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Offline Shemogolee

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Re: What if I tip over?
« Reply #16 on: October 28, 2020, 01:48:08 am »
Hi All,

 "What if I tip over".

Dare I offer some advice that might help you to not tip over? I don't want to appear 'holier than thou' so please accept these comments in the spirit which they are given, so that all who are interested might continue to improve their control of our wonderful machines. I am licensed motorcycle instructor teaching both new rider and advanced rider courses. I also teach traffic courses as well as instruct and evaluate new instructors.

Slow speed riding involves four principles and a sequence for applying them.

1. You must look where you want the motorcycle to go or it will go where you are looking.

Scan the area for the maneuver. When you get to the point of turn in, turn your head and eyes to focus only on where you want the motorcycle to end up. In most cases that is the end of the maneuver.

2. You must keep 'reserve power' on the motorcycle

To allow the clutch to properly control your speed you must have reserve power on the motorcycle. Set the power and leave it alone. Doing this allows immediate power application to the rear wheel when the clutch is released. It also allows you to concentrate on controlling the speed of the motorcycle with the clutch instead of having to coordinate power and clutch changes at the same time. If you have a tachometer use about one and a half times your idle RPM. Get used to the sound and vibration of the engine at that RPM so you don't need to look at the tachometer. If you don't have a tachometer experiment with the proper power setting. It needs to be above idle but not so high as to be overspending the engine.

3. You must control the speed of the motorcycle with the clutch in the friction zone (not with the throttle)

Using the clutch in the friction zone allows smooth and accurate delivery of engine power to the rear wheel for proper speed control and can help to control lean angle. When you slowly release the clutch the point at which the motorcycle starts to move that is the 'friction point'. All clutch movement between the friction point and fully released is the 'friction zone'. During slow speed maneuvering in the friction zone clutch movement needs to be smooth, accurate and small to produce proper control of the motorcycle speed and lean angle.

If you sense the motorcycle is going to slow (You are tempted to put your foot down or things are getting a little wobbly) all you need to do is increase your speed by allowing more of your reserve power to go to the rear wheel. This will immediately stabilize the motorcycle. This works in a straight line or when the motorcycle is leaning. If you are going to fast (as evidenced by riding out of the exercise or hitting a cone) just take away some power from the rear wheel by pulling in the clutch a small amount. You can also use a small amount of rear brake if required. Please, never use the front brake during slow speed maneuvers. Doing so is an invitation for the motorcycle to fall over

When leaning you can also control the lean of the motorcycle with the clutch. If you want to lean more pull the clutch in a small amount. If you want to lean less release the clutch a small amount

4. You can use rear brake as required to stabilize the motorcycle

Small amounts of rear brake, smoothly applied when required, will help slow the motorcycle, tighten turn radius and lower the centre of gravity (which helps to stabilize the motorcycle). This is an 'as required' control input, not a constant riding of the brake. It is used while keeping the power up and the clutch in the friction zone. For example, you could use rear brake while going down a slight incline or if you were going too fast at the entry to or during a slow speed maneuver.

Trophy linked brakes present no control issues as long as the rear brake application is small and smooth. (see caution above regarding front brake usage)


The sequence for applying the above principles is

1. Look

At the point of entry to the maneuver quickly turn your head and eyes and look only where you want the motorcycle to end up. When you do this your shoulders will turn in the direction of the turn which causes your arms to start the movement of the handlebars in the same direction

2. Lock

The radius of the turn is directly relates to how fast and how far you can turn the wheel towards the lock position (when the handlebars will not turn further). Smoothly and quickly continue to turn the handlebars to the lock position (or as close to lock as you are comfortable). This will reduce the radius of the turn significantly and will initiate the lean sequence.

3.Lean

The motorcycle will want to lean. Let it lean The radius of the turn is directly related to the lean angle. More lean gives you a greater reduction in the radius of the turn. Keep your body position perpendicular to the road and let the motorcycle lean under you. This is called counterbalancing and will keep the motorcycle's centre of gravity on the outside of the turn


Finding the correct speed for slow maneuvers is a bit of trial and error ... go too slow and the motorcycle gets wobbly ... go too fast and you can't complete the exercise. Try somewhere between 5-10 KPH and modify as required.

best regards, Shemogolee
 
If you're not disciplined enough to apply your knowledge and skills you're an accident looking for a place to happen

Offline Fatherof2

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Re: What if I tip over?
« Reply #17 on: October 28, 2020, 01:29:09 pm »
Great stuff Shem!!

I am going to practice using my clutch as a throttle..........so to speak.

Check out this guy. It almost looks like he is braking as he corners. Is that the case, or is he leaning in so much it slows up the bike?


Offline Shemogolee

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Re: What if I tip over?
« Reply #18 on: October 28, 2020, 08:09:19 pm »
Pretty good control of the motorcycle!

During the higher speed turns I doubt he is using any rear brake in the turns but in the slower speed turns he may be applying some gentle rear brake. When he is riding very slowly in the turns and in a straight line he is almost certainly using the rear brake to stabilize the motorcycle.

Practice of these slow speed skills, as well as aggressive swerving and braking are essential as these skills are 'perishable'. Of course practising the correct technique is important ... otherwise you just implant the wrong way to do it in your brain. Learn the correct way and practice often !!

In North America the principles and the sequence of application outlined in my previous post are taught to almost every police officer who rides a motorcycle (and to every student who comes through the new and advanced rider courses I teach). It's not rocket science, it's apply the principles and sequence and practice often. The Trophy will do a u-turn in under 18 feet if done correctly. All under control with no fuss if you apply the principles and the sequence properly. Start with a big u-turn and get the technique correct, then shorten up and keep shortening up until you get to less than 18 feet (or whatever you are comfortable with)

Shemogolee
If you're not disciplined enough to apply your knowledge and skills you're an accident looking for a place to happen