How the mighty have...

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I'll second that.
Every time I've wrecked a bike, it think, "What a tremendous waste of time spent making it how I wanted it. Wish I had crashed an old, worthless pos. The last one had oil change, tb synch, new fork seals and head bearings and a bunch of new paint on most of the body panels just before wasting it.
 

N0rt0nelectr@

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PAY ATTENTION ALL THE TIME !

Went for a ride on a Sunday with two buddies. One rode his metric cruiser and the other rode my ST 1300 . Absolutely beautiful day in the low 80’s - no humidity and not a cloud in the sky . I rode my 1950 Norton single which has a manual ignition advance on the left handlebar. Let in the clutch in first gear and then advance the ignition with your left thumb while rolling on the throttle. Leave it advanced while changing up or down until you get to bottom gear then retard just before coming to a stop. You are very busy operating machines of this nature but I have been riding this one for fifteen years now . We were riding two lane paved country back roads on a route I have traveled hundreds of times and I am intimately familiar with it.

I was in the front and came to an intersection with a stop sign - stopped , looked both ways and when no traffic was seen I proceeded across and reached for the advance with my thumb and it wasn’t there . I glanced down while I was in the intersection ( turns out I hadn’t retarded it before stopping - the rpm should have told me ) and when I looked up I saw the truck that I was about to cross in front of.
Instinct took over with stabbing in countersteer and stomping the inside peg . Turned right in the lane and then around the back of the truck which had never slowed .

My buddies whom had front row seats to this incredible stupidity on my part said it looked like an act in a motorcycle thrill show.

This was entirely my own fault and I am still beating myself up over it - as well I should . I allowed a simple distraction to take my eyes off the road for split second while in an intersection of all places. Thankfully no harm done to anyone or anything but my pride and my ego . I have been riding for over 50 years and this is as close as I have come to what would likely have been a fatality - yours truly being the likely victim. If by any wild stretch the driver of the red truck reads this I apologize for the likely stress I and I alone caused - my bad .

So maybe some good will come of this - I hope I have re- learned something and perhaps it will impress upon some who read it how vulnerable we are on motorcycles and how important it is to be vigilant. If something seems amiss wait for the appropriate time to assess the problem. Don’t allow complacency to creep in . Ride safely please - EVERYONE.
Years ago I was at a light, on my 47 ES2, in the outside lane. Turned green and as I got to the other side the driver of a car on my left decided it wanted to pull into the Circle K and pulled right in front of me. Good thing I was just getting my speed up and we didn't collide. Did need to stop and get the seat out of my backside, I was a serious pucker factor.
 
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I have had a few pile ups , the serious ones were all someone elses fault. I have it in my mind ,next time aim for the drivers door. Softest spot and maybe he wont be able to drive off leaving me in a heap. Bad thoughts?.
 
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I rode a motorcycle on public roads until I was 29. I fell off once when I broke a rear chain and once on a very slippery road, however I never had any other accident. I had so many near-misses that I gave up and went road-racing. At least if you crash when road-racing, you have usually done it to yourself.
My friend is the same age as myself, When he was 60, he stuffed an RD350 into a car which turned in front of him. He ended up in hospital with a steel shaft drive down the inside of the bone on his lower leg. He had road raced for years and rode regularly on public roads - and still got caught.
With motorcycles on public roads, it does not matter how good you are, they will still get you.
 
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I have been lucky , broken bones that healed. Not bad for about a dozen crashes . The most unlikey one in a car ,my car finished up inside the idiots up to the transmission tunnel. Yet no one got a scratch. Another time I wrote off a minivan with a Norton and flew high and far to only break a wrist. Just luck,and a very thick scull from bone growth after a fractured scull in childhood. I must just be lucky! Already had the virus weeks before the first recorded case in the uk. yeah, lucky! or something.
 
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Your stories humble me. I've been riding since '72, my main thought every time: They all will kill you. Avoid if at all possible.
Hoping everyone the best.
 
