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Old 26th Mar 2009, 14:32   #121
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[QUOTE=RTT;1946940]I had much the same experience - not really knowing if I should be continuing to click, and whether I should be identifying potential hazards, or only those that actually become one, or both?! It's a good idea and I can see the point, but it's so poorly executed. There's no sound either, and the camera just looks forward with a small field of view. Hardly indicative of real life

Actually, very representative of the restricted view of modern helmets. Apparently, you can make additional clicks to highlight extra dangers, as long as you pick up on their key hazards and do not keep continuously clicking. When you pass your test, fingers crossed, I truly recommend attending your local police force's rider training day.
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Old 26th Mar 2009, 14:35   #122
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Good luck, considering something like that myself now as I didn't realise that if I don't do the big bike test I have to ride my 125 for another 2 years after passing I thought that was just for youngsters, thought someone like myself could just jump on a decent bike once they've passed standard bike test.

That test (hazard perception) is in no way representative of my field of view when riding, I have a Shoei RaidII and can see pretty much as well as I can without a helmet (only helmet that could fit my head and chin in with appropriate spacing from my chin, not all companies it seems use bigger shells for big heads like me )

Last edited by sandys; 26th Mar 2009 at 15:24. Reason: added (hazard perception) to sentence for clarity.
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Old 26th Mar 2009, 14:57   #123
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Good luck, considering something like that myself now as I didn't realise that if I don't do the big bike test I have to ride my 125 for another 2 years after passing I thought that was just for youngsters, thought someone like myself could just jump on a decent bike once they've passed standard bike test.

That test is in no way representative of my field of view when riding, I have a Shoei RaidII and can see pretty much as well as I can without a helmet (only helmet that could fit my head and chin in with appropriate spacing from my chin, not all companies it seems use bigger shells for big heads like me )
I do agree that the hazard test is not amazing, an injury free way of drumming into learners heads to shoulder check, would be more effective at reducing accidents. My instructor focused on the hazard awareness / reading the road part of the training, probably why I passed my full licence first time. I was also lucky that there was only 1 other guy on the 3 day course and he was also proficient at bike control.
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Old 26th Mar 2009, 15:42   #124
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Good luck, considering something like that myself now as I didn't realise that if I don't do the big bike test I have to ride my 125 for another 2 years after passing
That's not correct, with the restricted licence you can ride anything up to 33hp for 2 years, a good rule of thumb is 1hp per 10cc of engine capacity, so you can ride most bikes up to 250cc and a fair few up to 400cc.

But more importantly you can actually ride any bike, but it has to be restricted to 33hp (by way of essentially shrinking the inlet manifolds between the engine and the carbs)

The downside is the bigger the bike, the worse it will feel when restricted, as the power to weight ratio is essentially ****ed.

I'm on a restricted licence now, and I'm looking for a bike as close to 33hp as I can. I've been told (although I don't know if this is true) that bikes that put out slightly higher than 33hp can still be ridden unrestricted, as it's nigh on impossible to restrict them down by such a small amount.

Check this article out

Hope that all makes sense.
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Old 26th Mar 2009, 15:58   #125
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ah, I see, I misundertood what it was saying on the government site, just read it again and see that you are indeed correct, I feel a bit better now, all I want is a bit more power than I have now, 33bhp rule would suit, thats 3x more than I'm used too
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Old 26th Mar 2009, 16:16   #126
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That's not correct, with the restricted licence you can ride anything up to 33hp for 2 years, a good rule of thumb is 1hp per 10cc of engine capacity, so you can ride most bikes up to 250cc and a fair few up to 400cc.

But more importantly you can actually ride any bike, but it has to be restricted to 33hp (by way of essentially shrinking the inlet manifolds between the engine and the carbs)

The downside is the bigger the bike, the worse it will feel when restricted, as the power to weight ratio is essentially ****ed.

I'm on a restricted licence now, and I'm looking for a bike as close to 33hp as I can. I've been told (although I don't know if this is true) that bikes that put out slightly higher than 33hp can still be ridden unrestricted, as it's nigh on impossible to restrict them down by such a small amount.

