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Beginning the journey... My experience as a novice

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Samboss260, Jun 2, 2012.

  1. With some of the great diary type threads on here about novice riders, I thought that I would start a thread about my experience so far, and then add to it as a progress.

    Mods, not sure if this should go in the New Riders section, so please move as required.

    Having never ridden a bike before ( only cycling ), I did a two day course at Qride, which included the competency assessment and by 3pm on the Sunday I had my RE license. That was about three weeks ago.

    And for the last two months, I have been living and breathing www.bikesales.com, www.gumtree.com and www.trading post.com looking for a bike. I was supposed to buy a ninja 250r off a friend, but that just wasn't working out, so I kept looking. End result after several bikes I looked at closely and some that I missed out on, I put a deposit yesterday on a 2007 GPX250, with 19,000 kms on it. Hopefully the mechanical test goes well this week so that I can pick her up.

    Today saw me getting my gear, courtesy of my wife as it's my 40th birthday next month, so this was my present. After heaps of research, and several trips to different bike shops, I managed to get the following;
    Alpinestars Indy leather jacket
    Alpinestars short leather boots
    Alpinestars gloves
    RST Ventilator Textile jacket

    I have a Arai helmet already, and now just chasing a pair of Kevlar type jeans.

    The plan is to get the bike this week, and then hit the back streets around here with some car park work to get to know the bike and practice some of the techniques from the Qride weekend.

    Thanks for reading.....
  2. Nice choice on the bike, GPX is a great first bike IMO, plenty of spares on the market as well as 89-07 parts are interchangeable (most of them anyways)
    Let me know if you need any technical/parts advice, as I've taken mine apart about a billion times and know it quite well. Currently mines in a hundred pieces in my garage whilst I respray the faring and a few other little pieces
  3. #3 Popollo, Jun 2, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 24, 2015
    Out of curiosity, what price did you get the GPX for? I have the same bike and same year.
  4. Those are some pretty sweet threads you got.
  5. Great choice of bike. They're very forgiving, and fun to ride. Can be quite quick as you build your confidence too.


  6. I had a GPX250 for my first bike too. Amazing fuel consumption and super fun through the corners. The best thing I did was get some Pirelli rubber on it, huge difference.
  7. Paid $3,700 with 6 months rego
  8. Best of luck, feels like yesterday I was in your shoes. You've done the right thing attaining gear before bike too ;) And good choice in first bike.....you will never want to get off for the first couple of months! Then the itch for bigger/more power sets in lol. So get as much road time on the gpx as you possibly can, it'll pay later on when the upgrade comes.
  9. Well, picked up the bike today. A good mate of mine rode the bike home for me, and tonight once th traffic eased I went for a ride tonight. I think I pissed myself in excitement, and shat myself at the same time.

    We have a fairly steep driveway leading down to the road, and we are on a bend of a busy-ish back street. So I started 'Gracie' up, and played it safe by coasting down the driveway, then popping it in first and taking off once I was on the road.

    Just stuck to the back streets off my street. It felt very nervy at first, not exactly smooth or that nice at all. Couple of streets, roundabouts and intersections and a u turn at a dead end street. probably got up to about 50km/HR, but probably stuck to around 40km/HR. Nothing to brag about at all, but just taking it easy for now, trying to relearn skills and learn to be at one with the bike.

    Issues or things to improve on...
    - pulling up a little too soon when stopping, so have to reacquaint myself with the brakes and stopping distances
    - changing gears, obviously not that smooth. Getting used to thevgears with the chunky alpinestars shoes will take a little getting used to
    - changing up too early and changing down too late, need to be mor confident with what the bike can rev up to

    So, just more time in the saddle. Luckily there were no cars around tonight, so I could focus and not hold anyone up. My hands felt like I was on a ten hour ride, that's how nervous I was. And then finally coming up the driveway, I was in the wrong gear and not enough revs, so did my first hill start. I'm sure my neighbors watching thought it was funny, but I didn't stall it !!

  10. Sounds like you are having a ball!

    Everything takes a bit of writing used to, different bikes need things done slightly differently and a new set of gloves or boots take getting used to.

    The best way I found to get used to a bike is to go on a longish ride away from traffic on some country (off highway) roads. After a few hours on a bike it feels natural, smooth gear changes and the confidence to push a little.

    Of course stick to the local back streets to gain confidence first ;)

    Very impressed with your sensible choice of bike and especially buying good gear straight up
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Cheers Gong.... my theory is that one can enjoy everything in moderation. No need to go crazy.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  12. one thing that i have found since i been riding a mbike, is that the same old roads that i used to do all my favourite cruises on over decades in the cage......take on a whole new meaning on the mbike.

    its infinately better.
  13. If you'd like a hand to "tune up" some of your skills and reactions I'm happy to help.

  14. Peter, I may take you up on that kind offer. Which side of town do you live on?
  15. Well, second ride tonight. Bloody cold outside, bloody cold.

    A bit better. Pretty much cruised around at the speed limit which is 50 round here. Did a few left hand and right hand T intersections. As well as a few roundabouts which were either straight through or left and turns. So I need to do a few right hand roundabouts, I know.

    The slow uturn at the culdersac was better, slowed to 1st and did it without stopping, but it wasn't as smooth as I'd like.

    Things to improve are;

    -slowing down to intersections, I'm bringing it down to 1st more than last night, but still not that smoothly
    - gear changes better, and tried to keep the revs up before changing up a gear, ie change a little later, rather than sooner
    - there is a long sweeping bend up a hill, that is pretty much 90 degrees, need to take that and other bends better and smoother. Still feels jerky going around it sometimes.

    So better than last night, and need to keep working at it. The slow maneuvers need work, so am keen to head to a car park this weekend as well.

    Lots of work to do, but getting there slowly.
  16. I'm east side, near the Gateway Bridge, so handy to most places except far western suburbs (though not out of the question).
  17. I'm at indooroopilly
  18. Probably just a confidence thing - going into the bend a little too slow and chopping on the throttle to keep momentum.

    Best to approach the corner, brake well before, then lean in, look as far as you can see round the bend and hold constant throttle or slightly accelerate out.

    It's just practice. Riding is one of those things you get rusty on if you don't keep it up regularly.

    Bet you're loving the feel of a bike on the road though!
  19. 1.) look -through the corner
    2.) push -your shoulder into the corner
    3.) lean - can't turn if it dose'nt

    get you entry speed right. use both brakes. be in the right gear.
    then gently and gradually roll on the throttle through the turn.

    really slow tight turns, u-turns. -don't lean your body. just the bike.
  20. Yep, I think that is my problem, I'm taking off to much speed then chopping at the throttle. Plus being completely dark, I'm not looking where I want to go cause its dark. Wrap all that up with newbie confidence or lack off and this is where I'm at.

    Good advise guys, and is exactly what we were taught to do, just have to focus on these simple yet fundamental things.