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Went down again-I need advice

  1. #1
    So Goose Pleasegivesoap's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice


    Hey Guys,

    Here's a quick recap - Have an 01 CBR600F4i, 14k miles when I bought it two months ago, 16k now.

    I've dropped it a few times. First time was coasting in grass, braked on a wet patch, went over. Second time, slow 5mph turn in a culdesac; I didn't see dry leaves, and hit them. Third time was really a bad decision/absentmindedness equation: was in a rush and braked too hard on cold tires, and saw afterwards the patches of pine needles.

    And today:

    Hit up a newly paved, gorgeous twisty road in Western Mass, but I was practicing emergency braking mostly. maybe the 5th stop, I was going about 40-50, braked, hard hard hard, front wheel locked at about 20, it was up for 10 feet maybe, but as soon as the front got traction, I went over, it slid 15 feet about.

    I'd been riding for 15 minutes, good pace, so the tires weren't cold I don't think (it was mid 50s today)- was it the new pavement? Whenever I've braked hard before, (granted it was warmer weather) the first thing to happen (before locking) is to bring the rear wheel off the ground

    So my question - a. was it the new pavement/oldish tires, b. how can I practice braking hard and finding the limit without worrying about this happening.

    Luckily no injuries, but my plastics are proper f*cked. Not the best looking fering anymore.

    Any and all advice welcome

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    Last edited by Pleasegivesoap; 10-30-07 at 08:13 PM.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator OreoGaborio's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    How are your tires? Pressures? How is the fluid in your brake lines? Pads? Calipers? Rotors? Are they all in proper shape?

    If all that stuff is good & you're applying the brakes PROPERLY (ie, SQUEEZING them smoothly, not SNATCHING at them) I don't see any reason why you should be locking up the front tire so damn often.

    So.... wtf are you doing? grabbing a fistfull as hard as you can w/o setting the front suspension & letting the weight transfer or what? This is the kinda stuff they teach in MSF, did you take it?

    1 - look farther ahead, as far as you possibly can & look for clear pavment
    2 - be smoother with your control inputs.
    3 - keep your upper body & arms relaxed at all times.

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  3. #3
    So Goose Pleasegivesoap's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    Pads are good, rotors are good, brake fluid's good, tires are old, but still have life in them. PSI is around 30, spec is 34. I don't grab a handful, it's smooth, but firm. I never hear this chirping that you're supposed to hear right before lockup.

    And yea, took the MSF course two months ago, the braking was textbook - is new pavement generally slippery-er than old? It was cold today, the tires weren't cold, but not hot either

    I'm not sure...

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  4. #4
    Super Moderator OreoGaborio's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    Didn't realize tires were required to chirp before they lock... that's a new one to me.

    Do your tires know this? Were they told before hand? Did anyone tell my tires this?

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    -Pete LRRS/CCS #82 - ECK Racing, TonysTrackDays, Ironstone Ventures
    GMD Computrack Boston | Pine Motorparts/PBE Specialists | Phoenix Graphics | Woodcraft | Street & Competition | MTag-Pirelli | OnTrack Media

    The Garage: '03 Tuono | '06 SV650

  5. #5
    Lifer imkindafkedup's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    Thoughts I had after reading your post.....
    1- In order to get better you need to admit fault, and stop with the excuses.
    2- Take the MSF class again.
    3- Riding for 15minutes won't necessarily warm up the edges of the tire.
    4- "Practicing" what ever that is, is best in a track or at the very least a parking lot.
    5- Counter steer, they never taught me that in MSF but Nick, ff36buell, did. You find your self on the brakes much less.
    6- Engine brake more often.
    7- Ride at your capabilities and don't push the limit.

