Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Beemer

Fear Is Your Enemy

Recommended Posts

Beemer

How to trail brake.

 

  • Like 4

Beemer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
D.A.

Interesting dichotomy.

The first video explains trail-braking as a blending of the controls whereas the second one describes it as an either/or technique, saying your first two fingers are always touching the brake lever but you’re only ever using one action at a time — either accelerating, braking or coasting. 

The latter is significantly easier but I‘m nonetheless a disciple of the former, meaning I try to go through corners simultaneously on the throttle AND on the brakes — slowly rolling off the throttle while increasing pressure on the front brakes during the first half of the corner, then gently easing off the brakes while adding throttle upon reaching the apex. 

That’s trail-braking, right?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
shinyribs

When did the term trail braking come in to vogue? Why is everyone so crazy about talking about it. You're jerky as a new rider, but as you get comfortable you become smooth and you feel what the bike likes.

Extremely few bikes extend the rear shock under throttle. I don't agree with feeding throttle while trying to drag the front brake. All you're doing is crowding the bike and bunching the suspension up. 

The very basic theories of putting weight on the front tire by using the front brake, and putting weight in to the rear tire by applying throttle can be observed in a straight line easily. It's intuitive simply due to weight transfer. You cannot transfer the weight of the motorcycle both forward and rearward at the same time. You just can't. Instead of trying to (magically?) transfer weight on to both ends of the bike simultaneously through front brake +throttle, you're far better off using the gyroscopic forces at your disposal.

If you apply enough front brake to load the front suspension your rear end will be light. Don't force feed power to the rear wheel in this scenario. You're asking to lose the rear. Everyone knows this that has ever accidentally taken a corner too hot or yanked the throttle too hard mid turn ( especially mid turn under braking)...yet he's teaching to load the rear tire with throttle while loading the forks through braking?  I can't agree with that.

 

Throttle is for acceleration.

Brakes are for deceleration.

The bike as a whole can't do both at the same time. 

Never pull the clutch in during a corner. Keep the engine rpms at a constant speed  and the gyroscopic forces will not change. This will make a bike feel stable while cornering. If you're coming in to a corner hard you can kick down a gear for extra revs/ gyroscopic forces to change how lean in feels. 

 

Gyroscopic forces want to keep the bike upright. More forces makes you have to tip in harder ( more bar pressure while counter steering) which gives the tire a very planted feel. You're leveraging the weight of the bike against the gyroscopic forces, and this creates a hinge effect. The gyroscopic forces from the engine are central to the bike, the bars are on the top, the tires are on the bottom. The harder you can push on the bars the harder that leverage can work through that hinge to plant the tires. 

This is why engine braking is useful to a point, but can be overwhelming in some chassis's. This is why slipper clutches were invented, but also why they kinda suck.  

Weight and gyroscopic forces are WAY more stable, reliable forces than your right hand solely attempting to brake and throttle at the same time. Braking wants to pull your hand forward while you need to roll your hand backwards to apply more throttle. Add countersteering pressure, moving body position ( wrist angle) and the fact that your body may be moving up and down from hitting bumps while this is happening....that's an enormous amount of dexterity to ask of a heavily gloved hand wrapped around a floating, squishy grip. 

No, "trail braking" while adding throttle is not how you safely corner a bike. Go find a long corner. At least 180°. Ride that corner over and over and over at a very relaxed, effortless pace. Do it until you can robotically glide through that corner with your brain completely not having to concentrate on anything. Now, pull the clutch in mid corner and see how gross it feels and watch how the bike reacts. 

Now, do that same corner again and lightly apply rear brake. Feel how the bike will turn tighter and the chassis won't upset.

Now, do that same corner and apply only front brake. Feel how the front was to dip and the bike suddenly feels wallowy, due to the steering engine changing mid turn. 

The fact that he quipped at the beginning of the video " who here has used the rear brake in a corner and has lived to tell about it".....ugh.... internet, stop making stuff up! The rear brake is a very effective tool for tightening your line! It's much safer than using the front brake and upsetting the balance of the chassis! But the key is none of these inputs can be done abruptly.

The key to smooth cornering is smoothness. The key to smoothness is doing nothing. You can't add several inputs to a bike at once, especially opposing inputs, and expect smoothness. 

