Safety riding courses......


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vinlugg
Posts: 90
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 8:40 am
Location: Barrington, New Hampshire
Motorcycle: 2012 GL1800ABS/blue
1973 Kawasaki Mach111 500 Triple
1975 Kawasaki Mach1V 750 Triple
1978 Honda 550-4
1983 Honda V45 Sabre
2003 Kawasaki 800A
2005 Kawasaki Nomad 1600
2012 Honda Goldwing

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by vinlugg » Mon Mar 03, 2014 4:27 pm



WingAdmin wrote:
486261 wrote:As for countersteering my son was taught from the get go how to do it in his course and I had some training in my course. I have come to the realization that you will never be a really good rider untill you master it.
It's my opinion that anyone who has ridden a bicycle (or motorcycle, for that matter) already knows how to countersteer. It's intuitive, you may not even realize you're doing it. You have to, otherwise you'd never be able to turn the bike!What needs to be taught is what I call the panic countersteer: When in an emergency situation - faced with an object that must be swerved around, in a curve that tightens unexpectedly - the mind says "turn the handlebars and steer the bike!" Which, of course, does the exact opposite of what is needed. Training is required to rewrite the brain circuits, so that the instant, automatic response is "countersteer around the object" or "press harder into the corner."

That sort of training is not going to happen in a weekend. It's a good introduction, but it takes many miles of repeated practice to burn that response into your brain, so as to make it automatic.

My point exactly.


Happy Riding

Vin
Retired US Army Combat Flight Medic
MFS Instructor since 2004

User avatar
vinlugg
Posts: 90
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 8:40 am
Location: Barrington, New Hampshire
Motorcycle: 2012 GL1800ABS/blue
1973 Kawasaki Mach111 500 Triple
1975 Kawasaki Mach1V 750 Triple
1978 Honda 550-4
1983 Honda V45 Sabre
2003 Kawasaki 800A
2005 Kawasaki Nomad 1600
2012 Honda Goldwing

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by vinlugg » Mon Mar 03, 2014 4:34 pm

486261 wrote:Thanks for the replies but I still think that counter steering has to be taught because I had never heard of it untill my course and everyone I have talked to feels the same. Also I made a major screw up on previous post in that I said the Oklahoma University put on the course, it's Oklhoma State University on the corner of Reno and Portland in OKC. I just been disowned by my whole family that grad from OSU.

486261....next time you see a ten year old out riding his bicycle, stop and ask him "what is counter-steering"? Would be a great experiment??
Happy Riding

Vin
Retired US Army Combat Flight Medic
MFS Instructor since 2004

LOMLC
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Jun 27, 2013 7:19 pm
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Motorcycle: 2003 GL1800

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by LOMLC » Thu Mar 13, 2014 4:04 pm

I find the 'ride like a pro' video (and techniques) outstanding. Like many, I returned to riding after a long hiatus and with the GW a lot heavier than my last bike. Watching the video (and clips on YouTube) has been great. I practice in local parking lots regularly (not this week at -15C). I am anxious to take the 'ride like a pro' course but can't find one locally. Anyone know of one in Southern/Central Ontario, Canada or something similar? Thanks. Howard

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DJnRF
Posts: 353
Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:50 pm
Location: FINALLY! Moved to a new home in Creve Coeur, IL.
Motorcycle: 1981 GL1100i Interstate
And, many others since I started riding. Started on a Harley in 1956.

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by DJnRF » Tue Mar 18, 2014 6:07 pm

I started riding in 1956. (If you don't count the Cushman scooter, Doodle Bug, or the MoPed)
At that time we didn't even need a drivers license for anything less than 165 cc, and there
weren't even many motorcycles with license plates either. Of course, there was no such
thing as motorcycle safety courses back then, either. When Illinois first got such a thing
(back in the mid-80's) and I found it was a free class taught at our local community
college by Illinois State U. I thought it might be something that I could learn more from
taking. I signed up for a class. In that class I did learn a whole lot more than I could have
possibly imagined, even after I had been riding for so many years. There were five of us
in that first class that were classed as Experienced Riders. I could hardly believe it when
I was the only one of us five that passed that class. I was quite impressed with it. As my
wife wanted to learn, she expected me to teach her. When I started teaching her the
way they had done in the class, she thought I had to be wrong, and thought it was too
hard my way. I just told her that maybe I was the wrong one to teach her, but if she
wanted I would sign her up for a class the next year. That next season I asked her, and
she said yes, so we both took the class. It was the second time for me, and first for her.
Since then I have taken the other classes they now teach. When it started they only
had just the basic class and the instructor class. After my second time of taking the
class I was told to take in once more and they would make me an instructor if I
wanted. I didn't. Now that I have had the basic several times, plus the Intermediate,
and Experienced, and was asked last year at the A.B.A.T.E. seminar in Springfield
if I wanted to teach, I am now considering applying to take the instructor class. I am
not sure if they want an old coot like me, though. Since I don't look my actual age,
I wonder if they think I am only in my mid-40's, or such. But, heck, if I can find a
smaller motor I can afford, and if they would hire me, I could sure use the extra
money to supplement my SS income. I will still take the class every other year to
'keep in touch' and up on things. At a recent police motor demonstration here I
talked to one of the officers at length. As I was a former officer, he invited me to
go ahead and practice on their course when ever I wanted just so long as they
were not using it. I am looking forward to warm weather to take the time to start
working on their course layout. I know I used to be able to do it on my 750, and
even on my old Harley, but not sure with this Interstate I now have. I am kind of
wishing I now had a 350, or 550 instead. lol
"Survival is one's own ability to cope with and overcome any adverse or threatening situation, condition, casualty or event." ©Dj 1969

User avatar
DJnRF
Posts: 353
Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:50 pm
Location: FINALLY! Moved to a new home in Creve Coeur, IL.
Motorcycle: 1981 GL1100i Interstate
And, many others since I started riding. Started on a Harley in 1956.

