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highsides and chops

CheatingOnMyR1 said:
I've heard "don't chop the throttle," of course, but since then I've heard "roll off slowly." Last it happened I rolled off slowly and highsided. The other day I read the answer was "do nothing," i.e., maintain throttle position and wait for the rear to hook up. What's the correct answer?

Thanks,
Trent

COMR1,

Absolutely==the chop is practically a guaranteed highside, that is a piece of conventional wisdom that is wisdom.

A roll off is another good piece of advice but then so is not changing the throttle but they both have qualifiers and I'm going to ask you something here:

If the slide gets the front end turned all the way, or almost all the way, to the steering stop and the throttle is reduced either quickly or slowly or maintained at its previous position what do you think is going to happen at the rear contact patch in relation to the out of alignment position of the wheels?

Let go from there.

Keith
 

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codedog said:
COMR1,

Absolutely==the chop is practically a guaranteed highside, that is a piece of conventional wisdom that is wisdom.

A roll off is another good piece of advice but then so is not changing the throttle but they both have qualifiers and I'm going to ask you something here:

If the slide gets the front end turned all the way, or almost all the way, to the steering stop and the throttle is reduced either quickly or slowly or maintained at its previous position what do you think is going to happen at the rear contact patch in relation to the out of alignment position of the wheels?

Let go from there.

Keith
Keith,

Thank you for your time. I'm not sure what you mean by the relation of the rear contact patch to the out of alignment position of the wheels, but I'll do my best.

I assume what you are saying is that the misalignment is the misalignment of the front contact patch and the rear contact patch in relation to the direction of the bikes travel.

If slide gets the front end turned all the way or almost all the way, the rider is in a bad position.

I would think that:

if throttle is reduced quickly:

Rear tire is spinning faster than front tire...contact patch is moving to the inside of the rear tire as bike leans inside the skid. As throttle is reduced quickly the speed of the rear wheel goes from faster than front wheel to slower than front wheel. Tires hook up and the rear may even be engine braking hard. Bike is pointed in a different direction than it's going. Highside.


...throttle is reduced slowly:

Highside likely. The bike is far out of alignment with the direction it's going. A slow reduction in throttle will likely result in tires hooking up dynamically. Same as condition #1.

...maintained:

Lowside or fine? Rear wheel will either continue to step out until lowside occurs, or the speed of the front will catch up with the speed of the rear as the bike accelerates, straightening the bike out?

Thanks Keith,
Trent
 

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highside

Trent,

The rear tire may or may not be spinning faster than the front especially if you lost the traction due to too much lean angle and perhaps some hard parts on the ground.

When and if the rear hooks up while out of track with the front you have a massive push on the front contact patch, which is acting as a pivot point from the traction of being pushed up the road sideways or crosswise to the direction of the main mass of the bike's travel. Main mass being everything but the forks and front wheel, most of the bike.

Rolling the throttle back and not chopping it, if it isn't too much out of track front to rear, is more often than not a save.

Quite a lot has to do with the bike's out of track situation. In this wise, quick reflexes are a big plus, again, as long as it isn't a chopping action the chances of a save are very good.

You good with this?

Keith
 

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Keith - Had a terrific time at Infineon Point. You run an excellent, no frills operation that produces tremendous results in just one day (plus reading Twist). Can't wait for level 2 and 3 at Laguna in March. I've found myself out on canyon roads practicing, but unfortunately I can't find a dang carousel anywhere :)

Thanks for everyone's questions and thanks Keith for your great and thoughtful responses. I'll save my questions for an in person answer at Laguna.

-Tom
 

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more questions

I must have scareed everyone off. It doesn't matter how simple or silly the question is.

I'll give you an example: I got a question today from a British bike magazine editor that floored me.

Why does it seem so much harder to push a bike from the right hand side than from the left?

I came up with 4 points that I thought about. Anyone have their own ideas on this bizarre question.

I thought I'd heard them all until this one.

Keith
 

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Hi Kieth,

Thanks for your time on this wonderful message board.

Regarding counter-steering, from what I understand the initial input is a push on the handlebars whereby the bike "falls" to one side or the other. After this point, does the front wheel remain in this initial direction or does it turn to the direction of the turn?

