Well here's a good one for all you lovers of regulations.Don't forget to checkout Motopodd, the coolest sidecars on the planet!
I have a motorcycle training friend who calls the DSA the Double Standards Agency and i'm beginning to see why...
We recently built an outfit for a guy, 1200 Bandit with Kliktronic gearchange as his legs don't work too well. He's only got a car license, so he arranged to do his CBT and a Direct Access test at his local bike shop / training school.
He's actually doing his final test as I type this.
Anyway, on the first day of his CBT, the instructor calls me. He complains that the outfit is unrideable. When asked what he means, he tells me that it pulls to the left on acceleration and to the right on braking. I inform him that this is how an outfit is supposed to work, and this is how you go around corners on one.
I become concerned that he is teaching someone to ride a vehicle on the road, that he has never ridden himself and does not understand, I ask him and he confirms that this is the case.
Fortunately, my customer is a switched on bloke and has already had some tuition with me, off road, so is able to complete his CBT successfully. His DAS road training only didn't result in a serious accident due to zero knowledge on the instructors part because we had provided some training and the customer had enough theoretical knowledge of how to ride an outfit at speed, not to get caught out by a left hand bend and a lifting sidecar.
This situation worries me.
The second part of this tale, involves the regulations regarding riding and taking a test on a sidecar outfit.
You can legally take a CBT on a 125 twist and go scooter, then ride any outfit on the road up to 0.16kwh/kg power to weight ratio. This is nonsense. The two vehicles bear no relation to each other at all.
If you take a test on an outfit, your license is restricted to you only riding outfits. This makes sense.
You can only take a test on an outfit (cbt or full test) IF you are registered disabled or have a letter from a Doctor stating that it would be unsafe for you to ride a solo.
Why would that be? Surely it's discriminatory?
If a person wanted to ride an outfit only, why can't they take a test on one if they are able bodied? Their license will preclude them from riding a solo, so where is the problem?
Here's an analogy from the car world:
You can legally take a test in an automatic car, you can then drive only an automatic. You do not need to be disabled to take your test in an automatic car.
Same situation, surely? Why the difference in regulations?