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by DJnRF » Tue Mar 18, 2014 6:21 pm

LOMLC wrote:I find the 'ride like a pro' video (and techniques) outstanding. Like many, I returned to riding after a long hiatus and with the GW a lot heavier than my last bike. Watching the video (and clips on YouTube) has been great. I practice in local parking lots regularly (not this week at -15C). I am anxious to take the 'ride like a pro' course but can't find one locally. Anyone know of one in Southern/Central Ontario, Canada or something similar? Thanks. Howard
One thing I used to do was to go to a large parking lot when the school, or mall was
closed. I practiced doing figure 8's within two parking spaces. Also, use the circle method
as well. Use chalk, paint marks, small cones and place them in a 17 foot circle, then
practice in that going both directions. On our local police course they have 11 ft, 17 ft,
19 ft, and 21 ft circles for practice. Narrow lanes between cones, or even making 90 degree
turns out of a narrow lane is also good to work on.

For the average street and highway rider, these and obstacle avoidance techniques
are as good as you will most likely ever need. Stopping fast is good aslo, but most
times such stops are not as necessary as long as a rider pays attention completely
while riding and observes all the safety techniques taught in books or classes. My
father told me when driving, or riding that if I always kept ten feet away from
any vehicle, or obstacle in front of me I would never have an accident. Even
when I pointed out the distance required for the various speeds, he just said
that as long as when I stopped I was still ten feet behind, I would never have
that accident. lol
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Old Faithful
Old Faithful

"Survival is one's own ability to cope with and overcome any adverse or threatening situation, condition, casualty or event." ©Dj 1969

User avatar
vinlugg
Posts: 90
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 8:40 am
Location: Barrington, New Hampshire
Motorcycle: 2012 GL1800ABS/blue
1973 Kawasaki Mach111 500 Triple
1975 Kawasaki Mach1V 750 Triple
1978 Honda 550-4
1983 Honda V45 Sabre
2003 Kawasaki 800A
2005 Kawasaki Nomad 1600
2012 Honda Goldwing

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by vinlugg » Thu Mar 20, 2014 9:31 pm

MNAspencade wrote:I will be retuning to riding a wing again as the weather clears here in northern MN. My last bike was a naked wing about 20 years ago. I have been reading about the courses and they look to be of good value. The hard part for me is the cost as my budget is tight - though I have a month or so to plan for it.... I also need to get the wing up and running first.

How much practice time should I have before taking the course??

Take the basic course first. You haven't ridden in a long time. I was the same as you. Overall the course was pretty easy for me but I was challenged on several of the exercises and I learned many tips.
The expericed(advanced) class is recommended after a year or 2k miles of riding.
My experience as a rider coach says take the basic first.
As far as practice prior to....not really needed if you've ridden many miles in the past.
Good luck.
Happy Riding

Vin
Retired US Army Combat Flight Medic
MFS Instructor since 2004

User avatar
vinlugg
Posts: 90
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 8:40 am
Location: Barrington, New Hampshire
Motorcycle: 2012 GL1800ABS/blue
1973 Kawasaki Mach111 500 Triple
1975 Kawasaki Mach1V 750 Triple
1978 Honda 550-4
1983 Honda V45 Sabre
2003 Kawasaki 800A
2005 Kawasaki Nomad 1600
2012 Honda Goldwing

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by vinlugg » Thu Mar 20, 2014 9:42 pm

DJnRF wrote:I started riding in 1956. (If you don't count the Cushman scooter, Doodle Bug, or the MoPed)
At that time we didn't even need a drivers license for anything less than 165 cc, and there
weren't even many motorcycles with license plates either. Of course, there was no such
thing as motorcycle safety courses back then, either. When Illinois first got such a thing
(back in the mid-80's) and I found it was a free class taught at our local community
college by Illinois State U. I thought it might be something that I could learn more from
taking. I signed up for a class. In that class I did learn a whole lot more than I could have
possibly imagined, even after I had been riding for so many years. There were five of us
in that first class that were classed as Experienced Riders. I could hardly believe it when
I was the only one of us five that passed that class. I was quite impressed with it. As my
wife wanted to learn, she expected me to teach her. When I started teaching her the
way they had done in the class, she thought I had to be wrong, and thought it was too
hard my way. I just told her that maybe I was the wrong one to teach her, but if she
wanted I would sign her up for a class the next year. That next season I asked her, and
she said yes, so we both took the class. It was the second time for me, and first for her.
Since then I have taken the other classes they now teach. When it started they only
had just the basic class and the instructor class. After my second time of taking the
class I was told to take in once more and they would make me an instructor if I
wanted. I didn't. Now that I have had the basic several times, plus the Intermediate,
and Experienced, and was asked last year at the A.B.A.T.E. seminar in Springfield
if I wanted to teach, I am now considering applying to take the instructor class. I am
not sure if they want an old coot like me, though. Since I don't look my actual age,
I wonder if they think I am only in my mid-40's, or such.
But, heck, if I can find a
smaller motor I can afford, and if they would hire me, I could sure use the extra
money to supplement my SS income. I will still take the class every other year to
'keep in touch' and up on things. At a recent police motor demonstration here I
talked to one of the officers at length. As I was a former officer, he invited me to
go ahead and practice on their course when ever I wanted just so long as they
were not using it. I am looking forward to warm weather to take the time to start
working on their course layout. I know I used to be able to do it on my 750, and
even on my old Harley, but not sure with this Interstate I now have. I am kind of
wishing I now had a 350, or 550 instead. lol

