Do you think newer riders are missing out?

Chat about all makes of Maxi scoot here!
User avatar
Data
Benefactor
Posts: 2150
Joined: Wed Feb 08, 2012 6:43 am
Current Ride: Vespa GTS300ie abs asr
Location: Starfleet Command, Engineering, Southern UK - I think! Well, we just beam in to a co-ordinance!
Great Britain
Do you think newer riders are missing out?

Post by Data » Wed Sep 04, 2019 7:22 am

Ok so just a conversation I was having with some modern (newer) motorcyclists recently. Not all of them were young uns either.

It evolved around the fact that when I was a young biker (at 16 years of age, the licence laws were different in 1970) I started out my biking life on a 50cc bike, then went on to a 90cc, 125cc, 175cc and then on to really big bikes like the 250's of the 70's! :lol: Then it was 350's, 500's 650's and a 750 and an 850. All this took me 14-15 years to get to the 750 Commando, and then an 850 Interstate. Loved them all. But got to say the really fun bikes were the smaller one for sure.

As many of you know, I've had a shed load of other bikes too up to 1000cc and 1400cc GSX Suzukis etc etc. But I now ride a GTS300 Vespa that I've owned for over 2.5yrs. It's very good, fast, handles well, very comfy and does long trips fine etc and is a joy to look at! Yeah...I know, that makes me sound soppy! :o

Now talking about this to the group of newer bikers they seemed amazed that anyone could go back(wards) to a smaller bike with less performance etc etc etc! None of them could ever contemplate doing that. Yet when I asked them if any of them had actually ridden a smaller bike after doing Direct Access sometime ago, they all said no. I pointed out that they just might be missing a trick here as none of them actually knew what it was like to ride a decent 250, 300 or 500. The response was they had all tried the Kawasaki or Honda 500's they had trained on and they felt flat as a pancake regarding performance. So what's the point of trying any bike under 500cc because it won't have any performance to put a grin on their smug little faces! I pointed out the 500cc bikes they trained on were restricted models! Surprisingly none of them realised that! If anyone has ever tried an unrestricted CB500 you'll know they go really well with a nice punch in the back as you open it up. Next step was to let one of them have a (short) go on my Vespa. The guy chosen normally rides a Triumph Tiger 800. He needed persuading to do it but eventually agreed.

Off he went. 20 mins later he returned having just thrown it around our local twisty and few other roads. "How much power does this thing have"? he asked. After furnishing him with the details requested he exclaimed, "that was brilliant" can't believe it handles so well on little wheels! Goes really well too and it's comfortable. The rest of the group looked perplexed!

The point of all this is that I heard from him just 10 days later to say he had ordered a brand new GTS300 HPE Vespa! He gets it next week! Could barely believe it. I think this points out that bikers often overlook the attributes of smaller machines thinking they are in some way inferior, lack performance, and ability to tour. Just goes to show eh! ;)

MrGrumpy
Benefactor
Posts: 5911
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2009 3:50 pm
Current Ride: T-max mk6
Location: Teesside UK
England
Re: Do you think newer riders are missing out?

Post by MrGrumpy » Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:12 am

I think that most bikers are fed bullshit from the biking press, who criticise bikes like the Africa Twin for 'only' having 100bhp and saying its performance is 'flat', or that overtaking is dangerously slow on anything with less than 150bhp. As we know even 35 bhp is enough to move a PTW along at a decent pace - and overtake.
The whole biking scene long since stopped being about practicality or even enjoyment, but its now about competing to see who's got the most impressive specifications and way over the top technology - most of which is merely needed because of the silly engine specs anyway!

User avatar
eame64
Posts: 72
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2018 7:48 am
Current Ride: Yamaha X Max 300
Location: Stratford Upon Avon
England
Re: Do you think newer riders are missing out?

Post by eame64 » Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:18 am

i think that they are missing out as i for one have had a lot more fun from riding scooters than i ever did on much larger motorcycles.

User avatar
Data
Benefactor
Posts: 2150
Joined: Wed Feb 08, 2012 6:43 am
Current Ride: Vespa GTS300ie abs asr
Location: Starfleet Command, Engineering, Southern UK - I think! Well, we just beam in to a co-ordinance!
Great Britain
Re: Do you think newer riders are missing out?

Post by Data » Wed Sep 04, 2019 10:29 am

I know exactly where you two guys are coming from. Gotta say I agree and the most fun I've ever had was on my Burgman 400 and now, my Vespa. My GSX1400 was great for going 0-62mph in 2.57seconds but you can only do that so many times before the excitement wears off. The bike then becomes a tiresome bore as it needs to be going at 90mph before the engine starts to do any work at all. Just no excitement and it's a real licence loser. And besides, my arms grew 9" in length after two years of owning the first one! :lol:

wilsonsteve
Benefactor
Posts: 119
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 12:55 pm
England
Re: Do you think newer riders are missing out?

