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Riding Out A Front End Slide


faffi
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Yesterday, with a low sun in my face, I hit upon something slippery while cornering at a brisk clip. I did see it before I hit it, but not soon enough to stop or alter my trajectory enough to avoid it.

 

There was one section about 20 inches wide covered with either flattened manure or sand (cannot tell for sure, but for the next miles there were splatter of turd many places) followed by an equally width of clean road before another 3 feet wide strip going into the ditch covered with the same stuff. A solid mountain wall was waiting beyond the ditch.

 

Now, I am the type that often stiffens up under panic and tend to use too much force, be it on the brakes or steering or whatever, but I somehow managed to stay relaxed on the bars and rolled just enough out of the throttle for the bike to freewheel.

 

The front end slid about 2 feet sideways before it gripped gently back. Once onto the apparently clean part, I fed in some rear brake gently and reduced the lean as much as possible. I continued through the clean part - at this stage not sure that it was clean or just cleaner or if my tyres were now covered in muck or not - with the rear brake on, then let it off as I wandered over onto the next dirty section. I chose to use the whole road which enabled me to end the corner with virtually no lean instead of forcing the bike to stick to the clean part.

 

This went well, obviously, but I would like to know if my actions seems appropriate, or if I did things wrongly and was saved by pure luck only.

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I really enjoy hearing of stories like this, it's even better when it's first hand, coming from the rider who made it through!

 

Why? Sure, this goes to show the work Keith started back in the 60's is helping people today, but what really gets me stoked is it also shows that everyday mortals such as you and I can decide to apply this technology with great effect, giving us a greater level of control.

 

Eirik, I'm sure you can appreciate staying relaxed on the bars allowed the motorcycle the greatest potential for traction, the roll-off does put more weight on the front which can promote further sliding but was this done after you had front traction again? The important point was you showed control over your relaxed posture. That's a huge win!

You then wisely slowed your motorcycle down in the narrow band of cleaner pavement in preparation for the slippery stuff, which in turn allowed you to hit it with less lean, and it worked a treat.

 

Reverse the situation, say instead of relaxing you went rock solid tight, I'd suggest today's post from you would be worded quite differently. Way to go Eirik! Learning the technology is a great thing, being able to apply it when you really need it - it's a whole new level since your winning the war against your survival reactions. Which can be a great personal challenge for anyone!

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Eirik, I'm sure you can appreciate staying relaxed on the bars allowed the motorcycle the greatest potential for traction, the roll-off does put more weight on the front which can promote further sliding but was this done after you had front traction again?

 

At first, I just rolled off enough throttle to go from acceleration to neutral - no drive or braking, like pulling the clutch, really - and then I rolled off completely once the front end stopped sliding.

 

It really took some effort to stay relaxed - there were electrical signals tingling my whole body biggrin.gif But yes, it was nice to be able to control my reflexes. Having read so much about staying relaxed here and also constantly practicing it on the road has really elevated my ability to ride the motorcycle under control, which goes to show you really can teach old dogs how to bark tongue.gif

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Eirik, I'm sure you can appreciate staying relaxed on the bars allowed the motorcycle the greatest potential for traction, the roll-off does put more weight on the front which can promote further sliding but was this done after you had front traction again?

 

At first, I just rolled off enough throttle to go from acceleration to neutral - no drive or braking, like pulling the clutch, really - and then I rolled off completely once the front end stopped sliding.

 

It really took some effort to stay relaxed - there were electrical signals tingling my whole body biggrin.gif But yes, it was nice to be able to control my reflexes. Having read so much about staying relaxed here and also constantly practicing it on the road has really elevated my ability to ride the motorcycle under control, which goes to show you really can teach old dogs how to bark tongue.gif

 

Good job Eiik!

 

Rolling off the throttle all the way would have loaded the front too much, you would have lost it fairly certainly.

 

CF

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