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ABS for sports bikes.. finally!

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by nath, Mar 10, 2009.

  1. I recently had a bit of a rant about how great I think it is that Honda has kick started a revolution on sports bike braking with their new "Combined ABS".

    For those of you who don't know about the new 600 and 1000 cc sports bikes that honda has revised for 2009: they have some magic called combined ABS.

    See "Sports bikes brake out of the stone age" for a bunch of vids on how it works.

    Basically it's ABS with the front/rear brake coordination to improve braking further (it uses a touch of the back brake to steady the bike and reduce dive).
    They launched with a test track with sand on it and every report so far I've seen/read seems very positive. They say it's very non intrusive and just works. Results from MCN showed both experienced and not so experienced riders managed to brake in less distance.

    So, my feeling is the main issue people have is that they think they're hot shit braking experts, when the statistics show that bikers are pretty lousy brakers (with the death rate).

    What do people think about this system? I personally think all bikes should have the option or have it as included by default. A one time bike price increase that we just deal with and save lives from this point forward.
  2. as long as there is an off switch

    im shit hot a braking (not) but i still want the option of switching it off.
  3. There might be reasons to want to turn it off (e.g. you're riding in some crazy road surface that it doesn't handle.. not that I know what that might be, but let's assume such a surface exists), so I'd be in favour of that.
    I guess for the most part it won't engage if you're just riding around the street and braking smoothly. Like a car's system.
  4. that would surely be dangerous if somehow the system shut down and the failsafe came on without you knowing...all the while you're used to giving the brakes a good handful. but then again...theres probably warning lights
  5. Dont like the extra 4-10kg for the ABS system, and haven't experienced it feel how it works but I wouldn't mind ABS on rear brake.. Have to be a bit of a spanner to lock the front often, but rear brake on my bike locks rather easily.
  6. I don't like it and I don't want it on my bike. Honda can also stick its combined brakes up its date, if companies can be said to have a date.
  7. The Tiger 1050's system is ~3kg, bringing dry weight from 197 to a round 200kg. Can't speak for Honda's new system, mind you.

    Tiger 1050's ABS-equipped brakes have the same feel as the non-ABS brakes, until the bike detects a wheel locking up due to a skid.

    When the system engages, it's similar to a car's ABS - the respective brake lever pulses/kicks as the hydraulic valve modulates the brake automagically. Provides good feedback that you're engaging the system. As you say, though, it takes a hard braking effort to lock the wheels (and therefore, engage the system).

    Front and rear are independent on the Tiger (while Honda's are linked).
    Trail-braking is possible on the Tiger... well, up until the rear begins to skid anyway.

    I have tested the Tiger's brakes on gravel roads, dirt roads, moist clay. Stops as good as any sportsbike-tyred vehicle could be expected to on a loose material. Harder than I probably could without ABS, because there's less fear involved. The tyres do skid for longer on loose material than on road, but no control is lost.

    I don't think it would be suitable for X-treme offroad descents, but for anything resembling a "road" I have no doubts in the sanity of the system. Most offroad-oriented bikes with ABS have a switch on/off anyway... And failing that you can just yank the ABS fuse out to make the brakes "dumb" on most bikes.

    'course, Honda's new system is all braking-by-wire, with simulated brake lever feel, etc... So I'm not sure how it'd go for "feel".
  8. The reviewers said there was no pulsing with this system.. So it's not like conventional ABS in that sense.

    Oh and one of the engineers said that in the event of a fault it fails safely and works like normal brakes.

    I think because of the perceived resistance to any sort of technology that improves safety: they would have nailed it before putting it on a sports bike.

    Anyhow, say hello to the future: it'll be on all of the 600cc bikes in a few years is my prediction.
  9. ABS

    ABS is good stuff, unless there is someone behind you who doesn't have it! Then you get run over by them.

    In France they found from ABS data loggers that when drivers of cars saw a threat, they panicked, slammed on the skids, the ABS took over and maximised the brakes. But then most idiot drivers felt they were braking too hard, so they backed off the brake pressure and collided anyway, even with ABS! So what was the solution? Now on French cars, if the ABS electronics detect a "panic" braking event, the ABS system overides the idiot drivers reaction to release the brake pressure, and the ABS autopilot keeps the skids locked on to full braking capability till the car stops. Sounds good hey?! Well that is until they realised that the cars following the ABS autopilot cars, that don't have ABS, now smash into the back of the auto ABS cars!
  10. Please show me how you came to this conclusion? Do you have stats that show poor braking caused certain amounts of accidents or are you just making this up?
  11. I would like to know too. I reckon it is the "go" button that makes people crash, not so much the "stop" button.
  12. It's both, innit? Too much "go" followed by too much "stop" - particularly if you grab the front brake a tad too hard.
  13. The system they showed the journos was amazing.