I am 61yo and we have several instructors over 65 and one over 70. If you can handle standing for 4-5 hours two days in a row and can learn to ride a great demo for every exercise and most importantly be able to teach you may be a good rider coach. You don't have to be an expert rider...you have to be able to get the message across to students and that can be tough at times.
Good luck with your decision.
Happy Riding

Vin
Retired US Army Combat Flight Medic
MFS Instructor since 2004

User avatar
DJnRF
Posts: 353
Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:50 pm
Location: FINALLY! Moved to a new home in Creve Coeur, IL.
Motorcycle: 1981 GL1100i Interstate
And, many others since I started riding. Started on a Harley in 1956.

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by DJnRF » Fri Mar 21, 2014 12:54 am

I am filling out the application for a position as an instructor here. We,
in Illinois, have an excellent program. I have been finding that we work
it differently than most states. For one, all classes are free. A $25 deposit
is made to register, but when you take the class you will get your money
refunded. The state DOT sponsors the program, and it is taught by instructors
hired for the program in state universities. In my area I would be hired by
ISU, but that doesn't mean I could only teach classes here. You become an
instructor to teach the MSF/ IDOT program anywhere you wish, and some
places where you agree to also teach. In actuallity, you are a teacher for
your subject for the IL Dept. of Ed. One thing I did notice on the App paperwork
is that it is strongly recommended that an instructor have a smaller motor
for the instructor class to do actual demos for that class. The state provides
all the machines and helmets for students taking the Basic, or Intermediate
class. For the Experienced class and Instructors they must have their own of
everything. When actually teaching an instructor uses the motorcycles that
are provided by the state for the classes. Most of the things done in the classes
are difficult to use a full size machine such as my Interstate. Another thing
good here is that if you pass the class (yes, some fail) you take your card to
the drivers license station and they will immediately upgrade your license
to include motorcycle. You do not have any testing to also take. My first
class was back in the mid-80's when it first started here in IL. In that class
there was one woman whose husband had died. She had never had any
license before, and had just gotten hers for her car, but wanted a motorcycle
also. She was 64 when she took the class, and had never before even been
a rider on a machine, let alone operated one herself. The schools are right
when they say that anyone can learn to ride easy. Sometimes, I think it
even better to never have ridden before so that you learn the right ways
without starting with acquired bad habits. My wife took the class a year or
so after my first one, while never having ridden before. She also learned
well then. I was impressed that they have people riding in the very first
class. Half the time is in the classroom, and the other half is actually
riding. Of the times I have taken the class the only people I have seen
fail are those who have ridden before. In one class there were five of us
classed as experienced, and had our own machines. The other four failed.
Their habits prevented them from doing what the instructor had told them
to do, in exactly the way prescribed. With all my years of riding about
everything there is, I never go into even the basic class with the idea that
I am experienced, so I already know it all. I go in as a student to learn,
period. I always learn something new as well. Personally, I wish everyone
who gets a drivers license would have to take the MSF course for the
motorcycles as well. In that way a person becomes much more aware
of motorcycles when they are driving. No lights, signs, safety awareness
programs or new slogans are as good an education of motorcycle
awareness than having had to take such a course. Maybe there might
be a day that USDOT mandates such a course of action for all states. I,
for one, would like to see it happen. I have seen all the tricks of programs
trying to give such an awareness, and after a while each trick tried becomes
ineffective, so another is brought out. They just don't work with any
degree of lasting help. In my 41 years in emergency medicine, I have
seen evidence that supports the need for everyone to learn to ride if
for no other reason that to provide a more lasting awareness.

Dave.
"Survival is one's own ability to cope with and overcome any adverse or threatening situation, condition, casualty or event." ©Dj 1969

User avatar
MNAspencade
Posts: 36
Joined: Wed Aug 21, 2013 7:02 pm
Location: Jacobson, Minnesota
Motorcycle: 1989 gl1500
1985 Gl1200 Aspencade - sold

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by MNAspencade » Fri Mar 21, 2014 7:18 pm

Well I have registered for the course. $160.00 out here - but when completed and passed you do not have to take the skills test ad DMV. I am hoping that there will be a discount on my insurance for taking it (they ask about it on the quote). Got another month to go and alott of snow to melt :lol:

User avatar
DJnRF
Posts: 353
Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:50 pm
Location: FINALLY! Moved to a new home in Creve Coeur, IL.
Motorcycle: 1981 GL1100i Interstate
And, many others since I started riding. Started on a Harley in 1956.

