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Old 01-13-2008, 04:11 PM   #1
Tycho OP
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Joined: May 2006
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sidecar lessons/classes

Can anyone recommend basic classes for someone who wants to have a little experience and instruction before considering buying a hack? I realize they are a totally different animal than a motorcycle and caution is required in learning to ride them.
I live in Northern California. Any information you have would be appreciated.
Thanks.
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Old 01-13-2008, 04:52 PM   #2
claude
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Contact Vernon Wade known here as 'the red menace'.
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Old 01-13-2008, 06:12 PM   #3
Mista Vern
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Quote:
Originally Posted by claude
Contact Vernon Wade known here as 'the red menace'.
Here's the site: http://adventuresidecar.com/index.html

I have heard great things about the training, and plan to sign up once the 2008 class schedule is posted.
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Old 01-13-2008, 06:34 PM   #4
twintwin
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I will strongly recommand to take some sidecar classes, if you have the project to dive into the sidecar world.
These classes have their own rig, and you can safely have a test of the 3 wheels handling.
I took two classes with my wife, one in MN with their 250 velorex rig and one in MA with my own rig (R1100GS+ural), great practice, and very nice organisation.

http://www.smsa.org/reports/restrict...ty_council.pdf

http://www.esc.org/content/05%20Moto...20Schedule.htm
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Old 01-13-2008, 09:20 PM   #5
RedMenace
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Adventue Sidecar S/TEP Classes

I plan to offer classes again this year May though October. I still need to check some things before I can post the exact dates but they will be up on the Adventure Sidecar Website as soon as I get the schedule finalized

http://adventuresidecar.com/training06/training06.htm
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Old 01-13-2008, 09:31 PM   #6
M700
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My wife's Grandpa told an amazing story about crossing the country on an Indian - and temporarily losing Grandma when the sidecar parted company with the Indian in a turn...

I keep trying to talk my wife into getting a sidecar, but apparently she heard the old story too many times while growing up...
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Old 01-13-2008, 09:47 PM   #7
antsaint
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From a past student

Definitely take RedMenace's class. I took it back in July 2007, and it was the final "deciding factor" on whether or not I was getting a Ural. Jodie and I agreed that if I did well AND enjoyed riding the sidecar rig, then I could get my bike.

I did well and had fun, and the rest is history. There's a good mix of classroom and field time, and Vernon has legendary patience (take it from a pre-novice rider who could barely start the bike on the first day on the range). I've got virtually nil motorcycle experience, but the way the class is structured, anyone can be flying that chair and whipping solid around right and left turns by the time the course is done.

Plus, Hood River is a great place to visit, so you can make a wee vacation out of your training if you want. Lots of good camping, you're on the Columbia River, Mt. Hood and Portland are nearby, and you can "gorge" yourself on Oregon bounty and beauty.
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Old 01-13-2008, 10:26 PM   #8
tony the tiger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by antsaint
Plus, Hood River is a great place to visit, so you can make a wee vacation out of your training if you want. Lots of good camping, you're on the Columbia River, Mt. Hood and Portland are nearby, and you can "gorge" yourself on Oregon bounty and beauty.


...and that, sir is the way to do it! I did the S/TEP class last year, in Moses Lake, WA. Being out on a campsite allowed us to take our time and enjoy the experience as a whole...

Using the supplied equipment was a good way to test the waters and decide if this was something that fit... and it did. Planning to make the trip to Oregon this year sometime and get some pointers "in the dirt" if our schedule allows. Practice Practice Practice... then ride it like ya' stoled it!
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Old 01-14-2008, 05:12 AM   #9
claude
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There is some great info at the link below for those who may not be ablke to get into a class right away. Check it out.
http://www.sidecar.com/links3.asp
Each year at the Internet Sidecar Owners Klub Sidecar RON DEE VOO there is a training session offered.
We also offer one on one training at the C Stanley Motorsports facility in Penns Creek, Pa. by appointment.
Neither of these are associated with the Evergreen Saftey Council training. We offer them as we feel it just may benefit new sidecarists just getting started. If you can take an evergreen (S/TEP) class by all means do so.
Note that there is no class or paper that can be issued you for passing any class that will make you a proficient sidecarist. The only way to gain the skills you need is to practice and practice some more. Classes from whatever source may give you some goood information but from there it is up to you.
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President: C Stanley Motorsports Inc.
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http://freedomsidecars.com/
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Old 01-14-2008, 10:30 AM   #10
tony the tiger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by claude
...If you can take an evergreen (S/TEP) class by all means do so.

