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Discussion Starter #1
I got my first bike Thursday night. Got a 2005 Ninja 250r. It is a nice bike, it felt better than the 500 did, and the price was good. I also got some gloves, helmet and all.

I have never rode a dirt bike, or anything before. I didn't have it 24 hours and I dropped it and broke the left hand side turn signal off :mad: Now I feel that if I get on a road I will crash big time.

The only reason I dropped it, was because the ground was damp and I'm not used to letting out on the clutch and I popped it and I freaked out and hit the front brake hard and it fell over on me.

I know the best way to learn is just to ride it and all, but is there anything I can do to not panic so much? I am going to take the MSF course also. I think it really shook me up a lot though. I just don't want to screw up on the highway with traffic.
 

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Just ride around your street slowly, and practice letting out the clutch. Thats what I did after I had a fall just like yours. And with a 500, it got going pretty good b4 I panicked and locked brakes. Just start slow and build up.
 

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Well I hope you learned a couple of lessons.
1. You learned what it feels like to drop it
2. You sort of got a feel for the clutch, keep at it and it will feel natural.
3. Don't buy a brand new bike as your first one.
 

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the "fun" guy
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While you need time to get to know your bike.....try not to be overcome with a fear of doing things wrong or you will find yourself committing even more mistakes than you already have.

Since it is a new bike you'll be inclined to baby it and while this is good...to a point....just remember all vehicles...cars...trucks...motorcycles...4 wheelers...boats...snowmobiles...you name it...all become used with age and "become" a used item along the way. If all you concentrate on is how to keep from getting a scratch on your new bike....chances are...you'll get plenty of them as it's what you'll be paying more attention to rather than enjoying riding the bike and getting to know how it handles...etc.

It's wise to be a safe rider...and that you'll want to learn each time you ride...and of course you'll further that knowledge when you take the MSF course. But don't be intimidated by the shiney new paint job and develop an unatural fear of hurting your new bike. It will take more of the joy out of riding than you can imagine. If you keep a level head and think about what your doing when you climb onto your bike...you'll be fine. Remember when you rode your first bicycle? And as time went on how good you got and didn't think anything about jumping on and going. The same holds true with riding your bike and with the proper amount of safety and care you'll be riding it just like you did your bicycle.

If you know of a good road that has little to no traffic on it...that would be a good place for you to spend some time riding and gain more confidence on the pavement. Take it slow and the more time you ride there the more comfortable you'll become. Get the feel of shifting....check your mirrors for correct positioning....get to know the sound of the engine as you shift through the gears so it becomes second nature....try doing stop n go's and practice turning left and right but go slow and don'y hurry yourself.

I think you have the confidence....but the newness of the bike is causing you to be a little intimidated since you want it to remain new for a long time. Just think things through and with some patience and practice...you'll do fine. :)
 

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MSF will help you out. If your gonna ride it around, practice slowly, just work on the clutch, and braking and such. Dont break while turning as you probably know, that's a sure way to dump a bike quick, and first gear is really touchy, try to stay away from driving in first. Bikes fall, it happens. Good luck with everything
 

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Wait to take the MSF first before taking the bike out again. The MSF is designed for brand new riders with no bad habits. If you start riding around the streets on your new bike you will probably have bad habits that you need to unlearn. Wait for the MSF, if at all possible.

As for the bike look around to see if there is a motorcycle salvage yard anywhere in your area and if there is just buy the turn signal from there. Be sure to specify if it is the front or rear turn signal because they are different in terms of wiring (the front has running lights and requires and extra wire). If that isn't possible check and see how much this site is selling them for, or buy one off of ebay.

Good luck!
 

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Motorcycle Momma
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Jeremy,

Sorry you dropped your bike. I am sure that all of us have done that at least once in our riding careers (Me included). Nothing to be ashamed of. Just go easy and be more careful.

