It’s been a few weeks and not a lot has happened for most of that time. I took the bike out down the lane again 2 or 3 times for 5 minutes. Just to get used to the throttle, trying a U-Turn here and there and practising smooth stops with the breaks. That’s it.
Until the 15th of August, the day of my CBT.
Well, I paid £140 for this 6 hour CBT. And it lasted less than half that time. This is what happened.
Got to the shop 5 minutes early, training starts at 9am. There’s another guy there taking his CBT for the 4th time in 8 years. Him and the owner are talking when he drops the following sentence ‘I had corona 2 months ago, I’m still not fully recovered.’
“Great” I think to myself, “Hopefully you aren’t still infectious, for fucks sake.”
9:05am the shop owner puts a training video on for us to watch. He says “If you walk out of the shop after seeing this video, I’ll understand riding isn’t for you. No hard feelings.”
The video plays and it consists of 3 TV adverts from the early 2000’s of bikers getting hit by cars.
Not sure exactly what this was supposed to teach us, apart from try not to get hit by car drivers not paying attention to the road.
This video lasted all of 5 minutes. Another guy came into the room, maybe called Chris, I can’t remember. He had just loaded 2 bikes into the back of a van and asked us to go with him. Me and the other guy go with him to the van, get inside and ride to a school a few minutes away. Get there, the gates locked, and Chris has forgotten the key. So back we go to the bike shop, retrieve the key, and head back to the school.
It’s now around 9:30am, we’re at an empty school car park and I’m being taught how to turn left using my indicators. Did some slow controlled U-Turns. And then talked about what to do at junctions for a few minutes. In total we were training for about 15 minutes.
The trainer then asked ‘Wanna go on the roads?’
I replied, ‘Sure, why not.’
So we went back to the shop, unloaded the bikes from the van and set off.
We rode around town for about 30 minutes. Going through traffic lights, round roundabouts, across 4 way crossings, T-Junctions, left and right turns. Did a couple of U-Turns and emergency stops. And that was it. We went back to the shop and Chris filled out my CBT certificate. Job done. 6 hours of training done in less than 2 hours. Surly I should have gotten two thirds of my payment back????
Anyway, I’m road legal. Almost.
One more thing to do before I can ride on the roads. Insurance.
I got home and relaxed, watched some videos, spent time with the girlfriend, talked to my friends who were asking how the CBT went. I pretty much did everything I could do at home except get my insurance.
A few hours later I thought I’d get it over and done with. I knew it was gonna be £500 and I was delaying spending yet more money on this bike after spending so much already. I’ve now gone past £4k for everything bike related.
So, I found an insurer, filled out the form. Got to the end of the forms (which took a while) and they can’t find my registration number in their database (or super computer as they called it. . . . . morons).
The site says to call the help line. But I’ve left it too late, they’re closed. And tomorrow is Sunday, closed again.
Monday morning (today) I had to go to work on my bicycle. I thought I wouldn’t have to use that thing again now I passed my CBT. But whatever, one last ride before I get home and get my insurance. (The bicycles left pedal broke off on my way home, it’s as if it knew this was the last time I’d be using it and it just wanted to piss me off. . . . . cunt).
Got home at 10:20am (my first job of the day is 8-10am). Picked up the phone, called the insurers, told them their supercomputer wasn’t so super after all and that we would need to do this on the phone.
After a 25 minute phone (a call that felt like several hours of some dude reading a bunch of terms and conditions and extra policies and blah blah blah blah blah blah blah)
I finally had my insurance. I even asked him at the end “Can I go ride my bike now?”
He replied “Yes, you can go ride your bike.”
30 minutes later I was on the Super Soco doing 28mph down a 60mph road on my way to my 2nd job of the day.
Couldn’t care less that I was holding people up behind me, I was having fun finally taking the bike on the road for the first time. I got to work in 4 minutes (normally 20 minutes on the bicycle) and all the guys at work came outside to have a gander at the bike. They’ve been waiting weeks to see it. And they love it. And what’s not to love about it? Look at it, freaking beautiful vintage styling without all the racket of a dozen chainsaws next to your ears.
The ride home had a bit more traffic but I was able to open her up on some long roads, back up to 28mph. After 3 weeks of the bike sitting in my driveway not being used, the charge had dropped.
When I got the bike 3 weeks ago It had 37 miles of range. It now has 6 miles of range left.
I’ll keep an eye on my range over the next few weeks and see how accurate it is.
The battery is currently in my home being charged. The adaptor has a fan in it, as it’s getting quite warm. And the fan isn’t quiet at all. Has about 2 hours left to charge as I type this, I’ll put it back in the bike before I sleep, otherwise the bike has no alarm.
I’m waiting for amazon to deliver a camera mount for my helmet, when that arrives I’ll be uploading some videos for you to watch.
I’ve also ordered a GPS system which I’ll review for you too and let you know how well it works with the bike.
Oh, and I ordered a packet of Alpha Dots. I’ll explain those next time. It’s some kind of security paint thing.
Until then, see you in the next blog.
(Unless I really do die, now that I’m on the roads)