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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sorry about the long absence AND before you react with what is naturally a "WTF?, why would one buy a Ducati and want less power" moment, let me quell this with a plead for a newbie rider. My nephew Wes is looking to get up on two powered wheels for the first time in his 30year life.
I know that the common practice is to purchase something smallish and trade up, but I object to this assumption quite strongly.
Why learn on one bike only to change geometry? Why presume that your first love will not last? Why not do the research, consult with your mentor and do it right the first time?
Oh regrets that I had no such advice when I first ventured in, or instead of a '75 Norton I might have had a 750 round case and OH MY GODDESS if I still had that now! (I still have the Norton-unridden) .
My take is if one learns on one bike and, when sufficiently confident, simply add a couple of dozen extra horses to the stable?
I know that many models have the ability to change the riding program, from Sport say, to Wet and drop some power.
Is it possible to detune a 2011 796? We have one for sale locally and he likes the color.
Come on folks, please help me out. Don't let him buy a Beamer!


Ciao
 

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Learning to ride motorcycles safely and well is a process. If you're having to discuss "de-tuning" a motorcycle for someone to be/feel safe and/or confident riding said motorcycle then it is probably the wrong motorcycle.

Has your nephew taken and passed an MSF course?
 

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I think you may be able to go with a 821. You would get abs and could put it in "wet" mode until he gets use to it. Some monster 796s had abs I think but the 796 hypers dont have the electronics.

But i pretty much agree with the point that starting on a dream bike, or really anything with power is in general a bad idea...
 

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there was a 659 monster sold in au that is lams (learner approved motorcycle scheme) and it uses a bolt on plate for the throttle bodies that restricts throttle opening to about half. they still go very nicely for what they are.

82810031aa is the part number. usually fitted with break off screws to be tamper proof, but you'll want to pull it at some point.

Eat The Bear: How to de-restrict a Ducati 659
 

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I know I’m wasting my digital breath, but I don’t agree at all with your premise on beginner bikes. He will smash up an expensive bike to repair at some point before he’s good enough not to. He should buy something cheap to repair and not scare himself with before he gets good at it, like an old Japanese dirt bike, 125-200cc. Learn to ride in the dirt, then parking lots, before traffic. Even if he destroys it he can part it out. You must be really coordinated, or have a bad memory, if you don’t remember how tricky controlling the throttle, clutch , and brakes, when you’re not used to it. A little non intimidating bike is a blessing for a new rider, and feels plenty fast when your not used to it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Second Time Around

Thanx for the lively responses.
One: I don't want him to start with hugely powered bike, that was the whole point of hobbling the horses.
Two: I really like the idea of a throttle stop. Its cheap, simple and effective. Thank you so much for the tip!
Three: A do admit that my first ride was a few decades ago, and some memories have gone by-the-boards 'tis true, but other experiences tend to remain as real as if yesterday, such as my first motorcycle ride! It was a gold Honda 350, my first time on anything since those automatic Honda mini-bikes on the farm, and this idio...sorry, "friend" said hop on and I went. I didn't stall, I didn't fall, and the only problem I had was in finding why the thing died on me. After some head scratching I switched the petcocks to "reserve" and returned, none the worse for wear except far my arms having absolutely no feeling below the shoulders.
And finally, what is with the assumption that one has to crash the bike in order to learn to ride? As a child do we have to put our hand on the burner to understand "hot"? Are motorcyclists less than their cart-driving counterparts just because what we do actually takes still and awareness? Nay I say! For they are able to take out a mailbox and motor on in their own embarrassment and hope there are no iPhones tracking them. And I have spoken with many bikers who claimed to never have fallen.
I wish I did have the opportunity to ride on the dirt when I was a kid. I may have developed needed reflexes @ loss of traction, better balancing skills and so forth as I sorely need those now.
But I have spent many isolated decades locked in a box with the windows down, denying the truth, so now when I ride it is a re-learning experience. My confidence, eroded to baseline from deep fried and Coca-cola, must be built up again if I am to reconnect with my second passion. And so I fall, or drop as it were, as I practice throttle control and a 59 degree lean angle. But with the foreknowledge that this was to be a difficult climb, I installed crash bars of my own design on my SS. And they work. I tested both sides. So no worries.
And those that learn on the dirt must needs adjust to a surface that doesn't move. Usually.

