How to spend my Christmas bonus? - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 25th, 2007, 10:48 pm Thread Starter
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Question How to spend my Christmas bonus?

So, I received a nice $1,000 Christmas bonus from work recently and the wife asked me what I planned to spend it on. Something for the bike I thought silently.

Iíve always wanted to get a set of aftermarket shocks for my motorcycles but never had the cash to do it. I would love to get a set of Wilbers for the K1200R. The R now has 22K miles on the shocks (ESA) and they certainly arenít shot but I have noticed some degradation over the past 7K miles since Iíve had the bike. The other item Iím looking at is a 5 pack of tickets to be used with one of the local track schools. The 5-pack costs $950 which I can use towards their track school. The schools are 2 day formats and cost $620. This allows me to get (2) 2-day track schools and 1 regular track day in 2008. Iíve only done 1 track school before and it rained that day so I didnít get into any serious lean angles.

As much as I want the new suspension, I think the track schools would do more for my skill level. There are a limited number of ticket packs and track school openings so I would need to make this purchase soon if I go this route. So which would you guys choose and why?
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 26th, 2007, 12:57 am
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After my last ride i thought it would be really nice to have some wilbers or ohlins on my bike. If i had the cash i would get the shocks. You can pay for a track day with your side money without the school to keep the cost down. i know there are places that will run a track day in the low 100's-180's. You can pay for those as you go, but it will be difficult to cough the 1000 bucks for the shocks overnight. get a dvd for instruction.

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 26th, 2007, 8:07 pm Thread Starter
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I'm not so hot on just doing track days without training yet. I mean, I can practice bad technique on the streets. Track days sound like a great way to practice once you know your not developing bad habits though.

I do have Sport Riding Techniques by Nick Ienatsch and I've read it front to back 3 or 4 times this year while working on things that he discusses. I've really noticed an improvement in my riding since I've been working on it. My legs feel like jello after I go on spirited rides now. My wife also got me Lee Park's, Total Control for Christmas and I'm looking forward to reading that as well.

While I feel you can learn a lot from reading these books or watching a DVD and practicing, you can't see yourself ride so having an instructor critique me would be very valuable.

Of course I forgot to mention that I weigh 250# which makes for an even stronger case for the new suspension.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 27th, 2007, 8:00 am
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No question, go for the suspension/shocks.

Every time I add Ohlins to one of my bikes (or traxxion, etc) it is like buying a brand new machine for less than 2 grand.

Suspension is one of the first places I spend money on a bike (once the stock susp is gone). It is just as important as good tires in my book.

Track days come and go. You'll have the good shocks forever and if they are ohlins, can be rebuilt (other brands can too I believe).
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 27th, 2007, 8:16 am
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Track days usually come with different levels on the same day. Start at the begginers level and work your way up. If you've read anything, you will probably rule begginer track days...

For riding schools, in california, Keith code's classes I've heard are the best. Get (Or read at the book store) his books Twist of the Wrist. 2nd volume is better than the first.

I wouldn't spend $1000 right off the bat for a set of classes either. What if you don't like the instructor or the track (I've been to one where both sucked). What if you get sick. I'm sure you get some money back but how much?

Do you want to just have some fun or become the next Casey Stoner????
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 27th, 2007, 6:16 pm
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Keith Code is a good idea. $450 for one day plus your bike. $650 if you use their Kawasaki 636.
Full face helmet
Preferred one piece textile or leather riding suit with protection.
Depending on how the two-piece zips together, you may get away with a two-piece.
They rent the gear, though.
Good gloves
Good boots
They say they want no more than 10% wear on the tires, but I'm fairly certain they're also including the Level 4 riders. But, 50% worn will probably fail inspection. Don't have to worry about coolant, what you bring with you is fine. They'll set the tire pressure and blue-tape the lenses. If it's easy to remove the mirrors, that'd be better, but they'll blue tape them if they're not easily removable.
Snack for breakfast, light lunch (chips and sandwich). Plenty of water, plenty of salt and potassium.

Good fun, though.




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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 27th, 2007, 8:19 pm
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I agree with Ray... Spend some of the money on a Keith Code School.. Trust me.. no matter how many years you've been riding.. you'll learn more in 2 days than in all your previous riding time combined...

Make yourself better.. then worry about your tweaking your bike...
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 27th, 2007, 9:22 pm Thread Starter
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I had thought about doing Keigwins school but it's good to hear such good feedback about Code's classes. I tried getting into one of Codes classes a couple of months ago and they had openings but they wouldn't let me in unless I rode their bike. I guess they limit the number riders that can bring their own bike. I have Twist Of The Wrist II and thought it was an okay read.

Raz, it's hard to tell from that pic but you look like you might be on the heavier side. Are you and if so did you have custom leathers made or were you able to find something off of the rack. I'm on the heavier side and haven't read of any 1 piece suits that fit bigger guys.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 27th, 2007, 10:20 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharkbait
I have Twist Of The Wrist II and thought it was an okay read.
It's OK the first time I read it, too. It gets better with time. It has more to do with a state of mind of fast riding rather than the hard numbers of suspension rates, sag, preload, rebound, etc. Instead of saying put your foot here, your body here and your arms here, it's more of a why things happen.

Nothing like the real thing, though...
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old Dec 28th, 2007, 12:35 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharkbait
Raz, it's hard to tell from that pic but you look like you might be on the heavier side. Are you and if so did you have custom leathers made or were you able to find something off of the rack. I'm on the heavier side and haven't read of any 1 piece suits that fit bigger guys.
Well...I've had some folks tell me they think I look like Santa.

But, you hit the nail right on the head. There's no place that will have anything "off the rack" that'd fit me. 270lbs, 5'9".
Three places I have heard only good things about:
Helimot Leathers - San Jose
Zooni Leathers - San Jose
Johnson Leathers - San Francisco ( I believe)

I got mine from Helimot, but I've been bumping into Helmut off and on for a few years, so I didn't really shop. Fits really well. Haven't heard of any up closer to your area, though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharkbait
I tried getting into one of Codes classes a couple of months ago and they had openings but they wouldn't let me in unless I rode their bike.
Regarding the limit on bikes...I wasn't aware of that. I went online to sign up; I didn't call. Both times I've gone, though, there were bikes sitting idle for sessions that had personal bikes in them, including mine. Dunno...



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