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A friend of mine once said 'every time we fall off while racing, we could be killed'. I never think like that. The only time I ever copped a serious injury, it was a dislocated collar bone, which could have easily been me neck. It is the only crash which has ever worried me and it makes me angry. It happened because of somebody else's stupid bloody ego. I have been off a couple of times at near 100 MPH due to locking drum brakes. If you don't hit anything, you usually walk away. But a nasty little crash at relatively low speed is sometimes a killer. I really dislike riding on public roads because some car drivers are homicidal. In racing the riders usually care for each other. To get killed while road racing, you usually have to be very unlucky. The most dangerous time is when you first start racing. After that, it is fairly easy.
 
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A friend of mine once said 'every time we fall off while racing, we could be killed'. I never think like that. The only time I ever copped a serious injury, it was a dislocated collar bone, which could have easily been me neck. It is the only crash which has ever worried me and it makes me angry. It happened because of somebody else's stupid bloody ego. I have been off a couple of times at near 100 MPH due to locking drum brakes. If you don't hit anything, you usually walk away. But a nasty little crash at relatively low speed is sometimes a killer. I really dislike riding on public roads because some car drivers are homicidal. In racing the riders usually care for each other. To get killed while road racing, you usually have to be very unlucky. The most dangerous time is when you first start racing. After that, it is fairly easy.
Tell that to Marco Simoncelli or Jarno Saarinen. I am really sick to death of hearing how unsafe public roads are and how safe racing is. When I was young, all my friends raced dirt bikes. I couldn't afford to have anything I couldn't use as transportation, so I rode on the street. They all tsk-tsked, wagged their fingers and shook their heads in knowing resignation. These days, they all limp from their "safe" dirt biking while I do not despite several pretty good crashes. And 99% of them ride no more. The street is potentially safer than the track because not everyone's going balls-to-the-wall with their hair on fire. Go tell your health insurance agent you are giving up "unsafe' street riding to become a "safe" motorcycle racer and see how long it takes them to cancel your policy.
 

Fast Eddie

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I’ve raced, I still do track days, and ride on the road.

I think the notion that racing is safe is utter nonsense.

Yes, there is solace in the fact there are no trucks, SUVs, drunks, mobile phones, cars full of kids, etc,etc. But this is then balanced by the fact that everyone on track has the red mist and is riding right up to, or beyond their level of safety and control.

It’s relatively easy to ride safe on the road if you so choose, just slow down and give way more. You can’t do that on a track, well if you do, you’re a bloody hazard !
 

cliffa

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Unfortunately I think riding on the road is rapidly becoming more hazardous that racing. I constantly see cars veering into the wrong lane, braking really late for a T junction or suddenly turning due to their lack of attention.
 

ashman

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Al we all know your thoughts on riding only on the track and really hearing it from you every time someone thinks differently to your own ways does get up most peoples nose, its ok that you are still racing when you can, but most of us riders prefer to ride all the time, not just a few times a year, nothing better than getting up early on a great day to enjoy what we like best, riding on the road can be safe if you watch what is happening around you, ride with the attention that everyone is going to try and kill you in their car, yes I have had a few spills on the road but that was when I was young and most of the time was my own fault pushing to hard and not paying attention to what was around me or the road itself, my last spill about 7 years ago involved my Norton when at slow speed had to brake very hard and the Norton threw me over the handle bars, was my first broken bones I ever had, my arm and thumb so not bad for over 45 years riding on the road, so really its the same whether you ride on the road or track you just got to be aware what's happening around at all times, think ahead and think what the other person is going to do in that car in front of you or beside you, and also remember everyone makes mistakes, including myself.

Ashley
 
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Thanks for all the responses guys. Have started stripping the bike and it's not been much fun.

Gotta say uncle Al, I hear ya, but it's not like I can spend my life wrapped in cotton wool, or decide to never get out of bed again. Sure, this "accident" was a bad one and really, the only one I've ever had. I've made plenty of mistakes in the past, have thrown a couple of bikes down the road and broken bones in my time, but this is the first time a stack has been completely out of my control. There's nothing I could have done to avoid it. If I was walking across the road, he still would have driven into me.

