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Noob crashes at the track...needs advice

Discussion in 'Racing, Motorsports, and Track Days' started by AznCruiser, Sep 26, 2011.

  1. Hi Netriders,

    Im after some expert advice and knowledge on the difference in feel between lowsliding because of oil on the back tyre (in the wet) and lowsliding because of cold tyres/too much speed/lean angle/and throttle input (in the wet)………………..

    As Disco and ONE would have known, I was one of the noobs who slid yesterday after 1.5 laps around the creek………………….Basically, my first lap went OK with the bike staying planted for most of the way through. I was extra cautious and didn’t push it at all………even then some corners the back tyres did slide around which I thought was normal with cold tyres.

    After the first lap was when the bike truly slid around at turn 2 and 3. I remember easing up on the speed and tried to hang off even more to get it as upright…………..before I knew what was happening though the back slid from under me and I was on the ground tumbling. I didn’t even have enough time to react……………………..Luckily the bike and myself came out of it very well and got back to pits and getting things scrutineered again………absolutely no damage or even scuff marks on my gear and only a RHS turn signal and RHS pick up knob broken/missing.

    I went back out on session two and the bike was more planted again on the first half a lap…………..we got called back in because of a crash infront of me. While lining up I looked at my swingarm and exhaust hangers and it had a tiny bit of oil running down………….thats when I called it a day.

    So how does it feel to slide from cold tyres/speed/angle as compared to sliding on oil? And how much oil on the back tyres to make the bike slide around? Id like to learn from this off and prefer not to learn by doing :)…………..
  2. Having owned a couple of Triumphs,and not modern ones,and have had a few riders with substantial oil on the rear tyre,its not to dramatic.You feel it slide when you hit the oil on the sidewall,it feels a bit squirrelly and you know not to go any further.Thats in the dry with a hot tyre,in the wet with oil on the tyre and cold rubber your going to be surfing the bitumen before you know whats happening.Are you sure the oil was there before you went down,maybe it spiller while it was on its side.You defiantly picked the wrong weekend for a track day.Good on you for having a go.My one and only low side was a complete mystery to me,long long ago.It happened very fast on a mega hot day,I wanted to put it down o melted bitumen but still don't know 20 years later.I went through the bike from stem to stern checking all bearings for slop and made the decision to only use the very best rubber regardless of cost
  3. The oil was definately not because of the crash..........even after draining some out for the second session, this is what I saw after one lap...............thats when I decided to park it not cause anymore damage to myself and not cause any accidents to others.

    Its basically weeping from the oil tank , down to the exhaust hangers, to the swingarms, and to the rims and tyre area.................would this small amount be enough to cause the back wheels to step out?
  4. bad luck man, granted I've never done a track day but I imagine pre-flight is pretty much a no brainer before you head out for each session? Usually when I get to my road of choice I pull over and give it a quick once over (probably should do it before I leave home but **** that I want to ride), you wouldn't even have to be looking for something wrong to notice something that bad? Surely it was from the crash....

    (to the more advanced riders: <ugh accidental smiley>)
    Is there even a different feel to losing traction because of oil/surface/temp issues? I've had a fair bit of fun winding it on when leaned over to the point where the back steps out a bit in the wet, but surely that'd be more or less what it feels like when you lose it regardless of whether your tyres are cold or they're covered in oil?
  5. What tyres were you on?

    Looks like run off oil rather than a leak or enough to be significant. But I can only tell by a photo, you have to be the judge of whether the oil had an effect.

    EC is an arsehole of a track in the wet.
  6. Metzeler Sportec M3 rear tyre and a Dunlop Arrowmax GT501 front..........I like the M3 but the Arrowmax is old as a dino, the Arrowmax came with the bike when I bought it.
  7. Arrowmax are dogshit from what I've read :p

    There doesn't seem to be much oil there but since it is wet it will spread the oil out into a fine film which can cause you to go down. I would have no idea if that was that cause of your crash but it could've been (I'd say)

    Also you say you 'eased off the speed' - that can cause the front to wash out as you overload the front as the weight comes off the rear and onto the front if you're not smooth with the roll-off , how much was the ease off? Just raising a possibility (maybe.. haha)

    Anyways mate, glad to hear you're alright and the rainbow bike isn't too dinged up :p
  8. Azn, the only two things I'd advise is degrease your bike and avoid wet track days unless you're on wets or very new treaded tyres......but I think you've figured that out already.
  9. I should have said slowed my speed down not eased off for corners. Thats what I found so frustrating, I was hanging off like I should, the bike was as upright as possible, I slowed down to what I thought was a good speed, I took care to be smooth, and rolling on the corners like you should.............yet I still came off, why?.........

    Yeah the rainbow bike held up OK..........it fell at the same place it fell before :). Trent (ONE) though was very quick on the "you should repaint it" suggestion lol..............

    Yeah I degrease my bike every track day and look for any oil leaks. There wasnt any oil leaks. I think that top up right before I got out was what tipped it over the edge..............

    Good suggestion on tyres...........I was eying the wets that Trent (ONE) was selling for cheaps........BUT they were way too large, I recon that his front tyres you fit as my back tyres :).

    I wont avoid wet track days but Ive learnt my lessons and getting wets for a wet track day. Anyone know how much to change two tyres on the bike at EC?
  10. Not if you like doing powersliders in the wet & the dry on
    your 2fiddy

    hey sorry to hear about your crash, i crashed my babyblade on my very first track dayin the wet on my 2nd lap turn 4. i was going hard on my first lap & i actually think it was a miracle i made it around one a whole lap, first track day pouring rain, first lap, cold tyres farrrk....

