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Old 30th March 2017, 00:30   #46
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I sincerely hope this thread reaches many people and acts as a wake up call for anyone riding. I do hope the guy recovers completely and is fit (both mentally and physically) to ride again. Kudos to you for being there for him in his time of need.
This is one of the reasons why I always ride alone, group mentality can sometimes cause one to lose sense of ones own limitations.
Is this nanduchitnis? I love his thread on the KTM Duke 200.

And I am disappointed to see no proper thread/ review on the KTM Duke 250 on team -bhp.com. I am huge of the KTMs & I have sold my 2015 KTM Duke 200, planning to buy the new KTM Duke 250.

The discussion among the new riders mostly revolved around riding gear. I had a keen interest in this as I haven't yet really gotten around to buying everything I should. During my last ride, I have received a light to medium scold from the group seniors. I had to promise a really fast turnaround time to get away. Most of the guys had purchased full set of stuff already - high-end helmets, jackets, gloves, riding pants and knee guards, shoes etc. I coined the topic of my discomfort with riding gear a couple of times, but people dismissed it immediately. Gear is essential for safe riding; rider comfort is a distant second in priority. If one wears proper gear, then a crash at 150 or 200 too is survivable. I couldn't disagree with that.

In my mind, I kind of differed with the general opinion there. I have grown up believing that control and precision takes priority above everything else in any kind of motorized vehicle. While riding this motorcycle, I have found that these motorcycles are way more sensitive to control inputs than anything else I have ridden before. In my terms, this means that subtlety is the key to riding these machines. a

This is really true.

Last edited by khan_sultan : 30th March 2017 at 10:48. Reason: Back to back posts -- merging
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Old 30th March 2017, 07:45   #47
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

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Is this nanduchitnis?
No, I think you have me mixed up with someone else.
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Old 30th March 2017, 09:56   #48
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

Thanks Sen2009 for such sincere and excellent write up. You did the best you could in given situation, hats off to you.

In all likelihood, crash at anything above 100 is not survivable in safest of 4 wheeler in India, need I say the fate of a rider on a two wheeler.
I really wonder how people get such ideas in their mind. A gear is just another layer of harden skin/leather/metal sheet around your body. At speed above hundred, you are talking about brute forces that can simply crush your bones. Especially in India, where road traffic is so unpredictable with all kinds of objects, that shouldn't be on the road, in first place.

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Gear is essential for safe riding; rider comfort is a distant second in priority. If one wears proper gear, then a crash at 150 or 200 too is survivable. I couldn't disagree with that.
Ride safe bro!

Last edited by Acharya : 30th March 2017 at 09:57.
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Old 30th March 2017, 10:51   #49
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

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Originally Posted by docmoya2007 View Post
In my mind, I kind of differed with the general opinion there. I have grown up believing that control and precision takes priority above everything else in any kind of motorized vehicle. While riding this motorcycle, I have found that these motorcycles are way more sensitive to control inputs than anything else I have ridden before. In my terms, this means that subtlety is the key to riding these machines.

This is really true.
Wearing riding gears is not guarantee of complete safety. Its just to minimize the end impact which might be too much for the body to take it. I agree that riding motorcycle require way more attention to details and concentration then vehicles (Just because Car is way safer in all the ways) for sole reason of you are exposing yourself to many elements which might hurt you. Riding gears never comes to picture unless or until a person is thrown of the bike, so till that time, its concentration and skill of the person which is keeping him safe. Once a person is under an accident situation, mostly its not in his control of how he falls, land on the ground (head first or hand first), this is where riding gears comes into the picture. A decent gloves, helmet and knee guard can minimize the impact many times compared to a person who is not wearing those.
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Old 30th March 2017, 11:35   #50
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

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Originally Posted by Acharya View Post
Thanks Sen2009 for such sincere and excellent write up. You did the best you could in given situation, hats off to you.

