My 33bhp Licence Restriction Ends In February 2010

July 15, 2009

And I’m already window shopping for my next bike 🙂

I had already kinda decided what I wanted next and after sitting on one a couple of weeks ago to see if I fitted ok, I have made my mind up that it is definately the bike for me….

One of these….. 🙂

2002 Fireblade, Red

As far me me fitting on the bike, bearing in mind I’m 5′ 3″ tall, I can easily get the balls of both feet on the floor 🙂 the weight of the big blade is about the same as my CBR400, so that won’t be a problem and it felt very comfortable to sit on 🙂 🙂

Best I start saving up for one 🙂

One thing though, I’m gonna have to do something with the exhaust, as and when I get one… It’s flippin HUGE!!!!!!!!!


Save £££’s on HJC Helmets

April 8, 2009

There are currently some good deals around if you are looking at buying yourself a new crash helmet.  I’ve come across these for some of the HJC range.  If you are just starting out on a bike and are looking to buy your first set of gear then you can’t go far wrong with these.  They are also suitable as a second standby helmet and are all being sold at affordable prices.

The helmet size conversion chart is at the bottom of this entry and you may also want to take a look at this entry Choosing The Correct Size Motorcycle Helmet to make sure you choose the right size for your head 🙂

Firstly the HJC IS-16 Range available

These helmets got a 2* Sharp Helmet safety rating.. The helmets are priced at £132.99 and are available in the following designs.

HJC IS-16 Type O Available in Black or White

There is something to be said about a black crash helmet, I tend to buy plain black ones every time.  This has a very subtle design on it and I quite like this one 🙂

HJC IS-16 ScratchAvailable in Gunmetal/Black, Blue/Black and Red/Black

HJC IS-16 Arkanium Available in Pink

Helmet Specifications

  • Advanced Polycarbonate Composite Shell: Lightweight, superior fit and comfort using advanced CAD technology.
  • One-touch Integrated SunShield: Smoke-tinted 3-stage adjustable SunShield deploys quickly and easily (patent pending).
  • AccuSight™ Anti-fog Faceshield: Optically superior 3D design provides 95% UV protection and an anti-scratch coating.
  • RapidFire™ Shield Replacement System: Quick, secure, tool-less removal and installation.
  • "ACS" Advanced Channeling Ventilation System: Full front to back airflow flushes heat and humidity up and out
  • SilverCool™ Interior: Moisture-wicking and odour-free interior with advanced silver anti-bacterial fabric. Comfortable, removable and washable.
  • DOT Approved
  • SIZES: XS-XXL
  • Next is the HJC FS-15 Prism helmet

    Priced at £170.99 these got a score of 4* in the Sharp Helmet safety rating tests.

    HJC FS-15 Prism

    Helmet Specifications

    • Advanced Fibreglass Composite Shell: Lightweight, superior fit and comfort using advanced CAD technology.
    • Optically-superior Pinlock®-prepared Faceshield: New 3D design provides 95% UV protection, anti-scratch coating and is prepared for the ultimate anti-fog Pinlock insert.
    • RapidFire™ Shield Replacement System: Quick, secure, tool-less removal and installation.
    • “ACS” Advanced Channeling Ventilation System: Full front to back airflow flushes heat and humidity up and out.
    • SilverCool™ Interior: Removable moisture-wicking and odour-free interior with advanced silver anti-bacterial fabric.
    • SNELL/DOT Approved
    • SIZES: XS-XXL

    Next up is the HJC CS-12N Cyclone Helmet

    This is priced at just £75.99 and scored 3* in the Sharp helmet tests. The price is pretty damn good for a 3* helmet and the designs not too bad either 🙂

    This is available in the following colours – Red/Silver, Pink/Silver, Blue/Silver and Black Silver.