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by DJnRF » Fri Mar 21, 2014 9:56 pm

MNAspencade wrote:Well I have registered for the course. $160.00 out here - but when completed and passed you do not have to take the skills test ad DMV. I am hoping that there will be a discount on my insurance for taking it (they ask about it on the quote). Got another month to go and alott of snow to melt :lol:
I would be looking into how your program is run. It is in the best interests
of the state to sponsor and absorb the cost of classes. Instead of the Dept.
of Public Safety handling it where they have the safety center to also pay
costs to run, It should be handled instead by your DOT since the USDOT is
the primary federal agency responsible for highway safety and EMS. By
using that method your state universities can run the course by providing
instructors, and equipment through education grants. Here in IL, many of
the motorcycles used are actually donated from ABATE of IL. That could
also be done there. One chapter here also sponsors and runs the Grand
Nationals. It is a great program, and is run in conjuction with the National
TT races here. It also gains that chapter a lot of money, which being a
non-profit organization has a lot to give to good causes here. One is the
help of motorcycles for the MSF rider education program taught by the
state universities around the state all summer long. Use the clout of
ABATE to push your state legislators into that type of program change.
Have one of your state Reps look into the IL program. Many, many more
people are taught in that way. The program also gains extra money from
the sale of related products not specifically available through the MSF.
"Survival is one's own ability to cope with and overcome any adverse or threatening situation, condition, casualty or event." ©Dj 1969

User avatar
vinlugg
Posts: 90
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 8:40 am
Location: Barrington, New Hampshire
Motorcycle: 2012 GL1800ABS/blue
1973 Kawasaki Mach111 500 Triple
1975 Kawasaki Mach1V 750 Triple
1978 Honda 550-4
1983 Honda V45 Sabre
2003 Kawasaki 800A
2005 Kawasaki Nomad 1600
2012 Honda Goldwing

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by vinlugg » Sat Mar 22, 2014 2:32 am

DJnRF wrote:I am filling out the application for a position as an instructor here. We,
in Illinois, have an excellent program. I have been finding that we work
it differently than most states. For one, all classes are free. A $25 deposit
is made to register, but when you take the class you will get your money
refunded. The state DOT sponsors the program, and it is taught by instructors
hired for the program in state universities. In my area I would be hired by
ISU, but that doesn't mean I could only teach classes here. You become an
instructor to teach the MSF/ IDOT program anywhere you wish, and some
places where you agree to also teach. In actuallity, you are a teacher for
your subject for the IL Dept. of Ed. One thing I did notice on the App paperwork
is that it is strongly recommended that an instructor have a smaller motor
for the instructor class to do actual demos for that class. The state provides
all the machines and helmets for students taking the Basic, or Intermediate
class. For the Experienced class and Instructors they must have their own of
everything. When actually teaching an instructor uses the motorcycles that
are provided by the state for the classes. Most of the things done in the classes
are difficult to use a full size machine such as my Interstate. Another thing
good here is that if you pass the class (yes, some fail) you take your card to
the drivers license station and they will immediately upgrade your license
to include motorcycle. You do not have any testing to also take. My first
class was back in the mid-80's when it first started here in IL. In that class
there was one woman whose husband had died. She had never had any
license before, and had just gotten hers for her car, but wanted a motorcycle
also. She was 64 when she took the class, and had never before even been
a rider on a machine, let alone operated one herself. The schools are right
when they say that anyone can learn to ride easy. Sometimes, I think it
even better to never have ridden before so that you learn the right ways
without starting with acquired bad habits. My wife took the class a year or
so after my first one, while never having ridden before. She also learned
well then. I was impressed that they have people riding in the very first
class. Half the time is in the classroom, and the other half is actually
riding. Of the times I have taken the class the only people I have seen
fail are those who have ridden before. In one class there were five of us
classed as experienced, and had our own machines. The other four failed.
Their habits prevented them from doing what the instructor had told them
to do, in exactly the way prescribed. With all my years of riding about
everything there is, I never go into even the basic class with the idea that
I am experienced, so I already know it all. I go in as a student to learn,
period. I always learn something new as well. Personally, I wish everyone
who gets a drivers license would have to take the MSF course for the
motorcycles as well. In that way a person becomes much more aware
of motorcycles when they are driving. No lights, signs, safety awareness
programs or new slogans are as good an education of motorcycle
awareness than having had to take such a course. Maybe there might
be a day that USDOT mandates such a course of action for all states. I,
for one, would like to see it happen. I have seen all the tricks of programs
trying to give such an awareness, and after a while each trick tried becomes
ineffective, so another is brought out. They just don't work with any
degree of lasting help. In my 41 years in emergency medicine, I have
seen evidence that supports the need for everyone to learn to ride if
for no other reason that to provide a more lasting awareness.

Dave.



