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Discussion Starter #1
I never noticed pavement back when I was driving a car, but I sure do now! I sometimes feel like the main thing I'm doing as I drive is scan ahead of me for potholes, manhole covers, and gravel.

The thing is, I know when I'm going faster, the gyroscopic force is going to keep me more upright - even if I hit one of Boston's giant potholes. But, the only real time I feel like I'm losing control of the bike is when hitting these road imperfections. Also,because Boston's road's expand and shrink with the intense cold, there are MANY, MANY road imperfections.

Is it as dangerous as I feel like it is? I tend to slow way down when I'm going over them. Is part of learning to drive faster "cowboying up" and hitting them hard? Or do I have good reason to fear bad pavement?

Bri
 

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Slowing down on a poorly paved public road is much better than "gassing it"... Especially when you consider the unknown road condition ahead.

Edit: If you're just going straight over bumps then it doesn't matter as much as long as you aren't bottoming out the suspension or getting thrown off of the bike. Doing any kind of turning over bumps or uneven pavement is a whole different matter.
 

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ya i go fast over them you proble have a better chance of nothing happeneing when you hit them faster
 

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"When all else fails, Gas it!" only gets you so far on the street. I think its more about 'maintenance throttle' than anything. Getting off the gas or on the brakes causes the bike to dip forward and shortens the suspension up making the bumps worse than they they really are. Try holding a steady speed where the bike is level.

Potholes on the other hand, you should do your best to avoid. anything thats gonna 'grab' a tire/wheel is no bueno. A big enough pothole at the right speed could send you flying.
 

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I never noticed pavement back when I was driving a car, but I sure do now! I sometimes feel like the main thing I'm doing as I drive is scan ahead of me for potholes, manhole covers, and gravel.

The thing is, I know when I'm going faster, the gyroscopic force is going to keep me more upright - even if I hit one of Boston's giant potholes. But, the only real time I feel like I'm losing control of the bike is when hitting these road imperfections. Also,because Boston's road's expand and shrink with the intense cold, there are MANY, MANY road imperfections.

Is it as dangerous as I feel like it is? I tend to slow way down when I'm going over them. Is part of learning to drive faster "cowboying up" and hitting them hard? Or do I have good reason to fear bad pavement?

Bri
"When all else fails, gas it."

I grew up practicing this on dirt, it comes as second nature to accelerate over bumps now.
OKAY, well let's all tear up the suspension now.

This is not a dirt bike. IT is a STREET bike. I had to pay 300 bucks because my fork seals were leaking "badly." The mechanic told me about this condition and told me advice (the advice is on here in the forums too from other people that experienced these problems). Fork seals break when you are hard on your suspension. I went on speed bumps going 30 mph and 80 mph on weird bumps in the highway. I think both factors lead to fork's seals to leak.

To Bri,

Slow down when you are in poor road conditions and didn't you take the MSF course? The video even shown you how to slow down in poor conditions like when the guy went through that mini river with his bike haha!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
To Bri,

Slow down when you are in poor road conditions and didn't you take the MSF course? The video even shown you how to slow down in poor conditions like when the guy went through that mini river with his bike haha!
It's one thing to take the MSF course. It's another to be aware that other people can drive their motorcycles faster than me when I see them around Boston. I don't want to be a Squid, but I'm trying to develop confidence. I think it's perfectly reasonable question.

Anyway, I hear this thread. It's okay to punch it a little if you're going straight. If you're turning, being conservative is a good idea.

Bri
 

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Have you had your suspension set up to your weight? If your suspension is not set up properly for your weight it might make it a harsher ride and make you feel uneasy when going over an uneven surface. Just a thought.
 

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For the weight that I think she is, I would imagine she isn't even putting a dent into her suspension. I think she may need softer springs front and rear. I'm sure that any marginal bump in the road has gotta feel pretty solid because there is little weight or effort on the springs.


Peace,

Gabe
 

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I think what lagwagonlead is talking about is when you already know you are going to hit the bump/pothole, is to juice the throttle. I don't think that he means to speed towards it if you can avoid it.

I agree with him in the sense that I explained. Your best off trying to take some of the weight off of the front suspension by giving throttle to get out of and over the bump/pothole and let the rear take the dip since you can give cushion for the suspension or "soak it in" with your legs.
 

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You're probably holding onto the grips too tight also. That will cause the bike to jerk around more when going over bumps. It will make the throttle jerky also. Keep a light grip on the grips. Try to ride with your fingertips.
 

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^In agreement. Light on the bars at all times.

I live in the land of potholes and constant road construction. There are times that things are simply not avoidable. The best thing I've found (and was taught at the MSF) is to remain steady on the throttle and stand up on the pegs to redistribute weight over the back wheel. This allows the front to more easily float over the obstacle. It works.
 

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^In agreement. Light on the bars at all times.

I live in the land of potholes and constant road construction. There are times that things are simply not avoidable. The best thing I've found (and was taught at the MSF) is to remain steady on the throttle and stand up on the pegs to redistribute weight over the back wheel. This allows the front to more easily float over the obstacle. It works.
Yep. I try to avoid them, but when all else fails, just get get off the seat a little, maintain, and just glide right over.

Same thing when you have a bumpy road. Make your legs act as shocks and your bike will stay glued to the road.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
For the weight that I think she is, I would imagine she isn't even putting a dent into her suspension. I think she may need softer springs front and rear. I'm sure that any marginal bump in the road has gotta feel pretty solid because there is little weight or effort on the springs.
You know, maybe that's it. I don't know how to phrase this less graphically, but I have occasionally wondered how on earth guys ride a CBR without smashing their twig and berries into a pancake. It seems like I can feel every bump in the road, and sometimes when I hit a bump hard, my whole lower body is jarred into the bike.

It's no big deal for me, but it sucks for you! Maybe it sucks less because your suspension is tuned correctly.

Bri
 

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Just give it time, you'll conform to the bike. Also, with experience you'll learn when to push your bike and when to be conservative.

+1 on getting the suspension set up for your weight.
 

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So Cal has no freeze/thaw cycles. :) But we do have large crevices in the middle of some lanes that can play with your front tire pretty good. I try to avoid them as much as possible and just stay loose and let the bike and damper work if I do get caught.
 

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I would invest in a Steering Damper if you don't have it. I usually hold my throttle steady, focus more on keeping my bike upright and under control, and relax a bit. Steering damper saved me quite a few times.
 

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Not right now chief, im in the f'ing zone
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It is called rutting. Flexible pavement that experiences rutting, which is the large groove you see along the wheel paths happens under the intense vehicular loads and heat produced by the sun and/or failed subgrade. Bad rutting can make riding the roads extremely difficult for bikers. Generally more severe on the outside wheel path on the far outside lane, due to the lack of horizontal forces caused by gravel shoulders.


So Cal has no freeze/thaw cycles. :) But we do have large crevices in the middle of some lanes that can play with your front tire pretty good. I try to avoid them as much as possible and just stay loose and let the bike and damper work if I do get caught.
 

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i avoid imperfections in the road most times.. just weave thru the jungle of potholes.. its kinda fun. but when you do you over it, just raise ur azz off your seat, absorb it in your knees.... only thing i slow down for is when i see gravel, really carefull bout that in turns
 
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