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Stroker

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Hey guys,

 

So i suited up and found a place where i can practice going round in circles.I had a friend take some pics, and made some very interesting observations besides.Please critique my body position and help me solve these problems.

 

https://picasaweb.google.com/Arpithc/BodyPosition1?authkey=Gv1sRgCMGDqfHCotvnvAE

 

Observations -

 

1. Left turns are easier than right turns.I can hold a constant radius circle and feel fairly relaxed while at it.The pictures are while i was taking left turns.Did not have the sense to click pics of right turns.

 

2. It was my first time in race boots and a suit and it was awkward.I am yet to get used to the feeling.

 

3. I was dipping in and out of right turns.My inside arm felt tired cause i was putting too much pressure on it.I have a feeling i was afraid of right turns for some reason..? I had noticed this discomfort with right turns earlier also.

 

4. i felt like i was leaning a fair bit but there was a lot more lean angle left as seen from the pics.I have not used the rear tire fully as you can see from the pics.

 

5. I had used the front tire fully on both sides.

 

6. My helmet obscured my vision a bit.

 

7. I love my bke.... :D:D

 

Goals -

 

1.How do i start to explore leaning further and using the rear tire more? I don't want to lean for no reason, but i do want to learn to be able to do it at will without fear.

 

2. How do i get comfortable on the right hand turns?

 

3. How do i differentiate between turning more and leaning more? I am not sure what makes the bike lean more and what makes it turn more? Or maybe i am confused in this matter because i felt i was falling off the edge of the world when i tried running circles in earnest.

 

4. Improving body position as suggested.

 

5. Vision when leaned over.....everything looks tilted.What is the correct way to see when leaned over?

 

Thanks

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3. How do i differentiate between turning more and leaning more? I am not sure what makes the bike lean more and what makes it turn more? Or maybe i am confused in this matter because i felt i was falling off the edge of the world when i tried running circles in earnest.

 

 

Stroker,

 

You were describing a circle of constant radius; therefore, you were turning the same.

In order to turn around a tighter circle (smaller radius), you need to turn the handlebar more.

 

While describing a circle of constant radius, more speed requires more lean angle and vice-verse.

The bike must be leaned in order to keep balance between the weight and the lateral (skidding) forces that act on both contact patches when turning.

Those lateral forces are higher for higher speeds and lower for lower speeds.

 

Use these threads as reference:

 

http://forums.superbikeschool.com/index.php?showtopic=3303

 

http://forums.superbikeschool.com/index.php?showtopic=3320

 

http://forums.superbikeschool.com/index.php?showtopic=4128

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Looks like you are making some good progress.

 

It was difficult to see from the photos but.... Make sure the ball of your foot is on the tip of the peg. As you get lower in the corners eventually the tip of your toe will touch the surface. The ball on the tip of the peg provides a pivot point for your foot and gets it further away from the track surface. It's something I still have to actively remind myself of.

 

A few years ago I did something similar myself with a large parking lot. I was not 100% comfortable getting in the hang off position and was not thrilled with the prospect of experimenting around at the track or on the street where I could make a painful mistake. A large parking lot worked really well for me. What also worked well for me is to have a friend take photographs as I was trying to hang off. Much like you are doing.

 

A parking lot works well for turns because you can do left and right transitions and if you make a mistake it's not that big of a deal. The only problem of course is debris. My afternoon of becoming more comfortable hanging off cost me a rear tire when I ran over a screw. It was well worth it. If you have a photographer and they are the brave type get them to stand in the middle of the parking lot and pivot around pretty close. They can turn with you and take photos and you can see mistakes and work on resolving them.

 

Here's a photo of me making my camera equipped friend nervous. Notice my low foot (its lower in other photos). Notice also my inside elbow is not extended and my head is still pretty high. I could probably also slide my butt a lot more to the inside. Not bad for a first try though. After that afternoon of practice and understanding what would happen hanging off never bothered me again. It has however been an area I have had to continue to refine as I have learned more.

 

IMG_4038.JPG

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More on the toe thing. Here's a photo for an example. If the rider in that photo increased lean angle what would touch first? Knee slider or toe tip?

 

IMG_0580.JPG

 

It unfortunately was not the knee slider that touched. :)

 

IMG_20130602_173648.jpg

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Thanks Robert - Interesting that we did the same thing.I too noticed the body position was way off but just getting used to the suit and boots will take a while i think.

 

Thanks Lnewqban - Ill check those threads.

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I'll add a few comments.

