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View Full Version : Wet roads + wind = OMG



Ragingrob
3rd October 2007, 14:45
Hey just a quick question. Lol this is my 2nd week of riding and I must say the weather's not the best! Is it normal to feel really dodgy going around some corners in these conditions? Like sometimes I swear the back wheel starts to slip slightly even when I'm taking it so slow! Also sometimes my front end seems rather wobbly with the wind and even with little grooves on the road it seems to take my wheel and wobble it a little...

Is this normal? Or am I special?

Grub
3rd October 2007, 15:04
Hiya RR,

Yup the wind is crap and moves you around a lot but doesn't (usually) knock you off. The wet is crap because white lines and tar snakes will get ya. Stop with your foot on a wet white line and see how slick it is. Be careful though, if you loose your footing completely, you'll look a right nanna as you fall sideways onto your butt.

The other thing is that you're riding a Ginny which may have the original chinese nylon :sick: tyres. These are just plain dangerous and should be removedd without a second's delay. If you've felt the rear move, you've been lucky. With those tyres, you should have been on yer arse before you felt anything. Same thing with the tyres tracking in road cuts and gouges. sometimes that's not the specific tyres, just a factor of their size but all bikes will feel them to some extent

Macstar
3rd October 2007, 15:12
Yeah mate, this weather is about as bad as it gets (apart from ice). A little 'ol GN is likely to be pushed around a bit in the wind - not much you can do about that and unless you're crossing the Harbour bridge you probably don't need to worry too much about that around town.

As for cornering in the wet... try and do all your braking before the corner while the bike is not on a lean and use the rear brake a bit more in the wet. Ease on the throttle as you go around a wet corner (no sudden jerking). And no dumping down a gear too half way through a corner as that could lock up your rear wheel - especially in the wet.

Check your PSI is within the recommended range specified on the tyre and make sure you have a fair bit of tread i.e. if you stick a coin into the tread of your tyre does it go in at least 2-3mm?

Ruts in the road (even around town) are a bit of a bastard and can take you by surprise but are usually harmless i.e. the bike will ride through them (but it may wobble a bit as you do so).

I recommend you give Squiggles a PM cause he has a GN and is around uni most days. He could maybe have a quick squizz at your GN and make sure there's nothing too dodgie.

ehab2weelr
3rd October 2007, 15:20
Ease on the throttle as you go around a wet corner (no sudden jerking). And no dumping down a gear too half way through a corner as that could lock up your rear wheel - especially in the wet.

.

sudden jerk on a gn??? hahahah :lol:
this isnt no gsxr750!!!! hahah

Ragingrob
3rd October 2007, 15:28
Yeah Steve's seen my bike and I'm pretty sure it's all sweet, the tires aren't the originals and do have a fair bit of tread I believe. So yeah it's prob me just not being used to it. Not a nice feeling riding in this weather! Especially when other drivers seem to drive more eratically at the same time haha!

HungusMaximist
3rd October 2007, 16:05
^ Good point about the checking our tire pressure Mac boy. Make it a routine!

I haven't checked it probably for about 3 weeks and it was down 10 PSI on the front.

Shit I thought......

EDIT: You got me all excited, I thought that was you in your avatar, all naked infront of the Ducati.... Then it turns out you're a dude.... hahaha....

Ragingrob
3rd October 2007, 16:26
^ Ha gutted!

So checking my PSI just involves going to the gas station and putting the air nozzle on the tyre and see what the pressure is?

ehab2weelr
3rd October 2007, 17:02
^ Ha gutted!

So checking my PSI just involves going to the gas station and putting the air nozzle on the tyre and see what the pressure is?

thats all it is! easy anf fast and could save ur life>>>:Police:

motorbyclist
3rd October 2007, 17:59
i've got a keychain pressure tester in my box of goodies in the shed :D


but yeah, wind can send you from one side of the road to the other in sudden gusts, cause speed wobbles on the motorway, ruts in the road will affect most bikes to varying degrees, and paint/tar is to be avoided while wet (paint is bad enough in the dry!).

just remember your braking is now on par with a car's, and corners should be done smoothly. it also helps to keep the bike as upright as possible and move your body instead.

oh, and if it's hailing like it did today, slow down and/or stop. you're riding on ball bearings and it's bloody cold too!

Ragingrob
3rd October 2007, 18:58
it also helps to keep the bike as upright as possible and move your body instead.



