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ugly

Noob goes up a hill

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ugly
Hey guys, being a new rider, I figured I should practice and learn to ride through the twisties.
 
I love to go up to Bald Peak Park here in Oregon. It kicks my butt every time, and I'm pretty slow through the curves abs corners. But it's good countersteer practice.
 
Here is a
of one of my rides. It was taken a little while back, and I'd like to think that I'm doing a little better now.  
Please let me know what I could do better within my skill set and things to look out for that I missed.
 
Thank you.

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Guest whitegas
Why does your Yoshimura sound so different from mine? Is your DB killer out? Or is it just camera audio messing with things?

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USMCFieldMP
Engine braking is fine, I do it all the time. You definitely need some work on shifting quicker. Make sure your foot is ready to make the shift ahead of time and realize that you don't need to be pulling the clutch lever in all the way to make a shift. It should only need to come in about 1/2" or so before it's disengaged, allowing you to safely shift to the next/lower gear. I just use my pointer and middle finger on the clutch lever and pull it in to my other fingers. Takes practice, as do all things.
 
When shifting down, you should probably be rev matching. It takes some practice, but it helps to ensure that you don't disrupt the rear tire too much. This is especially important for curvy situations. You disrupt that rear tire enough, and you're going to lose the rear end. Rev matching a downshift properly will also be much, much quicker than using the clutch slip method.
 
FYI: Rev matching is giving the throttle a quick twist when you have the clutch lever pulled in so that you can match the engine revs to what they'll be at in that lower gear. It only takes a quick flick of the wrist.
 
 
[video src=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tzOOsq8BqMM]
 
 
 

Why does your Yoshimura sound so different from mine? Is your DB killer out? Or is it just camera audio messing with things?
 
Sounds similar to mine, so I'll assume that he has no dB killer, like me.

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ugly
Why does your Yoshimura sound so different from mine? Is your DB killer out? Or is it just camera audio messing with things?
Hey whitegas, I do not have the db killer in. Must not restrict the roar of the dragon!  :D 
Ride safe

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ugly
Engine braking is fine, I do it all the time. You definitely need some work on shifting quicker. Make sure your foot is ready to make the shift ahead of time and realize that you don't need to be pulling the clutch lever in all the way to make a shift. It should only need to come in about 1/2" or so before it's disengaged, allowing you to safely shift to the next/lower gear. I just use my pointer and middle finger on the clutch lever and pull it in to my other fingers. Takes practice, as do all things. 
When shifting down, you should probably be rev matching. It takes some practice, but it helps to ensure that you don't disrupt the rear tire too much. This is especially important for curvy situations. You disrupt that rear tire enough, and you're going to lose the rear end. Rev matching a downshift properly will also be much, much quicker than using the clutch slip method.
 
FYI: Rev matching is giving the throttle a quick twist when you have the clutch lever pulled in so that you can match the engine revs to what they'll be at in that lower gear. It only takes a quick flick of the wrist.
 

Hey USMCFieldMP, thank you for your feedback! I really appreciate it.
 
When you use just 2 fingers to work the clutch, when you pull in, does the clutch lever hit your other 2 fingers? I haven't really tried that as to me it felt like the clutch won't disengage all the way. But as I go out riding today, I will try it.
 
As for rev-matching, I try to practice it, but mostly on straight roads, while coming to a red light or stop sign. I almost always find myself giving too much throttle, and lunge forward when rev-matching and down shifting. And then hard on the brakes! Too afraid to try that around sharp corners. 
 
 
Also, the correct way is 'roll off + clutch in > shift down > blip throttle + clutch out'? Having a hard time figuring that out from the video. Is the clutch let out slowly? And when blipping the throttle, twist and maintain, or twist up, then bring it back down? Back done to where? AAHhhhh!  >:D
 
So many things I do not know yet! You are probably going to regret opening this can of worms!!!  :|
 
Hope I do not kill the bike while I figure these things out!

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ch3rryghost
@UGLY, lever shouldn't hit your ring/pinky because (ideally!) you're not fully squeezing clutch all the way in (toward handlebar). It should just be about 1/2 way in where the clutch engages. Riding/driving is all about finesse--it definitely takes practice to get a feel for it; I'm no pro still smoothing everything out but coming from a manual car certainly helps my learning curve.
 
