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Old 10-03-2012, 08:28 PM   #31
DirtRider....
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Gotta stay focused... I lane share only when I feel comfortable.
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Old 10-03-2012, 08:38 PM   #32
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Laugh

split every day....too and fro from work ,rush hour down town LA(110 101 fwys)


love it
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Old 10-03-2012, 08:53 PM   #33
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I didn't even know lane splitting was legal in California.

But this begs another question: Given the ability to ride motorcycles year-round in California and the seemingly 24x7 congestion on some highways, why does the state not have lanes specifically for use by only motorcycles on the major freeways?
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Old 10-03-2012, 08:55 PM   #34
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Double Yellow

Don't think cars won't cross the double yellow or 2 double yellows in or out of carpool lane. If the lane next to them is open just assume they will take it without using their signal and no regard to double yellow(s). My speed when lane sharing depends on the vibe of the traffic at the time. ESP......dunno......sometimes I cruz fast sometimes I'm just faster than traffic and have to pick my pass points carefully. Don't worry about the "kids" on the racers, they don't know better. Get out of their way but don't make an unsafe maneuver just to do it, they can wait the 1 extra minute for you to find a safe spot to let them by. Welcome and good luck!
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Old 10-03-2012, 08:55 PM   #35
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If you're not riding around an urban area in rush-hour, it probably won't be that big a deal, but it can save a huge amount of frustration. A few pointers:

1. Keep your delta relative to other traffic less than 10mph, preferably 5mph.
2. Make sure that both lanes are moving at about the same speed, and tightly packed.
3. If you're keeping to #1, this makes lane splitting worth while only when speeds are slow. When I started lane splitting I kept it less than 20mph and that rule of thumb seemed to work well. Splitting is legal when done safely (judgment of CHP) and one of the old requirements for "safely" was "less than 35mph." Used to be in the CA driver's handbook. No different than any other form of passing: the onus is on the passer to do it safely.
4. You can't ride on the shoulder. You can pass on the right as long as you don't cross the fog line.
5. Enjoy.

My wife and I rode to Colorado this summer and were amazed at the sight of motorcycles sitting in traffic. Big bearded Harley riders in chaps and leather vests and no helmet sitting there in traffic like cows going to slaughter. Here? Well following one of the Oakland Dragons on a blinged out bagger across the Bay Bridge like Moses parting a sea of white people, is pretty damn cool.

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Old 10-03-2012, 09:00 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigbadandugly View Post
I didn't even know lane splitting was legal in California.

But this begs another question: Given the ability to ride motorcycles year-round in California and the seemingly 24x7 congestion on some highways, why does the state not have lanes specifically for use by only motorcycles on the major freeways?
Have you ever been here? There are 22 million people, 22 freeways, some up to 8 lanes wide (each direction), and there's still not enough for all the cars - it's gridlock at rush hour. Everybody in CA does everything all at the same time. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

With such a small percentage of vehicles being motorcycles, they're never gonna get their own lanes. They can't even get enough lanes for the cars.

Now they're gonna start charging to let anyone drive in the carpool lanes. It's all about the $$ now. Too many people and not enough money to go around.
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:00 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by DirtRider.... View Post
Gotta stay focused... I lane share only when I feel comfortable.
I gotta agree, Comfort is King.

For the OP, the #1 rule is if you feel endangered, tuck in behind a car that you can see around and just chill out in traffic for awhile. Your opportunity to pass the dangerous irritant will come in time.

Motorcycles are legal in the car pool lane, so exploit the opportunity to ride the (usually) faster lane.

Lane sharing is urban single track and a bit like riding endless whoops. When you find yourself getting out of shape (physically or mentally) it's time to slow down and gather your rhythm before attacking the lane again.

Look for clues to what drivers and the vehicles are doing, and look ten cars down the road (or more). Don't wait until you can see their eyes in the mirrors or hands on the steering wheel to identify the jerks and brain dead zombies.
If you see a vehicle crowding your future line, plan on giving them space by getting tucked-in the adjacent lane for clearance. Watch the vehicles front wheels. Do they track straight or twitch? Are any vehicle front wheels trending to the lane where you plan to ride, be prepared to have them take your line. When you see a multi-person vehicle working to the car-pool lane, expect them to cut into the lane without looking. Non-California plates are also a danger flag. A Buss or Large Truck CANNOT SEE YOU (give them all the lane they want and work the adjacent lane to get around them). These same clues apply to filtering and lane sharing.

Freeway lane sharing is actually easier on a large (wide) bike, than an narrow rocket or dual-sport, because the ignorant vehicle drivers cannot easily identify you from a CHP. I get more grief freeway lane sharing on my DRZ than my Road Glide.

The opposite is true on city streets filtering to lights, because the vehicles slowing for a red light do not expect a big full-dresses bike to challenge their lane priority, while it's almost expected from a scooter or dual-sport.

When I was first commuting on freeways I almost never shared lanes until passed by a CHP and was waved at to fall in behind. For the next few years I tended to follow many CHP riders at their invitation, before becoming more comfortable.

Most of the major freeways now have car-pool lanes and there is enough bikes sharing lanes that the working weekday commuters look and make space for bikes, and the lane sharing bike rider needs to keep an eye on their mirrors to let the faster riders by. The weekend ride however is a contrast in insanity, as the casual vehicle drivers are not a aware of (or used to) bikes sharing lanes.

