Motorcycles vs MotorTrikles (I just made up that word, I'm pretty sure)

My question, in short: Are there any positive or negative social connotations that come with riding a Harley Trike, or any other three-wheeled motorcycle? And beyond that, how are two- and three- wheeled motorcycles different in the driving experience? Does one need a motorcycle license for a trike (in Indiana, USA)?

Additionally: Etc?

MotorTrikles <- Nice!

This is kinda cool http://www.motorcycle-usa.com/97/771/Motorcycle-Article/2008-Can-Am-Spyder-First-Ride.aspx i am unclear on the social connotations but it’s still cool.

There are very minor negative associations for those riding a trike, unless one is old and/or crippled. But you’re going to catch just as much shit for riding a Harley (Or a metric) as you do for riding a trike. The overwhelming majority of that will be good natured ribbing though, so I wouldn’t worry about it.

I’m not sure about your state and what endorsements are required, it varies.

As for differences in riding, they are tremendous. Much of the fun of motorcycling comes from counter-steering and the lean that it induces. It’s why motorcycles are so manuverable. A trike gets rid of that. You just steer a trike. On the other hand, you’re at least not in a cage.

Is there a reason you’re considering a trike instead of a motorcycle?

Last I looked, there’s a strange loophole in California that allows someone with a normal license to drive a three-wheeled motorcycle without an “M” motorcycle license.

No idea why - it’s still a motorcycle - you need to know how to start, shift and stop the thing.

As mentioned above, you can’t lean to steer. They maneuver about as well as a car. If you’ve got a sidecar, rather than a trike, it is possible to lean the thing left if you work really hard at it and don’t have a passenger, but it’s impossible to lean right.

I’m guessing either medical reasons or a loved one who won’t let the OP on two wheels.

Oh, they look cool, I’ll give them that. When I first saw the pics of them, I had to have one. We put down a (refundable, thank goodness) deposit on one several months early and were all ready to head over and pick it up as soon as it came out.

Then we test rode one. “We” being myself and my spouse, both of whom have been riding motorcycles since 1991. When the test ride (the longest 20 minutes of my life, it seemed) was over, we both got off the trikes, headed away from the perky sales people, and looked at each other trepidatiously. “Well…” he said, “What did you think?”

“I hated it.”

He looked relieved. He hated it too. We were both afraid the other would love it and want one.

Why, you ask? The two big reasons:

  • For anybody who rides a motorcycle, the controls are all wrong. There is no hand brake, only a foot brake. And every time you go over a bump, unless you’re very careful, your foot comes crashing down on the foot brake and jolts you around (or worse).

  • The thing steers like a battleship. Several times I nearly ran it off the road in my effort to get it to go where I wanted it to go. You can’t countersteer it at all, which is very unintuitive for something that’s supposed to approximate a motorcycle. I thought it was just me (I’m not great in the upper body strength department) but the spouse, who is, agreed with me.

So anybody who’s contemplating a Spyder purchase, please heed my advice: test ride it before you drop 15 grand. You might not agree with me. You might love it. Some people do. But if you do agree, you’ll be glad you found out.

Sorry for the hijack–and yes, the Spyder does undoubtedly look cool and if you like it, you will look cool riding it. :slight_smile:

I don’t know much about the stereotypes, but I will say that in my safety course, there was a young, very “tough” appearing lesbian couple, and they opted for a trike. Thing was pretty cool, actually. I wouldn’t want one, though.

Personally, if you’re old or disabled and it’s the only kind of bike you can ride, I think it’s awesome that you’ve found a way to get out there. Otherwise, just a little weird. But hey, to each their own.