Motorcycle Forum banner
1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Today, I took the initiative, and got up early to practice in a local school parking lot. Got some cones and took the Triumph Tiger 800 out to practice those low speed maneuvers.

I was doing an offset cone weave, probably about 12 feet distant with 4 foot offset. I was mostly taking the turns wide, almost doing large U turns to the sides. Mostly, I wanted to practice rapid changes in direction, counter weighting, and using my focal points to put the bike where I want.

For the most part I did really well, and can consistently pull a U turn in 24 feet. Sometimes I do better, but again, I'm still learning a relatively big bike, rather than my tiny little BMW G310R.

After doing wide turns, I decided to try and do a slow offset, getting as close as I could. Unfortunately, I made the elementary mistake of looking at a cone. Of course I hit it. I was at full lock left and leaning, and ended up losing focus and stalled the bike. While I did counterweight, I still can't beat gravity.

I realized what was happening, so I ended up jumping away. Bike hit the pavement. Luckily, I still had my Pelican side cases attached. Mostly because I was lazy and didn't bother taking them off.

I had never dropped one before, and had therefore never picked one up, but I read about the technique and watched videos. So I did it as I thought I was supposed to, and it actually was way easier than I thought.

No damage to the bike, just a minor scratches on my side case, and a barely perceptible scratch to the left handguard.

Lessons learned.

1. Friction zone is the most important. If you stall, or touch the front brake while in a low speed turn at full lock, you're going down. Keep that throttle set and the clutch where it needs to be.

2. Focal points. Don't look at the cones, look where you want to go.

3. It's actually really easy to lift a bike with proper technique. Well, maybe not a gigantic Gold Wing, but the Tiger weighs 439 pounds dry. I had a full tank of gas, Hepco and Becker side case racks, and Pelican side cases, partially loaded, so probably close to 500 pounds total.

4. The side cases prevented me from having damage. Still, I may consider investing in some engine crash bars, and will probably keep the side cases on whenever I practice low speed techniques.

That was the first time dropping a bike in over 4000 miles of riding. It could have been worse, but I'd rather drop it in a deserted parking lot than at a stop light in traffic. I made an elementary mistake, and I know I'll probably make more down the line and drop it again, but hopefully with practice I'll get better and more confident. It's just a bike, those are replaceable, but skills diminish without practice.

Any super experienced riders have techniques and advice, especially for keeping the clutch hand doing what it's supposed to do?


Sent from my Moto Z (2) using Tapatalk
 

·
Save them all!
Joined
·
4,278 Posts
Well, you got the first one over with! You probably won't notice the scuffs in a couple weeks.

I find that slightly dragging my rear brake helps me stay stable - not sure why but it seems to work. The slower I need to go the more I drag it and use the friction zone to keep the bike moving. It really helps with sharp u-turns.
 
  • Like
Reactions: FlipFlop

·
MODERATOR
2009 Ninja 500r
Joined
·
1,499 Posts
The most embarrassing and annoying crash/drop will be the last one you done.

It happens and each time has to be a lesson. Some people never drop their bike and most of those are because they dont ride them.

Recently I dropped my oldwing and them crash bars did their job. You know it was supper silly of me too it was because I forgot to put my kickstand down or thought I did already leaned it and over tipping point and off it went. At least you were practicing maneuvers that most dont do unless they are going to a class for it and that is a requirement.
 
  • Like
Reactions: GarrXL

·
On The Road Again!
Joined
·
4,184 Posts
Get yourself a set of crash bars.
Some people don't like the look, but they will pay for
themselves easily in unbroken plastic.
Re: dropping the bike....
Remember, it's not IF you will drop it, it's only a matter of when.
 

·
Biker
Joined
·
1,620 Posts
Hello Adam,

Two thumbs up for getting out and working on the low speed skills, let me make the off-sets easier 4 ya.

Make one row of cones 30 feet apart, say 5 or 6 cones, measure out 40 feet( from last cone) to the left, then parallel to
1st set of cones but 15 feet down, start next row of cones 30 feet apart. This is similar to rlap's way but not messing with
gates but as long as you stay inside the cones. Going too slow you will have trouble but keep your eyes where ya want
to go lite pressure on rear brake modulate or blip the throttle and counterweight your self against the turns.
Basically you are doing large S's from one end to the other. You should not worry about the U-turn till you get the
off-set weave down real good, that is what motorman say's

Speed should not be less than 5 mph and maybe closer to 10 for heavyweight cruisers, 6 or 7 could be good.

Don't forget to breeze out the bike, say after two runs through the off-set course, put'er in 2nd and ride around a few
minutes NOT feathering the clutch no pressure on rear brakes.

Bring your favorite gatorade drink with you, gotta stay hydrated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I did buy the Motorman RLAP video via their digital download, so I'll be checking it out soon. I've also been following the MotoJitsu channel on Youtube too, and if you go by his color belt system, I can consistently perform to white belt standard on both of my bikes, and can perform some of the higher belt drills with varying degrees of success - sometimes I can, sometimes I mess it up, usually I do better on my G310R.

I definitely need to have more hydration next time. I got up and went straight to it after scarfing down some breakfast, and went in the hot sun without much water. I need to force myself to take more breaks and hydrate, but this is the Type A personality in me. When I'm committed to doing something, I go at it hard. By that token I sometimes get too anxious to run, when I need to practice walking and crawling first.

Any tips for improving the head and eyes focal point?
 

·
Biker
Joined
·
1,620 Posts
Yup, I know what you mean, doing these was not as hard on my 91 Sporty 1200 as it was on my wide glide which weights in at
700+something but it took not long to get the hang of it.

From Adam12 "Any tips for improving the head and eyes focal point? "

Don't do the 'Fish eye' thing, having your head in a different direction than your eyes, it'll either get ya big
time dis-oriented or dizzy.

Don't wait till the last second coming up to the cone. At 6 mph you move 8.8 feet in one second, so by
the time you think you are close enough, you'll be outside the cone. All I can say is really watch the video,
really listen to what he says and keep trying and don't work on the U-turn till u get the off-set down well.
 

·
American Legion Rider
Joined
·
25,876 Posts
Hello Adam,

Two thumbs up for getting out and working on the low speed skills, ...
Speed should not be less than 5 mph and maybe closer to 10 for heavyweight cruisers, 6 or 7 could be good.

Don't forget to breeze out the bike, ...
Yup, speed is your friend at times.

If you are inferring to not over-heat the clutch and engine, I agree. But also it let's you relax some as well to get some real run time for the bike.:smile:
 

·
SUPER MODERATOR
Joined
·
9,119 Posts
56 years of riding on 85 motorcycles so far and I have never had to ride through a bunch of silly orange cones on the street or in a parking lot, just so I could 'hone' my riding skills:surprise:

Unless you are new or want to prove something to yourself, just ride the thing and get experience as you go:wink2:

My best friend that I have ridden with since 15 1/2 years old, a Sheriff Deputy, with the City of Industry, in Southern California, could have retired but decided to take the 'Motor officer' course and certification, administered by the California Highway Patrol, at the Ontario Airport:grin: He thought he'd enjoy another 5 years or so being a Motor Officer instead of patrolling in a cage.:wink2:

He was near to finishing the course, riding one of those Kawasaki KZ1000 duty bikes and was on the infamous "ride around the stupid orange cones' obstacle course.':surprise: This was an individual test, with officials watching and He, my Friend riding at high speed, slowing down where marked and then making a bunch of slow turns around a bunch of cones:plain: The cones were over a half mile away from the officials and they watched with binoculars.:plain:

As he made the second slow, lock to lock turn, the bike fell over on its right side and trapped his right ankle and foot, under the bikes floor boards and just pinning him to the ground:surprise:

He said nobody came to help him for maybe 5 minutes, probably thinking that he would get up, right the bike and continue----BUT, he couldn't get up at all, was in intense pain and had to be taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital---all from a 1 mph fall:surprise:

His lower ankle and upper foot was crushed AND his ACHILLES tendon was SEVERED from his heel:surprise:

Outcome was permanent disability after a long and painful ordeal and then forced medical retirement:sad:

He still rides his Harley and his Goldwing but to this day is in pain.:plain:

Sam:nerd:
 

·
Moderator - Loves All Motorcycles
Joined
·
1,251 Posts
1. Friction zone is the most important. If you stall, or touch the front brake while in a low speed turn at full lock, you're going down. Keep that throttle set and the clutch where it needs to be.

2. Focal points. Don't look at the cones, look where you want to go.

3. It's actually really easy to lift a bike with proper technique. Well, maybe not a gigantic Gold Wing, but the Tiger weighs 439 pounds dry. I had a full tank of gas, Hepco and Becker side case racks, and Pelican side cases, partially loaded, so probably close to 500 pounds total.

