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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Older riders, do you think riding the old thin steel double loop flexy framed bikes of the 70s-80s made you a better rider . IMHO I think riding a bike that was twisting/flexing/sliding under you prepped you for when a bike got out of shape when you where riding at the limit on any bike even the new phenominal bikes of today. I have a 2016 Kawasaki H2. Riding twisties with guys riding New Suzuki GSXR1000RR, Honda CBR1000RR,new Yamaha R1 have said to me they thought I would crash at every turn when seeing the rear of my H2 sliding around/squirming (The H2 rear steel tube frame is just 1 thin tube on each side of bike no additional support , so it flexes/squirms when you push bike around corners) I know its flexing/squirming around but it just reminds me of old GPZ/kz CB750s ect ect that flexed more and without any traction control/electronics. And my skills have deteriated ALOT with age and injuries.
 

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Better ride - not sure. But certainly different.

I remember old 2Ts with fondness and have owned and restored a few recently. I described my last KR250 as being like it had a hinge in the middle of the frame :)
 

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Everybody whinged about Mach IV's back in the day and still do regarding handling but I thought mine was fine.

Backing it in like a dirt bike and drifting it out of roundabouts on K81's...just par for the course.

I was 17 and had NO fear...that was after the broken pelvis / ankle but....like I said..17.

My Z1000 (25) used to get a bit of a weave up at speed but not as bad as the XS1100 (23) where the front tire lost it's air fairly quickly at 100mph...that was a bit scary..

Did any of that make me a better rider?

Not for a few years....we all (most?) settle down with age and by the time I'd moved onto Speed Triples (43), Diavels (53) and MV's (57) I had already toned it down.

Better to keep riding albeit a bit more sensibly.
 

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Yay! I remember the old K81s, first marketed as TT100 as I recall. Had them on my CB750 K1. They were the tyre to have!:wink2:
Yup, had them on my Commando too. Now there was an interesting handling bike when the Isolastic wasn't shimmed up right!
But even now I like softer suspension settings so you get a bit of a wallow when cornering, it seems to make it all bit more forgiving.

Of course the Guzzi's skinny front forks also gave a bit of that feel.:surprise:
 

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Interesting subject. I have been riding British bikes daily since the early 70s'. 100,000 miles on a Bonneville, 250,000 miles on a Norvin, 50,000 miles on a Vincent HRD and have just now added a BSA Rocket 3 to that lot. They all hold a line around a corner so easily, some thing the MV will not. Its always trying to turn in on itself and wanting to fall in. Its takes concerted effort to steer it out to keep it up right.
 

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50 years of riding this year and no, old bikes are just that "old" give me new all the time. Better suspension, gadgets etc etc. Keeps me young, lol. To many people still live in the past.
 

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Hmm, been riding since 1967. The older bikes had stamped steel frames (Honda Super 90). Not fast or powerful enough to really show handling faults. But, extremely fun!!
 

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...do you think riding the old thin steel double loop flexy framed bikes of the 70s-80s made you a better rider . < snip >
No, not exactly. What makes a person a better rider is “experience”. The more you ride the more you learn. The more different motorcycles you ride the better. But! Most important of all is the different conditions you ride in. The greater the difference the more your knowledge base will grow.
Remember when King Kenny first took Europe buy storm? He and the other North Americans who followed all had off road, steeplechase and oval dirt track experience. The Europeans didn’t have that knowledge back then. Now look, all the top riders have dirt experience of one kind or another. Heck, most have their own dirt tracks and dirt ovals to practice on.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
OGLRIP 250,000 ,100,000 AND 50,000 MILES? Y OU ARE MY HERO. You got that many miles out of old tech Nortons ect. You can get 300,000 out of an MV AGUSTA LOL You my friend are a true hard core rider.
 

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Older Riders, Do you think riding old flexy ill handing bikes made you a better rider

For me, no.

I rode dirt bikes first ('60s) then a street bike, when I got my license.
To this day I do not encourage either end, of my street bike, to break traction... especially whilst turning.
 

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I raced a bit of AHRMA 350 for 5 yrs, beginning right around when I got my '95 916 and I truly believe that experience made me a better rider, plus the track days that I did with it. At 38 hp w drums, you had to manage your revs and available power and be careful not to overheat the brakes, esp at Daytona. But with sticky Avons, no cats, dogs or fences, you could really focus on improving your technique. A very good racer at AHRMA told me once to "go slow to go fast" when starting out and I felt that this was great advice - work on the technique first and then the speed will come. And it did, managing a few "top tens". I think about that statement every time I do a sportbike ride today.

But the "really fast" guys were virtually uncatchable, at least for me anyway.
 
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