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  6. #6
    Winter sucks Nate Dawg's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    sometimes freshly laid blacktop tends to have small loose stones that car traffic hasn't moved off to the side of the road. I've also seen oils in new blacktop. not sure if either of those are your problem.
    I'd say..take up tennis

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  7. #7
    So Goose Pleasegivesoap's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    thanks for the advice, but that's not the solution - I took the MSF course, passed fine, put 2000 miles on this bike in all kinds of conditions, - I'm not looking for general "be a better rider" advice - I do not need this. I'm well aware of the mechanics of braking, counter steering, engine braking etc, and I do all often - the problem is not my skill level per se, but the cause of my front wheel lock up in this case

    The previous 3 accidents were obviously all my fault, I'm not making excuses there - however, in this case, all the variables I could control were as far as I could tell, under control - brakes were fine, all mechanics good. I was alert, clear, smooth (new) pavement. It was a gradual, but hard brake, and the front locked up. I've braked harder than this before in practice scenarios (parking lots), this was probably 80%, but still hard, and there's been no problem. The differences in this scenario were the temperature (50s), and new pavement.

    So, please educate me. How much does cold and/or new pavement, not exactly warm tires, etc affect the possibility of front wheel lock? the previous 3 cock ups had to do with dumb decisions, and not seeing the leaves in my path of turn - this time was intended for practice, I wasn't trying to pull a stoppie or anything.

    ***

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  8. #8
    Winter sucks Nate Dawg's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    if you keep locking up the front wheel maybe you should have a mech. look at it.
    do you feel any wobble coming from the front? is either of the rotors bent? if so that might be why the front is locking up.
    Warm tires are very important. Most tires should warm up with in a few miles, depending of weather conditions. Maybe you should buy a new front tire.

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  9. #9
    Lifer imkindafkedup's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    did you leave the disk lock after you parked? Get a newer Goldwing or FJ1300, they have ABS you won't ever have to worry about this again.

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  10. #10
    Lifer
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    Went down again-I need advice

    One big question is what is your experience before going to the MSF? Both on motorcycles and bicycles. A dirt bike or mountain bike will give a much more gentle lesson then a street bike and help you with the muscle memory reactions.

    The best place to practice braking is an empty parking lot, not the street. Start off slow. If you want to find the limits of the front brake only - take your feet off the pegs and have them ready to help with balance. Practice stops in a straight line, handle bars straight, etc...

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    SSearchVT

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  11. #11
    .... naked-daytrader's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    Get an Italian motorcycle...we don't seem to have this problem.

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  12. #12
    Just Registered Crash Dummy Denno's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    stop breaking the law asshole!!!!!!

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  13. #13
    Lifer imkindafkedup's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Smooth R6 View Post
    stop breaking the law asshole!!!!!!
    Haha that makes 2,256 assholes

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  14. #14
    So Goose Pleasegivesoap's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    "...what is your experience before going to the MSF? Both on motorcycles and bicycles."

    My experience is varied - several years on/off dirtbikes, many years of roadbike cycling.

    Look, I guess more than anything, I'm asking the impact new pavement and cool-ish tires have on the possibility of front wheel lock - I'm not asking people to evaluate my competency, just to evaluate this scenario. Like I said, everything was similar to times when I've brought it to parking lots and tested the limits of braking. The differences were a. temperature, as it's fall, and b. new pavement.
    Please keep that in mind

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  15. #15
    Lifer burnham's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    You're using to much front brake at a low speed, with not the best traction due to the conditions. You can get away with using more brake at higher speeds. As you go faster, you can use more brake because there is less weight on the front, giving you more tire to use. At a low speed it is much easier to get around 100% of the weight on the front tire, and overload it. You turn slightly, hit a slick spot, whatever else, you go down.
    As said when you apply the brake "set it" by progressively squeezing. Also, as you slow down, or turn into a turn, feed the brake out. You're feeding the brake out becuase you know there is less available traction. 1 Set the front, 2 give it a hard squeeze, 3 and start feeding out the lever as you slow or turn. Braking very hard, you can't use the same lever effort all the way from 70 down to 10 mph. It's easy to do if you panic, or if you are starting to get ballsy after four or five practice stops. Read some roadracing books, so you'll know what's going on, and not look like a clown who crashes a lot.
    How old are the tires? Is it they have life left, or tread left? Good luck.

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    Lifer McBiggity's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    be looser. My guess is you are riding too tense. Not good on the street.
    Got to be fluid in your braking, turning, accelerating.
    Tell my students that all the time, relax, be loose in the arms and shoulders.

