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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I’m new to riding, taking the MTC at the end of the month. I was hoping you guys can guide me in the right direction since I have no one besides YouTube. What gear should I buy that’s worth it, and tips I should know. I plan on getting a N400 after I complete the course and written test but I wanted to better prepare myself for this upcoming course and knowledge on gear. Helmet recommendations. Gear and safety are really my priority in trying to understand what’s my best route, as well as keeping things in a good budget. I’m located in Southern California, so weather is usually great, except for the summer, but recommendations for protective light weight jackets and some good gloves as well.
Now for the riding part, any videos you can recommend I watch and study to understand the basics of riding so I’m not completely helpless when I attend the course. Like buttons and clutch. Or if you’ve taken the MTC, any tips. I appreciate all the tips and help you guys can give me. Sorry for the long thread, just want to be safe and knowledgeable about this. I know driving a motorcycle is awesome but I understand it’s something I got to respect too and not be an idiot about. Thanks!
 

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2019 Ninja 400 ABS, Pearl Storm Gray
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Welcome! In SoCal, your temptation with the beautiful weather will be to dress down... So get a jacket and helmet and gloves and boots you won't mind wearing -- they won't do you any good strapped to the back of the bike (been there once many years ago, tumbling down the road!!!)... I have a textile (cortech) and a leather jacket, both with armor -- I use the textile when it is hotter and the leather when it is colder... I'm happy with my alpinstars gloves. Most (DOT) helmets are great these days -- my helmet (hjc fiberglass) is also Snell approved, but I think that means less these days than it did 20+ years ago. Mostly, get stuff you will be happy wearing! As for safety, I also run a bunch of extra reflective tape -- visibility is your friend. Have fun and be safe!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you so much Rich! I’ll definitely look into these items listed. Yeah I don’t want to dress down too much so knowing about these textiles with armor plates sound really good, so thanks for that! I appreciate it.

Welcome! In SoCal, your temptation with the beautiful weather will be to dress down... So get a jacket and helmet and gloves and boots you won't mind wearing -- they won't do you any good strapped to the back of the bike (been there once many years ago, tumbling down the road!!!)... I have a textile (cortech) and a leather jacket, both with armor -- I use the textile when it is hotter and the leather when it is colder... I'm happy with my alpinstars gloves. Most (DOT) helmets are great these days -- my helmet (hjc fiberglass) is also Snell approved, but I think that means less these days than it did 20+ years ago. Mostly, get stuff you will be happy wearing! As for safety, I also run a bunch of extra reflective tape -- visibility is your friend. Have fun and be safe!
 

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You are taking the course to learn, don't fill your head full of utube crap. They will teach you what you need and its quite simple once your on the bike.
 

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Hopefully you get told this on your course but just incase:
Keep your head up and look where you want to go, not directly in front of the front wheel.
It's the cornerstone of riding a bike whether your commuting or sports touring or racing or woteva.

Have fun out there first and foremost. :giggle:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I appreciate that man, I just like to be prepared. Thanks for the comment and I hope to be riding soon

You are taking the course to learn, don't fill your head full of utube crap. They will teach you what you need and its quite simple once your on the bike.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Awesome advice, thank you so much for this. I will keep this in mind for sure. Appreciate this comment!!

Hopefully you get told this on your course but just incase:
Keep your head up and look where you want to go, not directly in front of the front wheel.
It's the cornerstone of riding a bike whether your commuting or sports touring or racing or woteva.

Have fun out there first and foremost. :giggle:
 

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Weirdly enough, a mesh jacket will keep you cooler than a t-shirt at speed. It's due to the shading your skin gets from the sun. And I can't help but think that the jacket will slow down dehydration as well.

Helmets need to be tried on. Once you find one that seems right, wear it in the store for about 20 minutes just to be sure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
yeah I’m definitely looking into a good mesh jacket, I heard many good reviews and recommendations. Yeah I need to try on some helmets at a shop to really figure out what works best for me. Thank you for the comment!!

Weirdly enough, a mesh jacket will keep you cooler than a t-shirt at speed. It's due to the shading your skin gets from the sun. And I can't help but think that the jacket will slow down dehydration as well.

Helmets need to be tried on. Once you find one that seems right, wear it in the store for about 20 minutes just to be sure.
 

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Hi Alex & welcome to riding. Commit from the start to being a good technical rider. Don't be happy with going fast and riding poorly. It is very satisfying to improve every time you go out. Work on smoothness and stay safe!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Definitely going to be driving slow for a while, I don’t plan on going too fast until I get some solid practice in. Planning on taking an extra intermediate training course after I get the motorcycle. Thank you for this post, and you’re 100% right. Appreciate it

Hi Alex & welcome to riding. Commit from the start to being a good technical rider. Don't be happy with going fast and riding poorly. It is very satisfying to improve every time you go out. Work on smoothness and stay safe!
 

