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Got my bike today! First ride (wet)

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by mechanism, Mar 3, 2012.

  1. Hey everyone,

    I got my first bike today, my mate rode it home for me.

    Being in melbourne, its a VERY wet day today (typical, the day i get my bike!) - but thats not too bad. I have been out riding around the back streets near my house.

    The first ride was very stressful. it was just a quick one down a block and into a big (reasonably empty) car park by a footy oval. did some laps, practiced stopping quick, and got a bit of a feel for the bike. my mate who has been riding for about 6 years was with me. so that was good. we then went around to safeway and then back home. all up about 2 or 3 blocks. then i put the bike away.

    After that breif ride, i was feeling shakey and unsure if i had done the right thing by getting a bike... i was stressed and worried. maybe it was the rain, learning to deal with visor fog and opening and closing that while learning to operate the bike properly...

    I had an appointment this afternoon so i went and did that, and came back and thought, there's a bit of light still in the day, might go for a ride round the neibourhood and see how that goes.

    It went much better. I went all around a few blocks in my neighborhood, practicing gear changes, indicator, hill starts and other basics. its all a bit rough but not bad for a first day. feeling much better with my decision now. maybe before it was because i had just got the bike back from the shop, my mate was there, it was raining, it was a very short distance and mostly slow riding. etc etc...

    Just thought i would share with you all :D
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  2. You'll be right mate, just keep practising it will slowly start to feel more natural. When I went for my first ride after getting my Ls it felt really strange...almost like I was doing something wrong by riding on the road...maybe it was coz I felt so vulnerable after driving cars for so long...but after a bit of practise I overcame that feeling and now I can't stop riding.
    It's like a drug and you will get addicted to it.
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  3. Congratulations on the new bike Mechanism, it will get easier with more k's under your belt. Bad day to pickup the bike. Tomorrow should be better you can get out again. And then when you have more confidence you can start to explore the Yarra Valley runs that are on our doorstep. :)
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  4. welcome to riding Mechanism, as above, first ride/s are nerve racking, if it helps, I have been riding for 3 years and had a fright myself tille I 'changed' my riding to 'wet' riding mind frame.
    You WILL find it easier as you ride more.
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  5. Like any new skill at first things don't feel natural. You have a lot of things to focus on going on all at once and the more you focus on one thing, the less you focus on others.

    With practice things will settle down. Some of the things you are now concentrating on will become second nature leaving you free to focus on other things.

    Plus you picked a bad day to start. A better day would probably have been easier.

    But it will get easier. Remember every experienced rider was here once.
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  6. @LCGTR1970 yeah i know what you mean. I felt like a naughty kid after my mate left and i took the bike out again!

    @cjvfr - looking forward to the yarra valley, no doubt :D

    Thanks guys
  7. On ya Mech!

    Remember that you've been walking for 17+ years and all the things that come naturally to an experienced "walker" had to be learned. As a rider its the same thing.

    There are some good guys down in Melbourne who can get you going on your new mode of transport. Look them up.

    Fun Ha!
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  8. mate, it's all been said. Everyone goes thru this to start with. It will not take long until you love it so much, you'll be wondering why it took you so long to get started.

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  9. You've approached the challenge very well, keep practising; it gets more natural the more you do it.
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  10. Well done; take it easy in the wet. Good idea having a mentor - I wish I'd had one when I was starting out. I was absolutely terrified! Having a ball now tho.

    Don't worry about feelings of doubt. As you get more confident, they'll go away, and you'll wonder why you were worried.

    Hopefully better weather coming this weekend, so you'll get a chance to have a good stint. Once you're OKish on the roads, come down to the learner sessions if you can. You can be escorted in (just ask in the Sat learner thread), and you'll learn a lot.

