Freaky Moment & it happened so fast I need help or advice getting over my fear

by Candy
(Wisconsin )

My husband surprised me with a 2010 Iron 883XL Sportster in 2010. I fell in love with the bike the first moment I saw it on a postcard I received from a Harley Dealership. I decided to take the
Motorcycle Riding Safety Course and get my license. If I have one word of advice is don’t get a bike because of the way it looks! I never felt quite comfortable on my bike. When I first got my license I rode all the time. Last year I could not ride I had surgery on my left arm due to nerve problems.
I became pretty rusty with riding. Some friends of ours just got there license and bought new Harleys. My husband has been riding since he was a kid. We went out early in the morning at around 9:30AM and rode until 2:30PM we did a lot of highway riding that day. I was almost home and just took a exit off the highway and was making a right hand turn at a stop sign and it all happened so fast I don’t know what the hell I was doing or thinking. I gave too much throttle and let out on my clutch, I was not thinking clearly and then started losing control of my bike and then I think I had target fixation, I was heading towards a car in the opposite lane head on. I am glad I had enough time to think and gain control but is scared the crap out of me. Because it could have ended differently. I just left a dealership earlier in the day and was going to trade my bike in for a 2014 Softail Slim. I sat on the bike and fell in love. I said I was not going to let this incident get to me. But I can’t help it, it does! I am hoping if I trade my bike in I will feel more comfortable. Has anyone else ever had this experience? I don’t know if I was exhausted and not thinking right? All I know is I don’t want it to happen again!!!

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Oct 09, 2014
Freakiest moment
by: Anonymous

Please don't trade your bike because you had a freakie moment with it and then get another. Only trade it if you found something you like better..I too have had moments and on different bikes. the bike you have and the one you wan't are both real good bikes. Get out there, be careful and build up your confidence both in yourself and in the bike whatever you ride.

Jul 31, 2014
That is me....almost!
by: Deborah

SO comforting to read your post. I am getting back to riding after many years, and taking the safety course. I am small and really value low seat height over everything else. Believe it or not, I am in love with a 883 hardtail, custom bike, it is so low and light. I do know how tough they can be and at the moment it would be for going to get ice cream no long distance cruises etc. Still feel more comfortable on that than sportys. BUT I too sat on the slim, and fell in love couldnt believe a big bike could be so balanced I am 5 4 a nd 110. I dont know what to do.No others feel "right" ALso, I really dont have 16 thousand clams at the monent!! I am so scared of dropping the damn thing though!!!More scared of making a dumb choice! The test drive thing seems crazy..I would be so nervous to take a brand new bike out on the road. Really dont know what to do, and I want to get something right away so I make my self ride.

Jul 27, 2014
Throttle control
by: Eleanor

I had a similar experience when I first took my new bike out. Basically I gave it to much throttle because I was used to driving a cruiser that needed throttle. I took a hard fall like you did, and hurt my leg pretty badly. I talked to some guys about it and was told that my new bike cut thru the wind more like a knife, so do not use the throttle on turns.
It took a bit time to heal my leg, and then I cried with fear when I got back on my bike. But, I did it!

I read somewhere that you should always take a lesson from a pro when you get a new bike. I will in the future.


Jul 25, 2014
Why limit yourself??
by: Judy

I see this all the time (especially with people posting here), in that many folks seem to only recognize one type (Cruiser) and brand (Harley) when there are SO MANY types and brands of bike to learn on and choose from! Why limit yourself??

Large Cruisers (and also, 600cc+ Sport Bikes) are NOT good bikes to learn on....period!
Heavy Cruisers have poor slow speed handling characteristics, limited suspension, and a distinct lack of ground clearance. Supersport bikes are have hair-trigger responsiveness to chassis, braking and throttle input.

But there are many, many "Standard" or "Naked" bikes (w/o fairings or windscreens) that have a very neutral seating position, and are lightweight and easy to handle for new riders. There are also street legal dirt bikes that allow riders to learn off-road first, which is a great benefit to transition to street riding, as you not only learn to deal with diverse surfaces, but to also master basic riding skills without the issue of traffic to complicate matters.

Think outside the "Harley only" box...there are tons of bikes out there far easier to learn on. You can also move up in size when you have a few years of riding skills under your belt.

Jul 24, 2014
by: Anonymous

Living in Iowa we become rusty after not riding for a few months. In reading your comments the first thing I want to say is that you corrected your situation and did not have an accident. Good Job!It does scare the crap out of you. I am wondering with your surgery and not riding for some time if the this ride perhaps was too long. It appears from the article this was your first ride back on the bike. All bikes handle differently. Do you have a dealer that you can test ride a Softail? I personally will not purchase a bike unless I can ride it. There really isn't any way of knowing if it is right for you unless you do so. I don't think you want to give up riding from your article- just take it slow until you build up stamina again from not riding. Your skills will come back to you. Good luck!

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