Jaybird180

Better Body Position for Steering

5 posts in this topic

One of the things that I continue to work on is effective steering. My confession is that I don't Quicksteer well enough. Leading up to that is that my body position doesn't lend itself very well to being in-line with the plane of rotation of the bars.

My new bike's clip-ons are pretty low and being a tall guy, I have to sit mostly to the back of the seat or hunch over significantly to get in-line to steer rather than push down on the bars (bad). Sitting that far aft of the CoG comes with another compromise in how aggressive I can get on the gas, considering that I don't have wheelie control on my analog literbike AND the fact that with a brand new chain & sprockets my wheel base is in factory specs, which is wee bit shorter than it has ever been during my short ownership.

I'm considering a set of bar risers that will bring the clip-ons higher. I've read good reviews on the Apex brand that gives a 2" increase and I'm thinking long and hard about making the change- it will also require a change to the hydraulic lines. Their 3" kit will require a change to the throttle cable and probably anything higher will require a change to the upper fairing.

My thoughts are that it would be a good ergonomic mod for me however I'm thinking about how it will affect my steering. I can't think of any cons to making the change other than the expense of new hydraulic lines- which I was thinking about doing anyhow- but they must be cut to spec given the need for another 2 (or 3) inches.

OTOH, perhaps there's something that's been overlooked in my steering technique itself. Scooting back was the solution provided at my days at the school and I'm not sure but I'm leaning toward  it being a possible contributor to my back pain, the onset of which came with it's own cornering challenges.

Scratching for ideas and a solution here.

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MOTORRAD tested a ZX-7R (so a long time ago) stock and with 4 inch riser. Eveybody went significantly faster through the slalom tests with the taller bars. The less experienced riders gained more than the experienced racer. After doing a ton of laps, pushing himself to his limits, the racer finally managed to set the fastest time around the race track with the stock bars - it was a pride thing for him - but it took a lot more effort to ride with the lower handlebars.

Take a look at the handlebars used in the early Superbikes AMA days. Pretty tall and especially wide to gain leverage. Now look at the handlebars of Kenny Schwantz' RG500. That's a bike only 285 lb light, yet Kevin still had wide and tall bars compared to most of his competitors. 

In my humble opinion, you would love moving the handlebars up.

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What are the designers trying to achieve with low bars?

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When I shop for clothes I always have to take into account my requirement for long sleeves. Couple that with a torso thats taller than average and it's a non-aerodynamic recipe. It's one of the fun things about engineering- making wise compromises.

I would just like to be able to get through a full track session at 80%+ without cramping.

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