Most Important Things to Know For a Motorcycling n00b.

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by MotoMusicMark, Mar 26, 2010.

  1. slide

    slide A nation in despair

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    Thx for the links. I had no idea this was a danger.
  2. superslomo

    superslomo Adventurer

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    Well, if I go to sleep tonight knowing I've filled someone with fear they didn't know they should have, then I've really done my job today. :evil

    You can feel safe until you're about the same distance from the storm that would cause worry if you were on foot in the open. The big difference is the bike can put you into the storm in a few minutes, and with earplugs while concentrating on other stuff, it's hard to tell how close the strikes are to where you happen to be. Nothing to be paranoid about, but from what I understand it's something that's good to be aware of at least.
  3. BudCAD

    BudCAD Zen Motorcyclist

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    Dude, lighten up, he didn't describe a way. Geez.
  4. award900

    award900 Been here awhile

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    Lurk.

    Sent from my LG-P999 using Tapatalk 2
  5. superslomo

    superslomo Adventurer

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    Yeah. You should always clean, or never clean. You should lube every time you fill the tank, or never, or get a scottoiler, or they are awful messes.

    When cleaning, your should always use kerosene. Or never use kerosene. Or always use wd40. Or never use wd40. Or use simple green. Or use a specialty degreaser. Or don't.

    When lubing, you should only use wax. Or only use dupont teflon. Or only use 75w90 gear oil. Or only use old motor oil you have lying around. Or only use boeshield. Or only use atf. Or use nothing.

    As long as you follow all of these rules, your chain will last for a period of time, at which point it won't last any longer.

    You have my word.

    Also, new riders should only use the one most perfect motor oil.
  6. braindigitalis

    braindigitalis Wet weather sucks!

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    I am part way through this thread, and i had to comment here from personal experience. A couple of years ago, i was riding home after a long days riding, tired and wet as it had been raining heavily the whole way home, over 100 miles.

    I came round a slight bend into a faster area of road with no street lamps, and just as i was about to accelerate from 30 to 60mph, a car came round the corner, full beams on, before i had time to react it had temporarily dazzled me. My immediate reaction as i could not see where i was going was to do an emergency stop, unfortunately due to the bend i glanced the curb while still blinded, and as my sight came back, i felt the bike's front wheel sliding from underneath me.

    At the time i was maybe doing 40mph and i threw myself off the bike sliding maybe 20 yards down the pavement. The bike slid maybe four times as far down the road, on its side, coming to the stop in the middle of my lane.

    Luckily for me, i managed to get up and ride away from it with only bruising to my shoulder and hip, and heavy scratching along my fairings.

    My own advice from this would be:

    1) ATGATT. Always, always always. It quite literally saved my skin.
    2) Be aware of drivers and other bikers with their full beams on at night, especially the new cars with really bright halogens.
    3) If you are cold and wet and tired find a place to stop, warm up and dry off. I attribute a lot of what happened to me to being cold and exhausted and would probably have reacted differently earlier in the day when dry and warm.
    4) Don't blind people with your own full beams!!!
    5) Jumping clear of the bike is not ALWAYS a bad thing. If i had not i would have been scraped along the road underneath the bike for four times the distance.

    Your mileage on my advice may vary :-)
  7. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

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    This is a better post for n00bs as what you do to care for your chain is dependent on where and how you ride.

    If you live near salt water you need to take into account the corrosive effects from that. If you ride off-road in sticky mud you will need to clear that... If you ride mainly on the road away from such things there is little that needs to be done.
  8. Jon_PDX

    Jon_PDX Long timer

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    Ok you lost me....were you just having fun with chain maintenance (think oil threads) or ????

    Since I've never heard that before I'm guessing you were just having fun but figured I would ask anyway.

    Jon...
  9. woolsocks

    woolsocks Been here awhile

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    I'm a relative noob to motorcycling. I've ridden just over 3,000 miles in the last 2 months or so mostly commuting to work, doing errands and some occasional weekend jaunts.

