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Thread: Ideas for a would-be rider w no L hand

  1. #16
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    While not a believer in too much guvmint and a sucker for feel good stories, I'd think it ought to be made pretty legally tough for this person to even get a motorcycle operator license. This group of people, obviously. MSF being so cash-strapped, I'd think it difficult for them to come up with reasonable criteria, which if they did ought to be "lobbied" to various governments. Or whoever else with scientific knowledge (and funded) and not just a bunch of us forum guys with opinions and anecdotes.
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  2. #17
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
    While not a believer in too much guvmint and a sucker for feel good stories, I'd think it ought to be made pretty legally tough for this person to even get a motorcycle operator license. This group of people, obviously. MSF being so cash-strapped, I'd think it difficult for them to come up with reasonable criteria, which if they did ought to be "lobbied" to various governments. Or whoever else with scientific knowledge (and funded) and not just a bunch of us forum guys with opinions and anecdotes.
    I think this brave young lady's handicap is far less than the handicaps I encounter with people driving adapted 4 wheelers. I don't think the licensing requirements should be any different than they would be for any other rider.
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

  3. #18
    Caribbean Druid dwestly's Avatar
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    Honda CTX recommendation

    I would also suggest she look at the new Honda CTX700 series with the DCT transmission. The DCT operates in both manual and automatic shifting modes, with an internal clutch. There is no left handlebar clutch/brake lever at all. All of the critical automatic transmission controls and front brake lever are on the right handlebar. Also, a clever DIY conversion might make the manual paddle shifters on the left handlebar (not used in the automatic shifting mode) usable by someone with a left hand/arm prosthetic. The CTX DCTs have other advantages. They sit and ride like standard motorcycles, and have very low seat height, which make them easy to ride and ideal for a new rider (one of the design purposes). The DCT option also comes with ABS.

    Now the disclaimer: In addition to being an MSF RiderCoach, I am also the contracted manager for Honda's national street motorcycle and ATV demonstrations teams. That being said, I would never recommend a riding solution that I didn't consider appropriate, in any situation. However in this case, a CTX DCT might be the perfect solution for her.

    Drop me a PM if you want to chat more on the topic, or would be glad to discuss direct with her, as would my wife, who is also a RiderCoach and team co-manager.

    Best Wishes to Her and You!
    Last edited by dwestly; 05-13-2013 at 06:39 PM.
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  4. #19
    Registered User ANDYVH's Avatar
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    I had totally forgot about the new Honda. Plus, a used or leftover DN 700 Honda may be another alternative since it offers a really low seat height which may be advantageous for a new rider with her added needs.

    The BMW scooters are an alternative. I recently had opportunity to really give one a hard ride, and this is one very capable scooter. But, it is as heavy as a R1200RT. And though being a scooter, the seat height to ground is surprisingly high and the footboards require a wide stance at a stop. Also, the rear brake is on the LH grip. But that could be integrated into the RH brake.

    As an MSF coach, I'd certainly welcome her into a class. However, none of the MSF bikes are clutch-less. MSF does have provisions for someone of special needs to bring in their own bike but it requires more review before the student just shows up in class and expects to ride a bike not provided in the program.
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  5. #20
    Caribbean Druid dwestly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ANDYVH View Post
    I had totally forgot about the new Honda. Plus, a used or leftover DN 700 Honda may be another alternative since it offers a really low seat height which may be advantageous for a new rider with her added needs.

    The BMW scooters are an alternative. I recently had opportunity to really give one a hard ride, and this is one very capable scooter. But, it is as heavy as a R1200RT. And though being a scooter, the seat height to ground is surprisingly high and the footboards require a wide stance at a stop. Also, the rear brake is on the LH grip. But that could be integrated into the RH brake.

    As an MSF coach, I'd certainly welcome her into a class. However, none of the MSF bikes are clutch-less. MSF does have provisions for someone of special needs to bring in their own bike but it requires more review before the student just shows up in class and expects to ride a bike not provided in the program.
    +1. MSF has specific guidelines for acceptable bikes for the Basic Rider Course. Given the specifics of a state's individual licensing requirements, it may be possible to take the MSF BRC on a scooter that meets course requirements, but these licensing requirements differ by state.
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  6. #21
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    More power to you.

    I don't have anything to offer.
    In fact I'm moved by all the replies from you folks, just wading in and working the problem.
    I'm going to go pray about it.

