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Old 06-03-2013, 09:50 PM   #1
Nesto1000
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Finally Started riding on the street!

So as the title says, I finally started riding on the street!

I was in the neighborhood for about 2-3 weeks on the new Ninja.

Last Friday I decided to ride the bike to work. I have to say that I was pretty nervous when I took it to work as it was my first time riding it on a public road that sees numerous vehicles a day and has traffic lights.

I have to say that I'm still not comfortable with turning right on a street. Luckily my workplace is literally down the street. Albeit, it's still about 15-25 minutes away so I still get a nice ride out of it. The only time that I really need to turn right is when I'm coming home to turn into my neighborhood. I can make the turns correctly, but I just don't feel very comfortable with them. Although if I'm turning right from a stop (eg stop sign or traffic lights) I do a perfect right turn. It's only when I'm turning right and I'm not at a complete stop that I feel uneasy.

I did have a close encounter in the morning on my way to work today though. I was going to turn left (much easier than a right ) and looked both ways. I did not see a car coming into the lane that I was going to. I specifically remember seeing no cars coming from that lane! Maybe I need to get my eyes checked? The car was really really close to hitting me, but they managed to break in time which I'm grateful for. Lesson learned from this, is that I need to double check each time that I turn.

Also, for some reason when I drive to work, I can't really feel the wind. Or should I say the wind drag because I can feel that awesome wind hitting my body . I think that you guys know what I'm getting at. Anyways, when I'm driving home, I can feel the wind a lot more as if it wants to tip me over or something. It's not really that strong, and I'm not really worried about it, but I do find it a bit odd. I go about the same speed on both directions. The only two variables that change is the direction and time of day. When I'm driving to work, I'm heading North at about 7:00-7:30ish in the morning with a shining sun outside. When I'm leaving work, I'm heading South in between 5:00-7:00 pm.

Another thing that happened was that I finally learned how to take off quick enough from a stop. It's amazing what pressure can make you do when you're the first person in line at a stop light. I've also almost perfected my up shifting to be very smooth as well. I just slightly jerk when I up shift every once in a while.

On the very first day riding on the street, when coming to a stop light I almost freaked out lightly hit the front break and smashed on the rear break. The rear tire screeched to a halt and luckily I didn't fall or anything, but from that moment on I learned how to gauge when to hit the brakes or engine break or cruise to a stop by holding the clutch in.

Just wanted to share this with you guys...
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Old 06-03-2013, 09:59 PM   #2
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to be honest eith you I think it eould be a good idea to take another riding course or even a track day. your still scared and too much apprehension can be bad. not only for you but others aswell.
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Old 06-03-2013, 10:11 PM   #3
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to be honest eith you I think it eould be a good idea to take another riding course or even a track day. your still scared and too much apprehension can be bad. not only for you but others aswell.
A riding course definitely. I wouldn't recommend doing a trackday just yet. Your not comfortable enough on your bike. Glad you got back on the house after your first incident on the GSXR. Be careful out there man. This may seem like something you really want to do buy ridings not for everyone though. Good luck and again, be careful.
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Old 06-03-2013, 11:19 PM   #4
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I feel like I have this down. While in the neighborhood I went to a small church and practiced on their parking lot.

I'm still having trouble with U-Turns, but I almost got that down. I just don't really have throtle control at I can do right turns, but the only and main right turn that I take right now is the one into my neighborhood. Right next to the street that I'm turning on is a huge ditch. Guess that that's what makes me uneasy because even when I'm in my truck I'm scared of turning to the right on there also when I'm going home from work I turn right and have no problems at all. Then again this could be because it's being done from a complete stop since I'm very conformable with those.

Anyways the fall from the gixxer was a combo of many things. First was inexperience with the machine. It was only the second day that I had it and I hadn't even ridden it around the neighborhood. Second it was a very damp day so the road was a bit slippery. Third road that I was pulling out from had a lot of mud, gravel, and pot holes. Fourth I was looking down when I turned. You look to where you're going. I was looking down at the ground and guess where I ended up... I can only blame myself for riding in such conditions and not target fixating properly.

By no means am I saying that I'm really good at riding, but I don't think that I'm bad enough to need to go back to take the MSF course. I know how to react when a car suddenly stops in front of me, I know how to sorta do a U-Turn, I know how to take curves, I'm learning the limits of the breaks on the bike to stop quickly enough without locking the front or rear up, and I don't remember anything else that we were evaluated on. I remember S.E.E. which I do every time that I get to an intersection, well I'm actually constantly S.E.E'ing actually. I always wear my gear. I always put my blinkers on when I'm turning or changing lanes (pet peeve of mine). I always use both brakes when attempting to stop using them. I haven't really passed anyone up on the bike, I tend to go just above the speed limit or just follow a car 4-12 seconds behind them.

