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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Im turning 16 soon (February) and am planning on taking the Msc in the summer with my dad. I have read a lot of forums saying that 16 year olds should not get bikes due to their lack of knowledge of the rules of the road. I understand this completely. I am thinking about getting a bike next year (250cc and would only ride it on the empty back roads with my dad) and I have heard horror stories of people only going 10-25 mph and crashing resulting in injuries. I was just wondering if any of you have your own rookie mistake horrors that happend to you. I have a good year before even thinking about buying a bike and want to be completely prepared before I do.
 

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I was probably lucky to grow up on a farm in the country, & started my 'riding career' at probably around 8 years old when I got my 1st minibike :D Yeah even with a 4-hp pull-start minibike I make a few mistakes, probably the 1st day I had it I learned to NEVER hit the front brake while turning sharply ;)

I don't see any reason a 16 year old can't get a motorcycle. You wouldn't be any more 'mature' if you waited till you were 20. Your 1st year riding will still be your 1st year riding..

However I would caution any new rider from buying either a NEW bike, or a bike that's too large (both engine size & seat height). And don't skimp on good riding gear.

Buy a cheap small used bike & take the MSC. Better still, why not take the MSC before buying a bike?
 

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you're fine.
get the bike.
just don't go cruising around at 90-100 mph.
it sounds excessive when I write it here - but it's very easy to get to those speeds.

definitely spend the cash and buy all of the protective gear. don't go cheap.
NEVER - I repeat NEVER - give a girlfriend a ride on your bike.
it's too dangerous. ride one-up ... only you.

have fun!
try to learn from some experienced people.

dT
 

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Every beginner goes thru the same "if's" and "what if's" (at ANY age). It is GOOD that you are thinking thru the various scenarios to get a grip on what you are doing. I'd rather that you were questioning, than just blindly jumping in with no thought of the issues.

That said.........."good luck" with your "MSC!" Pay attention and learn, grasshopper!! Much of it will be useful in the "real world" scenario, and the rest you will learn by trail and error.

-Soupy
 

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Make a decision that you're going to ride safely regardless of peer pressure. "Ride your own ride" is how we say it.

Like when all your pals decide to gun it and go around that truck even though you really can't see if there's anyone coming. Or split lanes. Or pass on the right. Or all the other dumb moves that are EASY to do on a motorbike - and that you'll GET AWAY WITH 99% of the time.

I have had a driver looking RIGHT AT ME pull out RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME. The only thing that will save you is going slow enough to stop no matter WHAT any driver does. Convince yourself that you're invisible on a bike, any bike, and that's a good start.

Take the MSF and then "adopt" a bunch of old dudes to ride with, guys who no longer have anything "left to prove." They'll welcome a young stud like you that's eager to learn and doesn't think he already knows it all even if you do zip ahead now and then out of frustration.

Wear your gear. Always. Would ya rather sweat or bleed? Why would you assume ordinary clothing would hold up against what is basically a 60mph bench grinder when you eventually DO go down.

They say on a motorcycle you gradually trade luck for experience. Good luck.
 

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I would guess there is some advantage to first becoming a car driver before becoming a mc rider. The fact is there are dangerous situations that come about when all drivers are on the road, but if you have not had to be aware of them, you may not watch for them.

For instance, as you need to watch for vehicles coming out of a side access, which ones are the most chancy? When you are protected by a cage, it usually means you will only get knocked sideways if hit, but survive. While on a bike, you may well be killed. Plus the fact that too often drivers just "don't see the bike," so you are more vulnerable.

But with some practice of watching for those potential problems while in a car means you will have a better idea of what is important on a bike. In BRC they don't teach you the rules of the road, but how to handle your bike. To have to learn both at the same time is a lot to internalize.

Not saying you can't do it, but I can state that even after having driven all types of vehicles for several million miles, I was on edge getting into city traffic, stop lights, being on the freeway, etc., the first time on my bike. I can't really imagine if I had never even driven a car first.

Even just driving your parent's car around for awhile before riding the bike will help getting used to brand new situations. You'll find that driving is quite different from your years of just riding with someone else.

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Definitely, read up and practice turning in a safe place. I fell the first time because I didn't understand how to turn at tight corners.

I read that the 2 biggest causes of crashes is turning and a car making a left turn in front of you.
 

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I rode bikes off road long before driving a car, but didn't ride on the street before putting in a couple years in a car first. I think that helped a lot.
 

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For me, the hardest thing to learn deep down in my guts was that car drivers really did not see me. I was 19 years old and on my first bike ever riding home from work the first time I was run off the road. I had owned the bike 2 days and felt lucky to find an entry to a strip mall right when I needed one.
After that incident I maintained an escape path every time I was on the road. Today I turn 68 and am still alive which means that lesson stuck.
 

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For me, the hardest thing to learn deep down in my guts was that car drivers really did not see me. I was 19 years old and on my first bike ever riding home from work the first time I was run off the road. I had owned the bike 2 days and felt lucky to find an entry to a strip mall right when I needed one.
After that incident I maintained an escape path every time I was on the road. Today I turn 68 and am still alive which means that lesson stuck.
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Maybe it's because there are a lot more strip malls. :biggrin:

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Back now and I a 16! Me and my dad are getting our licenses together in June of this year. Thinking about getting a dual sport just for the fun of going off road and then back on with ease. I've been looking at motorcycle crashing videos on YouTube for the sake of learning NOT what to do. Thanks everyone for the help and I am looking forward to this summer. (I will be taking the MSF course)
 

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Sounds like your off to a good start planning on taking the motorcycle safety course. I took a basic rider course when I got my endorsement and would recommend it to anyone without experience. Even people with experience, I had some riding dirt bikes but no on the road experience.

Good luck, have fun.
 

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License

I turned 15 on a Friday, got my cage license on Monday, and started a job that involved driving a delivery van on Tuesday. Got my motorcycle license not long after that. Had to wait until I was 18 to get a heavy traffic license.

Your approach sounds reasonable to me. I do not hold the view that motorcycles are dangerous. However some of the riders are, just as some cage drivers are.

Unkle Krusty*
 
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