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Old 03-12-2007, 05:51 PM   #1
WideTurn
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Neutral at a red light?

Okay, I've been riding for a few years and have always been told to keep the bike in gear at a red light. Or at least wait until there are 3 or 4 cars fully stopped behind you. I do this because that is what everyone says.

Before I started riding I was the 3rd car stopped at a red light and had sat there for a good minute when some guy plowed right into the back of me. That would have been real nasty on the bike.

My question is, why keep it in gear. I understand that it is easier to take off if you have to, but where are you going to go? Since I've been in Houston most of my riding has been highway. When I do get to a light at an intersection, it is usually a very busy intersection. If I'm the first one at the light and the car coming up behind me looks like it wouldn't stop, wouldn't taking off just get me hit on the side instead of from the back? I have seriously wondered about this for a while. I apologize if this is an ignorant question.

Maybe I'd be screwed either way but I have a better chance of not getting hit taking off into the intersection. Or maybe that pertains more to being able to pull along side cars stopped ahead of me in that scenario.

Just something I've wondered for a while. Thanks.
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Old 03-12-2007, 06:31 PM   #2
MadseasoN
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I usually stay on either the left or right side of the lane, never the middle. If I need to get outta the way then I could go between the cars in front. If I'm in front, hopefully I'd probably still have somewhere to ditch the bike - even if it's just a few feet over.
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Old 03-12-2007, 06:33 PM   #3
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I recently got rear ended sitting at a stop light on my bike. I have always been vigilant about keeping it in gear until there is sufficiant stopped traffic behind me. In the case of my wreck I saw the car coming and managed to try to start pulling away. I didn't get very far but I think it helped keep my injuries to a minimum. I always wear full leathers when I ride. I walked away with a bruised foot. Bike was totalled.
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Old 03-12-2007, 06:38 PM   #4
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good thread
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Old 03-12-2007, 06:52 PM   #5
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I've almost been plowed by a Firetruck that didn't see me at an intersection at night. I tend to stay in the far right or left as well. What I wll do it go the opposite direction of the side of the lane i am in and park my bike in front of the next car over at a diagonal type position as if Im trying to turn in front of him. Saved me and my passenger that night when the truck almost plowing me.
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Old 03-12-2007, 06:53 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Los
I've almost been plowed by a Firetruck that didn't see me at an intersection at night. I tend to stay in the far right or left as well. What I wll do it go the opposite direction of the side of the lane i am in and park my bike in front of the next car over at a diagonal type position as if Im trying to turn in front of him. Saved me and my passenger that night when the truck almost plowing me.
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Old 03-12-2007, 06:54 PM   #7
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I have always said if you have a wet clutch keep it in gear. They don't sift all that well with out the dogs turning.



non helpful info below here

When my wife was in her residency she was driving my showroom stock car and was rearended at a high rate of speed she got pushed into the car in front that was pushed into the car at the stop sign. Roll cage kept her safe as every other car had broken bones in them. She was wearing the shoulder belt not the sixpoint. She was however to stiff to go to the ER she was supposed to be moonlighting at that night.
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Old 03-13-2007, 10:49 AM   #8
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Pretty helpful info. I think I'll definitely stick to the sides when stopping. Thanks.
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Old 03-13-2007, 11:48 AM   #9
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I have a bad habit of not doing that. Ill have to get into that practice.
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Old 03-13-2007, 12:17 PM   #10
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I think the MSF course teaches you to keep it in gear at a stop light just in case of the situations mentioned above. This sucks in stop and go traffic cause my hand gets tired of working the clutch.
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Old 03-13-2007, 12:42 PM   #11
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I do what feels comfortable at the given moment.
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Old 03-13-2007, 12:57 PM   #12
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I tend to keep it in gear in most cases however if I have been riding for a while I put it in neutral, to give my hand a break but like mentioned above I am always in the side of the lane not in the middle. So I feel i could always jump to the side and leave the bike if I had to.
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Old 03-13-2007, 01:14 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by therky42
I tend to keep it in gear in most cases however if I have been riding for a while I put it in neutral, to give my hand a break but like mentioned above I am always in the side of the lane not in the middle. So I feel i could always jump to the side and leave the bike if I had to.
do you even ride anymore Eric? you need to go ride with us...



i usually spit the lane at lights and stay in gear till a few cars are stopped behind me
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Old 03-13-2007, 01:24 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WideTurn
keep the bike in gear at a red light. Or at least wait until there are 3 or 4 cars fully stopped behind you.
Same here.

If I have an uneasy feeling or cannot see more than two cars behind me and the light is not one of those forever red lights, then I also keep it in gear. If I am at a light with noone behind me, I go into neutral until I see someone coming up behind me, then I click back into gear.

Not too long ago, sometime in fall, a rider was hit that had stopped for a school bus on West Rd (northbound between Eldridge and 290). He had a car standing behind him and then a teenage girl with her friends plowed into the car and caused the car to push into the bike. He died at the scene. I ride by that section of the road where it happened regularily and you can still see the skid marks. A constant reminder ...
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Old 03-13-2007, 01:38 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ikp460.
do you even ride anymore Eric? you need to go ride with us...
Hey Chris I was riding with Will while you were "occupied". But Ill be out again when the weather clears up again.
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Old 03-13-2007, 01:40 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by therky42
Hey Chris I was riding with Will while you were "occupied". But Ill be out again when the weather clears up again.
good i got this 2001 old crappy honda so i can fit in with you guys!
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Old 03-13-2007, 01:41 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ikp460.
good i got this 2001 old crappy honda so i can fit in with you guys!
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Old 03-13-2007, 01:55 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ikp460.
good i got this 2001 old crappy honda so i can fit in with you guys!
traitor!
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Old 03-13-2007, 01:58 PM   #19
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i still got the r1......i had to get a slow bike so will and eric would still ride with me...
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Old 03-13-2007, 02:27 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Faylaricia

If I have an uneasy feeling or cannot see more than two cars behind me and the light is not one of those forever red lights, then I also keep it in gear. If I am at a light with noone behind me, I go into neutral until I see someone coming up behind me, then I click back into gear.
That's pretty much what I do.
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