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Middle of the lane in the rain?

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by sjnn, Jan 18, 2008.

  1. Hi Guys,

    Im sorry if this has been asked and answered before, but i couldnt find the thread answering this specific question -

    When riding in the rain, obviously the middle of the lane is the most slippery due to all the dumped oil. Therefore one would assume that you would steer clear from the middle of the lane, especially on corners.


    This makes riding the bike (especially cornering) substantially harder becuase your narrowing your turning circle (not using the Entry, Apex, Exit) and not to mention your riding awfully close to cars in the lanes next to you.

    How do you guys deal with this? Do you still use the middle of the lane but try and steer clear of obvious oil patches?

    A few riders went pass me on the way to work today (raining slightly) and they dont seem to have a problem at all - however their bikes were much bigger than mine, wider tires, more grip.

    BTW - Im on a CBF 250

    Thanks guys! I really wanna get this riding in the rain business down pat.

  2. ahh - remember the ls course - go in wide, stay out wide around a turn.

    Thats probly your best bet, and all else fails, get better tyres
  3. Hi sjnn,

    I try to steer clear of the middle of the lane even in the dry. It can be difficult, especially city riding but the chances of a car being right next to you in both the left and right lanes (at the same time) are slim... for example, usually there will be a car right on your left so you should sit in the right hand wheel track and vice vera. Move around in your lane, my P's instructor told us we should look like snakes moving from left to right in our lanes for more visibilty.

    When cornering, say your turning left, you should be in the right hand wheel track, starting wide to get the best vision for what's coming up then you should close in in the left hand wheel track therefore finishing tight.

    I'm still trying to get this right myself, it takes lots of practice but when you've done it right you can feel the difference and see why this approach is much better.

    Hope this makes sense :grin:

  4. Personally I like to stay in the wheeltrack whichever one. Using the apex is an advanced technique, that has bought many newbies undone. Best saved for the race track.
  5. They teach you to ride the through the apex at the L's course though?

    The link in Davo's post has a few good replies on the subject. You should be moving into what ever part of the lane poses the least amount of risk at that point in time.

    I personally have found in the wet, most of the diesel drips/spills are in the left hand wheel track, but i dont avoid that part of the lane all of the time... I just avoid that section when i see the hazard.

    *scratches head* Does that even make sense?
  6. A wet or slippery road is most noticeable in the same situations as when you're in a car:
    On take off, and when braking.

    You don't want to lose traction... unintentionally ;)
    Taking most sweeping bends at the speed limit or speed advisory limit will see you through it just fine.
    Motorcycle tyres aren't expensive because we're suckers: they are better quality than most car tyres, because we only have 2 of them.

    Pretty much just ride smoothly and sensibly; you'll be fine to cross a wheeltrack or several on your journey.

    But be careful on roundabouts.
  7. Exactly!

    I honestly dont know why youre (OP) even thinking about apexs for road riding. It largely irrelevant. Especially in the wet.

    Try focusing more on the traffic around you and the road conditions etc and less on replicating Casey Stoner.
  8. Thanks for the replys...

    What we get taught on our L's in NSW anyway.. is that its best to take a corner in the following way:

    1. Start the corner by positioning yourself on the outside edge
    2. when in the corner ride towards the inside edge (APEX)
    3. aim to finish the corner closer to the inside edge... so if you run a lil wide for whatever reason.. you wont be going into on coming traffic or off a cliff.

    (I know the exit is not the same as when your on the track)

    Im sorry if it sounded like they teach you to race your bike around the roads.... shouldnt have used those words in my original post....

    What I was trying to get to is that the course teaches you to cross the middle of the lane on all corners....and im a bit hesitant to do that when it rains. If your riding in a wheel track around the whole corner, you really dont have any margin whatsoever for error... so if you run wide even by about 15cm that will put your wheels on the lane markings (also slippery) or in the other lane...

    Just tryin to learn the best way of doin this.
  9. I dont get it? Why do they teach it in the NSW Learners course if it is an advanced technique?

    If you start wide on a left hander, then you will be pulling in tight at the apex effectively moving yourself further from hazards of on coming traffic. On a right hander you can still start wide but obviously need to have a larger field of vision to assess the on coming traffic, if you are unable to see more than 5 seconds in front of you then the idea is to stay more to the centre of the lane and not hog the centre line.

    What's wrong with having that in mind as a n00b?
  10. When I did my L's the first time, they taught you about the apex of a corner,

    But when I went back the second time, I mentioned the word APEX and they jumped down my throat, like it was a swear word :oops: . it is no longer used in the L's course.

    I tend to do what Ktulu has stated. :grin:

    Cheers Lou
  11. That's interesting chickibabe.

    How long ago was that?

  12. Shit i had think about that :LOL:

    I got my 1st l's in march 2006, redid l's in august 2006.. His comment to me was " we dont use that any more". (at penrith I did my l's both times)
  13. LOL

    I think it may have changed since then cause I got my L's in May 07 and P's in Oct 07.

    We were taught the Apex as my post above states :)
  14. me too, and I did mine in march. Although I dont remember them ever using the word apex, they just instructed and trained us in the technique.
  15. as fresh newbie (21 dec 07), i can confirm that they still teach that.
    at least at clyde (stayupright)
  16. Dont get me wrong, I use the apex everyday when im riding. Its a proven technic for negotiating a corner with maximum efficiency and speed. Fanging through the twisties ill always try and use the apex for my cornering. Wet roads? Nope. As said before, the center of a lane will generally be coated in grease/oil/debris. Switching from one side of my lane, to the other - mid corner - is a recipe for disaster. Not saying it cant be done at all, but a noob is very likely to kiss pavement in trying it.

    Not sure if youve ever come across tram tracks before but you always try and cross them at right angles. Even small amounts of lean on these buggers can result in tears. Whilst the centre of a lane probably wont be as slippery as a tram track, it can be just as dangerous.

    cornering in the wet for me is, is taking the safest line possible and maintaining situational awareness. Theres dozens of other things id rather concentrate on in the wet rather than a text book cornering technique.
  17. ^^^ Thats the jist of wet stuff,

    But the cornering techique shown to us in the ls course is the safest way,

    And whoever said apex - wash your mouth out - its "proper cornering technique" :LOL:
  18. Interesting that in some states they do teach you.
    Did they teach you how to identify the "apex"? I'm not asking where it is, because we all probably will differ, but did they teach youwhere the apex is?
    The problem is, if you get the "apex" wrong, meaning early, and most of us have done, even expreienced riders, it more on than one occasion) you may end up exiting early, therefore putting you on the wrong side of the road, or even worse into oncoming traffic. Although a lot disagree with me on this forum, I still believe, it should not be used by a newbie...moreso in the wet.
  19. ^^ they teach you to go out wide - stay wide - all the time looking for hazards, adjust as necessary - all the time scanning for hazards

    more so in right turns - you have to account for your head :LOL: