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 Post subject: BALANCING A 2 WHEELER
PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 7:41 pm 
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Joined: Feb 23, 2009
Motorcycle: Rebel 250 plus a few others
Rebel: 250
Country: Canada
State/Province: NB
City: Fredericton
Its so fundamental a child can do it automatically, but nobody ever does it the first time they try. Most people do it without even thinking what it is they are actually doing to keep that 2 wheeler upright.

Actually "balancing" is not really the right word, because the bike stays upright by STEERING not balancing.
A 2 wheeler is continually steering the front wheel in the direction the bike wants to fall. As the bike starts to lean over, the steering head is moving sideways in the direction of the lean relative to the contact patch of the front wheel. When the front wheel is turned in the direction of the lean, it moves the wheel back under the frame again and picks the bike up from the lean. Just like balancing a broom on your hand, except the bike is only free to fall side to side. You move the contact patch under the center of gravity of the bike.

If the bike stops moving forward, then steering does not work and the bike must be statically supported by at least a third contact point with the ground (the rider's left foot).
Just to make this easier, bicycle and motorcycle manufacturers have designed the front forks so that they will automatically want to steer the bike in the direction of a fall. You notice that the front wheel wants to "flop" to the left when the bike leans left on the sidestand. this feature makes it "stable" when moving forward. They just need a little help from the rider at lower speeds, and also to steer around corners, because they naturally just want to go straight.

When we see newbies having difficulty in steering a bike straight down a lane in the push exercise, we tell them to MOVE the handlebars back and forth quickly and note the results. Once they get active on the handlebars, they are quick to see the reaction of the bike and make the right corrections to get the results they want. This is much more effective than explaining the physics of it in that situation, but once you know what to do, it is good to understand why and what exactly you are doing, because it is so fundamental to everything else you do on a bike.

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2004 Honda Rebel 250
2003 BMW K1200GT
2004 BMW R1200GS
1996 Ducati 900SS
1973 Norton 850 Interstate


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 Post subject: Re: BALANCING A 2 WHEELER
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 3:06 pm 
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MOVE the handlebars back and forth quickly and note the results... mmm nice advice, thanks.


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 Post subject: Re: BALANCING A 2 WHEELER
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 4:01 pm 
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Joined: Feb 23, 2009
Motorcycle: Rebel 250 plus a few others
Rebel: 250
Country: Canada
State/Province: NB
City: Fredericton
It works for people who are so nervous they can't do anything. Most people already know how to keep balance by steering, but they just son;t realize what they are doing.

_________________
2004 Honda Rebel 250
2003 BMW K1200GT
2004 BMW R1200GS
1996 Ducati 900SS
1973 Norton 850 Interstate


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 Post subject: Re: BALANCING A 2 WHEELER
PostPosted: Thu Dec 05, 2013 1:39 pm 
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Joined: Aug 9, 2012
Motorcycle: 2008 FLHRC Road King Classic
Rebel: 250
Country: united States
State/Province: In
City: Peru
It had been YEARS since I was riding a two wheeled vehicle. So when I took the MSF course I was wobbling back and forth trying to maintain balance. After a few minuets of this, I quit trying to balance and let muscle memory take over. Funny how much "like riding a bike" is true if your not fighting it. :kickme1:

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1985 CMX250C Rebel "Juice" Sold
1982 GL1100 Gold Wing - Traded for an F250 pick up
2009 VN900C "Sunni"


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