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Old 01-04-2007, 12:30 PM   #221
boballen
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Default Re: Power to Wait

I believe the fallacy is that we only seem to have statistics on fatalities and from there we posit some huge conclusions. If we could get statistics on which size/style of motorcycle is most often damaged in an accident, then we might glean something useful.



Seemingly people die on motorcycles most often when they are doing something stupid and that's the only statistic traded publicly.



Which type of bike / type of rider is most often making an insurance claim as a percentage of total on the road is what we need before any rational conclusions on this debate can be made.
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Old 01-04-2007, 12:36 PM   #222
HighsideHarry
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Default Re: Power to Wait

"Hearing protection?" Try it before you buy it!



The problem with hearing protection, is that you can't hear anything! I tried earplugs for awhile and I felt as if I were on an electric bike. I couldn't tell if the damn bike was running or not when I stopped, and I found myself going considerably faster coming into corners as I couldn't modulate my speed in concert with what I was hearing.



Hell, I'm too old to worry about going deaf now anyway, but at least I won't launch myself into a corner 20MPH too fast.
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Old 01-04-2007, 12:41 PM   #223
rgewirtz
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Default Re: I'm an insensitive jerk

We all know about the black boxes that are being added to our motorcycles. These "smart" motorcycles could have a built in fingerprint reader as a theft deterence. They could also include a breathalyzer that would need to be used before starting. The smart chip would identify the user, and record a "log" of that drivers time on the bike building an experience profile. This would then be used to retard engine performance until enough experience would be gained on that bike. In this way and new liter class bike would ride like a 250 for a few months, then increase to the performance of a 500cc bike, and perhapse after 5000mi of that rider on the bike be fully functional. If you then buy a new liter bike the dealer could transfer the "log" from the old bike to the new bike. You would never again have drunk newbies on high performance bikes. Same could be done for cars. Unfortunatly, I haven't figures out what to do about high mass bikes or other inherently hard to ride bikes like a chopper.
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Old 01-04-2007, 12:49 PM   #224
Drakko
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Default Re: Power to Wait

I fully agree with the article. Here, in Ontario, Canada, we have graduated licensing - M1, M2 and full M. It takes two years and two riding tests to get fully licenced. Less than full M licence comes with restrictions - e.g., beginners are restricted to highways less than 80 kph (50 mph) and to day time riding only. There is no tolerance for alcohol either. Rider training is also highly recommended and you can literally observe the difference between those who've taken training and those who haven't. It's not just in the clothing worn (e.g., helmet, jacket, gloves) but also in how the bike is handled (speed control, lane position, etc.).
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Old 01-04-2007, 01:06 PM   #225
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Default Re: I'm an insensitive jerk



OK -- that really doesn't have much to do with my post, but I'll answer that in the context of my statement anyway.</p>



On principle, I'm against forcing technology upon people which assumes that they're using the device to commit a crime -- whether it's obtrusive copy protection or built-in breathalyzer tests wired into the ignition. We live in a free society which largely makes the assumption that most citizens abide by the law. Furthermore, the foundation of our criminal law system is that we're guilty until proven innocent. This takes that into account, but sort of sets it aside so that we're forced to prove that we're not going to commit a crime. If these weren't basic American cultural assertions, none of our speedometers would operate beyond the maximum speed limit, and our vehicles would be heavily governed to a maximum legal speed.</p>



Further, I'm against anything that spies on me and logs my activity without my consent. Finally, I'm against any legislature that would require me to purchase this technology with my vehicle. Remember that someone has to pay for this stuff, and it's always the consumer.</p>



That being said, if someone is caught driving/riding drunk, put an ignition breathalyser in their vehicles -- they've demonstrably broken the law.



How about instead of committing mine and your money to this, I'll try really hard to not be a jackass, and everyone else can do the same. If you're a jackass and you ride your brand new 'busa in an irresponsible manner and kill or disable yourself...I'll still try not to pass laws that assume that everyone else in the world is a jackass.</p>
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Old 01-04-2007, 01:35 PM   #226
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Default Re: Power to Wait

I agree with this article and although I think tiered licensing would be a good idea as well, I have a couple of other opinions that I think are worth considering. First, you often hear the stories of someone, young or old, who goes and buys a bike before they get a license or any training. In fact, in my class there was an older gent who had purchased a brand new HD touring rig and had it delivered to his house. He was at the beginner's riding course with a brand new 800 lb bike at his house. He ended up flaking out and telling the instructors he couldn't do the course, had absolutely no aptitude for bike control. He then promptly ran the Honda Rebel he was on into the side of the transport trailer. Crazy. My point? No one should be able to go buy a motorcycle unless they already have a valid MC license.



