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Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' at netrider.net.au started by Mirkon, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. I've had a bit of a look around (And used the search function) for the usual advice for handling windy conditions and taken up a fair bit of the advice that's on here. This site is an amazing resource.

    I got my license at the start of the year and have ridden on quite a few windy days and only once has the wind scared me, enough to pull over for a bit and relax.
    That day was meant to have 30km/h winds but I think that being at sea level, and that the weatherman gets it wrong, it was much stronger then that.
    Today was meant to be 45km/h winds so I decided against riding as I cross the Derwent River and like any bridge, windy days are pretty bad on big bridges. Being caught in crosswinds of those speeds I think would be just a bit much for me.

    I'm not asking what to do when riding on windy days but rather, at what windspeed do you think it's a bit much to ride ?

    Perhaps I should just harden the firetruck up lol
  2. Nah I don't like windy days too and sometimes just say **** it and drive to work instead.

    My VTR250 moves a lot in sidewinds although I'm told a fully faired bike is worse.
  3. Mirkon, what bike do you ride?
    Some bikes behave different to others due to design eg: fairings act like a sail on bikes a cross wind will push more on 'flat' surfaces, so a naked bike will have less resistance and a criuiser more so.
    Having said that, when learning I sold my VTR cause I was blown across 2 lanes on tulla freeway, my lack of riding experience contributed to that [I know that now] so I sold that and got a cb600r and that WAS heavier but above my riding skillls to I swapped to a cruiser and found the wind easier to deal with.
    What wind speed should you ride in? Well can I ask, what would you do if you are out riding and the weather turns ugly and it get wet and windy? You need to expose yourself to the experiences [slowly I would suggest] but build your confidence by going out and experiencing it all.
  4. Jus get out & do it. Unless strong gusts are forecast, or cyclonic conditions, the weatherman can't be thoroughly accurate.

    There will always be wind around so don't base whether or not you ride on that. Hell, on a quiet day you'll pass trucks going the opposite direction that'll spin you around so I guess it's one of those occupational hazards you need to learn to deal with. Plus, some areas tend to be more windy than others - gully's, seaside etc. Need to learn to lean your body into it rather than steer into it.

    Just keep an eye out for the 'strong' wind warnings etc.
  5. Wind doesn't bother me until it causes me to involuntarily change lanes.
  6. Bit like rain,you sometimes just get cought out.In 30 years of riding I have only struck it scary bad twice.The first time crossing the Hay Plain.
    It was at least a consistant side wind that you could bank into.
    Last year was by far the worst,we started at Walasha,west of Sydney and by the time we arrived at The Roberson Pie shop most had dropped out of the ride,started with 30 and ended with 6,the full dress Harleys were the worst,sudden 100k gusts that would
    come close to taking you right off the road on the ridges.It was March and I ended up wearing a balaclaver it was so cold.
  7. I rode out when the weatherman said strong gusts of winds up to 100km/hr. It was fine with tail wind, but damn at 100km/hr heading into the wind was rather painful on my neck. Was pushed around in my lane but it didn't bother me too much, just meant more of a work out. Most of the trip I was looking for a semi trailer going at the speed limit...slip streaming behind a truck was much nicer than pushing through the winds. I ride a 250cc Across, so not powerful at all...probably dropped 5km/hr or so everytime a gust of wind hit me.
  8. @goddie: I ride a Hyosung GT250r, so fully faired.
    @phongus: 100km ! That would be a great tail wind but to have that pressing against the side of you, yeouch !

    I'm not worried about getting caught out in weather, it happens, and I've certainly experienced a fair bit of it, Tassie weather does leave a lot to be desired. I usually check the local forecast so I'm prepared and unless it's heavy rain or rather windy (say, 30km+) I'll ride.
    I've passed many trucks and had them go blitzing past me in the other direction, wind buffeting has been a non-issue at 80k's, I still move into the left wheel track though to keep the distance.

    Aside from the one time when the wind was more then I could comfortably handle, I've been lovin it regardless of whatever weather I'm caught in :)
    I am interested in seeing what others would simply shrug off and when they would think twice about heading out.
  9. well they were only gusts of up to 100km/hr winds...so it was rather inconsistent, when they did hit though it was a little hard...that's why I started to look for trucks I can hide behind haha.
  10. The real bugger is in the city with all the tall buildings (maybe not so much in Hobart though). You get a wind tunnel effect that gets amplified by the corridors around tall buildings. Had to keep both feet down waiting at the lights a few times when this happens.

    As far as a maximum wind speed I'll venture out in, well... it's a tough call but if the wind is that strong that it has me worried about riding, I'd be more inclined to seek alternate transport (or stay where I am) due to possibility of debris being flung about.
  11. [MENTION=33880]Mirkon[/MENTION], to answer directly, that depends on the bike and the other conditions, and you. On a warm clear day, I might jump on your bike and ride it up the street with an 120k head or tail wind, but I wouldn't like to try and ride it across much more than 60k. (Very rough figures.) But I wouldn't advise you or any other beginner to try more that 60 head / tail and about 45 crosswind - at least until you've had a bit of a go at it and practised. Go to cold and wet and dark and rider is tired and uncomfortable, and riding on a road you've never ridden before, I'd cut all those wind speeds in half.

    It's hard to know what the limit is. Practice and familiarity will give you an idea, but you're the one on the spot so it's your call.

    Gusting crosswinds, or crosswinds that are periodically interrupted by something (like a big truck) are the hardest to ride in. A particularly strong gust can pick you up over centre and throw you downwind, and to effectively fight it you need to be pretty physical and brutal with the steering, and many newer riders lack the confidence to do that. Or to put it another way, they don't understand that to get the bike back on line it's going to take a lot of input applied very quickly, and if they don't, they'll crash.

    There is a conventional wisdom, oft repeated on this site, that you need to relax and flow and let it happen, like "Luke! Remember the Force!" That's all great as long as it doesn't get really bad. If it does, well, you've got to do what you've got to do, and that might involve parking the bike behind a wind break, or it might involve getting a bit physical with the controls.

    As a very loose rule of thumb, little bikes get tossed around more than big ones, light bikes get tossed around more than heavy ones, high bikes get tossed more than low bikes, faired bikes get tossed more than nakeds, (and the bigger the fairing, the worse it can be.) However, some bikes get blown around more than others in ways you wouldn't expect. Some fairings seem to be a huge horizontal sail, while others are less so. Some bikes seem to blow away at the top and turn downwind if a sparrow farts. Others seem to blow away at the bottom and lean into the wind like they're on auto-pilot - which is great.
    • Like Like x 2
  12. when i'm grinding the pegs trying to ride straight.
  13. It's a bit hard to determine when it's outside my abilities and when it's just plain too much, but getting a base idea with what the community is willing to tolerate certainly helps.

    We don't really have the wind tunnel effect, our larger buildings are pretty spaced out and well... not all that big :p

    Thanks for the responses :)
  14. I remember riding home from VIC back to Wollongong after the 2009 4M's ride with a phenominal crosswind, leftover from the huuuuge thunderstorm we quite literally raced a few days earlier.

    The Tiger 1050's usually completely ignorant of wind conditions aside from increased/decreased fuel consumption, no matter how severe the wind or what direction it comes from. But on that day as we rode over the Great Dividing Range from Bombala up to Brown Mountain, I swear the tiger ended up with a huge flat spot on the right hand edge of the tyre rather than dead in the middle. :D
  15. haha yes.
    when you are grinding down the left footpeg in order to take a right hand bend.

    but if it's really disconcerting, just slow down to a speed you are comfortable with in that wind.