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Question on roundabouts

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' at netrider.net.au started by Romus, Aug 11, 2006.

  1. Hey guys

    Just got back from a 90min ride. WOW! :) My first in actual traffic. 50/60/80 zones, and went real well. I have to add I took it out at 12 at night - perfect coz no cars around - except the most dangerous ones - taxis hehe. Came back home with frozen fingers and a BIG smile on my face - also frozen, had to sit in front of a heater for 15 mins to stop smiling. ;)



    Anyway my question is on slow speed. I realise it's only my first proper ride, but I find it difficult at really slow speed. If I took a roundabout slightly faster, I think I would be fine, but I don't dare yet, out of fear of going too wide and hitting curb :(. So I slow down to crawling speed, 1st gear, and do a reeeal slow one. Not all roundabouts, big one's are sort of fine. Really, going around the roundabout is toughest to me. Also I found myself in similar mess when starting off the lights and having to turn at say, 90 degrees.

    Any tips on this other than "get out there and do as many of them as you can"?

    Thanks in advance :)
     
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  2. Slow speed riding is among the harder things to do on a bike- so don't feel bad. It's a matter of practise... as always, look where you want to go, use more rear brake and less front, and move on the bike to help it do what you want.

    But mostly, just practise and respect that it isn't easy.
     
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  3. I think that sadly your answers will be mostly of experience will overcome types.

    It IS something that you will do in time with ease and without thought other than for observation obviously.

    Other than the obvious things to check like tyre pressures and the like then basically aiming to remain smooth, in control, observant etc is all you should be worrying about right now, not how fast you take it.

    The fact remains that miles on the road is your achievement and the more the do the better you will feel :)

    We were all cautious wobblers once no matter how we take left rights or roundabouts now :)
     
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  4. Man you guys know how to make a newbie feel good, don't you? :)

    I'm not beating myself up or anything, but thought maybe there's a technique. I actually feel quite good about tonight and more confident than I was before the ride.

    But nothing makes you appreciate Sydney's roads more (not :)) than once you start riding. A pile of concrete spilt by truck and hardened in the middle of a bend, cracks everywhere etc - man! :(

    Anyway, I will follow the advices and try not to worry about the speed I take the turns, as long as I make them safe.

    Thanks! :)
     
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  5. You'll be surprised what you notice re road surfaces that you wouldn't have given a second glance at before.

    Seriously it's all about miles - tomorrow you'll be better, the day after better still. You will no longer make mistakes that we ALL did once.

    Just enjoy it - cos next month you'll wonder why you posted this question - it's not a dumb question either - it's one we all have. You have 200kg of bike that you are in control of - well sometimes, and we all love to learn how to get better :)
     
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  6. Roundabouts throw it all at you: tight turn, random traffic, bad camber, spills and oil... I still stuff them up regularly.
     
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  7. Ooo tip - for a new rider - just as mentioned by Heinz - Roundabout near petrol stations - don't hoon them - cos you can bet your granny that there is diesel spilt all around it. Full tank - exit petrol station ! Recipe for dropped bike :)
     
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  8. Thanks again boys.

    I've read about the pebbles and oil in the roundabouts, but I didn't read about the ones closer to petrol stations being more dangerous - thanks for that.

    Can't wait for tomorrow night :)
     
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  9. Give me a PM with ya phone number Romus.
    I am working at North Ryde, and we have a huge deserted private car park here.
    You can ride around it, do circles, u-turns, left and rights, whatever you want mate.
    I am on from 6pm until 6am.
    If you give me ya number I can give ya a bell anytime after 7pm.
    The car park is empty from 8 pm onwards.

    Cheers: Jaq.
     
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  11. If you need practice on roundabouts, come to Canberra. We have plenty to spare
    :LOL:
     
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  12. I guess the only other thing to say is that it's all about the interaction between the lean and the power... The throttle and clutch have *so* much to do with low speed turning on a bike, and it really is a bit of a 'feel thing' that (yep, here it comes) only develops with practice. Jaq's suggestion sounds like a fantastic way to get that practice safely.
     
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  13. I have always found that the key to roundabouts (like any corner) is getting into the appropriate gear before entering it. Also remember to look where you want to go, sounds like common sense but it is doubly important on a roundabout because they can be fairly tight.
     
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  14. Yes having driven manual cars (on a track as well) I know the importance about chosing the right gear, but on the bike I come in too slow for 2nd, and the 1st is too jumpy :)

    And also, I do realise that cluth and trottle really go hand in hand at slow speed, but that's something I have to get smooth at. Gloves aren't helping, and frozen fingers with no feel in them - even less so.

    Thanks for the link duncanp, I will try some of that tonight. Last night, having all the roads to myself (heh) I tried positioning the bike at different angles when starting at T intersections, but haven't found one that works for me yet :) There's time ;)

    Thanks guys for all your responses.
     
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  15. Also try looking up... keep your eyes on where you want to go and not on the ground in front of you, it will eventually come natural, but will help in smoothing out a turning curve...
     
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  16. +1 to Jaqhama - it's all about the carpark practice sessions. Do small, tight circles as slowly as you can, in both directions, at constnat speed without putting your foot down. Do figure eights. Do emergency stops and side-to-side weaves. It's the best way to boost your low-speed confidence - which has a huge impact on your confidence at higher speeds.
     
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  17. One more here saying hit the carpark for some slow speed practice. It's really the best was to practice slow speed cornering in a controled environment.

    When you are in a roundabout, remember eveything you've heard/read/seen about the unpredictability of them (and the stupidity of drivers) and take it easy. I'm still surpised how often I have to stop or swerve because someone doesn't bother to give way. I tend to just idle through in 2nd, feathering the rear brake and keeping a finger or two over the front on the ready in traffic. :)
     
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  18. I will do the carpark as well then. Nothing better than being relaxed knowing there's nothing around that can harm me - except myself ;)

    Yea Seany that's what I did last night. Well really, that's what I do in the car as well. Slow down even if no cars around, you never know if the one that has to give way will even bother stopping, seen them fly thru too many times.

    Hey another thing I forgot about. I stopped at a light and after waiting couple minutes, and it didnt change, I crawled forward onto the white stripe and waited, then rolled back and approaced the strip from another angle - still no green light. Then, since I was riding aimlessly anyway, didn't wanna run red and turned around and rode back the way I cam from. But what do you do if the sensors don't detect you??
     
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  19. That happens to me sometimes at the same damn set of lights on the Great Eastern Highway Bypass, in Perth. Usually a car turns up and triggers them, but a couple of times I have had to dismount and push the bike across on the pedestrian crossing.
     
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  20. Oh no :) So pushing it thru the pedestrian crossing and then getting back on it and riding away isn't a traffic offense?

    Coz with my luck, cops will be chilling just around the corner and will bust me if i decided to go thru red. But i'm just wondering if pushing it thru would still be "running red light"?
     
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