    Practice, Practice, Practice.- but practice correctly

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  17. #17
    .... naked-daytrader's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Pleasegivesoap View Post
    "...what is your experience before going to the MSF? Both on motorcycles and bicycles."

    My experience is varied - several years on/off dirtbikes, many years of roadbike cycling.

    Look, I guess more than anything, I'm asking the impact new pavement and cool-ish tires have on the possibility of front wheel lock - I'm not asking people to evaluate my competency, just to evaluate this scenario. Like I said, everything was similar to times when I've brought it to parking lots and tested the limits of braking. The differences were a. temperature, as it's fall, and b. new pavement.
    Please keep that in mind

    When you grab a handful of front brake in an emergency situation, the front wheel will lock regardless of pavement temperature

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  18. #18
    Lifer imkindafkedup's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    temperature and pavement do not lock up the front tire

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  19. #19
    Just Registered Doc's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    Maybe you need to think about body position... at the speeds your talking the rear tire shoulda been up in the air before the front lost traction...

    Something tells me your not modulating the brake perfectly... practice makes perfect.

    Oh and as to the old tires/new pavement... old tires are harder, the oils have been "baked out" the new pavement could be a little more slippery or hard...

    Still I don't think it is the tires/pavement..

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  20. #20
    Kosher Assassin Stoneman's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    My first question is how many boards to you troll patrol on?

    If this is a legitimate question, my truely sincere apologies. But I'm having a hard time believing this is for real...

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  21. #21
    Lifer stevecbr900rr's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    1 Down 5 Up will help you with those "Stoppy" techniques...

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  22. #22
    Just Registered wookie's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    Quote Originally Posted by burnham View Post
    You're using to much front brake at a low speed, with not the best traction due to the conditions. You can get away with using more brake at higher speeds. As you go faster, you can use more brake because there is less weight on the front, giving you more tire to use. At a low speed it is much easier to get around 100% of the weight on the front tire, and overload it. You turn slightly, hit a slick spot, whatever else, you go down.
    As said when you apply the brake "set it" by progressively squeezing. Also, as you slow down, or turn into a turn, feed the brake out. You're feeding the brake out becuase you know there is less available traction. 1 Set the front, 2 give it a hard squeeze, 3 and start feeding out the lever as you slow or turn. Braking very hard, you can't use the same lever effort all the way from 70 down to 10 mph. It's easy to do if you panic, or if you are starting to get ballsy after four or five practice stops. Read some roadracing books, so you'll know what's going on, and not look like a clown who crashes a lot.
    How old are the tires? Is it they have life left, or tread left? Good luck.
    +1 - modulation.

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  23. #23
    a little crazy... 978chris's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    ASSUMING you know what's what and are "good" with the bike, as you say (4 times in 2k seriously?), I'd look at the tire. Did the previous owner let it sit in the sun for long periods of time, etc... Who cares how much tread is on it, how old is it? Is it crusty hard/cracked or soft still?

    Blah blah.

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  24. #24
    Lifer Currently's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    Some tires like the stock Dunflops on my SV turn into hockey pucks when it gets cold. Old tires get hard after 5 thousand miles of heat cycles packed into them. I run Michelins Pilot Powers and Pilot Roads, there is a big difference on the type of rubber and age of the rubber.

    There is a time and a place to practice ... the street is rarely the place or the time.

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  25. #25
    Just Registered Wishbone's Avatar
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    Went down again-I need advice

    Its all in the feel.

    For me I have never done a stoppie EVER my first bike was a duc and they stop on dimes.

    My fz has ss lines, brembo master, and verasah pads...so lets just say it stops when I want it to.

    Like burnham said its about different amounts of input for different situations.

    I have practiced panic braking a million times on both bikes and never locked the front up or lifted the rear. Subconsciously I guess I wont let my self grab on to the brakes that hard

    Its the same for me with wheelies, I can't do them. Can't bring myself to do them it the inner yellow in me I suppose but just subconsciously my mind wont let my body do it.


    Also check to see if the rotors are warped that would give a false sense of input from the front

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