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Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Catie, Jul 19, 2008.

  1. Got my L's on Thursday, the course was fantastic and ran though many situations, with the exception of speed bumps! There is one road that I'll need to take fairly regularly that has speedbumps the entire way along it's length.

    Is there any particular way I should attempt one without flying over the handlebars?
  2. slow and steady.
    if they are particularly high bumps, rise on the pegs a little to let your legs absorb the bump.
  3. Lift your ass slightly off the seat transfering your weight to the pegs.
  4. I find hitting them at about 40kmh and push down on the pegs works for me.
  5. Before you arrive, slow to a speed you're comfortable with, grip the tank with knees (relaxed arms and a light grip on the bars), rise up on the pegs with your bum off the seat slightly.

    Make sure you approach it at a 90' angle (ie you are perpendicular to the bump) or your steering may be affected - so make any required steering inputs before / after the bump.

    Rolling on some throttle just before and through the bump will help move weight to the rear tyre, which makes the suspension happier about the front tyre coming up (this holds true in a car as well, especially one with limited ground clearance).

    I find it works for me to let the seat rise with the bump as your knees help absorb the shock, so that you become seated again at the apex, and then either stay seated (your body descends with the bike) or re-extend your legs and separate from the bike again as it descends, depending on speed and the severity of the bump.

    I'm good for 50 km/h (*) pretty comfortably with this technique on normal speed bumps, but I have lost a McDonald's sundae out of an open pannier (it must have looked a bit like a test pilot in an ejector seat) ... luckily it was only one out of the tray of four, and it was on the road in edible condition close enough to see from my friend's house once I realised ;)

    Note: this is exactly the same technique as you use on any object on the road you choose not (or don't have time) to swerve around.
    (*) start slow and stay within your comfort zone. As the speed increases so does the chance of the front wheel leaving the ground and coming back down crooked, if your technique is off. That might get ugly.
  6. I'd attack the speed bumps straight. Dont head over at an angle. Could cause you to wobble or have the bars whip from side to side. If you are unsure I would recommend a speed that gets you over without stopping on top but not too fast to launch your butt off the seat!.

    In your case I would pull the clutch in just before the front wheel hits the bump so that you coast over it. This way you are less likely to accidentally snatch the throttle and get jerky. After you are more confident and have good control of your right wrist you may want to leave the clutch engaged when going over them.

    p.s us with sport bikes usually stand on the pegs, like you are riding a horse, so your legs take the shock not your bum.