Motorcycle Forum banner

1 - 20 of 49 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have no idea what the community is like here so I'm hoping I don't get chewed up, obviously there is motorcycle enthusiasts but I was hoping maybe I could get some solid advise on my situation.

I'm 27 years old, I've been riding dirt bikes and bikes most of my life, when I am on a bike, behind a wheel, or doing anything really it's not a lack of confidence or trust in myself but a lack of trust of others on the road.

My issue is that I'm not much of a risk taker, I'm 6'2 280 lbs played sports my whole life and try to let loose and enjoy myself but at the end of the day I try to calculate and think 3 steps ahead with everything. I love nature and being on the road behind a bike, and really enjoy it but between family and friends I'm constantly reminded of the dangers of riding a bike.

Other than dirt bikes I rode my grandfathers Virago 1100 and my dad's Triumph before buying a small bike (once again, trying to hold myself back) I bought a 2012 CBR 250 2, put about 4,000 miles on it, no major issues, enjoyed it but got bored because I'm a big guy and I couldn't do it on the highway it just sucked trying to commute 40 miles each way on it - no pull away speed and I felt like a sitting duck. It was fun to learn more on (besides the Virago), no issues really other than a wet day when someone tried to pull out in front of me.

Once I sold the bike and was ready to get something bigger -- (which I can now) I just haven't. Every time I feel like you only live once I need to enjoy something that I love and start looking at bikes I'm reminded of a friend who passed, or hear some horrible story about guys getting wiped out with no chance to defend themselves. What is the secret to not letting that stand in your way? Just don't think about it?

I'm getting married next year and feel like I'm not pursuing things in my life because I can't accept things not in my control or feel like I'm being irresponsible if I own a bike or that I'm being selfish to my family.

To clarify - when I am on a bike or riding I am not riding in fear the whole time, I do feel confident about my ability - its the decision and choice and thought of what MAY happen the longer I own one that is the issue.

Anyway, hope I didn't piss you all off I just really get irritated at myself the longer I keep going back and forth.

Thanks,
 

·
A legend in his own mind
Joined
·
2,600 Posts
Relax, I don't imagine any flamage from this group about this.
My advise? You have to do what makes you happy, as long as you can live with that decision of course.
I personally accept the danger involved with riding a motorcycle and do everything I can to minimize it. My family also respects my decision to ride. It sounds to me like you know what could happen, and it also sounds like you really enjoy it. I say as long as you try to come home alive and well each time then it shouldn't be an issue to get the bike. Does your significant other like to ride also (own or passenger)?

View attachment 25410
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Relax, I don't imagine any flamage from this group about this.
My advise? You have to do what makes you happy, as long as you can live with that decision of course.
I personally accept the danger involved with riding a motorcycle and do everything I can to minimize it. My family also respects my decision to ride. It sounds to me like you know what could happen, and it also sounds like you really enjoy it. I say as long as you try to come home alive and well each time then it shouldn't be an issue to get the bike. Does your significant other like to ride also (own or passenger)?

View attachment 25410
She rode on the back with me a few times, and she has not told me I can't get one & that she would ride with me from time to time on it but will do the same rambling about them being dangerous followed by all her family members who have broken their backs, legs, etc. I mean the stories I've had family members go into the most ... elegant.. detail about its enough to about make any sane person not do whatever it is. Thanks for your input !
 

·
Registered
2015 BMW K1600GTL & 2008 Harley Davidson Dyna Super Glide Custom
Joined
·
1,359 Posts
I have no idea what the community is like here so I'm hoping I don't get chewed up, obviously there is motorcycle enthusiasts but I was hoping maybe I could get some solid advise on my situation.

I'm 27 years old, I've been riding dirt bikes and bikes most of my life, when I am on a bike, behind a wheel, or doing anything really it's not a lack of confidence or trust in myself but a lack of trust of others on the road.

My issue is that I'm not much of a risk taker, I'm 6'2 280 lbs played sports my whole life and try to let loose and enjoy myself but at the end of the day I try to calculate and think 3 steps ahead with everything. I love nature and being on the road behind a bike, and really enjoy it but between family and friends I'm constantly reminded of the dangers of riding a bike.

