Should I Buy a Motorcycle?

Discussion in 'Motorized Vehicles' started by ZaZ, Aug 17, 2013.

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  1. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    Earlier this summer I happen to see an add for the riders course. It wasn't even on my radar, but there it was. I signed up for the course in June, but quickly realized, hey, I need my permit. So pushed back the class until last weekend so I had the time to get my permit, which I got.

    I took the class and it was a lot of fun. I'd never driven a motorcycle before and was one of the least experienced riders. Half the class rode their bike to the course and seemed to be in high school together. I improved a lot by the end of course. At least enough to pass the test and get my license, though it's probably debatable as whether I should be on the road.

    The thing I struggled with the most was just coordinating everything like the shifting, braking and remaining upright. :) My car has a manual so I'm sure it's just a practice thing and developing the muscle memory. Now that I'm an officially licensed rider, the question becomes should I buy one? It seems like it'd be fun, but dangerous too. Our instructor was telling us about how he broke ankle a few years ago. This is someone with 30+ years of riding experience.

    My original thought was to get a scooter, something like the Burgman. It's more practical and I would not have to shift, but they're heavier and longer than a motorcycle, which makes them less ideal for a beginner, so I've read. If I drop it, which is a distinct possibility, it'll be more expensive to fix. Plus, I'm not sure if it'll fit in my garage along with my car. Despite the fact I live in the sticks, there's a Moto Guzzi dealer not too far from me. They've got a Breva 750 that's only got 3,000 miles on and I like it a lot. It's in good shape. It's light at 400 pounds, and it's not a cruiser or sportbike, neither of which I want. Then there's 100s of bikes available on CL, but it's such a lottery and I don't know how to discern what's good or bad.

    So, I've got all this swirling around in my head, but then think, you know, maybe I should just get a convertible, which will be a lot safer. What would you do and why?
     
  2. mk4umha

    mk4umha Newbie

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    Do it!

    Sent from my SPH-L710 using Tapatalk 4
     
  3. FSU Logan

    FSU Logan Notebook Evangelist

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    I would runaway at the fact.
    Insurance.. danger..etc. all combined makes it NOT worth it!
    Sell your current car, save some money, and buy a car with some pep. It'll be FUN! Make sure you can modify it *cough* mustang/camaro/etc.*cough* because that is half the fun.

    TL;DR No.
     
  4. mk4umha

    mk4umha Newbie

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    Bikes are fun and requires lots of coordination. Just look at it this way, if you want to learn coordination, no other vehicle will teach you coordination like a bike. You'll learn how to be coordinated real quick or else you will wreck.

    Also don't cheap out on gear and buy a super bike. Anything else is a waste of money and time.

    Having the right gear will account to at least 90% of the enjoyment on the bike. Being able to have clear vision without your head shaking due to wind resistance when using an aerodynamic helmet, not feeling afraid of falling when you have boots, leather pants, leather jacket and gloves makes all the difference in the world.

    Imagine getting hit in the face at 80 by a June bug, that will knock you on your real quick without the right gear.

    Just be smart and safe and you'll be fine!

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  5. KLF

    KLF NBR Super Modernator Super Moderator

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    Gear. Gear. Gear. Gear. Gear and Gear.

    During last 35+ years I've crashed on every type of thing with wheels that I have driven with. I've never actually (seriously) hurt myself... Okay, my knee might have missed some skin (bone was showing) when I was 6 or 7 and a hole in the asphalt was bigger than front wheel of my bicycle... :D

    Now that I've scared you, it's good to say... GO FOR IT.

    That Moto Guzzi looks sweet and bit similar to my Ducati in style, not a cruiser nor a plastic sportbike. There's just something special in Italian ;)

    Drive (normally) around town in a Suzuki or Yamaha and no-one notices you. Do the same in convertible Mercedes or Honda, no-one notices you either... you'll get "oh, another one of those" look at best. Start and ride a Ferrari, Maserati, Alfa Romeo, Bimota, Moto Guzzi, Ducati, MV Agusta... heads turn when people look for the source of the sound ;)

    Edit: I'm not the only one, look at pedestrians at the traffic lights http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yEpsVSdKd4A :D
     
  6. FSU Logan

    FSU Logan Notebook Evangelist

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    If I ever turn around for a motorcycle its to make fun of them. No offence to anyone who is into them but I find them way too flamboyant and not to my key. Sportbikes on the other hand are amazing on how fast they can go. Plus they're a nice looking bike (more like a car, less like a typical motorcycle). Also, I can't see a motorcycle nor a sportbike ever being convenient in a place like where I live (Florida) where it rains everyday. Heck, I can't enjoy my dad's convertible Shelby 500 maybe but once a year.

    In all honesty our (mine in specific) opinions are meaningless on this. If you'd like one, go ahead and buy one; if you don't want one, do not buy one. Write a pros/cons list, take a picture of it, throw it away, write another one a week later and compare the results. If you have the same pros/cons you know what you're getting into. If you don't, maybe you just want the motorcycle for reasons that really don't matter. I am ranting on WAAAAAAAY too long.....
     
  7. Mitlov

    Mitlov Shiny

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    On the plus side, bikes are super fun, and they're remarkably fuel-efficient if you use them as a commuter. If you live in a rural area, you can just drive on backroads and avoid urban areas (intersections are the most dangerous places in the world for motorcyclists).

    On the minus side, statistically, they're one of the most dangerous hobbies in the US. Some people had raised a question about the safety of recreational shooting when I got into trapshooting, and I ran the numbers, and it came out that a motorcyclist in the US was approximately seventy times more likely to be killed motorcycling than a firearm owner (or someone in his/her household) was likely to be killed in an accidental shooting. Seventy times. Personally, of my high school clique, I know one motorcyclist who was killed and two who were seriously injured on their bikes.

    The cost-benefit analysis is up to you. As a teenager and single twenty-something, I rode a motorcycle all the time. When I had kids, I started riding less and less and eventually sold it.
     
  8. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    I don't know where you get your numbers, but while it's true intersections are very dangerous, most motorcycle accidents are single vehicle accidents due to improper braking/going too fast into a curve. If I use proper technique, I can eliminate the major cause of accidents. I think I'd be a fairly prudent driver. I'm not into going fast or being dangerous, but you're right in that if someone pulls out in front of you, there's not much one can about it. I do live in the sticks where there's not much in the way of traffic. The town I live in has no stoplights. I'm probably more likely to hit a bambi than another car, but it'll still hurt. I think I'm going to make an offer on the Guzzi tomorrow and see what they say.
     
  9. Mitlov

    Mitlov Shiny

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    There is only so much you can do about people who run red lights, cross over the center line, rear - end you when you are stopped, etc. As my MSF safety course instructor said, while the risks of motorcycling can be managed, they cannot be eliminated.

    I'm not saying not to ride. Before I had children, I rode regularly for a decade. But don't deny the risks when making your decision.

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  10. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    In the end I decided not to buy the Breva. It was a very nice bike, but I didn't want to spend that kind of money on my first bike in case I dropped it. I got a 80s Magna V30 that my friend who's into motorcycles said was in good shape other than a few rips in the seat. I'll use it this year and next spring while I get my sea legs so to speak. Since I only spent $1,000 on it, I won't be near as bummed if I drop as I would have had I got the Guzzi. Next year if I haven't killed myself and I decide I like it, I can get something better. I'm guessing for the price they're asking for the Guzzi, there's a good chance it'll still be available next year. I might look at the Burgman too. Here's a pic:

    [​IMG]
     
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