I thought it was about time that I introduced myself after lurking here for a few months now.
I am a 'born again biker'. I caught the bug again while on holidays in Spain where I hired a 125cc scooter for a week which was great fun. I just needed an excuse to get one for myself
After searching and reading loads on the net. I checked out various bikes and scooters homing in on the likes of the Suzuki Burgman 400/650, Yamaha T-Max and X-Max, Piaggio X7 and X9, when I came across the Honda Silverwing and this forum it became my must have.
When I grew up in Ireland you could drive anything you wanted on a provisional from 18 years old! I really wanted something bigger than a 125cc and set about getting my full motorcycle licence.
To obtain a full licence seems rather complicated in the UK and its changing next year (2013). I competed the following: Compulsory Basic Training (CBT), Motorcycle Theory Test, then took the Direct Access Scheme (DAS) which has two parts Module 1 (basically slow handling around cones, slalom, figure 8, u-turn, emergency braking, the much feared swerve), Module 2 is where you are followed by the examiner around various roads and junctions where he assesses your ability. It cost a small fortune (£650) but was enjoyable and I got to drive a CG125, CB500 and CBT500. I’m glad to say that I passed all the parts two weeks ago
I actually bought my Silverwing early December as an xmas present (that was a good enough excuse for me) which was a constant inspiration to pass the tests. Its a silver 2009 model with the following extras, Givi tall screen, Givi v46 top box and Honda heat grips.
Since I've passed I’ve been driving it as often as I can while the weather has been reasonable to gain more road experience. If you see someone gingerly tip toeing through some traffic around west London on a Silverwing its more than likely me, give me a friendly toot as you ride by
Nobody seems to nod to each other anymore!