With rev matching my .02, just start with a twitch of the wrist, the action should be mminimal. I do not rev match when my RPMs are low in the existing gear--only rev-match when I'm around 3.5k or above. I also do not roll off throttle when I clutch in (it should be noted that I'm not really on the throttle to begin with, only enough to maintain speed--not increase). My process= clutch in and immediately downshift, then twist wrist to bring revs up while simultaneously letting out clutch. Right after the clutch is engaged, I smoothly roll off the throttle (since the whole point in downshifting is to decrease speed), and repeat if necessary. I'm letting the clutch out slower, you should too until you get a good feel of the process. It'll keep surprise jerks/dives at bay though be ready for the engine braking!
 
Shoot, I hope I didn't meddle too much in your conversation w/ USMC. Always looking for feedback myself.
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wr250x
Watch twist of the wrist II on utube. .lots of good info

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USMCFieldMP
Hey USMCFieldMP, thank you for your feedback! I really appreciate it. 
When you use just 2 fingers to work the clutch, when you pull in, does the clutch lever hit your other 2 fingers? I haven't really tried that as to me it felt like the clutch won't disengage all the way. But as I go out riding today, I will try it.
 
As for rev-matching, I try to practice it, but mostly on straight roads, while coming to a red light or stop sign. I almost always find myself giving too much throttle, and lunge forward when rev-matching and down shifting. And then hard on the brakes! Too afraid to try that around sharp corners. 
 
 
Also, the correct way is 'roll off + clutch in > shift down > blip throttle + clutch out'? Having a hard time figuring that out from the video. Is the clutch let out slowly? And when blipping the throttle, twist and maintain, or twist up, then bring it back down? Back done to where? AAHhhhh!  >:D
 
So many things I do not know yet! You are probably going to regret opening this can of worms!!!  :|
 
Hope I do not kill the bike while I figure these things out!
 
 
As ch3rryghost said, ideally, you won't be touching your fingers because the lever doesn't need to come in that far.
 
 
Practice makes perfect. I had 10 years of practice on stick shift cars, so I already knew the basic "geometry" of rev matching on downshifts, etc. If you've never done anything like this before, it'll certainly take time and patience.

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hobbs
Practice makes perfect, but once you get a solid feel for the friction zone it will be much easier.
 
You can also adjust the throw on the clutch lever to your liking.

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FT
Noob, you asked for 'reflections' on your ride in the country.
 
I think you were smooth and appropriate for the road. It is not a race track.
The shadows and strobe effect of the sun coming through the trees can be tiring and even make some riders ill.
The beauty of this little engine is torque and engine back pressure which allows you to ride curvy roads without tapping the brakes all the time.
Only issue is that following road users won't know that you are actually braking because no brake lights came on.
Smooth release of the clutch and blipping the throttle on down shifts prevents wheel hop and extraordinary wear of chain and sprockets.
Pre-load the shift lever on upshifts and just barely feathering the clutch will get you that quick smooth upshift.
 
Traveling much faster on that beautiful road would be reckless because there appear to be driveways and intersections every few hundred yards
meaning there are folks trying to get in or out of their driveways and sporting dogs that can run out in front of you.
 
At 60-65 MPH in some places on your video, you could be outrunning your vision. 60 MPH is 88 feet per second. If you are really sharp, you may be able to stop in 300 ft. once you see, then react, then have good traction on the pavement.
An excellent rider with proper tire pressure on a clean surface can stop the FZ07 in about 135 feet after perception and reaction times. The perception and reaction times could easily add 200 feet of travel distance.
 
Probably most important is your familiarity with that road. You now know where hazards and curves are.  If you take friends on that road, they may have to ride out of their comfort zone to keep up with you.
Nice ride and commentary video.
 

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thestache
Great feedback @FT
 
Remember public roads aren't the track, they sometimes have gravel or dirt, even leaves. I cringe when I see guys riding on public roads like they are GP racers. Have fun, enjoy the ride breath in the air.
 
@Ugly wasn't taken a shot at you, or anyone, just saying have fun and enjoy the ride
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ugly
Noob, you asked for 'reflections' on your ride in the country. 
I think you were smooth and appropriate for the road. It is not a race track.
The shadows and strobe effect of the sun coming through the trees can be tiring and even make some riders ill.
The beauty of this little engine is torque and engine back pressure which allows you to ride curvy roads without tapping the brakes all the time.
Only issue is that following road users won't know that you are actually braking because no brake lights came on.
Smooth release of the clutch and blipping the throttle on down shifts prevents wheel hop and extraordinary wear of chain and sprockets.
Pre-load the shift lever on upshifts and just barely feathering the clutch will get you that quick smooth upshift.
 