Bike upright but move body...as in turn handlebars? Or lean with body and not bike?

Oh and I just checked, I think I have about 1.5mm tread front and 2mm tread back, although it's kinda hard to measure! What's this amount of tread like?

motorbyclist
3rd October 2007, 19:22
lean body and not bike, like hang off the side of it. obviously you can't do that for every corner but it makes it harder for the wheels to slip out from under you.

you'll find that's the easiest way to do a tight U turn aswell (well on a sportbike where slow corners are a problem you'll find it)


handlebars are a whole topic on their own......

fireliv
3rd October 2007, 19:25
I use to freak when it was windy in welly...but then I realised if I didnt learn to cope I would never get to ride!

Weather is normally better in chch-except today. Wind doesnt worry me as much now but still can be freaky! Grip with the knees I was told

Good luck!

rphenix
3rd October 2007, 19:34
Dont forget knees out both of em as far as you can comfortably, you will give yourself better balance, which allows you to deal with wind gusts, it also means your going to move around in the saddle more when leaning which helps with the whole move your body not your bike in the wet trick mentioned previously.

If you do harbour bridge crossings, big vehicles can help buses are great for pushing the water away on the road and as they have the double wheel base, it keeps you away from the centre line as you try and follow their tracks!

They can also smack the wind a bit ahead of you (if its not coming completely in from the side) making it slightly more turbulent but not as powerful... just remember if your sitting in a vehicles slipstream especially the larger ones they probably cant see you so be careful.

Speaking of slipstreams its great if you can get a riding budy that you trust absolutely one can be the buffer of the wind and protect the lighter/smaller bike it also helps keep the cagers off your arse though to be honest if im not in the fast lane and im dealing with wind cagers can go f*** themselves when its windy I've got my hands full keeping myself safe so just forget they are there (other than the obvious break allowing for them to stop thing).

One last thing your gear makes a big difference, bigger than you think!! Alot of people love synthetic riding gear due to its quick drying and in some ways better ability to keep you dry. But nothing sticks to your body like leather honestly the minute I got my Quasimoto leather jacket wind was 1/2 as bad as it used to be + leather makes you feel your skin might just remain on your body if you drop your bike on the road!

Ragingrob
3rd October 2007, 19:41
Wow thanks for all the advice guys!

motorbyclist
3rd October 2007, 19:45
They can also smack the wind a bit ahead of you (if its not coming completely in from the side) making it slightly more turbulent but not as powerful... just remember if your sitting in a vehicles slipstream especially the larger ones they probably cant see you so be careful.

yeah, tailgating trucks/large vans is an effective, albeit dangerous, way to keep out of the wind. you'll find as you approach it'll get quite turbulent but once you're close enough there's a dead spot behind them. i've seen trucks doing this to other trucks a couple of times before - saving gas in a very dangerous manner


likewise i find alot of station wagons, especially ones with pointless spoilers, create very "dirty" (turbulent) air

Squiggles
3rd October 2007, 21:39
tire pressures first :) 26 front 30-32 rear would be a good mix i think (as per the txt)

manual reccomends 28 for the rear solo, 32 for the rear with pillion, and 32 for the rear for highway riding, so about 30 with ya pack and bits on is probably a good setting :) The wind you shall learn to counter :niceone:

Conti's should be fine as tires, your tread was all good from memory... just keep away from the chin shen? stockers

Ragingrob
3rd October 2007, 22:03
Cool yeah...hey but what if there's more pressure than that already? When I go to pump them out should I let a little air out first anyway and then pump it up to those psi's? Cause I'm sure they're really tight!

On another point, sometimes when I go over a bump like pulling from a driveway or something there's a kinda knock around about the front suspension. Feels like something's hitting together, any ideas or normal?

Hanne
3rd October 2007, 22:39
I don't like the wind either, had to concentrate really hard on my way to uni today in order to stay in my lane.

