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.

L's & First ride...

Discussion in 'Roads, Touring, Journeys, and Travel' at netrider.net.au started by Rolkus, Mar 23, 2011.

  1. Well on Monday I went for my Learners at Armstrongs in Thomastown. I'd never been on a bike before so I signed up for the 9am course.

    Bloody ring road. I was late by about 15 minutes, but luckily, not the only one. I got there at about 8:15 and we started at about 8:20 - straight out onto the course to learn about each part of the bike. She went through them all, but I knew them having read the learners handbook about three times.

    We were learning on Honda CBF 250's.

    After that we selected helmets & gloves - I brought my own gloves (which I'll get back to). We got on the bike and were instructed to put the bike into first, hold the clutch and rev until about 3.5k, slowly releasing the the clutch to travel about 5 meters, then 'crab' backwards and do it again. It took a bit but I eventually got it - we ended up doing the whole length of the course, changing to second gear, getting to the end then turning around, and doing it again.

    We had a break then got back into it, where they showed us how to turn - turning and looking where we're going. Then we went in and watched a video - can't even remember what it was called.

    We got back out there after lunch and started going through what's required for the practical test, and practices them - turning left and right, slow ride, and emergency brake.

    We got through and had another break before the test - and I was first up for my group. I did it, I didn't find any aspect hard, other then the slow ride - but concentrating on something straight ahead really helps.

    Then we went back inside and watched another video (continuing from earlier) and then sat the written test. Out of 37 questions, I got 35 right, which I thought was pretty good! And that was it, I passed! Everyone except one person did, in a group of 18 - the poor girl dropped the bike on the first exercise, but she couldn't do the slow ride on the practical.

    So I got my paper version of my learners and headed to a friends house - en route to pick up my Kawasaki ZZ-R250. Got there, did all the paperwork and got on the road -- I had to drive from Alphington all the way to Wyndham Vale (north of Werribee). I took the slow road, and got the hang of the clutch and handling on the bike. Wow, this thing is pretty unreal.

    I got onto Bell Street - I wanted to avoid the freeway but I was comfortable with the bike - so I got on the Tulla and headed town the Calder. Whoa, the sense of speed is amazing. Wind is bloody strong.

    I continued on the Calder and headed off on the Ring Road headed towards Werribee. I had no problems at all - I stopped off and put some petrol in the bike, cost next to nothing, and continued my journey home. I got a nod from a fellow rider through Werribee - I grinned and forgot to nod back. Shit.

    The next day, I had to ride to work - over the Westgate and into the city. I didn't lane split and was in constant traffic the whole way - I stayed in the lane and watched bikes pass - no worries. I got up a bit further and saw a police bike, on the right hand side of the Highway, pulling the bikes over. Eek.

    I continued to the city and had no problems. Except for some idiot, Indian driver, sitting on my ass as close as he could. I took it easy and continues straight, he eventually changed lanes.

    So far, I've done about 300km in three days. I can't get enough.

    Tonight I rode home in rain, which was a bit scary. I just took it easy, and got home safe.



    I did have an interesting encounter with a chick on a bike on the Westgate, inbound. We looked at each other, each in our lanes, and she signaled for me to move over. I gathered she wanted to lane share - I shook my head and continued. No sweat right?

    Anyhow, back on the bike tomorrow, headed for work in peak hour traffic! Loving this!
     
     Top
  2. Awesome stuff!!

    I'm a bit of a conservative old fuddy duddy but my advice - don't even think about filtering or anything like that yet - just learn and practice your skills to keep yourself alive on the road without amping up the risks.

    And keep on enjoying it!!!
     
     Top
  3. Good stuff Rolkus. This sounds like a carbon copy of my learners test up here in Bairnsdale. The guy was pretty good and got me in for an hour the night before so I could get used to it as I havent been on a bike in 20 years till then. Awesome fun. Im pretty impressed with your first ride home on bell st etc. im was crapping myself about that so Ive got the guy Im buying it off dropping it at my place next week :) haha soft much?
     
     Top
  4. awseome! enjoy your bike, theyre good fun for a 250.
     
     Top
  5. Took me 3 weeks before i even started filterering traffic.

    Took me 3 months before i could then do it effectivly.
     
     Top
  6. Excellent story mate, which i will soon be experiencing myself as I haven't ridden for 12 years. I can't wait. Good on you for taking your time and getting lots of practice, stick with it and ENJOY :)
     
     Top
  7. Cheers guys!

    Last couple of nights, riding outbound on the Westgate Freeway has been scary as! The wind has been insane!

    I have to say I'm pretty confident with my riding, but I'm being very wary as I don't want to get too relaxed. Embarrassed myself a few times, stalling when I think it's in first when its in second -- I'm new to this whole 'clutch' thing, still getting used to it, but when I think too much about what I've got to do, I muddle it up!

    I got another nod on the Princess Hwy tonight, once again, I forgot to nod back damnit.

