so who rides in the rain on pavement & what can you teach me?

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by robfilms, Oct 3, 2012.

  1. crofrog

    crofrog Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,455
    Location:
    Annapolis Maryland
    Go faster and find a deeper puddle... I hit ~5" deep puddle at the edge of a highway once at probably 80ish. The bike didn't feel connected to the pavement and the motor revved up but it didn't really do anything whacky just sorta floated straight through. I did slow down some though...
    #41
  2. daveinva

    daveinva Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2011
    Oddometer:
    602
    Location:
    Washington, D.C.
    Fair point, but again, it's a question of risk: where are you most vulnerable?

    Personally, I avoid the overpasses and just get off the highway and find a covered gas station. But if the squall is bad enough, getting off the road is the #1 consideration.
    #42
  3. d.burbach

    d.burbach Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
    Oddometer:
    133
    Location:
    Winston-Salem NC
    Oh yeah! Which leads me to my one piece of advice, after it rains, even if the road is dry, watch out for tunnels! It can still be very wet in the tunnels and the sudden transition between dry and wet can catch you by surprise and potentially ruin your day. I speak from experience, the closest call of my life came from just that happening. I headed into a tunnel at dry road speeds to find a very wet road, I hydroplaned and came very very close to ending up in the oncoming lane. Lesson learned!
    #43
  4. ttpete

    ttpete Rectum Non Bustibus

    Joined:
    May 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    6,249
    Location:
    Dearborn, MI
    I put a set of Michelin Pilot Road 3s on the Kawasaki this year, and they are the best rain tires I've ever had. They have extensive siping, far more than the PR 2s do, and they feel very stable and solid in the wet.
    #44
  5. Fluklowskli

    Fluklowskli Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2006
    Oddometer:
    135
    Location:
    Dooloot, MN
    There is a semantic difference between hydroplaning and sliding... As I understand it, hydroplaning means your tire sort of floats on the water, which takes wide tires and not a lot of weight--ie low PSI at the contact patch; most mc tires have such a small contact patch, I'll wager you have better chances of getting struck by lightning than hydroplaning on the street...:norton

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aquaplaning
    #45
  6. Fluklowskli

    Fluklowskli Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2006
    Oddometer:
    135
    Location:
    Dooloot, MN
    I've had good experiences in the wet on PR2s also, for the past couple of years; PR3 on the front this year has behaved well too, but haven't seen much rain to date.
    #46
  7. windmill

    windmill Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2008
    Oddometer:
    4,084
    Location:
    Kent, Washington State
    I am a full time rider in the Seattle area, that equals 9 months of wet weather riding. All the advice given is good, with relaxing and taking it easy being the best advice there is. It's mostly a non issue, but requires some thoughtful respect.
    #47
  8. jules083

    jules083 Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    Oddometer:
    4,295
    Location:
    Richmond, Ohio
    I ride in the rain a good bit, but less than most in here I would wager.

    One thing I've noticed is that every time I've been on a poker run or organized ride where it has started raining someone has wrecked. Those are typically harley events, and the speeds have been typical harley speeds, meaning slow in the turns and a drag race at every light.

    I figure those wrecks are a combination of 3 things. Inexperience, freshly rained on road, and speed. A lot of the harley poker run type riders don't ride in the rain, so zero experiance. When it starts raining nobody owns raingear anyways, so everyone just keeps going. Nobody seems to feel a need to adjust speed for conditions, so the pace remains about the same. There may be some panic brake induced slide coming into a turn, I don't know.

    My point and opinion is that riding in the rain on purpose and in a situation you are in control of is much safer than getting caught in the rain. If you see a rainy day that's 'ideal' conditions, meaning slow and steady for a few hours, head out for a ride. You'll be able to evaluate your gear and get some seat time so that in less favorable.conditions you'll know what to expect.
    #48
  9. Bikehigh

    Bikehigh Not Dead Yet

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2010
    Oddometer:
    4,410
    Location:
    Living in a van down by the Schuylkill River
    If it's a day where it's been an all day soaker, and you're riding on a limitted access highway, be even more vigilant than normal for those who merge or change lanes without looking. As much as people don't look for motorcycles when it's dry, they expect us and look out for us even less when it's raining.
    #49
  10. FlySniper

    FlySniper Bleh...

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,664
    Location:
    Here
    I find that when the weather turns foul, falling back on the old adage, "When in doubt, gas it out." holds true.

