What do expect from MSF?
August 13, 2008 at 3:06 am #1897WeaponZeroParticipant
I’ve owned my SV650 naked for over a month now and have been commuting to work every day on it and taking the occasional weekend ride as well. I’m scheduled to take the MSF course starting Sept 3. While I do feel confident on my bike that I can handle your average ride situation, there are a few things I’m not comfortable with yet, especially low speed turns without stopping first, riding over rough roads (such as cobblestone) and taking turns while riding down a steep hill on a residential street. Will the MSF course teach me the things I need to be able to do these things with confidence now?
And will someone who’s been riding around the city for the last month or so on an SV650 have trouble with the riding portion of the classes?August 13, 2008 at 3:22 am #10430fotobitsParticipant
Relax. Seriously. Relaxing is the absolute best thing you can do on a motorcycle. Keep your grip on the bars loose, listen to the instructors, and practice what they teach you. You will be a more confident and safer rider at the end of the course. My wife passed the MSF course after three months of weekends on a Honda XR100.August 13, 2008 at 4:24 am #10433AndrewParticipant
Don’t sweat it dude. I passed the MSF with no experience driving stick and just 1 ride on a buddy’s dirt bike when I was 16. You will do fine with the riding and may get bored with the early clutch control exercises.August 13, 2008 at 8:14 am #10439AnonymousGuest
The class is great fun, I passed two weeks ago. Our group was 12 riders of which about 50% had never been on a bike before that weekend at all, the other 50% were seasoned riders. Everyone passed, had a great time, and learned alot (even the seasoned riders). As fotobits said, just remember to stay relaxed and enjoy the practicing. Listen to the trainers, they are there to help you as well. Have a blast!!August 13, 2008 at 2:43 pm #10442WeaponZeroParticipant
To give you a clue of what I’m expecting from it is this:
I live in Pittsburgh, PA, a city where everything is very old and all the roads were originally brick or cobblestone. A long time ago, they paved over most of the brick or cobblestone but many of the residential streets (such as the one I live on) never got paved over. If you look in my avatar you will see one behind me. The area is very hilly and most cobblestone roads take you up and back down again, and many of the stones are loose from the ground.
After turning off of the main road to enter my neighborhood to get to my house, you travel down what starts out as a perfectly flat and level normal paved road. After about 200 feet, the pavement ends and the road turns into a cobblestone road. Travel another 100 feet or so and it begins to go downhill, rather steep. Halfway down is a four-way intersection with stop signs. I have to turn left at this stop sign intersection and the ground I’m turning on is still on the side of a hill and I’m still going back down. Once i finally get to the very bottom of this hill, the pavement begins again and all is clear.
I’ve tried different techniques, but nothing I’ve found seems to help alleviate the fear and lack of confidence when travelling low speed downhill on a cobblestone road and then having to stop and turn while still angled downhill. It feels like I could lose the bike at any moment. What I really want out of the MSF course is to learn the proper way to go down roads like this with confidence and no fear because there are a LOT of them in this city.August 13, 2008 at 2:51 pm #10443AndrewParticipant
They didn’t cover that situation specifically in the class but the rider coaches were willing to answer specific questions about pretty much anything. My guess would be do it in a low gear while covering the clutch and the brakes. Practice going slow down a hill is probably the only thing that will give you confidence doing something like that.August 13, 2008 at 4:53 pm #10449megaspazParticipant
Ask. When you get to your MSF class ask what they would do. We don’t have much loose cobble stone here, although my apartment gate entrances have cobble stone firmly planted, riding slow over it is probably the best you can do. Or call up the city and ask them to pave some real frickin’ road over the cobble stone.
If there’s anything more important than my ego
around, I want it caught and shot now…August 13, 2008 at 5:36 pm #10453CityHunter357Participant
–“You don’t get to be old bein’ no foo, see? Lotta young wise men that’s deaaad as a motha!#@% ain’t they?– Richard Pryor as “Mudbone”August 14, 2008 at 1:11 pm #10489CityHunter357Participant
–“You don’t get to be old bein’ no foo, see? Lotta young wise men that’s deaaad as a motha!#@% ain’t they?– Richard Pryor as “Mudbone”August 14, 2008 at 2:00 pm #10495JimParticipant
The best thing I got out of MSF riding lessons….slowing down before I hit the curve, not in the curve, he made me do that exercise like 20 times , I didn’t get it then, I get it now….no more going into curves too hot. the quick braking exercises and the swerve exercises. Also in parking lots and stuff I use the figure 8 skills I learned in class.August 15, 2008 at 4:14 am #10575LokiParticipant
Man i thought i had it bad by having to drive 1 1/2 miles down a gravel road on my bike but COBBLE. I cant see how a bike would handle on cobble. /sarcaism/
Youll be fine, take it slow.August 27, 2008 at 2:26 am #11227zgotzillaParticipant
As a newbie I took the MSF, which should be a legal requirement for every single cyclist. However, I failed, and the instructor was right to fail me. As I took the final driving exam, it began to rain heavily. He stopped the test for awhile when it became monsoon like, but when it let up, I had to resume. A very experienced rider dropped his cycle during the emergency stop. This completely blew my confidence, as I had been riding all of one day. I was next up. Kept my head up, hit both front and rear brakes, and downshifted to first, while keeping the cycle in a straight line. However, the distance I took while trying to avoid locking up the wheels or dropping the cycle was way too far. Thought I did good, but the instructor was right to say in an emergency there was no way that amount of distance was acceptable.
Learn from my mistakes, fellow newbies. STOP MEANS STOP.
Here endeth the lesson.
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