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Thread: Simple but brilliant tip

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  1. #1
    Kbiker BCKRider's Avatar
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    Simple but brilliant tip

    This was originally posted by AKsuited in "Crash Chronicles" and thought it deserved a wider audience:

    "Sometimes when I stop for a traffic light, the bike wants to tip to the right. Since I'm using my right foot on the brake, I'll turn the handlebars to the right as I stop to force the bike to tip to the left, instead."

    When I read that I thought WHAT COULD BE MORE OBVIOUS? Perhaps I am the only one on this forum who didn't get that idea about two days after the first MSF course. But I didn't, and have frequently had to poke down my right foot while I re-squeezed the front brake lever, and felt rather incompetent in this simplest of maneuvers.

    If you are one of those who isn't quite sure which direction the bike will lean when you come to a stop - learn. The rest of you can have a good laugh at my expense. It IS pretty funny that I never thought of "counter-steering" in this light before.
    Doug
    1992 K100RS

  2. #2
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    I'm a both-feet-down-at-a-stop kinda guy, so this isn't an issue for me.
    Royce
    On the coast of Kansas
    2012 F800ST

  3. #3
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BCKRider View Post
    Since I'm using my right foot on the brake ...
    Because every stop is uphill?
    Kent Christensen
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    '12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S

  4. #4
    Registered User AKsuited's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
    Because every stop is uphill?
    1 Because I was taught to always stop with my left foot down, in the BRC. They teach that for a reason.

    2 Because when you do stop on a hill, you have to stop with your left foot down so that your right foot is on the rear brake. In a recent group ride, I saw 3 bikes tip over because their riders didn't do this correctly. If you haven't developed the habit of stopping and putting only your left foot down, then it's too late to learn this when you do stop on a hill.

    3 You may not have any hills where you live, but you will encounter them in your travels...

    Thanks, Doug.

    Harry
    2003 R1150RT - Silver

  5. #5
    Cam Killer marchyman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKsuited View Post
    1 Because I was taught to always stop with my left foot down...
    Excuse me while I climb up on this soapbox.

    Always? Really? When stopped sideways on an incline with the left side being the downhill side? Anyone who always does something the same way is someone guaranteed to do the wrong thing in some given circumstance. How about instead of following blind rules we teach people to use some common sense?

    OK, I've climbed off the soapbox. I usually stop with my left foot down, depending upon the surrounding terrain.

  6. #6
    Registered User AKsuited's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marchyman View Post
    Excuse me while I climb up on this soapbox.

    Always? Really?
    I guess you missed the part of me watching 3 bikes fall over on my last ride. In all cases, it was in a driveway. In the first, it was a turn into a driveway with a steep pitch. Because the rider did not stop with his foot on the rear brake, the bike rolled backwards and over it went. On the second two, it was again a driveway where there there were bikes trying to exit from a gravel drive and trying to merge with other bikes on the road. Two of them tipped over due to a lack of bike handling skill, which again was caused by not having right foot on rear brake. They were trying to turn right, there was a steep pitch to the driveway and there was gravel. No foot on rear brake = bike on ground.

    Again, the MSF teaches stopping with your left foot down for a reason.

    I don't recall ever having a situation where stopping with my right foot on the brake caused a problem. I've also got 36" inseam legs...

    Harry
    2003 R1150RT - Silver

  7. #7
    rabid reader dbrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKsuited View Post
    I guess you missed the part of me watching 3 bikes fall over on my last ride. In all cases, it was in a driveway. In the first, it was a turn into a driveway with a steep pitch. Because the rider did not stop with his foot on the rear brake, the bike rolled backwards and over it went. On the second two, it was again a driveway where there there were bikes trying to exit from a gravel drive and trying to merge with other bikes on the road. Two of them tipped over due to a lack of bike handling skill, which again was caused by not having right foot on rear brake. They were trying to turn right, there was a steep pitch to the driveway and there was gravel. No foot on rear brake = bike on ground.
    All demonstrating various rider errors unrelated to left foot down.

    Again, the MSF teaches stopping with your left foot down for a reason.
    I taught MSF for 10 years. The MSF stopping curriculum demands rear brake use, and reasonably so because using the back brake is indeed steadying while stoppiing. But the requirement that the rider press the rear brake pedal while stopping means the curriculum was created for bikes without integrated brakes; on BMWs from this century, the front brake lever applies both brakes. I only use the rear brake pedal in very tight very slow speed turns.

    I've also got 36" inseam legs...
    That'd certainly help in situations where the surface slants off to the left. For me, with way shorter legs, if I want a foot down on a left-slanting surface, it'll be the right one. I find no trouble in manipulating the throttle and the front brake lever at the same time with my right hand.

    I'm with Marc on this one: I also usually stop left-foot down...but not always.
    Last edited by dbrick; 07-01-2013 at 11:46 PM.
    David Brick
    Santa Cruz CA
    2007 R1200R

  8. #8
    advrider.com
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKsuited View Post
    I guess you missed the part of me watching 3 bikes fall over on my last ride. In all cases, it was in a driveway. In the first, it was a turn into a driveway with a steep pitch. Because the rider did not stop with his foot on the rear brake, the bike rolled backwards and over it went. On the second two, it was again a driveway where there there were bikes trying to exit from a gravel drive and trying to merge with other bikes on the road. Two of them tipped over due to a lack of bike handling skill, which again was caused by not having right foot on rear brake. They were trying to turn right, there was a steep pitch to the driveway and there was gravel.
    You have got to be kidding me. What a great reminder as to why I ride solo. Sounds like you should also consider it, or at least find some new riding partners.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by marchyman View Post
    Excuse me while I climb up on this soapbox.

    Always? Really? When stopped sideways on an incline with the left side being the downhill side? Anyone who always does something the same way is someone guaranteed to do the wrong thing in some given circumstance. How about instead of following blind rules we teach people to use some common sense?

    OK, I've climbed off the soapbox. I usually stop with my left foot down, depending upon the surrounding terrain.
    To add to that, if you ride in England/Scotland/Ireland on an old, crowned country road, when you stop you might not want to depend on your left foot.
    2012 BMW R1200RT
    2010 Triumph Bonneville

  10. #10
    Nickname: Droid
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    An earlier reply said he turns the bars slightly to cause the bike to lean in the direction of the downed foot. Got me to think about my technique, and I realized I actually have been doing this without really noticing it. But it is a great tip/technique to apply.

    Another way to apply the technique may be: slightly more palm pressure against the handlebar grip to coincide with the foot going down to support the bike at a stop. So, when the left foot goes down, press slightly more against the left grip. If the right foot goes down, press slightly more against the right grip.

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