    In the MSF and all the things I've read, when cornering you should move from outside-inside-outside and should always look through the corner at where you want to go. This seems easy in theory, but not in practice with cars and shit all over the roads. I find myself looking down in the corner looking to avoid sand that tends to collect on the inside of the corners and I find this upsets my cornering because I'm not looking through the corner because I don't want to wipe out due to sand. Any advice?
  10. superslomo

    superslomo Adventurer

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    I found attacking chain cleaning daunting in terms of the wealth of information to be had. I meant above originally that you should figure out the right regimen for your environment and taste, and be comfortable caring for that particular consumable.

    The theory that is being referred to, I think, is that a wet and sticky lube will pick up sand/grit and make a virtual grinding paste out of it. I was in the latter post trying to poke gentle fun at the fact that EVERY person will give you (and this noob with only a few years mucking about on bikes) their own very dogmatic "one and only way" to clean and care for a chain, and will all tell you how many miles they've gotten out of their particular method... horses for courses, pick one for the conditions and go with god.

    As to the corners, outside-inside-outside is the ideal line for the physics, but may not be right for sand, trucks crossing the center line etc. Leads me to another rule of thumb: take things with a grain of salt where appropriate. Also, avoid the roads if you can when they are salted ;)
  11. duck

    duck Banned

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    Ride more. Seriously. Be checking the surface by looking ahead at the turn and picking your line before you enter the turn. Then start looking through the turn as you start to turn. The more you ride the more experienced and comfortable you'll be with doing this.

    And always leave at least 10% "on the table" to deal with unexpected traction issues.
  12. dbuzz

    dbuzz Citizen of the world

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    Congratulations! You have just discovered the difference between the theoretical race paradigms and the real world of riding on the road.

    There is a world of difference between what works on the track to get the best lap time and what works on the street to get you home in one piece.:deal Race lines tend to ignore the fact that on the street you have large metal objects hurtling toward you from the opposite direction.

    As you look through the turn you are also glancing at the nearer surface and using your peripheral vision. The roadcraft cornering mantra is 'start wide, finish tight' ... the aim is to stay out of the collision zone.
    Always be able to stop in the distance you can see to be clear .... and that includes road debris... nothing as unsettling as rounding a blind corner and finding a tree across your path :eek1
  13. RevBill

    RevBill Irreverent Reverend

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    I: Death is usually making a left in front of, on top of, or into YOU .. expect it and actively look for it .. sometimes he's a sneaky SOB and will come at you with a right, so look for that too .. sometimes it hides in lawn trailers and tire treads laying in the road ..


    II: At any speed you can pretty much guarantee that whatever clothing you got onto the bike wearing is what you will have on when you get off .. and bounce .. and roll .. and slide .. ATGATT is just a good idea, all the time, year round .. even when rolling to the store for a pack of smokes or a sixer ..


    III: Asphalt .. let us break that down .. Ass (a portion of you anatomy usually referring to your "person/body" in general when you find yourself in trouble) .. and Phalt (the imaginary root for the word "fault") .. so .. if you have not paid attention to the first two; then it's your ass even if it isn't your fault ..


    IV: When you decide to study the kinematics of trauma you will learn that KineticEnergy=(1/2)m x velocity(squared) .. "M" being mass and velocity(squared) being the most devastating force .. such that if you double the mass you double the KineticEnergy (the amount of force causing trauma upon you person) .. and such that if you double your velocity you quadruple the KineticEnergy being released upon your person/body .. in other words; "Speed Kills, use it wisely" .. also frequently stated as "don't let your attitude write a check your ass can't cover" (ref: item III) ..

    .. there's more .. but wisdom comes with age and experience .. pay attention to these four and you may figure the rest out on your own .. yymv .. but usually not ..
  14. RevBill

    RevBill Irreverent Reverend

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    .. how about: slow down?
  15. woolsocks

    woolsocks Been here awhile

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    Double Post
  16. woolsocks

    woolsocks Been here awhile

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    How do you figure out this 10%?

