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Discussion Starter #1
My state doesn't allow lane splitting, but I'm not too far from California, and in the future I may want to get on the road an visit the family I have there. That considered... how many of you lane split? It scares me to death, but it does also appeal to me for many reasons. Traffic being the main one.
How dangerous is it? Does it matter what kind of bike you have? I've only ever seen standard or sports bikes lane split, no cruisers.
I've seen cagers open their doors randomly when there are MCs lane splitting, but from what I have heard it doesn't happen too often? Is lane splitting more or less dangerous on the highway/freeway?

I guess what I'm getting at, is your guys' opinion on lane splitting. Ya'll are more experienced than I am regardless of where you ride, anyone's advice is appreciated! :71baldboy:
 

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American Legion Rider
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Far as I'm concerned it is dangerous but manageable if done slow. You are after all only trying to get a little air movement on the engine with air cooled bikes and not trying to race somewhere.

Believe me the jerks are out there so if you do it be prepared for ANYTHING. I've only done it when I had to. Any other time I just sat there or went slow like everyone else.
 

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Troublemaker
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If you live through it, it is safe that time. Good luck with saving a few minutes on a trip when you could be sitting back enjoying it.

My opinion, it is unsafe and foolish, but I am old and like to ride. Even caught up in traffic is better than laid out on the pavement.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Believe me the jerks are out there so if you do it be prepared for ANYTHING. I've only done it when I had to. Any other time I just sat there or went slow like everyone else.
So just keep riding like I'm invisible and everyone else is drunk? ;)
 

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Troublemaker
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Not so much like everyone else is drunk, but everyone else is out to find a way to kill you without you knowing it.
 

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American Legion Rider
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+1 ^^^^^
 

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Gone.
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You could define "attempted manslaughter" by saying, "the operation of a four wheel vehicle on a public roadway."

:biggrin:

I agree with Luvs...I have never had the need to lane split and would rather be sitting in traffic then laid out on the ground. Maybe it takes me a little longer to get somewhere? Pfft. Those that do it swear by it, and good for them. I've just not yet encountered the need for me to do it.
 

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Very Famous Person
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I believe how "safe" depends on how you do it. I have done it on the bike in my avatar (certainly no skinny bike!) while in heavy traffic by San Francisco. All the other vehicles weren't moving most of the time and when they were, I just blended in with the traffic. When they stopped, I just passed at maybe 20-25 mph so I wasn't zooming past. Time saved--I don't know, but the line of cars I passed was several miles long.

I have been in stop and go, back east somewhere, at a traffic construction zone where it was hot and humid and my bike was sending up waves of heat and my carb was overflowing when I'd stop during longer stops. That wasn't much fun. I do wear all riding gear, so I had no relief at all. I know it was a different situation, but it would be the same in a long traffic jam.

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Discussion Starter #10
I'll have to watch that video at home when I'm not at work, but it looks interesting.
Thanks guys for the comments and thoughts, I'm always so wishy washy about it. Honestly it scares me.. but I don't really have a need for it yet so I'm not too worried for the time being :)
And RonK, how tight of a squeeze is that?
 

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They have written up a bill to make it legal in Washington, and if it goes through, l still won't do it. It just isn't part of my personal makeup. I am not in a hurry, and l do not want to be in a hurry.
 

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it's an art form.
you learn it slowly.
START by not lane splitting.
Then ride with people who know how to do it WISELY.
That's the important factor - learn it from the good riders who know how to keep the risks down.

I thought I knew "something" about lane splitting.
I've done it here in California for the last 7 years.

But I just came back from a holiday trip to Brazil.
You haven't seen anything - until you see the MC riders there.
All of those people are taking suicide pills on a daily basis.
I guess the moral is ... DON'T learn lane-splitting from a Brazilian !!!

dT
 

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...

And RonK, how tight of a squeeze is that?
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My handlebars are as wide as any Goldwing's. Mirrors are one thing you have to watch for. I think first is to be sure you know how to stop without thinking about it, then use your internal antennas to judge widths, and don't go through if you're not sure. You have to be very comfortable working with your bike as an extension of your body.

One of the best ways I've found to become familiar with the bike is to go on a trip where you ride for 8 hours day after day. You can keep practicing things over and over.

As to really knowing how lane splitting works, there are some riders here that do it every day. They could give you a better perspective than I can.

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Commute Racer
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I will answer specific questions, as I am one of those riders who splits daily, but I don't have the time to sit down and write a "how to" the likes of captain crash.
 

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Retired twice: Navy and as a govt contractor
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I will answer specific questions, as I am one of those riders who splits daily, but I don't have the time to sit down and write a "how to" the likes of captain crash.
You lane split on the route you take to work? Damn, I used to drive that in a cage everyday for years and it scared the crap out of me.
 

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Commute Racer
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I generally only find the need when I get to where 50 narrows down to two lanes just before the DC line, and then through the city. The same in reverse on the way home. Most of MD is clear for me.
 

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Retired twice: Navy and as a govt contractor
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I haven't worked in NVA for about 12 years now, but from inside the beltway down 50 to Bladensburg, to MD ave, and then underground and spit out on 395. That was the scary part of the trip.

50 had just gone to 3 lanes outside the beltway to Annapolis.
 
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