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Thread: Total noob here... did I do good?

  1. #11
    Flirting With The Redline 8000 Posts! Trials's Avatar
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    add: Your clutch lever is bent, it is suppose to be a dog leg lever on there, replace it.

  2. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by NORTY View Post
    Enroll in the basic course soon. Once you successfully complete the course, then we'll talk about " further training" to get you more comfortable with the street. Since you are in SoCal, there are "tools" for you to help you transition from a parking lot to the street with traffic.
    Don't forget to transfer the registration into your name. Also, don't forget insurance costs.
    Is the Ascot the one that has the oil in the frame? I think my xl600 had it.
    What City do you reside?
    I... don't believe the oil is in the frame. Then again, how would I really be able to tell? I inspected the oil cap and dipstick when I bought the bike and it looked nice and clean, no burnt smells or anything like that either. It also has a very new battery. I guess I should be grateful the seller included one of those Clymer service manuals for the bike. Well worn, but readable. That should help me figuring out whatever I attempt.

    Title transfer and registration are all taken care of. Also already have full comprehensive coverage on the bike (Gotta love AAA!).

    Norty, I live in Downey right now but I'm moving in 3 weeks to the Irvine area. I'd love to hit you up sometime if you're near, maybe?

    I'm seriously scraping together whatever I can for the MSF course. Everything I've ever read about it, plus everyone's kind advice here means there's NO way I'd do without it. Trying to sell some stuff which should hopefully fund the fees.

    So Trials, you're saying the clutch lever should be almost a match for the front brake lever in shape? That's a little concerning.Does that mean someone replaced it? Is that common as a preference thing or just a weird fix on an old bike?
    Last edited by Awyrdo; 08-03-2016 at 08:17 PM.

  3. #13
    Flirting With The Redline 8000 Posts! Trials's Avatar
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    Wink more information then you probably wanted

    Levers are frequently damaged in a fall, they often bend outwards without breaking, sometimes you can bend them back, sometimes they snap off, it's always safer to replace levers if they are badly bent or there is a significant risk of it snapping off :/ you don't want a lever poking a hole in you, that is why they have a round ball on the end of them, to reduce the chance of that happening. Looks to me just based on that one photo that your original lever was replaced with a non-dog leg shaped lever and then that replacement lever was bent outward from the bar in another fall. You want to keep good bars and levers on your bike, it will make it easier for you to learn how to use the clutch properly and you won't be making a big reach for it when you need to disengage the clutch in a hurry.

    Engine oil is less likely to be overlooked as a service item, most people are trained into the importance of that. Fork oil is the most frequently overlooked service item on almost any motorcycle. Brake fluid needs to be changed and that is probably your second most overlooked service item. If sufficient water collects in the brake fluid, it can cause your brakes to seize on when they get hot, that is the tell. Next most frequently overlooked service items are the steering head bearing and the swingarm pivot bushings plus the axle wheel bearings.

    Inside your front forks there are generally 2 bushings that provide the sliding surfaces between the fork stanchions (that's the long steel tube part) and the lower fork leg which is made from aluminum. Failure to keep your fork oil in good clean condition will accelerate the wear of the bushings and eventually wear the lower fork leg oval which destroys them. Think of it like a muzzle blown gun. The first sign of the bushings being worn out is that your oil seals will start leaking :/you can't keep good seals in the forks if the bushings are done, you can't keep the bushings in good operating condition if your fork oil is dirty or contains water. Water inside your engine, forks or bearings turns the steel parts to rust very quickly.

    Almost guaranteed your engine is a wet sump type engine and the oil is not held in the frame.

    Both the FT500 and the VT500 Ascot Honda's were very economical motorcycles when they were introduced new. I bought my FT500 new for 1450$ and the VT came out the following year at very close to the same price. Your VT has some nice features that the FT did not have; 6 speed transmission, shaft drive, and some liquid cooling in the V twin engine. Frame is very similar, brakes, wheels, lights, suspension etc. are near identical. Exhaust headers are probably double walled to prevent discolouration from heat, the centre stand is heavy and not real easy to get the bike up on, handlebars are reasonably wide like a dirt bike which makes them pretty good for a learner, levers should be dog leg shaped which is a nice touch, steering head bearing is marginal and the relatively heavy front wheel needs the fork brace that is on there because the bikes exhibit a nasty tendency to head-shake when you are traveling on bumpy roads or crossing railway tracks (be careful of that)

    hook up with Norty and have him look your bike over, he can show you how to check your steering head bearing, swing-arm bushings and help you set the controls up properly for you.

