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Thread: Highway riding

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    Default Highway riding

    Today was my 4th ride on my Spyder RT Limited. I bought it with approximately 2600 miles on it couple weeks ago. It's kinda scary on highways going about 70 mph or higher. It wants to shift me left to right in the seat. It's not a smooth straight line in the lane I'm in. I've read they are really nice to take a trip on. I would be fighting it the whole trip. My tires had 18 lb. each in front. 25 in back. It has elka(?) shocks that look brand new. I bought it to take some longer rides. I need some advice because it sure isn't a relaxing comfortable touring bike like I've read about. I've ridden motorcycles since I was 19. I'm now retired with left leg problems. I want the Spyder to work out ok for me.

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    Back down on the speed. 70 is too much too soon for the 4th ride. Stay 55 or below until you learn your machine. If your spyder has had an alignment and the front wheels are balanced properly your spyder should almost drive itself. Relax your grip and practice at a slower speed. Like Bfromia mentioned, read the Do's and Do Not's before your next ride. Excellent advice.

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    Thanks for your reply. I have read the do's and don'ts though. My problem is that the guys i ride with usually go on interstate highways at 70 to our destinations. I tried relaxing my grip, it helps some but hopefully I'll get used to it. But, I don't understand how a touring bike acts that way. I'm going to schedule 3000 mile service and get it checked out.

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    It's taken me a year to get comfortable. Lighter grip is true. I'm old and slow and avoid interstates if I can and haven't been over 70 and probably won't. It's hard to unlearn fifty years of habits, like they say you have drive it not ride it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SPYDERJERRY1 View Post
    Today was my 4th ride on my Spyder RT Limited. I bought it with approximately 2600 miles on it couple weeks ago. It's kinda scary on highways going about 70 mph or higher. It wants to shift me left to right in the seat. It's not a smooth straight line in the lane I'm in. I've read they are really nice to take a trip on. I would be fighting it the whole trip. My tires had 18 lb. each in front. 25 in back. It has elka(?) shocks that look brand new. I bought it to take some longer rides. I need some advice because it sure isn't a relaxing comfortable touring bike like I've read about. I've ridden motorcycles since I was 19. I'm now retired with left leg problems. I want the Spyder to work out ok for me.
    It sounds like it’s “Darting” due to alignment ...... has the front end been checked.... alignment? Just a thought.

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    Very Active Member trikermutha's Avatar
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    Sounds like a alignment or maybe tire issues?

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    I agree with bikerchris1270. Sounds like alignment may be the issue. I’d be happy to help you out if you want to make a trip to W Pa.

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    Very Active Member Snowbelt Spyder's Avatar
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    Hey Jerry. Alignment - agreed. Here's the list of laser alignment dealers in Ohio and you can check that site if other states are closer to you. You want to get this type of alignment and not the standard OEM procedure:

    http://www.spydercomfort.com/dealerohio.htm

    Also, it helps to use the cruise control at high speeds with learning to relax your grip. Keep in mind that you don't "hold on" to the Spyder with your hands and arms. Because any movement, for example from wind buffeting or the like, will move your arms and result in steering inputs to the handlebars. It's a learning process to teach your body to balance itself with your body and legs. Kinda like riding a horse. Just use your arms for steering, not for balancing.

    At some point when you're ready to do mods, put the sway bar at the top of the list.


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    I'm a newbe to the Spyder too. I just want to encourage you to give it some time and miles. Riding the interstate when I first got my RTL last summer I had similar concerns. I did get the Baja Ron sway bar installed, it was somewhat better at holding a straight line after that. And maybe there is an alignment problem. But what really made my ride better was getting about 1,000 miles under my belt, and getting a feel for how the Spyder reacts under all conditions. I just got back from a 1650 mile round trip to Florida, and much of it was on the slab doing 75-80 mph usually on cruise control and I never felt more comfortable and confident than on any of my previous touring bikes. If you know a local Spyder owner maybe let them take it out to see what they think before making a lot of expensive mods.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SPYDERJERRY1 View Post
    Today was my 4th ride on my Spyder RT Limited. I bought it with approximately 2600 miles on it couple weeks ago. It's kinda scary on highways going about 70 mph or higher. It wants to shift me left to right in the seat. It's not a smooth straight line in the lane I'm in. I've read they are really nice to take a trip on. I would be fighting it the whole trip. My tires had 18 lb. each in front. 25 in back. It has elka(?) shocks that look brand new. I bought it to take some longer rides. I need some advice because it sure isn't a relaxing comfortable touring bike like I've read about. I've ridden motorcycles since I was 19. I'm now retired with left leg problems. I want the Spyder to work out ok for me.
    I am a retired flight instructor (among other things) and I wouldn't dream of sending my students out flying without numerous practice hours and dozens of maneuver repetitions. You're jumping from completely new to high performance. Forget you buddies. Get up early Sunday morning and practice in parking lots, local roads, etc. Don't seek out speed yet. Wait until everything feels second nature. Then, again by yourself on Sunday mornings, gradually take on high speeds WITHOUT worrying about where your buddies are going or want. Forget what all the ads say - this is not a two wheel motorcycle. It is completely different machine and requires different techniques.
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    Well Jerry,everyone else has given you the basics,just follow them and give yourself time. If your bike came with an owners manual, there is a section on learning to ride. Because you come from somany years on two wheels you may be tempted to skip this section. I was,50 years on 2 wheels. Don't. There directions there for setting up your own training course. I set up that course with red 16oz cups from Walmart and ran it for a few times and read the ideas on riding a VTwin in Does and Don't s(the first part) and feit a lot more relaxed in my riding.5 years later It take several long trips a year and arrive much less tired then on 2 wheels. That day will come for you too,it just takes a little time and experience on your machine. Happy TRAails

