R6 as a first bike.....my story - Sportbike Forum: Sportbike Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-09-2002, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
 
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R6 as a first bike.....my story

Well, last year I purchased an R6 as a first bike. Well, actually, I bought the 600R but sold it to my brother about 3 weeks later and bought the R6. Anyway, to all of you who have said time and time again that an R6 is NOT the ideal bike for a beginner, you are RIGHT. It really does affect learning how to ride properly. I say this because of an experience that I had tonight. When I first rode my R6, I thought just because I could go 130-140mph in a STRAIGHT LINE I was actually riding the damn thing. I got into the habit of riding fast as hell in the straights, but slowing WAAYY down when I entered the curves. (don't beat me up too much, I had to learn on my own and I did not know about this forum then) After getting many tips from other riders on this board, I decided to re-teach myself how to ride. Each day, I would focus on SMOOTH control rather than speed. I would purposely ride on curvy, back roads, and did not exceed 90-100mph. (most of the time anyway) After doing this for a few weeks, I just experienced how this bike is SUPPOSED to be riden. I can't exactly describe the feeling I had when I was riding, but I can honestly say that the way I was riding felt RIGHT. I was smooth, confident, and faster than I had been. The most interesting thing about the ride was not the speed, but the fact that I was LEANING IN THE CURVE at almost 100mph. Now to most of you, that may not be a big deal, but it is for me. I would normally slow down to about 60mph on that particular curve, but not this time. I "hung off" the bike, kept my head and eyes up, pressed down on the bar, and accelerated through the turn. I felt my jeans dragging the concrete (buying knee sliders tomorrow) and It felt AWESOME!!!!!!! No, I don't think that is an accurate description of how I felt. It was somewhat orgasmic I use to say that "buying an R6 as a first bike is not a 'bad' thing if a person takes their time." Well, that may be true, but the bike will not be riden how it should be, and it WILL affect your learning curve! I may be wrong for saying that, but that is how I honestly feel. Man, I can't believe people actually critisize this bike for being only a 600cc. The other guys I was riding with were on an R1, GSX-R 750, ZX-9, and two Honda 929's. Guess what, I was in FRONT of all of them. So, to all of you "new" riders who are considering buying an R6 or other bike of this magnitude as a first bike, read my story. I am not saying not to buy the bike you want, because you are the one who is going to have to live with it. All I am saying is don't make the same mistake and get too confident just because you can go fast in a straight line as I did. Be prepared to re-teach yourself how to properly ride this awesome bike! I thought just because I was at redline in 6th gear that I had reached the full potential of this bike. Well, I was all wrong, and this bike has SOOOO much more to be brought out of her! Hell, if it wasn't so dark outside, I would still be practicing my new found "euphoria" Ride safe all
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2002, 05:54 AM
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lovemyr6,

great post. it takes a lot of guts for someone to admit their bike is better than they are. seriously. most people say it but when someone on liter bike passes them it's because they're on a liter, not because of skill, talent, understanding, education level. it's always because they have a "little 600."

there used to be an older guy around here with an rd400 (it was a sportbike in '79), and he'd beat us stupid. most of the guys who make fun of his bike when he'd leave. i'd ask questions. that guy taught me a lot of stuff. it's hard to make up for better than 25 years of sportrider this guy had under his belt.

that's one thing that's good about sportbikeworld.com. there are a lot of experienced rider here who are willing to share their knowledge and experiences. tamara and smeg do a great job with forum. and elo writes some bitchin' posts for newbies to read in here. the thing is, those 3 bring a lot of years of motorcycling experience to the table. and i read where someone with a year of motorcycling will post poor advice for newbies and the newbie will take that advice because it's justification for what they want to do. i'm not saying people with a year's experience don't know what they are talking about, but their experiences aren't quite the same.

love, if you want to be involved in motorcycling for years to come, keep doing what you're doing. the r6 isn't a great learning tool. but you can still gain skills. just approach this from the angle that you seem to be approaching them now. as an education.

good luck man, great post.

Tony

Coward stays behind freedom.
A braveman stands in front of freedom and defends it for others.


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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2002, 05:41 AM
 
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the fit

hey man,
true that was a great post.
im interested in a new R6 or CBR 600 F4i. ive looked at your pics and you look like a tall guy. im 6ft 3in and wondering if im gonna look like a watermelon on a toothpick. My question is: how tall are you and are you comfortable?
thanks
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2002, 07:01 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: the fit

Quote:
Originally posted by Varsity12
hey man,
true that was a great post.
im interested in a new R6 or CBR 600 F4i. ive looked at your pics and you look like a tall guy. im 6ft 3in and wondering if im gonna look like a watermelon on a toothpick. My question is: how tall are you and are you comfortable?
thanks
Do I really look that tall? Actually, I am only 5'10" 185lbs. My brother is 6'1" and he sometimes rides my R6. He says riding it is not bad for a little while, but he starts to feel a little crammed after more than 2 hours of riding. As for me, I am as comfortable as you can be while riding a sportbike. For me, the R6 is not too big, nor not too small. Just Right!
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2002, 12:51 PM
 
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Thanks for the insight LoveMyR6. Everytime I look at an R6 in a magazine or passing me by, I get the urge to go buy one... They just look TOO damn good.

