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.

Just got my L's

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by ResmeN, Nov 30, 2009.

  1. Hi Guys,

    Long time reader and first time poster. My names Ahmet and as title suggests just got my l's yesterday and am very happy about it.

    Did the 2 day course at Hart/Somerton in Melbourne and it took it's toll. Was very tiring, physically & mentally demanding. Out of a group of 25 only 1 failed. I don't know why but I never felt as happy and as excited as I did as when the instructor came over to shake my hand to congratulate me to say I passed as I did when getting any of my other licences (car, truck, fork).

    I need your help in helping me choose the correct bike and gear. Throughout the 2 day course I never dropped the bike or felt uncomfortable at any times. There were other people at the course dropping their bikes while riding or stationary or doing other stuff such as hitting cones mounting kerbs but thank God I didn't do any of them.

    I think I owe it all to the manual car driving I have done all my life as I have a very good grasp of clutch and gears etc.

    Long story short I need/want a bike. My budget is $5000.00 for bike + $1000.00 for gear. I have my heart set on a virago/intruder/eliminator. Can be new or 2nd hand. Though I was just speaking to a friend who was also a recent learner that sold his virago and he said you outgrow the power very quickly. Whereas others say no as a new learner stick to a 250 and get bigger later. I am 188cm and weigh 95kg so would want a bike that could support me comfortably without being underpowered or revving like hell.

    Last thing I would want is to get a 250 and be sick of it only after a few months. Perhaps I should look at 400cc+? I also don't think I would be able to do oil changes etc myself so would want a relatively low maintenance bike that wouldn't cost a lot in servicing. I would use the bike as my daily commute to work 10km each way.

    I also like the look of the er-5. So I am and will not only limit myself to the cruiser only style. I am very confused and don't know what to do. Too many choices.

    Sorry for ranting on this much but I guess it's been a long time dream of riding a bike.

    Might I add the only negative of the 2 day course was that of the Honda cbf250 it is bloody difficult to get in to N when the engine was warm. The top of my left foot was killing me trying to upshift from 1 to N. So I want a bike where it's atleast a bit easier to get to N at traffic lights etc.

    Thanks for all your feedback.
  2. Congrats. Firstly unless there is something that you reallllly want I wouldn't bother spending 5k on a 250. Drop the bike fund down to 3k and bring the gear fund up to 2k. My first bike was $1800 and great fun. Covered in scratches but reliable so I didn't care and wasn't slapped by depreciation when I sold if for $2200 two years later. If you really want a nice first bike around the 5k mark you could probably get a cb400, gs500, sv650 (maybe bit more). Given you like cruisers, maybe a XVS650.
  3. There is a VERY high chance you will drop your first bike, possibly several times.. maybe even at speed :p (talking from experience + the same advice I was given before I bought one)

    Mechanically reliable is all you really need, as it will probably get battered up even just a little, and the worse it looks to start with the less you'll care about each extra scratch ;)
    Another beauty about cheap bikes is you can usually sell them for the same price you bought them for
    So if you can go 6-12 months without destroying it then cash it in and grab a nice shiny one (y)

    The problems finding neutral can be from several reasons.. if its old and worn out, perhaps you had really soft shoes on? Since I recently got some proper boots I've found it SO much easier to change gear and find neutral etc, any other type of shoe just didn't cut it.

    Good luck on your search for a bike, and welcome to the community :)

  4. Congrats on ur L's....
    The bikes i did my L's on wouldnt get into N when they were runniing, you had to turn the bike off to put it in N!! LOL they were little 1000 year old CB 250s haha
    I have an Intruder and i love it....Looks pretty and gets me from A to B in a timely manner...Plus it gets you used to riding a Cruiser b4 you step up to the bigger heavier bikes, I know i found riding the cruiser a lot harder than riding around on the CB 250..

    Buy 2nd hand u wont lose at much when u come to sell it...

    James if he drops his bike budget to 3 k will he find a XVS650 for that ? 8-[
  5. Yep. I've seen a few 2002-2004's for the $5k mark and some clean 1997-1999's for $3ish. (y)
    I'm not sure if the posted add is legit. I'm always sceptical of Australian adds with miles rather than kms that are slightly cheaper than market value. Late nineties cruisers tend to be great value though as they are very similar to the current models, generally aren’t ridden as hard as sports bikes (so better condition) and tend to hold their value. When i was looking for my first bike I found a high km 1998 virago that had a rebuilt engine, new clutch, polished wheels, fresh spray, leather pannier bags and rwc for $2200. Just not my kind of thing. I still think a old gpx or zzr is the way to go for a first bike
  6. Congratulations on passing! Thats a really big achievement, I remember when I (finally) got my licence I didnt stop grinning for weeks! Anyway, cant help you with the bike as there are far far more knowledgeable people than I on the board, but one thing I could suggest is, buy a bike that makes your heart miss a beat! With my bike, it was love at first sight!
  7. Appreciate everybodys prompt and detailed replies.

    gsxrjames: Thanks a lot. You raise a very valid point and I will strongly take in to consideration. Bike price down gear price up. XVS650's seem to be higher prices though I'll have a look at older models and see what comes out of it.

