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  1. 3 points
    Here's a short TV spot about CSS. Courtesy of Superbike Planet
  2. 3 points
    A couple of other things to be cautious about. 1. Puddles. Not only because of the hydroplaning potential. Hit one at speed and all the water in the puddle nearly instantaneously will soak you and add lots of weight to you. 2. Tar snakes and patches. Not all traction is created equal. Tar snakes will cause a lot more traction issues when they are wet. Some patched areas have more or less traction than the main part of the track. 3. Visibility. Visor fogging (easily fixed), Mist from other bikes, fog and rain on your visor can reduce visibility. Use a clear shield at all times to avoid this and preferably a clear windshield on your bike to maximize visibility. The straights are a gigantic wind powered windshield wiper for your helmet if you stick your head up in the air stream and move it from side to side. 4. Slippery when wet. Controls, pegs, tanks and other parts of the bike are not as easy to hold onto when your bike is wet. Be aware.
  3. 3 points
    The short answer: you have to work up to it and feel it out. The longer answer: Testing the grippiness of your tire must be done gradually, the idea is to increase lean angle gradually so that if the tire begins to slide there is some warning and opportunity to save it. The most pro coaches I have talked to on this advise gradually adding a little more lean at a time (corner after corner, or possibly even in the same corner if it is a long one) to feel out the traction, as opposed to just whacking it over to maximum lean and hoping for the best - because if you go too far too fast you will not have enough time to "sample" the traction and see how it feels, and know when you are approaching the limit. Some tires will have a specific feel to them when they are cold: the Dunlop slicks, for example, have a tendency to make the bike want to stand up in the corner and that is a good indicator that they are very cold. The carcass is stiff and reluctant to flex so when you lean into the corner it resists and sort of pushes the bike back up. Some other tires just feel a bit "wandery" in the corner, like they are sort of weaving around slightly, instead of feeling planted. If you have ridden in rain or ridden dirt bikes in the mud, you can recognize the feel of little slides, and little slides like that are your warning that you are at about the limit of traction for the conditions and the tire needs to warm up more before you can lean over any farther. It is a great exercise, when opportunity presents (winter is coming!) to pay VERY close attention to how your tires feel when stone cold, to develop a sense for it with your own bike and your own tire brand/model. It is difficult to quantify how long tires will take to warm up because it depends on tire type, air temp, track temp, wind conditions, how hard you ride, etc., so the best solution I know of is to feel it out carefully.
  4. 3 points
    I have translated it - let me know if it is OK to read, or I can share a link to my document for those interested. Who leans that far? Where are the limits? And what are the differences between street bikes? We compare bikes around a skid pad: Supermoto, Naked Bike, Cruiser und Superbike. We have also discused with experts and tried qualifying tyres from WSBK to see how they differ from street legal sport tyres. Why do we lean? Without lean to counter the centrifugal forces, the bikes would simply fall over. Leaning against the forces the correct amount keeps the machine and rider in balance. For a given radius, the faster one rides, the more one must lean. Or for a given speed, the smaller the radius, the more one must lean. How far can we lean? Sport bikes are generally limited by grip, or friction. With good tyres on a good road we typically have a friction quotient of one µ. This means we can theoretically lean 45 degrees. If you lean further, or you try to slow down or accelerate, you will slide. However, we know it is possible to achieve greater angles of lean. How? Because very grippy tyres and a grainy road surface can interact like gears. That’s why in MotoP and WSBK we can now see bike lean angles as high as 62 degrees. With the rider hanging off we can even see combined lean angles beyond that. What is that- different lean values? Corner master Jorge Lorenzo show us the difference between bike lean and the third lean. Lean angle isn’t always lean angle Basically, we talk about three lean angles. The first one is the effective lean angle. This is a theoretical value and is calculated from the speed and the radius of the corner. This counts for every bike and every rider. But this theoretical value for effective lean angle is based upon infinitely narrow tyres. Now to reality. Imagine watching a vertical bike from behind. Pull a vertical line through the bike’s centre line, the tyre and to the ground. This is where the contact point is as well as the CoG. Now place the bike on its kickstand. Now we see that the contact point between tyre and road has moved to the side somewhat because the tyres are not infinitely narrow. The more we lean the bike, the further away we move the contact point away from the bike’s centre line. If we draw a line through the CoG and both the centre line as well as down to the contact patch, we create a triangle. The angle between them is the second lean. This is the added lean required to corner at the same speed as you would have been with infinitely narrow tyres. This also show that wider tyres require more lean narrower tyres. Lorenzo shows us the difference between the bike’s lean and the third lean. With his extreme hanging off the rider is leaned over far more than the bike. The combination of the two - bike and rider - gives the third angle of lean, the combined lean. Bei 62 degree bike lean we can get to an extreme combined value of 66 degrees. What can production bikes muster? We take 4 different bikes and try them on the skid pad sitting in line with the bike, pushing the bike down and hanging off. We then measure bike lean, calculate combined lean and measure cornering speed. What gives the greatest speed? Lean angle with the Husqvarna 701 The skid pad has a diameter of 55 metres. Upright lean is 47 degrees, speed 57 kph. In typical sumo-style, pushing the bike down while leaning out, we managed 57 degrees bike lean and a speed of 62 kph. The combined lean is 51 degrees. This is the biggest difference in the test (6 degrees), a result of a light bike, high CoG, high and wide bars, narrow seat, low set pegs. Final attempt is hanging off, and we get the exact same values of 62 kph and 51 degrees combined lean. The bike is only leaning 46 degrees. So the speed is the same, but pushing the bike down sumo-style bring some advantages; more bike control and easier to catch slides being the predominant. Ducati Diavel, Cruiser & Co. Unlike for sport bikes, cruisers are limited by dragging parts when it comes to possible lean angles. With 41 degrees, the pegs are in contact with the asphalt. This will be the same regardless of what style is used. This gives us a fantastic opportunity to compare cornering speeds between the various riding styles. Sitting up gives 50 kph, pushing down 47 kph and hanging off 53 kph. MotoGP bikes can actually accelerate harder when leaned over than in a straight line. While maximum acceleration on level ground is limited to about 1g, a MotoGP bike can accelerate at 1.2g when leaned over 45 degrees! For street bikes on public roads, 45 degrees means zeron grip left for acceleration. A modern street legal sport bike outfitted with racing tyre and circulating on a grippy race track can give up to 1g of acceleration when leaned over at 40 degrees. Cornering with the Honda Fireblade First we ride on the stock Bridgestone S20 “G” tyres. Hanging off gives 61 kph and 48 degrees of lean for the bike, combined 51 degrees. What difference does qualifying tyres make? WSBK Q-tyre, straight from the heaters, has tremendous grip and feedback. We do not give up until the Fireblade gets “floaty”, a sign we are nearing the limit. With the bike leaned over 53 degrees we reached 65 kph. Combined lean is 55 degrees with the rider hanging off. Why not faster? The asphalt was cold (less than 10C / 50F) and the asphalt not overly grippy. Add a slight negative camber and the limits were like that. But this was the same for all tyres. The problem for the Q-rubber was that they lost their heat rapidly, losing grip in the process. A Pirelli-technician explained that the racers don’t lean further on Qs, but they have more grip available for braking and acceleration. Enough to give about a second lower lap times. Two laps, though, and they are mostly gone. Cornering with the BMW S 1000 R Standard Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa allowed 59 km/h when hanging off, with 47 degree bike lean and 50 Grad combined lean was good, but better results were limited by grinding foot peg feelers and gear shift lever. Foto: www.factstudio.de Husqvarna Supermoto 701 Sitting straight made the rider feel uneasy, which limited lean and cornering speed. Foto: www.factstudio.de The Sumo-Stil made the rider feel at most comfortable. Sliding tyres and grinding parts set the limit. Foto: www.factstudio.de If the rider had been able to hang as well off as he was at pushing the bike down, he could have cornered faster. Foto: Archiv Tyre width and CoG Wider tyres demand more lean for any given corner speed. The same goes for lower CoG. The difference between the tall Husky 701 with relatively narrow tyres and the low Diavel with its ultra-wide tyres was 3 degrees when doing 50 kph around the skid pad; 38 for the 701 and 41 for the Diavel. Foto: 2snap Lateral acceleration and lean While 45 degrees of lean gives 1g, 60 degrees give 1.7g, which isn’t the same as going 1.7 times faster by any means. Foto: www.factstudio.de Ducati Diavel A good way to see what the different riding styles can bring. Foto: www.factstudio.de Looks weird, feels weird. Foto: www.factstudio.de Feels much better than pushing the bike down!Foto: Archiv Der Kammsche Kreis This shows how much grip is left to brake or accelerate or steer at various lean angles. If you are leaned over to use half the lateral acceleration, you have 85% grip left to other forces (green arrow). The red arrow indicate that you have only 10% grip left to do anything else than circulate. Grip through the gear effect. Mikrorauigkeit (red) [micro coarseness], with spikes between 0,001 and 0,1 Millimeter is especially useful in the wet, while Makrorauigkeit (green) [macro coarseness] between 0,1 und 10 Millimeter make the difference on dry roads. Foto: Archiv Contact patch with a 180/55 sport tyre with a racing profile at 48 degrees of lean. 38 square centimetres contact area. Typical contact patch is that of a credit card. Public roads are more slippery than tracks, particularly in the wet because the surface lack Microraugkeit. Cold rubber, especially with sport tyres, can cause the tyre to slide on top of the asphalt instead of forming around it. Hence sport rubber is worse than touring rubber below a certain tyre temperature. Karussell around Nürburgring is bumpy and can be taken with 58 degrees of lean. However, thanks to the sloping surface, the angle between the road and machine is just 33 degrees. Lean and speed The Fireblade on WSBK Q-tyres managed 55 degrees of lean and 65 kph. If we theoretically put Marquez on the same skidpad with a combined lean of 66 degrees, he would have circulated at 78 kph.
