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Unexpectedly long curves/2 stage curves?

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' at netrider.net.au started by corvus, Jul 19, 2009.

  1. I did a search but not really sure if there's a better term for this...

    I ride through the Royal to Bundeena usually once a week for work. I go uber slow because I kinda figure it's good to be going a little slower than you think you can go when you're so inexperienced.

    Anyway, I come in through the north and I've been finding it hard to predict how long a curve is going to be and where I should be aiming for as I'm going around. I usually assume that if the recommended speed is 55, it's a moderate curve, but sometimes it's longer than I was expecting, just not smooth, and I end up further in than I really wanted to be so that when the second stage of the curve comes I'm already on the inside of the lane and can't see that well around the curve. With all the rocky bits through there I often can't see through the curve from the start to see where I will be going.

    What should I do as I'm entering a curve I can't see through? Am I doing something wrong to be surprised by them being longer than I was anticipating? How should I adjust my road position if I get around what I could see and discover the curve keeps going around in a slightly different trajectory? I think this last bit is what's giving me trouble. I went back out the southern way last week and found those curves were much smoother and if I got around and found they kept going I didn't have to change where I was aiming for.

    Hope some of that makes sense...
  2. First of all, lines. Start the corner wide, finish tight.

    For dual apex corners such as you describe, you kind of treat it like two corners, after you've done the first part you move back to the outside of your lane so you can go in wide to the second curve. Once you get the hang of those corners they are alot of fun as you get an extra tip in :)

    Also speed, for 55ers the bike itself is fully capable of doing more than twice the suggested limit (probably a fair bit more than double ;) ), but when you're not confident just take it easy, dont try to keep up with others or 'try' to go fast.

    On a side note, if you find yourself coming into a corner and thinking 'oh shit too fast!' you need to concentrate on looking through the corner (if its a long curving bend 180 degree + etc then you're better off looking at the apex until you can see the exit since looking behind your shoulder wont help anyone). Most common noobie cornering mistake is going in too fast and staring at the concentrate wall/tree that they're afraid of hitting, resulting in them going straight into it. Or going in faster than prepared for and mashed the brakes = slide.

    Best thing you can do when shitting yourself due to thinking you're in too fast is focus on looking through the corner and do NOT roll off throttle as it'll just upset the bike. 99% of the time the bike can do it, just need to trust that you'll be ok.

    Overcoming tensing up in such panic moments takes alot of practice but is ultimately very worth it.
  3. Thanks, that really helps. I was getting a bit lost in between the two stages of those long curves, not really knowing where on the road I should be.

    I haven't gone into a curve too fast yet, although I've gone into quite a few too slow! I'm sure I'll do it one day, though.

    I figured I'd start at the recommended speed for a corner and build up as my confidence increases. :LOL: Motorcyclists die on that road all the time! At least I ride it during the week when it's quiet.
  4. as well as the above, a lot of its in how you set up for a corner. if your bodyweight is well to the inside you have a lot of options in changing your line.
  5. Corvus, if I may add my two cents worth ... Phizogs advice is superb. The corner you describe is definitely the double apex kind and it does take a little experience to recognise these, esp. if you're on a road you haven't ridden before - appreciate this is not the case on this road you ride so frequently.

    If you think you're going into a corner too fast (and we all do!!!) then look through the corner to where you're going, don't let your eyes stray to just where your front wheel is going, this equals disaster! AND counter steer to the max, don't roll off throttle, don't brake mid corner, get your body over. This is the sequence I do when say approaching a left hander ...

    initial brake, change down a gear or two, move body to left, look thru' corner, maintain throttle, counter steer.

    At the two advanced road rider courses I've attended they get you to "push the envelope" under controlled conditions and one of their interesting snippets is - "the bike can do it, can you?".

    Just remember, you can't go into a corner too slow and your own suggestion of taking it a little more slowly is certainly the best advice you can give yourself.

    Happy and enjoyable riding. My last piece of advice ... check out some advanced road rider courses they are just so worth the investment and time and will make your ride even more enjoyable.
  6. :shock: I didn't know corners were see through!

