Brand New Rider - Honda Shadow Forums : Shadow Motorcycle Forum
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2011, 02:51 PM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Pensacola, Florida
Posts: 23
Brand New Rider

I just purchased my first bike. A 1999 Honda Shadow VT600C/VLX with 13,500 miles for $1,000.

I took the motorcycle course, and it was moderately helpful with handling but the instructors were not very into answering questions. To be honest, I am not sure what questions I should ask, so I will start with these:

1. Does anyone have any pointers for a new rider?
2. My bike sputters a bit in lower gears, any suggestions on what it could be?
3. The chain it a little loose but it doesn't look to be in awesome shape. Should I replace it instead of tightening? Are there any risks to running on a bad chain aside from breaking down?
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2011, 03:02 PM
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Location: Weber County, Utah
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Welcome to the forums! Excellent buy on your bike. Please post pics when you can!

1. For a brand new rider just out of MSF, you should take your bike and practice your drills in a parking lot and then slowly venture to busier and busier roads as you get more comfortable. There's also a sticky above that has riding tips as well. It's a good read.

2. Kinda hard to know what's going on without seeing it, so can you elaborate on what you mean by sputtering? Is it jerking back and forth in lower gears (like a car would with a manual transmission and a driver learning how to use it)? Might be normal and can be lessened with more experience on the bike. Or do you mean something else?

3. Chains and sprockets on a VLX are usually good for up to 15-18k miles (in my experience). Yours is probably okay but don't forget it needs to be greased every 500 miles. I prefer a product called Chain Wax as it doesn't get flipped all over the bike when you apply it. However, if it does bother you, then get it replaced. Remember that you should replace chain and sprockets at the same time to get the best results and longer life.

You're right. I could die riding my bike. I could also die while driving my cage. I could die while crossing the street. I could die from cancer. I don't live life worrying about what might kill me. I just enjoy life as I see fit.

"The Flying Purple People Eater"
2001 Honda Magna 750: ride bell from I-AM-TIM and Daunte's grip ends
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2011, 05:41 PM
Join Date: Apr 2010
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to the hoard. Good find and ride safe, keep it on the low side.

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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2011, 05:46 PM
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Location: Shepherdsville Ky
Posts: 1,245
Check out ride like a pro
Try some seafoam or berrymans check plugs invest in a Honda manual

2008 Honda 750C2 sorta

In 2008, 42% of fatally injured bikers were not wearing helmets; 30 states do not require helmets for all motorcyclists.

So it's safer to not wear a helmet, as 58% deaths WERE wearing a helmet
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2011, 05:50 PM
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Location: Indiana
Posts: 158
Hello and welcome!

Momma's Aero

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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2011, 05:59 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Wichita, KS
Posts: 35
Welcome, newbie! Conga Rats on the new whip, what a deal!

Getcha some good gear (preferably armored, IMHO), don't ride beyond your abilities, and most importantly, have fun!

If you're not very handy with a wrench, take your new baby to a local bike shop. They'd appreciate the business, and you can rest safe knowing that a professional had a look-see and gave it his blessing!

Once again, welcome!

"Four wheels move the body, two wheels move the soul." - Anonymous

2007 Spirit 750, bone stock. Silky smooth and as reliable as an anvil. RIDE RED!
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2011, 06:08 PM
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 48

When you buy an older bike you might as well change all the fluids,plugs,filters and replace chain if necessary. Why not?A few bucks now could save you a lot of money and headaches later on.

And as far as running with a bad chain... Imagine your chain breaking and getting caught in your wheel and locking it up at 65 mph. Might mess your day up a little.Why risk your life to save 30 bucks?

97 Shadow A.C.E 1100
04 Kawasaki ZX-10R
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2011, 06:21 PM
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Location: Auckland, NZ
Posts: 587
Welcome and what everyone else said...

Life is a daring adventure or nothing - Helen Keller

'05 Honda Shadow Aero

'72 CB350 K4

'79 C50 Cub
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2011, 06:43 PM
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Location: good ole' kentucky
Posts: 3,537

I started out with nothin'... and i still got most of it left.

2006 Honda VTX-1300R
Memphis Shades Batwing, Stock "C" Model Pipes, Mustang Seat, Mustang Fender Bib, National Cycle Hard Bags,
Lindby Multibar, Küryakyn Sound System, Küry ISO Grips, Show Chrome Grille Cover, Küry L.E.D Light Kit, Küry Triple Whammy,
Küry Constellation Light Bar, TTO Tach, Metzeler Tires, Chromed Wheels and much, much more.
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2011, 06:53 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: The Great State of Texas
Posts: 298
Welcome and grats! Lot's of great advice already given. Practice Practice Practice. Ride like your invisible. Be safe out there.

2008 Shadow Spirit VT750C2F
CMA# 139428
Green Knights MMC Chapter 63
U.S. Army Aviation: 1977-1983

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