A New Stable Mate.
You might remember back in early July, The Bar Tender did his motorcycle training with Noel out at Q-Ride Redlands.
Getting his motorcycle licence was something he’d been wanting to do for a very long time; I guess it was inevitable seeing as he has been exposed to bikes all of his life.
If you’d like to refresh your memory, you can re-read the post I wrote about that momentous occasion here <link>
Anyway… after he got his RE (Restricted) motorcycle licence endorsement, he was like a bloke on fire: He couldn’t wait to get on two wheels.
He spent every waking minute searching Bike Sales, visiting bike shops and learning all he could about bikes.
One of the drawbacks (or rather, blessings) in starting out on an RE endorsement is that he is not allowed to ride bikes bigger than 650cc.
This depends on the power to weight ratio of the bike too, so bikes like the Yamaha R6 or Honda CBR 600 are out of the question, but the Yamaha FZ6n or Suzuki SV650 (current model) for example, are OK.
Unfortunately because the RE market is a captive market, most of the bikes available to them are well and truly overpriced.
I mean, when you can pick up a tidy Kawasaki ZZR-1100 for around $3500 – $4500(AU) but can only find neglected Suzuki GS-500’s or similar bikes for the same price, it speaks volumes about the opportunistic traits of some sellers when it comes to new riders.
This being the case, it looked like he was going to have to spend $4500 – $6000 to get a decent bike.
It took a bit of doing, but The Pillion and I managed to persuade him to save his money and pay cash, rather than take out a loan.
The main reason being that he is a casual employee and could be laid off at any time. If he had a loan and missed a payment or two, there was a real chance he could lose the bike.
At least if he paid cash he owned the bike.
Another thing I suggested to him was that he should consider steering clear of bikes with fairings, and if he can manage it, get some Oggy Knobs (frame sliders).
We quarreled about the fairing thing until he saw the difference in insurance premiums.
Chalk one up for Dad eh? 🙂
Having to wait an extra 2-1/2 months instead of going for instant gratification really sucked for him because even though he was the first one out of his mates to get his RE licence, he will be one of the last to own a bike.
Some of his mates paid out on him for that. They also gave him grief because he took our advice and steered clear of faired bikes and that he was going to install Oggy Knobs.
I can’t tell you how many times The Squid, who took out at $4500 loan for his fully fared bike, razed him about that. Karma caught up with him though, when he dropped his bike in his driveway.
I think you know why I’ve called him The Squid: Karma will catch up with him on that too, sadly.
So without further ado, allow me to introduce you to Blueys’ new stable mate: ‘Fee’.
‘Fee’ won out against a black Yamaha FZ6n and a white Suzuki GS-500, both of which were fine bikes in their own right. But I gotta say, this little Honda is a really nice bike to ride, albeit a little cramped for my exaggerated frame.
There are no bells and whistles. No ABS or traction control. Nothing fancy at all. Just a simple, easy to ride machine that will ease him into riding without too much unnecessary scariness.
Which is good in a way, because The Bar Tender will learn to respect braking, and handling, like you and I did.
The only difference being that ‘Fee’ handles and stops waaaay better than my old Honda CB750-4 (K2) and probably older bikes you an I have ridden over the years.
Now that The Bar Tender has his new wheels, I’m sure The Pillion is going to be a little on edge every time he throws a leg over ‘Fee’; and if I’m honest, I will be too.
I’ve already had the “Don’t bow down to peer pressure” and “Don’t get cocky” talk with him.
I’m pretty sure he is allergic to pain, so I reckon that talk had some influence. He has a lot to learn over the coming months that’s for sure.
Needless to say, our little single car garage is a little less roomy now that ‘Bluey’ has a new stable mate.
It’s all good though, she’s been pining for some company.
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