  5. 3 points
    The logic in getting more weight on the front, as I understand it, is that more pressure/weight on the front tire will increase friction (friction increases with weight) and also flatten the tire out more, making the contact patch larger, which doesn't increase friction directly (friction is not dependent on area, just weight) but CAN help the tire because too much pressure in too small an area can (I think) overheat the rubber and reduce the coefficient of friction, which WOULD reduce the overall grip. (Note - this is me giving you my own understanding, this is not superbike-school endorsed info.) Getting more weight on the front also can tighten up your steering by compressing the forks - but you can also get a similar effect with hook steering or changing your geometry or suspension settings. So that all works well for turn ENTRY, however once have turned the bike and have reached your desired lean angle and are pointed in the direction you want to go, if you don't get on the gas you will just keep slowing down. The best scenario for traction once you DO roll on the gas is: 40/60 weight distribution. Thus, the throttle control rule, "Once the throttle is cracked on..." So, the way I look at it, is while you are still slowing down and getting the bike turned, the weight on the front is a good thing (to a point - obviously using too much trail braking while turning can exceed your front tire traction), and once you are back on the gas, 40/60 is the way to go for best stability (we are no longer making lean angle changes at that point) and traction. Does that make sense? Do you remember from level 1 exactly WHEN you are supposed to START rolling on the gas?
  6. 3 points
    This is the way I understand throttle control rule number two in Chapter 6: Fine modulation of the throttle helps you read the forces that you feel more accurately. The advantage of that is that your entry speed will be more consistent and appropriate than if you grossly decelerate in a hurry (charging the curve), just to find out that your entry speed (at the end of that precipitate deceleration) is lower than it should be (because your senses were overwhelmed, you are erring on the safe side of entry speed). The error about the entry speed is more significant for any fast-entry turn, especially due to the aerodynamic drag explained by Hotfoot above.
  7. 3 points
    Cool story. Read this: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/the-bicycle-problem-that-nearly-broke-mathematics/#
  8. 2 points
    There’s an article with an objective performance data comparison of vintage vs modern sportbikes. Maybe later today I’ll see if I can find it again.
  9. 2 points
    That would look like me getting out of the driveway - LoL
  10. 2 points
    Simon possibly thinks he knows what CSS teaches but only has former students' information about CSS to try and glean what is taught. That's the dictionary definition of the word hearsay. He never did any of our schools. Often these students who hop around to different trainers misunderstand pretty much anything they are told and then give each subsequent trainer a foul impression of other trainers who came before them. The biggest problem/confusion is that there is not one. Simon says to turn with the throttle off, Keith says to get the throttle on when the steering is completed. Those two are the same thing. Now to take up your points on anti-squat and "better" steering geometry. It appears that your surface understanding of a truly complex subject of motorcycle geometry will only get you tangled up in a ball of yarn unless you seek to further educate yourself--outside motorcycle forums. Your biggest clue would be to seek out what "trail" is and what "normal trail" is and what happens to it when the front brake is applied, and seek to differentiate between "turning", "leaning" and "carving an arc". Also what an increase in trail mid turn would do for a motorcycle.
  11. 2 points
    Other than the slip between tyre and road, the engine is mechanically linked to the tarmac. By that it means that for any given speed, rpm is constant for a particular gear, regardless of throttle position. Let's say you need 5000 rpm to go 60 mph in 4th gear. Regardless of where the throttle is, be that full off or full on or anywhere in between, you will have exactly 5000 rpm at 60 mph in a straight line. Unless the tyre is spinning or the clutch is slipping. Now, if you lean over, the circumference of the tyre is reduced. This has a similar effect to lowering the gearing. But while lower gearing mean that the engine must turn more revolutions in order to get the wheel turned a certain amount of times, now the wheel must turn faster to maintain the speed, bringing the engine along with it. This could probably be explained much simpler, but as long as you remember that when the engine turns over X times it always makes the tyre turn Y times in gear Z. A smaller wheel must turn faster than a larger diameter wheel for any given speed, and so the engine must turn X+n to compensate.
  12. 2 points
    Inspired by the mystery of what to do and not do that is involved in wet riding, I thought I'd start a collaborative list of differences and limitations in riding in the two environments. To start what we know: You cannot Quick Turn the same You cannot brake as hard You cannot accelerate as hard mid-corner Anything else?
  13. 2 points
    Personally I love riding in the rain. Less traffic and at the end of the day it's like having your own private track when everyone packs up and leaves early. When other riders are angry and horrified about the R word I'm thinking "heck yea"! Some of the things that change in my riding in the rain. 1. Braking. Earlier, lighter, longer. Stretch out the braking zone and leave yourself a buffer just in case. 2. Lean angle. Less is more. You stay on the fatter part of the tire and maintain more traction. Hang WAY off the bike to reduce lean angle. The more you hang off even at slower speeds keeps you on the more stable part of the tire. 3. Line. It's critical to use ALL of the track available to flatten out the corners as much as possible. 4. Less aggressive quick steer. I have found that you absolutely still can quick steer in the rain if you stay reasonable with it. I worried the heck out of a CSS coach when he assigned me the quick steer drill in the rain. I performed the drill too. I even got a hug when I came back in one piece. 5. Throttle. You have to be a lot easier on the throttle especially when the bike is leaned over. On "analog" bikes once the bike is straight up and down you can use the throttle to "sample" traction. Give it gas and you can feel where the tire wants to spin just a bit. That is the fine line of where the traction ends. Don't cross the line especially when leaned over. (I would approach this with caution!). On bikes like the S1000RR in the right mode the bike will protect you for the most part on the gas. I find that I prefer sport mode or higher in the rain but rain mode is more protective and best to start out with. 6. Smooth counts. Abrupt and sloppy inputs that are ignored because of mega grippy tires are not tolerated at all by the bike in the wet. Stuff to watch out for! 1. Curbing. It's fine to run over curbing in the dry but in the wet that stuff becomes really slick. You have WAY less traction than you do in the dry on painted parts. 2. Panic. If you end up overdoing it don't panic!!!! With less traction the bike is much less willing to be forgiving for sloppy and abrupt inputs. If you enter a corner too fast just extend your braking past the optimal turn point and use the track you have available. Bring the bike down to a manageable speed and turn where you can. Yes you essentially "blow" the corner but by using the track you have you keep it on the pavement. 3. Tires. It's COMPLETELY true what was said about tire temps earlier. Your tires won't maintain temp. Not only are you dealing with the slick surface created by a wet track you are doing it essentially on cold tires. I set a cold pressure and leave it there. You can even experiment a bit with dropping the pressure but I'm not really sure it helps much and can potentially make the bike feel a bit mushy and imprecise if you overdo it. You still won't get a lot of heat in the tires. 4. Your physical condition. Riding in the rain seems easier but you do still get tired. Since you aren't sweating like crazy the fatigue sneaks up on you. I rode every single session of a wet track day only to figure out during the last session that I was a lot more fatigued than I realized. This fatigue can be both mental and physical. Stay sharp!