Dave,

Good choice. You'll enjoy teaching the program. It's amazing to witness someone that's never ridden before Saturday morning and by Sunday afternoon they're riding around the range like a pro.
FYI: Your state course isn't any different than other states, for the most part. I teach for the State of NH DOT, motorcycle training Div. We are MSF certified like every instructor in the country. We supply all the bikes, helmets too. If a student successfully passes the class we provide them a certificate that they take to the licensing Div. and get their license endorsed with an "M". There are several companies in the state that provide the same training but they work for profit. We ( state of NH) charge $110 for the basic class. We also charge a small fee when you register your bike that goes towards the program. Little to no monies come from tax payers.. Privately owned companies charge around $3-400 dollars but all the instructors no matter who you work for get our training the same with the same certifications. Many of us went through training together but work for different companies. You also have to go through separate training/certification to teach the experienced class. it's only one day..no biggie. Once you become certified to teach the basic class you're automatically certified to teach the intermediate class. have fun with the training. Ours is like "basic training" they try to thin out the weak folks. NH doesn't recommend having a "small" motor for instructors. Far majority of NH instructors have large bikes. Why does your state make that recommendation?? If you teach the experienced class you have to use your own bike for demos. My advice to you to get better prepared for the instructor class...practice riding great demos for each exercise...it has to be smooth and at a pace expected from a student. No scrapping pegs etc. By the way, once you get certified by MSF you can teach anywhere in the country for any certified program.
Good luck
Happy Riding

Vin
Retired US Army Combat Flight Medic
MFS Instructor since 2004

User avatar
2008retiredplb
Posts: 229
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 6:58 am
Location: Rockford, IL
Motorcycle: 2009 GL1800 now a 2016 HTS1800 RoadSmith Trike
2001 GL1800
1998 1100 Honda Shadow ACE
1972 Honda CL450

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by 2008retiredplb » Sat Mar 21, 2015 9:47 am

I have earned the Level 4, GWRRA Senior Master Tour Rider designation in their Levels Safety Program. I take a ERC or ARC class every two years to keep my skills ready for anything that I might encounter on the road. It has saved me from at least two serious accidents in the last 9 years.
Until I took my first class, I didn't know how to really ride my bike. In fact, after two or three times taking the class, I found that I was not steering properly. But now I am much more confident in my ability to handle my 1800 goldwing in any situation I may encounter. Many times I am on the road two up with my trailer behind the bike and that takes some additional training.
I would recommend to any person that is riding a motorcycle today, take an approved riding class, as soon as you can and take it again every couple of years. If you are new to riding, take a BRC (beginners riding class), then after you get some experience, move up to the ERC (experienced riders class) or ARC (advanced riders) class. You would not believe how much you gain by doing it or lose by not doing it. Up north in snow country, we have to park our bikes for anywhere from 3 to 6 months every winter and thats when we lose some of our skills. You must practice them constantly or you will loose critical skills. It must be learned until it becomes automatic, you don't have time to think about what you are going to do in a emergency.
Of course another thing (a lot of disagreement on this) is to wear all the safety gear all the time (part of the Level 4 Program). Helmet, gloves, jacket (w/protective pads), full pants or riding pants, and over the ankle boots. Seeing someone riding in shorts and flip-flops and no helmet, makes me think they are just asking to be a organ donor. With the new products today, you can get good protection without getting totally uncomfortable. I have found it is cooler to ride with a good jacket in hot sunny weather than going with only a t-shirt. The question of wearing a helmet is a no brainer when you get to see the damage on someone's helmet after a crash. Then think, what would that person have suffered if they were not wearing their helmet. When you no longer have a chin or a hole ground somewhere into your skull, was going without a helmet good idea? It only takes a few feet of sliding on asphalt to do major damage to your head, or any part of an unprotected body.
Lastly, many times it is not the motorcycle drivers fault for an accident, but the cager that caused the accident (They Didn't See You). But in any case the motorcycle rider AlWAYS gets the worst of it. The car gets a dent in the fender or bumper and the motorcycle driver gets killed or severely injured. So why take the chance and ride without training or safety gear.

Now go out there and ride safe
"Love to ride and ride to love"

User avatar
DJnRF
Posts: 353
Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:50 pm
Location: FINALLY! Moved to a new home in Creve Coeur, IL.
Motorcycle: 1981 GL1100i Interstate
And, many others since I started riding. Started on a Harley in 1956.

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by DJnRF » Sat Mar 21, 2015 9:38 pm

2008retiredplb wrote:I have earned the Level 4, GWRRA Senior Master Tour Rider designation in their Levels Safety Program. I take a ERC or ARC class every two years to keep my skills ready for anything that I might encounter on the road. It has saved me from at least two serious accidents in the last 9 years.
Until I took my first class, I didn't know how to really ride my bike. In fact, after two or three times taking the class, I found that I was not steering properly. But now I am much more confident in my ability to handle my 1800 goldwing in any situation I may encounter. Many times I am on the road two up with my trailer behind the bike and that takes some additional training.
I would recommend to any person that is riding a motorcycle today, take an approved riding class, as soon as you can and take it again every couple of years. If you are new to riding, take a BRC (beginners riding class), then after you get some experience, move up to the ERC (experienced riders class) or ARC (advanced riders) class. You would not believe how much you gain by doing it or lose by not doing it. Up north in snow country, we have to park our bikes for anywhere from 3 to 6 months every winter and thats when we lose some of our skills. You must practice them constantly or you will loose critical skills. It must be learned until it becomes automatic, you don't have time to think about what you are going to do in a emergency.
Of course another thing (a lot of disagreement on this) is to wear all the safety gear all the time (part of the Level 4 Program). Helmet, gloves, jacket (w/protective pads), full pants or riding pants, and over the ankle boots. Seeing someone riding in shorts and flip-flops and no helmet, makes me think they are just asking to be a organ donor. With the new products today, you can get good protection without getting totally uncomfortable. I have found it is cooler to ride with a good jacket in hot sunny weather than going with only a t-shirt. The question of wearing a helmet is a no brainer when you get to see the damage on someone's helmet after a crash. Then think, what would that person have suffered if they were not wearing their helmet. When you no longer have a chin or a hole ground somewhere into your skull, was going without a helmet good idea? It only takes a few feet of sliding on asphalt to do major damage to your head, or any part of an unprotected body.
Lastly, many times it is not the motorcycle drivers fault for an accident, but the cager that caused the accident (They Didn't See You). But in any case the motorcycle rider AlWAYS gets the worst of it. The car gets a dent in the fender or bumper and the motorcycle driver gets killed or severely injured. So why take the chance and ride without training or safety gear.

