I am so embarrassed

Listen!

I am so embarrassed! Well, actually I'm mad at myself. I managed to drop my motorcycle this evening coming into the underground parking garage at the apartment. SOON OFF AH BEACH! It was totally avoidable - completely the result of a really stupid mistake on my part. I've never liked the entrance to the garage. You have to go up/down a steep ramp going in/out, make a 90 degree turn inside the garage, vehicles going in/out use the same door and ramp, a vehicle at the top of the ramp coming in can't see a vehicle inside the garage coming out, and the top of the ramp is at a blind intersection on a 1-way street. This evening I stopped at the top of the ramp and opened the garage door and started down the ramp. I was going real slow down the ramp. I started to turn just as the front wheel was inside the door. That's when I dropped the bike. I tried to wrestle with it for a few seconds before realizing I had lost the fight. I said something about the sun and the beach, very loudly, more than once, then came to my senses and hit the kill switch. By that time the bike was down and gas was leaking out of the tank. It was laying on its right side. I was afraid the garage door was going to come down but it must have a sensor that detected something was under the door. I positioned myself on the right side of the bike with my back to the bike, squat down, grabbed hold of the right grip with my left hand, grabbed hold of the frame under the back wheel with my right hand, and pushed up with my legs. It wasn't that hard. It would have been harder if I wasn't on solid ground. Fortunately this happened at a dead slow, almost stopped speed, but I did a quick check for damage. The handle bar was still straight, the break lever wasn't bent or broken, the gas had stopped leaking, no damage to the radiator and nothing dangling down, so I got back on, started it back up and drove it to my parking space. My big mistake was to pull the clutch in half way down the ramp and coast the rest of the way. I was still coasting, dead slow, when I started the turn just inside the door. I think I hit the front break too. No power to the rear wheel and breaking while the bike was leaned over was enough to cause me to drop it. How embarrassing (maddening!) At least it happened at home instead of a more public place, at a dead slow speed, and there wasn't any damage. And, now I know that I can pick it up. Lessons learned: Always keep power to the rear wheel during a turn; never clutch or coast through a turn. Never use the break while the bike is leaned over; straighten the bike up before breaking. Don't look at the front tire; look at where you want the bike to go. See also: Does humidity affect judgment? My First Ride I buy a motorcycle and it starts raining! (updated) Motorcycle gear shift sequence Basic Motorcycle Rider Course

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Your mistake was Not a lack of power to the rear wheel, it was using your Front break.

No 1 Rule When SLOW RIDING: ONLY use the Back Break.

If you do the slow course, which I see you are or have been doing, then understand that cornering at speed and cornering slow require two different leans.

At speed, you lean in, when slow, you lean out.

Leaning out is hard to judge. So make a conscious effort to put knee pressure on the outside of the tank and weight on the outside footpeg.

And, as you guessed it... look where you are going not at the front wheel. You would be surprised how better the bike corners - at slow speed too - when you look to your destination.

Stay upright and ride within your capabilities.

Michael