So this is my first bike and I am learning. What is the best way to practice? I have trouble of knowing what gear I am in and throtle/clutch coordination...any tips?
How did you practice? Any tips you got and still remember?
I took a MSF (Motorcycle Safety Foundation) course. I would definitely recommend it! The gears.. i count them in my head. I would advise reading the manual also. Push the gear all the way to the bottom that's 1 and half click up is Neutral. Next is 2-6. As for the throttle and clutch, that will take some practicing to getting to know how far to let go on your clutch and add a bit of gas.
For practice buy a set of small cones at a Sporting Goods store. Practice weaving, figure 8's and u-turns in a wide open parking lot. Practice braking hard with out traffic around. There are lots of books and internet videos that show you how to ride.
Learn to keep your weight off the bars. Hold the bars as lightly as you can. Squeeze the tank with your knees and push on the footpegs to hold yourself up.
Look where you want to go. It takes some time to build up the comfort level and reference points.
Having a couple of reference points on your tachometer helps. I think the 250 is spinning at 7000 rpm at 48mph in fourth gear. I forget what 65mph in sixth gear is. But those are two good reference points.
Take your time and practice alot.
Get a good helmet and a comfortable motorcycle jacket.
this is my first modern street bike. about a month and a half ago (on st.pattys day) I got a brand new suzuki glaius 650cc. i totaled it 5 hours after it was delivered to my house. i was doing all the figure eights, finding the friction zone on the clutch, it was like everyone says. it happened so fast. i was doing those drills, my bike lurched forward, and i went for my front brake with my finger while the inside of my hand wrapped around the throttle and openened it up!!! a 650cc vtwin with an inexperienced rider (me), went from 5 to 35 mph in like a nano second and i rode staight into a brick wall. totalled bike. had it for five hours. i luckilly walked away major bruises beween my legs because my pelvis and "unmentionables" hit the gas tank. i was LUCKY. but i am getting back on the horse so to speak. find a nice big lot. one like supermarket size, so that if you do god forbid loose control or need to bail you too will walk away. take your time though. i talked to a guy teaches the MSC here in ohio and around the country; he said its not like relearning how to drive.. its like learning how to play the violin. i think that is a perfect comparison.
I always start people with creeping. With your feet on the ground practice rolling the bike forward, little by little, by letting out the clutch just until the bike starts to move and then pulling it back in. Once you get the feel of creeping, see if you can get let it out all the way, and put your feet up. When you do get going, then pull in the clutch, stop and try again.
When you start rolling around, pick a couple of places, stop at those places and get going again. When you get really comfortable with starting and stopping everything else will seem easier, gear changes will make more sense.
Yes, the MSF course does help! Also, after you pass, just start riding, the experience will all come naturally. You'll know what gear your on according to your speed. You'll know when to change gears according to the sound of your bike.
Since you are new, just remember, on 1st gear, rev up to at least 5k rpm and slowly release the clutch, don't let it go all the way, you might stall the bike since your new. The rpms will drop
Going on a training course would help. As for knowing which gear you're in, you'll eventually get a feel of which gear your in or you could learn a few important points on the rev counter, for particular gears. For example my V-strom does 4000rpm at 40mph in fourth gear, which is really useful. So if the engines revving faster or slower than 1000rpm/10mph, I can pretty much guess which gear I'm in. It's also useful to know when you're in top gear so at 60mph I know the revs will be 4500rpm. There will be similar points to memorise for the CBR - remembering three or four of these points will help you work out which gear you're in.
Big Thanks to all of you!!!! I have already used some of your tips and they are helping! Still trying to master not having any weight on the bars...I am getting better!
One of my friends told me to ride on the marking that car tires left on the road. There could be some oil spills in between the markings. Kind of obvious but I didn't think about it.
Any other tips?
My Dad was very motorcycle oriented, we had an old step thru honda 50 to ride in a large yard. Then we got dirt bikes. There was no MSF back then, but I believe getting a 70 - 100 cc bike in the dirt and thrashing it is fun and you learn a lot. You learn to look where you want your tires to go, and make them go there. You learn to miss obstacles, by not watching them, but watching where you need to go. You also learn to check terrain ahead, where you will be in 5 or 10 seconds. Your eyes do a lot of scanning, this will all help to keep you alive while driving among cages that are too busy on the cell phone or texting, or GPSing to actually pay atention and drive.
You also learn about a lot of surface and traction conditions, different than the street, but you get trained to look for these things. you can fall a lot, but not in front of a car, so if you dont ride off a cliff, you can fall and ride and learn a lot. Especially about gears, rpms and brakes. Take a class, watch for idiots. do not ride in a blind spot. If you cannot see a drivers face in their side mirror, they cant see you even if they did look. I pass so many cars with the side mirrors adjusted to see rear, they never know you are next to them. you are responsible for your safety. Be ready and willing to hit the horn, go some place and use it repeatedly so you know exactly where it is.