Suzuki Burgman USA Forum banner

1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Slow speed riding in parking lots still gives me fits, how tight a circle should you be able to make at slow speeds. I used to hear that on a Wing slipping the clutch helped would riding the brake in a turn help on the Burgman?
Terry in AZ.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
65 Posts
Terry,

This may go against the tide but after passing the MSF course in February on a Honda 250 by doing figure 8's in an 18 foot square box (among other exercizes) I have not found it comfortable doing small radius turns anywhere yet. So when I find I'll be doing one I stop my 650 and use power and feet to accomplish the turn. I did a U-turn on a city street when I test drove the Burg and found it fairly easy, but for real tight turns (like in my driveway) I'd rather be safe that laying on the asphalt. One good tip from the MSF course is to look where you want to end up with any turn, not right in front of your wheel. Turns are much easier and controlled that way.

C
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,278 Posts
Terry,

Since the Burgmans do not have a manual cluch to 'feather, a light pressure on the rear (or combo brake for the 400) to counter the amount of throttle need to keep power thru the turn is a good idea. Learning to do slow speed turns (in my humble opinion) is tougher on a maxi-scoot than a standard bike. The best thing you can do to get good at it is practice, practice, practice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
224 Posts
I agree, making tight turns on an auto scoot is seemingly harder than on a manual shift bike, at least it is for me. I think this is because I can't "feather" the clutch in the same way. Dragging the rear brake does help, and don't forget, look at where you want to go, not at where you are. Turn your head and look in the direction you want the bike to go. You might find yourself looking over your shoulder as you make the turn. Sounds strange, and hard to get used to, but, that alone will help more than dragging the brake.

Bruce Woodburn
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
794 Posts
Terry Kiernan said:
...would riding the brake in a turn help on the Burgman?
Terry in AZ.
Yes. I use the rear brake and have practiced enough now that I'm very comfortable with left turns. Still working on right turns. Hang in there, you'll get it.

Regards,

Dan
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
320 Posts
The rear brake helps--even in turns to slow down a little rather than applying the full maxi-braking power of the front brake. For me, the biggest thing is really turning my head where I want the bike to go. When I do this I can make U-turns tighter than I expected. :) Did that yesterday a few times; no need to duck-walk, just aim the bike with my head and eyes. It does take practice (and a little faith both in the law of physics or something and oneself) but you'll have it down in no time. 8)

Bryna
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,363 Posts
I'll confess, I still have my feet out and ready when I do a slow tight turn - like a U-Turn on a two lane road. I seldom, if ever, touch them down though. It is a phobia thing. Similar to when I was taking swimming lessons. I could stay afloat fine as long as I was close enough to the edge of the pool to reach out and touch it - even with 1 finger...

I still think the emphasis on very slow speed turning in the various state license tests is extremely unrealistic. I spend less than 1% of my riding time doing anything like that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,278 Posts
Until you feel comfortable doing tight turns, there is nothing wrong with doing a 3 point turn duck walking the bike.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,296 Posts
It is clearly a lot easier to duck walk a 400 than a bloated 650. :wink:

There has been much talk of control either in these tests or out on the street - and that is exactly what it is - control.

On the 400 (never ridden the 650) I have as a result of much practicing in supermarket parking lots got to the point where I can throw the bike around a U turn where an ordinary bike would struggle (do not know the dimensions of the U turn - just believe me it is tight).

My technique:

1. Slow
2. Drag the left hand combination brake.
3. Throw the handlebars round (around 70% of full travel) initally.
4. Counterbalance ( so on a right hand U turn I push the bike over to the left and counterbalance with my weight to the right).
5. Force you head round like you are doing the 'Exorcist' and look to your aiming point.
6. Adjust speed by easing off the brake.

But it is practice, practice. The smaller wheels and low Cof G really enable you to throw this thing around. Practice will allow you to perfect your technique with a perfected technique comes increased confidence and then you will be able to achieve accomplished performance - a sort of virtuous circle.

However - after saying all that there is no real need to perform these tight U turns there are normally alternative strategies you can adopt on the highways and byways. It is just a control thing - if you can master it you will just have more confidence in your machine and your own abilities.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,593 Posts
pauljo said:
I still think the emphasis on very slow speed turning in the various state license tests is extremely unrealistic. I spend less than 1% of my riding time doing anything like that.
I'll agree that the slow-speed riding and manuvers that they seem to stress in most licensing tests are usually only a small part of the type of riding most of us do on a daily basis. However, how a rider can control his/her bike at slow speeds is a good indicator of how skilled the rider is.
Just about anyone can ride a bike once the bike is underway and moving at speeds above 10-15 MPH. Control of the bike at slower speeds (including braking and turning) requires a much greater degree of skill, as we all know. The only way to develop these skills is PRACTICE.
I've been to several "Police Rodeos" where police departments from all over the country compete in riding skills contests. Now those cops know how to ride ssslllooowww. They can take a fully equipped police bike through a right-angle turn, between cones barely wider than their saddlebags, at speeds slower than walking, without touching their boots on the ground. I've seen Harleys leaned over so far during this manuver that you can see the underside of the bike (a few do fall over). I'd say it was impossible if I hadn't seen it myself. :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
969 Posts
It's true that low-speed turns are more difficult for us than for other riders, and as mentioned previously, it's because of the engine disengaging from the drivetrain. Try some low-speed turns on a bicycle and you'll see what I mean. Power and brakes must be used, and sometimes simultaneously. If you get a chance, watch trials riders (motorized or non) in action. Nearly all technical moves require judicious use of both throttle (or pedals) and brakes. The one anomaly that really baffles me is watching unicycle riders who can freewheel. :shock:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
58 Posts
HI ALL
Sure glad to hear you talk about slow speed turns on the Burg's as I assumed that after riding for a little over 45 years it was only my problem and age catching up with me and my riding time may be coming to an end but it seems several others are having the same problems as I do. Still have not mastered all slow turns after 3000 miles but still working on it and will continue to do so. Have not been down because of it. THANKS for the comments.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
92 Posts
Slow Speed Turns 650

