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Braking Deeper


aslcbr600
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One of my biggest struggles I am having is setting my braking points and braking properly without undershooting myself slower then I wanted to enter the turn. I picked up KC's book "the soft science of riding" and the one thing that caught my attention was when KC was talking about understanding the difference of the forces of braking and the actual slowing down of the speed.

 

I think what my issue is I am either going off the braking forces or how hard I apply the brakes is inconsistent....honestly probably a mix of both but more so how hard I apply the brakes.

 

My question is should I be setting my braking points deeper or should I be keeping the points the same and then work on the technique of applying the brakes? I realize that if I am approaching slower into the corner then I wanted to that I could set my points deeper, however setting braking points is easier to learn and adjust then getting the feel for my brakes.

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Deeper points may worsen your braking inconsistency, since you will have less error margin (regarding space and time).

 

The proper technique is to reduce a gross amount of speed first (harder braking) and to fine tune the entry speed later (lighter braking).

 

Maybe simultaneous downshifting disturbs your action on the front brake lever?

 

These articles may help you pinpoint your difficulty:

 

http://forums.superb...p?showtopic=258

 

http://forums.superb...p?showtopic=310

 

Some time ago, I started this related thread and received priceless advice from other members:

 

http://forums.superb...wtopic=3399&hl=

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Hmmm.......well let me explain what exactly happens, so I am coming off of 4th gear down shifting into 3rd and applying the brakes. I don't just grab a hand full of brake I progressively squeeze the brake lever and then I brake hard, once my hard braking is done I realize "###### now I am going too slow" and I am back to the gas and using my throttle to set my turn entry speed instead of the brakes..... :angry:

 

So I know that tells me my braking points could be much deeper, however I feel like how I squeeze the brake lever is still inconsistent maybe not in a huge way but enough to notice a difference that is inconsistent.

 

ace:

 

Doesn't your braking points reflect setting your speed? You must have some RP other then your turn point to achieve your desired entry speed?

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Hmmm.......well let me explain what exactly happens, so I am coming off of 4th gear down shifting into 3rd and applying the brakes. I don't just grab a hand full of brake I progressively squeeze the brake lever and then I brake hard.....

 

It seems that your problem is not accurately estimating the entry speed (for which the No-brakes drill described in the second link of my previous post works great), since you realize that your entry speed is too low.

 

Your problem seems to be over-estimating the real speed that you carry at the end of your braking phase.

Maybe the deceleration forces fool you on thinking that you are still above the entry speed that you have estimated.

 

I would reverse the downshifting and braking steps that you have described:

Look far away - hard braking (80% of the speed to be reduced) - downshifting - look far away - light braking (20% of the speed to be reduced).

 

In that more natural way, more of your attention is liberated to improve your perception of speed and your eyes "see" less speed.

Worse case scenario, you realize that you are still carrying too much speed: just apply some more light trail braking (fine tuning of speed) while you lean the bike.

 

You can set a RP for start the braking-downshifting phase.

You should not, however, target fix on that or any other RP.

Keeping track of them only with your peripheral view, will help you to feel your actual speed more accurately.

 

This article will explain it better:

 

http://forums.superbikeschool.com/index.php?showtopic=978

 

Deeper braking will make things more difficult for you, in my humble opinion.

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I have done the no brakes drill and I don't cut myself short on the entry speed, the problem I am running into isn't that I feel I can take the corner faster because I know I can it's that I am not judging my braking distance correctly.

 

I come up to the corner and apply the brakes, however I slow the bike down too hard too early because my entry speed isn't where I want it so I find myself getting back to the gas to up my speed. Or I find myself neutral throttle holding my speed too long before the corner where I feel like I could have braked much later and stayed on the gas.

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I have done the no brakes drill and I don't cut myself short on the entry speed, the problem I am running into isn't that I feel I can take the corner faster because I know I can it's that I am not judging my braking distance correctly.

 

I come up to the corner and apply the brakes, however I slow the bike down too hard too early because my entry speed isn't where I want it so I find myself getting back to the gas to up my speed. Or I find myself neutral throttle holding my speed too long before the corner where I feel like I could have braked much later and stayed on the gas.

 

well you just answered your own question partially :)

 

I persionally would work on applying the brakes in a much more linear fashion to avoid upsetting the bike at the point of turning.

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.........I come up to the corner and apply the brakes, however I slow the bike down too hard too early because my entry speed isn't where I want it so I find myself getting back to the gas to up my speed. Or I find myself neutral throttle holding my speed too long before the corner where I feel like I could have braked much later and stayed on the gas.

