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Any tips on test riding new unfamiliar bikes?

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Ms Supernego, Nov 25, 2007.

  1. Having just passed the pre-provisional test, I'm ready for a bike upgrade.

    I've been thinking about test riding a few different bikes to find out what I like but I've got to admit, the prospect of taking off on an unfamiliar bike in heavily conjested traffic, uphill streets & sharp corners from some of these dealer locations makes me nervous :shock: And then to add to that, is the bike itself which may be too heavy or just too damn weird to ride.

    Does anyone have any tips or experiences on test riding new unfamiliar bikes safely?
  2. Sit on the bike in the showroom and move it around, make sure
    you're OK with size/weight and everything else. Cos if you crash
    it you probably bought it.
    Make an appointment for around 9.30-10am, the roads are pretty quiet then.
    Ask the shop dudes and dudettes where the best route is for a test and
    get familiar with it on your bike first so you have one less thing to
    worry about (i.e. navigation).
  3. I know what you mean :) I wanted to try riding a bike other than my own, but I was very nervous that it would be very difficult and that I'd stuff it up somehow.

    All of that goes away after you take off though, its just a confidence thing. The controls will be almost exactly the same, its all very natural. And once you've ridden one different bike you'll want to try them all :D

    I'd advise you just to go out there during the week if possible and ride it around some backstreets for a few minutes before going out into traffic. If thats not possible, don't worry so much its not hard once you start doing it.
  4. in all seriousness, when you hope on a unfamiliar bike, don't think of it as a different bike, it's just a bike, just make sure you easy on the throttle, taking it easy to you get a bit of a feel for the brakes, and how the bike handles

    but using the thought, that it's just a bike, has had me throwing my fathers 400kg cruiser around (as much as a cruiser can be) scraping the foot boards and pipes
  5. Just take it normally like you do on you're bike first.. The new bike might not like it as much as you're one but you'll learn how to handle it very quickly...

    I remembered when I borrowed someones bike. I just thought of it as my own(even though its a completly different feeling). After 10min or so I got used to it.

    It would also help if you know that area that you're gonna test ride it on.
  6. Ride the bike the way you would normally ride, but just take it easy until you've given yourself a chance to see how it feels.
    Test the brakes...they might be vastly more powerful or vastly worse than you are used to...No point finding that out when you need them.

    And of course....get your balance, and watch the throttle.

  7. Thanks everyone for your input and I've taken all of it onboard.

    I actually took a Kawasaki Eliminator for a very brief test ride yesterday and everything you said was true...riding a bike is riding a bike, no matter what it is but I had to laugh...it was MY bike that felt different when I got back on it...like a bicycle...thought I could even maybe do a hand stand on it! :LOL: