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Thread: Bike wanting to stand up while trail braking

  1. #1
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    Default Bike wanting to stand up while trail braking

    With track season right around the corner, I was going through some notes that I had written down from the last couple of track days I did last year. The thing that kept coming up was that I was struggling a bit to get leaned over when trail braking. I'm probably not fast enough to actually need to do it but occasionally I'll toy around with the concept in a few corners I'm confident in at Thompson and Palmer.

    The biggest issue I kept running into was at tip in the bike just didn't want to lean over without a much greater input at the bars (not rough just much more deliberate than when not trail braking). When I'm off the brakes before tip in the bike falls over without a problem (actually a little more than I would like it to but I'm getting used to it now) without much steering input at all; I assume in part due to the skinny high-profile tires I'm on (150/70/17).

    Is this just a normal side-effect with trail braking? Is it an issue with my suspension? Is it shitty technique? (aka arms tensing up or something while braking making it just seem more difficult to steer). What are some things I can do to make it better?


    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Kurtz View Post
    If the owner decided tomorrow that we'd change business models and start selling a product that would allow you to force bees to sting babies, I'd stay there as long as they kept compensating me the same way.
    Current Track Day to Crash Ratio: 10:3

  2. #2
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    Trail breaking should make it easier to turn in because of the forks compressing and increasing trail. Sounds like you might be using your outside arm to carry weight instead of letting your tank and thigh connection as well as your ankle area lock into place on the outside leg. I'd try to focus on keeping weight off the bars as you are initiating the brakes by squeezing the tank with your thighs. You should already have your butt off to the inside of the corner, but you should still be able to squeeze the tank with your legs and support yourself with your core. As far as the inside leg I usually use that knee to dig into the tank and when I get lighter on the brakes and approach the apex I transition my knee from the tank to the pavement smoothly.
    -Christian LRRS/CCS #856 ECK RacingGMD Computrack Boston | Pine Motorparts/PBE Specialists | Woodcraft | Street & Competition | OnTrack Media

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  3. #3
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    Default

    You may have hit on something in the last sentence, focus on gripping the motorcycle with your legs and knees when braking and cornering and you will remove pressure from the bars, which may be causing the issue.

    Another thing to focus on is that when you make the directional change for the corner entry, your braking should be mostly done and you will start to release pressure from the brake lever proportionally to your lean angle.

    Good write up found here:
    https://www.n2td.org/trail-braking/
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  4. #4
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    One word: geometry

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by csmutty View Post
    Trail breaking should make it easier to turn in because of the forks compressing and increasing trail.
    Don't you mean decreasing trail?
    Kwicherbichen. I'm old and I'm slow and I don't care. Get off my lawn, ya punk.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by adouglas View Post
    Don't you mean decreasing trail?
    That is correct. Do not listen to the sheephumper.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by adouglas View Post
    Don't you mean decreasing trail?
    Slow old guys got terms.
    -Christian LRRS/CCS #856 ECK RacingGMD Computrack Boston | Pine Motorparts/PBE Specialists | Woodcraft | Street & Competition | OnTrack Media

    2011 Pit Bike Race CHAMPION!

  8. #8
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    Occupational hazard. I write for a living.

    I catch myself proofreading cereal boxes.

    I have no life.
    Kwicherbichen. I'm old and I'm slow and I don't care. Get off my lawn, ya punk.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonny Rocket View Post
    You may have hit on something in the last sentence, focus on gripping the motorcycle with your legs and knees when braking and cornering and you will remove pressure from the bars, which may be causing the issue.

    Another thing to focus on is that when you make the directional change for the corner entry, your braking should be mostly done and you will start to release pressure from the brake lever proportionally to your lean angle.

    Good write up found here:
    https://www.n2td.org/trail-braking/
    Good read. I definitely think the majority of the problem is in my arms. When I don't "try" to trail brake all of my braking is down prior to tip in and I'm already set with one asscheek off them seat which I'm sure helps with unloading the bars with weight. I do notice my lower back really start hurting bad when I'm repeatedly trying to trail brake so that's probably where I'll start focusing this season.

    And I'm sure once I get my suspension over to you to get sorted it'll help too

    Quote Originally Posted by DucatiMichael View Post
    One word: geometry
    Care to elaborate? It sounds like from what smuttnasty said that it should get easier to turn with the forks compressed. Is that wrong?


    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Kurtz View Post
    If the owner decided tomorrow that we'd change business models and start selling a product that would allow you to force bees to sting babies, I'd stay there as long as they kept compensating me the same way.
    Current Track Day to Crash Ratio: 10:3

  10. #10
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    Rake, trail, swing arm angle, rider hight is what Mike is getting at.
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