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 Motorcycle Safety
 Sharing of Lessons Learned
 More twisty experience, Although I have few quest.
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fz6yamaha
Standard Member
242 Posts


USA

Peer Review:

Posted - 04/04/2005 :  1:21 PM                       Like
We went for a ride this last sunday. GA mountains again. Someone told us about route 60 heading to suches (town up in there). The road was great, the twisties are extremly good (I had a blast) BUT I am still concern about entry speed.
This time I was just my friend (kind of like a riding mentor) and I. We started with the twisties and I was following him really well, I kept up with no problems. Then we swichted he told me you go head and lead this time after couple minutes (he found that the road was really good and I will enjoy leading). it was ok for me when I just started but I found myself having mor difficulty at the time I am dealing with my entry speed, I never ran wide, everything was fine but I feel that a slow down a little bit when I am leading.
It is that normal? (slow down when you leading)
I do feel it is a lot easier for me follow someones line and speed for now. I guess with time I will overcome and have more confidence. Like I said my friend told me I did great and that those roads had to be taken carefully just like I did.

Althoug when you think you doing pretty good and feel extremly confident another rider came along and passed us really fast (in the twistes) he was really carefull and his leaning angle was exelent this guy that passed us looked like a racer.
I am wondering how long does it take to get that kind of confidence in the twistes.

My tecniq handeling entry speed it is as follow:
-CHeck for speed post. (35mph- I see everyone taking the turn at 60-65 I know I can take way safer at 50-55 with not problem)
- Check road conditions
- Adjust my speed before the turn gets me so I will not have to deal with shifting, breaking and all that in the turn(the bike really freaks out if I treat her diferently-she loves me and she has her ways I know)
- Look where I want to know and do not look at the car oncoming the other way (that scare the c..p out of me)
- Keep the trotle steady and speed up at the end of the turn.
- Remind myselF LOOK WHERE YOU WANT TO GO. The turns become a lot easier this way

I think am not leaving anything out of the equation.
If you guys can give some advice I would apreciatte it.

Lu.

scottrnelson
Advanced Member
6948 Posts
[Mentor]


Meridian, ID
USA

Honda

XR650L, 790 Adv R

Posted - 04/04/2005 :  9:11 PM
The only way to get good at judging proper entry speeds for turns is to do lots and lots of them. I'm at the point where I feel much more comfortable leading than following because I'm pretty good at judging turns. When I'm following someone else I'm more likely to try to do what they do instead of judging the corner for myself and will occasionally get into a turn a bit too hot.

The thing that helped me the most was what I learned from reading Proficient Motorcycling by David L. Hough. He recommends a late apex technique where all of the braking is done before the turn begins and you're at the outer edge of your lane as you begin the turn. As you start the turn you crack the throttle to keep the speed the same or with very light acceleration. Just before you come to the end of the turn you touch the inner edge of your lane and continue on down the next straight preparing to set up for the next corner. If it's an S-turn, you're already at the outside of that turn and ready to take it.

You only go fast enough around the turn so that you can identify any hazard in time to do something about it. That includes swerving and/or additional braking. That then means that you can't be at the limit of traction in that turn, at least until you can can see to the end of it while you're accelerating out of it.

It's okay for you to take turns more slowly than your friend does. The more important thing is to be smooth and take a good line through the turn while avoiding any "panic reactions".

One of the things that helps build confidence in the twisties is to go over the same stretch of road many, many times. Try to make perfect turns all the way through. As you get smoother, your speed will improve as well. What you don't want to do is try to keep increasing your lean angle until something touches down or you slide off the road. Work on smoothness and the confidence will come.

When I ride, my goal is to never have to brake or alter my line in a corner unless a hazard is identified there. If I take a corner too fast and have to hit the brakes while leaned over, I consider that an error on my part, even if it wasn't unsafe.

Oh, and I generally ignore the yellow suggested speed signs unless they're way lower than I'm expecting. In that case there is usually an additional hazard to be aware of and it's a good idea to slow down more. The signs, around the west at least, are too inconsistent to be trusted. Some 35 mph turns can be taken safely at 60 while others are dangerous at even 40 mph. I judge corners by what I can see. However, as mentioned above, if it says 20 mph but looks like it should be 35, then I'll slow a bit extra.

Other than the first of the six items on your list, it sounds like you're generally doing the right thing.

Work on smoothess and good lines. When you have put in 1000 miles of twisties without ever having to alter your line (except for hazards) or make any swerves or do any sudden braking, then you might start thinking about increasing your speed a little.
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fz6yamaha
Standard Member
242 Posts


USA

Posted - 04/04/2005 :  9:58 PM
I will be practicing the twisites then. I have heard about the book, I finally bought it and also someone recomended me "A twist of the wrist" too. I will keep in mind your advice and try to follow as you said and I will come back to report my improvements.

I think am smooth but sometimes I mess up on the smoothness in the turn and does not feel right. That happend couple of time but then I corrected it. The way I did it was keeping the trotle steady so I would not have the back and forward problem with it. That helped me a lot.
I also found that while in the turn I must keep focus in the turn, for a second I glinced to see some people on bicycles on the other side of the road and I was inmediatly heading that way, I had to applied a little brake though but that was my mistake. After that I just focus on the turn and all the factors I have to work out to acomplish it in a proper maner.

