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Hanging Off In A Bend - Does It Help Grip?


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Hi all, we are having a discussion on an online forum about whether hanging off in a bend actually benefits the rider in terms of grip from the tyres. There have been various theorys put forward both for and against hanging off so I'm interested in your comments please. Would you please explain the reasoning / physics behind your answers too if possible. Please find to follow the original question.


Many thanks - MikeSG7




Hanging off in a bend - does it help grip?


We've got a "hanging off" thread going and the usual candidates for getting your knee out have come out of the closet... but how many of them are correct or work as we expect?


Hanging off shifts the bike upright by moving your own body mass to the inside of the turn. To maintain equilibrium, the bike's centre of mass moves outward and for the same speed and radius of turn the bike moves more upright.


This improves ground clearance certainly but does it affect tyre grip?


It's been said it does, because it moves the tyre to the flatter part of the profile.


Hmmm - has anyone taken a look at sports tyres? They are triangular in profile and probably have a bigger footprint when at full lean! Even touring tyres are round in profile - we don't drive on car tyres!

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  • 5 weeks later...

Hey ho yo'all,


I've been bitten so bad by the cornering bug I can't hardly sleep.

I am in awe and fascination of CSBCS's various topics and practioners.

I'm a newbie to racer lingo and have some dropouts of details on

following all the info so bare with me on my stumbles on what

I'd like to state and publically ponder on. My short time on limited #

of M/c's though has been very rich in rather extreme conditions with

hard fast lessions I'll share and proablely provoke with, though

not out of disrepect but because this stuff IS a deadly serious but

TOTALLY gleeful addiction to me and I find similar insights being

touched on or ridden well on here. The door was open, I'm a sick

sick puppy and seek to cure or spread my illness


So many factors so many corners... Its winter so please shoot

me down in flames if ya can get close enough to throw a

ember in me spokes.


My basic tenets: matter does not occupy same spaces at once.

energy is not lost just transformed, everything is meant to flow

from fuel to ideas.

full traction is make or break digital not smooth at max use of it.

all bikes have bounce back karma, good or bad, learn it, at slow speed.

rear steer/lean rules when it really matters belive it or bad juju.

front merely keeps nose off dirt when not using rear fully.

extra traction snatches are ontap even when tires are squealing

and grinding but only in thin slivers of time to apply and let recover.

almost crashing from a lowside to a highside is the fastest way

way to turn if you can enter turn so hot under power the front

won't hold before the apex.

nothing turns sharper than a skiping outrear, EXCEPT

a skipping out front which is me big #1 Taboo. Period!

funnest turns are not so smooth as digital overcomings of tire

grip between transitions of balanced states, kind of a cheating

to get traction losses over and done with quickly to get back

to the launch program by cutting the corners into sharp straight aways.

when able to make and break rear out at will run the of mill corners

feel like canyon wall riding delights as lean and G's apporach that.


m/c's go thru steer to countsteer tranistions and back with lean,

speed, power, grade and bank changes. airplane like, as each input

does more than one thing at once, non linearly too yahoo!


If ya got to break best get it over with first not later

or dog gone it ya's back into depending on that meek front limiter.

Oh btw, fastest way to stop, gulp, if need be, is fully locked up tires

sideways at belly scraping angle. Done right like a skier on edges ya'll just

pop right up stopped, with many great poundings in the chest too.


Best sensation is disapearing striaght thru coccyx into a skipping rear patch.


Lean angles, if at loads less than making hot tarmac as loose as

a pebbled surface then I have nothing to add just carry on as

you are, but at apporaches and follow though rates that begin

or overwhelm front traction, either by power input making the

front light/lift, so the rear skips on around or by pure glorious leaning

over, then that big ol' knee bone just flat gets in the space.

Spining crossed up is one way with less lean but wastes time,

tire and traction yet is a fall back reserve if goofing up or hazard

changes the plans.


Ever see a riderless bike self correct with jerks and twitches

as it runs on down the track? Ever see a thrown rider recover

and ride out an impossiblely jerking twitching steed? Yes,Yikes,similar.


Gryo force increases bar's resistence to change front tire direction but

it don't effect handling otherwise. Jumping 4 lane hwy at about 60

wiggling the spining front and waving at gap jawed cagers or steering

hands off turns by lean just fine only to 70's convined me of this non issue.

Front must be free, so not to resist but to assist the the rears lean,

That is key to allow low to highside crash steering antics.

OH, don't never gun a hot rod bike nor tap its rear brake

while in flight or yo'll get a test of instant inertia and attitude adjustment.


I bow to the scope and scale and outrageous explorations of

your Master Code. My one brief exposure has allowed me to finish up

my own flight envelope exceedings. BUT how do you sleep when

the vivid dreams are replaying fast zoom in videos straight into

rock faces at apexes right up to the edge hitting full torque band

throwing it down on both sidewalls till scaping and nailing it harder to

break free and just jet ski its tail into an erie steady state into

the clam eye of a hurrance just before the next storm wall hits...

again and againandagain...



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  • 2 weeks later...

After spending an entire day at Thunderhill in a constant to heavy rain condition. For me I have come to the conlusion that you do gain better traction with a more exagertated hangoff. I made it a point to do this to see how much better the traction was. My first two sessions I used my standard style in which traction seemed sketchy at best. I am working on my technique at this point in my riding and not going for speed I figure I'll add that once I feel I have a few things down better. That being said I wasn't tearing around the track or anything but yet I was getting little slides here and there quite often. For the rest of the day I modified my hangoff to an extreme that I felt comfortable with and the little slides were gone (as long as I kept with good throttle control anyway). I felt way more sure of my traction and my confidence came up as a result as well as my laptimes. I intentionally fallowed a rider that was running with more lean angle and found that I was able to get the throttle on alot sooner in the corner while we both maintained about the same corner entry speed.

For me in my opinion you do get better traction with more of a hangoff. A side note a result of experimenting with this helped me to find a more locked on position on my bike while hanging off. I attended the feb24 CSS school at Sears and Cobie informed me that I was hanging off too far. Only after the class did I realize that this was carrying over from my rainy day at Thunderhill, however from going to the extreme and then minimizing per Cobie's instruction I now found a middle ground where I'm more locked on now. One that would have been harder to discover without first experimenting with the maximum hangoff.

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If the tires will hold there is no problem with lean angle. the world superbike guys scrape the sides of the Ducati's and hardly hang off at all. For myself the faster I get the less I am hanging off. I have pinched my knee against between the road and my fairing with the new 17" slicks, that's alot of traction and not much room for hanging off.


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Thats funny you said that. My new position that I feel more locked on had my upperbody hanging to the side and low but with both knees in tight to the tank. I actually felt less comfortable putting a knee out, seems whenever I put a knee out I get more bar pressure through a turn than if I lock onto the tank. Are there any dissantvanges to this style? When I feel more locked on the bike I feel way more stable through the corners as well as seem to get the throttle on sooner to "settle" the bike.

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