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Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by mcpenner, Feb 10, 2014.
The ABS on YOUR CHOSEN BIKE sucks in certain circumstances. We get it. Let's move on, hm?
Keeping pulling is not that hard for me. But I have to force myself to brake hard enough at all - at least on a homogeneous surface. It's even harder on an unfamiliar bike. Once I was asked to check if the ABS worked on a F650GS. Just didn't have the heart for the front ABS even on lawn stone.
On my VFR 1200 it helps that you don't need much force on the front brake, much better than on her little Sister (800).
What I'd like to move to is to find out how many other chosen models do the same thing. You guys are all happy as clams not knowing, that's fine with me.
Ooh, that's scary....!
Think I'm gonna call you the Washboard Guy.
And I think you're not paying attention, as others have addressed that.
My '04 FJR and '12 Tiger800 will cycle the ABS on washboards if I was braking hard, but would behave normally afterward. Haven't had a chance to try on the new FJR.
I read the ABS section for both the BMW 800 and Tiger yesterday, out of the Owner's manual they are available online for perusal.
Can't seem to get anywhere with the Suzuki manuals....maybe I'll try Hondas or others if I feel like reading the same warnings with different wordings.
So far....they all seem to use the word "potentially".
I :heart: ABS
...on my present motorcycle. My previous one? :eek1
Even from bike to bike, same manufacturer, same model, ABS can sometimes be not exactly the same. In a perfect world it *should* be, but I know for a fact having owned one, it is not.
I know exactly what the guys here are talking about, regarding ABS on certain bikes that Sucked!
I'm not even going to say which bike or manufacturer it was that had me absolutely horrified at how poorly the ABS operated, and did EXACTLY what these other fellows are trying to tell you about. Extended brake release and a stomach turning free wheeling, that would send you past where you had wanted to stop.
Unless you rode my bike, under the conditions I did, and had it happen, for all the years I owned it, saying it doesn't or can't, is a completely bizarre thing to do.
The very fact that the bike I own now has me mega happy with it's flawless ABS, should at least let you know I am not a hater, and only ask you to please keep an open mind that other riders can have something happen that you may not have.
If the others or myself are unable to be wonderfully articulate or write our experiences down in such a way that is understood by you, my apologies, but surely that shouldn't translate into: "you're wrong, and/or: "that can't happen" with such confident disregard.
Well I do ride on a lot of washboard roads.
The larger the government gets the more of them there are.
Yeah the whole annual grading thing seems to have ended.
All I can say is WOW this is crazy. I forgot to subscribe to this thread when I started it so I only read the first few replies and then forgot about it. Now that the weather is getting better I looked it up again. 13 pages and almost NOTHING that is actually helpful to my original question!!! Come on people, you can do better then this.
I really do not care what you think of ABS! But I bought a bike with it and asked for some friendly advice about using it properly. I do know how to operate a motorcycle safely without ABS. That's all I've ever ridden.
Anyway, thanks to the few who gave me some useful pointers.
Just brake normally
. ABS is there as a back up, not as a substitute for basic skills and common sense.
yep, just brake normally. And practice braking (& braking+maneuvering) a lot, and on different surfaces, so you get used to how your bike behaves in those situations.
Definitely. I had to try 3 times practice emergency stops to get the ABS to kick in. Once it did it startled me a bit. Get familiar with how it feels and how hard you have to get on the brakes to make it activate.
I've also read you should active it periodically as a maintenance issue. Can't swear to that, though.
Early (-05 that is) R12GS here. Let me reveal to all how little I know.
When I first bought the bike years back, I took a riding course (on asphalt). We did some braking practices.
My first lesson learned:
The ABS on this particular bike is quite rough and slow. When it kicks in, the front end of the bike would kind of shake up and down (well probably not in reality due the telelever, but it felt like doing it) with the ABS pulsations, which seemed to be far over exaggerated (rough, like maybe releasing the brakes too much during every cycle) and slow (way too low in frequency). The front suspension was at a low preload setting, and setting it to medium made the behavior of the bike in braking much better.
My second lesson learned (very basic to most of you I'm sure):
I learned to use the front brake lever with a firm but "round" grip; don't just slam it as quickly as you can. This allows the weight to move to the front and the tire will have better traction and you're not going to lock the wheel (or get the ABS kick in) as early. Much better control during braking, fast but non-panic stopping.
My third lesson learned:
When taking my ride to gravel roads, I noticed that sometimes, especially at washboards(!) the braking effect was very weak, SCARY! Especially in a slight downhill slope, when you'd expect to have poor braking anyway.
(I'm still using the ABS in all conditions, even gravel and loose surfaces, as
1) it's too cumbersome to turn off in the old models like mine, and
2) I believe that it's still more safe to ride with the ABS on rather than off.)
Reading the above posts of other inmates, I'm starting to think that something needs to be done to keep the front wheel to the ground in the washboards. Maybe it's time for a suspension upgrade or should I at least try to learn to set it up better..??
Your suspension, specifically your shocks could be an issue. If your BMW has the typical miles on it for an 05 model (something over 30k) the dampening control of the stock shocks is largely gone, kuput, no more, incapable, for naught. crapped out.
ABS functions well if the wheel is in contact with the surface. But if a wheel is momentarily airbourne and slows enough that the ABS senses a speed differential compared to the other wheel (and the calculated vehicle reference speed in the ABS module) it may, and does, RELEASE brake pressure until that wheel speeds up to match the other.
When both wheels are in constant contact with the surface, that release/apply is the pulsing we sense in the chassis. But if the wheel does not speed up fast enough the ABS may hold off the brake until it senses that wheel is back up to speed. In most cases, that millesecond of time is enough for us to sense a lack of braking.
If the shocks are crapped out to the point the dampening is gone, the suspension can compress/extend more than needed for the terrain and may cause a wheel to loose contact, and if braking is on the ABS may override. New, top quality, aftermarket shocks, not cheap but worth it, will do a lot to minimize the effect as will proper setup. Here again, quality shocks built for your bike, your wieght, the way you ride make a world of difference. Stock shocks can never do that adequately, even when new.
Hi Andy, thanks for your input. I completely agree with you. The described experience was some 5 years ago, when I had maybe about 70k km (40 k miles) on the oddometer. Now I'm at 116k km (72k miles) with the same stock shocks :huh I know, I know... I guess it's becoming a safety issue rather than just me wanting new shocks.
ABS is FREAKY offroad....atleast older generation stuff (I hear the newest KTM setup is pretty well on).
I was just in a little play area...nothing serious...the thing wouldn't stop. I knew this was a potential problem, but wow....you'll end up at the bottom of a cliff with that turned on. Engine braking is your friend.....
That being said...I will be shutting down the ABS EVERYTIME I get off the standard issue black top.