I'll gladly retake the course if I don't have to pay for it though. And if I can get it to fit my schedule with work and class as well.
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Old 06-03-2013, 11:30 PM   #5
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Man I was nervous when I first hit the streets and the freeway. The wind on your body is for sure a new feeling ..but one I love. Dont let it freak you out.. hold on to the bike but dont death grip. You will notice a big difference if you relax a little bit. The handlebars and bike feel every movement you make if you grip hard with you legs and arms a sight movement will make the bike move...especially the smaller bike like the 250 you ride and the 300 I am on. It can make you feel like the bike is wobbling or like you are tracking back and forth inside your lane. It is because you are ... its not the wind... it is you moving the bike with your body movements. It has been/is a hard thing to get use to. When I first take off I have to remind myself to relax and just fall into the bike .. like sinking into a comfortable chair. Not to sound all zen and crazy but become one with the bike. You control where the bike goes .. as long as the wheels are moving its not gonna fall over ... it will hold itself up .. your body position and the way you handle the bars make it go if that makes sense.

As far as changing lanes... be careful. I had a guy show me on a chair .. yes a chair .. how to use my body to get around and get a better view to change lanes. The helmet makes you feel restricted in view .. in a way it does make it harder to see. Work on adjusting your mirrors to see just past your bike. Then get in a chair ... with sitting backwards (back to you) and practice putting your chin moving your body down .. chin down and turn putting your chin towards the top of your shoulder. Do this without moving your arms they have to stay straight or the bike will follow your body. This has helped me get my head around so I can get a better view of my blind spot. This is good for right hand lane changes. For left hand changes sit on your bike and hold on with your right hand (gotta stay on the throttle) let go with your left hand .. drop it down a bit and turn to the left... do this withou moving your right arm.. again the bike will follow your body. You can also do the same movement as above for right lane changes if you dont feel comfortable letting go with one hand yet. The chair is funny but do it it worked for me .. and wear your helmet when doing it.

On the jerk when shifting gears... you might be holding the throttle down so you are popping the clutch. Practice rolling all the way off the throttle ... shift the gear ease out the cluth and roll back on the throttle. The 250 will be more forgiving if you gun it accidentally. Not like the bike you had before .. you can dump the clutch but as long as your not on the throttle it wont jerk like that .. it may jump a little but the more you practice rolling on and off the throttle in fast shift situations the better you will get. Find a road with alot of stop signs in a neighborhood that has a good distance between them so you can practice upshift and downshift. Again it worked for me. Or a big parking / business strip center lot thats empty on the weekend.

No ABS .. grabbing that front brake is not your friend. parking lot practice again. Work on using both brakes to stop minimum front brake and down shifting to engine brake to slow the bike down. I down shift alot more now and grab the brake (tap tap) just to set my light off and down shift. I downshift .. grab a little brake and then downshift again watching the RPMS and listening to the sound of bike as it engine brakes. I dont grab full break and mostly rear until right before I come to a complete stop. But its like a dance between downshift and braking .. something you will need to practice but not on a busy street.

Someone mentioned it and it might help .. take the MSF again. Learning and instruction .. you cant get enough.

Hope this helps and these are my opinions and thoughts ... someone may say I am way off .. but it works for me. Everyone rides there own ride and does things they feel comfortable with. You will have to find your comfort zone. Keep the rubber side down and have fun.

PS .. I have only been riding on 2 wheels for almost 2 months... and still learning myself. Just sharing some of my experiences so far.

Last edited by Rowdy76; 06-03-2013 at 11:35 PM.
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Old 06-03-2013, 11:37 PM   #6
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Old 06-03-2013, 11:47 PM   #7
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No track day yet, def not. Another course? Nah youre fine, you can dowload the MSF course and practice the exercises yourself honestly. Up to you really, I think you just need to ride around a lot more though, just try to not ride at times where its going to have heavy traffic. Get use to the bike, do not use your rear brake from now on at all. Use only the front, probably get into the habit of using two fingers. Understand how your front brakes work, how your suspension reacts to front brakes, it loads your suspension. Maybe they'll come a time where you accidentally grab too much front brake and Remember thats not the bad part, quickly releasing the front brake after something like that is going to get you in more trouble. slowly release, be smooth. Practice stopping in your neighborhood, its also one of the exercises from the MSF course.
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Old 06-03-2013, 11:59 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rowdy76 View Post
Man I was nervous when I first hit the streets and the freeway. The wind on your body is for sure a new feeling ..but one I love. Dont let it freak you out.. hold on to the bike but dont death grip. You will notice a big difference if you relax a little bit. The handlebars and bike feel every movement you make if you grip hard with you legs and arms a sight movement will make the bike move...especially the smaller bike like the 250 you ride and the 300 I am on. It can make you feel like the bike is wobbling or like you are tracking back and forth inside your lane. It is because you are ... its not the wind... it is you moving the bike with your body movements. It has been/is a hard thing to get use to. When I first take off I have to remind myself to relax and just fall into the bike .. like sinking into a comfortable chair. Not to sound all zen and crazy but become one with the bike. You control where the bike goes .. as long as the wheels are moving its not gonna fall over ... it will hold itself up .. your body position and the way you handle the bars make it go if that makes sense.

