Motorcycle Forum banner

1 - 20 of 40 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
125 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
This wasn't completely clear from the MSF course. If you are going to slow before a turn, do you slow with front and back brakes or just one or the other?
Or, do you slow with back brake but not let off throttle while doing it?
 

·
American Legion Rider
Joined
·
18,889 Posts
Braking will be different on every turn depending on speed. I general use engine braking by letting off the throttle completely. But for times I misjudge, which I think is more or less what you are referring to, it's front brake followed by rear brake. It takes practice but most of the time I never need the rear brake. The new linked brake systems are ideal for beginners for this very reason. But learn to use and trust that front brake. That's where all your stopping power is. But front brake followed by rear brake for heavy braking is ideal. Practice practice practice is the only way you'll learn how. But I'd say that 99.9% of the time I never need the rear brake. Now if I was an aggressive rider then I'd need more rear braking. But I no longer need to prove anything and prefer to ride more sanely. But front brake then rear brake is how I ride into curves when needed. The instructors here may have something else to say though.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
6,676 Posts
Front brake first, then the back brake. Ease off on the front brake first, after the front tyre starts to feel some pressure, quickly followed by the back brake. But while you are learning, it may be best to brake first, then ease off the brakes, and turn. For practice you can just tap, or squeeze the brakes in a turn, to get the feel of them.
Generally the tighter the turn, like a hairpin, you will apply full brakes and ease off before turning.
A wide sweeping corner may allow you to keep the brakes on while entering the corner. A corner the tightens up ( decreasing radius I think is the modern term ) will require more brakes going around the corner. A corner that opens up, will allow more throttle as you go around.

UK
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
125 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I read somewhere that there are situations where you apply rhe rear brake but keep he throttle consistent at the same time. What would this apply to?
 

·
Very Famous Person
Joined
·
9,724 Posts
--

As noted, no two turns are exactly alike considering speed, view around turn, traffic, road surface (pot holes, etc.), weather conditions, possible debris on roadway, your awareness, your experience, the track you are taking, and the abilities of your bike. All of those things are factors. Believe it.

If you don't consider all the above and just want to make it simple, then your sequence is (1) to slow with reduced throttle, (2) decide on track (or path) to take, (3) use brake as needed before apex, (4) accelerate when appropriate. Remember, you must take into account all the things I mentioned above.

As to the braking, it's a good idea to always use both brakes when learning riding/stopping so as to train your motor memory to do both as you can't think about it in a panic stop. It has to be automatic to use all your stopping power.

--
 

·
American Legion Rider
Joined
·
18,889 Posts
I read somewhere that there are situations where you apply rhe rear brake but keep he throttle consistent at the same time. What would this apply to?
That's generally used in u-turns or slow parking lot maneuvers. There are numerous others situations but slow stuff is probably what you are referring to.

And I second what RonK said here...

Ronk said:
As to the braking, it's a good idea to always use both brakes when learning riding/stopping so as to train your motor memory to do both as you can't think about it in a panic stop. It has to be automatic to use all your stopping power.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
52 Posts
I far from being an expert.
I enjoyed the skills course and learned a lot. Even so it was just the basic minimum to survive on the road. Most of was slow speed. Counter steering, I couldn’t see it working. Don’t brake in a corner. I was to dumb to know you can’t. I have read about trail braking. Watched some YouTube video, practice on my own.
Riding in city traffic you need all the slow speed skills. Stopping and starting on hills. Instead of a parking lot. I have a tendency to use engine braking. The course advises use your brakes to signal the vehicle behind you.
I find I am still getting surprised by the vehicle behind me.
Getting out on the highway, I spent quite a bit of time just practicing counter steering. Which came in handy when I found I don’t have to think about it.
This time around I’m not a crazy as I was when I was young. I am staying within my ability which is way less than the bikes. I haven’t been approaching corners requiring hard braking or trail braking. I’ve still misjudged a few. Coming in a little to hot. I found Counter steering and leaning more. Sorted it.
Back in the day I never knew you can’t brake in a corner. Leaving space in front I find I can brake gently with the front if I have to. The skills course, I learned if you brake hard in a corner you will go down.

