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BRC weekend in MI - freezing my bearings off!

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  • BRC weekend in MI - freezing my bearings off!

    I took the classroom portion of the BRC tonight. Very interesting to me after my training in Germany.

    Some notes...

    The guy in the alcohol section of the DVD is kind of cute in those yellow Vansons.....
    The overall focus of the classroom work was far less technical. I know that this is due to time limitations.
    The average intelligence of the students was not going to handle serious technical discussions about how ABS and gyroscopic precession work, either.
    The videos were good. I was pleasantly surprised by this. The diversity of bikes was great, and of course there was the ubiquitous yellow F650GS just like in Germany, so I did pay attention to something. That acid yellow KLR, though.... Nasty!
    The main message I got was "please don't kill yourself". The two RCs doing the classroom segment did add a bunch of life to the materials and their love of riding definitely came through. I did not get a warm and fuzzy feeling about their technical chops, though. Maybe I am just too technical of a rider.
    Fine-C is utterly useless on an F650GS. We use KOCSNS - Key, killswitch On, Clutch, Sidestand, Neutral, Start.
    When they mentioned that Suzuki(?) required the clutch in to start, I said "BMW, also" and the guy said "oh, you're BMW.... so, uh, know your bike. Yeah." This made me giggle a lot. Mostly because they identified BMW as strange. Which it is.
    The horn button and blinker button are totally unclear in the book. And they are often swapped on various motorcycles.
    There were so many little things that as a somewhat experienced rider, I just didn't connect properly. Like what do you look for when coming up to a corner? The apex and exit, duh. Well, the real answer is assess the road condition, slope (which I call camber) and radius. Or upshifting - preload, blip, and yeah. No, it's this horribly complicated clutch and throttle thing. and preloading the shifter is not part of it!
    Ahhhhh... in the alcohol section, they mentioned the reduced visual capacity. This is how KC came to the concept of reference points - riding impaired. I don't want to ride impaired, but it was so weird not to hear the good stuff that came from an intelligent rider realizing that riding imparied was a really bad thing.
    And every time they said slow look press roll, it was hard for me not to finish the sequence with the rest of rule 1. I kept thinking of the German technique, too - look and lean.
    I was pleasantly surprised that they mentioned using your chin in turning. They soecifically called out wearing a full face helmet and bringing the chinbar to the shoulder. No real explanation of how it works by aligning the body properly, but at least they brought it up.

    Tomorrow, I have two two-hour range sessions. Apparently, they have TU250s, Nighthawks, and "Honda Trainers". I plan to go for a TU250 or a "Honda Trainer". I was hoping to see a WR or comparable dual-sport, but no love. I will show up early and take whatever looks ratty and fun.

    I am definitely aware that I will look funny with my euro gear on.
    Katherine goes to Fahrschule - the German rider training thread :: Nine Days in the Alps :: BRC 2014 :: Finding GS Land
    2012 CBR250R (sold), 2001 Super Sherpa, 2004 BMW F650GSa - not a big Ford truck...

  • #2
    You *have* to somehow get some pictures of this! Stay warm!

    via my nerded out Nexus 5
    Tim
    2011 Triumph Sprint GT
    vroom

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    • #3
      How is a Honda Trainer different from a Nighthawk? Will be interested to see what they are. Rebel I suppose but not sure why they wouldn't call them that when they refer to Nighthawks, another Honda, as Nighthawks.
      The TUs are some sweet fuel injected bikes, so don't discount it. Do get used to the front brake gradually though.

      I think "pressing" is "leaning". If you're pressing on the handgrip, the bike will lean.

      The BRC is Basic RiderCourse, so that's why you won't see a lot of that technical information you're used to. I KNOW I would not, as a RiderCoach, be able to talk with you technically. But..frankly, that's not why I'm there, neither. I have 20 hours to get the BASICS out there so people can form habits based on a good foundation of skills.

      Is this class 15 or 20 hours?

      Look forward to hearing more! Have a blast!
      Last edited by Missy B; 03-21-2014, 11:55 PM.
      CURRENT BIKES: 2014 Suzuki Wee Strom, 2016 Honda CBR500R
      PREVIOUS BIKES: 2002 Ninja 500, 2002 Kawi ZR-7S, 2002 Kawi Concours, 2003 Yamaha XT225, 2006 Yamaha FZ6, 2005 Suzuki Wee Strom, 2004 Honda CRF250R, Yamaha TTR250
      Test riding bikes since 2004.
      If loud pipes save lives, imagine what learning to RIDE that thing will do!
      sigpic

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Missy B View Post
        ...