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    I heartily concur in the recommendations others have offered and, most important IMO, RIDE YOUR OWN RIDE -- ALL THE TIME!!! To hell with the speed merchants, they can tempt you to ride over your head and that can get you dead!
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    Quote Originally Posted by SPYDERJERRY1 View Post
    Thanks for your reply. I have read the do's and don'ts though. My problem is that the guys i ride with usually go on interstate highways at 70 to our destinations. I tried relaxing my grip, it helps some but hopefully I'll get used to it. But, I don't understand how a touring bike acts that way. I'm going to schedule 3000 mile service and get it checked out.
    New to the Spyder world as well, but not new to motorcycles. Realized on a demo ride that the Spyder is much like riding a snowmobile, does not corner like or as fast as a motorcycle. If your buddies are riding at speeds that are outside your present skillset, know the destination and meet them there. The quickest way to be in the market for a new machine is to ride beyond your skillset. Haven't done any research on advanced training courses for the Spyder, if these type courses exist, give one a go. I know that advanced training courses for motorcycles enhance one's ability to ride. Good luck, no quick fixes, Rome wasn't built in a day.
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    The one thing I haven't read is the road conditions. A lot of roads are slightly crowned. A lot of highways have groves you can't see very well. On some highways my RV wanders mostly due to the condition of the road.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SPYDERJERRY1 View Post
    Today was my 4th ride on my Spyder RT Limited. I bought it with approximately 2600 miles on it couple weeks ago. It's kinda scary on highways going about 70 mph or higher. It wants to shift me left to right in the seat. It's not a smooth straight line in the lane I'm in. I've read they are really nice to take a trip on. I would be fighting it the whole trip. My tires had 18 lb. each in front. 25 in back. It has elka(?) shocks that look brand new. I bought it to take some longer rides. I need some advice because it sure isn't a relaxing comfortable touring bike like I've read about. I've ridden motorcycles since I was 19. I'm now retired with left leg problems. I want the Spyder to work out ok for me.
    Prior Mtc. experience is actually a detriment to Spyder riding ..... When I did my first Test ride the Dealer told me forget everything you learned on your Gold Wing .... just drive the Spyder like a Car and you'll be fine .... I did and traded on the spot .... I have driven me Spyders at 90+ on the highway with one hand and had No issues with control..... As others have said relax and Get your Spyder :LAZER aligned. .... good luck and ...... Mike

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    there is a training course check out moto mark1

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    Before you do please inflate the rear tire to 28 LB and then go out by yourself and get up to 70 mph and see if it makes any gain.

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    There are a lot of older Syders with low miles. What year is your Spyder? If it is older than 2016, seriously consider replacing the tires. Check the date codes on your tires.

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    If you have Elka shocks you may already have an upgraded sway bar. If you have the oem Kenda tires that may be part of the problem. Like all have said, get the laser alignment. I had similar complaint at 80+ until I started to 'guide' the RT instead of steering it at high speeds. Replacing the tires will also make a dramatic improvement.
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    My 2021 RT SE6 only has 400 something miles on it and it handles fine but I'm braking it in easy and rarely exceed 60 mph but I will offer this explanation: It probably isn't the machine itself making you feel slightly out of control, it is more than likely the ROAD you are on, like Cambers and off-Cambers and Crowned roads and those worn badly by heavy Big-rig usage.

    If the aforementioned conditions worry you then try this: Find a section of GOOD flat highway or interstate and notice the difference in ride quality.

    As was mentioned, slow down 5 or 10 miles per hour and the bike becomes super easy to ride/ drive.

    After 88 Motorcycles and 58 years of riding, the transition has been an easy one for me because I am realistic regarding my abilities on this my first 3 wheel vehicle since my Radio Flyer Tricycle 70 years ago and my Race-Spec Honda 3 wheel ATV's that I raced in the deserts of Southern California. The same leaning and weight shifting that was used on the 3 wheel ATV's helped my learning experience to a large extent.

    What pray tell does a professional Laser alignment cost??

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    All the above comments are spot on. Invest in a laser alignment first. The chances are, your bike needs it. Most do if it has not been done. DO NOT take the word of any BRP mechanic who may tell you your alignment is within spec. Get it laser aligned. Secondly make sure you have correct tire pressures. If you have the OEM Kendas, go with what your bike says they should be. If the bike is still not ridable at speed, it is probably your tires. They may look good but in reality be "broken". That happened to me. I tried EVERYTHING and still my Spyder was not ridable over 65MPH. I replaced all 3 tires with good quality tires and instantly I was in Spyder heaven. I was able to set the cruise control to freeway speeds and comfortably sit back with finger tips only on the handlebars and enjoy the ride. It can happen. Good luck..... Jim
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    BikerChris1270, I don't know if alignment has been or not. I'm going to get it checked though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JSRT View Post
    I agree with bikerchris1270. Sounds like alignment may be the issue. I’d be happy to help you out if you want to make a trip to W Pa.
    Hi and thanks for your offer of help. I checked and I still have warranty until September if its transferable. I'm going to take it to a dealer about an hour from me.

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    Snowbelt Spyder, thanks for the list.

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