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Test Ride Trouble

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by Owen, Sep 6, 2005.

  1. So im looking for a bike, just got my L's had all of 8 hours training with motorbikes and now im expected to just go out and test ride all different bikes until i find one i like?!? Everyone says, "never buy the fisrt bike you ride", i dont know about you guys but i am scared gutless about stacking a bike on a test road, especially when faced with real street conditions, and there is no way i can afford to repair one.

    And how am i meant to know what feels better than say a GPX or a ZZR or a VTR or GN for that matter?!? All i know is, if it rides better than a clutch-burnt CB250 then it is a sweet bike. Im really stuffed as to how i am meant to get a bike i like, that is in good mech cond., for a price i want.

    Anyone understand where i am coming from? Any advice? How do i make the transition from training to reality without being screwed over at every turn?

  2. simple owen.
    1. take a close friend to ride the bikes for you and get him to tell you how they feel on the road.

    2. ask the dealership to get one of the sales reps to take you pillion on a couple you like .
    that way you can listen to the bike , get some kind of view how it handles on the road even though you are not riding it .
  3. I bought Bond based on a visual inspection myself & a test ride the next day done by folma an experienced rider who's opinion I valued greatly a thorough inspection was done by Mike now of OCD Racing after I had paid & taken posession! A huge leap of faith but I've never looked back! Absolutely no regrets, I love my boy!
  4. Get someone to go with you :) If you've got no-one in the know, you can probably bribe your local mechanic.

    And you don't need to ride all those bikes, you need to start by sitting on the bikes first.
  5. what the others have said... sit on bikes to check for fit.
    you're making guess about what sort of rider you'll be, so bike choice is a bit of a guess. (not that it matters.... whatever bike you get will be a challenge, and a real hoot. You will love it.)

    Not wanting to alarm you....but...... a mate of my son's who took a test ride from a City dealer on his L plates had an unfortunate meeting with a police car. It cost him about $2000, Citytraffic on an unfamiliar bike while scared witless of doing any damage is not an ideal environment for studing the fine nuances of different bikes..
  6. I know hardlly anyone in this damn city, i only just moved here from adelaide this year, and i definately dont know anyone who knows about bikes.

    And what about for a private sale? I have lined up an inspection this thursday for a ZZR, but in all honesty all the guys i have talked to selling bikes (not on here) seem as if i am waisting there time, or that because i dont have any experience that i can ask questions about sprockets etc. On the other hand, female sellers tend to be a lot more empathetic and helpful.

    And i really dont think i have the confidence to wing it, or bribe a mechanic to help me. Maybe its something you guys would do, but i just cant.
  7. owen, you've asked lots of questions over the last few weeks, and gathered lots of answers. NOW is the time to collate that into a direction. Cull your list to around 4 bikes, and target them. PM people who've got them, or have mentioned having had them, and ask for feedback. Google for road tests, road reports, owner's feedback, marque web-sites, etc for some extra info.
    See who sells, take someone with you and ask him/her to look out for the things your Netrider friends, road tests, owner reports, have said. Groberts's idea of a pillion ride is good. If a dealer/owner won't offer a pillion ride at least, go somewhere else.
    If you go right through your short list and are not satisfied, make another list and start again.
  8. Where exactly are you located as I'm sure we can find you an experienced rider to help you out but then it will be up to you to decide how much trust you're prepared to invest in them! If they don't have a financial gain to be had and they're prepared to give up their time then they're probably worth believing in! Also they will probably become a mate to ride with down the track!
  9. I know i have asked a lot of questions and i have learnt an enourmous amount, but i still dont have experience.

    My list of bikes is pretty much
    -VT (spada),VTR (if cheap)
    -SRX (they are cheap)

    But when you have only 3.5k to play with, not too many bikes on the list appear. So this leads me to start grabbing at any bike for a decent price, i almost bought a suz GN250, even though i dont like the bike, just because it was a bargain.

    I dunno....gonna go sit in the corner for a while :(
  10. Owen
    2 suggestions .