I've been riding for over 45 years, I'm not an old fart who "usta have a 'onda 4 when I was 18 so know how to ride real good". I've not been without a bike in all this time. I've done an advanced riding course a couple of years back, been doing track days on my TRX850, rode my XRx solo from Tidal River to Karumba and back and was planning a trip to Cape York on my Superdual X after some off-road training at Broadford. I am aware of my own limitations. Sure, riding on the road is full of danger, but that's how life should be - at least for me. That's not to say I'm a crazy risk taker - quite the opposite. There are plenty of guys I've ridden with who are much faster than me, I consider myself a cautious rider.

I'll rebuild the Norton and at least try to get back on the road. If I don't feel safe any more, I'll give it away. If I'm ok, I'll keep doing it. More track days and that (much delayed) Cape York trip.
 
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Ok, enough rant and let's get on with things.
Seat is usable, bit scuffed and a small tear or two, but that'll add patina huh.
Tank looks ok after a cursory exam. Will need a bit of filler and a repaint, but just maybe.
What's under it is another story though:

PiwO


Can't see any way that the frame would still be recoverable.
Note the headsteady too.

xcGj


Yuk.

cs0xA


LHS peashooter has a couple of dings on the inside. Haven't got the RHS one off yet. Both header pipes completely ruined.
Want to get the front end off next. I hope the front wheel can be salvaged.
 
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Unfortunately I think riding on the road is rapidly becoming more hazardous that racing. I constantly see cars veering into the wrong lane, braking really late for a T junction or suddenly turning due to their lack of attention.
The hot bikes sport nearly 200 bhp, where back in the 60's 40 bhp made a big fast bike. There's millions more vehicles on the road. There's so many factors relating to increased danger. No way motorcycles can be as safe as they were when Cannonball Baker crossed the country on dirt roads on a 30 bhp 500-lb whale. Electronic safety aids, protective gear and technology in general have all done their part to mitigate the danger, but riding motorcycles will always be a less-than-totally-safe activity.
 
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Ok, enough rant and let's get on with things.
Seat is usable, bit scuffed and a small tear or two, but that'll add patina huh.
Tank looks ok after a cursory exam. Will need a bit of filler and a repaint, but just maybe.
What's under it is another story though:

PiwO


Can't see any way that the frame would still be recoverable.
Note the headsteady too.

xcGj


Yuk.

cs0xA


LHS peashooter has a couple of dings on the inside. Haven't got the RHS one off yet. Both header pipes completely ruined.
Want to get the front end off next. I hope the front wheel can be salvaged.

I've never seen one that badly crunched where the rider survived. You are one lucky SOB to still be with us, Dave. You should immediately go out and buy a lottery ticket.
 
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I’ve raced, I still do track days, and ride on the road.

I think the notion that racing is safe is utter nonsense.

Yes, there is solace in the fact there are no trucks, SUVs, drunks, mobile phones, cars full of kids, etc,etc. But this is then balanced by the fact that everyone on track has the red mist and is riding right up to, or beyond their level of safety and control.

It’s relatively easy to ride safe on the road if you so choose, just slow down and give way more. You can’t do that on a track, well if you do, you’re a bloody hazard !

The more you race, the safer you become. When you ride on the road, it does not matter how experienced you are or how safely you can ride fast - they will still get you. You are not a threat to a car driver, so most do not even see you.
One thing I would say about dirt bikes - a lot of MotoGP riders come up through MX. You seen them on TV putting a foot down in corners when they get nervous. If you actually put you foot on the ground during a road race, you are likely to end up with it back-to-front. MX is the main reason insurance for racing is so high.
 
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When you first start road racing, is the only time it is dangerous. The more you do it the safer you become. My friend took Kevin Magee through his crash and burn stage. But it probably passed a bit too quick. Magee had his big crash at Laguna Seca. The guys who reach the top the quickest are those who are most at risk. Making come-backs is dangerous, if you have not got a good memory.
 
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