    DragonCypher: Yeah most people say that I'd drop the bike and I wouldn't want to be doing that to a new expensive bike now. I will look at bikes between $2K to $4K.

    Everytime I told the instructors about not being able to put it in N each time they said it's a cbf250 thing and that once it heats up it becomes impossible to put in N while idle or travelling at low speeds. Thanks again and I'll make sure to get proper footwear.

    mischiefmaka: Thank you. Yeah the N thing was annoying the least. Did the same thing turn off and then put in N. The intruder is a great looking and affordable bike. Most likely will be going 2nd hand. I do hope I could find a xvs650 for that price.

    DragonCypher: Wow that bike is cheap and fits perfectly in my budget. Does it seem too cheap and things could go wrong?

    gsxrjames: Thanks for the info.

    ametha elf: Thank you. Tell me about it it was such a relief. The test couldn't have been at a better time as the second we completed it the rain started bucketing and I just zoomed off to the building parked the bike and ran inside as we didn't have our wet weather gear on at the time. Lovely advice.
  8. Congrats mate, good info already given. Also if you are ever stopped and want to find neutral give the bike a slight roll back and forward as you try to snick it up gently. That will solve the problem most of the time on most bikes.
  9. Thanks.

    What are the best places to search for bikes to buy apart from trading post, bike sales/point?
  10. ebay and some bike trade magazines.
    Though I only trust ebay when I can personally go and check the bike before putting in a bid.
    (Yeah some people prefer spending $5 to post an ad on ebay instead of the $50 for bikesales.)

    I would second the opinion about xvs650...real nice bikes.
  11. Thanks shadowwarrior. I guess I just have to keep searching online and start to actually pop by shops to see some bikes and gear in person.
  12. I kind of feel, second hand bikes from shops are a bad idea...specially when they are not just 1-2 years old. Shop prices are higher than private sales. You need to search around for websites and magazine ads. I googled Motorbike Sales Melbourne to come across various websites and forums with classified ads before purchasing my new bike this week.

    Yeah, check the various australian motorbike forums, they usually have sections for bike sales.

    Gear yes, try around different helmets...different brands and their sizes. Every brand's size would be different from the others. Pick one up which fits you perfectly, and don't rely on "oh well, this will do for now".
    The helmet should slide in and out of your head easy, but should be tight enough not to move once its on your head. I always prefer clear visors, unless you willing to carry a tinted one for the day time and a clear for the night.

    Pick up a small jar of cat crap, works wonders, and you can thank me later :) And yeah, they work on sunnies as well.
  13. Ahh yeah makes sense. I think I am more leaning towards 2nd hand private sales as compared to shops the prices are lower.

    Any particular place in Melbourne which is good for gear? Thanks for the tips on the helmet as I will definitely take it on board.

    Do you use cat crap on both sides of the visor or just the inside? Would if be better using something like rain x for the outside of the visor?
  14. Gear: Peter Stevens clearance store
    Rainx: beading stuff on outside for rain. Its not that great though and requires regular applications. Wouldn't bother with the anti fog.
  15. Bikemart (ringwood, http://bikemart.net.au/ ) is good, and has a special discount for NR Members (you pay $10 for the NR membership, https://netrider.net.au/?page=membership )

    I picked up my gear from Brighton bikes and bits, (http://www.brightonbikesandbits.com.au/) quite cheap and had loads of specials.
    Go and have a look at PS. check what you like...say a textile jacket of x brand. Call bikemart or brighton bikes and bits to compare price.

    The cat crap is meant to be applied inside. But i experimented applying it on the outside as well. Worked wonders during rain. The rain drops which has this habit of slowly coming off your visor, or worst, stay in there...drains out real fast. So, no stagnant water drops at all. Big plus for me coz I ride my bike everywhere and in all weather.. :)

    I tried the film/layers/sticker kinda anti fogs...but they never worked for me as well as cat crap did.