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Experiment For The Forum.


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Can one of the coaches/forum members perform an experiment - A lap hanging off and a lap not hanging off, and the time difference.

 

I wish to know how much difference hanging off makes.

 

Alternately, if you have already done such an experiment, do share the results.Some people in the past did not hang off, wonder how they got on?

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I won't be doing that :wacko: . For it to be a fair test you would have to be trying your best in both cases. Sitting bolt upright on the bike with your bum in the middle of the seat and your head centered over the steering head while trying to turn a fast lap sounds like a good way to crash. There are probably a multitude of reasons for this, but I can think of two off the top of my head:

 

1. altered CoG which would make the bike handle quite a bit differently than what I was used to. Bad juju.

 

2. part of setting up properly for any turn, even on the street, involves "committing" your body to the turn - getting your weight to the inside, at least a little bit. If you don't get yourself in that position and then find yourself in a situation where you need more lean than you expected (e.g., you overcook a corner entry) then you will find yourself even more upright than the bike, pushing the bike down beneath you MX style. Very spooky and dangerous on a regular sportbike (okay on a supermoto I think).

 

Besides, if I tried that and the event organizers caught me they would send my down to novice group... :D

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I'd say for me it's about a 2 second difference on a track where I run about a 1:40. Obviously everyone is different and it depends on type of bike, conditions etc. but that is my estimate based on my own experience. It is true that I would not push as hard withot hanging off due to a worry about crashing at the more pronounced lean angles. On a tighter more technical track like Streets of Willow it makes a bigger % difference in my times than at, say, Fontana where there are long high speed straights.

 

As a coach I often ride around at a good pace without hanging off at all; if I don't NEED to hang off, I don't - it is too fatiguing to do it if you don't need it.

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As a coach I often ride around at a good pace without hanging off at all; if I don't NEED to hang off, I don't - it is too fatiguing to do it if you don't need it.

 

 

This is what i was looking for.I have seen people hang off for the simplest of corners....something that attracts unwanted attention from the police and public.How do you decide when you need to hang off, and when you don't? It appears each corner needs hanging off, but which ones really do?

 

Ktk ace, there is no need for ridicule.I have watched the Dvd and the part you refer to is when they compare the correct body position, and how being crossed up hinders cornering.etc.

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In street riding my bum stays put but I still move my upper body weight to the inside. If you need to hang off in any kind of extreme manner while riding on the street you really need to take it to the track in my opinion. Seriously, around here there are few corners that I would need to hang off for even going twice the posted speed limit. In my part of the world, if they catch you doing 130 km/h in an 80 zone they impound your vehicle and take your licence away right there beside the road. Given that reality, it's more fun to stay on the seat and at least enjoy a bit of lean. But still not enough fun, which is why I gave up street riding altogether.

 

Even when I lived in a place where I had access to fun mountain roads with tighter corners (north GA, TN, NC), the point of completely socially-irresponsible ass-hattery came well before the speed where I would need to hang off like a racer to preserve lean angle. I could have fun, but I felt guilty doing it. If you can't restrict your street riding style to something like Ianetsch's "The Pace" then, again, it really is time for the track if you ask me.

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Interesting topic. I'll share my limited experience.

 

The first time I went to the Superbike School I had never been on a track. All of my riding was street riding and I never had the need to hang off the bike. The idea of hanging off actually terrified me because of the potential of my weight shift upsetting the bike. I rode level 1 and 2 without hanging off. As my speeds increased I felt the g forces in the turn working against me and I started moving my head and upper body towards the inside of the turn and could feel the improvement instantly. I got to the lean bike late in the day and shared with the instructor my apprehension and they spent a lot of time showing me the "right" way to hang off.

 

After I left the school I took my R6 straight to a parking lot and reproduced the lean bike drill without the outriggers and practiced for an entire afternoon. I then started practicing on the road and started noticing some interesting things. I went through a few turns with the bike nearly straight up and down by hanging off. I saw a realistic demonstration that by hanging off I was effectively reducing the lean angle required to turn the bike.

 

I also have noticed some other interesting things pertaining to hang off riding an older track bike. I obtusely chose an 1989 Yamaha FZR400 as a track bike after riding a friends on the street. The older bikes ergonomics are very different than some of the newer machines. The tiny fiberglass fuel tank cover on the FZR was next to impossible to lock onto. The bar setup on the FZR was also not good for low hang off. If you want my opinion on why the riders of years ago did not hang off "as much" the simple truth is the machines were not optimized for it. While you can do it and it helps you can't really safely do any of the "super low" stuff without the risk of falling off because you just don't have a good solid base to grip onto. If you look at vintage photos the riders are hanging off but just not as much as riders on more modern machinery.

 

The ergonomics of the FZR frustrated me for quite some time and I thought it was me. I could not figure out why when riding the BMW at the school I was able to make good progress towards developing a good body position in level 3 and 4 but when I rode my bike on track days it was all wonky and awful. I looked at some photos of some of the vintage racers and saw some similarities between their body position and my wonky awful body position and then realized the machine itself might be part of my problem.

 

I hang off regularly at the track. It really helps me. The thing I have learned the hard way is that there's no "one size fits all" when it comes to style, hang off and body position. Heavier riders don't need to hang off as much to achieve the same weight shift. Different bikes and their shapes and weights can effect body position. There are just too many variables in play for a one size fits all solution.