Summer, hurry up!

howdamnhard
3rd October 2007, 22:46
I like to run my Gn at the following tyre pressures: 28PSI front,30PSI rear.Check your rear shocks preload is the same on both shocks,midway is about right unless your pretty big or small.The guy I bought the bike off had them set to hard and the rear wheel would skip over any bumps,not so good when cornering.:shit:.The biggest thing is to relax your arms,pretend they are not rigidly connected to your body otherwise when the wind hits your body the displacement of your body is transmitted through to your hands which in turn displaces the handle bars which in turn causes the bike to be evenmore displaced causing a kind of instability feedback loop.It is normal for the front wheel to try follow inconsistences/furrows in the road,just relax and the bike will sort itself out.Give yourself plenty of space when riding in adverse conditions and its OK to feel apprehensive the first few times,you'l get used to it,and if you feel its beyond your ability just don't go out.

howdamnhard
3rd October 2007, 22:50
The Gn's front suspension is pretty soft but it would pay to get it checked out by someone in the know to.The back swing arm isn't that rigid either and can twist under hard acceleration loads but does'nt adversely affect handling to much .

motorbyclist
3rd October 2007, 23:01
The back swing arm isn't that rigid either and can twist under hard acceleration loads but does'nt adversely affect handling to much .

this is a GN250 we're talking about right?:laugh:

dell_boy
3rd October 2007, 23:37
Hi
If you still have the chinese nylon tyres on the bike - recommend strongly that you get rid of them - they are dangerous in the wet - I know from experience. I have bridgestones now & the bike is so much safer in wet conditions & over grooved roads.

motorbyclist
3rd October 2007, 23:39
ah i still remember my first set of pirellis :drool: riding heaven until they needed replacing 6 months later

bomma
4th October 2007, 00:39
mate for any gn issues i suggest you pm twinkle....thus far hes managed to pass a k7 gixxer600 and me on my zx7r around corners.....he would be the right man to talk to :niceone:

HungusMaximist
4th October 2007, 00:56
^ Yea I second that , he got some serious GN cornering skills.

As on the note of leather jackets vs textile.

I have recently started wearing one and I have to mention, it definitely feels way more sturdier than my pansy textile jacket. I still prefer riding in the rain with waterproof textiles over leathers. Although you will find you gotta give your leathers TLC (rainguard, leather conditioner), otherwise they can die pretty quick.

twinkle
4th October 2007, 07:32
mate for any gn issues i suggest you pm twinkle....thus far hes managed to pass a k7 gixxer600 and me on my zx7r around corners.....he would be the right man to talk to :niceone:

flattery will get you everywhere nish :rofl: :apint:

I find the gn to be hardly affected by crosswinds compared to my old gpx250, i guess its just something you get used to.

klyong82
4th October 2007, 09:02
I haven't checked it probably for about 3 weeks and it was down 10 PSI on the front.

EDIT: You got me all excited, I thought that was you in your avatar, all naked infront of the Ducati.... Then it turns out you're a dude.... hahaha....

How the heck you lose 10 PSI in 3 weeks? There must be something wrong with that front bro. How old is the tyre?

Haha....Watch out guys Ewen preys on little kids. He gets excited when he sees kids that ride bikes....chinese excluded .....danger danger..!!

Squiggles
4th October 2007, 10:10
by knock its not just the thud from dropping it into the gutter as ya leave...

i have a bit of a knock from the rear wheel, where when i put on the gas after getting off it the sprocket and bits engage with the wheel (part 15 here) http://www.cmsnl.com/suzuki-gn250-1998-ew_model13364/partslist/FIG53.html

No "knocks" as such from the front

just get the pressures right first... i suppose an overly hard tyre wont absorb the bumps as easily, and with too lower pressure you'd hear the rim knocking the ground if ya hit a gutter at speed

Ragingrob
4th October 2007, 18:25
Hey, I've pumped up the pressure, turns out the rear was only like 130KPa and I pumped it up to 210 which is like 30psi! Feels waaaay better!

Macstar
4th October 2007, 20:45
A happy ending...;)

klyong82
4th October 2007, 22:12
Glad that is sorted. Low rear pressure would mean slippery tires when wet. I experience this when I had Dunlop Arrowmaxes and I was about 10 PSI lower then recommended. Bike would just slid left and right when braking. Scary but fun....

Ragingrob
5th October 2007, 09:23
Yeah thanks to everyone for the help! Hope it's way nicer in the rain now. Can't believe it was like 80KPa below what is recommended though!!! Fully can't tell the difference just by look or touch :S.

nzcanadian
5th October 2007, 22:37
I ride across the bridge daily. Having just upgraded from a GN with dodgy tyres to a ZZR :), I can tell you I feel a LOT better going around corners now. Also, can hardly feel the rut in the right hand lane of the harbour bridge now.