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motorcyclist question

Old 11-04-2011, 04:48 AM
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have you ever used your bike as a daily driver ? been thinking about it for awhile,im taking the motorcyclist safety course next month since it is required here (fla) and i know there are things i need to learn and made aware of since i haven't ridden a bike on the street since the late 70s. i have a bike already to use (ninja 250 ) after the course is completed.any advice is greatly appreciated.
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Old 11-04-2011, 04:51 AM
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Commute distance?
Type of traffic? i.e. heavy, light, 30mph, 70mph?
Type of roads to be traveled? Back roads, highway?

.
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Old 11-04-2011, 05:00 AM
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In my opinion all of the fun slips right our of motorcycling, the second you use it for commuting rather than a hobby. Not to mention work commutes usually put you in the road at highly congested times, which increases the danger. The first time you get caught in inclement weather, you will wondering why you've made the decision.
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Old 11-04-2011, 05:08 AM
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240 has the key- it really depends on the commute you will be making.... If it involves any exremely congested roads, I would say no. Way too likely that the lady putting on her lipstick will run you over and not even realize it... then the five cars tailgating you won't have enough room to stop either...
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Old 11-04-2011, 05:11 AM
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When I lived in San Diego I rode an FZR 750 daily to work.... I was young so it was always fun...

But knowing what I do now - I only ride sat or sunday mornings when there is no traffic...
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Old 11-04-2011, 05:19 AM
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It's like going from fishing for a hobby to being a guide. Everyone thinks it's a dream job but when you do something because you have to do it rather then because you want to do it, it isn't the same.

Riding a bike, NEVER can you relax or become complacent when other drivers and deer are around.




.
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:25 AM
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youve got to be kidding with the "fun slips out of it" comments...you guys make it sound like its a job to ride a motorcycle to work...good lord...

its ok to use it to go places other than starbucks for a latte on saturday morning...and counting miles isnt what riding is about...

dress the part and it will be a great experience regarless of the weather...up north i rode into the 30s and until the snow flew...down south there are afternoon thunderstorms to deal with but you get accustomed to either waiting them out for the visibiity or making the run in full gear and getting home....i do have stops on the way home if necessary where i can take a nap under a church overhang or chew the fat with some locals when it comes down so hard i dont know where my ahnds are anymore....

it saves gas...wakes you up in the morning and clears your head on the way home...

the only warning i'll give you is not to get complacent as youll be travelling a similar route daily...keep your eyes open and stay aware...youll find the confidence you build riding in traffic everyday makes you a better rider and more appreciative of those times when youre just out riding for pleasure...
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:26 AM
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I rode for six or seven years when I was in College and when I graduated and came home. I loved it although any bad weather made daily necessary trips horrible. It was also in a small town (Tallahassee) so congestion wasn't too bad. Distance also plays a big part. Parking was great, mileage was fantastic, didn't need insurance (Florida).

Moved back to Miami and everything changed. It was a daily chore trying to stay away from people determined to smash me flat. Living on So. Beach and parking a car being a monster headache, I kept at it a further two years until I married and my boy was born.

Sold my bike for $50 to the first lucky winner at a yard sale. Shoulda seen the look in his eyes when I gave him the title.

So, whether its worth it to you as a full time ride depends on alot of factors. Where you live, how far you're going to operate it, what would happen to your SO or dependants if you end up flat, etc.
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:30 AM
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From age 14 until early 20's. Rode literally every day - street and/or dirt bikes. Had a 70 Chevelle for the days when the rain was just a bit too hard (I'd still hit the woods late in the afternoon for a mud run).

I'm 50 now, and my daily driver is an F150. Or a commercial jet.


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Old 11-04-2011, 06:38 AM
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Totally depends on the commute. If mostly city driving, it's not quite as much fun. If your commute is rural backroads, then it may be more enjoyable.

I used to commute on my motorcycle almost daily. If forecast was 40% or higher (or it was currently raining), I'd take the truck instead. When I moved, my commute became less enjoyable, as it was pretty much a straight shot down US-19. Then came the construction.

I always wore long pants, boots, a jacket, helmet, and gloves. Jacket was vented, so when moving I was fine, but the heat was brutal when stuck in traffic.

I've since sold the bike as I didn't really ride much anymore, and I was limited on space in my garage. I'll probably get another one in a few years when my kids are a bit older.

When I commuted, I did have a few unpleasant things occur during the commute. Not counting the number of times drivers pulled out in front of me. I always had time because I assumed that all would pull out in front of me, so I had exit strategies.

1. Rode in to work after a heavy rain. Roads where I lived were dry, but this was relatively high ground compared to the surrounding areas. During the commute, I ran into some deep standing water. I could easily avoid it, but could not avoid the huge wake that a truck pushed into me. I went from dry to soaked in a split second. I had to stop at a friend's to use his dryer before continuing to work.