Smoothly roll off power when approaching a turn, smoothly apply front brake if needed to settle the chassis ( not always needed!), smoothly apply rear brake if needing to tighten your line, smoothly release the brakes while smoothly rolling back on the power. You do this while smoothly adding and releasing steering pressure. Start slow, feels the bike react through your bars, listen to the engine, do it again - but smoother. Then do it again and again and again. Next thing you know you will be absolutely flying through that corner with complete control and total faith. But if your try to force feed several inputs at once - forget it. 

Braking inputs mid corner are slight corrections made necessary by road imperfections or rider error. It's not how you should be intentionally planning to attack every turn. 

 

Sorry for the rant. The YouTube Professors with no accountability annoy me to no end. Ride safe, y'all! I'm going back under my rock :D

Edited by shinyribs
  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
D.A.
47 minutes ago, shinyribs said:

...smoothly release the brakes while smoothly rolling back on the power. ...

Umm... isn’t that the very definition of trail-braking? 😀

I enjoyed your response. Thanks for posting! Gives me (all of us) a lot to think about. I will test some of this out!

Edited by D.A.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
shinyribs
27 minutes ago, D.A. said:

Umm... isn’t that the very definition of trail-braking? 😀

I enjoyed your response. Thanks for posting! Gives me (all of us) a lot to think about. I will test some of this out!

There's dozens of YouTube Professors all with their definition of what trail braking is. Gradually transitioning from from brake to throttle is just something we do pretty much nonstop on a motorcycle. When that guy was instructing people to use the front brake and the throttle simultaneously...I know what I would call that, but it's not a very friendly thing to say :D

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Fast_Frankenstein

Having road-raced since the '70s, and put just a few street miles on since, I'd just chip in the following fun facts - if you're trail-braking with any regularity on the street, especially on less well-known roads, you're just setting yourself up for some road-rash (if you're lucky). Street riding, even at a quick pace, should always be done with mostly straight-line braking, completed prior to the corner (fading off as you tip in). Maximum lean and anything but neutral throttle should not be considered until you can actually see around the remainder of the corner. Rage all you want on the way out, but being "hot" in the corner, prior to apex, on the street, can kill you quick.

L26MFPGEQW674JQQNJ62HNEN6I.jpg

When science meets crashing: The results of an MSF study about how and why people crash motorcycles. Where do you think you fit in?

"Curves are dangerous. 55% of the recorded single-vehicle mishaps happened in curves, mostly in right-hand turns and are usually the result of weak cornering skill and/or a too fast entry speed. We can also include poor visual skills as a common contributor to cornering mishaps."

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
robbo10

Trail braking is for slow  U turns and nothing else, for me.

  • Like 1

Just do it! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lone Wolf
On 9/6/2020 at 1:19 PM, shinyribs said:

When did the term trail braking come in to vogue? ... I don't agree with feeding throttle while trying to drag the front brake. All you're doing is crowding the bike and bunching the suspension up. 

Right. In the video I posted above, Dave refers to his Trail Braking video. In that Trail Braking video he responds to a readers question:

Julius"New rider and I'm trying to figure this out. When your slowing down to make a corner and you are trail breaking, do you roll completely off the throttle until you are ready to exit?"

Canyon Chasers: "@Julius Davis - yes, leave the throttle off until you can see your exit. You don't want to give the bike two instructions, that contradict each other, at the same time.   It'd be like your boss saying, "you can have the rest of day off and I need you to work late tonight".

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
xor_bot
On 12/29/2020 at 5:45 PM, Lone Wolf said:

Julius"New rider and I'm trying to figure this out. When your slowing down to make a corner and you are trail breaking, do you roll completely off the throttle until you are ready to exit?"

Canyon Chasers: "@Julius Davis - yes, leave the throttle off until you can see your exit. You don't want to give the bike two instructions, that contradict each other, at the same time.   It'd be like your boss saying, "you can have the rest of day off and I need you to work late tonight".

I would think this also depends on the throttle response of your bike. I don't know about you guys, but fully rolling off the throttle on my MT-07 results in some very serious engine braking. Which is fine while you're still upright and braking hard on the front. But such heavy engine braking while leaned over? I don't know if that's really desired. And when starting to roll on from fully closed, there is always a jerk, no matter how smooth my hand movement is. And if your traction budget doesn't have room for that jerk, you're in trouble. I still have a lot to learn, but right now what feels best to me is to get almost all braking (engine and brakes) done before the turn, with a smooth trail off on the brakes as I start to lean, and a slight bit of throttle as I'm trailing off (just to get the jerk over with while the bike is still fairly upright). Then neutral towards and through the apex, and rolling on when the exit is clear.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.