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10 days and 1, 000 KM in

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Donuts, Jul 30, 2009.

  1. Hey guys,

    Finally got a bike and am on the road :grin: . Riding a nice ZZR 250, doing 50 KM each way to Uni 3 days a week.

    So far? Really enjoying it :cool: . In the week leading up, I was a bit stressed and worried (read lots of bad things here, and elsewhere, and got the parental stress factor), almost to the point where I wanted to say "forget it", but now that I have the bike and am riding it everywhere, that's gone (even for Mum :wink: ).

    I did my busiest ride today (leaving 8 am, arriving at 9 am - 30 mins earlier than my friend who did the same trip in her car :p ), and lane split probably 200-300 metres of traffic at one roundabot :shock: . Glad I wasn't in the car today :LOL: .

    I still have a long way to go - I take roundabouts slowly (~40 km/h), especially in the wet. Some corners have been a bit sketchy, and sometimes I just make really silly mistakes (eg. losing track of a car, then suddenly having it alongside me, or thinking too much about immediate traffic and not enough about the upcoming intersection). I've already had 2 petrol related incidents, first one I stalled at a roundabout and didn't think to switch to reserve until I'd failed to start it (pulled onto median strip + realised), then today riding to uni I was riding in heavy traffic (as mentioned) and the bike felt a bit underpowered when I dropped down a gear near the end... realised I was probably low on petrol so flipped the switch, then totally forgot I'd done it until I read "360" on my odometer... Ran out of petrol literally 50 metres from a servo :LOL: , felt like a bit of a goose wheeling my bike in :p .

    The thing that gets me most is the ability to distance / seperate yourself from traffic. In a car I was always stuck in / behind packs, watching moronic maneuvers and lane changes... now, I still see those things (and be wary of them occuring), but generally it's in packs ahead or behind me, and not directly around me (assumedly because I try to position myself away from traffic that is potentially going to do those things).

    I've had very few "Oh crap" encounters, though I did have a couple today :(.
    First off, turning left at a set of lights using a slip lane, the cars opposite had a right turn arrow. I followed 2 cars out, aware that cars were slowly approaching but having plenty of time (3 lanes and left was clear). I took off into the left a little slower than usual (had just been drizzling), and the first car to complete the turn decided a couple of seconds after getting into the middle lane that my lane was better, so swung wildly into it (not putting me in danger), saw me then swung back.. waited a couple of seconds, then did the same :? . They then proceeded to tailgate me, which didn't please me so I did a big headcheck (already knowing where the cars that had turned had ended up) and did a sweeping turn to the far right lane, passed a guy in the middle then popped in there, well and truly away from my 'friend'.
    Secondly, approaching a roundabout I was next to a double trailered truck (the soil/rocks kind), and following a decent sized transport truck. I was paying more attention to what they were doing than what was happening in the roundabout (stupidly), and someone popping the indicator on at the last moment caught me off guard. If it'd been dry and I didn't have someone right up my butt, I would've jumped on the brakes, but it was a bit wet and I wasn't sure how close the car behind was so I ended up cutting him off (as had both of the trucks, I think), felt like a tool for doing it and could've been much worse :(. I'm kind of glad it happened though as a bit of a wakeup to stay alert.

    Other than that, I (surprisingly) find that most cars sees me and are generally courteous, except the ladies in their 4WDs who don't seem to, or don't seem to mind that I'm there, but I didn't expect much else :roll: - was the same in the car :wink: .

    I'm glad I found this site well before I finally committed to riding - I've read so much and thought over so many situations I've read here, it's been a great help (and will continue to be, I'm sure :D). Cheers guys.
  2. Congratulations on a good start. You're 3 days and a lot of km's up on me. I've been riding each day since starting on Saturday. I haven't had a scarey moment yet, but I'm waiting. I feel really slow as well (at round-abouts and corners in general).

    +1 for this site being priceless in learning about roadcraft from a two wheels perspective before starting riding.
  3. I guess I'm averaging 100 KM a day, because I've been trying to go for a decent ride even on the days I don't have to go to uni. I'm thinking of trying some twisties up near Ferntree Gully tomorrow, for a bit of fun :) Nothing too tricky, truth be told I'll probably be getting overtaken by cars, not the other way around :oops:
  4. hey :) would you guys like to join the Saturday learners ride ...

    Experienced riders come along and give us newbies lots of great advice ,
    we do car park practise and usually head off for a ride as well ...

    check it out here .. :)

    Prolly gunna get my butt kicked for this one :roll: :twisted: ....
  5. I'd love to Kitt but I'm generally busy on Saturdays unfortunately :(
  6. Thanks Kit! I'm planning on coming along real soon - maybe next weekend?. I wanted to get a bit more experience up before venturing out to St Kilda :oops: I rode with my brother today. Group riding is a whole lot more fun :)
  7. good stuff donuts, thats a lot of kays daily for a learner!