The reason I ask is because I am curious about quick responsiveness from left-to-right and vice versa and would like to understand in the mind what my body seems to know.

Thanks!
 

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codedog said:
I must have scareed everyone off. It doesn't matter how simple or silly the question is.

I'll give you an example: I got a question today from a British bike magazine editor that floored me.

Why does it seem so much harder to push a bike from the right hand side than from the left?

I came up with 4 points that I thought about. Anyone have their own ideas on this bizarre question.

I thought I'd heard them all until this one.

Keith
Well, I'll take a run at it. I've had the wrong answer with Keith before.

1. Most people are right handed. Pushing from the left allows the stronger arm to be on the tank or seat, rather than the bars (which will pivot with increased force).
2. Even if you are left handed, if you push from the right your right hand will be on the throttle. You'll have to adjust for the bars pivoting and the throttle rotating.

Thats all I come up with so far.
 

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The only answer I could think of was comparing cornering to waterskiing. Almost always slalom skiers will have a weak side. You can tell this by how straight they keep their entire body into and through the turn. In general, you'll see people bend at the waist on their "weak" side. If you do this, it throws off your line which means you will not make the next buoy. As a side note, when carving on a slalom, you always have to look over your shoulder at where you are going (sound familiar). In any case, that editor may have a weak side, which is totally in the mind. You have to condition yourself to make consistent turns from both sides or you will not make it through the course. So, my guess is that the person is setting up and flicking in differently from one side to the other.

For the record, slalom skiers are a dying breed, but I snowboard, so atleast I'm not totally in the 80's.

btw, eager to see the four points you've come up with.

EDIT - JNEGLIA, Keith teaches you at his school to never push on the bars. Once you countersteer to flick in, they want you to stop pushing and let the bike do what it was designed to do. They devote a full section in Level 1 to that technique.
 

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wheel direction

Purspeed said:
Hi Kieth,

Thanks for your time on this wonderful message board.

Regarding counter-steering, from what I understand the initial input is a push on the handlebars whereby the bike "falls" to one side or the other. After this point, does the front wheel remain in this initial direction or does it turn to the direction of the turn?

The reason I ask is because I am curious about quick responsiveness from left-to-right and vice versa and would like to understand in the mind what my body seems to know.

Thanks!
Purspeed,

NO mystery here on this point, look at most shots of bikes leaned into turns and you can easily see that the wheel responds to the intial counter-steer push by rotating slightly in toward the corner in the direction the bike is traveling.

The only variation on that is if the back tire is sliding and then you would see the front tire turned out, toward the outside of the turn.

Keith
 

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HawkDucati said:
EDIT - JNEGLIA, Keith teaches you at his school to never push on the bars. Once you countersteer to flick in, they want you to stop pushing and let the bike do what it was designed to do. They devote a full section in Level 1 to that technique.
HawkDucati - either I missed it or you missed it. I though Keith was talking about pushing the bike (as in "out of gas").
 

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codedog said:
Purspeed,

NO mystery here on this point, look at most shots of bikes leaned into turns and you can easily see that the wheel responds to the intial counter-steer push by rotating slightly in toward the corner in the direction the bike is traveling.

The only variation on that is if the back tire is sliding and then you would see the front tire turned out, toward the outside of the turn.

Keith
Hi Kieth,

Thanks for your response. To follow up on my question then, can I adjust my lean angle by push-then-pull in direction of turn. So, in other words, after the initial push, the bike leans and corrects itself by the front wheel rotating in the direction of the turn.

At this stage in the turn, can I adjust by applying pressure in the opposite direction of the initial push?
 

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Turn 3

Hey Keith,as a trackday instructor turn 3 at Loudon can be a real tough sell. Some students listen and don't look at the wall. They usually progress fairly well. Others resign themselves to "just getting through it". I can't fault these folks 'cause falling at a trackday really bites. However, my emphasis is always to teach skills at the track which will make better and safer street riders. Any thoughts on teaching them how to overcome the mental blocks? Thanks for this forum.
 

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steering

Purspeed said:
Hi Kieth,

Thanks for your response. To follow up on my question then, can I adjust my lean angle by push-then-pull in direction of turn. So, in other words, after the initial push, the bike leans and corrects itself by the front wheel rotating in the direction of the turn.