  14. 2 points
    I thought I knew how beneficial it would be and I thought I knew what I wanted to get out of it. I was kinda wrong on both counts. The personal consultant approach makes the leap between L3 and L4 huge. Take what we all know about CSS coaches. They're well versed in the hangups regular humans have in riding motorcycles fast and they're incredibly skilled at breaking down those barriers and knowing what the riders need to become better. Now, take those skills and remove the confines of teaching 5 new skills in a day and just let them have the time to fix whatever needs fixing and that's the difference between L3 and L4. I was at SoW. I was struggling at the kink and it turned out the problem was actually starting at the turn-in for 8. This was nice but the next revelation was that I was turning too slowly. It never felt like it to me because I was able to hit my marks at the speed I was riding. But much like the previous issue, the solution was not what I expected. I thought once I had more pace, I'd turn more quickly. But once they got me to really turn more quickly, I found that I had to up my pace. Again, the solution to a known problem was far from intuitive. After circling SoW who knows how many times at basically the same pace (better form each time but never more pace), being forced to do quick-turn correctly (in my case, push-pull) forced me to approach the corners with more pace because if had turned more quickly at the same entrance speed, of course, I would have early apexed. This one change got me 9 seconds. Next year I'm going to find a stretch of 3 or 4 days at SoW and book multiple days at once. Primary focus (I think) will be T1. Can't wait.
  15. 2 points
    I think I read that in TotW and/or from Level 1 training. Aim for a weight distribution of 60/40 Rear/Front bc our rear tire has more rubber on the road. Something got me thinking about that today and I'm now having trouble making sense of it. I think I've heard about people using setup to get *more* not less weight on the front to improve turning. I thought the logic there was that more weight on the front tire generates more heat and also gets a bigger contact patch. Why would we use throttle to reduce both of those things on the smaller front tire? It seems to me like doing so would simultaneously increase the risk of a high side as well as a low side. There's probably a lot of nuance and subtlety there but I'd rather ask for clarification than assume I figured it out on my own and then risk doing something inadvisable on an indirect route to the hospital.
  16. 2 points
    The slip % should be between 5% and 15%, which it is, and the traction control will keep it in that range. It looks like you are getting a lot of slip % at steep lean, which would suggest that your entry speeds are a little low for your liking and are being compensated for with somewhat aggressive throttle while leaned over far mid turn. I have no clue about Michelins, but would follow the suggestions of the local distributor for that tire.
  17. 2 points
    Drag racers rebuild their engines after each run. You really think cost is preventing them from running a skinny tire if they could gain a tenth? No. I have corresponded with the author of the article you link and while he might understand physics, I'm not convinced he understands motorcycle dynamics in a practical sense. The truth lies somewhere between the two. I have yet to find the answer. But the closest reasoning I've read that the coefficient of friction rather than being a constant can vary with temperature. Large contact patch might resist temperature change hence resist changes in coefficient of friction. Additionally, coefficient of friction does not accurately describe a rolling and cornering tire that operate with some slip angle. The tire is not stationary but not sliding either. No, it is too simplistic to say contact patch doesn't matter. From a practical motorcycling sense, much of Code's teaching talks about contact patch and friction. Based on all that practical experience of thousands of riders, there is some truth to the statement. Just my opinion.
  18. 2 points
    At Buttonwillow RT in CA, turn 1, clockwise, April, I attempted a quick flick at 25 mph. It was session 2, first lap, and i went down. The front tire lost traction. After that crash i recalled the T2 video where the question is posed to the class, "Do you quick flick the bike when you're tires are cold?". The resounding answer: NO! The morning temperature was about 50F. Street tires. No tire warmers. I cancelled my late November track say in Chuckwalla without regret. Some like it hot.
  19. 2 points
    It's clear to me that a big piece of the puzzle is the bike set up. Some street bikes need almost effort to steer other require a firm hand, and others yet need assertive gymnastics to make them go where you want. After a decade of pushing a small 400cc fourstroke, Suzuki Impulse around corners at stupid speeds, back in them1990s I had a chance to consider more pricey alternatives. So out for a test ride. Fist a BMW boxer 800cc. Well that was interesting, It really didn't like corners at all. Sure it could change direction, but once turned in it was stuck on line unless brutally steered. Then a Suzuki RF900F. This bike didn't so much love going around corners as ignore the fact that corners might be challenging. Having eliminated the boxer, the two very different Suzukis are worthy of discussion. The Impulse turned as smoothly as the rider permits. Full extreme hang off, body vértices bike turning with the front wheel towing the bike into corners after initial countersteer, or suberbike style half cheek locked in sharp countersteer. Or even wild, suspension hammering turf the bike into the corner and hang on style the Impulse with its marginal 1980s cheap street bike suspension would take it all in stride. And cornered fast just like a lightweight ought to. but then by comparison the RF900f a prices, younger well developed sports tourer made the impulse look like a wanton child. Cornering was smooth, effortless, and stupidly fast. Counter steering -why bother. Hang off - if you really really want to. Lean the bike - nah it's doing that all by itself. How the hell is thing turning - well the obvious answer is it's going where you are turning your head towards. That's it just turning ones head. The once 80kph corner requiring a bit of rider concentration and effort, was just glided through at 80mph with little more than a glance in the right direction. The seated balance was perfect - zero bar weight required loose hands was well effortless. The suspension was unnoticeable. Stitching sweepers, chicanes and multiapex corners simply required the infinitesimal weight transfer that occured when turning the head. Seating remained inline with the bike. And ok, habit had me point a knee out but experimentation showed me that that was more for comfort than necessity. But why the 80kph, and the 80mph comparison. I knew the gorge road very well, a cornering speed 80 kph was what I thought I read on the speedo out of the corner of my eye, and was only a little faster than my norm on the impulse. I was being cautious as the bike was on loan from the store! On the flat and straight I'd time to take a closer look, and spdiscovered the imported bike speedo was miles per hour. So in fact I'd just been smoothly trundling along at 1.5 times the speed I'd thought I was doing on one of the most challenging roads in the city. Technology is a wonderful thing and perhaps explains much of that, but an improvement in corner speed of 35% with zero effort, or practice simply by changing bikes is I think extraordinary. More extraordinary is the minor detail that it's clear that it's not how the rider rides, but how s/he rides a particular bike. Perhaps the impulse could have been riden that extra 35% faster, but I can say for certain not by me! I say that with confidence as I've clocked up about half a million miles on impulses, and riden them to the limit, even occasionally well beyond into stupidly terrifying, brake, suspension and tyre failure territory, for much of that. The RF900F was just a better balanced, way more refined package that enabled the rider. The rf900 was effortless compared to the beasts of the early 1980s like the gsx750, more refined and sharp than the BMW k750, and preposterously more nimble than the Kawasaki gt750. The impulse at very low speeds ran circles around the RF900F for nimbleness but the smooth sharp turns at open road speeds made the fr900 very attractive. What were the true limits of the RF900F I do not know, wisdom got the better of me. I was riding for the street, and I could quite easily imagine being caught out on a day with the flu coming on and loosing my licence because I cruised past a cop at 210 on my way to work. Or potentially crashing at stupid speeds because I was exploring the 900's limits. It also cost twice my annual income at that time. As I've gotten older and heavier, I find myself riding ( the Impulse - still) more upright, with less hang, but slightly more drama ( dancing front end) at times. And slower… . We are now both classics. In the rain less hang, more upright, bike leaned more than rider, means better visibility, and more time to react to road surface issues. It's not pretty and can feel wrong, but it's saved my bacon. But when the air is clear, and the surface is wet, hanging off the inside bike more upright gives one just a tiny edge if traction goes bye bye due to slick surface conditions. Old bold riders have learnt to ride through the problems ahead, by adjusting their style to the bike, the road, and the weather, in addition to their rapidly degrading mental and physical agility.
  20. 2 points
    That is a pretty bold statement. I disagree. There still needs to be a willingness to go fast, a level of tolerance for speed and G forces, and the visual and processing skills required to be located on the track and in control of the machine, not to mention knowing where to point it. IMO making the bike easier to ride helps free up attention and reduce crashes but won't make an average rider a superstar. Just look at today's bikes, you can buy a crazy high horsepower bike right off a showroom floor that has clutchless shifting and traction control and even electronic suspension, but move an average rider from an aged 600cc bike to one of those and see how much faster the rider really goes. Or just watch a superstar kid on a 1990 RS125 making mincemeat of a bunch of adults on 200hp liter bikes with all the electronic assists, you can see that often enough at a typical track day or race practice. I do agree that riders who learn on bikes that do all those cool things would struggle on an older bike without the electronic assists - just like many teenagers today wouldn't know how to operate a manual transmission car - but that could be overcome with some training and practice, I think the best riders would still rise to the top in either situation, I don't think the bike makes the rider.
  21. 2 points
    I get the sensation of "pushing" the bike up as a countersteering input coming out of the corner. If you remain in your "hang off" position or even exaggerate it on corner exit with your upper body, you really have no recourse but to countersteer the bike back upright out of the lean. For me that movement of putting bar pressure on the outside hand ( and pulling with the inside hand) could be interpreted as "pushing" a bike up. It's not a subtle sensation. Sometimes you'll have to really "push/pull" to straighten the bike up to get ready for the next corner. Maybe you are essentially saying this...
