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Two things that WILL keep you alive!

Discussion in 'Hangout Lounge' started by JeffK, Jun 5, 2017.

  1. JeffK

    JeffK Well-Known Member

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    I'm really glad to hear this being accepted, especially by the newer guys! Once you realize that despite what you might think, that car drivers brain is just not seeing and registering you even though you swear that he's looking right at you......you will understand the real NEED for you to break the plane of the background to draw attention to yourself. Don't, at your own peril.....

    jeff
     
  2. ManBot13

    ManBot13 Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    I also find that there is a sequence when you approach the car, to maximize your potential for survival given the timing of when a car decides to roll forward.

    For instance, if a car is on your right looking to pull out and turn left crossing your lane, you need to first move from your current lane position towards the car as you approach. If the car was to start moving and not see you completing his lane change, the more likely location to be open would be behind it and by braking you give it the maximum time to leave you a space.

    As you get closer, there will be a "point of no return" where your best option is to speed up and pass in front of it (this is a very small space, dependant on your minimum braking distance). Shifting to the left side of the road sets you up for this contingency. It also accomplishes the weave, since you'll be moving side-to-side to set it up, and execute.

    Finally, how can you tell if a car is moving? Look at it's wheels. It is easier for YOUR eyes to detect a very small change in angular position of a wheel, than to detect the body of the car moving forward (your visual processing has it's limitations too). If you see wheel movement, then you immediately implement the bail out plan you were planning before. If you couldn't effectively plan a bail out, then SLOW DOWN! You need to give yourself the most possibilities for survival and enough time to plan and react.

    If you find it difficult to plan this, consider taking a break. It's a lot of mental work to ride a motorcycle, and giving yourself a break could be the difference between life or death. Also, expending the mental effort shows that you have the mental capacity to react. If you are day dreaming, you may feel fine but your brain is taking the same shortcuts as the cagers!
     
    Stumplifter likes this.
  3. Kalikiano Kalei

    Kalikiano Kalei New Member

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    -----------------------------

    Jeff, I've taken the liberty of removing the middle section of this article in this quote simply for brevity in replying. Excellent thoughts on two critical subjects to us two-wheelers. Your braking commentary is very cogent and it's a well-documented fact that far too many riders lack even basic knowledge of how to use motorcycle brakes properly.

    What struck me about the section dealing with 'weaving' is that what was implied but unstated here is that a moving target is more likely to be noticed, as opposed to a still or steady one. This concept is underscored by the manner in which small prey such as 'snow-hares' in the Canadian north employ 'motionlessness' as very effective camouflage to avoid being detected by predators, despite the fact that they are in the open, exposed and otherwise unprotected. A moving hare, regardless of whether blending into the white backdrop of snow or not, is easily picked up by a hungry wolf, whereas one that is out in the open (against a snow background) may be entirely missed if it is motionless (as long as it is downwind of the predator). There is an apt analogue here for cyclists: a cyclist presenting a moving image to a motorist stands a markedly improved chance of being spotted at an intersection, as opposed to one that is moving slowly to an even stop. The 'weaving' motion you recommend augments any motion that a motorist may possibly pick up on, thereby exponentially increasing the odds of being seen.

    Tricks like that are invaluable if one wants to avoid ending up stuffed into the grill of a distracted motorist and many times they are not obvious to the average cyclist unless brought to his attention by an experienced cyclist such as yourself.

    In aviation we have a phrase that supports this wiser advice: "See and be seen". Motion increases the chance of being seed. Good on yah for offering up this nugget if wise motorcycling!

    One last thing: I spent many years in high-speed ADC jet fighter operations (with Convair F-106A/B 'Delta Darts'), often reaching beyond Mach 2.0 and 60,000 feet. Accordingly, at age 73, I've literally 'been there and done that', in terms of speed and extremes of travel. I know from those experiences that speed is greatly overrated and that once the youthful male hormones that promote needless preoccupations with speed (and fast maneuvering) have been worked through, one comes to an awareness that it is far more important, not to mention more pleasing and satisfying, to slow down and enjoy the ride. 'Stop to smell the flowers' is not just an old chestnut of archaic wisdom; it actually has substantial benefits. Case in point, my most formidable current machine is a Kawa Ninja that is rated at about 0-60 in 2.5 or so seconds. My previous 'suicycle' was a Yammy FZR1000 that had similarly insane capabilities. Despite this ability to meet God in less than 3 seconds flat, I am perfectly content to ride moderately and value person safety (for myself and others) far more than the ability to exceed Warp Factor 7.

    Thanks for taking the safety of your fellow cyclists as seriously as you do! I wish we had far more people like you on two-wheels! Again, paraphrasing another apt aviation aphorism: "There are old bikers and bold bikers, but few old, bold bikers".
     
    Franz and Toomanybikes like this.
  4. Franz

    Franz Active Member

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    Yes my father who was a Police officer used to say learn how the Police motorcyclists stay alive. A short course is run by the Fire Service free in the UK is Biker Down for accident management etc.
     
  5. Polock

    Polock Well-Known Member

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    it's better to be down here, wishing you were up there, than to be up there, wishing you were down here
     
  6. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Ill probaly be down there wishing I was up here
     

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