Hope you enjoyed the course and getting out on the road.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
252 Posts
I far from being an expert.
I find I am still getting surprised by the vehicle behind me... I am staying within my ability which is way less than the bikes. I haven’t been approaching corners requiring hard braking or trail braking...
Yep; I don’t think I even worried about what was in my mirrors back in my wild-n-crazy days (daze) because they weren’t there very long – now I find I spend a lot more time checking what may be lurking back there… As for pre-during-post corner braking – what did it matter, given the ineffectiveness of single-shoe (rear) brakes back in the day – we thought it was a big deal if we had twin leading shoe front brakes… Now is an entirely different issue – my low-tech C10 has brakes that rival a small car and it is twenty years old. If used ham-fistedly they can certainly yank the bike.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
182 Posts
The idea is the tires really don't have a large contact patch. When you are turning the patch has to be shared by braking force and keeping the bike on the road. If you are going slower, there are less forces at work. Forces wanting to keep going strait which doesn't work in turns when you exceed the abilities of the tires to hold onto the road surface. So the tires can slip easier in turns. When they slip/slide things go wrong. When you lock up tires, they are sliding and you don't have steering. You can reduce the possibility of things going wrong by getting your slowing down already done before the turn. You kinda want steering to work in turns and curves.

It takes time to learn your bike, and learn all this stuff. As said, practice and time. Take your time. For me I don''t want to get my ride over with. I enjoy it. So I'm not interested in going as fast as possible at all times. Some people do, that their thing, not mine. Take your time, especially though curves. Don't worry about what other drivers think. Ride within your abilities. If your nervous on curves and turns don't go flying thru them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
125 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I’m just one if those people who gets hung up on proper technique. I kind of want to know that I’m doing things right but the basic course really only scratches the surface. If there were more advanced courses offered in my area, I’d take them but there aren’t.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,751 Posts
I can remember entering a corner TDF! Had front and rear brakes right on the edge of locking up and I kept the bike up right as long as I possibly could. Then off the brakes and leaned in to the curve as far as I could. Somehow I made it around that curve.

This is exactly the wrong way to corner. It can also make you take up smoking. You smoke to explain nicotine stains in your under drawers.

You've only got to do it this way once before you figure out any other way is better. Never cuss yourself for going around a curve to slow. You'll develope your technique with experience and speed will come with experience.

Be careful and have fun. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
43 Posts
Something that gets neglected in discussions on cornering is rebound.
This pertains to braking when approaching a ninety degree turn on the street.
MSF teaches: 1. Slow 2. Look 3. Press 4. Roll.
In my opinion, they do not give students enough understanding of the expected rebound effect on the front tire after releasing the front brake. They just say to release the brakes completely before the corner.
I disagree with this.

If after slowing for a turn by applying both brakes, you release the front brake completely, you will lose your front contact patch quite a lot and rebound.
This will reduce your control of the bike and feel very unsettling.

I always carry a little front brake into a turn on the street.
I ease off the front brake as I lean into the corner.
It keeps the front tire planted and the suspension under control.
 

·
Very Famous Person
Joined
·
9,724 Posts
Something that gets neglected in discussions on cornering is rebound.
This pertains to braking when approaching a ninety degree turn on the street.
MSF teaches: 1. Slow 2. Look 3. Press 4. Roll.
In my opinion, they do not give students enough understanding of the expected rebound effect on the front tire after releasing the front brake. They just say to release the brakes completely before the corner.
I disagree with this.

If after slowing for a turn by applying both brakes, you release the front brake completely, you will lose your front contact patch quite a lot and rebound.
This will reduce your control of the bike and feel very unsettling.

