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Thread: A good video discussing trail braking

  1. #1
    Flirting With The Redline 2000 Posts! midknyte's Avatar
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    Mar 2005
    NW Chicago

    A good video discussing trail braking

    Objects in mirror are dumber than they appear!

  2. #2
    RiderCoach 4000 Posts! AZridered's Avatar
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    Jun 2007
    Chandler, Arizona
    That IS a really good explanation of the use of effective trail braking. However, I do have to differ with his explanation of the Motorcycle Safety Foundation's basic recommendation of Slow-Look-Press-Roll. In the video, he treats the Roll phase as if the rider is supposed to begin accelerating as soon as they begin the turn. This is a popular, incorrect, interpretation of the recommended steps. Here is what is actually printed in the MSF Rider Handbook:

    Roll: Use the throttle to maintain or slightly increase speed. Avoid quick or sudden throttle roll-on or roll-off that would affect smoothness as this influences the suspension and tire grip.

    So you see, no mandate to accelerate, just use the throttle at least enough to maintain the speed at which you have entered the turn. Elsewhere in the curriculum there are descriptions regarding how to judge how much to slow and warnings to be conservative with speed choice.

    Trail braking is a very useful technique and is something that all experienced riders should understand. However, due to the complexity of judging how much braking it is OK to still be using as a corner begins weighted against the risk of getting things wrong, trail braking is not an excellent New Rider technique. Get some experience with the basics before advancing a step or two.

  3. #3
    Flirting With The Redline 3000 Posts! Galaxieman's Avatar
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    Jan 2005
    Vacaville, CA
    Part of the reason there is a need to maintain entry speed with the throttle is the physics of rolling circumference. He talks a lot about making the circle bigger or smaller, but doesn’t acknowledge that in a turn, the bike is on what are effectively smaller tires. The circumference is smaller when you’re riding nearer the edge of the tire than when you’re straight up and down. Thus, to maintain the same speed you were traveling before you tipped in, you must apply more throttle to make up for the loss in distance traveled per tire revolution. This is a small percentage, but not so small as to be insignificant when you’re into the realm of dealing with geometry adjustment via trail braking. Thus, “apply throttle” or “roll” in SPLR doesn’t necessarily mean “accelerate” like he says it does.

    Quote Originally Posted by Afflo
    ... and all that promise of power just sorta evaporated into the clattery, hoary sound of disappointment.

  4. #4
    Flirting With The Redline 2000 Posts! Sorg67's Avatar
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    Jul 2015
    Orlando, FL
    Wow, this is some good stuff I did not know. The video, AZ's comments and Galaxie's comments all contributed to some interesting things for me to consider in learning to ride better.


  5. #5
    RiderCoach 5000 Posts! NORTY's Avatar
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    Dec 2011
    If you are "trail-braking" on the street, then you might back off your pace, on the street. (Altho, it is a useful skill to possess.)

    Now, in the dirt, it's a wonderful source of skill building.
    Knowledge speaks, wisdom listens.


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