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A few guys I know insist on riding side by side regardless of the road. this makes me nervous. They don't mind that I won't do it but just having them up in front of me side by side in the same lane rather than staggered bugs me. Just seems that all too often i need some room to the side to dodge a pothole or something and having a guy right next to me is just asking for trouble. Is it just me????????
 

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I have a riding buddy that rides side by side most of the time. I speed up and slow down trying to stagger, but he just does what I am doing. Guess I'll have to find a way to clue him in...
 

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That is the way the clubs ride. Takes a lot of practice and ya have to know the riders around you pretty well.

If you are not comfortable doing it, then tell em so and ride your own ride.
 

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Isn't riding side by side illegal? Someone told me it is in Illinois. I don't even have a permit yet and even when I get one I don't have anyone to ride with. But I got my new bike! :D

I'm going to have to get use to riding again and I'll be riding illegally with a permit only but none of my friends have bikes. I just pray that if I get stopped the cops will give me a break and not tow my bike.
 

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Side by side is legal in Michigan, and most states as far as I know. I agree I can just hang back staggered...and that's what I do. I was just interested whether anybody else thinks it is adding totally unnecessary risk just so you can look over and grin at the guy beside you?
 

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I only do it when I want to say something to my riding buddy. I know a guy (who I wont ride with) that rides like an animal and loves to ride and talk. Does burnouts with a brand new Roadking too! Anyway, last fall there was a fatality in front of my freinds house. My son and a freinds neice both witnessed it from the other side. Very experienced biker t-boned a pick up truck on his crotch rocket. He also had a Harley. Seems the above idiot was with him and I understand that it could have been avoided if he was'nt side by side.:mad: So in short, stay staggered to allow room to breathe.
 

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Staggered, two seconds apart on the straights. Ride single file thru the turns.

If you ride side by side, you're not leaving yourself any room to manuver. You're just an accident waiting to happen.

Cheers
Jim
 

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Staggered of course. When I ride with my club from work(we sometimes have upwards of 15 bikes) we always ride staggered and all use hand signals as well as lights and it's always on cue from the guy in the lead. Never thought I would like riding in a group until I met these guys(and gals!) You screw up on a ride YOU WILL KNOW ABOUT IT !!!! Twice and the chances of getting the email announcing the next ride will mysteriously have your address missing from it:D Just about everybody rides Harleys so the pace for everybody is similiar. Safety first!!!!!
Sheepboy
 

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I don't like side-by-side myself and prefer a pretty good distance apart when riding with others. If I remember the law here in NJ, and it's been 26 years since I got my license so don't bet on it, staggered side-by-side is legal. In other words, the rider on the right can only advance his front wheel even with the other riders rear wheel.

Dean
 

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Well, not going to argue about it, but there are many circumstances where riding side by side may be the safer way to go. It is very difficult to separate a group of bikes riding in close formation, and the bikes can defend each others position very easily in traffic.

I have ridden side by side with a number of people for tens if not hundreds of thousands of miles and never had a problem. It's more a habit then anything else.

When riding side by side with someone you just know casually you have to pay more attention and it may not be worth it, because it increases the fatigue level at the end of the day. It does however make you a better rider because you subconsciously control the position of the bike much more precisely. If you are going to be hanging with someone for a while it might even pay to force them to ride like this as it makes them much more aware of their surroundings.

If there is someone you don't want to ride this way with, tell them.

It is not just a club thing, both DPS here and CHP in CA ride this way too.
 

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It is legal in Cali to ride side-by-side if for nothing else but to save room on the already congested freeways here. I do not do it personally because I do not have the experience yet. When my skill is higher, I will be willing to do it on the flats, but the rest of the time I stay staggered.
 

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To me, its situationally dictated. If I don't know the folks very well, its staggered for me, even if in a group, I have to ride the back of the pack. Guys I know and ride with often, side by side is ok. Some roads just don't accomodate side by side. Just my .02
 
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