In all likelihood, crash at anything above 100 is not survivable in safest of 4 wheeler in India, need I say the fate of a rider on a two wheeler.
I really wonder how people get such ideas in their mind. A gear is just another layer of harden skin/leather/metal sheet around your body. At speed above hundred, you are talking about brute forces that can simply crush your bones. Especially in India, where road traffic is so unpredictable with all kinds of objects, that shouldn't be on the road, in first place.



Ride safe bro!
Don't make speed a barrier into deciding safety. I have personally crashed at 120kmph (dog on the road), and survived properly. Only damage to show is a scar on my left knee. The trick is to know how to crash. Always fall with the bike. Allow the bike to slide and take the brunt, you slide along with it and move out only when it comes to a stop. This is why motorcycle riding/safety courses are so important before riding. When I crashed, I had a split second to make a decision whether to let go of the bars or keep holding it, I kept hanging to the bars, and ensured that no body part made contact with the asphalt. These decisions can be made only if one has got proper training and riding experience. Same goes for a car as well. If one doesn't know how to drive, brake, limitations of a car versus a suv etc, he is bound to get into trouble sooner than later. The trouble is licences are given away like Prasad and people blindly buy a car or a bike and next they are doing cross country to Leh.
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Old 30th March 2017, 15:58   #51
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

This whole thing is why the riding group I ride with (though our vehicles are small, 300 ccs being all of it, we make it a point to follow the rules) maintain decorum and riding order which means we never break formation. The problem with bigger groups is just this: Too many people are impatient and some may want to show off. There have instances with organized events of a major brand in my city.

Gentlemen, those who ride or wish to ride, always understand this. You should ride rationally since all it takes is one bad decision to make it all go bad. For beginners/experts alike, our roads aren't safe as they are and hence even now I say that anything north of two digit speeds is basically tempting fate. This is an incident that could have been avoided if overconfidence had been avoided (I'm not judging here but the way it has been portrayed suggests the same). We could all come together and maybe discuss the aspects of safe riding because in my opinion, a rider is safe when he knows he is in control of the vehicle in question.
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Old 30th March 2017, 16:05   #52
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

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Originally Posted by apachelongbow View Post
The trick is to know how to crash.
True.

This video sums up what I wanted to say.

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Old 30th March 2017, 21:56   #53
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

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Originally Posted by deepfreak15 View Post
No, I think you have me mixed up with someone else.
Sorry. I was trying to quote something else
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Old 30th March 2017, 22:04   #54
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

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Originally Posted by docmoya2007 View Post
In my mind, I kind of differed with the general opinion there. I have grown up believing that control and precision takes priority above everything else in any kind of motorized vehicle. While riding this motorcycle, I have found that these motorcycles are way more sensitive to control inputs than anything else I have ridden before. In my terms, this means that subtlety is the key to riding these machines. a

This is really true.
Consider riding gear as an investment similar to airbags in cars. None of which can substitute for rider skills, but is essential incase things take a turn for the worst. Might never even be useful in its lifetime, but makes life better knowing that it's there.

It defenitely won't help avoid a crash, but might help one walk out of it on two legs rather than four wheels. Having riding gear won't make you any less of a rider than what you already are, so kindly do invest in it.

Last edited by CrAzY dRiVeR : 30th March 2017 at 22:07.
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Old 30th March 2017, 22:14   #55
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

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Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
Consider riding gear as an investment similar to airbags in cars. None of which can substitute for rider skills, but is essential incase things take a turn for the worst. Might never even be useful in its lifetime, but makes life better knowing that it's there.

It defenitely won't help avoid a crash, but might help one walk out of it on two legs rather than four wheels. Having riding gear won't make you any less of a rider than what you already are, so kindly do invest in it.
+1.
Also, do remember YOU might be riding carefully BUT can anyone guarantee that others will drive the same as you?

What if they hit and run with no fault of yours? Better to be prepared than to be sorry.

Not buying safety gear just because you have good skills is as senseless as an argument can get.

1 Tip : Ride on roads as if you're invisible to other motorists.
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Old 31st March 2017, 12:36   #56
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

A very gripping and nicely written thread. A very good insight into the rides and the feelings of riders both new and experienced. Hope the guy recovered well.

