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  1. #1
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    Default First freeway drive

    Well, took the Spyder on the freeway for the first time yesterday. I am used to driving two or four wheels on the freeway and the three wheels was a very strange feeling. I thought I would feel more in control having three wheels but it was just the opposite...it was a little spooky. I know I just need practice, much like the first few weeks driving two wheelers. It just didnít feel comfortable. Each little touch on the handlebars has me moving left or right. I thought it would be a seamless transition from two to three...silly me.

    Any of you experience growing pains moving to the three wheeler? Tips? Hints? I read the thread about not doing the death grip on the handlebars and that helped.

    Jerry
    2013 Spyder RTL

  2. #2
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    more miles you will get the hang of it

  3. #3
    Active Member george123's Avatar
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    You have to have a light touch on the handle bars. In the beginning most people have a death grip and that makes you over steer. Relax your grip. Watch at the vehicle ahead of you and not the road or stripes right in front of you. What part of San Antonio are you in. We're on the north side .
    2016 CanAm Spyder RT

  4. #4
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    Jerry, it will be that way until your brain gets convinced that it's you and not the bike causing the problem. That will probably be when you realize you just drove the last 2 miles one handed while you rested the other one.

    My first couple hundred miles on the interstate all i wanted to do was get home and hope that i didn't loose over $5,000 doing a quick sale. Thankfully i still had a couple hundred to go and it got better. Still took a few hundred more before i could say i was real comfortable.

    Hang in there. I think if you can ride a few times when the traffic is not bad it speeds up the process, not sure when that would be in the San Antonio area from what i have seen.

  5. #5
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    I never test drove any spyder or Ryker before my purchase.
    I bought a new one, and took the train to the dealer, and rode it 300km home.
    The first trip at highway speed I was actually wondering if I had done a horrible misstake. The bike felt quite wobbly and hard to keep on the road.
    But after a few trips I started to get the correct technique, and not try to micro manage all inputs by holding the bars hard, and correct constantly. Once I started to relax, the bike just handles great, and now it is relaxing and a VERY pleasant experience even at high speeds.
    So, just give it some time, it will not take long before you get the hang of it! And once you do, you will love your Spyder I am sure!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by george123 View Post
    You have to have a light touch on the handle bars. In the beginning most people have a death grip and that makes you over steer. Relax your grip. Watch at the vehicle ahead of you and not the road or stripes right in front of you. What part of San Antonio are you in. We're on the north side .
    We are in the Thousand Oaks area!

  7. #7
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    Good to hear....I imagined it would just take some time. I will definitely do more practice until I feel comfortable.

  8. #8
    Active Member bigbadbrucie's Avatar
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    It took me over 1,000 miles before I started to relax. It just takes time, time and more time, as well as miles.

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  9. #9
    Very Active Member Grandpot's Avatar
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    Mine was twitchy when changing lanes on the interstate at first. Got a laser alignment and the problem went away.
    If you have a little too much toe in it tends to over steer.
    2011 RTS
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    Experience is recognizing the same mistake every time you make it!

  10. #10
    aka: akspyderman ARtraveler's Avatar
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    Average learning curve 500 miles. I took 1500 miles. Hang in there, BUT NOT TO TIGHT.

    Currently Owned: 2019 F3 Limited, 2014 RTS-SE6 (yellow), 2015 Vulcan 900 LTD

    Previously : 2008 GS-SM5 (silver), 2009 RS-SE5 (red), 2010 RT-S Premier Editon #474 (black) 2011 RT A&C SE5 (magnesium). 6 Spyders, 11 years, 167,000 miles


  11. #11
    Very Active Member gkamer's Avatar
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    When I brought my Ryker on the 4th of June, this year, I had almost zero three wheel rider experience and zero two wheel experience. On a scale of 1 to 100, I would put my 3 wheel riding experience at about a 2-3. And that was from the 3 wheel training course I had to take several years ago. We did our riding portion of the class on a pad where we were barely able to get up to 20 mph before having to slow down or run off the pad.

    My dealer checked my license to make sure I was legal, had me sign a waiver, then told me to go have fun. I rode around on some back roads, never hitting more then 30-35 mph. But I knew if I were going to buy the Ryker, I was going to have a 60 mile ride home with the interstate my only option.

    So I threw caution to the wind and jumped on the freeway. Riding along at 70+, I had to keep reminding myself to not "death grip" the handle bars. There were a few shaky moments, but I willed myself not to try to fight them, just let the Ryker figure it out.

