ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > The perfect line and other riding myths
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 07-08-2014, 06:28 PM   #1
ubermick OP
the n00biest
 
ubermick's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2014
Location: SF Bay Area
Oddometer: 27
Not the typical noob question...

How's it going all?

So came across this almightily fantastic site over the weekend when perusing info on F650GS-es-es-es. Given the massive amount of info on here, I couldn't help but sign up.

That said, is there a little side area where newbs like myself can bang our heads against the wall, gathering experience? I'm not talking about getting used to adding images, or making avatars kinda newbs - I'm talking...

Um...

Er....

I've never ridden a motorcycle before, let alone owned one, but am hypnotized by the riders I pass repeatedly on the road, panniers full, gear on, and heading where the road takes them. And then I watched Long Way Round/Down, and am basically @#$@#ed.

That kinda newb. Newby-newb-newbiness. The Ubernewb, so to speak.

So a little sub forum for idiots like me to ask the REALLY dumb questions without cluttering up the packed-full-o-goodness threads would be fairly nice, eh? (Or do those questions all go in here?)
ubermick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2014, 07:59 PM   #2
Retro
Just the Facts Ma'am
 
Retro's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2003
Location: Virginia
Oddometer: 33,028
In meat space, the saying goes:

God gave you two ears and two eyes but only one mouth for a reason.

Apply that philosophy here until you've got things figured out.

Stay out of Jo Momma.
__________________
I'm just lookin' for clues at the scene of the crime.

Quis custodiet ipros custodes?
Retro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2014, 08:55 PM   #3
Klay
dreaming adventurer
 
Klay's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2005
Location: right here on my thermarest
Oddometer: 97,897
Quote:
Originally Posted by ubermick View Post
So a little sub forum for idiots like me to ask the REALLY dumb questions without cluttering up the packed-full-o-goodness threads would be fairly nice, eh? (Or do those questions all go in here?)
I can help. Send me a private message.
Klay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2014, 09:06 PM   #4
Motopsychoman
Not a total poser
 
Motopsychoman's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2013
Location: Oaklandish
Oddometer: 474
Eek

Quote:
Originally Posted by ubermick View Post
How's it going all?

So came across this almightily fantastic site over the weekend when perusing info on F650GS-es-es-es. Given the massive amount of info on here, I couldn't help but sign up.

That said, is there a little side area where newbs like myself can bang our heads against the wall, gathering experience? I'm not talking about getting used to adding images, or making avatars kinda newbs - I'm talking...

Um...

Er....

I've never ridden a motorcycle before, let alone owned one, but am hypnotized by the riders I pass repeatedly on the road, panniers full, gear on, and heading where the road takes them. And then I watched Long Way Round/Down, and am basically @#$@#ed.

That kinda newb. Newby-newb-newbiness. The Ubernewb, so to speak.

So a little sub forum for idiots like me to ask the REALLY dumb questions without cluttering up the packed-full-o-goodness threads would be fairly nice, eh? (Or do those questions all go in here?)

Well, I expect you win for the nOObiest. Before you can ride, you have to learn to ride.

You are a California dude, so you need to check with the DMV about the requirements for a class M1 license. Then look into the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. They teach nOOb riding classes and SAFETY.

Hang out at places like Motojava and ask annoying questions. People will talk to you.

Then you can start thinking about beginner gear. Remember, you WILL fall down. We all do. Good Snell/ECE rated helmet. Gauntlet gloves. Riding boots. Armored jacket and pants. You don't need to spend thousands on gear, just enough to protect you from $50,000 skin grafts.

After taking the MSF course, when you decide that you really are semi-suicidal and need a motorcycle, look for a good reliable beater bike that is easy to pick up when you drop it. No 700 lb mega cruisers.

Find someone willing to lead you on easy rides and hopefully someone willing to teach you how to wrench. Are you at all mechanically inclined? Not enough riders these days know how to fix their own bikes. ADV riders are more likely to have learned as they get stranded more often in remote locations.

Then ride every chance you get for the next, say, 38 years or more.

Read the thousands of threads and ask questions. It isn't a stupid question if you don't know. It's only stupid if you should know and don't. Just be ready for lots of help and some abuse.
__________________
"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." - Mark Twain

Current Rides: '13 Sertao, '98 Bandit 1200, Being restored: '86 R80G/S PD
Past: '66 Suzuki T10, '72 CL350, '74 GT550, '80 GS750, '7? XT500, '83 RM250, '85 XT500
Motopsychoman is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2014, 09:24 PM   #5
ubermick OP
the n00biest
 
ubermick's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2014
Location: SF Bay Area
Oddometer: 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Motopsychoman View Post
Well, I expect you win for the nOObiest. Before you can ride, you have to learn to ride.

You are a California dude, so you need to check with the DMV about the requirements for a class M1 license. Then look into the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. They teach nOOb riding classes and SAFETY.