Other than dirt bikes I rode my grandfathers Virago 1100 and my dad's Triumph before buying a small bike (once again, trying to hold myself back) I bought a 2012 CBR 250 2, put about 4,000 miles on it, no major issues, enjoyed it but got bored because I'm a big guy and I couldn't do it on the highway it just sucked trying to commute 40 miles each way on it - no pull away speed and I felt like a sitting duck. It was fun to learn more on (besides the Virago), no issues really other than a wet day when someone tried to pull out in front of me.

Once I sold the bike and was ready to get something bigger -- (which I can now) I just haven't. Every time I feel like you only live once I need to enjoy something that I love and start looking at bikes I'm reminded of a friend who passed, or hear some horrible story about guys getting wiped out with no chance to defend themselves. What is the secret to not letting that stand in your way? Just don't think about it?

I'm getting married next year and feel like I'm not pursuing things in my life because I can't accept things not in my control or feel like I'm being irresponsible if I own a bike or that I'm being selfish to my family.

To clarify - when I am on a bike or riding I am not riding in fear the whole time, I do feel confident about my ability - its the decision and choice and thought of what MAY happen the longer I own one that is the issue.

Anyway, hope I didn't piss you all off I just really get irritated at myself the longer I keep going back and forth.

Thanks,
First - riding is a risk; period. There will be situations that there isn't anything you can do about it. If you can't get over that portion of riding (or driving for that matter) then a road bike may not be a great option for you but I don't think that's the case. First, I think you should realize that you have a lot more control over what happens than you think you do. You're not out there with no control like a bouncing beach ball just hoping to be lucky. Every decision that you make contributes to the end result - you just need to think through it and make the safest conditions for yourself that you can: Consider lane position, time of day, weather conditions, traffic patterns etc. When I'm out riding (or driving) I always take into account where I am in the lane - who can hit me? What driveway is coming up? How fast am I going and is it appropriate for the area? Does the light I'm coming to have a left turn lane that has a specific turn lane/light or can they just go anytime? Am I in the right lane on a multi-lane street where someone can pull out into me (I NEVER ride here)? Am I visible? Am I wearing gear?...I see so many motorcyclists when I'm out doing things that aren't specifically stupid but they're for sure not safe and I know they're going to get hit, it's just a matter of time.

Also; I used to spend some time at the Cycle Gear bike nights with an insurance booth (I'm an agent) and guys would come talk to us all the time. It was really clear why certain guys were always telling stories about getting hit, close calls, fights with drivers etc while other have NEVER had an issue. The guys always having issues were almost always to blame even if legally they were in the right. Of course they still maintained it was the "f'ng cagers". Just because you can legally ride here or there or do this or that doesn't make it the right thing and you can always be dead right.

I haven't been riding as long as some (started in '08) but I've put on close to 90,000 miles and have avoided a few potential situations that could have been bad had I not been paying attention to everything. I also am a big proponent of continuing education. I take classes, practice specific maneuvers, read what I can. Everything helps.

Riding smart is riding safe
 

·
Gone
Joined
·
23,907 Posts
You're not out there with no control like a bouncing beach ball just hoping to be lucky.
That happens way too often with riders. Many make too many assumptions in how they ride, and it's only a matter of time before something goes horribly wrong. I see this type of riding all the time, unfortunately.

You are correct: A safe rider has a lot of control over how their ride goes.

Being able to control the motorcycle competently is only a small fraction of what it takes to stay safe on the road.

Using the eyes and mind to identify and properly react to potential dangers is the biggest factor that safe riders share.

