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Discussion Starter #1
Yesterday morning I decided to ride to work and sneak in another commute before the artic blast hits KC. Problem was I got into a argument with my wife before leaving for work.

Everything I have ever been taught or read warns against riding when you aren't in the proper state of mind. I rode anyway.

I rode aggressively and it nearly cost me my life. I ended up laying down my big beautiful black and red Scarabeo 500 in an intersection. What did I do wrong ? about everything,

I was riding too fast. I was over taking cars and changing lanes. I was angry and it was finding its way into my riding style. In the end, as I was approaching a intersection I came from behind a tractor trailer in the right lane and moved to the middle lane and entered the intersection. The truck was turning right on red and the other cars were turning left. My light was red. I couldn't get the bike stopped so I layed it down. Luckily I didn't cause any one to hit one another, no accident occurred beyond my idiotic move.

I am fine amazingly enough. I rode the high side of the scoot and slid to a stop. My beautiful ride is now ugly on the right side with many spots torn to white plastic road rash. Luckly I had someone offer to help me raise the bike up. I've been taught how to lift a bike but the help was nice given I was so shaken.

I want to ride again but must admit the most frightening part is how I allowed my emotions to overtake me and ultimately nearly kill me. The big Scarabeo brakes well and never skidded but I wasn't getting her stopped and rather than strike the vehicle in front of me I layed it down. Really disappointed myself.

Most say it is a matter of when not if, I'm just angry that it occurred because it was all avoidable if I had only been riding responsibily.

geez, I'm disgusted with myself.
 

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Glad to hear you didn't get hurt. :) The bike is replaceable - you're not!

You've analyzed why this happened & admitted your guilt, now you need to forgive yourself (so don't beat yourself up). We all make stupid mistakes. :shock: But the biggest mistake is not learning the lesson and applying it to the other areas of our life.

You've been given another opportunity in life. Make the best of it! :D Learn from the mistake, and go on with your life.
 

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You were very lucky! Glad to know you're ok and learned from the incident. Sharing it with us is a good reminder for us all. It takes a lot of guts to admit our mistakes and share them with others like you did. Thanks!
However, as an old MSF Instructor, I would like to ask a question that I asked many times but never got a datisfactory answer. How do you lay a bike down on purpose? It's certainly not something any of us get to practice beforehand.
In an emergency, I wouldn't know how to cause the bike to go down and slide on it's side intentionally. In fact, I'm pretty sure I'd instinctively do everything possible to keep it upright without locking the wheels. From everything I've learned, the bike will stop in a shorter distance in the upright position with the rubber on the road than on it's side sliding on metal and plastic out of my control.
Don
 

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Bummer....

Bummer about the accident, but you learned a great lesson on the cheap since you weren't hurt and no one else was involved.
 

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You lived and learned! Unfortunately, plastic isn't cheap - but it doesn't sound like you tweaked the frame or steering.

As horrible as it sounds, the experience you recieved is priceless.

But don't beat yourself up too much - There are 2 kinds of riders: Those who have laid their ride down, and those that will... :wink: Nobody is perfect all the time.

May your repairs be cheap & easy!

Sid sends
 

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Dude! Nasty, that. Thanks for keeping us advised and alert of our frailties.

On 'laying it down' (lowsiding). If you need to, it will likely happen without you noticing. Sometimes when stopping upright, there's not enough space available to avoid a collision. A lowside at the last possible moment can make the event survivable.

As you see that a collision is inevitable, begin to apply more pressure to the rear brake, until you break traction with the rear wheel, causing a skid. Then, countersteer away from the side you'd like to lay the bike down on. Fortunately for us, our legs aren't as likely to be pinned under grinding steel as with a conventional motorcycle (though the only bikes I've laid down were conventionals - a quick, but calm reaction can save much grief).