    In 22 days, I've put over a thousand miles on my Ryker. I still get buffeted by the wind on the freeway, but that's just the nature of the beast. While I still have to have a good grip on the right handle bar to control the throttle, I don't even wrap my fingers around the left handle bar grip anymore. I just sort of rest my palm on top of the grip. I more or less let the bike do what it was designed and engineered to do. I'm pretty much just along for the ride.
    Greg Kamer
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  12. #12
    Very Active Member JayBros's Avatar
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    I agree specifically with Grandpot, and generally with the other posters that you need to log more miles and it's an individual thing; don't worry about how long it takes. IMO, if your Spyder is properly laser aligned and if you have a Bajaron sway bar it will ride like it's on rails and you can take your hands off the bars at, "thank you for the ticket, officer" freeway speeds.
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  13. #13
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    Took me a couple miles to treat it more like a car and not a bike or normal trike. Now I feel perfectly comfortable and don’t even need any hands on the handlebars (with cruise control on) and it just cruises smooth and straight. Barely a touch to change lanes... can cruise at 70 using a finger to steer.

  14. #14
    Active Member george123's Avatar
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    Jerry, Check your notifications at the top of the page. I sent you a PM.
    2016 CanAm Spyder RT

  15. #15
    Member trong's Avatar
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    The more I read on this forum the more I think motorcyclists are having more issues riding Spyder in the first few hundred miles, myself included. I bought a RTL six weeks ago and started reading on how to transitioning to having another wheel upfront. It was hard for me for about 200 miles and slowly I started to relax and I now have about 600 miles and I don't try to fight to control it, surprise surprise it behaves better now. For the first two weeks I just picked less busy streets to ride, third week on I feel comfortable cruising at freeway speed.
    Just relax and get more miles on it and I'm sure it will be more enjoyable.
    Cheers.
    Ď13 Honda CB1100
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  16. #16
    Very Active Member StanProff's Avatar
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    Greg, I am on my third Spyder, my first one was a 2010 Rts. Had a 2014 and now a 2016 special edition. I seemed to always just rest my left hand on the grip like you do. Most new riders really just overdrive the Spyders. Kind of like riding a two wheeler on grooved pavement and trying to react to the groves, just gotta let the bike do its thing. Same with Spyders.
    Happy Spyderlovers

  17. #17
    Member OK-DZ9R's Avatar
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    looks like I am the odd man out here. After riding bikes for 60+ years and that includes dirt bikes, sport bikes, Harleys, vintage, BMWs, trials bikes, everything except big touring bikes, I bought a F3s due to a failing knee. My test ride before buying consisted of a half of mile loop at the dealer that was 30 miles away. Two miles down the road to home I was in the groove. I also own a '69 Austin Healey Sprite that I have owned for 51 years and I quickly realized that the Spyder handled much like the Sprite with handlebars with power like my BMW R1200GS. So, It was as I my Sprite and the GS had a baby. with that in mind, I've never looked back. Since, I have added a Baja Ron sway bar and a set of Elka shocks and the Spyder has only gotten better. No, it's not like my bikes, but it's not weird either. You have to think of it as a car with one less wheel not a bike with one extra.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by george123 View Post
    Jerry, Check your notifications at the top of the page. I sent you a PM.
    George - got it and sent you one back!

  19. #19
    Very Active Member RICZ's Avatar
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    At 1,000 miles, I was feeling more dialed in to the bike. By 2,000 miles, I was tossing it around turns like the 19 year old I think I am.
    What made the difference other than learning what the bike wants? It was overcoming what my brain and body had been programmed to after over six decades of two wheeling. It took almost 2K miles to reprogram body and brain to the inputs my Spyder delivers. Be patient and it will happen.
    Ours is a red, black and chrome 2017 F3 Limited. Bought new in 2/2019. The avatar is my first bike back in 1952, a Simplex Servi-Cycle. Photo taken at the Barber Museum.

  20. #20
    Active Member Peacekeeper6's Avatar
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    I was like you in the beginning as well, but I got quickly accustomed to it.

    However, if you do NOT have the stiffer Baja Ron swaybar and endlinks on your bike, I have two words for you:

    GET THEM.

    It'll make your steering on the "heavier" side. It is very similar to those cars that have aggressive power steering at slow, parking lot speeds. However, at faster, highway speeds, the power steering becomes less intrusive and you get a better feel for moving from lane to lane. It becomes less sensitive, which is what you want at faster speeds.

