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Old 12-06-2012, 10:52 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Riding in all types of conditions will make you a better experienced rider. My stryker that I bought in January of this year was my only transportation for just about the majority of the year. It was my first bike too. I did have to borrow a car from time to time but it hardly ever gets too rough here in SoCal. I actually enjoy riding in the rain as long as it's not too crazy. Light rain is much more enjoyable than a super hot summer day. I think 90% of riders out here are terrified of rain, rather, any type of imperfect weather. I like to think that I'm above most 'weekend/perfect weather' riders who have been riding for years compared to my 1 year of riding just about every single day. You learn best with experience afterall.

With that said, always have a back up car and the right gear. It will save you headache.

Look through craigslist for even used gears to save big bucks!
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:10 AM   #32 (permalink)
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My full year of commuting (did 10k miles) thus far has been

~$666 for gas
$360 for 2 tires, sprockets, and chain.
$98 6 quarts of oil at $12 each + 4x filters at $6.50
$50 for a chain slider (result of my gearing combo making clearance close and chain was rubbing, change gearing when I changed the chain to avoid that, now I anticipate far fewer chain and sprocket changes with the new ratio and no rubbing)
My first valve check is not due for another 16k miles.
$1174 total.


Meanwhile my truck would have used $2000 in gas alone to cover those same miles.

Figure 5 quarts x 4 oil changes for a car and about $5 per filter, so ~$128. So I would need a car that got ~38mpg in the city to match my bike on running costs. Pretty much have to be a hybrid to manage that, which would be rather expensive and cost a lot more on insurance. Perhaps an 80s CRX with a manual driven like a granpa? Maybe an old diesel rabbit? Course those ancient ol things will probably need some constant love to keep em going unless I found one in pristine condition.
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:16 AM   #33 (permalink)
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After purchasing a bike, what kind of preventive maintenance should be done? Spark plugs? Oil change?


EDIT: To answer Nero Diablo's question above, no I do not have any kind of formal training.

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Old 12-06-2012, 01:28 PM   #34 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hyena View Post
Hehe yes, I do live in Dallas. The weather isn't THAT bad! It's 61 degrees right now. But yes it can be unpredictable.

I learned to ride on a 250 ninja a friend had. Planned on getting my M endorsement at the time, but other things came up and I didn't get the chance.

I figure insurance would be high. I have 2 at faults and 1 other claim on my record(Parking brake didn't engage all the way. Car rolled into lamp post with cement base. Apparently still counts cause it's collision.) as well as a speeding ticket. Speeding ticket was taken care of by defensive driving course.

I don't act a fool in my Z mainly because I cannot afford to. Gas kills and a a new set of tires would find me asking for change on the street corner.
I live in Dallas and ride year round...barring the occassional ice storm. I have a rain suit and some cold weather gear for those occassions.......both seem rare anymore, unfortunately. It can be done. You will have to be creative when it comes to carrying stuff. Grocery shopping on a bike is a unique experience, the callenge is fun
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Old 12-06-2012, 02:14 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mfromphilly1 View Post
I live in Dallas and ride year round...barring the occassional ice storm. I have a rain suit and some cold weather gear for those occassions.......both seem rare anymore, unfortunately. It can be done. You will have to be creative when it comes to carrying stuff. Grocery shopping on a bike is a unique experience, the callenge is fun
Its all fun and games until you buy too much stuff to fit... Been there, done that, rode home with a gallon of milk in a bag hanging from my bars and a frozen pizza inside my jacket.
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Old 12-06-2012, 02:31 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevinwilly View Post
This only applies for the ninja 250 and 500. A regular sportbike is just as expensive to run as most cars. Maybe not a sports car, but a run of the mill sedan? Absolutely.
Um, no. It applies to pretty much anything except a full-on sportbike, and even those aren't very expensive to run if you're prudent. If nothing else, the *average* car costs over $30K these days, and will almost immediately depreciate more then the entire value of most bikes. And cars are more expensive to insure.

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Originally Posted by kevinwilly View Post
And of course you hate driving in the rain more than driving when it's not raining. Nobody LIKES driving in the rain. But I'll take driving in rain ANY day over riding in the rain. Unless it's like the middle of summer and raining in the afternoon. But this time of year? yeah, riding in the rain sucks.