One of the things the MSF teaches you is clutch use and manuverability. Find an empty parking lot that has some open space and practice riding slow, using your clutch and doing figure 8's and ever tighter circles in both directions. If you can do these things without putting your feet down and loosing your balance, you will be going well. Another exercise that they use in the MSF is the slow race....the winner is the rider that goes shortest distance without putting their feet down. The more familiar you become with your bike, how it runs and feels, the better a rider you will become.

My first bike was a Honda 250 Elsinore...I broke off several rear turn signals before I got comfortable. :? Live, learn and have fun...don't get scared. Practise, Practise, Practise.

Heather
 

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dude, that will happen. I had a 750 yamaha maxim, weighed about a million pounds. I put the stand down in dirt the first week I had it. It fell over broke the signal, windscreen, and the stand got a little bent. Just remember what this taught you and dont beat yourself up about it. At least you were probably able to pick it up. I had to call one, two, three freinds. Embarracing. I felt so silly but I never did it again.

As far as the clutch and feeling comfortable, The same bike hung wide open after a pass on a local road. I smacked the throttle, tried twisting it and everything else short of laying it down or pulling the clutch and letting it blow. Finally after about 5 miles and half a dozen dangerous passes between and around traffic, it loosened and slowed down. I roade the last couple of miles home feeling drunk from adreneline and stayed about 20 mph. Scary stuff. Lesson learned. Next time pull the clutch and blow the motor. That old bike wasn't worth getting killed. It took me a month and a new throttle cable to ride it again.

The threads above make good points, slow and easy is best at first. If you know someone with an atv that uses a clutch try and ride it a bit. 4 wheels can be safer. I wish you luck and dont be discouraged, you will have many years of riding bliss after this one.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks guys, I really appreciate the replies. If I didn't get off when it was dark it would be a lot better. It is going to be good weather this weekend, and I will take it to a dead road. Try some things out and see what I learn. I want to take the msf course so bad, but its full all the time here.

I will let you all know how I did.
 

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good luck and take your time:)

You will do fine, relax.:)
 

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Part of doing anything new is getting a good trainer to help you along and thats where MSF can step in. Lesson learned about being over excited in getting the new bike and messing it up.

You took drivers training before you learned how to drive a car right? Same thing with riding a motorcycle except that an accident is less forgiving on a motorcycle.

MSF will help you to work on the "friction zone" which is where the clutch first begins to engage and make your motorcycle go. Once you start to master that you will no longer have to be afraid of popping the clutch. Just remember smooth and ease the clutch out slowly - you will pick up where the friction zone is and how to use it properly. Ever drive a stick shift? Instead of using your foot you are using your left hand.
 

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the "fun" guy
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Enjoy the ride. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well I had yesterday off ( Friday ) so my cousin came over and we rode. There is a development across the road from my house that we rode in. Nice straight road, not much traffic. I got up to 45mph. It was really fun. I plan on riding some more this weekend since we are having good weather and all.
 

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I've been there before man. Just relax and get comfortable with it. As everyone else suggested, MSF will help tremendously. Empty parking lots (like schools) are great places to practice and gain confidence before & after you've completed the course. For me, the biggest hurdle was getting over the nervousness of being in traffic... but with experience it'll all feel natural. If it helps, I dropped my first bike twice while sitting on it in the driveway. Good luck :)
 

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hm, man spose I should take that MSF course before I buy anything
 

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Motorcycle Momma
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N3GATIVEZERO,

That would be the best course of action...you will never regret it. It is very worthwhile. It has been several years since I took it..probably wouldn't hurt for me to take it again.

Heather
 

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I was going to take it no matter what, in fact I was going to involve my girlfriend and get her to take the class too (my tricky way of getting her to not hate me for wanting a motorcycle), but I figured I'd buy the bike first and then take the class. Now I know that if I buy the bike first, my face is certainly going to wind up eatting some curb. After all who could resist a perfectly usable combination of awesomeness and machinery?
 

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You would have an advantage over those that haven't taken it and will have learned some much needed survival skills in order to stay alive and in one piece. What I have learned in class has saved my life and my bike several times.

Definitely bring your girl friend in if she is willing!!! We always looking for new ladies in the group!!!!

That is my 2 cents....

Heather
 
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