Do you buy everything I do?
I made a bet with somebody who shall not be named that you specifically would look into buying a bike as a direct result of this thread. I won.
Yeah, I was going to comment on that earlier, but didn't want to draw attention to it. Sorry for always stealing your thunder. Before your thread, I had assumed that decent motorcycles were too expensive for me still and never gave it any thought. It was on the maybe sometime in the future list. You showed me that it might be feasible now.
It may not happen still. I haven't fully committed to it. I have to see how feasible it is first (before buying a bike I need to see what my insurance company is going to do to me; then I need to see how hard it's going to hit my savings).
Do not buy anything less than 250 if you ever plan on riding out of town. My Honda Rebel is the bare minimum I would ever want to take out on the highway. It's fine on flat stretches, and can easily do (more than) the speed limit, but up hills it maxes out at 55-60 mph full throttle (maybe 65 if there's no wind).
Yeah, I've gotten this impression. My dad, who used to have a 125 cc bike in his younger years, said the same thing. Get a 250 if I'm going to get one because smaller is too slow and bigger is too fast. However, I don't technically need to ride on any roads faster than 80 km/h (about 50 mph) so I could probably get away with a 125 (there are two highways that run in parallel, one a replacement for the other, and the other now has severely reduced speed limits). I'm in the process of debating the money right now (which bike is the best that I can afford, if any).
But before you do anything, call your local colleges and see what kind of courses are available. It looks like the CSC sponsors things in Canada. You may be able to get a license via that before you even have to buy a bike.
The community college definitely has a motorcycle training course available. I plan to give the college a call on Monday to see if I can register for it. The Honda dealership representative told me that it's backed up like 3 months though. The CBR125R allegedly has a rebate on until the end of March because the fiscal year for Honda ends March 31st and they're trying to move the old stock. If I wait I'll apparently be paying more. Similarly, the used Yamaha will probably go pretty fast, if it hasn't gone already. The used Ninja 250R already has a buyer. I can wait and see what comes up or I can rush into a purchase and hope it works out. On Monday I also plan to visit the Kawasaki dealership to price up a 250R through them.
I'm currently studying the official MTO motorcycle handbook (debating whether I should buy another copy of the official drivers handbook too). I'm considering going in to take the written test sometime next week (maybe even Monday). If you're suggesting that I could wave the fee by going through the training course then I'm not sure it's worth waiting. I definitely intend to take the course though.
I'm a little concerned about having to pay again to upgrade to an Enhanced Drivers License if I do get my M1... That will be annoying because I just got it last year.
In other news, I just discovered "counter-steering" (in the motorcycle sense) or push steering. At first I thought the handbook was wrong, but after a little bit of YouTubing the bikes I'm looking at, I stumbled upon a demonstration video that explained it. Once he said it, and demoed it, and didn't die, I figured there must be something to it and started to ask Google. Mental note: listen to the handbook above intuition.
- We're also tested on that and it's possible I'll be asked about signs or situations that I've forgotten about and don't encounter in the area. I guess it's been something like 6 or 7 years since I last studied it.