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Discussion Starter #1
So, my buddy just go his new bike (see the Duc 620 thread) and he wants to go riding. I've suggested we do a 75-100 mile backroad ride on some very low traffic, scenic, country roads. A few easy curves (enough to make it interesting, but nothing that you even need brakes for).

He e-mails me and wants to ride at 5:30 down to the chaotic urban Newport News area. I told him whatever floats his boat, I'll ride with him. I'm just not up for an ego battle with an otherwise humble friend.

But, am I alone in thinking that someone whose first experience on a bike came last week at MSF, and who has maybe 20 miles under his belt shouldn't be looking to go to streetfighter mode yet?
Maybe I am and I'll STFU and just grit my teeth, but I have bad visions. My wife was easy, I literally had to pin a sign on her back (NEW RIDER, her idea BTW) and take her down the safest road in the area. No overconfidence there. She was novice and new it, and learned a ton because of it.

What would you do?
 

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Get him to sign up for a BIG life insurance policy with you as the benificiary... even offer to pay for it ;D

Stay behind him, the worst (yet common) problem with noobs is them running into the back of other riders.
 

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being somewhat of a noob to the motorcyle world myself i would be firm on telling him ur not riding with him in heavy traffic, tell him u like the twisties a little better, and ride behind him this way he isn't up ur arse or trying to race u every 10 seconds just my 2 cents
 

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If you honestly don't feel he's up to it then don't do it.    My brother just got his license and he/we stuck to back roads and avoided congested areas for about 500 miles.  He's got about 1,200 miles and feels comfortable with most scenarios including the highway.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
donniej said:
Get him to sign up for a BIG life insurance policy with you as the benificiary... even offer to pay for it  ;D

Stay behind him, the worst (yet common) problem with noobs is them running into the back of other riders. 
Good call on the behind thing. I was thinking the same thing. My wife always wanted to let me ride in front of her to watch my lines and stuff. She kept a good distance and only nearly hit me once. This buddy won't want to race (I don't think), but there's no way I'm going to be in front of him. I think I'll just put it delicately: Dude, it's 80 degrees, no humidity, and clear sunshine. Riding time is precious, let's not waste it in traffic.
 

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*Putting Fireproof suit on*  I can understand your buddies desire to get out and ride.  The day after I picked up my SV (which was my first bike, no dirtbike experience, just MSF), I just HAD to ride it to a friends party, which required spending some time on the Garden State Parkway late Saturday afternoon.  Anyone from Jersey knows this probably wasn't the best idea that I ever had, and trust me, I was very careful.  I made it out unscathed, but was definitely a bit uncomfortable.  So it can be done.

There's a couple of ways to look at it...
1.  Riding on winding back roads there is more likelyhood that he will crash taking a curve, but there isn't much traffic
2.  Riding on the highway you pretty much just have to go straight, but still need to keep your head on a swivel for other cars.  Going straight is pretty easy...
     (I'm not sure about the whole downtown Newport News part though, sounds like he wants to show off his new toy, which we've all been guilty of at some point ;D)

*Takes off fireproof suit* 
 

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Discussion Starter #7
True Blue said:
*Putting Fireproof suit on*  I can understand your buddies desire to get out and ride.  The day after I picked up my SV (which was my first bike, no dirtbike experience, just MSF), I just HAD to ride it to a friends party, which required spending some time on the Garden State Parkway late Saturday afternoon.  Anyone from Jersey knows this probably wasn't the best idea that I ever had, and trust me, I was very careful.  I made it out unscathed, but was definitely a bit uncomfortable.  So it can be done.

There's a couple of ways to look at it...
1.  Riding on winding back roads there is more likelyhood that he will crash taking a curve, but there isn't much traffic
2.  Riding on the highway you pretty much just have to go straight, but still need to keep your head on a swivel for other cars.  Going straight is pretty easy...
     (I'm not sure about the whole downtown Newport News part though, sounds like he wants to show off his new toy, which we've all been guilty of at some point ;D)

*Takes off fireproof suit* 
No need for a fireproof suit here. I can relate. My then 19 y/o brother and I (then 22) couldn't wait to ride his bike. MSF wasn't for weeks, but we rode anyway. First thing we did was get a cheap helmet and attack the back roads where we lived. It was pretty rural, but still, we didn't know any better. We didn't know they made "gear." I just wanted to ride. We knew enough not to wear shorts/t-shirt, but that was it. I just now know there are better ways and I'd like to show them to my friend.

I'd argue that we both came out unscathed on our first rides not by skill but by luck. I wasn't prepared to stop fast or swerve (I remember my brother's epiphanous revelation that it is easier to go through a corner if you look through the corner). I'd rather see a noob's first miles on non-technical, rural back roads where it is less likely for crazy crap to happen than in an urban nightmare where you can guarantee it will happen.
 

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im a noob still and i wouldnt feel comfortable with my expierence yet to travel the main roads. If I rode with someone they know I am new and THEY TAKE CONTROL and dont let me ride the main roads with hella traffic. If it was my friend I would tell them you had picked out the route already and take that one. +1 on staying behind, i feel more comfortable that way also.
 
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It is your call. If you really don't feel comfortable riding with him then don't. I know he is your friend but it is also your life. I have ridden with complete noobs that have gone down and some that stayed up. On the same hand Ive gone out with people who have been riding for years and some still go down over doing something stupid. Well let us know how it goes.
 

