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Hi

Still a relative newbie to the Burgman, and also getting back into biking after a 20 year hiatus. Back then I never carried passengers.

Now I'm wanting to start getting Mrs. B. interested in rides. I wanted to do a stretch without passengers, to hone my riding skills. I've read plenty of articles on passenger carry, but have not carried one yet.

How drastic of a difference does carrying a passenger make things?
Anything to be aware of handling wise or otherwise?

Hints and advice appreciated. Especially stuff you learned the hard way
 

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Try this :wink:
 

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Great link Norm - and v/good question Brewman. Thanks.

One of the things that I could do without is the pillion sitting so much higher up than me. My GS450E had a relatively flat seating surface and two up riding seemed a little less tipsy at lower speeds. That being said, the Burg has noteable plusses also - like no head knocking between shifts, handy grab rails, and an available rear backrest (650).

My corbin seat takes some of the space away from the passenger and gives it to me without any noticable complaints from any of my friends that I've taxied. However it seems as thought they sit even higher on it than they did on the stock seat -tho I havent taken any comparo.
 

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Brewman said:
Hi

How drastic of a difference does carrying a passenger make things?
Anything to be aware of handling wise or otherwise?

The difference between carrying a passenger or not depends mainly on the passenger. So long as the passenger is completely relaxed and limp and leans with the bike while turning and the rest of the time sits still while remaining loose and keeps their feet on the pegs (or floorboards) at all times, all will be well. When my wife first rode with me, I explained the above to her and we never had a problem right from the start. I never ever felt her back there and that's about the best thing you can say about a pillion passenger. I have, however, carried other passengers who were tense and leaned the opposite way when turning and generally made things difficult. So, explain to your wife that she should be completely relaxed and limp (like a sack of grain) on the seat, keep her feet on the floorboards at all times, apart from mounting or dismounting, which, incidentally, she should not do until instructed and place her hands lightly on your waist for support. While the bike is in motion she should lean naturally with the bike, once again, keeping absolutely RELAXED. Tell her it's OK to use her grip on your waist to prevent her from sliding forwards when you brake, or backwards when you accelerate. (She may prefer the handgrips later on, but for now, holding on to you will seem more comforting.) My wife has a habit of sitting far back and leans forward with her hands resting just above her knees (we used to ride sport bikes) and she hates backrests! Obviously, you will ride slowly at first and as smoothly as possible. Whatever you do , don't scare her! Maybe you should ride around a parking lot at first if she's the nervous type, but if she's reasonably confident, just go for it. The main points are: Relax, keep your feet on the pegs, and stay loose! I hope this helps.

Cheers,

Bob
 

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What Bob said!

You might want to have your wife sit with the bike on it's centerstand to get familiar with the seat, the view. Sit with her and talk her through what to expect from the ride. That will give you a chance to ease into having someone there also.

Once you are ready to ride, for many it's easier to mount when the bike is on it's kick stand. People climbing on and off can throw you for a loop. Like was said before, make sure any future passangers know they will not approach, jump off, do anything without direct approval from you. Have both feet planted firmly and both hands on the handle bars.

Crank up your shocks so your headlight won't be shining at the sky. Take it easy when coming to a stop. That extra weight will be uncontrollable if you lean too far. If you can balance the bike near straight up, you won't know you have a passanger. You'll be checking your mirrors to make sure you didn't leave them behind.
 

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IronRanger said:
Once you are ready to ride, for many it's easier to mount when the bike is on it's kick stand. People climbing on and off can throw you for a loop.
I was wondering about that. On my Vespa, I just lean the bike over (while I'm straddling it) and it's easy for my wife to put her right leg between me and her backrest. When she's on, I just straighten the bike.

What I envision is using the kick stand and having her step up on the floorboard with her left foot and swing over, just like mounting a horse. Then I could straighten the bike and put up the stand.

Does this make sense? Or is there a better way? I think the pillion seat is so high that she couldn't just step from the ground over the seat without using the floorboards as Norman's linked article suggested.

Ken
:eek:gre:
 

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The link Norm provided is a good one. Just make sure they understand to keep their feet on the floorboards at all times and to lean WITH you in turns. Make sure they wear all of their safety gear - helmet, gloves, eye protection, long sleeves, long pants and over-the-ankle boots.
Also, the MSF recommends that new riders get at least a year's worth of experience under their belts before carrying passengers. With your past experience, a long layoff and a brand new bike to get used to, it looks like you fall somewhere in between. Just make sure you are thoroughly familiar with your Burgman riding solo.
It's an awesome responsibility carrying a passenger so don't try it before you are ready. Your passengers will thank you (and so will your insurance co.).

Don
 

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Unless you have a tail trunk that would get in the way or if your wife has very short legs, you should be able to straddle the bike, hold it upright, brace yourself while she puts her left foot on the floorboards and swings her right leg over the seat, as if mounting a horse. It's the safest way, believe me. I hate the idea of all that pressure beeing put on the spindly side stand, although I know some people quite happily put all their weight on it. You may also have trouble picking it up straight with her weight on it, not to mention terrifying her in the process! Slow and easy does it.