Now go out there and ride safe
"Now go out there and ride safe"

Hi 2008retiredplb,
I get a kick out of hearing that from many. For me, it means a much tougher level of
mental concentration these days. At my age now I found that the mind is always the
second thing to go. It is true! The first thing to go is ... uhh .... uhh ...., I forgot!
(My point proven???) lol

I think many are right when they say to get a trike. I am beginning to feel that I do
need 'training wheels'. lol

On a more serious note, I intend to ride my two wheels as long as I find that I can,
and do have the proper safety concentration to ride two wheels, and will continue to
help others do the same. I now feel that to take classes myself every year is not a
bad idea. No matter that I have been riding since 1956. It actually is more of an
important act today than ever before with age. For my own 'practice' I was told to
go ahead and use the police training course facility whenever I feel the need. I do
that many times when I am just out 'cruising'.

I can never stress enough the need for constant training for the 'awareness' needed
to ride. Unlike many states, and private companies, the fact that there is no fee
to take the class here makes it easier, and something everyone should take as often
as possible, no matter how many years, or experience in riding has been gained.

Over the years I have investigated a number of motorcycle crashes, and you are
right in that many times it is not the fault of the rider to have caused the crash. That
makes it even more important to learn all possible to aid in avoiding as many such
situations as possible, and that only comes from constant training, and awareness.

Keep up the good work, and do all you can.

Dave.
"Survival is one's own ability to cope with and overcome any adverse or threatening situation, condition, casualty or event." ©Dj 1969

User avatar
2008retiredplb
Posts: 229
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 6:58 am
Location: Rockford, IL
Motorcycle: 2009 GL1800 now a 2016 HTS1800 RoadSmith Trike
2001 GL1800
1998 1100 Honda Shadow ACE
1972 Honda CL450

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by 2008retiredplb » Sun Mar 22, 2015 7:25 am

DJnRF
I agree about the age thing. At 68, my wife wants to get a trike but I am having to much fun on two wheels.
"Love to ride and ride to love"

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CMReynolds1
Posts: 647
Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2014 5:56 pm
Location: Oregon
Motorcycle: 2013 F6B

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by CMReynolds1 » Sun Mar 22, 2015 9:03 am

I have taken 3 MSF courses. One in Idaho (STAR), one in Oregon, and one in Washington. Two were advance courses and I learned in each one of them. I started riding in the 50's as a kid and taught myself all the wrong habits. MSF corrected a lot of them. I cannot tell you how many times countersteering has gotten my butt out of trouble. It is awesome. This and the use of the front brake along with the rear are the two biggest take aways I have.

The courses are worth every dime!
Attachments




Ride Safe,
Taz


TF 116, RivRon 512, Can Tho, S. Vietnam, 8/66-/9/68, GM(G)2

User avatar
DJnRF
Posts: 353
Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:50 pm
Location: FINALLY! Moved to a new home in Creve Coeur, IL.
Motorcycle: 1981 GL1100i Interstate
And, many others since I started riding. Started on a Harley in 1956.

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by DJnRF » Sun Mar 22, 2015 10:15 am

2008retiredplb wrote:DJnRF
I agree about the age thing. At 68, my wife wants to get a trike but I am having to much fun on two wheels.
I sure agree with the two wheel pleasure. I am 75, and my machine is faster in getting me
to the fire station for ambulance or fire calls. Blue lights on front and rear, and, at times,
90+ mph with great maneuverability. Of course, at my age, I must be looney for all this.
lol

I did look at trike kits for my Honda. Actually, they look pretty good, and for a price that
is much more reasonable than the price for a new, or even used trike. One company is
in Illinois in Ottawa. It is Motorcycle Tour Conversions. They use a trade name of Voyager
Convertible Kits. One of their dealers is Custom Trikes in South Beloit. It is nice when
one can find a dealer close by where a product can be seen, and even better when the
manufacturer is in the same state.

Prices on these kits depends upon which you get, but can range anywhere from $2700 to
$5000. What also makes these nice is that most can be a DIY install project in only about
30 minutes, and removed to run again on just two wheels in about 15 minutes. Most of
the various companies include the shipping in the price listed.

