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. planemanx15

    planemanx15 Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,009
    Location:
    Long Island, NY

    Not sure if I'm doing it right, but if I feel like I am going into a corner too hot, I will lean it as far as I feel comfortable, then add more throttle. The bike will go lower into the lean, it will tightens the turn, and the turn feels more controlled. I still consider myself a noob, but this tip has worked for me.
  2. JohnCW

    JohnCW Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2013
    Oddometer:
    1,436
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    What you have been told is fine, to a certain level. However, the next level is rather than lean your body and bike as one, practice leaning your body into the corner and keep the bike as upright as possible (the bike will be still lent over, but not as far). The more upright the bike the bigger the tire patch in contact with the road, and the less likely to catch a peg or your feet on the road. That's the main reason racers do it. For road riding a perhaps even more important reason is that it is much easier to alter a line going through a 'hot' corner with your weight out the side and pushing the bike upright, than being in a tight tuck greater lean angle position. You have much greater control to avoid that massive pot hole, loose gravel, or tightening radius corner that you didn't expect.

    I'm at work right now (obviously not working) and when I get home tonight I'll post up some links that explain it far better than I can.
  3. JohnCW

    JohnCW Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2013
    Oddometer:
    1,436
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Here's a couple of video's that explain the concept of keeping the bike as upright as possible in a turn. While at least one for certain is part of a track day course, the basic idea is still applicable to road riding. The only difference is how much of the technique you apply. Not for a second is anyone suggesting you should scrape your elbow let alone your knee going around a corner on an adventure bike like Marc Marquez on a MotoGP bike. But there is value in understanding the concepts and applying then to some degree where applicable.

    As I indicated in the previous post, I think the ability to more easily alter a line in a corner is worth it alone.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=znU_fyFZBRQ

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ODL2iqVG9Q

    Go try it yourself and decide. Find a sweeping corner and ride around it at a safe fast pace staying upright to the bike and just leaning. Take note of what your speed was. Ride around the same corner at the same speed but this time shifting your weigh across and forward dropping your shoulder and knee into the turn and trying to keep the bike as upright as you can as you give it some gas. If it doesn't go around much easier either (a) your probably not doing it correctly, or (b) ever pro racer in the world is doing something that doesn't work.

    Like anything it takes a fair bit of practice to become fluid at it. Remember, lot easier to do if you keep the balls of your feet on the pegs. Good luck with it whatever you decide.

    Even if the above is not helpful, perhaps there's a lesson for everyone in this lot. Every one of the front end wash-outs looks like it has one thing in common.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55HaKeDDqT4
    .
    .
  4. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    19,747
    Location:
    OR
  5. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    19,747
    Location:
    OR
  6. Stens25

    Stens25 Back in the saddle..

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2012
    Oddometer:
    19
    Location:
    Southern Idaho
    I'm getting back into riding again after 20 years away from it. Purchased a dual-sport a couple months ago and have been riding a little in the past week.

    I have noticed that my hands are 'falling asleep' when I ride more than about 15 minutes. I'm not squeezing my hands or have some type of weird riding position. I'm 6-2 and riding a stock height Honda XR650L, so it seems to 'fit' me fine.

    Any advice? My brain has me going in the direction of bar risers to lift my hands and arms a little higher. I seem to be pressing down into the bars at the current angle of setup.

    Input would be welcome...
  7. geolpilot

    geolpilot Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Oddometer:
    120
    Location:
    Texas Coast
    Some beston grips from eBay might help a lot.

    Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk
  8. fast1075

    fast1075 Fasterizer

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2013
    Oddometer:
    283
    Location:
    Flaw'da
    May want to work on your core strength a bit. Your arms should be loose. Stiff arming the bars can cause problems with control input, as well as fatigue. Practice, practice. You should be able to "chicken flap" your elbows at all times. Also practice not having a death grip on the bars.

    It is a natural "survival instinct" to grip the bars tightly. Doing so impedes the bikes ability to handle properly and creates hand problems. It is something you do not think you are doing.

    Remember that the natural action of the bike is to be stable. Inputs cause the bike to turn. Good practice is to go somewhere and do figure eights. You will soon find insight into the dynamics.
  9. JohnCW

    JohnCW Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2013
    Oddometer:
    1,436
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    I'm the same height as you and ride a smaller XT250 as a commuter. I'm surprised that you would find the bars of this style of bike to low. A natural position is a feature of this style of bike.

    The plank seats of dual-sport bikes can create problems. There are often very hard which means you tense up right up your spine, and the other problem is they make you slide forward. As a bigger person you probably need to sit back on the seat to fit properly, but the seat is always fighting against you in doing this. These problems can be corrected with a seat cover or change of seat. Not saying this is the problem, just something to think about.
  10. sineti

    sineti luv2ride

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2014
    Oddometer:
    20
    Location:
    NYC
    wear your helmet and keep your finger on the horn when passing cars weaving through lanes-which your technically not supposed to do, but will have to do anyway.
  11. Stens25

    Stens25 Back in the saddle..