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Old 01-04-2007, 01:55 PM   #227
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It's really, really easy to disagree with. The studies show that displacement has very little to do with fatality rates (have you read the Hurt report?).


This is a straw man. A good tiered-licencing system doesn't use displacement as the only criteria, if it even uses it at all.


"Tiered licencing" is not synonymous with "displacement restrictions". Simplistic tiered licencing systems have used engine capacity restrictions in the past, because engine size and engine power are loosely correlated. That does not mean they must use them in the future.


Every piece of data I've ever seen from places that have implemented tiered licencing has indicated it reduces accident rates and increases motorcycling participation. Since pretty much all the arguments I've seen against it amount to little more than paranoia, it's hard to see how any rational person would consider it to be a bad thing.
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Old 01-04-2007, 02:13 PM   #228
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Default Re: Power to Wait

Hi,

Don't laugh, my first bike was a ex-postman's Honda 50cc, I was 16. During my 20s, I rode a lot of dirt bikes, especially in the sand hills near my home. It is in the sand that I learnt most of my motorcycle survival skills: the limits of engine capacity and the effects of motorcycle mass, but more more importantly I found my own limits; what I could, and could not do. I would push myself to the limit knowing when it was crash time, I would land in the forgiving sand, bounce back up on my feet and then laugh my head off. Ha! Ha! But seriously, I quickly learnt what I could not do. Today I'm 55, still ride, and I'm proud to say, when approaching a corner at speed, many calculations still go though head, feeling for feedback off of the tarmac, sensing shifting centres of mass, hence searching for the limit. I've had no real serious injury in all those years, and still enjoy riding to the max.
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Old 01-04-2007, 03:07 PM   #229
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Default Re: WOW!

By the way, I just got back in to Chicago the other day and I come to understand that Highland House has been closed up for a couple years...where's the new spot for Sunday gaze & drool when you don't feel like riding too much? I'm south suburbs now, but plan to move into the city over the summer. Thanks.



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Old 01-04-2007, 03:16 PM   #230
drsmithy
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Default Re: I don't care at all.



Here's a wild and wacky alternative; why don't we just teach them how to drive or ride first?


Because training is not synonymous with experience.


Training hones (or creates) the motor skills needed to ride a bike. However, these skills are a relatively minor aspect of what you need to be a safe, competent rider.


An intensive two - five day training course will teach you a lot. An intensive two - five day training course *and* six months of riding around will teach you a lot more.


If we had meaningful driver's training in this countyr, training that taught riders how to mix with traffic, how to operate in an emergency situation at freeway speeds, how to do basic maintenance so they can spot mechanical problems before they are life-threatening, etc, we might see such a sizeable drop in crashes and fatalities (can't die if you don't crash, right?) that we won't need to enact HP limits.


You certainly would. And if tiered-licencing were brought along with it, deaths would be reduced even more.


The one big issue that tiered licencing is intended to address is inexperience. This mainly manifests as:


1. Inexperience in traffic (mainly for young riders).

2. Inexperience with motorcycles (for all riders).


It is very important to note that the second is a *multiplicative* factor. The more powerful the motorcycle, the easier it is to make mistakes on and the less forgiving it is of those mistakes. A rider error that results in little more than a pounding heart on a low-powered machine can quite easily result in a fatal crash on a high-powered machine.


Or we can keep promoting knee-jerk reaction legislation that does nothing and will never be enacted.


Everywhere I have heard of it being enacted, tiered licencing structures have improved motorcycling by making it safer, more accessible and more popular. OTOH, I've never heard an argument *against* tiered licencing that didn't involve an extended bout of paranoia along the lines of "OMG ! They're going to take away our motorcycles !!".


News flash: if they're going to ban motorcycles, they're going to do it regardless of what the licencing structure might be.
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