Some of the kits I have viewed can be really elaborate, and look much like a $30k price
trike. As with any trike, don't expect to 'lean' in curves, or turn really sharp. But, you
also don't have to put a foot down when stopped. lol

The addy for the company is: http://www.mtcvoyager.com/

Take care,
Dave.
"Survival is one's own ability to cope with and overcome any adverse or threatening situation, condition, casualty or event." ©Dj 1969

billcrawford
Posts: 78
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2015 5:16 pm
Location: flower mound. texas
Motorcycle: 1990 goldwing 1500 gl/se

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by billcrawford » Thu May 14, 2015 12:16 pm

itook the couse MSF in lewisville texas this month, it cost $180 . i have not riden in about 45 years, it was eye opening. i passed and got my license..

User avatar
DJnRF
Posts: 353
Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:50 pm
Location: FINALLY! Moved to a new home in Creve Coeur, IL.
Motorcycle: 1981 GL1100i Interstate
And, many others since I started riding. Started on a Harley in 1956.

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by DJnRF » Thu May 14, 2015 4:10 pm

billcrawford wrote:itook the couse MSF in lewisville texas this month, it cost $180 . i have not riden in about 45 years, it was eye opening. i passed and got my license..

Congratulations Bill!

I do wish every state would do like Illinois does with these classes. Here, we pay nothing other than
a $25 deposit, which we get back if we show up for the class, and complete it. Whether pass or fail
it is returned. You do have the option of letting the state have it for a tee shirt, though. If you pass
you get a patch, and a card the last class.

Our IL DOT sponsors the program, and it is taught by the state colleges. They provide everything
but the footwear, ls shirts/ jacket, and gloves required for riding in the class. Instructors are
hired from former students who have also passed the instructor course. They are paid the same
for every class they teach, and there is no restriction as to how many classes each year a person
can teach. I intended to teach this year, but have too much yet to do on my property. Next year
I probably will. Being retired I can sure use the money.

Dave.
"Survival is one's own ability to cope with and overcome any adverse or threatening situation, condition, casualty or event." ©Dj 1969

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CaNorseman
Posts: 76
Joined: Thu Oct 22, 2015 10:23 pm
Location: Modesto,Ca
Motorcycle: 1991 GL1500 Aspencade, 1976 GL1000 ,81 cx500d(sold), 75 cb400f(sold), 1971 SL175(sold)

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by CaNorseman » Tue Nov 24, 2015 1:06 am

Took the course in lew of the cone test at Dmv. I knew the gl1000 wouldn't and I couldn't. I learned a lot and my bad habits were revealed. Heads up and look where your going.Your bike will follow.

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2008retiredplb
Posts: 229
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 6:58 am
Location: Rockford, IL
Motorcycle: 2009 GL1800 now a 2016 HTS1800 RoadSmith Trike
2001 GL1800
1998 1100 Honda Shadow ACE
1972 Honda CL450

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by 2008retiredplb » Tue Nov 24, 2015 9:46 am

I don't know what they charge in other GWRRA Districts, but her in Illinois it is very cheap to get the GWRRA riding courses compared to what others are posting they had to pay for MSF courses. Even cheaper than the course and the GWRRA membership. I believe it was only $25 or $35.
"Love to ride and ride to love"

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WingAdmin
Site Admin
Posts: 19060
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:16 pm
Location: Strongsville, OH
Motorcycle: 2000 GL1500 SE
1982 GL1100A Aspencade (sold)
1989 PC800 (wife's!)
1998 XV250 Virago (sold)
2007 Aspen Sentry Trailer

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by WingAdmin » Tue Nov 24, 2015 11:00 am

CaNorseman wrote:Took the course in lew of the cone test at Dmv. I knew the gl1000 wouldn't and I couldn't. I learned a lot and my bad habits were revealed. Heads up and look where your going.Your bike will follow.
My bike was physically incapable of turning inside the radius they had set up in the Ohio test (had to re-take all my drivers and motorcycle license tests when I moved to Ohio). I complained, the guy simply didn't care. Because of it, I knew I would bust two of the test parameters, which meant I had to pass EVERY other part of the test in order to pass. Which I did. :)

User avatar
2008retiredplb
Posts: 229
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 6:58 am
Location: Rockford, IL
Motorcycle: 2009 GL1800 now a 2016 HTS1800 RoadSmith Trike
2001 GL1800
1998 1100 Honda Shadow ACE
1972 Honda CL450

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by 2008retiredplb » Tue Nov 24, 2015 9:29 pm

WingAdmin wrote:
CaNorseman wrote:Took the course in lew of the cone test at Dmv. I knew the gl1000 wouldn't and I couldn't. I learned a lot and my bad habits were revealed. Heads up and look where your going.Your bike will follow.
My bike was physically incapable of turning inside the radius they had set up in the Ohio test (had to re-take all my drivers and motorcycle license tests when I moved to Ohio). I complained, the guy simply didn't care. Because of it, I knew I would bust two of the test parameters, which meant I had to pass EVERY other part of the test in order to pass. Which I did. :)
I didn't think I could take turns that sharp, on my GL1800, until I took the ARC class two or three times. Now I can with very little practice make a complete 180 turn, in side a 16 to 18 foot ( or maybe smaller) diameter circle or a figure eight in a box of 16' to 18' by 30' (not sure of the dimensions of the box is, but it is much smaller than I used to have to have in order to do it). It just takes Practice, Practice, Practice. As you build confidence you will see great improvement in your riding abilities.
I am always amazed by riders that have been riding for many years and think they know everything about how to ride, until they take some of the more experienced rider classes and they are amazed at how much they learned, if they will admit it.
"Love to ride and ride to love"

User avatar
DJnRF
Posts: 353
Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:50 pm
Location: FINALLY! Moved to a new home in Creve Coeur, IL.
Motorcycle: 1981 GL1100i Interstate
And, many others since I started riding. Started on a Harley in 1956.

