The Aging Road Rider Thread

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

  1. Rider2

    Rider2 Been here awhile Supporter

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    I'm a retread, got back into motorcycles 8 years ago after a 35-year gap. I turned 64 this summer and did 4 months/24,000 miles from the East Coast to Alaska and back. Had a great time but I don't think I ever did over 500 miles in a day. I am vertically challenged (29" inseam) and a factory lowered GSA suits me well. It's a pig to pick up so I need to plan carefully to avoid dropping it. At some point I expect it will become too much for me, or my judgement or stamina will deteriorate. I can't say at this point whether I'll hang up the helmet or downsize when I can't do long trips. Call me vain, but I'd like to get my BMW 200,000 mile award before I think about that (still 65,000 miles away, maybe 3 years?).
  2. Snowbird

    Snowbird Cereal Killer

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    I'll repeat my own plans: I plan to ride whatever bike I want, when I want, where I want without regard to anything age related until it's obvious to me that I cannot do it. So far, that hasn't been a problem. My desires have, for at least 20 years, been to only buy bikes under 500 pounds. Yet, one of my bikes I love is a 650 pound FJR. I ride that bike only when my plans are to go places served by paved roads and where I won't end up having to turn around where the pavement ends. If I'm exploring where the pavement turns to dirt and further on I might find a "private property" sign, I will be on the KLR; lighter and easier to u-turn. If I want a quick romp on a go-to-jail special, you'll find me on my 2001 Aprilia. I keep myself in shape by keeping care of my house, land and vehicles. Walking between barns, climbing on and off equipment, cutting and splitting wood... I will someday find the end, but I'm not going to fret about it in the meanwhile. Forty years ago, I located the spot I park my cars 200 feet from my house just to insure I would keep active. Carrying groceries and bags of dog food in and trash out amounts to work most people would not see as beneficial.
  3. Karlfitt

    Karlfitt Long timer Supporter

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    Not too old yet, only 57, but have been riding for a long time.
    I ride mostly street, I have been averaging about 10,000 miles a year the last few years. Staying on sport touring bikes for now (Currently an R 1200 RS)
    I had a Yamaha Royal Star Venture for a while the (Then) girlfriend loved the back seat. I never liked the front. I rented a Harley for three days, and had a Victory Cross Country for three days as well. I just don't like the cruiser riding position.
    My dad taught me how to ride in the dirt. About 10 years ago I got a dirt bike again and even taught my kids to ride.
    The riding here in Colorado is much more technical than anything I did growing up. I would love to take some kind of school to help improve my off road riding skills. But with my work (Rotating shifts) it has been nigh impossible for me to find one I can actually attend. I do watch the videos @B1 posts up, but I find when I do have time to get out on the dirt bike, I don't practice anything I've seen and just go out and ride. So some kind of structure would really help me.
    I hope to continue riding for a looooong time.
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  4. TarTripper

    TarTripper Been here awhile

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    Cotswolds, England and Pyrenees
    I’m 61. Started riding when I was 50. First bike was a CBF 600, second a CBF 1000 now I ride a 2014 RT LC. Had a fall on it last summer on a very remote backroad in the middle of France. It was hellish to pick up and since then I’ve started to think about lighter bikes.

    I’m test riding a Sreet Triple R (LRH) next week. Thought this might be a good hooligan bike but was dismayed to find out that its 0-60 and quarter mile times are slower than the RT. So now I’m torn. Love the idea of a bike small enough that I can flat foot it (29” inseam) but hate the idea of losing a ton of cash trading in the RT for something less capable.
    davyjones likes this.
  5. zuma

    zuma Been here awhile

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    I don't know that the Street Triple is "less capable", just slightly slower in a straight line when riding flat out. Swings and roundabouts, two very different bikes.
    davyjones likes this.
  6. everetto

    everetto Been here awhile

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    XR..... light. VERY fast.....
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  7. TarTripper

    TarTripper Been here awhile

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    Well that’s for sure! I was just very surprised, when I started looking at comparison tables, by just how darn fast the RT is in a straight line. Faster than a CBR600RR.

    Explains why, on many occasions, I’ve been surprised by the speed I’m doing shortly after rolling on. It just does it so effortlessly and quietly.

    I would like a light bike but I do track days so I don’t want anything slower, and I certainly don't want any weight on my arthritic wrists.
    davyjones likes this.
  8. BetterLateThanNever

    BetterLateThanNever It turns out you can't delete your account...

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    More than once on TPL, age has been debated as a factor in crashes, with people often quoting the inaccurate datum that old riders are the most crash prone group. This chart is from a recent federal study of motorcycle crashes, the first reasonably large such study in a long time. It presents propensity to crash in the 'correct' way, ie. the share of crashes represented by a given group versus that group's relative size. It was encouraging to me, and intuitively made sense. Especially when you consider that the rest of the study said essentially that two things kill us... intersections, and out-riding our skills. Without meaning to generalize, that second one always felt to me more like a young person's kind of error than an old one's.