        I think "pressing" is "leaning". If you're pressing on the handgrip, the bike will lean.

        ...
        I think the concept of "pressing" is far superior to "leaning" since the "lean" is the result of "pressing". When I learned to ride we thought we turned the bike by leaning. The truth is the Wright Brothers figured out counter-steering 100+ years ago ... but that information got lost in the other things they figured out.

        I can remember trying to get an XS650 to flick into a corner in the mid 70s. I tried severe leaning ... that didn't work fast enough. Then I tried turning the handlebars ... like you would a tricycle ... and nearly went off the road the wrong way. I knew something was wrong ... but I couldn't figure it out. The truth of the matter was I already did turn a motorcycle by countersteering and I'd been doing that since I learned to ride a bicycle. I just didn't consciously realize it ... and neither did anyone else.

        It was not too long after that I read the first article in a motorcycle magazine that proposed counter-steering as the way you turned a motorcycle. I knew instantly it was correct ... but I would say 90% of riders at the time thought it was ridiculous.

        I do think the idea of turning by leaning has its place... in riding dirt bikes.
        The best thing you can buy for your motorcycle is gas.

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        • #5
          I like your expansion, Mike. Thanks. I don't have the way with words that you do.
          CURRENT BIKES: 2014 Suzuki Wee Strom, 2016 Honda CBR500R
          PREVIOUS BIKES: 2002 Ninja 500, 2002 Kawi ZR-7S, 2002 Kawi Concours, 2003 Yamaha XT225, 2006 Yamaha FZ6, 2005 Suzuki Wee Strom, 2004 Honda CRF250R, Yamaha TTR250
          Test riding bikes since 2004.
          If loud pipes save lives, imagine what learning to RIDE that thing will do!
          sigpic

          Comment


          • #6
            Katherine, I will reiterate that this is the BasicRider Course. It is geared toward novice riders. The training you got in Europe is much more comprehensive. Plus, realize that you ride at a higher level than even most experienced riders. So I would ask you to continue your critical thinking of the curriculum, but do not expect performance riding to be introduced, discussed, or encouraged.
            ~Teri
            Originally posted by Bugguts
            Hey, at my age running hot and loss of spark is a common problem.
            2013 Triumph Tiger 800
            2018 Triumph Street Triple R - Low
            2015 Ninja 300 (sold to a student rider, renamed Lloyd)

            sigpic

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            • #7
              I am sitting here chuckling at the KOCSNS...I can't remember that so asking students to remember it out on the range would be interesting.

              We actually coach that part of mounting the motorcycle on the range means having sidestand up (final step, of course), so...that's why it's not part of the start up procedure.
              As far as the others, they are all pretty similar really but FINE_C is a pretty easy "word" to remember for it all - for both students and instructors when we have to coach them "FINE-C" when they're on the range, stalled, because they forgot to turn their fuel supply valve on.

              I wouldn't call it utterly useless on the BMW either since it refers to all the same things, really. Of course, you're leaving out the F but most of the range bikes are not fuel injected and/or have a fuel supply valve. They may also encounter them on a bike of their own, so it's good to expose them to this.

              I have never preloaded my shifter...on purpose, anyway. And blipping? Seems simpler, to me, not to preload my shifter nor blip. Different strokes for different folks.
              Last edited by Missy B; 03-22-2014, 01:59 AM.
              CURRENT BIKES: 2014 Suzuki Wee Strom, 2016 Honda CBR500R
              PREVIOUS BIKES: 2002 Ninja 500, 2002 Kawi ZR-7S, 2002 Kawi Concours, 2003 Yamaha XT225, 2006 Yamaha FZ6, 2005 Suzuki Wee Strom, 2004 Honda CRF250R, Yamaha TTR250
              Test riding bikes since 2004.
              If loud pipes save lives, imagine what learning to RIDE that thing will do!
              sigpic

              Comment


              • #8
                Press is absolutely the right way to teach it. It removes leaning from the equation, which I think is a valuable thing. Leaning will happen naturally. I still hang up on "press" because in Geramn, press is to push the bike down and away in a counterlean.