 

Charging a corner (late braking) is not the fastest way to go through it, later turn-in is.

There is no much time lost if the bike coasts a little between off the brakes, late entry and quick flicking (you enter late and quick flick, don't you?).

 

"If you were to practice one thing in your riding, I'd recommend you become comfortable with slightly later turn-in points. It's common knowledge that you have a better line of sight through any bend from a later turn-in point.

One of the things that keeps riders from practicing this is they're not smooth in their transition; it feels too abrupt. You can become smooth, but overcoming the early turn-in solves many more problems than it creates, so you put up with the not-so-smooth until you gain some confidence in your later entries." - Keith Code

 

http://www.motorcycl...ing_motorcycle/

 

One of the advantages of fine tuning the entry speed with lighter braking at the end of the deceleration phase is that the suspension gets a smoother transition of weight from the front to the rear during brake release, which improves overall traction.

 

You only have your balance (associated to G forces) and vision senses to evaluate and judge entry speed.

I would work on improving vision techniques first and off-the-brakes smoothness later.

 

Check these additional articles:

 

http://www.motorcycl...orcycle_riding/

 

http://www.motorcycl..._smooth_riding/

 

http://www.motorcycl...blem_of_vision/

 

http://www.motorcycl..._a_trained_eye/

 

http://www.motorcycl...ics_code_break/

 

http://www.sportride...al/viewall.html

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I am unsure how it is instructed at CSS but what I was taught was to pick a braking reference point with a large margin of error, get comfortable with it, move it a bike length deeper and get comfortable with that. Repeat until very mild SR's trigger. Be mindful that some SR's are very very subtle. When you find that point, stay there until it's comfortable and you can perform good cornering technique throughout.

 

I see a couple of other things here;

 

How are your visual skills? What are you looking at and when? May I suggest starting with the 2step drill to get a handle on your visual skills so you can more accurately control the bike based on the information that really matters.

How long does it take you to load the front before the hard braking (while straight up and down)?

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I do quick flick and late turn in points using the 2step drill, it doesn't feel abrupt to me because I make sure to also make the quick flick smooth and not just throw the bike onto it's side.

 

Going down the straight I am focused down not what's immediately in front of me, then I as I get the bike slowed down enough I then get out of the full tuck and continue looking out. Once I feel that I have set my speed I come to realize that it's slower then I wanted to enter the corner and I am neutral throttle for too long, way too long in my opinion....in other words I have enough time to get back to the gas for a higher turn entry speed BUT without charging the turn. I don't snap the gas and roll off as the turn comes.

 

How long does it take you to load the front before the hard braking (while straight up and down)?

 

Honestly on this I can't really say and this is why I feel like my braking process is inconsistent, it's not the quick flick, I am not charging the turns, I am using the 2step drill and I have done all of the same corners with the no brakes drill without undershooting my entry speed.

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Ah... I see. Sounds like you may benefit greatly by riding the braking bike at CSS. I learned what my brakes were capable of by research, asking questions, the school of hard knocks and trial and error. :(

 

I am sure you know but a well set up bike can scrub A LOT of speed in a very short distance. For example; I go from 145ish mph to 85ish mph in about 350ft coming up on turn 7 at Mid-Ohio. I don't like to tell anyone it just takes seat time instead I like to say, it takes "seat time with goals" to get to intimately know your bikes brakes as they relate to your skills. You will know when you get to that point when your braking marker is deep, the rear may float just off the ground from time to time, and your entry speed is comfortable. It takes faith in your bikes brakes, traction and even more faith in yourself that you can get the bike slowed down enough to make the turn in point at a controllable speed. I am not sure if it's right or wrong but I load the front with a quick roll off to zero throttle at my braking marker to initially load the front, before a progressively harder (but quick) squeeze of the front brake. This happens in around 2 seconds. Once the front is fully loaded up, I start to blip down gears.

 

In the end, it sounds like your fighting one of the big SR's (over-braking). Let's look at this a different way.... What triggers your need to brake so early?

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.......Honestly on this I can't really say and this is why I feel like my braking process is inconsistent, it's not the quick flick, I am not charging the turns, I am using the 2step drill and I have done all of the same corners with the no brakes drill without undershooting my entry speed.

 

More than inconsistent, your pre-turn braking seems to be consistently excessive.