4. The side cases prevented me from having damage. Still, I may consider investing in some engine crash bars, and will probably keep the side cases on whenever I practice low speed techniques.
I've stalled my Goldwing a few times while at full lock (friction zone is basically an entirely different universe than my GS850G) and nearly dropped it. I'm pretty sure I put a good few hundred pounds on my one little foot that kept me from fully spilling over.

#2 has been extremely beneficial to me in my 2k miles of riding so far. I've noticed that things always get sloppy when you fixate. I aced the cone weave at the MSF by just looking straight ahead and trusting my hips and arms to do the work. :devil:

Next weekend I'm going offroading in a scooter that I made into a pseudo adventure bike. I'm pretty sure I'll have my first spill out there, but thankfully it'll be a Chinese scooter and I already shaved some weight off its already really light 250-ish pounds.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
194 Posts
56 years of riding on 85 motorcycles so far and I have never had to ride through a bunch of silly orange cones on the street or in a parking lot, just so I could 'hone' my riding skills

Unless you are new or want to prove something to yourself, just ride the thing and get experience as you go


I've been riding for only 50+ years but I'm not sure what makes cone patterns "silly." They're just a tool to learn to maneuver on a motorcycle. "just rid[ing] the thing" won't teach someone how to avoid an obstacle, swerve around a motorist who does something stupid right in front of a rider, brake in an emergency, or how to properly and safely round curves on a mountain road. Cone patterns make it possible to learn those things, and more, in a relatively safe environment.

I just finished a large, long ride with many other bikers, many of them with decades of "experience." I watched across a canyon as many of them failed to stay on their own side of the road. I watched an "experienced" rider panic brake, lose control as his back wheel lost traction, and run off the road. An "experience[ed]" rider drove into me, pushing me into oncoming traffic, and I narrowly escaped being hit, head‒on, by a car at a closing speed of about 140 mph.

He was near to finishing the course, riding one of those Kawasaki KZ1000 duty bikes and was on the infamous "ride around the stupid orange cones' obstacle course.
Neither the "orange cones," nor the "obstacle course" are "stupid." they simulate the obstacles that a motor officer will encounter while riding. Do you think it's better that he just go "ride the thing" in traffic? I guarantee that he's not going to learn the skills necessary by doing that.

Outcome was permanent disability after a long and painful ordeal and then forced medical retirement
Sorry for your friend's injury, but it would have been impossible to him to learn the movements necessary for enforcement riding by just "rid[ing] the thing."
 

·
SUPER MODERATOR
Joined
·
9,119 Posts
Thank you for being so judgmental :grin:

He and I had been riding since MOSES got his learning permit, all over the United States and we commuted to work in Good ol' Los Angeles for many, many years, so I think HE had enough experience to forgo the 'Coney' test:smile_big:

YOU though will probably say: "Well why did he fall then?":surprise:

POOP happens:grin:

Sam:nerd:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
194 Posts
Thank you for being so judgmental
Pot ‒ kettle ‒ black!

I was much less "judgmental" than you were, calling the cone course "silly" and "stupid," and by reasonable extension, applying those terms to the officials who set up the cone pattern, the class, and the requirement to pass that test to pass the class and become a motor officer. Let's not forget the "silly" and "stupid"" supervisors on his agency who required that he attend the CHP class to become a motor officer. The Nerve!

He and I had been riding since MOSES got his learning permit, all over the United States and we commuted to work in Good ol' Los Angeles for many, many years, so I think HE had enough experience to forgo the 'Coney' test
Based on results, I'd disagree. As I've said and seen over and over, "experience" doesn't give one the skills to do enforcement riding. Unless one goes to a class, they rarely practice the slow speed maneuvering that is required of a motor officer. I too "commuted to work in Good ol' Los Angeles for many, many years" but I don't recall EVER practicing slow speed maneuvers. The number times I had to do them in traffic was fairly small, nowhere near enough to become proficient. Again, based on results, your friend also was not proficient in them.

Since then I have taken several Intermediate level courses. They showed me how little I knew about the techniques of riding slowly, the same techniques that you belittle, the same techniques that caused your friend's injuries. Others in the course, who also had decades of "experience" made similar comments. One of the most common reasons that people don't attend such courses is their ego. They've been riding with "Moses," they're "experienced," and besides, cone patterns are "silly" and "stupid." Sounds familiar doesn't it?

YOU though will probably say: "Well why did he fall then?"

