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Finally pulled the trigger on getting a bike and it was the VStar 1300.

Many of my friends say I'm nuts for buying such a full size bike for a first ride, but my line of thought is go big or stay home. Other than dirt bikes as a kid, this is it. I am learning the magic of leans and picked up "Learning to ride Like a Pro"

 

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Dont listen to them. They are likely jelly. My first street bike was a 1700cc 2003 Star warrior. I am glad I went with nothing less. Two months on it, and I purchased a brand new 2012 Raider and havnt looked back.

EDIT: A good rider guide book is great, but there is no substitution for seat time. As you said, GO BIG OR GO HOME!
 

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Welcome to the forum eh. The 1300 is a really sweet ride and will put a perma smile on your face quickly. If I were you, I would find a rider course and take it. The stuff that they'll teach you will shorten your learning curve, you wouldn't develop bad habits and you'll enjoy your seat time even more.

Ride safe and keep it shiny side up.
 

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Enjoy your new ride and besafe. tell your buds that a 1300 is not that big in displacement compared to 1900CC or Boss Hoss bikes lmao
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Welcome to the forum eh. The 1300 is a really sweet ride and will put a perma smile on your face quickly. If I were you, I would find a rider course and take it. The stuff that they'll teach you will shorten your learning curve, you wouldn't develop bad habits and you'll enjoy your seat time even more.

Ride safe and keep it shiny side up.
Thanks! As far as a course, the next available one in my area isn't until late Aug. So as an alternative I have a temp endorsement, allowing me to ride with other riders. The group I ride with has two people who are retired cycle cops that have been working with me. Once they say I'm good to go, then I'll schedule a skills test with the local transport authority then I'll receive my endorsement...until then every gear shift, pull of the brake, swerve and low speed maneuver is critiques by these guys :)
 

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Many of my friends say I'm nuts for buying such a full size bike for a first ride, but my line of thought is go big or stay home. Other than dirt bikes as a kid, this is it. I am learning the magic of leans and picked up "Learning to ride Like a Pro"
Congrats! I am in the exact same boat. Dirt bikes and an a couple hours on various other bikes over the years. And I am looking at the 1300 like you.
 

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Finally pulled the trigger on getting a bike and it was the VStar 1300.

Many of my friends say I'm nuts for buying such a full size bike for a first ride, but my line of thought is go big or stay home. Other than dirt bikes as a kid, this is it. I am learning the magic of leans and picked up "Learning to ride Like a Pro"
I am presuming you're open for criticism or you wouldn't have put it out here.

You're friends are right. They know you so, they're not saying "Jeff always goes big and it works out fine.' They're saying you're impulsive and rash and it doesn't always work out.

There is no good reason to just jump on a full sized bike right out of the chute. If there were, beginner classes would have gold wings instead of 250cc rebels on the premise that it is better to 'go big or stay home'.

You may do fine and I hope you do. But, riding can get you killed in an instant and it is not reasonable or rational to just jump in the deep end. Your 'life guards', the ex motor cops, can't jump in to save you.

You should park the big bike, go get a dirt bike and spend a year or so refreshing your long past dirt bike skills and take any course you can find using their little bikes. Some Harley dealers offer one using little Buells. Take the 1300 out on weekends and work on parking lot skills and easing cruising after a few months.

I don't know you so, this isn't personal. It's just my recommendations of what I would suggest anyone should do in order to learn to ride safely. 50% of all new riders have some sort of wreck in their first six months. Obviously, many of them are because they were in over their heads including too much bike too soon. Everyone has their first six months. The goal should be to stack the odds in your favor of getting through them successfully. You're not doing that.

However, that doesn't mean you WILL wreck. It just means, in my view, you damn well better take parking lot practice seriously
as well as listening to and working with your experienced friends.

My goal here is not to discourage you. You already took the leap. My goal here is to encourage you to work at and learn all you can about how a motorcycle works, and doesn't, take classes, listen, practice and learn.

I'd be happy to hear from you in six months that you're doing great.
 

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I am learning the magic of leans and picked up "Learning to ride Like a Pro"
I love Jerry "Motorman" Palladino. Sometimes I'll listen to the video when I'm going to sleep, just to let it seep into my subconscious.

Can no longer say "turn your head." I only think of it as "headandeyes"

Turn your headneyes, friction zone, little bit of rear brake. Congrats on the purchase, keep learning and keep it safe.
 

