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A neighbor’s advice

1494 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Munenn
I am new to motorcycle riding. A good friend introduced me to it after he purchased his first bike. When I picked out my bike I had it delivered right to the house. The plan was to purchase the necessary gear (gloves, helmet, boots, etc), take a motorcycle safety course, and go for my license. Timing was such that the next safety course was a week away.

I bought the helmet and gloves and had high top sneakers (Adidas GSG9s) that would suffice. I got the courage up to roll the bike out of the garage and start practicing tight turns in my driveway. Well, that lasted all of two days. After that I started to venture down my gravel driveway into the cul-de-sac. Riding in a big circle was getting very boring very fast. I was getting anxious to ride on a real road in a straight line.

Finally my patience was gone and the day before my rider safety course I mounted the bike and rolled it outside for another practice session. I made it into the cul-de-sac and headed down the street. So far so good. I stopped right next to the stop sign and contemplated whether I should go left or right. I always went out left so I thought what the heck, I’ll go right and check out that area in the neighborhood. I pulled out of my street and shifted into second. Wow! That was easy! I’m cruising along now up the hill, passing an old couple walking their dog. I crest the hill and start going downhill. Hmmm, I don’t remember the hill being this steep. No problem, I read numerous books on the proper usage of the brakes. I gently squeezed the front brake while applying the rear brake and came to a good stop. Now here I was again. Either a left or a right were my options. Well if I went left I had no idea where I would end up. The right would get me into the beginning of a big circle around town. That’s easy enough, right it is. Now to take off. The rear of my bike is higher than the front and the road in front of me has one lane each way with no shoulder, just trees and shrubs. Your typical tight country road. I slowly pull out and begin to go right. Hey, why isn’t the bike going into the lane I wanted? I’m in the oncoming traffic lane! Okay, turn more. Wait, I’m out of road! Crap, where are the brakes! Oh no, no more pavement, just soft dirt! The bike makes it across the street into the soft dirt and tall grass on the side of the road. In slow motion the bike tips over on the left side with me under it. Great! Less than half a mile into my first ride and I dumped the bike (albeit gently) on the side of the road. I quickly got the bike upright and mounted the bike. Everything was fine. More dirt and grass on me than the bike. Now to get out of this mess. I roll the bike backwards out of the dirt onto a driveway about ten feet behind me. By now the person living in the house that I fell in front of came out with his young son. I managed to get the bike rolled backwards to his driveway when I realized oh great, the driveway goes steeply downhill. No problem, I read about this too. Hold the bike with the brake while applying throttle and smoothly roll forward. Heck, I did this when I was sixteen learning how to drive stick. How hard can this be? After stalling the bike the sixth time I stopped to regain my composure. The guy is still standing there watching me with his son. He is amused. I have the feeling he has a bike and is enjoying the moment. I lift up my visor and apologize for being in his driveway. He yells back, “no problem”. I stall the bike again. I turn to him, feeling real dumb at this point, and say, “this is my first bike. I’m taking the rider course tomorrow”. He smiles and says, “you should have waited for the course.” Great, a comedian! I lower my visor and give it my best attempt yet. The bike lurches forward out of his driveway and back onto the street I came from. The rest of the way home I kept the bike in first gear and wouldn’t pass 10 mph. I got the bike in the garage, cleaned off the dirt and waited for the safety class.
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Hahahaha, Glad you can laugh about it! :lol:

We all have our "first" ride, albeit mine was at 9yrs old, I still remember it 35yrs later!

I'll make mine short and sweet. When I turned throttle it seemed to turn all the way, no one told me you could just turn it a little bit! My Fox mini bike stopped becuase of the "God sent" tree that jumped in front of me while the rear tire keep spinning and throwing dirt! My wrist was stuck to the throttle in the "scared poopless position" and wouldn't let go! It did keep me from going of a cliff looking like Wile E Coyote!

I went on to race motocross for years figuring nothing could scare me that bad again, and I was right! :wink: I still race dirt, although it's in Enduro racing. I bought my first street bike last year, a new Honda Magna. I just fell in love with that V-4 and the sound of those Vance and Hines pipes. It gives me the best of all worlds for what I like, speed, acceleration, cruising, farting around, etc.

I look forward to the discussions of bikes here on this forum!
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I was a scrawny 13-year-old when I got my first taste of motorcycle riding, on my uncle's WW II surplus, Signal Corps Harley 45.

I had to keep it upright, 'cause if I went down there was no way I'd get that monster back upright!

I missed the windmill okay; made a circle of the house and the front pasture; got back in front of the garage from whence I'd started, and happily parked that sucker!

I've fun on quite a few other motorcycles since then, of course, but that first ride is certainly still remembered.

:), Art
My beginner story isn't great, but here it is anyway. I started riding late in life after blowing my knees on bicycles. As a long-time hot rodder and idiot I couldn't do the intelligent thing and buy a used small-to-medium sized bike- too whimpy. So I bought a brand new BMW R1200C. No, I didn't wreck it. I did have a lot of trouble with the clutch at first- especially on hills. Funny seeing as how I've been driving standard trans cars most of my life, but there you go. One fine day, shortly after actually passing the MSF course, I was stopped at a stop sign on a steep hill, trying to start and go right. I stalled the bike 3 times trying to pull out- the last time the motor was so unhappy it backfired hard enough to blow the plastic intake track completely off the left throttle body.

About a week later, 2 hours into a ride, I again pulled up to a stop sign at a "T" intersection and stalled the thing six times in a row. This time, the road was completely flat. I felt like a total putz. People were driving by, gawking at the big shiny new bike and the fat old jerk who couldn't even ride the thing. I had to roll the bike back off the road and sit down for a while before I finally realized I was letting the clutch out too fast every time.

I remembered this today because 14,000+ miles experience has passed since then, and I'm riding bike #2, yet even so, today I stalled the thing on that same damn intersection.

At least it had been a while.
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