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So I was reading a post at work, and I had meant to comment on it but I can't seem to find it. I hope the mods can forgive me for adding a new thread for it. Now I know that this topic has been beaten into the ground worse than a dead horse, but I wanted to share a sorta funny/sad story with you, depending on your view.

Back before I joined the service, a lot of friends and I were into bikes. A guy that was a distant friend learned we had bikes and wante to ride with us one day. We told him that would be great and asked what kind of bike he had. He told us he had bought a brand new yellow Ducati 749(forget the year, but it was when that model first came out). Now, he proceeds to tell us that he really hasn't ridden it yet cause it's his first bike and he wants some people to go learn with. My friends and I gasp at the fact that he has just payed 13K for a machine he has no idea how to appreciate. But we decided to take him under our wing and see what we can do.

We usually went canyon riding every other weekend or so in SoCal, we'd hit up Ortega freeway and a few of the remote canyons that I forget the names of so we tell him that we'll take him to one of the really mellow places to ride--with just enough mild twisties for him to get a feel. This was probably not a good idea in retrospect, but we didn't realize that his learning curve was going to be so steep.

So then, like a week before we are planned to go, he tells us that he's downed his Duc. We think it's something crazy but he tells it to us like this:

He was making a protected left at a light and the tire slipped out and he dropped it.

He couldn't have been going more than 15 mph in that turn (you'll see why in a sec) so I find it hard to believe that his tire slipped out from under him. I can't even see him leaning into the turn so much that grease or water would have affected him. I think he was just going too slow and he target fixated and lost balance and dropped it. I think he just wasn't sure how to describe it.

So he scrapes the side of his bike all up, busts the shift lever, clutch lever, master cylinder for his clutch, and I think that may be it. What's worse is he's got less than 50 miles on the bike.

He gets it fixed but has to used the leaky master cylinder and clutch lever for the ride because they have to import one from Italy just for him and it'll take 2 weeks. I look over his stuff before we go and it really just seems cosmetic on the master cylinder. He really wants to go with us so we take him.

We all head out toward our "place" and take a road up to it at a moderate pace. Not even moderate really, slow. We are still losing him. We actually have to stop and wait for him to ask him if he's having trouble with his bike. He tells us his bike is ok, but we're going way too fast. It must have been 40-45 mph on a slow long windy road, one that you don't even have to lean to follow the curves. Apparently his riding was in much more need of help than we thought so we humored him and actually didn't take him to where we were going to go, we coached him a bit and then stopped off somewhere for a break. We told him to rest up and wait for us and we scooted off to "Deadman's Canyon"(had a name that was similar to that, brain getting old) cause it was only a stone's throw away. After about 20 minutes we come back and take him home. We try to coach him on subsequent weekends and I dunno, it just seemed hard to get through to him. I don't know what possessed him to buy a Duc as a first bike, but that fall must have scarred him. It must have been painful to the wallet and his hide, cause he never seemd to make progress. I left soon after that for the military and haven't heard about him recently...though I'm curious. He was a nice guy, and he wasn't all squidly... I just think he really didn't know where to start and he made an expensive choice.

Sorry that it was so long. I meant to keep it short but I'm not good at that. =)
 

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I'm guessing from what you wrote he didnt take the MSF course. That would have helped a whole lot.
 

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I hope he had insurance because that repair bill had to be $$$.

Jason
 

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This reminds me of my friend who tried to learn to ride in late 2000. I wasn't into bikes yet (interested, but couldn't learn to ride or own one due to living circumstances).

Anyhow, friend (let's call him J) decides to get a bike. Goes to the store, and the guy there helps him out. Sales guy is batting .500 as far as advice. He tells J to just for the the 600 (R6) cause he would grow out of a 500 real fast. But he does at least heavily suggest taking the MSF. J decides to take the bad piece of advice and ignore the good one. Even back then, when I didn't know anything, I thought the MSF class sounded like a great idea, and made a mental note to take it the day I learned to ride. Anyhow, J puts down a deposit for a brand new blue R6, determined to learn on his own. Luckily, his friend trailered the bike home in a van for him.

Well, the night comes where an idiot friend of his teaches him how to ride. They are in an empty parking lot (J, his friend who we'll call idiot, and J's gf at the time). Before they even get started, J's gf is oohing and aahing at the bike, and idiot, trying to show off, offers to take her for a spin. She has no helmet, so he gives her the one helmet they have and they take off around the block. Meanwhile, J is getting annoyed at the fact that idiot is off with his girl showing her a good time. When they return, J finally hops on and learns to go straight. He manages to go coast in a straight line to the end of the lot. Idiot tells him to just turn the bike around with no real instruction. Being that J has no clue what to do, he turns it around Flintstones style. They go back and forth a few times like this, with idiot wondering why he can't turn the bike while it's moving (and still not offering any real instruction). I believe during one of these straight runs, J tips the bike over and it falls on its left side, but he hops off the left side b4 he goes down with the bike. Anyhow, after 20 minutes of this, he feels like he needs to impress his girl, so he asks her to hop on and gives her the helmet. He realizes too late that having a passenger changes the feel of the bike, so he tips it over on the left again. He jumps off the left again, but she doesn't, so she falls over with her leg pinned. That pretty much summarizes his first lesson.

He eventually learns to take it out on the street at slow speeds, but never learns to lean the bike in a turn. He has at least one more incident of dropping the bike on the left side and jumping off at slow speeds in an enclosed parking lot at an apartment complex.

One night, the bike gets stolen because he asked idiot to secure it at his place for a night, which he failed to do. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that his parents didn't know about the bike, so he had to store it elsewhere. The bike is soon recovered with just a few scratches (most likely from him dropping it a bunch of times though).

Another night a few weeks later, I get a call from him, frantic for my help. What happened was he was trying to do a u-turn or something at the edge of his driveway, but lost control, and the bike went off into the small patch of woods between his house and his neighbor's (who happen to be the parents of Laura Prepon, of That 70's Show fame). Luckily, he jumped off again (by now, he's mastered the art of jumping off the bike's left side). So now he needs my help to get the bike out of the woods, which we finally do after a while, but only after he realized that the bike was in gear the whole time and putting it in neutral would help. Bike is scratched up, with the left front blinker hanging off.

Long story short, he ends up being forced to sell the bike by his parents, who found out about the bike after it was stolen. So all he got out of this was nothing but trouble, not to mention some mildly embarassing moments. In the end, he never really learned how to ride the bike other than the basic operations and going straight. Idiot friend of his was of no use at all...in fact, he tells J that he drops a knee through ever turn :rolleyes:

So it was because of J's story that I insisted on taking the MSF, starting on a small bike, and learning to ride the right way. And also why I will never buy an R6...I think of him and laugh everytime I see that bike, especially a blue one
:icon_lol:
 

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Ahh, to be young and dumb!
 

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shamster said:
(by now, he's mastered the art of jumping off the bike's left side).
lol

sad to hear about these kinds of stories...you would think that if you're going to spend thousands of $$ on something that you would to the research and go down the 'right' path to avoid spending even more money and risk hurting yourself...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Ken06RR said:
I'm guessing from what you wrote he didnt take the MSF course. That would have helped a whole lot.
I don't think he took the MSF course, though even if he did I don't think it would have helped much. I should see if he still has the bike and wants to sell it. I bet it's got great mileage. I'd probably have to replace the plastics though :O.
 
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