Motorcycle Forums » Biker Chat

The Dynamics of Steering a Motorcycle

    • 5418 posts
    May 21, 2012 2:44 AM PDT
    We have all gotten and given plenty of advice on turning a motorcycle, and most of us who have been riding for a while know what happens to the bike as we do different things in a turn (hopefully).  But this gets a little more into the science of why.

    I found it pretty interesting myself!


    • 1 posts
    May 21, 2012 4:18 AM PDT
    alot of information, to digest in one sitting...would be good to watch it a few times and go out after each viewing to practise what the video says. Or just go do an advanced rider course. Problems I see alot of and experience myself is getting distracted whilst riding, rather than pulling up and having a sticky beak. Trying to accomplish two things at once..and thats a recipe for disaster on unfamiliar roads.
    • 3004 posts
    May 21, 2012 5:18 AM PDT
    Good post Lucky,
    I throughly enjoyed seeing the actual science behind how steering and rider input can create a great ride, or lack of create a poor riding experience. Also I liked the part about how the riders often get the wrong input from others on how counter steering works.This video is a must see for those just starting out n learning the dynamics of whats going on while steering the bike.
    • 0 posts
    May 21, 2012 10:19 AM PDT
    Jonesy has it right. This is the basics taught at the advanced riders course. You counter steer to upset the balance of the bike and then steer into the turn to balance the falling over against centrifugal force, or in simple terms push the bar in the way you wish to go.
    Most people are not really aware of the capability of the bike. It will do a lot more that most riders are capable of doing. A perfect example is a friend of mine that went into a corner too hot and was dragging all kind of parts, to the point of picking the rear tire off the road. He bailed and kicked the bike away and slid to a stop in the middle of the road and watched his bike straighten itself up and continue on down the road without him. It went straight until the road curved and still going straight, went off the road and through the tree's.
    • 6 posts
    May 21, 2012 10:46 AM PDT
    Good post, motorcycles are very capable tools if you give them their head.
    Watched a former State Police M/C instructor & active duty Trooper put their cycles thru the paces - Keeping the floor boards dragging while stilting  bolt upright the whole time



    Jonesy1340
    wrote...
    .   .   .   .   .  .   .Problems I see alot of and experience myself is getting distracted whilst riding, rather than pulling up and having a sticky beak. Trying to accomplish two things at once..and thats a recipe for disaster on unfamiliar roads.

    I am afraid to ask but what is a "sticky break"?  Think I left those behind in 1st few years of marriage & even then never on a motorcycle

    • 5418 posts
    May 21, 2012 10:54 AM PDT
    Well the basics of turning are the same riding at safe street speeds or at track speed. Just because you know the basics of turning a motorcycle properly doesn't mean you should push your limits, especially on the street.. I spent YEARS as an amateur and pro racer and even I don't push the limits on the street.

    Also, please remember this is NOT an instuctional video and wasn't menat to be.  There is a lot more info needed to learn how to ride and turn properly.  This video only shows what the science is behind what you are doing when you turn.

    • 1 posts
    May 21, 2012 11:14 AM PDT
    Sorry Savage, I got to watch what I post....a sticky beak is having a look at something. Although usually a sticky beak is your ol neighbour who never misses anything you do at home...cause she's always watching everyone's business.
    • Moderator
    • 17165 posts
    May 21, 2012 2:23 PM PDT
    Crap, I have slow internet again and can't get through it. I did bookmark it for next time I have good connections.
  • May 21, 2012 3:42 PM PDT
    I'm glad Lucky put this one up. Once I'd learned this it made twisties a lot more enjoyable, and safer. Keith Code writes articles like this for Motorcyclist Magazine.
    • 835 posts
    May 31, 2012 3:28 AM PDT
    Very interesting stuff
  • May 31, 2012 5:13 AM PDT
    "Chicken Strips", I'm so glad to see it some where else LOL!. This is more geared toward the sport bike rider, however it have a host of helpful thoughts. Besides the ERC I also found this information in David Hugh's books Proficient Motorcycling, and Street Survival. There is alot of bad habits that are shared between riders, and its good know some of the dynamics involved in corners. Most of all is comon sense if ya can't ride an on or off ramp with out holding traffic up, its time to learn and practice techs of turns, for by far on some of this nations roads in the higher elevations is not the time to try and learn how to do curvey twisty roads......
  • June 1, 2012 4:58 AM PDT
    Great information. Counter steering will lean your bike for you. Don't be afraid to lean is what I tell myself over and over again. If I live long enough, maybe one day I will get it.
  • June 1, 2012 5:25 AM PDT
    well actuall its about throttle control, braking, and pressure on the grips or handle bars if you will.........and what will get you the best cornering and how it effects control and exactly not what to do............"T"
  • June 14, 2012 5:44 AM PDT
    Very interesting video
  • June 14, 2012 11:51 AM PDT
    Interesting video! I wish I was 25 years younger and had one of them rice burners. They really look like alot of fun.
    • 6 posts
    June 14, 2012 1:02 PM PDT
    wheels wrote...
    Interesting video! I wish I was 25 years younger and had one of them rice burners. They really look like alot of fun.
    Fine to have a rocket but a good rider can do breathtaking things with a cruiser/bagger. - Got to see a couple of State Police instructors put some honking big scooters thru their paces and realized most riders do not take their rides to 30% capacity
    • 846 posts
    June 15, 2012 8:39 AM PDT
    Lucy thanks for the post, very informative.

    Savage you had a great point it this is useful to even the cruiser/bagger. I've seen what the local LEO can do with there bikes like mine and it amazing. That is as long as the sound of the floor boards scraping doesn't get to you.