 

I'm not crazy about the location you chose for practice. It looks like a concrete surface and may be kind of dusty. More importantly, as your speed increases if you make a mistake you are going to run into that curb pretty quickly. I like rchase's idea of a big open parking lot much better, assuming you can find one with a clean surface.

 

I think your body position is pretty good for the speed you are going. You definitely want to get your head (eyes) up a bit, but I think that will be easier in a more open area where you are not in such danger of running out of room. The good thing is that you have the center of your upper body well to the inside of the steering stem (i.e., you are not crossed up on the bike), which is one of the harder things for new riders to accomplish. When you are riding somewhere where you are not just going in circles, try to always "commit" your upper body to the inside of each turn in this way.

 

I am a little concerned about your tires, and wonder what other forum members think. In my experience it is unusual to run the front tire to the edges while the rear has so much unused rubber left. More often it is the opposite. There is a *lot* of lean angle potential left in your bike, but I am not sure I can say the same for your front tire. This worries me a little and I wonder if the tire is the correct width for the rim. It could just be that this tire does not have a very sporting profile. Either way I don't like it.

 

Edit: Oh, and I think it is pretty common to favor turning in one direction over the other. Me, I prefer lefts as well. In my case that got better as I was using the bars less and less to hold myself on the bike, and using my legs more for that purpose. Once your hands are really just working the controls and not supporting your weight, it matters less if your throttle hand in on the high side or the low side. That's not the whole reason for preferring one direction over the other, but it can be part of it.

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I'll add a few comments.

.........

 

Very good observations, YellowDuck!

 

The coefficient of friction between rubber and concrete is lower than between rubber and asphalt; hence, less lean angle can be reached before sliding one or both tires.

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There are no open parking lots in India....people park anywhere they want, any way they want.People also dont spend money on paved parking....it's just a dusty field most of the time.


There is some dust on the surface...but not worrysome.


I agree the front tire is a cause for concern.The public expect large rear tires on bikes here.It is possible that Yamaha went for a large rear tire simply for that reason as the earlier model was criticized for having a skinny rear tire.However, using the front tire to the edges at such modest lean angles certainly is alarming.In fact, i would have expected a good 0.5 inch on either side to unused. I will do the same thing tomorrow and make more observations.


I do not have the finances to get the front tire changed yet, but i shall do at the first opportunity.It has locked up at modest brake pressures on our dusty roads.


If i am running out of front tire....what are the warning signs?? I would like to know what it feels like when the front tire can't support the lean angle required.

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You could start running wide (front end pushing), or you could start getting little slips on the front tire that you can feel. If you have ever run over a small strip of sand or something slick while leaned over on a motorcycle or bike and felt a small sideslip - it can feel like that. But, if your technique is not good or your body position is not good or the surface is bumpy or inconsistent, you may not get much of a warning, the front end could slide out entirely. It is best to have good body position and be REALLY relaxed on the bars, to give the front end the best chance to correct and recover if it starts to slide. Grabbing the bars tightly makes a slide worse, being relaxed gives it a better chance to move and correct and regain traction.

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Hey guys, i took some more pics of both the inside and outside of the right and left turns respectively.As you can see my right turns are quite bad.I feel i am holding my inside arm stiff? Please look through the pics and help me improve.There are multiple angles, and hopefully you can get more from them.

 

https://picasaweb.google.com/Arpithc/BodyPosition2?authkey=Gv1sRgCKv3iceG2ZrJKw

 

Thanks for the advice HF and everyone else.Feel free to point out even the slightest mistakes.I fear there are many.

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Stroker, it looks to me as you are not bending your right elbow as much, aa your left elbow. So your entire body position becomes much taller.

 

On the left-turn pictures, it also looks like your pelvis is pushed up against the fuel tank.

Try sliding a bit back (about a fists' size), this should allow you to move easier from side to side and possibly also make it easier to crouch further down.

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Stroker, take a look at your left hand position on the left grip while turning left then do the same for the right turns. What do you notice that is different?

Also, it looks like you are looking down more when turning right, but it could be the camera angle making it look that way.

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My observations -

 

1. Outside foot lock on the pegs could be better on both sides.

 

2. Sitting too close to the tank.

 

3. Holding the right arm stiff on right turns.Holding the bars too tight as well.

 

4. Need to drop the right elbow more.

 

5. Need to get butt off the seat more.

 

6. Need to stick knee out more?

 

7. Need to look up and around the turns more.

 

8. Need to lean in the direction of the turn in right turns.

 

9. Need to get more weight forward aka hook turn?

 

I want to incorporate the " Pivot steer " technique.But i am not sure how much to press on the outside peg and for how long?

