Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

hello from Dandenong, VIC

Discussion in 'Welcome Lounge' started by funkymonkey, Feb 27, 2007.

  1. Hey guys... long time road user... first time rider... actually... "yet to be" rider.

    Hehe, a bit about me, my name's Shan, and I live in Dandy, Victoria. I'm 25, and have been using the roads since 16... in a car. I used to ride a bike as a kid (up to about maybe 12) but then sorta stopped using 2 wheelers. I guess my biggest claim to fame is that I help run Skylines Australia, a forum/community/car club for Nissan Skylines.

    As for why I've got the riding bug... I've always wanted to do it, just never had the motivation to. I drive to the city every day, and riding would be far more economical, and time efficient. Parking in the city/train station is much easier compared to a car. Also my car is always being worked on, be it mods, repairs, prepping for track days, post track day servicing, and I can't really justify having two road registered cars in the garage... nor do I have the space, so a bike I can tuck into the corner makes sense. So in reality, the reason I want to ride is for convenience/commuting rather than a pure passion for being on two wheels. Is this OK, or am I predisposed to fail because of this mentality?

    I've got a few questions, which I wanted to ask, and I don't want to create multiple threads about it, so I'll ask them in this thread... I don't know if that's the accepted norm, so please bare with me.

    What sort of training is available in VIC? As I said I have barely had much experience riding, even in a pushy, and I doubt i'd be that good at it these days. Is there a school of some sort that caters to total newbies who don't even know to ride? Where's a good place that's local to me that I can use to practice?

    Which is a better learner bike? A Yamaha Virago 250 or a Suzuki Across 250? (I guess what I need to find out is, what's easier to fix after I drop it a few million times, and is more reliable). Although my heart is set on a Yamaha FZR600 as my "not so newbie bike to get" in a year or so... I'm leaning towards the Across for its storage features and similarity to the FZR in driving position/style.

    Also, none of my mates or family ride... I know there's supposed to be a buddy system or something like that... everytime I'm on the road I see L platers with a riding buddy. Do I need one, or can I fly solo?

    And finally... I checked the VicRoads website to see the licensing procedure... if I'm to attend a riding school, do I need a license of some sort already? Does the school carry out the riding test for VicRoads? The website didn't really clarify in what order I had to do things to get a license.

    Woah... this has turned out to be a really long first post... whoops! Thank you for this forum, and your responses if you choose to answer my q's. Hopefully I get over the inital hurdle and can become an active contributer in time... till then, I'll see you guys on the road :p
  2. mate welcome, you are riding for the same reasons that i started riding. As a commute from Mt Martha to the city, saves time and money but can be a pain in the arse come winter time. But hey I've done it for 12 months and now can proudly claim that I am a biker. I now always have a bike and will probably keep it as my main form of transport, but I know guys who rode a few times and then gave up.

    I started ridign at 39 yo and had never really ridden bikes before, did the course and off I went. So some people get it quick some take time. :grin:

    I got a naked bike as it cost fcuk all to fix it if you drop it, and you will. I am still embarresed when I think about how I dropped it in my driveway in front of the kids. :oops:

    I have never ridden with a buddy.

    Do you have a licence? If you have lost your car one for whatever reason then you are out of luck mate. :wink:
  3. ooo so there is hope for my riding aspirations :p What do the driving schools cover? Do they assume you can keep vertical, or do they show you how to do that too?

    hehe I've had my full car license for a few years now... still have all my points too :D Think I lost one a few years ago for going 5km over the limit or something stupid. I do all the silly stuff in the safety of a track, so on the road I don't usually feel the urge to drive recklessly. Hoping to stick to that theory as a rider too.
  4. Full car licence means you will need to on L's for 3 months and then full bike licence with restrictions for 12 months. Restrictions for this period are no bike over 260cc. O% BAC and no pillions. :cry:

    There is talk at the MRAA site that they bring in LAMs into Vic but don't hold your breath :roll: LAMs is a power to weight ratio rather then a CC bike limit.

    The course that I did took a few hours and was the test, there are plenty of courses around. HART and a few others have 2 day courses which people seem to think are pretty good.

    Storage is a pain on any bike, I use a tank bag and that has proved the most effective to ensure my business shirts are not creased when I get to work, I just leave my suits, shoes and ties at work.

    Mate have a chat to the guys in Dandenong at any of the bike stores, they all seem pretty cool. Oh and a naked bike IMO is the way to go. :cool:

    OH and don't take what I say for gospel, get lots of opinions and accept what makes sense. Except about counter steering that makes no sense at all! :LOL: :LOL:
  5. Welcome funkymonkey :)

    As with any form of transport there are some downsides. I guess the lack of passion could test you out for if those downsides will be too much for you. eg no air con or heating, you're more vulnerable... I think the upsides far outweigh any downs, but that just me. Getting the right gear sure helps reduce the downs. I guess you're more likely to give up without the passion, but not necessarily. People can also start with the passion to find it's not quite what they expected.

    Go and sit on some bikes to get an idea of what feels right to you. I can't handle leaning back like on the virago, but others can't handle the forward position of my CBR. Ideally get same position as what you hope to grow up to for your next bike so you won't have to learn it all over again for such a different bike.

    I went to HART (Honda) and did the 2 day learner course (which has the testing at the end). No licence required to do that. I was as hopeless as they get, yet they taught me everything to somehow get through! I hired a pushy before my Ls just to check that I can balance, but bikes are so much heavier I'm not convinced that it helped. IF you do fail or want more practise, you don't have to do the whole thing again. They have practise time for $60 (?) and retesting for a fraction of the full price as well. So give it a go!

    You don't need a buddy to ride with in Vic. Other states are different.
  6. I can certainly understand your reason for wanting a bike - the main reason I got a bike was to avoid racking up too many kays on my MR2 (and it makes getting through traffic a lot easier and more fun).
    The Virago's a good choice if you're into cruisers - though with a big rider they can struggle a bit with highway speeds and it's going to seem slow to accelerate compared to a Skyline. Something like an Across offers much better performance - though there's plenty of naked 4-cylinder 250s that are just as fast (or faster) without the costly-to-fix fairings ie. Suzuki Bandit, Honda Hornet or Yamaha Zeal. Of course there's also the naked v-twins like the Honda VTR/Spada or Hyosung GT250 which offer a lot more performance than a cruiser and are easier to ride than a 4-cylinder (but have slightly less outright power and torque).