Nowadays owning one of these is a lot easier with many companies setting up shop here plus financial institutions very eager to support as well.
But while owning and riding one is great, what I am really surprised is the kind of speeds that everyone is prompted/goaded/chided into doing.

All this is being done on public roads.

While Sen and other riders feel very guilty of making people ride slow so that they keep up with them, lest they get 'left' behind. But hey, aren't you already doing 100+ KMPH which is already above the speed limit in most of our city roads??
So a bunch of 'responsible' and 'rich' people decide to set rules on what should be ideal speeding rules on such rides which are way insane in comparison to our speed limits. While they are protected to the teeth by way of leathers and guards and what nots all due to pre-condition (have money) what about the risk generated to other mere mortals on the road??

No one bothers about that, in this very same forum we have an Accidents thread where such an incident of speeding would be discussed in pages. Our own forum rules have a very clear rule against speeding.

Public roads are not meant for such rides, at least not in India. It is extremely disheartening to read such stuff, that such a large bunch of riders can put everyone at their mercy and go ripping and roaring away to glory.

I would seriously hope that the authorities track such rides and fine them every 5kms of the way for speeding and endangering lives. Till such time that people understand the value of others as well.

But who am I to say all this, well I am just an ordinary citizen, who expects the roads to be safe and equal for everyone. I am someone who is worried while travelling with the kids on the highway, lest one of these superheroes come sliding/flying/thrown down under my vehicle. I am someone who cares about the people on the road and would feel very sorry for seeing their loved ones look at their lifeless/broken bodies in despair with a question which may never be answered.

Sorry for the rant but this is seriously unacceptable behavior. Wake up!

Ride safe!
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Old 31st March 2017, 13:33   #57
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

This is one reason why I havent "upgraded" from my duke 390. I have the itch, I have the moneys but the I think the 390 scares me enough to not bite the bug. I believe I have the skill to tame a superbike...may be, but I know I lack the self control to not go WOT or bezerk in a corner at unreasonable speeds. I do these on the 390 but only when no one is in sight and yet one cannot predict what might spring out from the other end. The 390 gives me a sort of buffer time between steady scenery and total blur, it does not go into warp speed in direct relation to the throttle but gives you time and asks you if you are sure? Ok then .

I've also stopped going on these weekend warrior rides. Some of them think they have a point to prove and override their bikes when the skill clearly is lagging. They have no sense where the limit might be, no sense of line, no idea how much speed can be carried into a type of turn. They brake in the middle of the turn and end up dangerously on the opposite lane at the exit and have a stupid grin afterward and some even are proud at this sort of antics and laugh about it later. Sometimes traffic can get to ones head but road rage is the last thing one needs when handling a 100+ hp sbk.

Also riding slow alone is not a guarantee that one will always remain rubber side down. Learning lines (pre-requisite to riding ghats), proper braking methods and proper body positioning will all help in saving lives. Proper riding gear is a safety net but learning riding techniques is the rope you hang on to.

And lastly thank you Sen for a wonderful write up. It was good read and hope your friend is recovering well.

Here is my contribution to this thread. its a wonderful 8 part video and gets into the basics and the nitty grittys.


Last edited by nitro.1000bhp : 31st March 2017 at 13:36.
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Old 31st March 2017, 17:08   #58
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Default Re: Superbike Group Ride in Mumbai - A mixed bag of an experience

I started composing the opening post with the objective of sharing a story and to say what I observed about different things related to group riding in general. The thread has now morphed into a full blown discussion about safe riding, gears and group riding.

I do not have much to add to the group riding discussions. I have joined and stayed put in the groups as I find that itís the best opportunity to learn, given my circumstances. I have spent through my teeth and nose to get the Ducati and I will be really sad if I could never ride to its potential. Before you sneer and snigger, do note that top speed describes a very small little part of a Ducati motorcycle. There's a world beyond that, and I need someone to shine some light. From our group members and senior riders, I am getting help.