Check this article out

Hope that all makes sense.
How a bike feels when restricted to 33 bhp, also depends on the nature of its power delivery, whether it is a high revving inline 4cyl or a V-twin and its capacity. A bike, such as the SV650 limited to 33hp, will still be pleasant to ride because of its low down torque, whereas a R6 would be miserable. There also benefits to buying a more powerful bike and restricting it, such as higher quality suspension & brakes and one cannot forget the extra poser value!
Unless you are restricted by age to 33bhp, passing the unrestricted licence would be better value, in my opinion, as although 33hp may seem enough at the beginning, after a few months, you may start yearning for more power

P.S. Liked your latency widget,
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Old 26th Mar 2009, 16:44   #127
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Yeah, forgot to mention stuff like that, I was looking at an SV for that very reason. Although another benefit of getting a bike with < 33hp as standard is insurance, insurance companies don't give a **** if your bike is restricted, you'll still get a premium for a full power bike.

I would have done DAS, but I couldn't afford the few hundred quid lump sum. I spent very little on learning as my girlfriend's Mum is an instructor, so got cheap lessons, but she doesn't teach DAS so would have had to have paid full price for that.

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Old 30th Mar 2009, 21:24   #128
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First day of DAS complete, **** me, mentally drained. Really got to work on my observation skills - forgetting lifesavers left, right and centre (or doing them at the wrong time), and also need to sort my roundabout lane discipline out.

Highway code for bedtime reading methinks

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Instructor: 3rd exit at the roundabout
RTT: takes 4th exit
Instructor:

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Old 30th Mar 2009, 21:38   #129
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First day of DAS complete, **** me, mentally drained. Really got to work on my observation skills - forgetting lifesavers left, right and centre (or doing them at the wrong time), and also need to sort my roundabout lane discipline out.

Highway code for bedtime reading methinks

Also:

Instructor: 3rd exit at the roundabout
RTT: takes 4th exit
Instructor:

Being in the correct part of the lane at roundabouts and junctions is vital, not just for the test. but also for your safety, less chance that some dick will sneak into your turning zone.
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Old 30th Mar 2009, 22:00   #130
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I got very confused with rounderbouts, in a car I would come off tangentially but my instructor told me that on a motorbike you're supposed to come off more or less radially which makes no sense to me.

It is really tiring too though that does get better as you become more used to it. Are you still on a 125?

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Old 30th Mar 2009, 22:24   #131
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RTT, i know how u feel. after my first day of training i was so tired, and its alot of information to take in. good luck with tomorrow, keep us updated
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Old 30th Mar 2009, 22:54   #132
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which makes no sense to me.
Weird
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It is really tiring too though that does get better as you become more used to it. Are you still on a 125?
Not any more, big bikes tomorrow. I spent the day on a 125 as I switched schools, so they kept me on a 125 for day 1 as my ability was unknown to them. For todays purposes I had no need for a 500 anyway. I've got 2.5 days to go on the 500s before my test.

It's weird (and good) how anything you suck at "today", you tend to fix the next day. Well that's my experience anyway
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Old 30th Mar 2009, 22:57   #133
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Weird


Not any more, big bikes tomorrow. I spent the day on a 125 as I switched schools, so they kept me on a 125 for day 1. Which was fine. I've got 2.5 days to go on the 500s before my test.

It's weird (and good) how anything you suck at "today", you tend to fix the next day. Well that's my experience anyway
What make of 500 will you be using?, I reckon you will find riding the 500s easier, fewer gear changes etc, plus more powerrrr
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Old 30th Mar 2009, 23:04   #134
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Not sure which make actually. It has 4 cylinders though, I thought most 500s were twins I'll let you know tomorrow
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Old 31st Mar 2009, 08:14   #135
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They tend to be Suzuki GS500ss or Honda CB500's for training, I imagine yours is the suzuki as the hondas are twins. A lot of 500 are inline 4's as it means you've got 4 125cc cylinders, which gives a nice smooth power delivery.

