Wide driving – column

Harley DOLF
ER Classics Desktop 2022

During my military service, I received driving lessons from a drunken, adulterous professional corporal. The first phenomenon appeared from the grab stock of spirits that he also massaged during the driving lessons. The second I had to take his word for it. He talked about it constantly. A broad and proud arm gesture to a couple of ladies on a terrace that was passed: “I've had them all!” Misshifting was punished by a blow with a wooden bar on the helmet. That echoed the lesson. Passing the incline test was inspired by the fact that the driver in training had to put his watch behind a rear wheel. After such an exercise, someone must have come up with the idea that extra-flat watches should be an excellent business model.

However, I have benefited enormously from that driving course

I learned to drive 'wide' there. Driving with the left wheels on the axis of the road. You can also claim asphalt on the narrowest roads. That was the idea. And that that approach sometimes resulted in a frayed flank of the opposing party? They should see that as tuition. I still ride wide on the bike. Also on my classics. Although the psychological impact of a frontally approaching MAN 11136 H/HA 4×4 is seriously greater than that of a motorcyclist on tour.

And then you notice that everything is based on appearance

Because even if you march tight along the center line even on just a 250, you will see that even seasoned Scania drivers look up the verge for you. If they don't, you still have the entire width of your own lane to divert to the right. Wide driving also works on following traffic. If you're frolicking about in the middle of your own lane, there's a good chance that motorists will see that as an ideal situation to overtake you. Even if an oncoming vehicle is in the picture in the meantime, of which you can see the whites of its eyes. And then you only have a meter maximum to swerve to the right.

While overtaking, we motorcyclists often make the mistake of popping out of the blind spot of car mirrors. Calmly but resolutely going to the left while not driving short on the bumper of our predecessor helps there. Take the middle of the lane on the left lane. This prevents you from being overtaken twice and gives you some alternative options to the left and right in case of emergency. In an emergency, consider that the acceleration of even a classic engine is often a better way out than making an emergency stop.

Keep in mind that we actually remain invisible to motorists. Many of those folks have a gun license rather than a driver's license and the visual judgment of Stevie Wonder. And because we're our own crumple zones, we just have to be careful. Yellow vests don't help at all.

Also read:
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- Lake columns
– About a lot more classic engines


Give a reaction
  1. Once had a full day course in 'increased motorcycle driving skills' at the KNMV.
    Exactly the same thing was stamped in there as what you describe Dolf. And yes, I still enjoy it every time I ride. It was striking that during the advanced braking tests, a number of students had the notorious habit of smoking their rear rubber. That was, for example, firmly massaged out. Personally, I can recommend such a course to everyone if they are only on the road with their motorcycle a year after obtaining the pink pass. If you had already learned during your driving training to be able to turn around pawns at an angle, the angle of inclination there would be sharpened considerably. Emergency stops were really trained in it so that the front brake was put to work in such a way that the rear brake was reduced to a futile side effect. I still look back fondly on the day that already took place in 1997. The skills gained have seriously paid for themselves!

  2. The only (!) motorcycle lesson of 10 guilders (it used to be doable, a driver's license) which I was allowed to receive taught me at least that: choosing a position to be visible in front of a car in front. And learned over the years to see whether a driver also sees you – or not. To be able to see how many people are busy with something else. In that case I will pass them by as quickly as possible – broadly. Driving on the centerline for no reason, no, not as much of a need to scare oncoming traffic as possible.

    - Oldtimers in Auto Motor Klassiek -

    • Yes Michael, my first lesson also cost 10 guilders, I thought. Also only had 1 lesson and then take the exam, costs for the exam then 25 guilders, so ready for 35 guilders. Was a very good investment, still use it for 57 years now.

      • Aha, inflation, that is of all times. I note that I had to pay about 60 guilders for the driving test. We're talking 1972. What I do remember for sure is that I had my lesson on a scooter, a Lambretta with dual clutch control and rear handle brakes. What courage an instructor must have had at the time, being almost at the mercy of a perhaps less talented pupil. Of course, just about every candidate motorcyclist already had moped experience, which makes a difference.
        But neither nothing, no 'safe' motorcycle clothing, which was the final piece of many a budget at the time.
        Perhaps also because of this, my conviction is that safe driving is between the ears, and not around it.

  3. Nice piece of reading again.
    So, Erik, do you have anything against Harleys?
    Loud Pipes Safes Lifes
    Unfortunately, yellow vests did not cause a revolution in France, so certainly not on your motorcycle!

  4. I always read in the AMK that real motorcycling takes place on a classic bicycle. You don't want to be seen on that contemporary electronic 'shit'. boy but don't post a picture of an electronically adjusted Harley Davidson in the AMK.Vgr Eric Middelhuis

  5. By the way, this has been proven by the ADAC; yellow helmets, fluorescent vests… even if you put a flashing light on your helmet… as a motorbike + rider we are just too small a surface to be observed.
    Seen, but not observed…not registered.
    And unfortunately for the howler guild: open barkers do NOTHING at all to pay attention to car drivers..

    How often do you hear about screaming and flashing ambulances being run over..?

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