Folks I wonder how tight a turn can be made on a 650 when with the front wheel locked over it has a turning circle of 23 feet :wink: ? Makes that 18 foot square kind of impossible doesn't it :?:

I find, after much practice in a deserted parking lot, I can come close to that 23 feet, but I still have to keep my feet out. Doesn't seem to matter what direction I'm turning but I have also done it on the highway and in supermarket parking lots where if you don't have your feet out you'll end up on your head when that idiot pulls out without looking and you have to jam the brakes on. :(

Typically this happens about three times per tight turn in that same parking lot. Makes it feel more like bumper cars than driving but that's life in the GTA these days. :lol:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,296 Posts
Re: Slow Speed Turns 650

Richard said:
Folks I wonder how tight a turn can be made on a 650 when with the front wheel locked over it has a turning circle of 23 feet :wink: ? Makes that 18 foot square kind of impossible doesn't it :?:

[snipped]
Richard

Is that 23 feet with the bike upright and running central on the tyres OR 'Hanging 10' rolling on the edge of the tyre?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,411 Posts
Re: Slow Speed Turns 650

Richard said:
Folks I wonder how tight a turn can be made on a 650 when with the front wheel locked over it has a turning circle of 23 feet :wink: ? Makes that 18 foot square kind of impossible doesn't it :?:
I read this while at work. Pulled out my new AN650 Service Manual, and the specifications section listed the turning radius as 8.9 feet.

So when I got off work I went out into our bus yard and did a test. I pulled up to one of the lanes with the line under my right foot rest. Made a full-lock left turn. Parked the bike when adjacent to my starting point, then measured it with a rolling-measure we use for accident investigations.

Result: my turning circle was 17.3 feet. That's a radius of 8.65 feet, so Suzuki (for a change) was being pessimistic in their stats.

Or I measured wrong. But not by 5.7 feet, I didn't! 23 feet is way off.

Oh, BTW; I did the experiment in the other direction with the same result.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
In fact, given a bit of self-confidence in your own abilities and a willingness to commit to the manouevre, it's actually easier to u-turn a twist'n'go than a normal bike. The very fact that you feather the clutch on a bike brings with it the possibility/likelihood (sooner or later) of stalling the engine half way round (been there, done that!) and there's no way then but down.

The correct way to u-turn a motorbike or scooter is to drive the engine against a feathered rear brake, controlling the speed of the turn with that rather than with the throttle and while, in those circumstances it's quite easy to overdo the release of the clutch on a normal bike, thus stalling the engine, on a t'n'g there's no such risk as the auto tranny does all the hard work for you - just keep the throttle open a little way, controlling the speed with the rear brake and Robert's your parent's sibling.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,296 Posts
I am so glad my neighbours are away on holiday! They would think I have gone la la :wink:

Just as a matter of interest I took my 400 out on the drive to conduct the turning circle experiment.

This is the theoretical minimum turning radius for a 400 (I was pushing it).

With bike on centre section of tire (upright) = 6' 6.5"

With bike leaned into the turn rolling on the tire edge = 5' 4.5"

I am not sure what I can achieve in practice but it ain't less than that!! :wink:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,411 Posts
NormanB said:
...This is the theoretical minimum turning radius for a 400 (I was pushing it).

With bike on centre section of tire (upright) = 6' 6.5"

With bike leaned into the turn rolling on the tire edge = 5' 4.5"
Wow, that's really tight. I love my 650, but I'll admit it's not as nimble as the 400. If most of my riding was in town I think I'd have to reconsider my purchase.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,296 Posts
Brian said:
Wow, that's really tight. I love my 650, but I'll admit it's not as nimble as the 400. If most of my riding was in town I think I'd have to reconsider my purchase.
Yes Brian - but that was for radius - so to U turn within a road it would need to be a minimum of 15 feet for all practical purposes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
It's basically a gyroscope

Great insights you folks are providing for Terry's question. I might add, NormanB, that your findings would be further compromised by unlevel/sloping ground. I found that out the hard way a month ago. The scabs are just now falling off my strawberries.

I came off a curb from a dead start, perpendicular to the roadway that sloped steeply to my right. I had to immediately start a right turn to avoid going past the centerline of the street and didn't have enough gyroscopic effect in my wheels to keep me upright and on track. I now know from earlier posting on this subject that I should've been dragging the brake with the power on.

As soon as I started the turn, speed dropped off to the critical point. Without power to the rear wheel, the gyroscopic effect decayed rapidly and the 400 started to roll on its right side. And that being the low side of the slope, my foot couldn't reach the ground until the weight plus moment combined to overwhelm what little strength I had in that leg.

Worse yet, my reaction was to hold the bike up by pulling up on the right handlegrip...the throttle. I had a wild 50 foot ride before it threw me off. Fortunately, the scoot was sliding down the street on its side and didn't careen over the cliff or into houses below.

I realized early on that the Burgers require full attention at low speed. When I took my motorcycle operator's test, I knew I couldn't do the cone slalom without knocking them over, so I just took the point penalty for bypassing them, which was less than the penalty for knocking one over (failure). So I passed by a hair by performing the rest of the maneuvers flawlessly.

So, thanks to this message thread I have added to my lessons learned. That is, you can keep the gyroscopic decay from occuring by dragging the brake. Thanks folks.
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Top