HOW I BECOME A RIDER? PART 6 ? I write off my first bike

IMG-20121126-00023With my new license it was time for a new bike. I looked long and hard. I run plenty of insurance quotes to make sure I choose something that will be reasonable to insure.

My choice was Honda CBF250. 

I made some calls saw couple bikes but then I saw an add for a bike. It was reasonably priced and was under 5000 miles. The guy was happy to bring it to me so I can have a look. (I know – not a good idea as it is good to see it start from cold… well I did not know it back then).  I made an appointment and the guy brought the bike.

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It looked stunning

It was really nice, looked all shiny and new and I was impressed a lot. I have to admit – I was shy and cautious. he guy that was selling it must have had a lot of fun watching me being so careful around it. I did not even ride it (I KNOW!). I listened to the engine, looked around and all looked good. So I bought it.

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It was so much different

First ride was amazing. I was afraid and overwhelmed by the experience first. The bike was definitely more powerful. Much more responsive and it felt great. Breaks were no comparison to the cg125 drums. And it was so much higher! In the beginning I felt like if I was sitting on a horse! Thanks to that I could see the traffic better but was a bit intimidated.

Took me about 2 weeks to get used to it

After that it was absolutely fantastic. I was pleased that it was still agile enough to go through traffic gaps nicely… I have made many miles on that bike. I used it for about 2 years. Only issue I had with it was that the choke cable started seizing and needed to be replaced. Other then that no real problems.

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I have done some “mods” to the bike

It had heated grips already but I added Acerbis hand-guards with LED lights for both visibility and to deflect some cold wind during winter months. Additional blind spot mirrors.  I also added a top box so I could store my bike cover etc. .. I did nothing to the exhaust as I did not know much about that and was afraid that it may impact my insurance.

I have to admit I dropped it couple times

Nothing too serious but once I have learned the hard way that front brake at low speed while doing u-turn can be a problem.  I remember once I almost dropped it at the gas station as I just was not used to bike that much heavier than the 125. I tipped it too much to the right… aaaand I barely saved it 😉 There was also this one accident where I was being an impatient idiot and went down in a car park. I did something stupid and to avoid a car I went to my side. No real damage. I got a bruised leg and my mirrors needed to be rearranged.

But then the day of the last ride came

It was a winter evening. The weather was not on my side that day. Slight drizzle was making the road slippery. I was in a good mood though. I was on my bike after all… As I was going down the road I saw that car. It was stopped far down the road in the bus lane then it moved and went into the left lane.  That lane can be used to go straight or left through the junction. I moved to the bus lane that goes left. At the junction there is a traffic island between the bus lane and the lane that bloody mini was in.

I have not expected that

I was travelling at a slight bend couple meters behind him. Just in front of the island he stepped on the brakes and swerved left. Why? I still do not know. That was an absolutely stupid maneuver as he could have continued in his lane to turn. I can only suspect he was very confused.

It was very close

You cannot see that in the vid as the wide angle makes everything seem distant… but I was sure I will hit him. I grabbed the breaks and right away knew I locked the front. Bad news. Once that happened there was nothing I could do. Before I realized I was sliding down the road hoping I d not hit him.

He accelerated and it was good as I landed where he just was

The bad news was he kept going… I was on my feet right away (possibly not a good idea). I was buzzing with adrenaline and I wanted to rip his head off. It may be good he took off… I was very emotional and could not believe what has just happened. I cursed A LOT! Funny cause I do not curse much in my native language 😉  I was happy I have recorded it as I knew that will be crucial to get an insurance payout.

I kept my head clear

When people showed up – a cyclist and a biker I immediately got one of them to be a witness – remember to do that if you are in a situation like that. Soon enough police showed up (they were passing). They were very helpful. They helped to move my bike and gave me advice. I would like to thank both the officers and the cyclist – you were the best guys!

My bike was f**ed though

The hand-guard possibly saved my hand as it was deeply scratched and turned around. The clutch lever snapped off. Whole left side was scratched. Steering bar possibly bent. I do not remember all damage but it was not looking good. I could not ride it. I parked it next to the fence and tried to call insurance for help. There was a lot of confusion. I have spent 2h trying to organize some recovery with my insurance. The rain kept on going and I was cold. As the adrenaline was wearing off I started to feel the bruises too.

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I decided to go

That evening needed to end. I felt cold and depressed. I stopped a cab. I got on in a full gear so it struck a conversation right away. The cab driver was an older guy and he was really nice. In the end he gave me a discount and a receipt so I can try to recover the cost of the travel from insurance.

I finally was home

I changed, got some hot tea and started looking for a recovery van for the next day.

In the next episode I will tell you about the aftermath of the accident.

Watch the accident here: