Returning after a number of years

Discussion in 'New Riders' started by VFR_Mike, May 18, 2017.

  1. VFR_Mike

    VFR_Mike Member

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    I started riding motorcycles about 37 years ago. My first bike was a Honda SL350 dirt/street, years later a Yamaha XS750 triple, and a Suzuki Intruder V-twin 700. I got out of bikes while my kids were young, and turned my attention more to sportscars. After a number of years, I still have a sportscar, but I got back into motorcycles when I picked up a new 2014 VFR800. I found a honda dealer selling new/old stock in Wisconsin at ridiculously low prices, and the plan was in motion.

    I picked up the VFR in April and began acclimating myself to the bike (functions, riding position, weight, power, brakes, you name it). I've spent a lot of time in empty parking lots with cones, working on slow speed maneuvers, panic braking, and balance. My plan to return to riding incorporates time on empty roads, busy urban congestion, and highway. All the while building up seat time, and extending the distance and duration of my rides. I'm struck by the power, brakes and overall refinement advancements made to modern motorcycles compared to when I left the sport. I'm also struck by how much more aggressive drivers have become. less courteous, and show considerably less thought of drivers around them. Texting, drinking coffee, smoking, putting on makeup, have all become the norm. Meanwhile they don't have a hand free to signal they're changing lanes so ... oh well ... too bad, I guess we need to be mind readers too.

    Coming from my last bike that had a lot of torque and no top end to the VFR that has (relatively) little torque and gobs of top end, and a bike that weighed about 100 pounds less, add in the number of years I last rode regularly, and I'm looking at this as learning all over again. I look forward to the day when everything is natural with the VFR and I can enjoy the ride more.

    I'll be honest, like the sportscars I've owned, I use the VFR more as a way to clear my head after work. I used to say motorcycles are the cheapest psychologist you'll ever have. I still feel the same way. Sure I use them as transportation as well, but I can get behind the wheel of anything and get from point A to point B. These are more engaging, they *require* you to be more physically and mentally engaged. I shoot sporting clays competitively, and I feel the same when when I shoot. There is such concentration required, that everything else from the day (or week) just goes away. For an hour or so I'm completely relaxed.

    Since I bought the bike I've added Knight Design lowered pegs and MotoPumps .9 bar risers. Both make it the seating position a bit easier for my aging back. I picked up a tail pack, and I'm looking at slip on mufflers that add more deep tone, without creating a droning headache on the highway. Delkavic (sp) looks like a nice option that won't break the bank. I may opt for a larger windscreen as well, but I need to put more miles on this one to determine what I need before I buy. Coming up on the 600 mile service.

    This is longer than I anticipated, my apologies - thanks to this site and one or two others, I've learned a lot about maintenance, gear, and the VFR in general.
    Thanks to all that share their ideas here.
    See ya out there on the road, and be safe.
    Mike
     
  2. Diving Pete

    Diving Pete Insider

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    Glad to have you here...Mike

    Have fun.
     
  3. RllwJoe

    RllwJoe Member

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    A hearty welcome to you.

    I also have had a hiatus from the road bike for a good long time, and agree with your discription of many drivers today. Distracted is becoming the normal.
     
  4. V4toTour

    V4toTour Active Member

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  5. kenbfromsd

    kenbfromsd New Member

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    I too just returned to the fold after a 25-year hiatus. Taking it slow is a great way to go. I've starting out just riding on Sunday mornings.
    I feel very comfortable on the bike, not so much all the zombies in their cars. Southern California traffic can really suck. Luckily there are alot of great
    backroads here in San Diego.
    Have fun Mike!
     
  6. duccmann

    duccmann Insider

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  7. Pbanys1200

    Pbanys1200 New Member

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    As a teen who used to ride Honda CR80's and Kawi KX80's in the dirt, I'm ready to let her rip!:black_eyed:
     
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