I understand and agree that many would differ to the aforesaid opinion due to some very good reasons. I agree with most of those reasons as stated in this thread before. I have my reasons, but thatís a very personal choice. The general opinion expressed by many members on the topic addresses a larger perspective and its true. Group riding pushes people to imitate others and land themselves into trouble. It happened in front of my eyes and henceforth I will be very concerned and careful.

About riding gears, I think I could not express my thought properly staying within the scope of that story. I wish to elaborate a little on that, please hear me out.

To elaborate my point, I would recount the golden words of an old Sardarji who taught me driving on my dad's car, mostly behind his back. He asked me to let go of my footwear and dump it in back seat. He asked me to put my bare feet on the pedals and develop a feel of them. He taught me to rest my whole right foot to the right side of the accelerator and operate the accelerator with my big toe only. He would ask me to take the car on a slope and would ask me to keep the car abolsultely stationary with just clutch and accelerator, no touching the brakes.

Doing this over and over again I could achieve a millimetre level precision on accelerator control and could easily beat my dad in smoothness hands down.

I have carried this philosophy in anything I have driven - the santro, the safari or the Bullet, especially the Bullet. It would be very hard to imagine the Bullet as a delicate machine, but it is. Just let a pulsar / KTM guy to ride your well tuned bullet for 5 minutes and see what he does to the tappets.

Coming back to the Ducati, it is ultra-sensitive and an extremely high-strung machine. It does not tolerate a heavy hand, neither does it offer much room for stupidity. I can imagine that any other superbike will be much the same or possibly even more unforgiving. Case in point, hammer and anvil's description of the Kawa Z. I rode the Ducati with my bare hands, my old bullet helmet and a pair of normal shoes with really soft rubber soles. Yet, my control inputs were too much all the time and I over corrected and over-reacted to everything. Slowly, in about 500-600km riding, things started to settle in and I could modulate the accelerator with finesse. It is not about top speed, itís about whether I can maintain the exact speed I want at all times on any kind road surface, in any kind of traffic. Itís about precision, and that'd be the best reason I got into this.

Now, don't get me wrong. I bought a pair of leather gauntlet gloves before I got my bike. I also bought a big helmet. While the helmet was problematic in terms of peripherial vision due to my specs, it got taken care of with contact lenses.

But the gloves are a different story altogether. For one, I cannot feel nothing after wearing it. If I have to slow down, I have to let go of the accelerator completely as I cannot really rotate it by 4-5 degree with any kind of certainty. Accelerating was more or less an impossibility. I would limp for a while, make at least 50 meter space in front of me and then I would send a random amount of positive throttle input to the bike. When I see the speedo getting near to where I want it, I would let go of the throttle completely and invite harsh engine braking to send me back to square one. Even with Ducati traction control and Urban mode, the bike had a hard time to figure out what did I really wanted it to do. It kept me upright at all times and thank god for that.

I threw those gloves worth 8 thousand to the road side and went on to learn the bike with my bare hands. I have ridden it for about 1500 KM, largely with bare hands and now I can feel what Ducati engineering precision is all about. After gaining the confidence I needed, I bought a pair of probiker gloves for 400 bucks which has nothing but a cloth in it. It offers no protection, but it is helping me to ease into the gloves thing. After another 500-600 Km, I would probably be able to handle a thicker membrane between me and my machine. Till then, protection be damned. I cannot ride without feeling the motorcycle.

I had bought a pair of knee guards too. There was nothing wrong with them except for being of severe low quality. The only issue with those was about gripping the tank. I slid and scratched my million dollar red petrol tank (with 12,000 Rs of ceramic on top of it) several times. I felt like I would fly over the handlebars couple times when I braked hard as my knee guards would neither grip nor tell me that what itís doing. I threw those off as well. Actually, one guard flew off my leg on NH3. So I sent the other one to fetch it back. I am not rooting for their return.

