Why do you need motorcycle wisdom? Because you don't want to lose any more money or skin than you have to. I've lost both, but mostly money. It still hurts either way. If you're just learning to ride a motorcycle, or thinking about it, make sure you take enough time to get some motorcycle wisdom. If you're an experienced rider you can still benefit from taking a motorcycle safety course from the motorcycle safety foundation. I learned a lot of things the hard way and that usually cost a lot more than doing it right in the first place. It may help to be aware of these advantages and disadvantages of motorcycling.
For instance, motorcycle clothes. There are lots of choices to sort through. Motorcycle riding boots, helmets, rain gear, suits, gloves etc. I'll share some of the choices I've made, good and bad, so I can help you avoid the mistakes, wasted money and frustration. Like buying a cheap rain suit and having it split open on the highway. Remember, it will probably be raining at the time!
Then of course there is the bike itself. There are tons of choices here too. From what brand, to what type, to what size and on and on forever. I've owned Honda, Harley, Yamaha and BMW. Which one is best? I think you know the answer. It depends on each individuals wants and needs. In my early riding days, I mostly bought small used bikes to learn on. It's best not to have an expensive new machine to begin with since you will likely fall over on it once or twice. Or several times like I did.
There are many different brands out there, so ask around and take your time. A little extra research will probably pay off in the long run. Don't go too crazy with your money to begin with until you decide it's something you will want to continue doing.
For those of you that are looking for antique motorcycles for sale, I found a neat shop in western Iowa called Baxter Cycle. They specialize in Triumph and old British bikes like BSA and Norton. They have a lot of them for sale and a boatload of parts. They ship stuff all over the world. If you get a chance you should go check it out.
I'll be adding more articles as time goes on, so check back often and learn from my mistakes. Motorcycle Wisdom can be acquired much easier and cheaper than the way I did it.
Mitch Ferguson, May 2009