Bad Brain - Star Motorcycle Forums: Star Raider, V-Max, V-Star, Road-Star Forum
  • 2 Post By KCW
  • 1 Post By Diogenes415
  • 5 Post By KCW
  • 3 Post By Keith Post
  • 2 Post By Scrumdown
  • 1 Post By NGM
  • 2 Post By KCW
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-13-2018, 08:02 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
Highwayman's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Posts: 360
Bad Brain

I seem to be developing an unhealthy and irrational fear that's causing me to do things I shouldn't be doing. A couple of times this year I went heavy on the rear brake and fishtailed. I understand what happened but the thought creeped into my feeble mind that my rear tire is slippery. It's not, it has about 800 miles on it and I check pressure frequently. With my new found paranoia I'm putting my brakes on or slowing down in turns. Not good.

For mad scientists who keep brains in jars, here’s a tip: why not add a slice of lemon to each jar, for freshness?
Highwayman is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-13-2018, 08:25 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 5,097
In the MSF course the instructor recommended we practice two things everytime we ride.

One is to pick a spot in the road and swerve around it - like a manhole cover, to get our avoidance skills to become muscle memory.

The other is to stop harder than you need to when there is no one behind you. Not that you have to bring the tires to the edge of a skid, just be more aggressive than you need to. Again: when there is no one behind you.

I do this ever day that I ride, and still sometimes I lock up the rear tire and it surprises me.

If you are feeling uncomfortable in curves, then slow down a bit more and have a bit more fun powering out of the end of the curve. Also practice pulling the curve in tighter in your lane, or letting it go a bit wider when you are halfway thru the curve, by pushing the grips to move the bike left and right in your lane. Unless the roads are wet with fresh rain you will not slide out your tires on a cruiser bike, the pegs will hit first, then the frame - so you will have plenty of warning that you are leaning too far.

Practicing your riding skills gives you confidence in your ability to handle anything the road throws at you, and the increased confidence makes the ride more enjoyable.
eruby and cokerb like this.

Last edited by KCW; 06-13-2018 at 09:38 AM.
KCW is offline  
post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-13-2018, 08:30 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 909
I know of what you speak and my suggestion is to head for a large empty parking lot with no one around and start throwing that bike around. Build up speed as confidence increases and get the pegs scraping. You'll be back up to speed in no time.
Keith Post likes this.
Diogenes415 is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-13-2018, 08:32 AM
lesblank's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 4,050
I would check the brake pads for glazing. Brake pads will glaze over at times and affect braking effectivity. When brakes get glazed over they become "grabby". Brakes normally have a progressive feel when applied and glazed brakes will have a more grab feel to them. A simple light sanding of brake pads will knock the glazing off and should work much smoother if this is your issue. Good luck and keep us posted.

2001 Vstar 1100 Classic (sold), Cobra Slash Cut full exhaust, Dropped 1 inch with lowering links, ORK, 4.5 inch handlebar risers, Ultimate passenger seat, Passenger pegs moved forward 4 inches, Handlebar clock, KN air filter, Viking saddlebags, Additional rear lighting
Loose nut "me" behind the bars
2006 Harley Electra Glide Ultra Classic
lesblank is online now  
post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-13-2018, 08:46 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 5,097
regarding brakes, in another thread I forget who recommended wiping down your rotors with acetone. I did this over the weekend and after 5 years the screech in my front brake is finally gone!

The rotors looked clean when I started, but a lot of black stuff came off with the acetone. Just be careful, dont get it on your tires or your paint.

I suppose it might be good to pull the caliper off and wipe down the pads with the stuff too.
Keith Post, Elk, lesblank and 2 others like this.
KCW is offline  
post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-13-2018, 09:35 AM
Keith Post's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 5,815
I also like to head to a large parking lot and practice some of the basics I learned in my MSF course. With school being out, there’s several lots available. I constantly try to work on my u-turns and gain confidence. With living in a rural area, there’s lots of little critters that like to run out in front of you from either side of the shoulder of the road.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
lesblank, KCW and nurtaeff like this.
Keith Post is online now  
post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-13-2018, 09:58 AM
Senior Member
Scrumdown's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: Poquoson, VA
Posts: 902
PRACTICE! That is the way to remove those "bad brain" moments. Like KCW and other have said, do one action while riding to commit it to muscle memory.

One thing I do when I ride is tell myself " commands." EX: When I go into turns and corners at speed, I say ... "Look, push, lean." Look thru the turn. Push forward on the hand grip. Lean into the turn. AND (this is where i am glad I have many voices in my head) I say ... You may scrape and it is OK. Don't freak!

Also, as mentioned in another thread. Always have an escape plan or two ready.

One of the main reason I find riding so fun is ... It allows my brain to focus on figuring out 2 tasks at the same time. Pick the best one. Try to execute that one as best as I can, but be ready at a moments notice to call an audible.
Keith Post and nurtaeff like this.

No matter what you ride. Just ride!
Scrumdown is online now  
post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-13-2018, 11:07 AM
Lifetime Premium
NGM's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: N Florida
Posts: 1,155
I agree with all of the above.. I have gone from nervous about avoiding things or braking in a curve to making it a game.. A safe game.. While going down the road I like to flick the bike around man hole covers. (Also if you do this if one is open you don't hit it but that is another story). Even as I just go down the road I will flick the bike around marks in the road or patches. If there are a lot of man hole covers I slalom them. As for the braking an empty parking lot is your friend. That way there is a lot less of a chance a car slipped in behind you when practicing the panic stops. As for braking in a curve, if you feel you are coming into the curve too fast do not freak.. you got this.. Make sure to look through the curve, drag the back brake some and lower your throttle to slow down. Do not touch the front unless you are upright. Then once in the apex of the curve apply power and let off the brake. Sail through it dragging a peg and enjoy the looks of the cages behind you as you look like a champ scraping the peg and throwin some sparks at them.
Scrumdown likes this.

No matter where you go there you are. - Buckaroo Banzai
NGM is offline  
post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-13-2018, 11:37 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 5,097
When you are riding on mostly straight roads and come up on a sweeping curve, doing the 'outside-inside-outside' approach and exit has the added benefit that as you are still on the straight part of the road you are moving over in your lane to start the curve on the outside of your lane.

It acts like an easement into the curve, so you are not going straight straight straight straight TURN!

Its all one big smooth sweeping motion...
nurtaeff and Scrumdown like this.

Last edited by KCW; 06-13-2018 at 11:40 AM.
KCW is offline  
Sponsored Links

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Star Motorcycle Forums: Star Raider, V-Max, V-Star, Road-Star Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome