View Full Version : Back seat drivers = wreck

21st March 2005, 05:36
You know the type… the one on the back that thinks they know where the bike should be going better then you. Well my dumb ass wife is one of them. Every time she gets on the back I give her the same spill about being still, keeping your body in line with mine, look over my shoulder into a turn, and above all don’t fight my turns… you would think she would get the hang of it after 20k+ miles of being on the back!!

Well Sat, while my wife was at work, I did a quick 400 mile ride looking for a nice slow scenic drive to take her on when she got off work… (beautiful day). Found a great road and she couldn’t wait to go. My wife was being a darn good passenger this trip until for some reason she decided the bike needed to go straight in the middle of a turn. Not only did she lean out of the turn she jerked it out of the turn. I corrected then she jerked it again. Then just to make sure we wrecked she jerked it one more time. Well, I ran out of road, hit the soft shoulder and down the bike went then slid into the guard rail. All said and down, I had some pain in my right arm and my wife was just dirty, the bike was not ride able. A few bikers stopped by and they made arrangements to get the three of us back home. (beer was on me) Later that night I decided that my arm was hurting too much and went to the hospital. Turns out I broke it just below the shoulder ball joint and also busted the ball joint. Right now I’m on so many drugs I can’t feel squat and tomorrow I get to have surgery so they can pin the bones back together. Thank god I was only going 35mph in a 55mph zone just enjoying the ride.

Most passengers don’t understand how much control they can have on the back of a bike. Even after years of riding my wife has no clue… Maybe this will teach her something… I doubt it… It will be at least 3 months before both me and my bike are ready to ride again. :cry1

This is really pissing me off... with over 130k miles of riding this is the first time I dumped a bike. Was kinda fun, but with all the work it's going to take to put me and the bike back togeter... not worth it... nope.. not at all.

21st March 2005, 05:45
oh no.. not the new tins..:eek:
oh. glad your okay as well :p

i lucky my gf know how to be a pillion.

hope your feeling better soon.


21st March 2005, 05:56
I am trying to get my wife use to riding. She seems to get motion sick as she says about a block from starting. In turns she sqeezes the shit out of me and shakes. Next my arms feel like they are shaking. Hopefully she will get better at trusting the bike and me and relax & enjoy the ride. I have a fear of laying the bike down with her riding with me....

21st March 2005, 05:58
The tins held up pretty good... allot of paint got scraped off the front fender when it slid under the guard rail, The tank can be buffed out, but has a small dent... think it was from the handle bars. Looks like I get to do some more painting allot sooner then planed.

21st March 2005, 06:12
My wife use to squeeze the piss out of me in the turns... This actually kept her from counter steering me as much. Now she's relaxed and enjoys the ride and wants to do the driving for me. What’s funny is she loves it when I let the bike wind out and take the turns a bit faster then I should. I've never done anything to scare her, and let her poke me to speed up or down... most of the time it's up.

21st March 2005, 06:34
my gf's so relaxed on the bike shes admitted to dozing off a couple of times.
now i tap her leg every 20-30 kays to make sure she awake.


21st March 2005, 06:38
my gf's so relaxed on the bike shes admitted to dozing off a couple of times.
now i tap her leg every 20-30 kays to make sure she awake.
Must be nice!!! Sounds like I need to drop the wife and find me a gf... Sounds like a plan to me. :shhhh

21st March 2005, 06:46
Hi Mickes.
Wow, so sorry to here this, but am glad the injurys were not as bad as they surely could have ben.
When you get a chance, if you could post a couple picture so we can cry along with you. :cry1

Maybe its time to get the wife her own bike. :tour

21st March 2005, 06:52
Wow, sorry to hear this. I'm glad it wasn't worse.

Get well soon.


21st March 2005, 08:21
The important thing is your ok.. I droped a bike in January and have had right shoulder pain on and off since. Went to the doc a couple weeks and he sent me for a MRI last thursday. I am suppose to findout the results tommorrow. Just hope it does not involve surgery. Your really lucky... Really glad you and you wife are OK..............

21st March 2005, 08:26
Here is the funny part... she was signed up to take the MSF beginner class this weekend (had to canx cause of work). Then if she felt good about it, was going to buy an 883L next weekend. I'm a MSF instructor, but don't want her in one of my class.. would probably end up in a big augment.

Ya... I'll get some pics up here in a few days. Think I might be able to knock out a few how-to's rebuilding her. Maybe a beginners guide to painting. Then there are the forks.... I hate working on forks... Dug: You'll be hearing from me soon..

It could have been allot worse. If it didn't dump as soon as we hit the dirt we probably would have hit the guard rail head on.

Maybe I can get them to scribe SPORTSTER into one of the pins before it goes into my arm... That would be too kool :smoke

21st March 2005, 09:22
glad to hear it wasn't worse. Hope you and your scoot are back up soon. This is the exact reason I do not pack passengers.

21st March 2005, 09:47
I'm glad you're ok. No offense but I wouldn't ride her again until she gets over that tendencey. I don't know how long she's been riding but I suspect she's afraid for some reason. Maybe getting her around other riders for a while might help. Consider some low speed manuevers in an empty parking lot. until she overcomes her fears.

21st March 2005, 09:54
Most people....that includes riders... have no idea how much the passenger can control the bike...

Your wife is trust you and is used to you being able to handle any situation....

both good thing AND bad thing.

I recall an instance lotsa years ago....

I was at a mates place after a party...and there was a guy there that I asumed was a mate of one of the other guys.... the way he was talkin he made out he'd been ridin for years..
he needed a lift to his place... so I told him to hop on the back and we headed off to my place to grab some stuff on the way....

Near my place there was a short left/right ...

i dropped it in and he sat bolt upright ..... the bike picked the rear wheel up and kicked it right...I pushed the bars to the left to hold the bike down and hit the rear brake and slid the rear...
I managed to pull the bike up and got off....
as this idiot removed his helmet and said "shit that was close" I decked him..

then told him NEVER to make out he could ride better than he could...

I told him to walk and rode off .... it had scared the sh*t outa me .... fortunately at the time I was still racin BMX bikes and doin freestyle stuff... and a mate of mine and I used to go racin each other round the streets on the motorbikes whenever it rained....
still I was bloody lucky...coulda been nasty

21st March 2005, 10:25
glad to hear your ok. The way I see it, there are two people who can learn a lesson here; if your significant other can or will not learn the skills to become a good passenger, then i think that after 20k miles, you need to learn not to take her on the back of your bike anymore! :)

21st March 2005, 11:04
As I said, it usually comes from either fear. Either way, I wish they'd say something. I met this chick not long agao that said she could ride. First rattle outta the bag she leans against the turn. I stopped the bike, gave her the new rules and we continued the ride. Haven't seen her since but that's ok.

21st March 2005, 11:23
I always took friends as passengers on my 125ccm dirt bike back in 1979. All of them sat as I told them ... lean on my back, hold on to my body, don't fight the turn etc.
Only one (a boy of 16) never did like that. Told him many times that one day he may fall of my bike. He just smiled at me .... :frownthre
Told him to sit like I told him because I was going over a railroad crossing (in a RR curve = jump). I hit that RRcrossing at 50-60mph and make a nice jump ... he nearly falls of the bike! After that he always sat as I told him. :D :D :D

21st March 2005, 11:39
Wow, that sucks. I'm glad you're both okay. Too bad about the bike though, it was really looking great. I guess I never considered how lucky I am to have a wife who is such a neutral passenger. I practically forget she's there (I wish she'd be that quiet in the cage :o ).

21st March 2005, 11:48
She’s been on the back of my bike since before we got married.. some 22 years now.. I am part to blame here too… I guess. I have gotten so use to her ways that I learned to ride with her on the back and let me tell ya… It’s a workout. She tells me she’s not scared and I tend to believe her. There is a very tight quick 90* left/right just down from the road from us. She likes that so much we have to hit it before and after every ride and has me pushing my comfort zone. She likes fast and she loves twisties. I think she pays more attention to the road and what she’s doing when we are getting into it or riding in a group (I don’t notice her at all). Just cruising around I think she relaxes too much and even the slightest turn will spook her.