Maybe a more decent quality riding pant will do the job better. But I need tank grip pads before I need riding pants. If I grip the tank well, chances of me destabilizing the bike become much lesser. That matters to me more.
So, thatís' my opinion about riding gears in detail. Most of the members won't appreciate or agree with this view, but that's how I see it. Before I go about dumbing down my feel of the bike, I need to know how it feels in the first place.


Before I end, let me say again that I do not think riding gears are useless. Not for a moment. As of writing this post, I am desperately trying to work out a little bit room from next month income to accommodate a pair of riding pants in. Once that's done, boots next.

I just find that precision of control takes priority in matters of safety and protection. Plus, riding gear protects only me, precision protects everyone else on the road. It matters to me.

I invite members to please pen in their views in light of this.
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Old 31st March 2017, 19:37   #59
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Sen, what you did for your riding buddy is truly commendable. I hope and pray he recovers soon.

I understand your apprehensions about riding gear, but answer me this - do you think Doctor rides with less precision wearing those race gloves on the track?

Let me tell you a little story of mine. I used to be the one (when I was lot younger) who used to ride without ANY protective gear - not even a helmet; a cigarette between my fingers, a baseball cap and aviators. Back in 2000, CBZ was a craze and that was my ride. I rarely used to ride under 60km/h within the city; had to be to the first one to launch when the signal goes green and other stupid stuff.

One day, I was heading to office and was taking a shortcut through the bylanes. There was new house being built and I was unaware that the construction workers had pulled a plastic string across the road (I'm guessing, to measure something). The string being yellow, wasn't visible from far. As usual, I was weaving through the traffic at considerable (40-50km/h) and I saw the yellow string at the very last second. Braked hard trying to skid the bike, but couldn't get it down all the way. The string cut through the skin of my neck as I skidded and fell head first on the construction material by the side of the road - stones, bricks, sand and steel.

Couple of months back they had enforced a law for all two wheeler riders to wear helmets and on that fateful day I was wearing a helmet. I had all sorts of injuries - my left thigh was skinned, knee and forearm were bleeding and I had muscle tear in my left palm of my hand and what not. That day forward, I've never ridden a two wheeler without protective gear. We think we don't need the protection, until something happens to us.

Coming back to your narrative, from my experience, when one upgrades to something new, there's always a factor of discomfort. When I got my first bionic knee guards and riding jacket and used them while riding my CBZ, I used to feel ridiculous; I felt like a cyborg, making weird noises while walking. I kept telling myself it's for my own safety; doesn't matter what people think. Gradually, it became the norm. When I got my Jerez Pro, it felt thick and stiff, but once I had broken it in, it felt as comfortable as the Held Sambia I use for street riding. Just give it time. From just jeans and sneakers to knee guards and military DMX boots to proper riding boots and riding pants (and armoured jacket, gloves and helmet of course) - it takes a bit of getting used to, but in the end it will be like second skin to you and will protect you in case of a crash.

PS: the protection doesn't apply if you do stupid stuff on your bike.

This video should put things in perspective about why one needs riding gear when riding a motorcycle:



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Originally Posted by v12 View Post
I have been asked a couple of times to enrol Into CSS to improve my riding skills.
Alen, I would highly recommend it too. It is really an eye opener. And if you make it to the next's year class, I'll see you at the track

Last edited by IronH4WK : 31st March 2017 at 19:49.
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Old 31st March 2017, 23:03   #60
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Default Re: Red Ducati Monster 821 - Initial ownership report

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Originally Posted by IronH4WK View Post

I understand your apprehensions about riding gear, but answer me this - do you think Doctor rides with less precision wearing those race gloves on the track?

Let me tell you a little story of mine.
...
...
I'll see you at the track
Thanks for that great reply. It has given me a perspective. Of course a lot of other people have made this point already, you drove it in graphically. I shudder to think how many times I have been in that exact same place, just God removed the rope before I arrived.

Looks like I am just indulging myself into my long formed habits and trying to find some sort of justification in delaying. I got to work hard and figure out how to really feel through the layers to get my control in proper shape.

@Everyone who has been through this, share a few quick tips for the eager learners.
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