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New Learner Rider

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by WEJA, Nov 3, 2015.

  1. Hello i'm new to the forum and have enjoyed reading all the information on here,
    i thought i would give my experiences so far - about a week of riding (if you call it that)

    I got my bike the previous weekend - On saturday i rode it up and down my drive way (its quite long) it was very exciting - i could of ran faster than i was going but it was still very exciting

    then i thought id take it out the next day around my suburb i got up really early and went out - here is where i realised that i needed to practice a lot more - i came to a stop sign on a steep hill and i could not get the bike up it - i kept stalling and rolling backwards - i know to use the back brake but the bikes back break isn't very strong i don't think because it still let the bike roll back even when i had applied full pressure to it - i gave up and turned it around on the hill and went down instead (felt very defeated) i then went back home and had a think about what had happened and had a break then i went back out again - i then had another hill experience, it was another steep hill right after a turn - i shifted up and i think i kicked into neutral by accident and the bike was revving and not moving, it scared me and my automatic reaction was to stop on the hill, i then realised i had put myself in a bad situation because the hill was so steep and i am very short and i only had one foot down on my toes - i again decided the best idea would be to turn the bike around and go back down the hill - i then went back home and got onto the forum and read that if this happens i should just kick up a gear and not down (correct me if I'm wrong)

    A few other things i noticed while out was that the bike i had never realised how scary riding down a steep hill was, its a strange feeling i almost felt like i was going to fall over the handlebars

    I came to a round a bout where i gave way to a bicycle rider - i then stalled and this bike rider between the time they passed me and i stalled then had gone out of sight - i caught up to them but then realised that a bike rider was riding faster than me

    I have since being practising my hill starts and using the front brake as well - which has helped greatly but i still can't go straight away

    I think the main thing i have noticed is that when something happens that i don't know how to approach i stop - which in traffic situations would not be safe at all. I will keep practising and hopefully get more confident

    I just thought i would post this so i could look back on when i progress - also to help anyone else who is the same stage of riding as me - happy to hear about anyones experiences or advice, i plan on doing a course etc after i feel confident enough to ride there

    And also just wanted to say a big thank you to everyone on here, the information on here is soo helpful and i love reading through the forums

  2. Hi Weja :)
    I for one would not be attempting brake starts on hills first up - how scary ! Practice stopping and starting on flat ground first until it becomes second nature. You need to be confident you know where your clutch 'friction zone' is. Then find gentle hills (preferably where you will not have a lot of traffic to watch) to practice on. Usually you only use your back brake on hill starts and I thought they all should be good enough to hold you? Does yours need adjusting? I still find steeper hills scary, even a gentle slope at traffic lights I will make sure I am in first several times and get nervous. :)
    You are not doing bad - I spent a couple of weeks riding around a paddock on a little dirt bike before venturing out on the roads.
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  3. I would agree with Michelle33, your back brake should be enough to hold you stopped on a hill. It is either out of adjustment or the rear brake pads are to worn and should be replaced. Forget trying to do hill starts until you resolve the back brake issue because you will only learn bad habits.

    What model bike is it? If you let us know we may be able to suggest things to check on the rear brake.

    PS: When you get a chance you should start and introduction thread for yourself in the Welcome lounge. It allows people to get to know you a bit better. It is a custom around here for new posters to introduce themselves, no big thing but it helps in your upgrade to Member status as well so you can send personal messages and post pictures.
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  4. Thanks so much, that makes me feel better, I have to admit it did knock my confidence a little bit but I will keep practising and hopefully get better :)
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  5. Hey yeah I was thinking it was weird about the back brake, it's a brand new bike - an import - Honda msx 125 or Grom it was the best choice for me because of my height/inseam, yeah I didn't know about the welcome forum, I will defiantly check it out and make a post :) yeah maybe I should take it somewhere and get them to look at the back brake
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  6. Hey WEJA!! Great work on your first week of riding (of course we call it that!). It's awesome to read the persistence and determination you have shown so far. I am going to agree with the guys above me, your back brake should hold you on any hill you are on without anything close to your full weight on it. It's designed to stop you when your moving at (over?;)) 110kph so it should be able to manage gravity pulling you down a hill with no worries. Definitely get that checked out before you hit those hills again or ride on unfamiliar roads.

    The most amazing thing to me is that as a new rider you were able to manage turning around on a steep hill without falling over, that's awesome. I still freak out doing a U-Turn on a slope. Hill starts will get a lot easier when you figure out your rear brake issue, as unlike with a car you can maintain control over all three inputs whilst doing a hillstart. With your right hand on the throttle, left hand on the clutch, right foot on the rear brake and left foot on the ground, you can move them all and keep everything controlled.

    The trick I was taught in my L's was to keep upwards pressure on the gear lever with your foot until your clutch is past the friction point, that stops it from slipping back into the gear you were changing from.

    Definitely work on the smoothness and these things before jumping into traffic. I am all for jumping in the deep end, but when that deep end includes a bunch of people checking their phones whilst driving, you need to be on your guard which is easier when you can do everything you need to on your bike without thinking.

    Ride Safe and keep us posted on your progress!!

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  7. Ok Groms will be an grey import although rumour is that Honda will be importing them here officially. Which should mean better availability of parts etc for the model. The rear brake is Hydraulic single caliper so my guess is the rear brake may need to be bled of air. Although having a general look it appears it may be a Grom issue until the pads bed in properly. Some suggest adjusting the rear brake pedal around a bit so you have more leverage.