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I’ve been enjoying an alpinestars air mesh jacket and honestly it keeps me cooler than riding without it on those sunny days just as Baxter mentioned above.
Lesson I’ve learned so far is not to skimp on gloves. Pay a bit extra and get a quality pair. I’ve already had some that my finger put a hole through after just a few hundred miles of mild riding. I can only imagine what would have happened if I actually needed them for a fall.
I’m also a new rider in SoCal so if you ever want a riding buddy hit me up :) Ninja is a great choice to learn and grow on so far.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thank you bro, I’ll look into that alpinestar one. Yeah I agree with the whole jacket thing, definitely won’t skimp on that. Yeah I’m looking at reviews for some good gloves on revzilla. Oh nice! I’m trying to meet some new riders too, I’ll make sure to save this thread and hit you up when I get mine! :) thank you so much

I’ve been enjoying an alpinestars air mesh jacket and honestly it keeps me cooler than riding without it on those sunny days just as Baxter mentioned above.
Lesson I’ve learned so far is not to skimp on gloves. Pay a bit extra and get a quality pair. I’ve already had some that my finger put a hole through after just a few hundred miles of mild riding. I can only imagine what would have happened if I actually needed them for a fall.
I’m also a new rider in SoCal so if you ever want a riding buddy hit me up :) Ninja is a great choice to learn and grow on so far.
 

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2020 Ninja 400 ABS - Phantom Blue
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Welcome! Seems like you have your head in the right place, I agree with everyone's comments. I started riding at the start of COVID so no shops were open or allowed helmet try-ons, I ended up getting one too big and didn't even realize it, so 100% try them on and have someone help you. A good textile or mesh jacket would be perfect for SoCal, I personally have had an Alpinestars Viper V2 jacket that I've worn from 30 degrees to 100 degrees F and would still buy it if I could go back. Dainese Super Speed is also a great jacket. Everything fits everyone different though, I also didn't buy riding pants when I started and I regret it. In my first crash I was out of commission for 2 months for a 40mph slide. I recommend a pair of riding jeans with knee armor, or textile / mesh pants. We are lucky and have the best market for all types of gear now, you can get gear that doesn't even look dedicated for protection. Good luck man, stay safe and have fun!
 

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I’m new to riding, taking the MTC at the end of the month. I was hoping you guys can guide me in the right direction since I have no one besides YouTube. What gear should I buy that’s worth it, and tips I should know. I plan on getting a N400 after I complete the course and written test but I wanted to better prepare myself for this upcoming course and knowledge on gear. Helmet recommendations. Gear and safety are really my priority in trying to understand what’s my best route, as well as keeping things in a good budget. I’m located in Southern California, so weather is usually great, except for the summer, but recommendations for protective light weight jackets and some good gloves as well.
Now for the riding part, any videos you can recommend I watch and study to understand the basics of riding so I’m not completely helpless when I attend the course. Like buttons and clutch. Or if you’ve taken the MTC, any tips. I appreciate all the tips and help you guys can give me. Sorry for the long thread, just want to be safe and knowledgeable about this. I know driving a motorcycle is awesome but I understand it’s something I got to respect too and not be an idiot about. Thanks!
TL;DR, butt welcome. :LOL:
Sorry, I have the attention span of a gnat!
 

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Thing that got me more than once was dehydration. You might feel good with the wind on you but that sun and gear make you sweat then your reflexes go and such. I like to go for long rides 6-8 hrs so I ended up getting one of those hydration backs you can sip on.
 

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I generally like RST, really good products, great prices. RST pro jeans just over $200(little high) but come with knee and hip armor. RST Evo short gloves, very good quality and like $65. RST Evo 3 short boots, I have the full boots as well either is like $150-170 or so and should be closer to $250. Have a Joe Rocket classic jacket, def too heavy for socal. Shoei R12 helmet $380. I generally buy all my stuff from STG, sportbiketrackgear.com all the guys who answer the phone know their **** and tons of product videos in their product pages and on their YouTube channel.
 

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Welcome to the wonderful world of two wheels! Everything posted above is spot on. Something else to consider: While the "rules of the road" are the same for cars and bikes, there are a number of things that apply to riders only. For example: get used to giving up your right of way. When the light turns green, don't immediately jump on the throttle. Take the extra couple of seconds to make sure there are no morons running the light. Where I live, everyone seems to think the morning commute is tryouts for the Indy 500; speed limits are more like suggestions, red lights (especially in the turning lane) mean 'stomp on the gas, and the vast majority of drivers have the mindset that if you let anyone pass you, it means you have a small penis.

Have fun, be safe and and always remember: just because you can, doesn't mean you should. 😎
 

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just make sure you are at least doing the posted speed limit. If you ride under you will piss of a lot of cagers and could cause you to wreck.
Definitely going to be driving slow for a while, I don’t plan on going too fast until I get some solid practice in. Planning on taking an extra intermediate training course after I get the motorcycle. Thank you for this post, and you’re 100% right. Appreciate it
 
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