  22. 2 points
    Here is a snippet from Keith in Twist of the Wrist II that I think applies, this happens to be about choosing a line through a corner: "The "everyman's ideal line" does not exist, and it never will. Different lines are the rider's own personal way of seeing and doing his job: A concatenation of his strong and weak points, dos and can't dos and machine limitations, and, of course, his SR threshold." I think this is why we call it the "art" of cornering, and to me, the differences in riders' style and application of techniques is what makes racing so interesting to watch - and the sport itself so fascinating.
  23. 2 points
    There is an absolutely perfect description on Twist II that discusses quite specifically both side of this issue, see Chapter 5 Throttle Control, the first section "Street Lazy" followed by Off-Gas Results, it talks about why riders coast, where and for how long, and the exact effects.
  24. 2 points
    When tire is very worn and the rubber is thin it is much harder to heat up the tire and keep it warm, that is the biggest thing I notice on a very worn race tire, or in some cases the tire profile is changed through wear which can change handling.
  25. 2 points
    Riding a curved on-ramp at the speed limit with a cop behind you.
  26. 2 points
    it's all relative. Maintenance throttle in turn 8 at willow Springs on a SV650 is 100%
  27. 2 points
    OK I read back through this whole thread, and yes, bringing in Throttle Control Rule #2 seems to have added some confusion, as I personally got stuck on trying to discuss the throttle control rule. After reading back over it all, it seems that the OP's real questions was, does it really cause any problem to let off the gas fast or pull in the brake abruptly, it seems like people do it all the time.... I think the answer to that is situational, depending on how much traction you have and how much you are willing to upset the chassis. And also, of course, how fast you need to slow down, and how accurate you need/want to be when setting your entry speed. Example, if you are riding your S1000rr in first gear, wide open throttle, 12,000 rpm and you instantly chop the throttle you will feel a very abrupt change in the bike, potentially enough to affect your accuracy in an upcoming turn. However, if you are in sixth gear at 4000rpm, wide open throttle, and let off abruptly, that's not going to be such a violent change, it may not bother you to rock the chassis that amount. The weight shift is even more pronounced with braking, of course; but it is a matter of priorities. Upsetting the chassis with abrupt brake application may very well be worth it, especially if you need to get it slowed down in a hurry. For sure I can think of corners where I am coming down from high speed to low speed, traction is good, I am straight up and down, where I let off the throttle and bring in the brake as fast as I can - upsetting the chassis is OK with me, I know the front will dive down hard, but my priority is braking in the shortest possible distance and the majority of braking is done at the beginning and I need time for gradual release as I enter the corner. But I can also think of places where I am entering a corner leaned over, or the surface is bumpy, and I apply the brake more gradually to maintain the best suspension/traction scenario, to avoid bottoming the forks or overloading the front tire. One thing we have been taught is that if you slam the front brake on so fast that there is no time for the weight shift to the front tire to increase your traction, you can slide the front tire. Is that a problem? Maybe not, if you are going in a straight line and don't scare easily. Lord knows we see pros doing some really scary things on the brakes, things most of us don't really want to have happen on a Sunday ride (like stoppies, rear wheel hop, back end wagging around, back end stepping out, etc.) I'm going to run this question by Dylan and/or Keith and see what exactly Dylan was trying to communicate and get more details on different scenarios - braking while leaned over, wet conditions, etc.
  28. 2 points
    Think of the muscles in your back and your abs, as ratchet straps that support your torso. If you don't tighten them evenly, one will be overtightened. In most cases the lower back contracts to far leading to pain and loss of strenght.
  29. 2 points
    Surely the law in your country allows you to practise your religion! ?
  30. 2 points
    I found 2 exercises made a huge difference in my ability to ride without fatigue. They're both hitting the same area so you can do either one. Romanian deadlift and back hyper-extension. You can buy a kettle bell or some dumbbells for the deadlift and do them at home. If you belong to a gym, the hyper-extension allows for greater isolation but they both work great. Start light and do 20 reps a day for a couple of weeks. I found it not only made riding easier but also improved my posture. I'm never tired, my wrists never hurt, my back is strong enough stay low and move side to side without issues. Interestingly, I my fitbit records my rides as cardio.
  31. 2 points
    Unit came in last Saturday. Was a good weather day so went riding of course. That evening I reviewed the instructions and on-line videos Heal Tech has. Then I began stripping of side panels, seats, fuel tank, and airbus (these steps by far are the most complicated and time consuming of the install, so if you can handle that you can install one of these). Next morning (Sunday) I spent some time deciding how to route cables and locate things. Basically you have the coil harness and module, shift rod sensor, and actual QS Easy module. The coil harness connects between spark plug ignition coils and the bikes coil harness and then to a negative ground. This then has a lead that routes back to tail section where main QS module lies. Sensor is installed on the shift rod and connected back to unit in tail section. That's it except for putting everything back on bike. Setting up and monitoring it is done through your smart phone!!! Other than the initial setup process and some playing with bike on stand, haven't gotten to ride on street as its been raining. Once I get out on road will give a report back. https://www.healtech-electronics.com/products/qse/
  32. 2 points
    I do this myself. The most useful thing that I get is the "picture in my mind" of what the track is like. One of the things I have noticed however is once you actually get there reality tends to be a little different than what you were expecting. As Hotfoot mentioned there's lots of things that don't come across in video such as elevation changes and also logistics of moving around on the bike. A really good example of this is the elevation change on the long straight at COTA. I was really looking forward to blasting down that straight at 180+mph with a gigantic smile on my face but the elevation change caused a complete lack of visibility and that does not come across very well in video. Needless to say the first few sessions I was not doing 180 due to the visibility. I actually ended up enjoying the shorter straight near start finish a lot more. Although the speed was slower having a massive up hill elevation change made it so you barely had to touch the brakes to be at the perfect speed to enter the corner at the end. It was like having your cake and being able to eat it too. All the front wheel lifting acceleration you wanted without the chore of having to get on the brakes hard. One other thing which is amusing that I have had a fun experience with. Video games. I have a video game with Road Atlanta as one of the tracks. I was able to put in blistering lap times on the video game and could not wait to ride the track. When I rode the track the reality was quite different from the simulation. I won't bore you with details but I have yet to ride Road Atlanta again despite it being so close to my house because of how horrible of an experience I had. I actually think that my game play slightly hurt my ability to learn the track with an open mind. Certainly watch the videos and study the track maps but be ready to actually learn the track by riding it yourself. Most importantly be ready to adapt when the reality becomes different than what you were expecting.
  33. 2 points
    One thing I will mention - there is limited info available in the video above. You can hear the engine, see the rider's line and observe lean angle, but one thing you CAN'T tell is the relationship between the rider's throttle-hand INPUT and the engine response. So in the video above when you hear the engine rev up, it sounds odd in some places, like it revs up very quickly then flattens out a bit. That could be caused by traction control intervening (if it is present on this bike), by the tire spinning, maybe even by the clutch slipping - clutches wear out quickly on high horsepower race bikes, race starts are very hard on clutches - it is hard to tell without seeing data that shows throttle input. On the Superbike School student videos the camera is positioned so that the rider's hand is visible on screen, so it would become immediately obvious whether the rider's throttle input was smooth and consistent or not, plus the BMWs can tell you the actual difference between throttle INPUT (from the rider) and OUTPUT (after any traction control intervention) and the data logger can show tire slip rate, too, all of which would make it easier to analyze the video.
  34. 2 points
    Oh I like it! The "riders prayer". We should write a cool one a post it up.
  35. 2 points
    This interview with me appeared in the April issue of Roadracing World magazine. I thought you might like to see it. John Ulrich was kind enough to give me a PDF version of the interview for you to read. http://superbikeschool.com/files/code-rw-interview.pdf The file is 600K and requires Acrobat Reader 5 or newer to view it.