Thanks again.
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scottrnelson
Advanced Member
6948 Posts
[Mentor]


Meridian, ID
USA

Honda

XR650L, 790 Adv R

Posted - 04/05/2005 :  10:53 AM
quote:
Originally posted by fz6yamaha

...someone recomended me "A twist of the wrist" too.
The book you want to get is "A Twist Of The Wrist II". Don't bother with the first one because it's aimed at the racetrack. Actually, the second book is too, but it's a little more street oriented. It wasn't nearly as valuable to me as Proficient Motorcycling.
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TedGamble
Standard Member
214 Posts


Murfreesboro, TN
USA

Honda

GL1800A

Posted - 04/05/2005 :  11:50 AM
Scott is SO right-on in everything that he said. The key is (even when riding in a straight line), never go faster than you can safely stop within you current field of vision.

You should set you entry speed to a curve long before you are at the curve. As soon as you see the bend, this is where you start your adjustment. Scott is VERY correct that if you do it right you'll likely never hit your brakes on a good day. That's "the secret of smooth".

I came across this article a few months ago entitled "The Pace". This essay has been around for about 15 years, but the priciples set forth in the article are dead-on relevant today.

Scott, I'll bet that you've seen this too???

http://www.fjrowners.ws/pace.html

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nomad dan
Advanced Member
1276 Posts


Denver, Colorado
USA

Kawasaki

06 Vulcan Nomad 1600

Posted - 04/05/2005 :  2:10 PM
Read the article and liked it. It reminds me why some groups I've ridden with have been so enjoyable, and other groups not.
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fz6yamaha
Standard Member
242 Posts


USA

Posted - 04/05/2005 :  11:48 PM
The article its good, It does not matter that is from 1993 still contains a lot of information we use today. About the smoothness I will be practicing this coming weekend and check how improves.
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scottrnelson
Advanced Member
6948 Posts
[Mentor]


Meridian, ID
USA

Honda

XR650L, 790 Adv R

Posted - 04/06/2005 :  7:49 AM
quote:
Originally posted by TedGamble

Scott is VERY correct that if you do it right you'll likely never hit your brakes on a good day.


Make that "never hit your brakes in a turn".

Although I can ride a medium pace on many twisty roads without using the brakes, I make it a habit to at least touch them right before most turns. This is another thing I picked up from David Hough's book. You make it a habit to apply both brakes when setting up for a turn and when you have a reason to do some sudden braking you'll do the natural thing.

Both of my bikes can achieve pretty close to maximum braking without the use of the rear brake, but I make it a habit to use both, in the correct proportions, so that I automatically do what will result in the best stopping distance when I suddenly need it.

It can be kind of fun to make a run through a twisty road using only engine braking to slow for the corners, but I specifically don't make a habit of it.
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TedGamble
Standard Member
214 Posts


Murfreesboro, TN
USA

Honda

GL1800A

Posted - 04/06/2005 :  9:48 AM
quote:
It can be kind of fun to make a run through a twisty road using only engine braking to slow for the corners


I have found this to be my goal when I'm out to polish my riding skills. Instead of riding in the high gear, I'll drop back one gear. This allows me to accelerate out of the turns a little stronger, but more importantly, it allows me to SMOOTHLY decelerate into the apprach to the turns. I'm amazed at how much quicker I am on these runs.

Scott, I don't know about you, but at least twice a month, I try to ride my favorite "road that will eat your lunch" as hard as I can to keep my skills up. This not only keeps me sharp, but it also helps to reinforce and remind me where the limits are on the bike.

I'm not a "homicidal maniac", but since I paid for all of the tread width on the tires, I figure that I might as well get my money's worth every now and then.

Edited by - TedGamble on 04/06/2005 9:51 AM
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James R. Davis
Male Administrator
17377 Posts
[Mentor]


Houston, TX
USA

Honda

GoldWing 1500

Posted - 04/06/2005 :  10:09 AM Follow poster on Twitter  Join poster on Facebook as Friend  
Some of you might be wondering why I have not said anything here in a thread that seems to invite people to push their limits and ride aggressively on public roads. How is that consistent with 'motorcycle Safety'?

The fact is that what I have read in this thread is an advocating of reasonable and careful mastery of the rider's ability to handle difficult roads - in particular, it seems to me that what the authors here are saying is that smoothness and control are EVERYTHING, and I fully agree with that.

Whether you ride a 50 MPH turn at 50 MPH or 80 MPH, your odds of surviving that turn are a function of how well you control your motorcycle and how well you understand your limits so that you do not exceed them.

What I have not read here are arguments about how to pass a slower rider while being aggressive with your bike. What I have not heard here are hints about how to win races on the public streets. Thank you! Those kinds of discussions will not pass the muster here, but reasonable and practical talk about how to develop a smooth line through a turn and how to maximize your control of the bike are entirely appropriate.
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