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by DJnRF » Wed Nov 25, 2015 6:23 am

For us in Illinois, the state holds the MSF rider classes. The cost is "FREE", but one does
have to pay a $25 class reservation fee, but this is refunded if you attend and complete
the class. Also, the state provides the motorcycles for the class. They also provide the
helmets, but the student must provide the long sleeve garment, wear long pants, gloves,
and ankle high (or higher) shoes/ boots. There are three types of classes: Beginner,
Intermediate, and Experienced rider. If a rider would like to become an instructor, the
person must provide a motorcycle to take that class. The state does suggest that the
rider take the class on a smaller motorcycle as It is tough to do on a larger machine.
Not only that, but in teaching the class it is mostly not possible for their students to
practice on a small (usually 250 cc motorcycles) what they see one do on a large bike.
Most, and many times all, the students being taught have never been on a motorcycle
before. Instructors are hired by the State of Illinois universities, and are paid for
each class they teach. (Pretty good pay, too.) An instructor may teach all the classes
they wish.

There are some other organizations that also teach the MSF safe rider classes, but
most charge for the class, which the SIU, ISU, etc schools do not. The IL DOT (IDOT)
is the sponsor for the whole IL motorcycle safety program.

Ever since IL started teaching this class I go back every couple of years to take
again. Each time I have learned something new, or relearned something I had
forgotten. Since it started here in the mid-80's, I have taken all three levels
and have graduated from all a total now of six times. For extra practice in
my 'play'' time I go and use the Police Motor Officer's training area. They
have a very nice setup laid out. It is much less expense than actually
taking the Police course. (Free! to use if they are not using it at the time.)
The bad thing for me is that with age, and certain recently gained physical
limitations, it is getting much more difficult to do these days. With almost
60 years of riding now the ole bod just isn't as good as many previous years.

One last thing here is that if one takes the class and needs to re-license
(or get their first license) the IL Sec'y of State (IL DMV) accepts the MSF
certificate as proof of the class and waives the requirements of the state
testing for the motorcycle endorsement on the drivers license.

No matter what your experience, I very highly recommend everyone take
this class, even those who never even wish to ride! It can, and does,
promote motorcycle 'awareness'.
"Survival is one's own ability to cope with and overcome any adverse or threatening situation, condition, casualty or event." ©Dj 1969

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WingAdmin
Site Admin
Posts: 19060
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:16 pm
Location: Strongsville, OH
Motorcycle: 2000 GL1500 SE
1982 GL1100A Aspencade (sold)
1989 PC800 (wife's!)
1998 XV250 Virago (sold)
2007 Aspen Sentry Trailer

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by WingAdmin » Wed Nov 25, 2015 8:55 am

2008retiredplb wrote:
WingAdmin wrote:
CaNorseman wrote:Took the course in lew of the cone test at Dmv. I knew the gl1000 wouldn't and I couldn't. I learned a lot and my bad habits were revealed. Heads up and look where your going.Your bike will follow.
My bike was physically incapable of turning inside the radius they had set up in the Ohio test (had to re-take all my drivers and motorcycle license tests when I moved to Ohio). I complained, the guy simply didn't care. Because of it, I knew I would bust two of the test parameters, which meant I had to pass EVERY other part of the test in order to pass. Which I did. :)
I didn't think I could take turns that sharp, on my GL1800, until I took the ARC class two or three times. Now I can with very little practice make a complete 180 turn, in side a 16 to 18 foot ( or maybe smaller) diameter circle or a figure eight in a box of 16' to 18' by 30' (not sure of the dimensions of the box is, but it is much smaller than I used to have to have in order to do it). It just takes Practice, Practice, Practice. As you build confidence you will see great improvement in your riding abilities.
I am always amazed by riders that have been riding for many years and think they know everything about how to ride, until they take some of the more experienced rider classes and they are amazed at how much they learned, if they will admit it.
Oh, I can make the 180 in the box as required. What my bike couldn't do was where they had right angle turns with a narrow lane painted on the ground. You had to keep both tires inside (i.e. not touching) the lines when going around the corner. I showed the guy that with the length of my bike that it wasn't physically capable of actually making that turn without one of the wheels going over a line, but he didn't care, and I got points knocked off for it.

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WingAdmin
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Posts: 19060
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:16 pm
Location: Strongsville, OH
Motorcycle: 2000 GL1500 SE
1982 GL1100A Aspencade (sold)
1989 PC800 (wife's!)
1998 XV250 Virago (sold)
2007 Aspen Sentry Trailer

Re: Safety riding courses......

Post by WingAdmin » Wed Nov 25, 2015 8:56 am

I too take the MSF Experienced Rider course (or whatever they call it now) every couple of years as a brush-up. I find it interesting that every time I've taken it, the instructors ride (and demonstrate the maneuvers on) GL1500's.



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