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Discussion Starter #1
Well, I can't ride for quite a while now. I was turning left onto the highway in AZ and there was gravel all in the street. Bike slid right out from under me and now I have a broken left ankle. How can we combat gravel? I don't know what I could have done differently. I was going a nice calm slow speed, minimal lean, and on my light 400 which I have a lot of experience with. I don't know if it's me or if there's just nothing you can really do in that type of situation. I'm at a loss here.
 

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How exactly did you break your ankle?

I had a similar accident a couple years ago, and I got my ankle trapped under the scooter. Only by honking my horn repeatedly was I able to call for help to get the scooter lifted so I could withdraw my leg.

I wore heavy motorcycle boots, so at first the only damage was a black mark.

A week later, the skin broke open and the wound got infected, so a had to get strong antibiotics.

I fear gravel a lot now.
 

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Sorry friend. Gravel is our nemesis. When I enter intersections now my radar is on full alert. Sometimes nothing you can do as this is a strong reason for ATGAAT.
 

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Regarding riding on gravel

Well, I can't ride for quite a while now. I was turning left onto the highway in AZ and there was gravel all in the street. Bike slid right out from under me and now I have a broken left ankle. How can we combat gravel? I don't know what I could have done differently. I was going a nice calm slow speed, minimal lean, and on my light 400 which I have a lot of experience with. I don't know if it's me or if there's just nothing you can really do in that type of situation. I'm at a loss here.
I was in a minor fender bender and totaled my bike on Dec 4th. My left foot got in the way of the back edge of the floor board. My boots saved me from breaking my ankle. It tore my boot but saved my ankle. I never ride without boots.
 

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sorry to hear you went down. Gravel is pretty tricky I've faced two skids with the Burgman on gravel, although they were small patches I lost the rear both times.

Both times when I saw I was going to ride on the gravel I just made sure I was not hard on the bars and tried to get the bike as straight as possible. I guess I've been lucky and I've also lost the rear in parking lots over the painted signs when turning.

I guess being loose on the bars and go as straight as possible may help.

get well soon.
 

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Sorry to hear about your crash, best wishes for a complete recovery.

As for gravel on the road, not much you can do about it other than to be very watchful for it and keep the speed down in places where it might be present. As you found out gravel over hard pavement can be very slippery.
 

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http://www.klauswaldorf.com/scooterstuff/videos/LetsGetLost-LIAM.mp4

Gravel was my first and only time I've ever gone down in 35 years of riding. So don't feel bad, it can happen to anyone. Mine was a momentary blip in focus when I looked at my GPS instead of the little, slow right-hander while leading a ride of 30 scooters. I hit a wide patch about an inch deep (you can see it on the video) and down I went, Licatysplit.

Not much you can do except avoid it (which I would have done, had my attention not been diverted), or slow down and go through it upright.

Sorry to hear of your accident. Hope you're out riding soon,
 

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Yup BUT ....the way to learn to ride gravel is by going out and learning to ride on gravel and soft surfaces on purpose.

Then you will at least have a half assed chance of dealing with it as you will know what the bike will do.

Glad you are okay OP and there was not a size large truck tailgating you. ;)
 

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Glad you were not hurt worse. Gravel got me once. The city here likes to fix the roads with a little tar and lots of crushed gravel and then put up zero warning signs. I turned out of work parking lot one night and swoosh I went down. Luckily I only had a horrible headache and a little whiplash.

BTW leaves can be just as bad especially if they are wet. Frozen sleet is even worse and is the reason I did not ride today. Storm came in early this morning and covered everything in a bumpy sheet of slickness!
 

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Very sorry to hear about your accident. I hope you recover quickly and with minimal pain as possible. Like most of the members here have said there's nothing much you can do about gravel. I went down two years ago on my Triumph speed triple on my way home from work. Came around a curb and felt the back tire slide out from under me. Panicked and straightened the bike, but grabbed a handful of brakes which locked up the tires and the bike to tossed me like a rag doll. Cracked 2 of my ribs and fractured my thumb on my throttle hand. Hand still bothers me from time to time. Watching Liamjs's video brought back some painful memories.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thank you all for the warm wishes. I guess I can't beat myself up too bad about it hearing I'm not the only one. When my girlfriend went to go retrieve the bike once I was in the ambulance, she said there were cars that started to slide all over trying to turn. It's a 90* angle turn, so straight up can't happen. Had to lean. And on top of that no streetlights there either. She was saying there's even big holes in the road.
 

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I try to not ride at night. Too many unseen dangers. Last time I did, hit a dog.
 

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Some gravel on a smooth surface is just like ball bearings. Buddy on a too big for him, new Vstrom tried a Uturn in PA at a weirdly cambered deadend road....down he went.

I did a blody 13 point turn to get the Burgie around....geez it was slippy....boots has no grip.
 

