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Old 08-07-2008, 10:16 AM   #1
rugger35
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Default Advice, please. Thank you!

Hello everyone -
The good news ... I won a brand new 2006 Honda VTX1800S, spec 3 in a charity raffle. WOOHOO!!!!

The bad news ... I've never ridden a bike before.

So, what to do? I've signed up for a starter bike course to prep for an endorsement/MSF class. I've insured the bike. I've purchased a DOT helmet, boots, gloves - everything that has been recommended to me.

Am I kidding myself that I can start out as a new rider on this bike? I've been seeing a trend while reading the various threads there seems to be a consensus to start out small and work your way up. But in this case, I have no choice - and I'm not complaining about it - free bike and all. HA.

For reference, I'm 6'3" and 250lbs, and I've felt comfortable walking the bike around - meaning the weight of the bike hasn't been too much for me so far.

Advice?
Thanks!!!
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Old 08-07-2008, 10:36 AM   #2
pushrod
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Take the bike out to a big, empty parking lot. Preferably one that is smooth, with no concrete stops, and relatively sand-free.

Practice stopping, both 'normal' and 'panic' stops. Keep your head up, and eyes forward. Try to stop moving in the forward direction without putting a foot down, then roll off.

Practice turning. Look 'through the turn'; where you want to end up, vice where the front tire is rolling. Do some tight quarters turns, like a u-turn in two parking spots.

Most folks recommend keeping the revs up a little and using the clutch to maintain motivation in tight spots. If the bike starts to oversteer (fall into the turn), give it some gas, and it'll stand right up.

Remember: If the bike starts to fall, get away from it! You cannot save it; and if you get caught underneath, you have a very good chance of getting badly hurt.

Good luck, and keep us posted on your progress!
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Old 08-07-2008, 10:47 AM   #3
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Just depends on how much restraint, how much your willing to practice off city streets in parking lots and if you have engine guards on your shiny new VTX. We dont recommend starting off on hondas largest cruiser one bit. Since you only have to pay tax on that thing buy a beater, ride it till your comfortable then sell it and enjoy your VTX. Or sell the VTX and buy a starter bike and decide if a cruiser is even for you after you get some miles under your belt. It can be done, but we dont recommend it. We dont like more negative statistics influencing the cage driving majority to kill our passion. Nor does your family I imagine.
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Old 08-07-2008, 11:20 AM   #4
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Rent a bike or buy a REALLY cheap bike on craigslist. Train on it. Ignore how ugly the cheap bike is or how crappy the rental bike is and learn to ride. Get all the basics down and then transition to the VTX.

It will be much easier that way and you will enjoy riding more and more quickly.

Congrats on the fortune of good luck!
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Old 08-07-2008, 05:46 PM   #5
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Hold that sucker WIDE OPEN 'till she loosens up some, and by the time it's all broken in you'll have all you need to know 'bout handlin' the biggies on two wheels. Hell, I started out on a '66 Munich Mammoth and except for the steel rods holding my head on, I'm as good as new. So go for it there big guy!
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Old 08-08-2008, 06:29 AM   #6
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The Hot Dog Church needs your motorcycle more than you do. Please donate it immediately so that Snarli can buy the Castrol R Genie in a Bottle.
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Old 08-08-2008, 10:43 AM   #7
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Sell it and get a starter! Quick! Even though you can ride it, that doesnt mean you'll have the skill to avoid someone pulling out on you. And thats only one situation there are millions.

This is the biggest missconseption about new riders thinking they can handle a bike. You must train yourself to beable to react under a surprise situation instead of just grabbing the brakes.

That is after you learned uturns, quick stops, downshifting quickly, swearving and those are just a few to mention.

Sure you can ride it, but how long can you keep it up.

Listen bottom line is your trying to start on the biggest heaviest bike for your first bike.

In a perfect world (w/no obsticles) there wouldnt be a problem. Match your skill level to the bikes potential or as close as you can get. Good luck.
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Old 08-09-2008, 02:27 PM   #8
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I agree totally with this last post MOKE1K. I recently started riding about 3 mths ago. I am a professional driver for a living of big trucks. I opened up a whole new world for me driving a motorcycle. I have come into some close calls and had to make some quick decissions. I am thankful that I did start off on a small bike. I am a female only 5'4 only weighing 140, I wanted to be safe I started off with only a 250 and learning something new everyday I ride. I am getting more confident and you will too, just practice your safety skills that you will learn on the safety course everyday and you will be fine. Most importantly be aware of your surroundings at intersections. Ride safe...
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Old 08-10-2008, 08:31 AM   #9
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I wish the lot of my customers would stay on a smaller bike for longer than a few months. Once a person does this they learn things like extracting power out of the bike they never thought it had.

Things like this 1. make you a better rider 2. lets you REALLY get know your bike and its limits.
Think of it as filling the shoes of your bike. Same thing as when you hear someone ask can you ride it too 100% of the bikes ability?

Where do you stack up, think about it!
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Old 09-12-2008, 12:38 PM   #10
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Practice makes perfect. Remember the first time you rode a bike when you were a kid. I think the same concept is true here.
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