Thank you all for your thoughts.
 

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A 796 is far from being an overpowering bike. Trailer it to an MSF course, give the young man the proper training, then let it rip. The whole starting with a backyard 50cc bike is an antiquated idea. Use your goddamn brain, seems like a lost concept. To think we once stormed the beaches of Normandy, built bridges across divides. Now kids can't ride their bikes across the street, and we put throttle stops on a grown man's motorcycle. FFS, come get me mothership.
 

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I think the power of the 796 as is will be fine, the things that will get him in trouble will be the same on most bikes. Call me a heretic but I would/will not start my kids out with ABS as it is not needed and I think it sends the wrong message. I want them to learn to respect power and consequences and giving rider aids can give a false seance of security that can make riders feel invincible. I teach new riders on the race track and see this often now, riders pushing past skill limits only commenting I thought the electronics would save me as we pick up their bike.

I am a fan of small bikes to start with for reasons of .
less power makes your room for error larger when making throttle mistakes, twist the throttle on a 50hp bike and it will be less likely to send you into orbit as much as a 100hp bike. I do remember a friend coming back from a first ride on his first bike all wide eyed exclaiming "WOW THAT THING IS FAST" the bike? Ninja 250. Speed is different than power and most bikes go fast enough to get you into trouble so a ninja 250 going 70mph is as dangerous as a 796 ducati going 70mph. It just takes a little longer to get there. The power on the 796 is lower than any Ducati with rider aids I am aware of. The small hyper 4-valver drops power to about 80rwhp IIRC in rain mode wich is a good starting point.

I prefer the light weight because new riders are not used to 400lbs plus balanced beneath them. Yes they WILL drop the bike at stop signs and in parking lots due to this learning curve. This is one of the best reasons to start out with a beater or bike you care less about. It does not mean you have to but be prepared to cry seeing that dream bike on its side from a zero MPH tip over. The weight of the 796 is not bad and that's a big plus, see if the seat height also allows him/her to be flat footed to help boost control and confidence.

Yes the bike can be restricted but I do not think the 796 will be an issue, you know the person so maybe you do based on personality (type A do everything to 110%). If need be the bike can be modified to produce less Hp as well as softer delivery. If this is a big concern then I would see if the new small class bikes would work, I have a number of top class track guys running R3,rc390 etc bikes, they are twice the HP of a ninja 250 I am seeing close to 40rwhp on my dyno with them and the new ninja 400 is supposed to top 40rwhp. These bikes can be bought cheap and sold for close to your buying price so everyone trades them like baseball cards and they are great fun.

training is great advice and if he is going to go fast check out the local track schools as well, we teach everything from State police on Harleys to new riders on superbikes. It matters less what you ride and more attitude and aptitude for the skills you are trying to learn.
 

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I rode bikes from 90 to 250cc to work for years. They could get around in traffic better than a big bike. IF I dropped it, I could pick it up myself, alleviating a lot of the embarrassment. When I finally could afford a larger bike, I didn’t feel intimidated. I felt as if I was ready for it, that I could handle the taller , heavier bike, and more power.
 
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And finally, what is with the assumption that one has to crash the bike in order to learn to ride?
One doesn't "have to" crash to learn to ride. One is likely to crash. It's just statistics. The first time a new rider comes into a corner a little too hot, even though they are only leaned over 30 degrees their brain tells them "OMG I can't possibly lean over any more" then they target fixate on the ditch and off they go. Youtube is filled with those classics.

Do that with a beat up Ninja 250 and not a nice 796 Hyper. Suck up the pride and start on a 250 Ninja, preferable one that's been laid down, (and there are lots of them) for at least a few months.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Determining motorcycle accident statistics is too complex to compile. How many drops or runoffs w/o injury (except to pride) go unreported?
Besides, I refuse to date your ugly cousin simply to get laid.
A'hm holding out for true love.
 
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