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Good morning. I'm wondering if you could give me some info on the following:

INSURANCE: you have any suggestions for getting insurance for the Burgman 400 ? Certain companies?

MOTORCYCLE ENDORSEMENT: I ran into a snag when I went to sign up for a motorcycle class in California (although I will register it in Oregon were I have my residence... Confusing?) Anyway, because of personal reasons it would be very inconvenient for me at this time to take a motorcycle safety course in Oregon. In California, I wanted to use my own Scooter to take the course because the motorcycles require shifting, which I think would become a deterrent while I did the maneuvers!... Too much to concentrate on because I have no clue about shifting! (By the way, Oregon will accept an endorsement that I obtain in California.) California rules, according to the training folks, say to use the Scooter for the training course, two of the three following must be true about the Scooter:
1.it must be 350 cc or less (the Burgman is 385 cc)
2.it the must be 30 inches or less from the ground (the Burgman qualifies for this)
3. It must weigh 400 pounds or less (the Burgman weighs 405 pounds)

(No wonder California has so many financial and bureaucratic problems! ) Am I'm missing something here? hey Arnold Schwarzenegger, we need you to terminate this BS!

I don't know why I have so many reservations about shifting a motorcycle... when I had loggers come to my property to remove some of the trees, I asked to drive their D6 CATs, even though I had no previous experience. In the day I was helping with the logging and grading my roads! Frankly, I think maneuvering with a Scooter is more difficult than driving those big cats! Like the cat Skinner said, "you can't heard em!" Anyway, if you have any reflections on this issue, I'm open to your thoughts! Thanks much... Again!

Bob
 

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Hey Bob! Don't let the "fear" of shifting keep you from taking the Rider's Course. As a retired MSF instructor, I can assure you that at the end of the first couple of hours you will be able to shift the gears. All it takes is proper instruction and a little practice. My wife couldn't shift the gears in an automobile (still can't) but after taking the course she was able to shift a motorcycle.
As to insurance, I would recommend you contact Progressive Motorcycle Insurance (http://www.progressive.com). I recently got a policy for my 650 from them for $118/year (full coverage & roadside assistance). They came highly recommended by some of my friends who have been with them for sometime. Even my State Farm agent, when I called him to cancel my bike insurance, said they were a good company. :D
 

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Bob,

On insurance, it pays to shop around as insurance copmany and the rates they provide vary by state. Here in Tennessee I found State Farm provided a better rate than either Geico or Progressive (rare I'm told). You might also look at joining Bros Club which is kinda like AAA for bikes. One of the local HD riders said they have pretty good rates on insurance for members. For more info, check :

http://www.brosclub.org/

As for the MSF course, most states require that you ride one of thir bikes to take the course. I'm guessing it has something to do with insurance and liabilty. I'd suggest taking the course and using their bike. It would not hurt knowing how to ride a conventional bike and the (small) chance you lay down one in training, wouldn't you rather it be something else other than your Burgman?

Take the MSF, you'll learn tons and have a blast. Have fun on your new toy!
 

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Where I live, Progressive and Dairyland offer the best rates for motorcycles & scooters. State Farm is outrageous, unless you insure your cars with them - and I get better rates on my cars elsewhere.

I found that Progressive offers better service than Dairyland in this area, so I switched my V-Strom over to them this Spring - and I will switch my scooter over in the Fall.

This can certainly vary regionally - and it can vary annually as well if a company revises its rate structure.
 

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I wanted to use my own Scooter to take the course because the motorcycles require shifting, which I think would become a deterrent while I did the maneuvers!... Too much to concentrate on
Take the course learn the shifting
it's nothing compared to what you will have to concentrate on when you start riding the streets. 8)
 

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don't worry be happy

I purchased my Burgman and then took the MSF course. Rode my Burgman to and from class. When class was over I took a few minutes on the Burgman to become familiar with it and to practice what I had learned (Scooter Style) while making sure that the left hand was was only used for breaking, not shifting.

I also tried to get my bike in on the class but was refused. :evil:

:idea: A suggestion is to find one bike in the class and stay with that bike do not go from one bike to another it will help.

Next when they tell you to turn your head to see where you want to go DO IT... DO NOT PUT YOU FOOT DOWN AND GIVE IT A LITTLE GAS.
If you want to practice doing the box on you Burgman squeeze the rear break while slowly accelerating. This work for me to practice this way.

