Tell me about motorbikes

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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by Il Duce @ Mon Apr 01, 2019 3:50 pm

Suzuki TS- seat height 34 inches.

Finally someone has taken my place as the CTF dwarf.

<masterfully strokes his 32 inch inside leg>

Ok. Constructive help- Someone might make lower seats or chop the foam yourself is my only advice.
I'm genuinely amazed that you can barely touch the ground. What inside leg are you? I'm not asking just to take the piss just trying to figure out if some lanky bastard has messed around with it. If he has then all you'd have to look for is a stock rear shock.
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by desertweasel @ Mon Apr 01, 2019 4:46 pm

30" trouser or possibly 29" on a bad day so definitely dwarf territory, the rear shock is non-standard so possibly is adding height.

The guy selling it was only a bit taller than me and was climbing on to it using the pegs when on the side stand, it's a bit of a beast.
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by Tokyo Sexwale @ Mon Apr 01, 2019 5:10 pm

desertweasel wrote:

The guy selling it was only a bit taller than me and was climbing on to it using the pegs when on the side stand, it's a bit of a beast.

I have to do that on my bike (R1200GS) and can only get toes down, not flat feet - mainly down to the width of the seat but it's also a big lump.
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by Il Duce @ Mon Apr 01, 2019 5:26 pm

desertweasel wrote:30" trouser or possibly 29" on a bad day so definitely dwarf territory, the rear shock is non-standard so possibly is adding height.

The guy selling it was only a bit taller than me and was climbing on to it using the pegs when on the side stand, it's a bit of a beast.


Somethings not right there. My actual inside leg is 31(I'm a man I'm allowed to add an inch ok?) I used to ride MX and Enduro 250's and 500's and I never had a problem with seat height. I bet he fitted an uprated shock because the fat bastard was bottoming out. This would explain the skyscraper seat height. Fit a standard shock and it'll be lower to start with and softer so will sit lower when you sit on it.
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by Damien Thorn @ Sat Apr 13, 2019 9:33 am

e: tl/dr - I'm loving this, still.

For the brave :

Right then. I have now ridden about 800 miles since I got my bike in the middle of February. I know that doesn't seem like very much, but I am riding to work most days and I also find I use the bike for any errands or shopping that's practicable. As you can infer from that, I am just loving everything about riding.

Let's start with the bike. The Honda I ended up getting has turned out to be perfect as a novice big bike. It is the easiest thing in the world to ride, nimble and wieldy, and the 200kg weight just disappears completely once I'm on. I have to paddle about a little to get between my fleet of vehicles on the driveway to put it in and out of the garage, but even that no-speed sweaving never gives me any fear of the balance going or dropping it.

I've taken bits and pieces off the bike now; removed the ghastly retro CB stickers, unbolted the side panniers and frame that carried them, I took off the pillion pegs but then put them back on again when I discovered that Honda's intense weight-saving regime extended to not actually painting the chassis rail behind the fixing points (tw@ts). I've kept the top box on, because it's super-handy for everything from my packed lunch for work and spare clothes if it's raining, to a crate of 18 cans of beer from the shop. I've bought a tail tidy to go on, but haven't had chance to fit it yet, and I intend to get some bar end mirrors at some point. Oh, and I changed the levers to some nifty black anodised / carbon ones (not shorties, full length) in line with my intention of removing as much colour from the bike as I can.

That intention itself came about by accident simply because the bike I've bought is a colour combo of matt black and satin black, with matt black wheels and some subdued grey Honda badging on the tank. Which is why I've already binned the levers, as it came with red ones (ew).

As to actually riding, I'm slowly building experience, obv, but finding that that in turn is bringing a noticeable ramping up in my confidence - as well as competence. There's no element of a ride which gives me any trepidation, so I'm not concerned if the weather is shit or if the traffic is horrendous. In terms of weather, last Sunday I rode up to Nervy's as we'd planned to go out playing on some of his bigger boy's bikes. but sadly the weather didn't want to play ball. It's about 90 miles to his, and I was about 60 miles through before the weather bit me in the arse and pissed down so torrentially that I could barely even see. I had my heated grips wound right up, but even so the combo of cold and wet hands meant that when I stopped for a piss at one point I could neither undo my trousers or even extract myself from wringing wet pants. Awful. And my boots turned out to be the wrong kind of waterproof, as the rain soaking through my trousers ran down inside the boots and meant that I literally poured out an inch of water from each boot into Nerv's sink once I arrived. fcuking horrible. I put plastic bags on my feet under the boots to ride back (N insisted that I use ione if his cars to get home, but I wanted to ride back simply so I'd have my bike available at home to be able to ride to work for the week - which says a lot about home attached I've become to a bike commute. My boots stood on the radiator at Nerv's while we went out for lunch, and then on the radiator at mine until Thursday when they were finally dry enough for me to wear again.

On the positive flipside though, eclipsing the disappointment of not being able to ride out on one of Nerv's big bikes, we went out in the R8 instead and laughed ourselves silly at how desperately the traction control intervened to keep things even remotely tidy on the crumbling rural lanes. I don't know if he's fiddled with the car (he probably has) but it's making about 700hp and the most hilarious unholy racket. Does that sound about right TT? I know you've got one on the radar. It made so much noise in fact that firing it up literally sounded like something expensive had just exploded, due to the huge detonation of noise. He made me drive to the cafe simply so that when we arrived the people who were already there wouldn't think it was him who was the crass bellend with the obnoxious shouty car.