Hang out at places like Motojava and ask annoying questions. People will talk to you.

Then you can start thinking about beginner gear. Remember, you WILL fall down. We all do. Good Snell/ECE rated helmet. Gauntlet gloves. Riding boots. Armored jacket and pants. You don't need to spend thousands on gear, just enough to protect you from $50,000 skin grafts.

After taking the MSF course, when you decide that you really are semi-suicidal and need a motorcycle, look for a good reliable beater bike that is easy to pick up when you drop it. No 700 lb mega cruisers.

Find someone willing to lead you on easy rides and hopefully someone willing to teach you how to wrench. Are you at all mechanically inclined? Not enough riders these days know how to fix their own bikes. ADV riders are more likely to have learned as they get stranded more often in remote locations.

Then ride every chance you get for the next, say, 38 years or more.

Read the thousands of threads and ask questions. It isn't a stupid question if you don't know. It's only stupid if you should know and don't. Just be ready for lots of help and some abuse.
Haha, yeah. Like I said, I'm the newbiest of noobs. But it's been something that's been getting more and more appealing the older I've gotten (I just hit 40) especially when I saw Long Way Round 7 years ago (!) To top it off, the wife and I went on a recent trip to New Mexico a few months back, and lost count of the amount of people I saw getting off their F1200GS's, kicking back with the biggest grin, enjoying a beer. Here in California, I see ADV riders all the time heading up and down Route 1. I love the outdoors, I love camping, and I (used to) ride mountain bikes on a borderline addictive level.

That said, I absolutely realize I need to learn to walk before I can run. Blimey, I need to actually learn to crawl first! Have actually gotten set up with an MSF course in a few weeks (wife has me booked on weekend crap for the next three) and have been secretly tucking away cash over the past year to go towards it.

I'm decent with tools - haven't worked on a vehicle, but done a spot of welding, could probably build a bike out of wood, and serviced my small fleet of mountain bikes myself (I know, night and day, but at least it's something!) Definitely prepared for a spot of abuse, though!

As to a bike, that's obviously something I'm not even thinking about (well, okay, I'm thinking about it) until I've not only gotten the license, but also a considerable amount of practice. The problem I have - well, two problems, I suppose - is that a) I have a constant mantra of NEVER buying cheap and crap, even if cheap and crap serves a purpose, and b) I'm short, just 5'6 with stumpy wee legs. Which is why I keep lustfully eyeing Craigslist ads for people selling F650s. But that can wait. A while.

Anyways - cheers for the offers of support! Much appreciated, and if anyone has any recommendations for a cheap starter bike that can basically be tossed when done with, fire away!
ubermick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2014, 09:28 PM   #6
Motopsychoman
Not a total poser
 
Motopsychoman's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2013
Location: Oaklandish
Oddometer: 474
Eek

Quote:
Originally Posted by ubermick View Post
Haha, yeah. Like I said, I'm the newbiest of noobs. But it's been something that's been getting more and more appealing the older I've gotten (I just hit 40) especially when I saw Long Way Round 7 years ago (!) To top it off, the wife and I went on a recent trip to New Mexico a few months back, and lost count of the amount of people I saw getting off their F1200GS's, kicking back with the biggest grin, enjoying a beer. Here in California, I see ADV riders all the time heading up and down Route 1. I love the outdoors, I love camping, and I (used to) ride mountain bikes on a borderline addictive level.

That said, I absolutely realize I need to learn to walk before I can run. Blimey, I need to actually learn to crawl first! Have actually gotten set up with an MSF course in a few weeks (wife has me booked on weekend crap for the next three) and have been secretly tucking away cash over the past year to go towards it.

I'm decent with tools - haven't worked on a vehicle, but done a spot of welding, could probably build a bike out of wood, and serviced my small fleet of mountain bikes myself (I know, night and day, but at least it's something!) Definitely prepared for a spot of abuse, though!

As to a bike, that's obviously something I'm not even thinking about (well, okay, I'm thinking about it) until I've not only gotten the license, but also a considerable amount of practice. The problem I have - well, two problems, I suppose - is that a) I have a constant mantra of NEVER buying cheap and crap, even if cheap and crap serves a purpose, and b) I'm short, just 5'6 with stumpy wee legs. Which is why I keep lustfully eyeing Craigslist ads for people selling F650s. But that can wait. A while.

Anyways - cheers for the offers of support! Much appreciated, and if anyone has any recommendations for a cheap starter bike that can basically be tossed when done with, fire away!
Has the wife bought extra life insurance for you?

Actually, there are a lot of good bikes now a days. When I started riding, almost all were crap. Bikes are far more refined and reliable than say a 1972 Honda CL350 was.

