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Discussion Starter #1
So I bought a 900 Classic and now I have a new girlfriend, she wants a ride on the back of the Vulcan.
I've never ridden 2up before, anything I know regarding safety before she climbs on?
 

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Yes. First thing is for you to get used to riding your new machine by yourself, first. After you've got it down-pat and you know how it feels to operate with just yourself on it, then you can bring along a passenger. This is important. If it takes a few extra weeks before her riding with you, so be it.

If she's never been a passenger before on a bike take a couple of minutes and give her the boring yet necessary basics: How to get on/off, where to place her feet, how to lean with you, etc. Also how to dress.

For you, when moving at slow-to-no speeds you'll feel it being heavier so be aware of that. You'll find it may take an extra effort to keep it upright if you're stopping when the road is slanted to one side. Once moving it'll be fine. It may take a bit extra to accelerate/slow down or it may not depending on her size.

I once knew a gal that was 4'10" (maybe), 95lbs (maybe) soaking wet and even my 750 didn't know she was there. But until you get her on and feel the difference in how it handles there's not much more to tell you.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yes. First thing is for you to get used to riding your new machine by yourself, first. After you've got it down-pat and you know how it feels to operate with just yourself on it, then you can bring along a passenger. This is important. If it takes a few extra weeks before her riding with you, so be it.

If she's never been a passenger before on a bike take a couple of minutes and give her the boring yet necessary basics: How to get on/off, where to place her feet, how to lean with you, etc. Also how to dress.

For you, when moving at slow-to-no speeds you'll feel it being heavier so be aware of that. You'll find it may take an extra effort to keep it upright if you're stopping when the road is slanted to one side. Once moving it'll be fine. It may take a bit extra to accelerate/slow down or it may not depending on her size.

I once knew a gal that was 4'10" (maybe), 95lbs (maybe) soaking wet and even my 750 didn't know she was there. But until you get her on and feel the difference in how it handles there's not much more to tell you.
Yeah I want to give myself some time to get the feel for the bike for sure, she has been a passenger before so she knows how to be a passenger and how to dress.
I've watched a few youtube videos that seem to kind of ditto what you said, in addition to checks and adjustments to the bike itself, like tire pressure and suspension adjustment.
 

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When I got married I never knew that my 90lb bride was on the scooter until we went to the mountains and she tried to climb off the high side, lol. Looking down the mountain side scared her and when she tried to lean away from that side it scared me.
 

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One of the biggest differences I notice when riding with a passenger is in the braking. The nose will dive harder and stopping will take more time, distance, and effort due to the added weight. Also, I'd avoid I-95 on your first ride. Too many d'bags in high end sports cars treating it like their own personal test track.
 

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My oldest daughter would ride with me quite often in the past, but as she went off to college 6 years ago, that fell by the wayside. now current GF loves to ride with me. She is about 160, but knows how to be an excellent passenger. (and believe me - there are good passengers and bad passengers). Outside of the braking, I really do not know she is back there. Even tho I knew she was a veteran passenger, I still went over the rules I tell anyone that I give a ride to. (note - we do not use a comm-headset)

1. get on/off the left side of bike, and only when I give you the thumbs up
2. do not move around in the seat when I am doing slow maneuvers; it's OK to adjust yourself in the seat when I'm at speed. but give me a double tap on back first so I know
3. lean with me in the curves
4. if you need to talk to me (lean forward to do so) just tap my shoulder twice
5. be a 2nd set of eyes for deer, etc for me. 2 sets of eyes are better than 1. If you see anything that you think I need to see, tap me several times on shoulder (on same side that i need to look) and point. I will find your point
6. I go over with her what everything is on the bike, so she knows what I am doing when she sees my hands and feet at work. just helps her prep better for changes in the ride
7. a small shoulder rub every 50 miles or so is mandatory LOL

real life - first time out take her to the nearest parking lot and practice slow maneuvers with her on bike. Get her use to this. Get a bit up to speed and practice hard braking so you both know what to expect when it has to happen. Then first road trip out, stay on secondary roads that are easy to navigate (minimal stop-lights and stop signs. lower traffic if possible). Allow her to get her confidence up and enjoy the ride for what it is! don't go out on a 2hour ride first time out. keep it to 30mins max and check if she wants to go more. Always communicate! work out your taps and hand signals if you do not have a comm-set. If I'm about to hit a bumpy area in road (transition from road to bridge and back) I double tap her left leg for example.

you will find a few more signals, etc that work for you as you go along
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the tips

