M109 Rider Forums banner

1 - 20 of 32 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
608 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK OK I need to report my progress now that I am 200 miles into things. Saturday I did a run from where I live Fairhope, Alabama to the Blue Angels final show for the season. That was to P'Cola NAS about 45 miles away.

Riding this bike on the Interstate...piece of cake easy. Gave me time to make adjustments to my feet positions, everything. I officially have my 1st to 2nd shift issue (that were in my head) behind me now. :clap2: I can shift her like I mean it now. Ok so yesterday was easy. Cruises at 90 like its a nap for her.

Now we get to today's ride.

My b/f asked if I wanted to join up with a group ride today, 8 bikes, for a ride where he had never been to, with riders he only knew one of them, up north of us in what was supposed to be pretty roads. I said sure....(In my head I start to become legend already).

So at 8AM we roll out to the designated spot. Arrive 10 minutes early. Ok sweetie you did good yesterday, today there will be traffic, I think you may the only cruiser there, so we will do the back of the pack thing OK. And if you want to peel off just let me know. OK PUD I'm good I got this big girl figured out I think.

We have Scala Riders so we are always talking to one another when we ride, which I REALLY like......except for today....more on that later.

So rider number 1 shows up on a spanking new Honda VFR 1200 in full leathers. OK there is always gonna be one show off in the bunch I'm thinkin.

Rider 2 shows up on a Repsol 1000CC OMG gorgeous bike....in full leathers.....my jaw starts to clench a little.

Rider 3 and 4 show up on Hayabua's to make 3 total so far now......in full leathers.....I'm starting to worry.

Rider 5 shows up on a Yamaha R1 that he hasn't changed the tape off of from the track session he just had.

Rider 6 shows up on a Honda Interceptor that has been crashed more than once....in full leathers...that also showed signs of having been is same said crashes.

And me......in my chromed out Phat Butted big beautiful 109. My back tire is larger than the whole Interceptor it sits next to. Everyone introduces themselves, I'm like meekly holding out my ungloved, manicured nailed hand to shake everyone's gloved ones. My b/f looks at me and in the helmet says You still want to do this? Yes I am not afraid..I said........bravely.

The leader discusses the routes, that they leave no-one behind. There will be 3 planned stops, the ride is expected to be about 80 miles. I'm like Hokay Piece of Cake I just did this yesterday.

My b/f tells everyone, look the 109 is new to her, she is still getting her legs, we will pull out last and if we peel off we will let you know by cellphone.

No problem we understand, we are all here to have a good time today...nothing wild, nothing scary. If you need to pull back no worries. Everyone ready to roll out?

Never one to be made the slacker I gave them a thumbs up and we started to pull out. Rider 1 is off like a shot on the VFR. Rider 2 and 3 on the Hayabusa's are out of sight before I can even make my way up to the start turn from the parking lot.

Rider 4 on the Repsol does a 1st gear wheelie that never even touches down as he makes 2nd gear.

Rider 5 on the R1 also knows how to ride on one wheel at speeds I can't even comprehend.

Rider 6 on the Interceptor seems like he is the only other sane one as he eases out ahead of us that leaves me and my b/f to pull out last. I thought it was cool I can let off the clutch at 1100 RPM and this girl just chugs away no problem....so I ease out riding wingman to my b/f. The rest of the group is mostly out of sight by now but he says don't worry we will catch up now that we are rolling.

WTH is this a HAIRPIN curve.....nobody told me we were gonna be turning today!!!!! I instinctively moved into my rear brake followed by my front brake training...shhewwww this big girl has got good brakes...I say proudly as I hauled her down to about 20 MPH to negotiate this unexpected turn. I scrape my peg going into it apex FREAK OUT and let off and she tried to straighten up and pitch me off line. I AM MAJORLY FREAKED OUT NOW! I am on the Scala now saying WTH was THAT to my b/f. I HEARD Metal scrape I say in a panic!!!. He said that was your pegs, don't let it worry you...WORRY ME!....It freakin scared the bejesus out of me!!!! What do you mean I scraped my pegs? Umm honey. calm down, follow the line you set up, the pegs won't throw you off the bike, just work your lines, you know how to set up. Umm PUD...The Magna never scraped pegs and where did the hairpin come from out of nowehere??. He could sense some tension.

Ok umm honey.....you know how to ride, you have done the dragon, don't let this bike intimidate you. Find your line, find your rhythm, ride your ride. Screw you Pud My pegs scraped.....next will be something worse and where the heck is everyone else anyway?!!?