Good luck and take it slow and easy.
__________________
"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." - Mark Twain

Current Rides: '13 Sertao, '98 Bandit 1200, Being restored: '86 R80G/S PD
Past: '66 Suzuki T10, '72 CL350, '74 GT550, '80 GS750, '7? XT500, '83 RM250, '85 XT500
Motopsychoman is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2014, 09:49 PM   #7
YnotJP?
Beastly Adventurer
 
Joined: Dec 2007
Location: Philippines and Seattle
Oddometer: 2,013
Tell us the type of riding you are thinking about starting with. Many enjoy the dual sport type of riding, some pavement, some unpaved roads. The problem is dual sport bikes tend to be taller, and that can be a problem for a person starting to ride, who is 5' 6". But, your mountain bike background maybe helpful. (Like you already know what too much front brake can do. A motorcycle does that also.)

A lighter bike is always easier to control.

Good luck, enjoy yourself, be respectful of what it takes not to get hurt.
YnotJP? is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2014, 10:17 PM   #8
ubermick OP
the n00biest
 
ubermick's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2014
Location: SF Bay Area
Oddometer: 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by YnotJP? View Post
Tell us the type of riding you are thinking about starting with. Many enjoy the dual sport type of riding, some pavement, some unpaved roads. The problem is dual sport bikes tend to be taller, and that can be a problem for a person starting to ride, who is 5' 6". But, your mountain bike background maybe helpful. (Like you already know what too much front brake can do. A motorcycle does that also.)

A lighter bike is always easier to control.

Good luck, enjoy yourself, be respectful of what it takes not to get hurt.
I would say that the places I like to go would be 80% pavement, 20% unpaved. Down the road, once I've gotten plenty of experience under my belt, maybe a little (a LITTLE) off road, purely to have that ability under my belt in case the need arises. A friend of mine just did a fantastic National Park loop from Vegas where he lives, to the coast, then following the coast up through California to Oregon and Washington, then back down the other side. My personal dream ride - which is obviously not something I'd consider until I've amassed the experience both on and off a bike - is from San Francisco south to Cabo and back.

I was deffo thinking that my height would be an issue. I think the thing that prompted me to sign up here was that I spotted a guy selling his wife's (I know, I know!) F650GS which had the lowered seat and suspension, and I've seen it listed plenty of places as a "beginner bike", although a bit skeptical about that. But since thats the sort of bike I have as a goal, I'm leery of plopping a few grand on something like a 250cc Suzuki to putter around on for six months. (Or should I just realize that's the smart thing to do?)
ubermick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2014, 11:13 PM   #9
Motopsychoman
Not a total poser
 
Motopsychoman's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2013
Location: Oaklandish
Oddometer: 474
Eek

Quote:
Originally Posted by ubermick View Post
I would say that the places I like to go would be 80% pavement, 20% unpaved. Down the road, once I've gotten plenty of experience under my belt, maybe a little (a LITTLE) off road, purely to have that ability under my belt in case the need arises. A friend of mine just did a fantastic National Park loop from Vegas where he lives, to the coast, then following the coast up through California to Oregon and Washington, then back down the other side. My personal dream ride - which is obviously not something I'd consider until I've amassed the experience both on and off a bike - is from San Francisco south to Cabo and back.

I was deffo thinking that my height would be an issue. I think the thing that prompted me to sign up here was that I spotted a guy selling his wife's (I know, I know!) F650GS which had the lowered seat and suspension, and I've seen it listed plenty of places as a "beginner bike", although a bit skeptical about that. But since thats the sort of bike I have as a goal, I'm leery of plopping a few grand on something like a 250cc Suzuki to putter around on for six months. (Or should I just realize that's the smart thing to do?)
How about $600 for an old XT500? Or maybe $750 for an old GS550? An EX500? A learner bike ought to be disposable. Something simple, reliable but ugly: smashed body work, dinged tank, but good engine and brakes.

Also, seat height can be managed somewhat. I'm only 5'8" but ride a G650GS Sertao with about a 34" seat height. A standard G650GS can be ordered with a 30.3" seat height. Neither of us might be comfortable on a GSA1200 or a KTM1190R with their 35" saddle heights. But that is down the road somewhat, so to speak.
__________________
"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." - Mark Twain

Current Rides: '13 Sertao, '98 Bandit 1200, Being restored: '86 R80G/S PD
Past: '66 Suzuki T10, '72 CL350, '74 GT550, '80 GS750, '7? XT500, '83 RM250, '85 XT500
Motopsychoman is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2014, 07:44 AM   #10
Boondoggle
Gear Grinder
 
Boondoggle's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2009
Location: Central VA
Oddometer: 12,200
Quote:
Originally Posted by Retro View Post
Stay out of The Perfect Line.
Fixt

And there are tons of 250's, 400's, and 500's out there that you can buy, learn on, and not get banged around too badly on the resale when you either move up or decide it ain't for you.

