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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been riding for about a month, and this last monday i had the great pleasure of accidently laying my bike after locking up front the break. I had all my gear on so i only had minor injuries and my was about the same. Slid about 30 yard, 45 to 0 in about 6 seconds >.<

The thing that bugs the heck out of me is I can't really figure out what made me fall. The bike I road at the safety class didn't behave the same as my shadow did during the quick stop, but it was a lot smaller and lighter.

1 Will locking the front the break jerk the handle bars hard enough for me to dump the clutch?
2 Are my front shocks supposed to be sooo soft?
3 As side from getting into a situation where I have to stop quickly how do you avoid locking the break?
4 What should I check mechanically to ensure there isn't something with the breaking/steering system?

I wanted different handle bars anyways, and my saddle bags didn't fit so i didn't need them tail lights either :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Gloves are Alpine Star, they ripped at the seem. Guess it could have been worse without them though.

Elbows, and knee is about the same, and a wicked bruise on my thigh.

So any advice on how not to repeat this is welcome :D
 

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. . .
1 Will locking the front the break jerk the handle bars hard enough for me to dump the clutch?
Not sure what you mean by "dump." If you mean move your hand from the clutch and disengage, yes.
2 Are my front shocks supposed to be sooo soft?
They should not feel "soft."
3 As side from getting into a situation where I have to stop quickly how do you avoid locking the break?
Use your rear brake first, and start feathering your front--just a general approach.
4 What should I check mechanically to ensure there isn't something with the breaking/steering system?
Take to the shop and have it checked, since you've dropped it, unless you're a part-time wrench. There's a lot that could be wrong that no one here can see.

I wanted different handle bars anyways, and my saddle bags didn't fit so i didn't need them tail lights either :p
If that's all you have to deal with, you came away in pretty good shape.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
thanks for the answers.

Trust me I'm very thankful I got to walk away.. Wish I had the skills and experience to pull off the stop.

I was told to not use the rear break when stopping in an emergency. Because people have a tendency to stomp on it and lock the break.

Yes the front shocks are soft. They feel shot, if they were in a car i'd replace them, not sure if it's normal for a bike. I weight 210 and with my wieght i can press them down 75% or 80%. Felt strange but thought it was normal..

I'm more of a DIYer than a wrencher, you can't learn taking it into a shop. But as you said since i dropped it, it's best to have it looked over by a pro, I'll do that, but first I'll have my go at it. I like wrenching :D .. when it's on my stuff.

It starts and rides fine, the fork is straight, the bushings are shot and the handle bar is bent. i combed over it for leaks, nothing.

I plan to replace the bars, lights, bushings, risers, shifter, pegs, then take it into the shop. Anything else I can check myself before I spend 90 dollars an hours?

Thanks again,
When I start I'll post some before, during, and after pictures in the other forums.
 

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Use both brakes, fix your front suspension, and
 

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Mark,

I was just concerned because I can't possibly push the front end of my bike down that far . . . but maybe it's just a function of age . . .
;-)
 

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I'm gonna add the obvious, because you've mentioned it twice:

Find an emptry parking lot and practice "panic" stops using both brakes. You will find that you have a lot more control. It's just a simple skill that you will quickly develop.

Simply put, each end of the bike needs to come to a stop at the same time.
And you then have more braking power.
Make sense?
 

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1 Will locking the front the break jerk the handle bars hard enough for me to dump the clutch? Just like on a bicycle, locking up the front brake will have you kissing asphalt almost every time. You can lock your rear brake in an emergency if you feel the need and all you will do is slide and wear down your rear tire.
2 Are my front shocks supposed to be sooo soft? Nope! Get 'em looked at. If all you need is new seals and bushings you will probably be able to do the work yourself if you are a half decent wrench. Sometimes adjusting your rear shocks can have the effect of tightning your front suspension... Not sure why... but it does.
3 As side from getting into a situation where I have to stop quickly how do you avoid locking the break? Don't squeeze the front brake lever so damn hard! You can push down on that rear brake pedal as hard as you want.
4 What should I check mechanically to ensure there isn't something with the breaking/steering system? Not to sound like a smart-ass, but it sounds like they worked according to factory warranty!

I wanted different handle bars anyways, and my saddle bags didn't fit so i didn't need them tail lights either :p
treefiddy, go find whoever told you to never use your rear brake in an emergency stop and kick them in the balls. I don't know about all that 'feathering" crap... it's a little too complicated for me... same with 'practicing".... but braking on a motorcycle is just like riding a bicycle with front and reat brakes. You can lock up and slide on your rear wheel all day long and all you do is wear down your tire whereas you lock up your front wheel and you'll be kissing asphalt.

Glad you didn't get banged up too bad... chalk it up as a learning experience, get your bike checked out and back on the road.... push this accident to the back of your mind and go out and get a whole bunch more miles under you. Hope you enjoy them all!!
 

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30% of your braking power comes from the rear brakes, doesn't make sense not to use them! Like squidchief said, if you lock up your rear brakes just keep 'em locked and you'll stop eventually. If your front locks up, you've either gotta release it really quick or strap on some tennis shoes and hit the ground running.
 

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Mark, go find whoever told you to never use your rear brake in an emergency stop and kick them in the balls. I don't know about all that 'feathering" crap... it's a little too complicated for me... same with 'practicing".... but braking on a motorcycle is just like riding a bicycle with front and reat brakes. You can lock up and slide on your rear wheel all day long and all you do is wear down your tire whereas you lock up your front wheel and you'll be kissing asphalt.

Glad you didn't get banged up too bad... chalk it up as a learning experience, get your bike checked out and back on the road.... push this accident to the back of yor mind and go out and get a whole bumch more miles under you. Hope yo uenjoy them all!!

mark doesn't have a problem, the OP is learning,,John(Lakota) & I did a back and forth, that's why he addressed me.,,
 

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I've been riding for 2 mths. After watching a few you tubes on slow turning and braking, I went to parking lot and practiced. I was surprised how bike responded to locking the back tire. You slide forever. I always use both brakes now and make sure not to lock them.

I want to emphasize how important it is for all of us that are new to biking, to slowly introduce yourself to new situations. Going down early in your experience is not the best way to learn and usually means you are in a situation you are not ready for.

Interstate highways and very high traffic areas should be avoided until you are confident in most of your riding skills, especially shifting, braking, quick maneuvering, and slow turning.
 
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