Suzuki Volusia Forum banner

1 - 20 of 41 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
At 51, finally got blessing from better half, and got my first bike ('09 C50C). Recently been through MSF and was trying hard to do all the right things.

#1) Accelerating from stop light, car cut between me and car in front of me and hit his brakes (I assume to not to hit other car). Closing fast, I hit the brakes hard, back locked and seemed under control until I crossed crosswalk paint, wiggled hard and went down high-side. Only bent engine guard and scratch windshield. I sprained knee and toe (and pride, as it was city rush hour traffic).

#2) 10 days later, pulling off road into gas station, didn't see sand in transition (same color as concrete) and went down again hi-side. Little more damage to engine guard and broke two ribs (and a little more pride).

Feeling down because I was enjoying the experience sooo much (should of done this years ago); but I'm finding my self gun shy and paranoid.

Here's some of the lessons I've learned:

1) I'll never ever ride without a helmet. Hit my head hard (even though slow speeds) both time and I'm no worse for wear.

2) Wear the gear. I have a hi-viz textile jacket elbow and should pads. Body slammed both times and only thing that doesn't hurt are my elbows and shoulders.

3) While the ass in the car put me in a dangerous situation, my inexperience in emergency stopping probably lead to me ending up on the ground.

4) I looove the community of riders. Both time I went down, only people who came to my aid were other riders. Bless you all!

5) Engine guard saved my right leg both time.

I'll get back on the horse that's thrown me twice (only after I replace the engine guards). I was fortunate that both incidents were at very low speed. My body is telling my head it doesn't like the pain of falling and the risk of a higher speed accident. Only been riding for 5 weeks and don't want to turn back now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
Sorry to hear you went down...sounds like you've learned and making some good decisions to accept the risk we all take! Ride with a full face (by law and choice) and armored jacket everytime! Had a run in similar to your first but kept it up at least. Better skill at emergency breaking would have prevented any collision! Ride safe and keep the rubber side down!


Sent from Motorcycle.com Free App
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,042 Posts
How many miles riding do you have under your belt?
If less than 1000 I want to recommend you ride in the rural areas away from traffic for a month.
Other than deer I mostly fear cage drivers. I have all but stopped riding my bike on Friday afternoon. To many drunks.

I'm glad you're getting back in the saddle. WELCOME TO THE FORUM. Takes a real person to make their first post about an accident.

Hi-Vis
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
48 Posts
maybe you should have went with CBR250R or some smaller,lighter cc bike first...(average age of CBR250R riders in forum poll was 45 years old).....then transitioned to the 800cc boulevard after a year or two? I got my cbr 3 years ago after not riding for almost 18 years...then bought my boulevard a few months ago...havent went down yet and hope I never do...
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
20,123 Posts
welcome and a tip of the hat for your sharing your unfortunate recent experiences...it happens...some fare better than others...for the most part it sounds like your pride got hurt the most...take the positive from it and realize you now know how quick it can happen...be it from others bad judgement or something as innocent as road conditions. Many people never find the time to take what they learned at msf to continue to practice after they start riding figuring the riding will give them the experience they need. True for certain parts but not for the things you really need to be prepared for...swerving and emergency stops...things you can practice occasionally at your local high school parking lot or similar on early sunday mornings...good luck...it could have been alot worse.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,872 Posts
Glad you are o.k. I have been riding for 27 years, and I still practice emergency stops. Find an empty parking lot and practice emergency stops at different speeds. It will save your life. It did mine.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,720 Posts
Glad u are ok!!! Take your time, you are a new rider. I had my finance' riding around a Hugh parking lot for her first 50 miles riding. Getting use to starts, stops, shifting gears, cornering, looking through turns ect. You will be fine just take your time.:shades:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19,447 Posts
Inexperience played a huge part in both of your wrecks. You're lucky to have walked away with relatively minor injuries, especially sans-helmet.

Unfortunately, the only way to get experience is to practice. You practice by riding. Which is dangerous because gravity is a cruel mistress who must be obeyed.

Take some time to gather your wits and try it again. Find an empty parking lot and practice panic maneuvers including hard braking. Learn to slow yourself without locking the wheels. It just takes time and patience to get good at it.
 

·
The Village Idiot
Joined
·
5,013 Posts
How are your tires on that 09? Are they brand new or are they too worn? Might want to look into getting new ones along with new Cobra Bars if they are old.
This bike isn't too big for you. It just takes some practice as others have said. Play in parking lots for a while and then take back roads for a while longer.
Having said that, I started out my first ride on the super slab, so I don't practice what I preach.
Glad to hear that you aren't letting these two incidents get the better of you.

Welcome to the forum
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
452 Posts
You are going about it the right way, MSF and ATGATT. Might want to consider replacing the helmet if it has already taken a bonk or two. The energy absorbing material between the shell and inner liner has compressed.

Hang in there. I started two years ago at 62 and still consider myself a novice rider, and always will.

Good hunting
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
8,808 Posts
You could also consider signing up for the next level of MSF training, the one where you get to bring your own bike to the class and you run thru the exercises riding on it, not a loaner.

