My crazy route to an F4 -
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post #1 of 41 (permalink) Old 06-25-2015, 03:17 PM Thread Starter
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My crazy route to an F4

Less than 2 weeks ago, I was the proud owner of a mint 2008 312R with 3500 miles. My first sportbike and my first MV.

I'll be totally honest. The 30 mile ride home, a portion in rush hour traffic, the rest on rural twisty backroads, was the most visceral, aural, exhilerating and terrifying motorcycle experience I've ever had since I first swiped the keys to my roomate's GPZ1100 some twenty five plus years ago and taught myself to ride.

I came not even close to pushing the MV to its potential, never kissing the redline limit or unleashing a quarter of the 183 horses. Exactly ten minutes into the ride home, still in urban Seattle and with the heat rising off the bike, I wondered immediately if I had just made a big mistake. The ergos of the bike were all wrong, my legs and knees and wrists felt contorted as if I was in some kind of medieval rack where they place people who haven't paid taxes to the crown.

It wasn't until I hit the freeway and had a chance to crack her open just a bit, enough to hear those four Arrow trumpets wail like an F1 Ferrari, that I started to smile. Hitting the rural twisties, it felt incredibly odd and unfamiliar to me, same way I felt when I tried to follow a buddy up a muddy clay rutted hill after I brought my Husqvarna enduro out to play in the dirt for the first time. I've been riding a big flat wide handle-barred KTM, and pushing the MV around with my body felt foreign. I probably looked like a total squid (only a well-ATGATT'ed one) taking corners at ridiculously slow speeds. The Husky took me a while to get familiar and comfortable and so will the MV.

Hitting the last few miles to my house, I chanced to pass a few cars and cracked open the throttle cautiously, then a bit more (still nowhere near this beast's limits). That crazy wail began filling up my ear canals and its shriek bouncing off the cars, causing the drivers to wonder where in the hell a Ferrari had suddenly appeared out of thin air.

This bike was twelve kinds of wicked.

By the time I got home, I had become one with the pain in my lower back and wrist, but twisting that throttle past 5k rpm was like pushing a morphine button after surgery...the pain just seemed to fade away.

Less than 48 hours later, the 312R was lying on its side on the freeway.

The incident was caused when an ambulance ahead of me drifted onto the shoulder and a very large object shot out from its rear wheels directly into my front tire, blowing the tire and bending the rim back, locking it against the caliper (thereby locking the wheel), and slamming me on the highway for a nifty slide at 60 mph in heavy traffic.

Thanks to the gods shining on me, other motorists making quick and smart decisions, and my decision to be wearing excellent Motoport gear, I limped away from the crash, nothing broken. The 312R was torn up on the right side where it slid, but thankfully no tumbling. I was happy to emerge relatively ok, all things considered, but really really bummed about the mint 312R now bloodied.

Because I sincerely believe that what doesn't kill you makes you stronger, this week I located and purchased a mint 2007 F41000R, with 1350 miles, less than ten miles from where I bought the 312R. I also bought back the 312R, which my insurance totaled.

The 312R is absolutely rebuildable. The frame was ground down a bit on the right side, but not dented or bent. The rest of the plastics (nose, rear, mirrors) suffered predictable rash. The forks look fine, though the bottom features some nice rash.

To get it ship shape as a track bike, the 312R needs:

1. New front rim/tire
2. Right side fairing
3. windshield (cracked)
4. front brake lever
5. rear brake pedal

The question is really what to do with it. I can keep it as a parts bike, as nearly everything is transferable. Or I can add those 5 items, and now I've got a track bike/beater that I needn't worry about crashing.

I had a crazy thought to build it back as a Brutale style naked bike - a true canyon hooligan, with a more upright bar, and leaving the side fairings off, but fitting some sliders, or adding cheap track fairings with a matte-black finish. But the main obstacle seems to be locating a triple clamp, plus new cables, that would accommodate a wider flat bar like the brutale has.

Would appreciate all thoughts about the options and task ahead.

Hopefully these pix will show:

The 312r before my incident (moment of silence):

The bent wheel:

The replacement F1000R

Last edited by davehg; 06-08-2017 at 07:26 PM.
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post #2 of 41 (permalink) Old 06-25-2015, 04:15 PM Thread Starter
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Some crash pix of the gear below. I slid about 100 feet, on rougher asphalt (road gets rough due to semi trucks and winter studded tires), and tumbled a few times. The guy in the car behind me stopped, and later emailed me his perspective:

Things were definitely dramatic from our viewpoint. One of the craziest things I've seen while driving. Here is a recap of what I saw...

We had just rounded the corner in the right hand lane and we could see the exit up ahead... In front of us a little ways ahead in my lane was the ambulance. As we were going along I saw them start to drift towards the shoulder to the point that they were splitting the shoulder line with their vehicle. It was then that I saw something come under their ambulance and shoot left towards you. I saw it hit your front wheel, the bike wobbled for a split second and then went down on the right side of the bike. The person behind you had slammed on their brakes and swerved to avoid you and the bike. In the initial part of the slide you were under the bike and I could see you trying too kick away from it. You were able to but continued to slide, heading towards the right (into my lane). I was already braking as soon as I saw you go down but I then had to break a lot harder and steer to avoid you. You did a few rolls and slid further on your back and butt until you started to slow down. At that point you popped up and ran a few steps to the shoulder.