Post by wilsonsteve » Wed Sep 04, 2019 10:55 am

I'd also make the point that in my own case at least, and I doubt I'm alone, moving down-scale to a smaller bike was the infinitely preferable alternative to giving up riding completely as age made the weight a real problem. Riding had become almost a chore, something I did because I hadn't had the bike out for three weeks, or something like that.
Since getting my Forza300 I've got the fun back - yes, it's got enough power and yes it handles and yes it's light enough to manoeuvre without worrying about dropping it. Now I make excuses to take a ride instead of excuses not to.
In brief, I totally agree that to dismiss smaller bikes is to miss out.

User avatar
Stibbs
Posts: 142
Joined: Sun Nov 17, 2013 6:42 am
Current Ride: 2015 Burger 400
Location: Sunny Suffolk
Great Britain
Re: Do you think newer riders are missing out?

Post by Stibbs » Wed Sep 04, 2019 11:51 am

Interesting thread.
I had scooters as a second bike for many years but around three years gave up my last clutched bike (R1200rt) as I got a sever shoulder injury around 10 years prior to that which has never fully healed.
After around an hour on a clutched bike my left shoulder starts to ache and remains sore for days, indeed keeping me awake at night!!
I took the decision to offload the clutch and keep my Burger on its own.
A great decision. The Burger does nearly everything the RT did (albeit without the cruise and the very powerful pull). However I’ve been to South France on it more than once. It’s taken me all over this country, it’s economical, comfortable, durable, sits happily at 80 if I want it to (I usually don’t) and it’s fun.

Yes, smaller engined machines are just as much fun as bigger bikes.
One day the biking world will awaken :lol:
Image

User avatar
Ralph
Posts: 764
Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:20 am
Current Ride: Yamaha X-max 300 300
Location: Near Fleetwood
England
Re: Do you think newer riders are missing out?

Post by Ralph » Wed Sep 04, 2019 2:31 pm

There's something I like about riding a bike with just enough performance
so I can use it all when I have to without frightening myself to death.
Ralph
Nr Fleetwood
Yamaha X-max 300
Ariel NH 350
Ariel WNG 350


icon_maxi_scoot.gif


Image

MrGrumpy
Benefactor
Posts: 5911
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2009 3:50 pm
Current Ride: T-max mk6
Location: Teesside UK
England
Re: Do you think newer riders are missing out?

Post by MrGrumpy » Wed Sep 04, 2019 3:23 pm

Ralph wrote:
Wed Sep 04, 2019 2:31 pm
There's something I like about riding a bike with just enough performance
so I can use it all when I have to without frightening myself to death.
Yes, it adds that bit of a challenge as well by exploiting cornering abilities to keep average speeds up. Many sportsbike riders seem incapable of riding their bikes properly and don't use a fraction of the bike's handling capabilities. They creep round corners and use the huge amount of power to then blast out of corners. They've probably seen too many racing commentaries where this technique is described as 'squaring off the corner'.

User avatar
Ralph
Posts: 764
Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:20 am
Current Ride: Yamaha X-max 300 300
Location: Near Fleetwood
England
Re: Do you think newer riders are missing out?

Post by Ralph » Wed Sep 04, 2019 3:50 pm

They get awful pissed when you ride round the outside of them on a 250 Greeves I know this.
Ralph
Nr Fleetwood
Yamaha X-max 300
Ariel NH 350
Ariel WNG 350


icon_maxi_scoot.gif


Image

Meldrew
Benefactor
Posts: 3666
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2009 6:23 pm
Current Ride: 2018 Honda Forza 300 A
Location: York, North Yorkshire
Great Britain
Re: Do you think newer riders are missing out?

Post by Meldrew » Wed Sep 04, 2019 5:17 pm

I don't think newer riders are missing out, look at all the choice available and the technology that's standard these days, They can buy any variation of motorcycle like cruiser, adventure, sports or tourer straight from the dealers and they're now fully loaded. They have ABS, EFi, traction control, multi mode instrument displays, LED lights, DCT, and all the rest of it.

Whether they choose scooters is up to them and they're more likely to if the only have an Auto licence. They also have all the DCT Honda motorcycles to choose from if they want to ride bikes and don't want to go for the Full Licence. That's an option that wasn’t available a few years ago. Then there's car drivers that can be new riders on three wheel scooters or whatever else their licence allows them to ride.


Post Reply