling, less expensive bikes.

    I also want to increase the overall 'fun factor' of riding motorcycles.

    Would I sacrifice my beautiful, 2016, green and cream Indian Vintage for something like this?................oh, lordy, YES!!!!
    IMG_20171021_103703004_HDR.jpg
    #19
  20. steve gs

    steve gs Been here awhile Supporter

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    I have always felt the fun/enjoyment/thrill of motorcycling was inversely proportional to the weight of the machine. No offense but I have never understood how/why people ride those behemoths. Long ago I told my wife she had to get her own bike as I refused to ride 2 up; she did. With a com system you're still connected.

    For pure adrenaline an FZR 400 would be the ticket for me since the Aprilia RS 250 is not street legal. For a more relaxed ride I ride one of my classic sportbikes.

    For touring I prefer the backroads and would ride a 250/350 DS machine. Superslab touring does not interest me anymore, prefer quality vs quantity, plus the risks are much higher these days with traffic volumes, distractions, and attitudes.

    Attached Files:

    #20
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