So we ride distance sometimes short, sometime long because
we love to ride. Before we had a motor license it was probably the simple cycle
that gave us the sense of exhilarating freedom and taste of wind in the hair.
The motorcycle glamorized it and was the next stepping stone and there you are
enjoying – BUT hey - did you fall from your bike? Sometime somewhere … You must
have as there may not be a perfect born riderJ.
Hoping all’s well – as you have to learn to crawl before you learn to walk.
Falling is ok as long as the God of chance takes care of us.
The safest option gentlemen and ladies would be to sit at home under the bed.
But then that’s not our stuff! Riding is
also all about overcoming one’s fears of falling and getting a grip on the bike
and the road – life itself.
Risk is everywhere. There is no place without risk – though
you may travel by walking on footpaths, running, cars, trains, airplanes or
motorbikes - but what one can do is to minimize risk. You can wear protective
gear while riding; you take care of the road rules, and use your sense of
judgment to cruise on your motorbike. That’s about it – what’s in your control.
It’s always good to be protected when you are on a two
wheeler. Even a small spin just around the corner – because you never know. You
can control your elements to an extent. It’s easy to advice – Do this and don’t
do this! From experience, I know in our tropical weather like India – dust and
40 degree temperature, rain and sweat, wearing all the protective gear all the
time is rarely followed – Classic example , see our 60 year old milkman
delivering milk all his life on his motorbike all 30 years balancing the milk
cans! – Protective gear? What’s that – Tau ki kare si ? Or the pizza delivery
guys or the daily commuters on two wheelers with minimal protection.
In the west you have ardent riders commuting to office on
their bikes in complete protective gear. I have seen them come in the cold with
heater jackets and in the English summer with good air vent jackets. In India
it’s a different ball game.
From experience, when one falls from a bike, you have the
weight of the bike falling on you which drags you along with the bike in
motion. The bike should be separated from the rider for optimal safety in a
fall – that’s why no bike manufacturer sells bikes with crash guards. It’s
always add-on dealer accessories !
Better have a simple small crash bar and not have
complicated huge multi level and layer metal crash guards. The aim of the crash
guard if used should be only to protect the engine and help you get up and walk
Wear shoes with ankle protection – your ankle comes under
the motorbike weight in a fall and you cannot stand or walk away if your ankle
Full face helmet always – helps protect face, jaws etc from
bruises and scars. Glamour and style can take a backseat. Use fancy helmets and
half face helmets for photo-sessions and selfies – NOT while riding.
Then you have jackets and pants with protectors to protect
the joints and spine etc.
So with all the equipment all can be safe in event of
a fall – though no one can predict how exactly what manner one can possibly
fall and the possible damages. Unpredictable. All the research on motorbike crash
bars have not been conclusive in any way too.
I remember many years ago on a short ride one of my friends
had a fall and had face and jaw injury. He was on a bike riding couple of spots
behind me. From the hills we approached a small town and some scooter guy
jumped across. Blood. ‘RED’ as red can be – the sight shakes a person. Another rider with us had an issue of fainting
on sight of blood. We managed to get medical help and ride on. I remember the
injured person’s father telling me at the hospital – You guys rode 2000 km in 3
days and he never had a scratch. Now look just a short ride and this is the
situation. What to say- I was speechless.
The psychological scars are something that takes time for
one to recover and get back to riding – and depends on person to person. One
has to overcome the fear of falling and ride again. It depends on the injuries
and the person’s spirit.
Here’s what one of my Croatian friends did in Germany. He
bought a bike had a few falls and then decided motor biking is not for him. All
being said – all of us have a knack at doing something better. If you do not
feel comfortable in something like riding motorbikes, then it’s better to drop
it and find something you are more comfortable. Simple.
Motorbiking is safe – just the risk of being exposed unlike
protected by cage in cars. You have millions of riders some 80 years old and still kicking ! If
you love motor biking and know it’s your calling- then RIDE on and - Ride safe.
May the God of chance be on our side – Always!
We may like to own 100 different types of motorbikes but maybe we cant afford it or may be we have no parking space.Then what can we do to do some justice to the desire... Probably think smaller ...Miniature motorbikes. You have it and its unique and fits in your cupboard too!
Featured here are two folks who are are doing uniquely on those lines - Dan Tanenbaum and Vyacheslav Voronovich.
Dan Tanenbaum is based out of Toronto in Canada and specializes in making miniature. motorbikes exclusivly from vintage watch parts. Dan worked as Art Director for over 10 years in advertising.He has an obsession for vintage timepieces and industrial design and merged his two passions by creating miniature motorcycles using vintage watch parts.They sell for a few 100s of dollars. He has built custom motorcycles for clients around the globe.
Some of his unique work ...
Vyacheslav, a biker has a passion for hand-made miniatures and woodcarving. He is a based out of Lviv (Ukraine).He uses oak, beech, pine, ash or mahogany wood to create these marvels.Carving tiny components like gear shifters and turn signals is a major challenge as they break off.
Some of his work below ... awesome wood carvings !
BMW KT 1600 GT
Salute to these two master craftsmen !
On the beerer side we have beer cap motorbikes too... Now that's making maximum use of beer ...drink the beer, sell the bottles and use the bottlecaps to make these wonders !
With Heineken beer caps
and with Corona light !
For the non alcoholics... even cola caps will work ;)