Went down last Sunday - Star Motorcycle Forums: Star Raider, V-Max, V-Star, Road-Star Forum
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-05-2017, 10:45 PM Thread Starter
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Went down last Sunday

I was out with a local riding club this past Sunday, and unfortunately, went down during the ride. This was on my 2012 V-Star 950.

It was on a twisty mountain road. I was in #2 position behind the leader in a sizable group of about 15 bikes. I had scraped the floorboards a couple of times on the ride up to the point of where the accident occurred. I was pushing harder than I should have been - a little past my comfort level, not wanting to hold up the entire group behind me. The floorboard scraping was really getting into my head, and on a left hand sweeping turn, I just simply didn't get into it hard enough. I knew I wasn't going to make it, and as soon as the front tire hit a bunch of loose leaves and dirt on the edge of the road, the bike slid, and slipped out from under me. The bike behind me was unable to stop or go around, and ended up driving over my right leg with his front tire, but stopped before back tire went over. Somehow - my leg is fine. It was stuck under his bike and it took a minute for me to get my leg out from underneath.

Shook me up pretty bad, but almost no injury, just a few bruises and extremely minor road rash.

The bike itself sustained very minor damage. The helmet was scraped on the left side, and I really don't have any idea how hard it hit - so it's getting replaced. The incident was about 40 miles from home, and I was able to ride home without further incident. The handlebars are twisted a bit and need replaced, and the clutch cable stretched and several strands of the cable where it connects at the clutch lever broke, but more than half are still there. A few days earlier, I had just finished painting the batwing fairing to match the bike, and hadn't installed it yet because I'm waiting for the paint to cure so I can cut and polish, so thankfully that wasn't on the bike. The bike is parked and won't be ridden again until repairs are complete which will take a couple weeks because the shop is backed up and won't have the time to get to it until then.

The accident is absolutely 100% my fault. At the same time, I've never been comfortable with the reduced lean angle of the bike, and I very much doubt there would have been a problem if I had been on a different bike. Just the day before the accident, a local HD dealership had a demo day, and I rode a few of their bikes, and just in the little bit that I rode, I knew the available lean angle was there, and I was just much more comfortable.

I'll have to see how I feel when I get back on the road, but I'm seriously considering whether this is the right bike for me. I love so much about the bike. The way I react to the reduced lean angle may make it not a safe machine for me to operate.

2012 V-Star 950 (Ultimate Seat and Backrest, Cobra Slip On, Cobra PowerFlo Intake, Cobra PowerPro FMS, Klevver clutch, LidLox, Batwing Fairing w/7" windshield, Viking HardSide bags)
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-05-2017, 10:57 PM
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Really glad you are ok. Every bike and rider has a limit which it sounds like you exceeded. To me the V* is a great cruiser and not a sport bike. I've ridden mine to the limit several time and realized that it's not designed for that style of riding. I choose now to ride within the bikes limits and enjoy every second of it. Good luck on your recovery and keep us posted on your bike decision.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-06-2017, 05:31 AM
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That's an unnerving experience for sure but I'm glad you got through it OK.
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-06-2017, 06:03 AM
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Glad to hear you didn't get injured. Countless times I've narrowly avoided such accidents myself and got sparks from under the floorboards. It makes me nervous riding unknown, winding roads. Does anyone know if lean angle can be increased by replacing floorboards with pegs? Or are they fixed like that because bike itself is not stable if leaned pass this level?
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-06-2017, 07:59 AM
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I along with everyone else am glad you're ok and minimal damage to your bike. I went from a 650 to the 950 and noticed a difference in lean angle between both bikes. Again I'm glad you are alright.


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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-06-2017, 08:39 AM
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Glad you're ok! I went down on some loose gravel a number of years ago and luckily only damaged the bike. It can be quite traumatic and make you nervous! Glad you were able to get home!
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-06-2017, 08:40 AM
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Glad everything is mostly fine.

When I installed the progressive springs in the front forks of mine, instead of using a 3.5" spacer, I used 4" spacer on it. This raised my bike 3/4" from the stock springs that where in it. I used 10W fork oil set to 5" below the top. I have only scrapped once or twice since then, but I have also mostly adjusted my riding style also. Most noticable is now my jack fits under it, without me having to set the bike straight, but it can just slide under it while still on the kickstand. My goal here was only alittle bit of wanting the raise the bike up, but was mostly from I like my shocks on the firm side.

Before this, I scraped the footrests on almost every turn. But where the ride was not smooth, but rutted out from trucks on the turns, I would scrape the frame, and that is no good.
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-06-2017, 08:58 AM
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Matt,

Experience is a cruel teacher: first you are tested, then you are given the lesson.

If you want to ride more like a sports bike then definitely get a sports bike. There is nothing wrong with one over the other. Cruiser bikes have the front end raked and trailed to be hands-off stable and to take a long sweeping curves when you are well... cruising.

If there is one thing for readers to take away from your experience is riding where you feel comfortable and not letting someone else's ego get the best of you. Group rides are notorious for this, every person has a different skill and experience level, and no one wants to slow down to the comfort level of the least experienced rider.

And by the way, the guy that ran you over was not in control of his bike, he was going too fast for his abilities if he could not avoid you.
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-06-2017, 12:21 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by patrickdk View Post
Before this, I scraped the footrests on almost every turn. But where the ride was not smooth, but rutted out from trucks on the turns, I would scrape the frame, and that is no good.
I'm not sure how you might be able to answer this in a meaningful way, but how much further do you lean after starting to scrape the boards do you start hitting the frame?

2012 V-Star 950 (Ultimate Seat and Backrest, Cobra Slip On, Cobra PowerFlo Intake, Cobra PowerPro FMS, Klevver clutch, LidLox, Batwing Fairing w/7" windshield, Viking HardSide bags)
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-06-2017, 01:54 PM
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Good to hear you are OK. I was on a ride with 2 H-D Ultra Glides, a Gold Wing and a older Suzuki Intruder 1400. We were on the twisties and I was in the rear. While trying to keep up, I scraped my floor boards a couple times. Scares the be'Jesus out of me. I have this fear it will catch and I will pogo on the board. I know they pivot up and have replaceable pieces on the bottom but it's still pretty scary. I was totally comfortable with the lean right up to the scrape. I slowed. Since I was in the rear, I didn't hold anyone up. Just twisted the right hand a little more on the straights.

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