Steve
 

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I also am glad your OK, but I disagree with some of the post above that say don't beat your self up. .I say beat the hell out of your self if it will stop you from making those two mistakes again.
1- riding with your emotions instead of your brain.
2- not practicing emergence/panic stops.
And now you have to say your sorry to your wife because you scared the hell out of her when you had the accident.
However don't loose sight of the bottom line-- You must have done something's right
--you walked away! And I don't think that was luck :)
 

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wasions said:
On 'laying it down' (lowsiding). If you need to, it will likely happen without you noticing. ..............

As you see that a collision is inevitable, begin to apply more pressure to the rear brake, until you break traction with the rear wheel, causing a skid. Then, countersteer away from the side you'd like to lay the bike down on.
Sounds like a crash to me. :shock: I think I'll keep practicing my "stopping in the shortest distance" techniques. I just don't like the idea of me and my bike sliding down the blacktop into God knows what.

Don
 

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Guess I've been married too long

Have to admit, my first thought (upon knowing you were all right) was this:

I hope she learned a valuable lesson not to argue with you before you go riding! I mean, really, this is actually all her fault; therefore, she should not complain about the repair bill.

In all seriousness, ditto on the other posts...brave to recount, smart to rethink, best to remount. I especially liked the MSF comment about the tires stopping us best...so true. We should ALL be practicing panic stops and evasive maneuvers. Even after 20+ years riding, I still have a tendency to target fixate. That's the hardest thing to get over, I think.

Glad you're okay. Plastic can be fixed. Good learning for all of us.

p.s. I respectfully disagree with Sid and all the others who say "There's two kinds of riders..." I think it's totally the wrong mindset to begin with, and I also know a number of riders with 20+ who have never been down. I never have. I suspect there are many riders who retire from bikes without having put one on the ground. Perhaps I am naive. Or lucky!
 

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Re: Guess I've been married too long

irunamok said:
I respectfully disagree with Sid and all the others who say "There's two kinds of riders..." I think it's totally the wrong mindset to begin with, and I also know a number of riders with 20+ who have never been down. I never have. I suspect there are many riders who retire from bikes without having put one on the ground. Perhaps I am naive. Or lucky!
I couldn't agree more! :D
Don
 

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Right two kinds of riders-------------
I guess that goes for cars, trucks, boats, airplanes.
And least we forget walking. :lol:
 

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Mybug,

Thanks for having the guts to share your mishap with us. Sorry about your Scarabeo but those things are replaceable.
I'm with the MSF on learning how to stop quickly, although you can slide a bike on it's side it is only useful in greatly extending stopping distances. Usually it's because too much rear brake was used and not enough front brake. Sometimes it's because a person has a lot of dirt bike experience and has relied on the rear brake and reverts in a panic situation.
I had to panic stop the other day and the result of my stop was that the rear wheel was in the air as I came to a stop. I was within inches of not stopping quickly enough. Trust the front brake.

Thanx
Russ
 

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I agree. "I had to lay it down" usually translates to "I locked up the rear brake and lost control". I'm not poking fun at anyone. When things go wrong on two wheels stuff happens real quick. Always hit the front brake more aggressively than the rear in a panic stop. Keep the rubber side down and you'll scrub off a lot more speed. The only reason I can think of to go down would be to try and slide under a truck - and that often doesn't result in a happy ending. If you are going to hit a car, scrub off as much speed as possible, aim for the hood or trunk, and on impact, try to throw yourself over the vehicle. It worked for me. Bike was totalled, I walked away with some painfull bruises.
 

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While I agree with what's been said, there's still a chance that you may have to lay a bike down in an emergency, though it's not likely you'll want to practice. Yes, it's obvious that a bike will stop quicker with the rubber down, and with approximately 60/40 brake biased to the front (depending again on the bike and conditions). But if a deer leaps in front of me, I'm going to brake hard, attempt to steer around it, and as a last resort - lay it down.
 

