Yamaha Starbike Forum banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
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.
 

·
Super Moderator "Loose Nut"
Joined
·
5,019 Posts
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.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
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?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,233 Posts
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.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
106 Posts
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!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
447 Posts
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.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,538 Posts
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.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
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?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
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.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
2,349 Posts
Glad you're ok, Matt. Like others have said, it's a hard lesson. I never ride mine aggressively because it's a cruiser and I don't want to ride that way. I hope you can get yours pieced back together and whatever decision you make, ride safe.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
So glad you are ok. That is scary. Know it had to be. I was riding with a group once that got really aggressive. I scraped my boards several times one of which badly scared me. Hope you get back on the road soon and stay safe.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Which HD did you Demo?
Before we bought our V-star 1300 we rode about 7 hours on a ultra classic I was not impressed with the cornering at all.
Sorry to hear you went down glad you are ok.
I touch boards riding with a passenger and gear. It doesn't matter what bike you have if there is crap on the road you are going down.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
386 Posts
That sucks. Been riding road bikes for a long time and have been down more times than I wanted that's for sure.
Here where I live, the intersections and some corners are horrible.
Tiny rocks are almost like ball bearings and have a sharp turn where I live where I have to creep around the corner.
Glad you are ok.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Which HD did you Demo?
I rode both the Street Bob and Heritage - both in the 2018 softtail line. I'm 6'3", so the street bob was terrible for me - I felt like my knees were in my armpits. Rode super smooth, and even though it didn't fit well, dipped into the corners really well. The Heritage had forward controls, and road and handled fantastic. So much so it's probably a good thing I knew in advance that my wife would have killed me if i came home with a new bike.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,094 Posts
As others have said, I am glad that you are ok. The 950 does have a very limited lean angle. I have learned what the tolerance is, I think. But your experience should be a reminder to me, to not push it.

Take it easy, be well, heal up, and get back on the horse, even if it's a different stallion.

Sent from my SM-S975L using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
447 Posts
If I did my math right, cause I didn't have an angle finder currently, so measured the 3 legs and calculated it out.

With my bike raised about 0.5 - 0.75", using progressive springs and a 4" spacer.

I should scrape when sitting on the bike at 16 degrees, and grind the footrest mounts at 24 degrees. I am getting a sag of 3/4" when I sit on the bike currently.

As I said before though, it wasn't that I leaned the bike more, that caused it to grind, but that in the turn a tire hits a hole, or rut from trucks taking the turn, that causes the clearance not to be there anymore.

Since I don't have the stock springs in it (I still have the stock springs and parts, but don't feel like putting them back in to calculate what the original angles where), I'm not going calculate those angles. I would imagine it would be around 15 degrees and 22degress likely.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
MattF,

Glad to hear you are OK....I will take note from your experience.....I am not use to a bike of this size ( my XV1900 ).......I have been riding an early 80's mid size cruiser for 35 + yrs. that had quite the lean angle.....

It will take some time to get use to my current ride......

Get back in the saddle when you can.....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,538 Posts
Measuring the drop in your suspension when you are sitting on the bike is deceptive.

When you take a corner the cornering forces on the bike load up the suspension more than when you are going straight.

It takes a considerable force to push your ~1000 lb loaded MC around a turn, and since the bike is leaning part of that force is pushed into your springs and loads them up.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top