Classes from whatever source may give you some goood information but from there it is up to you.
As mentioned elsewheres, the Evergreen class experience can leave something to be desired. My personal experience may have been different from other folks, based on my background. Other than that, I couldn't disagree with ya' Claude!
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Old 01-14-2008, 11:24 AM   #11
URAL CT
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sideca lessons

Hello ya'll,
Any sidecar training schedule for the Austin/Dallas, Texas area?? Got my rig last September, immediately call A1+ (I think this is the name of the outfit), and I have yet to hear from this folks. Called several times and was told that the scheduled hasn't been determined yet. DOn't know how long it'll take 'em but in the mean time I'm riding the rig but would sure like some professional instructions. I've ridden 2 wheelers for almost 40 years but when I took the MC beginners training class, it was sure a revelation. Learning is a never ending process!!
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Old 01-14-2008, 12:16 PM   #12
claude
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tony the tiger
As mentioned elsewheres, the Evergreen class experience can leave something to be desired. My personal experience may have been different from other folks, based on my background. Other than that, I couldn't disagree with ya' Claude!
Tony,
I know exactly what you mean but , hey, taking any class will at least give a newbie some idea on what he or she can practice when they get home. So much depends on the specific instructor of course anytime a class is taken anywhere. I would liek to know who the instructor is and how much real time sidecar experience he has before signing up. But that is just me.
Some seem to stress things that may or may not be important such as hanging your butt off and flying the chair. Neither of these in and of themselves are drop dead critical in learning to ride a sidecar rig safely and even at speed if it is a well balanced outfit. Flying the chair at it's balance point may be fun and is a good show off skill but really has no meaning on the street. Hanging off is no more than shifting your weight to move live ballast one way or another.It does give a sense of security to cornering forces and can make a difference on lighter rigs..

At the RON DEE VOO Al 'Fly' Butterfield heads up the instruction and I assit a little here and there. Fly has been an MSF Instructor sine the beginning of time and was also invloved with the original USCA Sidecar Saftery Program developed by Hal Kendal, Ed Johnson and crew before David Hough kinda too it over. Each year we vary the agenda of the course we have so people may find more interst in taking it over again and again. It is not afflilated with any organization and we just do it because we care.

Bottom line is that I would never discouratge anyone from taking a sidecar operator course. Even if the instructor isn't th ebest in the world you will learn something and gain familairization with what a sidecar can be all about.
Besides that it can be fun.
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Old 01-14-2008, 12:42 PM   #13
Tycho OP
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sidecar lessons

Thanks for all the responses. Since I live in N. California and have heard good reactions to the adventuresidecar.com classes in Oregon, I'm hoping to make it up there in May.
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Old 01-14-2008, 07:59 PM   #14
claude
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tychoendo
Thanks for all the responses. Since I live in N. California and have heard good reactions to the adventuresidecar.com classes in Oregon, I'm hoping to make it up there in May.
I am sure you will get a lot out of it. Vernon does a good job and has put a
lot of effort into what he does. Have fun with it.
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http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/SCT/

President: C Stanley Motorsports Inc.
http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/...rsandTrailers/

http://freedomsidecars.com/
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Old 03-26-2008, 04:17 PM   #15
tony the tiger
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Bump

...AND a question:
Is there an advanced class or reduced cost option if you're already a licensed operator?
Yes, I'm still a n00b, having only gotten my license last year and piloting a rig since SEP 07... but the stuff about turn signals, PPE etc is well ingrained through years of motorcycling.

...just wonderin' - thanks!
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