Calm down....look ride with me....don't worry about the others. Then I see the signs. The ones that show the crooked roads ahead....next 20 miles. I think it was then that I began to feel my jaw start to clench up. So my b/f gets out ahead of me about 400 yards and he is on the Scala telling me what is upcoming, so I can prepare. I will hear curve ahead, downshift 2 stay left.....it was re-assuring. I start to think OK I will get this.

The scenery is gorgeous, the air is crisp, the wildlife all around....I'm gonna be fine........What do you mean hard right animal in road...as I hear my b/f in the speakers!!!!!!


OMG a FREAKIN DEER NOW!!!!....in the road....dead....entrails splattered everywhere, and I'm looking for what the hell Hard right means. Hard right I learned, after it was too late, meant stay all the way right or you will get deers guts on you....I learned that after the fact as I listened to the road make squishy sounds as my nice super clean and spiffy looking 109 ploughs thru deer stuff.

OK and now I have 6 other bikes heading back towards me with emergency flashers flashing and I'm thinking OMG someone went down.......NOPE....they were turning around looking for me thinking I must have gone down myself. Nice of them to go to all that trouble, but I am not gonna play catch up twice in one day, you guys can just eat my deer guts splattered dust now.

Pud.....don't stop........Pud....Hello......Honey....helllooo...where are you?......No re-assuring voice in my helmet steering my way ahead for me. I can see him and I know he is minding where I am but I can't talk to him now. OK well I know how we ride together we will be fine....as the others catch up I wave them around........and they blast past me like I'm going backwards. I keep repeating....find your line, set up the bike before the corner, hold your line, think ahead, throttle thru, ride your ride.

OK and here is where my b/f forgot to tell me something between my new bike and my old one. The Magna liked revs. She was on power and responsive at 6,000 and above. I always knew in curves, keep power on, and let the power work for you in both going faster or slower. He failed to mention that my 109 doesn't work that same way. So I have been doing 4-5K RPM in 2nd and 3rd gear pretty much full time here thinking the whole time...man this bike feels way different powering thru these curves. You can't make minor speed adjustments with throttle she wants to brake and stand straight up when you let off.

I didn't complain I was just making an observation. I had my hands full actually making these turns.

So we get to the first planned stop....THANK GOD! Everyone backs their bike in making a perfect formation....me....oh forget that...pull in...kick-stand down...key off...I need a break. My jaw is sore from clenching. My knuckles white from clenching....other parts of anatomy sore....from clenching. But nobody is gonna see or hear me complain...no sirree.

Ummm Pud...how come I can't hear you? Umm honey we didn't put a charge on the batteries, mine are dead. We will go with hand signs like the old days. Umm Pud...in the old days we didn't have curves and a motorcycle that weighed twice my old one, I am hoping this will ease out on the curvy stuff. OK honey I will ask.

Ok um Thad....how are we on curves from this stop on? Oh that was probably the worst part, the rest is mainly sweepers. Ok umm Thad, can you tell me approximately where we are so that if we need to peel off I have a clue as to where. He explains that this road is really the only way ahead, we would need to go back the way we came to go back to the start. Ahead is about 18 miles....but it should be way easier now.

YEAH.....RIGHT......easier if you are on a crotch rocket!!!!

I got so far behind that even when I hit a straight part and got her up to 100 I never even saw these guys until we came upon the next planned turn. Now is when it gets insulting. They had gotten so far ahead of me that they now actually had pulled off, turned off their engines and were waiting for me on the side of the road. That just ticked me off to be pulling up and listen to them actually start their engines upon my arrival. I motion to b/f to pull over. Umm PUD...umm I think I may be holding up these guys and it is kind of boring to them. I think I'd like to cut out and go home now. Ok honey...no problem. Umm Thad, where is the turn off to the main road? About 6 miles up. OK well we will be pulljng off there and heading back. OK no problems we understand.

So at that turn off I motion to turn into the gas station. He does. What's up you need to pee or ??...No gas light is flashing. What do you mean your gas light is flashing? My gas light...on the handlebar is flashing...right here see.......he is like Honey we filled up at the same place together, I am at over half, you must have a fuel leak we need to look it over.....thinking maybe deer guts took out something. Look it over....Nope...nothing looks or smells bad. Umm this doesn't make sense, you are you nearly empty and we only did like 50 miles here. Fill her up and she took 4.6 gallons. He is like OK something is wrong. I said remember how you told me that I won't get as good a mileage when I'm keeping the revs up. yes I remember....well OK that is probably why....what do you mean? Well I have been running thru all those curves at about 4-5000 RPM. You WHAT? I calmly repeat myself....re-assuring him that I rode it the way I was taught. He smiled and said OK....well I should have told you, you don't need REVS on this bike, she can power thru with nothing but torque. He asked me what gear I had been running. I said 2nd and 3rd...and he said OK and where..I said the last 15 or so miles in all those curves.