  36. 2 points
    Traction Science Traction limits are hard to reckon for most riders but there are some things to know about it. Traction results from a brew of chemicals the rubber is compounded with, how cleverly the carcass is constructed and shaped, proper inflation, enough tread depth, and maintaining the tire within its optimum temperature range, which varies with different rubber compounds. Heat up a mounted tire to its operating temperature, tilt it over to 45 degrees and apply ever increasing pressure on it. At some point the tire will slip; that amount of load is 101% of the tire's static grip limit. In motion, achieving maximum traction is quite different. As the tire grips it wears. What 'wears out' are the various chemicals, oils, waxes and pigments which bind together the rubber. Abrasion and heat 'cook' them off. You've noticed the bluish-purplish color of a tire from hard cornering, it's called 'blooming'. That is the residue from the chemicals which have been leached out of the tire from heat. It takes very little abrasion to wear it off, maybe a lap. The oily parts—in sufficient quantity to maintain the rubber's flexible and compliant character—support its ability to mate with the road's surface. When they 'cook off', the tire becomes dry and slippery, like dead skin peeling off a sunburn. That sun-cooked layer must be cleaned off to expose fresh skin, or, in this case, fresh rubber. Cleaning it off requires abrasion. The amount of abrasion needed is provided by tire slippage. Tire engineers agree that roughly 15% longitudinal slippage maintains friction value peaks which includes maintaining peak operating temperature. You'd be mistaken to think this 'slippage' is a 'slide': in a corner, the bike is holding its line. It is what is needed to achieve peak traction; considerably less slippage is needed for cleaning it. Depleted rubber must be scrubbed from both tires. There being no power to the front it relies on three forces: 1) slip angle, 2) side grip friction, and 3) abrasion from braking, to uncover fresh rubber. In the steady state part of a corner (after braking and before acceleration) both tires clean up from slip angle and side grip abrasion. Slip angle is interesting. If you were able to freeze the lean and the turned-in front wheel angle you have while going through a corner, then got off and pushed it, the line would be much tighter than when you were riding. The bike's tendency is to always go straight—until some outside force influences it to turn. The turned-in front wheel is that influence—it creates abrasion resistance which forces the bike to go into and hold its arc through the corner. The tires are actually slipping sideways toward the outside, hence, slip angle. The side-slip in skiing is similar. But that's not the whole picture. Camber Force is another factor. Although it has substantially less effect on tire wear, it plays a part in traction. It works like this: On both tires, the outside of the patch (the chicken stripe side) is on a tighter radius than the side that's closest to the tire's center line. Think of a playground merry-go-round. The outside is traveling further in the same amount of time as the inside and therefore going faster than the inside. Conversely, the side of the contact-patch closest to the middle of the corner, is turning slower and is dragging. This creates rubber-cleansing abrasion and also helps the bike stay on its line. (To find more data look up the technical definition of camber thrust or camber force.) In any corner and at any speed sufficient to keep the bike moving and balanced, the tires are always slipping, at least slightly. You wouldn't get through corners or have to replace tires if they didn't. © 2014, Keith Code, all rights...
  37. 2 points
    bingo - that's it in a nutshell. I think it's the quintessential dilemma for most aspiring riders: how much faster can I go before it results in disaster? If it truly ISN'T a knife-edge limit, then I guess it comes down to the combination of a machine that's set up in a way that lessens the abruptness of the loss of traction (when that slip vs feel non-linearity becomes uncomfortably exponential), and a rider's willingness and ability to ride through it. the last part is why is finally decided to cough up the big bucks for two days at CSS at Laguna. I guess I was just interested in first hand testimonial from guys/gals that do ride deep in that slip zone. I think at your school in Laguna you will be pleasantly surprised to find out a variety of ways you CAN go significantly faster WITHOUT having to slide more. Your personal style and setup may end up including a greater or lesser degree of sliding, depending on your preference, but for sure CSS will give you tools to predict, and manage and/or avoid sliding. As far as personal experience goes - I am obviously not riding at MotoGP level, but I am racing competitively and I don't slide much at all. I pass a lot of people who are sliding a LOT, and often I can see errors in their technique that are causing the slides. Here are some things I see a lot in races: - trail braking and too much tension on the bars causing front end slides - over-braking, getting the corner entry speed too low, then whacking the throttle on too hard mid-turn and sliding the rear - braking hard with tension on the bars causing the back end to wag around or step out - crossed up body position resulting in excessive lean angle, combined with imperfect throttle control, causing front or back end slides These are the ones I see the most and are the most obvious but there are other reasons having to do with line selection, etc. For me, the more schools I attended, the more confidence I had in what the bike was going to do - so the limit seemed less and less like an unknown sudden-disaster possibility. Getting educated and getting the survival instincts under control does WONDERS for confidence and control.
  38. 2 points
    Body Position The most obvious thing about any rider is their form on the bike. How do they sit and move on it? What’s their posture? Do they look comfortable or awkward, stiff or loose, Moto GP, or nervous-novice? Good body positioning isn’t just about being stylish——you can play dress-up in your older brother's or sister's cool boots but walking will be clumsy——it has a desirable result and we can define 'good body positioning'. Harmony with the bike, freedom of movement on it, precision control over it―with the minimum necessary effort. Survival Reactions Play a Role The bike itself can force poor riding posture. A shift lever positioned a ¼ inch too high or too low manipulates the rider into awkward and uncomfortable poses, limiting his control over it. Even with perfect control positioning, good form on the bike has its difficulties. Achieving it may look and even feel like it’s reserved for the young and flexible. This may be true to a degree but many of its problems are actually brought on by our own Survival Reactions, our SRs. For example, a rider who instinctively levels the horizon by tilting his head in corners, creates unnecessary tension in his body. Basics Apply Good form is difficult for riders who struggle with basics: uncertainty with basics has a physical manifestation. Just as joy or anger are obvious in someone, these uncertainties manifest themselves in awkward and unsuitable body positions. For example: poor throttle control prompts riders to rely on slash and burn hard drives out of the turns. Their 'ready-for-action', rigid body language telegraphs their intention. That tense anticipation of the drive off the turns loses them the handling benefits of being relaxed mid-corner. The Stages of Body Positioning There are three stages to body positioning: Poor form + poor riding = ripple-effect, snowballing errors. Good riding + poor form = good but limited range of control. Good form + good technical riding skills = riding that is both fluid and efficient. Number 3 is the goal of any rider training. The Ingredients Body Positioning has five distinct ingredients. The bike and how it is configured——its controls, seat, pegs and bar positioning. The rider's understanding of body positioning——how to properly position himself on the bike and why. Our Survival Reactions——how they create unwanted and often unconscious tension and positioning problems. Lack of riding basics——has or hasn't mastered the core technical skills needed to ride well. The rider's own physical limitations——height, weight, flexibility, conditioning. With those five points under control, specific techniques can be employed to achieve positive benefits in bike control. Form, Function and Technique GP body position does not address or improve 90% of the most basic and vital components of riding: Our sense of traction, speed, lean angle, braking, and line, to name a few, are not directly dependent upon or necessarily improved by stylish form. Clearly, body positioning isn't the universal panacea some think it is, but it has its place. For example, holding the body upright, counter to the bike’s lean while cornering has several negative effects. Among these, is the fact that it positions the rider so he can’t fully relax. This can be quickly corrected and solves the functional problem of tension from cramped and restrictive joint alignment: a key element in allowing any rider to relax. A bike related example would be too high or too low brake or clutch lever. It puts the rider's wrist into misalignment and restricts fluid movement. The Rules of Technique Here are my guidelines for technique. Any riding technique is only as good as: The validity of the principles it rests on. Example: The benefits of hanging off follow physics and engineering principles. The access it provides to the technology with which the bike is designed and constructed. Are the potentials of chassis, suspension and power able to be utilized as intended? Does the technique embrace them? The consistency with which it can be applied. Does it work in all similar situations? The degree of control it provides for the rider. Can the rider either solve problems or make improvements, or both, by using it? The ease with which it can be understood and coached. Does it take extraordinary experience or skill to apply it, or, can it be broken down into bite sized pieces for any rider to master? Which brings us to my first law of body positioning. Stability Comes in Pairs. Bike and rider stability are always paired―rider instability transfers directly to the bike. Body Positioning has but one overriding guideline: Rider stability. How a rider connects to the bike can bring about harmony and control and fluid movement or turn into an uncoordinated wrestling match. Ideal Stability Having stability AND fluidity of movement sounds conflicting; when something is stable it’s expected to stay put, unmoving, like the foundation of your house or the roots of a tree. But the opposite is true for riding. Comfort And Stability What works well on a paddock-stand doesn't always transfer to real riding. Aftermarket rearsets, which can be adjusted (or which are manufactured) too far up, back, forward or down is an example. In the paddock they feel racy; on the road or track they can fatigue the rider. The fatigue comes from the rider's core not being correctly supported. This causes him to be off balance. Off-balance generates extra effort from muscle tension and poor joint alignment which in turn hampers accurate control manipulations. Awkward looking body position is what you see. Riders often accept or try and work around this, without realizing its negative impact on their riding. Simply Complicated Through research and coaching of tens of thousands of riders of all skill levels, 58 separate elements which influence our body positioning have surfaced. Seemingly simple things such as too tight a pair of gloves or leathers can affect all the other elements. Once the 58 are corrected and integrated, the rider has many more options; opening doors to a wide range of fun, efficient and, you might say, elegant techniques. All of our coaches have been thoroughly drilled on what each of the 58 are and how to correct them. © 2014 Keith Code, all rights reserved. This article may not be reproduced in any form without the author's consent.
