ATGATT stands for “All The Gear All The Time”.
While waiting for the Roadcrafter suit to arrive; I decided to get my old leather coat out of storage. Purchased at the flea market in Orange County, CA sometime in the mid-nineties, I’d somehow managed never to wear it. While some may lament the 90’s shoulder-pad styling, it is hard not to like the southwestern influenced design.
Thus far it has been pretty comfortable, the leather seems sturdy, and you know… I don’t mind the smitten looks that I receive while wearing it one bit ;).
The MSF beginner’s riders class that I took a month or so ago required shoes that covered the ankles and I ended up buying a pair of the Brahma Hutch II lace-less steel-toe boots from Walmart. Wearing now for a about a month I’ve been really impressed; they are comfortable, broke in really easily, and slip on and off pretty quickly. Perhaps the only downside for motorcycle-riding is that the steel-toe makes for awkward shifting and breaking. For that reason I’m looking at buying some real motorcycle boots pretty soon; in particular the TCX X-Five.
All in all for only $30USD this is a really nice boot.
After a good bit of research I decided to go with a Shoei RF1100. After a few hundred miles I’ve found it to be really nice; comfortable, a lot of air goes through it, and it doesn’t squeal when you are sitting behind a windshield like a couple of reviews that I had read suggested.
Perhaps the most bothersome discovery is the ridge on the top of my head that is going to force me to purchase some extra padding or something to level out the top of the helmet so it quits giving me a headache!
One “funny” thing I found in the owner’s manual was a warning that if you purchase the Matte Black helmet then you need to be extra, extra-careful about protecting its finish. Great!
I took the bike to SouthEast Sales for them to do a general inspection and service. Here is what they did:
- Change motor oil & filter
- Change hypoid oil
- Change coolant
- General inspection & safety check
- Perform the 6200m maintenance schedule
- Odometer: 6491 miles
Last Friday I took my first real ride on the bike. It was a lot of fun. Riding a bike with a 10k redline was also a new experience for me which made it fun. Honestly, it was sort of shocking to me, the engine seemed to have 3 moods:
I wondered where the engine should live for normal cruising, and Dale explained that where it seems happy, it is happy. Great. I can’t wait to get back out again to spend some time with my M.U.T.T. Who is M.U.T.T?
As Dan explained… the “Monster Under The Tank”!
Here is a photo of the 2005 Kawasaki Concours that I bought last week:
I can’t wait to get her cleaned up, my riding gear sorted out, and out on the road again.
The previous owner included some nice gear with the bike:
- Rifle Windshield
- Throttlemeister Cruise Control
- GenMar Bar Risers
- Cee Bailey Bag Liners
- Mag’s Bags Gear Bag
- Passenger backrest
- CoverMax cover
Not having ridden for 12 years or so, I thought it would be good to get back in the saddle again with some off-street street-time and re-learning of good safety habits already under my belt. Luckily for me a slot opened up in Motorcycling Enterprises’ Safe Rider Course. It was a lot of fun.
The teachers provided excellent in-classroom and on-the-track training; balancing good exercises with 1-on-1 attention that made a big difference in how quickly you acquired the skill(s).
Unfortunately for others I’m sad to see that they are retiring this year. While there are plenty of MSF certified classes out there, I’m still hoping that their trainers decide to take over their business.