 

As for the experiment. Essentially I have already done it. In level 1 and 2 I did not hang off at all and in level 3 and 4 I did. While not very scientific with a year delay between experiments I have concluded that hanging off works well and makes me faster as a result.

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Once you get used to taking turn's with good body position, not using it can really mess with your head, I've experienced this several times while returning to my corner after a school session, I'll take a corner at a "Slow" pace and not set up for it and need WAY more lean angle than I have anticipated using due to my lack of body position.

 

Also on the street I "set up" for every corner, shift my but over in the seat and lock on with my outside knee, even if I don't intend to hang off it leaves me the option of using body position should I suddenly need it mid corner when debris or something forces me to change my line. I think of it as having more options on the table should I need to use them , I will also occasionally try to navigate freeway interchanges with the bike vertical and use only "body english" to steer the bike, but thats just for kicks

 

Tyler

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This is what i was looking for.I have seen people hang off for the simplest of corners....something that attracts unwanted attention from the police and public.How do you decide when you need to hang off, and when you don't? It appears each corner needs hanging off, but which ones really do?

 

Typically you hang off to reduce lean angle. That could be to help with ground clearance, or because traction isn't very good, or because you want to go faster around a corner without having to lean over any farther, as examples.

 

Having said that, it can be good practice to find a consistent hang off position and use it all the time, so you know exactly where you are.

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In street riding my bum stays put but I still move my upper body weight to the inside.

 

I may move my torso slightly inward when I can see far ahead, but I just as often hang out as far as I can to see as far around a blind corner - something we have lots of - as possible. For me, visibility is paramount on the street.

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There is absolutely no doubt hanging off works.I wanted to know how badly it affects your riding when you can't do it or not hang off fully as in CSmith's experience.

 

Deviating slightly, has anyone tried a lap without using the brakes or a minimal usage only? If you are racing in the wet, are you better served by no brakes/minimal brake? What are the time differences?

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No brakes is a drill at the school so we do it a lot! It's an amazing tool for setting your focus on entry speeds. I do a no brakes drill at every new track I ride. I haven't noted the laptime difference but I'm sure it would be less than you might think. At a track with a reasonably good flow you could run a great laptime no-brakes but at a track like Fontana that has some crazy hard braking zones it would have more impact on laptimes.

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The no brakes drill is one of my favorites at the school and is the one that's helped me the most. Heading into a turn faster than you "want" to and getting past the mild panic and stress related with that is a bit of a rush. It's also quite amazing to watch your hand reach out for the brakes by itself when you occasionally get into the SR zone. After a while you regain control of that automatic hand. :)

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Normally in the dry I get my braking and downshifting done before my turn point and then flick the bike into the turn. Standard CSS stuff.

 

In the wet for some reason I do things slightly differently. I get my downshifting and the majority of my braking done before the turn point and then gradually trail off the brakes in the turn. My turn in is a slower pace than the quick flick that the school teaches because of the reduced traction. My logic is to stretch the time on the brakes so that I can use them longer at with less pressure.

 

This might be the wrong way. But with no "wet" training I was flying by the seat of my pants. If anybody has some tips please share as I would love to improve my wet track riding. Some of the most fun I have ever had was on a wet track.

 

I would be uneasy doing the no brakes drill in the rain. In my opinion using the brakes produces a more predictable entry speed than rolling off the throttle. With the limited traction entry speed is more critical and sudden last minute braking to correct entry speed is more of a traction risk than light brakes.

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Normally in the dry I get my braking and downshifting done before my turn point and then flick the bike into the turn. Standard CSS stuff.

 

In the wet for some reason I do things slightly differently. I get my downshifting and the majority of my braking done before the turn point and then gradually trail off the brakes in the turn. My turn in is a slower pace than the quick flick that the school teaches because of the reduced traction. My logic is to stretch the time on the brakes so that I can use them longer at with less pressure.

 

This might be the wrong way. But with no "wet" training I was flying by the seat of my pants. If anybody has some tips please share as I would love to improve my wet track riding. Some of the most fun I have ever had was on a wet track.

 

I would be uneasy doing the no brakes drill in the rain. In my opinion using the brakes produces a more predictable entry speed than rolling off the throttle. With the limited traction entry speed is more critical and sudden last minute braking to correct entry speed is more of a traction risk than light brakes.

 

I have lots of article on wet everyday riding but not racing in the wet so bummer me too.

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In the dry, mistakes can he corrected/held without too much trouble.The same mistakes in the wet will cost you dearly in time and places.

 

It seems that the man who can do well in the wet has a significant advantage over the ones who don't, and it is something they would want to work on.Wonder if the coaches have any insight on how to work on racing in the wet?

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  • 1 month later...

As a coach I often ride around at a good pace without hanging off at all; if I don't NEED to hang off, I don't - it is too fatiguing to do it if you don't need it.

I'm slower than pig snot on a winter's day, but I just don't see the point of hanging off if I'm not running out of lean angle or traction.

 

I'd rather just sit there and enjoy the ride rather than crawl back and forth across the bike for no good reason. I just don't enjoy riding that way. Too old and stiff and tired, I guess.

 

For me, it's eyes up, watch the vanishing point and roll on the throttle.

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