    HJC CS-12N

    Helmet Specifications

  • Standard: Meets or exceeds DOT standard .
  • Shell: Ultra lightweight thermoplastic alloy shell.
  • Ventilation: Maximum chin-bar ventilation ensures minimum fogging while maximum air intake is achieved with 2 large adjustable venturi side vents and a traditional centre chin vent, drawing excess humidity away from the shield.
  • Interior: Plush Nylex interior and cheek pads for maximum absorption.
  • Others: Breathbox and anti-fog coated shields available for cold and/or wet conditions.
  • Size: XS to XL.
  • The next offering is the HJC CL-SP Throttle.

    Available in blue/black, red/black and gunmetal/black it scored 3* in the Sharp helmet tests and is available for £113.99

    HJC CL-ST Throttle

    Helmet specifications

    • Advanced Polycarbonate Composite Shell: Lightweight, superior fit and comfort using advanced CAD technology.
    • AccuSight™Anti-fog Faceshield: Optically superior 3D design provides 95% UV protection and an anti-scratch coating.
    • RapidFire™ Shield Replacement System: Quick, secure, tool-less removal and installation.
    • 2-stage Shield Closure Mechanism: Compresses shield into the eye port gasket providing an extremely secure seal.
    • “ACS” Advanced Channeling Ventilation System: Full front to back airflow flushes heat and humidity up and out.
    • Bioceramic Nylex® Moisture-wicking Interior: Anti-bacterial, removable and washable.
    • SNELL/DOT Approved
    • SIZES: XS-XL

    Lastly in this little selection are the HJC CS-R1 Samurai and Fang helmets.

    These got a 1* rating in the Sharp Helmet safety tests and are priced a priced at £104.99

      HJC CS-R1 Samuri The Samurai design above is one I personally quite like 🙂

      HJC CS-R1 Fang

    • Advanced Polycarbonate Composite Shell: Lightweight, superior fit and comfort using advanced CAD technology.
    • RapidFire™ Shield Replacement System: Quick, secure, tool-less removal and installation.
    • Optically Superior Faceshield: 95% UV protection.
    • Advanced Ventilation System: Adjustable forehead and chin vents, and two rear exhaust vents.
    • Plush, Nylex® Interior: Removable and washable cheek pads.
    • DOT Approved
    • SIZES: XS-XL

    Here is HJC’s helmet size conversion chart, just to try and be as helpful as possible 🙂

      Helmet Size Centimetres Hat Size Inches
      XXS 51-52 6 3/8 – 6 1/2 20- 20 1/2
      XS 53-54 6 5/8 – 6 3/4 20 7/8 – 21 1/4
      S 55-56 6 7/8 – 7 21 5/8 – 22
      M 57-58 7 1/8 – 7 1/4 22 1/2 – 22 7/8
      L 59-60 7 3/8 – 7 1/2 23 1/4 – 23 5/8
      XL 61-62 7 5/8 – 7 3/4 24 – 24 3/8
      XXL 63-64 7 7/8 – 8 24 3/4 – 25 1/4
      XXXL 65-66 8 1/8 – 8 1/4 25 5/8 – 26

    Choosing Your First ‘Big’ Motorbike

    January 27, 2009

    There are so many things to consider, beyond price, when choosing your first ‘big’ motorbike after passing your test, and I thought the easiest way to do this was to write this from my personal point of view as a female rider.  If there are other ladies out there facing the same dilemma then maybe, just maybe, reading about the things I had to consider may help you in your choice of motorcycle.

    I will try and briefly list the points I had to consider when choosing my bike.  Things like the physical size of the bike, its engine size, and the fact I had a restricted license so had to consider how a restrictor kit would affect my choice of bike.  What the seat height was, how wide it was and how much of my feet would be on the ground when at a standstill.  Where the centre of gravity of the bike was and how balanced I would feel on it.  And lastly what type of bike to buy and how old a machine I would get.

    The Seat Height
    The first thing I considered was the seat height of the bike.  I’m 5 foot 3 inches tall with an inside leg measurement, wearing my bike boots, of 32 inches (odd proportions as over half my height is legs!) and I’m about the 8 stone mark so I’m not exactly well built!  The physical size of the bike was as far as I was concerned rather an important issue. 