    Good advice, thanks!

    I'm going to have to be fast one day right? I guess do you guys think about sand and road debris while riding and consciously avoid it? I find myself thinking about it constantly in turns and envisioning myself wiping out due to sand, oil, etc. and then I chop the throttle mid turn and it upsets my turning. Maybe I need to rethink the outside-inside-outside line stuff...
  17. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

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    There are some places (times) where that out/in/out line will bite you. Fuel spills and road contaminates to name a couple.

    For instance: As you near the top of LoLo Pass on highway 12
    This road: [​IMG]

    (MT/ID border) You can't use that Out/in/out and need to stay in the tire tracks used but the cars due to granite dust that blows down off the hills and accumulates in the middle of the lane. Roll over it on a bike and it is either an instant face plant if the front goes or the rear steps out then re-gains traction standing the bike up mid-turn.
    The first is a good excuse to buy a new helmet and other gear (if you were wearing gear and didn't break anything) the second is a sphincter puckering heart racing attention grabber. :D

    Watch for wet lines on the road in corners which might be fuel spills and take the inside.
  18. RevBill

    RevBill Irreverent Reverend

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    I won't BS you with smart-arsed answers, "Slow Down" is not me just being a jack-arse ..

    .. I've gone hot through corners and been lucky to survive .. scared the hell out of a lady and her kids up on the Dragon while I was draggin my exhaust and throwing sparks through a corner trying to avoid hitting her head on cause I was an idiot and going to fast .. so yeah .. slow down ..

    .. been down several times and it hurts .. never felt good after a slide or taking a nap with my bike .. sometimes it's funny, but only because my pride got damaged and I rode away from the incident ..

    .. outside-inside-outside is a great line to run in almost every corner you find, but there are always exceptions and every corner is "dynamic" based on what you find from debris in the road to oncoming traffic in your lane .. to a decreasing radius .. to oil/fuel .. to an off-camber exit .. to wheel ruts .. etc., etc., ..

    .. it's never easy to give serious advice over the internet .. you just don't know the level of the person reading the advice, how they interpret what's being said, and you just can't cover the plethora of situations and what-ifs .. but here you go ..

    .. accelerating through/out of a corner is your best bet ..
    .. going "hot" into unknown territory is just unwise ..
    .. hitting the brakes into a corner is asking for a dump .. try to avoid that by paying attention to the first two ..
    .. engine braking is your friend, but downshifting one gear to much is not ..
    .. scraping pegs "can" be fun .. scraping mufflers/exhaust or engine guards/panniers (or other solidly attached cycle enhancements) can send you to earth ..


    .. riding is the second-most unforgiving recreational activity/thing you can do and flying aircraft is the first-most .. both involve gravity and speed and both can kill you fast ..

    .. all that aside, practice and ride to your level, not beyond ..
  19. woolsocks

    woolsocks Been here awhile

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    Dakez and RevBill- What you guys wrote makes sense, I'll store it in my mental computer and be aware of it while I'm riding. I plan on taking a course in about a month or so that addresses the issues I asked about, it's like a "track day learners course" that addresses cornering and braking. I think I'm not fully comfortable, or aware of my bike's turning and traction capabilities so any amount of road debris sends me into a "noob panic" when I probably have a lot more traction and lean angle to complete the turn.

    Noobs...:lol3
  20. duck

    duck Banned

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    With a calculator. (It's really just another way of saying to ride well within your skill level.)

    I completely understand the latter part of your post. When I started riding I used to have the same fear - that around the next corner there would be a big patch of oil or something. It's actually a healthy emotion to recognize what can happen if you're not careful. Just try not to fixate on it. As stated, the more miles you get under your belt the more comfortable you'll be. But never let yourself become complacent.