Monday, August 23, 2010

Part 2 - Let It Rain - Riding Motorcycles When It's Wet

Tip #5 Ride behind one of the rear wheels of the car in front of you.
This has two benefits, first if the guy in front of you stops suddenly you will be able to swerve to a side and get a few more feet of braking distance (which you'll need).
The second benefit is, remember that watery sludge that we described above? The car's wheel in front of you basically acts like a plow pushing all of the water on the road out of the way for a brief period of time. Take advantage of that (slightly) dryer pavement!

Tip #6 Unsure about traction? Test it!
As it should be, traction is usually any rider's biggest concern in the rain. Surprisingly though, wet pavement can offer significantly more traction than some riders think. If you're concerned about traction, take a few seconds to test it.
While riding at a moderate speed on a straight, level surface, feel for how much traction you have with your rear wheel (not your front!) by trying to lock it up. You are not trying to do a 50 ft skid here, just a brief test to see how much traction you really have.

Tip #7 Use a full face helmet, or buy a detachable face shield.
Rain drop's hurt at 50 mph. In fact, you will think it's hailing. If you ride with an open face helmet you'll want to get something to protect your face. I always carry a bandanna and cover my face with it in the rain.
Don't get caught with nothing to cover up with, you will be pink in the face by the end of that ride (and I'm not speaking figuratively here).

Tip #8 The Rule of One Action.
I know that you are a very complicated person, but in the rain, you need to be a very simple person. Specifically, in the rain, you should think about your tires and what I call the rule of "One Action." What do I mean by "One Action"?
In normal conditions, we put our tires through many different stresses (or actions):
We accelerate while turning. (two actions)
We downshift while coming into a turn. (two actions)
Shifting weight while turning and accelerating (three actions)
In the rain, you should focus on only putting your tires through one action at a time.
In other words, accelerate (one action) after you make a turn (one action). Downshift (one action) before you start to turn (one action). Etc. Don't combine actions on your tires together in the rain. Less tension on your tires in the rain is going to result in better traction.

I'm sure there are more great tips out there for riding motorcycles in the rain, these are the main ones I follow while riding when it's wet out.
To say the least, rain is no longer my kryptonite after taking these tips to heart!
I hope that you'll find that riding in the rain safely is quite doable and even enjoyable if you get the right gear, stay sharp, and pay attention to your surroundings.

Article taken from

No comments:

Post a Comment