Slow riding

General discussion of any issues that vaguely or not so vaguely relate to stuff about things that concern riding.

Moderator: BAM Moderators

Slow riding

Postby Mike Belch » Thu Jul 17, 2008 9:58 pm

My old IAM group (CVAM) visited Avon & Somerset Police headquarters last night for a slow riding evening. Robbie Downing and his fellow instructors had setup obstacles in the car park for us - exactly as they do for their police trainees.

Obstacle number 1 was a pair of cones. The challenge (not related to slow riding at all to be honest) was to accelerate across the car park then brake at the point of riding between the cones and stop as quickly as possible. Robbie got people to experiment with front-only, rear only, combined braking to see the effect it had on stopping distance. He also got those of us with switchable ABS to turn it off and try then. All in all an eye opening experience and something that I hope has made me a better rider.

Obstacle number 2 was a chalk circle on the tarmac. The challenge was to ride at walking pace inside the circle without stopping / putting a foot down. The trick is to keep high revs, feather the clutch and drag the back brake to keep the bike under control. Being on a R1150GS (big, heavy, but nimble) I had no problem with this, but with their help I was soon riding nearly 2 feet inside the line - something no other rider could achieve.

Obstacle number 3 was a slalom course through a line of cones. The technique was the same - low speed, high revs, clutch control and drag the back brake. Initially the cones were widely spaced apart. Some could do it some couldn't. Then they set the cones at the exact distance apart that police riders are expected to manage on a Pan or R1200RT. Again I had no problem with this so it then became a bit of a challenge with the cones getting closer and closer on each attempt. All the riders fell by the wayside on a varied collection of bikes ranging from a Triumph Rocket III, Harleys, a BWM K1200LT barge, Pans, various sportsbikes and naked bikes, and a F650GS. In the end, again with the instructors help and encouragement I was doing distances on the slalom that they thought impossible. I got quite a pat on the back from the instructors and rode home with a grin from ear to ear. More importantly I learned an awful lot about low speed handling on a bike and finished the evening a better rider.

I can heartily recommend it. I'm not sure if we could get Robbie to do it for us - if we don't ask we won't know, but if not then maybe it is something we can setup as a group. All we need is a fairly small area of tarmac and a few cones.

Mike
User avatar
Mike Belch
 
Posts: 253
Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2007 2:08 pm
Location: Cheddar

Re: Slow riding

Postby Evel Knievel » Thu Jul 17, 2008 11:44 pm

Mike Belch wrote:All we need is a fairly small area of tarmac and a few cones.


Hmmm, I wonder who could sort that out... :P
Too much "Oh sh!t" = Not enough "What if?"
User avatar
Evel Knievel
 
Posts: 1038
Joined: Sun Dec 10, 2006 5:14 pm
Location: Bristol, UK

Postby Rich.Frith » Fri Jul 18, 2008 7:59 am

I don't mind organising this as long as someone sends me Robbie's contact details. He used to work alongside my dad many moons ago and was keen to get me observing with CVAM before they went mental and decided they didn't want my services. :roll:
Rich.Frith
 
Posts: 16
Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2007 7:27 pm

Postby Al » Fri Jul 18, 2008 8:20 am

These slow speed riding courses are indeed absolutely invaluable. The Gloucestershire RoSPA (in collaboration with SAM) got Nigel Murray to do one a year or so ago and it was superb (I would have gone again this year if it wasn't for conflicting Severn Freewheelers duty).

They did similar things to those described by Mike, but also did:

Figure of 8 (essentially two chalk circles in the same vein as what Mike described).

Stop-and-go (bring the bike to a complete halt such that the suspension 'settles', then start moving again, without putting your feet down).

The 'M' (aka The 'W'). This is a fantastic (but rather challenging) manoeuvre that I try to get associates to do on the premise that if you can do this, you can do anything. The aim is to describe the shape of an 'M' in as small a space as possible. At the course, we had cones marking out the area allowed; I tend to just use car parking spaces. If you want to try this, find a car park with a lot of open spaces in two ranks (imagine two cars parked nose-to-tail) with at least five or six spaces wide. Then try to make an 'M' while staying completely within the area of those spaces. I can do it (just) in five spaces, but it isn't easy. In case that didn't make sense, have a look at this picture, maybe it will make it clearer:

Image
User avatar
Al
 
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 11:44 am

Postby Mike Belch » Fri Jul 18, 2008 8:56 am

Al wrote:The 'M' (aka The 'W'). This is a fantastic (but rather challenging) manoeuvre

I'll let you know how I get on when I practice it in Sainsbury's car park this afternoon.
User avatar
Mike Belch
 
Posts: 253
Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2007 2:08 pm
Location: Cheddar

Postby Horse » Mon Jul 21, 2008 1:45 pm

Al wrote: The 'M' (aka The 'W'). This is a fantastic (but rather challenging) manoeuvre that I try to get associates to do on the premise that if you can do this, you can do anything. The aim is to describe the shape of an 'M' in as small a space as possible.
Image


Walking speed, higher, or lower?
I assert my author rights: Copyright Design Patent Act 1988 may be quoted in Chain Link posts, but contacted for written consent before any other use/storage/transmission/recording

Argue with me: http://the-ride-info.blogspot.com
Horse
 
Posts: 410
Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2007 8:28 pm

Postby Al » Mon Jul 21, 2008 2:01 pm

Horse wrote:Walking speed, higher, or lower?


