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first of all i would like to introduce myself as a an entering undergrad to the Universtity of Texas at Austin this year. My current car (which me and my sister both payed for) is a 2000 Honda Civic EX 5spd coupe which I have officially "riced out" (intake, header, exhaust, rims, xenon lights, etc, etc). I have used that car throughout my junior and senior yrs of highschool. The plan is that when i goto college I will buy a new car and my sister will take the civic and the payments for the civic. I originally had the notion of upgrading to a 97-98ish Prelude and souping that up as well for college. However last week, I was cruising the highway at night and I saw two sportbike blaze past me and they wer riding in perfect harmony.. All at once I felt the power, the finesse, and the raw thrill taht these bikes produced, i was hooked and I knew I wanted one, the Prelue was out of the picture... Back to reality, I realized that motorcylce meant no cd player, no a/c no passengers(although u could see this as an advantage) and dangers to personal safety. I love my civic, I love the 5,500 rpm plus vtec rush, i love the crisp handing, and I love the honda quality, so naturally I expected a CBR 600F4i to fill my niche quite nicely (dont try all you R6 owners.. i am a Honda lover at heart no matter what :p )... I just wanted to know from all your experiences what the car to bike switch experience felt like, did u ever regret it? How do i know I will truly love a bike. Are bikes a good method of transportation for you r average college guy? Should I get an older F2-F3 to start off with? How and where do I learn to ride? How exactly do you shift gears on a bike???? This and any other info for a beginner would be much appreciates... Thanks to all in advance.... Jinho.......... o yea is a bike really that much more dangerous... I drive a tiny civic amidst Texas with its huge SUVs and cowboy trucks.. and i suppose a bike could be hardly much more safer den my civic :)
 

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Welcome --

First off, the transition is not that hard, but I own a truck and a bike, and would never think of owning just a bike for primary transportation JMO. I mainly ride my bike for personal pleasure and excitement.

Secondly, to shift gears would be just like in your 5spd (assuming you have a standard). For upshifting - let off the throttle, pull in the clutch, shift up on the gear shift lever. let out the clutch while increasing the throttle.. etc..

pretty simple stuff, but I sure hope that makes sense. I really do not think about it to much, just do it and go.. lol.. hope that helps..

Enjoy the site. You will find lots of information here.
 

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I learned how to ride a motorcycle before I learned how to drive a car, and have always had a bike, even if I didn't have a car. So the transition for me was from motorcycle to car, which explains why I probably still prefer motorcycles to this day. I rode my motorcycle all through college, unless it was just too damn cold or snowy (Univ of Nebraska). There are a number of ways to learn to ride, but the best way I know is to get an older bike and, with an experienced friend advising, practice in a large empty parking lot, or get an older dirt bike and practice in the woods. Some people love riding motorcycles, and others hate them...there is no accounting for taste. After you have your license you should consider taking the MSF beginner's course which will teach you some basic safety and riding techinques. Read the books Twist of the Wrist I and II, available on-line at Amazon.com. As stated earlier, you shift the same as you do a car, that is by engaging the clutch and then shifting up or down. The clutch is engaged by squeezing the left hand lever on the handlebars. The shift pattern for some bikes may be different, but for most today it is one down and four or five up, depending on the number of gears. The shift lever is on the left side of the bike and is operated by the left foot, obviously. So to go into 1st gear from neutral, you engage the clutch, step down on the shift lever (you'll hear the bike shift into gear), and then while slowly releasing the clutch give the trottle a little twist and you're off. From there you simply shift up or down based on the engine RPM, using the clutch as described and lifting the shift lever up or down with your toe. Now having said that, it should be remembered that there is a certain amount of technique to releasing the clutch and giving the engine enough gas to move the bike without stalling or doing a standing wheelie. Yes, motorcycles are inherently more dangerous than cages, to the tune of about 9 times as dangerous, according to National Highway Safety Board statistics. You are 9 times more likely to be in a motorcycle accident per 100,000 miles driven on a bike than you would in a car, and 9 times more likely to be injured per 100,000 accidents than in a car. Consequently, it is advisable to always wear a DOT approved motorcycle helmet, leathers, gloves, and shoes. There are only two kinds of riders...those who have dropped their bikes, and those who will. Still, I'd rather be riding than almost anything else I can think of.
 
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