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Old 03-28-2013, 08:32 PM   #1
myorangecrayon OP
Joined: Mar 2013
Location: Dallas, TX
Oddometer: 55
Noob discovers the world of motorcycles - First trip

I've been following the exploits and wanderings of many of the folks in here... did the obligatory watch and re-watch of LWR and LWD. And now it's my turn to take some tentative steps into documenting my new quasi-obsession!

I decided to start riding a motorcycle on somewhat of a whim - I live in downtown Dallas, and as much as I wanted a vintage car, space constraints and the inability to work on it in a public garage had kept me from doing it. I though I had found the perfect solution when I discovered Cafe Racers... they combined my love for engines, vintage quality products and do-it-yourself attitude. Within a week I had taken the MSF course and within two weeks I bought my first bike, a 1971 BMW R60/5!

I love that thing. The constant feeling of fear was enough to get me hooked. The noise and smell of a vintage engine, with all its quirks and constant maladies brought a smile to my face... the issue I did not count on was the fact that vintage motoring tends to not be consistent motoring. Nothing is more deflating than trying to go for a quick ride and finding your motorcycle leaking fuel out of the carbs, then remembering you can't go for a short ride because the old 6v charging system won't be happy. My ultimate goal is to do what the folks on this board do consistently: Load my camping gear in the back of a motorcycle, destination unknown, and see what kind of adventure evolves. Within 6 weeks and much reading and lusting, I finally pulled the trigger on my very first brand new vehicle last Tuesday (March 26), a 2012 Honda NC700X:

Yes, within 6 weeks of starting to ride I already have two motorcycles... needless to say, this is a addictive! This will be the story of my first ride, a 20 mile trip to Cedar Hill State Park in south Dallas. The amazing part is that in a motorcycle, even a short trip like that is a complete adventure. More coming up soon!
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Old 03-28-2013, 11:07 PM   #2
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Joined: Sep 2008
Location: Vankouver
Oddometer: 825
Talking Welcome to the asylum

Looks like you found a home, with your bikes a perfect mix also. I am curious at hearing your impression of the Honda.

Have fun
FEAR ===> False Expectation About Reality. GSA08
Work is just the time you have to spend between rides.

The motorcycle chronicles of Jackie & Valentino
The Southern Episode
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Old 03-29-2013, 04:21 AM   #3
Studly Adventurer
Joined: Aug 2012
Location: Southeast Lower Carolina
Oddometer: 733
Yes, within 6 weeks of starting to ride I already have two motorcycles... needless to say, this is a addictive!
Yep, it's too late for the immunization routine now. Two in six weeks is pretty much an indication of a severe case being hosted in your mind. We are your friends and will not do an intervention. Enjoy the disease. Do a road trip and take lots of pics.
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:25 AM   #4
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Joined: Aug 2011
Location: Texas
Oddometer: 308
Very cool!
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Old 03-31-2013, 07:25 AM   #5
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Joined: Mar 2007
Location: At the keyboard.
Oddometer: 6,488
There is no hope.... listen to the voices!
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Old 03-31-2013, 06:15 PM   #6
Gnarly Adventurer
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Joined: Nov 2010
Location: Bergen,NJ
Oddometer: 102
Welcome to the addiction
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Old 03-31-2013, 08:18 PM   #7
Studly Adventurer
Joined: May 2009
Location: where elephants roam
Oddometer: 684
You will meet the nicest people on a Honda! Nice bike!
Have fun!
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Old 04-02-2013, 08:44 AM   #8
Gnarly Adventurer
Joined: Feb 2007
Location: Western NC
Oddometer: 246

I do like that beemer!

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Old 04-02-2013, 10:53 AM   #9
North GA bound
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Joined: Nov 2012
Location: Atlanta GA
Oddometer: 140
Yes, it' s addictive, see you on the road.
Live your own life, for you will die your own death.

If you Don't Believe in Freedom For All -You Don't Believe in Freedom at All
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Old 04-02-2013, 11:04 AM   #10
Bug Dr.
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Joined: Apr 2008
Location: Southern Ozarks
Oddometer: 281
Talk about getting bitten hard!
As an NC 700 and BMW (not a classic one like yours) owner myself, I think you will be quite pleased with your new purchase. It is fun bike.

Looking forward to the rest of the story.
"Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms - to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way" Viktor E. Frankl
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Old 04-02-2013, 05:04 PM   #11
Beastly Adventurer
Joined: Feb 2007
Location: Granbury Texas
Oddometer: 2,816
Nice bikes. Really like the BMW. Now fill that puppy up with gas and do a real ride, SW of Dallas towards Granbury and Glen Rose are some very nice roads that you and either of those bikes will really like. Or just keep on going and head to the Hill Country, this weather will not last forever.