One thing I forgot to mention… the heel to her boot was in the road where she first bucked me!!! That tells me she put her foot down to straighten up the bike. Sure glad I was going slow this could have been a ugly one!!

It’s going to back to passenger 101 after we are back on the road… Trust me on that one!!

21st March 2005, 12:55
Hope you feel better soon, Marty.

21st March 2005, 13:32

I'm glad you're on the mend and things aren't any worse than they are. Best of luck on the shoulder surgery and the recovery. Fixing the bike will be some good rehab for the healing shoulder! Hopefully your wife can still take the MSF course even if she does not get a bike. The course will teach her a lot about being a passenger and, since it comes from someone other than her spouse, it may be taken more seriously.

I have the same problem as Crackers. My wife inevitably dozes off after about 20 minutes of riding. She loves to ride but I quickly notice the dead weight and have to smack her knee to wake her up. Other than that, she is a great passenger.

Anyhow, take care.


21st March 2005, 13:51
My wife won't ride at all. She just tells me-go take your girlfriend!

21st March 2005, 14:54
I guess I'm a lucky one. My GF had never ridden before so she asked some folks who she knows are riders ( an older couple who ride 2-up and they also have their own bikes ) what she should and SHOULDN'T do when on the back.

We just started riding together last week and have now completed just over 200 miles. She's been so darn good back there, I actually wonder if she fell off.

21st March 2005, 14:58
Too bad man. The bike gets fixed fast, the shoulder is a bit of a bugger. I did the same thing- broken Humerous plus torn rotator cuff, over a year ago. Still hurts. My first real injury after over 25 years riding. I was riding less than 2 weeks after surgery, but short distances at first. Just do your exercises.

21st March 2005, 21:40
I am glad you and your wife came out of your lay down as good as you are, it could have been much worse.

I am very luck guy, my girl loves to ride and rides very well, a good hug now and then and the old helmet tap on a hard shift are reminders that she's there.

The only time I can remember that she was not a happy camper was when we were rounding a sharp turn and there was water running across the road, the rear tire gave a little twitch and she was coming off that bucking horse.

I calmly touched her on the knee and she settled in behind me and everything went smooth. I had to stop and let her get her breath but all was well.


21st March 2005, 22:11
Like everyone says, good thing it wasn't worse.

My wife took the MSF course with me last year and I think it has a lot to do with the fact that she's a good passenger. Hopefully yours will learn once she completes it. There are enough dangers out there as it is...you don't need to carry one with you! :p

22nd March 2005, 00:53
Glad you're both okay. My wife is afraid of the bike and I aim to keep it that way. I generally do not take riders, less I know them well enough to know whether or not they've ridden and how well. I can dump my own bike without the help of some ass on the back, thank you..

22nd March 2005, 16:18
My wife was always an excellent passenger, but then she'd ridden alot in a previous life! :tour She, too, would doze on the long streches, but other than that, I hardly ever knew she was back there. She rides her own now, so that has stopped. I didn't really think I'd miss her being on the back, but oddly enough, sometimes I do...

22nd March 2005, 19:26
My girlfriend rides 2-up with me on roads (like forest roads) that most streetbike riders wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole, even solo. She's a hell of a trooper.

Jason's Sporty
23rd March 2005, 11:27
My wife won't ride at all. She just tells me-go take your girlfriend!

Do you? :laugh

29th March 2005, 20:03
Must be nice!!! Sounds like I need to drop the wife and find me a gf... Sounds like a plan to me. :shhhh

About 45 lbs!

:yikes :yikes :yikes :yikes

29th March 2005, 20:15
About 45 lbs!

:yikes :yikes :yikes :yikes

Me thinks you've stepped in "IT" now! :laugh