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Showing content with the highest reputation since 08/22/2019 in all areas

  1. 3 points
    Let's touch on one thing: bike doesn't turn as well when the throttle is on, even just maintenance throttle. When off throttle, bike weight is forward, more on the front, steering angle is steeper, wheelbase is shorter--the bike turns better. Does anyone know a single turn where braking is done, then gas on, then bike turned,? As mentioned earlier by trueblue550 (Streets of Willow Springs) there are series of turns where the throttle is stopped for a moment to complete the steering (T 4-5), or where rolling it on puts the rider too wide for the next turn in point (T5-T6). These are situations where there is a series of turns, the following one dictating the exit of the previous turn.
  2. 3 points
    I'll take a swing as well. I may be misreading the question but I don't believe it is an "either or". I believe the answer is "yes" to both sides of the question. First, I think the vast majority of today's motorcycles are designed for their intended use. In the broadest sense think dedicated dirt bikes, trials bikes, track bikes, touring bikes, etc. Their frame and steering geometry, suspension set-up, basic rider ergonomics, engine choices, etc., are all designed with a purpose or specific rider use in mind. However they are also designed within the limitations of today's technology and materials science knowledge, plus the economic realities and limits of what consumers will pay for a given motorcycle's capabilities. With regard to "do we need to do something to keep a motorcycle in its operating envelop", my initial reaction is to say we do it every single time we ride when managing things like throttle and acceleration levels, braking force, lean angles and traction limits for the specific riding situation we happen to be in. And we all know what can happen when we exceed an operating envelop. Just an add-on thought to this. What I love about many of today's motorcycles is how technology (e.g. ABS, traction control, engine braking, wheelie control, slide control, various riding modes, etc.) is being leveraged to help us safely stay within a motorcycle's operating envelop, AND that we can adjust the parameters of the envelop for our various skills and capabilities. I can't even imagine where motorcycle tech will be in another 20 years, but I know it will be fantastic! I've heard people say we're in the golden age of tire tech, but we might even be able to say that about the software / sensors / ECU technologies of today's motorcycles. Dave
  3. 2 points
    It's a big subject at the schools these days, we see it a lot. One point that comes up as the cause is....too low turn entry speed. But...that has to be brought up gradually, or one gets into the minus is too much entry speed, a challenge to juggle. If it were easy, likely wouldn't be so much fun when you get it right :).
  4. 2 points
    Hi Cobie. So I've been lurking here for awhile. This is as good a topic as any to dive in with a first post. For street bikes there are several upgrades I usually make. First I make sure the bike has the right spring rate set-up front and rear for my weight with gear. I ride a few different BMWs and Ducs and have found front springs in particular tend to be either one or two spring rate levels too soft. If so, then I'll swap out the springs. Will usually jump on a call with a suspension OEM's in-house expert to make sure I also have the right valving and oil level equation. Sometimes I will upgrade the entire front fork set-up, usually to a set of Ohlins R&Ts. Next are brakes. If a particular lever / master cylinder combination on a new bike has too much play at the hand controls and it can't be eliminated by simply adjusting lever distance, bleeding lines and changing brake fluid, or the brakes just tend to fade a tad too much during spirited rides (even after upgrading pads) then I'll put a quality Brembo or Magura setup on the bike. I'm always amazed at how much improvement one can get on a street bike by just dialing in the suspension and brakes so they truly work for you and how you ride. So these two "intelligent" bike upgrades would be the ones that really top the list for me. If I move down to what I would call second tier intelligent changes, next are lights. For road bikes I tend to add a set of Skene P3 rear LED brake / turn signal lights to the sides of the rear license plate frame. When you hit the brakes they have a very fast but short lived pulsing action that catches the attention of drivers behind you. The lights are small so they blend into the bike well visually. Over the last few years I've also been adding a set of small Clearwater lights as bright day-time running lights to the front of bikes I ride in heavy traffic. Atlanta traffic can be nuts at times and I've had situations in intersections where the Clearwater lights have caused a few drivers to think twice (you see a driver lurch their vehicle forward then stop) before pulling out, so they have definitely saved my butt. I usually add some simple crash protection to both side of the engine casing from the usual suspects - GB Racing, R&G, Gilles Tooling, Sato, Woodcraft, etc. I also like to use as a tank bag on my street bikes so I add a SW-Motech quick release tank ring as my preferred interface for attaching and moving tank bags from bike to bike. Sometimes I will upgrade rear sets if I find over time my leg position with the stock set-up needs some help. Although I do have to confess I have added some beautiful BMW HP rear sets to a few S1RRs and an S1XR for no good reason at all other than they looked great. Most of my road bikes also get a set of Tech-Spec tank pads. They not only help with leg lock-on in the twisties but also help protect the gas tank from scratches. If the bike will see more long distance travel I'll get a larger windscreen and change it out when I do multi-day rides. It is nice to get some relief from all the buffeting you get while highway riding. Last but not least, it is tough to do any distance riding without adding some kind of luggage. The majority of the time I use OEM bike-specific bags but have had great success with soft Wunderlisch, TourTech and Mosko-Moto bags. I'll add some thoughts about track bikes in a follow-on post. Carpe diem. See you in Sonoma. Dave
  5. 2 points
    On the street my absolute number one priority is safety. On the street I’m constantly trying to remain conscious of the variables outside of my control: most notably these include road conditions (loose gravel or a boulder in the middle of a blind turn), wildlife, oncoming traffic crossing over the double yellow, and the unimaginable/unexpected (like a Porsche making a 3-point U-turn in the middle of a blind corner on Mulholland, yes it happens). The most valuable tool I’ve learned from CSS for increased safety on the street is Wide Vision - without practicing wide vision it’s impossible to look through a corner and reserve attention/awareness for the unexpected. Wide vision and riding at 70-80% of my ability on the street has served me well. That way, hopefully, I become aware of the unexpected ASAP and I’ve got an extra $2-3 in savings to spend on it.
  6. 1 point
    I tried it once. Brake-Throttle-Turn. There’s a loop (or used to be) near me called “Harry S” (Truman Drive) a couple of long sweeping right turns, banked a little -a good place on the street to get the knee down. I found it could be a useful technique. I abandoned it when it betrayed me on the final left turn at home that day after many laps on Harry S- I lost the front trailing the brakes off (something slippery? - I felt it go- almost in slow motion) and broke my foot peg and a small foot bone. I found that the technique wasn’t at fault, my timing and application of it was, but it as a trained reaction contributed to the inability to recover after I felt the front bite again when the brakes released and the wheel roll. I needed that tire to press on the pavement and when the throttle was applied there wasn’t enough front traction to keep the rubber side down.
  7. 1 point
    Hello! My husband (Rob) and I (Linda) attended the SOW class. We are from Victoria BC. We had a blast! We are looking forward to getting our times 🤪 Hoping Coby got over his zombie vampire thing 😁
  8. 1 point
    Don't tell anyone, just continue to act immature (that's my story anyway).
  9. 1 point
    I did! Some silly minor eye infection, and I didn't have time to go to the doc! It was gone a day or so later, but yeah...small children and old people were warned to stay away.
  10. 1 point
    Been universally liked by most for the position, and the handling (I'm riding it more aggressively in the turns than I did my 2018.
  11. 1 point
    I know the video. I know the tuner and have had my bike tuned by him. I've consulted with him on reading my tires. The video confused me too, but only when trying to make it fit into CSS philosophy. He's not the only advocate of this timing method (I did a 2-up ride with such person who runs a long-standing school at an East Coast track). The best I can say about it, is that the goal is to untrain street habits with throttle shyness. However, it can become a potential issue if applied as a "this is how you ride' mantra as it will require the geometry to be setup with a bias to account for this style. Thanks for starting the discussion on it. I wanted to but didn't know a good way to discuss it; I'm glad you did.
  12. 1 point
    Two simple questions came up in class at CSS, and as you might suspect, the answers are not so simple. First: What did the engineers build your motorcycle to do? Second: What are you doing with your motorcycle? (or, What did that poor bike ever do to deserve that treatment?) These two questions have stayed with me every day since class. Here is a good example of why that is: Riding a long twisting downhill country road, but with traffic. Usually this is a favorite section, but at 45mph it's very boring. There is no place to pass, so you just have to ride it out. The easiest thing to do for me is to leave the bike in a mid-gear, 3rd or 4th, and let the massive engine braking of the boxer twin maintain the slow speed down the hill. Is this what the bike is designed to do? Absolutely not. Everything is wrong with this. All the drive gear is now loaded on the wrong side of the gear teeth, the rear tire is braking, but the suspension is loaded wrong because the braking force is not loading the brake calipers and effecting the swing arm member correctly. Add the fact that you are strangling the motor to produce drag. Then, you get to the bottom of the hill, and roll it on, shifting all the weight back to the rear wheel, unloading and the loading all the running gear on the opposite gear faces, and of course causing your engine to hiccup while fuel and air mix are adjusted to 'drive normal'. This transition is both sloppy and very uncomfortable. CSS informs me that the right move is to either ride the brakes down the hill consistent with design intent, or at a minimum clutch it before you hit the bottom of the hill to let the suspension heal, and then roll it on smooth to property load the bike. Long explanation, but you get the idea. Consciously trying to ride the bike the way it was designed to operate is actually much harder on the street than it is on the track, but there some rewards to be had in terms of machine wear and tear, and rider comfort. Plus, little things like suspension actually work if you consider what you are doing and why.
