Odd tailwind phenomenon....anyone had this happen?

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by Motor7, Oct 7, 2018.

  1. Motor7

    Motor7 Long timer

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    A few weeks ago I was on the way to WestFest & points West and was on Hwy 50 west of Pueblo and getting hammered with crosswinds. I was dodging some afternoon thundershowers with success, then somewhere between Salida and Montrose something odd happened.

    All of the sudden it was quiet. I ride with foam earbuds and usually listen to music, but had music turned off for a while because of the noisy xwinds. Now when I say quiet, I mean I could not hear the engine, the pavement was relatively new and the knobs were making zero noise on the road surface, there was no exhaust sound and all wind noise was gone. It was like I was on an electric motorcycle riding through a giant Library and this continued for at least 20 miles at 65mph.

    A friend suggested my ears had not popped, but I am positive this was not the case. What I think happened is that Hwy 50 had turned away from torturous xwinds which were now at my back. Now I know the wind was not blowing at 65mph, but it caught the bike in such a manner as to cancel out the noise it usually made....some kind of a harmonics thing. For those that ever rode Harleys side by side(not staggered) at highway speed you will have noticed a partial noise cancelling harmonic which makes the sound change dramatically. This was different in that there just was a complete total absence of noise.

    Anyway, I'm closing in on half a million miles and this has never ever happened to me and I suspect it will never happen again. Just wondering it anyone else has ended up in the motorcyclist "cone of silence"? ...or am I going bat shit crazy?
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  2. Richarde1605

    Richarde1605 Long timer

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    I have had it a few times, but have no real explanation other than aliens.
    Maxwell Smart and the Chief came to mind on occasions.

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  3. szurszewski

    szurszewski Long timer

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    I've matched speed with tailwinds on snowmobiles before - running fast across frozen lakes/etc. - and it acts like that: eerily quiet, much less sensation of wind in your face, and on a frozen lake or in snow it's easy to tell because all the snow you kick up sort of swirls around as if you're sitting still in a light breeze instead of trailing off behind you/to your leeward side. I've never had it happen on a bike though - and, like you said, the wind most likely wasn't coming up behind you at 65mph. Sounds cool.
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  4. TheProphet

    TheProphet Retired; Living the Dream

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    I believe you are over-thinking this. :dunno


    The "Harley" mention makes the inquiry suspicious as well. Only Harley's do this? No other bike? Yeah... right. :fpalm
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  5. Richarde1605

    Richarde1605 Long timer

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    Experienced this on a gt550 susie, and later on a k100rs, on the gt I could smell the 2t oil when riding, deffo a cone of silence experience

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  6. Motor7

    Motor7 Long timer

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    Well the oem Harley exhaust noise is much higher than my 'strom. I have ridden quite a bit side by side with another 'strom and never got those harmonic's. Sorry, I don't have many other mixed breed side by side comparisons.
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  7. Richarde1605

    Richarde1605 Long timer

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    Not trying to be a prick, but OE, original equipment is what came on the machine, OEM, original equipment manufacturers are the company's that supply brands some is oe with part #'s, other stuff are aftermarket parts even if they supply the original parts to the manufacturers generally under a license agreement.
    Ride on :-)

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  8. plumer1kt

    plumer1kt Adventurer

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    happens to me riding in specific areas (through gorges or along coastline) of Greece with strong back winds.
    all of the air noise (and feeling) disappear like i'm not moving, but exhaust,engine noise still there.
    and whenever this happening i'm gaining speed.A lot of speed.
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  9. lnewqban

    lnewqban Ninjetter

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    Why a cone and not a bubble?
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  10. Richarde1605

    Richarde1605 Long timer

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    Did he say he was riding a harley when the experience occurred?
    Do you have an alarm set for any mention of harley?
    If you read the post it asks a question, yes harley is mentioned in syncopation/harmonics, but nothing about harleys being silent with an unusual atmospheric situation. Anyway loud pipes save lives, so not much chance of the cone of silence.


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  11. norseXL

    norseXL Northman

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    For spookie sound effects, try riding some of the long narrow tunnels over here in Norway.
    Being alone in a badly lit tunnel of 5 miles or more and hearing your amplified engine roar kreaping up on you and then overtaking you,then repeating, all while you thinking of the long walk out if the bike break down on you.
    Pretty sure there are orcs hiding in those shaddows...
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  12. Richarde1605

    Richarde1605 Long timer

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  13. windmill

    windmill Long timer

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    I've experienced it descending Snoqualme pass with a strong tailwind. Being pushed down a long, steep grade barely touching the throttle, there's little sound, and no relative wind. It's a disconnected sensation almost like being in a car.
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  14. Richarde1605

    Richarde1605 Long timer

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    The lack of surroundings is surreal. I mean that I'm riding a bike, but in total isolation. Only happened a few times to me.

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  15. tennistime99

    tennistime99 Been here awhile

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    I've had it happen pulling a travel trailer through Nevada heading north out of Ely. Truck settled happily into overdrive and all the wind noise was replaced by engine noises I'm not used to hearing. Had to turn the radio up louder in case something was wrong. If I can't hear it there's nothing wrong. =)

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  16. millican

    millican Been here awhile

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    That's happened to me once north of Trinidad headed to Leadville to watch my wife run the trail marathon. There were some pretty strong storms in the area, it was the middle of the night, and I was on my Honda Helix.
    The thing that came to mind was: if there's a tornado somewhere close creating the wind, going with the wind is the wrong direction.
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  17. IronButt70

    IronButt70 You don't have to be crazy to do this but it helps

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    You were in the "zone." :lol3
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  18. Snowbird

    Snowbird Cereal Killer

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    If you truly were to match the speed of the wind, your bike would likely overheat. More likely is that you matched the direction of the wind and noise was somewhat reduced.

    I have two different sport-touring bikes. One has a plastic plate that moves with the forks to block off the area between my ears and the front tire. The other is completely open and if I look down I can see the top of the fender and glimpses of the road. The one with the area blocked off reduces tire and highway noise, the one without it doesn't. I've concluded the one without was done that way to allow tire noise to come through to help the rider judge front tire traction in some situations. But sometimes the noise is on the annoying level, say, on fresh tar and chip.
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  19. PlainClothesHippy

    PlainClothesHippy Riding a dangerously quiet bike.

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    I've experienced something similar in the Pennsylvania Turnpike tunnels where suddenly all wind resistance and wind noise seems to vanish. It's oddly peaceful on a quiet bike. I'm guessing that they use ventilation fans to push air through them to flush out the exhaust fumes. I keep meaning to look that up.
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  20. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Long timer

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    I’ve had tailwinds cause my throttle to float, quieting the engine and silencing wind noise. But if the likes of tire noise disappears, it’s almost always air pressure and my ear drums.
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