Managing the cost of riding - looking back
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Thread: Managing the cost of riding - looking back

  1. #1
    Poser Emeritus Array bill's Avatar
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    Aug 2003
    Lower Mainland

    Managing the cost of riding - looking back

    Based on the 25K thread I wonder how much money all of us would have saved if we had the knowledge that we have now and were starting out over again.

    Here is some of what I would do differently. I estimate that this would have saved me over 100k

    Starting Out

    1. First bike - Buy a used KLR or a UJM like a Honda Nighthawk soething that a drop is not big deal to

    2. Get all my initial gear from and buy and electric vest right away

    3. Start doing trackdays earlier and do them on the KLR - after taking BCSC or other riding school to learn - which I did

    4.Take a dirt / off pavement school

    5. Buy a used touring (Japanese) bike for bike 2 i.e, Kawasaki Concours or an ABS VFR or FJR 1200

    6. Do rallies like the 3 flags sooner in my riding life

    7. Upgrade my clothing when I knew I was going to stick to riding with an AeroStitch Darien ASAP

    8. Buy BMW riding boots from Day 1

    9. Buy BMW and Lee Parks gloves from Day 1

    10 Buy all my tires in the US and ship them to Point Roberts

    11. Discover the Letter Carrier earlier on

    12. Get specialty wiring & accesory installation done by a person who does that as a retirement job and not at a dealership

    13. Listen to my wife and buy a Goldwing sooner as it is purpose built for my type of riding

    14. Get a NEXUS card right away

    15 When learning continue the plan of getting up in the summer at 4:30 and riding around with little traffic on weekends

    16. If you are riding with a spouse or buddy all the time take a few lessons on how to ride together as a unique group. For example Susan (my wife )always leads on trips unless it is big traffic LA or tought conditions - night, snow etc

    17. Be just as lucky when you ride over your head as I was and not get into a new rider accident, - taking a turn too wide and crossing the yellow, riding TFF on one lane forest roads on my GS etc etc

    I will be interested to see what the rest of you have to say
    BCSB had mountains of experience with a lot of things. #1 on that list is pouring out bullshit to dumb questions by the Gigabyte. (TripleTime, 12-10-2014 03:19 PM)

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  3. #2
    Registered User Array ralphael's Avatar
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    Sep 2006
    Actually, 25k is pretty well spent....

    I only missed my expenditure by buying 1 extra set of gear (my starter set) which included that extra helmet and a few extra pieces of clothing as I was experimenting what would keep me warm and dry. Probably out of pocket by about $800 for the unused gear, however come summer that textile mesh pants will come in handy so perhaps out by $500 for that extra jacket and helmet.

    My heated Vest, heated Gloves and hopefully my heated socks coming next week, will be my best buddy for the winter season.

    I regretted none of my expenditure as it has given back so much that I can't even put a price on it. Even my finger wiper (which I lost during one of my rides) was priceless..


  4. #3
    Thanks for that... Array Miguel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    I haven't been riding long enough to say what I would have done to keep my expenses low because it's still a long learning curve for me. But, very interesting points you layed out. Good read.

  5. #4
    how about not sucking ass and joining a "wing" site?

  6. #5
    Medium Pimpin' Array ORYX's Avatar
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    Nov 2002
    White Rock
    A red one
    I was tempted to follow ssblade's post with something along the lines of "How about sucking my..." but figured it would be a waste of time. So here it is, my unfinished post.

    Ps. All in all probably spent about 15 g notes on riding my few seasons but was worth every penny. Save money early on by buying a two piece zippered suit.
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  7. #6
    Ghost SV Rider Array Dru's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    2002 SV650S Ghost
    I would only change one thing of my previous purchases. Buy Aerostitch and better boots. I didn't think I'd love riding hard. I still love my bike and I don't know if I can ever sell it. Even if it just sits around doing nothing. Looking for bike #2 and I hope to get it in a few months.

  8. #7
    Registered User Array SpideRider's Avatar
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    Jul 2002
    Fraser Valley
    So far, I think I've done almost everything perfect.
    Must suck to look back and realize you made mistakes. I'm so glad I'm perfect!
    Cry in the dojo, laugh on the battlefield
    Sparring speed is a matter of simple physics:
    The height of your flight is inversely proportionate to the mass of your ass.

  9. #8
    Registered User Array ralphael's Avatar
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    Sep 2006
    I think there is always a high price or fixed price for your life lessons and you won't save a penny for it. It is how willing you are to spend that money to get there.

    For example, let say you did buy a used KLR or a UJM like a Honda Nighthawk, you may be so turned off by the looks or power that you may not be riding today.

    I wasn't ready to buy leathers as my first gear, although my mesh gear may be sitting in my closet, they have served their purpose in getting me through my initial hot summer ridding. The cost $800, the return experience is of course priceless.

    Like they say, it isn't the destination that is important, but it is the road you travel to get there. You pay for your travels and at every turn there is a toll.


