Riding Day

Well, the MFS class went really well today. I was surprised that I remembered so much about riding, and, for the most part, all of the exercises came fairly easily. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I was rusty, and some things like slaloming weren’t as smooth as they should’ve been, but for the most part, today was worth a big boost in confidence. I haven’t forgotten how to do this.

Chris came with me for part of the day, and shot some pictures of the activities, such as the one here.

The MFS course gives you a really good basic start. They begin at the beginning, how to do a pre-ride check. Then they move on to how to mount and dismount. Then, how to start the bike. Then they go into how to shift into neutral and first. next, you test out the frictin point on the clutch by using it to rock the bike back and forth. Once you;ve done that, you start walking the bike with the clutch at the edge of the friction point. Then finally, you actually ride it!

That takes about an hour and a half.

After that, though, it goes quickly. You practice starting and stopping, and doing turns. Then,you get it out of fist gear, and do some shifting and downshifting from second. Then you do emergency stops from second gear, while shifting back down into first. Then you practice shifting in turns.

Finally, at the end of the day, you do some slaloming, alternated with stop&gos, and very low speed balance runs.

All of it very useful to get used to how a bike responds.

Finally, after six hours on the riding range, we went in for the second half of the classroom stuff. At the end of the evening, we took the written test. I was the first one to finish, and scored 100%.

So, one more six-hour stint on the range, and I’m done!

The bad news for the day, though was that we won’t be getting our certificates for a while. They said we have to give them up to 10 business days to get our certificates to us. So, that means no motorcycle commuting for another two weeks.

That sucks.

Author: Dale Franks

Dale Franks is the former host of The Business Day, ”a daily, four-hour business and financial news program on KMNY Radio in Los Angeles. From 2002-2004, he was a contributor on military and international affairs for TechCentralStation.com. Currently, he a publisher and editor of the monthly political journal The New Libertarian, as well as an editor of the popular web log, Q and O. Dale served as a military police officer in the United States Air Force from 1984 to 1993, in variety of assignments both in the United States and Europe, where he also was assigned to the staff of the Headquarters of Allied Forces Central Europe. In addition to broadcasting, writing, and speaking on various topics, Dale has also been a long-time technical training instructor on a variety of computer software and technology subjects. Dale has also long been involved with information technology as an accomplished web designer, programmer, and technologist, serving as the corporate knowledge specialist for Microsoft Outlook at SAIC, the nation's largest employee-owned corporation. Additionally, he is the author of a number of software user guides used for classroom training by one of Southern California’'s premier computer training and consulting firms. His book, SLACKERNOMICS: Basic Economics for People Who Find Economics Boring, is available from Barnes & Noble.