Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

Still afraid to lean on turns in rain

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by oohsam, Mar 30, 2008.

  1. Hey Guys.
    Ive been riding for over a month now in all weather, the rain doesn't really bother me that much but im finding that im still afraid to take turns at a resonable speed. I feel like the bike is going to slip from underneath me. I dont really want to learn by example and i've read all the posts about this but is there anything I can do to combat the fear in leaning in the wet?
    I have no trouble in the dry at all.

  2. I am like you. How do we know how far we can lean it over without the tires slipping in the wet when we have never had a tire slip? What is the limit and is it dangerous to push into the unknown to find out?
  3. Just slow down, it isn't a race. You don't need to hurry. Once you have done it a few times in the wet you will start to lean more, not much but enough.
    Theres no point rushing if you don't need to, if you watch most drivers in cars they slow down to around 50%(Or more, depends on the driver) of their cruising speed on corners, so a bike doing it in traffic normally doesn't seem *that* out of place(Especially when raining, people are a lot more cautious and generally won't mind people going slower).
  4. Thanks etelmo. Dont get me wrong. Im in no hurry, and i understand the added risks of riding while the roads are wet.

    I guess its just more of eliminating the fear to give me a little extra confidence in deciding to take the bike out when its raining.

    I know there is no "science" as such to how much you can lean in a turn, when the roads are slippery, given teh surface type etc..and im not talking about ridicolous speeds at all either, just a comfortalble speed where I know i wont end up in the gutter becuase im not leaning enough.

    Thanks for the advice. I"ll just keep it goin till i work it out.
  5. Like you say, there is no magic formula. The amount of grip available in the wet varies enormously. Things that tend to bring us unstuck are poorly maintained asphalt that has worn smooth, oil contamination, painted road markings, steel covers and grates, concrete surfaces, standing water and the like. If you avoid these, you will easily manage to corner at the speed of the general flow of traffic. Also be careful about braking distance. You would be amazed how many motorcyclists crash into stationary vehicles.
  6. What Al said is spot on the money, Ill just add that with intersections I tend to avoid sitting on the big arrows, even if it means going forward more, or staying back more. I also try to avoid line markings when turning as well, due to the same grip factor.
  7. Tram tracks.
  8. With tram tracks, cross at a right angle or as close as you can, at a smaller angle expect to slide and probably fall off in the rain. (This is unless you ride a bike with larger size tires, some of them are wide enough to straddle the track, so you will slide a bit, but it can be easier to regain traction.
  9. And very critical: Make sure you're not actually turning as you go over the rail. Much less chance of grief if the bike is upright and going 'straight' as you go over the rails.
  10. If you're talking about being afraid to lean into corners such as turning at an intersection, the fear is valid - oil always builds up here and if a nasty camber comes into play you can easily go for a slide.

    Around normal corners where traffic doesn't really stop, its generally quite fine. I've done old pac in crazy rain and you can easily do the speed limit the whole way.
  11. O.K, riding in teh rain, and especially commuting or in heavy rain, is about one thing, GETTING HOME.
    DO what you need to do to ride safely and to the conditions, it is not a race when it rains, it is survival.
    Cars may indeed be going faster than you, but they have four tyres, so if one loses traction it's not instant lie down, and they think they're safe surrounded by 0.8mm steel sheet......

    Regards, Andrew.
  12. Please feel free to correct me, I am but a nOOb.
    I asked this same question, and read a shitload on wet weather riding. Mostly cause I began riding last year ...just on winter and rode to work and back everyday. Leaning into corners scared me shitless.
    My Advice, ( If I may, through the little experience I have ), is to actually lean the bike away from you, rather than leaning with the bike. Not unlike dirt riding, it keeps more of the contact patch on the road thus giving you maximum traction.
    LIke I said, If this is incorrect, please feel free to intervine. I can only offer what I have experienced, and this feels better in the wet for me.
  13. VCM if you lean away from the bike in a corner it will force the bike to lean more over more. I thought you would want the lean angle to be as little as possible because the more upright the bike the better traction?
  14. Check out [FLUX]'s thread on motard cornering.

    If you weigh the outside peg, and keep upright, you are stabilising the bike much more than leaning with it.
  15. More contact patch is better in the rain. More contact patch = more traction, ie. what you want in the rain. And since losing traction is more likely in the rain, you want the weight balanced, instead of relying on the bike's pull.
  16. Isn't the contact patch bigger the more upright you are?
  17. Both Phiz and I are agreeing with you, just expanding your reply :wink:
  18. Toecutter but you said

    Doesn't that mean that you are not leaning with the bike, and sitting upright with the bike turning underneth you, you will be making the lean angle more than if you were getting your body into the inside of a corner.

    More lean angle = less traction

    People probably feel more comfortable letting the bike turn underneth them in the wet as it fools them into thinking the bike isn't really leaning over that much. :?:
  19. The method is the same as in the dry. Only a bit more cautiously.
    If you're hanging off the inside, the bike is leaning less.
  20. Wrong wrong wrong. Traction is about force (corner speed) and contact patch, not lean angle. If you run out of tire you run out of traction, but this certainly isnt the case in the rain.

    Weight distribution also comes into play, but more so with really slippery surfaces like mud.