PCH from the Palisades north, filtering is required with little room for lane sharing. Santa Barbara filtering is required even on the 101 and lane sharing with the nearly dead should be done with extra caution (worse than Tijuana and Mexicali combined).
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Old 10-04-2012, 03:55 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smm View Post



My wife and I rode to Colorado this summer and were amazed at the sight of motorcycles sitting in traffic. Big bearded Harley riders in chaps and leather vests and no helmet sitting there in traffic like cows going to slaughter.

-Scott
Around here we call them Pirates and make endless fun of them, assless chaps and all.
Lane splitting, in these parts, isn't a real high priority. Traffic can stack around Denver and there are a few chronic bottlenecks but traffic is a piece of cake compared to my old commutes on, say, the Ike into Chicago. We do have our share of the brain dead and just plain psychotic behind the wheel and this is probably the most heavily armed state in the Union, which tends to keep people on their toes.
When I was working as a home care nurse in Denver I visited patients on my Wee Strom and daily survival was a challenge. What I've noticed over the years is an increase in the number of people who come at you deliberately, not just as a result of inattention or incompetence.
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Old 10-04-2012, 10:52 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by browneye View Post
Have you ever been here? There are 22 million people, 22 freeways, some up to 8 lanes wide (each direction), and there's still not enough for all the cars - it's gridlock at rush hour. Everybody in CA does everything all at the same time. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

With such a small percentage of vehicles being motorcycles, they're never gonna get their own lanes. They can't even get enough lanes for the cars.

Now they're gonna start charging to let anyone drive in the carpool lanes. It's all about the $$ now. Too many people and not enough money to go around.

38 million people, 22 million cars, 800,000 motorcycles <<< most of those only go to Starbucks on Sunday morning.

There are more registered trailers than motorcycles in California as evidenced by any ADV "rally'.


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Old 10-04-2012, 11:24 AM   #40
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38 million people, 22 million cars, 800,000 motorcycles <<< most of those only go to Starbucks on Sunday morning.

There are more registered trailers than motorcycles in California as evidenced by any ADV "rally'.



OMG...
I was referring to so-Cal, I think your number is the whole state, but yeah, it's ridiculous isn't it?
And we're gonna get our own lanes??? Ha-ha. In our dreams.

There are also 900,000 boats registered in CA.

I was born in Canada, my father was Canadian. I was close to forty years old before I learned that Canada has a population that is 10% of the US, and 90% of them live within 100 miles of the border.

I love it up there. Just don't know if I could make a living. If we weren't so plugged in down here I'd go back. If the US ever has a 'melt-down' that's where I'm going. Problem is we'll take them and Mexico with us if we do.
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:55 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by Jeff aka BOLT View Post
Back in the 70s 80s and part of the early 90s we all did it. Motorcycle commuters were abundant and cars expected them. There were trains of 3 to 6 bikes several times in an hour commute splitting the No1 & No2 lanes. Even the Cops were in it. Not so any more. Bike commuters now are few and not expected. The imaginary motorcycle fast line does NOT exist anymore and it would be foolish to try it in moving traffic. Enjoy the freedom at traffic lights when cars are stopped. But the days of safe lane splitting in moving traffic are over.
I don't know where you have traffic to lanesplit out there in the Mojave, but where I commute between Sacramento and Fairfield, there's plenty of opportunity to do it safely. There are quite a few of us lane splitting, too. Maybe people are used to seeing me and Aerostitch? Maybe it's the cop bike? But I certainly don't feel unsafe doing it. I've passed many-a-sportbike while lane splitting 'cause they didn't check their mirrors and expired Larryboy's 5-count clock.
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Old 10-04-2012, 01:08 PM   #42
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Lane splitting is a natural part of riding in this state. That said, I pick my battles and don't split when traffic's already flowing. If it checks up and bumper to bumper, I'll split lanes until it flows again and then rejoin the flow. Sitting in traffic with traffic is just as dangerous or moreso than splitting a lane properly. I'm sure a few of you can relate to having been rear ended or almost rear ended by cars.

I'm also more cautious splitting lanes on surface streets because drivers have a reason to exit right OR left and often try both at the same time. Some sections of the road get very narrow making it hard for cars making left turns across stopped traffic or exiting parking lots to see a splitting motorcycle so I proceed with extreme caution. Again, pick your battles.
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:36 PM   #43
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I haven't exactly read every word of this thread so far, but I glanced through it all and didn't see this mentioned:

If you're riding a bike with hard bags, make sure you're going to fit though the gaps before squeezing into them, especially at red lights. My XR650 fits in a much tighter space than my KTM with the Touratech bags attached. You don't want to bump anybody.

My own rule for splitting in moving traffic is that as soon as I feel like shifting out of second gear, it's time to blend in with traffic. A lot of riders go faster than that, but I feel unsafe splitting, once traffic gets over about 35 mph.
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:51 PM   #44
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...measure the width of your bags or the widest part of your bike and then measure your handlebars.
In most cases you'll be able get through if your bars can.
Depends on the bike of course.
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:52 PM   #45
Jeff aka BOLT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cpt. Ron View Post
I don't know where you have traffic to lanesplit out there in the Mojave, but where I commute between Sacramento and Fairfield, there's plenty of opportunity to do it safely. There are quite a few of us lane splitting, too. Maybe people are used to seeing me and Aerostitch? Maybe it's the cop bike? But I certainly don't feel unsafe doing it. I've passed many-a-sportbike while lane splitting 'cause they didn't check their mirrors and expired Larryboy's 5-count clock.
You assume to much... been in the Mojave for a year... OC to LA commuter since the 70s.

Just picked up a new (to me) lane splitter this week. It's an antique now... had one of these when I was doing the OC to LA dance in the mid 80s. Can't believe this bike is 28 years old !

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