The Achievable Dream 5-part series - the definitive guide on DVD for planning your motorcycle adventure. Get Ready! covers planning, paperwork, medical and many other topics! "Inspirational and Awesome!" See the trailer here!
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So you've done it - got inspired, planned your trip, packed your stuff and you're on the road! This section is about staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure. And crossing borders, war zones or oceans!
On the Road! is 5.5 hours of the tips and advice you need to cross borders, break down language barriers, overcome culture shock, ship the bike and deal with breakdowns and emergencies."Just makes me want to pack up and go!" See the trailer here!
Tire Changing!Grant demystifies the black art of Tire Changing and Repair to help you STAY on the road! "Very informative and practical." See the trailer here!
Ladies on the Loose! For the first time ever, a motorcycle travel DVD made for women, by women! These intrepid women share their tips to help you plan your own motorcycle adventure. They also answer the women-only questions, and entertain you with amazing tales from the road! Presented by Lois Pryce, veteran solo traveller through South America and Africa and author of 'Lois on the Loose', and 'Red Tape and White Knuckles.'
"It has me all fired up to go out on my own adventure!" See the trailer here!
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In the interests of balance (and to put ta-all-the-way's mind at rest! ) :
My pops used to work in the Road Safety department for Trunk Roads in Scotland. He says the vast majority of bike accidents are 'single vehicle incidents', in other words bikers being a bit daft and losing it on a corner etc. Therefore, if we all ride safe then motorcycling need not in itself be a dangerous activity.
Plus, I've had seven motorcycle accidents and am (essentially) fine. OK so one of my legs is a bit gammy but not so much that it's stopped me entering the Edinburgh marathon this year. So: ride safe, wear good kit and enjoy yourself!
*Disclaimer* - I am not saying my bike is better than your bike. I am not saying my way is better than your way. I am not mocking your religion/politics/other belief system. When reading my post imagine me sitting behind a frothing pint of ale, smiling and offering you a bag of peanuts. This is the sentiment in which my post is made. Please accept it as such!
You should both be ashamed of yourselves racing at 175 mph on a public road... It's not clever and clearly puts everyone else at enormous risk including it must be said other bikers!
Enough of this self-righteousness.
Imagine this situation for a minute:
Lone sportsbike rider travelling on a deserted major road or motorway - maybe early morning on a weekend.
The view ahead is clear for several miles, there are no other road users, no side turnings or junctions and the road is dry and in good condition.
The rider's doing about 70 or so, and seeing the clear road knocks down a couple of gears and opens the bike up. In a few seconds he's well past 150mph, holds it there for a mile or so, then slows the bike back down.
It's a scenario that gets played out every summer weekend across the country.
Who's at risk here? There are no other people involved and the rider is taking a calculated risk with his OWN safety. Modern sports bikes are designed to be ridden fast, and on a clear stretch of tarmac they are stable, composed and safe at these sorts of speeds.
I've ridden quite a few miles in Germany where on the right roads this sort of riding is regarded as perfectly normal and legal, and certainly doesn't cause the sort of moral outcry we get here.
Speed in itself is not dangerous. Ignorance, carelessness and stupidity are the things which cause accidents, and are qualities which many road users possess in abundance the moment they take control of a vehicle.
Back to the original topic - this is a forum with the emphasis on overland travel. I can't see that it's the place for promoting blood and guts snuff videos.
Really sorry to hear about your riding buddy, brother John.
We're all experienced motorcyclists, and I'm guessing we've all lost friends, riding partners, all seen the potential dangers of bikes from this dreadful perspective. Consequently, we all ride with this knowledge lodged somewhere in our domes. Adapt and survive. Nothing wrong with talking about training, but I didn't like the way this thread seemed to be slipping into 'Who can find the nastiest crash vid?' snuff-circle. That shit's unhealthy.
Enough snuff. Really. This has nothing do with overland travel, everything to do with grisly ghoulisness and sneering at spannered-up squids. We're all grown-ups. We all know motorcycles are potentially dangerous, inherently unstable - they accelerate like **** and fall over if you don't go fast. And we all choose to ignore that 'cause they're such a giddy hoot. Why not spend some time digging out cheeky inspiration rather than crash-burst porn?
Agreed Dan. No more of these videos please, or I will lock the thread. In fact, I am removing several links. If anyone wants to watch this sort of stuff, there are lots of other options out there in the wild wild web. I know there is teaching value in shock, but too much is too much.