 

I also want to hang off more and run more lean angle.I want to start feeling how the bike feels on the edge of the tires....in a safe and progressive manner.

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Stroker, pick one or two of the items that you listed and get them correct. Then continue on to the next one or two, etc... by then you will be very aware of what you need to accomplish. Taking each as a separate task will not overload your brain trying to get them all right at once. Become comfortable with one then move on to the next, there may even be the possibility that you take care of another riding issue in the same process ;)

 

Good luck and keep at it!

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Hi Guys,

 

The racing season here starts in June, at this track -

 

How do i best prepare for this track? The track is fairly tight and twisty.The bike used is kinda like what i will be using, and the speedo is indicating in KPH.I cannot visit the track before the races, so do help me figure of what to do when i get there before hand.

 

I don't have access to a track in my city so i can't really practice either.

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I'm not sure how fast you're going, but from the pictures, it doesn't look like you're countersteering. Looks like a lot of hang off but maybe not enough input into the handle bars. In most of the pictures, it looks like the you're turning into the turn, rather than away. It might be due to the fact that you're not going fast enough to need to, but countersteering the bike will definitely give you more of a lean angle as the bike will fall over.

 

And I don't mean to be discouraging, but maybe it's not the right time to start thinking about racing. Do you have a lot of trackdays under your belt?

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Learning new tracks is easy and you are on the right track already locating youtube videos. Get a map of the track as well and try to correlate the video to where they are on the track map. On tracks I know well I can describe some amazing detail. On new tracks I know perhaps it's a right hand turn but I can't describe camber or the surface.

 

You can't learn everything from the track map or through videos. Its best to take it slow at first and make a point to observe. At the school they have a SUPER helpful drill where you ride down the middle and at the edges of the track. It's amazing how different the track is from varying perspectives. One other tidbit. In learning from youtube you are assuming that the rider has a good line. If they don't what you see will be completely different when you are on the track yourself.

 

Once you really fully learn a track you should be able to ride it in your mind and be able to visualize every element including turns, gear changes turn points and brake markers. Unfortunately that takes a lot more laps than I have under my belt to pull that off.

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At the school they have a SUPER helpful drill where you ride down the middle and at the edges of the track. It's amazing how different the track is from varying perspectives.

 

Finding lines or attack angles opens up a whole new world for many riders. If everyone always followed the same line, noone would pass anybody.

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Stroker, that is a tight track. From watching, it looks like whom ever did the video did a nice job even if the camera mount may not be the best. I would try to find better videos of the track, unless the track is that rough. If the track is as rough as it seems in the video I would look for different lines around those sections until I became more comfortable riding at speed on the track. You may even find a better line like csmith mentioned.

 

@Steven, It is not Stroker riding the track, it is a video of an upcoming track that Stroker intends on riding. Good observation on the lack of counter steering.

 

Bonus question: How many people are standing at the start finish when the video begins and ends?

Bonus question X2: Did you look or did you notice as you rode past?

 

 

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Steven - I countersteered to initiate the turn and ceased input after.The bike is holding the line after that.

 

I have tried to watch as many videos of the track as possible.There are some more i have found, and i will be looking at them closely.This one offers more perspective as to how bumpy the track is -

 

 

I must be careful about the lines taken, and explore multiple lines as suggested.

 

What is your opinion about trailing the brakes to tighten the turns a bit?

 

This is the newest video i could find, and maybe offers the most current view of the track.

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Oh wow!!! That track looks like serious fun!

 

Meh... so it's bumpy, don't let the bumps get in your head. I spent last season racing on the track in the video below, after you get accustom to the bike moving around under you, the bumps can be super fun!!! Just remember to ride light and loose. :)

 

 

 

To prep for riding/racing there, I would do a few things;

Research the suspension changes that other riders are making for this track. - Not all tracks are created equal, some require you to turn a knob or two to go race pace with confidence in the corners.

Walk the track!!! - If you can. Video and speed can skew what is really there.

Work on quick flick, hip flick and knee to knee - This will help out in too many ways to list, from helping with rider fatigue, to faster lap times.

Reference points are gunna be important.

Work on some endurance, that track will try to wear you out. Work smarter, not harder. I would bet this track will reward you 10 fold if you relax.

 

In your free time, ride some Mt. Bikes off road. Try to work on staying loose!!!

 

Good luck and have fun!

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