  10. #9 Array Stewy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Maple Ridge
    2007 GSX-R750
    Sure, I might have done things differently looking back, I think there's something that we'd all change in our 'paths' to where we are now. I love riding and everything that comes with it. Bring on 2007.
    "Nitrous is like a hot girl with STD’s… You know you want to hit it, but you’re afraid of the consequences"

    2007 Suzuki GSX-R 750
    2014 BMW X5 xDrive 35d M Sport
    2007 Audi A4 S-Line

  11. #10
    West Koots, I'm here.... Array flyfishinwoman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    "the Koots"
    a few toys
    I would have kept my '86 NS400R, and still bought a VFR750 or 800 as my primary bike. Then I wouldn't have bought and sold all those other bikes, man what a bunch of money I would have saved.

    I would have taken the ART course sooner, and gotten into dirt biking sooner too. That's about it.
    Back in BC, yay!!!
    2010 Yamaha Vstar 950
    250 Saga Dual-sport
    AC quad
    BCSB #712
    WMRC #747 (2005)

  12. #11
    + 39.9 km/h Array Smoke's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    2009 ZX10R
    I think I did a couple smart things...
    I waited to get a m/c at 21 versus 16.
    Took the BCSC class.
    Bot a used bike for $5K.
    My friends were guys in dealerships. (saves on tires, gear, etc.)
    Rode it for 5 years.
    When it came time for new I went bigger - so that's not smart to save on insurance. $15K
    Rode it for 5 years.
    It was good that I did have the insurance because it was stolen.
    Replaced it 8 months later for an additional $2k over my refund for a three year newer bike.

    Looking back...
    Maybe I would have first-off bought leathers that over the past 12 years would leave room for beer belly.
    From the start of this expensive lifestyle 12 years ago I have acquired the following gear;
    5 helmets,
    7 set of gloves,
    3 pair of boots,
    6 set of knee sliders,
    4 set of toe sliders,
    2 two-piece leather outfits.

    As for parts and service... probably over 30 tires,
    I'd think close to three dozen regular services.
    Gas would be around 1,000 tanks.

    It's worth it for all the fun I've had on two wheels.
    Now... bring me that horizon.

  13. #12
    Still defying gravity... Array Thumper 8's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    3 and 6 cylinders of fury
    Quote Originally Posted by bill View Post
    Based on the 25K thread I wonder how much money all of us would have saved if we had the knowledge that we have now and were starting out over again.

    Here is some of what I would do differently. I estimate that this would have saved me over 100k
    Quote Originally Posted by ORYX View Post
    Ps. All in all probably spent about 15 g notes on riding my few seasons but was worth every penny. Save money early on by buying a two piece zippered suit.
    When I got back into street riding after a 10 - 15 year absence, I figured $15K, which is about right.

    Lemme see:

    new VFR ABS (an 2002 model bought early 2003) - $12K + taxes (got a Shoei lid thrown in)
    2 pc Vansons - $1,000 + taxes
    JR waterproof boots, gloves and rain gear (at Imperial on sale) $300 +/-
    Hardbags for the VFR - $600 (bought on-line)
    Bike Brace - $150-ish

    That's it - for $25,000, I should be able to buy 2 bikes... gotta get a dual sport soon

    aka Tony

    My WMRC/Pitt Meadows and other bike photos are at - follow on Twitter and connect on Facebook


  14. #13
    Registered User Array pete_p's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    '89 FZR 600
    -Always, always, always wear a helmet and protective gear. Even if it's just in the parking lot.

    -If your bike is parked for the winter, its parked. Don't start it, don't look at. You will end up just "making sure the brakes aren't siezed" and riding it up and down the block with no insurance and no helmet and no drivers liscence on you just as the cops cruise by.

  15. #14
    PAyne Array UnToldFox's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Mission - Valley Brother, yo
    Black F2, 01 GSXR 600 - Race
    I'm an inpulse buyer this thread makes me look bad!

    Things I should have doone sooner;

    -Buy a manual, or if you have one, use it. it wont cost you 800 bucks to change a tire.
    -buy a fog gaurd thing for your helmet sooner
    -learn to wheelie sooner
    -invest in a full suit.. anyone have a size 42 forsale?
    -riding boots beat work boots anyday of the week

    Things I was lucky enough to do on my bike, sooner rather than later;
    -travel to a few places with great roads.
    -find out about motogp
    -race motorcycles for a couple years
    -found some good friends to have around for a few years while learning to riding. that helps alot.

    how much did it cost? no clue.
    Lets Jump

  16. #15
    Registered User Array michael's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Under the radar. Hopefully.
    Honda. Still. Again.
    Thumbs up:
    Started riding in the dirt at age 14.
    Gave up motorcycling for 13 years (marriage, mortgage, children) and matured.
    My re-entry ride was a $900 used motorcycle I put 40,000 kms on.
    I enjoyed my Harley years, not for the modest performance, but for the places it took me.

    My re-entry ride included a 100 km a day commute....bought leathers, rather than textile (waterproof) gear.
    Should have gotten better training, earlier on....tough to eliminate accumulated bad habits.
    Should have spent many, many $$ on trips, rather than frittering them away, keeping my BMW running.

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