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Discussion Starter #1
irunamok said:
I have two words for you: EDGE TRAPS! Learn about and watch for edge traps. I've been riding for 24 years now and even so, I almost dumped my VFR 800 at 10 mph on a neighborhood street because I didn't notice the edge trap. There's lots to learn more than that, of course, but you don't hear much about edge traps when they're telling you about lane placement, cars turning left in front of you, etc. I think edge traps are one of the biggest dangers yet you don't hear much about them.

Here is edge trap info from "Proficient Motorcycling" in Motorcycle Consumer News:

EDGE TRAPS
Although we don’t know of any statistics
to prove it, edge traps may be the most
hazardous work zone hazard. An edge trap
is any raised pavement edge or groove running
parallel to the lane direction. For
instance, when a lane is repaved, the edge of
the new paving is raised several inches
higher than the old paving. That raised edge
can be out in the traffic lane. If you allow
your front tire to ease up to a raised edge,
it’s very likely you will lose control and go
down. We call it an “edge trap” because it
tends to capture your front tire and trap you
into a fall. Once your tire is trapped by the
raised edge, it’s almost impossible to avoid
a spill.
Almost all construction zones will have
edge traps. The most common ones are
where lanes are being repaved. Even prior
to the repaving, edge traps are created when
the old asphalt paving is ground away.
Raised edges are created at the sides of the
gouged-away areas. Some edge traps are
not so obvious as a gouged away or repaved
lane. It’s common to spread gravel next to
paving to fill in a section being repaired and
reduce the height of the raised edge. But
loose gravel several inches deep next to a
hard pavement edge doesn’t prevent a
motorcycle from falling. Narrow motorcycle
tires tend to plow through gravel and be
captured by the edge of the pavement.

(end quote)

It doesn't sound like a big deal, but truly, it's a genuine danger that you should learn about very early in your riding. Imagine how I would have felt dropping my showroom-condition VFR at 10 mph in the middle of a straight street! I had read about edge traps before that but I REALLY respect them now. And it wasn't a construction zone, either, just a regular concrete street with a slight edge on the crown where they split the two sides.

Other than that, I think my biggest learnings in motorcycling have been to set the proper entrance speed to a turn, and know how to use your front brake like your life depends on it--because it does. Your rear brake is almost useless in a panic stop...but you should use it anyway! You didn't ask for advice so I'll stop at these few unsolicited comments.

I hope you will love riding and stay safe. Over 24 years riding now, and I've never been down, so don't believe that tripe about "there are two kinds of bikers..." Plenty of people ride for their whole lives without ever going down. Although that edge trap almost spoiled it for me! That's why I wanted to post this message. It's not just the easy, big stuff that can do you in, you have to watch for the sneaky stuff, too, like edge traps and tar snakes. Happy riding!
 

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While I agree edge traps are bad at least most times you can see them (or there shadow) and then swing into the edge at 45 deg's or better.
Another real danger but one you can't see is the paint the city uses on the street markings, it is like ice when just the least bit wet (that includes early morning dew)
 
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