Get complacent and assume too much, and even a second of inattention can spell disaster. You have to be on the ball for the entire ride.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
First - riding is a risk; period. There will be situations that there isn't anything you can do about it. If you can't get over that portion of riding (or driving for that matter) then a road bike may not be a great option for you but I don't think that's the case. First, I think you should realize that you have a lot more control over what happens than you think you do. You're not out there with no control like a bouncing beach ball just hoping to be lucky. Every decision that you make contributes to the end result - you just need to think through it and make the safest conditions for yourself that you can: Consider lane position, time of day, weather conditions, traffic patterns etc. When I'm out riding (or driving) I always take into account where I am in the lane - who can hit me? What driveway is coming up? How fast am I going and is it appropriate for the area? Does the light I'm coming to have a left turn lane that has a specific turn lane/light or can they just go anytime? Am I in the right lane on a multi-lane street where someone can pull out into me (I NEVER ride here)? Am I visible? Am I wearing gear?...I see so many motorcyclists when I'm out doing things that aren't specifically stupid but they're for sure not safe and I know they're going to get hit, it's just a matter of time.

Also; I used to spend some time at the Cycle Gear bike nights with an insurance booth (I'm an agent) and guys would come talk to us all the time. It was really clear why certain guys were always telling stories about getting hit, close calls, fights with drivers etc while other have NEVER had an issue. The guys always having issues were almost always to blame even if legally they were in the right. Of course they still maintained it was the "f'ng cagers". Just because you can legally ride here or there or do this or that doesn't make it the right thing and you can always be dead right.

I haven't been riding as long as some (started in '08) but I've put on close to 90,000 miles and have avoided a few potential situations that could have been bad had I not been paying attention to everything. I also am a big proponent of continuing education. I take classes, practice specific maneuvers, read what I can. Everything helps.

Riding smart is riding safe

Thanks for this post. I chuckled out loud when I saw the beach ball thing, but its funny while I completely agree with you 100% about becoming an expert knowing all the things you can about being safe all the horror stories I hear about guys getting wiped out by freak accidents or being cut off by semi trucks, etc. really makes you feel like a bike is a ticking time bomb not a matter of if - but a matter of when. It's quite scary from the aspect. But I guess I need to wipe away all the bull**** people try to scare you with and just educate myself.
 

·
Registered
2015 BMW K1600GTL & 2008 Harley Davidson Dyna Super Glide Custom
Joined
·
1,359 Posts
Thanks for this post. I chuckled out loud when I saw the beach ball thing, but its funny while I completely agree with you 100% about becoming an expert knowing all the things you can about being safe all the horror stories I hear about guys getting wiped out by freak accidents or being cut off by semi trucks, etc. really makes you feel like a bike is a ticking time bomb not a matter of if - but a matter of when. It's quite scary from the aspect. But I guess I need to wipe away all the bull**** people try to scare you with and just educate myself.
Freak accident - nothing you can do. Cut off by a semi? That is EXACTLY what I'm talking about when I say riding safe. Sure, I guess it could happen but if you're on the ball then you wouldn't be in a potion to get cut off by a semi. Those thing don't exactly dart around the road with ease. They're dangerous and as a rider and/or driver you stay clear. Here is something I see all the time. Out on the freeway and a rider is cruising along side a huge truck,, possibly going a bit faster but taking way too long. I wait until there is a clean lane so I can get by him as fast as possible.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,328 Posts
I've found my motorbike riding has made me a better car driver, I'm much more aware of what's going on around me. I feel that my family is safer in the car with me now that I ride a bike.

Guess you just have to be totally aware of your surroundings when on a bike, watching the front tires of parked and driven cars, staying visible - staying away from the blind spots to the side of cars and trucks because drivers DON'T check over their shoulders, always having a plan B/a "what if" plan all the time.

Yeah riding a motorbike is dangerous, but it sure is a lot of fun too. The choice is yours. I know what my choice would be, but I can't tell you what you should do.

