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2021 CanAm Spyder RT
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been riding motorcycles for close to 40 years, although I was a late starter, and I'm still riding at 79 and hope to keep riding as long as I am on this Earth. But last year, when I had to face the reality of aging and the loss of muscle strength, I traded in my wonderful 2016 Goldwing for a new Can Am Spyder RT. I love riding the Spyder, but it is not a "real" motorcycle. It gives many of the same experiences, like going down the road, open to the elements, wind in my face, etc. And it certainly has some practical advantages over a 2 wheeler, like essentially not worrying about the road suddenly turning into fresh, loose gravel, or putting a foot down at a red light and slipping due to oil on the road. The semi-auto transmission takes a bit of getting used to, with no clutch lever and no need to downshift when slowing down. Stop and go traffic is a breeze, since like a car in Drive, you can stay in 1st gear at stops and move when the traffic moves without shifting gears at all until things speed up. My wife loves the ride, and no longer worries that while getting on or off she will cause the bike to tip over and dump us both on the ground. But again, it is not a real motorcycle. It takes up a whole lane, and any thoughts of filtering or lane splitting need to be forgotten. There is no longer the thrill of leaning into a curve, pouring on the power as you come through the curve and blasting ahead, at one with the bike.

But participating in a Spyder forum, as well as a page on Facebook devoted to Spyders, its clear many "riders" are not former motorcyclists. That is certainly fine, and these folks can experience much of the fun of riding without the need to master any of the skills involved in motorcycling. But apparently when I tell the truth and say that these three wheel trikes are not really motorcycles, and that anyone that can drive a car can get right on one and do just fine, they get really unhappy with me. Many seem to want to think of themselves now as motorcyclists but are still intimidated from actually learning to ride a 2 wheeler.

Life stays interesting.
 

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I've been riding motorcycles for close to 40 years, although I was a late starter, and I'm still riding at 79 and hope to keep riding as long as I am on this Earth. But last year, when I had to face the reality of aging and the loss of muscle strength, I traded in my wonderful 2016 Goldwing for a new Can Am Spyder RT. I love riding the Spyder, but it is not a "real" motorcycle. It gives many of the same experiences, like going down the road, open to the elements, wind in my face, etc. And it certainly has some practical advantages over a 2 wheeler, like essentially not worrying about the road suddenly turning into fresh, loose gravel, or putting a foot down at a red light and slipping due to oil on the road. The semi-auto transmission takes a bit of getting used to, with no clutch lever and no need to downshift when slowing down. Stop and go traffic is a breeze, since like a car in Drive, you can stay in 1st gear at stops and move when the traffic moves without shifting gears at all until things speed up. My wife loves the ride, and no longer worries that while getting on or off she will cause the bike to tip over and dump us both on the ground. But again, it is not a real motorcycle. It takes up a whole lane, and any thoughts of filtering or lane splitting need to be forgotten. There is no longer the thrill of leaning into a curve, pouring on the power as you come through the curve and blasting ahead, at one with the bike.

But participating in a Spyder forum, as well as a page on Facebook devoted to Spyders, its clear many "riders" are not former motorcyclists. That is certainly fine, and these folks can experience much of the fun of riding without the need to master any of the skills involved in motorcycling. But apparently when I tell the truth and say that these three wheel trikes are not really motorcycles, and that anyone that can drive a car can get right on one and do just fine, they get really unhappy with me. Many seem to want to think of themselves now as motorcyclists but are still intimidated from actually learning to ride a 2 wheeler.

Life stays interesting.
Even though, I am currently boycotting Can-Am, their engineering cannot be denied...

 

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Honda Tiderls, Ural Solos & BMW R60/6
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Vito ;

I've been riding more than 50 years now and some will always disparage whatever others ride .

I agree, if it doesn't lean it's not the same, some day I too will have to try a three wheeler, so what .

At the same time I have noticed that whenever I see groups of three wheelers stopped some place, they're very uppity, like the henna tattoo Harley guys and gals .

So, screw 'em, go ride you're so lucky to have a sweetie who still rides ! .
 

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I swear we've had this exact conversation about the can-am riders here in the last 6 months, and I'll say again that its the norm today for men to be incredibly insecure and to shout and scream anytime anyone isn't fawning over whatever it is they're doing. Its nutty. Im at a point where I can't find normal people to interact with anymore, irl. Like you start talking g to someone, and they're normal for 30 seconds and then they start acting like that. Its not just can-ams. It can literally be any product in the world that they're willing to fight you over. Any product they feel brings them status. The Subaru crowd, for the most part, act exactly like can am riders when you remind them the cars are slow, get poor gas mileage, and are unreliable. They go nuclear even though its a demonstrable fact. I say embrace and and overcome it. Its like they think if they shout loud enough the thing they want will come true.
 

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I think the guy in the second video nailed it when he said something like they're not the same, but they're both fun in their own ways. I've never rode a CanAm but I know a woman that rides one and she loves it. Her husband rides a new Electra Glide and he likes her CanAm Ryker too.
 