But more than that- getting CAUGHT in the rain on your bike when you don't have your rain gear? THAT sucks.

Also- there's no way you can get enough gear to ride in every season for 350 bucks. No flipping way. You be hard-pressed to get a decent helmet (200 bucks) and jacket (150 bucks) at that price. I mean, you CAN find stuff cheaper, but not a whole lot. And not stuff for 4 seasons.
I'd much rather be on a bike than stuck in a car in the rain. At least I can get somewhere, when everyone else is stuck stationary behind the flipped SUV on the highway.

The caught in rain problem? Just carry raingear. A cheap rainsuit, or even just overpants, isn't terribly bulky. During the seasons where rain is an issue, I just put a pair of ski pants in my messenger bag or backpack, and put them on if it rains.

A decent helmet will probably be $200. But you can get a used jacket, and serviceable boots, for a couple hundred if that's all you've got to spend. Decent gloves are surprisingly expensive, but they are important. A simple rainsuit is about $100. So I'd say minimal is $600 to be properly covered.

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Old 12-06-2012, 02:36 PM   #37 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hyena View Post
After purchasing a bike, what kind of preventive maintenance should be done? Spark plugs? Oil change?

EDIT: To answer Nero Diablo's question above, no I do not have any kind of formal training.
There's some very good info on buying used bikes on this site; do a little searching and you can get all your questions covered.

I'd change all the fluids on it (oil, coolant if any, brake fluid, fork oil, etc.) unless the previous owner has done it recently. Check the condition of the chain and sprockets, how new the tires are (not just tread, but also age and cracks in the sidewalls and so on).

And get training. That matters a lot.

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Old 12-06-2012, 02:39 PM   #38 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by oic0 View Post
Its all fun and games until you buy too much stuff to fit... Been there, done that, rode home with a gallon of milk in a bag hanging from my bars and a frozen pizza inside my jacket.
I count that as "fitting". I can get an amazing amount of groceries on a bike. With a cargo net and a backpack for all the heavier stuff, then I can hang a couple bags of the lighter goods from my wrists, and carry quite a lot of stuff. I'd definitely suggest some practice before loading up like that, though.

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Old 12-06-2012, 02:45 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilB View Post
I count that as "fitting". I can get an amazing amount of groceries on a bike. With a cargo net and a backpack for all the heavier stuff, then I can hang a couple bags of the lighter goods from my wrists, and carry quite a lot of stuff. I'd definitely suggest some practice before loading up like that, though.

PhilB
Every time someone points out the saddle bags on my VTX I say "I friggen HATE them, ugly as sin... but they are just too damn useful to remove". Yes, between backpack and bags I can carry quite a bit after a parking lost game of tetris. There are those few pesky impossible items though. Like the fragile 24"x24" air filter for my AC unit, and the 40lb bags of feed for my critters
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:04 PM   #40 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevinwilly View Post
This only applies for the ninja 250 and 500. A regular sportbike is just as expensive to run as most cars. Maybe not a sports car, but a run of the mill sedan? Absolutely.


And of course you hate driving in the rain more than driving when it's not raining. Nobody LIKES driving in the rain. But I'll take driving in rain ANY day over riding in the rain. Unless it's like the middle of summer and raining in the afternoon. But this time of year? yeah, riding in the rain sucks.

But more than that- getting CAUGHT in the rain on your bike when you don't have your rain gear? THAT sucks.

Also- there's no way you can get enough gear to ride in every season for 350 bucks. No flipping way. You be hard-pressed to get a decent helmet (200 bucks) and jacket (150 bucks) at that price. I mean, you CAN find stuff cheaper, but not a whole lot. And not stuff for 4 seasons.
I said I hate driving in the rain more than I hate riding in the rain, that means, I rather ride in the rain than drive.

Helmet, $130
Scorpion EXO-700 Helmet - Solids :: MotorcycleGear.com
Gloves, $60
Fieldsheer Apex 2.0 Gloves :: MotorcycleGear.com
Jacket, $100
Fieldsheer Infinity Jacket :: MotorcycleGear.com

That's the gear I commute in, helmet, jacket and gloves. Don't usually ride to work with riding pants and boots.

Boots $100
FirstGear Mesh Hi Boots - 2013 :: MotorcycleGear.com
Pants $80
Fieldsheer Slip On Pants :: MotorcycleGear.com

FULL gear for $480.