Hope you chose a bike and I hope you have fun.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,168 Posts
OK, all kidding aside, riding is more dangerous than driving a car. It really is that simple. What you need to decide is if you are willing to add that risk to your own life. If you are, start looking at something in the 500cc to 650cc range for your next bike. It will have plenty of power to use it on the highway as a commuter and will easily carry a passenger for occasional rides. If you do not think the risk involved in riding is acceptable, accept your decision and go back to your cage. There is no shame in doing what you choose for yourself.
I have been riding since I was 18, that was 50 years ago, and I still ride twice as far every year as I drive in my cage. The reason is simple. I really enjoy riding and am willing to take the risk. I am one of many who have spent a lot of time in the hospital because of my choice but I still make that choice to ride daily. There are old riders and there are bold riders but there are very few old bold riders.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for your input. 50 years of riding wow. I think part of the problem is people I trust who normally give me solid advice on life really don't help out when It comes to this. My father had a few bikes and was in two accidents, one he claims was his fault, the other a deer. My uncle's best friend got blindsided in an intersection (who knows the truth there). But the #1 thing I can't stand to hear and this is pretty much a quote. "Sure, there is a lot of guys that say they've been riding for years and years but the reality is there is only two types of motorcycle riders, ones that have been in an accident, and ones that will. There is no way you can drive a motorcycle daily and not someday, somehow, someway get hit." I am surprised at how many on these forums have ridden so long but at the same time I'm sure you have all been hit, or close calls or lost loved ones. Maybe I can convince myself to ride casually and just try to learn and be as safe as possible. I do live in Ohio which is tricky - we have lots of deer, and our drivers here a lot of time don't pay attention for bikes, by the time they are its June, and by August they aren't looking anymore.
 

·
American Legion Rider
Joined
·
23,527 Posts
I personally believe the casual rider will have more problems than the daily rider. You hone that extra sense of when someone is going to try killing you by riding ever day. JMO
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
809 Posts
Generally, I agree. Riding is a perishable skill - the less you do it, your skills lessen over time.

The other side of the coin is that sometimes lots of riding can lull us into a false sense of complacency. When I have ridden every day for a week or more during nice weather, and racked up lots of miles in a short period of time, I sometimes have to remind myself to be on constant alert at all times, and keep my mind 100% on riding. Even something as seemingly innocent as letting your mind wander a little can be dangerous.


I personally believe the casual rider will have more problems than the daily rider. You hone that extra sense of when someone is going to try killing you by riding ever day. JMO
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
86 Posts
Speaking as a new rider I struggled with these very same questions myself for the past 7 or so years. My wife was initially radically against it, my whole family constantly talked about how motorcycles are basically mobile deathtraps. All the same things people have told you, they told me. And for a long time I allowed myself to obsess over that and it created a mental block in my mind every time I thought about a bike. Hell, even the biggest proponent of the idea, my dad, constantly dropped little notes of concern about riding.

Finally I just had to decide I wasn't going to let fear control me anymore. It controlled me in a number of other ways and honestly held my life back a lot. Not saying this is your problem, just mine. I just had to make the clear decision that I wanted to learn how to ride and then own one. The thing I told myself, and its probably not the best idea it just worked for me, was to tell myself "If its your lot to die on one, then its your lot. You could die anywhere, doing anything". Doesn't mean I just ride reckless or don't care, but that thought helped me get past most of my fear of riding.

Just my two cents ...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Speaking as a new rider I struggled with these very same questions myself for the past 7 or so years. My wife was initially radically against it, my whole family constantly talked about how motorcycles are basically mobile deathtraps. All the same things people have told you, they told me. And for a long time I allowed myself to obsess over that and it created a mental block in my mind every time I thought about a bike. Hell, even the biggest proponent of the idea, my dad, constantly dropped little notes of concern about riding.

Finally I just had to decide I wasn't going to let fear control me anymore. It controlled me in a number of other ways and honestly held my life back a lot. Not saying this is your problem, just mine. I just had to make the clear decision that I wanted to learn how to ride and then own one. The thing I told myself, and its probably not the best idea it just worked for me, was to tell myself "If its your lot to die on one, then its your lot. You could die anywhere, doing anything". Doesn't mean I just ride reckless or don't care, but that thought helped me get past most of my fear of riding.

