long time rider, new to sportbikes
Howdy all. ok, I'll play along and be a good FNG or newbie and say a bit about myself. I'm 47, spoken for (not legally married but committed, which is why marriage is an institution).
Been riding for a bit over 30 years now. First bike, old Honda 305 Superhawk, Kaw MachIII H1 and H2, then a Honda CB350, Honda 500/4, Yamaha 360 enduro, Suzuki GS550, then a 650, then a Honda CX500 and 78 BMW R100/7, then a GL1000 (early gold wing), then back down to a Suz GS450, and now (finally) a 89 Kaw ZX600R.
Just bought it this week and love it. Living up here in the Rocky Mountains I think it'll be the perfect bike. 600cc/70hp vs the 40-60hp bikes I've had recently. Also the responsiveness will be great in the twisties. I gave up the big bikes a couple of years ago while living in Northorn AZ as I wasn't doing the touring thing again. That little GS450 was a lot of fun and conviced me that lighter bikes are the way to go. Recently decided to get with the 21st century and go to the newer frame/suspension/engine designs, hence the Ninja. Plus the used price was right and it was right here in my little home town.
For all the other newbies, let me say that pavement hurts big time. I never used to worry about leathers, but have always worn a helmet. After being sideswiped/ran over 6.5 yrs ago, I now ride with leathers or cordura type padded riding wear. There are lots of brands out there now that fill the purpose without being ourtrageously expensive. Even found fully perforated leather jacket and chaps for about $300 that are perfect for really hot weather. Wished I had them when I lived in Florida and toured all over the southeast/gulf coast. Oh, boots and gloves are a big must too. Cant' say enuf about MSF courses either. I took one 5 yrs ago for the first time and learned more about riding safely and efficiently in those 2 days then I even knew was possible. As an example, I rode the Dragon, (Deal's Gap--318 turns in 11 miles or something like that) a month before the MSF course. Ok, I hadn't ridden anything like that in many years but still I didn't fall. OK, had a few pucker marks on the seat but I did it. Took the road at about 15-20 mph, 1st/2nd gears.
A month after taking the MSF course, I was back up at Deal's Gap and rode it at the posted speed limit of 35mph, 2nd/3rd gears on the same bike(78 BMW). No pucker marks and a huge grin to boot.
So that's enough soapboxing for me. It's a beautiful day out there and I'm stuck at work. OH well, that's life. Ya'll have fun and keep the rubber side down.