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Thread: Hi! I'm dumb, but I want to learn

  1. #1
    N00b
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    Cool Hi! I'm dumb, but I want to learn

    Hey guys,

    So admittedly, I've pretty much always been a car guy, but bikes have had this annoying way of creeping into my interests. Cars are expensive enough but nooooo...now i want bikes too. Great!

    Anyway, I used to be frequent car forums fairly regularly. Abarth Fiat Uno Turbo, Nissan 200sx clubs and the UK GTI forums while I was on that side of the pond. Thought I'd give this one a try. It's the biggest in SA right?

    The start of my appreciating bikes was pretty much forced onto me as I had no other option for transportation while living in Vietnam. That's just how you get around. No other reasonable ways. First "bike" i had over there was actually a scooter, Yamaha Nouvo. Death trap of note. Had been rented out to so many tourists and crashed so many times, it felt like I was riding on failed hopes and dreams.

    Thought I'd have an upgrade and rented a Honda Wave. Semi-auto scooter, but damn these things are popular in Asia. F*cking everywhere so its a solid choice in a country you hardly get over 40km/h because traffic looks like this:
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    Surprisingly, wasn't too bad on the mountain roads either and made for the perfect grocery getter:
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    Next it was time to actually buy one. There were a few upgrades done. I have a hard time keeping things stock (No, I did not put the TRD stickers on, but thought it was hilarious so I kept them - Vietnamese things):
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    Those were pretty fun daily drivers but I wanted something for the weekends away; those long mountainous adventures and bought my first "proper" bike, A Suzuki GN125. Was bigger and louder than all of the scooters around so it perfectly parted the traffic. Felt like a biblical story. Also, VERY comfortable. Miss it!
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    Had plans on modifying the GN but couldn't get myself to touch it. It was perfect the way it was, so I did what every idiot expat/traveller does in Vietnam and i bought a Chinese copy of a Honda Win. Now these things get driven up and down the country 100s of times by people who don't know how to ride and are barely maintained and WHEN they break down, it'll be fixed with Chinese parts and by Vietnamese mechanics. Not sure which of those is worse...Bougth mine from a local, but the thing was still a POS, but that's exactly what I wanted as I was going to replace everything anyway. It was the bike I was going to learn to properly modify with. Cheaper than learning on cars, that's for sure. I stripped it down, got it ready for painting and then I suddenly had to return home so the project was in pieces. Sold it to a friend who finished it for me:
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    So that was that for Vietnam, but when I got to SA, I was left with no motoring excitement. My cars had been sold and I was left with a Picanto (WOW! Kia has come far from what they used to be!). Randomly searched Gumtree for pretty much anything under a straight4 600cc. Found myself a 1989 rebuilt CB-1. Pretty much the original CB400:
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    Haven't been riding much. My learners for bikes expired probably 10 years ago. Was stupid enough not to do the license back when I did my car drivers, but oh well...

    Now, the honest reason why I thought I'd join the forum is because the bike has an issue that's been bugging me. It doesn't always run on all 4. Sometimes it starts fine, sometimes it starts on 2 or 3 and then eventually the 4th starts going, and other times the 4th never plays along. Strangely enough, most times when I fill her up to the brim, the 4th joins the party again. Oh and I also only get maybe 120kms out of a full tank haha guessing carb related. I'dlike to fix the issue myself, but I guess I'll start a thread at the appropriate place for that.

    Anyway, I'm based in CT. Howsit!
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  2. #2
    Biker Harvs's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forum and (back to?) SA!

    SA traffic on a bike should be a breeze for you if you've experienced the chaos of Asia then.

  3. #3
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    Yeah, I'm back here now. I'm not sure for how long but I need some sort of excitement. The bike is a good way on getting it

    SA drivers aren't exactly known to be the best but nothing compares to some major Asian cities, especially in the more lawless countries. 5 people on a scooter with no helmets? No problem! Blindly flying into a busy intersection without looking at all? Normal! Unfortunately, these things then lead to tons of deaths. I've seen too many people left seriously injured due to their own or someone else's stupidity or rather, lack of education.

  4. #4
    Legend in the baking. ColleenC's Avatar
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    Welcome
    "What's worth the prize is always worth the fight" Nickelback


  5. #5
    Hooligan Biker
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    Love the adventure you are on and were on in Asia. I think seeing so many two wheels must influence one tremendously (to partake or stay clear).

    Hope your gremlins with the firing will be sorted so you can enjoy riding at an angle down in the Colony.

  6. #6
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    Thanks guys,

    I still drive her maybe twice a week,but just around mine and the surrounding neighbourhoods. I have loads of fun

  7. #7
    BMW FAN!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harvs View Post


    SA traffic on a bike should be a breeze for you if you've experienced the chaos of Asia then.
    Bit late to the party here...BUT....SA roads will be very different. In the East killing someone is generally not cool because of the bad karma attached.....in SA they are a bit...well......different. Be prepared to encounter far more aggression directed at you.

  8. #8
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    Yeah, I've seen some car drivers here get quite annoyed at bikes, but my experience in Vietnam is that no one cares. I've seen people drive over children and leaving them for dead (twice) and a truck driver who ran into a bike and then tried to reverse back over the driver to make sure he's dead. Thankfully people stopped him from doing that. They have to pay a monthly sum if the person ends up disabled, so for many drivers it's a better outcome if they end up killing the person, as bad as that sounds.

    But then again, bad things happen all over. It is just refreshing to see car drivers actually notice bikes, whereas in Vietnam they will drive straight towards you and it's your responsibility to get out of the way, no matter if they're on the wrong side of the road or not, for example.

    I'll keep my eyes open, though. Better be safe than sorry

  9. #9
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    That sucks. I've ridden a lot in Thailand and although they drive really badly, they go out of their way to try and NOT kill you

  10. #10
    Biker Harvs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Road Rage View Post
    That sucks. I've ridden a lot in Thailand and although they drive really badly, they go out of their way to try and NOT kill you
    Probably because the bike is their primary mode of transportation, people got places to be instead of sitting around waiting for cops/ambulance

  11. #11
    I am dreaming of a mielie field ...
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    Welcome to the forum, bud. I hope some of our local mechs can help you sort out that engine problem.

    Now, go get your license!
    Ride so you can ride again tomorrow.
    From your friendly cager

  12. #12
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    Most people in Vietnam will stop and help or stare at minimum, but those are mostly the onlookers. Those who cause the accidents will drive off.
    For example, I was lane splitting quite slowly when the car in front of me suddenly swerved right into me. I presume he was dodging some other douche nozzle nearly hitting him. I fell down and all he did was check his car, quickly shouted at me and then drove off while I was still lying in the middle of the road.
    The other people around did help, though. Vietnamese are generally really nice people. They will go out of their way to help you. Sometimes this comes at a cost, though. But that's like everywhere else when you're the tourist/expat.

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