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Test riding a new bike

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Wanderer, Aug 29, 2006.

  1. I am off to test ride some new bikes this afternoon - problem is I have been riding a VTR250 for the past 2 years and am nervous about riding a new bike from a power and weight perspective. I am testing the VFR and potentially the Blackbird, and just wanted some advice about what to watch out for in terms of the increased power and weight. Don't want to bend something.......

  2. Hi Jason, just keep in mind the bike will only go as fast as you twist the wrist. Just take your time and relax. You will find if you havent ridden bigger bikes than the VTR that they will try to pull themselves out of your hands so make sure you hold on. The weight is also a factor but mainly when you stop, so make sure you are balanced when you stop.
    At the end of the day take it easy and enjoy your self.

    Good Luck and let us know what you thought of the bikes you end up riding.

  3. I did the same thing a few weeks ago when shopping for an upgrade. I was coming off a 2stroke RGV so that worried me even more. But as long as you take it easy with the right wrist you'll find that you shouldn't have much of a problem.

    And I also agree with the breaking thing, holding up a blackbird coming to a stop will be a hell of a lot different to a VTR250. Balance and stable rear braking should help this out.

    Have fun mate, as long as you keep calm you'll find you have the ability to ride most road bikes.
  4. Thanks for the replies. Well I went down to Red Wing at Heidelberg and rode both the Blackbird and the VFR800. I'll give you a bit of a rundown on them but before I do some advice for those in the same spot I was earlier today.

    Firstly, don't get nervous. Although riding a bigger bike is a little daunting - well at least it was for me - after 5 minutes you'll be over it.

    I'll give you the rundown of my experience. Got there about 4pm and the Blackbird was ready for me to test. Signed my life away on the paperwork (basically says you will pay for any damage, loss, etc....) and then had a chat about the handling characteristics and weight differences, etc. I think honestly I was delaying the time to ride the thing. Anyway, couldn't delay any more so there I was - me and the big 'bird. And to make it worse I had to get it over the lip of a gutter. Damn thing felt like a lead weight.

    Was really tentative on the throttle, and then realised the bike wasn't going to take off on me or anything - I think I had visions of the bike taking off and me running after the thing!!!!

    Anyway, the next revelation is that the big bikes are really well balanced when I had to do a U-turn down a side street and it was just as easy as on the VTR250.

    Anyway, after about 5 minutes of annoying drivers with me going so slow, I felt consident enough to actually ride the thing in some semblence of the way it was meant to be ridden!!! And how good was it!! Rode for about 30 minutes and then headed back to the shop for my turn on the VFR.

    Now when I got on the VFR I must admit they are a comfortable bike - nice body position and peg height, etc. But I must have been spoilt by the CBR - the sound of the VFR and the power, were well, for me, not the same. To be totally honest the VFR felt to me like getting off the VTR250 and basically adding a little power and that was it. Now don't get me wrong the VFR is a very nice bike, more nimble and manoueverable, but it just didn't feel the same as the CBR. Which is odd because I was pretty set on the VFR before I rode them. But to be fair I did ride the VFR for about 30 minutes to really give it a chance, but by the time I got back to the dealer my mind was pretty much made up.

    This post is getting to be an epic, but for all the riders out there ready to upgrade and wondering like me about test riding a bigger bike I would say the following:

    1. Test ride a few bikes even if you are pretty certain what you want
    2. Big bikes contrary to my belief are not hard to handle or "scary" if you respect the increase in weight and power
    3. Talk, talk and talk some more to the dealer - they may think you are dumb and you may think they are just there to take your hard-earned and maybe they are - but if they are - get value for your money!! Ask lots of questions.
    4. At the end of the day a bigger bike will not bite you, but you do need to respect that there is more weight and a bucket load more power at your fingertips.

    I'll post a review on the VFR and the CBR1100 in a more appropriate spot................
  5. Wanderer that was a good read thankyou :wink:

    Im actualy heading out sat to do a few test rides as lm coming off my CBR250RR and stepping up to a 600

    Ive got the R6 in mind, but lm still going to try a few different bikes to feel the difference, but even though l have ridden a few peoples bikes, jumping on a brand new bike is a bit daunting especially when your only 5'4 and on tippy toes...so see how l go

    Good read!! :)
  6. Yeah thanks, Wanderer.

    I'm shopping and dreaming for my next bike when it's 9 months away!
    I think I'd like a ZX10R, but my friend with a ZX6R keeps telling me how it's too much bike for me, blahblahblah.

    ... I am absolutely positive the real problem is that I'll have a faster bike than he does :grin:

    So thanks for the feedback on jumping on an 1100 from a 250!