    Please post back and let us know how it works out.

  7. #22
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  8. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
    While not a believer in too much guvmint and a sucker for feel good stories, I'd think it ought to be made pretty legally tough for this person to even get a motorcycle operator license. This group of people, obviously. MSF being so cash-strapped, I'd think it difficult for them to come up with reasonable criteria, which if they did ought to be "lobbied" to various governments. Or whoever else with scientific knowledge (and funded) and not just a bunch of us forum guys with opinions and anecdotes.
    care to expalin this? I really don't quite know what you mean.
    I can see major impediments to her taking the MSF class to get ilcensed, due to lack of a bike that has been suitably modified, but how does someone only having one hand change the nature of the necessary licensing? (hint- a motorcycle is not defined by whether it has a manual transmission or not).
    Ride Safe, Ride Lots

  9. #24
    SHIMHEAD
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    This topic has a special interest to me, as my wife lost her left hand/forearm in an industrial shredder when she was about 18 (long before I met her). Anyhow, she does not let much get in the way of doing things she wants to do. I have put a bit of thought into how she could be able to ride, as she sure seems to enjoy riding with me on my '06 R12RT. The most interesting thing I came up with is a Piaggio MP3, seems like the only real mod that would be needed would be getting the left hand lever (I believe it to be a brake lever) moved over to the right. Looks like it would be easy to balance at stops, possibly even no feet down required. I have not as of yet discussed this with her, and really don't know how she feels about it. So, at this point I am just curious to see what comes out of this thread....


    SHIMHEAD

  10. #25
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    Well the 850 Mana has no left lever and is a really fun bike.

  11. #26
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    also, the fully auto Spyder could be an option, unless she just has to have the lean-thing.
    Ride Safe, Ride Lots

  12. #27
    What, me worry? GILLY's Avatar
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    I saw a paraplegic motorcyclist on the Slimey Crud Run one year, IIRC it was his left arm he was missing, had everything he needed on one side, can remember all the details but seem to remember a bar coming up from possibly a frame tube, which had a clutch lever attached to it. I think he was already an accomplished rider before he lost the arm though. Cool guy to talk to I remember.
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  13. #28
    Mars needs women! 35634's Avatar
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    Since she is a beginner, a 3 wheeler could get her used to the controls without loss of balance being much of an issue. Heindle Engineering, where I got my Ural, has a Piaggio MP3 they took on trade. I was checking it out last week, impressive looking scooter. Leans, but locks upright at stops. 500cc so it probably scoots pretty good.
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  14. #29
    the Wizard of Oz 26667's Avatar
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    OK. I'll bite...

    Quote Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
    While not a believer in too much guvmint and a sucker for feel good stories, I'd think it ought to be made pretty legally tough for this person to even get a motorcycle operator license. This group of people, obviously. MSF being so cash-strapped, I'd think it difficult for them to come up with reasonable criteria, which if they did ought to be "lobbied" to various governments. Or whoever else with scientific knowledge (and funded) and not just a bunch of us forum guys with opinions and anecdotes.
    I got no personal stake in it at all, but lemme get this straight. You want her to have to pass a more difficult driver's test? What would you propose she be able to do, over and above passing the riding and written tests?
    We might as well walk. ~ Adam Guettel The Light In The Piazza
    used to own: 1982 R100T, 1984 R65, 1986K75C, 1997 R1100RT, R850R, K75S, 1978 R100RS... what was I thinking?

  15. #30
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikerfish1100 View Post
    but how does someone only having one hand change the nature of the necessary licensing? (hint- a motorcycle is not defined by whether it has a manual transmission or not).
    Well gee, you have to take a vision test to get a driver's license. Those with paralized legs need hand controls to qualify. Perhaps some folks qualified in physical therapy and ergonomics and whatever the other related disciplines are could provide guidance regarding riding a motorcycle with only one hand. Those that make/design prosthetic hands could lobby for approval of their product, etc.

    It's, BTW, interesting that one of the solutions proposed, i.e. BMW scooter, has left and right hand braking.

    The "nature of necessary licensing" is changed fundamentally by this situation (manual vs auto transmissions essentially irrelevant) and shadetree solutions proposed here are not the answer although in the long run some could achieve licensing. The point is, solutions will come from engineers and medical personnel and not from a motorcycle forum. This all should happen for the protection of the rider as well as the public--it's a valid government function.
    Kent Christensen
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    '12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S

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