I​ Have No Idea What I'm Doing Pt 3. The Verdict is In.

1​40 miles - I've come to a verdict.

12w ago
1.7K

A​s I've ticked off the miles, and have become more and more comfortable on my first bike (2021 Ninja 400 ABS), I have come to a conclusion. A few people seen to understand my perspective as I've slowly come to a conclusion, but most people just say "you haven't ridden enough to REALLY tell yet." Which baffles me.

I​ live in the city, but near horse country here in Central Ky. (an era where people come from all over the world to buy thoroughbred race horses, Kentucky Derby Winners, Etc.) So while in the city, you have your typical urban lay outs, but with a 10 minute ride out to the country, you'll find nice scenic drives/rides, rolling hills, and occasionally some nice twisty sections of road. It's nice to have a few routes to hit up, and just blow off steam, clear the mind, and enjoy some cornering, with out having to drive long distances, just to drive.

S​topping in a small town built by the rail road companies.

S​topping in a small town built by the rail road companies.

T​o me riding the motorcycle is, just kind of "eh". Not something I don't get much of a rush, and yet I'm no longer scared of it. However, it is worth mentioning, pushing my self to learn to ride, and get out of my comfort zone was a challenge. I've dedicated time every day to get out and ride, even if just for 20 minutes or so around the neighborhood. But I've tried to put my self in various environments, like highway speed driving, slow city cruising, and the scenic country roads. I've even had some close encounters already with something shooting across my lane inches from my front tire, idiot other drivers (which is unavoidable even in a car), animals crossing/freezing in my path of travel. and even encountered some gravel. Thank you to all those who uploaded riding tips and what not to do's on YouTube! Had me prepared! I've done 80mph + on it, greatly improved my braking and throttle control, and even my shifts are getting buttery smooth and comparable to good shift in a car. The only thing I haven't really done yet, is use ALL of the tire sidewall. Yeah there's still a little "chicken strip" on the edges, but I've been watching my progress via tire scuffing.

The only thing I can compare it to, is dating. You meet someone and it's exciting at first. But after a few dates the excitement can wear off because you're just not hitting it off. It's not exactly what your looking for, but it is better than sitting at home reading poorly written articles on the internet like this.

S​o I do not HATE riding, but I also don't love it. When I go for a ride, I don't get off the bike smiling or in state of joy/relaxation like I tend to after a good blast down some of the same roads in my car. I was able to adapt pretty quickly to riding a bike. I mean, I spent a good deal of my childhood on a BMX bike. About 5 years ago I purchased a road bicycle to try and get back in shape, and just couldn't find the same joy I did as a kid riding a bicycle. I remember as some of the guys that would ride at our local illegal dirt jump trails starting getting older, they'd move onto dirt bikes. Me? I feel in love with cars. Parked the bike and it been nothing but cars until I purchased this motorcycle.

My Corolla Hatchback looks angry that it must share it's space.

My Corolla Hatchback looks angry that it must share it's space.

M​otorcycles aren't for everyone. That's for sure. But I think my real problem is that I let people talk me into something bigger than I initially wanted. What I really wanted was a Honda Ruckus. Just something to putt around on. The real kicker is, I'm going to have to dedicate most of my extra cash to pay this bike off quickly. That way, when the title arrives, I can have the lean released, and make selling it much easier and less stressful. I'm glad I learned to ride, and I was pretty surprised with how quickly I became comfortable with riding. And how quickly the basic skills came to me. Don't get me wrong, my riding is still far from flawless. But I can ride safely where ever I need to. Provided the road is paved! I may not get there very fast, but I'll get there in one piece. So take that for whatever it is worth. Which is something I guess. I have no desire to keep a motor bike in my life, but at the same time, I don't mind keeping it around while I pay it off. I'll still ride it occasionally, because why pay on something, you aren't going to drive/ride?

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Comments (5)

  • I‘ll go out on a limb here and potentially make myself rather unlikable. Your tires look like 20 degrees of lean at best. I know, i know, „that guy“, but there is a point to be made here and it definitely isn‘t one meant to be demeaning. I rode the ninja 400 for a short roadtrip (3 days) through the alps and i had a hoot beyond what i could imagine. Now with my A-license and my gsx i obviously am used to a very different kind of performance but then, with my A2 license, that little ninja was the most fun i ever had on a bike. Obviously it doesn‘t tear your face off when you hit the gas but it lets you rip through gears like a lunatic without ever getting into suicidal speed regions and what you get in turn is a ridiculously flickable bike that you can go down to peg-scraping levels without breaking a sweat. I can most definitely assure you that what you are lacking (as i know your license-training isn‘t anywhere near as thorough as it is here in most countries in the eu) is an experienced rider to go for a few tours with. Trust me, it will change your perspective massively. The first time you go knee-down on a lovely sweeper, you‘ll forget how much power your bike has and just smile ear-to-ear for the next hour after you‘re done. No kidding, look for local riders near you and ask for a few rides together, you‘ll most likely shift your perspective forever. Also, while i don‘t know whether you are that kind of guy, an exhaust will massively lighten your day. I sure know it did the trick for me 😄

      12 days ago
    • No worries tires look much more used now. I’m approaching 1600 miles on the bike. There’s still some chicken strips on there but only about an inch. Kinda hard to use all the tires on the street. Not saying you can’t, but I just don’t ride that...

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        12 days ago
  • For me when ever I hear someone say they are not connecting with riding, they often have the wrong machine in the wrong environment.

    It really is no different then picking out a car. Say you were dropped from another planet here and wanted to buy your first car. What would it be? Someone might talk you into a M3 as a good all around car. But if what you really enjoy is long road trips to remote locations....well you probably are not going to connect with the M3. The other way to think about it is if you bought a jeep to learn how to autoX.

    Really enjoying pushing a bike in the twisties is a long process. It takes WAY longer to get used to the control then in a car.

    But there is more to motorcycles then twisty roads. If you really wanted something fun and simple to run around town a Ruckus or Grom is a great option. No shame in getting one of those as it is probably the best tool for the job.

    Personally I think the crop of middle weight sport bikes is a bad place to start. They are just not good at anything and hard to develop a relationship it.

    I have a garage full of bikes, but when ever I have to run to the post office, or pick up lunch I always take my 1974 Honda CL125. It is a blast.

      2 months ago
    • I agree - I think I let people talk me into something more than I wanted. The only problem with a low CC bike, is many of our main roads are two lane highways, with 55mph speed limits. So riding a Ruckus at full throttle on it's limit tends to be in...

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        2 months ago
    • 100% agree that a ruckus on a highway is terrifying....and not in a fun way.

      But if you really define your use case as never needing to ride on the highway, it doesn't matter.

        2 months ago
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