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Aging & Worn
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Discussion Starter #1
Is it safer to have your bike on the kickstand, and in neutral, when your passenger mounts the bike..............

or is it safer (more controllable, let's say) to have your passenger mount the bike, once you have the bike balanced underneath you (off the kick stand)?

I've taken a passenger a half dozen times, in my riding life, (most recently a month ago, when my thirty something daughter asked for a ride), and most of the time, I started the bike, made sure it was in neutral, planted my feet, and held the front brake, and then told her it was "ok to get on."

Recently I heard another point of view...........requiring the driver of the bike to leave the bike on the kickstand, until the rider has mounted.

your thoughts?

-Soupy
 

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Swamp Rat Rider
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1,867 Posts
Is it safer to have your bike on the kickstand, and in neutral, when your passenger mounts the bike..............

or is it safer (more controllable, let's say) to have your passenger mount the bike, once you have the bike balanced underneath you (off the kick stand)?

I've taken a passenger a half dozen times, in my riding life, (most recently a month ago, when my thirty something daughter asked for a ride), and most of the time, I started the bike, made sure it was in neutral, planted my feet, and held the front brake, and then told her it was "ok to get on."

Recently I heard another point of view...........requiring the driver of the bike to leave the bike on the kickstand, until the rider has mounted.

your thoughts?

-Soupy
Have done it Both ways If in a good level spot with the Bike headed out ready to go, prefer the passenger to get on First on the Stand .. If the Bike is parked in a situation that involves backing it up or a lot manuvering around up or downhill to get rolling will have her mount up when on a steady point of rolling out .. If do it the latter way I prefer both feet firmly planted and holding the front brake ..
 

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I had a case where I thought I was ready and told my wife to get on. I found out fast that the added weight on a passenger peg was not something I was really ready to deal with. Kickstand down means that is never an issue. I no longer invite anyone to mount the bike unless the kickstand is down and I am on the bike with the brake applied.
 

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Female Rider
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If letting them mount when it is on the kickstand you need to be able to handle the extra weight when you stand it up straight. I've seen a few guys, with the bike loaded down on a trip, struggle a little to stand it up, let alone lift the extra weight of a passenger.

I wouldn't want to be that close to my strength limit. That's why I haven't tried riding the Vision myself. I can stand it up, but I am at the point of almost struggling to do so.
 

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Troublemaker
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2,520 Posts
I have always done it with the bike balanced and the stand up. All of my wives have learned to get on the bike by putting the left foot on the peg and swinging over. They have to balance themselves too, and getting over the seat requires them to put their weight over the bike, not off to the side.

I only have one wife, but have been put to pasture before. All of them were married to me and my bikes first, a package deal. Now I don't have to worry about it, the wife rides her own bike.
 

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I always have the bike up and balanced with the stand up and then tell the passenger it's okay to mount. I think that is the way it's taught in advanced classes as well. My normal passenger is 5' even and 109 lbs so getting the bike off the stand with her on board isn't really an issue, but I trust my legs more than the stand. As far as I'm concerned, the rider should be completely in control of the bike with the front brake applied before the passenger mounts.
 

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Most side stands are designed to hold the weight of the motorcycle, not the additional weight of the passenger and rider.

I've always kept a firm grip on the ground with both feet down and the motorcycle upright when carrying a pillion.
 

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Super Moderator
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Little tip I've learned on a bike that's more standard in seating position:

Instead of sitting on the seat, put your feet down and rise up a little. The bike moves underneath you and you get a decidedly more planted feel because you don't feel like you're going to go over with the bike.
 

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Eating GSXRs, Sh***ing CBRs
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My wife gets on the bike the first way with the bike on the kickstand and me off. My daughter gets on after I'm on and she steps on the passenger peg and kicks her leg over. Personally, I prefer the latter.
 

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I am definitely NOT a fan of mounting with the kickstand down. I also do not like dismounting with it down. Below is how I mount and dismount a passenger.


1) The passenger must always ask if I am ready for her to mount and MUST get a response from me that I am. No telling and just hopping on. A good tap on the shoulder and a thumbs up also works for us. Always communicate.

2) Bike is vertical, in neutral, both feet firmly planted and the front brake applied.

3) Passenger always mounts from the kickstand side, throwing their leg over. Doesn't matter what side they mount from but I would keep it consistent.

4) I don't move from mounting position until the passenger is done fidgeting. Once they are seated properly they must give a double tap on my shoulder or verbal communication that they are good to go.

5) Dismounting is the exact in reverse. A double tap to let me know they want to dismount or a verbal communication with an affirmative response.

I've had people mount without telling me in the past with no spills but I had a passenger try and mount years ago when I didn't even have my hands on the bars. That was a pretty interesting moment! It was that event that made me standardize passenger mounting and dismounting rules for everyone before they ever get on my bikes. Its a bit more interesting having a passenger mount a sport bike as well. Since the pegs are so much higher for the passenger, it takes more support from me than on my vintage rides.
 

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Koda, you are doing it the way I was taught/raised to ride as a passenger. Always have a signals set before the ride and make sure they follow through with them. If the bike needs to be turned around or backed up I always have them do that before mounting.
 

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American Legion Rider
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Koda, you and I have had some disagreements, but this isn't one of them. You are right. Think about it folks. If you can't stabilize your bike without assistance, are your really ready for that extra weight? It's common sense. Really! If you use the side stand, at some point, your passenger will do something you didn't think they would do. All the communication signals in the world won't help if your passenger is suddenly attacked by yellow jackets. You had darn sure be able to handle all those weight changes. Think it will never happen? Think again and that is just one what if example. You had better learn how to let your passenger mount without assistance or we'll have another thread about falling over at a stop. I really suggest you think about relying on the sidestand. It's not the best solution.
 

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Pale Rider
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528 Posts
We ride two-up, switching positions every 2-3 hours, on tours. We always do it with the driver holding the front brake, side stand up, the driver's legs spread out in a wide, firmly planted 'V' to the rear, with their stomach and chest laid over, and in contact with, the faux tank, arms holding the bars firmly in place, elbows tucked against their ribs. We use intercoms, so we are communicating the whole time. Once the passenger is settled in, the driver relaxes, and assumes normal position.

We've found that making a 'V' with the legs, leaning on top of the bike, becoming one with the bike, mechanically, makes it much easier to handle mishaps from the passenger, avoiding falls for the driver and bike. It sounds more complex than it is. We do it quickly, and easily, after years of practice. YMMV. Cheers!
:coffee:
 
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