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Old 01-17-2013, 01:48 AM   #52
Ceri JC
UK GSer
 
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Joined: Sep 2009
Location: All over, usually Wales or England
Oddometer: 2,462
Quote:
Originally Posted by kellymac530 View Post
I get so sick of people always saying dont ride your bike there...get a better bike....buy a lighter bike {KTm, XR, DR, KLR....}

What if the OP and others like me do NOT want a different bike?
This. I generally find little bikes less fun unless you're able to push it and on most of the places you can ride legally near me, less of interesting as they're far more capable than the challenge offered by the terrain.

Also, I have a real difficulty gauging how bad something is going to be on a big bike as people's expectation of what they can do is generally so far out of whack with what a competent rider can do on them. You'd hope it'd be better with people who actually ride dirt bikes, but sadly it's not. I was once stuck in a pub during a really bad storm and the water causes a landslide that blocked the road (which definitely was impassable on a GS with sport touring tyres). The locals who were in there were all farmers, who from the sounds of it and the questions they asked about my bike, the overwhelming majority rode. I asked them about other ways round as the one my GPS showed involved a lot of backtracking and I was very close to my destination. Someone pointed out a particular dirt track nearby would bypass the landslide and the pub immediately erupted into a debate as to whether or not I'd get along it. It was pretty much a 50:50 split. I ended up trying it and not only got up there, but it was a piece of piss. Yes, it was steep and fairly muddy, but there was great levels of grip and I didn't even need to dab a foot down.

This of course can lead to a "boy who cried wolf" scenario, where you're so used to people's low expectations of what you can do on a big bike, that you discount all warnings, which brings its own troubles.

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RE: Picking the bike up. Things that I find help :

Make a point of initially refusing help when you drop your bike when with riding buddies and use it as 'practice' whilst you have the safety net of another pair of hands. A lot of people I see don't even try to get themselves unstuck/pick their big bike up and just wait for their friends. Consequently, when they drop it when solo, they haven't had much experience of sorting it out alone.

In the case of the boxers, when they're lying on their side, the engine cases form a natural see-saw point. In most drops, they end up holding the bike part of the way upright and make it easier. If it has gone right over though, they can make it harder. Treat it as a two stage job; first get it so both wheels are on the ground and then try lifting it. Standing on the wheels to force them down (and to lift the bars up) can help, then walk round the other side and lift as normal.

If there's a slope, spin the bike round (on its side, whilst it's lying down) so the bike is side on to the slope, with both wheels on the downhill side. Stand on the uphill side when you lift it. It's safer and much easier. Again, for boxers, use the engine cases as the pivot point to rotate it.

Take your luggage off, whilst the bike is still on the floor, if you can access the release mechanisms: Struggling with a 220KG bike is considerably better than struggling with a 250KG bike...

Now, it sounds like the OP is probably doing it right in this case, but 80%+ of the time I see someone unable to lift a big bike, they're doing it wrong. I have seen a 5'6" 60KG woman pick a GSA up without struggling.

Finally, look on the brightside. Once you learn how to pick a big bike up, the little bikes are a doddle!
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I like my bike because I can overtake 4x4s down farm tracks with a week's worth of shopping on the back.
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