I always carry a little front brake into a turn on the street.
I ease off the front brake as I lean into the corner.
It keeps the front tire planted and the suspension under control.
--

What you are describing can be called trail braking where you control rebound. The thing is, it takes constant mental effort to use this technique all the time for most riders. It's used to extreme perfection by racers, but for newbies can take a while to get the feel of how much they're applying front brake. There are intricacies to all turn actions and riders who care to both perfect and/or to improve defenses will work on these maneuvers constantly.

We have to remember that the rider's courses are really pretty short, not individualized, and written up by a committee. It's all a compromise.

--
 

·
Moderator - Like a crazy cat lady but with bikes!
Joined
·
1,088 Posts
Everyone here has you going in the right direction.

The only thing I have to add is that be very careful using the front brake in rain and snow. Breaking front end traction can lead to nasty results. I use the rear more and the front less in the snow. And if I do break traction in the snow/rain, what I do is straighten up the bike, gently put in the clutch, then gently apply braking only if I need to.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,751 Posts
As much as possible, I'm a fair weather rider. I did get caught in a hail storm in Montana once. Sounded like someone was smacking my helmet with a ball peen hammer.

Traveling cross country, got to take whatever comes up, or stay another night at Motel 6. :)

(Haven't ever done that, yet.)
 

·
Very Famous Person
Joined
·
9,724 Posts
As much as possible, I'm a fair weather rider. I did get caught in a hail storm in Montana once. Sounded like someone was smacking my helmet with a ball peen hammer.

Traveling cross country, got to take whatever comes up, or stay another night at Motel 6. :)

(Haven't ever done that, yet.)
--

Funny how that works. Five years ago, I went on an 8,000 miler and had 15 minutes of rain whole trip. This summer on a 9,000 miler I had two weeks of the time with some rain. I did, however, realize that I like it. Riding in the rain is pretty fun as long as you have your rain gear on.

--
 

·
American Legion Rider
Joined
·
18,889 Posts
Everyone here has you going in the right direction.

The only thing I have to add is that be very careful using the front brake in rain and snow. Breaking front end traction can lead to nasty results. I use the rear more and the front less in the snow. And if I do break traction in the snow/rain, what I do is straighten up the bike, gently put in the clutch, then gently apply braking only if I need to.
True. But I use engine braking and go slow enough (common sense) to not need much of either brake in those conditions. Feathering clutch when needed as well. But for most folks just slowing down for the condition will work. Just because the speed limit is 75mph doesn't mean you should do 75mph in snow.

And gravel is another area to be cautious.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
780 Posts
Go to youtube and search [ Cornering Theory #7 ] .

I would just embed it here, but I don't understand the copyright laws on it, and don't want to get in trouble with the feds. :surprise:

Great video both informative and entertaining. Authored by Keith Code, one of the foremost authorities on motorcycle techniques. :wink2:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
front or rear

If you are going straight, I'd say use both brakes. If your handlebars are turned keep your hand off the front brake. While most of your braking power is on the front, grabbing that front brake with turned handlebars can cause a high side or low side spill. In very slow maneuvers such as a parking lot, I'd recommend rear brake only. Several years ago, I was pulling into a restaurant that had a gravel parking lot. I was going slow and had the handlebars squared, but when someone stepped out in front of me I grabbed front brake and almost dumped it. It's mostly a judgement call based on experience in all cass.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
43 Posts
Braking tends to be a subject that we all have different opinions about.
But there is one thing I think all experienced riders will agree upon.
That is, release your front brake as slowly as you applied it.
Just as you would never grab your front brake, also don't just let go of it quickly.

This is a key point that should be impressed upon new riders.
Ease off the front brake as you approach a corner. Sloooowly.
Since the suspension is already set with pressure on the front tire, there is no risk of losing your front end by easing off the front brake.
It’s the application of front brake that shifts weight to the front that will cause you problems when leaned over.

Slow hands and controlled movements are your best friends.
 
1 - 20 of 40 Posts
Top