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What I learnt today in the wet.

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by Changa, Jul 28, 2010.

  1. G'day guys,

    well.....got the P's on saturday just past.....all good. So today I'm riding the bike to work - not too far from home - in the wet and raining. I've practised a little in the wet prior to today, so I was a little confident.

    Now.....some here might be able to educate me a little further, but first I'll say what happened. Road the few kays to work, down a dead end street with good roads, and approach the driveway to work. I wasn't going to quick, and applied a little rear brake.....it was then I noticed that the rear of the bike was in fact sliding left and right.

    I reduced the braking almost completely, and managed to get control just before hitting the gutter, and turned left into my workplace.

    Thinking about it, perhaps what I need to do next time is gear down much sooner and try not to have to brake. I didn't gear down too hard this morning, or use the brakes too heavily....IN MY OPINION.

    Whilst nothing came of it, it was a bit daunting, and the first time I've kind of lost control a little.

    Anyway....just thought I'd mention it for other new riders out there. You definitely can't be too carefull in the wet.

  2. If you just need to slow down a little bit, you can use the back brake without shutting the throttle right off. That way there is still drive to the wheel that should stop it from locking and you will still get braking power.
  3. I may be corrected but I would warn about changing down too hard as you may get compression lock. I think just earlier braking with the front might be your solution, but being on my p's too, will happily take any corrections.
  4. Agreed and on Ps also. My first thought was you got too much back brake and no front.

    I'm conscious of the careful setup then squeeze in the slippery stuff, that and "appropriate" down shifting.
  5. Well, that's the thing......I didn't think I was applying all that much brake....barely any to be honest. But it must have been enough to lock the wheel in the conditions.

    When i mentioned gearing down earlier, I realise there's the chance of compression lock, but not if it's done properly. Just my experience at least.

    I guess my main point was that this came out of nothing. I wasn't doing anything I considered reckless or driving above the conditions. It just happened.
  6. In the wet, extremely easy to lock rear, use the front to slow yourself down before you have to turn in the wet... no trailbraking
  7. You don't happen to work in an industrial area do you?
  8. Holster - youre thinking deisel/oil/chemical infected road as I am I assume?

    In the wet, you need to take much greater care than in the dry, esp when you start out, Braking distances required can easily be double what they are in the dry. Be gentle on the brakes and allow plenty of stopping room at first, then as you get used to it you'll adjust your braking to suit, gentle first tho, and it changes every time it rains.
    The good thing about rain is that when you crash you slide easier and as long as you dont come to a sudden stop = less injuries.
  9. tyre pressure??? it is known to slide your rear.
  10. Did you have your clutch engaged or disengaged? If disengaged, it can be easier to get unstable and/or lock the rear.

    What you should have done is clutch in, twist the throttle, lock the rear wheel then drop the clutch, allowing you to drift into the driveway.
  11. That's how alot of off's happen. There are sooo many posts by people on this forum who had an off completely out of the blue. The only advive that I can give is that when I ride in the rain I brake well before I normally would to allow for any mishaps/lockups etc. I also gear down and release the clutch slowly so the back doesn't lock up. Riding in the rain takes a bit of getting used to in relation to the above but after a while you adapt accordingly to it and you start to love it.;)
  12. G'day guys,

    I work at a Fire Station right next to an auto mechanics. Tyre pressure is good, and a reasonably new tyre (maybe too new).

    On the way home, I was easing the clutch well before slowing and very conscious of rear braking. I used the front - very tenderly - and all went good.

    If that was the lesson for me for today, then it's all good.
  13. This could be the reason.

    New tyres really don't grip - especially in the wet.

    If it was a very new tyre and you hadn't broken it in yet, that may well be the reason for your slide.

  14. If you are riiding in Sydney at the moment, you need to be ultra careful. I commute to the CBD most days. If it's wet, then I take the bus instead. Experience has shown me that when you leave a big braking distance between you & the car in front, then it's an invitation to other motorists to "drop in". Riding in CBD peak hour traffic trying to get home is one the most dangerous situations facing motorcyclists. I'm lucky that I live close to town so it's not so much of an issue getting public transport. Braking in the rain is all about being easy, soft & nothing too sharp & responsive. Use front & back brakes whilst shifting down. If you are going too slow for the cars around you & they are getting shitty with you, then mantally you need to say to yourself "They can go & make love to themselves":jerk:
  15. I had the same thing happen to me (I'm still on my L's too) a while back coming up to a set of lights. Rear braking is something that needs to be used with a lot of skill in the wet, something that takes a long time to develop
  16. Happened to me too last Sunday. I wasn't even braking at the time, and it was on a straight stretch of road. There was no reason for my tyres to slide, except it was drizzling after a long dry spell and I was on a country road. Kinda shook me a little.
  17. probably oil.

    one of the most dangerous times is just as it starts raining, and the oil comes right to the surface, as does everything else.
  18. I advocate that all inexperienced riders get used to their rear wheel locking up with a lot car park practice. Until they can handle their bike with the rear wheel locked up in varying conditions, competently.

    You MUST get a feel for the rear brake so that you can use it effectively, so you have to push it to the point of lock up, and become accustomed to how the bike handles it, inside a controlled environment. (car park)

    The rear brake is very dangerous to inexperienced or new riders, especially since they seem to over-use it, habitually.

    Honestly....locking up the rear wheel is nothing...and should'nt be a noteworthy conversation!!

    If it's such a big deal to any of you, then you have'nt practiced enough and learnt how to deal with it - as you should have. Put a big Noob sticker back on your forehead until you do.

    Excuse the "Tuff-luv" approach, but seriously...the rear brake can be an exceptional tool when used correctly, or it can be deadly if misused at the wrong time.

    Get it sorted, Riders!
  19. yeah, my brother, an inexperienced rider, was telling me this morning that he's started using the rear brake through corners as it helps him get through them better.

    i told him it's great until he hits the oil, gravel or in anything slightly wet conditions and he should not be using it, ESPECIALLY around corners, and to do his braking beforehand.

    unfortunately, he just said "nah, it's better. i do it properly, it's okay, i know what i'm doing"... i tried convincing him to no avail.

    i don't wanna answer the phone when he tells me or someone else tells me he's in hospital.

    he also mentioned how hard it is to ride in the rain at night... i was like "yeah, and?" he said "i can't see with the visor down cause of the water on inside of visor"... it's all scratched, he needs a new one, and then he mentioned how he slid all over the road in the wet and the back tyre was going everywhere... i mentioned again the rear brake and he dismissed it.

    some people don't learn.
  20. Muchly agreed, my years of riding dirt got me used to tail braking, but on the road, the easiest thing i can suggest is practice in car park as said by Raven, but when braking in normal situation i avoid rear brake all together, i shift down steadily not to compression lock and just apply front brakes on steadily.
    In short.. when wet just avoiid the rear brake and go easy on down shift..