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They've got to learn either way. I do suggest that for riding in heavy traffic the more experienced rider should lead, the less experienced rider should follow at a reasonable distance. There should be an up front safety discussion wherein the newb is warned of the constant need to keep your lane and maintain escape routes. You also need to instruct the newb that if you get separated, you will wait for him, that he isn't to bust yellow lights or take chances just to keep up.

For the first back road experiences make sure to keep the pace slow. It takes some time to get comfortable taking curves. I've seen newbs panic and run off the road in easy corners taken at a very easy pace. The goal for the newb is to get comfortable with the bike, to get smooth on the controls, and to get some confidence.
 

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I am probably over-cautious but I would'nt do it. This is almost like a first ride out in heavy traffic and makes no sense to me. I am the kind of person that would feel somewhat responsible if my noobie friend crashed in this type of riding enviroment and I was the experienced rider. Whatever you decide, I hope he has full head to toe gear. If friend has gone out a few times in traffic and then says he could handle it, I might be more inclined to go with him. At least in this case, I would feel comfortable he knew what he was getting into.
 

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I am Nimbus' brother and I don't know what he is talking about! You are supposed to look through turns ??? ;) I totally agree with your earlier statement. Riding time is precious, especially on days that are as beautiful as they are this week. I have been using my bike as daily transportation to work and yearn to get it back out to the twisites where I can actually use it properly. I say go back roads or don't go. I understand wanting to be seen, but take the high road on this one, or should I say country road.
 

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i really wouldn't go into heavy traffic when ur a noob...its scary and you WILL freak out and do something stupid. Take it easy on urban areas and empty road first before you run into all that traffic, because ppl in cages can be real assholes, and thats not a good combination when your a noob :-D Never let anyone pressure you into riding with them if you don't feel confident enough about your skillz, suck up the ego and refuse the offer for another day...
 

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I went on a ride with a noob that dident have MSF. WORST mistake ever! The first little, and I mean little twisty we came to BAM right into the ditch. The rest of the day was getting the bike back home.
 

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I speak from experience that taking the back roads is a great way to get comfortable when learning.  Safety course or not.  Keep a nice and easy pace and don't let the speed get out of hand.  Keep a good close eye and stop frequently for pointer/suggestions/rants over what is being done right or wrong.  Safety gear is essential as is gaining more experience.  Keep it easy and be safe.  That is what is important not his ego.  My 2 cents.
 

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Dude, it's 80 degrees, no humidity, and clear sunshine. Riding time is precious, let's not waste it in traffic.
+1 straight from the MSF? maybe he wants to practice his street/traffic skills?? i'd bring him to the twisties instead and follow him. make sure to mention he's going to ride at his own pace and not worry about you. if he runs wide in any of the corners, find a safe way to get him to pull over and have a little chat before he hurts himself. make sure to reiterate that where he looks is where he's going to end up.
 

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You live up in Willy'sburg right? Might I suggest going down the parkway to Jamestown and cross the ferry to Surry. Plenty of open roads to go on. Newport News/lower penisula @5:30pm on a weekday is insanity. Plain and simple. 10 fold for a noob. Simply tell him that until he gets more riding time, he has no business going into city traffic. And for cripe's sake, stay off 64! ;D
 

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reminds me of my friend.

He has been riding for less than a month, and thinks he is pretty hot sh!t....

2 days ago he dumped his new '04 Triumph Daytona 600 "going less than 10mph" allegedly because there was dirt on the road...he says there is nothing he coulda done to keep from goin down.

now he has some road rash on his left leg and left elbow (he wore shorts for some reason that day, had a jacket and helmet on)

people like that, will either learn from the pain of going down, or won't...he is a classic squid that likes to go fast in a straight line, but doesnt like to do the twisties

i haven't seen his bike yet, i told him to get frame sliders, but he didnt want to have the fairing cut to get them installed...so now his bike is nice and rashed up
 

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Plenty of riders start in city traffic, I don't see what the big deal is. I didn't learn to ride until I moved to Boston, so I was immediately out in insane city and highway traffic; can't be any worse there than it is here. It can be done, you, well, I guess he, has to be smart about it.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Well, he was 30 minutes late and then needed to check his V/M make phone calls for another 10 minutes so we left at 6:15. I was pissed. Anyway, his plan was to put the helmet I had loaned him into his backpack when he got the new helmet :mad:???

Well, we did ultimately decide to run the 75 mile backroad route. He led and while it was clear from the flurry of revs taking off and the extremely awkward stabs at the brakes approaching stops, he didn't do anything too alarming right off the bat. I was not impressed by his decision to tailgate a van for a mile and then suddenly pass at the first passing zone (van was at 60 in a 55). Also, he ran consistently in the far right of the lane (no major thing, but after MSF...)

Anyway, all was good until the first "curve." It really is more of a slight bend at 60mph, but I watched as his back tire was literally on the edge of the white line and heading for the gravel. He didnt' countersteer and it took him a bit too long to realize he needed to. When we finally stopped he was wanting feedback on his lines. Anyway, one priceless moment was on the ferry from Surry to Jamestown. We were loaded right behind 3 squids on GSX-R's (one had recently crashed at 100mph, according to him and like to take it to the 'extreme' ::)) Anyway, one guy asked about the duc: Is that a 750? My buddy responded "no, it's a 650." Oy.

Well, after about 75 miles, my buddy's main comment was about how people look at you on bikes. He also admitted to an earlier decision to "beat" an oncoming car when he was trying to turn left. I have little hope. Everytime I mentioned something technical about riding, his eyes glazed over like I was his mom.
 
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