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I love Jerry "Motorman" Palladino. Sometimes I'll listen to the video when I'm going to sleep, just to let it seep into my subconscious.

Can no longer say "turn your head." I only think of it as "headandeyes"

Turn your headneyes, friction zone, little bit of rear brake. Congrats on the purchase, keep learning and keep it safe.
Exactly. Most of today was spent running through the first 2 drills in the 5th video. The slow cone weave is down pat. Went from 15 feet cone distance to 13 by the end of the round, the dip, friction zone and rear brake are second nature now. Set up for the circle and got tight enough to feel a bit of foot peg drag, but played it safe and straighten her up to call it a day. Prior to hitting the parking lot the pivot points on the bike all got a touch of grease and it made a huge difference in shifting weight and turning that front wheel. And of course, turning the head was like magic.

Larry, thanks for the input, that's good advice. If I didn't have the resources and personal available then I'd do just as you suggested. Yet since I do have the resources, the time (Medically retired from the Military) and the drive to make it happen, I'll make it work out, but again, thanks for your input.
 

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Exactly. Most of today was spent running through the first 2 drills in the 5th video. The slow cone weave is down pat. Went from 15 feet cone distance to 13 by the end of the round, the dip, friction zone and rear brake are second nature now. Set up for the circle and got tight enough to feel a bit of foot peg drag, but played it safe and straighten her up to call it a day. Prior to hitting the parking lot the pivot points on the bike all got a touch of grease and it made a huge difference in shifting weight and turning that front wheel. And of course, turning the head was like magic.

Larry, thanks for the input, that's good advice. If I didn't have the resources and personal available then I'd do just as you suggested. Yet since I do have the resources, the time (Medically retired from the Military) and the drive to make it happen, I'll make it work out, but again, thanks for your input.
You're welcome. Sounds like you are off on the right direction!

One of the things about that first six months rule is a lot of people only get out on the weekends and are more interested in riding than learning how to, really learning how. So, at the six month mark, they have, maybe, 4 rides a month, 24 total, pretty much all destination trips without a lot of stopping and starting, parking lots and traffic riding. So, they may have 24-50 hours total or so. With, what, a couple hundred complete stops and take offs, very few on hills or tough angles and all around avoidance of the things you need to work at to get better; a catch 22, putting yourself at some risk to get better.

If you're working at it, couple days a week, lots of stops and starts doing drills, head to the store for anything that will fit on the bike, plus some riding, you're looking at double or triple or more the experience in that time frame and that is a HUGE difference in that short a time frame.

Palladino does a great job, in my view, of teaching the proper skills.
 

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Here's where I differ from conventional wisdom. I agree that learning the basics of riding a motorcycle on a low power, relatively light weight bike is wise. But I see no reason to progress through a lengthy continuum of bikes, each having slightly more weight and power than its predecessor. Instead I would say, master the basic skills, your safety and your confidence on the small bike. Then move on to the bike of your dreams. Get comfortable with it in a parking lot and on low traffic streets. You can ride a 1300 or even a 1900 as if it were a 250 while you gain experience, and there's room for growth as you become ready for it.
 

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Here's where I differ from conventional wisdom. I agree that learning the basics of riding a motorcycle on a low power, relatively light weight bike is wise. But I see no reason to progress through a lengthy continuum of bikes, each having slightly more weight and power than its predecessor. Instead I would say, master the basic skills, your safety and your confidence on the small bike. Then move on to the bike of your dreams. Get comfortable with it in a parking lot and on low traffic streets. You can ride a 1300 or even a 1900 as if it were a 250 while you gain experience, and there's room for growth as you become ready for it.
Agreed. Once you have the basics and are confident with your skills, no reason not to move up to whatever.
I was going to start out on a used Shadow 750 for $4500 as my first street bike. As soon as I showed interest in the bike, the price started to go up. Ultimately, I told them to go f*** themselves and walked out. That was a huge favor they did for me by trying to rip me off. That very same day, I purchased a used 2003 1700cc Warrior. After my first ride on it, I knew it was money well spent and I got a bike I loved. I realized the Shadow would have been a waste of money and time. I then wanted nothing less than what the Warrior presented. Phenomenal bike. I had to go back to the Shadow dealer and thank them for trying to hose me. Now riding a Raider and havnt looked back.
 
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