 

"There are two primary methods of braking for a corner: straight-up braking, where you complete braking before turn-in, and trail braking, where you stay on the brakes after turning and feather off brake pressure as you near the apex........

Straight-up braking inspires less physical drama, but still demands intense attention from the rider. In some cases, completing the braking act before you turn is more difficult than trail braking to the apex. In this case, the bike's turning arc must be established before the turn is initiated. The ability to predict line, apex and exit is vital. This requires, among other things, superlative visual skills. In addition, quick and accurate steering is a must. The rider must have enormous confidence in front and rear tire grip before flicking the bike into the turn. Coordinating brake release and turn-in steering actions must be spot-on, or the suspension will rebound as the bike is entering the turn. This all requires deft coordination and impeccable timing..........when you consider the judgment and coordination demanded to skillfully execute quick and accurate straight-up braking entries, I'm not convinced trail braking is the more advanced technique. It may be the other way around." - Keith Code

 

http://www.motorcycl.../#ixzz2GBdUnMtt

 

The previous statements explain that your style of braking is hard to achieve properly.

Your problem makes you underperform on the safe side.

 

Could it be that you have crashed before due to under-braking, and some SR is working at sub-conscious level, making you over-brake?

 

"You could say that the best riders make the best decisions: when to brake, how hard to brake, when and how hard to roll on the throttle, where to turn, etc. Let’s look at the same thing from another angle: A good rider also knows when not to do something.

Here’s an example: A rider enters a corner, and things seem okay as he tips in. As he approaches the middle of the turn, he becomes concerned about his entrance speed and, although he’s not running wide, he gets the idea that he might run wide. He then launches a preemptive strike on the problem that doesn’t exist......

 

If we look at preemptive strikes as riding problems, we find that what we are really dealing with are riders’ uncertainties. Resolving those uncertainties has been a major part of my job for the last 34 years. A rider goes into a turn, becomes uncertain, and then starts giving the bike all manner of control inputs that he thinks will make him certain and comfortable? I think not. That’s like stabbing at random buttons on a large machine to try and control it.

If we break down terms like certainty and confidence, we find the common denominator of a predictable result. Gaining certainty or confidence is something we do have a solution for, and here’s how it breaks down: 1) Practice one individual skill at a time; 2) While doing so, ride at about 75 percent of your limit; and 3) From there, incrementally increase your pace." - Keith Code

 

http://www.motorcycl.../#ixzz2GBfyg9cd

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I haven't tried trailbraking yet because I didn't want to have SR's flaring up if I screwed up the process. When I had my CBR600RR it had OEM pads, stock brake lines and rotors, on the Daytona 675 it had EBC race pads, braided lines and Nissin brakes instead of the tokico brakes. It was a HUGE difference in stopping power but I feel like I couldn't change the habit of riding the CBR on the braking side of things.

 

Not trying to take the rider out of the equation but the suspension was also setup for a 200lbs rider and I am 180 at best with gear on, I didn't bother getting the suspension re-sprung because I knew I was going to resell the bike and get something else. So the suspension was very stiff and it was hard for me to even get any real feedback from the bike on how much the front was compressing and the rear end of the bike barely felt like it was compressing when rolling on the throttle through the turns.

 

Now I don't have much experience with high speed braking, I just really feel like my braking is my weakest point for so many reasons like perception of speed (visual skills) consistency of over braking (probably SR's being triggered) and just lack of experience with such a big jump in braking power upgrades.

 

On the CBR I have locked up the front brake before and got the front to rapidly chatter but I didn't panic, didn't crash, I was still maintaining my direction of travel and just naturally fixed the issue. Never locked up the front brake on the 675 though and never really got a whole lot of seat time on that bike either. It wasn't a bike I was very comfortable on, in fact I hated it compared to the CBR but it was still a fun bike to ride just didn't mesh with me that well.

 

Oh and the reason the front brake locked was because I was still new to riding and a car in front of me slammed on their brakes and so I was in a bit of a panic. Only happened that one time though!

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To the OP; To me, it seems like you are asking how to set your braking start points, while admitting that your braking actions may be inconsistent.

 

I'll be starting my 3rd year racing next year, and up until the middle of last year I didn't have braking start points. In many corners, I still don't. What I have been using are braking end points (my turn point). If my attention is focused down the track, and I know how fast I want to be when I get to my turn point, the control of speed becomes much easier to modulate. Granted, this doesn't have me using 100% braking all the time, but it does usually have me releasing the brake lever as I tip the bike in. The timing is much easier.