    Ride safe, have fun and be prepared to become addicted to motorcycles

  4. #14
    Hello everyone. I'm sure this has been covered before so sorry. I'm new at this and am taking the msf course next Monday. I'm 5'8" and 253lbs. and need a bike that I can commute with about 70 miles round trip daily for work. I like the cruiser style and sportsbike style but am up for anything. Thanks to who responds.

  5. #15
    Flirting With The Redline 2000 Posts! Sorg67's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BonesJones View Post
    Hello everyone. I'm sure this has been covered before so sorry. I'm new at this and am taking the msf course next Monday. I'm 5'8" and 253lbs. and need a bike that I can commute with about 70 miles round trip daily for work. I like the cruiser style and sportsbike style but am up for anything. Thanks to who responds.
    People here are very nice and generous with their time and expertise to answer the same question repeatedly. So I am sure you will get a reply to your question.

    However, if you surf through the Starter Bike threads, you will find your exact question asked and answered several times.

    But I know, it is easier to just I ask. I do the same thing.

    Even though I am a novice and do not really know what I am talking about. I am tempted to answer the question since I have read so many of these threads I know what people will say.

    But I will let those who actually know what they are talking about answer.

    And each thread takes its own life so you will probably get some unique input to your particular objectives.

    Good Luck

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by BonesJones View Post
    Hello everyone. I'm sure this has been covered before so sorry. I'm new at this and am taking the msf course next Monday. I'm 5'8" and 253lbs. and need a bike that I can commute with about 70 miles round trip daily for work. I like the cruiser style and sportsbike style but am up for anything. Thanks to who responds.
    Hello there and welcome. My daughter lives in Chico and I love that area. Congrats for deciding to take the MSF class as it's a great decision. I just started 3 months ago so I will also let the experts answer this. I ride a CB500F (naked bike= no windscreen or fairings) and I love it as a first bike. I commute about 30 miles RT and I'm 6'2' and 225lbs. It's enough for me but it may not be the best for you. Good luck in your search!

  7. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Jamespz03 View Post
    Hello there and welcome. My daughter lives in Chico and I love that area. Congrats for deciding to take the MSF class as it's a great decision. I just started 3 months ago so I will also let the experts answer this. I ride a CB500F (naked bike= no windscreen or fairings) and I love it as a first bike. I commute about 30 miles RT and I'm 6'2' and 225lbs. It's enough for me but it may not be the best for you. Good luck in your search!
    Thank you. I'm 5'8" and 253lbs and need it to get me 70 miles round trip and do at least 70-75mph without feeling sluggish. I was looking at that bike and someone told me it's not for me because it's light weight and there is some good winds on the roads I need to travel.

  8. #18
    RiderCoach 4000 Posts! AZridered's Avatar
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    Wind effects are more dependent on the configuration of the bike than its weight. Much more.

  9. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by AZridered View Post
    Wind effects are more dependent on the configuration of the bike than its weight. Much more.
    AZridered, care to elaborate? I'm curious and it seems like something that will be relevant to myself as well. Gotta deal with the Santa Ana winds around here.

    Quick update also, I got into an MSF course from the waiting list! The three-day version of the course, going in for the first classroom session tonight, and riding this weekend

  10. #20
    RiderCoach 8000 Posts! WoodstockJeff's Avatar
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    Bikes with windshields and fairings help you deal with headwinds. But direct cross winds slightly favor a "naked" bike (less closed-in cross section for the wind to act on). Where the windshield/fairing is attached determines (forks or frame) can determine if the bike naturally steers into the wind, or away from it.

    The tires installed can affect how the bike feels in the wind. And the front/rear weight ratio. And the size of the rider. And are the vents on your riding gear open or closed?

    I'm pretty sure that the effect of the COLOR of the motorcycle on how it handles the wind has pretty much been found to be negligible. But I could be wrong on that.
    Jeff

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