                Two other things.. It's not a kill switch, it's an engine cut-off switch, and don't cover the front brake on the range, but do cover the clutch.

                I definitely do not want to come across as being critical of the course. It is trying to pack a ton of information into a short time, and I know that is not easy.

                The BMW starting procedure is due to the way the relays and diodes work. And FSM help you if you touch the throttle while it's starting!

                Anyway, off to the range! I ink we have a total of sixteen hours of class/range time.
                Katherine goes to Fahrschule - the German rider training thread :: Nine Days in the Alps :: BRC 2014 :: Finding GS Land
                2012 CBR250R (sold), 2001 Super Sherpa, 2004 BMW F650GSa - not a big Ford truck...

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                • #9
                  I'm all bummed out because they took the slow race out of the BRC.

                  kill switch if you called it anything else they wouldn't know what you were talking about.
                  …take some tools to adjust your brakes and levers that will really freak them out

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                  • #10
                    Who wants to use the word "kill" in a motorcycle class?

                    Sent from my Galaxy SIII, Tapatalk and my two left thumbs.
                    CURRENT BIKES: 2014 Suzuki Wee Strom, 2016 Honda CBR500R
                    PREVIOUS BIKES: 2002 Ninja 500, 2002 Kawi ZR-7S, 2002 Kawi Concours, 2003 Yamaha XT225, 2006 Yamaha FZ6, 2005 Suzuki Wee Strom, 2004 Honda CRF250R, Yamaha TTR250
                    Test riding bikes since 2004.
                    If loud pipes save lives, imagine what learning to RIDE that thing will do!
                    sigpic

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Missy B View Post
                      Who wants to use the word "kill" in a motorcycle class?

                      Sent from my Galaxy SIII, Tapatalk and my two left thumbs.
                      The guy who is pinned under a bike with the rear tire doing a burnout on top of his helmet

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                      • #12
                        I think you should be critical of the course! Just don't expect to be any more than basic info, is all I'm saying.
                        ~Teri
                        Originally posted by Bugguts
                        Hey, at my age running hot and loss of spark is a common problem.
                        2013 Triumph Tiger 800
                        2018 Triumph Street Triple R - Low
                        2015 Ninja 300 (sold to a student rider, renamed Lloyd)

                        sigpic

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Range is awesome so far, more details later!!
                          Katherine goes to Fahrschule - the German rider training thread :: Nine Days in the Alps :: BRC 2014 :: Finding GS Land
                          2012 CBR250R (sold), 2001 Super Sherpa, 2004 BMW F650GSa - not a big Ford truck...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            FINE-C works because it has its own correction built in:

                            Funny, I Never Even Checked!

                            Another program uses "ONE-C", for "On, Neutral, Engine Cutoff, Clutch". It's more universal to street bikes, but it wasn't what MSF chose to use.

                            As for "kill switch" and "kick stand", I just tell students that we avoid killing and kicking in the class, where possible....
                            Jeff

                            "Remember when being socially distant was a symptom of a potentially debilitating mental disorder, instead of a government mandate? C'mon, it was just a few weeks ago!"

                            "Modern Liberalism: The embodiment of an irrational fear of letting other people run their own lives."

                            '13 XT250
                            '10 ZG-1400 (operational again)

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                            • #15
                              I wondered whether the German-to-English buzzwords would be different for you. Sounds like they are. Also, one of those cultural differences may be coming in to play here, insofar as how learning is conceptualized and presented to adults in different countries.

                              There are reasons to cover the clutch and not the brake in a novice class. It is so important that experienced riders are not allowed to do it in the class, either. You are also very familiar and dextrous around machines in general. A person who is not so coordinated can have a very difficult time managing all the controls. Covering the brake impedes learning to manipulate the throttle, and in fact, can be very dangerous for a novice. When learning new motor skills, it is best done incrementally.

                              For you, I imagine this class feels like being stuck in slow motion. Remember, too, that not giving too much info to soon is beneficial to overwhelmed newbies. In fact, the most difficult part of learning to coach, for most of us, is learning to STFU and let the students learn by doing. Suddenly, poetry--saying more with less--becomes a valuable skill for a coach.

                              When you learned to ride, how many people were in your group?

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