  13. 1 point
    Start rolling on the throttle as soon as the steering action is complete and you are on the correct line through the corner. If you charge the turn, or over-cook it, you will be struggling to get on the correct line, or maybe even to stay on the blacktop! If this happens, no doubt your roll-on will be delayed until you get pointed where you need to be. If the road is damp or grip is low, good throttle control is that much more important.
  14. 1 point
    The very first thing I learned from Keith was from that classroom scene in the TOTW II video: "Once the throttle is cracked open, it is rolled on evenly, smoothly and constantly throughout remainder of turn." In my opinion, when I feel I need maintenance throttle it is because my entry speed was too low. I can't imagine getting on the gas before turn in. In some sections like turns 4/5/6 at SOW, I may not ever close the throttle all the way but just stop rolling on while turning.
  15. 1 point
    I think back to the nearly unrideable bikes of my youth. The Kawasaki H2 750 leaps to mind. The bike was designed with the track in mind, and top riders at that. Then it was sold to the masses for use on the street. The power band was narrow, and when you hit it it hit very damn hard. 'learning' to ride it was just learning how to not die. The S1000RR on the track was my only experience with a sport bike, and for a machine with such big numbers in power and torque, it seemed like a cinch to ride. I have to assume it's not my native talent, so that would be software correcting for my attempts to push outside the design parameters due to ignorance, supporting what CoffeeFirst posted above. My new ride has ride modes, 4 from the factory and one you can edit at your peril. These are now a necessary part of the modern sport bike, precisely because they are for sale to people like myself that are enthusiasts that are STILL LEARNING. Meaning, of course, that we make a lot of errors. So, to Jaybird180 I would say that the ultimate goal of a rider may well be to learn to ride the bike to the edge of computer intervention. To actually know by experience and feel where the edges are before the nanny functions step in.
  16. 1 point
    +1 for less weight and more horsepower!
  17. 1 point
    Thanks. It actually has a dual meaning. First, I do love a great cup of coffee and rarely start my day without one. Second, the phrase is a simple self reminder to slow down, ask good questions and listen when diving into problem-solving mode. It first started years ago with a very wise admin I worked with who use to say to me "remember, coffee first" when she knew I was headed into a meeting to deal with a complex problem. The phrase has been with me for several decades now and usually serves me well. Dave
  18. 1 point
    Yeah, forgot the windscreen for track/sport bike - prefer clear and typically need something a bit taller to get behind in full tuck (especially noticeable/appreciated on the long back straight here at COTA).
  19. 1 point
    sticker sets are a good one, like that.
  20. 1 point
    Just one point to clarify (Hotfoot has good comments) and this is when slowing, the throttle is fully off in almost all instances--and always when braking.
  21. 1 point
    That looks like it could go a few places, so I'll take a swing: knowing what the machine can do is a starting point, and not an easy one for many to explore the limits of. Some find the limits incorrectly/prematurely (too tight on the bars, the bike gives too much feedback--person could get the idea the bike is at the limit).
  22. 1 point
  23. 1 point
    It was good to meet you too! This year has turned out to be a pretty good one, and now with the new bikes (I think there are multiple points that are improved on this compared to previous models, but they aren't bad by any means!). If you think of it, shoot me an e-mail when you register, and come say hello in the morning. Best, Cobie
  24. 1 point
    Trying to "crouch with your weight on the pegs at all times" would be very physically demanding. There are times when getting some weight off the seat is beneficial, like when riding over bumps, or to facilitate shifting across the seat (hip flick, from Level 3) but generally it is too exhausting to try never to put weight in the seat. You can find a lot of prior discussion on this topic if you do a search of the forum. Here is one thread to have a look at:
  25. 1 point
    It’s not necessarily an either/or, it’s both seat and pegs and depends on what stage of the corner I’d say. Weighting the outside peg to setup body position early for the turn (pushing off the outside peg to move my butt and create a good lock on the bike between ball of foot/toe to knee locked into tank) allows me to absorb braking forces with the lower body. Mid corner there is some weight on the seat from the thigh and one buttock (I’m not lifting my midsection off the bike with the pegs), but majority of weight and force is being supported by the outside peg to knee locked on tank connection. Once the corner ends (i.e. I can go WOT), I’ll support the majority of my weight and acceleration forces with my butt on the seat and back of seat, but I still have my legs/feet supported by the pegs (I’m never 100% weight on the seat either). I’ll stay on the right of the bike if I’ve got another right hander quickly ahead. If at corner exit, I’ve got a long straight ahead, I’ll go to “home position” as you call it, (most aerodynamic). If I’ve got a quick series of alternating turns, there’s no time to stay in home position, it’s knee to knee and side to side time.
