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Featured N00bies First Ride, Thrills and Almost Spills

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Tevez, Oct 12, 2016.

  1. #1 Tevez, Oct 12, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2016
    (WARNING: This is gonna be a long one)

    Hey guys,

    Just got my baby today (ninja 300) and boy what a ride. Havent been on a manual bike for about a month when i did my L's test.

    Started with me trying to get out of my driveway which is on an incline. Pushing it up hill wasnt going so well so hopped on to try and ride it out. Only stalled once and narrowly avoided my car parked there but got out onto the street.

    Spent the first 10 mins practicing getting to the clutch friction point and practicing going around a small park. After building a bit of confidence I decided to take it to the street. Doing a few laps around my area on semi busy streets it was now time to go for a trip down to the beach.

    Not long after I hit the main road did I have my first near death experience hah... Was pulling up a bus which was pulled over, I thought I'd wait untill it finshed dropping people off instead of going around it. Seeing that there were people still getting out and no one on the right side of the street I began to head around it.

    No sooner did I start passing the bus did he put on his indicators and start to pull out. Initially I thought 'Oh he'll see me and wait until go by'. Well I was wrong about that. Half way passing the bus he doesnt slow down his turn at all. Quickly thinking if I slam on the breaks now he's most likely still going to hit me. So I kicked it into 2nd and went full throttle. Missing the bus by a few metres I got out unscathed (luckily there was no one ahead of me).

    Slightly shaken I continued on my way but 5 minutes later I encounted my second incident. Turning at some lights I began to speed up, mistakenly only looking at the car in front of me. Just ahead of him traffic had pulled to a stop as someone was trying to park. Quickly hittinf the back breaks (was only going about 40) the ABS kicked in and I guess stopped my back wheel from tail sliding.

    Regaining myself I pressed on now at a slower pace being more mindful of traffic ahead.

    Finally reaching Maroubra beach I slowly made my way around the quiet street admiring the view. After passing the coast I decided I'd visit my friend at Coogee beach and show him my new bundle of joy.

    Soon after showing him the bike I was on my way again. Making a U-turn on my friends street the bike began to tip as I took it very slowly on road with a semi steep slope at the side (Noo not the new bike!). Luckily at the slow speed i was able to put my right leg out and force the bike straight again.

    Heading up Arden st. to Bronte (a roughly 150m street in an incline of 50-60 degrees) I put it into second and started making my way up. Needing to to push myself down on the bike to avoid the wind pushing me back I thought the bike would struggle but it climbed that hill like a champion. Soon after going on a 50k/h road a scooter zoomed past me. Somewhat keen to catch up to him i fought against that urge (didnt want to risk losing my license on my first day with the bike!)

    After touring around Bronte I decided to make my way to Randwick. At the first round about heading there I almost stalled going around it at a slow pace. At the very next street turning left I did stall it and then starting back up I took the corner wide and came fairly close to running into a stationary car on the other side of the road.

    Going through Randwick I decided it was time to start heading home. Heading back I encountered a few more buses and decided to give them plenty of room and to stick behind them.

    Getting back near my home I had a car start to tail gate me. As I was doing the speed limit and the road didnt allow for over taking I tried putting it in the back of my mind and not to worry about it (but keeping a good eye on him in my mirrors) gave him plenty of warning with my indicators that I would be turning into my street and gradually slowing to make sure he would crash into my back. Finally making it home after a good hour and pulling around 35km on the trip it was time to reflect on the ride.

    I found that I could do a lot of steering with my legs tightly gripped to the bike which also let my arms relax (found that my right hand was always quite tense on the bar though). I also know now that I really need to start looking to where I want to go rather than a few feet in front of me when I take a corner, and that I really need to practice my U-turns and round abouts. Became fairly consistent with my hill starts along the way (althougy they were relatively small inclines). Also I tended to forget and leave my indicator on a fair bit XO .

    Sorry for the gigantic amount of text but just had to share the experience.

    If anyone mad it to the end;
    How was your guys first ride and did you have any close encounters?

    (Would add some pics of the bike but not sure how to do it on this forum)
    • Like Like x 8
  2. No no. You don't want that. Too messy.
    • Funny Funny x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  3. Glad you're still alive. Try to find someone with some experience to ride with......you'll be much safer and your riding will improve quicker.
    One little tip. Don't brake with your rear brake. ........all you're gonna do is leave a black line leading to the impact zone.
    Stay safe.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. Woops i meant so he 'wouldn't' hah. Will edit that
  5. This is a perfect example of why so many new riders crash/burn/die. Sorry but 4 almost accidents due to no idea about what's going on around you, in 1 hour is I dunno... head shaking? Don't mean to sound harsh (coming from a noob rider like myself) but I think the L test is soo not enough for anyone to begin to ride on their own.