My oldest daughter would ride with me quite often in the past, but as she went off to college 6 years ago, that fell by the wayside. now current GF loves to ride with me. She is about 160, but knows how to be an excellent passenger. (and believe me - there are good passengers and bad passengers). Outside of the braking, I really do not know she is back there. Even tho I knew she was a veteran passenger, I still went over the rules I tell anyone that I give a ride to. (note - we do not use a comm-headset)

1. get on/off the left side of bike, and only when I give you the thumbs up
2. do not move around in the seat when I am doing slow maneuvers; it's OK to adjust yourself in the seat when I'm at speed. but give me a double tap on back first so I know
3. lean with me in the curves
4. if you need to talk to me (lean forward to do so) just tap my shoulder twice
5. be a 2nd set of eyes for deer, etc for me. 2 sets of eyes are better than 1. If you see anything that you think I need to see, tap me several times on shoulder (on same side that i need to look) and point. I will find your point
6. I go over with her what everything is on the bike, so she knows what I am doing when she sees my hands and feet at work. just helps her prep better for changes in the ride
7. a small shoulder rub every 50 miles or so is mandatory LOL



real life - first time out take her to the nearest parking lot and practice slow maneuvers with her on bike. Get her use to this. Get a bit up to speed and practice hard braking so you both know what to expect when it has to happen. Then first road trip out, stay on secondary roads that are easy to navigate (minimal stop-lights and stop signs. lower traffic if possible). Allow her to get her confidence up and enjoy the ride for what it is! don't go out on a 2hour ride first time out. keep it to 30mins max and check if she wants to go more. Always communicate! work out your taps and hand signals if you do not have a comm-set. If I'm about to hit a bumpy area in road (transition from road to bridge and back) I double tap her left leg for example.

you will find a few more signals, etc that work for you as you go along
Great tips, especially like the shoulder rub one!
I will definitely try these with my gf, she has also been a passenger before. I'm going to get used to my new bike before she ever gets on it.
 

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I would suggest you go get an old girlfriend first that way if she falls off on the highway its no big deal.
 

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I recently did a trip across Borneo with my wife on the back, haven't ridden a lot with a passenger and never with her, made sure she knew not to mount or dismount without telling me then went for a decent tide on a country road with no stop start type ridding, after 20kn all was fine, I wouldn't recommend starting in busy town environment with loads of junctions, stop start.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hi everyone. After almost 30 days of riding my new to me Vulcan, I planned a short ride with my girlfriend, we were going to go out for an evening ride last night, when she arrived at my home she was prepared, dressed mostly appropriate, not gear, except for helmet, jeans, sturdy shoes, full helmet.
She could immediately tell I was feeling anxiety about the VERY FIRST ride with a passenger and said if I was feeling nervous about it, we could plan it for sometime later, we went to the beach in her Kia.

How can I overcome my anxiety about a first ride with a passenger. She is ready and willing to take the risk. If I crash and hurt myself that's one thing, that's just me, but if WE crash I would feel horrible if she got hurt.
 

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hey go with your gut. Honestly if you have any anxiety then by all means get more solo time before you take on the responsibility of a passenger. You have nothing to prove, The name of the game is Arrive Alive.
 

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Yep. Like bearslayer said, get some more solo time. Once you feel ready, find an empty mall parking lot with plenty of open space and practice with her on the back. After a few practice runs, your anxiety should float away.
 

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Yep. Like bearslayer said, get some more solo time. Once you feel ready, find an empty mall parking lot with plenty of open space and practice with her on the back. After a few practice runs, your anxiety should float away.
That's kind of the approach I was thinking of. My biggest fear is low speed maneuvers and dropping the bike with her on it.
 

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Low speed maneuvering is always going to be difficult. These things are big and heavy and are not designed for slow easy movement. Keep both feet out and ready just in case.
 

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Hi FloridaGuy
Of course you are concerned about her getting hurt, so do her and you a favor and get her a good jacket with shoulder, elbow and back D30 armor and riding pants with knee/shin, hip, and tailbone D30 armor. Good gloves and bots and a modular helmet (nice and flexible) Then ride the first time around the neighborhood when the traffic is light. You may not have the same concern that she will get hurt should you drop the bike. Embarrassed yes, hurt maybe not... Of course a nice romantic ride to the beach in the Kia ain't bad !
WEG (Another Florida Guy)
ATGATT
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Well, me and my girlfriend finally got the time to go to a mostly deserted mall parking lot for some practice before going out onto a public road. My anxiety was still a little high but not too bad, I practiced low speed riding, starts and stops and cornering. It wasn't as scary as I thought it would be. I didn't drop the bike and neither one of us got hurt. My confidence level is much higher now.
 
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