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Picking up first bike tomorrow

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Primax, Sep 30, 2010.

  1. Hi all,

    After a long wait, I'm picking up my first bike tomorrow.

    I'm buying it from IMI in Knoxfield, which is quite a while away from where I live in Brunswick.

    Its been a few months since I got my Ls and I haven't ridden since, so I'm a bit concerned about being rusty. I'm back on Netrider to refresh myself with some wisdom before the big day....

    Does anyone have any advice before I pop my cherry? :D
  2. Hey Primax,
    Best of luck with your first bike purchase - you must be sooooo excited :)

    There are many threads here in the forums, with lots of riding tip contributions from the many experienced riders. Might pay you to have a search (search function on top of page) on any particular areas you may see fit.

    Picking up a first bike (any bike, for that matter) is an exciting experience ! As you're no doubt aware, care is needed also, in not only riding the bike correctly, according to manufacturer's recommendations during 'break-in' period (new bike), but also being careful, riding safely from dealer --> home, especially if you have to contend with traffic, roads not previously traversed etc. Ensure/check with dealer that the tyres are scrubbed, if new. Otherwise, carry out a long burnout in front of the salesman, by rocking the bike side to side, screaming as loud as you can at the same time. Kidding.

    Just take it slow mate, rethink all techniques learnt during your L's course, and refresh your mind with the do's and don'ts ( ie, DO keep your 3 second distance from cars ahead, refresh emergency stops, counter-steering/emergency swerving... DON'T get influenced to ride outside your comfort zone at any time, constantly carry out mirror/head checks, avoid front braking during slow turns etc).

    Another thought : Prior to riding home, through traffic etc, you might wish to ride around local quiet streets/car park to establish your initial acquaintance with your new 'mate', prior to setting off for the bike's first ride to its new home. Just a thought.

    There are many skills you will develop as you spend more time on your new beast. Just be patient and open to learning. Keep up to date with the many helpful posts which are again available here, in the Netrider forums. There are also Sunday learner rides which are organised by some very helpful & experienced Netrider members to enhance skills, confidence and abilities for Learner Riders. I can't recommend this enough and I'm sure you will benefit greatly from these sessions. Check the forums for exact details.

    Most of all, BEST OF LUCK, and here's to a fun-filled, thrilling memorable day for you !

    Safe, happy riding mate.

    PS - And what will your first bike be ?
    PSS - If you're not already aware, it is customary to post pics of any new bike, here at Netrider. Snaps when you get a chance (y)
  3. Well Nickers beat me to it..but in all take care...dont panic, pull over if you feel you need to have a break..adrenaline can sharpen reflexes..but it will also drain you,so try and keep the super happy/oh my God, oh my God, factor in check. Stopping also gives you time to admire your beasty in her natural environment..unlike the clinical confines of the garage...oh and post pix.
  4. Well, that was an eventful day!

    I started off heading out to AMX in Keilor Park to pick up new boots, jacket, a few pairs of jeans and a lock & cover for the bike. Things went well there, got everything quickly and easily and then headed home to change.

    Jumped on the train to head out to IMI in Knoxville and mentally prepared myself for the first ride.

    Got out to IMI and checked out the new RVFs they had got in since my first test drive. There was quite a few which shook my certainty in getting the black West Elf one, and they happily dragged them out me to start up and listen to, and get a good look at in the sun.

    I loved the aftermarket pipe on one of the stock RVFs, but otherwise was still keen on my Westy. Turns out they had a couple of RVF pipe kits in stock and I bought one which they fitted on the spot. They kindly offered to look after the stock pipe for me until I can come back with a car and pick it up. Also bought a big thick tungsten steel chain to lock it to a tree at home. Thing weighed about 10kg, wore it in my backpack for a while to make sure it wasn't too heavy.

    Next we did all the paperwork and they took me out for any questions and they gave me some tips on riding etc. All in all very happy. I meant to ask which end of the fuel tap was reserve and which was full.... but got carried away yakking and forgot. Mistake 1. (More on this later)

    All things settled, I geared up and tentatively started off on my first official ride on the new bike. I drove into a nearby industrial estate and did a quick slowride and some short turns to get my confidence up before hitting the road.

    Traffic on Ferntree Gully Rd was quite thick but I wasn't as nervous about it as I expected. Everything went well, if a bit tentative while getting used to the ropes. With a bit of confidence behind me, I went off onto the Monash Freeway to head back toward the city.

    Freeway riding was great. I gave everyone a lot of distance and found myself comfortable doing 80/100 through the gentle turns of the Monash. I was feeling solid about riding at this stage, but decided to turn off before the tunnel and go through the city rather than brave the big loopy onramp onto the Bolte bridge. One step at a time.

    Riding in the CBD was good. Took things slow and got comfortable. Stuck to Russell and Lonsdale to avoid tram tracks as much as I could, doing a few hook turns to get around(!). These went alright... need to get used to doing tight turns though, mine were a bit wide..

    Headed up Royal Parade towards Brunswick. Got to the start of Sydney Rd and the bike spluttered a bit and died. Shit. Turned it over to get it going again, but with no dice. Shitshitshit. I checked the fuel tap and decided that yes, I has left it on reserve. I hadn't even thought to fill up along the way, as I was too concerned with the other issues of a first ride. Mistake number 2.