  39. 1 point
    To those who have ridden a lot of bikes over the years - if you took the best sport motorcycles from yesteryear and put them up against the current bikes of the same size but less sporty, fitted them with the same tires (where possible) and sent them around a race track, which would win? I'm asking because people have told me for quite some time that modern bikes, even budget bikes, are so much better than the stuff just a decade old. In my experience, my FZ07 has suspension no better than what many bikes could offer in the 80s, so I do not buy this. However, I could very well be wrong. So what if you teamed up something like these pairs, do you reckon the latest would beat the oldest every time? Or would it be the older sport bikes taking the honour? 1992 CBR900RR vs 2017 CB1000R 1993 GSX-R750 vs 2017 GSX750S 1994 ZX-9R vs 2018 Z900 1994 FZR600 vs 2017 FZ6R 1994 916 vs 2017 Multistrada 950
  40. 1 point
    Hello, I have an ex-CSS '15 S1000RR that I ride exclusive on track (Mid-Ohio, Grattan, GingerMan). I was using Dunlop Q3s without issues, but recently decided to try out slicks (Pirelli, then Michelin). I keep getting excessive wear on the right side of rear slicks. I've received a number of tips from the tire reps at the track and riding coaches: - it's my riding style, I need to pick up the bike more before accelerating hard. - it's a hot tear, I'm running 2 psi too low (went from 24 psi hot to 26 psi hot on the Michelin. - it's the rear suspension, it's too stiff and you might have your eccentrics (top of rear shock mount and swingarm) set wrong. I did try to change my riding style and played with the pressure, and the tires did last a bit longer (up from 2 days to ~3.5). The last point was the one that was intriguing to me - I've never looked at the eccentrics or thought about them. Since I bought the bike used (and had the rear swingarm removed by a mechanic when I had a full exhaust put on), I don't know if they are set 'stock' or something else. Can someone tell from the pictures whether I have stock settings? Does anyone have experience with how the bike handling will change if set these eccentrics different?
  41. 1 point
    RE Car tire widths... The movement of a car tire when turning is split between the wheel and the tire. The steps involved are: Turn steering wheel the wheels turn while the tires remain in original position the tires then let go of the road surface and twist to get back in line with the position of the wheel This repeats in little steps over and over throughout the turn. It happens for rear tires too but it's the attitude of the car which turns the rear wheels. In both cases, the tires lag behind the wheel, let go of the road, and catch up with the wheel as long as the direction is being changed. The way a tire performs this sideways deflection (twist) is a product of sidewall height and tire width. This is one of the main reasons race cars have low profiles and more width. It should be noted that there's a practical limit for how low you can go with profile before losing too much suspension effect from the tire. It's far more desirable to add width as much as possible without hitting suspension components or fenders. Also, you want to increase the wheels along with increases in tire because even though you can often add +5 or +10 mm for a given wheel size, it will allow the tire to twist more than if this relationship is controlled. If the article says that more width does not give more grip (in cars), then it is wrong. I spent a lot of time a while back autocrossing and time trialing. I've been to racing schools and read dozens of books about car setup and performance. Classes are tightly controlled about all aspects of the tire including width. Getting a tire that is too wide for your current class bumps you into a different class and your lap times drop. It's easily verified. Anyone involved in racing (bikes or cars) will tell you being able to consistently run laps with little variation is important both for safety and to reliably improve the car's setup. It's not "in your head". It's a real effect. I can't speak to bike tire widths.
  42. 1 point
    I fully agree with you, faffi. Reason may be that it is easier to mimic performance riders "looks" than mastering other things that are less evident. Knee down seems to be the highest goal for many riders. Whoever feels the need to hang-off while street riding is speeding big time. What a pass at 11:15 of that vid! On his own words (copied from http://www.mikethebike.com/quotes.htm): The former editor of a magazine asked him: "What do you do to the others in order to beat them apart from outride them?" His response was: "Look at all of them on the front grid before the start. You can see it in their eyes. If they think they can beat you, smile, give a nod and a wink. It works every time. Then you go out and show them what you meant." Sadly, he died 35 years ago.
  43. 1 point
    According to the headlines of this forum, we discuss "Anything that advances a rider's understanding of riding." As the background of all posters is not the same, we should try discussing complicated subjects in the most simple and yet understandable way. You are correct about the illusory nature of centrifugal force, as well as about the departure from the pureness of the academic discipline. Nevertheless, in my humble opinion, it is a simple shortcut to give the idea of the experienced tendency of the mass of bike and rider to resist the curvilinear movement of cornering. I believe that your explanation of the cornering force and having less friction when leaned is contradictory and inaccurate, as the cornering rider feels more than his/her static weight. Copied from: http://forums.superbikeschool.com/index.php?/topic/3723-the-1g-club/ "The barrier then is both physical sensation and visual orientation and I believe there is a make/break point in it. That point is 45 degrees of lean. At 45, the forces are a bit out of the ordinary. Along with the normal 1g down we now have a 1g lateral load as well. As a result the bike and our bodies experience an increase in weight. That’s not native to us and acts as a distraction and as a barrier." - Keith Code (2013) As you seem to be serious about the Physics of motorcycling and able to understand complicate explanations, I highly recommend you these two books: "Motorcycle Handling and Chassis Design: the art and science" by Tony Foale. "Motorcycle Dynamics (Second Edition)" by Vittore Cossalter.
  44. 1 point
    There are many ways to Rome. This is a good interview on comparing Vinanles and Lorenzo's styles. http://www.crash.net/motogp/interview/269077/1/exclusive-wilco-zeelenberg-yamaha-interview.html Doohan did a lot of things "wrong" and won a lot of titles. Hailwood came back and used the classic style to beat more contemporary riders 15 years on. Personally, I do not believe there is one universal correct way, and everything else is more or less inferior. Perhaps if all riders were computers, there could be a universal "right". But in the real world, people differ. They learn to compensate, they learn little tricks. The rider's weight, strength, agility, flexibility, reactions, preferences and more will all influence how fast a rider can go and how he or she can do so in the best way for them. In that respect, I think Hotfoot is right on the money. CSS will teach every person a way that will work, safely and efficiently. Level 1-3 will not be enough to make a world champion out of anybody, and the majority will not even be able to take full advantage of the basics they CSS teach them. But for those with the will, determination and skill to move forward, CSS and their level 4 can no doubt help any rider at any level break through new barriers and continue to improve what they already do best. Not knowing any of the CSS personnel in person, and certainly not Keith, I think it is still safe that they would not try to make Marquez ride like Lorenzo or vice verse. Instead, I believe they would focus on each rider's strengths and improve them further while also trying to knock back on the odd weakness so that they can become even more complete. I could, of course, be wrong. Again
  45. 1 point
    There is another physical point, more for the older guys...(I'm 56). I find that if I don't really, really stay hydrated, my neck gets tight, and just doesn't want to move. A chiropractor I like once told me that the disks dehydrate like anything else, and spinal fluid is pretty thick, about like molasses. Another reason to hydrate.
  46. 1 point
    Ha ok. Well the socks I'm currently wearing are samples from a manufacturer that were sent to me for testing. I have been a huge fan of bamboo and my favorite socks are no longer available. So out of sheer "being totally desparate" I'm testing out as many yarns as I can as I'd like to make my own socks specifically for riding. So far I'm on day 3 of wearing them and they still smell like roses. They are unbelievably soft as well, pretty much like walking on clouds. I'm going to wash them a number of times to see how they wear, but I've been told they stay soft just like my bamboo socks did. Another bonus, they are supposed to be extremely durable. I can show you the fabric end of this month when I'm at CSS but they will be well worn by then so beware hahah. I looked up "tencel socks" and there are a few companies that use the yarns so I think in the mean time I'll find a good company and buy my daily wearers from them. I truly don't think I can go back to pure cotton, poly, or nylon. Especially cotton.
  47. 1 point
    The list of survival reactions!
  48. 1 point
    OK. So... if you don't have a point picked out for an apex AND haven't looked in toward the apex, you don't really have any info about where you want the bike to go - so how confident will your quickturn be? This is a good review exercise for forum members, what is the timing on 2-step? When should you spot your turn point and when should you look in to the apex? Spot your turn point as soon as possible because it controls many decisions (where to brake, when to downshift, etc.). Without reference points, there is no turn point. No bueno. The time to look at your apex is just before you reach the turn point. A rider requires a turn point to have the attention left to spend on his next reference point, the apex. If a rider is confident on his/her location (turn point/reference point), the rider is "free" to look at the apex just before flicking the machine into the turn. Like in real estate, location, location, location is of primary importance. You must have RPs to get your through the turns; you can relax on the straights.