    Rain, snow, sleet or whatever. The best strategy by far is to pin the throttle and dump the clutch. The bike will eventually find it's own, best solution for the artificially induced traction dilemma. Often times in this case, the sides of the bike will provide the most grip, even more so than the wildly rotating rubber tires.

    Rest assured though, should the bike remain upright and the rider manages to hang on through the fishtailing, it will be an exhilarating and memorable ride and a wonderful introduction to motorcycling through all of Mother Nature's little vexations!



    This is the first in a series of articles targeted at new or returning riders. Be on the lookout for my next writeup on how to deal with deer, complete with tips on keeping a full body cast from becoming too smelly.
    #50
  11. Hurricane Bob

    Hurricane Bob Long timer

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,948
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    Don't run bald tires.


    [​IMG]
    #51
  12. NJ-Brett

    NJ-Brett Brett

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2010
    Oddometer:
    6,968
    Location:
    Southern New Jersey
    Remember to have fun.
    The last rain ride I was in was a deluge with the flash flooding and everything, and I had more fun then when it was dry out. I have a little light bike, and the Shinko tires I had on it seemed fantastic, so it was easy to go fast.

    No rain gear, everything soaked, and I had a blast.
    The worse it is, the more fun I seem to have.
    Once you are wet, there is no reason not to enjoy the ride, you are not going to get wetter....
    #52
  13. KX50002

    KX50002 NooB, my ass

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2012
    Oddometer:
    1,855
    Location:
    NEPA
    I once "Hydroplaned" my DR 350 about 50' across a pond, until the front wheel dipped into the water a bit and I went over the handlebars. Best part was... I didn't get wet, I was close enough to the other side that the bike and I both landed on dry ground. The bad part was smashing my ribs into the bars and breaking some of them, very painfull, I don't recommend it! :D
    #53
  14. Okie Preacher

    Okie Preacher Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2010
    Oddometer:
    967
    Location:
    In the middle...
    Yeah... About that lightening thing. Most of our storms here on the Plains come with plenty of electricity. The rain and gusty winds don't scare me much. The lightening does. Find some cover and stay there when things are popping.
    #54
  15. Hurricane Bob

    Hurricane Bob Long timer

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,948
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/8IJI45tYwWU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
    #55
  16. KX50002

    KX50002 NooB, my ass

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2012
    Oddometer:
    1,855
    Location:
    NEPA
    #56
  17. vulgar1

    vulgar1 Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 5, 2012
    Oddometer:
    57
    Be smooth on the controls and you will be fine. Also stay out of the drip path of oil and such.

    I ride year round in the PNW so I spend a lot of time in the rain. It's not that bad. Just watch for the first few minute to let the roads get clear of standing oil and watch for traffic as usual.
    #57
  18. Wookazoid

    Wookazoid Tree Basher

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    Oddometer:
    568
    Location:
    Goobertown, Arkansas
    Wow. Glad I read this last night thinking I was going to ride to work today with a 60% chance of rain, which turned out to be Severe Thunderstorm Warnings when I left work. I've ridden dirt bikes for over 40 years but just recently got my license to ride on the street (3 years ago). Rode my XR650L home today with very small hail for a brief time (yes it hurt like crazy), wind and heavy rain. No one was driving over 40 MPH, but it really wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. My rain suit leaked and it was cold, but glad I got that experience, which is easy to say here nice, warm and dry at my computer. The fun part was wondering what people thought about me.

    Greg
    #58
  19. davidji

    davidji bike curious

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,122
    Location:
    california
    And in some regions you'll encounter pavement that is glassy smooth, and gets incredibly slippery in the rain.

    I started riding in the PNW. It rained a lot and it wasn't a big deal. Other than getting wet. But if you live in a place with different pavement, your experience may be much different.

    If the pavement looks glassy smooth, if it feels smooth to the touch, it's probably gonna be really slippery when wet.

    Other issues in the wet include tar snakes, steel plates, wooden road surfaces (fortunately rare), train tracks, painted lines, gore points etc. And standing water.
    #59
  20. Al Goodwin

    Al Goodwin Long timer

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,369
    Location:
    Cullman, Alabama
    Riding in the rain?

    Good tires...

    AVOID painted lines at ALL cost...



    And number one on the list...gotta be SMOOOOOOOOOTH !!!!!!!!

    :freaky
    #60