Then I get little glimpses of someone using a spatula to scrape me off the asphault because I chose a bike that looked good instead of one that would help me learn to ride.

Those little visions and posts like yours make it much easier to stick with the 500s as a new rider.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2002, 10:12 PM
 
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Thanks for the post. I'm looking to move to an R6 or F4i. I have a Bandit 600 (my first bike) and after 6,000 miles I know I want a more agile, nimble bike. But NOT a bigger one. I was at a weekely car/bike show last Sat night in Scottsdale AZ and several guys were asking me why I don't get a (fill in your liter bike here)? They were shocked when I said I don't need a bike that big. Your post merely helps me stick to my guns. Thanks.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2002, 10:49 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by bluebandit
Thanks for the post. I'm looking to move to an R6 or F4i. I have a Bandit 600 (my first bike) and after 6,000 miles I know I want a more agile, nimble bike. But NOT a bigger one. I was at a weekely car/bike show last Sat night in Scottsdale AZ and several guys were asking me why I don't get a (fill in your liter bike here)? They were shocked when I said I don't need a bike that big. Your post merely helps me stick to my guns. Thanks.

No problem Bluebandit. I don't want to come off as being a "know it all" or anything like that (i somewhat of a "newbie" and learning as well), I am just posting an experience that I had the other day. Some people may be able to ride an R6 or similar bike just fine as a first bike. But, after riding the thing for more than a year, I just felt that I wasn't riding it like it should be ridden. Man, when I was riding the other night, everything just "felt" right. This was the first time I rode the R6 and felt like that. I am sitting here watching the Speed Channel (taking notes), and that is how I want to ride. Their techniques are soooo smooth (some anyway
) and I truely beleive MY techniques would have been a bit better if I had started on something a little smaller. I know the feeling of other people looking at you as if you are on a piece of crap bike because it is only a 600cc. But, you should have seen the faces of the guys I was riding with. (the liter crew) I was leading the pack in the twisties, and right with them in the straights. Although going fast in a straight line is "ok", it does not compare to the twisties. (in my opinion) I rode the 600R for a few weeks before buying the R6, and I felt as if I wanted something more nimble and agile too. I have heard some people say the 600R is a good starter bike, but it just seemed so damn heavy to me? I guess it all boils down to personal preference. If you feel like you are ready to move to the R6, I seriously doubt you will be disappointed.

Now here is a quick question for the experiened riders: Is it better to have the reload adjustment set to hard or soft for riding in the twisties? I changed the adjustments from stock and made them softer. In the twisties, the bike felt great. But, when I jumped on the highway, it "felt" a little too soft. It was like I could barely feel the ground underneath me, kind of like I was floating. When I made the adjustment "harder", it felt more stable on the highway, but was more difficult to lean the bike over? Am I doing something wrong, or am i just imagining things? I would appreciate any advice.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-14-2002, 12:14 AM
 
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you shouldn't do that crap on the street. Go to the track. If you crash at 100MPH on the street, there are far more hazards on the street, and you'll just become another statistic. Track days are proably cheaper than your insurance deductable.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-14-2002, 01:33 AM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by schpreck
you shouldn't do that crap on the street. Go to the track. If you crash at 100MPH on the street, there are far more hazards on the street, and you'll just become another statistic. Track days are proably cheaper than your insurance deductable.
Schpreck,

I won't try to defend my actions like most would in this situation. You are right, that may not have been the "optimal" place to practice my leaning techniques. But, when there is NO traffic and you have a wide open road, it is too good to pass up. Riding sportbikes on public roads ARE very dangerous! But, as long as I don't put anyone elses life in danger, I can accept the consequences of what happens to me. Besides, it is all about balancing the risk. I would never attempt this on a road that had cars, concrete dividers, trees, gravel, etc..This particular road happens to be as good as it gets as far as "street riding." So, I appreciate your concern and your sense of responsibility. Man, life sure would be great if we had a good track here in St. Louis Only one to choose from, and I don't care for "drag" racing.

Take care, and ride safe.

P.S. What do you ride, and have you ever gotten it up to 100mph on a public road??
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-14-2002, 02:16 AM
 
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You said that you were going around a TURN, right? So, how do you know if there were any cars coming? Or for that matter, another bike! what if you lowsided at 100MPH and I was coming around the corner on my R-1? You just might take me out! What if my girlfriend was on the back?! Then I'd have to KILL you. My first sportbike was a race bike.(A new, well... it was new THEN... F-2) I've been racing ever since. I only started riding on the street a year ago and I DO regret it. There are too many SUVs and drunks on the road. I'll be selling a low mileage R-1 soon. and buying (another) R-6 racebike. I didn't mean to sound like a jerk in my last post, but a good friend of mine was taken out by someone thinking that they're Nikki Hayden on the street. I really didn't try to be a jerk. The street is not a place to hone your skills. I'll check to see where the nearest track is in your location, and maybe I can swing a deal with someone to take you to a track day.
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