Enjoy your new obsession...It only gets better.
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Old 04-02-2013, 05:07 PM   #12
One Fat Roach
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Joined: Mar 2013
Location: PNW
Oddometer: 1,615
Originally Posted by FotoTEX View Post

Enjoy your new obsession...It only gets better.
Truth!! I'm a beginner rider as well and that quote sums it up best
Originally Posted by Apple Jam View Post
just cause we ride fast doesn't mean we're in a hurry
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Old 04-03-2013, 09:57 PM   #13
myorangecrayon OP
Joined: Mar 2013
Location: Dallas, TX
Oddometer: 55
This past weekend I went on my first adventure - a trip from downtown Dallas to Cedar Hill State Park, about 19 miles each way. I packed light, as I was only going to be gone one night and it wasn't supposed to rain or be cold.

A few people have asked me about my impression of the NC700X, so I'll give my uneducated, inexperienced impressions of the motorcycle. I'll preface this by saying that my experience is limited to my '71 BMW and random scooters I rode while in college, so I don't have many sources of comparison for the bike. The Honda is exceedingly beginner friendly. The engine is torque-y, so much so that you don't even need to twist the throttle to start going from a dead stop if you are extra careful with releasing the clutch. The exhaust note is satisfyingly deep without being loud or obnoxious. The bike accelerates very linearly without being peaky, and it encourages you ride efficiently, not necessarily quickly. The handling, as best as I can describe it, is like a scooter. The bike seems to swing under you without much effort, and I'm sure that scooter like handling has something to do with the low center of gravity for the platform. I wouldn't exactly call the NC700X "fast," though it's plenty fast enough for me. I think, regardless of displacement (almost 700cc) that this bike is a great entry point for beginners. I feel safe and haven't felt like it's too much bike for me. The Honda wants you to be conservative, but I'm sure it has the potential to really give it the beans and explore the limits of grip... something that I won't be doing, as I really look forward to seeing my 29th birthday!

The '71 is a total death trap, in case anyone was wondering. That's why it's fun!

Anyways, the ride down to Cedar Hill was somewhat eventful as 1. It was quite windy. 2. I didn't exactly know how to get there, and my GPS is in my phone, which was in my jacket pocket. Wind on a motorcycle for a beginner is downright terrifying... for those of you familiar with Texas, the weather here changes in seconds, as does the strength and direction of the wind. I distinctly remember having a solid lean to the left, against the wind, in order to go straight... just to have the direction of the wind change suddenly and finding myself running on the white lines adjacent to the median. I have some applicable experience with wind from my years of riding a road bicycle while training for triathlons, but on a bicycle the wind is an annoyance and increases the effort required (unless its on your back), while on a motorcycle it's dangerous! Nonetheless, after fighting the wind and at least 3 U-turns, I made it to the campsite!

Pitched the tent, realized I wanted a fire but had no firewood

Most people need a truck for this:

Roughin' it:

Glamour shots:

I haven't had any children, but now I understand why parents incessantly take pictures of them doing menial activities. I've been doing the same thing with my new toy.

It's hard to describe how much fun I had doing this:

Fire, book, soup and this:

Right behind my tent! The night was actually pretty miserable, as I kept thinking someone in an RV was surely about my ram my new motorcycle. Alas, I woke up to everything being fine, but an upcoming Thunderstorm Warning in Dallas. So early Sunday I hustled to put everything away and ride home, I'm not quite ready to ride around in the Texas thunderstorm. Of course, as soon as I made it home the sun came out and it ended up being a beautiful sunny day. Texas weatherman are less reliable than a Harley (ha! I kid... Harleys are wonderful machines, ridden by upstanding members of society). Now we're all home, planning the next trip to Austin for the MotoGP race at Circuit of the Americas the weekend of the 19th. Thanks everyone for the positive messages, I've caught the bug for sure! More to come!

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Old 04-04-2013, 12:15 PM   #14
Gnarly Adventurer
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Joined: Sep 2007
Location: Maryland
Oddometer: 400
Really good stuff.
Welcome bro.
On your impression of the NC700.
I read this somewhere before and I
have found it to be very true.
"It is more fun to ride a slow bike fast,
than to ride a fast bike slow".
I'll just add that I ride the sh#* out
of my KLR.
2008 KLR rider
Lets ride !
"The poets down here don't write nuthin' at all
They just stand back and let it all be." Springsteen
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Old 04-04-2013, 12:22 PM   #15
Joined: Feb 2013
Location: Ontario, Canada
Oddometer: 3
Nice write up and photos.
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