Heat/friction rash, not road rash, because I was wearing just gym shorts and a light tee shirt underneath the Motoport


Shoulder where I first impacted:

Front of pants. Knee shredded the top layer, but didn't burn through the inside layer or armor:

Butt side:

knee armor underneath

Gloves held up well too

Last edited by davehg; 06-26-2015 at 01:56 PM.
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post #3 of 41 (permalink) Old 06-25-2015, 08:04 PM
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Wow! First of all, glad to hear you came off relatively in a great shape. Could have been lot worse. The riding gear did great as well. Most importantly, you didn't break a bone. Questions: I am guessing your pants and jacket weren't zipped together to form a single-piece suit? In other words, if not zipped together, did the jacket roll off exposing your hip? I wear Vanson leather overpants, and not zipped to jacket. It always concerns me.

Kudos to you for not giving up on F4 and finding another in a hurry! As you gain more experience with it, you will love it more! It is one of THE best sounding bikes (at least the first gen), with possible exception of RSV4.

Welcome to the club!
cheers. henry.
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post #4 of 41 (permalink) Old 06-25-2015, 08:18 PM
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Quite a story. Track bike for sure.
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post #5 of 41 (permalink) Old 06-25-2015, 09:24 PM
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Thumbs up !

great story.......glad you're OK

the bike will be an easy fix

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post #6 of 41 (permalink) Old 06-26-2015, 12:47 PM
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Glad to hear that you were not hurt

Btw the pics don't seem to working
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post #7 of 41 (permalink) Old 06-26-2015, 01:26 PM
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So that's where all the MV's for sale went...


Well first off, very glad you survived. I've known of many freak accidents over the years. One involved a card carrying racer on the freeway up by Everett Washington and a blue trap that blew off a truck ahead of him. He didn't make it. I myself had a gal pull a U-turn in front of me 5 1/2 years ago; I got to live at Harborview in Seattle for a month. Yours could have been so much worse.

Oh, and like the poster above, I can't see your photos? Sure wish I could...

Now then, I sold my F4 about a year ago to fund a project I got too involved with, and have been watching Craigslist since to keep up on what's out there.

Was your 312R the one at Moto Corsa in Portland? There was another in the Seattle area with the same miles and same color (both white 1+1s) that seems to have sold in the last few weeks. I'm guessing you must be in Portland, because I think I saw the '07 in the Portland CL also, a black one?

I had bought my '05 F4 in Portland three years ago, and the fellow that bought it from me took it back down there. Good guy, maybe he'll see this and chime in. I'm West of Seattle across Puget Sound.

Anyway, take care and keep us up on your progress on that 312R, and your progress too of course.

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post #8 of 41 (permalink) Old 06-26-2015, 02:05 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for the welcome and kinds words. I was having trouble with my photo locker, so moved over to Flickr. Pix should be visible now.

Originally Posted by henry-a View Post
Questions: I am guessing your pants and jacket weren't zipped together to form a single-piece suit? In other words, if not zipped together, did the jacket roll off exposing your hip? cheers. henry.
I was wearing their Marathon jacket - not zipped together (though you can get that option, which I may do when replacing the gear). I had a light rash on my left lower back, but the jacket didn't ride up, I think this was just friction rash.

Originally Posted by JAndrewG View Post

Was your 312R the one at Moto Corsa in Portland?

John, the 312R was the one advertised in Craigslist in Seattle (I live on the Eastside). The 1000R replacement was a fellow employee who had posted it for sale in our company's internal discussion list. Funny to find nearly identical bikes, in mint low mileage condition, less than 10 miles apart.

I looked at the 312R last night, it fared better than I thought, thought the frame part that was ground down a bit looks ugly. I'll try to post some pix.

On the lookout for those parts listed above, if anyone has spares they'd like to offer or sell. I think track bike is the way I am headed.
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post #9 of 41 (permalink) Old 06-26-2015, 02:21 PM
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Shit man. Fixing the bike is the fun part. I just did the same thing. Only not as fast. Build it back
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post #10 of 41 (permalink) Old 06-26-2015, 03:28 PM
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Ahhh, you bought the one from Seattle. The seller had four bikes he put up in separate ads at the same time, and three of them were bikes I'd have loved to have. The first was your white 312R, then he had a cherry V11 Guzzi with that super cool Magni fairing. Last, he had a very nice Duc ST4s in yellow. Love those too.

Your pictures are fixed now, and wow. You really are fortunate to not have worse injuries. Good on you for buying and wearing good gear, head to toe. You see all the guys out there in this nice weather with t-shirts and shorts? That guy crashes like you did and he won't have enough donor skin left to graft.

Your replacement '07 wasn't on the open market yet, that explains it. Yeah, really is funny that it was available and is so much the same bike.

Take care,

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