    I kept think the rear washed out, but the guy behind me was adament that it was a front end lowside.....when the bike lets go like that your always trying to figure out why, but its happens so fast sometimes you just can't figure it out.

    my cbr had a leaking sump once & oil would drip down & be run over by the back wheel, i knew this was happening cause every now & then i would do a little power slide, but it would never feel scary as long as you just keep the throttle on

    the rear tyre is much fatter than the front & it has drive from the engine, i think a rear end lowside is very unlikley compared to a front end wash out
  11. Is there any difference in feel between ... ?

    Not reliably, no.

    If the front goes quiet in your hands, the bike seems to want to lean further, and then the bars seem to turn in like they're trying to pick the bike up but couldn't quite be bothered, too tired, too lazy, and then the ground comes up and hits you really really fast - then it was a front end lose. If the back seemed to go soft, and the bike seemed to fall away from you like it was in quicksand, and then began to rotate into oversteer - that's rear-end.

    If they both went very suddenly and violently, it was likely the back which went first, and the shock of dropping the extra weight and load on the front broke that away as well. If the front goes first, the back usually doesn't go at all.

    A clue can be whether the bike slid down the road with the front pointed in the same direction, or whether it began to rotate toward the corner, like it was trying to hang the tail out even though it was already on its side. That's only a hint - it's not certain.

    I realise the advice is a bit late, but ... If you're completely new to it, and it's p1ssing down rain, and the bike is sliding around ... park the f#kken thing in the pits! Honest - there are not many old and bold pilots, so I can't really be that old - but if I got more than one or two little slides at what seemed like not much lean or speed - I'd be straight back into the pits to have a good look over the bike.

    Also - if you have an old front tyre of unknown mileage and providence - don't go out on a wet race track with it!

    Arrowmax were a really good thing when they were new. I think that was '83. Things have moved on a little since then. I believe that a brand new one even today is not too shabby - but the older they get (in both miles and time) the worse they get. Like any tyre.
  12. that reminds me i had a set of Arrowmax's on my first bike an 85' RG250 2 stroker....

    every time it rained & i hit the power band it would power slide or hit the limiter, this never happens now on my 250/600 4x strokes with modern tyres.

    i say bin the Arrowmax's & get some Metzllers or Pirrelli's, take the opportunity to learn how to do rolling burnouts : )
  13. Hey Azn_
    Sorry to hear of your off. You can work out the age of your tyres by the markings on the side wall. Should be a 4 figure number, sometimes in a box. My front says something like 2306. That means made in the 23rd week of 2006. Too old and overdue for a change.

  14. Front tyres are old as Old man river.....................also been out in the elements too. Anyway, ive given up trying to wear them out and swapped them for a brand spanking new tyres and the difference is hugeeeee..................I was gobsmacked how much later I could brake, just wow.

    I just got a pair of BT003RS and cant wait to scrub them in :D:D:D. Marulan yesterday would have been its maiden voyage...............BUT as is the case, the damn ride day gets way too wet and they decided to cancel it :(. Good thing though is that my next Marulan ride day next month is free :).

    It was definitely a rear end loose then, the bike basically spun itself around with the back end leading the way............I was also spinning around.

    I definitely learnt my lesson. While riding i put it down to wet+cold tyres+shitty tyres, I thought that slowing down and standing the bike up more would have served. When I came in the pits I thought oil straight away, since it felt exactly like the time I ran through oil......................very sudden, just like safe, safe, safe.......bang WTF quick.

    The other guys put it down to cold tyres because oil wasn’t really much..........this is why I came back out for the second session (after taking out some oil and wiping down). I came back in when I saw the actual amount that was dripping out.........and decided to finish the day if I couldn’t fix it properly.

    Just riding around the block with the new Bridgestone’s and braking hard and even leaning a bit in cold tyres.............wow what a difference. One lap around the block had stuff sticking in the tyres already these BT003RS is unbelievably sticky im a huge fan now :).
  15. In my experience if you hit oil on the track you slide both wheels. Or the bike goes strait out from under you. and you break your collar bone.
    It really is critical to stay on line in the wet. That's where the grip is.
    Off line has heaps of crap deeply ingrained and the slight rain brings it up. Specially if the cars have been there the day before.
    We brake earlier and turn in a little later so even online you have those little floating moments.
    ps braking is the best way to get heat into the tyres. Just thinking you might have been using lots of front brake and that got the tyre warm but on the rear as you say was taking it easy so it might have been cold whjile the front was ok through braking
  16. bt003rs are a good tyre, but not a super awesome track tyre. street tyre they are good as the front shape leads itself to be very stable under trail-braking. but as a trade off it wont flick from side to side as well as something like a michelin power one.
  17. Lol thats exactly what happened mate, even at the same turn..........I think I even thought about the same stuff. Only think is that I saw how the bike spin.

    Ive got my dry tires now.................i might get some wets as well. Pretty much all my track days has poured down hard, my last two has been cancelled. My best day weather wise was the day we went to EC.........BTW come book Marula next month with me, its on a Sunday and allot less riders.
  18. Nah I didnt want to get a pure track only tyre................I wanted on that I could practice and get used to on the street.

    Experinced guys might not think much of these tyres on the track but for me who came from a crappy tyre like I did...............these things are unbelievably awesome, $401 including fitting is a bargain, so I cant complain :), im always after bargains.
  19. I wasnt using much braking at all to be honest, just took it easy and followed the guy infront of me as smoothly as I can.

    If it was truely oil then I wouldnt have run over it with my fronts since it was dripping from my bike.
  20. for good street hooning i dont think you can find a better tyre really ;) i have them on all my street bikes.