 

Otherwise, you need to accurately pick your start point, consistently apply your brakes exactly at some pre-determined level, and hopefully do it perfectly to end up at your tip-in point. Unfortunately, you end up focusing on your braking application instead of your entry speed, and the final outcome is much harder to manage.

 

Mid season, I added using start points as a gentle reminder on blind corners (still on the track). I see the start point, start applying the brakes to get the process rolling, and keep my attention focused on spotting my turn point and relaeasing the brakes just as I tip in. If the corner isn't blind I still don't bother with a start point.

 

On bigger bikes I still struggle with over braking the entry, but mostly due to not riding them enough to build consistency. The higher straightline speeds makes me feel the need to shed a little more than necessary, and they slow down quicker than I expect.

 

-Sean

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Ok just so I can go back over this and not have to read through the clutter let me see if this is accurate on what needs to be worked on:

 

- Visual skills on perception of braking distances

- Set braking points at a comfortable distance

- Better manipulation of the brake lever

- Understanding how much pressure to apply and when

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To the OP; To me, it seems like you are asking how to set your braking start points, while admitting that your braking actions may be inconsistent.

 

I'll be starting my 3rd year racing next year, and up until the middle of last year I didn't have braking start points. In many corners, I still don't. What I have been using are braking end points (my turn point). If my attention is focused down the track, and I know how fast I want to be when I get to my turn point, the control of speed becomes much easier to modulate. Granted, this doesn't have me using 100% braking all the time, but it does usually have me releasing the brake lever as I tip the bike in. The timing is much easier.

 

Otherwise, you need to accurately pick your start point, consistently apply your brakes exactly at some pre-determined level, and hopefully do it perfectly to end up at your tip-in point. Unfortunately, you end up focusing on your braking application instead of your entry speed, and the final outcome is much harder to manage.

 

Mid season, I added using start points as a gentle reminder on blind corners (still on the track). I see the start point, start applying the brakes to get the process rolling, and keep my attention focused on spotting my turn point and relaeasing the brakes just as I tip in. If the corner isn't blind I still don't bother with a start point.

 

On bigger bikes I still struggle with over braking the entry, but mostly due to not riding them enough to build consistency. The higher straightline speeds makes me feel the need to shed a little more than necessary, and they slow down quicker than I expect.

 

-Sean

 

 

That makes sense, I think you are right on the braking aspect of focusing on the braking rather then setting the speed.....as KC would say "dont spend all of your attention on one thing" and I think that's exactly what is happening, I need to realize that I am not trying to go from 120mph to 20mph rather say 120mph- to still 80mph.

 

I will also start using end of braking markers instead, I read about that before but never had a chance to practice it before the riding season ended.

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Ok just so I can go back over this and not have to read through the clutter let me see if this is accurate on what needs to be worked on:

 

- Visual skills on perception of braking distances

- Set braking points at a comfortable distance

- Better manipulation of the brake lever

- Understanding how much pressure to apply and when

 

I agree; very interesting.

 

Since braking from 100 to 70 mph is exactly the same than braking from 40 to 10 mph (except for the speed at which we see things moving), you may benefit from regularly practicing braking on an empty street or big parking lot.

 

The rate of reduction of speed (deceleration), modulation of force on the lever and G forces are exactly the same as long as a reduction of speed in 30 mph happens in the same period of time.

 

Rather than waiting for the next track day or race, setting cones or other marks and specific speeds for each could help getting familiar with the right way to accomplish the points on your list.

 

Progress regarding consistency in braking would be easy to log and check, specially if somebody can help you.

 

Using a similar system, I practice emergency braking for street riding regularly, and my confidence has grown exponentially.

 

Check this article about braking threshold:

 

http://www.msgroup.org/Tip.aspx?Num=267&Set=

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Although it takes the same amount of time, it takes a LOT more distance to slow from 100-70 than from 40-10.

 

It takes three times more distance.

 

Braking distance = (V final ^2 - V initial ^2) / 2a

 

It takes 65 m (213 ft) to slow down from 100 to 70 mph at 0.8 G, while it takes 19 m (62 ft) to slow down from 40 to 10 mph.

 

However, the forces that the pilot, the suspension and the tires feel, the pressure on the brake lever and the time it takes is exactly the same.

 

Replicating track speeds for practicing consistent braking would be ideal, but parking lots are more easily and frequently available than tracks.

 

Again, the only thing that the rider feels different is the speed at which he sees things moving.

 

Watch how Valentino does brake to set entry speed:

 

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