15 or so miles!!!!!....Yes...And on the straights...OH I hit 5th no problem.

Ok so what did I learn today.

The 109 while a beautiful wonderful gorgeous bike, is not
A) A sportbike
B) A 4 cylinder that likes or needs to rev.
C) Does not have very high ground clearance
D) Get horrible mileage if you cruise at 5K RPM
E) Will never do a wheelie
F) You don't do well using throttle to use as brakes. She stops like a boat
G)She does not like to cruise at 5K RPM for long periods of time.
H)She steers and brakes like a battleship in the curves when you are still a rookie rider like me.
I)My b/f has his limits on patience.


*sigh*
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,703 Posts
A sport bike the 109 is not but it will definently pull a wheelie if you so desire.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,263 Posts
Ah lessons learned

I feel for you, learning anything new can be a humbling experience.
I guess you figured out that picking your riding companions is an important part of enjoying a ride. I've been riding 50 years, and no way I'm going riding with fast strangers on sport bikes. You did the smart thing going your own way.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,459 Posts
thanks for the story
im laughing with you.............. really lol

:agree:E) will pull the front tire if you so desire

always ride your ride
im willing to bet this ride will be retold at several occasions
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,458 Posts
That could not have been enjoyable for you at all. Hang in there. This bike will corner with the best of them no it's not a sport bike but it does a fine job. A lot of us will ride where we drag a heel before we drag a peg. That way you get a little warning before you hit the feelers on the peg.

It will pull a wheelie very easy.

Anyway you'll be throwing this thing around before long.

Wanna see you doing this real soon :bigthumbsup:

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16,261 Posts
One thing to remember, sport bikers and cruisers are generally 2 styles of riders. Sounds like you were a lil out of your element but adjusted to hang in there. IMO, you weren't ready to ride w/ this group. May wanna stick to riding solo, or w/ your Beau until you have had more seat time on the bike. Maybe find some ppl that have cruisers to run with.

When we go out w/ a group, we generally tuck the less experienced riders just behind the lead rider and not at the back of the pack. That way, the leader adjusts to the speed of the novice and everyone follows suit. Me, I tend to like the tail gunner position since I have a tendency to lolly gag. But a quick blip of the throttle and I am right back in the back of the pack.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
169 Posts
that gut feeling

I have been in a situation like that before riding with riders that were more skilled and at higher speeds that I was comfortable with. I think when you get in a situation like that you have to go with gut feeling and get in to your own comfort range.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,120 Posts
That's one hell of a story girl

Looks as if you survived and had a good time doing it (Except for the deer guts). Sorry I had to laugh at that one. I really like the play by play in the story. But I've been stung by bees and hit by birds but never had the pleasure of the deer thing. Ran over some horse **** the Amish left in the middle of the road once, it was a real bear to clean off. Sounds like your doing great. Enjoying your 9 has just begun. :bigthumbsup:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,619 Posts
Just a suggestion

I suggest you spend a LOT of time getting used to the 9 before you do that again. You have to know IT before you can start doing things without having to think about them first.

It's a lot easier to make progress by doing it at your own pace than when trying to stay up with others that may be well beyond your skill level.

Learning the bike is step one. You have to be comfortable with IT first. Then you can move on to taking the twisties with more ease.

Never ride beyond your comfort/skill level. It's just an invitation for a bad day. Your skills will get better.

Good story.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
608 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
I suggest you spend a LOT of time getting used to the 9 before you do that again. You have to know IT before you can start doing things without having to think about them first.

It's a lot easier to make progress by doing it at your own pace than when trying to stay up with others that may be well beyond your skill level.

Learning the bike is step one. You have to be comfortable with IT first. Then you can move on to taking the twisties with more ease.

Never ride beyond your comfort/skill level. It's just an invitation for a bad day. Your skills will get better.

Good story.
All of this is true. All of this I know. My b/f never let me out of his sight and he knows I was taking in all new things today. But to be fair, he didn't know these roads were this twistie until we were already there. Had he known he would have never suggested I do this ride today. But me, always being the trooper is never gonna disappoint.