Traveling much faster on that beautiful road would be reckless because there appear to be driveways and intersections every few hundred yards
meaning there are folks trying to get in or out of their driveways and sporting dogs that can run out in front of you.
 
At 60-65 MPH in some places on your video, you could be outrunning your vision. 60 MPH is 88 feet per second. If you are really sharp, you may be able to stop in 300 ft. once you see, then react, then have good traction on the pavement.
An excellent rider with proper tire pressure on a clean surface can stop the FZ07 in about 135 feet after perception and reaction times. The perception and reaction times could easily add 200 feet of travel distance.
 
Probably most important is your familiarity with that road. You now know where hazards and curves are.  If you take friends on that road, they may have to ride out of their comfort zone to keep up with you.
Nice ride and commentary video.

Thanks FT, I really appreciate the feedback. 
I try to remain within my skill set as much as I can, and only push myself in small increments. Each corner up that road, I have ridden many times, and started out really slow. I try to do better each time I go up there, as and if deemed appropriate. Better is not just going fast, but how comfortable I felt doing that, and how "smoothly". Keep working on my gear selection and entry speed. 
 
I am just trying to build up my courage. I feel like that is the biggest key for me to be a better, and safer rider. Because I lack the courage, that I can make it around a corner, it makes me second guess myself and the bike's capabilities, resulting in choppy rides. I roll off the throttle, fixate on where I do not want to go, etc.
 
BUT, this is not the tracks, and I should always remember that. I need to put in some track days under my belt to work out my limits. I do not really want to find the limits of the bike!  :-/
Also, I do not know that I have enough experience to put myself on the track with other riders...
 
I am glad you liked the video. I just want to add a PNW perspective to the immense moto-vlogging community on Youtube. And also, in my case, the struggles of a new rider as I practice riding and learn from it. And when I can't figure it out on my own, I am glad that I can get help from more experienced riders like yourself. 
 
This is for EVERYONE who comes across any discussion I start: Please not hesitate to call me out on how I ride. Should I overstep my skills, please let me know, as I obviously did not notice.
 
Thank you, and ride safe.

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ugly
Great feedback @ft  
Remember public roads aren't the track, they sometimes have gravel or dirt, even leaves. I cringe when I see guys riding on public roads like they are GP racers. Have fun, enjoy the ride breath in the air.
 
@ugly wasn't taken a shot at you, or anyone, just saying have fun and enjoy the ride
That is totally fine!  
It's easy to get carried away sometimes on these amazing machines. I did not understand that before, but I get it now.  
 
A good reminder every now and again can only keep people safe.
 
Thank you.

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ugly
@ugly, lever shouldn't hit your ring/pinky because (ideally!) you're not fully squeezing clutch all the way in (toward handlebar). It should just be about 1/2 way in where the clutch engages. Riding/driving is all about finesse--it definitely takes practice to get a feel for it; I'm no pro still smoothing everything out but coming from a manual car certainly helps my learning curve.  
With rev matching my .02, just start with a twitch of the wrist, the action should be mminimal. I do not rev match when my RPMs are low in the existing gear--only rev-match when I'm around 3.5k or above. I also do not roll off throttle when I clutch in (it should be noted that I'm not really on the throttle to begin with, only enough to maintain speed--not increase). My process= clutch in and immediately downshift, then twist wrist to bring revs up while simultaneously letting out clutch. Right after the clutch is engaged, I smoothly roll off the throttle (since the whole point in downshifting is to decrease speed), and repeat if necessary. I'm letting the clutch out slower, you should too until you get a good feel of the process. It'll keep surprise jerks/dives at bay though be ready for the engine braking!
 
Shoot, I hope I didn't meddle too much in your conversation w/ USMC. Always looking for feedback myself.
I have started practicing that. Still jerky, but I think I will get it soon.  
I am still a bit hesitant about the 2 finger clutch pull, but I tried that also, and think I can get used to doing that eventually. I keep thinking, what if it has not been fully disengaged?
But I know that is not the case.
 
On straight roads, and going slow, I practice rev-matching, and 2 finger clutch pull. Once I can do that smoothly and quickly, I will start practicing it on the twisties.
 
Thank you, and ride safe.

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garlic
The two fingers on the clutch is key.  Feels awkward at first but makes it much easier to shift smoothly and quickly. Lot of wasted movement of the clutch otherwise.
 
Need to work on the clutch-less shifts next.

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