Get a single. Pre-scratched. No plastic bodywork. Buy extra clutch and front brake levers. Make sure it's safe, and you have a good feeling for the seller. You don't need to buy the first one you see. MSF is a start.

Good luck. Welcome
__________________
____
"Be seated on the front porch at Yokum's store, and sooner or later a friend will ride up." -Old Lion
What is wrong with you guys? -RapidWife
Utensils are for normal people.
Boondoggle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2014, 12:06 PM   #11
Retro
Just the Facts Ma'am
 
Retro's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2003
Location: Virginia
Oddometer: 33,028
This thread has outgrown ABBA.
__________________
I'm just lookin' for clues at the scene of the crime.

Quis custodiet ipros custodes?
Retro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2014, 12:45 PM   #12
Bill Harris
Confirmed Curmudgeon
 
Bill Harris's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: backwoods Alabama
Oddometer: 5,924
Don't let your enthusiasm get the best of you. Safe riding is an acquired habit and the learning curve can be steep and jagged. And the road is a harsh mistress, so small mistakes may end up not being minor ones.

But you've come to the right place. Just be careful if you wander into JoMama... it can be a lot like the Squeal Scene in Deliverance...

--Bill
__________________
'73 R60/5 Toaster
Luddite. Not just a philosophy, a way of life...

Bill Harris screwed with this post 07-09-2014 at 05:40 PM
Bill Harris is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2014, 12:49 PM   #13
Hesaid
Studly Adventurer
 
Hesaid's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2012
Location: Central CA
Oddometer: 814
Take the MSF course, read the Bay Area Adventure Riders thread, obtain a TW200, and then join us in late August. Done.

Or...

Go out and get a new G650gs, with the low seat height option, bring it to the Noob Ride, ask really nicely, and Shesaid might just trade you for her TW200. But I doubt it, she (and everyone else with one) loves that little bike. Still, worth a shot. Especially if it means I don't have to pony up for a new BMW for Shesaid!

MV
__________________
DR Feelgood , Tipsy Wombat, Pinkfoot, FatCat, and how they got their names: What the hell is a wombat? And now, the tales of their adventures.
Hesaid is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2014, 01:44 PM   #14
DustyRags
Idiot
 
DustyRags's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2012
Location: The Beast, California
Oddometer: 372
Welcome! Check out the MSF course in Alameda if you're anywhere near there- that's the one I took 2 years ago, and at the time they had the best pass rate, and the best rating for enjoyability. I had fun, learned a lot, and passed with flying colors.

Then get gear. I like getting used gear, since gear, like bikes, is something that you don't know you'll hate until you live with it. Lots used in the fleamarket here, and on Craigslist.

DO NOT buy a used helmet. Ever. Full stop.

Then get a bike. Your first bike's gonna be awkward. It's gonna be small, ugly, old, banged up, and uncool. You'll ride it, and you'll learn a lot. You'll drop it, brush the dust off it, squint for a minute and decide you can't tell which scratch is the new one, shrug, and keep riding. You'll break it. You'll fix it. Good times.

Or you'll do what my friend did, buy an almost-new R6, and 6 or 7 years later still can't ride it for crap, because he's scared of the twitchy monster just begging to drop all 106 horsepower on a botched shift.

Nighthawk 250's are great for learners- light, cheap, easy to fix, low seat height, run for ever, and if you get a used one you can generally re-sell it for what you bought it for in a year. Time it right, and you might even make some cash on it.

Ping me if you have wrenching questions- I'm a self-taught greasemonkey, so while I'm far from an expert at fixing shit, I'm pretty damn good at figuring out how to figure it out.

Welcome to the club! Now get your colors!
DustyRags is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2014, 01:58 PM   #15
aldend123
Adventurer
 
Joined: Sep 2011
Location: Bristol County MA
Oddometer: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by ubermick View Post
I love the outdoors, I love camping, and I (used to) ride mountain bikes on a borderline addictive level.

I'm decent with tools - haven't worked on a vehicle, but done a spot of welding, could probably build a bike out of wood, and serviced my small fleet of mountain bikes myself (I know, night and day, but at least it's something!) Definitely prepared for a spot of abuse, though!
If you can do MTB mechanics, you can graduate easily. You surely understand torquing a bolt properly, getting a tight fit, not rounding the head etc. There will be a progressive accumulation of knowledge over time, but I'm sure that was true with MTB. You didn't suddenly know all the size standards for seat posts, cranks, headsets, or who made the best fork.

Find the owners manual (if you buy used, you can find a copy online 99% of the time) and read it cover to cover. Grow from there. It's a lot less intimdating if you can always drive your car to work in the morning because you couldn't finish the job last night.

Don't buy anything too pretty. You're going to drop it in the garage, or a parking lot at least once.
__________________
Still afraid to really lean deep in to a turn.
aldend123 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 09:30 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014