    1. if you dont know anyone who rides , one of your friends might and may help put you on to them.
    2. there is bound to be a Ulysses club in adelaide .
    look up there site , tell them you are in need of help to check out some bikes ask if you can meet them and talk to them about it , go to one of there weekly gatherings , introduce yourself and see if they are able to help out.

    also if they can help , then you have a group to ride with too, just because you arent 40 doesnt mean you can do rides with them.
    most ulysses clubs rides are open to all riders.

    that way they can also help give you pointers on riding and you will pick up a lot of skills too.
    many of the ulysses blokes have been around a long time and there knowledge and experiance is invaluable.

    hornet wasnt having a go at you , you now have the info its up to you to do the hard yards now.
    see the local ulysses chapter , it would be a good start.
  11. Have you bought your safety gear yet cause if you haven't reduce the bank balance by about a grand, go out & buy your safety gear then look for a bike with what's left over!
  12. Some good advice here. I guess in the end, owen, if you want to get riding you're going to have to "bite the bullet" buddy!
  13. my two cents...

    go to a dealer ship... all their bikes are insured so if you do stack it will cost you $500... but the test ride will let you know how the bike should feel... try fiew different bikes of thesame make and model at different dealerships.

    Defenatley try the Ulissis club... My brotheres father in law is or was the president there... I know they will be more than happy to give you a hand...
  14. I did buy a gn250 (many years ago) :? just because I could afford it. I knew it was only for a year and I didn't know what bike I really wanted or could afford. Anway turns out I had fun simply 'cause I had a bike.

    Just do it (check it mechanically first) and keep on trading up for the rest of your life :p :p :p :LOL: :LOL: :LOL:
  15. Hey Owen

    I'm a fellow learner and fellow Adelaidean. There seems to be quite a few people on here from Adelaide... we've had a few posts talking about going for rides etc. Do a search for Adelaide or SA and you'll probably find some riders that might be willing to help you out.

    Other than that my partner has her unrestricted license and time permitting might be able to help.

    All that aside I've just bought my own bike not more than two months ago. So compeltely know what you're going through. I found that private sellers were a lot more helpful and you can generally tell whether you can trust someone straight away or not. I happened to get a pretty good bargain in a private sale. 2004 ZZR-250 for $5,500.

    So look around, know whats out there. Check the trading post, advertiser, bikesales.com.au etc and then when you find something you like bargain hard. Also check out redbook.com.au - its a website to find out average prices on cars and bikes.

  16. So where are you located now, since you've moved from Adelaide?
  17. you need a plan, Here's one if you like it, use it.
    you've got your L's. You can ride enough to test.
    Find 4-6 bikes, private sale, the ones you like at least a bit (DON'T even look at ones you don't like!) where you can go and see them without too much effort. Test ride them ALL in quiet back streets, at your own pace. Take your time. Tell the seller (afterwards) that you will get back to him when you've tested a couple more - that's normal.
    DON'T buy ANY of them (at least not yet). Just collect info and experiences.
    Now you know what each of them feels like, roughly at least. If there is anything AT ALL that you think is strange/uncomfortable etc. like noises, clunks, riding sensations, the riding position etc. , write it down and keep your notes.
    When you've tried a few different models, have a think and see if you can decide which felt the best. Go and find a couple more examples of this model and test ride them. Anything different this time? Again, take notes.
    Still happy with this model? Now it's time to go shopping. You can go back to the original sellers, or find others.
    Pick the best example you can afford, and have a REALLY good look and listen. If the least little thing makes you stop and think "is that right?", it probably isn't. At this price range you aren't going to get something 100% perfect, you just need to TRY and avoid the things that might cost you hundreds (or thousands) of dollars afterwards.
    You may be able to get someone from the forums to come with you at this stage, if you ask nicely, but you need to have narrowed down the choice first. Don't worry if that doesn't happen - trust your instincts. And also remember it's your choice and your money in the end, so DO make your own choice and NEVER hold the advisor responsible if it does go pear-shaped. Sh*t happens, the best we can do is try to dodge it.
    Good luck, take a deep breathe and dive in. We'll be here when you come up for air
  18. So where are you located now, since you've moved from Adelaide?