But back to riding. There are definitely strides I can see and feel that I'm making in terms of control finesse-ing, but also areas where I'm still ineptly trying to find some smoothness. I'm still getting to grips with pulling away quickly into a turn, out of a side road onto a busy main road, say. So I have to wait for a sizeable gap to be able to move off smoothly. If I try to lunge quickly for a smaller gap, I end up snatchy and jerky and making the turn into a fifty pence instead of a nice radius. Nothing dangerous or horrible, just sometimes moments when I crossly think to myself that I've made a bit of a dog's breakfast of it. Pulling away straight is fine - perhaps at traffic lights - where it's easy to modulate clutch and throttle for a smart getaway. But I am getting the hang of it, and part of that seems to be growing confidence in tipping the bike in to a turn, and the lean angle that feels perfectly happy even at lower speeds. And my ability to roll on and hold a steady part throttle is coming on in noticeable leaps too, keeping the bike happy and balanced through big roundabouts or town speed corners forex.

Sounds like some heavy negatives there, but it isn't really. Just thinking out loud about where I can see myself getting better, and where I can see that I still need to get better. And I still love filtering through traffic so much. It's hilarious. I'm not a tw@t about it, and limit my relative speed with the traffic and with other road users vehicle positioning ofc, but it is just the best thing ever. The only problem with it is how much it exaggerates the frustration when you have to be in a car in traffic, and you can see the huge swathes of space where on a bike you'd just be gone.

I should stop going on, as this post is already horrifically long. But two things are also happening: I am constantly looking at other bikes with a buyer's eye. I'm looking at Triumph nakeds, and Ducati Monsters, and all sorts of bigger-engine things. I've got absolutely no disappointment with the performance from my Honda though, just an itchy trigger finger when looking at things for sale. My Honda is still easily as quick and responsive as I want it to be and is plenty on my commute even short-shifting through the box at no more than 6 or 7000. On the few occasions when I have wrung it out further it's simply hilarious, werewolfing from a rumbly thrum into a proper fast-motorbike multi-cylinder Stuka of a noise. It also builds speed (or "accelerates") at such a rate it makes me lol out loud and other traffic flies backwards in the mirrors like it's a magic trick. Heaven knows what properly quick bikes feel like!

Second thing is that Nervy is an absolute hero in the background here. Gleefully encouraging me through my baby steps with pretty much daily contact and total delight at how I'm getting on. He was gutted the weather put paid to our plans last week, but they will come to pass in the near future, as soon as the weather makes up its mind for more than two hours in a row. So my trepidation for riding his monster MV or Ducati will have to continue a while.
Last edited by Damien Thorn on Sat Apr 13, 2019 10:27 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by Tokyo Sexwale @ Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:10 am

:thumbup: Excellent. The best is yet to come too with the summer looming.

I know it's tricky to get away (with a family, work etc) but one of my favourite things to do on a bike is ride in Europe, especially Southern France and Italy. If you can get even a long weekend away in the summer it is utterly sublime; sun, emptiness, smooth sweeping mountain roads, just beautiful.
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by Damien Thorn @ Sat Apr 13, 2019 2:44 pm

Tokyo Sexwale wrote::thumbup: Excellent. The best is yet to come too with the summer looming.

I'm really looking forward to that. Seems preposterous that so far I've only ever ridden during the "off" season, when people tend not to ride because the weather is crap.

Nervy was somewhat taken aback that I was merrily using my bike as actual transport.
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by CJ+ @ Sat Apr 13, 2019 3:05 pm

I love how enthusiastic you are about this, datho. Speaking as someone who's never so much as ridden pillion, it sounds amazing fun!
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by Disastrous @ Sat Apr 13, 2019 6:07 pm

Excellent. Inspirational stuff, so much so that I took the Triumph for a belt round Loch Lomond in the sun today. Still chilly but superb day and great fun.
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by Damien Thorn @ Sat Apr 13, 2019 6:38 pm

What bikes have you got now D? Triumph, Aprilia, still got the Thundercat?

Reminds me what the Aprilia is.
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by Disastrous @ Sat Apr 13, 2019 6:39 pm

Damien Thorn wrote:What bikes have you got now D? Triumph, Aprilia, still got the Thundercat?

Reminds me what the Aprilia is.



I’ve got no Thundercat as it burned down after it was stolen.

I’ve got the Triumph, and Aprilia RSV Mille and a Herald Classic 250 (raffle prize).
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by Damien Thorn @ Sat Apr 13, 2019 6:51 pm

I remember now.
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Re: Tell me about motorbikes

Post by span @ Sat Apr 13, 2019 8:43 pm

CJ+ wrote:I love how enthusiastic you are about this, datho. Speaking as someone who's never so much as ridden pillion, it sounds amazing fun!

Yes, CJ I'm the same! Although I have ridden pillion upwards of once. This is lovely and I never usually read these sort of threads but the enjoyment is palpable and I'm enjoying it vicariously.
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