    Have fun! I do!
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  11. Brand new bike mechanism? If so, get some dry road time to scrub the tyres a little more. Gently into left and right turns and over the next 40 to 50 kms steadily increase the lean angle until they are nicely buffed both sides to reflect your ability and comfort zone. Ignore all chicken strip comments. Good on you for getting started.
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  12. chicken strip lol, never heard that one.

    Its a big bad world, but now you're living!
    there will be some spills and brown pants,
    so make up your mind if this is what you want.

    But, riding well is probably the best feeling
    you can have with pants on.
    i haven't ridden for about a week and
    i haven't stopped thinking about bikes,
    except when i'm thinking of girls.

    good luck, try some track days, go at your own pace
    don't listen to ****wits
    don't try to ride fast, try to perfect your style
    and one day the bike should feel like an extra set of legs
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  13. Ermm... You had reasons to buy a bike, you spend a few hrs riding, and you are questioning your decision.
    Sounds to me like your reasons for getting it couldn't have been very strong!!?
  14. rather than replying to everyone individually, I will say thanks to everyone for posting such supportive comments and advice.

    @raven my reasons were commuting to work. Since my office moved to Richmond my petrol and now parking expenses have gone up massively. even with the bike on finance if i ride more than 3 days a week i am saving money. Other reasons are the obvious ones. My doubts were after getting about 30 minutes to ride and it feeling very different to when i got my L's - being on a real road with other cars, feet forward cruiser riding position, new bike - don't drop it, wet weather, brand new stiff gear. everything felt alien, so then i had to get off and do a few other things that day so i didn't get to 'feel it' on the first 'ride' (in quotes because it was barely a ride at all).

    anyway - felt much better after the 2nd ride, so looking forward to todays riding :D
  15. That's ok. Don't ever be put off the whole idea of riding because of one experience. You just have to knuckle down and cop it, or as I still do - make whatever it is, a challenge, and then hit it for six in defiance. :)

    Riding coz you have to, rather than want to, is pretty tough.

    But you enjoyed your next ride, and it will get better and better. Stick with it. :)
  16. Commuting is a whole different challenge. For most riders I would recommend not rushing into commuting too early. So much can go wrong and most new riders won't have the skills to deal with it if (or more likely when) it does.

    Baby steps.
  17. I had a good day today, went for a ride this morning venturing out onto some main roads during the quieter part of the day. I dont see myself commuting for at least a couple of weeks (planning on practicing every day after work - wet or dry). How many Km would anyone suggest be done before I start commuting. I would use km rather than riding hours or weeks with a licence because hours of slow riding out of busier areas would not make as much traffic experience or having the bike for 2 or 3 weeks but not riding it enough would be less. I'm thinking about 500 km or so?

  18. Grats on the bike, and awesomely well done with the first rid ein the rain! Don't know if I'd have the balls to do that haha. Hopefully by the time i've got a bike and ready to go you'll be all skilled up and can teach me the ways of the bike ;)
  19. haha thanks @Rastus - but oh gawd i dont know about that LOL :biker:
  20. Tough one to call. It depends on yourself I guess. For me, my FIRST ride after doing my L's was to pick up the bike from Ferntree Gully, ride down Burwood hwy, Eastlink, Punt Rd, Toorak Rd, St Kilda Rd (work). Then my second ride of course was home from there at peak hour. My first 10 rides were commuting into the city (or home). Let me be clear, I don't recommend this. In hind sight, it would've been much better to take it a bit easier, but, that's just the way I did it. One thing that did do for me was to make me learn FAST. My advice would be not so much to worry about the number of k's rather than the skills/confidence you pick up. Practice braking, slow manoeuvring, braking, throttle control and of course braking. Introduce traffic at different levels if you can manage it. Start with light, then get heavier. My main advice would be this, when you first start to get into traffic, a lot of new riders (I did this) tent to feel like they shouldn't be there, and so they end up hugging the left of a lane, closer to the gutter for eg. Don't do this. OWN your lane. This mean, ride in such a way that no-one will consider sharing the lane with you. Good luck.