Counter stearing and the weave is easier on the Burgman.

One last thing If you crash the bike you can rest easy knowing it is not your Burgman! :wink:
 

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BobDorsett said:
...In California, I wanted to use my own Scooter to take the course...California rules, according to the training folks, say to use the Scooter for the training course, two of the three following must be true about the Scooter:
1.it must be 350 cc or less (the Burgman is 385 cc)
2.it the must be 30 inches or less from the ground (the Burgman qualifies for this)
3. It must weigh 400 pounds or less (the Burgman weighs 405 pounds)...
Interesting.

In Washington the courses are given by several private companies who contract with the state's Washington Motorcycle Safety Program, which is administered by the Washington State Department of Licensing and is affiliated with the MSF.

One company's Web site (The Motorcycle Training Company) says only the following:

I have a scooter that I would like to use instead of one of your motorcycles. Is that possible?

As long as the scooter is fully insured and you can make arrangements to get it to the training site for both riding sessions, we can arrange to allow for its use in the BRC.
Since scooters are different than "regular" motorcycles in many respects it seems to me that it would be best to train on what you're going to ride; but the trainers have their ways, and the states have their rules, so I guess you have to take what you can get.

One nice rule here in Washington is that if you take the course you don't have to take the test at a DOL station. You just show your completion card and you get your endorsement -- for the proper fee, of course.

And if you're under 18 you must take the course to get the endorsement.

Back when I got my first endorsement, there were different classes of endorsement based on the displacement of the bike tested on. I had a Class 3: All Motorcycles endorsement.

As of this year there is no longer a size class, but there are seperate endorsements for 2-wheeled and 3-wheeled (sidecar and trike) cycles. Fortunately I heard about this in time to change-over my license under a grandfather clause that expired on the 30th.

My license now says the following:

CDL B: Any vehicle except Class A combination vehicles and motorcycles

Endorsements:
7 - Two-wheel and Three-wheel motorcycles
P1 - All Passenger Vehicles (Buses)
Line one and line three seem to disagree with each opther, but that's legalese for you.
 

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Brian said:
Since scooters are different than "regular" motorcycles in many respects it seems to me that it would be best to train on what you're going to ride; but the trainers have their ways, and the states have their rules, so I guess you have to take what you can get.
I agree that it would be nice to be able to train on what you plan to ride. But, I'm sure that most state programs are concerned about the liability that would be involved with the possibilities of having 12 different brand/style bikes and/or scooters, most with inexperienced or novice riders, running around the range at the same time with 2 instructors. As a former MSF Instructor, I can assure you that would be our worst nightmare.
At my training site (H-D factory, York, PA) we had a fleet of about 20 state-owned bikes (no Harleys) that we were responsible for. We were familiar with the bikes and kept them in safe condition. We would have no idea of the condition of a student's own bike and would be irresponsible if we allowed a possibly unsafe bike on the range with 11 other bikes (insurance or not - imagine the lawsuits).
We had spare parts for the class bikes to make minor repairs when needed. With 12 students to a class, should we have mechanical problems on the range, we could park the bike and put the student another with no disruption to the class schedule. If everyone had their own bike and someone had a breakdown and was unable to immediately ride a spare bike (with normal clutch, brakes, etc) that student would have to drop out of the class. That could make for some real unhappy students if it was on test night, just a few minutes from the finals.
With the variety of bikes and the differences in their controls (locations, operation, etc) it would be real tough for the instructors to know and teach students the basic operation of a lot of different bikes. Also, instructors position themselves during some exercises to be able to grab and pull in a clutch lever should a bike get away from a student who grabs too much throttle and panics and forgets how to stop the bike. It would be real tough to stop a scooter in this manner.
I hope this gives a little insight into the possible cons of allowing people to bring their own bikes to learn on. The present system of using "class bikes" for training works well (about 80% of our students passed). And, one of the benefits is that after you have learned how to ride a standard bike (not difficult with proper training and some practice) your selection of bikes in the future is wide open. :D
 

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One of the more experienced instructors (actually founded the MSF testing site where I took the course) told me they had a scooter specific course avaialble but had never had enough interest to make a class. Looking at the Motorcycle Safety Foundation website I found that the scooter specific course was slated for release in 2002. No other information was avaialble. With the growing number of scooters avaialble in the US, maybe they will revive the course.
 
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