Other than that -- find a parking lot and practice, practice, practice the things that make you uncomfortable.

Glad to hear you walked away. Keep on wearing the gear!

.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,051 Posts
Parking lots are good. But I do prefer a nice, relatively quiet neighborhood where you can deal with low-volume intersections, stop signs, kids, pets, bicycles, etc. Slow speed, but a bit more "real world." Way back when, I got my first bike in June, and stayed in the neighborhoods until about September.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,962 Posts
At 51, finally got blessing from better half, and got my first bike ('09 C50C). Recently been through MSF and was trying hard to do all the right things.

#1) Accelerating from stop light, car cut between me and car in front of me and hit his brakes (I assume to not to hit other car). Closing fast, I hit the brakes hard, back locked and seemed under control until I crossed crosswalk paint, wiggled hard and went down high-side. Only bent engine guard and scratch windshield. I sprained knee and toe (and pride, as it was city rush hour traffic).

#2) 10 days later, pulling off road into gas station, didn't see sand in transition (same color as concrete) and went down again hi-side. Little more damage to engine guard and broke two ribs (and a little more pride).

Feeling down because I was enjoying the experience sooo much (should of done this years ago); but I'm finding my self gun shy and paranoid.

Here's some of the lessons I've learned:

1) I'll never ever ride without a helmet. Hit my head hard (even though slow speeds) both time and I'm no worse for wear.

2) Wear the gear. I have a hi-viz textile jacket elbow and should pads. Body slammed both times and only thing that doesn't hurt are my elbows and shoulders.

3) While the ass in the car put me in a dangerous situation, my inexperience in emergency stopping probably lead to me ending up on the ground.

4) I looove the community of riders. Both time I went down, only people who came to my aid were other riders. Bless you all!

5) Engine guard saved my right leg both time.

I'll get back on the horse that's thrown me twice (only after I replace the engine guards). I was fortunate that both incidents were at very low speed. My body is telling my head it doesn't like the pain of falling and the risk of a higher speed accident. Only been riding for 5 weeks and don't want to turn back now.

Drive a trike:wayhappy:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,488 Posts
What everyone said. I'll add


SPACE


Make it. Keep it. It's a good thing.
As soon as the car squeezed in front of you, the first thing to do is to start making space in front of you. You can't help what someone behind you does, but you can open up space in front of you. It's a good thing that someone behind you didn't hit you!
If you are riding busy roads with little experience, there is significant risk of death or injury. Find someplace with less traffic. If you are getting somewhere, go out of your way to find a route that doesn't have as much traffic, even if you have to go way out of your way.
Riding in traffic is a game of making space and keeping the upper hand. It's NOT the place you want to be timid. So, if your head isn't in the game right now (yet) keep out of traffic for a while and build some confidence.
Practice hard braking in a parking lot.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
686 Posts
To OP, glad you are pretty much OK after the 2 mishaps. Some good advice has been offered here. I find when I'm under anxiety I am not comfortable riding in any type of traffic. I'm lucky, I have country roads very close. Riding is just for fun, not an option for a rush hour commute.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
973 Posts
Hi mshepard62, I am sorry to hear about the incidents. I am glad it is not putting you off of riding.

I also welcome you to the forum (I'm up in Aurora, if you want to get togther for a ride some time, lemme know). I'm trying to find a weekend free where I can see about getting everyone in the area together for a ride.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,309 Posts
Welcome.........glad to hear that you're okay after "two" quick ones. Everyone has to do there part to keep the aftermarket folks in business.....just kidding.

I've been riding my whole life and both of those situations have happened to me also with the same results. Good advice here and I can't add anything better. Keep at it.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
24,512 Posts
Sorry to hear about the accidents, and I'm glad that nothing but your pride was seriously injured.

That said, I'm gonna give you some tough love now. The important thing when something like this happens is that you don't waste the opportunity to learn something, so you need to figure out what you could have done to avoid the situation in the first place. It doesn't sound like you did anything "wrong", but there's probably one thing you could have changed to avoid them.

In the first case, it sounds like you didn't leave enough space between you and the car on front. That doesn't mean you were tailgating, obviously you weren't, but the cushion you need changes with conditions and experience. For instance, I've only been riding about two years now, but I've been driving for over 20. When I'm in my car I'll get a LOT closer to the car in front of me than I will on the bike. I leave at least two car lengths between me and the guy in front on the bike. Do I get a lot of cars pulling in front of me? Sure! But with two car lengths it doesn't bother me and I don't have to do emergency braking.

The second incident? That one's a bit tougher. Perhaps you cut the corner sharper and got out of the tire tracks created by cars? Remember that a bike can ride on spots of the road that cars never touch. Unfortunately those areas are where the dirt, sand, gravel, trash, and various other types of debris build up. When you're turning, try to stay where the cars go.

Like I said, just think about what happened and try to learn from the situation.

One more thing I'll add... Do you have a ride bell? Maybe you could use one for some good luck! That might have been the answer on the sand incident! :biglaugh: If you don't, head over to the ride bell thread and get yourself one.

Ride safe and welcome aboard!
 
1 - 20 of 41 Posts
Top