As far as changing lanes... be careful. I had a guy show me on a chair .. yes a chair .. how to use my body to get around and get a better view to change lanes. The helmet makes you feel restricted in view .. in a way it does make it harder to see. Work on adjusting your mirrors to see just past your bike. Then get in a chair ... with sitting backwards (back to you) and practice putting your chin moving your body down .. chin down and turn putting your chin towards the top of your shoulder. Do this without moving your arms they have to stay straight or the bike will follow your body. This has helped me get my head around so I can get a better view of my blind spot. This is good for right hand lane changes. For left hand changes sit on your bike and hold on with your right hand (gotta stay on the throttle) let go with your left hand .. drop it down a bit and turn to the left... do this withou moving your right arm.. again the bike will follow your body. You can also do the same movement as above for right lane changes if you dont feel comfortable letting go with one hand yet. The chair is funny but do it it worked for me .. and wear your helmet when doing it.

On the jerk when shifting gears... you might be holding the throttle down so you are popping the clutch. Practice rolling all the way off the throttle ... shift the gear ease out the cluth and roll back on the throttle. The 250 will be more forgiving if you gun it accidentally. Not like the bike you had before .. you can dump the clutch but as long as your not on the throttle it wont jerk like that .. it may jump a little but the more you practice rolling on and off the throttle in fast shift situations the better you will get. Find a road with alot of stop signs in a neighborhood that has a good distance between them so you can practice upshift and downshift. Again it worked for me. Or a big parking / business strip center lot thats empty on the weekend.

No ABS .. grabbing that front brake is not your friend. parking lot practice again. Work on using both brakes to stop minimum front brake and down shifting to engine brake to slow the bike down. I down shift alot more now and grab the brake (tap tap) just to set my light off and down shift. I downshift .. grab a little brake and then downshift again watching the RPMS and listening to the sound of bike as it engine brakes. I dont grab full break and mostly rear until right before I come to a complete stop. But its like a dance between downshift and braking .. something you will need to practice but not on a busy street.

Someone mentioned it and it might help .. take the MSF again. Learning and instruction .. you cant get enough.

Hope this helps and these are my opinions and thoughts ... someone may say I am way off .. but it works for me. Everyone rides there own ride and does things they feel comfortable with. You will have to find your comfort zone. Keep the rubber side down and have fun.

PS .. I have only been riding on 2 wheels for almost 2 months... and still learning myself. Just sharing some of my experiences so far.
Cool, maybe you two could go ride with each other. One thing im really going to disagree with is using the rear brake. do not use it at all. stick with using the front brake ONLY. Its not going to help you stop much quicker, get good at emergency braking with the front brake only. Oh and for the lane change, counter steering helps, check out a video on it maybe. practice that.. it'll help you later on as well so if you have to dodge some debris or something.
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Old 06-04-2013, 12:04 AM   #9
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A riding course definitely. I wouldn't recommend doing a trackday just yet. Your not comfortable enough on your bike. Glad you got back on the house after your first incident on the GSXR. Be careful out there man. This may seem like something you really want to do buy ridings not for everyone though. Good luck and again, be careful.
yes please dont do a track day, i dont want someone taking my sessions away from me.... honestly.

But take another msf. and practice figure 8's in a parking lot

breaking was my issue when i started, when i was riding my bike home and my buddy was behind me in my truck, he was like DUDE you would slow down to like 5 mph 100 feet from the street light! what is your issue