POOP happens
Yes it does. But it happens less frequently when one practices low speed movements and is proficient in them. Hard to do on the street. EASY to do in a parking lot with cones.
 

·
SUPER MODERATOR
Joined
·
9,119 Posts
:crying::crying::crying::crying::crying::crying::crying::crying:

Any orange cones that I have offended, please forgive me:grin::grin::grin::grin::grin::grin::grin::grin:

Sam:kiss::kiss::kiss::kiss::kiss::kiss::kiss::kiss::kiss::kiss:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
194 Posts
In another thread today, this message appeared,
Had a Harley guy in my MSF class, been riding for 20 years with no license.
He had a hard time in class unable to do the weave, low speed turns and when he fell with the bike in the "box", he quit and walked out of the class cussing and cursing the class.
I wonder if he's still out there riding with no license.
I responded.
Now I know that you're lying! This doesn't happen. [/sarcasm] At least not according to one member who thinks that having ridden for a long time gives one "experience" and competence in low speed maneuvers. Falling wasn't the fault of this rider in your class. It was those "silly" and "stupid" cones that were responsible.
Not to mention those pesky officials of the state, who required that he ride such a course to obtain his license.
 

·
SUPER MODERATOR
Joined
·
9,119 Posts
" At least not according to one member who thinks that having ridden for a long time gives one "experience" and competence in low speed maneuvers." Quote beemer DUD :)

Pray tell snowflake, what does riding for a long time do to your level of experience, enhance or destroy it?

I have an idea about where to put your orange practice cone :)

Sam:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
194 Posts
" At least not according to one member who thinks that having ridden for a long time gives one "experience" and competence in low speed maneuvers." Quote beemer DUD
Looks like your panties are in a TIGHT twist alright. I DO love the play on my name though, calling me "dud" when my name is "dood." My, aren't you clever?
And this from a guy whose name is "Porky!" ROFL.

Pray tell snowflake,
Snowflake? You're the one who's engaging in the childish behavior of name‒calling and telling people that if I respond in a thread, that you'll ignore it, while participating everywhere else. One of the signals that one has lost an argument is when he turns to name‒calling.

what does riding for a long time do to your level of experience, enhance or destroy it?
It depends on what skills have been used while obtaining that "experience." If all one does is ride the freeway, you'll get very good at riding at a constant, moderately high speed in a relatively straight line. But if that's all that the "experience" is based on, that's all that this rider will be skilled at. If once practices slow speed maneuvering, and BTW cones aren't necessary, but some sort of target, such as half‒tennis‒balls, or the lines on a parking lot ARE NECESSARY, then one will become proficient at slow speed maneuvering. If one practices swerving, emergency braking, shifting weight to the outside in slow, tight turns, etc., then one will become proficient in those skills as well.

Didja read the post from RiderV3 who told us about his classmate with "TWENTY YEARS" EXPERIENCE who was "unable to do the weave, low speed turns and [who] … fell with the bike in the 'box' …?" Those are VERY BASIC low speed maneuvers that ANY rider should be able to do well, since they might have to be done on the street. But here's a rider with "TWENTY YEARS" EXPERIENCE who could not do them! Just having "experience" may mean very little as to skill, depending on what that experience has consisted of. How is it that you miss this very obvious detail?

Riding a motorcycle is a perishable skill. Riding will enhance those skills that you practice but DOES NOTHING or possibly even DEGRADES those skills that you don’t practice. Since average riders (probably even the majority of riders) DO NOT practice low speed maneuvers, they don't get better at them. Yet, often riders are called upon to make low speed U‒turns after stopping at traffic signals or in the middle of the block, after they've ridden past a turn. They may have to ride slowly in traffic, in parking lots, or when approaching gas pumps.

Speaking of gas pumps, I went on a very large group ride a few months ago. When the group stopped for gas, most of those EXPERIENCED riders put both their feet down and dog paddled, as they rolled slowly towards the gas pumps. Half a dozen times I saw riders either fall or catch themselves in a near‒fall. On some of the first gear turns in the hills, many of those EXPERIENCED riders were doing the same thing, feet down, walking their bikes around those turns. Many of those EXPERIENCED riders could not stay on their own side of the road in the tighter or faster turns, because they'd never practiced this skill. I’m sure that many had never received training in doing so.