    I've also found my gloves to do absolutely nothing against the cold -- might have to check something out about that, my left hand has been going pretty much numb!
     
     Top
  8. It wasn't the lane she wanted to share with you. You missed out on getting lucky :p

    Seriously, though -- quite impressive what you've accomplished in such a short timeframe. Stay alert, safe and upright (y)
     
     Top
  9. I've had a few interesting rides, to and from work.

    Have had quite a few idiots thinking it's okay to sit on my ass going 100k's on the Freeway. He eventually passed me, it took all of my self control not to flip the bird.

    Started a bit of traffic filtering -- so far I've found people pretty courteous, moving aside and letting me past. Passing trucks is a different story, and try get past em as soon as possible. But no problems.

    On the Ring Road the other night, it's 80k's most of the way - slowly passed a blue commodore who was going about 75k's - his window was down and out came a smoke -- it hit me on the arm and fell behind me -- don't know how the guy didn't see me or hear me but just took it in my stride and made sure the fag was behind me -- the smoke, not the driver.
     
     Top
  10. Aw man, you've missed out there - sounds like she was giving you the biker's "follow me home" signal!
    Congrats on the license though, and keep practising your emergency braking...
     
     Top
  11. He may well have seen and heard you. He just didn't care. Last time someone chucked a ciggie butt at me I lost the internal battle to do nothing and found myself doing some slightly dangerous riding whilst flipping the bird :furious:

    I'm sure they have no idea - just doesn't occur to them that a lit cigarette and motorcycle rider don't mix well.
     
     Top
  12. Well I've been riding over a month so far, and love it. Don't miss the XR-6 at all!

    Had a scare last night, due to a rather pathetic excuse for a driver.

    On the Westgate - posted speed limit is 80kmph - I'm doing that, rather heavy traffic in the far right lane. This Champagne BA Falcon comes up and sits right on my ass - I can't move over, as there are vehicles there - and I certainly wasn't going to speed up as for the cameras.

    So the traffic to my left speeds up a bit, but before I get a chance to move over she pulls out and roars up beside me - I glance her a look and she gives me the finger then pulls in front of me, SLAMMING on her brakes before she is even in the lane fully. I shit myself. I had to break quite hard on my front which causes a tremendous amount to wobble, the bike wobbles left, right, left, right, left and I release the brake and accelerate to the left getting in the left lane - she speeds up, out of distance.

    I was fuming, I had every intention of riding up beside her and kicker her passenger mirror off or something, I was so pissed. But I just pulled off the FWY and composed myself and continued home.

    What the ****? Can't they see the bright yellow L plate on the back of my bike? (mind you, it looks like an 'I' because of it rubbing against my tyre.

    Could I have done something differently? I couldn't merge which would have been my first option. Some people are absolute ****wits and makes me angry, especially if they're going to do stuff like that and stop me from coming home to my family.
     
     Top
  13. sounds like you're a natural, duck to water.
    if you do have a tailgater, make sure you maintain a decent gap between yourself and the car ahead of you. theres not really much you can do about her type unfortunately, but must not allow them to pressure you into doing something you're not comfortable with in order to get out of their way.
    if you have a decent buffer ahead of you, at least then, if the car ahead of you suddenly slows, you have more time to react and that gives tailgater more time to react.

    the girl wanting to share the lane with you on the freeway, smart idea. you ride staggered in the lane, not directly alongside. that way if either of you need to quickly swap sides of the lane, it's doable. the pair of you create the same presence as a car, twin headlights.
    plus, tailgaters are'nt as brave usually when theres two of you. always good to seek out other riders on freeways and stick together. cars get buzzed by first bike, they expect more, or are awakened at least to bikes around them. the more of you, the more ownership you can assert in the lanes. you can work together to affect/influence the behaviour of the cars around you.
     
     Top
  14. You should be proud of yourself, you handled it well, controlled your bike well, and stayed upright.
    If you ask me, you got a WIN!!
     
     Top
  15. + 1 to what Monkeyman said.
    You are learning to ride on a pretty hectic road so kudos for you for learning how to stay calm and relaxed. Riding in such busy traffic just make sure your head is always moving, eyes scanning throad and checking your mirrors. The more you ride the more natural these instincts come and your "spider senses" will inherently sharpen also.

    I had a girl on a bike gesture at me once and I thought i was going to get lucky..............turns out my indicator had been on for the past few klms.....dang!

    Stay safe mate.

    d
     
     Top
  16. well done mate! sounds like yr getting the bug like the rest of us! enjoy that bike & ride safe.
     
     Top
  17. Had a fall today.

    Not pleasant, but won't stop me from riding.

    Big word of warning for everyone, if you have a route with tram tracks, and a route without tram tracks - take it without, especially if it's wet. If you do have to go over the tracks, take as much of an angle as possible.

    Otherwise that could happen to your baby.
     
     Top