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The other day I was talking with a co-worker (CW) who I knew was looking to buy a bike a couple of months ago. She'd never ridden, but was tired of riding pillion with her SO. It's also somewhat pertinent to note she's a bitty thing, about 105 lbs. soaking wet.

The conversation went a little something like this:

ME: Hey, did you ever end up getting a bike?

CW: Yeah, I bought a Harley Street Bob.

ME: Nice bike! But isn't 1700cc's and 900 lbs a bit daunting for your first bike?

CW: I don't know...I didn't want to have to get a bigger bike in a year or two.

ME: Fair enough. How do you like it?

CW: I don't know. It's fun when I'm going straight, but turns scare me. I just rode it 5 miles to the store by myself for the first time yesterday and was terrified.

ME: Have you thought about rider training? Maybe the MSF course?

CW: I can't afford that! It's like $200.

ME: How much was your bike?

CW: I got a deal -- around $12,000.

ME: You can justify spending $12k on a bike but not $200 on improving your skills and becoming a safer rider?

CW: Once I can save up enough to get it insured, I might think about some training.

ME: Okay, I'm done.
 

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WoW. Leaves me speechless.
:surprise:
 

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Happens all the time. Shame that the safety courses are not under written by INS companies so that they have a better set of riders on the roads.
Then there might be fewer claims and injuries to cover.
 

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Maybe....just maybe......her SO is helping her learn.

I survived bikes that were too powerful and heavy in my early years too.

I waited until my middle age and after many miles before I took any training.


MEH....
 

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Should of asked her what riding gear she has. I bet the answer would of been the same for that. It is so expensive and I will have to save up for it. Never changes. When I was looking for a bike for my wife she took a riding course first. She rode a cruiser style, a dual purpose and a ninja 250. She decided she felt the most comfortable on the ninja. ( another good reason to take a riding course, try different styles of bikes) So we went shopping at the dealerships in Calgary for one, we went to the big mega dealership named after a First Nations tribe. As we were looking I over heard a salesman talking to a young lady and boyfriend about a good first bike for her. The salesman suggested a new Ninja 600 would be a good bike for her to start with. We walked out.


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You just can't help some people. She sounds like she's dumb as a bag of hammers, and not getting any good advice from her SO.

"I didn't want to have to get a bigger bike in a year or two" - Why the f!#$ not? It's not like selling a big and getting a new one is some huge problem. If you start with a good used bike, you don't even have to lose much on the deal, and even if you have to pay sales tax on the purchase of a used bike, the price is generally pretty low and so the taxes aren't a big deal. But again, how do you talk sense to someone who spends $12K on a bike that they don't have a clue how to ride, and then says that $200 for a training course is too much, or who hasn't bought insurance? Probably not licensed to ride a bike, either.

I may not be the smartest or wisest guy in the world, but when I started back in to the street riding world in '95 or so, after I dropped off my new used bike at the dealer for some servicing, the first thing I did was head over to their gear department. Picked up a pair of blue and white riding boots on clearance that may have been a little goofy looking, but did the job. Likewise for a nice heavy leather jacket, again on clearance. Spent less than $300 for both, and a pair of gloves, and a nice Shoei "Chimo" helmet (essentially an RF200). Now, I had been an enthusiast, albeit without a bike, for years, and had read a lot of bike magazines and absorbed the message about gear.
 

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She's going to be awfully disappointed when the 2700 cc motorcycles come out and her puny 1700 is too small and she is forced to upgrade.
 

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Maybe....just maybe......her SO is helping her learn.
More likely she is getting bad advice from him, $12k HD for 1st bike, no training, probably no gear, cuz I don't plan to ride "like that". I'm sure she has been instructed on the dangers of ever using the front brake.
Mother Nature will sort it out soon enough.
 

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I've been behind HD riders like that on the country backroads. Curves I normally take at 55-60, even on a scooter, they're slowing down to 30...no leaning into the curve at all. I was glad for myself that we don't have a graduated licensing system here, but I can see the merits of it.
 

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It's not just Harleys that slow for the corners. On the local mtn roads I've passed HP2's and Diavel's ridden by slugs.
And I've been passed by guys on Harley's with their hair on fire and going like stink. I admire their skill!

Getting the proper training to ride a motorcycle and develop a decent attitude is important to serviveability.
Ya, really don't need to know how to lay it down, you need to know how to mind the road and brake well.
 

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Heh, she sounds like a typical customer at my shop. I see thought processes like hers every day!
 

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At dinner last night a buddy said his son who is 29 is getting interested in motorcycles and test rode a Ducati Monster. I asked if he had ridden before and he said no. I asked if I could have his full personal information so I could get out of the stock market and start investing in life insurance policies....
 

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Happens all the time. Shame that the safety courses are not under written by INS companies so that they have a better set of riders on the roads.
Then there might be fewer claims and injuries to cover.
It's too bad not all insurance companies give you a discount if you've taken the MSF course...
 
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