    I absolutely LOVE my swaybars. I like the fact that I can set the cruise control at 55 or above and just lightly lay one hand on the handlebar, and it tracks straight as an arrow. Sure it takes a bit move "oomph" to switch lanes and it's not obnoxiously bad, but I like that because it feels A LOT more planted and not as darty. As a result, I am more relaxed and enjoy the ride a lot more.

    Many who have installed the sway bar say "Oh, I didn't feel a big difference". Well, to me, ANY mods that make my bike safer and easier to control is a BIG difference.
    Last edited by Peacekeeper6; 06-27-2020 at 01:34 AM. Reason: edit
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peacekeeper6 View Post
    I was like you in the beginning as well, but I got quickly accustomed to it.

    However, if you do NOT have the stiffer Baja Ron swaybar and endlinks on your bike, I have two words for you:

    GET THEM.

    It'll make your steering on the "heavier" side. It is very similar to those cars that have aggressive power steering at slow, parking lot speeds. However, at faster, highway speeds, the power steering becomes less intrusive and you get a better feel for moving from lane to lane. It becomes less sensitive, which is what you want at faster speeds.

    I absolutely LOVE my swaybars. I like the fact that I can set the cruise control at 55 or above and just lightly lay one hand on the handlebar, and it tracks straight as an arrow. Sure it takes a bit move "oomph" to switch lanes and it's not obnoxiously bad, but I like that because it feels A LOT more planted and not as darty. As a result, I am more relaxed and enjoy the ride a lot more.

    Many who have installed the sway bar say "Oh, I didn't feel a big difference". Well, to me, ANY mods that make my bike safer and easier to control is a BIG difference.
    I decided to order them today and put them on. I hope they are everything that many say they are!

  22. #22
    Very Active Member Peteoz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chiefburg View Post
    I decided to order them today and put them on. I hope they are everything that many say they are!
    I don’t think you’ll find that anyone who has installed Ron’s bar has removed it, Jerry. The only ones who say they don’t need it appear to be those who have never tried it.....and if they are happy with the stock stabiliser bar, then that’s great. We are all different.

    p.s. I was exactly the same as you to start. I rode two wheels into the dealer, swapped, and rode two hours home on the freeway. It was like your first time in a house boat with rear steering, where you intend to go straight up the river but end up zig zagging toward each bank through over correction.

    Pete
    Harrington, Australia

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  23. #23
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    I'm pretty much in the same boat, not as smooth as I would have thought. Old habits are hard to break. I'm just not getting out enough.

  24. #24
    Very Active Member Cruzr Joe's Avatar
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    The Spyder does not want you to control it, it wants gentle guidance and it will be a smooth ride, relax and have a very loose grip.

    Cruzr Joe
    [SIZE=4]2018 F3 Limited, BRP Driver Backrest, Spyderpops Lighted Bump Skid, Dual Spyclops Light, Mirror Turn Signals, Laser Alignment, Engine LEDs, Fog Lights With Halo's, Cushion Handgrips, BRT LEDs, and Under Lighting, Lamonster IPS, (with Clock), F4 25" Vented Windshield with Wings, Airhawk "R" Cushions. Position 4 Brake setting, Short reach Handlebars, Dash Mounted Voltmeter and 12 Volt Plug. Set of 3rd pegs. Extended Passenger Seat. Exterior BRP Connect setup, Ultimate Trailer/SIZE]

  25. #25
    Active Member Peacekeeper6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chiefburg View Post
    I decided to order them today and put them on. I hope they are everything that many say they are!
    Trust me, I avoided buying the upgraded swaybar for the longest time. Then I read many, MANY riders who SWORE by it, so I decided to give it a try. I enjoy tinkering with our Spyder, so I looked at it as a LEGO project.

    Best decision I ever made as far as mods are concerned.

    Hope you like yours as much as I like mine....
    2016 Toyota Sienna SE - hers
    2002 BMW 325i - his
    1994 Chevrolet Silverado K1500 Sportside Z71 - whoevers vehicle is in the shop
    2009 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL883 Low (Vivid Black) - his
    2018 Can-Am Spyder RT Limited - hers
    2007 Harley-Davidson Sportster XL883 Low (Pearl White) - hers (SOLD 02/29/20)
    2011 Tao Tao 50 - whoevers bike is in the shop
    2007 Reinell 186 FNS - the dog's
    1995 Fleetwood Flair 27R - EVERYBODY'S !

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