    I always thought you had to look around them! :LOL:

    IMO to the OP, The previous can be a bit of a confusing statement as saying "look through" doesn't really dissect what you can focus on. Still good advice from nZebra.

    RNP is treacherous due to the plethora of blind corners plaguing it. Usually riding a corner, you should instinctively be searching for an exit but in the RNP and on a double apex, the exit might not always be visually available. If it is one of those long sweepers that seems like a double corner, you do generally need to back off a bit, set it up a bit wider then when the second part of the corner looks like its setting in, crank it over again. This will have you finishing tighter (hopefully).

    IMO don't back off the throttle in regular corners that you have a good line in. Think of the double apex like two corners jammed into one for twice your riding pleasure. For corners we want to start wide and finish tight right? So to do this, wouldn't we need to make the bike start wide in the second part of the corner?

    btw entire post is IMO based on Keith Code indoctrination so if anyone wants to critique and correct, feel free.
  7. Thanks everyone. That helps.

    I'm finding corners take a good deal of concentration as you juggle your speed, pick the right gear, pick the right place to start, the angle, and try to make some guess as to what it's going to look like on the other side. If I go in too slow it gets sloppy, but I guess that's better than going in too fast and panicking. I'm aiming for smooth cornering where I don't need to roll on the throttle and follow a smooth line through, starting wide and finishing tight, but these double corners and blind corners make it a slow learning curve. :)

    I think ideally I wouldn't even be doing that road at this point, but it's the bike or the train/ferry, and the latter costs $18! As long as I don't have locals on my tail it's been good for learning a bit about how different it is riding a bike to driving a car. I used to do that road in a car all the time and got really comfortable with it, but it's a whole new road on a bike I'm still making friends with.
  8. mmm...double apex...there are two kinds...the one that you descover for the first time and the one you know from experience.

    Either way, you tackle them the same way, as you do any other corner...you do not tip-in until you can see the apex. Since it's a double apex that you know, then you would'nt tip-in until you see the second apex.

    The first apex - you ride through it in a fashion that will facilitate you being in the correct position to tackle the second apex..
    Learn where you need to be on the road to correctly begin your tip-in for the second apex, then adjust your line through the first so that you end up where you need to be.

    If it's a double apex that you don't know and you've been caught out too far on the inside, then you are going to exit wide...sometimes a wide exit is ok, even though it is'nt ideal from that angle, and it will probably mean you will need to slow down to stay on the road depending on your speed.
    But usually it can require a speed adjustment so you have to ease on the brakes a little before you get in too deep on the second apex...traverse it slower than would be ideal and basically forget trying to be too racey.

    Better to throw away a corner and get set properly for the next one, than to keep trying to fight it, and running the risk of crashing out, by running too wide on the exit.

    Of course...normally on these unknown corners, you would not be caught out by a double apex becuase you would not have tipped in until you can see where the corner is going and have spotted the apex. The plan is to wait out wide until the apex comes into view before heading for the it...so in the meantime you would be likely to pick up on the visual cues and hints that something was up, and that perhaps a second apex or a late apex exists.

    I would suggest you ride the first apex to set yourself for the second, whatever that may require in terms of speed and positioning on the road.

    Oh...one thing...don't be afraid to decellerate, or "drag" a little brake if you are caught out of position on the second apex...just be aware that this action will push the weight onto the front-end. Do it smoothly and it's really fine...get too abrupt and it can destabilize the bike, and give you a pucker moment at a time where you might be unprepared for it.
    Be smooth, brake if needed, then traverse the second part of the corner from that point.

  9. Quite right Not4Resale ... bit hard to explain ... perhaps I should have put the through in inverted commas or maybe said "keep looking at the corner (curve) as you ride it until the apex then the exit reveals itself" keeping one's head up of course. :wink:

    Some good advice for OP and me too I might add :!: [/quote]
  10. Sage advice indeed.....

    Safety first, last and always....