  49. 1 point
    The Fine Art of Braking By Keith Code By survey 100% of over 10,000 riders agree on this point: they know that if they possessed the ability and skill to get their turn entry speeds consistently right, their confidence would soar; they would feel more in control; they would be faster and they would be smoother. Here is some information on why you might want to master that ability. Coasting Races In the mid '70's I was introduced to an amazing form of "racing". Four or five of us would get together at the top of one of our favorite southern California canyon descents; turn off the engines; line up across the road; heckle each other; count to three; pick up our feet without pushing off any more than was necessary to get moving and laugh and yell out insults to one another all the way down to the bottom. Most of the runs were a couple of miles long with lots of turns. That's a coasting race. The rider who coasted the farthest and fastest (they were usually the same rider) "won". There weren't any tricks, equipment mattered little, it was all you. Well, I did have one little trick -- pushing the pads back into my front caliper to eliminate the pad drag. The camaraderie was elevated enormously by the fact that, unlike our usual canyon rides we could, for the most part, communicate throughout the descent. It was such a delight. Even when it went wrong and someone crashed (like me) I still have fond memories and get a warm sensation when recalling it. Strategy of Coasting Races On the technical side of things: I was immediately impressed with several aspects of this form of entertainment and a couple of those points were indelibly printed in my memory and became a part of the California Superbike School over 20 years ago. The simple trick to winning a coasting race is the obvious, the rider who could maintain his momentum by using his brakes the least generally would prevail. Doing an entire run down some of the steeper roads with little or no braking took as much or more mental grip than doing it with them, this becoming immediately apparent in the first semi-tight corner you came to. Unwilling to give up the momentum yet afraid of the speed which had accumulated, your focus and interest became laser sharp. Sure your hand would be poised over the lever and sure it took some supreme acts of willpower to keep from using brakes and sure you would make errors and have to use the brakes but you also paid closer attention to the speeds than you normally would. The reduction of distractions like engine noise and gear changes and throttle and charging the corners with hard braking were all eliminated and it allowed you to make much finer estimates of your corner entry speeds and maintain that precious momentum. Low Noise, High Speeds After my first coasting race I realized I never would have gone through those turns with the power on as fast as I had done with no engine running, no charging and, for the most part, no brakes. It made me realize just how distracting those things really were and just how much of my attention they absorbed. One of the things I have noticed when I watch students is how erratic their turn entry speeds often are. That comes from the idea they have to charge the corners and brake hard but they can tend to over-brake and foul up their entry and corner speed momentum. Low Speeds, Quick Times One day, as I was driving up to the Laguna Seca track in northern California to do a school, I realized that if anyone was going to overcome this self generated confusion from over-braking, the quickest route to that was riding no brakes. Once I got to the track I tried it out and rediscovered what I'd already figured out before from the coasting races. I went faster into the turns, my speed sense and judgement became sharper, I worried less about my entry speed and found that getting back to the throttle earlier was significantly easier. I thought it would be worthwhile to have the students try it out. While it is true that some tracks lend themselves to this form of sharpening your riding skills better than others, I did begin to notice a trend at different tracks. The riders who stuck with the no brakes, even after we officially switched back to using them, made more improvement in their speed and confidence than those who were "testing" our brake pad material by charging the turns. Ignore the Instincts It's almost as if riders feel obligated to charge turns. It's the idea that you will go faster because of it and seems such a simple and direct route to that end but rarely works. The instinct to brake late and hard is like clubbing a female to then take her for a wife. That plan isn't going to work. I have observed many truly diligent riders who ignored the instinct and stayed with the No Brakes format knocking off seconds from their lap times. To top it off they were achieving their quicker times with only one or two gears instead of the usual thrashing through the gear box. They might be going 20 mph slower on the straights but one should pay attention to the results (improved lap times and corner speed) not the impulse to go fast on the straights. As I have said a thousand times, the brakes become more of a crutch than a tool for most riders. Someone always whines about the no-brakes riding format at school. Well, crutches are notoriously hard to put down, aren't they? Riders claim it is difficult (of course it is), that they could go faster with them (faster down the straight away, yes); that they "had" to use them (the crutch again) and on and on. What these riders don't realize is how satisfying it is to persevere at the exercise until you really get it, so you really can judge your entry speeds and really know you can do it. Very, very satisfying. Very, very big contribution to your riding confidence. Very! The Basic Idea The logic is flawless. Using or not using the brakes is irrelevant to the intended result of getting into the corner at the exact right speed. One either knows what that right speed is and can achieve it or they are guessing. If they are guessing they are paying more attention to it than they should have to. Guessing brings about inaccurate braking and inaccurate braking brings about rough and uncertain turn entries. Trail Braking (Definition: Action of trailing off or tapering off brake lever pressure and braking force as the rider enters the corner.) Trail braking is a valid and useful tool for any rider at any level of riding. The warning is this: when used too often, or as a crutch to calm the fear brought on by the inability to sense speeds accurately, it not only doesn't solve the source of the problem it makes it worse. As the pilot you must make the decision on when to let off of the brake(s). It is a complicated little piece of work with all of the other usual distractions you encounter at the turn's entry, e.g., setting the lean, getting the line and feeling the traction. Bottom line - if you are trailing the brakes towards a well known, accurately understood speed it is a tool. Otherwise it tends to become a crutch and invites riders to "charge" the turns, low line them, leave the throttle till late and make tricky and sometimes dangerous mid-corner steering corrections all of which could be avoided with accurate turn entry speed sensing and setting. Panic Crutch In contrast to the aforementioned, I see many riders who feel compelled to stab at their brakes in the last moments before entering a corner. While watching them do it, the only conclusion one would come to is that the speed was a big surprise; all of a sudden they become aware of it and it seemed too fast. This is an obvious error. They aren?t using the brake to adjust anything except their fear. In either of the above cases, an accurate sense of speed opens the door to confidence. Results Then and Now The essence and final result of any brake release for cornering remains what I said in 1980 in my first Superbike School lecture and on page 64 of the first ?A Twist of the Wrist? book in 1982: To set the speed of the bike correctly for that place on the track (or road) so that no further changes are necessary. In other words, you get it right. Not too fast, not too slow. Braking itself is an art within the art of cornering. Your sense-of-speed is the underlying resource you have to get it right. As an exercise, no brakes riding will help improve your sense-of-speed. Do no-brakes whenever you have the opportunity and see what happens to your sense of speed and see what happens to your riding. The best part is that once you have combined a good sense of speed with the other twelve basic skills of cornering it all begins to come together. It is truly one of the skills that allows you to discover the ART OF CORNERING. All the best, Keith ----- ⓒ Copyright Keith Code, 2004, all rights reserved
  50. 1 point
    There are technical points concerning a rider's fear of making either right or left hand turns. Many riders have this fear and it's frustrating. Scores of riders have complained to me about this with a sheepish sort of approach and "admitted" they were perplexed by it. Rightfully so, roughly 50% of their turns were being hampered by an unknown, un-categorized, seemingly unapproachable fear having no apparent source and no apparent reasoning behind it. Out of desperation for an answer riders have blamed their inability on being right or left handed, mysterious brain malfunctions and a host of other equally dead end "nonsense solutions"; nonsense because none of them answered their questions or addressed the hesitance, uncertainty and fear. Having a fear of right turns would be the worst if you lived in Kansas or Nebraska where practically the only turns worth the title are freeway on and off ramps. If you went "ramping" with your friends, "doing the cloverleaf", round and round, you'd be at the back of the pack . Anxiety on lefts would exclude you from the dirt track racing business for sure but mainly we are talking about day to day riding and any such apprehension as this (and there are others) spoils a rider's confidence, making him somewhat gun shy. There are actually three reasons why you could have this unidirectional phobia (fear) and all three contain an inordinate amount of some emotional response that runs from suspicion and distrust to mild panic and a dose of plain old anxiety dropped into the middle for good measure. By the way, if you consider yourself in this category of rider, count your blessings, many riders have bidirectional phobia and it's only by their force of will and love of freedom that they persist in their riding at all! First Reason Reason number one for this fear is that you crashed on the right or left at sometime and the relatively indelible mental scar is still on the mend but remains a more or less hidden and nagging source of irritation. The part of the mind that is concerned with survival does not easily forget and the proof is that our species still exists. There have no doubt been other more pressing problems along the way that have tried and tested Man in his effort to put order into his environment. The fact that the incident of a crash drops down to an obscure sub-level of awareness is not a help in this, or perhaps any other case, as it can affect our riding from there and can add an unpredictable element to our riding. You may gain some control over this with practice but the oddest part of it is that if one hasn't ridden for a while this apprehension of turning right or left can return in force... provided it springs from this particular source. In the technology of the mind and according to the discipline of Dianetics, these incidents are stored in what is called the Reactive Mind, for the obvious reason that one finds himself reacting to, rather than being coactive with, some