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I hate u-turns

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by nightgash, Aug 15, 2007.

  1. Ok doing a U-turn on a CB250 was kind of easy with its big wide handle bars and upright riding position when I rode one at HART.

    Now I have a FZR250, with tiny bars, crouched over riding position and hardly any steering lock. Coupled with a long first gear that will do me over 80km/h I'm finding it really difficult. I feel that with the small bars I don't have the same leverage to be able to balance the bike at low speed when doing a U-Turn. I always start right at the edge of the road and pretty much have a turning radius which sees me complete the U-turn right on the edge of the other side of the road, sometimes I go onto the gravel shoulder. I live in the country and sometimes the road is single lane and makes it even harder to turn the thing around.

    I try shifting my weight to the outside and it helps. What about using the rear brake? Its positioned in a difficult position on the right side when you are turning sharply right.

    How do people find doing U-turns on modern day sports bikes like R1's or ZX-10s/ZX-6's with even longer first gears? Do experienced riders on sports bikes find it really easy to do U-turns?
  2. I used to just go around the block,do a 3 point turn or chose an area where there is sufficient space for the U turn.
  3. Did you find you had to use all of the road, from white line to white line to get your Zx2 to turn around 180 degrees?
  4. At the begining I'd almost bang into the gutter of the other side before stopping and doing the 3 point turn.

    I now do the Uturns using a bit of throttle on full lock and 'feather' the clutch.
    Practice in a car park, get comfortable doing Uturns and eventually decrease the radius.
  5. Easier than you imagine. However you need to practice, practice and practice some more. From your rain thread, I think you've had a crappy time of it late and this is holding you back. Find a car park somewhere and just practice, practice, practice. Remember, head up, look where you want to go. Steer and throttle, use rear brake to steady.
  6. Head up, look where you want to be at the end of the turn...

    edit...lol...I didn't read the post above right through
  7. Dope.....

    I think I'm not looking to where I want to be. Looking where I want to go and training my eyes is my biggest downfall. I will have to work on it! Thanks for your help everyone!
  8. Just last night i seen a guy on a sport bike do a u turn on a main road...just flicked it around & then done a massive wheelie to top it off...damn i hate that :?
  9. I found that my cbr250rr would only just fit the max range in the uturn. If you go to a car park and measure out the metres. I found it was two and a half of the one near me. If you can wheel teh bike around from one line on full lock to the other line and complete the uturn, then it can be done riding it.
    I founn it much easier to idle the bike in first gear with the cluth out and control speed with rear brake. Found it really difficult and uncomfortable to try to feather clutch and throttle.
    Another method i employed was to trick myself into believing i was going to complete a turn of 270degress rather then 180. I made myself look the extra distance over my right shoulder and found that when my head and eyes were 90degrees past the point i wanted the bike i would look forward and the bike would then straighten up. Bit hard to explain but it worked in training me.
  10. here is how to do a u-turn on a sports bike, heavy bike or loaded up bike.

    1. look where you want to go.
    2. apply rear brake to steady your self.
    3. accellorate against the brake.
    4. practace, practace, practace.

    find a enpty car park or somthing and practace.

    i used to have a ZZR1100 in the UK and when my wife and i went touring the bike, us and lougage must have been over 500kg's. and practace is how we got there. going around the block might and been 3 hours in the alps, and you had clifs insted of gutters. not alwase with a barrer.
  11. Nightgash,
    I too ride a FZR250 and found the same problem when I first started.
    I found that the biggest thing that was holding me back was my slow riding skills. Because they weren't up to par it meant that any slow manuovering was suffering.
    I found that by slowing right down when coming to a stop a lights for instance instead or stopping a car space behind the car in front I would slow down a good 30-40m before I had to and slow ride (about 5-10km/hr) upto where I wanted to stop. Of course only do this if you are not going to overly annoy other drivers :p

    I found that by doing this everytime I could it has really helped my slow riding skills and I feel alot more confident manuvering at slow speeds.

    Yes the FZR is long with a smaller turning circle than most bikes but it can be done.

    As everyone keeps saying just need to practise. I also strongly agree with what lastlineofdefense said about looking past where you need to go this will inadvertantly shift more of your weight and help in the turn.

  12. I have a cbr250rr and the tightest circle I could manage was a little below 6m(i measured it out). I practiced so much that i dropped my bike - doh! first gear is too jerky so I always did it in 2nd gear, using the clutch applying the rear brake while accelerating but i was too slow the front wheels had already turned and i stalled while leaning slightly. the bike went down on the right side :-(. more like a tip over. I have never practised the u turns again recently. I think the secret is to have the correct speed - not too fast and not too slow. Accelerate and brake together while turning and maintaining speed. It also helps if you flick it to the left a little before doing the big right.
  13. I must admit 1st gear is so jerky also. You either have to give it to it and set off possibly too fast or if the revs go too low you will jerk it or stall.
  14. Can't instill this enough for u turns, look where your bike should end up, if you look at the front wheel, most do to start, your bike will end up there.

    Counter balance your weight, shift your body to the left side of the bike so you can lean it further without dropping it, and use first gear, a few revs and use the cluth to control speed, you should never have to few revs.

    Back brake takes the lash out of the drive train so you can control your speed without jerkiness, not too much though.

    Again look at the point where your bike will be heading straight after your u turn. If you feel uncomfortable looking that far around, you are nearly there.
  15. try writing a letter to the council and ask them to widen every single road.. :shock:
  16. Then they will tell me to fork out the money to widen it! lol

    I was practicing again today I guess its not too bad, I'm not really tightening the radius because its pretty much on full steering lock but I'm feeling more comfortable leaning to the other side and looking as far around as possible. I guess on single lane roads because of the bike I am going to have to run onto the dirt/gravel, the FZR250's turning circle is just shocking on full lock. thanks for everyones help!
  17. This is the exact stuff I was worried about

    Slow manuvering-
    My partner took me into latrobe uni carpark to have a go at slow manuvering .
    I took with me some tennis balls that were cut in half....I'm a visual kind of person and it helped to change the degree of difficulty.

    I was shown how to feather the clutch but thats in the instance of moving slow on a hill but i know the back brake and the throttle work really well together-
    for some reason i was trying to do it in 2nd and was shown the control there is over first...YAY and it was after that stuff at the car park that I felt ready to get on the road properly.

    good luck with staying off the gutta!
  18. #18 rendezvous, Aug 18, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 13, 2015
  19. I can do a uturn on a 2lane road with my cbr250rr without hitting the white lines, you just have to be confident in the bike no tipping over & practice practice practice, i found that going around small round abouts helps alot, took me a good 2-3 hours before i got confident in fully leaning the bike over during a uturn, practicing sliding the bike through atm(scary but fun :D)

    forgot to add remember to practice uturns to the right when practicing in a carpark, most of your uturns will be to the right :D, i practiced left turning for a good 2 days then i figured out that i will barly ever need to do it

    i found that holding the clutch in while doing the uturn(in first gear) & slowly releasing it & trowing alittle trottle in while finishing the corner helps alot, but like eveyrone said it all about practice, give the uturn a couple of trys every day & eventually you'll get the hang of it, the cbr250rr has pretty good slow speed control

    don't forget the reason why you start with a crappy 250 is to practice & occasionally drop it
  20. Hi,

    sorry to hijack... but when can we carry pillions? I am on my Ps and wondering if we can carry pillions once we are on full license in NSW? or is it 12months after fulls?

    thanks heaps ... you can even pm me