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Came around a curb and felt the back tire slide out from under me. Panicked and straightened the bike, but grabbed a handful of brakes which locked up the tires and the bike to tossed me like a rag doll.
exactly why everyone should be riding on dirt and gravel roads from time to time so no panic if it gets squirrelly and you learn how to stop ( rear brake lightly along with the front lightly and keep the front straight to avoid a wash out. )
It is amazing how quickly you get comfortable riding dirt and light gravel.

That said, gravel on pavement can be a bear but a handful of brake was the wrong reaction.

You do learn how marginal the suspension on the Burgman is.
My Wee - hardly feels much different on dirt roads than pavement - just floats along.

Now mud or sand?? that is not a happy place for a Burgman.
I find grass treacherous.
 

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Gravel... the word still sends shivers up my spine....

I've been riding now for 4 years. One evening in my 2nd season I decided to go on a quick 5 minute ride at sunset around my neighborhood on a 50cc scoot I used to have. I turned down a street I had never been down before and could not see well. I could tell you could go straight or turn left, I made a decision to go straight but as i got closer and closer within my headlight range I saw a cable stretched across the road. Right at the moment I realized that it was a cable it was too late! Right as i hit the brake the road turned from pavement to gravel and I started a sideways skid and rolled off the right hand side of the scooter. I came within 1 foot of the cable. I was only going about 20-30 MPH. Picked up my scooter, shut the motor off, sat there for a minute while people rushed up to see if I was ok. A man could see I was hurting, holding my left arm, kinda dazed. All the way up my right arm to my shoulder was totally full of gravel and road rash. I didn't want to get a ticket so I refused to let the people call for help, and I drove home with the air hitting my road rash stricken arm. It felt like someone was holding a match to it. I had my wife clean the gravel out of my wounds... worst pain ever! Then I went to bed. My left wrist hurt but I thought it was just bruised. when I woke up the next morning I could not squeeze the toothpaste with my left hand to brush my teeth. That's when i knew I had to get it checked out. Turned out it was fractured. I had to wear a cast for 6 weeks that killed the rest of my riding season! I also had to go around telling strangers and cute women that I had an accident on my ninja :rolleyes: The funny part was I rolled onto my right side, but fractured the left wrist. I believe it hit the handle bars when i flew off. The road I had decided to go down, was not actually a road, it was an elementary school property and was a bus turnaround! It was my fault, but I was pissed that they had no sign hanging from the cable. I would have seen it in time to avoid or lessen my accident had a sign been hanging from it. I meant to go back just to tell the school about my accident to save others from the same fate , but never did. I have noticed they have changed it now and is no longer a danger.

As it turned out, later i discovered I had 1 of 2 working headlights. All this time I did not realize both lights were supposed to work on high and low beams. I thought one was high and one low. After i fixed my lighting it was a big difference, but still very inadequate.

Bottom line, stay off dirt, gravel and night rides without upgrading lighting. I still cringe when i'm forced to go over loose dirt or gravel ,but I stay calm and all is fine!
 

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I can tell you that riding on a gravel road isn't the same as riding on a paved road that has gravel on it. I live on a dirt/sand/gravel packed 5 acres. Well that is it's packed where we drive. ;) The paved road is about 200 yards away. Burgman handles not bad on it. Down the paved road about six miles the road stops at a tee. Thats where the gravel on the road comes into play. When coming home on the tee road & making a right turn I slow to a crawl. Have seen quite a few bikes go down there. I take that corner as easy as I can & still the front & or rear will want to slide.
 

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I agree with you Mike, there is a big difference between riding on a gravel road and riding on a paved road with gravel on top of it.
 

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There is a lesson here for every one . The reason we have a broken ankle , is likely because the rider more than likely tried to save himself and or the bike with his left leg and foot . The bike went any way and he got his ankle caught underneath and mangled it . The mistake is trying to hold a MOVING 400 pound plus vehicle with the weight of a rider on it up with one feeble ankle . This is where experience comes into play , when you know you're going down it's best to tuck every thing in and let it go down . When you use your foot / ankle attempting to hold it up the foot and the ankle get pulled under and behind because the bike is moving forward . So if you are going down tuck every thing in and let it go , try to use the butt of the grip on the side that going down to keep you away from the road . In other words try and keep the handle bar end pointing into the road while you pull away from the road .

TheReaper!
 

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I agree with you Mike, there is a big difference between riding on a gravel road and riding on a paved road with gravel on top of it.
Yes - that said - being familiar with the slip slide that occurs on a gravel road will let you handle gravel on pavement better and perhaps teach you caution.
 

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What were you wearing? On your feet? I never ride my motorcycles w/o boots but unfortunately I do ride the scooters with shoes that don't protect in a fall.

Every situation is different but usually speed contributes whether it is 100 or 10 mph. On a 90 degree turn where you see gravel beforehand the slowest turn is the safest and trying to straighten out the turn as much as possible. This seems obvious but probably contributed to your wreck. There is nothing wrong with riding like a "granny" in turns. Safer and cheaper than the alternative.
 
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