my rebuttal was the small breaks :P
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Old 06-04-2013, 12:04 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Umayr View Post
No track day yet, def not. Another course? Nah youre fine, you can dowload the MSF course and practice the exercises yourself honestly. Up to you really, I think you just need to ride around a lot more though, just try to not ride at times where its going to have heavy traffic. Get use to the bike, do not use your rear brake from now on at all. Use only the front, probably get into the habit of using two fingers. Understand how your front brakes work, how your suspension reacts to front brakes, it loads your suspension. Maybe they'll come a time where you accidentally grab too much front brake and Remember thats not the bad part, quickly releasing the front brake after something like that is going to get you in more trouble. slowly release, be smooth. Practice stopping in your neighborhood, its also one of the exercises from the MSF course.
I have to remember to use the front brake lol. I rode a quad for so long and I never used the front brake. So I have to remind myself to actually use it. It keep my fingers on it and use it to tap the brakes but I have been practicing actually using both .. with full rear brake at final stop and leaving my foot there especially on inclines .. which I have leaving my house in both directions. I do see your point of learning the correct amount of pressure to apply to the front brake as on most bikes too much and say hello to the pavement. Back brake is alot more forgiving and easier to ride out if it locks up.
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Old 06-04-2013, 12:06 AM   #11
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Cool, maybe you two could go ride with each other. One thing im really going to disagree with is using the rear brake. do not use it at all. stick with using the front brake ONLY. Its not going to help you stop much quicker, get good at emergency braking with the front brake only. Oh and for the lane change, counter steering helps, check out a video on it maybe. practice that.. it'll help you later on as well so if you have to dodge some debris or something.
yeah i wont lie... its good to keep your rear in the bag of tricks, but i hardly ever use it....


for some reason i have this stigma.. every time i have to really do an emergency brake, i always lock the rear and stall the bike.... well... yeah i cant lie.. it happens from time to time. the streets are rough. thats why i ride track now
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Old 06-04-2013, 12:07 AM   #12
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f3xq1w
OMFG

its been too long man, haha my stomach hurts from laughing so much!
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Old 06-04-2013, 12:35 AM   #13
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I have to remember to use the front brake lol. I rode a quad for so long and I never used the front brake. So I have to remind myself to actually use it. It keep my fingers on it and use it to tap the brakes but I have been practicing actually using both .. with full rear brake at final stop and leaving my foot there especially on inclines .. which I have leaving my house in both directions. I do see your point of learning the correct amount of pressure to apply to the front brake as on most bikes too much and say hello to the pavement. Back brake is alot more forgiving and easier to ride out if it locks up.
Your back brake doesnt really help you stop much, most of your stopping power is at the front brake. 95-98ish percent

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OMFG

its been too long man, haha my stomach hurts from laughing so much!
hahah for sure, lets go riding. especially since you think i woke up in a new Bugatti haha
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:11 AM   #14
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Oh and for the lane change, counter steering helps
There's no other way to steer a bike at speed. That's like saying use the steering wheel to turn a car.

As far as braking, if you're only going to use one brake, use the front. There's nothing wrong with using both brakes together.
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Old 06-04-2013, 06:17 AM   #15
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The only time you don't use the front brake is when you're stopping in gravel/dirt.

The rear brake is convenient when stopped at a light that is going uphill too. You can free up both hands while waiting for the light to turn green without rolling back.
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Old 06-04-2013, 06:58 AM   #16
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The only time you don't use the front brake is when you're stopping in gravel/dirt.
Or if you go off road into the grass
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Old 06-04-2013, 07:36 AM   #17
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Cool, maybe you two could go ride with each other. One thing im really going to disagree with is using the rear brake. do not use it at all. stick with using the front brake ONLY. Its not going to help you stop much quicker, get good at emergency braking with the front brake only. Oh and for the lane change, counter steering helps, check out a video on it maybe. practice that.. it'll help you later on as well so if you have to dodge some debris or something.
bad advice
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Old 06-04-2013, 07:52 AM   #18
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Quote:
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Your back brake doesnt really help you stop much, most of your stopping power is at the front brake. 95-98ish
if you let it be that much, it is that high

practice using both brakes cuz 1 day that back brake could be the difference between stopping and hitting an object

preface your bad advice with your limited riding experience please
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Old 06-04-2013, 08:08 AM   #19
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Quote:
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There's no other way to steer a bike at speed. That's like saying use the steering wheel to turn a car.

As far as braking, if you're only going to use one brake, use the front. There's nothing wrong with using both brakes together.
to add on to that if you dont mind and u may agree to disagree BEVO but ive just made it a habit to learn how to engine break and i use it to slow down and then add additional braking to it its not used as an emergency brake by any means but u def notice a DIFFERENCE for slowing down such as stop sign to stop sign
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Old 06-04-2013, 08:32 AM   #20
Bevo
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Originally Posted by IrvGotti421 View Post
to add on to that if you dont mind and u may agree to disagree BEVO but ive just made it a habit to learn how to engine break and i use it to slow down and then add additional braking to it its not used as an emergency brake by any means but u def notice a DIFFERENCE for slowing down such as stop sign to stop sign
Yea, it's a good idea to close the throttle when you want to stop
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