He also knows when to push me. When we hit the straights, he knew it was time for me to open her up and let her run some.

Little did he know I was in 3rd gear doing so. We had a little session today about this bike. I guess to this bike 5K is a LOT. That used to be cruising RPM before.

He didn't expect today's conditions either. Had he, I would have known to be powering thru at 2-3,000 and letting the energy carry the bike. Today I was fighting engine RPM with throttle on and offs. There is no such thing as gradual engine braking at 5000 RPM with an 1800 V-Twin. The bike was out of shape from start to finish today.

I'm learning.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,313 Posts
The 109 while a beautiful wonderful gorgeous bike, is not
A) A sportbike
B) A 4 cylinder that likes or needs to rev.
C) Does not have very high ground clearance
D) Get horrible mileage if you cruise at 5K RPM
E) Will never do a wheelie
F) You don't do well using throttle to use as brakes. She stops like a boat
G)She does not like to cruise at 5K RPM for long periods of time.
H)She steers and brakes like a battleship in the curves when you are still a rookie rider like me.
I)My b/f has his limits on patience.

*sigh*
I'll have to disagree with you on
B) a little - it likes to be around 4k in the twists
E) can certainly do a wheelie
F) You just need to get the feel right
H) maybe if you count in the rookie part.

You can hang with many sport bike riders and have a good time.

You just were not ready yet.

Here is my tail of riding with sport bikes:

http://www.m109riders.com/forums/showthread.php?t=134073
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
108 Posts
Great story Blondie. My 9 is the first bike I've owned and it took me some time to get use to. Believe me you're not alone in your experience today. You made a very smart move in turning back, knowing your limitations. Thank goodness you didn't do like some of us and go do something you would regret. You'll get use to it in due time. Like suggested in an earlier post, take your time to get use to her.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
643 Posts
Blondie,

good for you not letting the riding of the crotch rocketters get to you and feeling pressured into something you couldn't handle :congrats:

It wasn't but a few months ago after i had about 1000 mostly highway miles or so on my C , that i first rode with a member on this board, he followed me most of the day and we reached a road i had a hunch he would enjoy much more if i let him go ahead at his own pace , so i explained to him the road and let him know where to wait for me. By the time I arrived he was off his bike with helmet off and checking his emails on his phone , so don't feel bad about having had them shut their engines off and waiting.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,120 Posts
Excellent story

I glad he wasn't hurt. However, you have to know your limitations as well as the bikes. I almost never push my 9 because I know if I do what the conquences will be. However, I did push it some on my last trip to the Dragon and had a blast. Scraped a peg or two but safely and made it home in one piece.

I'll have to disagree with you on
B) a little - it likes to be around 4k in the twists
E) can certainly do a wheelie
F) You just need to get the feel right
H) maybe if you count in the rookie part.

You can hang with many sport bike riders and have a good time.

You just were not ready yet.

Here is my tail of riding with sport bikes:

http://www.m109riders.com/forums/showthread.php?t=134073
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,127 Posts
took me several thousand miles to learn how to steer alot easier on a shaft drive:redfaced: she will do a wheelie sitting down, and with a passenger really easy I learned the hard way. Gf at the time smaked the hell out of me, and frankly it scared the hell out of me that it happened, im guessing there is some physics involved here.after 16,000, miles on her there is no way I could even keep up with the east coast guys like bobbymac and friends. thats just the way I roll It is neat watching them throw thier bikes around.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,123 Posts
:clap2:I loved your Turn by turn Description of the day , Really, very enjoyable
You are a Very Talented Writer and always enjoy you Take on things

are you sure u used 4 1/2 gallons in 50 miles ? even keeping the Revs that high, i don't think it should be That Bad ,,,

Sounds like you've got a Good rider to learn form and your alert enough to
Handel the New Bike just fine ,by next summer you will Be looking for some twisty to tame ,I'm sure !!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,367 Posts
Sounds like a great day! you'll get more comfortable with every ride, just try to relax and have fun
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
Sounds like it was a stressful day blondie! I agree with the others that it might be best to ride by yourself of with just your b/f for a while until you get a little more practice. If you don't have it already, I'd recommend "Proficient Motorcycling" by David Hough or "Total Control" can't remember the author of that one though. They are good "how to" books and you can read up on doing curves, braking, etc. and then practice them at your own pace before you ride with a group.

Riding with a group is always more work than riding alone. But you got the first one out of the way now!:congrats:
 
1 - 20 of 32 Posts
Top