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Discussion Starter #1
When riding tandem, you generally ride in a staggered position.. what about if you're riding solo and happen to come up behind another bike, do you stay in the dominant lane position, or do you assume the staggered position?

I'm guessing you stay dominant, but thought I'd ask.
 

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ZAMM Fanatic
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When you're in traffic and have cars behind "pushing" you to go faster, or to "close up the gap" between you and the vehicle ahead of you --- and that vehicle happens to be another motorcyclist....

I always go to a staggered position, even if I don't know the other rider. It's safer FOR ME if they "eat *hit", swerve, whatever.

Out on an empty country road, don't know the other rider, I'm gonna stay dominant (directly behind them on the left side of hte lane) but FURTHER behind him/her UNLESS I'm overtaking or planning to overtake.

That way if I see them brake, swerve, or suspension travel (pothole, bump, debris, unseen speed bump, etc.) I get info that allows ME to brake, swerve, ...

Safety for myself and the other rider are my ONLY concerns, although showing courtesy to cagers always helps, never hurts.
 

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American Legion Rider
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If you've caught up to another rider why slow down and pull in staggered. Ride your own ride and go on around and continue your ride. Geez!!!
 

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Charlie Tango Xray
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I'll stager too. If I'm riding with others, then they'll also follow suit. But I'll stay to the left if I have intentions to pass.
 

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I always stagger if there is another bike nearby. It is safer.

If I stay in a dominant position - it's a signal to them NOT to pass me ... until I give the All Clear hand signal. Not that a lot of riders care, often the young guys just blow past me anyway. all the more reason to switch to a staggered position.

dT
 

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Driftless Rider
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If rolling along at my pace, or if traffic dictates; I will fall into staggered formation regardless of what lane position the other bikes is in. I just like the cushion and vision staggering provides.

If is it a slower bike, I will keep in the left position and look to pass if/when the opportunity arrives.

On a somewhat related note, I find it interesting that when we see 2 or more cycles in a row, we just assume that they are a "group" regardless of the style of bike. Or at least I do.
 

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Aging & Worn
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<another vote for going staggered. I like the idea of giving the bike I am coming up to, every full advantage of seeing me at all times.

I watch to see when other bikers coming up behind me, if they will "stagger" themselves. More often than not, they DON'T and that annoys me.

It's like when someone, in the midst of a conversation, starts with the word "so." It's condescending!

If you want to "pass" them, or visa-versa, .....all bets are off!!

-Soupy
 

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Being relatively new to the biker life, I tend to try and stay away from other cycles. I tend to prefer the left hand part of the lane, unless I got a left handed turn coming up, I tend to move over to the right hand side of the lane. I also stay away from all the cracks in the road (notorious here in ct) so where I am depends on the road. But what I cannot stand, and it annoys me, is when I'm stopped at a stop light and another bike comes right up besides me and blocks my view of oncoming traffic. Regardless if the light is green, I want to see if it's safe to go.
 

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American Legion Rider
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Usually because of traffic. Sometimes you just can't pass safely.
In that case I'd bide my time but stay ready to continue and pass when safe. I'm not part of that group so why act like it. Plus I've ridden enough with others following me that to change position is a big no-no. That makes everyone change and is not recommended. You ride your own ride. Simple as that.
 

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Justa anutta Human......
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728 Posts
When i come up to another bike or more riding i try to make sure they know i'm behind them first.
Then i ride staggered till i can pass if they're not going a speed i'm going.
Seems most cruisers go about the speed limits by their speedo that usually is off by +5 MPH. I changed my gearing so my speedo is off -5 MPH, but i go by my GPS. 55 on speedo is 60 GPS.
I usually run 10 MPH over on highways.
Seems the cops here let sportbikes get away with that no problems...
I don't pass them like most idiots on supersports seem to like to do....
At least that's how i see a lot of them do it here....
A blur going by or passing on one wheel.....
I show the other riders respect as i'd like them to show me.
No reason to be a hater out there riding....
 

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Female Rider
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One of the main reasons IMO for the staggered formation is so riders can see a little further in front of them without the rider directly in front of them blocking the view. It gives you more tie to react should something happen.

We have a LOT of 2 lane roads around here and frequently catch up to other groups of riders and you either have to follow or find a long straight stretch to pass so staggered it is. We may leave a little more of a gap between their last rider and our 1st rider but we can't leave too much or some idiot will try to fill in that gap.
 

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The 43rd Poser
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440 Posts
I agree with Wade...

However.

I do not let cagers "push" me. I ride MY ride, if they want to go faster, then they can pass. If they start tailgating, I'll tap the brake and slow a bit.

If none of that works... I've got a pretty mean biker scowl.
 

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When riding tandem, you generally ride in a staggered position.. what about if you're riding solo and happen to come up behind another bike, do you stay in the dominant lane position, or do you assume the staggered position?

I'm guessing you stay dominant, but thought I'd ask.
Stay back where they don't have to worry about what you are doing, ride wherever you like, pass when you can.

If you come up behind me, there will be limited passing zones, when you can pass I will move over to the right, slow down, and motion you to pass, you move up, see for yourself that it is clear, pass.

You were going faster than me, thats why you came up behind me, continue going faster than me after you pass.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Funny how everyone assumes I'm catching up to another bike on the open road going fast.. the reality is, I came up behind this other rider simply because they turned into the lane in front of me in town. There was no desire, or need, to pass.

Lots of good info here though, appreciate it.
 

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Premium Member
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Behind

I make sure the other rider can see me. Usually ride staggered. Follow them for a while. If they are going a bit slow I will pass them. If they are going at a good clip they will soon find out I can stay with them, if I am on one of the bigger bikes. I am happy behind if the pace is okay. I usually do not pass in corners having no idea of the other riders skill, or lack of. That is why I follow them for a while. When I pass I give a polite wave. If I know the other rider I will pull alongside at a red light. Do the same with a keen Sportster rider.

Unkle Crusty*
 

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Funny how everyone assumes I'm catching up to another bike on the open road going fast.. the reality is, I came up behind this other rider simply because they turned into the lane in front of me in town. There was no desire, or need, to pass.

Lots of good info here though, appreciate it.
I didn't assume anything, I answered the question you asked. Look at your own post.

If I'm going 5mph and you are going 7mph then you are going faster than me.......faster than me is what I said, I did not assume you were going fast. You apparently did assume that I ride right up to the edge of fast.

Someone turning into the lane in front of you is not the same as "what about if you're riding solo and happen to come up behind another bike,"

Silly me, I did assume that you were asking a "what if" situation, which I probably got from "what about if", I don't know how we were supposed to assume that you were talking about a real situation.

If want answers to a specific situation........then you need to give specific details.
 

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Super Moderator
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Only issue for me is "Am I going to pass?" Simply put if I am then directly behind usually sends a clear message. If we're going the same direction and the same basic speed I'll slip into the stagger and lay back a little extra so they don't feel pressured.

You might want to be aware of who you've caught up to. Some folks don't like you puppy-dogging it like you're part of the party...
 
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