circumstance. In this case, right or left turns. Second Reason In the discipline of riding technology we have the act and activity of counter-steering to contend with. Here a rider may have become confused, in a panic of some sort, and gone back to another variety of "survival response" that pressed him into turning the bike's bars in the direction he wanted to go rather than doing the correct (and backwards from other vehicle's steering) action of counter-steering. That instant of confusion has stopped many riders cold in their tracks, never to twist their wrist again and pleasure themselves with motorcycle riding. Turn left to go right push the right bar to go right, its the thing that eludes us in that panic situation (statistically) more commonly than anything save only the overuse and locking of the rear brake. When you dissect this confusion regarding the counter-steering process you see that it is possibly more devastating than the rear end lock up, even though both have the same result, the bike goes straight, and often straight into that which we were trying to avoid. Basics prevail--You can only do two things on a motorcycle, change its speed and change its direction. Confusion on counter-steering locks up the individual's senses tighter than a transmission run without oil and reduces those two necessary control factors down to one...A bad deal in anyone's book. Third Reason The third possible reason for being irrational about rights and lefts is the one that has solved it more often than not--practice. Applying the drill sergeant's viewpoint of repeatedly training the rider to practice and eventually master the maneuver is a very practical solution. I suppose this one falls under the heading of the discipline of rider dynamics. And a casual inspection of riders will show you the following: Ninety-five percent of all riders push the bike down and away from their body to initiate a turn or steering action, especially when attempting to do it rapidly. Rapidly meaning something on the order of how fast you would have to turn your bike if someone stopped quickly in front of you and you wanted to simply ride around them; or avoid a pothole or a rock or any obstacle. For example, a muffler falls off the car in front on the freeway at 60 m.p.h., that's eighty-eight feet per second of headway you are making down the road. Despite the fact you've left a generous forty feet between you and the car, that translates into one half second to get the bike's direction diverted, including your reaction time to begin the steering process. We're talking about a couple of tenths of a second here--right now. This procedure riders have of pushing the bike down and away from themselves to steer it seems like an automatic response and is most probably an attempt to keep oneself in the normally correct relationship to the planet and its gravity, namely, vertically oriented or perpendicular to the ground. This is a good idea for walking, sitting and standing--but not for riding. When you stay "on top" of the bike, pushing it under and away, you actually commit a number of riding dynamics sins. The first of which is the bad passenger syndrome." Bad Passenger Bad passengers lean the wrong way on the bike. They position themselves in perfect discord--counter to your intended lean, steering and cornering sensibilities. So do you when you push the bike away from yourself, or hold your body rigidly upright on the bike--very stately looking, very cool but ultimately it's an inefficient rider position. The most usual solution to a bad passenger's efforts to go against the bike's cornering lean angle is brow beating them and threaten "no more rides." But how do you fix this tendency in yourself? A bad passenger makes you correct your steering and eventually become wary of their actions and the bike's response to them. This ultimately leads to becoming tense on the bike while in turns. Pushing the bike away from yourself or sitting rigidly upright while riding solo has the same effect. Hung Off Upright Hang off style riders don't think this applies to them but it does. Many riders are still pushing the bike under themselves while hung off. Look through some race photos especially on the club and national level and you will easily see that some are still trying to be bad passengers on their own bike and countering the benefits of the hung position by trying to remain upright through the corners. A rider's hung-off style may have more to do with his ability to be comfortable with the lean of the bike, and go with it, than anything else. This is not to say there is only one way to sit on a bike, in any style of riding. But it does mean that each rider must find his own way of agreeing with his bike's dynamics and remain in good perspective to the road. And this doesn't mean that you always have to have your head and eyes parallel with the horizon as some riders claim. But it does mean that you may have to push yourself to get out of the "man is an upright beast" mode of thinking and ride with the bike, not against it. It may feel awkward at first but it's the only way to be "in-unit" with the bike. On a professional level most riders do this. John Kocinski is an example of someone in perfect harmony with his machine and Mick Doohan has modified his sit-up push-it-under style of riding over the past couple of years to one that is more in line with the bike. Show and Tell If you have a rider (or yourself) do a quick flick, side to side, steering maneuver in a parking lot you'll clearly observe them jerking and stuffing the bike underneath themselves in an effort to overwhelm it with good intentions and brute force rather than using correct, effective and efficient steering technique. There are other steering quirks you may observe while having someone do this simple show-and-tell parking lot drills. For example, some riders have a sudden hitch that comes at the end of the steering when they have leaned it over as far as they dare. It's a kind of jerking motion initiated from their rigid upper body. You may see an exaggerated movement at the hips; that's another variation of their attempt to keep the back erect. Also, look for no movement of the head or extreme movement of it to keep the head erect. A general tenseness of the whole body is common as is lots of side to side motion of the bike. So what's the right thing to do here? Good Passenger What does a good passenger do? NOTHING. They just sit there and enjoy the ride, practically limp on the saddle. The bike leans over and so does the passenger. Which scenario agrees with motorcycle design: weight on top that is moving or weight that is stable and tracking with it? Motorcycles respond best to a positive and sure hand that does the least amount of changing. You, as a rider, need to do the same thing, basically, NOTHING. Holding your body upright is not doing nothing it is doing something. It is an action you initiate, a tenseness you provide and it is in opposition to the bike's intended design--what it likes. More Lean There is another technical point here. The more you stay erect and try to push the bike down and away (motocross style riding) the more leaned over you must be to get through the turn. That's a fact. Crotch rocket jockeys hang off their bikes for show but the pros do it to lean their bikes over less. You can counter this adverse affect of having to lean more by simply going with the bike while you turn it, in concert with and congruous to its motion, not against it. There is even an outside chance you may find it feels better and improves your control over the bike and reduces the number of mini-actions needed to corner. There is also a good possibility that this will open the door to conquering your directional fear, whichever form it may take. Diagnosis Look for one or more of these indications on your "bad" side: 1. The body is stiff or tense while making turns on the side you don't like, at least more so than on the side you do like. 2. You don't allow your body to go with the bike's lean on side: You are fighting it and it is fighting you. 3. The effort to remain perfectly vertical is greater on your bad side. 4. You will find yourself being less aggressive with the turning process on your bad side. 5. You will find yourself being shortsighted, looking too close to the bike on that shy side. 6. You will find yourself making more steering corrections by trying to "dip" the bike into turns or pressing and releasing the bars several times in each turn. 7. You will notice a tendency to stiff arm the steering. 8. You will notice you are trying to steer the bike with your shoulders rather than you arms. You might find more symptoms but one or more of the above will be present on your bad side. Coaching The very best and simplest way I've found to cure this tendency to push the bike under is to have someone watch you while you do a quick flick, back and forth, steering drill in a parking lot. You have your friend stand at one point and you ride directly away from him or her as though you were weaving cones and then turn around and ride directly back at them weaving as quickly as you feel comfortable and at a speed you like, usually second gear. In that way your coach is able to see you either going with the bike at each steering change or they will see you and the bike crisscrossing back and forth from each other. As the coach, that's what you are looking for, the bike and the rider doing the same action, the rider's body is leaned over the same as the bike at each and every point from beginning of the steering action to the end. There is no trick to seeing this...it is obvious. For example, when they ride away from you, if you see the mirrors moving closer and further away from the rider's body, they are obviously not moving together. That's pushing the bike under rather than good steering. This is also the time to notice which side is the rider's bad side. The back and forth flicks will be hesitant on one side or the other. Remedies The entire purpose of this exercise is to have the rider get in better communication with his machine--going with it not against it--and not treating it as though it were a foreign object that he is wrestling to stay on top of or muscle it down like a rodeo rider. Often, it simply takes a reminder to loosen-up the upper body. Sometimes the rider needs to lean forward and imagine the tank and he are one and the same. On sportbikes, a full crouch over the tank can sometimes be the answer to link the rider with his bike, giving him a ready reference to it's physical attitude in relation to the road. Making sure the rider has some bend in his elbows while leaning forward slightly seems to help. Having them use palm pressure to steer the bike seems to resolve the tendency to muscle the bike over from side to side. Dropping the elbows so the forearm is more level with the tank makes the steering easier and promotes their going with the bike and takes them away from the stiff armed approach to steering. Reminders to relax the shoulders and let the arms do the work of steering also helps. End Result You stop doing the drill when the rider has the feeling he is in better control of the bike, when he has the idea of how easy and how much less effort it takes to steer; or when he feels comfortable with both rights and lefts. There could be other contributing factors like overly worn tires or a bent frame that would bring a genuine and justified anxiety to a right or left turn but I believe the above three reasons cover everything else and if you are anything like the hundreds of riders I've had do the above drill, you could use a little work on this area even if you don't have a bad side. I hope it helps. ? Keith Code 1996-1997
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