Cheers,

Bob
 

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Just beware! Once you start the Mrs on the bike, before to long she is gonna want one for herself!!

Iron Ranger is my Husband and I swore I would never ever get on a bike with him (or anyone for that matter) not only did he get me on his bike with him I am now sporting my very own Burgie, mine is a 400 while his is the 650.... Of course now I only have to learn how to ride it :D

The hubby took me out today for my very first lesson... in about an hours time I got to put about a whole mile on my bike!!! Taking baby steps!!! I can now go forward with my feet off the ground and can even turn the bike, of course not on a tight corner... I take pretty WIDE corners at this time... next lesson day will be Sunday sometime weather permitting before I have to go to work! :shaking2: The best part was I never dumped it to the ground!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for all the great advice, everyone. Great link, Norm.

Roco Kitty- I'm kinda hoping the the Mrs. gets interested enough to want her own ride.
One reason I selected the 650 was I thought it may be a bit better for long touring 2 up, something I still hope to do with her as a passenger for now. She enjoys riding as a passenger on our snowmobile.
She has no experience at all on bikes, except the kind you pedal. She only works 3 easy to ride (light traffic, slower speed streets) miles from here, and often has to go back and forth several times per day. We'd save on gas, that's for sure.
I could start her on a moped, even or a small displacement scooter.
Maybe this spring............

PS- If you are ever in this area, especially if you Burgman you way down, be sure to let me know.
 

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I just put a passenger backrest on my 650. On the first ride since the installation it seemed like my wife was riding quite a ways back with a lot of space in between us and she said that she was still not against the backrest. Before the backrest, she sat farther forward because she was a little insecure not having anything to keep her from slipping off if I hit the throttle a little to hard.

The passenger seat on the 650 is very long and wide. She is a very experienced rider but it feels a little awkward to have the passenger that far back. Is that the way most of the passengers sit on the 650. Have not noticed that situation on the 400, even though it has a pretty large seat too.

On the plus side, she says that the passenger seat on the 650 is the most comfortable motorcycle/scooter she has ever sat on and that is very interesting since she is used to riding on the back of my 1500 goldwing.
 

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The seat has a tendency to make both, the rider and passinger feel like their sliding foward. I added foam to the front 1/2 of both, the rider and passinger seat. I also added some foam the the backrest. My wife says it helped a lot, still not as nice as the sissy bar that was on our mid 70"s Water Buffalo, but still very doable. There is a lot more space between the rider and passinger, than with most other bikes. The additional weight is located almost right on top of the rear axel. So the front end doesn't feel lighter, like it did on the old 750.
 

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Carrying a passenger

All the advise you have received is good. New passengers have a hard time relaxing if they have to remember a long list of what to do. I have found it easier to keep the list short. Rather than leaning, they only need to remember to always look over your inside shoulder when turning.
The bonus with a Burgman is the seamless character of the transmission and power delivery. Your passenger won't be hitting you in the back of the helmet with theirs when you are inattentive with gear changes.
 

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Ken OBSC said:
IronRanger said:
Once you are ready to ride, for many it's easier to mount when the bike is on it's kick stand. People climbing on and off can throw you for a loop.
I was wondering about that. On my Vespa, I just lean the bike over (while I'm straddling it) and it's easy for my wife to put her right leg between me and her backrest. When she's on, I just straighten the bike.

What I envision is using the kick stand and having her step up on the floorboard with her left foot and swing over, just like mounting a horse. Then I could straighten the bike and put up the stand.

Does this make sense? Or is there a better way? I think the pillion seat is so high that she couldn't just step from the ground over the seat without using the floorboards as Norman's linked article suggested.

Ken
:eek:gre:
Actually that kinda what we do but she doesn't get all the way on the bike. With the bike on the side stand she will put her right leg over the seat (from the front of the seat not from the back) with her left leg still on the ground, then I put my right leg though the stepthru and roll the bike up and we basically both get on at the same time. I don't have the problem of "holding the bike" while she gets on that way and we dismount just the opposite.
When my grandaughter gets on (she's 10) she will use the foot board to climb onto the bike while it is on the side stand and then I get on and roll the bike up just as I described before. :lol:
 

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My wife and I had a great 2-up experience yesterday - riding our own bikes. The local Jr. HS principal wanted a video to open the new semester, so he had his daughter film us riding "to school" with himself behind my wife and the vice principal riding behind me.

Neither of them have any experience on bikes, so we gave them instruction before mounting up. They both have long legs so we had them step over from the ground and then put their feet on the floorboards. They were as excited as kids in a candy store to be riding! The only problem occurred when we were stopped midway through the ride and they leaned towards each other to high five - neither of us went over, but we let them know in no uncertain terms NOT to lean off the scoot - ever!

When we pulled away from the Jr. High, the sensation was like riding a bicycle. (the principal weights in at about 170# and the vp at 300#) There wasn't any turn too tight or maneuver to complex that we couldn't have performed it casually. We need to ride 2-up more often!
 
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