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2012
    Oddometer:
    19
    Location:
    Southern Idaho
    Thanks for the ideas everyone. I'm going to try the risers and some Pro-Tapers.

  12. Stens25

    Stens25 Back in the saddle..

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2012
    Oddometer:
    19
    Location:
    Southern Idaho
    Thanks for the ideas. My seat has been recovered, so I think I'm going to tear it apart in the next couple weeks and rebuild it. We have an upholstery shop pretty close, so maybe I'll go buy some high-quality, firm seat foam and give that a shot.

  13. fast1075

    fast1075 Fasterizer

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2013
    Oddometer:
    283
    Location:
    Flaw'da
    I had a DRZ400 for a while. The seat was a pure torture device. It wasn't because it was HARD (which it was hard), it was that it was narrow, giving no support. I would be in agony after 40 or 50 miles. It was fun to ride, but I ended up selling it because of the horrible ergos.

    I had a Buell Blast once that suffered the same problem with a horrible seat. I ended up with a Corbin on it. Nice wide seat pan for support. The Corbin was hard as stone too, but the added support made it a 500 mile seat.

    The stock seat on my Buell XB12s was horrible too. Really thick soft foam, but was miserable. I put on a factory "low" seat that has far less padding, but makes the seat effectively much wider. Much better support, good for a few hundred miles without much trouble.

    You results may vary.
  14. usgser

    usgser Long timer

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,322
    Location:
    Westside WA
    Sorry, didn't read the entire 100 pages of replies and not going into learning skills/motorcycle maint etc. IMHO number one survival rule is SITUATIONAL AWARENESS. #2 is: Don't put yourself into a scenario you're not skilled/capable of getting out of. Riding over your head is on parr with learning into a punch...never a good offense or defense. #3: Pain sucks.
  15. JohnCW

    JohnCW Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2013
    Oddometer:
    1,436
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Don't disagree....but! I'm currently teaching my 20 year old daughter to drive. She is up to a point of adequate driving technique, and a reasonable understanding of the road rules. But..... she lack appropriate SITUATIONAL AWARENESS. I keep constantly keep telling her to keep a greater distance, slow down approaching a heavy traffic spot, etc. But is seems without the potential situation having some real meaning due to a near miss or actual accident, goes in one ear and out the other.

    Sort of a chicken - egg situation. How do they get situational awareness without actual situations making real the need to have situational awareness. While that experience may be an expensive trip to the panel shop in a car, it may be the hospital or worse on a bike.

    Dunno the answer.
  16. 1911fan

    1911fan Master of the Obvious

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    3,285
    Location:
    North Central Washington
    Years ago I had a girlfriend with a daughter like that. Her bubble was maybe 50 feet forward, and not at all to either side. Scared me to teach her to drive, but her mom was even worse. She finally totalled the car by pulling right out in front of somebody who was speeding through a red light. That she saw coming, and somehow thought would manage to stop in 20 feet before the intersection.
    For MONTHS, she denied any responsibility. Every time it came up, she'd say, "But I had the green light, and that lady was speeding!" and I would reply, "You knew this, and pulled right out in front of her anyway." and she'd say, "But I had the green light!"
    And one day we have this conversation, and I say "And you pulled out in front of her anyway." and after about a 30-second pause, she says, "Yeah, I did, didn't I. That makes it my fault."
    Don't know if her driving improved, because that whole family was fucked up in many ways. "Dysfunctional" would have been a major step up, but that's another story. I got the hell away from all of them shortly after that.


    1911fan
  17. geolpilot

    geolpilot Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2011
    Oddometer:
    120
    Location:
    Texas Coast
    Good judgment comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgment.
  18. Kawasakirob

    Kawasakirob flick the bean

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2014
    Oddometer:
    1,247
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, Mi
    Put as many miles as you possibly can on that bike. Experience Experience Experience
  19. PFFOG

    PFFOG Richard Alps-aholic

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Oddometer:
    3,062
    Location:
    Western NY, further from NYC than 6 entire states

    I started teaching my kids SA as soon as they could see out the windows of a car. Put lots of miles on with them in the car, and instead of punch bug of find the license plate games, it was more like a game show, I would quiz, where did that car come from? What potential hazards do you see ahead? If I slowed down when I saw something, asking them what THEY saw?

    Worked well, all grew up to be excellent riders/drivers. My middle son to this day amazes me with his ability to see deer along side the road. And his only accident in 16 years of driving was a minor slide off a slippery road, that only damaged his perfect record.
  20. LuciferMutt

    LuciferMutt Rides slow bike slow

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2008
    Oddometer:
    11,537
    Location:
    New(er) Mexico
    Or bad luck. Or chance. Or...basically... life and anything that is out of your immediate control.