    I had learned on a cruiser style 125cc and after riding that and being so low to the ground I was convinced, when choosing my next bike, that I would be happier being able to get all of both feet on the ground.  So I was looking out for a bike which wasn’t too tall. 

    Being able to get all of both feet on the ground isn’t necessary.  Some people aren’t bothered by it, while others are.  I just found it made me feel that little bit more confident, especially when moving the bike around with the engine switched off, for example getting it in or out of the garage.

    Don’t forget you can lower a bike if your heart is set on it.  Check out my posts on Ride Height Adjuster Kits to see what your options are in that respect.

    The Width of the bike
    The width of the seat and bike can be an issue as well.  If the bike is wide then obviously your legs will be further apart when sitting on it.  Sorry ladies but it is true!  You may find that sitting on a wide bike will have you on tiptoes where as a narrow bike of similar height will enable you to flat foot.

    The Weight Of The Bike
    This was rather important to me as well, being small and slim.  I didn’t want to have a bike I would need help moving around, it would be very annoying (and possibly a tad embarrassing!) if I needed help moving it round all the time!  Once you are used to riding a larger bike the weight will become less of an issue, as it has with me.  

    The Centre Of Gravity
    How low or high the bikes centre of gravity is may be an issue.  With a lower centre of gravity the bike may feel more stable for you.  Where as one with a high centre of gravity can feel top heavy.  When I first sat on the GSX-R750 I realised how high its centre of gravity was and was afraid if I leant it over the weight might catch me by surprise and I would drop it, and that wouldn’t be a good thing to do! 

    Yes, more considerations! This bike-buying lark is a minefield! 😉

    The Engine Size
    As I have previously mentioned on this blog I passed the UK restricted motorbike test on a 125cc bike.  This basically means that I am restricted for two years from the date of my test as to what output any motorcycle I ride can have.  Any bike I buy must have a power output of less than 33bhp, or be restricted to that by other means. 

    So when looking for a bike I checked the list of ones with power less than 33bhp and decided I didn’t want any of them!  So the next step was to check which bikes could have a restrictor kit fitted so they were under the 33bhp.  I soon found that there are loads of bikes which can be restricted! 

    So there were plenty I could choose from, but when you consider my previous points the field was narrowed down again.  I had to choose a bike that would take the restriction happily, after all what’s the point of buying a small, light, narrow 1000cc bike and then restricting it? None as far as I could see! So a bike with a 400cc-600cc engine seemed the way to go, the choice of which model depended on all the rest of the issues I have already mentioned. 

    New Or Older Bike
    As much as I would have loved to ride out of a dealer on a brand new bike I decided that this was really something I didn’t want to do.  My first big bike was going to be the one I carried on learning on, the learning curve just doesn’t stop once you have passed your test!

    Chances are you will at some point drop your bike, and which would you swear about more.  The brand new bike you have just bought or the 15-year-old one which already has a few dings?  I would really swear at both but, in all honesty, if it was a new bike the swearing would be more profane and a whole lot louder!

    Me? I went for the older bike..

    Lastly.. 😀

    What Type Of Bike
    Cruiser, Tourer, Dual-Sport, Commuter, Sports?

    This seriously comes down to personal choice.  I personally love the sports bikes (and the old Z650’s) but my new baby had to be a sports bike.  The best advice I can give is to go to as many bike dealers as possible, see what sorts of bikes ‘float your boat’ and make sure you sit on as many as possible until you find the one which feels just right. 

    Following advice from my nearest and dearest I settled on the Honda CBR400RR.  Easy to restrict to 33bhp, small enough that I can reach the ground very easily, light enough that I can move her around and a low center of gravity which means she corners like she is on rails.

    Am I happy with her, and my choice, after almost a year?

    🙂 You bet I am! 🙂  

    You may also want to take a look at these posts which contain more advice and tips.

    Bikes Girls Can Ride

    Girls And Modern Sports Bikes

    Daytona Ladystar (M-Star) Boots – Help For The Vertically Challenged Motorcyclist!