Originally Posted by space
Thanks for all the feedback.
My buddy signed up for the local HD class, but they weren't the best at communication. Among other things, they told him only a few days beforehand that he'd need to first take a test at the DMV -- and he only found that out because he asked. Maybe this is common knowledge, but ... well, I didn't know it, and I've been riding for a while now. Anyhow, he didn't have time to get to the DMV on such short notice, so he canceled.
He'll be taking a non-HD course next weekend. He's psyched. He's into cruisers, so he's looking into used Honda Shadows for his first bike. Maybe he'll turn up in Road Warriors.
Weird....must be a California thing.
I am an MSF and RE instructor. I ride a BMW
A 1983 BMW
I was a card carrying HD basher, but those days are over. I grew out of that shite and realized it doesn't matter what you ride, but that you do. The unfortunate stereotypes do exist, but the fact that some HD dealerships are offering rider training is helping to educate its consumers and minimize the sterotype. When Georgia went to a 2 day state run course, I was flabergasted!!! That isn't a lot of time to get through the curriculum and riding portion....any problem will set you back. So 1 or 2 riders out of 12 have clutch control issues, or mechanical issues with the bikes, or you happen to have a crash were the rider needs a few minutes to relax......you're wayyyyy off schedule. And why would you want to fly through education of new riders is beyond me.
Riders Edge is no less than 3 days. It gives instructors extra time to get to know there riders and ease them into the process a bit, mechanical problems....you usually have 2-3 back up bikes at HD, rider needs extra time...you have it. Our dealership charges 325-350 depending if its a weekeday or weekend, state class is 250. You get more talk time and ride time at HD here in GA.....and that's a good thing!
Also a lot of state classes are run out of a trailer. Not very comfortable. HD dealership are usually very accomodating and the facilities are top notch.
I recommend a Rider Edge course over a state course here in Georgia because, well, more time = more education. Even if it's the same curriculum, you can actually have a conversation about things instead of just reading text aloud from a book.
Keep in mind your experience will vary from dealership to dealership, so word of mouth is key picking your dealership.