2. Passed a car in light traffic when I felt a sharp pain at the back of my neck. I swatted the back of my neck, but didn't feel anything. Back of my neck hurt like hell. This was about the only skin exposed. Continued on a bit, and suddenly felt something else. It felt like an insect moving around under my shirt. Now I figured what must have happened. I got stung by something, and when I swatted, I swatted the insect down under my jacket and shirt. Pulled over at the first opportunity, and proceeded to strip off my jacket and shirt at the side of the road to the amusement of motorists. Found a yellow jacket in my shirt. Very glad that it only got me once, and it never stung anyone else again.
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:41 AM
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I did it for 2 years, rain and\or shine and I must admit it sucked big time. Only time it was "fun" was when it was nice out. 45 minute commute one way to work. I too grew up riding but realized using it as a daily commuter was not for me. After getting stuck behind semi, in the pouring rain, soaked to the bone with my rain gear on I decided screw it. Sold it not long after but for another reason. To each there own though.
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Old 11-04-2011, 07:21 AM
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regarding city/country commute...i commuted in the city to 2 downtown located jobs for 16 years and it was just as enjoyable as the longer commutes ive had later in life...i also never had a problem finding parking downtown...

its what you make of it...
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Old 11-04-2011, 08:05 AM
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to respond to 240s questions,my commute would be early in the a.m,about 35 miles, im in the medical field and have to be at work by 645 a.m and. i work 12 hour shifts . i dont leave work until 715 pm so i miss the bulk of rush hour both ways,the route i drive now i is pretty much all expressway.i live in jacksonville,so yes we do have the usual idiots on the road and for some reason they come out of the woodwork when its raining.i very aware of he danger factor,two of my three sons ride and i have heard many " i was cut off today by _______ !" stories.after reading the responses from the forum ,i going to rethink this .as usual, you guys come through,thanks again
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Old 11-04-2011, 08:15 AM
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I live in Jax also and have to take JTB To I95 to get to work. I tried riding my bike a few times and I found it to be more stress than anything. I'm happy to pay more in fuel and feel nice and safe in my truck. Bike's are for fun not work.
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Old 11-04-2011, 09:08 AM
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I ride mine as a daily driver....unless it's really raining or I have to carry something big, I'm riding...about 12-15K a year...to and from work....it's great fun....poo-poo on the naysayers....
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Old 11-04-2011, 09:21 AM
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I rode an 80 mile round trip commute in the Philadelphia area for 2 years. Spring, Summer, Winter and Fall. Didn't own a car. Anybody care to guess at the wind chill factor when its 4 deg. and you're going 70 mph.
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Old 11-04-2011, 09:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Uncle John View Post
I rode an 80 mile round trip commute in the Philadelphia area for 2 years. Spring, Summer, Winter and Fall. Didn't own a car. Anybody care to guess at the wind chill factor when its 4 deg. and you're going 70 mph.
Don't know how you survived the winters in Philly. Winters in Tallahassee I had double insulated gloves and a windshield and I still had to defrost my hands under a sink after a 8-10 mile ride becuse I lost feeling in them. Sometimes I had to look at my hand to see if I was clutching or not.

Last edited by The Contractor; 11-04-2011 at 10:33 AM.
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Old 11-04-2011, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by bladenbullet View Post
youve got to be kidding with the "fun slips out of it" comments...you guys make it sound like its a job to ride a motorcycle to work...good lord...

When your on the road in rush hour on a bike, it is a far different experience than hitting the twisty's for some fun on the weekends. Someone above attributed it to something like becoming a fishing guide and that is a perfect analogy. Most of us enjoy fishing, and would think that becoming a guide would be a dream job, however when it becomes work, things change.

I don't drink starbucks, I don't look the part but I do have quite a few bikes and I've ridden for 35 years. I really wouldn't want to be on my way home from work, and be forced to pull under an overpass or into a place to BS with the locals to avoid the weather. On the weekends it is all fun and games, but when you do it out of necessity a lot of the fun is taken out of the equation.
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Old 11-04-2011, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Uncle John View Post
I rode an 80 mile round trip commute in the Philadelphia area for 2 years. Spring, Summer, Winter and Fall. Didn't own a car. Anybody care to guess at the wind chill factor when its 4 deg. and you're going 70 mph.
Cold as a witches ___ ! I ride as much as possible to work. My ride is 70 miles round trip. Roughly 1/3 rural, 1/3 75 mph highway and the last 3rd busy stop and go traffic. Dress for the ride and you will be fine. Especially in Florida. I rode today and it was 44 when I left the house. Now yesterday I decided not to ride as it was 32 and heavy frost. What I like is the technology they have today with radar. If I see bad weather coming I leave work early. I only got caught twice this season in the rain. Practice awhile until you get used to your bike before commuting. Good luck!
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Old 11-04-2011, 12:27 PM
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Cold as a witches ___
Yeah, and that witch is wearing a brass bra and doing pushups in the snow.
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