    Pushed the bike around to the nearest 7-11. Bloke on a yellow Honda 250(?) asked if I needed a hand or a push and I said no thanks, explaining it was a combination of idiocy and petrol. Got to the 7-11 and then realised they had no fuel pumps, ugh. Talked the attendant and he pointed me to the two nearest fuel places, a kilometer away or so. Oh well.

    Jumped into a taxi with a nice Greek driver who commiserated with me and gave me the motorcyclist lecture. Filled up a small jerry can and went back to fill up the bike.

    Filled up the bike from the jerry and tried to turn it over... battery was dead. I probably tried to start it too many times when it was empty and drained it. Let it sit for 10 minutes and tried again. No luck. Figured I'll have to push start it.

    Made a fairly tame attempt at push starting the bike while sitting on it. I'd push started ag bikes before, but wasn't used to the high seat of the racing profile on the RVF. Decided I'd have to get off and try it. Mistake 2.

    Found a nice clear empty stretch of flat, straight rode and went at it. Got up a decent pace, huffing and puffing with my jacket and heavy chain in the backpack and everything else and eventually got up enough speed. Went to hop on and screwed it up, tried to stop the bike and ended up dropping it.


    Fairly freaked out at this point, I tried to lever the pick up the bike. No luck. I them moved around and tried to lever it up like I'd seen in a youtube video. As I was huffing and puffing with that a nice block in a red shirt pulled up and helped me pick her up. I think his name was Shane... I really forget in all the stress. He was an American or Canadian, not 100%. Really nice guy to help out a noob in need.

    Checked out the damage, about an inch long sparely scratched area on the right fairing. Will post pictures here later asking for advice on patching it up.

    Had a bit of a yak with him and he helped me get it push started. On the first two push starts it died immediately after putting the stand down. Figured I'd have to just keep going on the third.

    Offered my red shirted friend some beers sometime or money for giving me a hand and he said don't worry about it. I bid him farewell and he gave me a final push before I took off and wobbled on home.

    Stopped to get fuel again nearby, at a petrol station on a hill. It wouldn't start again, despite a good 10 minutes or so of riding/revving at idle.

    Got home, found a way to chain it to the tree, and then came in to write this. About to head off for K-Mart to get a charger for the battery, to see if that will fix it for me instead of taking it back to IMI.

    All in all enjoyed the ride a lot. Learned more lessons today than I have in years. Hopefully tomorrow everything will go well..
  5. And crap, I don't have a 4mm hex key. I have 3mm and 5mm but it seems the seat cover needs 4mm.

    Is there likely to be one included with the bike somewhere?
  6. Sounds like you had a bit of a ruff time mate
    I doubt a 4mm will be with it
    You gota watch out with these importers as there grey imports with more than likely the clock wound back i could be wrong but i hope not for your sake

    Did you get a charger and did it fix the problem
  7. Got a charger, can't get the seat off tho to get at the battery ](*,)

    Good thing I live not far from a big downhill slope.
  8. Hmm.. tough on the drop mate!

    Lesson there, if she doesnt start after 5 or 6 turns for a few seconds, theres something else wrong and cranking and cranking aint changing that!
    In saying that though, it sounds more like you have a killswitch issue? Putting the stand down when a bike is in gear usually kills the engine.
    My bike can be tempremental with killswitches, i have to cycle them and the ignition sometimes to be able to start it.

    Good luck on getting the fairing sorted!

    Why cant ya get the seat off?
  9. It has hex bolts that need alum keys to get off. I don't have the right size key..

    I'll ride into work tomorrow and sort it out there at the workshop.
  10. Relax and take it easy :)
  11. What a first day of riding Primax. I know the 7/11 you rocked up to which is at the corner of sydney rd/brunswick rd. I feel for you mate and hope you are able to get everything sorted. Where did you get the jerry can and petrol from?
  12. Hey, chin up and use it as a positive with plenty to throw in the experience basket..
    Just think, in future when you've many k's under the belt and probably a few bikes, you'll have this great fun story to tell over a beer with your new bike mates!

    I live close to IMI and went there when I bought my first bike.
    Thought they wern't that great a deal considering most of those bikes were 10 years old or more...
    Prefered to pay a couple of grand more ffor a new gs500f than a 10 year old bike I considered from them....
  13. Sounds like you had a rough day! Don't worry too much - heaps of learners drop their bikes (I've crashed once and dropped it twice more :p )
  14. How much is your bike?
  15. Hey Primax, I have an RVF so if you need a hand with anything just send me a PM. Have you got the bike going yet?
    Strange to hear that there are hex bolts holding the seat down.....hmmmmm.
    There is no hex key in the toolkit. There is a small compartment off the boot and that is where the tool kit should be for future reference. Damn, there prices ar step for RVF's so I hope you got a good deal considering you bought an aftermarket exhaust too.

    Take the advice that Nickers330 posted -some good tips in there.
    RVF's are a very fast bike so take it easy and learn how the bike handles and responds to your input. Take care on the roads and don't sweat that you dropped it either - shit happens.