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wasions wrote
60/40 brake biased to the front (depending again on the bike and conditions). But if a deer leaps in front of me, I'm going to brake hard, attempt to steer around it, and as a last resort - lay it down.
Two things you may want to consider ,
the first is a 70/30 bias the front would be better, second without ABS you will not be able to steer while braking .
If you were saying break hard release the brakes and steer then of course your right . :)
 

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Randy said:
wasions wrote
60/40 brake biased to the front (depending again on the bike and conditions). But if a deer leaps in front of me, I'm going to brake hard, attempt to steer around it, and as a last resort - lay it down.
Two things you may want to consider ,
the first is a 70/30 bias the front would be better, second without ABS you will not be able to steer while braking .
If you were saying break hard release the brakes and steer then of course your right . :)
On the DR, or with limited traction, it'd be more like 60/40, or even less. Actually, that being said, I have no idea when riding what modulation bias I'm using. No meter. SOP :wink: I do know that in ideal conditions you can brake pretty darned hard with the bike leaned over at a modest angle.

Steve
 

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pauljo said:
Always hit the front brake more aggressively than the rear in a panic stop.
Good point! But, remember that as the bike slows, keep applying more front brake in a progressive manner and, at the same time, ease up gradually on the rear brake. If you don't ease up on the rear brake as more and more of the bike's weight is being transferred to the front, the rear of the bike will lighten up and, at some point, the rear wheel will lose traction and lock up.
When the rear wheel locks up, most riders instinctively let up completely on the rear brake pedal (or lever). This can cause the rear wheel to suddenly regain traction and result in loss of control.
If you ever lock up the rear wheel, don't let up on the rear brakes. Stay on the brake pedal (lever) and keep your eyes straight ahead until the bike stops. If you lock up the front wheel, immediately release the front brakes to allow the wheel to regain traction and then re-apply the brakes. You can't steer with the front wheel locked up.
This is why riders should continually practice stopping their bikes in the shortest possible distance (in a safe area). It's all a matter of getting the "feel" of your bike's brakes and how the bike (and rider) will react in a real emergency. Start at slower speeds (15 MPH) and gradually build up. Don't start at 50 MPH.
Don
 

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DonRich90 said:
pauljo said:
Always hit the front brake more aggressively than the rear in a panic stop.
Good point! But, remember that as the bike slows, keep applying more front brake in a progressive manner and, at the same time, ease up gradually on the rear brake. If you don't ease up on the rear brake as more and more of the bike's weight is being transferred to the front, the rear of the bike will lighten up and, at some point, the rear wheel will lose traction and lock up.
Absolutely. I think many riders lock the rear wheel at the first jab at the levers, in some cases, hitting the rear brake before the front brake. But you did a great job of describing proper technique as braking continues.

DonRich90 said:
When the rear wheel locks up, most riders instinctively let up completely on the rear brake pedal (or lever). This can cause the rear wheel to suddenly regain traction and result in loss of control.
Whoo... I did that once years ago. Scary! It was at moderate speed and I was able to save it. But when that sliding rear tire regains traction, you are most likely going down - and hard.

DonRich90 said:
If you ever lock up the rear wheel, don't let up on the rear brakes. Stay on the brake pedal (lever) and keep your eyes straight ahead until the bike stops. If you lock up the front wheel, immediately release the front brakes to allow the wheel to regain traction and then re-apply the brakes. You can't steer with the front wheel locked up.
This is why riders should continually practice stopping their bikes in the shortest possible distance (in a safe area). It's all a matter of getting the "feel" of your bike's brakes and how the bike (and rider) will react in a real emergency. Start at slower speeds (15 MPH) and gradually build up. Don't start at 50 MPH.
Don
All great advice. Thanks Don.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
How did I lay down the scoot ?

Not perfectly certain but as I recall, it went like this,.

I was braking hard and was conciously considering letting go of the brakes to allow me to swerve, as I neared the vehicle in front of me I began to push hard on the right grip to begin the swerve to the right,

I don't think the rear wheel locked, I was on the high/left side of the scoot pretty **** quick

I may have began my swerve while still braking

I have practiced braking in a parking lot but must admit that this was so quick that I may have tried to do too much with the scoot,

I feel lucky :)
 
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