At this stage in the turn, can I adjust by applying pressure in the opposite direction of the initial push?
Puspeed,

Just to make it clear, let's say you are in a left hand turn leaned over at a conservative angle and you need to lean it over some more to keep from running too wide at the exit. Another press on the left bar is going to achieve that additional lean for you. So no matter how you slice it, you are countersteering to get into the turn or adjusting the lean once already into it.

Same at the end of the turn. When you come to the point of bringing the bike back up out of that left hander, you would either press on the right bar or pull on the left one.

Keith
 

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truth said:
Hey Keith,as a trackday instructor turn 3 at Loudon can be a real tough sell. Some students listen and don't look at the wall. They usually progress fairly well. Others resign themselves to "just getting through it". I can't fault these folks 'cause falling at a trackday really bites. However, my emphasis is always to teach skills at the track which will make better and safer street riders. Any thoughts on teaching them how to overcome the mental blocks? Thanks for this forum.
Truth,

No that can't be done. There is no one solution to what you say but then again I'm not totally sure of what you are asking me. What "mental block" are you talking about exactly?

Telling someone to "not do something", like look at the wall. doesn't exactly contain a solution to any problem.

The one thing that must be done in coaching is to find out what the person is doing exactly and then there are a variety of solutions once that can be accurately identified.

For example, it matters what part of the wall the person is looking at and when they are looking at it.

Keith
 

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Keith,

More on the highside thing. Would it be true that if you always maintained throttle when the rear steps out, you would either recover it, or lowside?

I just saw this great clip of a highside in the wet
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U_U7unoE6xk&mode=related&search=

and it reminded me of my recent highside experience. As the rear loses traction the motor surges since it's no longer under drag, and quickly spins the rear tire much faster than the bike is going. Seems unrecoverable.

But if the rider had maintained the throttle, and leaned inside the slide, might he have had a relatively pleasant lowside experience?

Thanks,
COMR1
 

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Turn 3

I think I catch your drift here Keith and will try to impliment a different technique in both myand the students self analysis of their progress. Should allow me to suggest what to do instead of what not to do.
 

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codedog said:
Puspeed,

Just to make it clear, let's say you are in a left hand turn leaned over at a conservative angle and you need to lean it over some more to keep from running too wide at the exit. Another press on the left bar is going to achieve that additional lean for you. So no matter how you slice it, you are countersteering to get into the turn or adjusting the lean once already into it.

Same at the end of the turn. When you come to the point of bringing the bike back up out of that left hander, you would either press on the right bar or pull on the left one.

Keith
Hi Kieth

So the solution to greater lean and recovery is always counter-steering. Thanks for that invaluable info, Keith. :)
 

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CheatingOnMyR1 said:
Keith,

More on the highside thing. Would it be true that if you always maintained throttle when the rear steps out, you would either recover it, or lowside?

I just saw this great clip of a highside in the wet
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U_U7unoE6xk&mode=related&search=

and it reminded me of my recent highside experience. As the rear loses traction the motor surges since it's no longer under drag, and quickly spins the rear tire much faster than the bike is going. Seems unrecoverable.

But if the rider had maintained the throttle, and leaned inside the slide, might he have had a relatively pleasant lowside experience?

Thanks,
COMR1
You got a good point but the answer is maybe. The one thing the rider didn't do that is very useful in wet is to get his body off the inside of the bike instead of crossed over the tank, which raises the C of G of the bike and rider combination forcing him or anyone into using more lean than they would have used if on the inside of the bike.

He would have been luckier to have had the back come all the way around and yes that would have resulted in a low side becuase it never would have hooked up and spit hi off like it did in the video.

Keith
 

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Barriers

truth said:
I think I catch your drift here Keith and will try to impliment a different technique in both myand the students self analysis of their progress. Should allow me to suggest what to do instead of what not to do.
Great, I'm positive you will get better results doing it like this. Not to say you are going to "solve" it for them. In the end the rider must push throught their own barriers. But the first step is alwasy to see that you have a barrier. Nothing can happen without that awareness.

Keith
 
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