    Interesting bike, if it has not done a lot of kilometres the rear pads could be still shiny and need some more braking before they start to work properly. You are using both front and rear when you brake on the road are you? I am not sure what part of Sydney you are in but when you are ready the guys at Saturday practice in Homebush may be able to help.
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  8. welcome aboard :) take your time and keep practicing :] somewhere quiet and flat :]:]
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  9. Most likely the back brake not bedded in as cjvfr said. Even on my bike the rear break did nothing for a few hundred KM's ended up dragging it a bit while riding slow which helped. Defiantly try and make it to a homebush session depending where you are located, should be able to find someone to ride in with you when you're ready.

    But just keep practising, you'll be surprised how fast you will improve.
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  10. Thanks so much everyone! Really great advice which I will try this weekend coming.

    I was using the front brake more than the back because I couldn't really feel any braking power when I was using it so i was just doing what I learned in the pre learner course (set up and squeeze) thanks for the advice I will ride around slowly and try using the back brake more and hopefully it will get better. The bike (apart from the back brake) has been really good for me, I found even at the pre learners the Honda cb125e was a very big bike for me and this bike is much lighter and feel a lot more comfortable being on it, the only down side is visabitly (being a smaller bike I'm sure i will be harder to see in traffic)

    I defiantly want to come to the Homebush practice sessions, I just need to practice a whole lot more before I make the trip... :) I'll keep you posted how I go this weekend coming...I'm not sure but I might go onto a main road...well that's the dream....It probally wont happen tho lol
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  11. Where in Sydney are you located?
    Just ease into it and you'll be hitting the main roads in no time.
  12. Awesome bike.! Hope to see your Grom at homebush when I go for practise as well..
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  13. Sutherland shire :)
  14. I'm just across the bridge, near kogarah so if you ever need a hand or someone to ride with to the Homebush session then hit me up, if I'm free i'll be happy to help out.
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  15. so i just thought id update this, i went out early this morning again around my area - went much better this time….although the highest speed i got to was 50km/h i didn't stall when i was out on the road which was good :) and i also didn't have any bad experiences with hills either lol - but of course i had a few learning mistakes….when i came back home i was practising on my driveway with my slow speed turning and i left the bike in 2nd gear and stalled while turning but it was a good learning experience because i won't ever try and turn in 2nd going that slow again, i was also practising downshifting when coming to a stop and then turning (i accidentally kicked the bike into neutral) - so far been good but i always take a break when i start making mistakes - ill go out later today (and hopefully tomorrow ill go out onto some of the more main roads :) (i also want to go back to that stop sign on the steep hill and have another go at it)
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  16. Well done. Its a steep learning curve that I reckon never really stops, but thats the joy of learning new skills.

    And when it all comes together and you nail a set of corners or even a rightturn on a roundabout you will congratulate yourself inside you helmet (like I did yesterday )
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  17. Hey everyone,
    Just thought i'd update from today…i was only out for about 30 mins..today was quite scary...had a car tail gaiting me…i pulled over and let them pass, had a person around a blind corner doing a 3 point turn in the middle of the road…luckily i was only going 40km/h then had a car come reversing out of their steep driveway really fast without looking, i was coming down a hill and had to swerve to the other side of the road…luckily no one was on the other side of the road….oh and had a man in a 4wd ute speeding on the other side of the road and come into my lane….all and all feel a little bit shaken up…this was all in the space of 30 mins and on suburban roads…just happy to be safe and home…just thought i'd share….also how long did it take for people to feel comfortable on the road?
  18. Hi WEJA, that's seems quite a few hazards in short amount of time. Sounds like the learner training worked well for you as you're home safely. Some real-life lessons early probably good for experience.

    I also just started riding last weekend at q-ride and got first bike during the week - dropped her at stop sign in front of road work crew first day, ugh. No damage so a good lesson. I personally find riding at speeds much easier than the slow stuff - especially as bike is much bigger and heavier than the q-ride CB125. Practice is helping feel more comfortable now. Developed better stopping routine and now don't feel like I'm going to drop her each time, but right hand turns on tight roundabouts are still my nemesis.

    Took my first ride to countryside yesterday with few open twisties, 110km/hr on Pacific Hwy and also completed my first refuel without making a goose of myself, but getting home and facing the steep driveway from big bump up from road to tight left hand turn I need make at top around my car to where I stop her still fills me with dread, as does leaving the driveway. Especially as clutch friction point is to far out from bar for my liking.

    I guess everyone finds different parts of riding easier or more comfortable at different rates - only thing that helps is just doing it. I try tell myself, "you can do this" each time I have to do the manoeuvres I don't like - figure I may as well pretend to be confident even though know I'm not comfortable with it. If riding was just the stuff above 30km/hr I'd be happy, but we have to start and stop sometimes as well - ugh.

    Keep practicing, it's fun once the butterflies subside.
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  19. Dramatic improvement in a short period of time. There isn't a person on here who hasn't made all of those mistakes. It seems as though you are the type of person who wants to push out there and learn slowly and privately on your own. That's OK, but get an experienced rider to review your riding from time to time and make sure you aren't settling into any bad habits that might hurt you later when you start going quicker. If you were my friend and I was teaching you I would be well pleased with your progress so far.

    Don't forget to enjoy it.
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