Harley Beginner's Riding Course ??

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by space, Jan 19, 2013.

  1. gpounce

    gpounce Been here awhile

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    I took the Harley msf basic rider via a local dealership because HD was offering many more classes than the local colleges etc so I got in faster. Course was very good, the extra day tacked on for the HD indoctrination was neither here or there, ie forgettable OTOH the classroom facilities in the dealership for the video and written test portions were great. OTTH I saw a couple of guys in the class in deep conference with salespeople after so maybe HD picks up a fair # of sales via the BRC courses.

    Thought the Blast was a really good learner bike, probably would make a good "local" non-highway bike too being so light and moderate to ride.
    #81
  2. ongrade

    ongrade Been here awhile

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    The local HD shop here has Riders Edge, as a former BRC coach I'm very impressed with their program. Twice the riding time(8 hrs. over two days for the BRC/16 hrs over two days for RE) and the written test is done on a separate night from the classroom time. The BRC classroom time is shortened up to allow test taking the same night. One of my friends just bought a Sportster from this dealership and they really encouraged him to take a class before picking the bike up. They wound up throwing in the RE class with his purchase. After witnessing his riding ability after the class(he knew absolutely nothing about riding before the class) I'd say they did a damn good job of teaching.
    #82
  3. headhunter1213

    headhunter1213 n00b

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    The msf here run by the bmv(ohio) is only 20 bucks. I havent gotten around to taking it yet but you have to supply your bike and gear. I took my test for the endorsement about 2 months after getting my bike and passed with flying colors. There was a guy on a repsol cbr acting like they do when I told him I wanted to watch. He failed every portion of it. Karma much?
    #83
  4. IrishJohn

    IrishJohn Adventurer

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    St Louis MO

    I took it a couple of months ago. Sickening experience - First bike broke a belt after an hour and a half, SECOND one would not go into second gear all the time, THIRD one had such loose steering I refused to ride it after ten minutes and the 'Instructor' got very sarcastic with me - totally unprofessional behavour. With only a couple of hours to go before the 'Test' I was then supposed to get used to the quirks of the FOURTH bike while trusting the maintenence had been done properly on it...

    As a result, I did terribly on the test but was passed anyway because I had evinced 'great interest' in a bike they had on sale during the 'Tour' of the dealership. By that time most of the class could see what the emphasis was on anyway so we 'played the game' - and we were pissed off because one woman quit the course after the first hour on the Lot saying 'This is not for me - I could never feel comfortable doing this' Turned out it was the bike with the faulty steering head she had been given and she had no idea it was not her, it was the lousy bike.

    What really got to us though was the following - there was a guy on the Course who had come into a boatload of money and was on a spending spree, had bought a high end car, bigger house etc and was now fulfiling his 'life dream to own a Hog'. By his own admisson he had spent 'all of ten minutes on a dirt bike years ago' and that was the sum of his experience (and it sure showed on the range). Nice guy but I think still in shock with all the new found cash and not really paying attention to things when some people tried to have a quiet chat with him....

    Because before the week-end was out, and the Instructor knowing the 'skill' level of this guy, the Dealership had sold him a Road Glide Ultra with all the trimings. Over thirty grand for your very first bike and with only the Rider's Edge Program and 'ten minutes on a dirt bike years ago' as your background....

    Talk about unethical - I fully expect to see his name either in the Obit section of the local paper or trying to sue their asterix off in court for pushing something like that on him.

    This whole Rider's Edge program was a complete farce and had to be
    a conflict of interest when the Instructor is a direct employee of the guy selling motorcycles - it's all degenerated into selling HD and handing out licences and fitting as many classes in a year to provide fresh 'leads' for the dealership.
    #84
  5. Tanshanomi

    Tanshanomi Your Favorite Uncle

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    FWIW, my Rider's Edge instructor was an active MSF instructor at other non-Harley training locations as well; I saw no favoritism toward the dealership or "rubber stamping" prospective customers. In fact, he counseled one rider out of completing the course after a few hours on the range; she was very intimidated by the clutch and was not getting the hang of it. After dropping the bike several times while stopping/starting, he encouraged her take the MSF scooter course to see if she felt more comfortable riding with a CVT, then re-evaluate her desire to ride.

    So while he might have had a conflict of interest by encouraging her to enroll (and pay) for two courses, the second one had no connection with the Harley dealer, and he certainly steered her away from a possible Harley purchase.
    #85
  6. El Pescador

    El Pescador Been here awhile

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    While I'm not calling "BS" on this entire story, I can tell you it's completely different from my experience with the RE class.
    BTW, why is it the dealership's responsibility to nanny the guy with $30k burning a hole in his pocket? They exist to sell motorcycles not determine who is worthy of a bike.

    Just for those who think its only HD dealerships that are "irresponsible" enough to sell someone a motorcycle that lacks enough skill, I watched the very same thing at the BMW dealership in FW. A girl who obviously didn't get the relationship between clutch and throttle dropped her "new to her" Bonneville about 5 feet out of the parking lot on the feeder road to 820. Anyone who is familiar with 820 and 121 in Fort Worth knows that interchange is challenging for seasoned riders due to the construction. For someone unfamiliar with a motorcycle, I would rate it between reckless and suicidal.

    My first instinct was to think "what a D-bag that salesman is for selling that bike to that girl". I came to realize though, that she may have told him any number of lies about her proficiency. Or, she told him nothing. Or, she told him she had no idea how to ride a motorcycle. The fact is, I knew nothing about the transaction other than the outcome and I probably shouldn't speculate with little to no information.

    Off my soapbox.
    #86
  7. IrishJohn

    IrishJohn Adventurer

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    While I'm not calling "BS" on this entire story, I can tell you it's completely different from my experience with the RE class.

    Very gracious of you not to pronounce judgement on my 'entire' post - I guess that you are saying I am only an occasional liar.

    If you want to debate with me do not start off with an insinuation that I am telling lies. It would also be helpful if you actually paid attention to what I write, you assume I made points that I did not.
    #87