    They provided a range of surfaces and got the journos to brake as hard as they could. The reporter was stunned with it stopped on loose sand spread over a road.

    To be honest, anything that helps in those marginal conditions such as sand, gravel or wet is to be applauded. Honda have seriously invested in this system and there is serious talk that it might appear on their Supertsport race bikes for wet races.
  14. +1 to that

    yep honda building another idiot proof system, soon they will add two more wheels and a roll cage :roll:
  15. But what if the system is genuinely better at stopping in poor conditions than you can possibly hope to achieve by yourself?

    I've not heard or seen many people lock their brakes up and crash in the dry, but how many posts are there here from riders who've locked up in the wet, on gravel or when the road is shitty?

    The system has been developed specifically for sports bikes, with heavy front brake bias and grippy tyres. It's been fitted to the 600RR and the 1000RR and the road testers couldn't fault it, in any way.
  16. there are reports available that detail things like "use of brakes" and presence of skid marks etc on incident reports as observed factors. Commonly, it is marked up as "incompetent braking" or similar, and it figures large in the numbers, even the hurt report which, following interview with H. Hurt in 1999 remain as valid today as in the 70's.

    More usefully in a general sense though is point 4 here:

    and it isn't hard to work out that people probably stuff up braking even more in sudden cases like multi-vehicle incidents like the left/right turn ones.

    And then we have the persistant bullshit anecdotes floating around of "had to lay it down", plus all the sob stories on this forum about "locked a brake and went down".

    If you believe that the population at large is good enough that they don't need ABS, you are kidding yourself.

    As for LBS: It works as well, most particularly for the rear brake only brigade.

    ABS for cars shows no difference in accident rates - that is common to many studies. What is not shown however is that a car with locked brakes still slows down pretty fast compared to sliding on its side and that the car doesn't roll over under locked brakes.

    For a bike, even just keeping a rider upright and braking using the tyres is likely to have a significant impact (ahem) on impact speeds and thus on severe injury or fatality likelyhood when compared to those who lock up and slide into the object (be it car, tree, gutter etc). And the reports already tells us that even bike cops with loads of training still fcuk up emergency braking, let alone the rest of the population.
  17. I'd have ABS I rekon. If you never lock up, you'd never knew you had it.
    and when the shit hits the fan and you do lock up you'd be glad you had it.
    ...and hardcore riding 'purists' can yank the fuse or put in an inline toggle switch or something.
  18. You've got my vote. Sad day in the history of bikes.

    there is nothing good about a system that takes control away from a rider at it's most critical point.

    Don't want it. I don't want the complexity. I don't want the negative safety effects. I don't want the weight. I don't wan the maintenance.

    Even if you can turn it off I don't want it.
  19. Never rode a bike with ABS, but I do know I hate it in cars. It’s probably great for people who cannot drive to save their lives. But anyone who puts a little effort into it just turns the car into a giant sponge on wheels.

    I guess it’s good for some people to have the option.
  20. I'm a little divided on the issue... While ABS in cars is built for 'idiots', I'm not sure how it would go with bikes.

    Where I say abs in cars 'for idiots' is that anyone with very little driving experience can get in a car and jump on the brakes and pull up a lot safer then without the abs or training to pump the brake if in a non-abs car.

    Referring to bikes however, I believe its a fair statement to say bike riders generally have higher knowledge of bike handling and physics and road physics and therefore know all the forces and actions/reactions of ramming on the brakes on a bike.

    While all the test results are positive, I'd be very cautious approaching a bike that has abs as I've never riden one that has.

    In saying that, while i love the abs in my car and i'm never afraid to use it, i have made it fail several times in Very slippery conditions. Basic example; jammed the brakes on so hard, only several 'abs' pumps occurred before all four wheels locked. The car thought it was stationary as all four wheels were stationary and the car was now locked up and sliding out of control. While this was simple to correct (release brake), imagen this happening at a lot faster speeds on a bike a moment before entering a corner............................