At times it appears that we are our own worst enemies, a lot of sportsbike riders take great delight in taking a video of themselves and posting the film on sites like youtube etc, a more recent observation I have seen is football holiganism rearing its ugly head, I have seen first hand people filming their accomplices fighting at matches, I have seen the footage on youtube, all the time there are websites that are prepared to show this sort of thing then there are always people to oblige.
I used to drive trucks for a living and believe me I have experienced cars as well as bikes doing some incredible things, mainly getting into a 'blind' spot when you are indicating and making a left turn (UK roads). We just have to be very aware, and when riding with no other vehicles about remember our bikes like animals and can at anytime turn nasty and 'bite back'. I once joined a well known 'green lane' organisation, that offered in there leaflets to join them and 'see' the countryside............What a joke. 'see the countryside?' It was as much as I could do to watch 20 feet ahead as I was getting left behind on a 'beginners run' It turned out many of these so called 'beginners' were MotoX and enduro riders out practising, and they wonder why Horseriders and ramblers take such a dislike to us....Wake -up!. A lot of people seem to measure life in MPH....why?.
I mainly agree with Kentfallen, but to the others that boast of 175mph, why? I just hope for their sake they don't learn the 'hard way'
It wasn't my intention to offend anyone by posting these videos and I never looked on them as entertainment. I was merely using them to "kickstart" a lively discussion and debate. I will cheerfully apologise if anyone feels it's a bit OTT however it has had the desired effect.
I don't want to give the impression that I have never sped myself or broken road law on occasions but I can honestly say that as I get older I feel an increased inclination for self-preservation! These days I can be found most weekends (weather permitting that is) tootling around the Romney Marsh on a large Jap Thumper (XT or XBR). I honestly have no wish to go much faster than about 50-60 MPH. Besides, this is ample given the road conditions in that area.
As for the "danger freaks" here who boast of speeds approaching 200 mph - I hope as you get older you also get a bit wiser. It's simply not worth risking your own life and that of others who have as much right to use the road as you do.
I guess the most effective way to get the safety message over is to read that awfully sad story about a forum member losing his mate to a horrific bike accident! We have all been there... I have lost 2 close mates to bike accidents over the past 20 years (including a fellow bike cop wiped out by a foreign lorry on the M25). I am always greatly saddened when I hear of a fatal bike RTC because I appreciate it could just as easily been me.
Lets all slow down a bit and ride defensively (not forgetting our "lifesavers")...
To Redboots, condolences to you and your friend's family. Always sad to hear about "one of the family" involved in a tragic accident.
Whether you agree or disagree with Neil's way of sparking off a discussion, you have to agree it's worked. Nothing wrong with a little intelligent debate.
A friend of a friend is due in court for doing close on 90mph (with pillion) in a 30mph residential area. (It was actually my brother who caught him.) Now that's different as it's speed in an inappropriate place and no matter what, no-one in the right mind can condone that.
If a road is suitable and empty, the rider has the appropriate level of competence and the conditions are right then speed in itself is not dangerous, but a calculated risk, just like crossing a busy road is. As MarkLG said, and as anyone who has driven/ridden in Germany will tell you, these high speeds are not just common but the norm. BMW M5's, etc, own the roads out there and the drivers use them in the way they were intended, i.e. at 150mph+ on the autobahns. Even Merc Sprinters will bomb along at 100mph and I didn't see any accidents on the autobahn when I was there.
Admittedly, I wouldn't want to do much more than 80mph on an XT or similar but modern sportsbikes are purposely designed for such use. Get yourself to one of MCN's bike shows and blag a few test rides. I think you'll be impressed with the capabilities of such bikes. The new R6 for example, is nothing more than a thinly disguised race bike and you just wouldn't be getting the best out of it if you didn't thrash it. Also, who is more likely to cause an accident on a lonely country road, a alert rider who is maybe cracking on a bit quicker than the legal limit or some old duffer in his Daewoo Matiz, dawdling along and more interested in the scenery and where to stop for lunch than the road?
While on the subject of riding in the countryside, what gets me is fell walkers, etc, who complain about us spoiling their tranquility and condemn us for speeding in remote areas. They then go off on their little walks, knowing fine well that they can get way out of their depth and someone will risk their life to come and rescue them. At least most of us take responsibility for our own actions.
Here in South America at least, most of these sorts of links are wasted on us. In the internet cafes, the plugins are too outdated to load and run these things, and we don't get the priviledge of loading the updates.
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Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.
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