    So ride on, fellow geezers. Looks like we're not time bombs after all ;)
    Screen Shot 2017-11-05 at 12.39.30 PM.png
    xnihilo, nk14zp, joe a and 1 other person like this.
  9. Vrode

    Vrode Not going there Supporter

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    62. Got a Super tenere last year and love it. The VFR was getting old for longer distances when I hit 50. The FZ1 that replaced it was fine for the first 8 years, but then would start to wear on me at the end of a long day. The Tenere is fine, though it is a big, heavy bike. Handles fine but you can feel it moving around the garage and such. I can do long tours with it and other than some aches and stiffness, I'm ok. Next bike (5 yrs away?) will be under 500 lbs I think. Hoping my general health remains good, as I'd like to ride into my 70's.
    davyjones likes this.
  10. Valker

    Valker Long timer

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    Pampa, Texas
    I'm 63. I bought a new Valkyrie in 1999 which now has 160,000 miles. It was feeling a bit heavy a few years back, so I started moving more weight around and taking more stairs. I bought an additional Valkyrie in March of this year. I think I'm set.
    FormerOilhead, davyjones and Rockred like this.
  11. lkraus

    lkraus Long timer

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    Do you have link to that study? I'd like to read more.
  12. BetterLateThanNever

    BetterLateThanNever It turns out you can't delete your account...

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    I caught it in Revzilla's email news thing.

    The preliminary report is here.
  13. TheProphet

    TheProphet Retired; Living the Dream

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    It is a general misconception that older riders crash more, or have more accidents.

    One thing to realize is that there are a LOT of 55+ riders out there, so therefore it would appear that they have the most accidents when all are totaled up.

    On an adjusted scale, 18-26 year old riders have the worst accident and fatality record, but it often looks lower because the TOTAL ridership # is less than 55+ riders.

    It's sort of like saying that California has more traffic accidents annually than Rhode Island, therefore Rhode Island has much safer drivers. Or, that China has more deaths annually than Delaware, therefore there must be something strange going on in China to cause these additional deaths. In both cases, the sample lot is skewed.

    The reality is that 55+ riders have the best riding records as far as accidents and fatalities, the 18-26 year old group the worst.

    Ever wonder why Insurance rates are higher the younger the rider is? That's a major reason why.

    On the other hand, if a 55+ rider takes a spill, they tend to take longer to heal, or the injury is more severe than a younger rider might sustain, but that's just common sense - the older we get, the more brittle and weaker the bones, etc. Doesn't take a genius to figure that out.
    CSI likes this.
  14. Schlug

    Schlug JockeyfullofBourbon

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    put something on and stay in that position.
    Love those XRs. Was never sure about seating for long distance, though.

    How much for the hot rod?
  15. everetto

    everetto Been here awhile

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    The XR seat is not bad, mine is the low version. It took a bit to get my a$$ used to it, but now it is ok - not the best, not the worst. So far I have done a 350 mile day on it, think I could do a 500 mile day.

    I have the Rod listed for sale in Flea Market Other (hope it is ok to say that here).
  16. CSI

    CSI Long timer

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    55 here.

    Started riding as a kid...took about a 15 year break for kids, then got back into riding. Had three Harleys then bought a wing.

    The wing was traded on an FJR.....currently trying to decide if my next purchase is gonna be another wing, or if I wanna buy a Ninja 1000.

    Apparently I am regressing......
    knight, TT RDHS, barko1 and 2 others like this.
  17. barko1

    barko1 barko1 Supporter

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    69, did 1000 miles the last two days on my 1190, using the cruise helped the body. One thing I've added to my gear is a Helite vest/airbag. Figured old bones, ribs, would not be a welcomed malady and the vest might ease any collision.
    Uke, davyjones and TT RDHS like this.
  18. lkraus

    lkraus Long timer

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    Thank you. I need to study that a bit. Site bookmarked so I eventually find the final report.
  19. sphyrnidus

    sphyrnidus born to ride

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    Apr 2, 2009
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    Netherlands
    I'm going to be 65 in a few month's, so low and behold I did something... I bought myself a car after have been a bike only guy for years. Ok it's a BMW Z4 and almost as hard to get into and out of as climbing the BMW GSA :) But still a car....
    Been riding the bike for 55k km every year and now I actually go to work with a car. Still need some adjusting :rofl
    LewisNClark and durtwurm like this.
  20. D R

    D R Been here awhile

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    885
    "Once you start down the dark path, forever will it dominate your destiny."

    --Yoda-- The Empire Strikes Back