Just my two cents ...
This is my situation pretty much. One second my father is helping me look at bikes, the next he is like - but by the way no way you wont ever get in an accident its inevitable. I've got some good input here - training is key, obviously a lot more to safety and nuances than maybe I even had thought of, and also some insight, thanks all
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
86 Posts
This is my situation pretty much. One second my father is helping me look at bikes, the next he is like - but by the way no way you wont ever get in an accident its inevitable. I've got some good input here - training is key, obviously a lot more to safety and nuances than maybe I even had thought of, and also some insight, thanks all
Personally I'm too new to be a solid authority on the matter of whether its inevitable everyone is going to crash or not. I can only speak from the advice given to me by other riders around me and the answer I've gotten is that no its not inevitable ... but you should plan like it will be. This speaks to ATGATT (All The Gear All The Time) and of coarse to riding cautiously.

From my personal experience (limited though it may be), I've dropped a bike three times. All three times it was my fault and the bike was either at a dead stop or only going like 5mph. Twice trying to make right hand turns from a dead stop and once I forgot to put the kick stand down after my first real ride (was a little too excited).
 

·
MODERATOR
Joined
·
8,572 Posts
There are two kinds of people, those that are alive and those that are not:wink:

All of us will draw out last breath someday, in one way or another.

My Christian testimony goes like this: "We are all one breath away from eternity so be ready." So as not to Proselytize I won't go further but I'm sure you can discern the rest:biggrin:

I have ridden since I've been 13 years old, started riding in the dirt in Southern Calif. Got my drivers and motorcycle license in 1962 when I was 15 1/2 years old and I have always had a bike and ridden ever since that time, with my Triumph Rocket being my 79th bike.

I did have a few racing accidents and broke a few ribs and a collar bone over a 38 year period of riding in every type of event from trials to Motocross, Flat Track, TT, Oval 1/2 mile tracks, hare and hound, European scrambles, ISDT type endure rallys, Hill climb events, 1/4 mile competition and BAJA Mexico events so I guess a few spills were inevitable.

Riding on the road since 1962, and I mean not just the commute to work but long distance touring and adventure bike touring on and off road, all over this country and Old Mexico, I have never had an accident of any kind.

Knock on wood! Thank the LORD!:)

I have dropped a Big BMW K1200LTC parking it when the sidestand sunk into new asphalt and almost dropped a brand new Honda VTX 1800 when I forgot to put the sidestand down once!

I ride in a constant state of Paranoia:

WIKIPEDIA.


1.

Psychiatry. a mental disorder characterized by systematized delusions and the projection of personal conflicts, which are ascribed to the supposed hostility of others, sometimes progressing to disturbances of consciousness and aggressive acts believed to be performed in self-defense or as a mission.


2.

baseless or excessive suspicion of the motives of others.


Sounds scary but this mental attitude will keep you alive knowing that threats to your life are mostly from other drivers not paying attention at all to you being on the road and lots don't even see you.

I don't have to remind anyone about the dangers of riding/ driving while being self medicated, legally or illegally. Medical conditions can cause accidents such as Hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia events that can render unconsciousness at any time and the list goes on.

None of us will get out of this world alive---until the RAPTURE comes!

Sam:coffeescreen:
 

·
American Legion Rider
Joined
·
23,527 Posts
I ride in a constant state of Paranoia:
That's the ONLY way to ride as far as I'm concerned. Every single time I let my guard down SOMETHING happens and I pay for it. 3 times and still counting but trying my darnedest to not let that guard down. That is a major chore right there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
27 Posts
I am in your exact position. If you look at my last post, I'm ready to start riding. I passed the MSF course, bought all my gear and armor, got my license, the only thing missing is a bike.

Before this weekend I was ready and so sure to pull the trigger. However, now that I've been sitting on bikes and have narrowed my decision to two, I'm having second thoughts.

I have been wanting to ride all my life, but every time someone in my family or friends circle hear about my future purchase, here comes the horror stories. Like you, the one I've heard the most is "is not if you'll crash, is when you crash".

Like you, I have let fear control most of my life. Even prevented me from making some beneficial decisions. Now, I'm doing this for me, and I know and accept the risks.

Sorry, I don't have advise, just letting you know that you are not alone.
 
1 - 20 of 49 Posts
Top