As slow, or as fast as you'd like to go...

In practice though, it is unlikely you'll do it any faster than a crawl.

I'd also be very impressed if anyone can pull it off on a sportsbike or a big tourer. I can do it comfortably on a Bandit and, having ridden an R1200GS a week or so ago, I reckon it'd be fairly easy on that as well. I've yet to try it on my Sprint ST though (it has a VERY big turning circle). I'll have to find some time to try it out sometime soon.

To be honest, the picture I posted isn't really that fair (it was made rather quickly). The manoeuvre is probably more like this (if you want to do it in as small a space as possible):

Image
User avatar
Al
 
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 11:44 am

Postby Mike Belch » Mon Jul 21, 2008 3:47 pm

Al wrote:I'd also be very impressed if anyone can pull it off on a sportsbike or a big tourer. I can do it comfortably on a Bandit and, having ridden an R1200GS a week or so ago, I reckon it'd be fairly easy on that as well.

If it were a good rider on a 1200GS then you could knock off at least one of the car parking spaces, that's assuming the GS doesn't break down first. But at least being in a big empty car park it would be easy to load it on the back of the RAC truck.

I'm told that at a previous CVAM event (they do this anually) the best performance was from a really short rider on a 1300 Pan (Dave Mason, for those of you in Freewheelers who know him) confirming that it is not just about the bike but also partly down to rider skill.
User avatar
Mike Belch
 
Posts: 253
Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2007 2:08 pm
Location: Cheddar

Postby Al » Mon Jul 21, 2008 3:58 pm

Mike Belch wrote:I'm told that at a previous CVAM event (they do this anually) the best performance was from a really short rider on a 1300 Pan (Dave Mason, for those of you in Freewheelers who know him) confirming that it is not just about the bike but also partly down to rider skill.


At the RoSPA session there was a bloke on a GSX1400 who did all the manoeuvres as if he were on a CG125. Impressive enough as it was, but he did them with a pillion.
User avatar
Al
 
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 11:44 am

Postby Evel Knievel » Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:42 pm

Al wrote:I can do it comfortably on a Bandit


Perhaps you'd be interested in helping out at this event...?
Too much "Oh sh!t" = Not enough "What if?"
User avatar
Evel Knievel
 
Posts: 1038
Joined: Sun Dec 10, 2006 5:14 pm
Location: Bristol, UK

Postby Evel Knievel » Sat Nov 08, 2008 1:17 pm

Image

Received a voicemail message this morning from a member (who shall remain nameless) who was out practising this manouvre in a car park and was struggling.

I wonder if they were doing it within 5 car parking spaces, or 5 x 2 car spaces...? The former would surely be impossible on most big bikes...!?
Too much "Oh sh!t" = Not enough "What if?"
User avatar
Evel Knievel
 
Posts: 1038
Joined: Sun Dec 10, 2006 5:14 pm
Location: Bristol, UK

Re: Slow riding

Postby Horse » Sat Nov 08, 2008 1:47 pm

Mike Belch wrote: Obstacle number 2 was a chalk circle on the tarmac.


What size circle?

Mike Belch wrote: The trick is to keep high revs, feather the clutch and drag the back brake to keep the bike under control. Being on a R1150GS (big, heavy, but nimble) I had no problem with this, but with their help I was soon riding nearly 2 feet inside the line - something no other rider could achieve.


:) Well done.

Have you seen the 'Ride Like A Pro' web site and DVDs?

They're based on uS police training techniques, and by Jerry Palladino. Well worth a watch, there's vid on the site & Youtube too.

http://www.ridelikeapro.com/html/videos.htm

http://ridelikeapro.com/html/practice_guideHome.htm
I assert my author rights: Copyright Design Patent Act 1988 may be quoted in Chain Link posts, but contacted for written consent before any other use/storage/transmission/recording

Argue with me: http://the-ride-info.blogspot.com
Horse
 
Posts: 410
Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2007 8:28 pm

Postby Evel Knievel » Sat Nov 08, 2008 4:08 pm

Horse, you are a legend. By posting that, you've just saved me an hour preparing notes for tomorrow's slow riding day. Thanks !! :lol: :lol:
Too much "Oh sh!t" = Not enough "What if?"
User avatar
Evel Knievel
 
Posts: 1038
Joined: Sun Dec 10, 2006 5:14 pm
Location: Bristol, UK

Postby Mike Belch » Sat Nov 08, 2008 5:10 pm

By the end of the morning everyone is expected to be at the standard demonstrated below:

<object width="425" height="344"><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/bWaq0zOaAVU&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>
User avatar
Mike Belch
 
Posts: 253
Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2007 2:08 pm
Location: Cheddar

Postby WhiteBeak » Sat Nov 08, 2008 6:11 pm

Evel Knievel wrote:Received a voicemail message this morning from a member (who shall remain nameless) who was out practising this manouvre in a car park and was struggling.


Yeah, that was me and I was tearing my hair out with frustration, only having a mental note of the requirement and unable to complete the manoeuvre to terminate facing out of the parking space ! No way in 5 spaces... he says challengingly.

On return, I see that the requirement is to finish facing inwards.. can do that !

I had some very strange looks at Marks & Spencer's this morning 8)
WhiteBeak
 
Posts: 545
Joined: Mon May 21, 2007 6:51 pm
Location: Armchair keyboard motorcyclist with Sellotaped paper licence:-)

Next

Return to Advanced Riding Issues

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

cron