    I'm sure you'll find people to ride with from here to get that experience and confidence you need.
    • Agree Agree x 5
    • Like Like x 1
  6. gday TevezTevez congratulations on getting your L's and welcome to NR!

    take it easy out there, don't hurt yourself.
    • Agree Agree x 3
  7. now iv'e seen this mentioned on this site a few times "don't use the rear brake" "or don't brake with the rear brake"

    i'm sorry, but i strongly disagree with them comments, imo you need to get used to using both your brakes, now i'm no trainer etc.
    but from many years of riding of and on, both road and dirt, if id'e have only used my front brake at times, i'm pretty sure id'e be dead long ago :dead:
    and i'm sure i could out brake anyone that's using the front brake only by a long distance at speed.
    another poster the other day was saying the same, they don't use the rear brake wtf ?
    it's really got me stumped ?

    i'm not writing this to try upset anyone or to troll or start trouble or anything like that.
    just reading stuff like this is setting people up for failure or worse imo...
    • Agree Agree x 3
    • Like Like x 1
  8. I am with you mate. The rear brake is an excellent tool for so many things. Obviously you need to learn slowly how to use it properly, but it makes you such a better and smoother rider if you do. It can reduce stopping distance by around 10% if used correctly.

    I am preparing for an onslaught by some, but the rear brake is a great way to reduce your speed and tighten your line in a corner without transferring excessive weight to the front. You need to understand what your traction surplus is at any given time before doing it. So not for a beginner.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  9. Always try to look as far ahead as possible, it will also make you a smoother rider out on the open road if you're looking "through" corners. It's common for learners to have trouble with U-turns, I did too. There's [plenty of advice on this forum about learning how to master them. Everyone leaves their indicator on too, or accidentally beeps their horn instead of indicating lol.
    I strongly suggest finding a dead empty street at night and practice U-turns, braking etc until you're skill level gets up a bit, and only then worry about riding on busy roads with the added hazards of heavy traffic.
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. I should have been clearer.....sounded to me that the op braked only or primarily with the rear as some inexperienced riders do.
    Of course the rear brake is there for a reason and can and should be used.
    • Agree Agree x 4
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Great post ...
    But u are making me nervous.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  12. Maybe you can find an empty/quiet industrial/commercial area on the weekend, then you can practice the mechanics of riding and negotiating corners, stops and starts, U turns and so on without a lot of traffic around. Get comfortable with the operation of the bike so it requires less of your attention, then you can spend more time on situational awareness when you go on the roads with other vehicles.
    • Like Like x 2
    • Agree Agree x 1
  13. And buses - when they indicate, they go. They have right of way so you have to watch for them pulling out.

    Glad you made it ok but that's too many scares for a ride, you'll need to up your roadcraft in short time. Agree with finding a mentor or go to Syndey sat morning training.

    Keep it shiny side up!
    • Agree Agree x 3
    • Like Like x 1
  14. Sounds like you learned a number of things on your first ride. Trucks and Buses have big blind spots and you can be sitting in an area where you can't be seen. You need to be aware of that and manage your position on the road. Also Busses have a special right of way when rejoining traffic so "some" bus drivers see this as a plant foot and go permission. As your ride more and more your awareness of the traffic around you will improve and you will start to get better at anticipating what other drivers are going to do, As a new rider a lot of your mental power is being occupied on just riding the bike and less so for situational awareness. It will come with time.

    As others have said if you can find others to ride with around you it will help you a lot. Welcome to the world of motorcycles. :emoji_motorcycle:
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Hey guys, thanks so much for all your feed back. Definitely planning to spend the next few days in the quiet back streets around my house to practice before setting out on my next adventure. Theres a few turns and round abouts and small empty parking areas to practice starting and stopping, u-turns and parking.

    Mentor sounds like a good idea once ive become more familiar with the basics.

    Chillibutton you mentioned a sysney sat morning training, is that a proper training class or just hosted by a few random experienced bikers?

    Once again guys thanks for all the comments
  16. here's 640-odd pages for you to read through, you decide

    Sydney Learner Sessions (Weekly, Sat 1pm)
    • Funny Funny x 1
  17. You 100% should make your way to a few of these.. They helped me immensely and when MOST time came about, I aced it.

    You only need to read the first page... I'll condense the rest of the pages for you:
    • Is it on today?
    • What time does it start?
    • See you all there
    • Thanks for a great session
    • I passed My MOST!!!
    It's totally free and the volunteers there are excellent individuals with a ton of experience.
    • Like Like x 5
  18. Hey Tevez - interesting read, and I expect I'll post my beginner experiences shortly :) I'm fortunate that I live in a smallish suburb with quiet streets, so quite easy to get some practice in, weather permitting, without too much stress. I'm trying to get the basics sorted before I venture out too far :)
  19. That sounds like exactly what I need. Hopefully its not too far from where I live.

    Tasrider, would be great to see how your beginner rides were like. Look forward to reading it.