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There are getting to be more trikes than bikes here. There was a time I'd see 1 trike and 12 to 14 bikes at the Legion Post. But the last time I was there, there were 8 trikes and 1 bike. The old, like me, are going to trikes just to stay on the road it seems.
 

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My wife and I joined an American Legion Riders group ride yesterday. There were 25 bikes and 7 trikes. Not all the trike riders were old guys and all of the ladies riders were on two wheels. This seems like the same mix in my area for the past ten years or so. During the meeting and chat session I heard nothing about 2 or 3 wheel differences. Just folks getting together to enjoy the ride. I guess it is different in different parts of the country. Sounds like maybe some of the Cam Am owners drank the Beemer coolaid!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
My local GWRRA group often has more trikes than bikes on our rides, and no one bats an eye over what type or brand of trike. I think the difference with some Can Am owners is that some never were two wheel riders but want to think of themselves as motorcyclists. Traditional trike riders are virtually all former two wheel riders, and don’t have the same insecurity about themselves.
 

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Annihilator :

I don't grasp why someone would be rude to another person showing interest.....

That's very typical fear / insecurity response .

As far as 'drinking the Beemer Koolaid', I'm guilty ~ in the early 1960's in Cambridge, Mass. there was a Motocycle Dispatch outfit and they used only BMW /2's ~ slow and ponderous but extremely long lived .

I didn't get a BMW until the 1980's, my 1st was William Shatner's 1973 LWB R75/5 'Toaster' in Irish Green and I foolishly gave it to my lat fatherin law who loved it but trashed it in short order .

Since then I've had four /2's including two R96S', also extremely good bikes but saddled with poor brakes
so I sold them all on and went back to my beloved 1972 SWB R75/5, like a dummy I sold it too .

There used to be a whole bunch of smaller Japanese made bikes with either front or rear paired wheels, some had a joint on the middle of the frame allowing the front end to lean but the rider remain upright .

I have no idea how good or bad they were but always wanted to try one in case I'd need it as I get ever older and more decrepit .
 

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A lady at work was telling me about she is riding her Slingshot, and how as a 3 wheeler dodging potholes and manhole covers is a challenge. That was something I never considered/thought about with the wheel configuration. As far as the safety system that kicks in before it gets upset? That could be unnerving, wonder if it brake's or derates or...?
 

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Riding a normal motorcycle, usually, it's what the front wheel is doing or going to hit, knowing that the rear will undoubtedly hit the same thing and we are all used to that as you angle around something in your lane, to miss it!(y)

With a 3 wheel vehicle, such as my SPYDER, I have to worry about all 3 wheels and what is in their way, at all times. A Turtle, crossing the road in the middle of my lane, must be timed to 'fit' between the front tire track and the rear tire track, an area of maybe 18 inches or so! I can no longer try to just swerve a little to avoid whatever is in the road.:eek:

This part of riding a 'Tricycle,' is what took me so long to get used to as it is counter to all of my past experience.o_O

Sam:rofl:
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Riding a normal motorcycle, usually, it's what the front wheel is doing or going to hit, knowing that the rear will undoubtedly hit the same thing and we are all used to that as you angle around something in your lane, to miss it!(y)

With a 3 wheel vehicle, such as my SPYDER, I have to worry about all 3 wheels and what is in their way, at all times. A Turtle, crossing the road in the middle of my lane, must be timed to 'fit' between the front tire track and the rear tire track, an area of maybe 18 inches or so! I can no longer try to just swerve a little to avoid whatever is in the road.:eek:

This part of riding a 'Tricycle,' is what took me so long to get used to as it is counter to all of my past experience.o_O

Sam:rofl:
Without a doubt this is one of the few negatives of riding a trike. I haven't learned yet how to always avoid small objects in the road with the rear tire, but I try to aim to line up the object with my left foot. Sometimes I get it, sometimes I don't.
 

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Interesting thought .

I still use random man hole covers and so on in the street to practice my avoidance skills .

In Guatemala, Centro-America I nearly rode my 1937 Harley EL into an open manhole one day coming home from work and being able to dodge obstacles has saved my life more than a few times over the decades of riding .

One of these days I really need to try a modern trike .
 

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Without a doubt this is one of the few negatives of riding a trike. I haven't learned yet how to always avoid small objects in the road with the rear tire, but I try to aim to line up the object with my left foot. Sometimes I get it, sometimes I don't.
You have to do more than just aim vito. You also have to swerve a little, most times anyway. And don't even try to do it with a dead skunk in the road, just go around those things if at all possible.

I had similar problems but at the rear which I can't even see. That's been a real learning curve but I've got it down now. If in doubt go around, has become my new mantra.
 

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I ride a sport bike. Got back into riding 5 years ago after a 40 year break. Bad high side in the 70's. I considered a 3 wheeler for the inherent safety but went two wheels remembering the fun going through corners laid over, braking, the acceleration. For me two wheels was right. But can't argue
the benefits to some folks of the 3 wheelers. It's a personal decision I respect. But, I expect same for mine.
Will say though that three wheeler folks mostly return or originate a friendly wave on the road. Not always true of younger cruiser riders. Guess they're either concentrating or wrapped up in that part time pirate thing. ☠ ✌ 🙂
 
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