  26. 1 point
    I think visual skills are far more important than the others listed. I think your school thinks so too You teach that and throttle control first because it's the foundation of all the other skills in that those two things keep you mentally ahead of the action unfolding in front of you. The only other thing I would add as a skill is being smooth and steady on the controls. If your vision and throttle control are good, I think you'll find that those quick reflexes, bravery, and other skills will get tested less often!!
  27. 1 point
    All good suggestions, including The Ridge. CF
  28. 1 point
    Laguna Seca has two uphill straights that are great opportunities to get the throttle wide open. You wouldn't get as high a top speed as you could at VIR, for example, but the uphill acceleration is REALLY fun and personally I have more fun laying on the power at Laguna than I do anywhere else, I love those straights there. However, having said that, it is common for it to be a bit cool at Laguna so it can be hard to keep enough heat in the tires to get maximum traction for cornering, compared to somewhere like VIR or Barber where the temps are usually high when we are there.
  29. 1 point
    This. You'll have so much fun no matter which track you choose. I did Laguna Seca for my level 1 and 2 training and It was fantastic, especially because it was right after the Motoamerica/WSBK weekend and I got to watch the races and then do the 2-day camp!
  30. 1 point
    You really can't go wrong with any of the tracks that CSS goes to. However, I would give the slight edge to Barber, VIR, and Laguna if you're making a big trip out of it. If you're open to the entire country, I would probably vote for Barber. It would be a heck of a long trip, and I would definitely recommend using the school's BMWs. Barber has a fantastic track and the museum is incredible. The museum is definitely a must-see. VIR flows incredibly well and has fun elevation changes. You would be running the North course. Beyond the track, VIR has great amenities. You can rent a room overlooking the front straight or stay at the inn, and it has a restaurant on site. Laguna is a legendary track, but the amenities definitely are lacking compared to Barber and VIR. However, Monterey as a whole does make up for the extra frills that the track lacks. Also, do not worry about the straight. It is plenty long enough to scare yourself, especially if it your first time on track. On that note, even though VIR may seem like it has a long front straight, it definitely has a strong kink at speed. Although I would vote for Barber first, I will also say that Laguna days are harder and harder to come by. To that extent, you might want to do Laguna Seca sooner than later before the ridiculous neighbors finally make the track costs astronomical. (I fear that day will happen in the not too distant future). You really can't go wrong with any of them. But really consider renting their bikes. *knock on wood* The biggest issue I have with riding to the track is what happens if you crash. Odds are, the motorcycle will sustain damage and require repairs. Additionally, there is always the risk of bodily injury preventing riding home even if the bike is fine. If you have contingency plans ready, then that's one thing. I always prefer to drive or fly-in.
  31. 1 point
  32. 1 point
    How did you watch racing in the stone age?
  33. 1 point
    The only reason there are no female racers in the MotoGP class is that too few enter at the bottom as youth racers. It probably takes between 3,000 and 5,000 youth racers to eventually end up with one who is capable of racing at the highest level. This includes having the family with the means and support and Olympic-level dedication to the child to make it past all the barriers to succeed.
  34. 1 point
    I have not re-read that section specifically to answer this, but I am going to have a go anyway based on my understanding of the subject... WHEN exactly should you start your roll-on? When you have completed your turn-in and are satisfied with where the bike is pointed - as soon as possible. How MUCH should you roll on? Enough to transfer the weight to the rear tyre to achieve optimum cornering load on the tyres (40/60) How does good throttle control affect the suspension and traction? Suspension is now in the most usable range (middle third) and traction is optimised by giving each tyre the amount of load determined by the size of contact patch (40/60) Is it possible to roll-on too early? If so, when would be too early and how would that affect your line? It IS possible to roll on too early. Too early would be before you have completed the turn in, and before you have the bike pointed in the right direction. This would make your line widen. What happens if you roll on too LATE? Rolling on too late - hmmm... You would be loading the front for too long in the corner, suspension loaded, tyre loaded, scrub off alot of speed, therefore may get gas greedy to try to make up for it... Also, the bike's tendency is to go wide, and you would have to steer the bike in more and more to keep your line, therefore increasing lean angle unnecessarily... And suspension will be compressed, so possibility of dragging hard parts and lifting a tyre perhaps?? What happens if you roll on too MUCH? Roll on too much will make the bike go wide by extending the front forks too much too quickly. Worst case you can break traction of the rear tyre and SR#1 can kick in (chopping throttle) and turn into a high side... But Throttle Control Rule # 1 would have prevented all of this. Once it is cracked on (as soon as possible after the turn in is completed), it should be rolled on smoothly, evenly and constantly for the remainder of the corner. Even in the case of rear wheel slide, checking the throttle can regain traction gradually, where chopping it obviously creates a violent regaining of traction... So... How'd I do??
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