Coming back from a ride last weekend, we hit traffic in a construction zone that had very narrow lanes, and started lane splitting at very low speeds due to the narrow lanes. We caught up to some riders who were lane splitting but instead of actually riding, they were 'dog paddling' walking their bikes with the feet down. Apparently, they LACKED THE SKILLS to ride slowly, so they were walking. We RODE behind them (that is, with our feet on the pegs) for a few hundred yards, hoping that they'd see us and move, so that we could get through. When they didn't, we changed lanes and went around them, using our low speed riding skills, that we practice WITH CONES regularly. We were all moving at the same speed for awhile, but they were dog paddling while we were riding. I don't know them so I can't say for sure, but it appears that none of them had the skill to simply ride their bikes, and so, they were dog paddling, a beginner's skill, that's taught in the first hour on the range (on the bikes) of the BRC.

In the past three years, I've taken a BRC (Basic Riding Course), and 5 Intermediate riding classes. My daughter wanted to start riding and I thought that if I took the classes with her she'd be encouraged to learn and would be safer. ALL of the Intermediate classes were populated with "experienced riders," many of them riding for years, some of them riding for decades. ALL of those folks had problems with low speed movements because they'd never practiced them. MOST of those EXPERIENCED riders had no idea how to use the clutch, throttle, and rear brake together to make it easy. MOST of those EXPERIENCED riders had no idea of how to safely and quickly go around a tight corner, such as one might find on any mountain road. MOST of those EXPERIENCED riders could easily make it around a gentle turn, especially at moderate speeds, since THAT is what they had experience with. MOST of those EXPERIENCED riders had little skill in making fast stop using both front and rear brakes. They'd never practiced it and therefore were lacking in the skills and knowledge of how to do them. Some of them were completely ignorant of counter‒steering! I'd say that "experience" hadn't taught them quite enough to ride safely.

Some of those classes were taught by nationally known people, whose names you might recognize from the articles and books they've written. Some were run by various safety organizations and some were run by LE motor officer trainers. The theme that was repeated at ALL of those classes was that one must practice THE SPECIFIC SKILLS in question if one was to become, or remain proficient in them. To a man, they lamented the fact that almost NO EXPERIENCED RIDERS ACTIVELY PRACTICED SUCH MOVEMENTS REGULARLY.

Motorcycle riding skills are like most other sporting skills in that they are 'training specific.' Skill doesn't come unless one practices that skill SPECIFICALLY. Is the fog lifting? Will it ever?

I have an idea about where to put your orange practice cone
Now thinly veiled threats of violence? Looks as if you've run out of logic and reason and so have now moved to name calling and threats. The FAIL is becoming more and more obvious!
 

·
SUPER MODERATOR
Joined
·
9,119 Posts
Dud, you are becoming pedantic, verbose and oh so boring, with your propensity to micro-manage every comment on any topic:grin: Get over it DOOD:wink2:

My name isn't 'Porky,' that is a posting name chosen because I had named my first 1991 Harley Electra Glide 'PORKY,' because it was:smile_big:

Some call me MR. Porky, which I suggest you use in the future:grin:

Lighten up, an ORANGE TRAFFIC CONE is rarely used in Violence:kiss:

Sam:smiley_mornincoffee
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
194 Posts
Dud, you are becoming pedantic, verbose and oh so boring
As I said, "namecalling" is the last refuge of someone who's lost an argument.

, with your propensity to micro-manage every comment on any topic
I get it. You're tired of me showing that MOST of what you write is either flat out wrong, partially wrong, or just inane.

Get over it DOOD
If you have any powers of observation at all, you've discovered that I've decided against taking your advice.

My name isn't 'Porky,' that is a posting name
It seems to have escaped your notice that "a posting name" IS a name. It's contained right in the phrase, but still, YOU MISSED IT. ROFL.

chosen because I had named my first 1991 Harley Electra Glide 'PORKY,' because it was
"ecause it was ……….. " what? Looks as if you left out a word.

Some call me MR. Porky, which I suggest you use in the future


Probably not gonna happen.

Lighten up
ALSO probably not gonna happen

, an ORANGE TRAFFIC CONE is rarely used in Violence
How often something is "used in violence" has nothing to do with making a "thinly veiled threat."

I notice that you spent NOT ONE WORD on the topic of discussion, "dropping a bike!" Your ludicrous proposition that having "experience" (which, without specificity, has no real meaning), gives skills covering all aspect of motorcycling, even though a given skill may never have been practiced AT ALL, has been exposed. You realize this and so you completely avoided responding to my last message that showed this. Instead, you try to divert attention to my writing style, your name, and giving me advice. I haven't seen FAIL of this scale in quite some time!
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top