Good luck with the rest of the DAS dude, and just wait 'til the day a life saver actually saves your life, happened to me as I was riding towards the test centre to take my test. It was where two lanes merge in to one, some dick decided to fly past me at the merge point, if I hadn't have checked I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be here right now.
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Old 31st Mar 2009, 20:38   #136
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Turns out it's a Honda CB400 which makes the exact same power as the CB500 twin! I quite like 4 cylinders actually, they're smoooooth

Today was brilliant though (day two of four). First time on a 'big' bike and my goodness there's so much difference between a 125 and the 400. I know you've all been through this but humour me here - Heavier (obviously), far superior brakes, much bigger rev range (handy!), heavier clutch, position on the bike (much more weight forward - my palms ache!), throttle response is instant and it's eager to keep on going and going too...

I expected the 400 to be faster, and I rode it around the car park for ~10 mins which gave no real indication of how much quicker it'd be. Once out on the road it quickly became apparent just how much more powerful it was and I gave myself some stern words in my helmet to remind myself just what a responsibility I was taking on riding the thing. It didn't scare me but I was aware that things were more serious all of a sudden, comfort zone reduced a little.

If a 400 is this responsive, I struggle to think what a 600 must be like... let alone a 750 or a 1000.

I also love how you can really grip the bigger bikes with your legs - something you really can't do on the 125s. Gives a lot more confidence on the corners - feels like you're in the bike rather than perched on top. I was also taken aback by how much happier they are to corner, and actually how stable they feel. And this is only a 'little' 400?!

So anyway, today was 100% out on the roads. I think we did 80 miles in 4 hours. Still managed to stuff up a few roundabouts (bloody lanes!) but it was entirely my fault and I knew i'd got it wrong as soon as I'd got it wrong, if that makes sense. My observation towards the end of the day was much better - lifesavers in almost all the right places. Still have some work to do there though, but should be damn near perfect tomorrow. That's the plan anyway.

Stalled a few times today but all of those occasions were early on when I was still getting to grips with the heavier clutch and needing more revs to move off compared with the 125s.

My u-turns are really good. Keep the revs up, get on the rear brake all the way round and control speed with the clutch & brake Should I be having more problems here?

Roll on day three
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Old 31st Mar 2009, 20:59   #137
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...
Cool, glad to hear you had a great time, the wrist ache is a bitch, eventually you get used to using less clutch. CB400, nice bike, can you imagine what a Gixxer 1000 with over 3 times the power feels like, the max I've been on is GSX-R 750, if only the Police and those Gatsos would go on strike! I think I may try to pony a test drive of a 1 litre bike from my friendly dealer this summer!

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Old 31st Mar 2009, 21:43   #138
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Big bike are much nicer to ride, I hear what you're saying about being "in" rather than "on" but I imagine some of that is due to the riding position too. Riding fast is easy, riding slowly is what takes skill, until you start trying to take corners at serious speed anyway. I dont think I've ever ridden a 4 cylinder, my Beemer is a 2 cylinder and although is is a little viby it has torque by the truckfull, around town I'm generally in 3rd gear @ 30mph and 2000rpm, I don't think you could do that on a jap bike.

I also had no problems with U-turns on the 500, plenty of revs, clutch and brake all the way round. The other guy, on his own 125 Varadero that he'd been riding for months had nothing but trouble, I think the added momentum of the bigger bike really helps. My 850 is the same except you don't want to slip the clutch so much as it's a dry plate like in a car.

You get used to the responsiveness, it's really nice to have it there when you want to nip round a car in front that's doing 55 on a nice twisty road.

You might find that day three starts off really badly, stalls, balance errors, all sorts of things, in my case it was my confidence over-running my ability, I got complacent and things went wrong.

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Old 31st Mar 2009, 21:56   #139
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I have a scooter and want to progress to the big bikes. But after having a few accidents though, the missus is dead against it. The last one was pretty hairy so I can see her point. I have always loved and owned Vespa's and Lambretta's, and always had field bikes when I was younger. I would love to own a Harley, but there's not much chance of that while I'm married

One of my favourite run outs on the scooter is from Doncaster (my home town) to Bridlington or Skegness, on the a & b roads. A few of my mates and I do it pretty regular in the summer.
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Old 31st Mar 2009, 23:13   #140
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125s are harder to u-turn, that's for sure, I think smaller bikes just aren't balanced as well and they also tend to be perched on skinny little tires.

Once you've passed, give clutchless upshifting a go, when you get it right it feels so smooth its amazing, just don't force it, or you'll **** your gearbox good and propper
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