As I said, you can go and blow $827 on an Arai helmet
Arai Corsair V Nicky-3 Stars Helmet :: MotorcycleGear.com

But full gear for commuting can be had on the cheap.


I remember when I first came to this site, everybody said it was impossible to be bike only. I first did it, almost five years ago, had to sell my car but kept my bikes, 6 months later I had another car, which to me was just a hassle. Year and a half later that car was totalled when I was hit by a drunk driver, a blessing in disguise, decided not to buy another car and got my CBR. As of now I've been "bike only" for 3 years and save for some times I wish I had a truck to take the bike to the track, I don't see myself getting another car.
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:09 PM   #41 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oic0 View Post
Every time someone points out the saddle bags on my VTX I say "I friggen HATE them, ugly as sin... but they are just too damn useful to remove". Yes, between backpack and bags I can carry quite a bit after a parking lost game of tetris. There are those few pesky impossible items though. Like the fragile 24"x24" air filter for my AC unit, and the 40lb bags of feed for my critters
Impossible? Nah. If the filter is a recurring item, you might be able to make a sturdy box for it, with shoulderstraps so you could wear it like a backpack. Big heavy bags of feed or cat litter or whatnot I usually just drape over the gastank, and support in place with my knees.

I finally, after using this bike daily for 19 years, got my hands on a pair of hardbags for it. I haven't fitted them up yet, but I'm looking forward to the added utility.

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Old 12-06-2012, 07:45 PM   #42 (permalink)
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The hard top case I put on the duke is prob the number 1 mod I've put on any motorcycle. My backpack fits like an inside bag so when I get to work all I do is grab and go.
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:52 PM   #43 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Süsser Tod View Post
I said I hate driving in the rain more than I hate riding in the rain, that means, I rather ride in the rain than drive.

Helmet, $130
Scorpion EXO-700 Helmet - Solids :: MotorcycleGear.com
Gloves, $60
Fieldsheer Apex 2.0 Gloves :: MotorcycleGear.com
Jacket, $100
Fieldsheer Infinity Jacket :: MotorcycleGear.com

That's the gear I commute in, helmet, jacket and gloves. Don't usually ride to work with riding pants and boots.

Boots $100
FirstGear Mesh Hi Boots - 2013 :: MotorcycleGear.com
Pants $80
Fieldsheer Slip On Pants :: MotorcycleGear.com

FULL gear for $480.

As I said, you can go and blow $827 on an Arai helmet
Arai Corsair V Nicky-3 Stars Helmet :: MotorcycleGear.com

But full gear for commuting can be had on the cheap.


I remember when I first came to this site, everybody said it was impossible to be bike only. I first did it, almost five years ago, had to sell my car but kept my bikes, 6 months later I had another car, which to me was just a hassle. Year and a half later that car was totalled when I was hit by a drunk driver, a blessing in disguise, decided not to buy another car and got my CBR. As of now I've been "bike only" for 3 years and save for some times I wish I had a truck to take the bike to the track, I don't see myself getting another car.

Would it be possible to come out cheaper buying boots, helmet, gloves, and a one piece instead of pants and jacket? Can a one piece be worn over regular clothes? Will it provide the same protection as a leather 2 piece, or will I need extras like shin pads and such? I saw a post about the weather proof Survivor one piece. I could look for a used one that hasn't been down. How would that fair? Can anyone recommend a different one piece?

Like I said before, I have a helmet already. It IS used and I know everyone warns against it, but the helmet is a good friend of mine's and I'm 90% sure he bought it new. He's only taken one spill and it was a lowside. Didn't hit his head and I'm not even sure if he was wearing this same helmet. Is it okay to go used as long as you know where it came from?

Also, I think the weird sleeveless armored piece I have is a back protector. If I can find it, I'll upload a picture. If I can figure out how to do that that is.

Last edited by Hyena; 12-07-2012 at 12:35 AM.
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:58 PM   #44 (permalink)
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The helmet should be okay but keep in mind the recommended life span is 5 years, 7 tops

There should be a date code on the helmet


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Old 12-06-2012, 08:02 PM   #45 (permalink)
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The helmet should be okay but keep in mind the recommended life span is 5 years, 7 tops

There should be a date code on the helmet


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No matter actual usage? I can see how that would make sense, but do helmets just expire?
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