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Hubcap on road + turning motorcycle = Impromptu lowside

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by Gilligan, Dec 5, 2007.

  1. Sometimes I just don’t know what to say when life throws these things at me. Went riding with Drew tonight and after dinner in town I headed home. I was turning off the main road into my estate, lean into the left-hand corner and as I start making the turn what do I see lying right in front of me? A frigging 15 inch Commodore hubcap laying face down on the road right on my line :eek: . I probably don’t need to explain the rest, but no surprises, with no time to avoid it the moment my front wheel ran onto it the hubcap surfed down the road like the tyre was on oil, the front end instantly washed out because I was on a lean and next moment the bike and I were on the ground :? .

    Damage is relatively minor, just a busted up clutch lever assembly and headlight. Only damage to me is some Kevlar burn on my left knee, bit of blood but no drama.

    I find these this very disheartening. I constantly try to be vigilant of what is around me – other cars, pedestrians, potholes, gravel and junk on the road, etc. Last time it was a knob doing a u-turn across me when he was behind my peripheral vision. His fault 100%, but I learnt my lesson – never take your eyes off a stationary car, even as you are past it. Now this. In retrospect I don’t think I was doing anything particularly wrong; not tailgating the car ahead that was also turning, going at a normal speed, watching the other vehicle, looking through the corner, etc etc. Yet I’m angry at myself that it happened and I wonder how I could have avoided it. Maybe I just have to put it down to bad luck and call it another lesson learned. Be warned, grimy grey hubcaps blend into the road surface really well at night :roll:

    At least it didn’t happen on the new bike :grin:
  2. ouch chris, sorry to hear. at least your ok and it wasn't too nasty.
  3. Chris,

    At this rate bud, they'll have to upgrade you to titanium skin over your knees.

    At least you got away with it relatively unscathed.
  4. Dooooooood!! Rotten luck mate.

    Glad you're not seriously hurt.
  5. Did you return that hubcap through its respective owners window? :evil:
  6. umm, no don't put it down to bad luck, you could of avoided it, but lacked the skills to do so from the sounds. I say this because you say that you saw the object on the road (so i assume you then target fixated on it) and off course you then hit it.

    So to me there are a couple of things you should be taking out of this off, that you need to practice you mid turn situation options, which are adjusting your line by either tightening you line (tipping in harder) or letting it run wider or stand the bike up and emergency brake and remember to staying relaxed on the bike.

    The other thing that i will also add is that when riding on the road don't forgot you never know what will be around the next corner so if you have entered a corner quicker then you feels your abilities are to adjust/stop mid corner then you are riding to quick.

    Anyway glad to hear you got away with only minor scraps, and hope you don't take my post the wrong way, you stated your not sure what to take from it so i am just pointing what i would take from it and learn so that if down the track you find a bike/stick car or any number of things in your space you have the abilities mid corner to deal with them.

    cheers stewy :)
  7. Ughboots sorry to hear about your off. Glad to hear there was not much damage to you or your bike.

    "For lucky best wash, use Mr. Sparkle" Disclaimer: Doh! :facepalm: Mr. Sparkle not all that ruckey for front wheel wash out.

    Oh and these are for your left knee


  8. The only thing I could say given the situation is the somewhat perplexing need to look thru a corner, but also know what's right in front of you when you are riding in suburbia. It takes peripheral vision practice.

    Normally...looking thru the corner, you would have spotted the hubcap early enough to make an line correction...BUT this was at night....your headlight does not go where you look, so the chances of seeing something early enough are very much reduced. Especially when it's an item that blends into the road as the hubcap did.

    The question to ask yourself Ugh, is...could you have stood the bike up or turned in sharper to avoid it once you'd seen it? And only you can really know that, mate...

    Most mishaps like this seem to boil down to us dropping our guard because we are riding in a relaxed manner, compounded by a little inexperience thrown into the mix....and then luck not running our way at the time...

    I would'nt be too hard on yourself in this case...but I understand your annoyance at it happening mate...file it away in your bag of experience, and be thankful that it was'nt the new bike. :grin:
  9. Ack... definitely frustrating, Chris. I guess hub caps are pretty camoflouged at night.

    So in hindsight, and for the rest of us to learn :wink: , could you have uprighted the bike while you went over it, widened your line, or countersteered harder? Or was it simply too tight a corner for your speed (however docile) to deviate?
  10. bugger chris!
    glad you are still in good shape though.
    and very happy it's not on the new bike.

    get well bro
  11. Exactly my thought.
    At the speed you are going in taking a corner like that, there should be plenty of time to, a) see the object, and b) take avasive action to avoid it causing harm(which might have been just standing the bike up so you go over it vertical).

    Glad you're OK mate, better now than on the new bike 'eh? :shock:
  12. There's always something out there waiting to get the heart racing hey!

    Glad to hear it wasn't any worse and yep, good thing it was just the Spada. :)
  13. Sorry to hear about youre off..

    I had a similar experience but luckily didnt cause me to come off.

    I'd was just coming home from work after dark. At one of the roundabouts (with no street lights). I did what I usally do every time I come back home at that round about. Since its a wide enough roundabout to go in at a decent speed with a decent lean angle. I would go in quite confident and lean the bike almost to the point where I feel my limit is. But on that night I was just powering on to help stand the bike up to head out of the round about I saw a peice of timber(for house construction). I saw it in my head light beam about 4-5 m infront of me while I was powering on. At the time I felt like I done have time to do anything so I kept on standing the bike up and went over it at the least lean angle I can manage. I thought if I countered steer again I would of gone off the road and same if I tried to change to the other direction...

    I did learn from that time and I never go in to that corner at/close to my limit. Just incase I had to avoid something on the road...
  14. Sorry to hear about it ughboots, hope it all heals and fixes up quick.

    I'm starting to realize that with bikes its just impossible to stay out of trouble indefinitely. Unlike cars, you can't expect to ride around for 10 years (maybe even 1 year??) without a boo boo even if you did everything perfectly. All sorts of otherwise trivial crap will cause an off or a dropped bike.

    Hope you have car to get around with!
  15. Sorry to hear Chris :( I know you're a good rider so I don't put it down to a lack of experience, just a shit bit of luck/timing/vision etc.

    Glad it wasn't the Gixxer!!!
  16. yeah right. because it was their fault???

    fair dinkum.
  17. Hey Chris,
    Sorry to hear about the saga of crouching spada, hidden hubcap...... Starting to think the Spuds are rising up against their owners! Hope you get it all sorted out and that you heal soon. I'd throw you a clutch lever, but I already broke mine and my Spud is still awaiting it's heart transplant! It rejected the first one today!
  18. Hey Chris,Sorry to hear about your off.. I had a similar 'incident' on a road I often ride with a rusty tin can that blended in with the road quite nicely.. Fortunatey there was no major injury to you or your bike. Just remember- "What doesn't kill us can only make us better riders"
  19. I don't agree that throwing the hubcap through the owner's window would teach them anything, but yeah, it was at least partially their fault. Sure, the idea is to ride around such objects, but it really shouldn't have been there. If this was a big pool of oil on the road or a fuel leak, or even just for littering or not securing their load, the cager could certainly be fined due to the danger for road users.